Diet and Nutrition: Which Foods Will Help You Lose Weight?

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Not all foods are fattening. Some can actually help you lose weight. These are called diet foods. Know what diet foods you should consume to help you get that slim figure!

 

Fish: For your protein requirement, fish has lesser calories than beef or pork. It is also advisable to get at least three servings of fish per week for a healthy dose of Omega-3 fatty acids to fight coronary heart disease. Rich sources of Omega-3 fatty acids include tuna, mackerel, sardines and salmon.

 

Milk: It could supply the calcium needed for stronger bones. Some studies also show that there is a lower incidence of obesity among milk drinkers.

 

Red Wine: Red wine is rich in cholesterol-lowering phytochemicals. Alcohol-free red wine contains the lowest calories, about 37 calories per serving.

 

Water: Instead of soft drinks and artificially flavored fruit juices, rely on water to quench your thirst. Tons of water detoxify your body, aid digestion and hydrate your skin.

 

Oatmeal: Take oatmeal and other whole grains for breakfast because it takes longer to digest. It will make you feel full longer, sans the high blood sugar. And because it is high in fiber, it has cholesterol-lowering effects.

 

Virgin Coconut Oil: Some fats turn out to be the best fat-reducing aid like diacylglycerols found in cottonseed oil and medium chain triacylglycerols which are abundant in coconut oil. These oils go direct to the liver for fast conversion into fuel, increasing fat metabolism. It also increases the feeling of satiety.

 

Nuts: Some studies show that nuts may help in keeping weight under control through increased satiety levels and energy malabsorption. Studies also show that a handful of walnuts reduces total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol.

 

Dark Chocolate: Dark chocolate contains antioxidants and the compound anandamide.

 

Vegetables: Vegetables contain the least calories and glucose, making it one of the best ways to lose weight. Go heavy on the dark green vegetables because they contain the least amount of sugar and starch but are high in phytochemicals.

 

Fruits: Fruits are rich in vitamins and phytochemicals although they are also high in sugars and starch.

 

Green Tea and Oolong: Some studies reveal that oolong tea greatly increases fat oxidation. Substances in green tea like catechins are believed to increase the antioxidant capacity of the human plasma that reduces the risk of cardiovascular diseases. Coffee has antioxidants too, but I recomend you to minimize caffeine intake.

Eye Exercises: How your Children can Avoid Eye Strains

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Although they are young and almost stress-free, children also get their eyes tired and strained. Reading all the books for school reports, staying in front of the computer for hours, and watching numerous television programs can make your child’s eyes abused and stressed out. To avoid further eye and sight problems, teach your child some exercises that may be equal to half the rest he gets while he sleeps.

The three-minute break for the eyes involves getting up from his seat in front of the computer and walking around a bit to rest the eyes. He can also stare at greeneries for three minutes. The color green, according to doctors, have a calming effect on tired eyes.

Another exercise he can do is to close his eyes and roll the eyeballs around. Then, with his eyes still closed, he should look right and hold the position for five seconds, and then he should look left, holding the position for another five seconds.

Another exercise he can perform is the eyes shut exercise. All he has to do is to close his eyes as tight as possible, holding this position for three to five seconds. This exercise should be done repeatedly for five times.

If your child works at night, tell him to shut down the light for a minute to rest his eyes. If he works in front of the computer, he should decrease the level of brightness so as not put on too much strain in his eyes. During the day, advise him to cover his eyes with his palm or a piece of cloth to rest it from the light.

It is also a good exercise for your child’s eyes to follow straight lines, real or imaginary. This could be done by moving the eyes from the ceiling towards the floor or from a wall on his left towards a wall on his right. He can also picture a square and let his eyes follow the diagonal line created from point to point.

Do not let your child’s eyes get damaged, especially while still young. Teach him the importance of exercising and resting them to avoid further complications as he grows old.

Chiropractic Care for GERD

Male anatomy of human organs in x-ray view

Seven percent of Americans suffer from a disorder in the stomach and esophagus called gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). They experience heartburn, chest pain or belching after a meal, the most common symptoms of this disorder.

 

GERD is more prevalent among adults in the 20 to 40 age group. However, it is alarming that GERD symptoms are being noticed even among children.

 

What Causes GERD?

 

In a normal digestion, the lower esophageal sphincter – which acts as a barrier between your stomach and esophagus – opens to allow the passage of food to your stomach and closes to prevent partially digested food and gastric juices to go back up into the esophagus. Medical experts believe that the likely causes of GERD are:

 

  • A weak lower esophageal sphincter
  • Inappropriate relaxation of the lower esophageal sphincter
  • Too much acid in the stomach to digest the food.

 

GERD can often be triggered by:

 

  • Chocolate
  • Fried fatty foods
  • Peppermint
  • Coffee
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Heavy meals

 

Treatment and Care Options for GERD

 

Diet and lifestyle changes and non-medical options recommended in the care of GERD include:

 

  • Avoid foods and beverages that trigger the symptoms.
  • Lose weight, particularly when obese or overweight.
  • Reduce the intake of alcohol and caffeine.
  • Quit smoking.
  • Eat small meals frequently.
  • Take probiotics supplements
  • Avoid exercise immediately after meals
  • Wait at least three hours after a meal before lying down.

 

Doctors recommend the following in the treatment of GERD:

 

  • Antacids to neutralize the gastric acid and relieve the symptoms
  • Drugs to stop or inhibit the production of acid in the stomach
  • Surgery when all other options prove ineffective

 

The failure to eliminate the cause of GERD can lead to more serious health conditions like esophageal cancers and ulcers.

 

Chiropractic Care for GERD

 

People typically visit chiropractors for the treatment of health conditions such as back and neck pain and other direct neuromusculoskeletal issues. Recently, the number of people seeking out chiropractic treatment for other ailments is increasing. In fact, patients who refer gastrointestinal cases to their chiropractic doctors for treatment account for 10.3 percent of all chiropractic patients.

 

Abnormal spinal conditions have been found to have impacts on GERD occurrence. In recent studies, the combination of lumbar kyphosis – the abnormal spine curvature – and weak back muscles have been determined to significantly affect the presence of GERD. Another spinal condition described as increased hyper-kyphosis – curvature of the thoracic-mid back – was also found to cause or contribute to the symptoms of GERD. These two conditions can put pressure on the stomach and the esophageal system. When the pressure becomes so severe, it can cause the stomach to be displaced downward that can lead to a condition called hiatal hernia. In many cases the consequence of this condition is  an altered alignment of the spinal posture, inhibition of the reflex activity of the stomach-gastric muscle and ultimately, GERD.

 

The spinal misalignment will put substantial amounts of pressure on the spinal nerves. Since the nervous system has a direct link with all of the body functions, altered nerve activity that results from poor posture, can obviously also lead to impairment of stomach function. Nerve interference is what chiropractors call altered or inhibited nerve function from an abnormal spinal alignment. This nerve interference can reduce the vital nerve energy being supplied to the organs, including the digestive organ.

 

The most common chiropractic treatments in GERD cases involve spinal manipulative adjustments and posture improvements. Realignment of the spine to its normal condition and improving back muscle strength reduce the pressure on the the body organs and allow the unimpeded flow of nerve energy throughout the body. The normal gastoesophageal function is effectively restored with chiropractic care.

Chiropractic Care and Other Treatments for GERD

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Gastroesophageal reflux disease is a disorder in the lower esophageal sphincter that allows the acidic digestive juices and food in the stomach to flow back up into the esophagus. The most common symptom is burning pain from behind the breastbone moving up towards the throat. GERD is widely believed by medical professionals to be caused by either a weak or malfunctioning lower esophageal sphincter or very high volume of acid used in the digestion of food in the stomach, or both.

 

Treatment for GERD    

 

The common treatment methods for GERD try to address the production of too much digestive acid, and decrease the amount of reflux and the damage to the esophagus lining from refluxed materials.

 

  • Antacids are medications to help neutralize the acid in the stomach and esophagus and control heartburn. Nonprescription antacids may provide partial or temporary relief. Antacids when used with foaming agents, help prevent acid reflux from the stomach by blanketting the top of the stomach with foam that act as barriers.

 

When used long-term, antacids can have side effects such as diarrhea, altered metabolism of calcium in the body and excessive buildup of magnesium, which can have serious implications for kidney disease patients. A doctor’s advice should be sought when the use of antacids for more than two weeks is deemed necessary.

 

  • Medications to stop or inhibit acid production. Drugs described as ‘Proton Pump Inhibitors’ were developed and are being prescribed to stop the production of acid. Prevacid, Nexium, Prilosec, Zoton and Losec are common examples of this type of drugs. Another group of drugs called ‘H2 Blockers’ are also recommended to reduce acid in the stomach for digestion.

 

The use of these synthetic drugs changes the natural process of the body and presents adverse consequences. Acid needs to be produced by the body also for the metabolism of calcium for stronger bones. A study involving 135,000 people 50 years and older revealed that patients taking Proton Pump Inhibitors in high doses for over one year have 2.6 times higher chances of having broken hips.

 

  • Dietary changes. This involves:
  • avoiding foods and beverages that have been identified to weaken the lower esophageal sphincter including fried fatty foods, chocolate, peppermint, alcoholic beverages and coffee.
  • avoiding foods and beverages known to cause irritation to the damaged lining of the esophagus including citrus fruits, citrus juices, pepper and tomato products.
  • eating dinner at least two hours before bedtime to help lessen reflux, allow the gastric acid to decrease and let the stomach to partially empty.
  • decreasing the size of food portions every mealtime.

 

  • Lifestyle changes.
  • Losing weight is recommended as being overweight can worsen the symptoms of GERD.
  • The patients are advised to quit smoking. Smoking weakens the lower esophageal sphincter.

 

  • Chronic and long-term GERD can erode the gastroesophageal membranes and turn the cells into cancer. This is when surgery to remove the cancer cells and cut out the affected part in the organs comes in as a last option.

 

Chiropractic Care for GERD

 

Chiropractic care offers a natural, drug-free and non-invasive approach to treating GERD.

 

Chiropractic holds that a healthy nervous system is the key to the normal functioning of all body organs and that this comes from a properly aligned, subluxation-free spine. Abnormalities and misalignments or subluxations in the spine can put significant pressure on the spinal nerves and hinder their activities, which can cause disturbances of body organ function, including that of the stomach. When these abnormalities go untreated, the affected organ will be in a dysfunction and eventually, in a state of disease. Most of the time, the physical causes we attribute the disease to are actually effects of abnormalities in the nervous system. It is important to address the underlying causes of the disease, as chiropractic treatment does.

 

Recent studies show that some spinal abnormalities such as lumbar kyphosis, the abnormal lower spine curvature and increased hyper-kyphosis, the curvature of the mid-back spine have significant effects on the development of GERD and its symptoms.

 

Chiropractic care has resulted to significant reduction in the symptoms of the disease for many GERD sufferers. Chiropractic realignment of the spine of these patients helped decrease the pressure on the their internal organs allowing freer flow of nerve energy throughout their body. The normal gastroesopageal function is restored.

Nutritional and Chiropractic Care for GERD Sufferers

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Although not everyone is bothered by the same foods, if you have frequent heartburn or have been diagnosed with gastro-esophageal reflux disease (GERD), you should eliminate these foods from your diet. You may stop the burning from returning when you say “no” to the following foods:

 

Chocolate: It may be sweet for some, but for others, it causes the valve between the stomach and esophagus to relax – and that allows acid to move back up into the esophagus and trigger heartburn’s discomfort.

 

Citrus fruits: Avoid citrus fruits such as oranges, lemons, limes, and grapefruits whenever you can. If heartburn had a “10 most wanted” list, these triggers would probably be on it.

 

Ketchup and other tomato products: While this may put a dent in your plans for eating Italian and Mexican foods, you will not miss the heartburn they can cause. And if you are worried about losing out on lycopene, remember that watermelon, guava, papaya, and apricots also have lycopene. For best results, find ways to eat them with foods that have healthy fats or oils.

 

Mustard, pepper, onions, garlic, and vinegar: Spicy and acidic condiments can irritate the lining of your stomach and esophagus. Avoiding them could help you feel better.

 

High-fat foods: Not all fatty foods are bad, but avoid the ones that are high in saturated fats. These include fried foods with a lot of butter and oil, cream and meat sauces and soups, butter, margarine, meats, cheese, pizza, and mayonnaise.

 

Sweets and spices: You may also want to avoid spicy foods and sweets, which can cause heartburn to blaze as well.

 

As a replacement, you may indulge with cinnamons. Heartburn and GERD sufferers in ancient times relied on them to help their digestion. Today’s experts are not exactly sure how it works, but they suspect it may have something to do with how cinnamons heat up your stomach.

 

Supplement Treatment for GERD and Heartburn

 

Aside from nutritional changes, you can manage heartburn and GERD with some lifestyle changes, as well. These include engaging in regular exercise, quitting smoke and alcohol, and having complete rest every night,

 

Another practice to help you overcome digestive problems is chiropractic care. While spinal manipulations and adjustments do not directly touch the digestive system of the person, improving the nervous system and freeing it from damages can mean overall health and wellness, and this include getting rid of heartburn and digestive refluxes. Getting a regular chiropractic treatment can help you achieve optimum health free from negative conditions.

The Negative Effects of Caffeine to One’s Health

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Many of the food we eat contain caffeine. Coffee, tea, chocolate, soft drinks, and both prescription and nonprescription drugs have this substance.

 

Caffeine stimulates the central nervous system, thus we feel alive and energetic after consuming a food or drink with caffeine. It makes us feel and believe that it can help us stay alert the entire day. However, too much consumption of caffeine-rich food can bring negative health effects, such as the following:

 

  1. Caffeine raises the level of fatty acids in the blood.
  2. It causes various digestive problems, such as heartburn and GERD.
  3. It relaxes the muscles of your intestinal system, thus making digestion less effective.
  4. Caffeine has been shown to possibly cause miscarriage or may slow the growth of a developing fetus when given in doses greater than 300 mg (an amount equal to three cups of coffee) a day. Also, caffeine intake by the mother during pregnancy may affect the heart rhythm of the fetus.
  5. It can also cause ulcer by increasing the secretion of both acid and pepsin in the stomach, which could exacerbate an existing ulcer.
  6. It may cause certain heart diseases such as cardiac arrhythmias or irregular heartbeats. Doctors often advise patients with heart disease to avoid caffeine.
  7. It raises your blood pressure.
  8. It has a diuretic effect that causes increased and frequent urination.
  9. It can cause sleep deprivation, especially if caffeine intake is high and in the evening.
  10. Studies show that caffeine may cause decrease cone density and cause osteoporosis among women.
  11. It may also cause “caffeine nerves” which is characterized by palpitations, shaky hands, and wobbliness of the legs.
  12. It can result to caffeine addiction that causes nervousness, irritability, agitation, headaches or ringing in the ears.
  13. With excessive caffeine intake, your pancreas will have to produce extra insulin to reduce extra blood sugar. Thus, it will require your pancreas to overwork.
  14. If abused for so long, it can cause detrimental effects on the esophagus, increasing the risk of acquiring peptic ulcers, erosive esophagitis, and gastroesophageal reflux disease.
  15. Finally, it makes you more exhausted and less alert the next day when effects of caffeine are already gone.

 

While caffeine intake is not addictive, it can be habit forming. Taking too much caffeine can make you dependent on it that when stopped abruptly, such that you may experience headache, fatigue, or drowsiness. Because of this, you should avoid dependence on caffeine at the earliest possible time. Take caffeine at a minimal level, if it cannot be avoided completely.

 

How to Minimize Caffeine Intake

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It is a fact that too much caffeine is bad for the health.

 

Thus, if you are a coffee addict, you should ask yourself, what should I do about it?

 

The answer is easy. Eliminate your caffeine intake. Ooops! Better said than done, right? Caffeine intake is habit forming, And mind you, it does provide some kind of benefits such as helping you stay awake and making you feel more energetic

 

So how can you still enjoy the benefits of caffeine without taking too much of it? Here are some possible solutions:

 

  1. Take a brisk, 10-minute walk around the block to liven up your blood. The fresh air and the action can wake you up and calm your senses at the same time.

 

  1. Eat regularly and healthily to avoid feeling tired and draggy. Do not eat too much. Eating very large meals can make you feel sleepy, thus making you feel the need to reach for caffeine-infused drink or food.

 

  1. If you feel sleepy during the day, do some exercise or yoga. Be active throughout the day.

 

  1. Use substitutes. Drink herbal tea, hot or cider or decaffeinated coffee for caffeinated drinks instead.

 

  1. Stop smoking. Most people associate the need for coffee or other sources of caffeine with smoking.

 

  1. Ask the people around you, especially in your house to minimize caffeine intake. Seeing lesser people taking caffeine will get you become less tempted to get one too.

 

  1. Have to stay awake up to late at night? Grab an apple; same effect but healthier.

 

  1. Avoid stacking beverages containing caffeine in your house. When caffeine is out of reach, it is easier to control yourself and say no. Whereas if caffeine drinks is readily available at your house. The level of temptation is higher.

 

If you are overly dependent on caffeine, you may experience some withdrawal symptoms when you try to cut back. You may experience fatigue, headaches, craving, tiredness and feeling of lethargy, and confusion and inability to focus. It may also cause a dramatic drop in your blood pressure, muscle cramps, drowsiness and excessive sleeping.

 

Remember, therefore, to do it slowly. Do not stop abruptly, because it will only increase the withdrawal symptoms. You get used to taking caffeine slowly. You can take it out of your system only by doing it slowly too. Monitor your progress. Keep a logbook of your caffeine intake to see how well you are doing and if you are able to stick to your plan.

 

Cure that Tummy Ache in Three Simple Diet Habits

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The best way to prevent constipation and diarrhea is with permanent diet and lifestyle changes. But to get the most from your efforts, try these natural remedies that attack your symptoms and sometimes relieve more than one at the same time.

 

Alternating constipation and diarrhea can be one of the toughest conditions to handle. How can you try to relieve one when you know the other is probably coming soon? Believe it or not, three things can help you with both.

 

Try an apple a day. Whether your problem is visiting the bathroom too often or not often enough, apples can help. Just one apple with its skin contains 4 to 5 grams of fiber -the most important nutrient in keeping your bowels working regularly and smoothly. Get-ting back to normal without relying on harmful drugs could be as easy as replacing that afternoon snack of potato chips or cookies with a crisp, delicious apple.

 

Have some honey. Honey may ease constipation and clear up diarrhea associated with IBS – for those who can tolerate it. Against diarrhea caused by bacteria, for instance, research shows it could ease that bloated and cramped feeling. In fact, modem sci¬ence shows raw honey kills bacteria that even the most powerful antibiotics can’t handle.

 

But honey is also an age-old folk remedy for constipation. Mix one to two tablespoons of honey in a glass of water to get things moving again. If you can afford the calories (one tablespoon has 64), you may want to try three tablespoons of honey instead of one or two. Three tablespoons seems about twice as effective in bringing on a bowel movement. For some folks, three tablespoons could be better than fiber.

 

This cure works for many people because honey contains more fructose than glucose. Both of these are natural sugars. When foods are higher in fructose than glucose, you often aren’t able to absorb and digest the fructose very well. Your body has to get rid of the undigested sugar, so you have a bowel movement. Honey contains higher amounts of fructose in excess of glucose than any food except apples, pears, apple juice, or pear juice. So honey, apples, and pears can all be good natural laxatives.

 

Sip some psyllium. Although many people with bowel disorders have trouble absorbing the fructose found in honey and apples, they still have one more double-duty remedy to turn to – psyllium.

 

Psyllium comes from the husks of plant seeds and forms a gel in liquid. It is often recom-mended for IBS because the gel helps slow diarrhea but also fights constipation by keeping stools soft. It’s sold commercially as a powder you can mix into water, but you’ll also find it in breakfast cereals. Check your favorite to see if it has been fortified with this helpful fiber.

 

Teenagers and Repetitive Stress Injury

Rear view of a young man holding her neck in pain, isolated on white background, monochrome photo with red as a symbol for the hardening

Have you ever experience having pain in a particular part of your body because you keep on using it? One good example is having eye strain if you watch TV for hours without rest. Another situation you can probably relate to is when you over-exercise or stay too long in the gym. Don’t you feel soreness in your body the next day?

 

Repetitive stress injury or RSI is similar to the examples mentioned above, although more serious. RSI is a collective term for injuries that occur when there is too much stress put to a particular part of the body. Stress, in this case, refers to repeating a specific body motion over and over again. Often, RSI results to inflammation of the area where pain and swelling are present, tissue damage, or muscle strain.

 

RSI is normally brought about by work-related activities and are common to adults, particularly those who use the computer keyword often. When you keep on typing for 8 hours a day, every day, you are putting too much stress on your hands and wrists that eventually will lead to injury. This is how RSI usually occurs, and is very common among typists, encoders, programmers, secretaries, and other office employees.

 

RSI and Teenagers

 

While RSI is often experienced by working adults, it is also now becoming prevalent among teenagers because of the time they spend on computers and video games. Engaging in sports such as tennis and playing musical instruments are also common causes of RSI on teenagers.

 

In general, there are over 100 different kinds of repetitive stress injuries brought about by the wear and tear of the body. In teenagers, the parts of the body that are often affected by RSI include the shoulders, elbows, heels, and knees.

 

What Teenagers Can Do to Prevent RSI

 

Adolescence is the time when boys and girls start to identify their passions and desires in life, and when they do, it’s as if no one can stop them from practicing what they like. This is why you can see them spending the whole day playing video games or sitting in front of the computer, or spending the entire weekend for band practice or sports training. As they push themselves to their limit, their body reacts in a way that is easily distinguished – through RSI.

 

Here are some helpful ways that you can advise teenagers so they won’t experience repetitive stress injuries as they explore their adolescence.

 

  1. Monitor teenagers’ use of computer and video games at home. Remind them to take a break every so often by standing up, moving around, and doing some stretching, especially the parts of the body that are most prone to injuries.

 

  1. Let them observe proper posture when sitting in front of the computer. Make sure that the computer screen is within their eye level and their back is rested well on the chair. Moreover, instruct them to place the keyboard and mouse close to their arms or body so they don’t exert much effort when typing or clicking.

 

  1. Use an ergonomic computer chair that provides lumbar support for the lower back, making sitting in front of the computer comfortable and easy.

 

  1. When engaging in sports, remind them to always do a warm up, cool down, and stretching exercise to properly prepare their body for the activity. Also, make sure that they wear proper clothing and protective gears, if necessary.

 

  1. Teenagers must drink plenty of fluids and keep themselves hydrated at all times. This will help prevent tightening of muscles that may lead to RSI.

 

  1. Teenagers must vary day-to-day activities. For example, alternate playing sports with running and swimming so ensure that all body parts are being used and not just a particular area. They should do eye-exercises to minimize eye strain from constant reading and scrolling their phones.

 

  1. Whenever they start to feel any pain in the body, teenagers must not neglect this symptom and should immediately consult their doctor for diagnosis and possible cure.

 

Teenagers are expected to be active and vigorous. However, they should also be mindful about the intensity of their activities to prevent repetitive stress injuries.