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  • midlifelove 3:52 am on February 19, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: cancer, Coffee good for you, Coffee health benefits, Harvard Medical School, heart disease, longevity, ,   

    Coffee Brims With Health 

    Drink up, coffee lovers. Not only is coffee aromatic and delicious, it’s good for you.

    Who says? None other than Harvard Medical School.

    Once considered questionable for your health, it turns out that the beloved beverage is actually healthful in moderation. That means a few cups a day.

    At about 20 cents per 6-ounce cup, coffee is a good deal if you brew it yourself.

    Harvard researchers say drinking coffee may help prevent diseases such as:

    • Cancer: Some studies have found coffee drinkers have lower rates of colon and rectal cancers, better survival rates with prostate cancer, and are 50 percent less likely to get liver cancer than coffee abstainers.
    • Type 2 diabetes: Coffee is thought to contain chemicals that lower blood sugar because heavy coffee drinkers may be half as likely to get diabetes as those who drink little or no coffee. Coffee also may increase your resting metabolism rate, which could help prevent diabetes.
    • Parkinson’s disease: Coffee seems to help protect men from Parkinson’s disease, but not women. The difference might be due to estrogen, researchers say.
    • Heart disease: Coffee is not linked to the development of heart disease. In the past few years, Harvard scientists say, coffee has been shown to be safe even for heart attack survivors. Scientists think antioxidants in coffee may reduce inflammation and protect blood vessel walls.
    • Life span: Recent studies suggest that drinking coffee decreases the risk of premature death, especially in women. Women who drank at least five to seven cups a week had a death rate 26 percent lower than non-consumers, a large investigation by researchers in Spain and at Harvard Medical School found.

    Three Or More Cups Good

    It’s not only Harvard researchers who are touting the brew’s benefits. As the Palm Beach Post reported, in September a study led by Neal Freedman of the National Cancer Institute showed that people with chronic hepatitis C and advanced liver disease who drank three or more cups of coffee a day cut their risk of the disease progressing by 53 percent.

    Although caffeine might be considered the “active ingredient” in coffee, coffee is only 2 percent caffeine and 98 percent “other stuff,” including more than 1,000 different compounds such as vitamins, minerals and amino acids.

    It even contains fiber. Each cup contains from 1.1 to 1.8 grams of soluble dietary fiber, the kind that dissolves in water and helps prevent cholesterol from being absorbed by the intestines, according to researchers at the Spanish National Research Council in Madrid.

    But Not If You Are Pregnant

    Do researchers have any words of caution? Yes — although regular coffee drinking isn’t harmful for most people, that might not hold true for pregnant women. Research has linked miscarriage to caffeine consumption of 200 milligrams or more per day. A typical cup of coffee has 100 to 150 milligrams, Harvard reports.

  • midlifelove 5:21 am on May 13, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: brocolli, citrus, dehydration, , effective, FDA 2500mg, , heart disease, potasium, , processed foods, Salt, , toxic, viatmin C   

    Salt – Obsessive food no.2 

    Cut Salt and Live Happily Ever After

    Find yourself ordering French fries more for the saltiness than the potato? Do you put salt on everything – even watermelon? If so you’re probably in the majority of people whose salt intake is double (5000 mg daily) that recommended by the FDA (2500 mg daily). As common salt – white refined sodium chloride – is toxic to our bodies, it’s a common craving that’s good to curb.

    For most people, craving salt is simply a matter of habit developed by eating lots of salty foods like potato chips, salted nuts and French fries.

    But craving salty foods can be a symptom of adrenal exhaustion, especially in people who live fast-paced, stressful lives. Your body needs approximately 500 mg of salt a day. If you are an athlete or work hard physically, and sweat a lot, you will need more. A desire for salt may simply be a result of dehydration, the process by which your body loses water, electrolytes and salt. Some experts believe that Americans are so accustomed to a high-sodium diet, that they go into salt “withdrawal” when their eating habits change.

    Slowly cutting back on salt, rather than completely cutting it out of your diet, is a more effective way to reduce your intake.


    Beating Salt Craving

    Replace your standard table salt with unrefined sea salts.Often the body doesn’t actually want the salt, but the mineral content found in salt. Because unrefined sea salts have a stronger flavor and higher mineral content, you can use less and give your body exactly what it is craving.

    Eat foods that are high in Vitamin C and Potassium. If stress and adrenal failure are causing your cravings, these foods will help reduce the urge.

    Foods high in Vitamin C – Citrus, Pepper, Broccoli

    Foods high in Potassium – Apricots, Bran Wheat, Raisins, Figs, and Baked Potato With Skin

    Substitute a squeeze of lemon juice in your favorite recipes instead of adding excess salt. Just like salt, lemon helps to bring out the natural flavors of food, but does not carry the health risks. While it may take some getting used to, before your know it, you won’t even miss the excess salt.

    The best way to fight dehydration is by drinking more water and by replacing the lost salt. Many sports drinks like Gatorade and Powerade provide the necessary nutrients for hydration, especially after an intense workout.

    Replace some processed foods with fresh fruits and vegetables and season your dishes with herbs and spices. Stick with it and after a while you won’t miss the salt and will be feeling better. And if you’ve developed a taste for watermelon with salt on it, try dipping bite-sized pieces of watermelon in soy sauce instead.

    Caution: Sudden, excessive cravings for salt can also be a sign of some serious health conditions, such as diabetes, heart disease, and sickle cell anaemia. If you experience symptoms of any of these diseases, you should consult your physician immediately.

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