Monday, September 29, 2008

Eat Like A Mediterranean!

Eating like a Mediterranean, by including lots of fresh vegetables, whole grains and healthy oils in your diet, may help lower your risk of heart disease. Discover two quick and easy Mediterranean snacks that will help keep your heart strong. EatingWell Food and Nutrition experts show you how to make two quick and delicious Mediterranean style snacks.

Monday, September 22, 2008

A Kid's Favorite: For Your Blood Sugar

There’s something sweet and creamy that kids love -- and it may actually be good for your blood sugar. It’s not chocolate pudding. It’s peanut butter. Adults in a recent study who ate this childhood fave at least five times a week reduced their risk of type 2 diabetes by 27 percent. Go NuttyResearchers speculate that the unsaturated fats in nuts -- and nut butters -- may partly explain the big dip in diabetes risk. These healthy fats may somehow improve insulin sensitivity and keep your blood sugar stable. The fiber and magnesium in nuts may also decrease insulin demand and resistance. (Better than takeout: Satisfy your cravings for Chinese food with these deliciously healthy Spicy Peanut Noodles.) In a NutshellAn added bonus of eating peanut butter? Staying slim. The study participants did, especially when they used nut products to replace other fatty foods, like chips. Here are even more reasons to dip into nuts and nut butters:

Peeper protection. Eating nuts at least once a week may save your vision and prevent this sight-stealing disease.

Heart help. Eating a serving of nuts twice a week can slash your heart attack risk by almost half. Here’s why.

Mood boosting. Here’s how nuts banish the blues and make you smile.

Glowing skin. They’re part of our healthy-skin diet. Video: Make your own savory snacks at home.

Watch this video on how to toast nuts.

Tip: Be aware that peanuts are heavily sprayed with pesticides so, be smart and pay the extra price for ORGANIC peanut butter. Natural does not mean organic!

Via Real Age.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Food Allergies: What do you do?

You eat strawberries. Hives. You eat shellfish. Your throat starts to close and you can’t breathe. You eat nuts. Your lips and tongue start to swell. You obviously are suffering from food allergies. Is there anything can you do to prevent them?

Food allergies are the result of the immune system’s inability to detect what is healthy and what is not in the food that you eat. It may see that strawberry as an invader of sorts, so it launches an all-out attack to get rid of the invader, or allergen. To do this, the immune system produces proteins, called antibodies, against the invader. These antibodies can then recognize the alien invader (strawberry) if it enters your body again.

Your body also responds to allergens by producing histamines; these histamines produce the allergic reaction to the food source in the form of a runny nose, hives, rashes, inflammation or swelling, difficulty breathing, and at its worst – anaphylaxis, a severe reaction that leads to difficulty breathing, a sharp decrease in blood pressure and unconsciousness.

Food allergies can also produce conditions such as ADD/ADHD, irritability, stomach and digestive system problems, migraines, arthritis, depression, seizures, irritable or inflammatory bowel diseases, colds and ear infections.

Obviously if you’ve had a bad reaction after eating a certain food, it would be best to stay away from it in the future. Some people have tried eliminating whole groups of food from their diets (i.e., dairy, gluten, grains, nuts, etc.) when it is difficult to pinpoint one cause.

Since allergies are the result of an immune system response gone haywire, improving immune system function may reduce or even eliminate allergies. Chiropractic care has been shown to improve the overall health of the central nervous system, which controls and properly regulates the immune system. Once stress to your nervous system is reduced, allergies often disappear or are far less bothersome.

Another effective way to build up your immune system is to take Juice Plus+. Juice Plus+ contains 17 fruits and vegetables in a capsule, which builds up your immune system and helps prevent diseases. Visit my website to learn more.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Tropical Treat for Joint Pain

Got an achy back? A bum knee? Consider soothing yourself with this poolside treat: a mai tai.

Okay, you can probably skip the rum. The real joint-soothing power in this pick-me-up comes from the pineapple.

Any Way You Slice It

That’s right. Pineapple --
be it part of an icy drink, a fruit salad, or a barbecue kabob -- contains an anti-inflammatory enzyme called bromelain. New research shows that bromelain soothes your cells by reducing the migration of white blood cells to sites of inflammation -- like sunburned skin, injured muscles, and arthritic joints. Know how to pick a ripe pineapple? Watch this video for tips on picking-- and preparing -- a fresh one.

~ Via Real Age.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Ten Cancer Prevention Tips

The World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF) expert report on Food, Nutrition, Physical Activity and the Prevention of Cancer, was released in November 2007 (view the full report in: The Report is intended as a guide to future scientific research, cancer prevention programs and health policy around the world.

The following paragraphs summarize the 10 recommendations from the WCRF report.

Recommendation 1: Body fat
Be as lean as possible within the normal range of body weight.
Public health goals
Median adult body mass index (BMI) to be between 21 and 23, depending on the normal range for different populations
The proportion of the population that is overweight or obese to be no more than the current level, or preferably lower, in 10 years
Note: “Normal range” refers to appropriate ranges issued by national governments or the World Health Organization
Personal recommendations
Ensure that body weight through childhood and adolescent growth projects towards the lower end of the normal BMI range at age 21
Maintain body weight within the normal range from age 21
Avoid weight gain and increases in waist circumference throughout adulthood

Recommendation 2: Physical activity
Be physically active as part of everyday life.
Public health goals
The proportion of the population that is sedentary to be halved every 10 years
Average physical activity levels (PALs) to be above 1.6
Personal recommendations
Be moderately physically active, equivalent to brisk walking, for at least 30 minutes every day
As fitness improves, aim for 60 minutes or more of moderate, or for 30 minutes or more of vigorous, physical activity every day
Limit sedentary habits such as watching television

Recommendation 3: Foods and drinks that promote weight gain
Limit consumption of energy-dense foods; avoid sugary drinks.
Public health goals
Average energy density of diets to be lowered towards 125 kcal per 100 g
Population average consumption of sugary drinks to be halved every 10 years
Personal recommendations
Consume energy-dense foods sparingly
Avoid sugary drinks
Consume “fast foods” sparingly, if at all
Note: Energy-dense foods are here defined as those with an energy content of more than about 225–275 kcal per 100 g; Sugary drinks principally refers to drinks with added sugars. Fruit juices should also be limited.

Recommendation 4: Plant foods
Eat mostly foods of plant origin.
Public health goals
Average population consumption of non-starchy vegetables and of fruits to be at least 600 g daily
Relatively unprocessed cereals (grains) and/or pulses (legumes), and other foods that are a natural source of dietary fibre, to contribute to a population average of at least 25 g non-starch polysaccharide daily
Personal recommendations
Eat at least five portions/servings (at least 400 g) of a variety of non-starchy vegetables and of fruits every day
Eat relatively unprocessed cereals (grains) and/or pulses (legumes) with every meal
Limit refined starchy foods
People who consume starchy roots or tubers as staples also to ensure intake of sufficient non-starchy vegetables, fruits, and pulses (legumes)

Recommendation 5: Animal foods
Limit intake of red meat and avoid processed meat.
Public health goal
Average population consumption of red meat to be no more than 300gm a week, very little if any of which to be processed.
Personal recommendation
People who eat red meat to consume less than 500gm a week, very little if any to be processed
Note: ‘Red meat refers to beef, pork, lamb, and goat from domesticated animals including that contained in processed foods; processed meat refers to meat preserved by smoking, curing or salting, or addition of chemical preservatives, including that contained in processed foods.

Recommendation 6: Alcoholic drinks
Limit alcoholic drinks.
Public health goal
Proportion of the population drinking more than the recommended limits to be reduced by one third every 10 years
Personal recommendation
If alcoholic drinks are consumed, limit consumption to no more than two drinks a day for men and one drink a day for women
Note: One drink contains about 10–15gm of ethanol

Recommendation 7: Preservation, processing, preparation
Limit consumption of salt. Avoid moldy cereals (grains) or pulses (legumes)
Public health goals
Population average consumption of salt from all sources to be less than 5gm (2gm of sodium) a day
Proportion of the population consuming more than 6gm of salt (2.4gm of sodium) a day to be halved every 10 years
Minimise exposure to aflatoxins from mouldy cereals (grains) or pulses (legumes)
Personal recommendations
Avoid salt-preserved, salted, or salty foods; preserve foods without using salt
Limit consumption of processed foods with added salt to ensure an intake of less than 6gm (2.4gm sodium) a day
Do not eat moldy cereals (grains) or pulses (legumes)
Note: Methods of preservation that do not or need not use salt include refrigeration, freezing, drying, bottling, canning, and fermentation.

Recommendation 8: Dietary supplements
Aim to meet nutritional needs through diet alone.
Public health goal
Maximise the proportion of the population achieving nutritional adequacy without dietary supplements
Personal recommendation
Dietary supplements are not recommended for cancer prevention
Note: It may not always be feasible to meet nutritional needs through diet alone. In some situations of illness or dietary inadequacy, supplements may be valuable.

Special Recommendation 1: Breastfeeding
Mothers to breastfeed; children to be breastfed.
Public health goal
The majority of mothers to breastfeed exclusively, for six months
Personal recommendation
Aim to breastfeed infants exclusively up to six months and continue with complementary feeding thereafter

Special Recommendation 2: Cancer survivors
Follow the recommendations for cancer prevention.
All cancer survivors to receive nutritional care from an appropriately trained professional
If able to do so, and unless otherwise advised, aim to follow the recommendations for diet, healthy weight, and physical activity
Note: Cancer survivors are people who are living with a diagnosis of cancer, including those who have recovered from the disease.

Excerpted from this article.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

What is Kefir?

I drink kefir daily and use it to make delicious smoothies, using my Juice Plus+ Complete (You can use soy milk, cow's milk, goat's milk, rice milk or coconut milk -- whichever you prefer. I like the taste of kefir).

Kefir is a tangy, slightly sour tasting fermented milk. Kefir's closest cousin is yogurt, also made by fermenting milk with bacteria. But kefir is fermented with more and different types of bacteria, in addition to yeast, which means the final product has more of the beneficial microorganisms, or "probiotics," that first made yogurt a popular health food. Probiotics can control the growth of harmful bacteria and aid digestion, and some even manufacture vitamins in the gut. Kefir can be made from any type of milk, cow, goat or sheep, coconut, rice or soy.

This is the brand of keifer I prefer - it is rich tasting and is a good source of protein, calcium, and pstassium. Other benefits of keifer are described here.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Drugs in drinking water affect more Americans than previously thought

Testing prompted by an Associated Press story that revealed trace amounts of pharmaceuticals in drinking water supplies has shown that more Americans are affected by the problem than previously thought - at least 46 million. That's up from 41 million people reported by the AP in March as part of an investigation into the presence of pharmaceuticals in the nation's waterways. Officials in one of those communities, Colorado Springs, say they detected five pharmaceuticals in all, including a tranquilizer and a hormone. The drug residues detected in water supplies are generally flushed into sewers and waterways through human excretion. Many of the pharmaceuticals are known to slip through sewage and drinking water treatment plants.