Blogs on various topics
Chinese have the longest average lifespan in the world, and research suggests that the cultural significance of green tea consumption is a factor in that claim.
Researchers found Chinese women who drank green tea at least 3 times a week were 14% less likely to develop colon, stomach and esophageal cancers. No one can say whether green tea, itself, is the reason though. Many green-tea lovers are often more health-conscious in general. The study did account for the samples lifestyle habits. None of the women smoked or drank alcohol regularly. And researchers did collect diet assessments, exercise habits and medical history. Even with those things factored in, women’s tea habits remained linked to their cancer risks.
Green tea Profile
Green tea contains certain antioxidant chemicals - particularly a compound known as EGCG, or epigallocatechin gallate - that may ward off the body-cell damage that can lead to cancer and other diseases. Green tea contains relatively little caffeine compared to coffee – but 10 cups a day can still total 500 mg of the stimulant.
Green tea also contains small amounts of vitamin K, which means it could interfere with drugs that prevent blood clotting, like warfarin. Since many older people are on multiple medications, it's best for them to talk with their physician or health care provider before using green tea as a health stimulant.
Why don't other Chinese teas have similar health-giving properties? Green, oolong, and black teas all come from the leaves of the Camellia sinensis plant. What differentiates between green tea is the way it is processed. Green tea leaves are steamed, which prevents the EGCG compound from being oxidized. By contrast, black and oolong tea leaves are made from fermented leaves, which results in the EGCG being converted into other compounds that are not nearly as effective in preventing and fighting various diseases.
If you want to start drinking green tea, it's considered safe in moderate amounts. But the tea and its extracts do contain caffeine, which some people may need to avoid. You can also consume EGCG in supplement form, usually in a capsule form. Always consult with your health care provider before you start any supplement program.
Calcium supplements do more harm than good or so it has been suggested. A published study looked at the link between calcium supplements and the risk of heart attack, strokes, and deaths from cardiovascular disease over a period of 11 years. This German study found no link between the amount of calcium in people’s diet and their risk of stroke or cardiovascular deaths. However, people using calcium supplement as their only form of supplement had more than twice the increase in heart attack and stroke compared with people who didn’t take any vitamin supplements.
Calcium: Tough as Nails Facts
Your body contains roughly 2.2 pounds of calcium in the body, that’s more than any other mineral! Calcium is essential for the development and maintenance of strong bones and teeth, and that’s where over 99% of body’s calcium is found. Calcium also helps the muscles work properly, including the heart muscle but it is probably best known for helping prevent osteoporosis.
Calcium supplements are often recommended to elderly people and menopausal women, in an effort to keep their bones healthy and strong. In order for calcium to be absorbed and used properly, your body needs several other nutrients such as magnesium, phosphorous and especially vitamins D and K.
How Does Calcium Get Absorbed in my Body?
Your intestines have two mechanisms to absorb dietary calcium:
Transcellular Absorption – the primary means of calcium absorption
Cells in the first portion of your small intestine, the duodenum, actively absorb calcium. Specialized pores called TRP channels on the surface of duodenal intestinal cells take up calcium from digested food. A protein called calbindin transports absorbed calcium to pumps that export the mineral into your bloodstream.
When you eat meals containing a high concentration of calcium, a second absorption system kicks in to help absorb calcium not taken up by the transcellular mechanism. The paracellular calcium absorption system operates throughout your small and large intestines. The cells lining your intestines are shaped similar to microscopic bricks. The interface between the cells is called a tight junction (TJ). TJs are minute gaps between intestinal cells through which calcium and other small molecules can pass. When the calcium concentration is higher in your intestines than in your blood, the mineral crosses through the TJs and enters your bloodstream. This is also termed passive diffusion.
The way the body absorbs calcium is an important factor when considering taking calcium supplements. It is better to start off at a lower dose and gradually increase it to a point that your body can absorb it efficiently. It is also recommended to supplement calcium with other vitamins and minerals that are essential for proper bone growth and maintenance, such as vitamin D and K and phosphorous and magnesium. Talk to your pharmacist or a qualified health counselor to make sure your getting the right amount.
Vitamin D & Calcium
If you are deficient in vitamin D, than your calcium is probably not getting absorbed. Vitamin D stimulates the transcellular calcium absorption system. Calbindin is required throughout this process and production of this protein depends on the adequate amounts of vitamin D.
Should I Take a Calcium Supplement?
The best way to get calcium is through food. Many foods are fortified with calcium, but some people may still need to take calcium supplements to get enough. It is especially important for children to get enough calcium in their diet as they are growing and forming bone, and for older people as they start to lose bone.
Postmenopausal women, people who consume large amounts of caffeine, alcohol, or soda, and those who take corticosteroid medications may need calcium supplements.
Calcium deficiency can be found in people who don' t absorb enough calcium, which can happen with Crohn's disease, celiac disease, and some intestinal surgeries.
So, if you have been recommended to take a calcium supplement, don’t be alarmed by the headlines. Don’t stop taking your supplements because you probably were recommended to take those supplements for specific reasons. Before jumping to the conclusion that calcium supplements are harmful, speak to your pharmacist or other qualified health professional and get more information regarding what is being printed in the news.
Carnitine is a nutrient that is often marketed as a “fat burner” as well as a “performance enhancer” (in regards to physical activity). Carnitine is formed from the amino acids lysine and methionine and plays a critical role in energy production. From the sounds of it, carnitine sounds like a miracle pill for some people. Let's take a closer look....
There has been so much media hype over Raspberry Ketones and their ability to shred pounds off your body. If you’re a Dr. Oz fan, you’ve likely heard him discussing the health benefits of raspberry ketones. This supplement trend has quickly spread – much like with acai a few years ago. But what makes raspberry ketones different from other weight loss supplements? I’m looking for scientific research to give Raspberry Ketones the official stamp of awesome!
The choices for supplements are seemingly endless. But before you go crazy looking for the right additions to your diet, take a look at the basics, like protein powder.
Beginning a fitness regimen can be an intimidating experience. There are thousands of products that all claim to help you get big or get little, depending on your goals. While any number of these products may indeed help you reach your goals, your initial supplement purchase should be a high quality protein powder
Even if you aren't a gym regular, adding a protein supplement can still be of benefit to you. Although the name"protein powder" may not have a tasty connotation, the supplement industry now creates products that taste just as good as that vanilla milkshake from the local burger joint. So, don't be worried about having to choke it down.
Now that we've put the taste issue to bed, consider these five reasons you should include a protein supplement in your diet:
Milk has long been a regular food staple for many cultures, often described as nature’s most wholesome food. It provides a unique blend of protein, magnesium, potassium not to mention vitamin D and calcium required for bones. Where would breakfast cereal be without it?
Lately milk’s health properties have come into question. Some people fear it will make them gain weight, while a few have claimed it can cause diseases ranging from osteoporosis to Alzheimer’s to cancer. So is milk bad for you?
It was perfect weather for the Spartan Race weekend. So many people came out to participate and to support runners from all over. Summer is probably the best season to focus on health and wellness. It’s such a great feeling to move your exercise outdoors, you feel more motivated to target your health-goals. But while training more frequently will eventually make you stronger, it’s also important to recognize the importance of recovery time.
When people talk about fats, they usually think fats are unhealthy and try to avoid them. However, fats provide most of the energy needed to perform much of the body’s work. Fat tissue (adipose tissue) secretes hormones that help regulate appetite and influence other body functions. It also serves to protect your organs and insulate your body from extreme temperature.
Now, everyone knows that coconut is high in saturated fat. Yet, recent studies have re-evaluated this botanical fruit (not nut) and studies have shown that coconut contains medium-chain fatty acid, also known as medium-chain triglycerides – MCT. MCT is unique and different from most all other fats and possesses many health-giving properties. It is now gaining long overdue recognition as a nutritious health food.
Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) is a fat-soluble substance that is found naturally in the body and is important for its role in energy metabolism. CoQ10 is found in almost every cell in the body, and is a powerful antioxidant.
Antioxidants fight damaging particles in the body known as free radicals, which damage cell membranes, tamper with DNA, and even cause cell death. Scientists believe free radicals contribute to the aging process, as well as a number of health problems, including heart disease and cancer. Antioxidants, such as CoQ10, can neutralize free radicals and may reduce or even help prevent some of the damage they cause. CoQ10 is well known for its ability to support cardiovascular health, slow atherosclerosis, prevent heart attacks, and lower blood pressure.