Nutrition

Nutrition Articles

Coconut oil: heart-healthy or just hype?

© Yuttadanai Mongkonpun | Dreamstime When a friend told me about "the wonders of coconut oil," it sounded a bit like a Saturday Night Live sketch. It's a health food. It's a skin conditioner. You can use it in your hair. It's even great as a natural wood polish for your furniture! But wait, there's more! You can use coconut oil to improve your IQ and shrink your bunions! More »

Struggling with emotional eating?

Some people cope with difficult situations by reaching for comfort food. Chowing down on ice cream or macaroni and cheese can make everything seem like it's going to be okay. And there may be a reason why, according to the Harvard Special Health Report Lose Weight and Keep It Off. Turns out, there are parts of the brain that are rewarded from eating high-fat or high-sugar foods. And more than a decade of psychological research suggests that any behavior that is rewarded is likely to be repeated. More »

Can you, should you, have medically tailored food delivered to your home?

Many older adults who have chronic illness or have just come home from the hospital are unable to shop for or cook their own meals. The result is a diet that’s deficient in the nutrients essential for good health, or meals that don’t follow dietary restrictions, such as low salt or low potassium. A solution is having medically tailored meals prepared by friends and family, or prepared and delivered by a nonprofit organization such as Community Servings in Boston. (Locked) More »

Does diet soda raise stroke risk?

The evidence linking diet sodas to a higher risk of stroke and dementia is weak. But there are other reasons to avoid artificial sweeteners, namely because they don’t seem to help with weight loss. Also, people who use them regularly may find less-sweet fruits and vegetables unappealing, which could lead them to miss out on nutrients in these foods. But sugar-sweetened beverages are closely tied to a higher likelihood of weight gain, diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease and stroke. Plain or sparkling water infused with fruit or other natural flavors is the healthiest choice. (Locked) More »

Is chocolate heart-healthy?

People who eat more chocolate have lower rates of heart attacks, heart failure, and death from heart disease. However, chocolate products are often rich in saturated fat and sugar, so they should be eaten in moderation. (Locked) More »

Think twice before going gluten-free

It appears that gluten does not prevent heart problems. People who eat low amounts of gluten often have diets low in whole grains. Restricting whole grains may be bad for heart health. More »

Are there any benefits to exercising on an empty stomach?

Research has shown that aerobic exercise when fasting increases the use of a stored fat as an energy supply. Although these results sound promising, it is less certain that exercising on an empty stomach will help lose more weight. In fact, there are relatively few studies that have measured long-term weight loss or body fat composition. (Locked) More »

Counting on fewer calories

Older men need to maintain a healthy weight, so being mindful of how many calories they actually need—and perhaps cutting back by about 10%, an approach called calorie restriction—may help some men stay healthy and maybe even live longer. Besides helping men lose excess weight, calorie restriction can encourage smarter food choices and portion control. (Locked) More »