Posts Tagged ‘eating’

More About Diet

Thursday, September 27th, 2012 by American Senior Fitness Association   View This Issue of Experience!

Here’s an important news alert for Americans and Canadians, especially persons with high blood pressure. A recent study published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal (CMAJ) revealed that international fast-food chains consistently put more salt in food items sold in the United States and Canada, compared to the same items when sold in other developed nations.

Researchers determined the salt content of major fast-fare restaurant items in the U.S., Canada, France, the United Kingdom, Australia and New Zealand. The chains that were looked at in the study included Burger King, Domino’s Pizza, Kentucky Fried Chicken, McDonald’s, Pizza Hut and Subway. The types of foods that were studied included burgers, sandwiches, french fries, pizza, savory breakfast items, chicken items and salads.

Overall, the researchers learned that the sodium content of comparable food items varied greatly from country to country, but that fast-food in the U.S. and Canada contained a lot more sodium than that in France and the U.K. An example provided by a CMAJ news release illustrates the findings: In Canada, a 3-1/2 ounce serving of McDonald’s Chicken McNuggets had 2-1/2 times more sodium than the same size serving in the U.K. That’s 600 milligrams of sodium, compared to 240 milligrams — or 1.5 grams of salt compared to 0.6 grams. In summary, fast-food giants are selling the same products on the American continent and overseas, but with significantly lower sodium content abroad.

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Super Thoughts

Friday, July 27th, 2012 by American Senior Fitness Association   View This Issue of Experience!

These authors have entertaining thoughts to share — some serious, some humorus — on the topic of eating and on certain "superfoods" in particular:

"Nothing would be more tiresome than eating and drinking if God had not made them a pleasure as well as a necessity."

   — Voltaire

"There is a lot more juice in grapefruit than meets the eye."

   — Author Unknown

"It’s difficult to think anything but pleasant thoughts while eating a homegrown tomato."

   — Lewis Grizzard

"The colors of a fresh garden salad are so extraordinary, no painter’s pallet can duplicate nature’s artistry."

   — Dr. SunWolf, www.professorsunwolf.com

"Hey yogurt, if you’re so cultured, how come I never see you at the opera?"

   — Attributed to Stephen Colbert

"Don’t eat anything your great-grandmother wouldn’t recognize as food."

   — Michael Pollan

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Lean Forward

Friday, June 22nd, 2012 by American Senior Fitness Association   View This Issue of Experience!

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics recommends looking for certain words on meat labels in order to purchase leaner cuts. Good-bet words include:

  • Round,
  • Loin, and
  • 95 percent lean.

The academy also advises trimming off visible pieces of fat prior to cooking and then using cooking methods that minimize fat. These include:

  • Braising,
  • Stewing,
  • Stir-frying, and
  • Grilling.
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Social Overeating

Tuesday, February 14th, 2012 by American Senior Fitness Association   View This Issue of Experience!

Two new studies explore the tendency to overeat in social situations. Researchers at Radboud University Nijmegen, in the Netherlands, paired women who had not previously met and monitored them as they shared a meal together. The scientists were studying behavioral mimicry, in which a person unwittingly imitates the behavior of another. In this study, the women did mimic each other’s eating behavior virtually bite for bite, including taking bites at the same time. Both members of a pair were influenced by the other member, and the mimicry was stronger at the beginning of the meal, diminishing towards the end of the meal. Since the women were new acquaintances, researchers think they may have unintentionally observed each other’s eating behavior in order to establish a matching pattern, unconsciously seeking to facilitate the social connection. That could shed light on why the mimicry subsided as they got to know each other during the course of the meal.

Researchers at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio, found that "people pleasers" (persons who are sensitive to criticism, who put other people’s needs ahead of their own, and who worry about hurting other people’s feelings) tend to overeat in certain social situations. Each study volunteer was seated alone with an actor posing as just another study volunteer. The actor took a few pieces of candy from a bowl, then offered the candy bowl to the study volunteer. Being a people pleaser was associated with eating more candy. Lead author, psychologist Julie Exline, said, "People pleasers feel more intense pressure to eat when they believe that their eating will help another person feel more comfortable."

Both of these studies serve as useful reminders to eat mindfully in social settings.

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Winter Delight

Tuesday, January 10th, 2012 by American Senior Fitness Association   View This Issue of Experience!

During the chilly season, warmed fruit dishes make cozy treats. So here’s a delicious breakfast idea that you may wish to share with your senior fitness clients and try out yourself at home. Simply drizzle a little honey onto fresh grapefruit halves. Microwave on high for about one minute if the grapefruit started out at room temperature, or for about two minutes if it came straight out of the refrigerator.

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Healthy Hints for the Holidays

Monday, December 20th, 2010 by American Senior Fitness Association   View This Issue of Experience!

SFA author Jim Evans is a 40-year veteran of the health and fitness industry and an internationally recognized senior fitness consultant. Today Jim provides practical solutions for mature adults who have concerns regarding holiday weight gain.

DEAR JIM: It seems the older I get, the more weight I gain — especially during the holidays. I seem to be able to hold my own during the rest of the year, but I probably gain at least five pounds every year between Thanksgiving and New Year’s. At this rate I’ll be a blimp by 2011, and I’ll only be 69. What can I do to control my weight this holiday season?
HEFTY IN HELENA

DEAR HEFTY: The holidays are here again, and the average American can expect to gain from one to 12 pounds during the holiday season depending on what statistics you want to believe. It’s the same old story every year. Most Americans will make the same New Year’s resolution every year too: to lose weight! How to break the cycle of failure? Try these healthy hints to help you control your weight while still enjoying the holidays:

  • WALK AFTER EVERY MEAL. Instead of sitting around feeling stuffed and uncomfortable after every big meal, get up and walk. You don’t have to be a party pooper and leave your company behind to talk to themselves — invite them to walk with you. A brisk walk around the block will be invigorating for everyone, and you can continue your conversation along the way.
  • DRINK LOTS OF WATER. Drink a full 8-ounce glass of water when you first get up in the morning and right before you sit down to eat that big meal. Another helpful trick is to take a drink of water between every bite of food. All of this will help you to eat less and improve your digestion too.
  • EAT SMALLER PORTIONS. Serve yourself smaller portions — you can always go back for another serving if you are really that hungry — and cut the servings into several small pieces. Of course, this is a psychological ploy to fool your brain into thinking you are eating more than you really are, but it does work because generally you will eat less if you take smaller portions. Eat more slowly, too, instead of trying to wolf your food down as if there were no tomorrow. What’s the hurry, anyway? Enjoy!
  • EAT BREAKFAST. Be sure to eat breakfast on the day of any big holiday meal, even if you sleep in late and the meal is only a few hours away. It will keep you from eating too much at one time and help you digest your food more efficiently.
  • WALK IN PLACE. Most people will be watching lots of television during the holidays and, between all of the football games and Christmas specials, we are creating a nation of couch potatoes in just a few short months every year. Well, fight back without sacrificing your favorite television programs. How? Just stand up during every commercial and walk in place in the middle of the room. It might sound stupid, but just think about how many commercials appear on each program. You can log a lot of miles and burn a lot of calories without even leaving the house. Think you might be embarrassed in front of family and friends? That’s their problem, not yours, and you might be pleasantly surprised when they join you (it might be fun for grandchildren too!).
  • STAND UP AND SUCK IT IN. It sounds simple because it is simple. Many people walk around slouched over, shuffling along dragging their feet with absolutely no sense of energy. They are sleepwalking through life. Make a concentrated effort to stand up straight, throw your shoulders back, hold your chest high, suck in your tummy and walk with purpose. Try it while you are holiday shopping. Walk like you mean it. It takes a little more effort in the beginning, but after a while it will become a habit.

These simple suggestions can help you to have a healthier holiday season this year and every year hereafter. And, maybe you can convince Santa to join you.

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Healthful Eating

Friday, November 5th, 2010 by American Senior Fitness Association   View This Issue of Experience!

The Humane Society of the United States produces a lively DVD series called the "Latest in Clinical Nutrition" that reviews cutting edge research published in peer reviewed scientific nutrition journals and provides practical tips on eating to prevent, treat and even reverse disease. This series provides strong support for the belief held by many that a humane diet is also the healthiest.

Hosting the series is Michael Greger, MD, the director of Public Health and Animal Agriculture in the farm animal welfare division of the Human Society. A physician specializing in clinical nutrition, Dr. Greger focuses his work on the human health implications of intensive animal agriculture, including the routine use of non-therapeutic antibiotics and growth hormones in animals raised for food, and the public health threats of industrial factory farms. He is a founding member of the American College of Lifestyle Medicine, a respected author and an invited lecturer at universities, medical schools and conferences worldwide. To view an invigorating 68-minute video of Dr. Greger conducting a highly informative nutritional presentation, click here.

There are four fascinating volumes in the "Latest in Clinical Nutrition" DVD series. A new volume is added each year. They range in length from 90 minutes to approximately three hours, and cover numerous topics of contemporary interest. For example, volume 4 alone features 99 chapters, including the following examples:

  • Latest on alfalfa sprouts
  • Latest of aspartame
  • Latest on coffee
  • Latest on gluten
  • The healthiest herbal tea
  • Best fruits for cancer prevention
  • Improving memory through diet
  • Dietary osteoarthritis treatment
  • New cholesterol fighters
  • Statin muscle toxicity
  • Dietary theory of Alzheimer’s
  • Exercise and breast cancer
  • Anabolic steroids in meat
  • Obesity-causing pollutants in food
  • Plant-based diets and mood
  • Licorice: helpful?
  • Vinegar: helpful?
  • Vitamin D pills vs tanning beds
  • Mitochondrial theory of aging
  • The three preceding volumes address hundreds of intriguing topics, such as:

  • Preventing cancer: which foods to avoid
  • Preventing cancer: which foods to eat
  • How to eliminate constipation
  • The food that can drop your cholesterol 20 points
  • The healthiest beverage
  • The food that cuts your fatal heart attack risk in half
  • The one supplement everyone eating a healthy diet needs
  • Black pepper: helpful?
  • Oranges vs orange juice
  • Honeybush tea
  • Fish: omega 3s and mercury
  • Sun-dried vs golden raisins
  • The best bean
  • The best mushroom
  • Should people take antioxidant supplements?
  • What’s the #1 cancer fighting vegetable?
  • What’s the healthiest sweetener?
  • How does one alter one’s brain waves through diet?
  • Recipe of the year
  • The Humane Society Press (HSP) points out that the world’s longest life expectancy is found in California Adventist vegetarians. According to the HSP, they live 10 years longer than the general population and enjoy lower rates of many of the chronic diseases that plague Americans, such as heart disease, stroke, diabetes, obesity and certain cancers. For additional details and ordering information on the "Latest in Clinical Nutrition" DVD series, click on HumaneSociety.org/nutrition.

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    Sometimes You Feel Like a…

    Friday, November 5th, 2010 by American Senior Fitness Association   View This Issue of Experience!

    Nut consumption has been linked to improved cholesterol levels by an analysis of studies published recently in the Archives of Internal Medicine. Results indicated that enjoying approximately 2.3 ounces of nuts daily decreased total cholesterol levels by 5.1 percent and LDL cholesterol (the "undesirable" type) by 7.4 percent. It improved the ratio of LDL cholesterol to HDL cholesterol (the "desirable" type) by 8.3 percent and reduced triglyceride levels by 10.2 percent in persons with high triglycerides.

    Although the strongest evidence for nuts’ helpful effects has come from research involving walnuts and almonds, other types of nuts have also been found beneficial. They include pecans, peanuts, macadamias, hazelnuts and pistachios.

    Due to their high caloric content, nuts can contribute to unhealthy weight gain if eaten in excess. However, moderate nut-eating can add useful dietary fiber, vegetable proteins, vitamins, antioxidants and cholesterol-lowering unsaturated fat to the diet.

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    A compound found in plants such as peppers, carrots and celery may help reduce memory deficits

    Thursday, October 21st, 2010

    Luteolin, a compound found in plants such as peppers, carrots and celery may help reduce memory deficits. The results of a study conducted at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, indicated that luteolin can help protect the brain against inflammation, “a key contributor to age-related memory problems.” Study leader Rodney Johnson added that “these data suggest that consuming a healthy diet has the potential to reduce age-associated inflammation in the brain, which can result in better cognitive health.” For a report from ScienceDaily, please click below.

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    The National Heart, Blood, and Lung Institute of NIH has produced a creative, heart-smart cookbook

    Monday, September 20th, 2010

    For tasty heart-healthy eating, check out Keep the Beat Recipes: Deliciously Healthy Dinners from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute of NIH (the National Institutes of Health). To sample one satisfying main dish featured in the cookbook, Chicken and Mushroom Fricassee, click here . For ordering information, click below.

     

     

     

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