I Can’t Believe I Ate the Whole Thing!

Woman with heartburnHeartburn, or the more technical term gastro-esophageal reflux (GERD), is essentially caused by food and stomach acid reversing direction and traveling uphill via the esophagus. This is supposed to be prevented by the esophageal sphincter muscle. However, there are certain conditions in which this muscle fails to do its job: 1) increased pressure in the stomach from being overfull that overwhelms the muscle, and 2) consuming certain foods or beverages that can decrease the esophageal sphincter pressure. READ MORE

Berry, Berry Good For You!

strawberries at grocery storeA new study, published in the journal Circulation, found that women who ate the most strawberries and blueberries reduced their risk of heart attack by 32%. More than 93,000 women, aged 25 to 42, were followed for 18 years. The researchers believe that anthocyanins, antioxidants found in plants that protect and repair cells from damage, are responsible for this health benefit. Significant benefits were seen in women who ate just over three servings (1/2 cup = 1 serving) of berries weekly. READ MORE

The Wellness Continuum: Where Are You?

Wellness toolsWebster defines wellness as “the quality or state of being in good health, especially as an actively sought goal, such as lifestyles that promote wellness.” I like to think of wellness as a continuum. It’s not a matter of either/or, but of degrees. Are you sick, almost sick or healthy and feeling great? Visualize a continuum that spans from 0 to 10, with 0 being very ill, 10 being “total wellness” (extreme health) and 1 thru 9 as degrees of wellness. Your state of wellness, or health, is how close to 0 or 10 that you rate. READ MORE

September is Fruit and Veggies-More Matters Month!

fresh produceEach September fruits and veggies are celebrated. And why not! They are packed with vitamins, minerals, fiber and phytonutrients. What are phytonutrients? Well actually they are pigments that give produce all its pretty colors! But this sweet produce, with all its phytonutrients, is more than just a pretty face! It can provide protection against chronic diseases such as heart disease, diabetes and many types of cancer, as well as other health maladies. Also, fruits and veggies are low in sodium, with no cholesterol and have little to no fat. And with all the fiber and water in produce, it helps weight control by filling you up on very few calories. READ MORE

Potassium: One Valuable Mineral

Potassium foods and beveragesEvery day I see clients in my private practice that fall short of getting the potassium they need from their diet. Although found in a wide variety of foods, potassium is often lacking in Americans’ nutritional profile. Much of it, I believe, can be attributed to our fast-paced lifestyles. We eat out more frequently, and when we do eat at home it is often processed foods that are quick, easy, and not quite as nutrient-rich as fresh, whole foods. Variety within the Five Food Groups also seems to be lacking, resulting in missed opportunities to get optimal nutrition. READ MORE

Grocery Shopping For The Food Gatekeeper: The Good and The Not So Good

Grocery cart with foodHeading to the supermarket? Don’t forget your coupons! Have your shopping list? Checked it twice?

When shopping for food, think nutrition as well. Below are some nutrients and their food sources that are important for your family, as well as some that should be limited. Reading the Nutrition Facts Label on foods and beverages will aid you in determining the value of each item regarding many of these nutrients. READ MORE

Energy? Naturally!

Energy foods demoWake up early. Make breakfast for the kids and get them off to school. Work all day. Take the kids to soccer practice/dance/baseball games/karate. Get some type of dinner together. Make sure the homework is done. Get kids to bed. Iron clothes for work the next day. Etc., etc., etc. No wonder energy has become such a valued commodity! Also it is why we see so many ads for energy drinks, and why we now find caffeine in everything from coffee to potato chips! READ MORE

Sedentary Life a Health Risk, Even With Regular Exercise

Woman working in officeMany office workers can spend more than 75% of their working hours just sitting. Then their evenings may consist of watching TV, reading, or some other sedentary activity. Recent research findings suggest that this sedentary behavior is a risk factor for several types of cancer, diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Even if they workout at a gym 3-4 times a week this doesn’t undo the damage done by being sedentary the remainder of the time. READ MORE

Meat Eater? No Problem…Just Limit the Red and Processed

Healthy Protein ChoicesAccording to the 2010 Continuous Update Project (CUP), a joint endeavor by the American Institute of Cancer Research (AICR) and the World Cancer Research Fund to report on the most current cancer research, overdoing the consumption of red meat and processed meat greatly increases the risk of colorectal cancer. A more recent 2013 study, the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC), found that middle-aged adults consuming high levels of processed meat (more than 5 ¾ ounces daily) over 12 years had more than a 70% increase in cardiovascular death than those eating about ½ ounce per day. Also, cancer deaths were 43% higher among those consuming the most processed meat. READ MORE