Friday, July 16, 2010

"Soya-a" Wanna Be Healthy: The Real Soy Protein

Perhaps one of the most promising foods to be brought on to the "green and super foods" scene is soy or soy protein. Soy is ubiquitous and comes from the soy bean a legume known to be useful for many things . The Chinese perhaps are historically known to have used soy be centuries. But, unlike typical soy products we use today , they "fermented" soy as a consumable good in all products. But, what are the health benefits of soy based proteins in the foods we consume today?

Soy is thought to reduce breast cancer, prostate cnacer and menopausal problems and perhaps even bone health. The NCI(National Cancer Institute) has look at both chemo-preventive and cancer protective soy compounds called isoflavones,specifically.

The USDA and University of Saint Louis published that Asian males have a 50% less of a risk of prostate cancer due to a soy product , genistein , an isoflavone.

Soy protein is reported to reduce the "bad cholesterol" called LDL. The FDA in 1999 claimed that 25 grams of soy protein in a person's daily diet can help reduce heart disease. An American Heart Association study stated that replacement of animal protein with soy protein would do the same thing.

Soy has an Omega 3 oil called Alanine(ALA). ALA can reduce heart disease by 20 percent and reduces saturated fats while increasing lean protein .

Isoflavones such as phyto-estrogens that are a "competitive estrogen-like" compound that inhibits natural estrogen in menopausal symptoms. It is this product that reduces hot flashes by 50% according to the National Institutes of Health in Japan and University of Minnesota.

But, is the soy foods we are consuming the preferred "fermented" soy that was stated in the Chou Dynasty in China used in Tempeh, Natto, Miso and soy sauce and Tofu?

Fermentation Process:
The puree of the cooked soy beans percipitates of calcium sulfate and magnesium sulfate.This offers a healthier benefit of soy to take out negative toxins or Anti-nutrients that can ALSO exist in certain soys that do not meet this safety process.

What are some of these toxins that can be in unfermented soy?

1)Enzymes that block the amino acid Trypsin
2)Gastric distress
3)Reduction of protein digestion
4)Pancreatic problems, potentially cancer
5)Hemaglutinin which is a clot factor causing red blood cells to clump
6)Growth depressant compounds
7)Phytic Acid which can block calcium, magnesium, iron and zinc utilization
8)Genestein and Diadezem which are inhibitors of thyroid hormone(T3/T4) create goiter

Always look for Fermented sources of soy perticularly in baby formula. Read labels looking for the nitrosamines or nitrites in soy foods.

Soy is a terrific alternative potentially for food sources causing many of the chronic illnesses from dietary sources. Be aware and question if the source is "fermented".

Much of the benefits of soy protein are potentially a boon to changing lifestyles into becoming healthier. Be aware of genetically modification as another potential threat to soy food sources. Much of the "proven" benifits are still being studied , but appear to be hopeful , it is the "fermented" process that still becomes the primary caution about receiving its benefits without the threat of toxins inherent in soy protein not protected.

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Dr. Marcus Wells is a previous Clinical Associate at the National Institutes of Health at the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute(NIH/NHLBI). He has served in the US Health & Human Services, US Public Health Service,and US Commissioned Corp.Dr. Wells also holds a Master's in Public Health from Emory University.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Berry Berry Healthy

Many berries are noted by both conventional and nutritional health scientist to contain numerous health benefits. These small delicious morsels that we've put in oatmeal, loved in our jams, marmalades, and ice creams pack serious Nano-Nutrition.

For example just one cup of strawberries has numerous Nano-Nutrition such as calcium needed for strong bones, Mangesium also needed for bones, folate which helps production of red blood cells to fight anemias,along with 100 mg of vitamin C a powerful antioxidant.

One cup of blue berries has vitamin C and Vitamin E which is an even more potent antioxidant than vitamin C as well as 4-9 grams of fiber.

Cranberries have special antioxidants called polyphenols. It works well to help reduce premature aging ans is good for urinary tract illnesses.

Raspberries has Niacin needed to protect against Pellegra.

Blackberries have manganese needed for bone metabolism.

Goji Berry is the most nutrient dense food which has more vitamin C than orange juice; it also more beta-carotene than carrots and has more iron than a steak, wow! That's quite a berry!!! Goji berries help with liver, kidney and eyes diseases, but also fights against fatigue and boosts growth hormone in the body naturally.

Goji protects your cell's DNA from oxygen free radicals also to help it's destruction and improves the fight against cancer. As an extra bonus Goji helps boosts libido by improving testosterone.

Acai berries are made from the palm tree and they are related to the dark berries like blueberries and cranberries that have the dark pigment anthrocyanin.

Berries are healthy because many contain phytonutrients called phyto-chemicals. These include caretenoids, betacarotene, lutin,lycopene(great for prostatic problems), zecxathin and flavonoids.

Berries can be used to make smoothies in the blender. Add low fat and low cal ice cream , yogurt, gelato or ice pop to them and watch the kids light up. Berries are great to put in cereal such as oatmeal or your own favorite to ad flavor,taste as well as reduce the amount of processed sugar.

Berries go well with fruit salads and with green salads like kiwi or strawberry with avocados.

Berries are great alternatives from traditional desserts and can be made with a fundue such as chocolate or strawberry syrups.

In 2013 news from the University of Michigan (Mitchell Seymour) shows that cherries contain a chemical that can reduce inflammation and could be implicated in reducing auto-immune disease. Inflammation is also the premise in which arthritis and cancer may be caused. Inflammation is also one of the underlying problems of heart attacks where platelets release inflammatory chemicals.Getting your kids to enjoy a variety of blends of fruit as a healthy alternative to conventional desserts is a great idea to reduce high fructose corn, HFCS(HFCS causes obesity, overweight, liver disease,diabetes in kids) syrup in their diet and adds great colors and taste to their palate as well. By starting children early to appreciate berries may be considered an early anti-cancer, anti-auto-immune disease and cardio-vascular disease dietary regimen.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Family Health Values

Perhaps the typical American family is going to have to look at today's healthcare issue with different lenses and adjust it's vision on what should be our focus.The future of healthcare is going to see the responsibility of health on individuals and the benefits of prevention are going to be given to those individuals and organizations who think and do better on how to reduce or prevent healthcare cost from going way up! The economics of "cost valulation" is what the managed care industry and public economists are utilizing to pre-determine your "cost" (or risk)to this type of system. At best a "pay as you go" system is about the most stable assurance of health where pre-existing conditions can limit a insurance company in selecting you.In other words: Take care of your body!

Today, airline industries are not just charging extra if you carry heavier luggage , but are charging you more if your body's weight is high for their plane's limitation. Some have demanded those who are at a certain BMI(body mass index) purchase a 2nd seat in advance or risk being bumped off their flight. Municipalities are looking at the concept of extending a "sin tax" to those who over eat and whose weight issues cause the healthcare system to go up in cost for acute and chronic care disease. Ethicist are debating whether it is considered child abuse for parents to allow their kids to become obese or overweight and legal experts are debating if they can be punished by serving time!

Before it get's this far we can do something about this. It begins with developing a culture of wellness with health being focused on the family. Much like the old idea of "family values" that were popular before, a "new contract with America" may have to be created beginning with health of the family. Because we all need health and if the majority of the nation is creeping to a greater than 75% risk to heart disease, cancer and diabetes due to obesity we are teetering on what would be seen in any other scenario as a national security matter!

It begins with teaching your children how to develop better attitudes about food and exercise. Developing these healthier relationships about foods and activity will develop a higher value of these habits when they are exemplified by the parent. Parents participating in activity produce kids who exercise. Walking with your child, playing tennis, swimming are rock climbing are ways to turn a "boring" concept into something exciting.

With foods try carobe over chocolate, try natural fruit juices in the blender over sodas, try "crazy" sandwiches like peanut butter and bananas , make smoothies from organic fruits, try ice pops whether than chocolate ice cream, use trail mix rather than candy bars, make a kiwi avocado sandwich as well. Getting kids to like soy, whey and casein at a earlier age are healthier alternatives than meats. However, white meats may be a better transition choice than red meats.

How you prepare food at home will be how most of us will cook on our own from home. So if you fry food mostly, guess what, your kids will most likely too. If your kids punish with food at the dinner table by witholding favorite foods and rewarding with an equally unhealthy food ,you've done twice as bad. You can rest more assured (though not always 100 %) that in devloping autonomy in your child by boosting their esteem with food choices when you are not with them at school, the mall or the movies they will be better off.

Dr.Marcus Wells is a past clinical Associate at the National Institutes of Health in the National Heart, Lung, & Blood Institute.Dr. Wells has served in the US Health and Human Services, US Public Health Service, and the US Commissioned Corp. Dr. Wells also holds a Master's in Public Health from Emory University

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