Please follow all preventive measures issued by official health authorities in the country with regard to Coronavirus (COVID-19). For any medical support or inquiry contact Estijaba service hotline at 8001717.
Concerned about Coronavirus (COVID-19)? Get your symptoms checked here! Free
  Healthigo

Nutrition  Articles

Food
Eat your way to good mental health

Parkinson’s disease, autism, and depression – could diet be the cause of these and other supposed diseases of the brain? An increasingly compelling body of scientific research suggests it is. Numerous studies into the branch of the nervous system that lies in the gut – the enteric nervous system (ENS) – indicate that, contrary to popular belief, mood and behavior disorders don’t necessarily originate in the brain. While the ENS regularly communicates with the brain to regulate things like appetite, alteration of the gut environment can distort this communication and result in mood and behavior disorders. This may explain the puzzling gut symptoms known to occur in patients with neurological diseases and vice versa. For example, patients with Parkinson’s disease often report constipation and bowel-related symptoms up to 10 years before the familiar motor deterioration symptoms of Parkinson’s disease begin. So, how does it work? Is it what, when or how much you eat that causes the type of gut dysfunction that triggers brain-related conditions? To find the answer, we have to look deep inside the intestine and explore something known as the gut microbiota. Influence of the gut microbiota on health The gut microbiota is the collective term for the 100 trillion plus microorganisms that live in the bowels. These organisms include fungi and bacteria and are involved in maintaining normal metabolism, absorption of nutrients and immune function. Disruption of the delicately balanced gut microbiota – either through excess or lack of important microorganisms – is known to result in gastrointestinal conditions, such as inflammatory bowel disease. Disruption of the delicately balanced gut microbiota – either through excess or lack of important microorganisms – is known to result in gastrointestinal conditions, such as inflammatory bowel disease. But that’s not all. It now appears that upsetting the gut microbiota has repercussions far beyond the bowels. Scientists have long known that the intestinal microbiota and the substances it produces (known as metabolites) directly affect the gut’s ability to function properly. A loss or excess growth of bowel bacteria and fungi can affect intestinal permeability, how easily nutrients are absorbed into the body and normal bowel movements. This is why bowel conditions like IBS often develop after food poisoning or other gut infections that upset the balance of normal gut bacteria, fungi or viruses. How the gut communicates with the brain? You may be familiar with the hormone serotonin. It’s a neurotransmitter that your brain releases after activities such as eating chocolate or laughing. That’s why doing these things feels so good. But did you know that scientists now believe 95% of serotonin is made in the gut, not the brain? It’s not just the production of neurotransmitters within the gut that links the intestinal microbiota and the brain; there’s also the role of immune cells. Your gut has an extensive immune system that protects your body against infection, inflammation, and damage. When foreign organisms invade the body, the cells of the immune system (both in the gut and elsewhere) release substances to start the fight against the infection. How antibiotics can upset the gut balance? The gut does a great job of balancing its levels of the bacteria and fungi that keep it working as it should, but this fine balance can be easily upset by eating and drinking things that kill off gut microorganisms. And that includes medicines, specifically antibiotics. Take these drugs too often or for long periods of time and they can kill off the strains of bacteria the gut needs to function at its best. If you want to maintain a healthy gut, step number one is to avoid unnecessary antibiotic use. When you do require antibiotics for a bacterial infection, you can prevent them from wiping out your protective gut bacteria by topping up your levels of ‘good’ bacteria with a probiotic supplement or natural foods like ‘live’ yogurt, kefir and pickled vegetables. What constitutes a gut-friendly diet? Eating a gut-friendly diet is another way to maintain a healthy gut microbiota. This starts with minimizing your intake of the sugary foods, refined/processed carbohydrates that encourage the growth of ‘bad’ gut microorganisms, like Candida albicans. So cut out the processed carbs and sugar if you want to maintain optimal gut health (and get your carbs from healthier sources such as vegetables, fruits, nuts, and seeds). And watch your alcohol intake too. The science is clear: what you eat really can impact on your overall health, mood, and mental wellbeing by altering the way your gut’s microorganisms ‘talk’ to your brain. The good news is that you can take control of your gut health today without any need for medication or a complicated treatment plan. And don’t forget to prioritize getting a good night’s sleep.

  1 Likes
  0 Comments
February 05, 2019
Novomed Integrative Medicine
Health & Wellness Partner
Request Appointment
This provider is unverified. To get a confirmed appointment, look for Verified Providers
Food
How to make the right choice? Best vs. Worst food for Diabetes

If you get diabetes, one of the biggest lifestyle changes you'll have to make is your eating habits. Everything you eat and drink will have an impact on your condition. Doesn’t mean to say that certain things are off limits, but you should go easy on them. Some food for diabetes is just better than others. Here’s a list of the kind of choices you got to look out for! Carbohydrates & Starches Best Worst • Whole Grains (oatmeal, brown rice, quinoa, millet) • Processed Grains (White rice, white flour) • Items made with whole grains (bread, pasta, noodles) • White Bread • Sweet Potatoes • White Potatoes • Cereals with little whole grains and plenty of sugar Protein Best Worst • Plant-based Proteins (tofu, beans, nuts, seeds) • Anything and everything fried • Poultry (chicken, turkey, quail) – try to stick with the breast meat • Fatty Meat (ribs, belly, bacon) • Fish & Seafood • Poultry with skin • Eggs • Regular Cheese • Low-fat Dairy (cheese, yogurt, milk) • Beans prepared with lard • Lean Beef • Lean Pork Fruits Best Worst • Fresh fruit • Canned fruit in heavy sugar syrup • Frozen fruit • Regular jam • Canned fruit without added sugar • Chewy fruit rolls • Sugar-free or low-sugar jam, marmalade, fruit preserves, apple sauce • Fruit drinks Vegetables Best Worst • Fresh raw veggies • Veggies cooked in butter, cream, cheese, or sauce • Frozen veggies • Pickled vegetables (cucumbers, carrots, radish, chilies, kimchi, sauerkraut) • Lightly steamed, roasted, or grilled veggies • Greens (lettuce, spinach, kale, arugula) • Unsalted/low-sodium canned vegetables *Note: Eat a variety of colors to go with the greens such as reds and oranges (carrots, red peppers), purples (eggplants), white (onions) etc. to get loaded with nutrients. Dairy Best Worst • 1%, skim, low-fat, nonfat milk • Whole milk • Low-fat yogurt • Regular ice cream • Low-fat/nonfat sour cream • Full fat yogurt, sour cream, cottage cheese • Low-fat cottage cheese Fats and Sweets Best Worst • Plant-based oils (olive, canola, grapeseed) • Artificial trans fat; read the label and look for “partially hydrogenated • Vegetable Fats (avocados, nuts, seeds) • Saturated Fat (animal fat, coconut oil, palm oil) • Foods that provide omega-3 fatty acids (tuna, salmon, mackerel) • Cakes/pastries/candies Drinks Best Worst • Water (you know you saw this coming) • Soda/soft drinks • Unsweetened tea (try adding a slice of lemon for more flavor) • Coffee with cream and sugar • Coffee (black/added low-fat milk and sugar substitute) • Sweetened tea • Flavored Coffees • Energy drinks Make sure to always read the label for anything and everything you eat. You never know what kind of ingredients you’re putting into your body. As mentioned earlier nothing is really “off-limits” but in moderation. You don’t want to put your body at risk of developing other issues such as heart disease. Diabetes is already bad enough. If you’re still unsure sure about what you should and shouldn’t eat, the best thing to understand the right food for diabetes would be to talk with a dietitian to devise a detailed guide for you.

  0 Likes
  0 Comments
February 04, 2019
Lifeline Hospital
Health & Wellness Partner
Food
4 Natural Sugar Substitutes You Can Try

At this point, everyone knows that too much sugar is bad for you. It can lead to a whole list of health issues; tooth decay, obesity, diabetes, the list goes on. We add sugar to our drinks, to the food we eat and who knows how much added sugar is in the products we get out of the food industry. But are you willing to sacrifice taste to reduce the amount of sugar you consume? You don’t have to! There are other natural options out there! Here is a list of the most common sweeteners that can actually be sweeter than sugar. Honey Apart from fruits, honey is one of the best and most natural forms of sweetness. It’s loaded with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants which are great for the body. Studies have found that when consumed, it gradually raises blood sugar (which is what you want) instead of causing a dramatic spike. The only downside is that honey does contain calories so use it sparingly. Agave Nectar Agave is a plant and when blended creates a liquid sweetener similar to honey. It’s best for hot drinks but is difficult to use for baking since it will brown quickly under high heat. Also, just like honey, it gradually raises blood sugar instead of spiking. It’s also much sweeter than regular sugar and honey so a little goes a long way. Mind you it still has calories like honey so consume in moderation. Stevia There are a number of sugar substitutes like Sweetleaf, Truvia and Sweet ‘N Low that contain stevia, which is a herb found in Central and South America. What’s great about this herb is that it is 40 times sweeter than sugar and has ZERO calories and will not spike your blood sugar. Also, you can add it to anything, coffee, tea, yogurt, and even baked goods. Just keep in mind since it’s sweeter than sugar, less is more. Xylitol This is a naturally occurring sugar alcohol. It can be found in food such as berries, corn, and beets. It’s almost as sweet as sugar but it is only partially absorbed into the body thus causes no sugar spike. Again can be used for hot drinks and in baking, for the latter just be sure to use only half the recommended sugar in the recipe. Another plus side is that xylitol helps prevent bacteria from causing plaque on your teeth, which is why it is found in a number of sugar-free gum. Mind you though taking too much xylitol can cause gas and diarrhea so consume in moderation. Keep in mind these are sugar substitutes, not substitutes for a healthy diet. If you’re still stuffing your face with cake and cookies on a regular basis, sugar substitutes will only go so far. The food industry is loaded with added sugars so unless you meticulously read labels, you could mindlessly eat loads of sugar. Eat as much natural whole food as you can and cook at home as much as possible. What do you think of these sugar substitutes? Willing to trade sugar for any of these? Have you tried any? Let us know in the comments below!

  0 Likes
  0 Comments
February 04, 2019
Lifeline Hospital
Health & Wellness Partner
scroll-arrow-to-up