Sitting in a booth in a corner may be romantic but can also have a down side. Researchers at Cornell University’s Food and Brand Lab discovered that patrons who sat on high stools or seated themselves by a window tended to make healthier food choices. They also tended to skip dessert and alcohol compared with those seated in a booth. More visibility to prying eyes and seated in an upright position seemed to make people more aware of what were better options on a menu.
(Source-Muscle and Performance Magazine)
An online survey was conducted in which 5,000 adults were asked to assess snack food packages. When the front of the package claimed it was a good source of a particularvitamin or mineral, the participants were less likely to check the nutritional information on the package. They just assumed that a package that had a health claim would in turn be a healthier option. The study was published in The Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. It is important to always read the nutritional facts of any boxed or processed food.The addition of vitamins may also mean the addition of empty calories.
Olive Oil is still one of the healthiest fats available. Even more so if eaten in its natural state instead of heated. However, the new trend in restaurants is to line up a tasting menu of different olive oils with a basket of bread as you await your order. We are all aware of how easily we can empty a basket of warm bread. Add to this dipping each piece into a bath of olive oil and you may be setting yourself up for unnecessary additional calories, 120 calories a tablespoon to be more precise. Should we avoid this taste bud sensation? Maybe it is better to have both the bread and the oil brought to the table while the meal is being served. Chances are you will consume less then when you are sitting at a table on an empty stomach.
There is enough information to support the fact that eating out may cause over-eating and excess calories. However, the “where” may be the biggest factor. Research from Brigham and Colorado State Universities have shown that eating in a local sports bar with blaring televisions, screaming fans and all around loud noises can have a large effect on the amount we are consuming. The reason being that we are simply not able to hear the sound of our own chewing. Awareness of the crunching and chewing that accompanies eating may have a great effect in promoting satiety.
– 1lb. sweet potatoes (steamed)
– 1 can of chickpeas (rinsed and drained)
– 1/4 cup tahini
– Juice of ½ lemon
– 2 chopped garlic cloves
– 2 tablespoons olive oil
– 2 teaspoons grated orange zest
– 1 teaspoon paprika
– 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
– 1/4 teaspoon of both salt and pepper
Blend all items together and start to dip
– Small ripe avocado
– 1 can lentils (I prefer Brads’ Organic)
– 1 steamed sweet potato (small)
– 1 cup frozen spinach
– 3 sprigs of parsley
– 2 scallions
– 2 cups vegetable broth
– 1 teaspoon turmeric
– 1/2 teaspoon Red pepper
* Place all food items in your large Nutri-bullet, takes about 15 seconds
* Top with 1/2 inch squares of hard left-over whole grain bread
* If the soup is too thick, Just add more broth
* Can also be served cold after being refrigerated.
An article in The American Journal of Epidemiology reported that sitting and too little exercise can speed aging by as much as eight years. A group of 1,481 women, average age 79, wore motion sensors for one week, after which a white blood cell count was taken. Those that were more sedentary with little exercise proved to have shorter telomeres. Telemeres are caps at the end of our DNA strands. The shorter and more frayed they are the more susceptible a person may be to to heart disease, certain cancers, type 2 diabetes and shorter life expectancy.
1) Try to Stick to Regular Meal and Snack Times-Your body will condition itself to expect food at a certain time. Grazing all day only encourages the need for a continuous supply of food.
2) Increase Fiber Intake-recommended daily fiber intake is between 20 and 28 grams a day. By increasing your intake of fiber by just 8 grams will have a tremendous impact on feeling full and satisfied.
3) Use Stronger Spices-It is easier to get your fill of a food that has a strong spice. There is a limit to how much enjoyment you can receive as opposed to a food that is milder or even on the bland side.
Processing speed, the measure of how our brains absorb and respond to information, seems to be especially hard hit as we age. The fraying of white matter, the specialized cells of the brain that communicate messages between neurons, are greatly affected after age 40. A study conducted at the University of Illinois and published in “the Frontiers of Aging Neuroscience” showed a difference in brain scans of older, healthy yet sedentary adults before and after they had incorporated dancing into their lifestyle. Participants were divided into three groups. One group was assigned brisk walking, another stretching and balance training and the final group intricate choreography in country dancing. After six months, the three groups were retested and the group that was assigned to learn new dancing techniques had a remarkable increase in the density of the white matter. It seems that the choreography, which involved fluid lines and squares along with continually changing partners was responsible for the increase in processing speed. New activities that include movement and socializing seem to be the key in retaining mental acuity.
Is there a way to lose that amount of weight in less than 3 weeks? There are over 20,000 diet books in print and some of them have even gone to 2nd and 3rd editions. What I decided to do is present some of the more out of the ordinary methods that I found unbelievable and even a little amusing. I do not recommend any of these but want to expose you to what extremes people are tempted to try in order to lose weight quickly. I believe, as you know, following a slow, sensible, healthy weight loss program is the best choice and in the long run, sustainable. Let’s begin with the “Wine, Eggs and Black Coffee Diet” consisting of wine, coffee, eggs and an occasional steak thrown in. “The Baby Food Diet”, also known as the diet of the stars, consists of carrying around a supply of baby food and eating all your meals and snacks out of little jars as long as you don’t exceed 14 for the day. There is the ever appealing “Cookie Diet” which consists of specially made meal replacement cookies, six throughout the day, which brings you up to a grand total of 500 calories and then allows you 300 more calories for dinner. Of course, this is not to be confused with the “Twinkie Diet” which does not need an explanation. Next is the Hormone “hCG Diet” which consists of injecting urine from pregnant women into your body. You are allowed an additional 500 calories for the day but would you really feel like eating? I wanted to end with the “Werewolf Diet” a diet of fasting and drinking water but only during a full moon, “Sleeping Beauty Diet” which involves taking sedatives to make you sleep more so there is less time to eat and take a deep breath “The Tapeworm Diet”. Yes you ingest a tapeworm and it eats instead of you. Of course, they all guarantee weight loss but no mention of how fast it returns after you stop the programs. Learning how to eat properly and how your body reacts to certain foods is a slow but effective process. Once you are aware of what makes your body energized and what causes it to operate at full capacity there will be no need for any restrictions. And one more “The Cabbage Soup Diet” if besides losing weight you are interested in losing friends as well. (gas for days!)