Nutrition Articles

A sugary diet may spell trouble for your heart

A sugar-laden diet may raise the risk of heart disease, even in people who are not overweight. Sugar-sweetened beverages such as sodas, energy drinks, and sports drinks are by far the biggest sources of added sugar in the average American’s diet. A 12-ounce can of regular soda contains about 9 teaspoons of sugar—the recommended daily limit of added sugar for men, according to the American Heart Association. (The recommended daily limit for women is about 6 teaspoons.)  (Locked) More »

Is summer heat putting you at risk?

High temperatures put older adults at risk for heat-related illness, because the body can no longer handle heat and dehydration the way it used to. Symptoms of heat exhaustion include general weakness with dizziness, fatigue, nausea, and feeling faint. To avoid heat exhaustion, people should stay out of the heat, make sure there’s an air conditioner that works at home, stay hydrated by drinking two to three quarts of liquid per day, go outside only in the morning or late afternoon, and wear loose, light-colored clothing. (Locked) More »

Restaurant meals: How to make them healthier

Eating in restaurants can ruin the healthiest diets. But one can enjoy a meal on the town by following a few guidelines. Suggestions include reducing portion sizes by splitting an entrée with a dinner partner, asking for food to be steamed or broiled without added butter, requesting that the chef go easy on added salt, asking for sauces on the side, and planning what to order ahead of time by looking at a restaurant’s menu online or visiting the restaurant in advance to check out the offerings.  More »

What too much sugar could do to your heart

Sugar not only leads to weight gain, but also can contribute directly to cardiovascular disease. Research finds people who get 25% of their daily calories from sugar nearly triple their risk of death from heart disease. The American Heart Association recommends that women get no more than 100 of their daily calories from sugar, and the World Health Organization recently lowered its recommendation to no more than 5% of calories a day. (Locked) More »

Caffeine IQ: How much is too much?

A safe amount of caffeine intake each day is 200 to 300 milligrams (mg). More than 500-600 mg per day may increase the risk of negative side effects. Such side effects include insomnia, jitters, nervousness, dehydration, and irritability.  Stopping caffeine intake suddenly can cause headaches, which can be cured by another jolt of caffeine, but may result in a dependence on the compound. But not everyone is affected by caffeine the same way. There is a broad range for an individual’s limit of caffeine due to built-up tolerance as well as genetic differences in ability to break down caffeine. (Locked) More »

Eat more fiber-rich foods to foster heart health

Many studies suggest that fiber-rich diets may help prevent heart disease. But most Americans eat only about 16 grams of fiber a day—far less than the recommended amounts, which range from 21 to 38 grams daily, depending on age and sex. Fiber may help lower blood pressure and cholesterol and makes people feel full so they’re less likely to overeat. Good sources of fiber include breakfast cereals, whole grains (oatmeal, barley), beans (kidney, lima), and fruits (prunes, apples, pears).  More »

Is a vegetarian or vegan diet for you?

Going vegetarian or vegan has numerous health benefits. There are many ways to start eating a more plant-based diet. Be sure you get enough of nutrients that are typically found in animal products, such as calcium, iron, and vitamin B12. More »

Mediterranean diet quick start

The Mediterranean dietary pattern emphasizes olive oil, grains, fruits, nuts, vegetables and fish. Research shows that it prevents heart attacks and strokes. To prevent intestinal discomfort, gradually increase the amount of extra-virgin olive oil in your diet. Eat generous amounts of fruits and vegetables and modest amounts of whole-grains, dairy foods, and fish or poultry. Minimize red meat and added sweeteners. (Locked) More »