Whole foods burn 50% more calories than processed foods.
Do processed "diet" foods leave you with lingering hunger and a desire to nibble on other foods, thus leading you to consume more calories than if you had prepared a wholesome meal? Researchers have found we burn 50% more calories metabolizing whole foods (WF) than comparable processed food (PF) meals with the same number of calories. Diets with a high percentage of PFs result in increased energy assimilation and may contribute to obesity.
PositiveTip: Eat wholesome foods which are lower in calories and burn more in metabolism.
“I’m afraid my food was grown in poor soil and doesn’t have the right nutrition.” “What if my food has been contaminated by pesticides?” “Will I get cancer from my food?” “Did someone irradiate my food?” “Do I need to avoid a certain types of food?”
These are questions heard by nutritionists every day from concerned people – who are misinformed. The misinformation comes from multiple sources: who have a “safer” product to sell, who have a “back to nature” agenda, who have done their research on fear-mongering web-sites. And some – also as fearful – are “helping” to spread “the truth” about the “dangerous” condition of food. The truth is – in general – food in the United States is safe.
Eating out increases caloric intake in children and teens--probably adults too!
You probably could have guessed this! Eating meals at fast-food and full-service eateries is associated with more calories, sugar, total fat, saturated fat and sodium. This study included over 9400 children and teens. When eating at fast-food places teens consumed 309 more calories and children 128 more per meal, and when at full-service restaurants 267 and 160, respectively. These excess calories significantly contribute to overweight and obesity.
PositiveTip: Take a healthful lunch instead of going out to eat.
A group of researchers reported that children aged 6-12 years given low dose vitamin-mineral supplements were involved in less violence and antisocial behavior than those who did not receive the supplements. [Ref: The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine. February 2000, 6(1): 7-17] The setting for this study was two "working class" schools in Arizona in which 468 students participated. Half the students were given vitamin-mineral pills containing 50% of the U.S. RDA (Recommended Dietary Allowances) for four months while the rest got a placebo.
Good and bad genes can be influenced by what you eat and how you live.
A study was conducted to determine whether a pure vegetarian diet, exercise and stress management could modify the progression of prostate cancer. After one year, those following the program showed significant improvements in weight, abdominal obesity, blood pressure and blood fats. The research found that over 500 genes changed function -- some were turned "on" and others turned "off" in favor of controlling the cancer. We all have bad genes and are exposed to cancer-causing agents, but our lifestyle and diet can determine whether those genes are activated.
PositiveTip: Are you helping to turn "off" cancer genes by choosing a vegetarian diet and exercise to lower your risk of cancer?
Sugar-laden beverages may raise blood pressure.
Sugar-sweetened sodas and fruit juice may increase blood pressure according to British researchers who looked at 2,696 U.S. and U.K. participants. For each additional sugary beverage per day systolic blood pressure rose 1.6 mmHg and diastolic by 0.8 mmHg (p<0.001 for both). Perhaps these "empty calories" are displacing calories from the nutrient dense foods like fruits, vegetables and whole grains. More research is needed.
PositiveTip: None of us really need sugar-sweetened beverages for health. Drink plain water instead of that calorie dense beverage, and eat another serving of delicious fruit.
This is the third blog in a series exploring the benefits of eating meals together as a family.
A report from the University of Florida says that one of the real benefits of family meals is the opportunity for conversation that it brings (see the last post in this series). The report goes on to reveal that eating together as a family is also associated with better nutritional quality of food eaten. Here is what they say:
Jacob, one of the Old Testament Bible characters, lived through seven years of famine in Egypt. When he was old he wrote, "God...fed me all my life long..." (Genesis 48:15) Today, in the current economic crunch, we can trust Him to feed us, too.
However, He does expect us to use judgment and restraint in not only the foods we choose, but in how and where we purchase them. The following guide will help you eat well without needing to own the grocery store!
Do you have cancer?
Do you know someone that does? Have you or someone you know survived cancer? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then you need to read on!
The American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR) has released an educational DVD called "Food for the Fight, Guidelines for Healthy Nutrition During and After Cancer Treatment". It is full of practical dietary strategies to help survivors remain healthy during treatment and prevent recurrence of their cancer.
Easy and fun tools to discover what is in the food you eat.
Ever wondered what is in the food you eat? You don't have to find a nutritionist, or even look in a big fat textbook, to discover a wide range of food composition knowledge. All this and more is easily available on the web--for free! The United States Department of Agriculture hosts What's In Food, where you can find a host of resources to help you discover the nutrients found in individual foods and calculate the same for recipes. You can even find the composition in selected fast foods by brand. Wondering how much sugar is in beverages? There is a resource for that. MyFood-a-pedia is an easy to use searchable database of one food with the ability to compare with two items.