Yes, that farmed Atlantic salmon at the grocery store may be a deal compared to the wild kind, but in addition to containing more toxins, the fat in the farmed fish isn't as healthy.
In fact, farmed salmon is increasingly eating cheaper food, namely vegetable oil, instead of more expensive and scarce marine feed. Now a new Norway study has found that this trend has a substantial consequence on human health.
Comparing the diets of heart patients with atherosclerosis (disease of the cardiac arteries), researchers found that patients eating wild salmon received the greatest health benefits compared to patients eating fish fed pure rapeseed oil. In addition to raising the patients' omega-3 fatty acid levels, the wild salmon group also enjoyed much better levels of marker substances for heart and vessel diseases than the patients eating the cheaper, less nutritious fish.
Source: Science Daily
Health Expert Claims that Cod Liver Oil is #1 Superfood
Rancid Fish Oil More Harmful than Healthful
Is Your Fish Oil Measuring Up?
Friday, February 29, 2008
Wednesday, February 27, 2008
Blueberry extract may be more than a just another super antioxidant. A new animal study found that it also has the potential to help cut food intake.
Researchers found that rats consuming blueberry extract consumed eight percent less food than rats not given the extract, which translated into gaining 10 percent less body weight.
Blueberry extract may be a good satiety inducer, concluded one of the researchers.
Related Article: Turn Up Your Body's Fat Burning Ability
Monday, February 25, 2008
Some people think that eating healthy is too expensive so they continue consuming a nutrient-starved diet filled with over-processed, empty-calorie foods. Well, those people no longer can use that as an excuse for poor eating.
A recent study published in the Journal of Nutrition found that eating a Mediterranean diet--consisting largely of fruits, vegetables, nuts, legumes, whole grains and fish--was actually quite affordable for the average person. While the cost for the healthier fare is higher, it is offset by the money not spent on red meat, refined grains, desserts and fast food.
Loading up your grocery cart with natural, whole foods can also help you reap dividends on your health. According to another study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine, woman who closely followed a Mediterranean diet were 12 percent less likely to die from cancer and 20 percent less likely to die from heart disease compared to those not following the diet. Men fared even better by closely eating the Mediterranean way. In fact, they were 17 percent less likely to die from cancer and 22 percent less likely to die from heart disease.
Next time you're trying to save money at the grocery store, pass on the chips and boxed meal "helpers" and head over to the bulk isle for some heart-healthy nuts, dried legumes and steel cut oats. It may also save your life.
Source: New Hope Natural Media Online
Related Article: Choose Olive Oil Like Wine to Reap Benefits
Friday, February 22, 2008
Need some inspiration to slim down, get fit and be healthy? Maybe some peppy motivation to get your feet tapping, body moving and mind fully determined in the pursuit? If music moves you from inside out, you'll want to check out SkinnySongs--a CD loaded with upbeat and empowering music that can help you get back into your skinny jeans.
According to Heidi Roizen, founder and lyricist of SkinnySongs, the inspiration for the CD began last spring when her weight mushroomed to her all time high. It forced her to make the decision to lose the weight.
"I wanted to find music that would keep me motivated about getting in shape and sticking to my diet," Roizen said. "While I normally exercise to music by artists like Pink and Carrie Underwood, and their music is great, their lyrics didn’t speak to me about what I was trying to do. I figured, there is great, empowering music about all sorts of topics, there must be for this too. But, I searched for it, and just couldn’t find any.”
While Roizen wrote the lyrics, rising artists sing the positive tunes. You can hear a sample of the songs at SkinnySongs.com. You can also purchase the CD for $14.99 or download the music through Amazon.com.
Tuesday, February 19, 2008
We've all heard the saying "you are what you eat." But new research is finding that you are what you ate at your last meal--for better or for worse.
One greasy cheeseburger with fries for lunch can set off a chain reaction in your body that leads to immediate negative effects, including inflammation of blood vessels, production of damaging free radicals and possible rise in blood pressure. The new study published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology found that any high-fat, high-sugar meal resulted in damaging the body.
However, the research also found that just one healthy meal from unprocessed whole foods, such as fruits, vegetables, fish, legumes, grains and nuts, helped repair the damage from the previous meal.
Bottom line: Your only one meal away from better health.
Journal of the American College of Cardiology
Photo Credit: Christian Razukas
Related Articles: 10 Superfoods to Fight Inflammation
Monday, February 18, 2008
If you've been searching for some real weight loss help and hate to count calories, look no farther than your toddler's kiddie plate. A sectioned plate can help you control your portion sizes, resulting in fewer consumed calories.
A recent study from the University of Calgary found that participants who had their meals served on plates and bowls sectioned to mark off portion sizes, lost on average 1.8 percent of their body weight during a six month period. Even more impressive, 17 percent of the study participants were able to lose five percent of their body weight. Researchers say the results are comparable to taking weight loss drugs.
In addition to getting a better grip on what portion sizes should be, sectioned plates help diners better assess the nutritional balances of their food.
While you can buy the special plate used in the study, called The Diet Plate, you can also save money using a regular sectioned plate, such as the Pfaltzgraff Rio Divided Plate. Of course, you could also snatch one from your kids' collection.
Body + Soul (March 2008)
Related Article: Just Thinking You Got Workout Will Make You Fit
Thursday, February 14, 2008
If you're a mom that is serious about fitness and/or losing weight, you may want to check out BookieBoo.com to help keep you on track. It's touted as an "online fitness hangout for moms".
Registered members of the online community get their own Web page within the site to blog about their fitness routines and weight loss struggles. Moms can also connect in discussion forums to chat about walking, yoga, Pilates, organic eating, healthy recipes and more.
If you need a little accountability or a nudge to lose that stubborn post-pregnancy weight, BookieBoo.com may be just the inspiration you need.
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
When my husband and I first got married, he made a spectacular pasta dinner for us. However, I was shocked when he heaped upon my plate twice what I normally would consume and then served himself an even larger portion. He did this again with a delicious stir-fry.
I quickly figured out that if I ate according to his standards, I would weigh an extra 100 pounds by our first anniversary. So I let him know that I couldn't eat his super-sized meals any longer. He responded by following my lead and cutting his portions as well. As a result, he ended up losing weight our first year of marriage, and I didn't gain any.
It turns out his response is quite common in a marriage. A new study has found that if one spouse improves his or her health behavior, the other is five times as likely to join in.
This research published in Health Services Research found that this behavior was similar for both males and females.
So if you're looking for a way to get your spouse to exercise or eat right, set an example and do it yourself. Also, if you break an unhealthy habit such as smoking or drinking too much, your partner is more likely to stop too.
Related Article: Break Smoking Habit with Fruits, Veggies & Dairy
Tuesday, February 12, 2008
Calling your sister on the phone, grabbing a cup of coffee with a friend, or chatting around the water cooler with colleagues can help give you a mental edge, claims a new study. In fact, gabbing can sharpen your brain as much as any crossword puzzle or intellectual game.
University of Michigan researchers recently found that just 10 minutes of socializing can improve your memory and test scores. First, they examined the social interactions of 3,610 people and discovered that those with the higher levels of social interaction also had better cognitive functioning.
Investigators also conducted an experiment on three groups of students to compare their intellectual performance. One group socialized for 10 minutes before a test, another was given intellectual exercises prior to testing, and the control group watched a 10-minute clip from an episode of Seinfeld. The study concluded that socializing before the test offered the same brain-boosting results as the intellectual exercises.
Source: Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin (February 2008)
Related Article: Green Tea Rejuvenates Damaged Brain Cells
Thursday, February 7, 2008
The other day as I was looking for agave nectar at Whole Foods, I noticed a new sweetener sitting on the grocery shelf. It's called erythritol. Intrigued by the discovery, I decided to do some research.
I found that it just might be a good option for people avoiding sugar, but don't want to live without a little sweet stuff in their lives. More than a dozen animal studies have concluded that erythritol is harmless. While it is a sugar alcohol like maltitol and xylitol, it does not cause gastric side effects. It has virtually no calories. It also does not affect blood sugar levels or insulin release. And you don't have to worry about tooth decay from eating it.
The most undesirable quality that I found about using erythritol is that is produces a cooling effect in the mouth after it is consumed. Additionally, it is only between 60-80 percent as sweet as sugar.
If you decide to use it in baking, I recommend pairing it with lo han, an extract from a sweet fruit harvested in China, which also does not affect blood sugar levels and has no calories. However, it is 15 times sweeter than sugar so a little bit of it coupled mostly with erythritol may be a better option for baking. In fact, a Japanese company makes a product combining the two ingredients called Lakanto. Donna Gates, founder of Body Ecology, promotes Lakanto as a healthy alternative for people suffering from candida and other inner ecology imbalances.
For those wary of genetically modified foods, I should warn you that erythritol is derived from corn so you may want to look for an organic variety. Wholesome Sweeteners offers organic erythritol. Body Ecology offers a non-GMO version in their Lakanto on their website at BodyEcology.com.
I plan to give erythritol a try soon and will report back the results. If any readers have used it, please leave your comments below.
Healthy Sugar Substitutes
No-Sugar, Naturally Sweetened Chocolate Truffle Cheesecake Recipe
Wednesday, February 6, 2008
If you're worried about your cholesterol and want to stay away from any pharmaceutical remedies, you may want to start drinking a favorite South American beverage--mate (mah-ta') tea.
Researchers at the University of Illinois found that drinking mate tea significantly boosts the activity of an enzyme that promotes HDL (good) cholesterol, while lowering LDL (bad) cholesterol.
The recent study found that this herbal tea induces some of the important antioxidant enzymes in the body.
To duplicate the study results, you will need to use four to five tea bags. Mate tea has a strong, grassy flavor so it may take some time to acquire a taste for it.
Related Articles: Top 10 Healthy Foods
Monday, February 4, 2008
An antioxidant found in green tea may help restore damaged brain cells, claims a recent Israeli study
Researchers gave mice, which were induced with Parkinson's disease, EGCG (epigallocatchein gallate)--about the equivalent of what is in two to four cups of green tea a day. They found that the EGCG entered the brain's neurons to resuscitate dying cells and prevent further deterioration.
Israeli investigators are hopeful that green tea may help people suffering from neurological disorders, such as dementia, Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's disease.
Photo Credit: Wikipedia.org
Related articles: Boost Green Tea's Antioxidants with Lemon
Saturday, February 2, 2008
I never thought a hair dryer could change my life, but I think I found one that comes close. Having thick, long, wavy hair, drying it is quite a chore.
Last week, I discovered that there really is a huge difference between the low-end ceramic, ionic, infrared hair dryers and the real deal. After my Conair Ion Shine Hair Dryer started sounding like a dying cow, I thought it was time to get a new one. I never noticed a difference from it and a regular hair dryer so I was skeptical of paying more for a high-end model.
Kat James, holistic beauty and health expert, recommends in her book The Truth About Beauty the Chi Air Ceramic, Ionic, Infrared Professional Hair Dryer to minimize heat damage and cut drying time. It uses a different kind of heat that evenly penetrates hair, while not scorching it. However, the thought of spending $100 to $200 on this hair dryer didn't appeal to me.
Fortunately, I saw a similar one on Amazon.com from the same parent company, Farouk Systems, as the Chi hair dryer. The hair dryer is part of the Deep Brilliance line of professional products, which uses the same Chi technology. The Deep Brilliance hair dryer has a list price of $259, but Amazon.com is selling it for only $49.99. It really is a salon-quality dryer worth a higher asking price. It makes my hair look so much shinier, smoother and healthier. It dries faster with fewer watts so it's not taking daily abuse. Best of all, the once unmanageable frizz is gone.
If my new hair dryer ever breaks down, I just hope Amazon.com is still offering such a great deal because I can't go back to the low-end version. Now that I can see and feel the difference, it would definitely be worth it to fork over the big bucks for a true ceramic, ionic, infrared model.