January 2011 Newsletter

Good Fat versus Bad Fat

Planning to do a lot of cooking this month?
Remember when any fat was bad fat? Now that science has found that some fats are good, it's all about avoiding the bad guys. Here's a simple list that rates fats, from the best to the don't-even-think-about-its.

    Acids Among the best fats on the planet, omega-3s add years to your life by dramatically reducing the risk of heart attack and stroke. They may also stave off arthritis, depression, and some cancers. Eat these frequently: Fatty fish, such as wild salmon, sardines, herring, tuna, flaxseeds, flaxseed oil and walnuts.

    All monounsaturated fats are kind to your heart because they raise good HDL cholesterol and lower bad LDL cholesterol (the kind that clogs arteries). Delicious sources are: olives, virgin olive oil, canola oil, peanut and other nut oils, nuts and avocados.

    Most polyunsaturated fats are heart-friendly. Find them in: corn, soybean, safflower, canola, sunflower oil and fatty fish (canned light tuna counts)...Read more about the "lousy fats" and the "don't even think about 'em fats".

Probiotics Strains Could Help Relieve Stress

For those who thought probiotics were just for your digestive health, we've got some news for you.

New research published in the British Journal of Nutrition shows that two particular strains of probiotics - Lactobacillus helveticus and Bifidobacterium longum - have "beneficial psychological effects in humans" and may play a key role in reducing some people's anxiety.

The research by French scientists found that "levels of psychological distress, including measures of depression, anger-hostility, anxiety, and problem solving, were significantly improved in the probiotic group, compared with placebo."

These results provide further evidence that gut microflora play a role in stress, anxiety and depression, perhaps via the enteric nervous system as well as centrally. Subject to the confirmation of these results, probiotics might offer a useful novel therapeutic approach to neuropathological disorders and/or as adjunct therapies in psychiatric disorders.

Research has shown probiotics to support immunity, as well as other important areas of one's health. Probiotics, tiny microorganisms that help maintain a healthy balance of essential bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract, are becoming increasingly popular in today's health & nutrition market.

It is important to understand, though, that while some products claim to provide large quantities of probiotics, the diversity of strains, total bacterial count and protection of the probiotics are key elements in a powerful product.

Hormone Replacement Increases Kidney Stone Risk

Women who take hormone replacement after menopause are at increased risk of developing kidney stones, new research shows.

"It doesn't mean that women should stop taking hormone therapy based on this fact, but it does need to be taken into account when deciding to take the hormones or not," Dr. Naim M. Maalouf of the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, one of the study's authors, told Reuters Health.

He says that from 5 to 7 percent of postmenopausal women in the U.S. suffer from kidney stones. Kidney stones aren't just extremely painful when they are passed out of the bladder; "people who have kidney stones over time tend to have more kidney damage," Maalouf said...Read more about Dr. Maalouf's research on hormone replacement and kidney stones.

Did You Know???

  • Probiotics need to be fed.

    The good bacteria (probiotic) that thrive in your stomach require food (prebiotics). Berries, bananas, legumes,onions and whole grains feed the probiotics you receive from such foods as yogurt, tempeh, and cottage cheese.

  • Spices can relieve nausea.

    Ginger and Cinnamon have nausea-and diarrhea- controlling properties. Cinnamon helps "relieve abdominal spasms due to gas and constipation."

  • Going back to school can be exciting, but also stressful for kids and teens with inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD).

    Here are some great tips to share on managing IBD at all levels of education:

    1. Meet with your school nurse to discuss and establish a medication schedule
    2. Create a plan now for future absences -- include ways to get assignments and class notes and how you will make up exams
    3. Make an accommodations checklist -- determine if you will need an unlimited bathroom pass, water bottle, supply bag, rest period, or other accommodations.

  • Western diet has changed our biological environment.

    Our health depends on having the right collection of bacteria in our guts to break down and metabolize food. But the Western diet--low in fiber, rich in fat--is changing that biological environment, with troubling consequences.

    A team of Italian researchers compared the gut microbes of European children with those of children in Burkina Faso, Africa, whose high-fiber diet of legumes, millet, sorghum, and vegetables closely resembles what humans ate 10,000 years ago. The gut microflora of African children turned out to be both more populous and more diverse, which also contained bacteria that protect them from allergies.
In this Issue:
Good Fat versus Bad Fat

Probiotics Strains to Relieve Stress

Hormone Replacement Increases Kidney Stone Risk

Did You Know???

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