June 2017

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Subscribers Only - Do you find it challenging to maintain a balanced eating plan? It may help to think of nutritional balance not just in terms of the meal in front of you, but of your eating pattern over the course of a day, a week, a month, a year. In the short term, balance means including all of the basic food groups in your day. In the longer term, it means including a variety of foods from within each group. That’s because each food group—and each food within a group—offers a slightly different nutrient package.

All Protein Types Benefit Muscle Health

Dietary protein from any food source—plant or animal—can improve muscle mass and strength, researchers say. A food-frequency survey was used to estimate total protein intake of almost 3,000 men and women aged 19-72 years old, from 2002-2005. Dietary protein was grouped into fast food and full-fat dairy, fish, red meat, chicken, low-fat milk, and legumes.

The Benefits of Balancing Your Plate

Do you find it challenging to maintain a balanced eating plan? It may help to think of nutritional balance not just in terms of the meal in front of you, but of your eating pattern over the course of a day, a week, a month, a year. In the short term, balance means including all of the basic food groups in your day. In the longer term, it means including a variety of foods from within each group.

Eating to Stay Healthy Lowers Carbon Footprint

Recent research has mined the field of diet patterns that lower environmental impact, demonstrating that a plant-based diet has a lower impact. And now a recent study has taken that concept a step further by linking diet to greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions caused by medical care.

Charcoal Risks; Food as Sunscreen

known as activated carbon, is a medicine used to treat oral poisonings. It is mixed with water and consumed as an effective treatment for a number of poisonous substances, when taken within an hour of the poison ingestion. Too much of a good thing isn’t always a good thing, and so it is with the sun. We need to expose our skin to some sunshine every day in order to make vitamin D, sometimes called the sunshine vitamin.

Beyond Gluten: Could it Be Wheat Sensitivity?

Wheat and gluten (a protein in wheat) are at the top of the list of foods being targeted for causing “food sensitivities.” Many people who may test negative for celiac disease, which calls for a lifelong gluten-free diet, and wheat allergy still experience discomfort with wheat consumption. Here’s an overview of what we know.

Diarrhea Diet Defense

Diarrhea is not a topic of choice at the dinner table. Nonetheless, it is a common condition that affects many people. An estimated 179 million acute cases occur each year, and five percent of the U.S. population suffers from chronic diarrhea. Diet may help control this condition.

Berries on the Brain

Americans are eating more berries, and that’s a good idea. Besides being packed with vitamins, minerals and fiber, berries are rich in flavonoids like anthocyanins and flavanols. “Berries are colorful because of bioactive compounds like these,” says Navindra P. Seeram, PhD, an Associate Professor in the Department of Biomedical and Pharmaceutical Sciences at the University of Rhode Island College of Pharmacy. “They protect the berry, and those beneficial effects are imparted when we eat berries.”

A New Take on Yogurt

Subscribers Only - Yogurt has gone from a natural foods niche to a staple in the refrigerators of most Americans. A few years ago we were introduced to Greek yogurt, in which the watery whey is removed by straining, leaving a creamier, thicker yogurt with higher protein and lower sugar content.

To B or Not to B: Getting to Know Niacin

Subscribers Only - Niacin (a.k.a. nicotinic acid, nicotinamide, and vitamin B3) is a member of the family of B vitamins, which also includes vitamins B12 and B6, riboflavin, folic acid, pantothenic acid, biotin, and thiamin. Niacin, like a lot of its B brothers, is essential for converting carbohydrates into fuel and for producing critical hormones in the body.

The Pluses of Pulses

Subscribers Only - Evidence supporting the fighting power of pulses is stronger than ever. Pulses are an excellent source of fiber and plant-based protein and deliver folate, magnesium, iron and other important vitamins and minerals. Dried beans, peas and lentils have a low carbon footprint making them an eco-friendly food choice.

Take a Look at Leeks

Subscribers Only - Leeks (Allium porum) are part of the Allium family, along with onions, garlic, shallots, and scallions. In fact, they look like giant scallions—small white bulbs and tall (about 12”), layered stalks, topped with green, flat, fanned leaves. Like their Allium cousins, leeks are rich in health protecting plant compounds, including the flavonols kaempferol and quercetin, which are concentrated in the bulb and lower leaves. A one-cup serving also packs more than half the Daily Value (DV) of vitamin K, important for blood clotting, as well as 30% DV of vitamin A, essential to healthy vision.

Research Roundup: June 2017

Making healthy changes in one’s diet to include more fruit and vegetables, whole grains, legumes, fish, lean red meat, olive oil, and nuts can significantly reduce symptoms of depression, research shows. Women who eat anti-inflammatory diets, which are higher in vegetables and fruits, fish, and whole grains, may improve bone health and may prevent fractures, according to research. Substituting whole grains for refined grains, which have half the dietary fiber of whole grains, appears to speed up metabolism and lessen the number of calories absorbed.