Tuesday, 16 February 2016

Become active to reduce your risk of diabetes

Try to be physically active and maintain a healthy weight (BMI 20-25 kg/m2) to reduce your risk of diabetes. The recommended minimum amount of activity for adults is 150 minutes of moderate level physical activity a week – that could be 30 minutes on 5 days of the week or it could be broken up into shorter sessions of 10 minutes or more. 
But don’t worry - you do not have to join a gym! Walking, dancing, swimming, gardening, golf, bowling and cycling are all activities that most people can enjoy. Activity can also be spread out through the day so you can make small changes to your lifestyle, which can add up to a lot more activity. 
For example, use the stairs instead of taking the lift, leave the car at home for small trips, or get off the bus one or two stops earlier. Even housework can count! These are all achievable ways to incorporate activity in to your daily routine.

Friday, 12 February 2016

Dietary Fibre

Dietary fibre has many health benefits. It can reduce your risk of heart disease, diabetes and some cancers, and also help weight control. Fibre is also important for digestive health - insoluble fibre bulks up stools and makes waste move through the digestive tract more quickly, which is better for the gut and can help to prevent constipation. Soluble fibre may also help this process by making the stools softer and easier to pass. Some types of fibre can be fermented by gut bacteria, producing substances that appear to be good for gut health. Providing ‘food’ for gut bacteria can also help increase the number of healthy bacteria in the gut.

To increase your fibre intake you could:
1. Choose a high fibre breakfast cereal e.g. bran flakes, or porridge
2. Go for wholemeal or granary breads instead of white bread
3. Choose wholegrains like wholewheat pasta, bulghur wheat or brown rice
4. Go for potatoes with skins e.g. baked potato or boiled new potatoes
5. For snacks try fruit, vegetable sticks, rye crackers, oatcakes, unsalted nuts or seeds
6. Include plenty of vegetables with meals – either as a side dish or added to sauces, stews or curries
7. Add pulses like beans, lentils or chickpeas to stews, curries and salads
8. Have some fresh or dried fruit, or fruit canned in natural juice for dessert.

Monday, 8 February 2016

Load Up on Vegetables and Fruit

Vegetables and fruit are packed with nutrients and fibre, so enjoy a wide variety of them. Try to include at least one dark green and one orange veggie daily.
Quick Tips:
  • Try a new vegetable or fruit each week
  • Sprinkle some berries over whole grain cereal at breakfast
  • Pack a couple pieces of fruit and some raw veggies with your lunch
  • Start dinner with a salad of dark greens like spinach or romaine lettuce
  • Fill half your plate with vegetables at dinner
  • Add a handful of spinach or kale to a fruit smoothie
A serving is:
  • 1 medium fresh fruit
  • 125 mL (½ cup) chopped fruit or veggies
  • 250 mL (1 cup) raw leafy vegetables
  • 125 mL (½ cup) 100% juice

Wednesday, 3 February 2016

Higher dietary fiber intake in young women may reduce breast cancer risk

Women who eat more high-fiber foods during adolescence and young adulthood—especially lots of fruits and vegetables—may have significantly lower breast cancer risk than those who eat less dietary fiber when young, according to a new large-scale study led by researchers at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.
The study was published online February 1, 2016 in Pediatrics.
“Previous studies of fiber intake and breast cancer have almost all been non-significant, and none of them examined diet during adolescence or early adulthood, a period when breast cancer risk factors appear to be particularly important,” said Maryam Farvid, visiting scientist at Harvard Chan School and lead author of the study. “This work on the role of nutrition in early life and breast cancer incidence suggests one of the very few potentially modifiable risk factors for premenopausal breast cancer.”

The researchers looked at a group of 90,534 women who participated in the Nurses’ Health Study II, a large long-running investigation of factors that influence women’s health. In 1991, the women—ages 27-44 at the time—filled out questionnaires about their food intake, and did so every four years after that. They also completed a questionnaire in 1998 about their diet during high school. The researchers analyzed the women’s fiber intake while adjusting for a number of other factors, such as race, family history of breast cancer, body mass index, weight change over time, menstruation history, alcohol use, and other dietary factors.

Breast cancer risk was 12%-19% lower among women who ate more dietary fiber in early adulthood, depending on how much more they ate. High intake of fiber during adolescence was also associated with 16% lower risk of overall breast cancer and 24% lower risk of breast cancer before menopause. Among all the women, there was a strong inverse association between fiber intake and breast cancer incidence. For each additional 10 grams of fiber intake daily—for example, about one apple and two slices of whole wheat bread, or about half a cup each of cooked kidney beans and cooked cauliflower or squash—during early adulthood, breast cancer risk dropped by 13%. The greatest apparent benefit came from fruit and vegetable fiber.

The authors speculated that eating more fiber-rich foods may lessen breast cancer risk partly by helping to reduce high estrogen levels in the blood, which are strongly linked with breast cancer development.

Source: Harvard Edu

Monday, 1 February 2016

Selenium for Your Skin

This mineral may help protect your skin from cells that gather free radicals. Free radicals cause signs of aging like wrinkles and dry skin, tissue damage, and probably some diseases. Selenium may also help prevent skin cancer. You can get it from Brazil nuts, button mushrooms, shrimp, lamb, and fish like snapper, cod, halibut, tuna, and salmon. Cooked beef, light turkey, oysters, sardines, crab, and whole-wheat pasta also have selenium