• Thank you for reading Healthy Tips

    Thank you for reading Healthy Tips

    After five years of publishing "HealthyTips", an era has come to an end. The May 17th article was the last to be offered on the Food Services webpage. Thank you for reading the tips and including them as part of your curriculum and discussion.

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  • What's on Your Plate - May 17, 2019

    What's on Your Plate - May 17, 2019

    What’s on Your Plate?
    What’s at Stake:
    A food product recall is the last line of defense for keeping the contaminated food off store shelves and out of our kitchens. But there’s a hitch: Not all recalls are created equal.
    The Food and Drug Administration doesn’t always alert consumers to the store names and locations of where recalled products were sold. The agency has defended these inconsistencies by pointing to an obscure and broad interpretation of what qualifies as “confidential commercial information” under the Freedom of Information Act.
    For example, when the FDA announced a recall in May of frozen raw tuna cubes imported from Indonesia that tested positive for hepatitis A, the action included retailer and location specifics. But when the agency announced a recall last year of strawberries imported from Egypt that also tested positive for hepatitis A, it declined to offer those same details.
    There is a small window to get vaccinated against hepatitis A after exposure, so sharing those locations could have helped mitigate the multistate outbreak traced to the berries.
    How CR Has Your Back:
    CR believes that specific retailer details should be released in the wake of every recall and is asking the FDA to address this inconsistency. Along with 10 other consumer and public health organizations, CR sent a letter to the agency urging a policy change. We think consumers should be armed with as much information as possible to protect themselves and their families.
    What You Can Do:
    Go to recalls.gov/food.html to make sure you didn’t pick up dangerous items during your recent grocery shopping trips.

    Consumer Report, December 2017, pg. 5.

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  • Dash, in a Dash - May 3, 2019

    Dash, in a Dash - May 3, 2019

    A DASH-like diet can help lower your risk of a heart attack or stroke. Here is a 2,100-calorie version. (Note: The serving sizes are small)

    Vegetables & Fruit:
    1 serving: ½ cup (or 1 cup greens) or 1 piece of fruit (11 servings per day)

    1 Serving: ½ cup pasta or rice or cereal or 1 slice bread
    (4 servings per day)

    Low-fat Dairy:
    1 Serving: 1 cup milk or yogurt or 1 ½ oz. cheese
    (2 servings per day)

    Legumes & Nuts:
    1 Serving: ½ cup beans or ¼ cup nuts or 4 oz. tofu
    (2 servings per day)

    Poultry, Fish, Lean Meat:
    1 Serving: ¼ lb. cooked
    (1 serving per day)

    Oils & Fats:
    1 Serving: 1 Tbsp.
    (2serving per day)

    Desserts & Sweets:
    1 Serving: 1 tsp. sugar or 1 small cookie
    (2servings per day)

    Wild Card:
    Poultry, Fish, Meat or Oils & Fats or Grains or Desserts & Sweets
    (1serving per day)

    Nutrition Action Healthletter, November 2017, pg. 5.

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  • Sprouted Grain Gains - April 20, 2019

    Sprouted Grain Gains - April 20, 2019

    Sprouted Grain Gains

    Q: Are sprouted grains healthier than regular whole grains?
    A: Sprouted grains are whole grains such as brown rice, wheat, and millet that have germinated: The tiny embryo at the grain’s core has begun to grow, activating enzymes that may make the nutrients stored in the grain easier for the plant to use. This can increase levels of vitamins, protein, and fiber—but the amount of extra nutrients and their type varies by grain, says dietician Marisa Moore, R.D.N., L.D., formerly of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Studies have found, for example, that sprouted brown rice has more fiber than regular brown rice, sprouted whole wheat has extra folate, and sprouted millet has more active antioxidants. While there’s early evidence that some sprouted grains could contribute to lower blood-sugar levels compared with regular grains, more research is still needed to see whether the wide variety of grain changes are linked to particular health benefits. Either way, says Moore, sprouted grains have a “pleasantly nutty and slightly sweet flavor,” and—as with other whole grains—can be enjoyed in bread or cereals, or on their own.
    Consumer Report On Health, December 2017, pg. 12.

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  • Eat Plants, Skip Reflux Drugs - April 6, 2019

    Eat Plants, Skip Reflux Drugs - April 6, 2019

    Eat Plants, Skip Reflux Drugs?
    If you experience acid reflux (when stomach acid backs up into the esophagus), dietary strategies may work as well as drugs. Ina study of 184 adults with the condition, participants either took drugs called proton pump inhibitors or followed a mostly plant-based, Mediterranean-style diet (including alkaline water) for six weeks. (Alkalinity inactivates pepsin, a digestive enzyme thought to injure throat tissues.) People in both groups showed similar improvements.
    Consumer Reports On Health, December 2017, pg. 3.

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  • Dancing: Good for the Brain - March 15, 2019

    Dancing: Good for the Brain - March 15, 2019

    Dancing: Good for the Brain
    When 26 older adults took dance lessons or did endurance and flexibility exercises at least once a week for 18 months in a recent study, their brain’s hippocampus increased in size. That’s good news, because the hippocampus plays a key role in learning and memory. The participants’ balance also improved. During dance lessons, they learned steps including the cha-cha and the grapevine.
    Consumer Reports On Health, December 2017, pg. 3.

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  • 6 Surprising Foods That Can Give You Food Poisoning (3 of 3) - March 1, 2019

    6 Surprising Foods That Can Give You Food Poisoning (3 of 3) - March 1, 2019

    6 Surprising Foods That Can Give You Food Poisoning (3 of 3) March 1, 2019
    Raw pet food. This one is a risk both for you and your cat or dog. Raw pet food (meat, bones, organs) is a popular “natural” trend. It’s supposed to be closer to the kind of food that a feral dog or cat would eat in the wild. But it’s very easy for these foods to get contaminated with salmonella, Listeria and other pathogens that can make pets and humans sick—the FDA has recalled several brands due to contamination.
    As with humans, in pets these food-borne illnesses can lead to vomiting, diarrhea and sometimes fever. Even if your pet doesn’t get sick, you can become ill if you contract these bacterial infections after handling pet food.
    Protect yourself: It’s best to avoid raw food entirely and serve your pet only food that has been cooked, either store-bought or homemade. If you do handle raw pet food, be sure to wash your hands in hot, soapy water for at least 20 second.
    Staying Safe. Now that you know about these often-ignored dangers, you can protect yourself. But don’t ignore the better-known food-safety risks, either. These include…
    • Rare or even medium-rare hamburgers. Make sure burgers reach an internal temperature of 160 degrees.
    • Raw Milk. It’s dangerous. Avoid it.
    • Bagged salad greens. These have been the cause of many recalls. Better to buy bunches of spinach or heads of lettuce…rinse thoroughly in cold water (no need for soap)…dry thoroughly and refrigerate until use.
    • Sprout. Never eat any kind of sprout raw.

    BottomLine Personal, May 1, 2018, pgs. 1-3.

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  • 6 Surprising Foods That Can Give You Food Poisoning:    (2 of 3) - February 15, 2019

    6 Surprising Foods That Can Give You Food Poisoning: (2 of 3) - February 15, 2019

    Raw Flour. You’re probably thinking, Who eats raw flour? But if you ever nibble raw cookie dough or lick cake batter off your finger—you do! Recently, dozens of people across the country got sick from eating raw dough made from flour contaminated with the E. coli bacterium. A whopping 10 millions pounds of flour were recalled because of the outbreak.
    Cooked meats—even ones that have been stored properly. Everyone knows that raw meat can possible harbor salmonella and other bacteria. But even foods that are cooked when you buy them, such as deli meats…smoked seafood…store-made deli salads…and precooked hot dogs can harbor Listeria. It’s a bacterium that grows in moist, cool temperatures—such as a refrigerator or cooler.
    • Eat meats that you buy cooked soon after purchasing them, and toss anything that remains five days after you opened the package. With unopened packages, use the “best by” date as a rule of thumb for when to toss. In this way, you won’t be eating these foods after the bacterium has had a great deal of time to multiply. Note: If you buy frozen hot dogs or freeze them when you get home, you’re safer—Listeria won’t multiply in the freezer.
    • If there are any spills from deli salads in your refrigerator, clean them up promptly. Once a week, wipe the walls and shelves of the fridge with warm soapy water, then rinse…and keep the temperature at 40 degrees or lower.
    • Listeria is especially dangerous to pregnant women and people with compromised immune systems (from diabetes or cancer, for example). They should be especially cautious and heat not only hot dogs but also lunch meat and smoke seafood until they’re steaming.
    BottomLine Personal, May 1, 2018, pgs. 1-3.

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  • 6 Surprising Foods that Can Give You Food Poisoning (1 of 3) - January 25, 2019

    6 Surprising Foods that Can Give You Food Poisoning (1 of 3) - January 25, 2019

    6 Surprising Foods That Can Give You Food Poisoning:
    Perfected by nature. That’s the motto for Live Spring Water. It is “raw” water—unfiltered, untreated spring water—the latest trend in health circles. Cost: $36.99 for a two-and-a-half-gallon jug…$14.99 for a refill.
    Save your money…and you might be saving yourself something even more valuable—your health. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the nation’s top health protection agency, drinking “raw” water could increase the risk for serious food-borne illnesses including, potentially, cholera and typhoid. You also could swallow disease-causing parasites including Giardia, Cryptosporidium and Cyclospora. While no outbreaks have been reported from the bottled variety—and Live Spring, for one, says that it tests its water sources once a year for contamination—public health authorities believe that it’s only a matter of time before someone gets sick from bottled raw water.
    Unless you like to chase the latest trends, you probably don’t have a cooler filled with raw water in your kitchen. But chances are you do have one or more of the following five other surprising sources of food-borne illnesses…
    Melon and other fruits with thick skin. You might assume that a fruit with a thick, inedible skin—such as cantaloupe, mango, papaya and even avocado—would be perfectly safe. After all, you’re not eating the skin. But there have been several food-poisoning outbreaks associated with such fruits.
    Risky moment: When you cut into the fruit, you can transfer bacteria from the skin to the flesh. Protect yourself: Thoroughly wash fruits that have a thick skin before you cut through them, using water and a produce brush to get at nooks and crannies—soap isn’t necessary.
    BottomLine Personal, May 1, 2018, pgs. 1-3.

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  • 9 New Ways to lose that last ten pounds ( 4 of 4) January 11, 2019

    9 New Ways to lose that last ten pounds ( 4 of 4) January 11, 2019

    Time-Restricted Daytime Eating: “Time-restricted eating,” in which you consume all of your calories each day within a 10- or 12-hour window, is a new fad with potential weight-loss benefits. But to make it work best, eat your calories relatively early in the day. One two-month study from the University of Pennsylvania’s Perelman School of Medicine found that participants who ate all of their calories between 8 am and 7 pm weighed less than those who did so between noon and 11 pm—and they all consumed the same number of calories. For the daytime eaters, ghrelin peaked earlier and leptin peaked later. That helps deter late-night cravings.
    If you’re truly hungry late in the evening, don’t be a martyr! Instead, choose a snack with fiber and protein, such as a handful of nuts…or fruit with Greek yogurt.
    Redefine Yourself: One of the greatest predictors of weight-loss success is in your head. A study published in International Journal for Obesity found that regardless of actual weight status, people who perceived themselves as overweight were significantly more likely to gain weight. It may not be easy, but give yourself credit for the weight you have lost (even if you haven’t hit your goal), and try to think positively about yourself and your weight. Love and respect yourself just as you are.
    Take a Break: Dieting all the time is exhausting—and can be self-defeating. Research published in International Journal for Obesity found that men who took a two-week break from dieting lost more weight than those who dieted continuously. During their dieting break, the men ate simply to maintain their weight. So take a break when you feel you need it, be kind to yourself and envision yourself meeting your goals.
    BottomLine Personal, March 1, 2018, pgs. 1-3.

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  • 9 New Ways to lose that last ten pounds ( 3 of 4 ) - December 28, 2018

    9 New Ways to lose that last ten pounds ( 3 of 4 ) - December 28, 2018

    9 New Ways To Lose The Last Ten Pounds (3 of 4)

    Add Some Weight On Purpose—Muscle Weight: Building strength may not have been your focus in the initial stages of your weight loss, but it’s crucial now. As you lost weight, your metabolic rate decreased. Strength training helps bring it back up. In one study, for example, a 26-week strength-training program increased resting metabolic rate by 7%.
    Muscles are not miracle calorie burners, though. Their ability to radically change metabolism often is hyped in the media. The average actually is about 50 calories a day, according to a research review—not much if you’re seeking a big weight loss. But adding muscle is great if you want a little edge to lose those last few pounds, since 50 calories a day translates to losing five extra pounds a year.
    Don’t’ Let Another Night Go By: You know that sleep is essential for health, but you might not realize how even a little sleep deprivation can drive cravings and slow metabolism. Amazing statistic: After a single night of poor sleep, study subjects ate an average of 385 extra calories the next day, according to statistical analysis of multiple studies. In fact, just two consecutive sleep-deprived nights (four hours each night) may be enough to alter your metabolism, according to research published in Endocrine Development. It increases the body’s level of the hunger-stimulating hormone gherlin and decreased hunger-reducing leptin. To lose those last 10 pounds, commit to healthier sleep habits.
    BottomLine Personal, March 1, 2018, pgs. 1-3.

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  • 9 New Ways to lose the last ten pounds (2 of 4) December 14, 2018

    9 New Ways to lose the last ten pounds (2 of 4) December 14, 2018

    Go Beyond Calories: Counting calories still are the primary way most people approach weight loss—but different foods with the same calorie counts can have different effects on satiety levels. Case in point: Plant-based proteins—beans, legumes, nuts, seeds, soy and grains such as quinoa—help you feel more full than animal-based proteins. Fiber is one reason. In one study, participants who at a plant-based rather than animal-based breakfast spontaneously ate about 100 fewer calories at lunch.
    Share a Selfie: If you’ve kept your weight goals to yourself, it’s time to share them aloud. Make a public commitment. It will increase accountability and help build a community of support. That comes in handy when you need motivation or experience a setback.
    One study from Northwestern University found that people in an online weight-loss group who “friended” others in the group and posted photos of their progress lost more weight than those who were less active online. In another study, those who shared goals with friends were more likely than those who didn’t to meet them (62% versus 43%). Social-media outlets such as Twitter and Facebook can help, too, studies show—just be sure to unfollow people who don’t support you or who make fun of your goals.
    BottomLine Personal, March 1, 2018, pgs. 1-3.

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  • 9 New Ways to lose the last ten pounds ( 1 of 4 ) - November 30, 2018

    9 New Ways to lose the last ten pounds ( 1 of 4 ) - November 30, 2018

    You’ve changed your diet. You’ve exercised. And it worked—you lost weight. But not that last 10 pounds. Sound familiar?
    Those last few pounds really are more difficult to lose. One reason, ironically, is that you weigh less now—so you need fewer calories to maintain your weight. Your body also fights back, resisting further weight loss through hormonal and metabolic means. Your resting metabolic rate falls, so you burn fewer calories at rest. Hormones kick in to increase your appetite. The result may be a weight plateau—or even weight regain.

    What to do? If you can’t bear the thought of cutting more calories or spending more time exercising, here are some unconventional methods to get you over the finish line…
    Drink Green Tea: A green tea habit may help you lose weight. One Reason: Gut bacteria. A recent study showed that mice that received green and black tea extracts had fewer gut microbes linked to obesity and more linked to lean body mass. Green tea is particularly rich in gut-friendly polyphenols. In study published in Clinical Nutrition, women who consumed green tea extract every day for 12 weeks lost an average of 2. Pounds—without following a reduced-calorie diet.

    Get Outside – And Go High: Do you exercise mostly indoors? Head Out! Exercising outside burns more calories, due to harder terrain and wind resistance, and can improve your mood and increase your enjoyment of the workout. Fun Fact: Gardeners weigh less than non-gardeners , according to research—11 pounds less for women, 16 for men. To really jump-start your weight loss, though, book your next vacation in the mountains. Research published in Obesity found that spending one week at a high altitude (8,700 feet) led study participants to eat less than those at sea level and to lose an average of three pounds. Both metabolic rate and levels of leptin (the satiety hormone) were higher.
    BottomLine Personal, March 1, 2018, pgs. 1-3.

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  • 25 Ways Sugar Is Making You sick (4 of 4) - November 16, 2018

    25 Ways Sugar Is Making You sick (4 of 4) - November 16, 2018

    25 Ways Sugar is Making You Sick (4 of 4)
    20. Sugar Takes Your Breath Away: Scientists have long suspected a link between sugar-sweetened beverages and asthma. After analyzing data from 146,990 adults in the United States, they found that, sure enough, adults who downed at least two of these drinks a day were more likely to have respiratory issues.
    21. Sweets Could Be Worse Than Salt For Hypertension: According to a study in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology in 2010, a high-fructose diet can push your blood pressure over the threshold of 120/80, which is considered the upper end of normal. In a 2014 research review published in the journal BMJ Open Heart, medical experts argued that added sugar intake may have the most dramatic effect on blood pressure—and, in fact, could be more detrimental to heart health than sodium.
    22. It’s Bad for Your Body Mass Index: Researchers from the University of Reading, the University of Cambridge, and Arizona State University studied the sugar intake of 1,700 men and women ages 39-77 in Norfolk, United Kingdom. According to a study published in 2015, they found that those who ate the most sugar were 54 percent more likely to be overweight (that is, have a body mass index over 25)—and were also more likely to have underreported how much sugar they consumed.
    23. Sweet Treats Ruin Your Teeth…. You childhood dentist was right—sugar causes cavities….
    1. You sip a sweet coffee shop beverage
    2. Bacteria in your mouth thrive on sugar, which provides them with energy
    3. Those micro-organisms multiply, creating a film of plaque on the surface of your teeth
    4. The plaque produces an acid that dissolves the minerals that make up the hard surface of your teeth
    5. The longer the plaque builds up, the worse the damage will be. Tiny holes appear and expand until they become cavities
    24. ….And Make Your Gums Bleed: Most kids grow up learning about the connection between candy and cavities. Turns out, a high-sugar die

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  • 25 Ways Sugar Is Making You Sick (3 of 4) - November 2, 2018

    25 Ways Sugar Is Making You Sick (3 of 4) - November 2, 2018

    25 Ways Sugar is Making You Sick (3 of 4)
    13. Sugar May Keep You Up At Night: A 2016 study in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine shows eating more sugar (along with less fiber and more saturated fat) is associated with lighter, more disrupted, and less restorative sleep.
    14. We’re Still Drinking Too Much Liquid Sugar: Good news: We are drinking less soda. Sales of carbonated soft drinks are at their lowest level in 30 years. Bad news: We’ve replaced it with options that may be just as unhealthy. Sales of flavored waters, ready-to-drink coffees and teas, energy drinks, and sports beverages are all growing. Energy drinks contain about 30 grams of sugar, sports drinks contain about 40 grams, and your average flavored latte comes in at around 45 grams.
    15. Sugar Messes With Your Cholesterol: A 2010 study of 8,495 Americans over 18 published in JAMA found that as subject’s added-sugar intake went up, their levels of HDL (good cholesterol) dropped, increasing their risk for cardiovascular disease. The study also found that women in particular who ate or drank more added sugar had higher levels of LDL (bad cholesterol) density.
    16. 74%: That’s the percentage of packaged foods that contain added sugars, according to a study published in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, which analyzed more than 85,000 food items sold in the United States.
    17. Sugar Can Make You Sad: Ending a bad day with a bowl of Ben & Jerry’s may make you feel worse in the long run. In 2015, Columbia University Medical Center researchers found that postmenopausal women with diets high in added sugars and refined grains were at an increased risk of new-onset depression, while the risk decreased in subjects who ate more dietary fiber, whole grains, vegetables, and unprocessed fruits.
    18. Some Food Labels Can Hide Sugar Content: For the first time in 20 years, the FDA is revising nutrition labels for packaged foods to better highlight the links between

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  • 25 Ways Sugar is Making You Sick (2 of 4) - October 19. 2018

    25 Ways Sugar is Making You Sick (2 of 4) - October 19. 2018

    25 Ways Sugar is Making You Sick (2 of 4)
    6. 13 Five-Pound Bags:
    This is the amount of added sugar the average American eats in a year-without noticing most of it. The American Heart Association recommends that men consume no more than 9 teaspoons (36 grams) of added sugar per day (about the amount in a Three Muskateers bar) and women no more than 6 (24 grams). On average, we each ingest 19.5 teaspoons (78 grams) a day.

    7. An Expert Says You Should Cut Down-Now:
    Laura A. Schmidt, a professor at the University of California, San Francisco, worries about all the damage sugar is doing to our bodies. That’s why she became lead investigator for UCSF’s SugarScience, a site developed as an “authoritative source for the scientific evidence about sugar and its impact on health.” Here is her strongest advice:
    • With all the negative news about sugar, should we switch to something else?
    The evidence is mounting against sucralose, saccharin, and aspartame. Some research shows that these sweeteners damage the micro-biome in the gut. They’re also associated with weight gain and glucose intolerance-the things people use them to prevent. Based on what we know, I wouldn’t consume those products or give them to my kids.
    • How to you keep added sugar from seeping into your own diet?
    I just don’t have it around the house. Take all that stuff out of your environment. Once you start cutting back, you’ll lose your sweet tooth. It’s a palate phenomenon, and it doesn’t take long. You’ll notice that you can suddenly taste the natural sweetness in unprocessed food, and you’ll start to find processed products cloying and unpleasant.
    8. Sugar Is As Bad For Your Liver As Alcohol: Unlike other forms of sugar, fructose is processed in the liver. Though it occurs naturally in fruit, we’re still consuming too much of it thanks to our penchant for foods with added fructose sweeteners, and it’s leading to a rise in nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). One visible red flag:

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  • 25 Ways Sugar is Making You Sick (1 of 4) - October 5, 2018

    25 Ways Sugar is Making You Sick (1 of 4) - October 5, 2018

    25 Ways Sugar is Making You Sick (1 of 4)
    1. It Hurts Your Heart:
    Harvard University researchers studied thousands of American adults over 15 years and found that those who consumed 25 percent or more of their daily calories from add sugar were more than twice as likely to die from heart disease as those whose diets included less than 10 percent of added sugar a day. The biggest sugar sources? Sweetened beverages, fruit drinks, grain-based treats such as muffins, and dairy desserts such as ice cream.
    2. “No Sugar Added” Doesn’t Mean “Healthy”:
    Even if a label says 100 percent juice, don’t chug with abandon. The drink may have no added sweeteners, but its naturally occurring sugars are far more concentrated than what you’d find in a piece of fruit. And unlike oranges and apples, which are high in fiber, juice offers empty calories and is of minimal nutritional value.
    3. Excess Sugar Is Linked to Dementia:
    In 2017, researchers at the University of Bath found a molecular link between sugary diets and early Alzheimer’s. The scientists discovered that glycation- a reaction through which glucose affects cells-causes damage to an enzyme that’s involved in reducing abnormal protein buildup in the brain, which is characteristic of the disease.
    4. Sugar Won’t Make Kids Hyper. It’s Worse Than That:
    A meta-analysis in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) found that sugar doesn’t affect children’s behavior. “It may simply be the environment where certain food is being served (for example, parties) that causes children to be more excitable,” says Andrea D’Ambrosio, a registered dietitian in Kitchener-Waterloo, Ontario. But it does spike their blood pressure and cholesterol. One 2016 study in Obesity showed that reducing young subject’s sugar consumption for just nine days led to improvements in those areas, as well as overall blood sugar levels.
    5. Snacks that Sneak in the Sugar:
    These five convenience foods may appear to be healthy choices, but th

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  • Frozen Food Myths (part 2 of 2) - September 22, 2018

    Frozen Food Myths (part 2 of 2) - September 22, 2018

    Frozen Food Myths (2 of 2)
    Myth No. 6 Food should go straight into the freezer: Just because those chicken breasts were wrapped at the store doesn’t mean they’re freezer-ready. Typical meat wrappers let in airflow, creating an entryway for bacteria and lowering the quality of the meat, says Passerrello. Rewrap the food in butcher or freezer paper and push out as much air as you can before freezing. As for fresh vegetables, blanch them before freezing. The boiling water stops enzymatic action that would otherwise strip the flavor and crispness from your veggies, according to Passerrello.
    Myth No. 7 Once you’ve hit a food’s sell-by date, you shouldn’t refreeze it: Grocery stores use “sell-by” dates to make sure they’re rotating their inventory, and a “use-by” date indicates a product’s peak quality, but neither is a safety guide, according to the USDA. Popping food in the freezer on those date shouldn’t have any health consequences, says Braddock.
    Myth No. 8 Frozen food expires: The site foodsafety.gov lists guidelines for how long to keep items in the freezer-for instance, two to six months for leftover cooked meat-but that’s just for quality, not safety. “Frozen food pretty much remains safe indefinitely,” says Passerrello.
    Myth No. 9 You can’t freeze everything: In terms of safety, there’s really nothing you can’t freeze-it just comes down to quality. The texture of some foods, such as milk and cheese, might change a bit after freezing, but they’re still perfectly safe to eat.
    Reader’s Digest, April 2018, pgs. 34-35.

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  • Frozen Food Myths (part 1)  - September 8, 2018

    Frozen Food Myths (part 1) - September 8, 2018

    Frozen Food Myths (1 of 2)
    Just because it’s frozen doesn’t mean it’s not healthful-or tasty. Follow these freezer-friendly tips and enjoy.
    Myth No. 1 Frozen fruits and vegetables aren’t as healthy as fresh ones: These fruits and veggies are often picked at peak ripeness, then flash frozen within six to ten hours, says dietician Jenna Braddock, MSH, RDN, CSSD, LDN. “That freezing locks in the nutritional value,” she says.
    Myth No. 2 It’s safe to thaw food on the counter: This is probably the biggest culprit of unsafe thawing, says dietician Caroline Passerrello, MS, RDN, LDN, a spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Thaw food in the refrigerator instead, where it will be safe from the “danger zone” temperatures-between 40 degrees Fahrenheit and 140 degrees Fahrenheit- at which bacteria can thrive. Of course, defrosting in the fridge takes longer, so plan ahead.Myth No. 3 Frozen food is high in sodium: Many manufacturers are taking a cue from health-conscious consumers and trying to cut the salt content. Scan the label-you might be pleasantly surprised by how little is in there.
    Myth No. 4 Running hot water over food will thaw it safely: On the contrary, this could cause health issues. “Parts of your item can be frozen while other parts are hot and might even start to cook,” says Braddock. Not only could that mean uneven cooking, but some of the food could enter the temperature danger zone. If you can’t wait for food to thaw in the fridge, the USDA recommends placing frozen food in a bowl of cold water and changing the water every half hour.
    Myth No. 5 Refreezing food is unsafe: As long as you thawed it in the fridge, you can put it back in the freezer, says Passerrello. Just beware that its quality could degrade after the second freeze, she says.

    Reader’s Digest, April 2018, pgs. 34-35.

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  • Happy Summer 2018

    Happy Summer 2018

    Hope you enjoyed reading these tidbits each week. We look forward to starting them again in September. Until then, have a great, safe, marvelous, and fun summer.

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  • Spring into Fitness - May 29, 2018

    Spring into Fitness - May 29, 2018

    Spring into Fitness
    Here’s how physical activity benefits everyone:
    • Children and adolescents:
    o Physical activity can improve muscular fitness, bone health, and heart health.
    • Adults:
    o Physical activity can lower the risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and some types of cancer.
    • Older adults:
    o Physical activity can lower the risk of falls and improve cognitive functioning (like learning and judgment skills).
    Highmark BC/BS Heath Matters, April 2017, page 2

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  • What Can You Do to Resist the Flood of Junk Food Fighting for Your Attention (2 of 2) - May 12, 2018

    What Can You Do to Resist the Flood of Junk Food Fighting for Your Attention (2 of 2) - May 12, 2018

    What Can You Do to Resist the Flood of Junk Food Fighting for Your Attention – 2 of 2 parts
    • Address your stress:
    o “Stress can be a huge cue, “notes Gearhardt. “Notice the emotional triggers that can set you up to crave palatable rewarding foods.”
    Go for a walk, call a friend, try some mediation, or distract yourself. “The craving will peak and then go down if you don’t give in to it,” says Gearhardt.
    “When we’re stressed, the executive control system in the brain-the signal to stop eating-is weakened. Stopping ourselves from doing things we want is taxing and energy intense. So when we’re stressed, there isn’t much energy for that.”
    • Get enough sleep:
    o When researchers let people sleep for only four hours a night for five days, they ate more and gained weight.

    In similar studies, “participants reported increased hunger,” says Erin Hanlon, assistant professor in the department of endocrinology, University of Chicago. “And their appetite was greatest for high carbohydrates and high fast foods.

    • Give yourself a break:
    o “I ask people to have some compassion for themselves, because it is really hard,” says Gearhardt. “Our food environment is set up for to make it hard for people to eat healthier.”

    Nutrition Action Health Letter, April 2017, page 6

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  • What Can You Do to Resist the Flood of Junk Food Fighting for Your Attention (1 of 2)  - April 27, 2018

    What Can You Do to Resist the Flood of Junk Food Fighting for Your Attention (1 of 2) - April 27, 2018

    What Can You Do to Resist the Flood of Junk Food Fighting for Your Attention – 1 of 2 parts
    • Don’t let yourself get too hungry:
    o If you are hungry, “your gut signals tell the reward system in your brain, ‘you need to really be on the lookout and respond intensely to any food cues you see,’” says Ashley Gearhardt, assistant professor of psychology at the University of Michigan. Her advice: Skip the crash diets and “focus on the quality of the food you eat.”
    • Don’t drink your calories:
    o Sugary drinks-soda, sport drinks, energy drinks, or sweetened teas-lead to weight gain.
    It’s not clear why. One possibility: liquid calories may not “register.” People eat only slightly less food when they drink a 150 calorie glass of cola with lunch than when they drink a zero calorie glass of water or diet cola.
    • Find foods that don’t case war:
    o Hungry between meals? Try fresh fruit or carrots with hummus.

    “Try to identify foods that you enjoy that don’t cause an intense internal struggle-‘I’m only going to have one bite of this but, oh my, I want more,’” suggests Gearhardt. “That’s exhausting. The willpower parts of your brain can only take so much.”
    Nutrition Action Health Letter, April 2017, page 6

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  • Give Prediabetes the Boot - April 13, 2018

    Give Prediabetes the Boot - April 13, 2018

    Give Prediabetes the Boot?
    On out of three adults have prediabetes. If a preliminary study pans out, the right diet could make it disappear.
    Researchers randomly assigned 38 people who had prediabetes and were obese to one of two diets. Each diet cut 500 calories a day.
    • The higher protein diet consisted of 30 percent of calories from protein and 40 percent from carbs relied largely on fish, chicken, lean meat, and low fat cheese and milk for its protein.
    • The higher carb diet consisted of 55 percent carbs and 15 percent protein relied largely on whole grains, fruit, vegetables, and beans for its carbs.
    • Both diets had the same fat (30 percent of calories) largely from healthy fats like oils and nuts.
    After six months, 14 people had dropped out. However, blood sugar levels in the remaining 12 people on the high protein diet-but only four of the 12 on the higher carb diet –had fallen into the normal range. What’s more, the higher protein group had lower hemoglobinA1c (a long term measure of blood sugar) and lower LDL (“bad”) cholesterol, triglycerides, and some markers of inflation.
    Both groups lost the same amount of weight, but people with the higher protein diet lost only fat, while those in the higher carb diet lost both fat and muscle.
    What to do: If you have prediabetes, try cutting back on carbs. (This will cut your calories and make protein a higher percentage of your diet.) You do not have to cut all carbs. You can still enjoy vegetables and fresh fruit, with small services of grains.
    Nutrition Action Health Letter, April 2017, page 12

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  • Cut Carbs at Dinner - March 30, 2018

    Cut Carbs at Dinner - March 30, 2018

    Curb Carbs at Dinner
    A carbohydrate-rich dinner may be worse for blood sugar levels than a carb-rich breakfast or lunch.
    Researchers studied 29 men who had either normal blood sugar levels or prediabetes. Most were overweight, but none were obese. For one month each, the men ate either:
    • Carb-rich meals early(by 1:30pm) and fat-rich meals late (4:30 to 10:00pm) or
    • Fat rich meals early and carb-rich meals late.
    Among those who had prediabetes, blood sugar levels, measured throughout the day, were 8 percent higher after a month of eating the carb-rich meals later in the day than after a month of eating the earlier.
    As expected, a high-carb test meal raised blood sugar levels more than a high-fat test meal. However, both test meals raised blood sugar levels more when they were eaten later, rather than earlier in the day. In other words, glucose tolerance-the body’s ability to handle carbs –gets worse as the day progresses.
    What to do: Shrink servings of pasta, pizza, potatoes, rice, and bread at dinner.
    Nutrition Action Health Letter, May 2017, page 8

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