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EAT WHOLE GRAINS: LIVE LONGER AND PREVENT HEART DISEASE

eat whole grainIn their ongoing investigation of over 74,000 women from the Nurses’ Health Study (1984–2010) and almost 44,000 men from the Health Professionals Follow-Up Study (1986–2010), 2 large prospective cohort studies, Harvard researchers* have some new and exciting findings to report.

The results? Whole grain intake was significantly and inversely associated with a reduction in risk of total mortality (9% ) and a reduction in risk of death from cardiovascular disease (15% reduction in risk) in American men and women, independent of other dietary and lifestyle factors. More specifically, bran intake showed a similar inverse association of total mortality (6% reduction in risk of death) and cardiovascular disease mortality (a whopping 20% reduction in risk of death), whereas the wheat germ showed no association.

These results add to the considerable body of scientific evidence showing the spectacular health benefits of consuming whole grains on a daily basis. Unfortunately, the average American eats less than one serving per day, and almost half of all Americans never eat whole grains at all. (Younger adults tend to eat less than one serving daily.)

A kernel of wheat grain contains three parts: the germ, endosperm and bran. Refined grains consist of only the endosperm, hence have lost the life-extending bran portion. Furthermore, all three components contain the plant storage protein known as gluten, a component of grains currently shunned by many Americans.

Rx: to extend your life and keep your heart healthy, aim to eat three servings of whole grains a day (remember, “3 is key”) and do NOT avoid gluten unless you have been medically diagnosed with celiac disease (experts estimate that only about 1% of Americans have celiac disease) or have been diagnosed with gluten intolerance.

Here is a list of some whole grains readily available in the supermarket:

Corn, Whole oats/oatmeal, 100% whole wheat flour, Popcorn, Brown rice, Whole-grain barley, Wild rice, Buckwheat, Quinoa.

The bottom line? Eat whole grains (rich in bran) to live longer free of heart disease—the leading cause of death in American men and women!

 

* “Whole Grain Intake and Mortality: Two Large Prospective Studies in US Men and Women,” Hongyu Wu, Alan J. Flint, Qibin Qi, Rob B. van Dam, Laura A. Sampson, Eric B. Rimm, Michelle D. Holmes, Walter C. Willett, Frank B. Bu, Qi Sun, JAMA Internal Medicine, doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2014.6283, online Jan. 5, 2015

How Serious is Childhood Obesity?

obesity

The best way to promote a healthy weight in children is to provide an environment conducive to weight control in the home.

Childhood obesity has risen to epidemic proportions in the United States and continues to escalate in prevalence, making this a very serious public health problem. Hand-in-hand with obesity is the twin epidemic, Type 2 diabetes mellitus. Children have shown an alarming increase in this disease that was once unknown in children (also known as “Adult-Onset Diabetes”).

Diabetes, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure are now increasingly diagnosed in obese children; these are major risk factors for heart disease, the leading cause of death in this country. This is a dire situation, with some researchers stating that this could be the first generation of parents that will outlive their children.

Parents must take action to prevent and treat childhood obesity. The best way to promote a healthy weight in children is to provide an environment conducive to weight control in the home surroundings.

Here are some tips for “making home where the health is:”

1. Remove all “junk food” from your home (pantry and refrigerator) and replace with healthful, lower calorie food choices:

• Place cut-up fruits and vegetables (in ice water)—front and center of your refrigerator.

• Make 100-calorie popcorn as a snack, serve fat-free pudding cups (only 60 calories a pop) with fat-free Cool Whip (only 15 calories a tablespoon!) for dessert.

• Replace soda or high calorie juices with sparkling water jazzed up with just a touch of red grape juice.

• Replace sugary sports drinks with plain water for rehydration during sports.

2. Cook at home and eat together as a family (at the dinner table and never in front of the television!)

• Let your kids help in the food preparation such as cutting up vegetables and making a healthy, low-fat yogurt dip.

• Your job is to provide your children with healthy food but it is up to them if they decide to eat it, let them decide if they are full (never use food as a reward or punishment).

• Use normal portion sizes and remember to stay away from control issues regarding food: again, your job is to provide healthy food, it is your child’s decision how much they chose to eat.

• Use low-fat cooking techniques: bake and broil foods rather than fry, remove the skin from poultry.

• Always provide a salad (low calorie dressing on the side) with dinner.

• Divide the dinner plate into thirds, 1/3rd of the plate should be a vegetable (steamed broccoli for example), another third, a starch (baked fries for example) and the last third a lean protein source (skinless, boneless grilled chicken for example).

3. Encourage regular physical activity

• Be a great role model and exercise daily yourself.

• Restrict sedentary activity in your kids to no more than one hour a day (television, computers, video games).

• Make it a family affair, go bike riding with your kids or hiking or take the dog for a walk together.

• Demand a healthy-promoting environment at your child’s school (i.e. daily PE classes, nutritious lunches and a ban on junk food and soda on school grounds)

4. Most important, be supportive and loving of your children regardless of their size as obesity takes a terrible toll on a child’s self-esteem.

One caveat, make sure that you consult with your pediatrician before putting a child on a diet. The goal of developing children should be to grow into their weight and not to lose excessive amounts. The bottom line is that families must take action against the growing epidemic of obesity in our nation’s children…a dire situation that predisposes them to developing heart disease later in life—the leading cause of death in American men and women.

Statistics Americans Need to Know:

• Among children and adolescents ages 6-19, 16 percent (over 9 million) are overweight or obese.
• This number has tripled since 1980.
• Over 75% of children ages 6 to 11 do not eat the government advocated “5-a-day” servings of fruits and vegetables.
• Eighty percent of obese children will remain overweight as adults.
• Only about 8% of elementary schools and 6% of middle and high schools provide daily physical education classes.

3 Great Tips to Avoid Surprising Health Risks of Beans: Dr. Janet on the Dr. Oz Show

Healthy Foods

Dr. Janet offering tips on avoiding surprising health risks caused by beans

We all know that beans are a nutritional powerhouse. They are loaded with protein, fiber, potassium and many other nutrients. However beans can also cause some surprising health risks.

Nutritionist and author Dr. Janet Brill appeared on The Dr. Oz Show to discuss about beans and she reveals tips on how to avoid the surprising health risks that are caused by this staple food.

1. Black beans do not cause migraine

There are three types of beans that are known to trigger migraine which are – Fava, Garbanzo and Navy beans. Dr. Janet advises to consume black beans as they don’t cause any headache.

2. Dry beans lower blood pressure

Beans are generally a great heart healthy food that help lower blood pressure. The problem lies with canned variety which the majority of Americans consume. Canned beans are loaded with sodium that can raise BP. The mantra is to rinse the beans at least twice. Or you can use natural, dry beans, soak them overnight and cook them using pressure cooker.

The secret is that the beans without extra salt are heart healthy and they help bring blood pressure down and lower cholesterol.

3. Properly cooked beans do not cause gas

Though beans cause gas, Dr. Janet offers tips on how to avoid that. She suggests using Japanese dry sea weed, coriander, and baking soda while cooking beans that ensure that beans don’t cause gas.

The idea is not to give up eating beans. Rather eat natural, dry beans thrice a week by cooking them yourself.

Quick ‘N Healthy Summer Lunch Idea – Tuna Stuffed Pepper

Low Cholesterol Recipe

Delicious Recipe for Summers – Tuna Stuffed Pepper

Quick healthy lunches are always a great idea to have on hand, especially during those hot summer days when cooking in a hot kitchen just isn’t going to happen. Canned tuna and salmon are both fabulous light lean protein sources to keep in your pantry. Remember to always purchase the tuna and salmon in water, not in oil. Also, instead of adding mayo to make your tuna or salmon salad creamy, cut back on calories by using this delicious swap: add 0% plain Greek yogurt with red wine vinegar, as featured in this week’s recipe, Tuna Stuffed Peppers.

Low Cholesterol Recipe of Tuna Stuffed Pepper:

Stuff a bell pepper with tuna fish for a low carbohydrate bread option and serving of vegetables to add to your daily intake.

Yield- 2 serving  (1 serving = 1 bell pepper with ½ cup of tuna
stuffing)

Ingredients:

  • 2 Bell peppers
  • 1 can of light tuna (or salmon) in water,
  • drained
  • 2 celery stalk, chopped
  • 1/4 red onion, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp of 0% plain greek yogurt
  • 1 Tbsp of red wine vinegar
  • ¼ tsp of cracked black pepper
  • 1 tsp of dried dill (or fresh)

Directions:
Either cut the top off a bell pepper or cut bell pepper in half. In a medium bowl, mix the rest of ingredients to form the tuna salad. Stuff the pepper or pepper halves with the tuna stuffing. Eat cold or heat in the oven for 10-15 minutes on 350 ºF.

Nutrition Information Per Serving:
Calories:136kcal
Fat: 1 g
Cholesterol: 38 mg
Carbohydrate: 11g
Dietary Fiber: 3g
Protein: 19 g
Sodium: 351 mg

Treat Digestion Problems and Colds with Ginger- Nature’s Miracle Medicine

Heart Healthy

Ginger – Nature’s Natural Medicine

Pungent, flavorful and aromatic; ginger is one ultra nutritious herb that is used as a spice. Not only does it add a great flavor and zest to any dish, ginger also boasts of plenty of therapeutic health benefits.

Ginger is a herb that belongs to the Zingiberaceae family, the same family as turmeric and cardamom. Known for therapeutic properties, ginger is a herb that can be used in drinks (tea), and cooking.

In Ayurveda, the ancient alternative system of medicine, ginger is considered Mother Nature’s natural medicine that helps treat many ailments. In India and many other Asian countries, ginger is ubiquitous among culinary specialties. Let’s have a look at some of the benefits using this wonder spice/herb in your meals:

Time-tested herb for stomach problems
Ginger is a time-tested herb that purportedly has numerous digestion-friendly properties. This wonder herb has been used for thousands of years for effectively providing relief in gastrointestinal distress. Ginger is rich in powerful antioxidants that help facilitate food absorption, reduce inflammation and improve digestion. Ginger is widely used around the world for treating loss of appetite.

Battles cold and flu
Cold and flu are health issues that are quite bothersome for many people. Instead of, or as an adjunct to over-the-counter cold remedies, why not head to kitchen for a natural cure. Ginger has been used for centuries as an effective remedy for treating and preventing cold and flu symptoms. Try some chopped ginger steeped in hot water two or three times a day to fight cold and flu.

Nature’s cure for morning sickness
Suffering from morning sickness? Feeling nauseated? Try ginger powder or chew ginger dipped in honey. This herb is your best natural remedy when you are experiencing nausea. In fact, folklore has it that ginger is far better and more effective that many over-the-counter prescription drugs for relieving symptoms associated with morning sickness or motion sickness such as nausea, cold sweating, vomiting, and dizziness.

Treats respiratory problems
For relief from persistent cough, mix some ginger with honey, black pepper and basil leaves in hot water. This interesting herbal concoction helps break up phlegm, ultimately providing some relief with respiratory problems.

Strengthen immunity
Ginger strengthens immunity to protect your body against many ills such as throat infection, cough, stomach infections and more.

Other benefits
Ginger is rich in magnesium, zinc and chromium and aids in improving blood circulation. As ginger contains anti-inflammatory properties, it can help provide relief for joint pain.

Next time, you feel nausea or experience a cold or stomach cramps, head to the kitchen and chop up some ginger. It is a treasure trove of nutrients that can help treat and prevent many ailments.

Grilling your Way to Health

Heart Healthy Recipe

Delicious and Heart-Healthy Salt-Free Seasonings

Grilling is a superbly healthy and lean cooking technique; just don’t ruin the health aspect by dousing your grilled food with a salt-laden marinade or other seasoning. Grill your way to better health with vegetables and lean meats, but be sure to season them with delicious salt-free seasoning blends.

The CDC recommends that all of us curb our sodium intake to <2,300 mg of sodium per day to reduce your risk of developing heart disease, high blood pressure, and other serious health conditions.

Salt is made up of 40% sodium. Just 1 tsp of salt = 2,400 mg of Sodium, putting you over your daily limit.

Look for salt-free wording printed on the packaging of poultry, seafood, and all-purpose seasonings and marinades and take a quick look at the sodium content on the food label.

Better yet, make your own salt-free seasonings and marinades such as this week’s featured recipe, Salt-Free Grilling Seasoning, a perfectly delicious and heart-healthy seasoning to spice up your Memorial Day weekend!

Salt-Free Grilling Seasoning

Sprinkle the seasoning as your taste prefers. The more you add, the more intense the flavor becomes. This salt-free seasoning contains zero cholesterol and helps prevent heart disease.

Yield: About 1/3 cup

Ingredients:

  • 2 Tablespoon paprika
  • 2 Tablespoon of garlic powder
  • 1 Tablespoon of dry mustard
  • ½ Tablespoon of onion powered
  • ½ Tablespoon of brown sugar
  • 2 tsp of cayenne pepper

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl and mix until all spices are evenly dispersed. Sprinkle grilling seasoning on vegetables and/or lean protein before grilling.

Nutrition Information Per Serving:

Calories: 190 kcal
Fat: 6g
Cholesterol: 0mg
Carbohydrate: 33g
Dietary Fiber: 10g
Protein: 8g
Sodium: 20mg

Mediterranean Diet Defined: Fruit and Nuts

Mediterranean Diet consists fruits, vegetables, fish and nuts

Mediterranean Diet consists fruits, vegetables, fish and nuts

If you were to compile what constitutes the most important ingredients of a Mediterranean diet, you will most certainly find whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables, fish, protein-rich legumes and liberal use of extra virgin olive oil in all facets of cooking.

The Mediterranean diet has gained widespread popularity across the world for its far reaching impact on promoting positive health and longevity. It is now a proven fact that the Mediterranean diet is effective in controlling high blood pressure, lowering cholesterol levels, and both treating and preventing type 2 diabetes. What’s more, the diet is rich in flavor, taste and is extraordinarily easy-to-prepare.

Fruit is commonly found in Mediterranean diet recipes, so let’s take a look at the benefits of the fruits  popularly used in Mediterranean diet.

Some delicious fruit commonly available in your local supermarket include: mango, oranges, peaches, apricots, cherries, figs, lemon, pears, plums, pomegranate and all sorts of berries – raspberries, strawberries– and of course, let’s not forget the potassium and fiber rich banana.

Among dried fruits, it is common to find cranberries or raisins mixed in with ancient nuts such as almonds or walnuts.

The variety of fruit and nuts characteristic of the Mediterranean diet can be eaten plain or baked.

For example, in the winter season, a warm scone made of whole wheat and cranberries baked with heart healthy extra virgin olive oil along with a cup of hot tea is a great way to snack and stay warm and comforted.

Almonds – available in whole, sliced (flaked, slivered), and as flour – almonds are a superbly heart healthy food which can be eaten raw or used in a variety of dishes. Almonds reduce the risk of heart disease, help control diabetes, help with weight loss and are rich in protein, fiber, healthy fat and antioxidants. Add almonds to your daily Mediterranean diet and you will be on the road to better heart health.

Walnuts are another fabulous Mediterranean nut that can be eaten as a snack or as a delicious addition to your recipes.. Walnuts are an excellent source of vitamins B6, vitamin E, folate, and thiamin. These delicious nuts also contain various healthy minerals such as iron, magnesium, and phosphorus.  Among Mediterranean recipes, a popular preparation that uses walnuts in generous measure in Roasted Tomato Walnut Pesto Salmon. This simple Mediterranean-style heart-healthy salmon dish, is packed with multiple artery-healing ingredients.

You can also add chopped and toasted walnuts along with figs to Arugula salad. Arugula is an anti-cancer cruciferous vegetable with a delicious peppery bite. It is considered a true super food and is a popular Mediterranean diet ingredient.

Summer is the perfect time for tapping into Mother Nature’s chest of berries. Low calorie, fiber-filled red and blue berries (raspberries, strawberries and blueberries) are the perfect Mediterranean food for summer time. Mix them up with non-fat Greek yogurt for the perfect and delicious summertime snack. For additional nutrition, top your yogurt with heart-healthy walnut bits.

The naturally sweet and fiber-rich banana is an ideal Mediterranean food and summer is the time you might consider using bananas as a desert. Frozen sweet treats are very appealing this time of year, as the weather gets warmer, so try a refreshing cold fruit dessert of summer banana frozen yogurt this spring and summer.

Strawberries Lower Cholesterol – Dr. Janet on Dr. Oz Talk Show

Cholesterol Down

Strawberries Bring Cholesterol Down

People suffering from high cholesterol, generally resort to taking medication. However these statin drugs pose harmful risks as they have serious side effects. Instead of taking cholesterol-lowering drugs, Dr. Janet Brill, author of Cholesterol Down: Ten Simple Steps to Lower Your Cholesterol in Four Weeks–Without Prescription Drugs, recommends consuming right foods.

Dr. Janet appeared on Dr. Mehmet Oz’ talk show to discuss the health benefits of eating strawberries. Strawberries are one of the nutritious fruits that help lowering cholesterol. Juicy strawberries are an excellent source of vitamin C, antioxidants and fiber that not only help maintain healthy skin and hair but also bring cholesterol down.

Dr. Janet recommends three cups of strawberries daily in order to lower your cholesterol the healthy way.

Besides strawberries help reduce inflammation and lower blood pressure as suggested by Dr. Janet, author of Blood Pressure Down: The 10-Step Plan to Lower Your Blood Pressure in 4 Weeks–Without Prescription Drugs.

Check out the Recipe of Sensational Strawberry Salsa.

Dr Janet in The Dr. Oz Show
April 2, 2014

“Got Great Results” with Cholesterol Down Book

Low Cholesterol

Cholesterol Down

Here is a testimonial by M. Bickhart from Phoenixville on how Cholesterol Down book has helped him lower his cholesterol.

“This was on my Christmas list. Had my blood work done Sept, 2013, results as followed:

Total Cholesterol-231
HDL-78
LDL-131
Triglycerides-108

Read the book, made a list of the 10 guidelines, taped it to the wall near the kitchen sink, tweaked it to my liking.

  • Ate steel cut oatmeal with chia or flaxseed, wheat germ, oat bran most mornings. (I made a week’s supply at once and refrigerated, then reheated adding some kind of berries or bananas.)
  • Took 2 tabs of Cholest-off daily (phytosterols).
  • Took 2 tabs of organic Flaxseed oil daily.
  • Ate almonds or an apple (or both) as a snack sometime during the day.
  • Ate more spinach and mushrooms and garlic and veggies,(beets and cabbage clean the system).
  • Ate more beans (not so great with that).
  • Ate much less meat and dairy (which I had previously done, with little positive results).
  • Drank a soy latte or some kind of soy shake (non GMO)..delicious!!!(not every day).
  • Continued eating the dark chocolate I have always indulged in.
  • Took a garlic supplement (not every day).
  • Took “Super Thisilyn” for 3 weeks (figured it would help my liver recover from whatever damage I have done).I added this little “secret weapon” of my own.
  • For the life of me, could not tolerate the psyllium husk.
  • Continued to exercise, (either walk or zumba or pilates) about 3 times a week.

Just received my new lab results, drawn March 2014 (6 months later), as followed:

Total Cholesterol-186
HDL-78
LDL-94
Triglycerides-69

My 60th birthday is in 2 months. I have a terrible family history. My father died from a stroke and early heart disease. My brother had a severe stroke at age 54. My mother has been on all the “Big Pharma” meds since she was 50 and tries to persuade me to “just take them”.

My labs have NEVER been so good!!!

Thank you Dr. Janet Brill!! Thank you for taking the time to study and publish this information for our benefit… I believe your approach with recognizing the different mechanisms of our bodily functions is the ticket.

May be the best Christmas gift ever!!! My best to anyone reading this…tweak it to your liking and you won’t have to stress anymore over blood tests…Amazing!”

~ M. Bickhart (Phoenixville,Pa)

Buy the book from Amazon:
Cholesterol Down: Ten Simple Steps to Lower Your Cholesterol in Four Weeks–Without Prescription Drugs

Zero Cholesterol Recipe of Vanilla Chia Pudding

lower cholesterol

Vanilla Chia Pudding = Low Cholesterol Food

CHIA means STRENGTH!

“Chia” = Strength (as defined in the Mayan language)

Chia seeds create very cute pets, but they also are a nutritious edible seed from a desert plant called Salvia Hispanica. Omega 3 fatty acids, fiber, and antioxidants are only a few of the nutrients in chia seeds that will help boost the quality of your diet and prevent chronic disease.

Below are a few ways you can add chia seeds to your diet.

  • Sprinkle on your yogurt/oatmeal/cereal/salads
  • Mix into a homemade dressing
  • Blend into smoothies
  • Add to baked goods and granola/nut/fruit bars
  • Stir with a liquid (water, almond milk, soy milk) to create a pudding/gel like consistency, as featured in this week’s recipe, Vanilla Chia Seed Pudding.

Zero cholesterol recipe of Vanilla Chia Pudding:

Mix up your morning yogurt with a satisfying lactose-free option.

Yield: 2 Serving (1/2 cup per serving)

Ingredients:

  • ¾ cup of unsweetened vanilla almond milk (or unsweetened soy milk)
  • 1 Tablespoon of 100% pure maple syrup (or honey)
  • 1 tsp of vanilla extract
  • 3 Tablespoons of chia seeds
  • Optional Toppings: berries, chopped walnuts, sliced almonds, granola, cocoa nibs, etc.

Directions:

In a small bowl or tupperware container, mix all the ingredients together. Cover the chia seed mixture with saran warp or a tupperware lid. Let the chia seed mixture sit overnight. In the morning, give the chia seed mixture a stir. You will notice the mixture is no longer a liquid consistency, but a pudding consistency. Add your favorite toppings to the chia pudding and enjoy for breakfast or an afternoon snack.

Nutrition Information Per Serving:

Calories: 144 kcal
Fat: 9g
Cholesterol: 0 mg
Carbohydrate: 15g
Dietary Fiber: 9g
Protein: 3g
Sodium: 65 mg