Omega 3 – How Will It Benefit You?

Thinking about adding Omega 3 to your daily diet? There is no doubt about Omega 3 offering benefits to a lot of people, we will get into more about that later.

The essential fatty acids in Omega 3 have long been known for their many health benefits. Many clinical studies have proven that the biggest benefits come from DHA and EPA, these fatty acids are only found in fish oils, although you would still get some health benefits when taking Omega 3 from plant sources, it is recommended that you include Omega 3 from fish oils, either from eating fatty fish at least 3 times per week, or buying an Omega 3 supplement.

Of the two essential fatty acids mentioned above, DHA offer the most benefits, most supplements however, contain much more EPA than DHA, so when shopping for a supplement, be sure to choose one with as much DHA as possible.

Another thing you should be aware of when looking for an Omega 3 supplement is toxins (PCB’s), ask the manufacturer about the levels of PCB’s and heavy metals in their product, also ask if they can supply you with test data on the purity of their product.

Now, let’s take a look at the benefits of including Omega 3 in your daily diet, these have all been proven in clinical studies.

* Fish oils, rich in Omega 3 fatty acids (DHA and EPA) have been shown to significantly reduce deaths from heart disease.

* Clinical studies have shown improvement for people who suffer from depression.

* Lower aggression in teenagers.

* Improved memory.

* Lowered risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease.

* When taken by mothers during pregnancy, it may help protect babies from allergies.

* Improves the body’s immune system.

* If you have, or are in danger of developing type II diabetes, research has shown Omega 3 helps regulate blood sugar levels, and decrease insulin resistance.

* People suffering from skin disorders like psoriasis have shown improvements when taking fish oils.

As you can see, Omega 3 offers benefits both for those who just want to be proactive, as well as it can help those who already have developed some types if illnesses.

If you decide to eat more fatty fish, or take an Omega 3 supplement, remember to check the purity and levels of DHA in your chosen source.

Making Smart Choices With The Glycemic Index

The Glycemic Index (GI) has been around since 1981 and is a great blueprint for eating healthy.

With a growing population of diabetics and overweight individuals, eating within GI guidelines, meaning that you take into account how much a particular food raises blood sugar and over stresses insulin production, is gaining interest among the medical community and the public.

What is the Glycemic Index (GI)?

The Glycemic Index indicates how quickly 50 grams of a food’s carbohydrates turn into sugar. At the most basic level, the GI ranks carbohydrate filled foods according to their glycemic response. Foods that raise your blood glucose level very fast have a higher GI rating than foods that raise your blood glucose level at a slower pace. In general, lower GI foods are the healthier choice.

What are the benefits of low GI foods?

Trying to keep the bulk of your food in the low GI rating can offer a number of benefits, these include:

• Controlling your blood glucose level
• Controlling your cholesterol level
• Reducing your risk of type 2 diabetes
• Assists in lowering and controlling weight
• Reducing your risk of heart disease
• Prolonging your physical endurance

How do I lower my GI?

There are simple steps you can take to lower your Glycemic Index. Here are a few ideas.

• Limit your bread intake to whole grains and oats (No White Bread)
• If you are eating a high GI food, try combining it with a low GI food (see chart)
• Eat multiple servings of fresh fruits and vegetables. They fill you up and have a low GI.
• Try rice vinegar in place of salad dressings.
• Limit your intake of processed and starchy foods.
• Choose healthy fats such as canola and olive oil.

For more ideas and a more in depth look at the GI, you may want to look at the following books.

“Sugar Busters”

“Eat Yourself Slim”

“The G.I. Diet”

Glycemic Index Food Chart

Low Glycemic Index food (less than 55)
Foods with GI index between 55 and 70 are intermediate
High Glycemic Index food GI (more than 70)

Low Glycemic Foods

Apple 38
Pear 38
Skim Milk 32
Carrot Juice 45
Whole Grain Bread 50
Low Fat Yogurt 14
Oranges 44
Spaghetti, whole wheat 37
Sweet potato 54
Jams and marmalades 49
Popcorn 55
Artichoke 15
Asparagus 15
Broccoli 15
Cauliflower 15
Celery 15
Cucumber 15
Eggplant 15
Green beans 15
Lettuce, all varieties 15
Low-fat yogurt, artificially sweetened 15
Peppers, all varieties 15
Snow peas 15
Spinach 15
Young summer squash 15
Tomatoes 15
Zucchini 15
Soya beans, boiled 16
Peas, dried 22
Kidney beans, boiled 29
Lentils green, boiled 29
Chickpeas 33

High Glycemic Foods

Waffles 76
Doughnut 76
White bread 71
Rice Krispies 82
Cornflakes 83
Corn chips 74
Jelly beans 80
Pretzels 81
Rice Cakes 82
Potato, instant 83
Potato, baked 85
Rice pasta, brown 92
Dates 103

The GI should help you make smart choices when choosing what to eat. Remember to make most of your choices on balanced nutrition…including a healthy dose of fruits and vegetables. Make an effort to cut back on foods with refined starch and concentrated sugar. Include some healthful fats and do not forget the protein.

Nutritional Immunology – The Cold War

Runny nose, stuffy head, congestion, sore throat, hay fever, asthma attack – the annoying symptoms of a cold war waging closer to home. To varying degrees, all people are forced to combat the dreaded cold and its violent relatives. Although it has long been said that there is no cure for the common cold, sufferers seem willing to try anything to breathe easy again, collectively spending billions of dollars each year on cold-related medicines, cough suppressants, antihistamines, asthma drugs and antibiotics. Despite controversial data regarding the efficacy of these drugs, people casually consume them, only to discover that drugs’ harmful side effects are a heavy price to pay for temporary freedom.

Cold and Allergy Medicines

Because a cold is caused by a virus, it cannot be cured by medication. Cold medicines may help suppress symptoms, but the cold virus continues to roam inside the body. Notwithstanding this fact, potentially harmful cold medicines abide in most household medicine cabinets. Beside their questionable ability to offer relief, cold medicines may contain drugs such as triprolidine, pseudoephedrine, guanifenesin, phenylpropanolomine and pheynylephrine. Many cold medicines combine several of these chemicals into one tablet, giving the false impression that more is better, when in actuality, they merely increase the risk of unwanted side effects. The damaging results of these drugs may include high blood pressure (especially dangerous for people with heart disease, diabetes or thyroid disease), confusion, nervousness, dry mouth, constipation, difficulty urinating, decreased sweating and worsening og glaucoma.

Unaware of these side effects, many people also mistakenly use cold medicines to regularly treat allergies. Nasal sprays containing ingredients such as pseudoephedrine hydrochloride or other antihistamines may prove harmful to sufferes of allergies. Using these ingredients may lead to rebound congestion, icreased nasal stuffiness and permanent damage to the membranes lining the nose.

Cough Suppressants

Just as a runny nose promotes beneficial drainage, a fact ignored by many, a cough can also be a productive way to naturally remove harmful material. Although a dry or painful cough may be a sign of a more serious condition, most coughs should not ne depressed. Adverse effects of cough suppressants such as hydrocodone, dextromethorphan and phenyltoloxamine include skin rash, dizziness, nausea, nasal congestion, constipation, dry mouth, difficulty urinating, blurred vision and headache.

The combination of iodinated glycerol and codeine, commonly promoted as a cough suppressant, should especially be avoided. An unpublished study performed under the direction of the National Toxology Program (Department of Human Services) found that Iodinated glycerol may cause illnesses as severe as cancer. In general, coughs are most effectively combated by clear liquids, which help thin mucus and promote effortless breathing.

Antibistamines

Ironically, some drugs prolong cold symptoms and antihistamines are a prime example of drugs people wrongly assume can effectively treat any illness. Antihistamines can actually make a cold or cough worse by thickening nasal secretions and drying mucous membranes. They can also cause serious side effects including confusion, short-term memory loss, disorientation, dry mouth, constipation, difficulty urinating, enlarge prostate, increased body temperature, unusual bleeding, ringing in the ears, stomach upset and worsening of glaucoma.

The antihistmaine hydroxyzine, used to treat itching and hives, may also cause restlessness, seizures, trembling or shakiness. Another antihistamine, diphenhydramine, may cause unusually fast heartbeat, increased sensitivity to the sun, unusual bleeding, sore throat, nervousness, restlessness, irritability and ringing in the ears.

Adverse cardiovascular effects are extremely rare, but patients using the antihistamine astemizole have reportly experienced cardiac arrest, venticular arrhymias and even death as a result of the drug.

Asthma Drugs

Although its symptoms resemble that of the cold, asthma is a delicate condition that must be carefully monitored and treated. Drugs such as aminophyllines, theophylline and oxtriphylline are frequently used to treat symptoms of chronic asthma, bronchitics and emphysema, including difficult breathing, sneezing, chest tightness and shorteness of breath.

Asthma drugs open airways in the lungs and increase airflow, making breathing easier, but this process is not without risk. The body can only tolerate a specified amount of an asthma drug. Too little may bring on an asthma attact; too much can lead to seizures, irregular heart rhythms, pounding heartbeat. Adverse effects include bloody stools, confusion, diarrhea, dizziness, flushed skin, headache, increased urination, loss of appetite, muscle twitching, nausea, trembling, trouble sleeping, vomiting of blood, heartburn, etc.

The asthma drug pirbuterol can cause or wosen high blood pressure, diabetes or heart disease. Inhaled drugs, such as albuterol and terbutaline, have been found to cause tremors, jitters, nervousness, and in extreme cases, begign tumors in the ligaments and heart disease.

Antibiotics

While used to treat diverse bacterial infections, antibiotics are also prescribed to address the common cold. Unfortunately, antibiotics are often proved unnecessary, bringing harmful side effects instead of cure. In 1983, fifty-one percent of the more than three million patients who saw doctors for treatment of the common cold were unnecessarily given a prescription of antibiotics

Many ‘healthy’ and vegetarian foods contain MSG in the form of yeast extract

Copyright 2006 Truth Publishing

There’s a great deal of deception in the labeling of food products found at your local grocery store and even at many health food stores. A disturbing trend I’ve noticed is that many vegetarian products and grocery items billed as “healthy” or “natural” are using chemical additive taste enhancers found in an ingredient listed right on the label.

The taste enhancer is MSG — monosodium glutamate — a chemical that has been associated with reproductive disorders, migraine headaches, permanent damage to the endocrine system leading to obesity, and other serious disorders. MSG is a chemical compound that simply does not belong in the body in the concentrations provided by these foods. It is used by food manufacturers as a taste enhancer — something to cover up the bland tastes of these foods and make them more appealing to consumers. But food manufacturers don’t want to list MSG on the labels, especially when they know that consumers will avoid purchasing products that list MSG.

So what do they do instead? They hide the ingredient in another ingredient called “yeast extract,” then they put yeast extract in the product and list “yeast extract” right on the label. So this is the scam: all sorts of natural health products and vegetarian products are using chemical taste enhancers in the form of yeast extract, but are failing to disclose to consumers that they actually contain MSG. And if you look around at the natural health products in health food stores and grocery stores, you’ll find that yeast extract is a rather prominent ingredient. It’s used in soups, in vegetarian mixes, in some tofu mixes, and even so-called natural frozen foods.

I can personally verify that yeast extract has the same effect as MSG, because I am an individual who is extremely sensitive to MSG. Upon consuming even a small amount of MSG, I experience a severe headache that lasts for 6 to 8 hours. Consuming yeast extract causes precisely the same effect as consuming MSG.

In fact, food manufacturers don’t deny that yeast extract contains MSG — it’s something that’s well-known in the food manufacturing industry. What’s going on here is a blatant deception, an attempt to mislead consumers by essentially renaming dangerous ingredients with harmless sounding names such as “yeast extract.” I believe this practice to be irresponsible and unethical, and I strongly urge you to not only avoid purchasing products made with yeast extract, but avoid products from companies that use yeast extract in any of their products. It is simply a dishonest practice, and we should not reward companies that engage in such practices by purchasing any products they manufacture.

Unfortunately, many of these food manufacturers are creating products for the so-called health foods industry. In a way that is sadly all too real, traditional grocery products and processed foods will list MSG right on the label. At the same time, so-called healthy products will use yeast extract, so they can avoid mentioning MSG on the label. Yet, both products contain MSG, and both products carry the risk of toxic side effects associated with MSG.

So, are you any safer by purchasing health foods rather than traditional grocery store foods? The answer is that you should avoid purchasing processed foods at all, regardless of what health claims are made on the label. Processed foods are unhealthy foods, period. If you want optimum nutrition, and foods for which the human body was designed, you need to purchase and consume raw ingredients, such as vegetables, fruit, nuts, whole grains, and healthy oils. It’s also a good idea, as you’ve often heard me recommend on NewsTarget.com, to supplement your diet with whole food supplements, organic vitamins, and superfoods, such as chlorella, spirulina, broccoli sprouts and sea vegetables. This is the way to achieve optimum nutrition, not by purchasing processed foods that are disguised as healthy foods, even though they contain ingredients known to induce toxic side-effects in the human body.

But don’t take my word for it — check it out yourself. Next time you go to a health food store, look at the product boxes and cans on the shelves, and see just how many you can find that contain yeast extract. It’s especially easy to find with vegetarian foods, which just goes to show you that just because a product says “vegetarian” on the label doesn’t mean it’s good for you (or that the company making it gives a hoot about your health).

Nutrition, Diet And Exercise

Whether you are trying to lose weight or live an active healthy life style, nutrition and exercise are vital to your health. We have become as a whole in the western culture, a couch potato, slow moving, over weight and flaccid society. Of course there will always be that smaller percentage of people who get it right and remain fit and healthy. But those that do, make a conscious effort at it with diet and exercise. Well done if you are in that category!

Part of the problem is that because we as humans have it ingrained in us to constantly change things, we are the only creatures that invent food. No other animal or insect does this and they don’t have the diseases humans do unless we have poisoned their environment. We have so much in the way of processed food that have little nutrient value, that we pack on the pounds and become slower moving.

In the wild, animals that eat the raw greens, grasses fruits and berries are very healthy animals. The meat-eating animals consume the healthy plant-eating animals and remain virtually disease free. Our farms on the other hand, need to mass-produce cattle and chickens so we give them hormones and phosphates and the like and we consume them. That is by the way, some experts now think younger girls are developing much earlier than they used to because of the hormones in meat and dairy products. We can however, luckily eat raw organic fruits and vegetables and we should do so on a daily basis.

Another culprit is our need to once again, change our environment. We have more machines that do things for us now and it won’t stop there. This is both good and bad. The good is a higher rate of production for the products we need, bad because we are slowing down physically. In as little as ten years ago we could go out on a Sunday morning and see someone pushing his or her lawn mower. (And I mean pushing). Now a days, you’ll see more of sit down mowers or power mowers that literally pull you along with it. Our fore fathers were much more active and they ate nutrient rich foods. And they could eat a lot of it without getting fat because of how much energy they spent from hard physical labor.

Is all lost for us in this day and age? Absolutely not!!! We are perfectly capable of reversing this trend, but it does require a) your dedication and b) follow through. This can be done no matter what your weight and activity level.

Make your first step the decision to become healthy and fit. Once you have firmly made that decision you are on your way. Now take the time to evaluate your lifestyle and really look at it. Be honest with yourself about your eating habits and activity level.

Changing your diet to eating healthy whole foods is a good way to start. It’ll not only help you lose weight and help you feel better, but it will enhance your quality of life. You’ll have more energy and life just feels better when you are healthy.

There are many popular diets out there. The Zone, the Blood Type Diet, Atkins, the South Beach Diet, Weight Watchers and the list goes on. They all have had their share of successes so it is hard sometimes to know what to do. I can only say, do your homework. You will find the right one that works for you and you will be more likely to stick to it.

If you want to do it on your own you can be just as successful if you know some basic rules.

1) Portion control. Cutting down to smaller portions can help tremendously. A great
way to eat less food at one sitting is to drink a glass of water before you eat and then drink more water with your meal. Water takes up a lot of space in your stomach so you will feel full faster and water won’t give you any extra calories. Awesome!

2) Water, water, water. Drink lots of clean pure water. Your body needs it and more than you think. Most North Americans are in a state of semi dehydration. Water flushes out toxins, gets your bowels moving. (Did you know that the amount of pain you feel from injury or minor aches and pains are directly proportional to how dehydrated you are? An interesting tid bit)

3) Eat raw fruits and vegetables as much as you can especially dark greens. Cooked veggies lose some of their nutrients so eating a salad every day would benefit you.