Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Heart Disease Prevention - Why Should People Eat More Brown Bread?

More and more people are consuming brown bread instead of the ordinary white bread because people believe brown bread is healthier for them. Brown bread, sometimes also called wholemeal, whole wheat or wholegrain bread, usually means the bread is made of unrefined whole-wheat grains. Why? Find out more at:

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Would Low-Carb Diet Outperform Low-Fat Diet Plan?

More than two-thirds of Americans are overweight or obese, and heart disease and cancer are the top two killers that are linked to obesity. It is obvious that people who are overweight or obese should try their best to get rid of the extra weight they have to lower the risk of getting heart disease or cancer.

Basically, there are 3 kinds of diet plan, namely low-fat, low-carbohydrate and calories-counting plan. For years, health experts are divided on their views about which diet plan is the most effective. 

Researchers from Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine
in New Orleans reported recently that a low-carbohydrate diet is better for losing weight and might also be better to reduce the risk of heart disease than a low-fat diet.

When it comes to weight loss, it is the low-carbohydrate diets that have outperformed other diets, but some researchers feared that they might not be good for heart health because they tend to be high in fat. The new study, findings of which were published September 2, 2014 in journal ‘Annals of Internal Medicine’, showed that with proper nutritional counseling, people could lose more weight and lower their risk factors for heart disease on a low-carbohydrate diet.

148 obese men and women aged between 22 and 75 were enrolled. For a year, half were randomly assigned to follow a low-carbohydrate diet, and the other half were assigned to a low-fat diet. Participants on the low-carbohydrate diet were found to lose more weight, by 8 additional pounds, and more body fat than those on the low-fat diet.

Meanwhile, there was no increase in total cholesterol or bad cholesterol (low-density lipoprotein) for both groups of dieters. Previously, it has been thought that low-carbohydrate diet would raise cholesterol levels.

Participants in the low-carbohydrate group had lower levels of fat circulating in their blood and had lower scores on a measure used to predict the risk of heart attack or stroke within the next 10 years.

Some experts not involved in the study do not agree entirely on the findings. They warned people that they should not just eat all the meat they want to lower their carbohydrates. In fact, low-carbohydrate diet plan is just one way to reduce weight. According to their observations, participants in the study appeared to improve their overall diets. For instance, they were eating foods with healthier fats like nuts and beans. They also ate more fiber and reduce the intake of processed foods with more carbohydrates.

The researchers of the study admitted that they were unsure why participants on the low-carbohydrate diets lost more weight and had lower risk factors for heart disease after one year. They were also not certain if the results would still hold after a longer period.

Heart Disease Prevention - Would BPA Lead To Hypertension?

A recent study conducted by researchers from Seoul National University College of Medicine in South Korea found that people who drank out of cans lined with resins BPA might had a brief increase in their blood pressure. Their findings were published December 8, 2014 in the American Heart Association journal ‘Hypertension’. More details at:

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

What We Eat Are Influenced By What Friends Eat

Overweight or obese is a major health issue many nations are facing for years. Besides lack of physical activities, many health experts also blame unhealthy foods as the main culprit.

Why do the experts so concern about overweight and obesity? A person who is overweight or obese is more likely to develop various medical disorders including Type-2 diabetes, heart disease, high cholesterol, high blood pressure and stroke. Some studies also linked obesity to certain kinds of cancer.

Many diet plans are available. But to get rid of the extra weight one has is never easy. One has to be very determined and discipline as well. As a new study suggested, one has also have to stay away from the influence from the peers.

According to a paper published online September 16, 2014 in the journal ‘Appetite’, researchers from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville and Cornell University revealed that when people share a meal with an overweight person, they are more likely to eat terribly.

82 undergraduate students were asked to eat lunch that included spaghetti and a salad, with an actress. The researchers randomly assigned the students to 1 of 4 conditions: the actress wore a fat suit but served herself more salad than pasta; she wore a fat suit and served herself more pasta than salad; she appeared without the fat suit and served herself more salad than pasta; and she appeared without the fat suit and served herself more pasta than salad.

It is observed that when they are eating with overweight eating companions, regardless of what the actress serves herself, participants ate more pasta. They ate less salad even if the overweight person ate more salad. Why did this happen? It is possible that people feel less motivated to be healthy with someone who is overweight, as posited by the researchers.

The study was neither intended to fat-shame nor to pass the blame for the act of overeating. It, however, provided evidence that the body type of an eating companion and whether she served herself healthily or unhealthily, affected the quantity of food intake. Meanwhile, the findings could also remind people to be more mindful of how much they are consuming by understanding how environment and people around could actually affect the eating habits.

Peer pressure could influence people’s eating behaviors. People tend to eat and exercise to look like their friends and family members. They change their habits to mirror those of their friends without necessarily thinking or talking about an ideal body weight.

In 2011, a study published on May 9 in ‘the American Journal of Public Health’ confirmed that if people have heavier friends, family members, and colleagues, it is more likely that they will be heavier, too. The stronger the relationship between the 2 people, the stronger the link between their weights.

Monday, February 09, 2015

Heart Disease Prevention - Which Is The Most Effective Diet Plan?

According to a study published September 3, 2014 in ‘JAMA (Journal of The American Medical Association)’, all the diet plans were equally effective after comparing diet plans like South Beach, Atkins and Weight Watchers. Researchers from McMaster University in Ontario and other institutions pointed out that low-carbohydrate and low-fat diets resulted in the most weight loss, though the difference was small. Read more @Heart Disease Prevention - Which Is The Most Effective Diet Plan?

Tuesday, February 03, 2015

Which Wine Is The Healthiest One?

Alcohol indulgence has been classified as a risk factor for heart disease. But moderate consumption of wine was thought to be good for the heart. 

Health experts who have studied the science of grapes and health benefits in wine pointed out that many varieties of red wine, especially pinot noir, contains a greater amount of a plant compound called resveratrol than is found in white wine. 

Pinot noir refers to wines created predominantly from Pinot noir grapes. The name is derived from the French words for pine and black. Pinot noir grapes are chiefly associated with the Burgundy region of France but they are also grown around the world including countries like Argentina, Australia, Canada, Chile, Italy, South Africa, and United States.

Resveratrol might lower low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL or the bad cholesterol), reduce the risk of blood clots and cancer, prevent damage to blood vessels, and contribute to general longevity.

Studies in mice given resveratrol suggested that it might also help protect them from obesity and diabetes, both of which are strong risk factors for heart disease. Research in pigs has also shown that resveratrol may improve heart function and increase the body's ability to use insulin.

Nevertheless, there is still no clear evidence that red wine is better than other forms of alcohol. For example, several studies have linked Champagne consumption to beneficial cardiovascular, vascular and even brain performance, possibly due to its anti-oxidant properties. 

Yet not all alcohols are the same. For instance, a chronically high intake of beer or spirits has been associated with an increased risk of lung cancer. One study also showed that resveratrol might actually reduce the positive effect of exercise on the heart in older men. 

So, which wine should be consumed?

Red wines are beneficial because they are fermented on the skin and have a lot of antioxidants and tannins. Tannins are chemical compounds found in plants and fruit skins that give wine a bitterer and a more complex taste. They have also been linked to red wine headache. Some people who might get hangovers because of tannins should avoid drinking red wine.

For people who prefer something fizzy and festive, they should stick with Champagne, which is a ‘sparkling white wine’. As suggested by some experts, adding a splash of seltzer water (soda water, carbonated water) to any wine stretches the drink without adding calories. And it might help avoid that headache the next morning. 

Anyway, there is no doubt that high, chronic intake of alcohol, in any form, will certainly associate with many adverse health outcomes. It is, therefore, important that people should consume alcohol or wine moderately and stick to the American Heart Association (AHA) recommendation: no more than two drinks daily for men and one drink for women. A single drink is 5 ounces of wine, the same as a 1.5 shot glass or a 12-ounce bottle of beer.

Monday, February 02, 2015

Heart Disease Prevention - Would You Eat Tuna Everyday?

Being rich in omega-3 fatty acids, tuna fish contains 2 main kinds of omega-3 fatty acids, namely DHA and EPA. People who eat foods rich in DHA and EPA will have a lower risk of developing heart disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and stroke. Unfortunately, fresh and canned tuna do contain methylmercury, a contaminant that builds up in water… Check it out via the following link: