Good Nutrition Advice

For a healthy body and mind

Tag: Weight loss

aging and intelligence

Ageing and Intelligence

Things are looking up for ageing and intelligence.

A group of population experts from the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IILSA) have published a study (published in journal PLOS ONE) that looks at data that was collected in Germany between the period of 2006 – 2012.

Older people are getting smarter, but not fitter

The IILSA researchers found that cognitive test scores increased for both men and women at all ages from 50 – 90, while physical and mental health declined. Low-educated men aged 50 – 64 were even more likely to suffer.

One explanation for the improvement in cognitive performance is lifestyle. The lead researcher, Nadia Steiber suggests that life has become more cognitively challenging; from the use of technology and people working longer in more demanding jobs. On the other hand, people are less physically active which is why obesity is on the rise.

It’s great to hear that intelligence is booming in the ageing population but it’s important that you stay active as well. Whether you walk, swim or take a Pilates class it is important for your overall health and wellbeing to keep moving.

References: Population Aging at Cross-Roads: Diverging Secular Trends in Average Cognitive Functioning and Physical Health in the Older Population of Germany

nutrition advice

Boredom Link to Food Cravings

nutrition adviceBoredom can make you more likely to crave fatty and sugary foods.

Research presented at this year’s Annual Conference of the British Psychological Society explored the connection between boredom and food consumption. The research was based on two studies involving up to 52 people; the first observed a group’s food intake before and after carrying out a monotonous task and the second study involved observing both food choices (healthy or unhealthy) and amount during both a funny and a boring film.

The results showed that you are more likely to eat unhealthy food when you are carrying out repetitive tasks and you’re more likely to opt for unhealthy food when you’re watching a boring film.

Make sure that you keep plenty of healthy food with you at all times so that if you are doing something repetitive or boring, you always have something healthy to hand.

References: Bored people reach for the crisps

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Are Food Issues Really About Food

Are Food Issues Really About Food?

Do you think you have ‘food issues’? Do you find yourself wondering why you just can’t keep away from the Nutella pot?

You know you’re not really ‘meant’ to eat too many carbs or too much sugar… but what the heck? Are you always eating more than you ‘should’? If so, you’re not alone…

And, most of the time, we blame it on our lack of willpower, or on the food itself. But are food issues about food?

“If Nutella wasn’t so yummy, I’d be able to stop… If I had more willpower, I wouldn’t have eaten four slices of cake at the office party” … and so on… and on… and on…

Are food issues about food? Well, I’ve got news for you. News that may completely change your perspective.

Food Issues Aren’t Really About Food

And it’s not about eating, or the fact that you need more willpower around the office cakes. It’s something else. I know that can be hard to hear. But if it was about food, then you could just find the perfect diet, and everything would be fixed.

But your food problem isn’t really about food. And until you work out what is going on with the Everything Else that’s causing you to have a Food Issue, you will always have a food issue.

Ask yourself a few questions:

  • What is going on with my relationships? With my career?
  • With my feelings around ambition, authenticity, success?
  • Who do I think I ‘should’ be in the world, and who actually am I?
  • What about your family and their expectations, and your friends and their needs?
  • What is going on with how you spend your day and how you’d like to spend your morning, evening, and night?

CBT for weight lossLet me put this another way:

Are you dressing, moving, talking, laughing, loving, walking, sleeping, working, thinking and striving in a way that expresses your deepest, most truthful self?

Most of us generally find that our food issue isn’t really about food at all. It is much more a sign that our lives are not in balance.

Of course there are things that we need to do to look at our eating in more detail (like eating when we’re hungry, stopping when we’re full, and eating without distractions), but often, the point of those practices is that they are the warning sign.

  • If you’re eating when you’re not hungry, something else is going on.
  • If you’re still eating when you’re full, something else is going on.
  • If you always need to be distracted, something else is going on.

So, if you find it uncomfortable to even contemplate not reading or fiddling with your phone while you eat lunch, you might want to work out what’s up.

  • Is it uncomfortable to think about eating without distractions because you never get any time to yourself and this is your time to relax and have fun?
  • Or maybe when you write down your distractions, all kinds of thoughts and feelings come up that are completely overwhelming?
  • Or perhaps you feel rather awkward eating without distractions because nobody else at your office does?

Whatever your answer, it gives you a whole insight about how you spend your day, how you deal with feelings and thoughts, and what your relationship to your job is.

  • You may need more time to relax.
  • You may need to deeply investigate your thoughts.
  • You may need to re-evaluate what you want out of your job.

What I’m interested in is your ‘deepest’ truth, your wants and needs and desires and everything you hate but think you should love.

I’m not particularly interested in dieting, although metabolic typing and healthy eating can be an extremely useful. What I am interested in is helping you understand core, essential insights about what you do and do not want from life.

And if you seize that opportunity — if you truly look deeply into what is driving your behavior around food — you have the potential to make peace with your food, and radically improve your life as a whole.

And who doesn’t want that? If you need some help, the next 8-week CBT for Weight Loss Programme starts Monday. Or if you feel you need one-to-one help and can set aside 30 minutes each week for a Skype or phone consultation drop me a line on the contact page and we can have a chat and work out an individual plan for you.

wheat allergies and celiac disease

Wheat Allergies, Celiac Disease and the Importance of a Gluten Free Diet

If food allergy testing uncovers celiac disease, wheat allergies or gluten intolerance, the only option is a gluten free diet.

Gluten is a protein-carbohydrate mix found in wheat and wheat products. Gluten intolerance, which is a type of food allergy, is becoming more common as more people are developing sensitivities to gluten. Wheat allergy in the form of celiac disease is the body’s inability to handle wheat and sometimes other grains containing gluten.

Symptoms of celiac disease can include weight loss and anemia. It is worth remembering that rye, barley and occasionally oats can trigger gluten intolerance reactions. Food allergy testing is the only way to determine if either wheat allergy or gluten intolerance is the root of the problem. If so, the answer is a gluten-free diet.

wheat and food allergies

Gluten intolerance and celiac disease

Celiac Disease and Gluten Intolerance

At one time celiac disease affected around one in every 200 people. Today, the figure is thought to be close to one in every 33. Some experts such as James Braly, MD believe it is actually more common than that.

He also believes many cases of related gluten intolerance go undiagnosed every year. Wheat is one of the seven most common allergens in a standard Western diet. In his book Dangerous Grains he reports many nutritionists, naturopaths and doctors look at wheat allergies and gluten intolerance as a first step for patients with multiple complaints. They then recommend food allergy testing and a gluten free diet. Celiac disease can often go undiagnosed as it is often mistaken for irritable bowel syndrome.

Food and Allergy Testing

A specific way to screen for celiac disease is to have an anti-endomysial, anti-gliadin and tissue transglutaminase antibodies test, according to Liz Lipski, Phd. Anti-endomysial antibodies are the most specific. Other food allergy testing should include: wheat, oats, rye, barley, gluten and gliadin with IgE and IgG antibody testing. Gluten antibodies are positive in anyone with celiac disease and gluten intolerance. IgA levels are also higher in those with celiac disease. Intestinal permeability screening is also suggested to test for leaky gut syndrome or intestinal hyperpermeability. A comprehensive digestive stool analysis and lactose intolerance testing is also advised.

A Gluten Free Diet

the importance of a gluten free dietAny gluten free diet should obviously eliminate all gluten and gluten containing products. Grain alternatives such as corn, quinoa, rice and buckwheat are all non-glutenous. It is important to read all labels carefully. Foods such as texturized vegetable protein, desserts, processed meats, cheese, dairy and pasta often contain gluten. Some people with gluten intolerance can tolerate oats. Digestive enzymes can also be useful to aid digestive function. Specific amylast enzymes can be especially beneficial.

References:
James Braly, MD. Dangerous Grains: Why Gluten Cereal Grains May Be Hazardous To Your Health. Penguin Putnam.
Elson M Hass, MD. Staying Healthy with Nutrition. Celestial Arts.

Elizabeth Lipski, Phd. Digestive Wellness. McGraw Hill.

 

Green Tea May Prevent Glaucoma

 

Green tea may prevent glaucoma

Green tea may prevent glaucoma

Studies reported in the Journal of Agriculture and Food Chemistry have found more evidence that green tea may help fight eye diseases such as glaucoma.

Researchers found catechin in green tea may help fight eye diseases are one of many antioxidants that protect the eyes from some diseases.

They found the antioxidants passed from the stomach through the  intestinal tract and into eye tissue. The retina absorbed the highest levels of gallocatechin while the aqueous humor absorbed epigallocatechin.

Green tea’s health benefits have been known in the East for centuries. Packed with antioxidants, green tea contains more than 4,000 of these compounds which help fight free radicals which can lead to heart disease and cancer. Green tea supplements can also be effective.

Green Tea and Weight Loss

Adding green tea to your diet may also benefit those wanting to lose weight. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition reported that men who added green tea to their diet burned more calories than men given a similar drink without green tea. The effects of caffeine were also taken into consideration. One of the reasons for this is that green tea raises and speeds up oxidation which in turn helps with weight loss. It also contains high amounts of polyphenols which activate an enzyme which helps get rid of excess fat in the body.

Antioxidants in Green Tea

Green tea contains a very powerful group of antioxidant polyphenols called catechins. Many of green tea’s health benefits come from these. One particular catechin is epigallocatechin gallate which is thought to contribute to the cancer fighting effects of green tea. The Journal of the National Cancer Institute published results of a study that showed drinking green tea reduced the risk of esophageal cancer by nearly 60 percent. Another report from Harvard Medical School found that catechin in green tea inhibited the growth of cancer cells. It is now widely accepted that the antioxidants in green tea may help prevent cancer of the bladder, colon, pancreas, esophagus, rectum and stomach.

Green Tea and a Healthy Heart

Both green and black teas have cholesterol-lowering properties which keep the heart healthy. Studies reported in Circulation Journal on ‘effects of green tea intake on the development of coronary artery disease’ found the more green tea patients consumed, the less likely they were to suffer from coronary artery disease.

Green Tea Supplements

Taking green tea in supplement form may be effective as well. Many weight loss supplements contain extract of green tea. However, as a weight loss aid it may be a better idea to actually drink the tea rather than take it in supplement form. Studies have shown those drinking green tea are able to control their appetites better and it also helps keep the body well hydrated. Experts suggest four cups of green tea a day will give maximum benefit. This equates to roughly three capsules of green tea extract. A standard 500mg capsule should contain 275mg EGCG which is the term used for the catechins that are isolated, dried and put into capsules or tablets or made into a liquid.

Do you have a health challenge that you’d like to discuss with me? I offer online Naturopathic and Nutrition Consultations. Fill out my forms here to book your personal consultation with me.

Or if you don’t have any particular health issues, perhaps you’d prefer one of my off-the-shelf  Health Programmes? Choose from Colon Cleanse, Detox Programme, Ultimate Cleanse or my comprehensive Supplement Programme. All packages include a full consultation.

Thank you for reading!

Fiona

 

 

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Eating Greens Stops Cravings

eating greens stops cravings

Eating greens stops cravings

Not only are green vegetables a nutritional powerhouse but now research has found that they can actually aid weight loss by stopping cravings for sweets and fast foods. 

There are green leaf membranes in green vegetables called thylakoids and scientists at Lund University in Sweden found that an extract of these membranes reduces food cravings by 95% and boosts weight loss by 43%.

The three month study involved 38 overweight women who all craved ‘unhealthy’ foods. Half were given a thylakoid drink before breakfast and the other half a placebo. Both groups were instructed to eat a balanced, three-meal-a-day diet, and not try any other weight loss method during that period.

The control group lost an average of 3.5kg, and the thylakoid group, 5kg.  However, the thylakoid group found it easier to stick to three meals a day and didn’t experience any cravings.

Do you have a health challenge that you’d like to discuss with me? I offer online Naturopathic and Nutrition Consultations. Fill out my forms here to book your personal consultation with me.

Thank you!
Fiona

Natural Choices

Natural CoursesIf you’re interested in Natural Health you’ll love Natural Choices. This online course in Natural Health, Nutrition, Psychology and Food Choices, will help kick start your healthy living plan.

There are 18 modules you can go through in your own time. This course is a unique and potentially life-changing learning experience giving you constant access to 100s of tips and health suggestions that you can easily incorporate in your life to make a difference!

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Multivitamin and Mineral Supplement Helps Women Lose Weight

Multivitamin and Mineral Supplement Helps Women Lose Weight

Multivitamin and Mineral Supplement Helps Women Lose Weight

A randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial followed 87 obese women aged between 18 and 55 for 26 weeks.

Divided into three groups, one group was given a multivitamin and mineral supplement, the second took a 162mg calcium supplement every day, and the third took a placebo.

After the trial period, the multivitamin and mineral group had significantly lower body weight, body mass index (BMI) and fat mass, as well as lower levels of total cholesterol and LDL (bad) cholesterol, with an increase in HDL (good) cholesterol.

Participants in this group also lost an average of 3.6kg body weight compared to 0.9kg in the calcium group and 0.2kg in the placebo group.

Don’t forget — not all vitamin and mineral supplements are created equal. Contact me if you would like a recommendation.

If you have friends or family who are interested in health and nutrition please do forward this to them using the Social Media buttons below.

Do you have a health challenge that you’d like to discuss with me? I offer online Naturopathic and Nutrition Consultations. Fill out my forms here to book your personal consultation with me.

Thank you!
Fiona

Natural Choices

Natural CoursesIf you’re interested in Natural Health you’ll love Natural Choices. This online course in Natural Health, Nutrition, Psychology and Food Choices, will help kick start your healthy living plan.

There are 18 modules you can go through in your own time. This course is a unique and potentially life-changing learning experience giving you constant access to 100s of tips and health suggestions that you can easily incorporate in your life to make a difference!

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Foods to fight inflammation

vegetablesALTHOUGH inflammation is the body’s normal response to injury, it can lead to disease if it becomes chronic. A recent report from an expert at the University of Alabama (UAB) suggests that you can fight inflammation with food.  

According to the National Council on Strength and Fitness, obesity has been found to cause inflammation, and it can lead to the development of cardiovascular and metabolic disease. Lauren Whitt, PhD, UAB Employee Wellness Director and adjunct professor of personal health adds that weight loss is also related to a reduction of inflammation, and believes  the right anti-inflammatory foods are the answer.  Her recommendations?

  • Citrus fruits – vitamin C and Vitamin E are essential antioxidants
  • Dark, leafy greens – high in Vitamin K
  • Tomatoes – the fruit’s red pigment, lycopene, is a potent antioxidant
  • Wild-caught salmon – contains a rich concentration of omega-3 fatty acids

At lunchtime, choose salad instead of sandwiches, cut down on saturated fat from processed and fast foods and have fruit for dessert or a snack instead of something sugary. Increase your intake of fish, especially oily fish.

Source. University of Alabama at Birmingham (2013, March 22). Foods can help fight inflammation. Science Daily. Retrieved April 5, 2013, from http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/03/130322154027.htm

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