Eating for beauty benefits doesn’t mean a lifetime sentence of salad (although leafy greens do wonders for your body and your skin). Instead of feeling guilty after getting “wasted on chocolate”, you get excited, (as long as you choose the right kind of chocolate) because you’ll be reaping some beauty benefits and health rewards for treating yourself!
Some chocolate can deliver significant beauty benefits. However, the only chocolate that can supply these benefits is dark chocolate having at least 70% cocoa content. Unfortunately, most treats found in the candy aisle and conveniently located upon check-out at grocery stores and pharmacies are the wrong kind of chocolate. Dark chocolate, the good stuff, is lower in sugar and high in cocoa. It’s super-rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that nourish our bodies. For example, cocoa contains naturally occurring plant substance called; flavonoids which can contribute to a healthy heart and help reduce the risk of stroke. Dark chocolate also relaxes blood vessels, which in turn can reduce blood pressure and blood cholesterol levels. Several studies even suggest that it may also be a “feel-good” treat that increases production of mood-enhancing neurotransmitters and improved blood flow to the brain.
Proponents of genetic engineering (GE)—whereby DNA from unrelated species is combined to produce improved or novel organisms—insist that the benefits of increased crop yields and less agricultural waste outweigh the potential risks, but many environmental and public health advocates aren't convinced.
According to the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS), one risk of GE is that our new "frankencrops" could become invasive, toxic to wildlife, or dangerous in other as-yet unknown ways. "But the most damaging impact of GE in agriculture so far is the phenomenon of pesticide resistance," reports UCS, adding that millions of acres of American farmland are infested by weeds that have become resistant to Monsanto's popular herbicide glyphosate (known to most by its trade name Roundup). "Overuse of Monsanto's 'Roundup Ready' trait, which is engineered to tolerate the herbicide, has promoted the accelerated development of resistance in several weed species."
“Beer, if drank in moderation, softens the temper, cheers the spirit, and promotes health.”Thomas Jefferson
Studies have revealed that beer can produce the same benefits as drinking wine. Whether you prefer ales, lagers, stout, bitter or wheat beers, studies show that one drink a day for women or up to two drinks a day for men will reduce your chances of strokes, heart and vascular disease. It's no secret that the stroke is the 3rd leading cause of death in the U.S. and the leading cause of serious, long-term disabilities.
What's interesting is that it was proven (New England Journal of Medicine - Nov. 1999) that those who drank one beer a week compared to those who drank one beer a day experienced no variance in reducing stroke risks. It is said that light to moderate drinkers will decrease their chances of suffering a stroke by 20%.
A researcher at the Texas Southwestern Medical Center (May 1999) reported that those who consume moderate amounts of beer (one to two a day at the most) have a 30-40% lower rate of coronary heart disease compared to those who don't drink. Beer contains a similar amount of "˜polyphenols' (antioxidants) as red wine and 4-5 times as many polyphenols as white wine.
Alcohol has also been attributed of its ability to increase the amount of good cholesterol (HDL) into the bloodstream as well as help to decrease blood clots.
Beer also contains vitamin B6, which prevents the build-up of amino acid called homocysteine that has been linked to heart disease. Those of us who have high levels of homocysteine are usually more prone to an early onset of heart and vascular disease.
“Clearly, drinking alcohol has some benefits. But there also are some very real risks. If you choose to drink, be mindful about it and always drink in moderation.”
— Donald Hensrud, M.D., Preventive Medicine, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn.
Recently, consistent information has been provided in support of an association between light to moderate alcohol consumption and protection from vascular and all-cause mortality, ischemic stroke, peripheral arterial disease, congestive heart failure, and recurrence of ischemic events. After reviewing the information with respect to major aspects of cardiovascular pathophysiology, to potential confounders and to underlying mechanisms, several concepts emerge. First, the recommended amounts of “safe alcohol drinking” in healthy individuals are up to two standard drinks (~20 g/d) for a man and up to one drink (10 g/d) for a nonpregnant woman.
© Thieme Medical Publishers
Approach the month of March, with the promise of pots of gold, shamrocks and little leprechauns, our thoughts turn to beer. Green beer, light beer, low-carb beer… the choices are endless. For those on a low carbohydrate diet, St. Patrick’s Day is the holiday for you. Not only is the traditional dish of corned beef and cabbage naturally low in carbohydrates, but now you can even enjoy beer and liquor, too.
According to greek legend, when the gods walked upon the earth, they lived on walnuts. It’s no wonder why they did. As an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants walnuts have many potential health benefits.
Walnuts are an exceptionally good source of omega-3 fatty acids, a special type of fat the body cannot manufacture. Numerous studies have demonstrated that people who consume a diet rich in omega 3 oils have a significantly reduced risk of developing heart disease. Specifically, Omega 3 fatty acids help to reduce artery clogging plaque from forming within the walls of coronary arteries.
These important fatty acids also impact the healthy functioning of nerve cells. A relative deficiency of omega 3 oils leads to the formation of cell membranes that are much less “fluid” than normal, which can ultimately affect behavior, mood and mental function. In fact, decreased consumption of omega 3 fatty acids has been correlated with increased rates of depression.
Walnuts also contain polyphenolic compounds which are powerful antioxidants and inhibit free radical damage to LDL cholesterol, further reducing the possibility of plaque formation.
Add Walnuts to your Daily Diet
Despite the significant health impacts, an estimated 60% of Americans are deficient in omega-3 fatty acids. The good news is that increasing YOUR body’s supply of healthful omega 3 fatty acids couldn’t be any easier - just toss a few walnuts into your morning oatmeal, or your dinner salad, or grab a handful as a quick afternoon snack.
Piled high in the grocery store produce area you may have noticed peculiar-looking fuzzy fruits with thick brown-green skin, each about the size of a lemon. When cut open, their inside is bright green, although in the late 1990s a sweeter yellow-fleshed variety was also developed.
Of course, your family expects a traditional holiday meal.
But, you yearn for the fun and challenge of cooking up something a little different and adventurous. Why not do both? Prepare the traditional meal of time-honored favorites your family loves, but this time, give tradition a tasty timely tweak. Here are some recipes to help you discover that traditional doesn't have to mean predictable. We've taken holiday menu classics and recharged them with a few fresh new ingredients. Try these delectable subtle flavors that add to but don't overpower the familiar ones and take your holiday dinner from being a good meal to a great one.
Many people dread winter because of the freezing weather, multiple layers of clothes, and icy driving conditions. But I grew up in Florida and was jealous of my friends who got snow days and were able to make snowmen outside and sit by a fire when they came home. Now that I have been living up north for about ten years, I still look forward to winter to enjoy staying indoors and snuggling with my family with a hot drink warming me from inside out. A hot drink is one of the best parts of winter and whether you choose coffee, tea, or even cocoa, they are not only delicious but they can also be nutritious.
According to a 2009 Vegetarian Resource Group/Harris Interactive survey, it is estimated that around three percent of the U.S. adult population is vegetarian. With holiday meals just around the corner, this could present a bit of a challenge for millions of households.
With holiday meals just around the corner, this could present a bit of a challenge for millions of households.
Learn the Lingo. Understanding what a vegetarian is and what they eat can be one of the most difficult areas people face with this issue. A vegetarian does not eat any type of animal flesh, whether from fish, fowl or other animals, although some individuals choose to eat dairy and/or egg products.
Before they discovered how to make fire, cavemen (or cave people to be politically correct) may have had trouble fending off sabertooth tigers or keeping the clan warm at night. But, could their uncooked foods have been healthier than those comprising the modern diet?
Certainly there are benefits to eating a cooked meal. Nonetheless, it is worth our time to get right down to the roots of the earthy advantages of eating raw foods. To bring the full flavor of the raw food experience to your palate, I decided to consult an expert in the field.
RECIPE #1: Puree massive quantities of low-fiber, highly saturated fats and trans fats with highly processed, sugary foods. Mix in gallons of nutrient-leeching carbonated beverages. Add very LIMITED fruits and vegetables! Shake, stir and WAIT! The transformation WILL take place. The process involves complicated and intricate biochemical reactions and rapid cellular change. WHAT is the secret result of this nature-bending, mad-food-scientist experiment? The answer is: The Average American!
The quest for the perfect Jack-O-Lantern is a cherished tradition that brings many families to the pumpkin patch each October. Children are delighted at the sight of row upon row of pumpkins, and the challenge of finding their own special pumpkin adds to the excitement. Back at the homestead, mom or dad carefully carves out the prize into a Jack-O-Lantern with a big toothy smile and a diamond shaped nose. But wait! Hold on a minute before you throw the pulp and seeds into the trash! Remember the old saying, waste not; want not. Pumpkin flesh and seeds have tremendous nutritional and health benefits. Perhaps Hippocrates thinking about pumpkin when he proclaimed, “Let thy food be thy medicine and thy medicine be thy food”
Healthy eating habits are an important part of maintaining a strong immune system. As cold and flu season get underway, breaking poor eating habits can not only prevent sickness, but also give you more energy, make you feel better about yourself, and help you live a healthier life. Dr. DerMarderosian suggests the following healthy eating basics:
Spring has sprung and along with mild temperatures and longer days come our primordial desires to clean houses, yards, cars and pets. Getting rid of excess “stuff” accumulated during the winter brings a tremendous sense of relief and accomplishment. Our bodies, according to Eastern and Western healing traditions, also accumulate excess “stuff” during the winter months. Heavy protein and fat laden meals, combined with lack of exercise, leave the digestive tract and liver sluggish. Among the “spring cleaning” herbs in Traditional Chinese and Ayruvedic Medicine is turmeric. Traditionally, people use turmeric for indigestion, bloating, intestinal parasites, and to support the liver and gall bladder. Herbal support for the digestive tract and liver, according to these healing methods, helps the body eliminate toxins and purifies the blood.
Culinary adventures during the month of November typically involve turkey with all the fixings, sweet potatoes, pumpkin and apple pie. Here is a suggestion - how about exploring a more esoteric culinary delight – pomegranate! November is National Pomegranate Month. Up until a few years ago pomegranates were an oddity of the produce department. The exotic fruit, which grows on small trees and resembles an apple with a “crown” at one end, generally did not make it into American shopping baskets unless it was commandeered by a person of Middle Eastern or Mediterranean descent. About five years ago an explosion of news emerged from scientific studies regarding the impressive health benefits of pomegranates. Suddenly, hundreds of new pomegranate products – pomegranate juice, salad dressing, fruit bars and even ice cream and candy hit store shelves.
You are on a first date in Japan. The pressure is CRUSHING! This make-it-or-break-it event can be DEADLY…
especially, if impressing your date requires gulping down a slice of Fugu or Blowfish at the hip new Sushi bar. Known as “Fuku” in western Japan, the Blowfish contains poisons that may cause INSTANT DEATH if not properly prepared by a certified chef!
If hospital bills could be compared, one common “beverage” found in the American diet poses a greater risk than all of the $50 plates of Fugu served in Asia. Unlike the paralyzing death that occurs within 24 hours from ill-prepared Blowfish consumption, American’s favorite “refreshment” kills slowly with little warning. To introduce the health-ravaging offender, we need NOT look in our oceans, rivers or lakes, but in any American refrigerator.
Fresh, ripe blueberries are bursting with flavor, loaded with nutrients and low in carbohydrates. They are high in vitamin C and potassium, are a source of vitamin E and important trace minerals, especially manganese and selenium. Blueberries are a good source of dietary fiber. In addition to their nutritive value, scientists are discovering the tremendous anti-aging, and health protective benefits of blueberries. These benefits are discovered in the very attribute that gives blueberries their sensory appeal – their color.
Moms and health experts agree: milk does a body good. It delivers the calcium you need for strong bones and teeth, muscle contraction and a beating heart. And now, studies are showing that people who drink milk every day lower their risk of colorectal cancer as much as 12 percent, and double that if they drink two glasses a day!
Chilly winter weather, blustery winds and fewer hours of daylight send many of us seeking warming comfort foods. Afternoon tea with a friend or relation helps us pass long winter afternoons and brightens a dreary day. As you sip and share stories with friends you may be unaware of the health promoting properties of tea. Protection against Parkinson’s disease, high blood pressure, vascular disease, prostate cancer, ovarian cancer and heart attack and stroke are, in all probability, far from your mind. Yet, according to many studies conducted over the past decade, tea has profound health benefits.