Many sober, law abiding people who would never dream of knowingly ingesting a mind - altering drug, actually consume one every day—caffeine! Caffeine is so pervasive in our culture and in many other cultures that we often forget it is actually a drug that affects our brain. Caffeine is present in coffee, tea, many cola drinks and over the counter medications. The most common way that most of us ingest caffeine is in the form of coffee. And some of us drink many cups of coffee in a day. If you are one of those people who drinks a lot of coffee daily, you probably wonder what all that coffee is doing to you. Is coffee really bad for you, or is drinking coffee just a harmless vice? Can it be possible that coffee is actually good for us? The research on coffee shows mixed results. Some studies show that drinking coffee increases the rate of heart attacks, while other studies have shown that drinking large amounts of coffee decreases the risk of diabetes. There are nutritional advisers who claim that coffee makes us age faster, wears out our adrenal glands, and causes all sorts of untold damage to our cells. Other researchers claim that coffee, especially if it’s freshly roasted and ground, is full of antioxidants, and therefore good for us. Most doctors say that drinking one or two cups of coffee a day is probably not harmful. And of course there are others who say we ought to avoid caffeine altogether. The one thing that most researchers and most coffee drinkers agree on is that coffee can keep us awake at night and cause insomnia if we drink it late in the day. Yet many of us drink coffee precisely because we want to boost up the activity of our brain cells, especially when we first wake up. Many of us feel that we cannot really get going in the morning until we have had our first cup of coffee. We often continue to drink coffee throughout the day whenever our energy appears to be flagging and our brain seems to need additional help to think more clearly. Does caffeine really enhance mental performance, or is that just a myth? Yes, caffeine does give a temporary boost to brain cells. But the amount required to improve mental performance is not very high. Even half a cup of coffee will be enough to give your brain a boost that lasts several hours. Oddly enough, more caffeine is not necessarily better. In one test done when high-level executives were given the equivalent of fourteen cups of coffee in a day, they made their decisions faster, but the decisions were not of very good quality. Not every person reacts to caffeine in the same way. Some people experience greater mental clarity, alertness and productivity after a cup of coffee. Other people become jittery, anxious, or depressed when they drink coffee. Although caffeine will keep most of us awake if taken at night, it does not have this effect in everyone. In some older people, coffee or tea can improve memory and alertness enough to partly offset the effects of aging. It is true that caffeine is mildly addicting for most people. Some people can quit using caffeine with absolutely no withdrawal symptoms, while others will feel headaches, fatigue, and experience cravings for caffeine for weeks. Caffeine works by blocking one of the neurotransmitters--adenosine—which normally tells brain cells to calm down. Brain cells that have been affected by caffeine will remain excited and on high alert for several hours. The most noticeable negative effect of caffeine is that it can interfere with sleep. In most people, drinking coffee, tea or cola in the late afternoon or in the evening will cause insomnia. If you are particularly affected by caffeine, you will find that the quantity and quality of your sleep will be greatly reduced. This can set off a vicious cycle, where you feel so tired all the next day that you drink a lot more coffee just to try to feel awake. If this is happening to you, cut back on the amount of coffee you consume each day. You may experience fewer withdrawal symptoms if you cut down gradually. You may wish to substitute green tea for some of your cups of coffee. Green tea has some caffeine, but not as much as coffee. Better yet, consider substituting exercise for some of those cups of coffee. If you can’t leave your workplace, at least get up from your chair periodically. Do a few stretches, walk around a bit, and jump up and down a few times. Take some deep breaths. A little exercise break can revitalize your brain without giving you the caffeine jitters. Remember that your brain won’t really benefit from more than one or two cups of coffee in a day.
In an attempt to explain the obesity epidemic in the world, fingers have recently been pointing to fructose – the sweetener found naturally in fruit and honey and as a component of high-fructose corn syrup used in sweetened foods and beverages. Some research has suggested that fructose may stimulate a hormonal response in the body that promotes weight gain, while other studies have hypothesized that fructose, vs. other forms of sugar, may trick you into thinking you are hungrier than you should be. But is fructose the real culprit? Many experts don't think so. John S. White, PhD, a researcher specializing in nutritive sweeteners, finds the information unfounded. "I don't believe that limiting any single food ingredient would be at all effective. Obesity is caused by a host of environmental, psychological, and physiological factors. All macronutrient food ingredients -- fats, carbohydrates, and proteins -- will contribute to weight gain when consumed to excess. … That may not be a trendy position, but it is one that is consistent with rational science." White’s colleagues agree. The expert view is that fructose may only be one ingredient causing people to gain weight, but other factors should be looked at, and overall calorie intake is likely high in obese people. Limit your consumption of fructose-sweetened beverages and snack foods just as you would any simple carb. Get your carbs from whole grains and veggies instead. They suggest reading labels carefully and when you need a sweet, try to choose fruit over artificial candy and beverages. The fact of the matter here is that added sugars, in any form, can be a significant factor in obesity. The moral of the story: don’t give fructose a bad rap - everything in moderation - you could gain weight by eating too much of any food.
You probably know that saturated fats are bad fats that can cause all kinds of heart related diseases. Did you know that and the humble coconut oil has 92% saturated fats? Then why is it that there are many advocates of taking coconut oil as a health supplement? Isn't that contradictory? Supporters of virgin coconut oil argue that coconut oil helps them to improve skin condition, have more energy and even to lose weight. Huh? consuming saturated fats to lose weight? How is that possible? These advocates hail the virgin coconut oil as one of the hottest new nutritional supplement to hit the health and nutrition industry in years. This logic flies against conventional wisdom, isn’t it? Saturated fat and there are plenty of it in coconut oil has been the villain for heart diseases. When hydrogenated vegetable fat (trans fat) was invented like in margarine, it was supposed to replace unhealthy saturated fat like in butter and was thought to be a healthier form of fat only until it was discovered in the last few years that trans fat is more dangerous to your heart health than saturated fat. It is with this thinking that proponents of coconut fats is now arguing that not all forms of saturated fat may be bad and the coconut oil may be one of them. Dr. Bruce Fife, a US based naturopath and author of “The Coconut Oil Miracle” remarked during a press conference in Singapore last month, “Not all saturated fatty acids act in the same way. The fat in coconut oil is different from most other fats and has many health giving properties”. He further added that, “The Lauric acid (I coconut oil) boosts immunity, has antioxidant properties and is being investigated in reducing viral load in HIV patients. You should also take into account the size of the carbon chain in the fatty acid. Most of the oils and fats we consume are long–chain fatty acids. Coconut oil is the richest source of medium-chain fatty acids, which actually behave very differently from the long-chain versions.” “Medium-chain fatty acids in coconut oil boost the body’s metabolic rate and promote weight loss. They are broken down immediately in the liver to produce energy and are not stored as fat,” he added. So is the consumption of coconut fats good or bad for health? It’s very controversial isn’t it? Let’s hear it from another expert Dr Annie Leong, deputy director of the nutrition department at the Health Promotion Board. “There is not enough evidence to prove that medium-chain saturated fats can reduce heart risk.” Nutritionist Anna Jacob argued that, “Kerala is the coconut capital of India and it also has the highest rates of heart disease. While it is possible to argue that Indians are genetically predisposed to heart disease, but a diet high in saturated fat as well could heighten that risk.” My question is that since Indians are more prone to heart disease, then the high rates of heart disease should be spread evenly throughout India and not just in Kerala, don’t you think so? Therefore, I am still a little skeptical. So who is right and who is wrong? So is coconut oil saturated fat good or bad for your heart health? Well, the jury is still out there as far as I am concerned. I for one will make a conscious effort to avoid consuming coconut oil too often until the coconut debate is more conclusive with empirical evidence that the coconut oil is good for heart health.
Are you running for the medicine cabinet as soon as you feel the slight pang of a headache coming on? I think we all do. There is a way we can be more proactive and decrease the amount of headaches we get simply by looking at our diet. Research shows that some headaches, primarily the severe migraine type, can be triggered by what we eat. Experts suggest keeping a headache diary. Look for patterns to see which foods or beverages consistently cause headaches. Once you've identified a potential trigger, cut it out of your diet and see if the result is fewer headaches. Here’s some common head-tension culprits to keep in mind: Tyramine Formed from the breakdown of protein as it ages, tyramine is found in red wine, overripe bananas, beer, ale, nuts, seeds, soy, chocolate, pickled foods, and some aged cheeses. Caffeine Over two cups of coffee a day means increased blood flow to the brain. Alcohol Alcohol can trigger a headache or cause dehydration and lead to a hangover headache. MSG The increased sodium intake MSG may result in a hangover-type or migraine headache. Tannins Usually associated with red wine, tannins are also found in apple juice, black-berries, coffee, tea, chocolate, and carob. Nitrites This food additive, found in processed meats such as hot dogs and lunch meat, can increase blood flow to the brain and cause a migraine. Ice cream This dessert and other very cold foods can irritate a nerve in the back of the throat and bring on "brain freeze," which can trigger a headache. If the diary is too tedious for you, at least try to lower consumption on the above items and see if you don’t notice a change in the number of headaches you experience. Always remember to drink lots of water throughout the day to fend off unwanted head tension.
So many people that are concerned with improving their health over look the health of their liver. The liver is called LIVE - R for a reason. The reason is the liver is involved with digestion and assimilation. It processes nutrients to give life to your body, to repair diseased and damaged tissue. It removes toxins and eliminates pathogen from getting into the blood that flow to all of your body cells. Over 27,000 people every year die from chronic liver diseases and Cirrhosis. People with diabetes have a high number of deaths from liver deterioration. Over 60,000 people die from liver failure. It is estimated that 9,000 die from Chronic Hepatitis C and over 12,000 from liver cancer. Over 25 million people create some form of liver and gallbladder disease every year. Liver disease is the Seventh killer of American people. Don't dismiss the health of your liver as you layout your plans to improve your health. Most people have some from of liver weakness and don't even know it until it too late. Why not learn what you can do to treat your liver right so it can give you good LIFE. Here is a list of symptoms that you will have when your liver is not working like it should. Frequent headache not related to stress, eyestrain, or shoulder muscle tension Frequent menstrual problems Blurry vision or red eyes Constant bitter taste in mouth Excessive anger, depression or moodiness Tenderness in the liver area - just under your right rib cage Acne, psoriasis, eczema, rashes, and other skin problems Weakness in your muscles and joint areas Any one of these symptoms can be an indication that you have liver weakness. If you have two - three of them for sure you have some liver weakness. So what can you do if you feel that you have some liver weakness? The first area to work on is to examine the types of fats and oils you eat and make the changes that will give you better liver health. Saturated fats, such as found in butter, meat, lard, and other oils are highly susceptible to oxygen damage through the process called oxidation. When these fats are oxidized they become rancid and form free radicals. But Saturated fats are not the only fats that can be oxidized. Even unsaturated fats, the good oils, can be oxidized. Still it is better to eat most of our fats unsaturated since saturated fats are associated with heart conditions. All fats can become oxidized outside the body by using them to fry your food or inside your body though the natural oxidation processes. Liver cells are highly susceptible to free radicals. These free radicals are destructive to liver cell walls and weaken the health of the liver over time. Also, Scientists have found that 17% of the oxygen you breathe and have available in your body becomes a free radical. These free radicals, again, attack and destroy liver cells. To counter eating free radicals and the free radicals that are created in your body, you need to take anti-oxidant supplements and eat fruits and vegetables. The yellow and red colored fruits and vegetables are the highest in anti-oxidants. Of course it is best to also limit eating fried food and not use oils that have been sitting around to long.
Low-carb diets, while they may be effective in promoting quick weight loss, have been shown to increase inflammation in the body, according to researchers at the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and University. Not only does this age your skin, but your internal cells and organs as well. The solution is the IF Rating™ system, which shows you the foods that are both low-carb and anti-inflammatory. Obesity, wrinkles, heart disease, hay fever, depression…all of these different problems share a common factor: inflammation. Now thought to be at the root of today's most vexing health problems, chronic low-level inflammation is rooted in the foods you eat. By reading the label, you can determine whether or not a food is high in carbohydrates, fats or sugars, but not whether it's an inflammatory food. In The Inflammation Free Diet Plan, nutrition researcher Monica Reinagel takes the confusion and guesswork out of reducing inflammation with her revolutionary IF Rating system, which reveals which foods are best for reducing inflammation and which may make it worse. Using over 20 different nutritional factors to calculate each food's rating, the IF Rating system helps you maximize both health and weight loss. So do you choose the salmon or the steak? You'd probably be surprised at the answer. The IF Ratings reveal that one type of salmon may actually increase your risk of inflammation-driven aging and disease, while certain cuts of steak will reduce inflammation. This new information may change how you think about many common foods. The Inflammation Free Diet Plan includes: • IF Ratings for more than 1,600 common foods • Tips to balance the effects of inflammatory foods with anti-inflammatory ones • Three weeks of easy menus the whole family can enjoy • An easy, flexible program you can follow for life • More than 50 delicious anti-inflammatory recipes. Perhaps the best part is that the plan works almost immediately. You'll notice that your skin looks younger, your joints feel better and your allergy symptoms improve within days after you start. You'll also be reducing your risk of heart disease, Alzheimer's disease and diabetes in the future!
There's good news for those who want to incorporate more whole grains into their diet. Thanks to innovative menu planning and a growing number of products, it's getting easier for consumers to include whole grains on a regular basis. The U. S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) food pyramid recommends that adults consume at least three servings of whole grains per day. That's the same as three ounce equivalents. But according to a recent survey by the Whole Grains Council and Knorr®-Lipton® Sides™ Made with Whole Grains, 68 percent of adults are unaware that they should consume at least three daily servings of whole grains. USDA research has indicated that the majority of whole grain servings are consumed at breakfast, followed by snacks. Whole grain intake drops at lunch and dinner as each of these meals account for only 15 percent of daily whole grain consumption. Fortunately, with a little creativity, it's possible to find a number of ways to add whole grains to a family's diet. Here are 10 quick tips: • Buy quick-cooking whole grain pasta or rice side dishes for dinner. • Make risottos and pilafs with whole grains such as barley, brown rice, bulgur, millet, quinoa or sorghum. • Enjoy whole grain salads like tabbouleh. • Try whole grain breads. Kids especially like whole grain pita bread. • Add half a cup of cooked wheat or rye berries, wild rice, brown rice, sorghum or barley to your favorite canned or home-made soup. • Substitute half the white flour with whole-wheat flour in your regular recipes for cookies, muffins, quick breads and pancakes. • Add half a cup of cooked bulgur, wild rice or barley to bread stuffing. • Use whole corn meal for corn cakes, corn breads and corn muffins. • Look for cereals made with grains such as kamut, kasha (buckwheat) or grano. • Snack on multigrain chips and crackers or air-popped popcorn.
In the face of what many see as an exploding obesity epidemic among both adults and children, a growing number of state and regional legislatures are passing laws that prohibit the sale of junk foods in school vending machines and cafeterias. The new regulations differ from region to region, but the general drift is to reduce the availability of sugar, salt, and fat laden foods and snacks, and replace them with more nutritious healthy foods and snacks. The money issue Such good intentions are not always easy to implement. Money raises its ugly head at numerous points along the way, making it difficult to move to more healthy alternatives. First, vending machine operators naturally prefer to fill their machines with junk food because these "foods" generally have two major advantages over other more healthy alternatives. They have a higher profit margin, and they sell better because kids (for whatever reason) prefer them. This means the vending operators can offer schools attractive profit-sharing incentives when they fill up their machines with pop and candy bars. As everybody in the business knows, "healthy" vending machines cannot properly compete with "unhealthy" ones until attractive, good-tasting healthy snack products are made available at a competitive price. And student organizations themselves are split on the wisdom of going "healthy". Many student groups use candy sales as one of their primary fund-raising methods. According to Laura Thomas, a senior at Wilcox High School in Santa Clara, California, "These sales fit the needs of the clubs because they can sell at school, during lunch or in class. If clubs were forced to switch to selling other things like calendars or magazines, they would have to drastically shift their target market. Chances are students simply wouldn't be interested in those new products as much as they are in candy." In other words, not allowing junk food sales by student groups would make fund-raising programs in the schools much more difficult, and would threaten the current fund-raising structure that feeds cash directly into the school program. Of course not everyone agrees this would be a bad thing. As another California student, Leah Karlins, a junior at Branham High School in San Jose said "it seems no one is asking the obvious question -- why do our schools need to sell brownies to pay for sports teams and clubs?" Meal changes don't come easily There are similar problems when it comes to changing cafeteria menus. Not only is it usually less expensive to offer french fries every day, but it is much easier, takes less planning, and will probably be more broadly accepted by the students doing the eating. Menu changes usually involve a good deal of experimentation and have to be introduced slowly. Students are not going to switch to "eating healthy" without a relatively long and gradual transition period. And of course cost is always a factor. Most school boards in the U. S. receive a meal subsidy from one or more levels of government, so they must keep their costs below that level. At the same time they must meet the gradually tightening nutritional standards. These standards are sometimes the result of intense industrial lobbies that appear to encourage "healthy" change, but can also make it difficult. For instance, long-standing policies of the U. S. Department of Agriculture tend to discriminate in favor of diets that are heavy in meat and milk. The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine notes that meat alternatives are not subsidized by government, while meat and meat products are. The result is that a low-fat, low-cholesterol veggie burger is often twice as expensive as a high-fat hamburger. The same thing happens with milk. Milk production is subsidized, but not the production of low-fat alternatives. And milk is even mandated within the U. S. federal school guidelines which require schools to offer only milk to drink, and include it in the base price of the lunch meal. The bottom line is that the problem of poor eating habits among children is not something that is likely to go away quickly. While schools may dominate a child's daily activities, they still only account for one meal a day. So what the children are doing for the rest of their meals is even more important. This fact supports the claim that what schools really should be doing is teaching about nutrition and the importance of physical activity, and using school programs to set an example -- as a matter of "putting your money where your mouth is". The objective should be to have these habits carry over into the rest of their choices and activities. Lunch programs, vending machines, and school activity programs are not solutions to the problems of overweight and inactivity. They primarily serve as examples of a better lifestyle, and point children in a healthier direction.
Eating a variety of healthy foods is the best way for your child to get needed nutrients. But how do you encourage kids-notorious for being picky eaters-to explore the wide world of food? According to the health and parenting experts at KidsHealth, the answer is pleasant persistence. It turns out that once is not enough when it comes to kids and trying new foods. It may take up to 15 tries before children warm up to new tastes, research shows. So if your child turns up his nose at green beans or broccoli, don't assume he will never like those good-for-you green veggies. Consider starting a new rule at your family table: Everyone takes at least a bite of what's being served, even if they tried it before and didn't like it. This exposes kids to new tastes again and again, increasing the odds that they'll eventually accept some of them. It also makes trying new foods just part of the normal routine. The KidsHealth experts offer these tips for implementing this one-bite strategy: • Put a small portion of the new food on your child's plate. Or, if your child's old enough, allow her to self-serve. • When serving a new food, be sure to also include a familiar food on that night's menu. Too much new stuff can be off-putting, especially to a hungry child. • Keep the mood light and upbeat. Don't make the one bite seem like a punishment. • Talk about the new food you're serving, where it comes from, other recipes it's in, or even how to spell the food. (For instance, you might tell a toddler that zucchini starts with "Z.") • Be a sport by following the one-bite rule yourself. Visiting restaurants, farmers' markets and specialty markets can also expose kids to different foods. Use those outings to let your child choose a new food to try. Reading books about food and paging through cookbooks is another way to encourage experimentation. If a recipe looks good to your child, consider making it together. That new dish could become a favorite. But for now, start with just one bite.
If you are on a diet or simply enjoying a healthy lifestyle, than you probably know that peer pressure to eat foods that are not good for you is a major part of your life. If you are concerned about nutrition and the food that goes into your mouth, don’t worry—there are ways to overcome peer pressure. It simply takes a little know-how to get people off your back! Parties are a major source of peer pressure, especially with alcohol. However, remember that alcohol contains hundreds of calories in just one drink and of little to no nutritional value. When you go to a party, people may pressure you to have a drink and relax, and it can be difficult to say no when they are constantly trying to convince you. Instead, offer to drive to the bar instead. This way, you re the designated driver, so people won’t want you to drink and, in fact, they will probably be purchasing you waters and maybe even helping to pay for your gas. It’s a win-win situation for everyone. Another time when you may feel pressured to eat is at work when the boss orders lunch for everyone at a meeting or when you have to visit a client. Instead of giving in to temptation, simply and politely decline, by letting your boss know in advance or order a meal that is more nutritious and request only a small serving. Baby showers, weddings, birthday parties, and other special events can also wreak havoc on your diet and nutrition, even if you are good at resisting temptation on your own. When someone hands you a piece of cake and won’t take no for an answer, it can be difficult to know what to say! Here, little white lies might be appropriate. For instance, saying that your stomach was upset earlier in the day will convince a person that you don’t want to eat at the moment or pretending to have a chocolate allergy will get people to allow you to enjoy the party without a hassle surrounding food. A better way is to make a joke of it telling the truth, that your watching what you're eating. (I'm On a Health Kick) Remember, however, that while refusing foods of poor nutritional value is great, you should not stop eating good foods or start missing meals. If you do, dangerous eating habits and disorders can develop, which will give you, your friends, and your doctor a real reason to worry. It’s OK to say no to peer pressure and poor nutrition, but don’t say no to food in general!
Why should I increase my Omega fatty acid intake? Our intake of essential fatty acids has changed radically in the last century. Our ratio of Omega-6 to Omega-3 should be close to 1:1, but it is now over 10:1 and up to 20:1. This is due to the addition of corn, sunflower, safflower, sesame and other Omega-6 oils to our food supply. Such excesses are thought by many scientists to be a factor in a number of chronic medical conditions including arthritis, cardiovascular disease, asthma, acne, obesity and depression. It is clear that we need to increase our intake of Omega-3 fatty acids and decrease our intake of Omega-6 (linoleic acid) oils. By doing so we will be, look and feel healthier. What are good fats and bad fats? Fat is a concentrated source of energy. This source of energy is very useful during aerobic exercise. The longer the exercise, the higher the fat contribution for providing energy. Fat is particularly used in large quantities in the brain and nervous system. There are two types of fat: saturated and unsaturated. Unsaturated fats are commonly referred to as "good" fats, and should make up the greatest percentage of your fat intake. UNSATURATED • Unsaturated fats, "good fats" are liquid at room temperature, and remain in liquid form even when refrigerated or frozen. • Good fats are part of the essential fats: omega 3 and omega 6, both of which are unsaturated fats. What are EPA and DHA? These are two specific essential fatty acids found in fish oil. Both Eicosapentaenoic Acid (EPA) and Docosahexaenoic Acid (DHA) have been well documented in regulating cellular functions and promoting good health. Diets deficient in EPA and DHA have been associated with a number of health problems, most notably cardiovascular disease. What is GLA and how is it different from other Omega-6 sources? GLA (Gamma Linolenic Acid) is an Omega-6 fatty acid found in high amounts in borage oil, and to a lesser degree in black currant and evening primrose oils. In contrast to the sunflower, safflower and other Omega-6 oils, the presence of GLA in borage oil results in very different physiological effects. Linoleic acid in its current dietary excess promotes inflammation due to the production of arachidonic acid (AA). GLA on the other hand, actually interferes with the production of AA and decreases inflammation. GLA has been used with success in treating various medical conditions, most notably rheumatoid arthritis and eczema. Emerging science also indicates that GLA has synergistic activities with the Omega-3 marine-derived DHA and EPA, particularly in cardiovascular health and fat metabolism. We all want to be healthy, happy and fit with enough energy for work and for play. A well-balanced diet, exercise, and enough rest go a long way in helping us get the most out of life. And essential fatty acids (EFAs) have been proven to help us achieve healthier and happier lives. These good fats' truly are essential and the majority of us are not consuming enough of the well-researched Omega fats. Now getting the right amount of Omegas to suit your specific health needs is easier than ever. Where do essential fats come from? Sources of Omega 3 and Omega 6 essential fats: • Cold Water fish such as Salmon (coho, king and pink), sardines, cod, albacore tuna, trout, halibut , herring. (these fish are also a great source of Omega 6, but are predominantly richer in Omega 3) • Flaxseeds and green leafy vegetables are great sources of Omega 3. • Sesame and sunflower seeds and other seeds and nuts are great sources of Omega 6. • Borage oil and evening primrose oil are rich sources of GLA which is part of the Omega 6 essential fats. Where do saturated fats come from? Saturated fats contain large amounts of saturated fatty acids. Saturated fatty acids are named so, because they are "saturated" with hydrogen, meaning they have only single bonds between carbon atoms, leaving no room in their chemical structure for additional hydrogen atoms. Saturated fats are typically solid at room temperature. Varieties of Saturated fat include: Butter, coconut and palm oils and lard. Benefits • aid in balancing the autoimmune system • treats skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis • cardiovascular health
Parents play a key role in ensuring their children meet the daily requirements of calcium intake, according to a recent report from the American Academy of Pediatrics. The report also states that most children and adolescents are at risk for bone fractures and osteoporosis later in life due to low calcium consumption when they're young. Three servings of low-fat milk, cheese or yogurt, or up to 1,300 milligrams of calcium depending on age, are recommended each day to build strong bones. "Parents and caregivers often know the importance of calcium, but aren't sure how to incorporate it into their child's diet," said Andrea Garen, a registered dietitian at Dairy Council of California. "Since dairy foods provide 70 percent of calcium in the Western diet, finding ways to include more dairy can make a difference in a child's long-term wellness and bone health." Garen's suggestions include: • Find ways to work more dairy into the diet: Offer a child yogurt or cereal with low-fat milk for breakfast, and string cheese and flavored milk as a snack. • Serve as a child's role model: If good nutrition is important to parents, it will also be important to their children. • Insist on family meals: Eating together at home will help parents control what their children eat. Garen added that the Dairy Council of California's meal-planning Web site ( mealsmat ter. org) contains hundreds of free and easy-to-make, calcium-rich recipe ideas, including Chicken Crunchers. Parents can try this and other palate-pleasing recipes to help their children meet their daily calcium requirements. Chicken Crunchers Ingredients: 1 cup all-purpose flour Salt Pepper 4 Egg whites 1/2 cup milk 11/2 cups cornflakes 1 cup reduced-fat, shredded cheddar cheese 6 Chicken breast fillets; cut into strips Directions: Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Set up three bowls with the following: 1) flour mixed with a pinch of salt and pepper; 2) an egg-wash, made by beating the eggs and milk together; 3) cornflakes mixed with cheese. Coat a 13 x 9-inch baking pan with nonstick cooking spray. Dip chicken pieces in flour, then into the egg-wash, then roll in the cheesy-flakes mixture. Bake for 25 minutes, turning halfway through to ensure even browning. Serve with ketchup, BBQ sauce or plain yogurt for dipping, if desired. Total Preparation Time: 15 to 30 minutes.
Copyright 2006 Truth Publishing A new study published in the American Journal of Psychiatry shows that children who experience malnutrition exhibit strikingly increased behavioral disorders and aggressive behavior as they grow older. The study looked at children between the ages of eight and 17 years, and found some rather shocking statistics about their behaviors. Children who suffered certain nutritional deficiencies demonstrated a shocking 41% increase in aggression at age eight. At age 17, they demonstrated a 51% increase in violent and antisocial behaviors. And the only difference is their diet. It's all about the foods they were eating and the nutrients they were missing. What specific nutrients were missing from their diets? Four primary nutrients were tried in the study: Zinc, iron, B vitamins and protein. Malnourished children weren't getting crucial minerals like zinc and iron, and they weren't getting the B vitamins they needed to develop healthy nervous systems. And a healthy nervous system is a prerequisite for mental and emotional health and stability. Now let's talk about these nutrients in a little more detail and explore why these nutritional deficiencies are so widespread. Zinc is perhaps the single most common nutritional deficiency in the American population. Estimates are that more than 80% of the population is deficient in zinc. As a result of that deficiency, people's immune systems are impaired, they're not able to resist infectious diseases such as influenza, they're not able to heal their wounds as quickly and they're not able to recover from surgical procedures as quickly as they could if they had zinc. It also affects fetal development in pregnant women and impairs neurological function. And yet zinc is cheap! It only costs a few pennies a day to supplement our diets with zinc. In fact, it's one of the least expensive supplements you can get. But in our country we still have widespread chronic deficiencies. And as we're seeing in studies like this, our zinc deficiency is leading to – let's say it bluntly – criminals. Why do we have so many criminals in this country? Because so many of them are raised with nutritional imbalances which then distort their mental function, their mood, their response to stress and their ability to be successful in modern society. At least those are major contributing factors. At the same time we have B-vitamin deficiencies, which is interesting because so many of the popular food products sold in grocery stores all over the country and around the world actually deplete the body of B vitamins. The two most common ingredients in our foods seem to be white flour and sugar. It's hard to find any product in the grocery store, it seems, that isn't made with flour or some form of added sugars, whether it's sucrose, high fructose corn syrup, dextrose or just plain sugar. These two ingredients are both highly refined ingredients, and they tend to strip away nutrients from the bodies of people who consume them. For example, when a person eats a donut, that donut contains both white flour and added sugars, which deplete the body of B vitamins, causing deficiencies. And it is these deficiencies that lead to antisocial behavior, aggressive behavior and ultimately criminal behavior - especially among males. Another dietary factor in these behavioral disorders, it turns out, is a lack of quality protein. People aren't getting high quality protein because they think the only place to get protein is from beef and red meat, when in fact superfoods like spirulina offer much higher quality protein. Soy and rice proteins are also much higher quality proteins. In fact, there are many plant proteins that are actually healthier proteins for human beings, but are not being adequately consumed by the American population. People tend to turn to meat and milk, and those are in my opinion the worst sources of protein if you wish to maintain long-term health. So we have a population that suffers from widespread nutritional deficiencies – that much we know. But what may surprise you is how we actually deal with these deficiencies. Instead of spending a few dollars a month on nutritional supplements that would prevent these chronic diseases and aggressive behaviors, we end up spending hundreds of billions of dollars a year on building new prisons and treating these people with expensive prescriptions and mind-altering drugs. When it comes to children, for example, instead of giving them the food they need to be healthy, which would prevent these diseases and disorders, we dose them on Ritalin, antidepressants and other mind-altering drugs. This is expensive. It also impairs the child's learning capability while at the same time increasing the child's risk of violent behavior and suicide. Here we have a nutrient deficiency, most notably the B vitamins, that is causing children to act aggressively and be diagnosed with ADHD. The solution offered by conventional medicine is to dose them with antidepressant drugs that actually promote more aggressive behavior as we've seen in recent school killings. What kind of solution is that? It sounds crazy, but it's exactly the solution being implemented every day, right now, all across the country. Perhaps even with your child. But these kids don't need drugs; they need vitamins, nutrition and healthy foods. But even if you went to the grocery store for fruits and vegetables and ate them three times a day, you still wouldn't be getting adequate nutrition. To figure this out for yourself, just do the math. Add up the U. S. Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) numbers on the labels of all the foods you consume, and you'll find out that if you're going to meet the minimum requirements set by the U. S. government for preventing chronic disease, you're going to have to eat, on average, 10,000 calories a day of grocery store foods. That's 500% more food than an individual needs if they're a healthy adult of average weight. It's impossible to eat that much, even if you try hard. Morgan Spurlock, the creator of the "Supersize Me" documentary, ate nothing but McDonald's food for 30 days. He stuffed himself with McDonald's food three times a day and still only managed to eat about 5,000 calories. You would have to double Spurlock's incredible feat to eat 10,000 calories a day. And only then would you be meeting the minimum requirements for nutrition. And yet, those minimum requirements aren't enough to experience optimum health; all they do is prevent the most obvious nutritional deficiency diseases such as beriberi, scurvy or even rickets. If you want to get optimum health, you've got to supplement your diet through nutritional supplements, or by consuming superfoods like chlorella or spirulina, sprouts, berries and products like The Ultimate Meal or Berry Green. This is the only way you can get adequate nutrition. As we're now realizing with this study, a huge segment of our childhood population clearly is not getting this nutrition. As a result, we are raising yet another generation of children with behavioral disorders, aggression and problems with the law. Essentially, we are raising tomorrow's criminals. These are the people that will be put in federal prisons that you and I will have to pay for with our taxpayer dollars. We're going to have to support them, and it costs a lot of money to support prisoners. Not only do they not produce anything, they don't pay taxes or contribute to the revenue needed to support society. They actually suck away revenues from society by costing something like $60,000 per year per prisoner on average. They simply waste away without learning new skills that could help them assimilate back into society someday. Now think about it. We could spend a few dollars a month on our children, and give them nutritional supplements that prevent all of this. The choice is this: spend a few dollars a month on supplementing our kids' nutrition, or let this become a full-blown problem where we have to build more prisons and spend tens of thousands of dollars every year to support them in our federal prison system. Which choice makes more sense? If you were running the country and had to decide where to spend the money, where would it make more sense? Should you spend a couple of dollars a month on nutritional supplements for children and pregnant women, or should you spend $60,000 a year on each and every criminal that is created by nutritional deficiencies? So what's the solution here? It's easy. Nutritional supplements should be made available free of charge to the entire population. The government (the taxpayers, actually) should provide free vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients to the population, especially pregnant women and children, so that we can prevent birth defects and behavioral disorders early on. We would save countless dollars down the road. This is something I've supported for a long time and I will continue to promote. But of course, nothing is free. American taxpayers would be footing the bill, but it is a wise investment. By spending a few dollars on disease prevention today, we are avoiding the long-term expenditure of a lot more money taking care of a society full of criminals. Nutrition is a great investment, and preventing disease has a big payoff for society. I say we pay close attention to these studies and find ways to provide better nutrition to our children, our expectant mothers and our general population so that we can prevent these diseases before they become problems for society.
One of the most common deficiencies is that in iron; about two to three millions of people suffer from the lack in iron in their blood and some develop the anemia hypo ferric or the iron-deficiency, which is the latest stage of this kind of deficiency. Those who are usually in high risk are children and women in fecundity periods. Until the 80-ties this phenomena was very common with babies and little children. Although iron was added to babies’ drops without testing the hemoglobin level contained in their blood, the deficiency was still evident. Lack of iron in nursery may cause strange behavior and irreversible damages to the nervous system. Kids who suffer from this deficiency would later have studying difficulties. There is more that one reason for this deficiency and there are diseases that might cause it regardless to the way you eat. One of the latest discoveries is that the infection with the germ called Helicobacter pylori also causes iron deficiency. What I would suggest is to do a blood test and see what are you lacking and why is that. Scientific result would help you chose the right treatment – sometimes it’s safer to rely on medicine than trying out a friend’s advise. Those who seem to experience the very same symptoms may suffer from something entirely different that you. Make sure to eat food that contains iron in it – apples, serials, etc. Right nutrition is much similar to a diet; though it does not always meant to help you lose weight. Lacks and deficiencies are the reasons for feeling weary and sleepy. General weakness can be very disturbing especially if you intend to attain an active life style. If any of the symptoms appear familiar to you, you should definitely get yourself checked! Remember, Health is the most important aspect of your life.
Did you know that breathing is the only essential bodily function performed unconsciously, that you can control consciously? Your body can go without food for months, water for weeks and yet your body can't go without oxygen for more than a few minutes. Think about it. The power of breath has been known in India for thousands of years. Any type of quality yoga combines two powerful elements, those of breathing and stretching. The word "spirit" in the Hebrew language or "life-force" can be translated into the word "breath". You may recall in the bible it describes that god literally breathed the breath of life into Adam. Our breath is quite literally our life force. Oxygen feeds every part of the body. Breathing deeply and slowly will relax you, while instantly sending powerful doses of oxygen to the brain and every single cell of the body. One of the main reasons people find smoking relaxing is that they are taking slow deep breaths. It's powerful enough to calm the system even while inhaling poisons. What would happen if it was done without the cigarette? It's an interesting fact that the word "conspiracy" comes from a Latin word meaning two or more breathing in unison. Carbon dioxide robs the body of oxygen. Carbon dioxide is poisonous to our body in high amounts and that’s exactly why we breathe in oxygen and breathe out carbon dioxide. Breathing influences every organ in the body and balances the brain hemisphere. This is a profoundly important lesson: learn to breathe effectively. Many people report that they'd like to be able to have the ability to relax. How much value would it be if you could relax at will? Being in a relaxed state has it's side effects, you tend to be able to concentrate more, and retain information more easily. Could this be of use to you? My guess is probably yes. Breathing deeply and evenly through both nostrils helps to synchronize both sides of the brain. The right nostril tends to stimulate the left side of the brain and the left stimulates the right side of the brain. Research has proven that the brain swaps the dominate nostril we breathe through every 90 minutes. In addition, breathing has all sorts of physiological effects on the body, some very noticeable and others not so noticeable. Some physicians believe that breath is the doorway between the conscious and the unconscious mind. It can help relax and feed specific parts of the body, give greater control over the nervous system and often plays a large role in miraculous cures. Breathing deeply puts us in what science calls a "kinesthetic" state; that is, a more feeling state. Some people believe god has created us with a fixed number of breaths. A definite advantage to breathe deeper. Anytime you're tired, stop and take ten deep breaths. I’m going to show you the best way to breathe. The best way to breathe is in the pit (or bottom) of your stomach. Why, you may ask? Few people know that the lungs extend beyond the rib cage, in fact 2/3 of the lungs sit below the lowest rib. Filling the larger portion of the lungs will literally explode your energy. Do the exercise right now. You might as well apply what you're learning? You do want to feel better, right? It's so incredibly easy, yet so profoundly powerful. Breathe into the pit of your stomach. As deep as you can. Put your hand on the bottom of your stomach and push your stomach out as you breathe. While you read this, relax and start breathing deeply. Make sure you breathe in through your nose. Now breathe as deeply as you can, hold it, as long as comfortable then breathe out through your mouth. Would you expect to go to the gym one time and say Great, now I'm fit for life and I'll never need to work out again!? The answer is no. The same thing applies with breathing. You’ll notice an explosion in how you feel if you take this and use this. The best thing about deep breathing is it can be done anywhere while you're doing others things. You can do it while driving, sitting or working at a computer. I advise many of my clients who sit in front of a computer all day to learn to deep breath and keep their circulation moving by doing basic ankle exercises. Do this and the difference in your energy at the end of your day will be noticable. This tool is simple and can be used anytime, anywhere. It helps lower stress, increase energy, aid mental clarity and infuse every cell in your body with the most precious element for the body, oxygen.