Fad Diets Fail. So Just Eat Less.

Guess what! Fad diets don’t cut it. A new study in yesterday’s New England Journal of Medicine showed gimmick diets, such as high-protein, low-carb and low-fat, aren’t as good as simply cutting calories. The participants, 811 overweight adults, were randomly assigned a diet and each person was encouraged to cut calories, exercise 90 minutes a week, keep a food diary and meet with a nutrition counselor. At the end of the study, no diet came out ahead, people lost an average of 13 pounds over six months, but all groups gained back their weight after a year; the Associated Press reports.

Quick, let’s break it down. Low-carb is bad, too much cancer and heart disease-promoting saturated fat. Plus, a recent study showed low-carb diets make you dopey. High-protein is equally stupid. According to Dr. Fuhrman these fat or meat-centered diets are unquestionably associated with obesity, not weight-loss. And the low-fat diet, as most Americans know it, is what made us all fat in the first place.

Here’s a better choice—coincidently, it jives with the new study—Dr. Fuhrman’s nutrient-dense diet, i.e. lots of fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and beans, makes it easy to maintain a healthy bodyweight, specifically green veggies. Green vegetables are packed with fiber and low in calories, meaning you can eat lots of them, fill your stomach quickly and still lose weight. How’s that for a sale pitch!

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Glass of Wine a Day Ups Cancer Risk in Woman

Drinking around slick men with greased hair and pinky rings is risky enough. But sorry ladies, it just got worse. A new study in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute found women who drink 1 glass of wine each day raise their risk of certain cancers, like throat, breast and liver cancer, by as much as 22%. Experts examined survey answers from 1 million women in the U.K. and 68,775 cancer diagnoses over 7years. Findings also revealed drinking 2 glasses of wine day doubled risk; The Daily Telegraph reports.

Red wine has a reputation of being healthy. It’s not. According to Dr. Fuhrman wine can lead to extra belly fat, breast cancer and stroke. Wine usually gets the thumbs up for resveratrol a plant compound found in the skin of red grapes linked to cancer prevention, but you don’t need booze to get antioxidants, like resveratrol, all fruits and veggies are packed with disease-fighting phytonutrients.

But some people are insane. They have no problem giving their toddler wine. Eek!

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Salt Worse for People with Metabolic Syndrome

According to a new study in The Lancet salt may be more harmful for patients with metabolic syndrome, a major predicator of heart disease and type-2 diabetes, increasing risk of high blood pressure. Researchers examined over 1,900 Chinese people, ages 16 and up, they were fed either a high or low-sodium diet for 7 days and their blood pressure was checked regularly. Results showed participants with metabolic syndrome were more likely to be sensitive salt and had higher blood pressure; HealthDay News reports.

Salt gets a bad rap. But it’s warranted. A recent report found reducing salt helps lower systolic blood pressure by helping blood vessels relax. And in September, experts at American Heart Association claimed cutting salt helps control high blood pressure. Salt also contributes to heart disease and stroke.

As for metabolic syndrome, previous studies show red meat increases the risk of metabolic syndrome but eating some mixed nuts everyday lowers risk by 13.7%. Nutty!

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Low Cholesterol Blocks Prostate Cancer

Turns out that big greasy steak is not so manly after all! New research in the American Journal of Pathology claims lower cholesterol levels may inhibit the growth of prostate tumors. To examine the connection, researchers fed mice a high-fat diet as well as the cholesterol-lowering drug Zetia, which blocks the absorption of cholesterol from the intestine, and data revealed reducing cholesterol may halt tumor angiogenesis, i.e. new blood vessel growth associated with tumors; via EurekAlert!

Actually, in July scientists determined men who eat lots of burgers, steak and cheese—all loaded with cholesterol-raising saturated fat—were nearly twice as likely to experience prostate cancer progression and another study found mice eating less fat were 27% less likely to develop prostate cancer.

Now, all this is no reason to go on Zetia. Zetia has not been shown to reduce heart attacks and strokes. In stead, eat fruits and vegetables. Veggies knock out prostate cancer, heart attack, stroke and more!

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More of New York Banning Trans-Fat

This summer New York City put the clamps on trans-fat, banning it from the city and since then other parts of New York have followed suite. Suffolk County, Long Island banned trans-fat earlier this month, along with Nassau, Albany and Westchester counties. Local officials call it an important move that will help residents eat smarter and healthier. But not everyone is happy, a senator in New Jersey who proposed a ban last year actually received physical threats and hate mail; The New York Times reports.

Trans-fat is bad news! A recent study linked trans-fat to colon cancer and it has been associated with both heart disease and cancer. Trans-fat turns up in all sorts of food, like dried soups, frozen entrees, energy bars, doughnuts, cookies and much more, so make a note, don’t eat that crap.

Actually, New York has been pretty proactive with food lately, by requiring restaurants to post calories on menus and New York Governor David Paterson wants to put a tax on sugary beverages, like non-diet drinks and any fruit juice that is less than 70% juice.

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Surprise! Weight-Loss Helps Diabetics...

Reported in The Journal of the American Medical Association researchers reveal weight-loss and lifestyle changes are more effective than insulin therapy for overweight individuals with insulin-resistant type-2 diabetes. High insulin levels overload tissues with fatty molecules, leading to insulin-resistance. And treating people with MORE insulin does not overpower the resistance, but can cause organ damage. Losing weight and improving diet is much safer; Medical News Today explains.

An estimated 24 million Americans now have diabetes. And drugs are not answer. According to Dr. Fuhrman, a diet rich in healthy foods, such as green vegetables, beans, tomatoes, mushrooms, onions, garlic, raw nuts, seeds and some fruit, in combination with weight-loss and exercise can help you kick insulin and reverse diabetes.

America needs to take the hint! More and more of us have chronic conditions, like heart disease, cancer and diabetes, than ever before. And all this extra fat isn’t helping.

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Multivitamins Don't Slow Heart Disease and Cancer

Reported in Archives of Internal Medicine, scientists have determined multivitamins have little or no influence on the risk of cancer, cardiovascular disease or overall death-risk in postmenopausal women. The study involved 161, 808 participants and documented chronic conditions, such as breast, colon and stomach cancer and stroke, myocardial infarction and total mortality. Researchers point out populations eating a lot of fruits and vegetables have lower risk of chronic disease; via CNN.

In November, findings in the Journal of the American Medical Association revealed vitamins C and E do nothing to prevent heart disease in men and then in December, another study showed just taking vitamin C and E and selenium supplements don’t ward off prostate cancer.

Now, for potent sources of vitamins and minerals, with known anti-cancer and heart disease-preventing effects, give green veggies, like broccoli, kale and Swiss chard, a try!

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Stupid Guy to Only Eat Bacon for a Month!

Dumb ideas, we’ve all heard them, like the Jump to Conclusions Mat and the Knife Wrench, both equally stupid. But they’re about to be topped! Some dummy has announced for the entire month of February he’ll only eat bacon—plus beer, wine, water and martinis. And he says his weight won’t change and his blood pressure may actually drop; via Fit Sugar.

Okay, let’s recap. Bacon bad, bacon very bad! Just last month a studied linked cured meats, such as bacon and hotdogs, with a higher risk of leukemia and a previous report showed processed meats and cheese speed up the growth of lung cancer tumors. Not to mention, foods rich in saturated fat, like bacon, lead to heart disease.

I like this idea better, get an entire city to go veggie for a month. As for me, the closest I get to bacon these days is the Haminal. He’s cuddly, cute and cholesterol free!

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Brits Need to Buy Less Saturated Fat!

Heart disease is the number one killer in the United Kingdom, accounting for 1 in 3 deaths, prompting the nation’s Food Standards Agency to launch an advertising campaign encouraging citizens to consume less saturated fat. The new health initiative will focus on moms and women ages 45 to 60, and include posters, digital marketing and television and press ads. Currently, adults in the U.K. eat 20% more than the recommended maximum levels of saturated fat, too much butter, chips and cheese; FoodNavigator explains.

Dr. Fuhrman recommends avoiding saturated fat. It raises cholesterol, causing heart disease. In this video, this poor guy ate a diet mostly compromised of saturated fat, a lot of ghee, clarified butter, and without emergency surgery he would have died.

And don’t forget, saturated fat has also been linked to cancer, such as prostate, ovarian and small intestine cancer.

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Staying Heart Healthy During the Recession

It’s the 800-pound gorilla in the room. The recession, depression or whatever we’re in. People are worried. Things are bad! And during an economic slump people’s health is at risk, particularly their diets. History shows candy consumption goes up and newer reports reveal people eat more fast food and less fruits and veggies when money is tight.

Resist the temptation! Eat your fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and beans. And, listen to these tips by a professor from the University of California for staying heart healthy during the recession, such as exercising more, eating lots of fresh simple foods at home, avoiding secondhand smoke, and find ways or activities to reduce stress; via HealthDay News.

And ignore companies like Krispy Kreme who hock free coffee and doughnuts to mark the Great Depression. Oh, you’re broke? Now get fat too!

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Eat Lignans for Healthier, Thinner Women

A new study in the British Journal of Nutrition claims a diet rich in lignans, phytochemicals found in flaxseed, whole grains, berries and other fruits and vegetables, lowers women’s body mass index and significantly reduces blood glucose levels. Participants, 115 women, tracked their lignan intake using a 3-day dietary record and blood tests revealed those women with the highest lignan levels had less body fat and a better metabolic profile, including higher insulin sensitivity; Nutraingredients reports.

Seeds are a great source of lignans! According to Dr. Fuhrman, lignans are a type of fiber and eating foods, like flaxseed, has been shown to protect against heart disease and cancer. Sesame seeds are cool too. They’re loaded with calcium, magnesium, copper, iron, manganese, zinc, fiber and vitamins.

Actually, my breakfast pudding is made with both sesame seeds and flaxseed. It’s also got sunflower seeds, walnuts and avocado, lots of healthy fats! Sometimes I throw blueberries in too.

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Vitamin D Makes Girls Big and Mean!

A new study in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism claims vitamin D levels in adolescent girls are significantly associated with muscle power and force. Researchers recruited 99 inner-city girls from a multi-ethnic school between the ages of 12 and 14. And blood testing revealed 75% of the girls had low levels of vitamin D and the girls with higher levels performed much better on a jumping test used to measure strength; Nutraingredients reports.

Ironically, in October the American Academy of Pediatrics recommended doubling children’s daily intake of vitamin D to 400 units, replacing its 2003 recommendation of 200 units, based on claims that sufficient vitamin D may help reduce risk of cancer, heart disease and diabetes.

And previous reports show vitamin D deficiencies can cause back pain in older women and even increase the likelihood of c-sections.

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High Fructose Corn Syrup Oozing Mercury...

A new study in Environmental Health discovered mercury in citric acid, sodium benzoate and high fructose corn syrup (HFCS). An analysis of HFCS from three different manufacturers revealed mercury levels ranging from under the detection limit of 0.005 to 0.570 micrograms of mercury per gram of high fructose corn syrup. The researchers claim average daily consumption of HFCS in America is 50 grams per person, spelling possible danger for children and sensitive populations; Reuters investigates.

But back in October, the lunatics at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration ruled that high fructose corn syrup is natural, prompting an ad campaign by corn refiners insisting that HFCS is the same as sugar. Yeah, because that’s something to brag about!

Sorry sugar pushers. Previous reports have linked high fructose corn syrup with diabetes and obesity and soft drinks with cardiovascular disease.

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