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Nutrition Archives - New Malaysia News

Pizza Bread
It’s so easy to go to the grocery store and pick up a loaf of bread, but what if you made your own delicious pizza bread from home? This sun-dried tomato filled Pizza Bread is for you if you 1) have never made bread before, 2) haven’t made bread before but would like to without it taking hours, or 3) if you want to have fun in the kitchen making something homemade and delicious that tastes exactly like pizza, but isn’t pizza! The Best Pizza Bread I’m biased here, but truly, this gluten-free sandwich bread is as good as making a quick, healthy, and the delicious homemade bread gets. Our family makes homemade sourdough, which I would love to get into and learn more about, but until then, we have this easy blender bread that gets only a couple dishes dirty and cooks for about 40 minutes. The batter is incredibly simple to make by putting all the wet ingredients in a high-speed blender until creamy, then stirring the dry ingredients including the star ingredient sun-dried tomatoes, which really gives this bread a savory and slightly sweet flavor. If you don’t happen to love sun-dried tomatoes or you want to try another variation of this bread, here are a couple you might enjoy too: artichoke hearts black olives golden raisins (omit the dried herbs in the recipe and add ground cinnamon) I can easily eat a whole loaf of this bread by myself in one week. I love enjoying it for toast with avocado, like sandwich bread, or slathered in non-dairy Classic Cashew Cheese with a sprinkle of salt, pepper, and fresh basil. Another delicious way to enjoy this is Cheesy Dust and a drizzle of high-quality olive oil with fresh black pepper, it’s so delicious. But if you’re not so keen on eating it all in one week or sharing, you can easily freeze this for later. To freeze, I recommend allowing the bread to completely cool, slice, then lay each sliced in a single layer in an airtight glass container. The post Pizza Bread appeared first on Nutrition Stripped. [...]
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A Super Healthy Plant-Based Diet vs. Diabetes
We’ve known that type 2 diabetes could be reversed by an extreme reduction in food intake for nearly a century and a half, since the 1870 siege of Paris during the Franco-Prussian War. This has been demonstrated experimentally. By starving people enough, you can reverse diabetes. Diabetes specialists “have long known that the tiny proportion of iron-willed people [with diabetes] who can substantially decrease their weight and maintain this, can exhibit a return to normal metabolism.” “A label is required to allow doctors to recognize and appropriately manage this subgroup who were willing to do anything to get rid of their diabetes. These are the Health Motivated. At the time of diagnosis, the Health-Motivated individuals will benefit from being advised that they are likely to be able to reverse their diabetes completely” by losing up to one-fifth of their body weight. And then—and only then—if they “show that they are not sufficiently strongly motivated should the routine guidelines for managing Type 2 diabetes be rolled out,” which include lots of drugs. Unfortunately, the control of blood sugar with medication has proven to be unsustainable and may actually exacerbate obesity, making us put on more weight and, thus, creating a vicious cycle. There has got to be a better way. Instead of starving oneself by eating less food, what if we just ate better food? What if we ate a diet that emphasizes all-you-can-eat greens, lots of vegetables, beans, nuts, seeds, and some whole grains, and is at least 90 percent plant-based? This would be a diet including at least one big salad every day (like a pound of raw greens), veggie-bean soup, a handful of nuts and seeds, fruit at every meal, a pound of cooked greens, and some whole grains, but no refined grains, junk food, or oil, and a restriction on animal products. Thirteen diabetic men and women followed this diet for an average of seven months. How did they do? Hemoglobin A1C is considered the best measure of blood sugar control. Below six is normal—that is, non-diabetic. The official American Diabetes Association target, however, is to get diabetics at least down to seven. Anything above seven is uncontrolled diabetes. In my video Reversing Diabetes with Food, you can see a stunning chart that plots how the study participants’ hemoglobin A1C levels responded over time after they start plowing in the plants. All subjects had had diabetes for at least seven years, and they started off with hemoglobin A1C levels ranging from as low as 6 to as high as 12. After they began following the plant-heavy diet, their levels consistently dropped, month after month. After about seven months, their average A1C dropped from a diabetic 8.2 down to a non-diabetic 5.8. The majority dropped down to normal, and this is after dropping most of their medications. Now, this was a pilot study with only a handful of people, no control group, and including only people who could actually stick to the diet—essentially, a retrospective case series, considered one of the weakest forms of published evidence. However, the magnitude of the effect they found indicates that a high nutrient-density diet can be very effective for some people. In Reversing Diabetes with Surgery, another one of my videos, I discussed how type 2 diabetes can be reversed with an extremely low-calorie diet. And, as I’ve just shown, type 2 diabetes can also be reversed with an extremely healthy diet—but is that because it is also low in calories? That’s the million-dollar question I answer in Diabetes Reversal: Is It the Calories or the Food?. You may be aware that I’ve touched previously on the ability of healthy diets to prevent and treat type 2 diabetes. (See Plant-Based Diets and Diabetes and Plant-Based Diets for Diabetes if you haven’t yet watched those videos or want a refresher.) It’s so exciting to be plugging in the final puzzle pieces. What about the benefits of blood sugar medications and more moderate diets? I discuss that topic in When Drugs and Diets Don’t Lower Diabetes Deaths. Other videos of interest include: What Causes Insulin Resistance? How Not to Die from Diabetes Curing Painful Diabetic Neuropathy Can Vinegar Help with Blood Sugar Control? In health, Michael Greger, M.D. PS: If you haven’t yet, you can subscribe to my free videos here and watch my live, year-in-review presentations: 2012: Uprooting the Leading Causes of Death 2013: More Than an Apple a Day 2014: From Table to Able: Combating Disabling Diseases with Food 2015: Food as Medicine: Preventing and Treating the Most Dreaded Diseases with Diet 2016: How Not To Die: The Role of Diet in Preventing, Arresting, and Reversing Our Top 15 Killers   [...]
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Simple Sun-Dried Tomato Pasta
Need a delicious and hearty pasta in under 20 minutes? This is your go-to and it’s a crowd-pleaser. If you make this a meal, add a protein of your choice, or enjoy it on the side since this pasta dish is rich in carbohydrates. Hello, blood sugar balance. Tomatoes are really the star of this recipe, and here’s why: they’re a major dietary source of the antioxidant lycopene, which has been linked to many health benefits, including reduced risk of heart disease and cancer. They are also a great source of vitamin C, potassium, folate and vitamin K. Pasta Time Beet Marinara with Brown Rice Pasta Fig Zucchini Pasta with Hemp Seed Crumble Zucchini Pasta with Roasted Pumpkin Sauce This quick, delicious and hearty pasta dish is a great emergency meal for the entire family! It's #glutenfree friendly too. #nutritionstripped Tweet Trying It? If you make this dish, I want to see how it turns out! Submit your photo directly on this post in the comments section below, and share on Instagram by tagging @nutritionstripped #nutritionstripped. Happy cooking! xx McKel The post Simple Sun-Dried Tomato Pasta appeared first on Nutrition Stripped. [...]
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How to Reverse Type 2 Diabetes
Diabetes reversal, not just treatment, should be a goal in the management of type 2 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes can be reversed not only with an extremely low calorie diet, but it can also be reversed with an extremely healthy diet. Could it be because an extremely healthy diet is also low in calories? This is the topic of my video Diabetes Reversal: Is It the Calories or the Food. Study subjects lost as much weight on a green, leafy vegetable-packed plant-based diet as those who were on a semi-starvation diet based on liquid meal replacements. So, does it matter what we’re eating as long as we’re eating few enough calories to lose 15 pounds a month? Even if diabetes reversal is just about calorie restriction, instead of subsisting off largely sugar, powdered milk, corn syrup, and oil (common ingredients in some liquid diet drinks) on the plant-based diet at least one can eat real food—in fact, as many low-cal veggies as desired. So, even if it only works because it’s just another type of calorie-restricted diet, it’s certainly a healthier version. But, even participants in the study who did not lose weight—or even gained weight eating enormous quantities of whole healthy plant foods—appeared to improve their diabetes. Thus, the beneficial effects of this kind of diet appear to extend beyond weight loss. The successful treatment of type 2 diabetes with a plant-based diet goes back to the 1930s, providing “incontestable evidence” that a diet centered around vegetables, fruits, grains, and beans was more effective in controlling diabetes than any other dietary treatment. In a randomized controlled trial, insulin needs were cut in half and a quarter of the subjects ended up off insulin altogether. But, again, this was a low-calorie diet. Walter Kempner at Duke University School of Medicine reported similar results 20 years later with his rice and fruit diet studies, showing for the first time documented reversal of diabetic retinopathy in a quarter of his patients, something never even thought possible. One patient, for example, was a 60-year-old diabetic woman already blind in one eye and who could only see contours of large objects with the other. Five years later, while on the diet, instead of her vision getting worse, it got better. She “could make out faces and read signs and large newspaper print,” and got off insulin, had normal blood sugars, and had a 100-point drop in her cholesterol. Another patient went from only being able to read big headlines to being able to read newsprint four months later. What was behind these remarkable reversals? Was it because the diet was extremely low-fat or because there was no animal protein or animal fat? Or, was it because the diet was so restrictive and monotonous that the patients lost weight and improved their diabetes that way? To tease this out, we needed a study where researchers switched people to a healthy diet, but forced them to eat so much they didn’t lose any weight. Then, we could see if a plant-based diet has unique benefits independent of all the weight loss. For that, we had to wait another 20 years until a study in the 1970s. In it, diets were designed to be weight-maintaining. Participants were weighed every day, and, if they started losing weight, the researchers made them eat more food—in fact, so much food that some of the participants had trouble eating it all, but they eventually adapted. Thus, there were no significant alterations in body weight despite restrictions of meat, dairy, eggs and processed junk, and there were enough whole plant foods—whole grains, beans, vegetables, and fruit—to provide 65 grams of fiber a day, four times what the Standard American Diet provides. The control diet they used was the conventional diabetic diet, which actually had nearly twice the fiber content of the Standard American Diet, so it was probably healthier than what they had been used to eating. So, how did the even healthier diet group do? With zero weight loss, did the dietary intervention still help? The study compared the number of units of insulin with which subjects had to inject themselves daily before and after going on the plant-based diet. Overall, despite no change in weight, insulin requirements were cut about 60 percent, and half of the diabetics were able to get off insulin altogether. Was this after five years, or after seven months, as had been the case in the other studies discussed above? No. It was after 16 days. To be clear, we’re talking about diabetics who had had diabetes as long as 20 years, injecting 20 units of insulin a day, getting off insulin altogether in as few as 13 days, thanks to less than two weeks on a plant-based diet. Patient 15, for example, had injected 32 units of insulin while on the control diet, and then, 18 days later, none. Lower blood sugars on 32 units less insulin. That’s the power of plants. As a bonus, their cholesterol dropped like a rock to under 150 on average in 16 days, making them nearly heart attack proof as well. Just as “moderate changes in diet usually result in only modest reductions” in cholesterol, asking people with diabetes to make moderate changes often achieves equally moderate results, which is one possible reason why most end up on oral drugs, injections, or both. Everything in moderation may be a truer statement than people realize. Moderate changes in diet can leave one with moderate blindness, moderate kidney failure, moderate amputations. Moderation in all things is not necessarily a good thing. The more we, as physicians, ask from our patients, the more we—and they—get. The old adage, “shoot for the moon,” seems to apply. It “may be more effective than limiting patients to small steps that may sound more manageable but are not sufficient to actually prevent disease progression.” Although I have dozens of videos about diabetes, I think Diabetes Reversal: Is It the Calories or the Food may be the single most powerf [...]
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How to Cleanse and Clear Your Home
When new seasons hit, it’s time to cleanse and clear your home. With new beginnings in mind, there’s no better time to give your home a good scrub-down and organizational makeover. In case you missed it, check out this article about mindfulness shifts and the importance of improving your space to stay committed to your goals — no matter what they are. Assigning meaning to the space around you will help you be more purposeful and cultivate the lifestyle you want. Today, I’m sharing some of my tips and tricks for de-cluttering and organizing your home. 5 Ways to Get Your Home Ready for a New Season 1. Edit your closets and pantry First things first, you want to do a good edit of your closets and pantry in every room of your home. Are you maximizing the space you have? Do you really need everything you store inside them? If you can’t find a reason to keep something, then it probably means you don’t need it. Just like we talked about in the organized pantry article I used bins, jars, and turntables to help me stock everything from spices and herbs to protein powders, beans, flours, and healthy snacks. Organizing your closets can be tricky because they hold all your clothing for every season. My advice is to assign items for each of your closets. For example, one closet will house bed sheets, blankets, towels, and tablecloths. Another closet will store your coats and shoes. Put away non-seasonal things, like swimwear and shorts into separate bins, and keep your winter items such as heavy coats and sweaters front and center. This way you don’t have to go digging for them. To ensure you’re not holding on to things you don’t need, go through your closet and gather everything that you don’t love or really use. Then put those items in a bag and after a couple of months donate or get rid of anything you don’t reach for in that time period. If you don’t miss it in a few months time, it’s likely you don’t really need it or benefit from having it around. Pantry Organization Buy Now GlassLock Glass Containers Buy Now Container Store Tosca Basket 2. Assign purpose to each area and space When there’s chaos in your home, there’s chaos in your life. Learning how to say no can be hard, but letting go of items that no longer serve you will invite some clarity in your space. That’s why it’s important to assign a purpose to every area. Your living room, for example, is meant for lounging and relaxation, so use baskets to separate magazines and newspapers from games and cards and television remotes. In your home office, take time to get rid of unnecessary papers in your desk drawers. Organize the papers you want to keep in folders and use small compartments to store pens, paper clips, staples, and other office items. Your bedroom is your sleep sanctuary, so make sure to build it with what dreams are made of. First step? Invest in a quality mattress and if you can, choose one that is eco-friendly and non-toxic. A few months ago, I swapped out my old mattress for a mattress from Avocado Green Mattress. I love the brand because their mattresses are made out of organic and biodegradable materials rather than synthetic and potentially harmful chemicals. Mattress Buy Now Avocado Organic Mattress I also think it’s important to keep bedroom clutter to a minimum. Make sure to pick up clothing off the floor — hang it up, throw it into the laundry hamper or fold it and put it away. You also want to keep surfaces on your nightstand and dressers clutter-free. We tend to take everything into the bedroom — magazines, bills, coffee mugs. Minimizing the number of things on these surfaces will prevent you from feeling stressed out.  3. Take inventory Raise your hand if you own one too many tote bags or water bottles? Guilty! We all have those things that just seem to build up in our home. Take the same approach with these things as you do with your closet by having a designated bin in your home to put the things you want to get rid of. Take inventory of these items and once a month, donate them to a homeless shelter or thrift store. We all harbor sentimental items that we feel bad for throwing away. Concert tickets, birthday cards, and letters are often tied to good memories, and throwing them away makes us feel like we want to forget about them. But the truth is those things are just another form of clutter. Clearing these items from your drawers will help free up space for things you do need and metaphorically, help you move forward. 4. Dust furniture and clean surfaces and floors Now that you’ve organized your home, it’s time to actually get cleaning! I like microfiber cleaning cloths because they leach onto dust, particles, and dirt. Use a wood polish to dust off your furniture and an all-purpose cleaner for kitchen counters, stovetops, and refrigerator shelves. Disinfectant sprays are perfect for bathroom floors and counters since they’ve been exposed to bacteria, germs, and bodily fluids. Air Purifier Buy Now Intellipure Air Purifier I also can’t overstate how important it is to ensure that you’re breathing good, clean air while you’re at home. I k [...]
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Do Flaxseeds Offer Sufficient Omega-3’s for Our Heart?
According to two of perhaps the most credible nutrition authorities, the World Health Organization and the European Food Safety Authority, we should get at least half of a percent of our calories from the essential omega-3 fat ALA. That’s easy: Just have about one tablespoon a day of chia seeds or ground flaxseeds and you’re all set. Our body can then take the short-chain ALA from our diet and elongate it into the long-chain omega-3s, EPA and DHA. The question, however, has long been whether our bodies can make enough EPA and DHA for optimal health. How would one determine that? Take fiber, for example. “A convincing body of literature showed an increased [heart disease] risk when diets were low in fiber,” so the Institute of Medicine came up with a recommendation for about 30 grams a day, which is an intake observed to protect against coronary heart disease and to reduce constipation. “Thus, just as [cardiovascular disease] was used to help establish an [adequate intake] for dietary fiber,” it was also used as a way to develop a recommendation for EPA and DHA, as I discuss in my video Should We Take EPA and DHA Omega-3 for Our Heart?. With reviews published as late as 2009 suggesting fish oil capsules may help with heart disease, nutrition authorities recommended an additional 250 mg per day of preformed EPA and DHA, since, evidently, we were not making enough on our own if taking more helped. So, in addition to the one or two grams of ALA, it was suggested we should take 250 mg of preformed DHA/EPA, which can be gotten from fish or algae. Fish is a tough one. On one hand, fish has preformed DHA and EPA, but, on the other hand, our oceans have become so polluted that seafood may also contain various pollutants, including dioxins, PCBs, pesticides like DDT, flame-retardant chemicals, and heavy metals, including mercury, lead, and cadmium, all of which can negatively affect human health. Dietary exposure to PCBs, for example, is associated with increased risk of stroke in general and an almost three times higher risk of hemorrhagic stroke. Unless you live next to a toxic waste dump, the major  source of exposure to PCBs is fish consumption. Salmon may be the worst. This may explain why studies in the United States have shown that just a single serving of fish a week may significantly increase one’s risk of diabetes, emphasizing that even levels of these pollutants once considered safe may “completely counteract the potential benefits of [the omega-3] fatty acids and other nutrients present in fish,” and lead to the type of metabolic disturbances that often precede type 2 diabetes. Now, one could get their daily 250 mg of preformed DHA/EPA from algae oil rather than fish oil. Algae oil is free of toxic contaminants because it is manufactured without pollutant exposure.  Then, one could get the best of both worlds: the beneficial nutrients without the harmful contaminants. However, it was demonstrated recently that these long-chain omega-3s don’t seem to help with preventing or treating heart disease after all. Since that was the main reason we thought people should get that extra 250 mg of preformed EPA and DHA, why do I still recommend following the guidelines in my Optimum Nutrition Recommendations? Because the recommendations were not just based on heart health, but brain health, as well. See my video Should We Take DHA Supplements to Boost Brain Function?. Other omega-3 videos include: Fish Consumption and Suicide Omega-3s, Prostate Cancer, and Atrial Fibrillation Omega-3s and the Eskimo Fish Tale Should Vegans Take DHA to Preserve Brain Function? Which Are Better: Chia Seeds or Flax Seeds? If the no-heart-benefit surprised you, check out Is Fish Oil Just Snake Oil?. Surprised by the link with diabetes and want to learn more? See: Fish and Diabetes Diabetes and Dioxins Pollutants in Salmon and Our Own Fat Food Sources of PCB Chemical Pollutants has more on PCBs, and here are additional videos on other pollutants: Dioxins in U.S. Farm-Raised Catfish Dietary Pollutants May Affect Testosterone Levels Flame Retardant Pollutants and Child Development In health, Michael Greger, M.D. PS: If you haven’t yet, you can subscribe to my free videos here and watch my live, year-in-review presentations: 2012: Uprooting the Leading Causes of Death 2013: More Than an Apple a Day 2014: From Table to Able: Combating Disabling Diseases with Food 2015: Food as Medicine: Preventing and Treating the Most Dreaded Diseases with Diet 2016: How Not To Die: The Role of Diet in Preventing, Arresting, and Reversing Our Top 15 Killers [...]
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Get My Favorite Apron (and New Fall Shirts!)
You may remember the fun broccoli apron I wore in my “In the Kitchen” videos (here and here). These aprons are back by popular demand, along with a fun new t-shirt and sweatshirt, designed by our talented summer intern (thank you, Bryan!).  Support the continued nonprofit work of NutritionFacts.org and look cruciferocious at the same time! This limited-time fundraiser runs through October 4. Get your swag at http://bit.ly/NutritionFactscollection.  Now on Facebook Watch If you follow NutritionFacts.org on Facebook, you might have noticed a few changes in the way our page looks. That’s because we are now a Watch page. Facebook saw that our primary content was video and invited us to convert over. Now if you follow us there, you’ll be notified when new episodes are added, while still seeing all of our great non-video content.          Calling More Volunteers We are seeking volunteers experienced in translating into Sanskrit-Hindi to help make our videos more accessible to the Indian community and also looking for volunteers fluent in Mandarin with a medical or nutrition background to help answer questions on our Chinese Social Media profiles. For more information and to apply, visit NutritionFacts.org/volunteer.             Federal Employee CFC Are you a federal worker? You can show some love for evidence-based nutrition by giving to NutritionFacts.org through the CFC workplace giving program. Be sure to look for us in the upcoming enrollment period, with designation number 26461.         Live Q&A TODAY Every month now I do Q&As live from my treadmill, and today, Sept 27 is the day. Facebook Live: At 12:00 p.m. ET TODAY go to our Facebook page to watch live and ask questions. YouTube Live Stream: At 1:00 p.m. ET TODAY go here to watch live and ask even more questions!  You can now find links to all of my past live YouTube and Facebook Q&As right here. If that’s not enough, remember I have an audio podcast to keep you company at http://nutritionfacts.org/audio.   In health, Michael Greger, M.D. PS: If you haven’t yet, you can subscribe to my free videos here and watch my live, year-in-review presentations: 2012: Uprooting the Leading Causes of Death 2013: More Than an Apple a Day 2014: From Table to Able: Combating Disabling Diseases with Food 2015: Food as Medicine: Preventing and Treating the Most Dreaded Diseases with Diet 2016: How Not To Die: The Role of Diet in Preventing, Arresting, and Reversing Our Top 15 Killers [...]
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The Salad That’ll Make You Love Celery and Olives
This Celery Olive Salad is the salad that’ll make you love celery and olives. As if you need another reason to enjoy celery, one of the crunchiest and most hydrating vegetables. If you didn’t catch on to the sarcasm, I’ll call it out here. So many of us don’t enjoy celery plain, most people find it a bit of a boring vegetable, sometimes bitter, sometimes slathered in peanut butter with raisins or cream cheese (ants on a log anyone?). But rarely are people celebrating this crunchy vegetable on its own! Like cucumbers, celery is made up mostly of water and fiber and has a mild flavor and crunchy texture. The Side Salad You Never Knew You Needed It’s great to have a handful of side salads that you can whip up anytime you need to boost a meal with more vegetables. From Massaged Kale Salad to Radish Salad, salads are a great way to make vegetables a little more exciting! One of my biggest hacks for making salads more interesting and ones that you’ll actually really enjoy eating is to play up the texture. Celery has one of the most interesting vegetable textures, it’s extremely crunchy, can be cut, diced, and thinly sliced in so many ways where it feels like you’re eating a different vegetable every time. Celery also has a pretty neutral flavor, one that’s a little sweet and sometimes a little bitter, but always absorbs what flavors you have around it making it a great vegetable to mix with others. First things first, I’ll be addressing the health benefits of celery (and celery juice for that matter) in great detail coming up in its own article because that deserves some space and nutrition myth busting. In the meantime, do you know much about the health benefits or nutrition behind olives? What Are The Health Benefits of Olives? Olives are used in so many cultures and regions of the world and for good reason! Olives taste delicious, they add a salty bite to any meal, and not to mention add some healthy monounsaturated fats. But wait, did you know that olives are actually a fruit? Yes! Just like avocados are technically a fruit, yet we consider both of these whole foods a healthy fat because they’re generally made up of more healthy fats than carbohydrates — how we typically define fruit.   The post The Salad That’ll Make You Love Celery and Olives appeared first on Nutrition Stripped. [...]
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Raw vs. Cooked Garlic and Onions for Blood Thinning
As we age, our arteries stiffen. In my video Inhibiting Platelet Activation with Garlic and Onions, you can see charts showing measurements of the stiffness of our aorta, the main artery coming off the heart, as we get older and older. “As the aorta stiffens it leads to a range of linked pathphysiological changes,” such as exposing our brain and kidneys to greater pressure fluctuations, which may increase the risk of stroke and impairment of kidney function. However, those who consume garlic—less than a quarter teaspoon of garlic powder a day—appear to have less stiffness in their aortas. We think this is because garlic seems to improve the function of the inner lining of our arteries, which helps our arteries relax. But the protective mechanisms of garlic against cardiovascular diseases are multiple, and include a combination of anti-clotting, clot-busting, antioxidant, and blood pressure- and cholesterol-lowering effects. The latest review suggests that long-term garlic intake may drop bad cholesterol levels about 10 percent, and the blood-thinning effects are such that the American Society of Anesthesiology recommends garlic intake be stopped a week before elective surgery. Or, presumably, you could just cook it to death. Unlike the anticlotting components concentrated in the yellow fluid around tomato seeds, which are heat stable, the antiplatelet activity in garlic and onions is lost with cooking. When comparing  platelet inhibition, garlic appears about 13 times more potent than onion, and eating garlic raw appears to be better than cooked. This suggests that “garlic and onion could be more potent inhibitors of blood [clotting] if consumed in raw than in cooked or boiled form.” So, it might be good to cook garlic right before surgery, but what about the rest of the time when we’re trying to suppress platelet over-activity to decrease the risk of heart attacks and stroke? “As garlic and onion are normally consumed in cooked food, their efficacy as preventive herbs in cardiovascular disease may be doubtful.” But, we can put some raw onion on salads and raw garlic in salsa, dressings, dips, or pesto, right? Or, we can crush or chop it, wait ten minutes, and then cook it. Researchers demonstrated the platelet-inhibiting power of raw garlic. If you cook it for just a few minutes, it does fine; but after cooking for about five minutes, the benefit is abolished. If, however, you pre-crush the garlic and wait, some of the antiplatelet activity is retained a bit longer. That’s because the enzyme that makes the antiplatelet compounds is activated by crushing but destroyed by heat faster than it creates the compounds. So, by crushing first and letting the enzyme work its magic before cooking, one can delay the loss of function. Even better, though, is that, (as I discussed in my video Second Strategy to Cooking Broccoli with mustard powder), the addition of a little raw garlic juice to cooked garlic can restore the “full complement of antiplatelet activity that was completely lost without the [raw] garlic addition.” When onions are cooked, the antiplatelet activity is similarly abolished within ten minutes, but then something strange happens. After 20 or 30 minutes of cooking, the effect on platelets is reversed and appears to make matters worse. Significant pro-platelet activation effects are seen, “suggesting that extensively cooked onions may stimulate rather than inhibit” platelets. That was in a test tube, though. Thankfully, when tested in people, even when onions are dropped in boiling water, fried for 10 minutes, and then left to simmer for 30 minutes, platelet activation drops within one to three hours after eating onion soup. For background on what platelets are, what they do, and why we should care, see Inhibiting Platelet Aggregation with Berries and Inhibiting Platelet Activation with Tomato Seeds. What else can garlic do? Check out: Cancer, Interrupted: Garlic and Flavonoids Garlic and Raisins to Prevent Premature Birth #1 Anticancer Vegetable Food Synergy What was that about mustard powder boosting the benefits of broccoli? See my Second Strategy to Cooking Broccoli video. Broccoli is also a potent activator of our liver’s detoxifying enzymes. Learn more in my Best Food to Counter the Effects of Air Pollution video. Wondering whether it’s better to cook vegetables or eat them raw? See Best Cooking Method and for a surprise update, The Best Way to Cook Sweet Potatoes. In health, Michael Greger, M.D. PS: If you haven’t yet, you can subscribe to my free videos here and watch my live, year-in-review presentations: 2012: Uprooting the Leading Causes of Death 2013: More Than an Apple a Day 2014: From Table to Able: Combating Disabling Diseases with Food 2015: Food as Medicine: Preventing and Treating the Most Dreaded Diseases with Diet 2016: How Not To Die: The Role of Diet in Preventing, Arresting, and Reversing Our Top 15 Killers [...]
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Breakfast Polenta with Spinach & Cherry Tomatoes
Brinner: breakfast for dinner. I’m in the group of people who love eating dinner for breakfast and breakfast for dinner — both are equally delicious and a great way to switch up meal time! I recommend saving time and getting organic quick-cooking polenta, topped with a scrambled or poached egg — your choice! — and maple syrup for the sweet variation or sriracha for some savory spice. Polenta is the star of this recipe, and here’s why: it’s a great grain-free alternative. Polenta is also a natural and excellent source of carotenoids, and it’s good to note that they’re easier to digest when they’re paired with some sort of healthy fat. Breakfast for Dinner Baked Eggs with Garlic Kale and Sun-dried Tomatoes Poached Egg Plate with Castelvetrano Olive Butter Veggie Tofu Scramble with Herb Chutney Breakfast for dinner — you dig it? Bonus: this one's protein-rich and full of nutrients. #nutritionstripped Tweet Trying It? If you make this breakfast polenta recipe, I want to see how it turns out! Submit your photo directly on this post in the comments section below, and share on Instagram by tagging @nutritionstripped #nutritionstripped. Happy cooking! xx McKel   The post Breakfast Polenta with Spinach & Cherry Tomatoes appeared first on Nutrition Stripped. [...]
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Alzheimer’s Disease and Dietary Copper
Though the underlying cause of Alzheimer’s disease has yet to be found, there is increasing concern about the role of metals in the development of the disease, as I discuss in my video Alzheimer’s Disease, Copper, and Saturated Fat. “Iron and copper,” for example, “are strongly concentrated within the neuritic plaques and neurofibrillary tangles that represent the hallmarks of the [Alzheimer’s] brain.” Alzheimer’s disease victims have higher levels of copper in their blood and in the fluid that surrounds their brain, as well as inside their brain. Researchers found that in a slice of Alzheimer’s-diseased brain tissue, the amyloid plaques correspond to copper hotspots. Copper may then make these amyloid plaques more toxic, “leading to increased oxidative stress.” “Free Cu [copper] is extremely efficient in the generation of free radicals,” and when copper is removed with a chelating (metal-binding) drug, the free radical oxidation drops. Unfortunately, when researchers gave that drug to nine Alzheimer’s patients in a pilot study, it did not seem to have any effect on slowing the clinical progression of the disease. Perhaps we need to prevent the copper buildup in the first place? “Organ meats and shellfish are the richest food sources of copper,” but should we also consider cutting down on plant sources, such as nuts, seeds, legumes, and whole grains? Copper intake only seems to be a problem when consumed with saturated fat or trans fat. In the Chicago Health and Aging Project, thousands of elderly Chicagoans were followed for six years. Those who were getting the highest copper doses, largely from multivitamin supplements, combined with a diet high in saturated fats, lost cognition as if they had aged 19 years in a period of 6 years, tripling their rate of cognitive decline. However, copper intake “was not associated with cognitive change when the diet was not high in saturated fats.” Diet-induced high cholesterol “has been shown to increase the formation and progression of [amyloid] plaques in the brain.” As well, “dietary copper may interfere with clearance of [amyloid] from the brain and may further promote [the plaque] accumulation that results from elevated cholesterol levels.” Copper has been shown to interact badly with amyloid, causing its clumping and the production of hydrogen peroxide, a potent pro-oxidant neurotoxin. This may explain why the higher the levels of copper, the quicker Alzheimer’s disease may progress, particularly among people with high cholesterol levels. What do we think may be happening? As cholesterol and copper levels rise, cholesterol is incorporated into the nerve cell membrane, causing it to stiffen. The amyloid protein in the membrane detaches to form plaques, at which point iron and copper generate neurotoxic free radicals. Inside the cell, similar havoc is created. Finally, cholesterol-enriched diets can lead to nerve cell death, DNA damage, and blood-brain barrier disruption. “In conclusion, the present systematic review suggests that a diet rich in [copper and iron] might aggravate the detrimental effects of a high intake of cholesterol and [saturated fat] on the risk of developing [Alzheimer’s disease].” So, diets rich in saturated fat and deficient in antioxidants appear to promote the onset of the disease, while more plant-based diets would likely suppress its onset. There are compounds in plant foods that not only scavenge free radicals and prevent oxidative damage, but are also known to chelate, or bind up, metals, potentially making them additionally protective against the onset of Alzheimer’s. Therefore, the practical implications could be to eat lots of fruits and vegetables, avoid copper-containing supplements, and avoid high intakes of saturated fat and excessive iron intake. Isn’t Alzheimer’s genetic? What about the “Alzheimer’s gene”? Just because we’ve been dealt some bad genetic cards doesn’t mean we can’t reshuffle the deck with diet. See The Alzheimer’s Gene: Controlling ApoE. If the relationship between cholesterol and dementia is new to you, see Alzheimer’s and Atherosclerosis of the Brain and Cholesterol and Alzheimer’s Disease for more. What else can we do to protect our brain? Check out: Preventing Alzheimer’s with Lifestyle Changes Preventing Alzheimer’s Disease with Diet Preventing Alzheimer’s Disease with Plants Reducing Glycotoxin Intake to Prevent Alzheimers Higher Blood Pressure May Lead to Brain Shrinkage Benefits of Rosemary for Brain Function Should Vegans Take DHA to Preserve Brain Function? It’s never too early to start eating healthier, because Alzheimer’s May Start Decades Before Diagnosis. In health, Michael Greger, M.D. PS: If you haven’t yet, you can subscribe to my free videos here and watch my live, year-in-review presentations: 2012: Uprooting the Leading Causes of Death 2013: More Than an Apple a Day 2014: From Table to Able: Combating Disabling Diseases with Food 2015: Food as Medicine: Preventing and Treating the Most Dreaded Diseases with Diet 2016: How Not To Die: The Role of Diet in Preventing, Arresting, and Reversing Our Top 15 Killers   [...]
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Meat Industry Response to Meat Being Labeled Carcinogenic
The most extensive report on diet and cancer in history is constantly being updated with all the new research. As I discuss in my video The Palatability of Cancer Prevention, in its update on colorectal cancer a few years ago, various meats were implicated, including processed meat as “a convincing cause of colorectal cancer,” which is its highest level of evidence that “effectively means ‘beyond reasonable doubt.’” More recently, processed meat was confirmed as a carcinogen by the World Health Organization. The main message was that “the best prevention of colorectal cancer is the combination of higher physical activity with a fibre-rich and meat products poor diet.” A decrease by half a turkey sandwich’s worth of meat might lower the total number of colorectal cancer cases by approximately 20 percent. There are several implications of this cancer guideline update, but a paper in the industry publication Meat Science decided “to focus on the consumer side of the story, since every consumer is a patient and vice-versa at some point in the future.” But chronic disease need not be invariably a consequence of aging. “Although the epidemiological evidence for the relationship between colorectal cancer risk (at least!) and processed meats intake cannot be denied,” the Meat Science authors suggest further research. For example, compare the risk of consuming meat to other risky practices—alcohol, lack of physical activity, obesity, and smoking. Compared to lung cancer and smoking, maybe meat won’t look so bad! Consumers, however, probably won’t even hear about the cancer prevention guidelines. “Consumers today are overloaded with information….It is thus probable that the dissemination of the [World Cancer Research Fund’s] update on colorectal cancer drowns in this information cloud.” And, even if consumers do see it, the meat industry doesn’t think they’ll much care. For many consumers in the Western world, “the role of healthfulness, although important, is not close to taste satisfaction in shaping their final choice of meat and meat products…It is hence questionable that slightly revised recommendations based on the carcinogenic effects of meat consumption will yield substantial changes in consumer behavior.” Doctors and nutrition professionals feed into this patronizing attitude that people don’t care enough about their health to change. A classic paper from The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, a leading journal, scoffed at the idea that people would ever switch to a “prudent diet,” reducing their intakes of animal protein and fat no matter how much cancer was prevented. “The chances of reducing consumptions of fat, protein foods, or indeed of any food to a significant extent to avoid colon cancer are virtually nil.” Consider heart disease. We know we can prevent and treat heart disease with the same kind of diet, but the public won’t do it. “[T]he diet,” they said, “would lose too much of its palatability.” “The great palatability of ham,” in other words, “largely outweighs other considerations…[although] health and wellbeing are increasingly important factors in consumer decisions.” A 1998 Meat Science article feared that “[u]nless meat eating becomes compatible…with eating that is healthy, wholesome, and safe, it will be consigned to a minor role in the diet in developed countries during the next decade.” That prediction didn’t quite pan out. Looking at a graph of total meat consumption per person over the last 30 years or so, intake rises and rises. In 1998, when that Meat Science article worrying about the next decade of meat consumption was published, we see intake rise even further. It does then seem to kind of flatten out before it starts falling off a cliff. Indeed, meat consumption dipped down about 10 percent  but has surged back up. Still, millions of Americans are cutting down on meat. So don’t tell me people aren’t willing to change their diets. Nevertheless, we continue to get diluted guidelines and dietary recommendations, because authorities are asking themselves, “What dietary changes could become acceptable?” rather than just telling us what the best available science says and letting us make up our own minds about the cancer risk as we feed ourselves and our families. How Much Cancer Does Lunch Meat Cause? Good question—watch the video! Can simply cutting down on meat consumption extend our lifespan? Find out in Do Flexitarians Live Longer?. For my overview on cancer prevention, check out How Not to Die from Cancer. I think the role of health authorities is to share with patients the pros and cons of all the options and let the patients, their families, and their doctors decide together what’s right for them. I’ve produced a number of videos on this issue, including: Fully Consensual Heart Disease Treatment Optimal Diet: Just Give It to Me Straight, Doc Physicians May Be Missing Their Most Important Tool The Actual Benefit of Diet vs. Drugs What Diet Should Physicians Recommend? Should We All Get Colonoscopies Starting at Age 50? How Did Doctors Not Know About the Risks of Hormone Therapy? In health, Michael Greger, M.D. PS: If you haven’t yet, you can subscribe to my free videos here and watch my live, year-in-review presentations: 2012: Uprooting the Leading Causes of Death 2013: More Than an Apple a Day 2014: From Table to Able: Combating Disabling Diseases with Food 2015: Food as Medicine: Preventing and Treating the Most Dreaded Diseases with Diet 2016: How Not To Die: The Role of Diet in Preventing, Arresting, and Reversing Our Top 15 Killers [...]
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