Jonny Bowden, PhD, CNS
Are we unfairly blaming fructose for the obesity epidemic?
That’s what researchers from St. Michael’s Hospital suggested in the Annals of Internal Medicine when they reviewed over 40 published fructose studies.
In 31 of these studies, people ate the same number of calories as either pure fructose or non-fructose sugar. The fructose group did not gain any more weight than the non-fructose group in these studies.
In the remaining studies, one group ate their normal diet while the other group added fructose to their diet. As you might guess, the fructose group (those who ate the extra calories) gained weight.
A study in the American Journal of Epidemiology found that guys who drank five or more glasses of water had only a 46 percent chance of having a fatal heart attack, and women had only 59 percent risk, compared to people who drank two or less glasses of water daily.
It gets even better (or worse, depending on how you look at it). Women who drank two or less glasses of something other than water—such as tea, a soft drink, or juice — had a 147 percent greater risk for a fatal heart attack than women who drank five or more glasses of water. (Guys, you had a 46 percent greater risk if you skipped the water for another drink.) Now, if those stats confuse you, I’ll sum it up: drink more water and reduce your risk for a heart attack.
A recent meta-analysis in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that magnesium could help reduce blood pressure.
Researchers at the University of Hertfordshire analyzed 22 studies that involved 1,173 people total to understand how magnesium affects blood pressure. Each of these studies supplemented anywhere from 120 mg to nearly a gram of magnesium, and lasted anywhere from three to 24 weeks.
According to new research published in Food and Function, researchers from the University of Scranton in Scranton, Pa., compared the amount of powerful antioxidants called polyphenols in nine types of roasted and raw nuts and two types of peanut butter in an attempt to “crack” the antioxidant code.
A recent study in the Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior concludes you can eat out and still burn fat.
In this study, 35 healthy middle-aged women participated in a six-week program called Mindful Restaurant Eating, which teaches people how to eat out healthfully.
Now, keep in mind the goal of Mindful Restaurant Eating was to prevent weight gain in women, who fell into that perimenopausal age range where weight gain and ensuing problems like diabetes and heart disease more frequently occur.
Name a drink that can increase your alertness, prevent you from fainting after giving blood, and even promote a teensy bit of weight loss.
Think it’s one of those “miraculous” multi-level marketing elixirs made of exotic juices that sell for about 40 bucks a pop?
Well, think again...continue reading.
The drink I’m talking about doesn’t cost anything, yet most of us don’t get enough of it.
I’m talking about…water.
How many people like to exercise?
How many people are not so crazy about it?
How many people don’t have any time…
If you were Christopher Reeve…
No one can find more time
I call sunshine the under-appreciated energy vitamin. In fact, it’s more than under-appreciated. In some circles, it’s downright undiscovered!
We avoid sunshine at every potential encounter, slathering SPF 60 all over our bodies even if we venture out for a bottle of milk. We act as if five minutes of sun exposure is going to condemn us to a lifetime of wrinkles—or worse, to melanoma.
We treat the sun as our mortal enemy. And we’re paying the price—in energy and in health. It’s time to rethink our relationship with this brightly burning star.
Recently, a nutritional newsletter I subscribe to had the following headline: Vitamin D improves physical performance.
That got my attention.
I’ve long felt vitamin D is one of the most underrated vitamins on the planet, for reasons I’ll discuss in a bit. I’ve also long felt most of us are far too sun phobic for our own good. And the sun is our best source of vitamin D.
Anti-Aging Tip: Get in Sync with Zinc Take a multiple vitamin with at least 15 mg of zinc everyday. When you feel an illness coming on, boost your zinc intake to 50 mg daily.
Zinc is present in every tissue, organ, fluid, and secretion of the body. In fact, it’s present in every living cell. It plays a huge role in immunity (not to mention cell division, DNA synthesis, growth and development, and the activity of about 100 different enzymes). And because the body has no specific storage sites for zinc, you need to consume it on a daily basis.
Many of us don’t.
While virtually everyone is aware of the benefits of aerobic exercise, there still seems to be a lot of confusion about the subject of weight training and its place in an overall wellness program. Maybe it’s some residual confusion left over from the “Pumping Iron” days when weight training was something done only by bodybuilders and the Muscle Beach crowd. Who knows. Whatever the reason, it’s time to put some of the myths about weight training to rest.
Lose Weight, Get Healthy, And Live Longer
For the past two decades, fitness experts have been telling us that to get the benefits of exercise you had to do aerobics. And you had to work out hard. There was even a way to calculate whether your exercise was hard enough to do any good: You were supposed to subtract your age from 220, exercise intensely enough to get your heart rate up to 70–85 percent of that number and keep it there for twenty minutes.
- Eat protein at every meal, including breakfast.
- Eliminate wheat- and flour-based products for the time being. And yes, that definitely includes bread and pasta.
- Eliminate “food products.” Ninety percent of what you eat should be food that could have been hunted, caught, gathered from the ground, plucked from a tree or grown.
You can’t swing a rope without hearing some spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association tell you how great whole grains are and how you should make them a big part of your diet.
“Whole grains” are definitely better than processed grains. The question is “how much better” and the answer is… not so much.
If you’ve ever seen someone having an asthma attack, you know it’s not pretty.
And, according to those who suffer with it, it can be one of the most scary experiences in life.
What Is Asthma?
Asthma comes from Greek words meaning either “panting” or “sharp breath.” It’s a chronic disease that affects the pathways that carry air in and out of your lungs. Those airways become inflamed and very sensitive to any of a variety of substances (in air, food, the environment) that are irritating or allergenic. That’s one reason asthma is so often linked to allergies.
Let’s get real. Some foods make it really difficult to lose weight. They create their own self-sustaining cravings (“Betcha can’t eat just one!”) and play havoc with your blood sugar and, ultimately, your waistline.
But some foods do just the opposite.
By now almost everyone knows how great foods like broccoli and blueberries are and how they can help you lose weight, but here are some foods you may not have thought of when you first saw the title of this article. Yet every one of these foods (and one beverage) meets at least one major criteria of being a superfood for weight loss. Make these foods part of your daily diet and watch the pounds come off!
Researchers in Denmark have found that a high-protein low-GI (Glycemic Index, a way of measuring how quickly food raises blood sugar) diet was significantly better than other diets tested at maintaining weight loss in subjects who had already successfully shed pounds.
How many times in your life have you heard a health professional say to you, solemnly, “just listen to your body”?
According to the conventional wisdom, your body knows best, and it will always inform you as to what it needs. When it needs water, you feel thirsty. When it need energy, you feel hungry. When you feel an unexplainable desire for a steak, it’s probably because your body needs protein, or some component of protein like zinc or iron. Makes sense, right?
Except it’s a “doughnut truth.”
I coined the word “doughnut truth” to refer to statements or beliefs that have a little bit of truth in them — or, as Steven Corbet would say, “truthiness”— but have a hole in the middle you could drive a Mac truck through. Sure, your body will tell you what you need, but only under the right conditions. When the conditions are wrong, your body will lie to you as effortlessly and effectively as Bernie Madoff selling you an investment plan.
Before I start talking about that vitamin study you all want to know about, I want to say a few words about MSNBC and FOX NEWS.
Trust me, it’s relevant.
No matter what side of the political fence you’re on, I’m sure you’ll agree that cable news has become extremely shrill and highly partisan. Both MSNBC and FOX may agree on the facts they are reporting but then spin them in an entirely different way to reach entirely different conclusions. Each political argument is founded on certain “if’s, ands and maybes”; i.e. this policy will lower (or raise) the debt assuming certain projections (such as medical costs or unemployment) are in fact true. Different researchers come up with very different projections (just read the Wall Street Journal stock advice columns!) Depending on whose projections and figures you use, even well-intentioned honest people can come to very different conclusions.
Many people who are just starting a fitness program are going to turn to this page, as well as many who already caught the fitness bug and are “in the lifestyle.” The latter group can always remember what it was like when they first got into it, unless they are among the very few who were always fit and athletic, since childhood. We hate you guys. (Just kidding, just kidding…) When you’ve put it off for a long time, you usually feel you have a lot of weight to lose, plus you hate to exercise, plus you’re intimidated by all the choices and don’t want to ask “stupid” questions* on how to get started (*premature footnote: I don’t think there are such things), or you feel some combination of the above. And always, you wish you knew how to start.