Posts Tagged ‘Diabetes’

High-Intensity Interval Training

March 6, 2014 Written by JP

Last week, a column in the New York Times entitled, “How to Get Fit in a Few Minutes a Week” garnered quite a lot of attention. The idea of achieving physical fitness in such little time is appealing to just about everyone, myself included. But, is this claim supported by real science? Or is this a case of: “If it seems too good to be true, it probably is?”

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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Exercise, Heart Health | 3 Comments

Prescription 2014: Strawberries

January 14, 2014 Written by JP

The word ‘prescription’ has become synonymous with medications that can only be prescribed by a licensed physician. In 2014, I’m going to do my part to reinvent the use of this word. Beginning today and continuing onward for each month of 2014, I’m going to prescribe a natural practice that may very well transform your current state of health for the better. The more “prescriptions” you adopt, the more your wellness is likely to improve.

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Posted in Food and Drink, Heart Health, Nutrition | 4 Comments

Green Tea News 2013

October 14, 2013 Written by JP

There are very few trends you can count on in the field of modern medicine and nutrition. The “stock” of virtually every food and/or supplement tends to go up and down more erratically than the Dow Jones or Nasdaq. One day coffee is bad for you, the next it’s being touted as a preventative for Alzheimer’s disease, diabetes and liver cancer. For years, doctors have been recommending supplemental calcium for just about everyone. Now, there’s a grand debate about potential cardiovascular side effects involving this essential mineral. And, the examples go on and on. However, if there is such a thing as a bankable food/supplement which has sustained its sterling reputation over the years, it is most certainly green tea.

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Posted in Food and Drink, Heart Health, Women's Health | 2 Comments

The Fast Diet

March 19, 2013 Written by JP

Recently, a book bearing the title “The Fast Diet” was released in England. Thus far, sales of the book, co-authored by Dr. Michael Mosley, have been brisk and are likely to follow suit in the US where it was just published a few weeks ago. The underlying message of The Fast Diet is that adopting a 5:2 eating plan, in which you eat regularly for five days and semi-fast for two days, will reduce overweight and various risk factors associated with advanced aging, diabetes and heart disease. In the medical literature, this style of eating is commonly referred to as “intermittent fasting” (IF). Since the media and public have taken an interest in IF, I thought this would be a good opportunity to review the most current findings about this practice and a related form of dieting known as alternate day fasting (ADF) which calls for a semi-fast every other day.

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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Diet and Weight Loss, Nutrition | 4 Comments

Fish Oil News for Women

March 5, 2013 Written by JP

Holistic practitioners pride themselves in treating individuals based on their unique needs and requirements. However, even when dealing with a holistic physician, it’s still important to make sure that you are indeed receiving personalized care. For instance, the effects of any given supplement may have slightly or significantly different effects based on age, gender and medical history. In practice, this could mean that one form of fish oil is better suited for pregnant women and another for those trying to improve exercise performance.

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Posted in Heart Health, Nutritional Supplements, Women's Health | No Comments;

Healthier Cranberry Juice

September 25, 2012 Written by JP

Last week a slew of studies were presented at the American Heart Association’s High Blood Pressure Research 2012 Scientific Sessions. Among them, was a trial funded by Ocean Spray Cranberries, Inc. – a leading manufacturer of cranberry juice. The details of the study reveal that the daily consumption of “low calorie” cranberry juice moderately reduces blood pressure (by about 3 mmHg diastolic and systolic) as compared to a placebo beverage. But, before you go out to the market to stock up on low-cal cranberry “cocktails”, consider the details that weren’t included in the mainstream press converge.

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Posted in Diet and Weight Loss, Heart Health, Nutrition | No Comments;

Mustard Health Benefits

July 11, 2012 Written by JP

One of my favorite condiments is organic Dijon mustard. I slather it on most of my sandwiches – peanut butter and jelly not withstanding. As with most of my other culinary and dietary choices, my decision to use this ingredient is based on the fact that I enjoy the flavor, while hopeful that it will impart certain benefits. If you’ve never thought of mustard as a health promoting ingredient, then please read on.

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Posted in Diet and Weight Loss, Food and Drink, Nutrition | 6 Comments

Barley Grass Juice

June 25, 2012 Written by JP

One of the veteran products available at many health food stores is barley leaf juice powder. As its name implies, this is a dehydrated extract taken from young barley grass or “leaves”. Think of it as a close relative of wheat grass, an even more popular “super food”. Typically, barley leaf supplements are sold in a pale green, powdered from that boast names such as “Green Magma” or “Just Barley”. The labels of these products imply numerous health benefits, including detoxifying effects, immune system enhancement and increased energy. And, since these products have been around for decades and have amassed a large following of admirers, you might assume that there’s plenty of research to back them up. Surprisingly, this is not the case.

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Posted in Detoxification, Food and Drink, Nutritional Supplements | 2 Comments

Weight Loss Surgery Supplements

June 11, 2012 Written by JP

For better or for worse, bariatric or weight loss surgery has been become a mainstay in modern medicine. Obesity and related health conditions, including diabetes and heart disease, are on the rise and more and more physicians are recommending gastric bypass as a last ditch solution. Given this reality, I’ve researched this topic thoroughly with the knowledge that I’d likely be working with quite a few bariatric clients as part of my consultation service. Today, I’d like to share some of findings I’ve encountered along the way.

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Posted in Diet and Weight Loss, Nutrition, Nutritional Supplements | 1 Comment

Monounsaturated Fats

June 6, 2012 Written by JP

The fact that I embrace science as a means of validating natural remedies occasionally puts me at odds with strict holistic advocates. In a recent encounter, I was accused of aligning myself with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) – an organization which, by most accounts, has a contentious relationship with the natural health community. My response was that if I were affiliated with the FDA, prescriptions for statin medications (used to lower cholesterol) would become obsolete and avocados would be stocked in pharmacies throughout the land.

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Posted in Diet and Weight Loss, Memory, Nutrition | No Comments;

A New Prebiotic Ingredient

May 7, 2012 Written by JP

There’s an old adage that says to avoid foods that contain ingredients you can’t easily pronounce. The purest interpretation might lead one to steer clear of processed foods altogether. I’m fully supportive of this philosophy provided that it works for you. However, in my experience, most people eat at least some pre-packaged or refined foods. And, much to the chagrin of purists, sometimes hard to pronounce ingredients are actually quite good for you.

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Posted in Diabetes, Food and Drink, Nutrition | 2 Comments

Natural Products Expo West 2012 Part Two

March 19, 2012 Written by JP

Among the trends spotted at this year’s Natural Products Expo West, was an attempt to make dairy or dairy-alternatives accessible to virtually everyone. To that end, some manufacturers catered to consumers who prefer organic over conventional milk. Other products offered vegan versions of cheese, milk and even yogurt. There was cream on top or unhomogenized dairy and nonfat options galore. The one common denominator was an undeniable sense that health conscience consumers want more variety in the dairy aisle.

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Posted in Dental Health, Food and Drink, Nutrition | No Comments;

Flaxseed Research

March 12, 2012 Written by JP

Several of the most pressing health care issues of the moment can be vastly improved by making a few minor alterations to the modern diet. The addition of more dietary fiber, omega 3 fatty acids and phytochemicals into our daily menu plan is a great starting point. An economical and simple way to do so is by including more (ground) flaxseeds into common foods such a hot cereals, muffins and yogurt.

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Posted in Food and Drink, Heart Health, Nutrition | 2 Comments

Vitamin D Heart Controversy

January 13, 2012 Written by JP

A recent publication in the American Journal of Cardiology called into question the safety of high dose Vitamin D supplementation. In the paper, researchers from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine investigated a proposed link between Vitamin D levels and an inflammatory protein (CRP) which is considered a risk factor for heart disease. Their conclusions report that levels of D below 21 ng/ml are associated with higher CRP or C-reactive protein. This determination came as no surprise. However, participants with Vitamin D concentrations significantly above 21 ng/ml also demonstrated elevated or undesirable CRP readings. The lead author of the piece, Dr. Muhammad Amer, stated that “Clearly vitamin D is important for your heart health, especially if you have low blood levels of vitamin D. It reduces cardiovascular inflammation and atherosclerosis, and may reduce mortality, but it appears that at some point it can be too much of a good thing.”

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Posted in Bone and Joint Health, Heart Health, Nutritional Supplements | 4 Comments

Eat More Organic Strawberries

January 11, 2012 Written by JP

Avoid sugary foods. Cut back on carbohydrates. Skip dessert. If you’re at all interested in weight management and well being, you’ve probably been advised to follow one or all of these adages. But, how you apply this advice is as important as whether you follow it at all. For instance, if you avoid wholesome fruits such as strawberries you’re missing out on important health benefits that are frequently overlooked.

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Posted in Food and Drink, Heart Health, Nutrition | 6 Comments

Bitter Melon and Cancer

September 28, 2011 Written by JP

According to an alarming report in the September issue of the journal Lancet Oncology, the number of new cases of cancer worldwide is expected to reach 27,000,000/year by the year 2030. The authors of the paper call for a comprehensive effort to better manage cost and human suffering by emphasizing “real value from new technologies”. One of the “new” technologies that’s being examined is the use of bitter melon (Momordica charantia) in prevalent malignancies such as prostate cancer. In June of 2010, a scientific review described this tart, functional food as having “anti-tumor activity” and “no-to-low side effects in animals, as well as in humans”. Later in 2010 and onward into 2011, preliminary evidence emerged showing that bitter melon extract (BME) successfully interfered with prostate cancer progression in animal models and in vitro. But, why get so excited about a handful of trials that weren’t even conducted in humans? The reason for my optimism stems from seemingly unrelated studies that have explored the potential of bitter melon in managing diabetes in animals and humans alike. For instance, a publication appearing in the March 2011 issue of the Journal of Ethnopharmacology found that a daily dosage of 2,000 mg of BME effectively lowered blood sugar and fructosamine levels in a group of type 2 diabetics. Meanwhile, a study from August 2011 involving diabetic rats likewise discovered that BME “powerfully lowered (blood) glucose levels”. In fact, the excitement surrounding bitter melon is so great that nutritional experts are desperately trying to find ways to make it more palatable in order to promote greater consumption in the population at large. Here’s hoping they succeed in their objective and that more research continues to be published supporting the use of bitter melon in the fight against cancer and beyond.

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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Men's Health, Nutritional Supplements | 6 Comments