Wednesday, October 28, 2009

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Calorie density


The calories in our foods come from fat, carbohydrate and protein. Calorie density is the number of calories per weight in grams of the food. Calorie density often referred to as energy density.

Determining calorie density can be important for people who are attempting to lose weight, gain weight, in weight control management program or need to monitor food consumption due to an existing health issue.

Foods that are low in calorie density tend to be high in water and low in fat like raw fruits lean meats, low fat dairy products and vegetables. Water is the largest component of food and has the greatest impact on calorie density. So, low calorie density foods don't pack a lot of calories per bite but stuffed with water and fiber. Consumption of low calorie density foods will satisfy hunger with fewer calories while still providing plenty of vitamins and minerals.

Foods that are low in calorie density keeps us able to enjoy larger portions of various foods and still consume less calories overall. If you want to lose weight, try to aim for lower calorie density, but higher nutrient density.

Be smart and do not eat less than what your body needs.
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Sunday, October 25, 2009

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Orexigen obesity drug shows added benefits: studies

Orexigen obesity drug shows added benefits: studies
By Bill Berkrot

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Nearly half of patients who completed 56 weeks of treatment with Orexigen Therapeutics Inc's experimental obesity treatment, Contrave, lost at least 10 percent of their weight in a late-stage study and the drug also appeared to help cholesterol and blood sugar levels.

The drug demonstrated an even greater improvement in non- weight loss measures in patients considered to be at high risk of heart disease, according to data released on Saturday.

Orexigen released top-line data in July from a trio of Phase III trials showing Contrave met its primary goal of at least 5 percent weight loss compared with a placebo.

That data included all patients who began the studies, even those who discontinued the medicine at any point. The data presented Saturday included only those who completed 56 weeks of treatment, which the company called "a more clinically relevant number."

Orexigen also released data that looked at several secondary measures, such as impact on waist circumference, blood lipids and a marker for inflammation, as well as blood sugar levels in a separate trial of obese diabetics.

"We're very encouraged that all those things are going in the right direction," Dennis Kim, Orexigen's head of medical affairs who presented the new data at the Obesity Society scientific meeting in Washington, said in an interview.

Contrave is a pill that combines the antidepressant Wellbutrin, known generically as bupropion, with a sustained- release version of naltrexone, an opioid blocker used to treat alcoholism and other addictions.

New obesity treatments are needed for what has become a public health epidemic as obesity is a leading cause of diabetes, heart disease and many other serious medical problems, and the condition is rising at alarming rates.

The top-line data in July showed 48 percent of obese patients lost at least 5 percent of their body weight in one trial and 56.3 percent in a second study, compared with 16.4 percent and 17.1 percent on placebo.

Those differences are considered robust enough for likely FDA approval and the company said it was on track to apply for U.S. approval in the first half of next year.

But when looking only at patients who completed the 56-week study, the Contrave numbers jump to 61.8 percent and 75.8 percent compared with 23.1 percent and 21.7 percent on placebo.

In addition, 48.2 percent of Contrave patients lost at least 10 percent body weight and 23 percent dropped an impressive 15 percent of their weight in one of the studies.

In the other Phase III trial, 34.5 percent lost at least 10 percent on Contrave and 17.2 percent achieved 15 percent weight loss -- all significantly better than the placebo group, which topped out at 3.4 percent losing 15 percent of body weight and 10.7 percent who dropped 10 percent.

"These numbers demonstrate some really compelling efficacy results that I think patients and prescribers will be impressed by," Kim said.

The data also demonstrated impressive impacts on blood lipids and other measures in those patients in the study considered to be at high cardiovascular risk.

In that population, triglycerides went down 66.3 milligrams/deciliter and 51.2 mg/dl on Contrave.

"Those drops in triglycerides actually is in the ballpark of what you would expect to see from a lipid lowering drug that's on the market today," Kim said, referring to Abbott Laboratories' blockbuster triglyceride lowerer TriCor.

Levels of good HDL cholesterol rose 5 mg/dl and 6.2 mg/dl among Contrave at risk patients -- similar to what one would expect from niacin, which is approved to raise HDL.

High risk Contrave patients also had significant drops waist circumference and c-reactive protein -- an indicator of arterial inflammation associated with heart disease -- and small drops in bad LDL cholesterol, according to the data.

Blood sugar levels from the study of diabetics was also more impressive than originally thought when looking at just patients who began the trial with A1c levels of greater than 8 percent. American Diabetes Association guidelines call for an A1c level of 7 percent or less.

Among those patients, Contrave led to a highly statistically significant mean A1c reduction of 1.1 percent.

"That is very impressive and outdoes a lot of diabetes drugs that are approved today," Kim said. "And you get big weight loss on top of it."
(Reporting by Bill Berkrot; editing by Andre Grenon)
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Tuesday, October 20, 2009

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Be Overweight And Live Longer, German Study Suggests

ScienceDaily (Oct. 16, 2009) — Contrary to what was previously assumed, being overweight is not increasing the overall death rate in the German population. Matthias Lenz of the Faculty of Mathematics, Computer Science, and Natural Sciences of the University of Hamburg and his co-authors present these and other results in the current issue of Deutsches ├ärtzeblatt International.

Most Germans are overweight, with a body mass index (BMI) between 25 and 29.9 kg/m2. About 20% are obese (BMI of 30 or over), with age- and gender-related differences. The authors systematically evaluated 42 studies of the relationships between weight, life expectancy, and disease.

The S├╝ddeutsche Zeitung published an advance notice of the report, which shows that overweight does not increase death rates, although obesity does increase them by 20%. As people grow older, obesity makes less and less difference.

For coronary heart disease, overweight increases risk by about 20% and obesity increases it by about 50%. On the other hand, a larger BMI is associated with a lower risk of bone and hip fracture.

In relation to cancer, the overall death rate among extremely obese men (BMI above 40) is no higher than among those of normal weight. Men who are overweight even have a 7% lower death rate. No significant association was found in women.

According to the authors' analysis, overall mortality is unchanged by overweight, but increased by 20% by obesity, while extreme obesity raises it by up to 200%.

Retrieved October 20, 2009, from¬ /releases/2009/10/091016094032.htm
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Monday, October 19, 2009

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Non starchy vegetables

It is important to note that vegetables are divided into two categories, especially if you have diabetes, starchy and non starchy. Non starchy vegetables are contains only (approximate) one third calories than starchy vegetables.

Non starchy vegetables are an important part of diabetes diet. Because they contain small amounts of carbohydrate and calories, but they packed with many important nutrition, vitamin and fiber. So, everyone can enjoy more!

Here is a list of Non starchy vegetables. You may be able to find other Non starchy vegetables by doing surf.

Sprouts (bean, etc.)
Greens – lettuces, spinach, etc.
Hearty Greens - collards, mustard greens, kale, etc.
Herbs - parsley, rosemary, etc.
Bok Choy
Cucumber (of course without sugars)
Bamboo Shoots
Brussels Sprouts
Green Beans and Wax Beans

If you're trying to lose weight, avoid starchy vegetables, like corn, green lima beans, and potatoes, in favor of non-starchy vegetables whenever possible.

All vegetables are healthy and nutritious, however, eating them raw may give you the maximum nutritional value possible.
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Wednesday, October 14, 2009

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Energy Drink

Sponsoring at sporting events can associate some products with fitness. Their website also features a number of star athletes. Is energy drinks good for you?

It’s not going to kill you. But I think energy drinks are not very good for you. Especially if you drink too much or you chose the wrong product. Because energy drinks generally have a large contain of caffeine and sugar which is not good for your health.

Energy drinks generally don't offer you much in terms of nutrition, but they are very popular around the world.
If you found some energy drink packed with nutrients like folic acid, vitamins B6 and C, selenium, it's not bad. But remember, it won't replace your healthy meal and don’t think you drink it for health reasons.

Energy drink claimed they can increase your energy levels and stimulate your metabolism. Some ads misleadingly imply that their products are healthy by referring to them as good sources of energy or by associating the product with athletes or physical activities. Unfortunately a few energy drinks only offer low energy. An eight-ounce can has only five calories, but it still claimed as a energy drink. Caffeine indeed has the advantage of stimulating the central nervous system, and increasing metabolism.

What about fitness waters?
Fitness waters may be a better choice. You won't get a lot of unwanted calories, and their sugar content is minimal. Some brands contain high amounts of vitamins or minerals, which means if you drink a lot of these waters, you may go over your daily nutrient needs.

But remember that you still can get all the nutrients in these beverages from food and satisfy your thirst with regular water.

Don’t mix energy drinks with alcohol because studies show changes in our heart rhythm resulting from this bad combination.
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Monday, October 12, 2009

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"Good" dietary fats trim body fat in diabetic women


"Good" dietary fats trim body fat in diabetic women
By Amy Norton

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Eating certain kinds of fats may actually help obese women with diabetes trim some body fat, a small study suggests.

The study, of 35 older women with type 2 diabetes, found that supplements containing two types of fats -- conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) or safflower oil -- led to healthy changes in body composition over four months.

With CLA, the women saw a dip in body mass index (BMI) -- a measure of weight in relation to height -- and in their total level of body fat.

With safflower oil, the women's BMI did not change, but they typically shed a couple pounds of fat from the trunk area; they also showed improvements in their blood sugar levels, which signals better diabetes control.

CLA is an unsaturated fatty acid found in beef, lamb and dairy products. Animal research has found that CLA can help melt away body fat, and some studies have suggested the same may hold true in humans.

Safflower oil is rich in omega-6 polyunsaturated fats, but exactly how it might affect body fat and blood sugar is unknown, said Dr. Martha Belury, an author of the study and a professor of nutrition at Ohio State University in Columbus.

She explained that she and her colleagues were simply using safflower oil as a comparison substance to gauge the effects of CLA. The former, it turned out, had its own unique benefits.
It is too soon to recommend that overweight women with diabetes buy CLA or safflower oil supplements. But they can try to fit more polyunsaturated fats into their diet, Belury told Reuters Health.

"Don't get rid of the healthy fats in your diet when you get rid of the bad ones," she advised.

The study, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, included 35 obese women with an average age of 60. Each took either 8 grams of the safflower oil supplement or 8 grams of the CLA supplement every day for 16 weeks; after a one-month break, the women then switched to the other supplement.

Overall, Belury's team found, the women showed a small decline in BMI and shed a couple pounds of body fat while on CLA. There was no change in their blood sugar levels or muscle mass.

In contrast, while on safflower oil, the women lost body fat in the trunk area and gained some muscle mass, while their blood sugar levels showed a general decline.
"These fats seem to work very differently from each other," Belury said.
More research is needed to understand why that is, according to the researchers. Studies suggest that CLA affects enzymes involved in body-fat storage, which may explain its benefits for body composition -- but its potential effects on diabetes are unclear. The supplement did not affect blood-sugar control in this study, and a previous study of diabetic adults found that CLA actually raised blood-sugar levels.

For now, Belury recommended that people try to work polyunsaturated oils into their diets -- eating salads with oil-and-vinegar dressing, for instance, or cooking vegetables with the oils instead of butter.

She noted that the amount of safflower oil used in this study was equivalent to just under two teaspoons a day, which is easy to get through food. A number of other oils, like sunflower and corn oils, are also high in omega-6 polyunsaturated fats.

On the other hand, the amount of CLA used in the study would be tough to get through the diet. A liter of full-fat milk, for example, contains only about 1 gram of CLA.

SOURCE: American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, September 2009.
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Friday, October 09, 2009

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Food Advertising for Children

We know that our children are becoming fatter, but not everyone agrees on the cause or who’s to blame. Since 1970, obesity rates have more than doubled among 6 to 11 years old children and than tripled among those 12 to 19 years old. Make us as parents very concerned.

Without going to blame one party, understanding the following phenomena is worthwhile.

Today, marketing in schools has become big business. Businessmen see it as an opportunity to make direct sales. They are taking advantage of schools’ financial difficulties by offering marketing their products in the schools as a way for the schools to solve their financial problem.

Almost all children live in homes with a television (about 99%). They spent five and a half hours each day (The average American child ) watching television.
Marketers reach our children through kid-oriented channels. They also can use
non-commercial stations to influence children.

Food manufacturers also sell toys, books and clothes that are advertisements for their products. There are countless books for our children centered on their food’s name (brand). Maybe they want to make eating as a part of reading.

Children are unlikely to recognize advertising because it is an integral part of a program, like movies or games. As a result, they can “force” you to buy product that they want. From my personal experience, I know that marketing campaigns are effective in driving children to request products.

There is a close connection between unhealthy foods to children’s weight. Unhealthy food is food that high in fat and sugar and low in nutritional value.
Our job as parents to protect the children from practice that can harm their health.
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Saturday, October 03, 2009

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Omega-3s Can Reduce Appetite

Omega-3 fatty acids can help dieters feel full longer and eat less, according to a study conducted by researchers from the University of Navarra, University of Iceland and University College Cork and published in the journal Appetite.

"[Omega-3s] could improve the patients' compliance to changes in dietary habits required for weight loss and weight loss maintenance," the researchers wrote.

Researchers placed 232 overweight or obese volunteers onto a lower calorie, balanced diet that was supplemented with either a low or high dose of omega-3s for eight weeks. The average age of participants was 31, and their average body mass index was 28.3 kg per square meter. The low omega-3 dose was 260 milligrams per day, while participants in the high-dose group were given 1,300 milligrams per day.

During the last two weeks of the experiments, researchers assessed the appetites of participants and found that those in the high dose group tended to feel hungry less frequently than those in the low dose group, when measurements were taken either immediately after or two hours following a meal.

The researchers also found that participants with higher blood levels of omega-3s and a healthier omega-3 to omega-6 ratio were also less likely to report being hungry after eating.

"The most important finding of this study is that subjects who eat a dinner rich in long chain omega-3 fatty acids feel less hunger and more full directly after and two hours after than their counterparts fed with the low long chain omega-3 fatty acids diet," the researchers wrote. "This observation indicates that long chain omega-3 fatty acids modulate hunger signals."

Omega-3 fatty acids are found in high concentrations in certain fish oils, flaxseeds and other seeds and nuts, and certain varieties of algae. Omega-6 fatty acids are found in high concentrations in vegetable oils. Recent research is suggested that omega-3s are essential for the healthy development of the central nervous system, and the higher ratio of omega-3s to omega-6s is important for cardiovascular health.

Source :
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