Sunday, August 26, 2007

Avoid Very Low Calorie Diet for Permanent Weight Control

Avoid very low clorie diet unless there is a medical need that is recommended and supervised by physicians, if you think about permanent weight control.

People are faked by the simple fact that extra weight is gained through foods we eat, yet cutting all foods largely may present some unpleasant side effects (gall stones), as well as it may represent a health risk.
Children, adolescents, pregnant or breast feeding women, should not follow very low calorie diet plan unless as a part of a specialized obesity treatment program.

The only candidates for very low energy diets are those suffering from moderate to severe obesity, who are at risk from weight-related illness and these risks are worse than the potential side effects of a very low-calorie diets, and this is when doctors prescribe them.
The problem comes when only mildly overweight people begin to use them as a quick fix. Sudden dietary changes forced upon your body can wreck havoc, and more often than not you can end up back where you started.

Very low-calorie diet is also compensated for by the body by burning muscle (since starvation represents a crisis for the body). People on this type of diet who revert back to their old eating habits end up gaining back some, if not all the weight they have shed off. This would consist mainly of fats. And since fats have more volume per mass than muscle, they end up having the same weight as before but more bulkier. In losing weight, one should keep in mind that they should lose excess body fats only.Muscle loss is extremely unhealthy (do you afford to lose heart muscles?)

These diets do not change long established bad eating patterns and cause the body to slow down their metabolism significantly, so when the dieter returns to a more normal eating pattern - which is unavoidable - their slower metabolism generally leads to increased weight gain.
They are also accompanied by some side effects like fatigue, nausea, constipation and diarrhea, and of course gall stones.

In the absence of a special factor, successful treatment of obesity requires a long term commitment to improved dietary and exercise habits. SO these very low -calorie diets are not likely to be effective.
Fad diets, unbalanced diets, diet pills, diet supplements, weight loss surgery and other short term weight loss methods are not recommended for permanent weight control.

The best way to lose excess fat and maintain a healthy weight in the long term is to
take regular aerobic exercise and follow a balanced calorie controlled diet - slightly less than your basal metabolic rate, i.e.about 2000-calories/day-(more details here)

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Yogurt and Honey Recipe to alleviate Constipation and Diarrhea

Yogurt, keffir, and butter milk are the richest foods with probiotics.
Probiotics-according to Wikipedia- are live microorganisms which when administered in adequate amounts confer a health benefit on the host.
The two most abundant friendly bacteria found in gastrointestinal tract are L.acidophylus and Bifidobacterium bifidum.

Researchers from the Academic Medical Center in Amsterdam, states that
probiotics friendly bacteria with known benefits for intestinal health, may boost the number of bowel movements and relieve constipation. Based on the result of a pilot study investigated the potential of a probiotic mixture to alleviate the symptoms associated with childhood constipation- a condition that can affect 30 % of children in the Western World.

Another recent study by researchers from Imperial College,London, reported a 22 % drop in the number of cases of diarrhea if probiotics drink, were consumed by hospital- bound elderly patients receiving antibiotics.

There were some other trials some of which were published in The Lancet
about successful use of honey to treat diarrhea in children.

Here is a recipe that gathers the benefits of Yogurt,honey, and fruits
in treating such ailments.It is published by website.

Fresh Fruit Salad with Honey Vanilla Yogurt

2 cups plain yogurt
2 tablespoons good honey
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Seeds scraped from 1/2 vanilla bean, optional
1/2 orange, juiced
1 banana, sliced
1/2 pint fresh blueberries
1/2 pint fresh raspberries
1 pint fresh strawberries, hulled and cut in half
1 bunch seedless green grapes, halved

Combine the yogurt, honey, vanilla extract, and vanilla bean seeds in a bowl and set aside. Combine the orange juice and banana slices in a separate bowl. Add the berries and grapes and gently mix the fruit mixture together. Spoon the fruit into serving bowls and top with the yogurt.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Nano Visualization / Micro reality - Life Inside a Cell

Here is a video made by Harvard University students showing how things happen inside a cell. With amazing graphics, it enables the visualization of life at its most microscopic dimension. With some simplification, the non-specialized person can comprehend the information on his way to appreciating the beauty of Biology, moreover he can put his feet on the way of understanding health and disease.

Watch it more than once and do not be involved in complex phenomena, just pay close attention to the cytoskeleton as a good deal of the cell
activities are directed to maintain it. It plays a great role in health and disease.

These are explanations of some scientific terms included in the video:

# Red Blood Cells: the segment of blood that carries Hemoglobin with all its functions.

# Leucocytes : White blood cells that represent the army of the body against any foreign invasion.

# Endothelial cells: are the cells lining the blood vessels.

# Extracellular matrix: is the surrounding medium of all cells in a certain tissue, it composed mainly of water.

# Plasma membranes: The membranes of all cells. They are composed of Phospholipids( Phosphatidyl Choline), lipids ( Sphyngolipids),and Cholesterol. They embed several proteins.

# Cytosol : The medium inside the cell, composed mainly of water.

# Cyto-skeleton : is a protein network that entraps organelles of the cell. It is responsible for the spacial configuration of the cell and its components. It plays a crucial role in some serious diseases, most importantly, Cancer.

# Glyco-proteins: Glycosilated proteins,i.e. a protein having attached
sugar moieties. They play a major role in cell-cell communications. You can read more about them

# G-protein: is a protein that is located beneath cell membrane and is responsible for transforming signals coming to the cells into a metabolic response. This response is caused by conformational changes of cell proteins.

# Actin: a protein together with Tubulin form the building material of
microfilaments and microtubules which represent the building units of the cytoskeleton.

# Monomer : a single molecule.

# Mitochondria: Energy house of cell which produce energy through coupling the extracted hydrogens from metabolites to inhaled Oxygen.

# Ribosomes: factory of proteins inside the cell. It is operated through orders coming via mRNA.

# mRNA: a printed DNA script that is sent from nucleus to cytoplasm
to synthesize proteins.

# Endoplasmic reticulum: is a network that accumulate proteins formed
in ribosomes and packs them after finished their processing.

# Golgi apparatus: is a system that complete glycosilation of proteins.

# Nuclear envelope: membranes surrounding the nucleus and separate it from cytoplasm.

# Micro villi : protrusions on the surface of a cell.

# Leukocyte extravasation: migration of white blood cells from the interior of a blood vessel to an inflammed area.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Folate, Vitamin B12, Vitamin B6 and Vitamin C Prevent Formation of Plaques in your Arteries

Along with other vitamins in the B group (most notably B-6 and B-12)
folate has been shown to reduce levels of homocysteine, the amino acid
that promotes plaque buildup in arteries. The result: Folate began to be known to help keep the heart healthy while also reducing risk of stroke and cognitive decline.

L-methylfolate (Metafolin), is the primary biologically active isomer of folate and the form of folate in circulation. It is also the form which is transported across membranes into peripheral tissues, particularly across the blood brain barrier (that selectively permits some of blood constituents to enter into the brain). In the cell, Metafolin is used in the methylation of homocysteine to form methionine and tetrahydrofolate (THF). THF is the immediate acceptor of one carbon units for the synthesis of thymidine-DNA, purines (RNA and DNA) and methionine. About 70% of food folate and cellular folate is comprised of Metafolin. Folic acid, the synthetic form of folate, must undergo enzymatic reduction by methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) to become biologically active. Genetic mutations of the enzyme MTHFR result in a cell's inability to convert folic acid to Metafolin.

There have been some supplements that are formulated according to these
principles to be used for the nutritional requirements of individuals under a physician's treatment for neurovascular oxidative stress and/or hyperhomocysteinemia, with particular emphasis for those individuals diagnosed with or at risk for mild to moderate cognitive impairment1, vascular dementia, Alzheimer's disease and/or recurrent or ischemic stroke.

Lastly, researchers from the University of Bonn found that Metafolin is
more bio available than a standard folic acid supplement.More recently researchers at Belgium's Katholieke Universiteit Leuven found that Metafolin alone significantly raised folate levels for four hours. But when vitamin C was added, these levels stayed elevated for six hours. Each of the two vitamin C doses produced about the same effect.

The University of Sheffield in the UK is currently conducting a study
that will compare folate levels in subjects receiving a folate-rich
diet, folic acid supplements, or Metafolin supplements. Results will be
reported next year.

The best dietary sources of folate include spinach and other dark green
vegetables, citrus fruits, broccoli, wheat germ, brewers yeast, Lima
beans, cantaloupe, watermelon, brown rice, peas, sprouts, poultry,
shellfish, pork, and liver from organically raised animals. Talk to
your doctor before taking folate or Metafolin supplements.

Monday, August 06, 2007

B12 Metabolism and Blood Cells,Heart disease and Nerve Cells

The B12 vitamin is just one of the essential b vitamins that are needed to maintain a healthy body and mind. Cobalamin is the alternative name for the B12 vitamin. The body needs the B12 vitamin for a number of different processes including converting the fats, carbohydrates and proteins from all food that is consumed into energy (i.e.normal metabolism).

One of the most important processes that the B12 is essential for is to create healthy red blood cells. The prevention of heart disease relies on the production of healthy blood cells and therefore the B12 vitamin is vital, moreover vitamin B12 has an important role in reducing Homocysteine that plays a dangerous role in initiating the process of atherosclerosis.

The B12 vitamin is also vital for keeping the immune system functioning at its maximum efficiency. Not only this, but the B12 vitamin also works to form the protective covering of all the nerve cells in the body.

The production of red blood cells is not the only type of cells that the B12 vitamin is essential for. In fact, all of the cells in the body require the B12 vitamin, including white blood cells and nerve cells. The white blood cells are an important part of the immune system and without the B12 vitamin the effectiveness of the immunity of the body to germs and viruses is heavily reduced. The nerve cells need the B12 vitamin to create the fatty layer that will protect them from damage. The brain cells are particularly open to disease and damage if there is not enough B12 vitamin present to form this protective layer.

Even though the B12 vitamin is involved in so many essential processes the actual recommended daily amount that a body needs is quite small. The fact is that the majority of people consume much more of the B12 vitamin than their body actually requires. The only issue is that the body cannot absorb the B12 vitamin very easily and has to create its own aid to the process. The intrinsic factor that the body produces helps the body to absorb the B12 vitamin that it needs from food but this still amounts to only half of the total B12 vitamin available. A deficiency in the B12 is extremely rare in most people and is made even less likely because the body can recycle the B12 vitamin that it already has absorbed.

A few groups of people may develop anaemia due to a lack of B12 vitamin in their diet. Young children often have a problem getting enough of the B12 vitamin because they may be extremely fussy eaters and it is important to encourage them to eat as wide a variety of foods as possible. This is not only the case with the B12 vitamin but is true for all essential vitamins and minerals.

Choose your favored form of Vitamin B12

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