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Better Nutrition

What Is a Plant-Based Diet?

Pros and Cons
fruit and vegetable snack board

A plant-based diet is one that focuses on plants, such as fruits, vegetables, tubers, seeds, legumes, and grains. People on plant-based diets typically avoid beef, poultry, fish, eggs, and dairy, or eat them only in small quantities.

There is no official set of rules for how to follow a plant-based diet and there are several different varieties of eating plans. Vegetarian, vegan, raw food, Flexitarianpescatarian, Fruitarian, Engine 2 diet, and Mediterranean diets all fall under the plant-based diet umbrella, even though some may allow for small portions of fish, poultry, or dairy.

A 2018 study in the journal Clinical Cardiology found a plant-based diet reduces risk factors for cardiovascular disease, while a 2016 review of 42 meta-analyses found a significant association between increased consumption of red meat and cancer, especially with colorectal, lung, esophageal, and gastric malignancies.  To learn more about the pros and cons of a plant based diet click here.

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Myths and Misconceptions About Nutrition

Here are a few:

>>Meat Does Not Rot in Your Colon 

    It is completely false that meat rots in the colon.  The human body is well equipped to digest and absorb all the important                  nutrients found in meat.  

>>Eggs Are Among The Healthiest Foods You Can Eat

    Eggs were unfairly demonized because the yolks are high in cholesterol.  However, studies show that cholesterol from eggs              doesn't raise blood cholesterol in the majority of people.  The truth is, eggs are among the healthiest and most nutritious foods          you can eat.

>>Sugary Drinks Are The Most Fattening Aspect of The Modern Diet

    Added sugar is a disaster, and getting it in liquid form is even worse.  The problem with liquid sugar, is that your brain doesn't            compensate for the calories by eating less of other foods (7).  In other words, these calories don't get "registered" by the brain,        making you eat more calories overall (8).  Of all the junk foods, sugar-sweetened beverages are the MOST fattening of all!

>>For more nutrition clarifications click here


50 Healthy Food Swaps:  Smart substitutions that will help you look better, feel better and slim down, too!                                                                                 


Instead of Cinnamon raisin bagel
TRY 2 mini–cinnamon raisin bagels
Why Trading volume for quantity makes you feel like you're eating more, so you'll never even notice that you've nixed 181 calories.

Instead of Nonfat strawberry yogurt
TRY Nonfat Greek yogurt with sliced fresh strawberries
Why Creamy Greek-style yogurt has nearly twice the protein of traditional yogurt; fresh berries add antioxidants.



Instead of Smoked turkey and Cheddar on a baguette
TRY Natural sliced turkey with roasted peppers on a whole-wheat baguette
Why You'll banish cancer-causing compounds found in smoked foods and add protective antioxidants.

Instead of Chicken salad sandwich made with regular mayo
TRY Tuna salad sandwich made with canola oil mayonnaise
Why You'll get a double dose of heart-healthy omega-3 fats.



Instead of Chicken cutlets sautéed in corn oil with a side of roasted potatoes
TRY Chicken cutlets sautéed in canola oil with roasted cauliflower
Why Canola oil provides more omega-3s than most other cooking oils, and cauliflower is loaded with phytochemicals that protect against carcinogens.

Instead of Steak fajitas with flour tortillas
TRY Shrimp fajitas with corn tortillas
Why You'll save 400 calories and 22 fat grams, and trade saturated fat for heart-smart omega-3s.


Click here for more healthy food swaps


Healthy Eating Tips for Keeping Your New Year's Resolutions                               


1. Reduce your sugar intake, little by little. Why?                                                                                               

It doesn't exist in nature.  sugar is a highly concentrated food.  Your body is designed to get its sugars slowly from the complex foods we eat; it is not designed to handle the high amount of sugar that enters it every time you gulp down a soda.

Weight Gain: sugar will cause you to gain weight. And this is not only because sugar contains calories, but because sugar is unique and your body handles it differently than other foods. T                                                                                                         -

Harmful to blood vessels: Sugar destroys blood vessels. You can see the evidence for this in diabetics where blood vessel damage is responsible for all the common diseases that diabetics have, including heart disease, stroke, loss of vision.          Resource: http://www.olsonnd.com/five-reasons-you-must-avoid-sugar/  

2. Incorporate more probiotics and prebiotics into your diet.  Why? 

Prebiotics are natural, non-digestible food components that are linked to promoting the growth of beneficial bacteria in your gut. The best choices are: bananas, onions, garlic, leeks, asparagus, artichokes, soybeans, and whole-wheat breads. Probiotics are active cultures that help change or repopulate intestinal bacteria to balance gut flora.  The best sources are yogurts, kefir, kimchi, sauerkraut, miso, and tempeh. Learn more about pre and probiotics here.

3. Prepare your food.  Why?

Having your meals on hand during the day means you don’t have to go to the local cafe for food. This not only saves you time, but also your waistline. You have full control over the portions and ingredients. Another major advantage of planning and prepping your meals: saving money. Skip the $15 a day you spend on a salad covered in croutons and unknown dressing, and you’ll pocket $75 a week.  Resource:  https://www.organizeyourselfskinny.com/2014/10/17/how-to-prep-food-for-the-week-in-1-afternoon/

For more tips go to: https://www.self.com/story/new-years-resolution-ideas-healthy-eating


About Cholesterol                                                                  Cholesterol is a soft, fat-like substance found in the bloodstream and in all your body's cells. Your body makes all the cholesterol it needs. Low-density lipoprotein (LDL or 'bad') cholesterol can join with fats and other substances to build up in the inner walls of your arteries. The arteries can become clogged and narrow, and blood flow is reduced. High-density lipoprotein (HDL or 'good') carries harmful cholesterol away from the arteries and helps protect you from heart attack and stroke.

Cholesterol comes from two sources. Your body (specifically your liver) makes all the cholesterol you need. The rest you get from foods from animals. For example, meat, poultry and full-fat dairy products contain cholesterol (called dietary cholesterol). More importantly, these foods are high in saturated and trans fat. That’s a problem because these fats cause your liver to make more cholesterol than it otherwise would. For some people, this added production means they go from a normal cholesterol level to one that’s unhealthy.     

Learn more about cholesterol here: http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Conditions/Cholesterol/AboutCholesterol/About-Cholesterol_UCM_001220_Article.jsp#.Wm9Ra0-WzDB


12 Foods that Lower Cholesterol 

Avocados, red grapes, fresh garlic, chocolate, oatmeal, black tea, nuts, tumeric, lentils, olive oil, flaxseed, and egg plant to name a few.  Learn more about these and other foods you can eat to lower your cholesterol here.


What happens to my body if I eat too much sodium?

In most people, the kidneys have trouble keeping up with the excess sodium in the bloodstream. As sodium accumulates, the body holds onto water to dilute the sodium. This increases both the amount of fluid surrounding cells and the volume of blood in the bloodstream. Increased blood volume means more work for the heart and more pressure on blood vessels. Over time, the extra work and pressure can stiffen blood vessels, leading to high blood pressure, heart attack, and stroke. It can also lead to heart failure. There is also some evidence that too much salt can damage the heart, aorta, and kidneys without increasing blood pressure, and that it may be bad for bones, too.  Resource: https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/salt-and-sodium/sodium-health-risks-and-disease/

How much sodium should/can I consume each day?

The American Heart Association recommends no more than 2,300 milligrams (mgs) a day and an ideal limit of no more than 1,500 mg per day for most adults. Because the average American’s sodium intake is so excessive, even cutting back to no more than 2,400 milligrams a day will significantly improve blood pressure and heart health. More than 75 percent of the sodium Americans eat comes from some processed, prepackaged and restaurant foods – not from the salt shaker.                                         Resource: https://sodiumbreakup.heart.org/how_much_sodium_should_i_eat

Shaking the salt habit to lower high blood pressure

Learn about salt vs. sodium, sodium sources, shopping and cooking, seasoning alternatives, when dining out, and more....