Thoughts To Live By…

Archive for the ‘Diet’ Category

by Kiera Aaron August 30, 2011, 02:30 am EDT

Working out can eliminate signs of depression in people who are already taking medication, but still having symptoms, according to a new University of Texas study.

“About 70 percent of people on medication will still have signs of depression,” explains study author Madhukar Trivedi, M.D., professor at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center. “One treatment usually leads to improvement, not remission.”

In the study, 28 percent of people who worked out on a treadmill or stationary bike for 30 to 45 minutes, 3 to 4 times a week eliminated their symptoms. When another group exercised 2 to 3 times a week for 20 to 30 minutes, 16 percent saw symptoms disappear. “When we compared to other studies, we even found that exercise was just as effective as taking an additional medication,” says Dr. Trivedi.

This was especially true for men. Researchers found that men had a very low remission rate when they exercised only a little, but a high rate when they exercised a lot. (Women were less polarized.)

Researchers aren’t quite sure why depressed men need more exercise, but it certainly effects your hormones. “Exercise releases serotonin, which can help reduce symptoms of depression,” explains Dr. Trivedi. “We think that the feeling of accomplishment plays a role, too.”

If you’re feeling low, sign up for a 5K to boost both your serotonin and confidence, or better yet, try the Men’s Health Urbanathlon in a city near you. Just be sure to keep exercising after the race.

Trivedi also notes that exercise can’t replace a doctor when it comes to depression treatment. “Think of it like diabetes,” he says. “You’d eat right, but you’d still go for check-ups.”

http://news.menshealth.com/the-drug-free-depression-cure/2011/08/30/?cm_mmc=Yahoo_Blog-_-Health-_-5_Nutrients_You_Need_More_Of-_-Drugfree_Depression_Cure

by Holly Robinson Peete, Shine staff, on Tue Feb 16, 2010 11:31am PST

Eating right on a budget can be a challenge, but it’s certainly not impossible. Consider this your cheat sheet to the 5 inexpensive foods you should eat everyday for optimum health.

#1 Leafy greens
Medical experts call them one of nature’s miracle foods. Leafy greens like Swiss chard and kale are high in nutrients like folate and vitamins A and C that can lower your risk of cancer. Just one cup of dark, leafy greens a day could also prevent diabetes and high blood pressure.

#2 Nuts
Many nutritionists recommend nuts like almonds, cashews and walnuts because they’re high in natural fiber. Fiber slows your digestive process, keeping hunger and unhealthy mid-afternoon snacks at bay. Goodbye vending machine runs!

#3 Onions
Studies show that consuming onions on a regular basis may reduce symptoms of asthma and the risk of developing stomach cancer. Add them to soups and stir-fry, and just remember — the stronger the onion, the greater the health benefit.

#4 Whole grains
Refined grains, like white rice and pasta, have lost 90% of their nutritional value through the refining process. As if that weren’t reason enough to choose whole grains like brown rice, quinoa and whole oats, a recent study showed that a diet rich in whole grains actually flattens your belly by reducing fat storage in your lower abdominal region.

#5 Yogurt
Making yogurt part of your daily eating routine can improve your digestion — if you’re buying the right stuff. Check that the label lists “active cultures” to make sure you’re getting healthy probiotics, and pick a yogurt rich in vitamin D to prevent osteoporosis.

Thanks for watching Real-Life Makeover! Tune in next week with more simple solutions to enrich your life.

http://shine.yahoo.com/event/makeover/the-5-foods-you-should-eat-every-day-710199/

Overfed or undernourished, manage weight through balanced meals

By ROWENA BAUTISTA-ALCARAZ

March 22, 2010, 4:55pm

“Over 98 percent of dieters will regain their weight and usually more,” said corporate pharmacist Jenny Blasurca.  She was quoting Dr. Ray Strand from his book ‘Releasing Fat’.  “How then do we manage our weight?  More importantly, how do we do it the healthy way?” she asks.

In an intimate gathering, Blasurca of USANA Health Sciences discussed the several mechanisms in existence to aide weight management.  According to her, there are the so-called ‘extremes’ where people either cut down on food or they eat whatever they want but use ‘magic’ pills, tea or creams.

“The problem with cutting down on your food intake is you may lose the nutrients that your body need.  On the other hand, using slimming tea, pills, or cream often interfere with the body’s normal functions because many of them work by eliminating water, by blocking or binding, or more frequently burning fat,” she explains.

She further adds, “A lot of people do this but why are they still fat?  The country has a growing number of obese cases.  What these patients don’t probably know yet is that their cells actually cling on the fat deposits.  These fat deposits actually cause self cell-destruction.”

There are also those who abide by the rules of reducing their fat intake thereby purchasing products only those with the ‘Non Fat’ or Low Fat’ labels.  And then there is the very popular ‘No Carb’ diet which prohibits individuals from eating rice or bread – staple components of a typical Filipino meal.

“There is a lot of health risks involved in the no carb diet.  It runs the risk of finding an alternative for what is lacking, like meat for protein.  If you over-eat meat, scientifically, you release nitrogen which becomes ammonia which is bad for the kidney.  These types are quick-fixes that are unsustainable and unhealthy,” Blasurca relates.

Proper nutrition is the key

According to Blasura, what the body needs is homeostasis or balance to avoid the ‘rebound’ effect where nature strikes back by putting back the weight that was lost.  That balance is needed by the body organs to function completely.  “We don’t need to cut down on anything but we need to make good choices because according to the food pyramid we should really eat fats, proteins, carbohydrates, and fiber in right amounts.  Water should be sufficient as well for it is the foundation of the food pyramid.”

In addition, Blasurca gave emphasis on minding the glycemic index (GI) of every food. GI is a measure of the ability of a food to raise blood sugar levels after it is eaten.  When a person’s blood sugar rises, insulin is produced to counteract it.  However, high levels of blood sugar and insulin can lead to problems like weight gain, insulin-resistance, hypoglycemia, and heart disease.

Relatively, USANA introduces Nutrimeal, a low-glycemic meal replacement drink that includes quality protein, carbohydrates, dietary fiber, and other micronutrients.  Available in two flavors, Dutch Chocolate and Wild Strawberry, Nutrimeal has 257 calories per serving.

“We recommend it as a program in three phases.  Phase I is called Reset where the individual replaces all meal for five days.  It accustoms the body to the amount of sugar that it should consume and the amount of four necessary micronutrients that it should get.  What you set is what you get!.”

Blasurca adds, “It is advised for that duration because the most bio-available form of protein is meat and we would like to teach the body to eat in moderation the amount of protein, carbohydrates, fats, and fiber.  It’s also a way of cleansing because the food that we’ve consumed is removed from our system.”

The second phase is Transform where the drink replaces two meals for two days.  “It works best by eating a lot of fruits and vegetables that has low GI component,” reminds Blasurca.  Lastly, Maintain which is the third phase of the program, replaces one meal a day for three months. “Based on the research and developing team, it is best taken in the evening because when the body is at rest, the fiber can get into the colon resulting to a good evacuation process in the morning.”

In conclusion, Blasurca asserts, “Regular exercise is still recommended.  The basic way to do to lose weight is to eat less calories based on your desired body weight.  That is established by clinical nutritionist, pharmacists, and doctors.  Energy in should be the energy out.”

http://mb.com.ph/articles/249066/overfed-or-undernourished-manage-weight-through-balanced-meals

By Dr. Maoshing Ni – Posted on Thu, Apr 16, 2009, 4:06 pm PDT

Trying to change your habits and routines can be daunting, even when you know the changes are for the better. Try these 8 simple switches below to slim down and live a long and healthy life.

1. Swap green tea for coffee
For many people, the first thing they reach for in the morning is coffee. Caffeine acts as a CNS (central nervous system) stimulant, causing you to experience stress, anxiety, a racing mind, and even insomnia. For a calmer energy boost, cut the coffee and go for green tea. On average, a cup of green tea contains about one sixth of the amount of caffeine you would get from the same cup of coffee. Even better, green tea is full of powerful antioxidants that ward off cancer, and tea is a proven preventive and treatment for atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries).  Also, when combined with exercise, green tea can help you lose weight.

2. Try trailmix in place of fatty snacks
Carry dried fruits and nuts with you as healthy snacks to replace any unhealthy ones you usually eat. Just a handful every day can help improve circulation and muscle tone. Research shows that many of these nuts and seeds are rich sources of vitamin E, lignans, and omega-3 fatty acids, which help prevent heart disease and protect you from the ravages of aging.

3. Switch brown rice for white rice
Modern staples around the world often include refined bread, pasta, rice, and corn. These carbohydrates that have been found to be the culprits in serious conditions like diabetes, stroke, and heart disease, arthritis, and allergies. And there is no question that refined carbohydrates contribute directly to weight gain. So change to whole grains to get complex carbohydrates; said another way, swap “white” for “brown”. Substitute white rice, bread, and pasta with brown rice, whole wheat bread, and whole wheat pasta. Other “browns” will bring you anti-aging benefits also. Quinoa and amaranth are two tasty grains rich in protein and easy to cook. Millet, sorghum, and buckwheat are packed with B vitamins.

4. Swap fish for red meat

Red meat does have some health benefits-when eaten in moderation. However, studies have shown that men and women who eat meat every day are three times as likely to develop breast cancer and prostate cancer as those who almost never eat high-fat animal foods. Of all animal products, fish is the healthiest because of its high protein and low-fat content. The omega-3 fatty acids in fish, along with other nutrients, protect blood vessels from plaque, reduce inflammation, and prevent high blood pressure. If you just can’t leave the red meat behind, choose only free-range, grass-fed, and hormone- and antibiotic-free lean meat, and eat it no more than three times a week.

5. Use olive oil instead of butter
Butter is the bad kind of fat. Also included in this saturated fat category: peanut oil, coconut oil, palm kernel oil, and lard. All of these elevate cholesterol and triglyceride levels, leading to an increased chance of heart attack and stroke. Switch for olive oil or one of the other monounsaturated fats, which increase good cholesterol and protect you from heart disease and premature skin aging. Others include canola oil, rice bran oil, walnut oil, flaxseed oil, peanut oil, and sesame oil. Like butter on your bread? Try hummus instead.

6. Swap sweet potatoes for potatoes
While filling, potatoes just do not contain the nutritional benefits of sweet potatoes. Yams and sweet potatoes are powerhouse foods that contain higher amounts of beta-carotene and vitamin C than carrots, more protein than wheat and rice, and more fiber than oat bran. They are also rich in plant DHEA (dehydroepiandrosterone)-a precursor hormone that is essential for the body’s anti-aging defenses to work.

7. Swap berries for refined sweets
The average American consumes nearly 240 pounds of sugar per year. Most of the excess sugar from candies, pastries, sodas, and other refined sweets end up being stored as fat in your body, resulting in weight gain and elevating heart disease and cancer risk. Instead, satisfy your sweet tooth with a berry tasty treat: blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, cranberries, and cherries. Berries are rich in antioxidants that fight free radicals and can also help remove toxic residue from the system, which is often the cause of chronic fatigue and low energy.

8. Switch to water in place of soda
Soda pop is very high in phosphorus, which in excess actually causes calcium loss from your bones, possibly leading you to osteoporosis. Diet soda is filled with artificial sweeteners such as aspartame or saccharin, which have shown dangerous results in tests with laboratory animals. Your best beverage is filtered water, which flushes your system of the chemicals and toxins that you encounter every day. If water by itself doesn’t appeal, turn to juice and tea. One caution about fruit juice is that it tends to be filled with sugar. Cut back on sugar content by watering down your juice: one part juice to three parts filtered water. Unsweetened herbal tea, brimming with health benefits, is another way to go. For a selection of healthy teas that promote total body wellness, click here.

Make these switches and you are on your way to a healthier you!

May you live long, live strong, and live happy!

–Dr. Mao

Don’t Believe the Health Hype: Six Fallacies Debunked
By Maxine Hurt (View Profile)

By this time, you know that you should never skip breakfast, all carbs are not bad for you, fasting is a dubious get-thin-quick solution with negative short- and long-term repercussions, and cutting up your food up into tiny pieces before eating it doesn’t decrease your caloric intake, despite what Alicia Silverstone’s diet-obsessed character in Clueless says. But just when you think you’ve found a clear path in the labyrinth world of fitness, nutrition, and health, a whole new set of myths, exaggerations, and flat out lies pop up, ready to thwart your wellness goals. This means that you have to be forever vigilant, separating the bad information from the good to ensure that your health doesn’t suffer as a result. Here are a few common fallacies explored to help you stay on track.

1. I should exercise in my “fat burning zone.”
You hop on the elliptical machine at the gym and study the console’s colorful diagram. Without making a single rotation, the words “Fat Burning Zone” cause your heartbeat to accelerate. A special zone that allows me to burn more fat? Perfect! So you accelerate, check your heart rate, then decelerate and peddle cautiously to ensure you never leave the fat burning zone. According to Michael Brazeal, Director of Fitness and Exercise Physiologist at the California Health and Longevity Institute at the Four Seasons Hotel Westlake Village, California, you’ve been misled. “Yes, at low levels of exercise, a greater percentage of the calories burned come from fat, whereas at higher levels of exercise intensity a greater percentage of the calories burned come from carbohydrate combustion. But the bottom line is that it’s all about calories and creating an energy imbalance—your body doesn’t care where the calories come from.”

Brazeal explains that when he measures his clients’ resting metabolic rates (the energy required to perform vital body functions such as respiration and heart rate), a higher percentage of calories burned come from fat combustion. This means that you would be in the optimal “fat burning zone” when watching TV on the couch or lying in a hammock by the beach. Obviously, that’s not going to help you with your health goals. Instead, Brazeal, whose advice is evidence-based and substantiated by scientific research, tells his clients, “Exercise vigorously. Get the most out of it.”

2. If I focus on abdominal exercises, I will lose inches off of my waistline.
Remember the video of the woman in the pink leotard trying to trim her waist by being violently jiggled by a vibrating belt machine? Guess what? It didn’t work then and it doesn’t work now. According to Brazeal, “There is no such thing as spot reduction unless you know a great plastic surgeon. But you can spot tone the musculature beneath the fat.” Performing leg lifts, abdominal crunches, or bicep curls will, overtime, increase the muscle’s strength and may change the physical appearance of the area. Your biceps may appear larger or smaller depending on your genetics and exercise routine, but it is the muscle mass that has changed, not the fat surrounding it.

According to Brazeal, “The best way to get rid of fat is by doing cardio exercise—long duration, vigorous cardio exercise.” So you can abercize, ab-tone, abdominalize, ab-crunch, ab-sculpt, and ab-burn for days, but as for losing inches off of your waist in the process, you better go running, jump on the elliptical machine, or take a spin class.

3. If I do too much weight training, I’m going to look like Schwarzenegger.
Many women like having a toned body, but don’t want a bulky one. As a result, we are suspicious of weight training, scared that the end result will be an overly muscled, Amazonian physique ideal for winning body building competitions. According to Brazeal, that’s a fallacy. “Due to hormonal differences, very few women are capable of achieving exaggerated muscle hypertrophy which is an increase in muscle mass caused by resistance training. Unless you are on some type of supplement, you are not going to bulk up,” says Brazeal.

Rather than worrying about bulking up, women should be more cognizant of realistic fitness challenges more likely to plague them like saddlebags, the deposits of fat that settle around the hips, butt, and thighs. According to Brazeal, one reason to go all out with weight training is because it’ll help you in the future. “Muscle is metabolically active. The more muscle you have, the more calories that you burn.” So although spot training alone won’t get rid of saddlebags, weight training in general will make your body an efficient calorie burning machine which will help you reach your long-term fitness goals. 

4. If I eat meals from the low calorie menu at a restaurant, I’m being responsible.
Just as decadent chocolate desserts tempt us, so do the words guiltless, low fat, low calorie, and heart healthy when they’re printed on the menus at our favorite restaurants. But relinquishing control of what you eat is always suspect no matter how convincing the marketing campaign. According to registered dietician Anne Stone of Thousand Oaks, California, “If you want to lose weight, you have to reduce the frequency that you eat out, because even though something is advertised as a guiltless menu item, studies have recently been showing that it depends on who is preparing the food that day and how carefully they are following the guidelines.”

In one investigation conducted in 2008 by Local 6 News in Orlando, Florida, the station’s reporter packed and shipped food content from eight different meals from popular restaurants to scientists at Analytical Laboratories in Boise, Idaho. The laboratory reports revealed that in all but one of the eight meals, there were more calories in the meals than advertised. Some meals were around one hundred calories over the marketed amount. In two of the meals, there were over 80 percent more calories in the supposedly low calorie fare. This is clearly a good argument for preparing your own meals at home whenever possible.

5. If I want to lose weight, I can’t go wrong by eating lots of salads.
The salad myth is wrong for two reasons: salads can be just as high in calories and fat as any other meal (especially when ordered at a restaurant) and your body can feel deprived when it doesn’t receive meals that incorporate all three major food groups. This can cause you to munch relentlessly later on. Stone, who is familiar with this mindset, tells her clients, “You’d be better be off never ordering salads unless it’s a garden salad on the side of your turkey sandwich. I’m a big believer in sandwiches; they are very filling, they look like a meal, and they taste like a meal.” Stone looks beyond the calories in/calories out weight loss equation into murkier psychological waters. “Psychologically, it’s more satisfying to eat a sandwich. Our body likes all of the three major food groups: carbohydrates, protein, and vegetables.” According to Stone, as long as you make smart choices when ordering or making a sandwich (whole grain bread and hold the mayo for example), they are the clear winners over salads.

6. At least I don’t have to worry about heart disease; that’s a man’s problem.
Not only is this assumption wrong, it’s potentially deadly. When you learn that of the approximately 870,000 people who die annually of cardiovascular disease, almost 450,000 are women, it’s clear that this is also a woman’s problem. According to Brazeal, “It’s not that a man is the poster child. The thing is that women show different symptoms and signs. They will go into their physician and complain of fatigue, lethargy, insomnia, stress, and oftentimes the physician will dismiss these symptoms as stress-related, write a prescription for Xanax or Zoloft, and send her on her way.”

Not having overt symptoms can confound the problem. According to the American Heart Association, 64 percent of women who die suddenly of coronary heart disease have no previous symptoms. Similarly, women still see it as a man’s disease. Historically, most of the research on cardiovascular disease was performed predominantly on middle-aged men. Ironically, only thirty years ago, a 1960s American Heart Association conference in Oregon devoted to women and cardiovascular disease was titled, “How Can I Help My Husband Cope with Heart Disease?” Help him, but know that you need to stay informed and help yourself as well.

Although there are many misleading claims made about fitness and health, sometimes our worst saboteurs are ourselves. Yes, it’s easier to tell yourself you’re avoiding bulking up by not weight training, but in the end, the right choices will always produce the right results.

http://www.divinecaroline.com/article/22176/72281-don-t-believe-health-hype–six

by Liz Vaccariello, Editor-in-Chief, PREVENTION, on Thu Mar 12, 2009 8:54am PDT

The news about all the amazing ways eating—NOT dieting—can improve your health, help you lose weight and give you all-day energy just keeps getting better and better. In fact, new research shows that certain nutrients found in loads of foods are powerful factors when it comes to balancing blood sugar and encouraging weight loss. Here are four that can have a powerful effect on your weight, your energy level and your long-term health.

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1. CALCIUM

Scientists aren’t sure how calcium burns body fat—some believe it reduces the fat-producing effects of a steroid hormone called calcitriol. What we do know is that it works: Researchers at the University of Tennessee found that obese people who went on a low-calorie diet that contained three daily servings of calcium rich dairy lost 70% more weight and 64% more body fat than those who ate just one serving of dairy a day.

WHAT TO EAT:

Fat-free milk and low-fat dairy, spinach, kale, broccoli, and white beans

Do you find yourself over-eating when your stressed? Here are 7 positive ways to beat the stress

2. VITAMIN D

A landmark study from Tufts–New England Medical Center showed that low levels of vitamin D raise a person’s risk of type 2 diabetes by as much as 46%. Researchers believe vitamin D quells cellular inflammation that contributes to diabetes. Plus, your body needs D to absorb calcium—and together, they can help fight diabetes: According to the Nurses’ Health Study, an ongoing investigation of more than 83,000 women, those who consumed more than 1,200 mg of calcium and more than 800 IU of vitamin D a day were 33% less likely to have developed diabetes than those taking in less of both nutrients.

WHAT TO EAT:

Salmon, mackerel, sardines, tuna, fortified whole grain cereal, fortified fat-free milk, and Swiss cheese

Keep your heart strong with these cutting-edge strategies from leading cardiologists

3. OMEGA-3s

New science published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition showed that women who ate a balanced diet including omega-3s lost 1 12 more pounds of torso fat than women on the same exact diet but minus the omega-3s. These healthy fats slow the rate of digestion, which makes you feel fuller longer, so you eat fewer calories throughout the day.

WHAT TO EAT:

Tofu, enriched eggs, shrimp, salmon, tuna, walnuts, flax, and flaxseed oil

Delicious Meals That Boost Your Energy and Fight Fat

4. FIBER

Foods high in fiber are nutrient-rich, filling, and low in calories—a combination that makes them weight loss wonders. According to a study done at the University of Minnesota, people who stuck to higher-fiber diets lost 2 to 3 pounds more per month than those who followed lower-fiber diets. Fiber triggers hormones that control appetite, which also helps with weight loss. Plus, both soluble and insoluble fiber help control blood sugar: The soluble type dissolves in water and forms a thick gel during digestion, which can interfere with and slow down carbohydrate and glucose absorption in the intestines, explains Quinn. Insoluble fiber doesn’t dissolve in water. It stays solid and moves quickly through the digestive tract, so intestines have less time to absorb carbohydrates, and blood sugar levels stay even.

WHAT TO EAT:

Whole grain breads and cereals, brown rice, barley, oatmeal and oat bran, apples, pears, citrus fruits, carrots, beans, and artichokes

http://shine.yahoo.com/channel/health/4-super-nutrients-that-fight-fat-428622/

“Bad” Foods Can Help You Lose

Seductive foods seem to lurk at every turn, especially when you’re trying to lose weight. But many foods that have gotten a bad rap aren’t so terrible after all. Learn which tempting treats can actually help you lose weight and keep it off.

Eggs

When it comes to healthy eating, few foods have sparked as much debate as eggs. The latest research suggests an egg a day is safe and nutritious for most adults — and if you eat that egg for breakfast, you’ll boost your odds of losing weight. The reason: Eggs are packed with protein, which takes time to digest. Eating protein in the morning keeps your stomach busy, so you eat less during the rest of the day.

Steak

For years, health experts have been admonishing us to eat less red meat. But steak is not always bad for the waistline. In fact, a lean cut of beef has barely more saturated fat than a similar size skinless chicken breast. Like eggs, steak is loaded with protein and can keep you feeling full longer. To get plenty of protein with less fat, choose T-bone, sirloin tip, or other extra-lean cuts — and limit portions to the size of your fist.

Pork

Talk about a bad reputation — the term “pork” is used to describe all kinds of excess, so it’s no wonder dieters often steer clear. Here’s a case where the meat itself is not what it used to be. Today’s cuts of pork tenderloin are 31% leaner than 20 years ago. That makes this white meat a lean source of protein with benefits similar to those of lean beef.

Pasta

Rather than avoiding pasta when you’re dieting, make the switch to whole grain. Research suggests people who eat several servings of whole-grain foods per day are more likely to slim down and maintain healthy weights. According to one study, eating whole grains rather than refined grains can also help burn belly fat.

Nuts

Nuts may be high in fat, but it’s the good kind. And they are also rich in protein and fiber, which can help stabilize blood sugar. Sure, you’ll get a few extra grams of fat from munching on a handful of nuts, but it’s worth it if it helps you avoid reaching for cookies or other sweets. Even peanut butter can be a dieter’s friend. Studies show small amounts of this favorite food can control hunger without causing weight gain.

Cheese

Dieters often try to cut calories by nixing calcium-rich dairy foods, but some studies suggest this is a mistake. One theory is that the body burns more fat when it gets enough calcium, so eating cheese, yogurt, and milk may actually contribute to weight loss. Calcium supplements don’t seem to yield the same benefits, so high-calcium diets may have other factors at work as well.

Source: http://www.webmd.com/diet/slideshow-bad-foods-that-are-good-for-weight-loss


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