Posts Tagged ‘Metabolic Syndrome’

Banish Belly Fat

June 1, 2012 Written by JP

When news outlets cover the current state of health care and weight, an image of a heavy-set person with a particularly large midsection is often featured. Due to recent changes in diet and exercise patterns, abdominal obesity has become increasingly common in the population at large. No longer does the term “beer belly” primarily apply to those who are problem drinkers. Nor does youth protect against it, as evidenced by higher rates of central obesity and metabolic syndrome frequently found in adolescents.

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

Berberine for Diabetes and Metabolic Syndrome

May 23, 2012 Written by JP

Berberine is a naturally occurring plant alkaloid found in a number of medicinal herbs including barberry, goldenseal and oregon grape root. In China, a significant amount of money and time has been applied to investigating the potential of this phytochemical in managing a host of conditions and diseases. Diabetes and heart disease top the list of health concerns presently being evaluated. The findings of a current batch of studies may very well catapult berberine supplements into the bestseller category in China, the United States and beyond. Whether or not this turns out to be a positive development remains to be seen.

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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Diabetes, Nutritional Supplements | 11 Comments & Updates

Nuts in the News 2012

April 4, 2012 Written by JP

The advancement of medical technology benefits us all. There’s no doubt that the development of less invasive surgical procedures and improvements in infectious disease management have saved countless lives. But, what’s sometimes lost in the noble quest for cutting edge therapies is the acknowledgement that non-technological approaches can save lives too. Using certain whole foods in a medicinal manner is one illustration. By that, I mean eating nutrient dense foods in a prescribed capacity – as though they were medications. I believe that the reason this is rarely endorsed is a lack of conviction about the impact that diet can play in objective medical outcomes. Fortunately, the evidence to support the integration of therapeutic foods into the current health care model is widely available for anyone who’s interested.

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Posted in Diet and Weight Loss, Food and Drink, Nutrition | 7 Comments & Updates

Nopal Cactus for Diabetes

February 22, 2012 Written by JP

Next week I’ll be taking my work on the road. More specifically, I’ll head down south to Mexico for a fact finding mission and informational exchange. One of the planned areas of discussion will focus on an edible cactus commonly known as nopal or nopales, as diabetes and prediabetic conditions (i.e. metabolic syndrome) are quickly reaching an epidemic level in Mexico. Nopales, when eaten as a part of one’s daily diet, may offer a valuable tool in turning the diabetes tide in Mexico and beyond.

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Posted in Diabetes, Food and Drink, Nutrition | 10 Comments & Updates

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 | 10 Comments & Updates

Food News You Can Use

November 7, 2011 Written by JP

The next time you put together your grocery list, remind yourself that the foods you include and omit can have a profound affect on your well being. Here are several, recent examples of how you can use food to improve you and your family’s health. If you’re obese and on a hypocaloric diet, make sure to consume optimal levels of dietary calcium (1,600 mg/day) and protein (30% of calories/day). A study appearing in the current issue of the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism reports that higher protein diets rich in dairy products may reduce the risk of dieting-induced bone loss in overweight women. The importance of dietary protein was further bolstered in the October 12th edition of the journal PLoS One. In that research, lowering protein intake by as little as 5% was found to increase overall caloric intake by 12% due to increased appetite.

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Posted in Bone and Joint Health, Diet and Weight Loss, Nutrition | 2 Comments & Updates

Fructose Confusion

October 10, 2011 Written by JP

Albert Einstein once famously quipped, “Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler.” The topic of sugar aptly illustrates his point. Some would have you believe that all calorically equivalent, naturally sourced sweeteners are basically the same. Just eat them in moderation and there’s really little danger. However, a careful examination of the medical literature suggests otherwise. In particular, fructose stands out as a sweetener that ought to be limited in one’s diet. In recent months, fructose has been implicated as: a) reducing the calorie and fat “burning” (net fat oxidation and resting energy expenditure) potential of overweight men and women; b) contributing to abdominal pain, digestive symptoms and sleep disturbance in children; c) elevating various risk markers for cardiovascular disease including LDL (“bad”) cholesterol and triglycerides; d) a primary contributor to the development of abdominal obesity, hypertension and metabolic syndrome in a population study consisting of over 2,500 adults.
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Posted in Diet and Weight Loss, Food and Drink, Nutrition | 11 Comments & Updates

Black Chokeberry

August 24, 2011 Written by JP

Black chokeberry (Aronia melanocarpa) isn’t exactly a household name. A select group of researchers in Poland are trying to change that and with good reason. At least five studies conducted over the past decade suggest that A. melanocarpa extracts may be the medicine of the future for patients living with metabolic syndrome. Anthocyanins, a class of antioxidants found in black chokeberries, appear to counter various pre-diabetic and pre-heart disease related risk factors associated with metabolic syndrome. A daily dosage of 300 mg of black chokeberry anthocyanins (100 mg / thrice daily) has been shown to: improve circulation, increase antioxidant enzyme levels and reduce numerous cardiovascular and diabetic threats including high blood pressure, fasting glucose, LDL cholesterol and triglycerides.

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Posted in Diabetes, Heart Health, Nutritional Supplements | 5 Comments & Updates

Yoga for Diabetes

August 15, 2011 Written by JP

In 2010, an estimated 1.9 million people were diagnosed with type 2 diabetes in the United States alone. My guess is that only a very small fraction of them were advised to take up yoga. But, this is likely to change in the years to come. A new study in the August 2011 issue of the journal Diabetes Care reports that adding 3 months of yoga practice to “standard care” effectively reduced body mass index and levels of oxidative stress in a controlled trial involving 123 diabetics. A significant improvement in blood sugar control was also noted. Two previous publications from 2009 support the current findings and add that yoga is also capable of lowering anxiety, blood pressure and high triglycerides in those with adult onset diabetes. This is not to say that yoga is a replacement for appropriate dietary changes, other forms of exercise and sensible weight management. However, it illustrates the potential of such holistic therapies as part of a comprehensive diabetes regimen.

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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Diabetes, Mental Health | 11 Comments & Updates

Dr. Larry McCleary Interview Part One

July 22, 2011 Written by JP

The term “brain food” is bandied about in magazines, podcasts and television exposés seemingly on a daily basis. Foods such as blueberries, fish and green leafy vegetables are often singled out as supporting neurological health. But, the same is also true of granola bars, low fat diets and even whole grain bread. In short, there are broad and sometimes differing views about what exactly constitutes good choices with respect to brain functioning and wellness. So who better to clear up this confusion than Dr. Larry McCleary? If you aren’t already familiar with the good neurosurgeon, you should know that he brings to the table not only an impressive curriculum vitae, but also a track record of giving back to the community. Read more »

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Posted in Diabetes, Diet and Weight Loss, Interviews | 4 Comments & Updates

Aerobic Interval Training

April 18, 2011 Written by JP

Aerobic interval training is by far my favorite form of cardiovascular exercise. It doesn’t matter if I’m on a treadmill, in the gym or walking on the beach. I could be alone or training a group of clients. The bottom line is that if I’m working out, part of my routine is almost certainly composed of walking at variable inclines and speeds. That’s essentially what aerobic interval training (AIT) is. Instead of walking at a constant pace for prolonged periods of time, you simply push yourself to walk faster/harder for shorter intervals followed by less intense intervals in between. Read more »

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Posted in Diabetes, Exercise, Heart Health | 7 Comments & Updates

Pedometer News You Can Use

March 14, 2011 Written by JP

How many steps do you take on any given day? Most people can’t answer that question with any sense of accuracy unless they use a pedometer. Up until this past Saturday, I know I couldn’t tell you how many times my feet moved forward or backwards per day. No clue. 1,000 steps? Possibly. 4,000 steps? Maybe on a good day. Well, on Saturday the figure was 8,670 steps. To be more specific, that was the total number of steps I took while at the Anaheim Convention Center – the site of this year’s Natural Products Expo West.
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Posted in Diabetes, Exercise, Heart Health | 3 Comments & Updates

Low Carbohydrate Renaissance

December 29, 2010 Written by JP

One of my favorite Christmas gifts this year came in the form of an article that my wife sent me via e-mail. The piece, “A Reversal on Carbs”, was written by Marnia Jameson and appeared in December 20th online edition of the Los Angeles Times. It features the voices of many of the leading nutritional scientists the world over. The general thrust of the publication is best summarized by Dr. Walter Willet, the chairman of the department of nutrition at the Harvard School of Public Health. He emphatically states that, “If Americans could eliminate sugary beverages, potatoes, white bread, pasta, white rice and sugar snacks, we would wipe out almost all of the problems we have with weight and diabetes and other metabolic diseases”. I would’ve added a few additional foods to that list, but otherwise I agree wholeheartedly. (1) Read more »

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Posted in Diet and Weight Loss, Food and Drink, Nutrition | 44 Comments & Updates

Italian Brussels Sprouts

November 23, 2010 Written by JP

Brussels sprouts. You either love them or hate them. My goal today is to provide support to those who already enjoy them and change the minds of the many who don’t. My reason is simple: eating more vegetables from the Brassica family, which includes bok choi, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, kale and mustard greens, can assist you in achieving many health goals. How they do so is no mystery. Simply put, they yield a broad array of potent nutrients and phytochemicals that are often lacking in modern diets.
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Posted in Diabetes, Heart Health, Recipes | 5 Comments & Updates

Vinegar and Blood Sugar Control

December 16, 2009 Written by JP

Each day we are challenged to live up to our highest potential. These tests can be as basic as the thoughts upon which we choose to focus or as profound as life and death decisions such as whether or not to quit smoking. One of the issues that I’ve tried to work on over the years is to refrain from comparing myself to others. I’d like to say that I came to this realization after years of careful contemplation and devout study of the most sacred spiritual texts. But, in reality, I attribute this shift of thinking to a rerun of an old television sitcom. Many years ago, I fell asleep watching TV. I awoke at about 3:00 or 4:00 in the morning and I recall seeing a few moments from an episode of M*A*S*H. The scene involved an older, wiser character (Colonel Potter, played by Harry Morgan) giving some sage advice to a younger, wilder surgeon under his command (“Hawkeye” Pierce, played by Alan Alda): “The only person you need to compare yourself to is who you have been. And the only person you need be better than is who you are now”. To this day, I don’t know whether I actually heard that wisdom or conjured it up in the fog of my sleepy head. Read more »

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Posted in Diet and Weight Loss, Food and Drink, Nutrition | 21 Comments & Updates

Vitamin D Deficiency

March 11, 2009 Written by JP

A startling report was just presented at the 2009 American Heart Association’s Conference on Cardiovascular Disease Epidemiology and Prevention. The implications of that presentation will hopefully have a widespread impact on the future health of teenagers in the USA and worldwide. Read more »

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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Diabetes, Nutritional Supplements | 14 Comments & Updates