Showing posts with label Diet. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Diet. Show all posts

Jan 29, 2016

Calories are Calories

A few years ago, for a class project of 10 weeks, Mark Haub, a professor of human nutrition at Kansas State University, ate sugary foods for his meals. To add variety in his stream of Hostess and Little Debbie snacks, he munched on Doritos chips, sugary cereals, Oreos, Twinkies, Nutty bars, and powdered donuts.

His daily intake included : Doritos Cool Ranch: 75 calories; 4 grams of fat,
Kellogg's Corn Pops: 220 calories; 0 grams of fat,
whole milk: 150 calories; 8 grams of fat,
baby carrots: 18 calories; 0 grams of fat,
Duncan Hines Family Style Brownie Chewy Fudge: 270 calories; 14 grams of fat,
Little Debbie Zebra Cake: 160 calories; 8 grams of fat,
Hostess Twinkies Golden Sponge Cake: 150 calories; 5 grams of fat,
Centrum Advanced Formula From A To Zinc vitamin: 0 calories; 0 grams of fat,
Little Debbie Star Crunch: 150 calories; 6 grams of fat,
Hostess Twinkies Golden Sponge Cake: 150 calories; 5 grams of fat, and
Diet Mountain Dew: 0 calories; 0 grams of fat.

His premise was, "In weight loss, pure calorie counting is what matters most - not the nutritional value of the food." (Not the best for lifelong intake, but an easy diet.)

A man of Haub's pre-dieting size usually consumes about 2,600 calories daily. So he followed a basic principle of weight loss and consumed less than 1,800 calories a day.

The result - Haub's 'bad' cholesterol, or LDL, dropped 20 percent and his 'good' cholesterol, or HDL, increased by 20 percent. He reduced the level of triglycerides, which are a form of fat, by 39 percent. In addition, the premise held up as he dropped 27 pounds during the course of his diet.

May 16, 2014

Gluten Fad and Facts

As with most fads, gluten has way too many headlines and gluten free diets are popular, without much knowledge of what it is or why we should or should not eat gluten. In fact, the majority of Americans do not know which foods contain gluten.

Gluten is a protein composite found in foods processed from wheat and related grain species, including barley and rye. Gluten gives elasticity to dough, helping it rise and keep its shape and often gives the final product a chewy texture. Worldwide, gluten is a source of protein, both in foods prepared directly from sources containing it, and as an additive to foods otherwise low in protein.

Gluten, especially wheat gluten, is often the basis for imitation meats resembling beef, chicken, duck, fish, and pork. When cooked in broth, gluten absorbs some of the surrounding liquid and becomes firm to the bite. Gluten is often present in beer, soy sauce, some chocolates, and deli meats. It can be used as a stabilizing agent in more unexpected food products, such as ice cream and ketchup.

Experts estimate that about .75% to 1% of Americans have celiac disease. The condition, caused by an abnormal immune response to gluten, can damage the lining of the small intestine. For people with celiac disease, a gluten-free diet is essential, but for others, "unless people are very careful, a gluten-free diet can lack vitamins, minerals, and fiber," according to the Celiac Disease Center at Columbia University. Many whole grains that contain gluten are rich in an array of vitamins and minerals, such as B vitamins and iron, as well as fiber. Studies show that whole grain foods, as part of a healthy diet, may help lower risk of heart disease, type-2 diabetes, and some forms of cancer. The 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends that half of all carbohydrates in the diet come from whole grain products.

Gluten sensitivity is classified as intolerance, not an allergy.

Gluten does not make you fat and cutting gluten will not help you lose weight. Gluten-free does not mean fat-free or calorie-free. “Gluten does not make you fat,” according to the Cleveland Clinic. “Calories make you fat regardless of where those calories are coming from, whether they are coming from brown rice, which is gluten-free or a wheat bagel.” If you eat more calories in a day than you use, the extra calories will be stored as fat.

Some gluten-free foods contain extra sugar and/or calories to make them more palatable and make up for the loss of the gluten.

You can eat a clean diet that includes gluten or a clean diet that does not.

French fries are gluten-free and vegetarian.

There is nothing unhealthy about gluten. Gluten alone doesn't have many health benefits, but foods that contain gluten, like whole grains, tend to be higher in fiber and contain vitamin B, zinc, and iron. As a result, cutting gluten could actually result in nutritional deficiencies.

Gluten does not cause cancer. There is no connection between gluten and risk of most cancers. The exception is an increased risk of intestinal cancer for only those who have celiac disease, or true gluten intolerance. The Mayo Clinic lists cancer as a complication of celiac disease (not gluten). People with celiac disease who do not maintain a gluten-free diet have a greater risk of developing several forms of cancer, including intestinal lymphoma and small bowel cancer.

Numerous observational studies show that the more whole grains a person eats, including the gluten-containing grains (wheat, rye, barley), the lower risk of most cancers. This is true for some of the most common types of cancer, such as breast, prostate, and colon cancers, as well as for less common cancers, such as cancer of the pancreas. Whole grains contain fiber, which can stabilize blood sugar and hormone level.

Feb 28, 2014

How to Stay Young

It need not take a lot of effort. John Morley, M.D., director of the division of geriatric medicine at Saint Louis University outlines a ten-step program to improve quality of life as we age.

He suggests little changes that involve good eating, such as including dark chocolate in your diet, drinking wine, socializing, adding simple exercises, fidgeting in your office chair to burn calories, spending time walking from your car to the store rather than driving to find a close parking space, working in your garden, taking the stairs instead of the elevator or going dancing once a week. I  already socialize, drink wine, and eat chocolate, but need to practice fidgeting a bit more.

Dec 20, 2013

Holidays and Weight Gain

Postprandial weight gain is especially troublesome during the holidays. In the immediate short term any food and drink that you put into your body will make you exactly that much heavier. Eat a pound of chocolate and you add one pound to your mass, until your body starts to excrete the food or use it for energy.

That gain begins to decrease almost as soon as it begins. The time it takes for food to pass through the digestive tract varies widely. Overall, the journey of a meal takes between 20 and 56 hours. Once it is metabolized and excreted, only excess calories converted to fat remain. If you ate a very salty meal, you tend to retain water, and a greater proportion of the weight temporarily remains. How much remains long term depends on the energy content of the food consumed as excess calories are converted into fat to be used for energy in the future.

In a recent study, a team of Israeli scientists tested different diets on almost 200 obese adults. One group consumed a greater proportion of their calories at breakfast and lost significantly more weight, on average, than the others in the study.

The bottom line is, the net weight gain associated with any one meal will be very small. However, a prolonged series of excess eating can accumulate to have a significant, long-term effect. A few overindulgent meals for the holidays are not a problem, the problem is the three overindulgent meals a day over a long period of time. Just as it takes time to reduce weight, it takes time to gain lasting weight, so enjoy the Holidays.

Oct 9, 2012

Money Diet

A few years ago, baseball pitcher Curt Schilling started to get a bit pudgy. When the Boston Red Sox re-signed him to a one-year deal with $8 million before the 2008 season, it included a clause in which Schilling could pick up an extra $2 million if he made weight at six random weigh-ins over the course of the season.

Schilling picked up a $333,333 check each time he didn’t tip the scales too far.