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Archive for November, 2011

Preparing Healthy Holiday meals

Monday, November 21st, 2011

The holidays are just around the corner and with them come visits from family and friends and out of town relatives.  Getting ready for them can take some time and thought; especially when it comes to meals.

Preparing for the holiday meal is a exciting time for millions of people; planning dinner menu’s creating incredible appetizers and wonderful tasty treats for family and friends and spending time together is what the holidays are all about.

There are however, times when planning a holiday menu can be stressful; when one or more of your family has specific health requirements it can be very nerve-racking planning the menu.

Traditionally, holiday meals and desserts have a lot of fat and a lot of calories and everyone eats in abundance.  You sit around and laugh about loosening your belt, however serious health issues can arise from high fat and high calorie foods.

For those who want to eat a more healthy, it can be very challenging for the person preparing the menu however once you get on track, planning a menu that everyone can enjoy will be a breeze.

Planning a holiday meal that is both delicious and healthy is not difficult; there are so many different kinds of foods that can be prepared in a variety of ways.

The dreaded snack table is where most of your company will congregate; cakes, pies, cookies, high fat and high calorie dips and spreads are enticing for everyone.

There is an alternative; you can create an incredible snack or dessert table using delicious healthy foods like healthy &  natural energy bars. They are an excellent alternative to chips, dips, brownies, cookies and other high calorie snacks. There are so many different ways to present healthy foods for the holidays.

Healthy foods are not alien; they are normal everyday foods that many of us already eat. The fun is in preparing them. Experimenting a little bit will produce new healthy and tasty dishes that everyone will rave about.

You can also take the foods that you’ve always eaten and put a healthy twist on them; switch the ingredients around and you may come up with a new dish that everyone will request.

By simply making healthy ingredient choices, you can turn your holiday meal into a healthy meal that everyone will love. Your guests will appreciate the fact that you went through the trouble of preparing foods that they are able to eat.


Low Glycemic Index diets: can be protective against chronic diseases such as Diabetes

Monday, November 14th, 2011

We all know that Diabetes is a horrible disease, which goes without saying. Yet in the United States today over twenty six million people have it and either don’t take it as seriously as they should or they just don’t understand the ramifications. Diabetes is insidious; it adds so much stress to the body that resistance is lowered and you can develop serious chronic diseases.

Taking proper care of yourself is crucial to your overall health; people with diabetes know that diet is a major part of managing your disease. A low GI diet is essential in managing your diabetes and warding off chronic diseases.

Gaining weight happens to everyone; you gain it and then diet and lose it. For those with diabetes, it not that simple even though weight management is imperative to staying healthy. When a diabetic consumes foods that are high on the GI, their bodies react differently then non-diabetics; the risk of developing chronic diseases increase substantially.

The glucose in fats and carbohydrates absorb into the blood at a faster rate then low GI foods and raise the blood sugar level. This in turn requires them to take more insulin. If their blood sugar level gets too high, it could cause a number of different affects; dizziness and lightheadedness, which can lead to falling and getting hurt and more serious effects such as heart disease, coma or even death.

According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), seventy nine million Americans are at risk of developing type 2 Diabetes. This condition is called Prediabetes. There are a number of factors that are used to test for this.

  • Blood glucose levels are higher then normal
  • Poor eating habits
  • Poor coping skills
  • Minimal physical activity

By changing these four things in your life, it has been proven that the risk of developing Diabetes is lowered and so is the risk of developing one or more chronic diseases.

Studies show that people with pre-diabetes that lose up to seven percent of their body weight and exercise two and a half hours per week can lower their chance of developing type 2 diabetes by up to fifty eight percent.

Changing your dietary habits is perhaps the most important beginning; when you change your diet you will begin to lose weight and everything else falls into place.

Changing your diet sounds disconcerting; your used to eating certain foods and don’t want to give them up. While it’s true that some things will do more harm then good, it doesn’t mean that your diet will consist of boring tasteless food. Nothing could be farther from the truth. It is simply a matter of substitution and moderation.  Instead of grabbing a candy bar or a greasy bag of potato chips substitute with a low glycemic all natural energy bar.


Today Is World Diabetes Day!

Monday, November 14th, 2011

Diabetes Education and Prevention is the World Diabetes Day theme. For people with diabetes, this is a message about empowerment through education. For governments, it is a call to implement effective strategies and policies for the prevention and management of diabetes to safeguard the health of their citizens with and at risk of diabetes. For healthcare professionals, it is a call to improve knowledge so that evidence-based recommendations are put into practice. For the general public, it is a call to understand the serious impact of diabetes and know, where possible, how to avoid or delay diabetes and its complications. The key messages of the campaign are:

Know the diabetes risks and know the warning signs
Know how to respond to diabetes and who to turn to
Know how to manage diabetes and take control

Diabetes Facts

Tuesday, November 8th, 2011

Diabetes is an insidious disease it wreaks havoc on the bodies of people afflicted with it; unlike other diseases, Diabetes can affect different parts of your body in different ways.

In the United States today, there are more then twenty six million people that suffer from Diabetes, it is crucial that they understand what the devastating effect it has on their bodies. Despite the alarming number of people that suffer with this affliction, there are facts about Diabetes that they do not know.

  • *27% of people ages 65 or older are diagnosed with Diabetes
  • *Diabetes kills more people every year then Breast Cancer and Aids Combined
  • *Recent estimates project that as many as 1 in 3 American adults will have diabetes in 2050 (if it keeps increasing at this pace)
  • *Every 17 seconds, someone is diagnosed with diabetes

One of the deadliest effects of Diabetes is heart disease; Heart disease involves a number of different disorders, all of which effect heart function. Heart disease includes conditions such as hardening of the arteries, also known as arteriosclerosis, heart palpitations, heart attacks, high blood pressure and hypertension.

Another life threatening effect of diabetes is kidney problems. Renal failure occurs quite often in diabetic patients. People develop of number of symptoms that indicate there may be a problem with the kidneys.

One of the more common signs of kidney problems as associated with diabetes is swelling of the extremities particularly the legs and the feet. This is known as edema it an indication that the body is retaining fluid. In many ways kidney disease becomes gradually worse until it is necessary for a person to undergo dialysis on a regular basis.

Nerve damage is another result of diabetes; it is estimated that nearly half of the people that develop diabetes will experience some form of nerve damage. Nerve damage that is caused by diabetes is called diabetic neuropathy.

Nerve damage occurs when glucose or sugar destroys the nerves that line the blood vessels. This can initially result in tingling or numbness in the finger or toes and eventually it will spread to other areas of the body.

Nerve damage can be one of the most serious effects of diabetes because it can eventually make it difficult for people to feel when they have an injury.

This is especially true with the feet, which are prone to nerve damage as a result of the disease. Therefore, it is very important for people with diabetes to talk to their doctor and make him or her aware of any issues they may have with their nerves in order to combat the problem and prevent the spread of the nerve damage.

Eating foods that are high in fats and carbohydrates increase blood sugars and the fats may also coat the arteries causing high blood pressure and heart attacks. More people die of heart disease than other diseases each year and part of this is linked directly to Diabetes.

It is important diabetics have a proper diet that consists of low GI foods. Because most type 2 diabetics contract the disease later in life, they can control it through diet, exercise and medication. All three work together to keep you healthy however diet is extremely important when treating Diabetes.

Foods that are high on the Glycemic Index release glucose quickly into your blood and raise your glucose level and if it gets too high, shock, coma or even death can occur.

If you are unsure of which foods to choose, a dietitian who has specific credentials to work with people with diabetes – CDE- certified diabetes educator can create a menu that is low GI; there are many foods that are good for you and tasty too.