Vitamin D. Do you ever wonder if you are getting enough of it, whether you should be taking a supplement, or why vitamin D is even important? In this article, I will discuss everything you need to know about this essential nutrient and hormone—how to get it, what foods have it, and how to choose and take a vitamin D supplement if you need it.
When you have diabetes, keeping your blood sugar in a healthy range is not only essential in keeping your diabetes under control, but it can help you feel your best. The easiest way to stabilize your blood sugar level is to watch your carbohydrate intake. This is because any carbohydrate food you eat (e.g., milk, fruit, bread, and pasta) is immediately digested into glucose (sugar), which causes your blood sugar level to increase. In this article, I will discuss one of the more “advanced” methods of diabetes meal planning: the “carb counting” method. A simpler method is the Diabetes Plate Method, so be sure to check out that article as well if you haven’t yet, along with the rest of the posts in the Diabetes Series!
Over the past year, there has been a lot of buzz surrounding the ketogenic diet. Not surprisingly, I have encountered many questions regarding them. What is it? Is it safe? Would I recommend it?
Despite the recent trend, a “ketogenic diet” is actually not new at all. In the 1970’s, Dr. Atkins popularized his low-carbohydrate diet for weight loss that began with a very strict two-week ketogenic phase. Over the years, other popular diets also incorporated similar approaches for weight loss. But in medicine, we have been using this method for almost a century to treat some forms of epilepsy, especially drug-resistant types in children.
As you know, whenever something is popularized, much information goes around—some accurate, some not so accurate. The purpose of this post is to summarize for you what the medical community actually knows so far through its research on the health effects of ketogenic diets. This post is not to make a stance either for or against, because as you will see, there are both pros and potential cons (as well as some unknowns); rather, I simply want to equip you with the right information in order to empower you to make the best decision for your personal situation.
So let’s get started!
Do you enjoy salty snacks? Do you often find yourself reaching for the salt shaker at the dinner table? In general, people eat much more sodium (salt) than they should. But why is it important to watch the amount of sodium you eat? It is important because the more sodium you consume, the higher your blood pressure becomes, which in turn can harm your health in the long run. Some conditions, such as certain heart and kidney problems, cause the body to hold onto sodium, which causes extra fluid to build up in the body. This extra fluid forces the heart to work harder. Therefore, if you live with chronic conditions, it is especially important to control the amount of sodium you eat. This article will cover the essential information you need to know that will make it simple to cut down salt and start on a low sodium diet.
Your diet, as most people know, is a big component of healthy living. There’s even much truth to the idiom, “You are what you eat!” However, when it comes to living with chronic conditions such as heart disease and diabetes, having the right diet becomes even more important, as the foods you eat can make a huge difference not only in the symptoms you experience day to day, but also in the way your chronic conditions progress over time. What this means is that with the right diet—aka the heart healthy diet— you can take control of your health by helping to slow or even reverse your chronic conditions. When it comes to heart disease, being on a heart-healthy diet can protect you against further narrowing of your heart’s blood vessels and in turn help prevent further complications such as heart attack and strokes.
In this article I will discuss what types of foods make up a heart healthy diet. In a subsequent article, I will cover the essentials of a specific component of heart healthy eating–the low sodium diet.
By Phoebe Chi, MD
Inflammation. Foods that fight inflammation. Anti-inflammatory diets. It has no doubt become a buzzword in the world of nutrition and health these days. But while there’s little question that the food we eat is an important part of staying healthy, some of these diets are being promoted with very big health claims, among them the assertion that they can cure serious diseases. But does the actual science match up to these claims? And should you follow these dietary guidelines? And what exactly do these diets consist of? These are the questions that will be addressed in this post.
Fish oil. It is one of the most commonly used supplements these days, estimated to be taken by 19 million adults in the U.S. alone. In the media, claims of its health benefits are broad and ubiquitous, ranging from heart disease and cancer prevention to treatment of ADHD. However, while there is little doubt that a diet rich in omega-3 foods is beneficial, do fish oil supplements—which also provide omega-3 fats—confer the same benefits for your health? And what if you are currently on one or thinking about starting—what are the ‘right’ reasons for doing so and the potential risks to consider? And finally, what should you look for in a product?
In answering these questions today, I hope to equip you with the confidence to make the best decisions in regards to your health. If you haven’t yet and would like an introduction to omega-3 fats and their natural food sources, take a look at the first part of this article.