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Health News Results - 1593

TUESDAY, Oct. 23, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration "jumped the gun" when it declared the chemical BPA safe for consumers earlier this year, experts from the Endocrine Society claimed Tuesday.

The FDA asserted in February that its "initial review supports our determination that currently authorized uses of BPA continue to be safe for consumers."

...

TUESDAY, Oct. 23, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Children with autism or developmental delays may be at increased risk for obesity, a new study finds.

The study included nearly 2,500 2- to 5-year-olds in the United States. Of those, 668 children had autism spectrum disorder (ASD); 914 had developmental delays; and a control group of 884 children had neither.

Compared to the contro...

MONDAY, Oct. 22, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Paying extra for those pricey organic fruits and vegetables might pay off: New research suggests eating them might help you dodge a cancer diagnosis.

People who consumed the most organic foods had a 25 percent lower cancer risk compared with those who ate the least, the study found.

Specifically, eating more organically grown foods ...

THURSDAY, Oct. 18, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- A behavioral therapist could be as important as a calorie-cutting diet for folks who want to lose weight, researchers say.

Brain scans reveal that people who are better at losing weight have more activity in regions of the brain associated with self-control, a small new study reports.

Teaching people to trigger their brain's self-c...

THURSDAY, Oct. 18, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Protein is key to your well-being and deserves a significant place in every diet. Knowing the best sources can boost your health as well as help you feel more satisfied on fewer calories.

Seafood is an excellent protein source, with dozens of types of fish and shellfish to try. Eat a 3.5-ounce serving at least twice every week, and include f...

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 17, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Tuna, salmon, mackerel, cod: Whatever your preference, eating more seafood may help you stay healthy as you age, new research suggests.

In a study spanning 22 years, researchers found that higher blood levels of the omega-3 fatty acids found in seafood were associated with a better chance of healthy aging.

...

TUESDAY, Oct. 16, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- The gluten-free diet craze is both reassuring and upsetting to people with celiac disease who are allergic to the nutrient, a small study suggests.

People with celiac disease say they're happy to have more food choices at stores and restaurants. But some with celiac sense a growing stigma as other people voluntarily go gluten-free. And many ...

MONDAY, Oct. 15, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- A huge bowl of greens can be filling and chock full of vitamins, minerals and fiber. But what you top it with can turn it from diet delight to diet disaster.

Whether you're at home or facing a tempting all-you-can-eat salad bar at a restaurant, these tips will keep fat and calories in check.

Creamy dressings can have more than 130 ca...

THURSDAY, Oct. 11, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Although many people suffering from painful gout flare-ups point to diet as the culprit, new research suggests DNA plays a much bigger role.

The findings challenge the long-held belief that diet is the major factor in gout, a joint disease that causes extreme pain and swelling. Gout is caused by hyperuricemia -- high blood levels of uric aci...

THURSDAY, Oct. 11, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Even when you're trying to lose weight, you need some fat in your diet for good health. While fat in general has gotten a bad rap, some types of fat -- particularly plant-based fats -- are good for you in moderation.

Good-for-you fats:

  • Olive, flaxseed oil and other plant-based oils.
  • Fatty fish.
  • Avocados.

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 10, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Occasional fasting may help control type 2 diabetes, a small Canadian study suggests.

"The use of a therapeutic fasting regimen for treatment of [type 2 diabetes] is virtually unheard of," said Dr. Jason Fung, of Scarborough Hospital, in Ontario, and colleagues.

But this trial showed that 24-hour fasting regimens can significantly...

MONDAY, Oct. 8, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- If you're gluten-sensitive, watch out: One-third of the "gluten-free" foods sold in U.S. restaurants actually contain trace levels of the substance, new research suggests.

The finding will be of particular concern to the 1 percent of Americans with the autoimmune disorder known as celiac disease. For them, even a min...

THURSDAY, Oct. 4, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- A Mediterranean-style diet might significantly reduce your risk of a major cause of blindness, a new study suggests.

Poor diet is emerging as an important factor in the development of a degenerative eye disease called age-related macular degeneration (AMD). It's a leading cause of vision loss among older Americans.

"You are what you...

THURSDAY, Oct. 4, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- May 7, 2018 marked a milestone for public health in the United States. It's the date that mandatory nutrition and calorie information took effect for most chain restaurants, enabling consumers to compare menu items before ordering and, hopefully, make smarter choices.

Some cities across the country had already required restaurants to post cal...

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 3, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Preschoolers who quickly pack on pounds may be at particular risk of becoming obese teenagers, a large new study finds.

Experts said the results point to a critical "window" in early childhood -- between the ages of 2 and 5 or 6 years -- that can set the stage for persistent obesity.

They also said the findings leave some questions...

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 3, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Like the human gut, the breast gland has a "microbiome" that's influenced by diet, new animal research suggests.

Although the findings are preliminary, scientists hope their work might someday improve the treatment and prevention of breast cancer.

"Being able to shift the breast microbiome through diet may offer a new approach to p...

TUESDAY, Oct. 2, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Americans' love affair with fast food continues, with 1 in every 3 adults chowing down on the fare on any given day.

That's the finding from a new report from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. When asked by researchers, 37 percent of adults said they'd eaten fast food at least once over the past 24 hours.

There was...

TUESDAY, Oct. 2, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Black Americans are at greater risk of high blood pressure than whites, and a new study suggests the "Southern" diet bears much of the blame.

Experts have long known that blacks are more likely to die of heart disease and stroke than whites -- and that rates of high blood pressure explain a lot of that disparity. But why are blacks more likely...

TUESDAY, Oct 2, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Want to get consumers hungry for a chocolate-covered ant or crunchy cricket snack?

New research suggests that if you're marketing protein-rich insects as edibles, emphasizing flavor and luxury is key.

So finds an advertising experiment that aimed to get 180 Germans to embrace entomophagy, a verbal mouthful that basically means "eating...

MONDAY, Oct. 1, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Losing weight often comes down to changing the patterns and habits that led to overeating. And that usually takes self-control, or the ability to resist temptation.

Think of self-control as the inner voice that keeps you from indulging in high-calorie food and prompts you to stick to your diet.

But having to constantly resist temptati...

FRIDAY, Sept. 28, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- When you're hungry, everything's annoying and tempers can get short. Now, animal research might help explain why.

Researchers working with rats found that the sudden drops in blood sugar that occur with hunger make people "hangry."

That drop in blood sugar -- and the ensuing mood changes -- may also be a key to depression and anxi...

THURSDAY, Sept. 27, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Promises of healthier kids' meals have drawn increasing numbers of families back to fast food restaurants, but most kids are still being served unhealthy options, a new survey finds.

Nine out of 10 parents had purchased lunch or dinner for their child in the past week at one of the big four fast food chains in 2016, up from 8 of 10 parents ...

TUESDAY, Sept. 25, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Heather Kinion never spent much time thinking about her weight. But when she got pregnant, that changed.

"My sister had a baby a few years before me and had gained a bunch of weight, and she still hadn't lost it when I got pregnant," Kinion said. So the Chicago-area mom-to-be was happy to sign up for a nutritional counseling program her doc...

TUESDAY, Sept. 25, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- To avoid possible E. coli infection, check your freezer and toss out any ground beef bought in the United States between June 21 and July 11, food safety advocates advise.

Consumer Reports believes U.S. regulators didn't go far enough in their response to a deadly E. coli outbreak in Florida. The nonprofit urges consumers to be extra cautiou...

FRIDAY, Sept. 21, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- The nightly dinner battles many parents have with picky toddlers can be exhausting. Now, research suggests that either pressuring or rewarding kids to eat healthier may backfire.

"These practices can reinforce fussy eating, increase preferences for unhealthy foods, and lead to excessive weight gain," study author Holly Harris, from the Centre...

THURSDAY, Sept. 20, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- The Mediterranean diet may do more than help you reach and maintain a healthy weight: New research suggests that women who follow it also lower their stroke risk.

But men did not reap the same benefit from the diet, which concentrates on fish, fruits, nuts, vegetables and beans, and avoids meat and dairy products.

"Simple change...

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 19, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- If a pregnant woman eats a lot of high-gluten foods, the odds that her child will have type 1 diabetes rise significantly, new research suggests.

In the study, pregnant women who had the highest consumption of gluten had double the risk of having a child with type 1 diabetes compared to those who ate the least gluten. Gluten is a protein f...

TUESDAY, Sept. 18, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Shopping at specialty stores and farmers' markets is great for getting fresh foods, but that's not always possible, depending on where you live and the season. And sometimes you just don't have time to get to the store.

But the right frozen foods can be the fixings for low-calorie meals and snacks that are nutritious as well as satisfying.

MONDAY, Sept. 17, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Is America's love affair with meat starting to lose its luster?

A new survey finds that many Americans are cutting back on the amount of red and processed meat they eat -- and even some poultry and fish -- because they're worried about their health or their finances.

Americans still eat more meat than health experts recommend. Hig...

FRIDAY, Sept. 14, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- With roughly 40 percent of Americans now obese, new research finds that one strategy may be helping Americans stay slim: calorie counts on restaurant menus.

Following the passage of the Affordable Care Act of 2010, chain restaurants with 20 or more franchises must now list a meal's calorie count on their menus and order boards.

And...

FRIDAY, Sept. 14, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Could that morning cup of joe bring a health boost to people battling kidney disease?

According to new research involving nearly 5,000 people with chronic kidney disease, a hike in daily caffeine intake appeared to lower their odds of an early death.

The benefit remained "even after considering other important factors such as age, g...

FRIDAY, Sept. 14, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Many children are picky eaters, making every meal a challenge. But for some, the problem goes deeper than not liking vegetables or whole-wheat bread.

According to a study in the journal Pediatrics, more than one in five kids between the ages of 2 and 6 are considered "selective eaters." Most of them are moderately picky, but about 3 pe...

THURSDAY, Sept. 13, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- U.S. kids are drinking far more water than sodas and fruit drinks, health officials say.

A new report from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention finds that water accounts for almost half of kids' total beverage consumption.

And together, water and milk comprised about two-thirds of the beverages consumed by America...

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 12, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Americans continue to fatten up, with obesity rates topping 35 percent in seven states, a new report reveals.

That's up from five states two years ago. Moreover, no state had a notable improvement in its obesity rate over the previous year, according to the report from Trust for America's Health and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, both...

TUESDAY, Sept. 11, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Dairy foods might be your ticket to better heart health, even if you're drinking whole milk and eating rich cheeses, a new study suggests.

The study couldn't prove cause-and-effect, but folks who ate three servings of dairy per day had an overall lower risk of death during the study period than people who ate no dairy. They also had a lower...

TUESDAY, Sept. 11, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- There's no disputing the fact that regular colonoscopies, now suggested to start at age 45 for those with an average risk of colorectal cancer, can help prevent the disease by finding -- and removing -- precancerous growths.

And a study of 77,000 adults published in JAMA Internal Medicine found that you can also lower your risk of thi...

MONDAY, Sept. 10, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- It may seem counterintuitive, but eating bread, pasta and cereal may actually help prevent type 2 diabetes, as long as those foods are made from whole grains, new research suggests.

The study found that each serving of whole-grain foods per day was linked to as much as an 11 percent drop in the risk of type 2 diabetes.

"Whole grai...

MONDAY, Sept. 10, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- The choices you make every day, both big and small, influence your weight and your health.

For instance, do you grab coffee and a donut for breakfast or opt for yogurt with fresh fruit?

Understanding why you make the choices you do and how to improve those choices are important steps for weight loss.

Start by making health...

THURSDAY, Sept. 6, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Poor nutrition increases a child's risk of high blood pressure, a new study finds.

Researchers analyzed national health survey data for 2007 to 2014 from more than 7,200 U.S. kids between 8 and 17 years of age.

More than one-fifth lacked good access to nutritious foods, and more than 12 percent overall had high blood pressure.

...

THURSDAY, Sept. 6, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- They're sold everywhere, but can probiotics -- the good bacteria found in some foods like yogurt and in supplements -- really help restore digestive health?

Maybe, but only for some people, new research suggests. The Israeli researchers found that some people's digestive systems held on to the probiotics given in a supplement. But in others,...

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 5, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- One hundred thirty people across 36 states have now fallen ill with salmonella after eating Kellogg's Honey Smacks cereal, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Tuesday.

For the time being, the "CDC advises consumers and retailers not to eat, serve or sell any Kellogg's Honey Smacks cereal," the agency said in a statement...

TUESDAY, Sept. 4, 2018 (American Heart Association) -- A varied, quality diet could help prevent hospitalizations and even death among patients with heart failure, a new study suggests.

Researchers investigating nutritional deficiencies found that people with heart failure who lack seven or more micronutrients had nearly double the risk of dying or being hospitalized than those who d...

FRIDAY, Aug. 31, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- It's the dieter's tug-of-war: the need to lose weight versus the urge to eat high-calorie foods.

Scientists say the easy availability of sweets and other treats has made the desire for them stronger over time. Couple that with a sedentary lifestyle that burns fewer and fewer calories, and battling the bulge is that much harder.

To wi...

THURSDAY, Aug. 30, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- An E. coli strain found in fresh chicken and turkey products can cause serious urinary tract infections (UTIs) in people, researchers say.

For the study, investigators analyzed chicken, turkey and pork purchased from every major grocery chain in Flagstaff, Ariz. They also collected and analyzed urine and blood samples taken from patients at ...

THURSDAY, Aug. 30, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Could the timing of your breakfast and dinner help you eat less and lose body fat?

A small, preliminary study suggests it's possible.

People cut their daily calorie intake by about 25 percent when they held off on breakfast for 90 minutes and then had dinner 90 minutes earlier than usual, said senior researcher Jonathan Johnston. ...

TUESDAY, Aug. 28, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- People who slash carbohydrates from their diets may shorten their lifespan, a new study suggests.

Using data on nearly 25,000 Americans, researchers found that the one-quarter who ate the fewest carbs each day also had a higher risk of dying over the next six years. Specifically, they had higher death rates from heart disease, stroke and canc...

TUESDAY, Aug. 28, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- For years, nutritionists have warned Americans to minimize dairy in their diets, especially high-fat dairy products.

But new research involving 24,000 U.S. adults suggests milk and milk-derived products don't pose the dire health risks suggested by prior research, and maybe those old warnings should be relaxed.

"In light of the prot...

MONDAY, Aug. 27, 2018 (American Heart Association) -- People turn to convenience stores to grab on-the-go food while traveling or as the only alternative when fresh food options like grocery stores are scarce.

But can you find healthy options there? Nutritionists say it's possible -- even when faced with aisles of candy bars, salty snacks and cheesy puffs.

It just takes a ...

MONDAY, Aug. 27, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Rising levels of carbon dioxide caused by air pollution are making crops less nutritious, a new study warns.

That could put hundreds of millions of people worldwide at risk for protein, zinc and iron deficiencies and related health problems, the researchers said, with people in poor countries at most risk.

"Our research makes it clea...

MONDAY, Aug. 27, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Weight loss depends on eating fewer calories than your body uses up. But when you eat those calories could make a difference that you'll see on the scale.

An Italian study found that you can boost weight loss by about 25 percent just by eating 70 percent of each day's calories between breakfast and lunch, including a mid-morning snack, ...

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Wellness Library Results - 60

Now that you're pregnant and eating for two, you probably wonder a bit about your diet and whether you're getting the nutrients you need. And if you suffer occasional bouts of nausea or morning sickness, your diet is even more of a concern. Here are some of the most common questions about nutritional needs during pregnancy. How much weight should I gain during pregnancy? Every woman is different...

The deep fragrance of soy and garlic wafted out to the nurses' station from Mrs. Lee's room, signaling that her daughter, Mrs. Wong, had arrived with lunch. Time for me to make rounds. Mrs. Wong was her mother's interpreter and advocate, as well as her cook. When I walked in, Mrs. Wong was untying the handles of white plastic bags bearing red Chinese lettering. Inside were rectangular plastic cont...

You may feel unsettled when your mother botches her favorite recipe. Then again, who hasn't confused tablespoons with teaspoons a few times? But as the months go on, she starts forgetting to turn off burners. She puts salt in her coffee rather than sugar. And one day, she no longer remembers to eat. When Alzheimer's disease begins taking over the brain, even the most basic instincts aren't safe. ...

Remember those high school chemistry experiments in which you mixed two harmless chemicals and got a bizarre reaction? You may be performing a similar experiment on yourself every time you take two medications at the same time. Certain drugs react strongly when taken with others, often causing serious side effects. In rare cases, drug interactions can even be deadly. Drugs can affect each other i...

Should I be worried about eating fish while I'm pregnant? Since fish is low in saturated fat and high in heart-friendly omega-3 fatty acids, eating it during pregnancy is very important. But seafood is the only significant source of mercury in our food, and some fish have levels of mercury so high that it may be harmful to a developing baby. No more than two helpings a week of low-mercury fish ar...

Many people with diabetes have to rethink their approach to eating. Often, that means a new approach in the kitchen, too. You can bring out great flavors in foods without adding a lot of fat, calories or salt. If your kitchen is a place where healthy menus go to die, it's time to try some new cooking tips. For starters, a diabetes-friendly kitchen doesn't come equipped with a deep-fat fryer. Dee...

Menopause is a time when a woman's body goes through major changes. Some may be due to the natural transformations that come with aging. Others are produced when a woman stops generating the hormones that regulate her menstrual periods. In many women, these changes can trigger hot flashes, vaginal dryness, insomnia, night sweats, depression, and loss of interest in sex. Weight gain is common among...

Think about some of your favorite recipes. Do they include heavy cream by the cupful? Butter by the stick? Those meals may be tasty, but they aren't doing your heart any favors. Fortunately, you don't have to throw out your recipe books -- or sacrifice flavor -- to make your meals more heart healthy. All it takes is a little translating. When the casserole recipe calls for heavy cream, you read "...

Soda addiction has long been a problem in our nation's schools. Every day for years, many kids have lined up at vending machines to buy their 20-ounce bottles of sugar and carbonated water before they go off to study important subjects like history, math, and, yes, nutrition. Kids love soda, but they aren't the only ones who are hooked. With few exceptions, it's the schools that haven't been able ...

Most of the time Rosalia Scalia is a happy vegan. She turned her back on meat, fish, eggs, and dairy products and embraces grains, beans, and greens instead. She devours volumes on nutrition and health, and enjoys whipping up exotic dishes from vegetable-based cuisine. After six years of dining low on the food chain, she's never felt healthier. There's just one problem: She can't get enough of the...

Can omega-3 fatty acids stabilize mood and combat depression? We all have fat on the brain. Amazingly enough, more than half of the brain's dry weight comes from fat. Some of these fats are the key building blocks of cell membranes and play essential roles in the brain's function. Omega-3 fatty acids, for example, help form cell membranes, keep those membranes flexible, and regulate the flow of ...

Is organic produce healthier for my kids? There's good reason to suspect so. The virtue of organic produce is that it's grown with far fewer toxic chemicals than is conventional produce. And there's no doubt that direct exposure to some of the pesticides and herbicides used in conventional farming can pose a danger to children. Certain chemicals can harm the immune system or central nervous syste...

Why does my child refuse to eat anything that's green? Probably for the same reason she insists on dressing herself and resists going to bed on time -- because she can. Some kids go through lots of fussy eating stages, but the first and most common occurs when they're toddlers, about the time they learn to say no. The next time your child scrunches up her face, clenches her jaw, and pushes her pe...

Finding time to make your child breakfast -- not to mention getting him to eat it -- can be a struggle. Usually he's halfway to school before you can say, "OJ." The good news is that you don't have to provide a complete meal every morning. What's important is getting your child out the door with a dose of energy and at least a few essential nutrients. Here are some ways to give him what he needs...

The key to preparing nutritious family dinners in a limited amount of time is planning ahead. "When 4 o'clock in the afternoon rolls around, most people have no idea what they'll have for dinner," says physician and professional chef John LaPuma, who co-founded ChefMD, a health and media company dedicated to helping people choose and cook healthful meals. "Unfortunately, most of us tend to grab th...

Once your child starts school, you can't really monitor what she has for lunch. Sure, you pack good things in that paper bag. But does she actually eat those strawberries or trade them for some buttery crackers? Though you can't guarantee that the nourishing foods will get inside of her, you can improve the odds by following a few simple tips:

Many people with high blood pressure see salt as a villain. According to conventional wisdom, just a few shakes can send blood pressure soaring. But is salt really so dangerous? After decades of studies, scientists finally have an answer to that question: Yes -- and no. For many people, extra salt really does raise blood pressure. In a few cases, however, it seems to lower pressure. And for some ...

Should I worry if my child loves to snack? Not for a second. Kids need so much energy while they're growing up that they often can't get enough from three square meals. Instead of fretting, encourage your child to choose the most nutritious snacks. What are the best choices? Obviously a piece of fruit or handful of carrot sticks is the most healthful snack going. But there are plenty of other n...

Should I be worried if my child is skinny? As long as she's a healthy eater, there shouldn't be any cause for concern. A lot of children are naturally thin. Chances are, your child will fill out as she gets older. Most kids follow a fairly steady growth curve that's dictated, in part, by genetics; if you were a beanpole in your youth, it's more than likely that your child will be, too. You shou...

What do Inuits in Greenland have in common with residents of downtown Tokyo? More than you might think: Both groups rarely suffer heart attacks, and both groups eat a lot of fish. Nutritionists now believe it may not be a coincidence that such dramatically different populations have a similar low incidence of heart disease. Whether you live in an igloo or a skyscraper, fish is good for your heart....

The biggest shortfall in most Americans' diets isn't vitamins or minerals. It's fiber. Experts say adult women should get 25 grams a day while men should get 38 grams. Yet we average a paltry 15 grams. Our kids aren't doing any better. The American Heart Association (AHA) recommends that children ages 1 to 3 get at least 19 grams of fiber a day, and children ages 4 to 8 get 25 grams. The AHA say...

What kind of diet will help me keep my blood pressure under control? If you have hypertension, your doctor will most likely recommend that you cut back on salt, particularly if you're 40 or older. To find out whether your blood pressure will respond to a low-salt diet, try to get no more than 1,500 milligrams of sodium a day (just about the amount in one teaspoon of table salt) -- and much less t...

Ding Dongs and Doritos have never solved anyone's problems, but that doesn't keep us from seeking solace in food. When work gets hectic, when plans fall apart, when relationships founder, we often try to calm our minds by filling our stomachs. "Everybody has their own comfort food," says Marci Gluck, PhD, a research clinical psychologist with the National Institutes of Health. A bag of chips, a b...

On the Internet and around the water cooler, you're likely to hear stories claiming that eating a certain food or eliminating one kind of food from your diet can change your quality of life. Except in rare cases of food allergy or intolerance, there's no concrete evidence that a simple change in diet can, say, banish chronic pain for good. Researchers have found, however, that eating particular fo...

Is a vegetarian diet healthy for children? Experts are still debating that question. Some say a vegetarian diet is fine for kids (in fact, the American Dietetic Association endorses vegetarian diets for all ages). Others worry that limiting their choice of foods may prevent kids, who tend to be picky eaters to begin with, from getting the nutrients and calories they need in order to grow. But if...

What's wrong with skipping breakfast (or any other meal) if I'm not hungry? When you wake up in the morning you've probably gone about 11 hours without eating, and since your body uses calories as fuel, you'll need to refill your tank right away. While it's tough for your body to get going when you're running on empty, skipping breakfast is even harder on your brain. Most of the cells in your bod...

On a typically hectic morning, most of us couldn't possibly find the time to make that "complete breakfast" we remember seeing on the side of cereal boxes when we were kids. (And if you're not a morning person, the very idea of eggs, toast, juice, cereal, and milk may be more than you can stomach.) The good news is you don't have to entertain all the food groups at breakfast. What's important is g...

The key to preparing a nutritious dinner in a limited amount of time is planning ahead. "When 4 o'clock in the afternoon rolls around, most people have no idea what they'll have for dinner," says physician and professional chef John LaPuma, who runs a program at Alexian Brothers Medical Center in Elk Grove Village, Illinois, called CHEF -- for cooking, health, eating, and fitness. "Unfortunately, ...

When you're rushing out the door on a weekday morning, you just can't think ahead to lunchtime. It's hard enough to get showered and presentable, feed the cat, get your kids to school, and do whatever else needs doing. So when your stomach rumbles around noon, you dash to the nearest store for a ham sandwich gloppy with mayonnaise or you accept your co-worker's offering of the leftover fries at th...

Do I need sports drinks? When you're sweating your way to a serious thirst, water isn't always enough. That's why old-time American ranchers used to drink batches of switchel -- a mixture of water, molasses, and vinegar -- during haying season. Workouts have changed since then, and, thankfully, so have the energy drinks. The water is still there, but the molasses and vinegar have been replaced wi...

What is caffeine? If it weren't for caffeine, lots of people around the world would find it hard to get their day started. Caffeine is mild stimulant that occurs naturally in over 60 kinds of plants, most notably coffee, cocoa beans, and tea leaves. It's unlikely to cause any long-term health problems, but coffee fanatics can attest that an overload can make a person jittery and anxious for a few ...

What's the difference between herbs and supplements and the drugs that you buy over the counter? Shopping for dietary supplements can be like stepping into a wild frontier with few rules and fewer enforcers. Since the federal government doesn't regulate herbs and supplements -- as it does prescription and over-the-counter drugs -- herbal remedies don't have to go through rigorous testing or displ...

What are nutraceuticals? Remember the kids' book Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory ? One of Willie Wonka's most amazing inventions was a machine that packed an entire feast into a single piece of gum. When young Violet Beauregard stole one of the pieces and shoved it into her mouth, she could taste succulent roast beef followed by a steaming bowl of tomato soup, a baked potato, and a blueber...

What are protein supplements supposed to do? Step into any health-food store and you're likely to see stacks of protein-packed powders and bars, often accompanied by pictures of people with action-figure bodies. The message is clear: If you want to trade in your relatively normal body for the Mr. (or Ms.) Olympiad model, you can't live without products like Ultra Body-Building Protein Powder and ...

Is my diet triggering my headaches? It could be. Cold drinks, alcohol, caffeine withdrawal, hunger, and certain food additives -- all these things can cause the blood vessels in your brain to swell and press on the surrounding nerves. (This is the same way migraines cause head pain.) You sip a frozen drink too fast, and your temples throb unbearably for the next ten seconds. You have a few more c...

How can my diet affect my premenstrual symptoms? What you eat and drink can have a big influence on both the physical and emotional symptoms you may have each month during the week or two leading up to your period. Most experts recommend that women with premenstrual syndrome start by avoiding caffeine and alcohol, which can exacerbate headaches, anxiety, and depression. It's also a good idea to d...

Could the right diet help prevent heart disease? It certainly could. Ask a doctor or a dietitian about the value of good nutrition, and you're bound to get a lesson on the heart. Indeed, nutrition experts seem to be fixated on the organ. "This is good for the heart," they'll say, usually followed with, "And this is bad for the heart." There's a reason for all of this heart-talk: Cardiovascular di...

There's nothing in your refrigerator or cupboard that can cure osteoporosis. And no matter what vitamins or supplements you take, there are also no guarantees against broken bones. But if your bones have lost some of their strength, you'll need to pay extra attention to nutrition. Along with prescription medications and regular exercise, proper nutrition is a vital part of the three-pronged approa...

Can the food we eat ward off disease? There's no doubt about it -- especially if you combine that with some daily exercise. As many as one-third of all cancer cases are related to a poor diet and a sedentary lifestyle, according to the American Institute for Cancer Research. In fact, four out of the six leading causes of death in the United States -- cancer, stroke, heart disease and diabetes -- ...

What is lactose intolerance? You're lactose intolerant when your intestines lack a certain enzyme, called lactase, needed to digest lactose, the sugar in milk and other dairy products. Within 30 minutes to two hours of eating these foods, you may suffer cramps, gas, bloating, and diarrhea. Unfortunately, you can't reverse lactose intolerance. But by making a few changes in your eating habits or b...

What is a vegetarian diet? Once a fringy, unpopular notion dismissed by some as downright unhealthy, eating your vegetables is now a mainstream idea. If you're skipping meat entirely, you're in good company: More than 7 million Americans say they never eat red meat, poultry, or fish. Instead, they fill their plates with plant-based foods, from vegetables, legumes, and fruits to nuts and grains. ...

Why do I need calcium? For all of the attention and acclaim calcium gets as a bone builder, that's just one of its jobs throughout the body. Among other things, the mineral plays a crucial role for the nerves and the heart. Recent studies have shown that calcium can help lower blood pressure, and there's some evidence that calcium can help prevent cancer of the colon and rectum. Calcium is so impo...

Why do I need iron? Iron is one of the most abundant metals on the planet, which is a good thing because our bodies can't function without it. Iron makes it possible for your red blood cells to carry oxygen to the rest of your body. If you don't have enough iron, your body won't get the oxygen that it needs to stay fully stoked. You'll feel tired and weak -- the classic signs of iron-deficiency an...

What is chromium? It's a metal that's much more valuable in your body than on your car. Chromium, found in tiny amounts in most foods, works like a key to unlock insulin. Without this nutrient, insulin is much less effective at controlling blood sugar, building proteins, or performing any of its other jobs. If you don't get enough chromium in your diet, you may be more likely to develop high bloo...

Why do I need selenium? You probably don't spend much time thinking about selenium, a rare metal that shows up in tiny amounts in all sorts of foods. There isn't very much selenium in your body, either, but its doing an important job. The mineral is a key ingredient to powerful antioxidant enzymes that protect your cells from damaging free radicals. It can definitely help keep your heart, liver, a...

Why do I need vitamin A? You've probably heard that the vitamins in carrots can help you see in the dark. That old tale is actually true -- the beta carotene in carrots and many other vegetables is converted in the intestines to vitamin A (also known as retinol), and vitamin A is undoubtedly good for the eyes. But night vision is only the beginning; vitamin A is also vital for healthy skin, strong...

Why do I need B vitamins? B vitamins are an important class of vitamins that help support your red blood cells and your nervous system. Some of the benefits are already well known. Women who are pregnant or planning to become pregnant need plenty of folic acid -- also known as vitamin B-9, or folate -- to prevent a serious type of birth defect known as neural tube defects (these include spinal bif...

Why do I need zinc? Zinc may come last in any alphabetical listing of nutrients, but it's one mineral that your body absolutely can't do without. It plays a key role in your immune system and wound healing. It's also important for fertility and growth. Severe cases of zinc deficiency can cause hair loss, impotence, and skin lesions, among other things. Fortunately, most people get plenty of zinc i...

What is macrobiotics? Macrobiotics is a belief system developed by the Japanese philosopher George Ohsawa in the 1930s. It's based primarily on the ancient Chinese principle that you can maintain health and well-being by balancing the opposing forces of yin and yang, which are inherent in everything in the universe. This balance is achieved in large part by following certain rules for choosing an...

Can the foods I eat really affect my mood? You bet. If you've ever recovered from a stressful day with a bowl of Haagen-Dazs, you know they can -- and science backs you up. A number of studies over the past 25 years have found that healthy, well-balanced diets can offer strong protection against depression. Of course, different foods change mood in different ways. Starchy foods can help you rel...

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