Monday, October 31, 2011

Black Licorice: Dangerous Candy

Eat too much candy and you’ll be sorry. Eat too much black licorice, and you could be dead.
This creepy Halloween warning comes from the FDA. Too much black licorice, the federal agency says, can lead to “abnormal heart rhythms, as well as high blood pressure, edema (swelling), lethargy, and congestive heart failure.”
How much is too much? The FDA warns people age 40 and older not to eat 2 ounces of black licorice a day for two weeks or more.
And that’s a conservative warning. The NIH has warned that it’s “possibly unsafe” to eat just 1 ounce of black licorice a day for several weeks. In addition to the FDA’s list of drastic possible too-much-licorice results, the NIH adds paralysis, brain damage, and erectile dysfunction.
And if you eat a lot of salt, if you have high blood pressure, or if you have heart or kidney disease, the NIH says as little as a sixth of an ounce of licorice a day could cause these problems.
The issue, well known to many forms of traditional medicine, is that licorice root contains a drug: glycyrrhizin.
Many of those who use licorice as an herbal remedy seek relief of sore throat, cough, infections, arthritis, lupus, or chronic fatigue syndrome. It’s been used to treat all kinds of ailments ranging from muscle cramps to prostate cancer, although there’s no solid scientific evidence that it actually works.
But the potential side effects are real enough. That’s because licorice — real black licorice, not the phony licorice-flavored stuff flavored with anise oil — causes a drop in potassium levels. It may also mimic the activity of the female sex hormone estrogen.
The NIH advises women NOT to eat black licorice while they are pregnant or breast feeding. People with hormone sensitive conditions, such as breast cancer or endometriosis, should avoid licorice.

Soft drink makers target U.S. youth

U.S. children and teenagers are seeing far more soda advertising than before, with blacks and Hispanics the major targets, as marketers have expanded online, according to a study released on Monday.
The report from the Yale University Rudd Center for Food Policy & Obesity also said many fruit and energy drinks, which are popular with teenagers, have as much added sugar and as many calories as regular soda.
"Our children are being assaulted by these drinks that are high in sugar and low in nutrition," said Yale's Kelly Brownell, co-author of the report. "The companies are marketing them in highly aggressive ways."
Children's and teens' exposure to full-calorie soda ads on television doubled from 2008 to 2010, fueled by increases from Coca-Cola Co and Dr Pepper Snapple Group Inc , the report found.
Children were exposed to 22 percent fewer ads for sugary PepsiCo Inc drinks, it said.
Black children and teens saw 80 percent to 90 percent more ads than white children, including twice as many for the 5-Hour Energy drink and Coca-Cola's vitamin water and Sprite.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Can eating slowly help weight loss?

A new 'flab lab' is investigating whether eating more slowly could help people to lose weight.

The unit, at University Hospital Coventry, is Europe's most advanced whole body calorimeter, and measures how much energy the body is using.

The BBC's Health Correspondent, Jane Hughes, meets lead researcher, Dr Tom Barber, to find out more about the lab.

Watch the video

Quarter of Scots 'obese', health survey says

More than a quarter of adults in Scotland are obese, according to official figures.

Statistics from the Scottish Health Survey suggested 27% of people between the ages of 16 and 64 were obese in 2010.

The Scottish Health Survey said it continued the upward trend from just 17% in 1995.

The survey, produced for the Scottish government, said it was predicted that obesity rates could reach 40% by 2030.

The figure for the number of adults deemed to be overweight (with a body mass index greater than 25) was now 65%, the survey said.

The percentage of overweight men (67.8%) was significantly higher than women (62.4%).

The survey follows the launch of the government's action plan to tackle obesity in March.

Read more

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Is your diet good for your skin?

Sure, your diet keeps your body slim and healthy, but its impact doesn't stop there.

The food you eat -- from wrinkle-fighting antioxidants in fruits and vegetables to hydrating healthy fats in fish -- may matter to your skin almost as much as it does to your waistline.

Is your way of noshing helping or hurting your complexion? We asked top docs for their take on the face-friendliness of six popular diets.

Read on to see if yours passes the beauty test, and find out how you can alter what you eat for A-plus skin.

Read more

Desperate to qualify for weight loss surgery, some pile on the pounds

At 202 pounds, Steffany Sears knew she was fat, but not fat enough to qualify for traditional weight-loss surgery.

Desperate for help, the Gold Bar, Wash., woman did what seemed the only logical thing: She gorged herself on chips and cookies, pizza and fried chicken so she’d gain at least eight pounds more.

I would have eaten myself stupid,” recalled Sears, 34, who was turned down by her insurance company for the $20,000 procedure. “I know friends who would have done that, too.”

In the end, she actually qualified to participate in a clinical trial that led the federal Food and Drug Administration this spring to lower the bar for obesity in people eligible for one form of weight-loss surgery, Allergan’s Lap-Band stomach-shrinking device. Because she had a body mass index, or BMI, of between 30 and 35, the target range of the new rule, she even got the treatment for free, instead of having to take out a second mortgage on her house.

Read more

Friday, October 28, 2011

Why eating a lot feels so darn good

On Thanksgiving, many of us will eat way more than normal and then waddle away contented, with a turkey and sweet potato buzz.

Having a belly stuffed with comforting food can feel like a warm hug from the inside.

Evolution has given us the instinct to eat a lot every time we can, preparing for hard times. It's the drive to survive, like puffy-cheeked squirrels storing up for the winter. It's also fueled by competition: beating the others to the food.

Our brains reward us for it, by releasing pleasure chemicals -- in the same way as drugs and alcohol, experts say.

Scientists studying that good feeling after eating call it ingestion analgesia, literally pain relief from eating.

"There are reward circuits to make you enjoy eating," said Roger Cone, professor and chairman of molecular physiology and biophysics at Vanderbilt University. "If we didn't eat, we wouldn't survive."

Read more

Love red meat? Cutting back just a bit helps heart

Eating too much red meat has long been a no-no for people with high cholesterol and other risk factors for heart disease. But it hasn't always been clear how much is too much.

Now, a new study suggests that you don't have to cut out red meat altogether to improve your heart health. If you eat red meat more than once a day, cutting back to one serving every other day can substantially reduce your risk of having a heart attack or dying from heart disease, the study found.

Replacing the red meat in your diet with other, less fatty sources of protein -- such as nuts and fish -- can lower your risk even further, the researchers say.

Read more

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Can a muffin help doctors diagnose diabetes?

Giving a "muffin test" to people at risk for diabetes might help doctors diagnose the disease and its warning signs, according to a new study.

Tests for diabetes and its precursor, impaired glucose tolerance, check how well the body uses glucose, a type of sugar.

In one common test, called an oral glucose tolerance test, a person fasts overnight and then drinks a sugary solution while doctors monitor how the body reacts and how much sugar sticks around in the blood.

Researchers behind the new report wondered if people might prefer munching on a muffin to downing the glucose drink -- and if a muffin test would give doctors a better idea of how the body deals with real food.

"Women really hate to get tested" with the oral glucose tolerance test, said Dr. Michael Traub of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in Bronx, New York, who worked on the study.

"It's really not such a pleasant test," he told Reuters Health, adding that many people often feel ill from the drink.

"A muffin more closely resembles what someone really eats -- it may just provide a more adequate test."

Read more

GPS Shoes for Alzheimer’s Patients

Imagine the terrifying feeling of trying to find your lost mother or father. They wandered off again because they have Alzheimer’s, a disease that affects 5.4 million people in the United States.

Now one accessory has been developed to prevent that. The first shoes with a built-in GPS system are scheduled to hit store shelves later this month, giving families and caregivers an easy way to track lost loved ones, Agence France-Presse reports.

The company behind the shoe, GTX, has already shipped the first 3,000 pairs to be sold through Aertex World Wide. The Los Angeles company patented a miniature GPS device small enough to fit in the heel. They will sell for around $300.

Consultant and assistant professor Andrew Carle at George Mason University’s Program in Senior Housing Administration said the shoes could save lives.

“Sixty percent [of people with Alzheimer's] will wander off and get lost,” said Carle, a scare that prompts panicked family members to call the police.

Carle said the shoes could be synched with Google Maps to pinpoint exactly where the person wearing them goes. The devices could even be programmed to send an alert if the wearer wanders out of a specified area, or ”geofence.”

Read more

Why Dieters Can't Keep the Weight Off

As any dieter knows, losing weight is hard. Keeping it off can be even harder, and a small, new study by Australian researchers helps explain why: a symphony of hormonal changes sends the body relentless signals to slow metabolism and increase the urge to eat, for at least a year after weight loss.

The findings support obesity researchers' long-held belief that dieters who regain weight aren't just reverting back to old habits. Instead, they may be fighting their own biology.

Many previous studies have shown that when overweight people slim down, their bodies respond vigorously, by undergoing changes in hormones that affect hunger and satiety — "multiple compensatory mechanisms encouraging weight gain," as the authors put it. For instance, when obese people lose body fat, levels of the hormone leptin, which is produced by fat cells, drop. That signals to the brain that the body's energy stores are low, slowing metabolism and triggering hunger.

Read more:

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The unstable future of a world full of men

As the global population hits seven billion, experts are warning that skewed gender ratios could fuel the emergence of volatile "bachelor nations" driven by an aggressive competition for brides.

The precise consequences of what French population expert Christophe Guilmoto calls the "alarming demographic masculinisation" of countries such as India and China as the result of sex-selective abortion remain unclear.

But many demographers believe the resulting shortage of adult women over the next 50 years will have as deep and pervasive an impact as climate change.

The statistics behind the warnings are grimly compelling.

Nature provides an unbending biological standard for the sex ratio at birth of 104-106 males to every 100 females. Any significant divergence from that narrow range can only be explained by abnormal factors.
In India and Vietnam the figure is around 112 boys for every 100 girls. In China it is almost 120 to 100 -- and in some places higher than 130.

Read more

Death toll from Listeria outbreak rises to 28

The death toll linked to Listeria-contaminated cantaloupes in the United States has climbed to 28, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said on Tuesday.

Whole or pre-cut Rocky Ford-brand cantaloupes from Colorado-based Jensen Farms have been traced as the cause of what has become the deadliest U.S. food-borne Listeria outbreak in a quarter century.

A total of 133 people in 26 states have fallen ill so far in the outbreak, and the CDC has said that one woman, who was pregnant at the time she fell ill, had a miscarriage.

The deadliest known food-borne Listeria outbreak in the United States was in 1985 when a Jalisco Products' Mexican-style soft cheese contaminated with Listeria killed 18 adults and 10 newborns, and caused 20 miscarriages.

The illness has a long incubation period, with symptoms sometimes not showing up until two months after people consume Listeria-tainted foods.

Read more

Mediterranean diet tied to better fertility

Women who eat a Mediterranean-style diet -- high in fruits, vegetables, fish and whole grains -- are less likely to have trouble getting pregnant, hints a new study from Spain.
The findings add to a growing body of evidence linking theMediterranean diet to all kinds of health effects, including lower risks of obesity, diabetes and heart disease.
But Dr. Jorge Chavarro, who was not part of the study, cautioned that the new results are based on observations, not an experiment.
"There's always the possibility that this association is not causal," said Chavarro, who studies nutrition at the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston.
Researchers looked at nearly 500 women with fertility problemsand more than 1,600 women of the same age who had at least one child. Based on questionnaires, they measured how closely women followed either a Western-style or a Mediterranean diet.
The Western diet consisted of red meat, fast food, whole-fat dairy products, potatoes, refined grains and sugar-sweetened soda, and was not linked to fertility.
In other words, there was no difference in fertility problems between women who followed this type of diet religiously and those who followed it less strictly.
But the picture changed for women with a Mediterranean diet. About 17 percent of those who stuck to it meticulously said they'd had trouble getting pregnant, while 26 percent of the women who followed that diet least closely had fertility problems.

Living near fast food joints may not up weight

Adults who live close to fast food restaurants may not weigh any more than the rest of us, a new study suggests.

The findings, from a 30-year study of Massachusetts adults, add to a conflicting body of research. A number of studies have suggested that people living in fast food-heavy neighborhoods have a higher rate of obesity, while a few have failed to find a link.

But most of those studies have had limitations -- like only studying people at one time point, making it impossible to tease out whether easy access to fast food could be blamed for the extra pounds.

In this latest study, researchers used data from more than 3,100 adults who entered a heart-health study back in 1971. And they found no consistent relationship between participants' driving distance to fast food joints and their weight over the next 30 years.

There was some evidence of a link among women. On average, for each kilometer (0.6 miles) women lived from the nearest fast food place, they showed a slightly lower body mass index (BMI).

The translation: A woman of average height would weigh about a pound less for every additional kilometer she lived away from a fast food place.

Read more

What’s the deal with Institute for Integrative Nutrition Scam Claims?

There’s no single common motivation for people who choose to pursue an education in nutrition. An interest in the hard science of macronutrients and the digestive process hooks some; others are interested in the humanistic side of helping people learn how to eat well and be their healthiest. Some people consciously hope to improve their own health and wellness; others find that eating more healthily is an unexpected (but welcome) benefit. It’s incredible, then, that the Institute for Integrative Nutrition is able to meet such a wide variety of demands and expectations. That’s why one must question Institute for Integrative Nutrition scam claims – they are at complete odds with the overwhelmingly positive reviews of the school.

The vast majority of people who study at and graduate from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition have great things to say about it. They receive the business training they need to enjoy meaningful, interesting, and lucrative new careers as health coaches; they get the knowledge and insights they need to eat more healthily and adopt a healthy lifestyle; they learn a holistic approach to wellness that takes into account not only the food you put into your mouth, but the primary food that feeds your soul – your relationships, your job, and your spirituality. When people refer to an “Institute for Integrative Nutrition scam,” they seem to be overlooking the testimonials of the many graduates who rave about their health coach training.

It seems that Institute for Integrative Nutrition scam claims are founded on only the hearsay and criticisms of a small minority and fail to account for the incredible success that grads enjoy and the amazing changes they’re making in the world.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

1 Soda A Day Equals 50 Pounds Of Sugar A Year

The New York City Health Department is launching a new campaign to show just how much sugar is in a can of soda.

The health department says drinking one soda a day equals 50 pounds of sugar a year, which can lead to problems like obesity, diabetes and heart disease.

“Sugary drinks are the largest single source of added sugar in the diet, and a child’s risk of obesity increases with every additional daily serving of a sugary drink,” said New York City Health Commissioner Dr. Thomas Farley in a statement.

Cathy Nonas, director of the city’s physical activity and nutrition program, says that 50 pounds of extra sugar can be harmful to the body.

“When we’re looking at a city where there is an epidemic of overweight and obesity and we look at the diseases that are associated with obesity, even in young kids, 50 pounds of sugar a year, of added sugar to rest of the diet, is way too much,” Nonas told 1010 WINS.

Read more

Shunning water linked to high blood sugar

People who drink less than a couple of glasses of water each day may be more likely to develop abnormally high blood sugar, a new study suggests.
When someone's blood sugar levels are high, but not high enough to fit the definition of diabetes, doctors often consider that person to have "pre-diabetes" -- which puts them at risk of developing the disease itself.
In the new study, adults who drank only half a liter of water -- about two glasses -- or less each day were more likely to develop blood sugar levels in the pre-diabetes range, versus people who drank more water.
But whether simply drinking water will cut your risk of blood sugar problems is still up in the air.

Monday, October 24, 2011

I Will Buy Back Your Halloween Candy, Says Mansfield, Ohio Dentist

Dr. Craig Callen, a dentist from Mansfied, Ohio, says he will offer $1 for every pound of Halloween sweets to trick-or-treaters. He has placed a limit of 5 pounds per child. Callen says that those who do so also enter a raffle for children's bicycles. The kids will also receive free toothbrushes.

Callen and two other colleagues, Mathew Snipes and Anthony Lordo have put up $1,000 towards their offer.

They say this is a cavity-preventing drive - to reduce the amount of candy children consume during the Halloween period. Money, toothbrushes, and a chance to win a bike in exchange for sweets.

Read more

Yoga and stretching both ease chronic back pain

Weekly yoga classes eased pain and improved functioning in some people with chronic lower back pain -- but the yoga sessions weren't any better than regular stretching classes, according to a new study.

Researchers found that participants in both types of classes had better functioning and fewer symptoms after three months than back patients who were only given a book with advice on preventing and managing pain.

"We've known for a while... that exercise is good for back pain," said Dr. Timothy Carey, from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, who wrote a commentary published with the study.

Yoga, he told Reuters Health, "seems to be a perfectly good option for people with back pain, but it is not a preferred option."

Finding that yoga and stretching had about equal effects means it was probably the stretching involved in yoga -- and not the relaxation or breathing components of the practice -- that helped improve functioning and pain symptoms, researchers report today in Archives of Internal Medicine.

Read more here

Change Your Neighborhood, Improve Your Health

Does where you live influence your health? Yes, and maybe even more dramatically than you might expect.

When a U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) offered a program in the 1990s to move families out of poor neighborhoods, it created a unique opportunity not only to improve people's day-to-day lives, but also to study how a change in environment might impact their health over the long term. Now, more than a decade later, the researchers have found that families who moved to lower-poverty neighborhoods had lower levels of obesity and diabetes than those who stayed behind. What's more, the improvements in health were as significant as those that typically result from targeted diet and exercise interventions or the use of medications to treat diabetes

"The results suggest that over the long term, investments in improving neighborhood environments might be an important complement to medical care when it comes to preventing obesity and diabetes," says study author Jens Ludwig, a professor of public policy at University of Chicago

Read more:

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New app aims to reduce stress with slow breathing

Want to reduce stress and improve mental focus? A new app that promotes slow breathing may help.
Called MyCalmBeat, the app uses a heart rate monitor that attaches to the ear to detect a person's optimal breathing rate, or resonant frequency, which is unique to each person.
At this breathing rate, the company says the user can increase the variability of their heart rate to lower stress levels.
"People don't realize the profound impact that slow breathing can have until they actually sit down and do it for 10 minutes and then they feel completely different," said Savannah DeVarney, vice president of product marketing for MyBrainSolutions, the creators of the app.
After finding their ideal breathing rate, animated exercises show users how to breathe at that rate, while the heart monitor provides feedback about the variability of their heart rate.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Do You Read Food Labels?

How often do you look at food labels when you shop? There's a lot of good information there, although I have to admit some parts of the Nutrition Facts labels can be a bit tricky if you're not careful. Like servings per container. Look at a can of condensed soup - there's probably two or three servings there and not just one, so if you eat the whole thing you've got to double or triple the calories, sodium, or fat when you keep track of them. The U.S. FDA is looking at overhauling the Nutrition Facts Labels to help fix problems like that. Hopefully it will help.

Read more here

Get Your Body Back After Pregnancy

If all those images of svelte and shapely celebrity new moms have left you feeling like you never want to look in a mirror again, take heart! Here's some real-world advice on how to get your body back after pregnancy.

It sometimes seems as if they're jumping right from the labor bed to the treadmill with many high-profile celebrity new moms snapping back from pregnancy with a model-perfect shape in almost no time!

Indeed, take a look at Katie Holmes, Angelina Jolie, Melania Trump, Heidi Klum, and former Spice Girl Victoria Beckham -- whose record-time baby-fat weight loss has set the bar high for new moms the world over.

But is it realistic -- or for that matter even healthy -- to slim down after pregnancy with such lightening speed?
Experts offer up a resounding "No!"

Read more

CDC Says Kids Not Drinking Enough Low-Fat Milk

Recently the CDC published a report titled "Low-fat Milk Consumption Among Children and Adolescents in the United States, 2007-2008." The report indicates that about 73 percent of children and teens drink milk, but only about 20 percent of them usually drink low-fat milk (which is non-fat or one percent milk).

Milk is an excellent source of calcium and protein, plus it's fortified with vitamin D, which isn't found in many other foods. There's also some evidence that kids who drink milk are less likely to be overweight or obese, probably because kids who drink milk tend to eat healthier diets in general. However, regular milk is high in fat, especially saturated fat, so choosing low-fat milk is one way to cut back on the fat and the extra calories that come along with it.

But what about the kids who can't or won't drink milk? There are other ways to get calcium into the diet. Calcium-fortified soy beverages can replace milk in the diet, and dark green leafy vegetables are high in calcium. Dietary supplements can add calcium too.

Read more

Integrative Nutrition Scam Claims Are Untrue

People have different expectations when pursuing an education in nutrition. Some study simply for the sake of knowledge and hope to improve their own health and wellness with this knowledge. Others want to launch a career in the healthcare field and use their training to achieve new professional goals. That’s why it’s so remarkable that the majority of Integrative Nutrition’s students and graduates are so satisfied with their education – the school manages to fulfill such a wide variety of needs. Integrative Nutrition scam claims directly clash with the overwhelmingly positive reviews of the school.

Graduates report renewed passion about their careers, increased health and vitality, and even improvements in their personal lives and relationships. Because the school emphasizes a holistic approach to wellness – your marriage, religion, and job are just as important sources of nourishment as the food you eat – many people come out of the program not just healthier, but happier, too. While it’s impossible to please everyone and some may get more out of their training than others, there’s definitely no Integrative Nutrition scam. Most graduates believe that IIN’s tuition was in fact the best investment they ever made and are leading highly successful careers:

Missy Maintains
Pleasurable Weight Loss
Nishani Wellness

Looking at the success of past graduates, it’s obvious that Integrative Nutrition scam claims are based on the criticisms of a few and overlook the positive changes that IIN grads are making in the world:

Do We Have a Set Point for Exercise?

Does exercising at one point during the day make you less active the rest of the time?

The question of whether humans have an innate set point for movement, a so-called activitystat, is of increasing interest and controversy among scientists. One of them is Dr. Terence J. Wilkin, a professor of endocrinology at the Peninsula Medical School in Plymouth, England, who asked himself that question a few years ago while hoping to learn more about the interplay of activity and childhood obesity.

Dr. Wilkin had outfitted about 70 children at three wildly different English elementary schools with an accelerometer, an electronic device that records almost all movement. One of the schools, a private college-preparatory academy with acres of playing fields, required an average of 9.2 hours of physical education classes each week. Another was a village public school, equipped with outdoor facilities and an established sports tradition, but requiring only 2.2 hours of P.E. each week. And the final was an urban school with limited playground options and 1.6 hours a week of P.E. The children wore the devices full time for a week on four separate occasions during the school year.

Read more here

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

NY Times Recipe for Health: Quinoa with Roasted Winter Vegetables and Pesto

This combination of sweet vegetables with pungent pesto is great for a simple grain and vegetable bowl.  Get the recipe here

Yoga Can Help Manage Pain

For many people, yoga is more than just exercise: Studies show it is one of the most commonly used forms of alternative therapy in the country. Many rely on yoga to relieve chronic and acute pain.

The reasons for this are varied. Some researchers believe that yoga may alleviate pain through relaxation and the release of endorphins. Others say it may reduce inflammation and promote positive emotions.

Read more here

Monday, October 17, 2011

Impact Of Fast Food Advertising On Childhood Food Choices

Concern has been raised by The American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Psychological Association regarding the negative influence advertising has on children's food choices. Several health care professionals and parents are worried about how direct advertising affects children. A new investigation that examines the connection between parental influence, fast food advertisements, and children's food choices, is due to be published soon in The Journal of Pediatrics.

Dr. Christopher Ferguson and his team at Texas A&M International University investigated 75 children between the ages of 3 to 5. The children were spilt into two groups, one group watched two cartoons with a commercial of French fries in between, and the other group watched two cartoons with a commercial of apple slices with dipping sauce. After the children had watched the cartoons and commercials, they were allowed to select a coupon for either of the foods advertised with their parents input. Half of the parents remained neutral, while the other half encouraged their child to choose a healthy option.

Some experts call milk industry's claims ‘deceptive,' ‘discredited'

A major Wisconsin dairy group continues to promote dairy products for weight loss, four years after two national groups, under pressure from the Federal Trade Commission, agreed to stop.
The state-supervised, nonprofit Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board, whose annual budget exceeds $30 million, claims at least three times on its consumer website that dairy products can help people lose weight, and at least twice that the foods can aid weight management.
"Emerging research indicates consuming three servings of low-fat
dairy products as part of a healthy diet and exercise plan will help with weight loss and weight maintenance," states a board Web page on dairy's health benefits.
Leading nutrition experts from Harvard University and the Mayo Clinic contradict such claims. So do the U.S. Department of Agriculture's 2010 dietary guidelines, which state that "strong evidence in adults and moderate evidence in children and adolescents demonstrates that consumption of milk and milk products does not play a special role in weight management."

Read more:

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Raising Picky Eaters

Raising kids who are picky eaters can be frustrating and downright depressing at times. It may be genetic, or at least some of us have a genetic tendency to dislike bitter flavors that are a part of so many vegetables - and it takes a few (or a lot) of years to grow out the bitter-vegetable hating phase.

Sometimes it helps to have your kids assist in the meal planning and cooking. Being involved seems to make some kids more open to trying different foods. You can also puree, blend or mash cooked vegetables and hide them in the kids' macaroni and cheese or spaghetti sauce. Not all experts think that's a good thing to do, but it works for some people.

Green Tips for Your Diet

Choosing Foods for Sustainable Living

The foods we buy and consume have an impact on our economy as well as our environment and there is a growing concern about how the way we live affects our global environment. Two words that are growing in popularity are green and sustainability. They both refer to the idea that products can be high quality and good for the environment, or at least not harmful.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Do You Have Salt Hiding in Your Food?

Salt is made from the combination of two minerals called sodium and chloride. Consuming too much sodium has been linked to an increased risk of high blood pressure. Many people get more sodium than they need because sodium is also present in a lot of preservatives and in other ingredients used in processed and packaged foods.
Experts suggest consuming no more than 1500 to 2500 mg sodium per day and if you eat a diet high in processed foods, you're probably getting much more.
Eliminating the extra sodium in your diet is not as easy as hiding the salt shaker. You need to look at nutrition labels, ingredient labels and read Find the Hidden Salt in Your Diet.

Regular Exercise Seems to Guard Against Migraine

Exercise can prevent migraines just as well as drugs or relaxation techniques, a new study from Sweden suggests.
"Our conclusion is that exercise can act as an alternative to relaxations and topiramate when it comes to preventing migraines, and is particularly appropriate for patients who are unwilling or unable to take preventative medicines," study lead author Emma Varkey, a physiotherapist and doctoral student at the Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, said in a university news release.

Friday, October 14, 2011

3 Hours of Exercise Weekly Can Cut Men's Heart Risks

Three hours of vigorous exercise a week can reduce a man's heart attack risk by 22%, a new study suggests.
The Harvard School of Public Health researchers also found that about 38% of that decreased risk was due to the beneficial effects of exercise on a man's levels of "good" high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol.
The findings were published Oct. 4 the journal Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise.
The study included 1,239 men in the Health Professionals Follow-Up Study who provided information on their weekly amount of exercise. The researchers also analyzed the men's cholesterol levels, as well as biomarkers of inflammation and insulin sensitivity.

Choosing Foods That Help You Sleep

Getting a good night's sleep makes your work day (or school day) go so much better. If you have difficulty sleeping, you already know how tough staying alert during the day can be. But did you know that sleep is also important for your health? People who have chronic sleep loss are also at a higher risk of being obese, having heart disease, diabetes and kids with ADHD often have sleep disorders.

If you don't get enough sleep at night, you might rely on caffeine to keep you awake during the day. Drinking a cup or two of coffee in the morning is fine, but you're drinking more than that, you may need to cut back, especially if you're drinking a lot of that coffee in the afternoon. Quitting the caffeine habit isn't easy or comfortable. Many people suffer from withdrawal symptoms such as headaches, drowsiness, flu-like feelings, irritability and lack of concentration when they give up caffeine cold turkey. You can avoid those symptoms by gradually withdrawing. Try blending decaffeinated coffee with regular coffee. Increase the amount of decaf over a few weeks time.
The relationship between your diet and good sleep doesn't end with caffeine. There are several other ways to use foods to help you sleep better.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

NY Times Recipes for Health: Red Bean Stew

Hungarian gulyas (goulash) is the inspiration here, but this one is a vegetable dish. It has a deep, rich flavor redolent of paprika, garlic, lots of sweet peppers and onions. I like to serve this with noodles, or over thick slices of country bread. Note that soaking the beans is not absolutely necessary, but I find that they cook more evenly and have a more uniform, pillowy texture if I do.

Click here to get the recipe

More Reasons Why Chocolate Is Good for You!

A healthy chocolate habit -- about two chocolate bars a week -- appears to help women reduce their risk of stroke, according to new research.
The new Swedish study echoes previous research in men and women. It also adds new information.
"The protection started at more than 45 grams [about 1.5 ounces] a week," says researcher Susanna C. Larsson, PhD, of the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, Sweden.
The group eating the most chocolate got the most benefit, reducing stroke intake by 20%. In this group, the median intake (half ate more, half less) was about 2.3 ounces a week.
The research is published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.
While other studies have found a link between eating chocolate and reduced stroke risk, this research found a slight difference in protection, depending on type of stroke. Those who ate the most chocolate were protected a bit more from strokes caused by hemorrhage than strokes caused by obstruction such as blood clots. Larsson isn't sure why.

What Integrative Nutrition Scam Claims Overlook

Losing weight and getting healthy isn’t a scientific mystery. We all know that it generally comes down to eating the right foods (but not too much of them) and staying active. The thing is, if it were so easy, wouldn’t everyone be at a healthy weight? In the end, there are all sorts of obstacles that stop people from eating healthily and exercising. Most people have jobs that require sitting for long periods of time. Then there are all the unhealthy but overwhelmingly tempting ways to relieve stress: watching TV rather than taking a walk. Eating a comforting bowl (or two) of ice cream rather than talking to a friend. We often get into these habits at a surprisingly young age, and they are habits that are really difficult to change.

That’s where the need for health coaches comes in – they can help people make realistic, attainable health and wellness goals. Then they offer support and guidance to help people take the steps to achieve them, slowly and sustainably. Integrative Nutrition scam claims tend to overlook the fact that health coaches don’t claim to fill the role of registered dietitians, doctors, or nurses. These medical professionals play a really important role in today’s healthcare system. Unfortunately, they obviously aren’t enough – they offer the medical expertise and diagnosis, but don’t have the time or interest to hold someone’s hand and make sure that their patients are actually taking the medical advice. Health coaches can work side by side with doctors and dietitians to help people take the prescribed treatment plan and make it a reality.

Health coaches are already making waves in the health and wellness industry and have achieved a high level of respect from many reputable sources, and that’s another thing that Integrative Nutrition scam accusations ignore. Health coaches work in doctor’s offices and wellness centers, own their own restaurants and health food lines, and help people change their lives one day at a time, for good. In an interview on CNN, Dr. Oz explained how health coaches could change America:

“If we can change the culture of wellness in America … For example, health coaches, which could be a tier of healthcare providers which don’t cost a lot to train but could actually provide that infrastructure to people to make it easy to do the right thing. If we can make that happen in America, we could cut our costs, and then everything else would fall into place.”

The quality of the YouTube video is pretty bad, but you can hear what Dr. Oz has to say about health coaches for yourself here:

In the end, claims about an Integrative Nutrition scam and criticisms about the health coaching profession don’t seem to be founded in much reality.

Ginger May Have Cancer-Fighting Qualities

Ginger supplements appear to lower some indicators of inflammation in the colon, a new study shows.
The study, published in Cancer Prevention Research, is an early step toward finding out whether compounds found in ginger root might prevent colon cancer.
"Many studies in cell culture have shown that ginger is an anti-inflammatory," says study researcher Suzanna M. Zick, ND, a research assistant professor at the University of Michigan Medical School, Ann Arbor.
Other studies in mice and rats have shown that ginger may help prevent the formation of tumors when it's fed to the animals exposed to a chemical that causes colon cancer.
Zick and her team wanted to see whether those findings might translate to humans.

Watching Your Protein May Be Key to Weight Control

Counting calories may not be enough to manage either your appetite or your weight, new research suggests.
Paying attention to the percent of calories from protein may be an important key, according to Alison Gosby, PhD, a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Sydney. Protein and weight control may go together, suggests her research. It echoes others' findings.
In her study, she found that men and women fed a 10% protein diet ate 12% more calories over four days than they did on a 15% protein diet.
"Any dietary intervention that results in dilution or restriction of protein in the diet will promote overeating in an environment where food is abundant," she tells WebMD.
While many experts believe that protein content in the diet plays an important role in determining how many calories we eat, and how hungry we are, the new study lends some solid numbers to that idea.

Monday, October 10, 2011

When a Health Coach is Better than a Doctor

It’s the latest and some say the fastest growing career for individual’s interested in health and nutrition. The Health Coach is a new breed of healthcare professional whose job is to guide individuals through the minefield of dietary and lifestyle change. They support clients to make behavioral changes by utilizing techniques such as goal setting, identifying obstacles, and just good old positive reinforcement and support.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Nutrition and Anti-Inflammatory Foods

Can nutrition and the foods you eat have an impact on inflammation? Quite possibly, yes. Some foods promote conditions in your body that may make inflammation worse, while ...Read Full Post

Do You Read Food Labels?

How often do you look at food labels when you shop? There's a lot of good information there, although I have to admit some parts of the Nutrition Facts labels ...Read Full Post

Centers for Disease Control Says Kids Not Drinking Enough Low-Fat Milk

Recently the CDC published a report titled "Low-fat Milk Consumption Among Children and Adolescents in the United States, 2007-2008." The report indicates that about 73 percent of children and teens ...Read Full Post

A Look Into Institute for Integrative Nutrition Scam Claims: What Students and Graduates Say About IIN

A Look Into Institute for Integrative Nutrition Scam Claims: What Students and Graduates Say About IIN

The Institute for Integrative Nutrition (IIN) was founded in 1992 by Joshua Rosenthal and is now the largest nutrition school in the world. Driven by the fundamental belief that if you can change what people eat you can change the world, the Institute for Integrative Nutrition has trained over 17,000 Health Coaches who have gone on to open their own wellness centers, health coaching practices, and healthy food restaurants. As some of the most successful professionals in the healthcare industry, IIN graduates have been featured in everything from Oprah to the New York Times to Martha Stewart’s Whole Living to the movie Supersize Me.

Though a scattering of isolated reports have appeared with Institute for Integrative Nutrition scam accusations, the vast majority of IIN’s students and graduates rave about their experience at the school and are at complete odds with these claims. In fact, in 2008, a third-party, higher education consulting firm surveyed IIN students and graduates, and their findings were remarkable: Integrative Nutrition had the highest satisfaction rating of any school the firm has ever measured.

This rating is truly incredible when considering the diverse make-up of Integrative Nutrition’s student body. Graduates come from over 85 different countries and are of all ages, sizes, genders, religions, and socioeconomic backgrounds. Each IIN student has a different set of expectations and seeks a different experience in his or her education. IIN’s curriculum is both comprehensive and flexible enough to fulfill this wide variety of demands.

The testimonials below reveal what different graduates got out of their Integrative Nutrition experience and debunk some of the Integrative Nutrition scam claims.

A Healthier and Happier Lease on Life
Many graduates praise the Institute for Integrative Nutrition for helping them overcome their own health challenges:

“Before I started at IIN, I was at 250 pounds and a mess. I knew all about eating right, what I should and should not be eating, I was just having problems sticking with a diet. When I started my studies, there were two things that registered with me. First was the theory of ‘primary foods.’ Getting my primary foods in order was key for me. Next was learning that diets don’t work. I could attest to this. Lifestyle change is what has worked. Since I started the program last June I have lost about 65 pounds.”
-        Cindy, San Antonio, TX

“I struggle with many food allergies and my main goal when I started school was to find a way to eat those foods again. After hearing from so many experts, I now know that it isn’t necessary. Foods that fuel me are so much better.”
-        Nancy, Westfield, IN

“When I was 52 I lost 52 pounds in 52 weeks. I used a Holistic Health Coach trained by IIN in that process. So, a year ago, I decided that I wanted to be able to share my success with others. I enrolled in IIN and it has been the best decision of my life!”
-        Sue, Philadelphia, PA

A Meaningful New Career as a Health Coach
In stark contrast to Integrative Nutrition scam claims, many graduates credit Integrative Nutrition with helping them transition from a stressful, unsatisfying career to a meaningful one:

“I read the brochure from IIN one day on my train ride home from NYC after a horrible day at work in a career I was not happy with. I had recently started studying nutrition on my own and cured many of my health ailments by becoming a vegan. I knew this was my calling and that I wanted to help others cure their health naturally like I did. I had a lot of facts, but knew I needed a full education as well as a business plan, which I had no clue how to achieve. I bought Joshua’s book, read it very quickly, and enrolled in the school the next day. I have workshops set up and recommendations coming in which I honestly didn’t think was going to happen for awhile. Thank you Integrative Nutrition! You have changed life in ways I am just starting to realize!”
-        Jes, Waldwick, NJ

“The impact IIN has had on my life has been huge! I've changed careers after 20 years in a dead-end job and feel healthier and happier than ever. We have so much to share with others and I am passionate about what I now offer in my own new company, Fuller Living. While I have networked and marketed my services, clients have come to me naturally, at the right time and continue consistently, even before my graduation! My life is stress-less now and to split my time between my private practice with individual clients and teaching children nutrition in school are a wonderful, realistic balance. I never could have imagined any of this even in my wildest dreams! Every time I share my new career with friends or associates, I beam from ear to ear because I feel such genuine enthusiasm about what I now do.”
-        Landry, Big Island, Hawaii

Nutrition Knowledge as a Powerful Medicine
Other graduates describe the education they gained at Integrative Nutrition as actually life saving:

“It wasn't until I was hit with a cancer diagnosis at the age of 27 that I realized something had to change, and fast. I began conventional cancer treatment, but also pursued some changes in my diet that seemed to be making a big difference in how my body handled chemotherapy and how I handled cancer in general. In the middle of chemo, I decided to leave my job behind for good, really take care of myself and attend IIN. I knew that even if I didn't turn this into a career, I would still learn some pretty important stuff that would literally save my life.

Since graduating IIN, I've formed my own practice and work with busy women who just don't know how to fit "healthy" into their lives. I also work with people affected by cancer. I LOVE what I do - seeing what a difference it makes in people's lives is amazing. Not only has my life changed for the better career-wise, but I am also cancer-free (hooray!) and the healthiest and happiest I've ever been in my life. How many schools can you say that about?”

-        Kendall, Freeport, ME

Business Training for a Quick ROI and Lucrative Practice
Also in strong opposition to Integrative Nutrition scam claims, many graduates praise the professional business training that IIN provides:

“The business tools are perfect for those people who have never owned and operated their own business before. IIN breaks everything down so that the steps are very easy to follow and manageable. They tell you exactly what you need to do to launch your practice. They also support you with endless ideas for marketing your practice, and they actually provide most of the content for you, right down to newsletter content, workshop scripts and an entire proposal which you can use to pitch your corporate wellness programs. I am a former successful Brand Marketer with a graduate business degree and a writing background, and when it comes to anything business or marketing related, I must say I’m fairly hard to impress. Needless to say, I’ve been impressed by IIN every step of the way.”
-        Jill, Seattle, WA

“The business or ‘fast track’ part of this program is invaluable. IIN coaches help you get past your fears and begin your own business while in school. You will receive all the marketing materials you will ever need: a website, business cards, and hours of business classes taught by friendly and insightful coaches who’ve been there and DONE it! This is an action-oriented program, and it got me, queen of sitting on my butt, to actually take ACTION! I gave a workshop and got a client! I gave a teleclass and got another client! I join the thousands of other voices that say, ‘If I can do this, so an you.’”

-        Zoe, Seattle, WA

As indicated by these testimonials and the overwhelmingly positive feedback from the vast majority of IIN graduates and students, Integrative Nutrition scam claims are baseless and untrue. Check out how these Integrative Nutrition grads are achieving success with their training as certified Health Coaches:
By launching careers as certified Health Coaches, IIN graduates not only enjoy successful and lucrative professional opportunities; they’re also changing the world and making people’s lives healthier and happier.