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5 Diet and Lifestyle Measures to Ward Off Heartburn – The New York Times

Posted: August 27, 2021 at 1:47 am

Dont smoke.

Dr. Lagergrens team found that tobacco can extend the time it takes for acidic foods to leave the esophagus. In an analysis of 30 studies, GERD affected about 20 percent of smokers, compared with about 16 percent of nonsmokers.

Those who engaged in moderate to vigorous physical activity for at least 30 minutes per day were less likely to develop symptoms of GERD, the Harvard team reported.

The risk of GERD was reduced among those who consumed no more than two cups of coffee, tea or soda each day.

Those who followed a Mediterranean-style diet, for example, featuring fruits and vegetables, legumes, fish, poultry and whole grains, but little or no red meat and other sources of saturated fats, were less likely to develop acid reflux.

Genetics can also affect ones risk of developing acid reflux, so people with a family history of the problem would do best to avoid the risks highlighted above. Doing so will also help protect against leading killers like heart disease, diabetes and many forms of cancer.

If you already have acid reflux, theres much you can do to minimize symptoms and perhaps avoid them entirely. Instead of consuming large meals, eat smaller ones more often. Minimize fatty foods and skip fried and fast foods entirely. A friend uses an air fryer to achieve a crispy skin on chicken, but I prefer grilled chicken and skip the skin. Choose lean meats (if you eat meat) and low-fat or nonfat dairy products, and avoid eating within three hours of bedtime. Also, try sleeping as if on a recliner, with the head of the bed propped higher than the foot.

Foods that many people with GERD find most irritating include tomatoes and citrus (like oranges and grapefruit) and their juices, coffee (even decaf for some people), alcoholic and carbonated beverages, spicy foods, garlic, chocolate and peppermint. I long ago switched to low-acid orange juice, consuming only a few ounces a day to dissolve a fiber supplement. Ive also found instant coffee to be less irritating than brewed, and drink the latter only with food to help protect my digestive tract.

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13 health benefits of a vegan diet you may not have considered – Vegan Food and Living

Posted: August 27, 2021 at 1:47 am

8. You might smell better

Research suggests that when you remove meat from your diet, your body odour may improve.

One study found that when smelling clothing samples from vegetarian versus red meat-eating men, women found the vegetarian samples less intense, more pleasant and more attractive!

This is likely due to the changes in substances emitted from sweat glands as well as the bacteria feeding on these substances as a result of dietary changes9.

There is a misconception that eating a vegan diet is more expensive.

Of course it is always fun to try out the latest vegan alternative on the market, but this may not be so good for your wallet (or your health!).

Stocking up on whole plant food staples like potatoes, beans, rice, bananas and oats, as well as frozen fruits and vegetables is a great way to save the pennies.

In fact, it could even reduce your food bill by 40% compared to an omnivorous diet10.

If you are used to a diet that is high in fat, a few weeks of no dairy, eggs, butter and meat has been shown to increase your taste sensitivity to fat. This can result in a change in your taste preferences11.

This is also true for salt.

This suggests that the longer you are on a healthy vegan diet, the better it will taste. An unexpected benefit of a vegan diet!

If you are switching to a plant predominant diet, you are very likely to be increasing your fibre intake and reducing your saturated fat.

This is great news for many aspects of our health, but research has found that this could also be key in supporting a deeper and restorative nights sleep12.

Over 800 million people go to bed on an empty stomach, yet we produce corn purely for animal feed on 90 million acres of land.

Choosing to go vegan supports our global requirement to reduce animal agriculture, and instead use land to grow crops for starving populations13.

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13 health benefits of a vegan diet you may not have considered - Vegan Food and Living

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Taste of Life: Vegetarian messengers and the no three Fs diet plan – Hindustan Times

Posted: August 27, 2021 at 1:47 am

I am sitting inside the semi-circular hall of the bright red, old building of the Connemara Public Library in Chennai one February morning, wishing that it was a bit cooler inside. The library staff has taken my reference receipts inside to get the books for me. In the meantime, I have been craning my neck to get an eyeful of the intricate designs on the roof of the main hall. That part of the old building is not accessible to visitors.

I am there that day to read the issues of The Dietetic Reformer and Vegetarian Messenger. The magazine was started in 1861 by the Vegetarian Society which had its headquarters in Manchester. Established in 1847, the objects of the Society were to induce habits of abstinence from the Flesh of Animals as Food, by the dissemination of information upon the subject, by means of tracts, essays, and lectures, proving the many advantages of a physical, intellectual, and moral character, resulting from Vegetarian habits of Diet.

The Society had a branch in Calcutta which was run by Baboo Keshub Chandra Sen, one of the most influential and prominent social reformers in 19th century Bengal. According to the September 1885 issue of The Dietetic reformer, a branch was opened in Bombay that year of which Mr Byramjee Panday was the chairman.

The magazine makes an interesting read. Almost all the articles preach the virtues of a vegetarian diet and urge the readers to abstain from three Fs Fish, Flesh, and Fowl. Most of the articles are argumentative, yet eloquent.

While I am a little overwhelmed by the huge stack of magazines on my desk, in one of the issues I find some handwritten pamphlets and notes. All of them are signed as JM Lane, Poona. Some have dates on them, many dont.

The first pamphlet bears the date 23/8/1885. It says During the past twelve months four entirely Vegetarian restaurants have been opened in London, and at least three other dining rooms have undertaken to provide Vegetarian meals. Manchester has seen the establishment of two new restaurants, and one has opened in Leeds. I urge the members to start a Vegetarian restaurant each in Bombay, Poona and Mahabaleshwar.

This pamphlet seems to be meant for private circulation of an organisation, because it is clearly addressed to members, perhaps of the Vegetarian Society.

Another interesting pamphlet was probably written to convey a decision taken collectively in a meeting, or by Mr Lane himself - A Vegetarian badge, for which many friends have been so anxiously waiting, has been decided upon in the form of a narrow silk ribbon, with a red center, narrow gold lines on either side and blue margins. This badge may be worn by all Vegetarians, its signification being simply that the wearer is an abstainer from fish, flesh, and fowl. By the general use of this badge, especially at festivals and meetings, Vegetarian friends will be able to recognise each other, while it will frequently afford an excellent opportunity for introducing the subject to the notice of others. It is neither dated nor addressed to anyone in particular.

The other pamphlets have appeals to come up with innovative vegetarian recipes, to preach vegetarianism during the Sunday mass, to meet medical practitioners and sell them on the idea of giving up meat, to visit hospitals and explain to the patients the benefits of a plant-based diet. Then there are a couple of notes which request the presence of members at the residence of JM Lane in Civil Lines, Wanowrie on certain Wednesday evenings from 1891 to 1893.

The Dietetic Reformer mentions in August 1885 that Lane published a useful pamphlet in Poona. There are no other mentions of him or the city again in the magazine. This means that Lane was affiliated with the Vegetarian Society from Manchester. But, did he start a branch in Poona, or was he associated with the one in Bombay? In what capacity did he convene meetings at his residence in Poona?

I dig a little in the hope that I find answers and come across a report published in The Bombay Gazette on September 10, 1891. On September 6, Sunday, a meeting was held in Church Gate Street, Bombay. One Mr Gostling took the chair. In his opening address, he mentioned that he had personal experience of the advantages of natural living, which had cured him of the chronic dyspepsia from which he had suffered for over twelve years. Dr Daji then moved the resolution referring to the formation of a Vegetarian Society. He said that the Vegetarian Society at Manchester had repeatedly requested their friends in Bombay to form a similar organisation in Bombay that would find work to do in educating the native vegetarians in the land in the physiology of digestion and the chemistry of food.

The chairman then declared that the society would be called The Natural Living Vegetarian Society, so as to guard against the misconception that vegetarians had to live upon vegetables alone.

The report ends with a quote from Gostling The admirers of British rule were not right in attributing the success of the British Army to their eating beef since the poor Irishmen and Scotch men who form the bulk of the army were brought up from childhood on potatoes and oatmeal respectively.

This report suggests that the branch of the Vegetarian Society opened in 1885 in Bombay was short-lived and that another was started in 1891.

What interests me is the revelation that the last quote by Gostling is replicated verbatim in one of the notes written in Lanes handwriting. This means that he was either present at the meeting in Bombay, or he copied it from the newspaper to use it later.

Lane and his pamphlets have remained a mystery to me after I first saw them three years ago. How the pamphlets ended up in the Chennai library, is another question. He probably shifted there from Poona. Or the pamphlets were brought there by another member of the Vegetarian Society. I have found no mention of Lane in the newspapers or magazines published from London, Manchester, Bombay, Poona, and Madras. Yet his pamphlets tell us that he kept championing the cause of vegetarianism till 1893 at least.

I hope to find out more about JM Lane someday.

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Ancient Roman vacationers consumed gobs of olive oil and fish, volcano victims reveal – Science Magazine

Posted: August 27, 2021 at 1:47 am

Herculaneum was covered by Mount Vesuviuss eruption in 79 C.E., but unlike Pompeii, many human remains there were well preserved.

By Andrew CurryAug. 25, 2021 , 2:00 PM

Almost 2000 years ago, a volcanic eruption buried the seaside Roman town of Herculaneum in the same rush of hot ash and gas that decimated Pompeii. The catastrophe didnt just preserve buildings and bonesit saved clues to the Roman diet. A new analysis of the bones of 17 victims reveals what these ancient villagers were eating, and in what proportions. Residents scarfed a lot of seafood and olive oil, confirming historians estimates that average Romans consumed 20 liters (more than 5 gallons) of the oil each year.

Previous studies have only given broad outlines, not the nitty-gritty details, of the ancient Roman diet, says Erica Rowan, an archaeobotanist at the Royal Holloway University of London who was not involved with the new work. Here they do a good job of filling in those details.

In 79 C.E., in a desperate attempt to escape the impact of the Mount Vesuvius eruption, the people of Herculaneum huddled in boathouses along the towns waterfront, situated on the west coast of central Italy. But a sudden blast of 250C ash and gas killed them instantly, cooking their flesh while preserving their bones almost perfectly.

In previous work, scientists analyzed the collagen in those bones to conclude that men at Herculaneum had a more diverse diet than women. In the new study, researchers isolated specific amino acidsthe building blocks of proteinsfrom the collagen, and determined the ratios of varieties, or isotopes, of nitrogen and carbon atoms. Those isotopes can be traced to specific foods.

Thanks to the remains of plants and animals found at the site, archaeologists know the people of Herculaneum ate grains such as wheat and millet. They also consumed lentils, beans, cherries, peaches, and olives, plus 70 kinds of fish and shellfish from the Bay of Naples. But the proportions remained a mystery.

Using the new method, We can tell where their calories were coming from, says study co-author Oliver Craig, an archaeologist at the University of York. We were able to see foodstuffs were usually not able to see because theyre not proteins.

The analysis held some shocks: People at Herculaneum ate a lot of seafood, especially compared with humans in the Mediterranean region today. Approximately one-quarter of their protein was netted from the nearby sea, nearly triple the amount in the modern Mediterranean diet, the team reports today in Science Advances. We havent been able to see that before in regular isotopic analysis, Rowan says.

Olive oil was also a big hit. It made up at least 12% of calories consumed at Herculaneum, and perhaps much more. The find supports historical sources indicating the average Roman consumed 20 liters of oil each year, and that the oil was one of the most significant fat sources in the Roman diet. Olives were grown widely all across the Roman Empire, providing ample supplies. Oil wasnt a condiment, it was a proper ingredient, says co-author Silvia Soncin, an archaeologist at Sapienza University of Rome. They got a lot of energy out of it.

The women of Herculaneum also ate fewer grains and cereals than did the men. Herculaneums men, meanwhile, seemed to down more fish and shellfish. Soncin and Craig suggest mens varied diets might be a sign that they spent more time outside of the house.

The scientists acknowledge that the Herculaneum diet may not be representative of ancient Rome as a whole. Its possible the people of the townsituated on the rich Bay of Naples, surrounded by fertile volcanic soil, and near a major port importing goods from across the Mediterraneanhad an especially diverse diet.

Still, Rowan says, the approach could shed light on other ancient diets across the globe. If they could use the same methods at different sites, it would be really interesting.

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Diabetes diet: 5 of the worst foods to eat for high blood sugar symptoms – Express

Posted: August 27, 2021 at 1:47 am

Almost five million people in the UK have been diagnosed with diabetes, while a further 13.6 million are considered to be at risk for developing type 2 diabetes. If you have diabetes, or might be at risk, it can help to make some changes to your diet. You can start by avoiding these five foods that cause high blood sugar symptoms.

Diabetes is a condition where the body is unable to regulate blood sugar. There are two main types of diabetes: type 1 and type 2.

Those with type 1 diabetes will need to inject insulin to manage their diabetes, and their condition is not a result of their lifestyle. Type 2 diabetes can be caused by lifestyle choices and can be managed by adopting healthier ones.

Type 2 diabetes is far more common than type 1 in the UK, with around 90 percent of diabetics having type 2.

But what are the worst foods for diabetes patients to eat?

READ MORE:Scientists may have found the most important indicator of Covid death

These fruity yoghurts can often be packed full of sugar.

Make sure you check the label carefully to see how much sugar is in your choice of yoghurt.

For a diabetes-friendly swap, try eating plain yoghurt instead.

Cereals with a high sugar content are not the best way to start the day if you have diabetes.

Some cereals contain a high sugar and carbohydrate content, as well as providing you with very little protein.

Swap sugary cereals for a protein-based low-carb breakfast, like an omelette, to keep you fuller for longer.

There are loads of health benefits that come from eating fruit, but unfortunately for diabetics when fruit is dried, its sugar content becomes more concentrated.

Raisins, for example, can contain four times more carbohydrates than grapes.

Diabetics dont have to give up on fruit altogether though. Sticking to lower-sugar fruits like fresh berries or a small apple is a much better alternative.

Theyre delicious, but unfortunately not a good choice for diabetics.

Potatoes are pretty high in carbohydrates already, but deep frying them in vegetable oil makes them even more unhealthy.

All the oil can also cause inflammation and other health problems.

Why not instead opt for a small portion of sweet potato?

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The 7 Biggest Myths About Calories – Everyday Health

Posted: August 27, 2021 at 1:47 am

You may think you know all about calories. Many people have been counting them, cutting them, and adding them up for most of their lives. But when it comes to weight loss, theres actually still a lot of confusion out there about calorie counting. It turns out that many of the most common beliefs on the subject are really just myths. Here are seven of the most persistent calorie counting myths plus the facts, straight from experts.

Plenty of people believe that as long as they stick to a certain number of calories per day, theyre eating healthy. This myth can get in the way of eating a balanced, nutritious diet. You cannot compare 100 calories of salmon to 100 calories of soda, says Samantha Cassetty, RD, former nutrition director of Good Housekeeping, who is based in New York City.

She points out that salmon is loaded with beneficial nutrients, including omega-3 fatty acids and protein one reason the American Heart Association recommends eating it twice a week that work really hard to nourish your body. With soda, its the opposite those calories are working against you, she says. Not only are they lacking in nutrition, but they are also full of sugar, and drinking them has been associated with an increased risk of obesity and type 2 diabetes, past research shows. Its a total mistake to think all calories are the same, Cassetty says.

With only about 9 calories a stalk, per the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), its obvious how this myth got started. Its easy to imagine that the act of chewing celery erases enough of those calories to take the food into negative calorie territory. Its an idea leftover from another era, says Cassetty.

Cucumbers, radishes, lettuce, and other water-rich vegetables are also sometimes said to be negative-calorie foods, but just like with celery, its nothing more than a myth. There are no negative calorie foods, says Cassetty.

Related: What Is the CICO Diet and Can It Really Help You Lose Weight?

What you see is not necessarily what you get when it comes to calorie information on nutrition labels. There is leeway for manufacturers, says Cassetty. In fact, by law, food manufacturers can be up to 20 percent off the mark with this number, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). That means a product youre eating that you believe has 200 calories might actually have up to 240 calories. A study published in the journal Obesity investigated the accuracy of nutrition labels andfound that prepackaged convenience meals had 8 percent more calories on average than their labels claimed. That can add up.

This is a gross oversimplification of the science of calories, and hardly the way weight loss works in real life, according to Cassetty. Overall body size, genetics, sleep, and stress can all complicate this general rule, she says. As a body loses weight, the amount of calories it needs to maintain that weight goes down.

The 3,500 calories-equals-one-pound math simply doesnt account for this. Nor does it take into consideration other factors including gender, changing diet and exercise habits, and poor compliance, according to an article in Todays Dietitian. Carson C. Chow, PhD, a senior investigator in the mathematical biology section of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), is quoted in the article explaining: Every 10 calories per day decrease in calorie intake leads to an eventual one-pound loss, but it can take three years to get there." (You can check out the National Institutes of Healths Body Weight Planner tool to try this new math out for yourself.) This rule of thumb isnt quite as appealing to dieters as the 3,500 calorie rule, but its more accurate.

Related: The 16 Best Apps for Weight Loss: Diet Plan Tools, Fitness Trackers, and More

Theres a difference between the number of calories a given food contains and how many calories your specific body absorbs from that food. The number of calories you may assimilate can vary based on the makeup of your gut microbiome, according to research, among other things. In anotherprevious study, researchers from Harvard even discovered that calorie counts can vary between raw and cooked foods. And then theres the fiber effect. Because your body doesnt absorb fiber (its the indigestible part of plants), the amount a food contains can also affect the calories you actually get. One small study of 18 people, which was published in American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, found that almonds contain more calories than they contribute to a persons diet. Almonds, in particular, are a source of prebiotic fiber, which we do not absorb, according to previous research.

Related:I Tried Noom for Weight Loss and It Worked

Many calorie counters live and die by the calories burned readouts on their exercise equipment and fitness trackers. Its very common for people to decide to eat an extra snack or have dessert based on a number supplied by their device, says Cassetty. But a study from Stanford Universitypublished in May 2017 in the Journal of Personalized Medicinefound that wearable fitness trackers are generally off by 27 percent. Thats a substantial amount. If youre overestimating your calories burned by that much, it can not only make it impossible to lose weight, it can result in weight gain, she says.

People dont realize when they exercise, theyll unconsciously decrease other energy spent throughout the day, says Cassetty. Previous research supports the notion that after exercise people may fidget less, stand less, or take the stairs less often. The body is always compensating, making small adjustments to maintain energy balance below the level of your awareness. Its not necessarily something you can control, says Cassetty.

People do a really bad job of estimating the number of calories they eat, then they get an inflated idea about how many calories they burned thanks to these devices, says Cassetty. You can really end up on the wrong side of that equation.

Can calorie counting be a helpful guide for weight loss? Sure. But theres no need to feel like youll never shed excess pounds if you cant commit to tracking every calorie especially when research suggests otherwise. A study published in September 2017 in Perspectives on Psychological Science concluded that reducing calorie intake may not be the golden ticket to weight loss that people assume it will be.

And a study published in February 2018 in JAMA found that other dietary changes, for instance eliminating processed foods, can be just as effective for weight loss. Notably, the study was designed to determine whether a low-carb or low-fat diet was better for weight loss. Neither group counted calories, but they were given nutrition advice. Both groups lost around the same amount of weight, and what they had in common was a diet of natural whole foods, not processed food. So count, or dont count, but know that the best approach is the one that works for you.

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Is It Safe To Use Herbal Weight Loss Supplements? – Health Essentials from Cleveland Clinic

Posted: August 27, 2021 at 1:44 am

When youre struggling to lose weight, it might be tempting to want to try every pill and potion on the internet that promises to blast, burn or melt the pounds away in a matter of weeks. The thing is, those concoctions could make things worse instead of better. So whats the skinny on herbal weight loss supplements? Obesity medicine physician Shweta Diwakar, MD, helps us understand how they work and why its better to stick with a supervised weight loss program.

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According to Dr. Diwakar, there is a lack of high-quality evidence to suggest how herbal weight loss supplements work.

Herbal supplements claim to cause weight loss through:

Most herbal supplements have limited or no consistent data to support long-term weight loss efficacy and safety. They also have the potential for adverse interactions between supplements and prescription medications. Supplements are not intended to treat, diagnose, prevent, or cure diseases, and therefore claims such as reduces pain or treats heart disease arent substantiated. Claims like these can only legitimately be made for drugs that go through scientific rigor, a process thats not routinely followed for dietary supplements, says Dr. Diwakar.

One mistake that people make is thinking that herbal supplements are good for them because the ingredients arent synthetic. Dr. Diwakar points out that herbs are not always safe just because theyre natural. In fact, increased herbal and dietary supplement (HDS) use is directly proportional to increased HDS-induced liver injuries.

HDS-induced liver injuries account for about 20% of the cases of liver damage in the U.S. The major implicated ingredients for these cases include anabolic steroids and green tea extract. Many weight loss supplements that are considered unsafe can be found online. Its important to recognize that these products can come with associated risks.

If youre getting an herbal product from a retail chain, keep in mind that the salesperson might have limited knowledge about how the product works. They also might not be aware of reported problems or how the herbs might interact with medications that you may be taking. Many herbal manufacturers also make false claims about the health benefits of these products. For all of these reasons and the lack of proven health benefits, its best to avoid herbal weight loss supplements or to talk to your healthcare provider about other options.

Other things to keep in mind should you still decide to try an herbal weight loss supplement:

Here are some key points about common herbal weight loss products and some insights as to their effectiveness as weight loss agents.

Ephedrine: Ephedrine is a common ingredient in herbal dietary supplements used for weight loss. Its also an ingredient found in asthma medicine. In addition, ephedrine is used to make methamphetamine or speed.

Ephedrine can slightly decrease your appetite, but no studies have shown it to be effective in weight loss. Ephedrine can be dangerous. It can cause high blood pressure, changes in heart rate, trouble sleeping, nervousness, tremors, seizures, heart attacks, strokes and even death. Ephedrine can also interact with many prescription and over-the-counter medications. In the US, ephedra-containing dietary supplements are no longer available.

St. Johns wort: St. Johns wort, also called hypericum, is a plant that has been used for centuries to treat mental disorders, nerve pain, malaria, insect bites, wounds, burns and other conditions. More recently, St. Johns wort has been studied to treat depression, but studies have shown that it was no more effective than a placebo.

There arent too many studies that examine the use of St. Johns wort as a weight-loss agent. However, keep in mind that it shouldnt be combined with anything that contains tyramine aged cheeses, cured or processed meats, wine, pickled or fermented vegetables and citrus or tropical fruit to name a few.

It also shouldnt be combined with:

Overall, using St. Johns wort for weight loss isnt a good idea because its potentially very dangerous.

5-hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP). 5-hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP) is found in some over-the-counter weight loss formulas. This extract from a West African plant seed contains an ingredient that is linked to a rare and potentially deadly blood disorder. It has not been proven to be an effective weight-loss agent. Until more is known, 5-HTP products should be avoided.

Chitosan: This dietary supplement is made from chitin, a starch found in the skeleton of shrimp, crab, and other shellfish. Chitosan binds with fat in fatty food, moves it through the digestive tract and then, the fat is passed out of the body in bowel movements. Some research suggests that combining chitosan with a calorie-restricted diet might result in a small amount of weight loss. But taking chitosan without reducing caloric intake doesnt appear to cause weight loss. People with shellfish allergies might be allergic to chitosan as well.

Pyruvate: Pyruvate is formed when the body digests carbohydrates and proteins. Some research suggests that it may promote slight weight loss. Found in the form of pyruvic acid, pyruvate is in many different types of foods, including red apples, cheese, and red wine. Pyruvate appears to be safe, but its claims of boosting metabolism, decreasing appetite and aiding in weight loss need further study.

Aloe: Aloe, or aloe vera, is a plant that is related to cacti. Oral forms of aloe are added to herbal weight-loss products. Oral aloe causes bowel movements and many aloe weight-loss products are marketed as internal cleansers. Aloe supplements have not been proven to promote permanent weight loss. Taking oral aloe can lead to side effects such as abdominal cramping, diarrhea, electrolyte disturbances, and decreases in potassium. Therefore, taking oral aloe is likely unsafe, especially at high doses.

Cascara: Cascara is only marketed as a dietary supplement. It is a common ingredient in weight loss products and is mostly used as a laxative for constipation. Misuse of this herb can cause disturbances in electrolytes (such as potassium and sodium). Electrolytes help your body maintain normal functioning. Do not take if you are pregnant or lactating (can be passed into breast milk). Cascara may interact with medications such as digoxin and diuretics.

Dandelion: Dandelion is a natural diuretic (a substance that makes you urinate more often). This is how it causes weight loss. Dandelion has been known to cause allergic reactions. People who are allergic to ragweed and related plants (daisies, chrysanthemums, marigolds) are likely to be allergic to dandelion.

Glucomannan: Glucomannan is a sugar made from the root of the konjac plant (Amorphophallus konjac). It is available in powder, capsules, and tablet forms. Glucomannan might work in the stomach and intestines by absorbing water to form a bulky fiber that treats constipation. It may also slow the absorption of sugar and cholesterol from the gut. Glucomannan tablets are not considered safe as they can sometimes cause blockages of the throat or intestines. Glucomannan may interfere with blood sugar control. Blood sugar should be closely monitored if you have diabetes and use glucomannan.

Guarana: Made from the seeds of a plant native to Brazil, guarana is an effective central nervous system stimulant. It is used as a weight loss product due to its stimulant and diuretic effects. Guarana contains caffeine and may cause high blood pressure. Some of the extracts have been known to interact with anticoagulants (e.g., warfarin [Coumadin]) and lengthen the bleeding time in the event of a health emergency. Many advertisements state that guarana is free from side effects; however, this statement is not true. Side effects may include nausea, dizziness, and anxiety.

Yerba mate: Also known as Paraguay tea, yerba mate is a strong central nervous system stimulant (the doses typically used mimic that of 100 to 200 milligrams of caffeine). The main reported side effects excessive central nervous system stimulation (speeding up the bodys mental and physical activity) and high blood pressure. Yerba mate has not been proven as a weight-loss aid. A few cases of poisoning, which led to hospitalization, have been reported with the use of this product. When taken in large amounts or for long periods, yerba mate increases the risk of mouth, esophageal, laryngeal, kidney, bladder and lung cancers. This risk is especially high for people who smoke or drink alcohol.

Guar gum: Also known as guar, guar flour, and jaguar gum, guar gum is a dietary fiber obtained from the Indian cluster bean. Guar gum is often used as a thickening agent for foods and drugs. It has been studied for decreasing cholesterol, managing diabetes and weight loss. As a weight-loss product, it helps move foods through the digestive tract and firms up stool. It can decrease appetite by providing a feeling of fullness. However, like glucomannan, guar gum and guar gum preparations have been linked to causing blockages in the esophagus. The water-retaining ability of the gum permits it to swell to 10- to 20-fold and has led to gastrointestinal blockages. Guar gum can also cause large swings in blood glucose (sugar) levels. Diabetic patients should avoid this ingredient.

Herbal diuretics: Many herbal diuretics are commonly found in over-the-counter (OTC) weight-loss products and herbal weight-loss products. Most of the diuretics used OTC come from xanthine alkaloids (like caffeine or theobromine). Avoid anything that contains juniper seeds (capable of causing renal damage), equistine (neurotoxic and can cause brain damage) and horsetail/shave grass (contain several dangerous ingredients that can lead to convulsions or hyperactivity).

Herbal diuretics can interact with certain drugs like lithium, digoxin, or conventional diuretics such as furosemide or hydrochlorothiazide. They also do not provide enough water loss to be considered effective weight loss aids.

While many products out there suggest that they can help you lose weight fast, they can also come with a slew of health concerns. If you need help with starting your weight loss journey, talk to your provider. They can steer you in the right direction and help you find a program that is safe and effective.

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This One Diet Can Protect Your Immune System, New Study Says | Eat This Not That – Eat This, Not That

Posted: August 27, 2021 at 1:44 am

As the highly infectious Delta variant continues to spread and make a devastating impact on Americans' lives, it's even more vital now to provide your immune system with the tools it needs to keep your body safe.

While getting the COVID-19 vaccination is the absolute best way to prevent yourself from enduring severe symptoms of the Delta variant, eating a diet rich in foods that support your immune system is just one extra step you can take (in addition to the vaccine) to help you combat the disease.

RELATED:Here's Exactly How a Plant-Based Diet Can Protect You From Disease, According to Experts

A recent study published in theBMJ found that those who follow a plant-based diet and/or a pescatarian diet have lower odds of experiencing moderate-to-severe COVID-19 symptoms. The study looked at healthcare workers, who had substantial exposure to COVID-19, from six countries: France, Germany, Italy, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Participants were asked to complete an online survey from July 17 to July 25, 2020, that covered demographic characteristics, dietary information, and COVID-19 outcomes.

"Compared to participants who reported following plant-based diets, those who reported following 'low carbohydrate, high protein diets' had greater odds of moderate-to-severe COVID-19," Hyunju Kim, Ph.D., assistant scientist at Johns Hopkins, and the first author of the study tells Eat This, Not That!

However, one major limitation of this study is that the majority of participants were male physicians, so the findings would also have to be replicated in female healthcare workers to be more conclusive. Still, eating a plant-based diet has been shown to provide a host of benefits to both your immune system and overall health.

"This study tells us that diet does indeed play a role in COVID-19 infections, including the severity of symptoms and duration of illness," says Sharon Palmer, M.S., R.D.N, also known as The Plant-Powered Dietitian. "While no studies have previously looked at this, we do know that research has shown a strong link between nutrition and immunity, which includes not only the quality of diet people consume, but also if they have health factors related to poor diet, such as obesity, type 2 diabetes, hypertension, and heart disease."

RELATED:Dangerous Side Effects of Having High Blood Pressure

More specifically, the study identified that those who followed a plant-based diet had a 73% lower chance of suffering from moderate-to-severe COVID-19 compared to those who didn't eat a plant-based diet. The findings didn't surprise Palmer, adding that we already know certain nutrients including vitamins A, C, and E as well as phytochemicals and fiber, may be significant for supporting immune health.

"These nutrients are rich in whole plant foods, such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, pulses, nuts, and seeds. In addition, vitamin D and omega-3 fatty acids may be protective, and they are rich in pescatarian diets," she says. "In contrast, Western-style eating patternshigh in red meat, processed meat, and refined grainsare linked with [being] pro-inflammatory and [have] other negative effects."

Kim says she and her colleagues also found that supplementation of specific nutrients, such as vitamins A, C, and E decreased the risk of respiratory infections, such as the common cold, and even shortened the duration of these types of ailments. Keep in mind, there's more research that needs to be done.

"Our results need to be confirmed in prospective studies, studies with a larger sample size of individuals with COVID-19, studies with detailed macronutrient and micronutrient intake data, and objective markers, [or] biomarkers such as plasma micronutrient levels," says Kim.

In the interim, why not test out some more plant-based recipes to help support your immune system and overall well-being?

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Understanding The Role Of Dietary Supplements And How To Use Them Safely – Femina

Posted: August 27, 2021 at 1:44 am

India has a sizeable portion of people who suffer from various nutritional deficiencies. According to studies by the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), prevalence of Vitamin D deficiency ranged from 40 per cent to 99 per cent, while that of vitamin B12 deficiency was at least 47 per cent in the Indian population. Deficiencies of important nutrients like iron, folic acid and macro nutrients like protein are also very common in India. Speaking on this, Mihir Gadani, Co-Founder, OZiva, says, Nutritional deficiencies are due to the absence of right nutrition in daily diet or other physiological conditions. Vitamin deficiencies can lead to various health conditions and can affect the overall functioning of the body. Hence it is imperative to supplement your diet with the right kind of vitamins and minerals.

Nutritionists and experts across the world suggest that picking the right supplements is the key to fighting nutritional deficiencies. That being said, there is a cloud of contention regarding the usefulness and overall impact of dietary supplements. Gadani acknowledges that overconsuming a particular supplement for a sustained period can put the individual at risk of suffering from a condition known as vitamin overdose. While water-soluble vitamins like B and C are flushed out of the body, synthetic vitamins A, D, E and K will be stored in the body as they are fat soluble. Such storage usually happens in the fatty tissues and liver, leading to various health hazards like nutritional imbalance and the same can also upset the equation of the body with other nutrients and minerals, he adds.

Addressing Nutritional DeficienciesSo, what can one do to address nutritional deficiencies that might be developing in the body? Well, start with eating the right kind of food that can lend you the essential nutrition and energy necessary for everyday function. If you stick to eating a well-balanced diet consisting of fresh fruits and vegetables, you are likely to meet your necessary vitamin intake. However, a substantial percentage of people who manage to eat good food still suffer from nutritional deficiencies. Therefore, consuming some kind of supplement to fulfill the required nutritional quota is also important. Global experts recommend choosing clean and plant-based nutritional supplements like natural vitamins and minerals over synthetic supplements.

Keep In Mind: Choose supplements according to your health needs Read labels, go for plant-based supplements free of chemicals, added sugars, etc Buy supplements from a trusted source or brand Know the recommended daily amount (RDA) for all vitamins and minerals and avoid ingesting more than whats required; take expert advice for the same and stick to the dosage Never substitute dietary supplements for wholesome food Take fat soluble vitamins with high-fat meals to facilitate better absorption; ingest water soluble supplements first thing in the morning or half an hour before meals Taking probiotics like yoghurt with supplements can aid digestion and increase nutrient absorption Reduce caffeine consumption if youre taking calcium supplements, avoid taking zinc and copper, and iron and calcium supplements together Pair certain nutrients to increase absorption vitamins D and K2 boost calcium absorption, while vitamin C helps increase iron absorption

Read more: Herbs And Spices To Boost Your Kids Immunity During The Pandemic

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Is Protein Powder Bad for You? Downsides and More – Healthline

Posted: August 27, 2021 at 1:44 am

Protein powder is one of the top nutrition supplements on the market.

Some people use it to support muscle growth, and others use it because they want to consume more protein than theyre getting from food alone. Protein powder can be part of a balanced diet.

However, you may wonder if consuming a lot of protein powder can be harmful. The short answer is no, but it may have minor side effects.

This article discusses whether consuming too much protein powder is dangerous, reviews the research on its side effects, and examines some misconceptions about protein powder.

Protein powders are concentrated forms of protein from animal or plant sources. You can buy them at many health food stores and online, and theres a wide range of brands, types, and flavors to choose from.

Animal-based protein powders are usually made of two milk proteins called whey and casein, with whey being more popular. While less common, protein powders containing beef or chicken protein are also available.

Whey protein powder is isolated from whey, a liquid byproduct of cheese making that manufacturers spray-dry into a powder (1, 2).

Plant protein powders can be made from various plant-based proteins, such as brown rice, pea, soy, and hemp. Typically, plant-based protein powders contain a blend of plant proteins (3).

Both types of protein powder will generally provide 2030 grams of protein per scoop, so they are a great way to get additional protein in your diet. They also commonly contain added vitamins, flavors, and sweeteners.

People often use protein powder after workouts to support muscle growth. Your muscles need enough protein to rebuild muscle tissue after a strength training workout (4, 5, 6, 7).

You might use it if you have difficulty meeting your daily protein needs through food alone for example, if you arent eating large amounts of food or youre following a vegan diet (8, 9, 10).

That said, if youre getting enough protein through food, its unlikely that youll see much benefit from taking protein powder.

The DRI (Dietary Reference Intake) for protein is 0.36 grams of protein per pound (0.8 grams per kg) of your body weight per day.

However, if youre aiming to build muscle, this can go up to 0.60.9 grams per pound (1.42.0 grams per kg) per day. A good general rule is to try to get 2040 grams of protein per meal (4, 5, 11, 12).

Protein powder is a concentrated form of protein from plant or animal sources. Available types include whey, casein, pea, soy, and rice.

Simply put, protein powder is not bad for you.

Its a convenient source of protein that helps many people meet their daily protein needs.

Of course, if you have allergies to a certain type of protein or other ingredients in a protein powder, then it will cause you to have an allergic reaction. In that case, you should avoid that type of protein powder.

The ingredients in protein powders vary significantly among brands and products.

While the Food and Drug Administration regulates dietary supplements such as protein powder, manufacturers are responsible for evaluating the safety, effectiveness, and labeling of their products (13, 14).

This means that the labels on protein powders and other dietary supplements could provide misleading ingredient or product information. In fact, one study found that numerous protein powders actually contained lower-cost proteins such as chicken, rice, and soy (15).

Though this is rare, protein powders may sometimes contain harmful ingredients or substances that have been banned in sports. Fortunately, many reputable protein powder brands use third-party testing to demonstrate their products safety and transparency (16).

Try to select a protein powder from a reputable company with third-party testing. And make an effort to eat a balanced diet that includes plenty of protein-rich whole foods, such as lean meats, poultry, eggs, beans, lentils, tofu, nuts, and seeds.

Protein powder is not bad for you. Some protein powders may contain unwanted or harmful ingredients, but this is rare. Be sure to buy powders that have been through third-party testing they will say this on the label.

You might be worried about taking too much protein powder because youve heard that it affects your liver, kidneys, or bones. But research has shown that these claims are false.

Heres a look at these misconceptions in detail.

One major concern some people raise about taking protein powder is that it affects the kidneys and liver.

Experts once thought that too much protein could damage the kidneys and liver in healthy people, but many recent studies have disproven this (17, 18, 19, 20).

In one study, 48 men and women consumed a high protein diet from both food and whey-beef protein powder during an 8-week heavy resistance training program. Those who took the protein powder didnt have any difference in kidney function (21).

However, those with kidney disease or decreased kidney function have more difficulty excreting protein waste products in their urine and will need to monitor their protein intake.

Decreased kidney function is defined as an estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) of less than 90 (22, 23).

Therefore, unless you have chronic kidney disease or decreased kidney function, consuming protein powder and other high protein foods is likely safe.

People once thought a high protein diet was harmful for bone health. This myth was rooted in the idea that proteins high acid content stripped bones of their calcium, leading to high calcium levels in the urine and weaker bones (24).

However, current research suggests that a high protein diet may actually boost bone health.

Researchers believe it does this by promoting calcium absorption, supporting the growth of skeletal muscle mass, and preserving bone mass during weight loss (24, 25, 26, 27).

In an 18-month high quality study, 280 older men and women consumed 45 grams of whey protein or a placebo each day. Results showed no differences in bone composition between the groups (28).

Interestingly, the whey protein group preserved significantly more muscle mass, suggesting that protein may help reduce age-related muscle loss. This may benefit bone health by allowing aging people to stay active longer (28).

To date, there is no evidence that consuming protein powder or high protein foods is harmful to bone, liver, or kidney health. If you have kidney issues, speak with a doctor before taking protein powder to make sure its safe for you.

Protein powders are generally recognized as safe, although you may experience digestive side effects if you consume large amounts of protein powder.

If youre lactose intolerant or otherwise sensitive to lactose, dairy-based protein powder may lead to stomach upset, bloating, and gas. Instead, opt for a plant-based protein powder or try whey protein isolate, which is much lower in lactose than other dairy protein powders (29).

If you want to use plant-based protein powder, read the ingredient label carefully to identify any potential food allergens or sensitivities. For example, soy and gluten are common allergens found in plant-based protein powders (30).

Furthermore, those who have irritable bowel syndrome or are sensitive to FODMAPs (fermentable oligo-, di-, and monosaccharides and polyols) may experience bloating and cramping from pea protein powder or powders with added sugar alcohols (31).

Companies may add sugar alcohols as low calorie sweeteners.

Trial and error will help you determine the best protein powder for you.

The main side effects of consuming a lot of protein powder are digestive issues such as bloating, gas, and cramping. If you have any food sensitivities, be sure to read the label first.

Most peoples bodies can process excess protein from food and supplements and can safely tolerate 1.141.5 grams per pound (2.53.3 grams per kg) of protein per day (4, 32).

However, more research is needed to investigate an upper limit for protein powder consumption.

Until then, if you want to use protein powder, stick to 12 servings per day and get the rest of your protein through food.

Theres no known safety limit for protein powder. Most research shows healthy people can tolerate up to 1.5 grams of protein per pound (3.3 grams per kg) of body weight per day from both food and protein supplements with no side effects.

Protein is important for growth and development during childhood and adolescence. Most experts agree that children and teens should get their protein from food sources such as (33, 34, 35):

In some cases, a healthcare professional might recommend that a child take a protein supplement, such as PediaSure, if the child is malnourished, is a picky eater, or has strict dietary restrictions.

While there is no data to suggest that protein powder is harmful to children and teens, relying on protein powder and supplements may displace nutritious, whole foods in the diet. Therefore, protein-rich whole foods should come first (36).

If youre concerned that your child or teen isnt getting enough protein, speak with a registered dietitian, a qualified nutritionist, or your childs doctor.

Children and teens should aim to get their protein from food first to ensure theyre getting enough calories and nutrients. A healthcare professional may recommend a protein supplement for picky eaters or those with malnutrition.

Protein powder can be a great addition to a balanced diet. However, here are a few important considerations.

It might feel overwhelming to choose a protein powder from the many available options online or at the health food store. Here are a few things you can do to make it easier:

Though protein powder can be a great addition to your diet, you dont need to consume it to be healthy.

Whole, protein-rich foods contain vitamins and minerals that are important for health. Whats more, they take longer to digest than protein powder, so they may make you feel full longer.

On the other hand, protein powder is considered predigested and will leave your stomach more quickly after you consume it than whole foods do (37).

Instead, use protein powder to supplement your balanced diet at times when you may not be able to meet your protein needs.

When shopping for a protein powder, look at the label to ensure the product has been third-party tested and doesnt contain any unwanted ingredients. Ideally, use protein powder in addition to a nutritious diet, not as a replacement for one.

If youve ever wondered whether protein powder is safe to use, you can rest assured that it is.

Due to protein powders popularity, many research studies have investigated its safety and effectiveness. Theyve found that its safe and does not pose a risk to bone, liver, or kidney health, even if you take it in large amounts.

Still, its best to get most of your protein from whole, minimally processed foods and use protein powder only to address any unmet protein needs.

The best protein powders will be third-party tested, contain 2030 grams of protein per scoop, and contain ingredients you can personally tolerate.

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