The Alkaline Diet

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The Alkaline diet’s goal is to cut out foods that produce more acid like processed foods, dairy, eggs, and meat. On the contrary, foods like some legumes, fruits, and vegetables can contribute to an increased production of alkaline. Proponents of the alkaline diet argue that it can enhance overall well being and can promote weight loss due to the lower production of acid.This diet consists of healthy whole foods that benefit kidney and bone health. The pH scale measures whether a substance is alkaline or acid. The scale is between 0 and 14, anything below 7 is an acid, 7 is neutral, and 7 to 14 is alkaline. The kidneys are responsible for controlling the pH levels in the blood by either expelling or soaking up compounds. Over time, the adjusting of pH levels could have a consequence on your health. Bone density is a measure of the strength of your bones, and the lower your bone density the higher the likelihood of osteoporosis. This means your bones are weaker and more likely to break. Research has found the diet high in acid foods leads to calcium to be sucked out from the bones, thus reducing bone density. Diets that are higher in acid can also cause kidney stone as well as kidney failure. The pH in the stomach is more acidic as opposed to blood which tends to be more alkaline. It is important to remember that certain foods paired together can affect the pH of each individual item. The alkaline diet promotes a diet that is high in legumes, fruits, and vegetables. It is also lower in processed food and animal protein, which is something health experts are proponents of. If you are considering giving the alkaline diet a try, you should speak to your physician beforehand to ensure it is a good option for you.


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There have been debates about the negative effects dairy can have on health, and one of the most common topics is whether the type of fat found in foods with dairy cause an increased risk for type 2 diabetes. Dairy products are high in fat, specifically in saturated fat, which is a major contributor to obesity. On the other hand, many believe that certain dairy products such as fermented yogurt actually may reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes or at least not have an effect on the risk of developing it. Dieticians recommend limiting saturated fat intake by 10% of the total amount of calories consumed, which is about 20 grams of saturated fat per day for the majority of people. To put this into perspective, a single ounce of cheese has about 8 grams of saturated fat. Studies performed to see if there is a connection between dairy and diabetes have been inconclusive because they don’t take into account the types of dairy people are consuming.However, results from several studies do indicate that low-fat dairy consumption has a slight decrease in risk for type 2 diabetes. Specifically, it was found that a quality, low-fat, fermented yogurt was the most beneficial. The other side of dairy proponents say that quality full-fat dairy products like cream, yogurt, and cheese lower type 2 diabetes risk. A study from Framingham Heart Offspring found that those who consumed low-fat and high-fat dairy products reduced risk of prediabetes by 25%-39%. While studies like this did find these results, it is still not clear what dairy products are the best. Due to this unclarity, the dietary guidelines for dairy consumption say that 3 servings per day of low-fat or fat-free dairy products, especially fermented yogurts like kefir, are optimal.

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CBD Oil Can Benefit Your Overall Well Being

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CBD oil is getting a lot of attention but more research is needed. 

CBD imageCBD oils have become all the rage lately, however are there any real health benefits that can be obtained from it? CBD, or Cannabidiol, oil is extracted from cannabis that contains chemicals that are found in marijuana plants. This doesn’t mean that it gives you the “high” effect because CBD oil does not contain THC, the chemical responsible for getting people high. Even though CBD does not cause any intoxication, there is still a lot of controversy around it. Nevertheless, many are becoming more aware of the possible benefits it could have on overall wellbeing. The following are potential health benefits of CBD oil:

  • Anxiety management. Research has found that it can change the way your brain reacts to serotonin. A study found that a dose of 600 mg CBD oil helped people with social anxiety before having to give a speech
  • Pain relief. Studies have found that  CBD oil can be used to manage pain. It can provide benefits when taken after chemotherapy services. However, scientists believe that the anti inflammatory properties are the main contributors, and not necessarily that it helps with pain
  • Reduces acne. As mentioned previously, CBD has anti inflammatory properties that are very beneficial when it comes to acne. It was found that it helps prevent activity in the sebaceous gland that is responsible for sebum production. Too much sebum production is what causes acne.

There are many ways you can incorporate CBD into your lifestyle such as oil, capsules, sprays, and creams. The form of CBD really depends on what it is being used for. CBD is not approved by the FDA and you should consult your physician before incorporating it into your lifestyle. CBD oil is not legal in all states, so be sure to check your state law’s.


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Childhood obesity can prevent physicians from being able to properly interpret their routine blood tests. Studies have found that 24 routine blood tests can be affected by obesity, including:

  • inflammation markers,
  • iron,
  • lipids, and
  • liver function.

Researchers evaluated 35 routine biochemical markers in serum samples like iron, magnesium, calcium, uric acid, phosphorus, and high sensitivity C-reactive protein. They converted waist circumference, BMI, and sex specific z-scores and grouped the children in normal-weight, overweight, and obese categories. The study found that 13 out of the 35 biochemical markers were different among different BMI categories. Some of these included GGT, cardio C-reactive protein, iron, transferrin, and HDL cholesterol. Waist circumference and BMI were related to serum concentration of 24 out of 35 markers. The most noticeable difference found among the various BMI’s was the uric acid results. The average among both males and females was 237 μmol/L, 261 μmol/L, and 270 μmol/L in normal weight, overweight, and obese. Research suggests that this may be due to immoderate adiposity is related to uric acid levels in a healthy population of kids, so it is important this be taken into account for obese kids. It is important for physicians to take this into account when interpreting routine lab results because they are often used for clinical decisions based off of a range derived from a healthy population. It is unknown whether childhood obesity is a marker for early disease, but it should definitely be taken into account when interpreting blood test results, as 70% of blood tests can be affected by obesity.

blood test checklist


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Vegan Food – Is it Health Food?

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Go to the supermarket and you will be overwhelmed with all the vegan alternatives in the aisle.   There are vegan milks, vegan meats, vegan butters, vegan yogurts, vegan snacks and the list is endless.   For those that have been vegan or those that are trying to live a vegan or vegetarian lifestyle, it seems like there is a plethora of food options for you now.  Are all these options healthy for you?   Have you read the labels on some of these vegan foods?   The list of ingredients is important and it’s prudent to read all labels.  Many of these items have added sugar, some bad fats and other chemicals that may not be particularly healthy.

One example of a meatless entree recently reviewed has jackfruit listed in the ingredients.   This fruit is similar to fig but it does not contain much protein.    Jackfruit is mostly carbohydrates so it’s probably not the best substitute for meat if you are seeking protein.  Another issue is that some vegan foods are highly processed.  They may have some veggies listed as an ingredient but recognize that they may not be the whole foods you need for your diet.   Generally, if you want to have a vegan diet, it’s best to consume whole foods – the actual fruit, vegetable, nut, etc.

Also, just because it is vegan does not mean that it is great for you.   Oreos, gummi bears, Wheat Thins, even some pop tarts are vegan.

vegetarians and vegans

 


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Are the Ingredients in Sunscreen Safe?

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One of the most recommended products by aestheticians and dermatologists is sunscreen, but the FDA has found that the active chemicals in sunscreen is easily absorbed by the skin. The studies found that although they absorbed into the skin, it cannot be confirmed whether this is safe or not, which means more research needs to be done. The study’s goal was to see if they could find 0.5 nanograms per milliliters of sunscreen chemicals in the blood, which they did. The FDA has already concluded that mineral sunscreens, such as those composed of zinc oxide and titanium oxide, are safe. The one downside to these mineral sunscreens is that they often leave a white cast after application. The study performed by the FDA tested 6 chemical sunscreen ingredients from four different formulations- 3 of which were  sprays and one was a lotion. The chemicals that were tested were homosalate, octisalate, octinoxate, avobenzone, octocrylene, and oxybenzone. The participants applied sunscreen over 75% of their body once a day on the first day, and then four times a day for three days. It was found that all six chemicals exceeded the FDA’s 0.5 nanograms per milliliters in the bloodstream, and continued increasing over the course of the experiment. The main takeaway was that they found out how much of these chemicals is getting in the bloodstream, however new studies need to be conducted to find out if this information is relevant or not. This study does not suggest you stop applying sunscreen, however if you are concerned by the outcomes you can always opt for a mineral sunscreen. sunscreen image


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Vitamin D is often associated with strong bones. The major biological function of Vitamin D is to keep the serum calcium and phosphorus concentrations within the normal range which maintains essential cellular functions and promotes mineralization of the skeleton. But more is not necessarily better. Research has found that those who take large amounts of vitamin D not only did not see any benefits in regards of bone density, but actually ended up with worse bone density in the long run.

vitamin D graphic

It has been found that high doses of vitamin D do not provide additional benefits for bone health. There are are a few instances where doctor’s believe higher doses of vitamin D are beneficial with those that have conditions that prevent the body from absorbing nutrients properly: ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease. But increasing vitamin D in hopes your bones will be stronger, is not recommended for most people.

There are simple tactics you should follow to maintain your bone health. It is safe and sensible to take small amounts of vitamin D, like 1,000 International Units (IU), if you believe that you are not getting enough of this vitamin naturally. Get tested to see if you have sufficient vitamin D. Supplements are best for those who consume a small amount of vitamin D in their diet but it is recommended that you get vitamin D through diet and sun exposure rather then supplements, when possible. Some good sources of vitamin D are cheese, milk, yogurt, fatty fish like tuna or salmon, and cereals. People that don’t spend a lot of time outdoors should also consider taking small doses of vitamin D supplement. This vitamin is often referred to as the “sunshine vitamin” as it is produced by your body after exposure to the sun. As you get older, your body produces less and less vitamin D. People that are over the age of 65 make about 25% of the vitamin D they did in their twenties. Doses of vitamin D 4,000 IU or higher should only be taken under the advice of your primary care physician. In rare cases, a high dosage can actually be toxic. It can even lead to hypercalcemia, which is a condition that causes high amounts of calcium build up in the blood. This condition could cause a formation of deposits in soft tissues or arteries. It could also cause a predisposition to kidney stones, which are pebble like masses, created when high levels of minerals in your urine begin to crystallize in the kidneys. Again, the preferable method of getting your vitamins and minerals is through your diet. You can check food labels on the back of packaged foods to see the amount of vitamin D they contain.


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The thyroid a large ductless gland in the neck which secretes hormones regulating growth and development through the rate of metabolism.  Metabolism is our body’s ability to convert food into energy and the energy is burned at different rates depending on the person.  

The interconnectivity of the hormones, organs and the brain must be in sync for optimal performance.  So if the thyroid gland is not functioning correctly, you may experience symptoms of a thyroid disorder: underactive or overactive.  Low levels of the thyroid hormone, hypothyroidism, could cause various symptoms such as dry skin, changes in your hair, brittle nails, constipation, fatigue, and aches/pains. If low levels of this hormone remain untreated, it can increase the likelihood high blood pressure, high cholesterol and heart disease. High levels  of thyroid hormone, hyperthyroidism, occurs when the thyroid gland produces too much of the thyroxine hormone.   Too much of this hormone can accelerate your body’s metabolism which may cause weight loss or rapid/irregular heartbeat.

discount online blood lab testWomen have increased chances of having thyroid issues than men, especially as they get older. In some cases, symptoms can be gradual and not very noticeable, and in other cases symptoms can be abrupt within a few weeks or months. Symptoms can include exhaustion, depression, constipation, muscle aches, cardiovascular effects, cold intolerance, and appetite loss. Please consult a physician if you experience any of these symptoms. Hypothyroidism is typically treated with a daily dose of synthetic hormone, in pill form, and essentially does the job of your thyroid. Usually, people with hypothyroidism experience a substantial symptom relief after starting this treatment.  Hyperthyroidism can be treated using anti-thyroid medications and radioactive iodine to slow the production of thyroid hormones. Sometimes, hyperthyroidism treatment involves surgery to remove all or part of your thyroid gland.

Is your thyroid producing the right amount of hormone?  Order your own discount online thyroid lab test at www.HealthOneLabs.com.  


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lutein graphic

Lutein is a plant pigment, or phytochemical that belongs to the carotenoid family. They are responsible for giving plants their bright orange, red, and yellow colors, and contain many health encouraging properties like antioxidants. Lutein differs from other carotenoids because is taken up directly to the brain and eyes. Although lutein is not classified as an essential nutrient, it does provide some health benefits. Due to the fact that Americans are living longer, more are experiencing cataracts and age-related macular degeneration(AMD); both are vision issues. Research has found lutein’s antioxidant effects help prevent damage to the retina from the sun. It was also found that consuming foods that are high in carotenoid reduces the risk for AMD and cataracts.

Since the retina is an extension of the brain, the lutein gets to the eye through the barrier between the blood and brain. The tissue that makes up the retina and brain are similar in the amount of lutein they contain, and there is a positive correlation linking it with cognitive function. Studies show that lutein supplements in women have increased verbal fluency and cognitive function significantly. A similar study also provided subjects the experimental group lutein through avocados and the control group with the same amount of calories through chickpeas or potatoes daily for six months. Those that ate the lutein-high avocados scored higher in problem solving than the control group. These benefits are not seen at the levels of lutein which the majority of Americans consume. You can increase your lutein consumption by incorporating more eggs, yellow/red vegetables, avocados, and leafy greens. It is also important to note that lutein is a fat soluble, so the body can’t absorb it without a healthy fats, like olive oil or salmon, present.


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How to identify Vitamin B12 Deficiency

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Studies have found that around 20% of people over 60 years old are deficient in Vitamin B12, but many are not even aware of it. Vitamin B12 is responsible for creating nerves, DNA, and red blood cells.

vitamin B12 graphic

Order your own Vitamin B12 blood test at HealthOneLabs.com

Deficiency of this vitamin may present itself as shortness of breath, tingling/numbness of extremities, constipation, paranoia, and irritability. B12 deficiency can also be developed over time, and may present only a few or all symptoms. It is often overlooked to diagnose as symptoms presented can resemble other diagnoses, and if left untreated it could cause irreversible damage. The optimal amount of B12 you should be getting daily is somewhere around 2.4 micrograms, and it can be found naturally in animal products such as dairy, fish, eggs, and fish. For this reason many vegetarians and vegans are deficient in B12. Even those older adults that consume plenty of Vitamin B12 can lack sufficient amounts because the production of stomach acid reduces with age, which makes it more difficult to absorb B12. Certain medications like omeprazole and ranitidine can also affect B12 levels. Autoimmune disorders like pernicious anemia, usually present themselves in people over the age of 65, and is one of the most common causes for severe Vitamin B12 deficiency. If you believe you are suffering from any of the symptoms related to deficiency, you can check your vitamin B12 levels through a blood test. If your blood test determine you don’t have sufficient amount of B12, you can speak to your physician about possibly taking a B12 supplement. Your doctor will help you determine the best dosage for you depending on the extent of your deficiency. Always check with your physician prior to taking vitamin B12 supplements.

 


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