Obesity and Fat Loss: Cause and Cure

February 15, 2016 by  
Filed under Unhealthy Food, Unhealthy Body

image Obesity and Fat Loss

Did you know that there are now 500 million people worldwide, including 41 million children, who are obese. A person is classified as obese if their Body Mass Index (BMI) exceeds 30.0.

The obesity epidemic marches on unchallenged.

Even more disturbing is that research has found that only 0.5% of obese men and 0.8% of women have been able to attain a normal body weight.

Such an abysmal recovery rate is shattering for people who have to accept that, once obese, it is extremely difficult to burn the excess body fat and return to normal body weight.

Are you one of the people who feel trapped carrying excess body weight?

If you have followed the media on this subject you have probably seen dozens of articles describing a variety of causes and possible cures for this debilitating fate. None of them helped as evidenced by the terrible recovery rate.

But…there is now light at the end of the tunnel.

Genetic mutation causes obesity

Research published in Aug/Sep last year at first looks like a huge hoax. It is only when you take note of the reputation and eminent qualifications of the researchers involved that you have to sit up and take notice.

Researchers from Harvard and MIT have published their findings in the New England Journal of Medicine following research collaboration between institutions like Harvard, Yale, Dartmouth and Cambridge. Their proceedings were also published by the National Academy of Science, so the credibility of what has become known as the “Baby Boomer Gene” is impeccable.

Here’s what the researchers have to say. Following the end of World War II, more precisely in 1946, a human genetic mutation, apparently caused by environmental conditions, occurred. As a consequence, this genetic evolution affects people up to the age of 70 or less.

Researchers knew as early as 2007 that a gene called FTO (Fat and Obesity) was associated with obesity but not in which specific way. It is now known that people affected by this genetic mutation were born with a dangerous fat causing gene. It causes energy from food to be stored as fat instead of being released into the bloodstream as energy.

We can now understand the cause of the obesity epidemic as the research has found that people with this gene mutation are 250% more likely to become obese and stay that way. To repeat, people born after 1946 are 250% more likely to become obese. With this gene active, your chances of staying skinny are close to zero, the researchers found.

That is the bad news. The good news is that this fat causing gene and its function can be turned off. In other words, you can re-program the body to burn fat instead of storing fat.

The researchers found a new way to control metabolism so that fat cells either stores fat or burns fat. YOU have the ability to turn these genes off so that fatty acids are released and burn off as energy. The metabolic process associated is called thermogenesis which, when activated, causes fat cells to dissipate energy as heat, instead of storing it as fat.

The metabolic processes involved in re-programming the gene mutation are fairly complex. However, you can read more about it here and here.

It was also revealed that the gene mutation was found in 44% of Europeans, but only 5% of black people and other genes cause obesity in with some people in some parts of the world.

Regrettably, there is no immediate therapeutic procedure available to re-program the gene. Researchers are currently working with academic and industry to transform their findings into therapeutic solutions for obesity.

While there is no immediate cure for switching off the fat burning gene, there are definitely slower but effective methods available to burn off excess body fat.

Weight loss in perspective

Each individual diet program comes with its own unique guidelines about nutrition and exercise; what to eat, when to eat it, how often to eat, how and what exercises to perform. Their common failure and, in my humble opinion, the profound lack of success people achieve, comes down to the fact that they do not convey KNOWLEDGE and UNDERSTANDING on HOW the body burns off excess fat permanently. The fundamental principles are in fact quite simple and  straight-forward. Success in weight loss rests on four core principles: NUTRITION, PHYSICAL ACTIVITY, COMMITMENT, AND KNOWLEDGE. You must force your metabolic process to release and burn stored fat as energy. This cannot happen while your body digests foods you have just eaten, and before “reserve” energy stored in your liver as glycogen has been depleted. Once this has happened, the body has no choice but to find and burn energy from your stored fat cells. These fat cells – triglycerides – are formed when you consume more food than the body needs for energy and when the liver can no longer convert and store additional calories as glycogen. Beyond this, extra calories are stored in fat cells for later use. They are difficult to dislodge but it is quite possible. I argue that you simply cannot and will not succeed unless you acquire knowledge and understanding on how your body, your metabolism and your hormones react to your lifestyle choices in terms of nutrition, physical activity, and commitment to weight loss.

You may also like the following posts on this website:

Nutrition Guidelines: New Science and Problems with Real Foods

Good Fats vs. Bad Fats

The Uncomfortable Truth About Sugars

Nutrition Facts About Sugar

Nutrition Guidelines: Why so Freakin’ Confusing

January 12, 2016 by  
Filed under Unhealthy Food, Unhealthy Body

By Alex Beckis, 11 Jan 2016

blog-title-no-4

How far have we really come in pursuit of scientific dietary guidelines?

Secondly, why do weight and fat loss programs have such an abysmal failure rate? After all, there are hundreds of them, and Amazon sells more than a thousand different books about diet, nutrition, fat and weight loss. Still, available statistics about effective weight loss are dreadful to say the least.

  • The obesity epidemic marches on and, with a few national exceptions, now affects 30-40% of people worldwide. Researchers have found that only 0.5% of obese men and 0.8% of women have been able to attain a normal body weight. Once overweight, it is very difficult to return to a normal body weight, they concluded.
  • The most common outcome with weight loss programs is that people give up and regain whatever weight they managed to lose. The vast majority of diet programs do not give you the knowledge you need to lose weight and keep if off.
  • The Internet is full of misleading, incomplete and conflicting information. In the words of Dr. S. Sisskind, in a special report, makes the claim that “The misinformation is staggering.”

To make matters worse, a new study from the Weizmann Institute of Science  in Israel, recently published, has concluded that there is no one diet program that fits everybody. They claim that people have different glycemic responses to the same food. Dr. Elan Elinav, a co-author of the published research, stated as follows in an interview: “If my and yours response to the same food are opposite, then by definition a similar diet cannot be effective for both of us.

The study claims that  two people who follow the same weight-loss diet may end up with diametrically different results. Because of their different  responses to the same foods, one may lose weight while the other fails. The difference is supposedly the extent to which each person’s blood sugar level peaks after eating a particular food.

Where does this leave common diet programs?

Just how are people going to figure out what diet program might suit their particular metabolism? How would you accomplish this? Who would you consult and to what extent could you rely on whatever “microbione analysis” you might receive?

If conflicting information has caused people to fail with their weight loss programs and given up, the need for an individual diet routine it is simply going to add more confusion.

It has not taken fortune-seekers and spin-doctors long to profit from this research. The program I examined argued that I would need to determine my metabolic type. Fine, no problem with this. I was asked to complete a 30-second online interview in which I answered a few basic question about my eating habits. The test determined that my metabolic type was that of a muscle burner, and I was told to add snacks in between regular meals. Needless to say, the recommendation was accompanied with a paid offer that would explain the need to also change my exercise routine.

I have successfully lost 10 kg of body weight in less than one month and stabilised my weight at this level. Based on my own research and success in losing weight, my classification as a muscle burner could not be further from the truth. Beware of these scammers who attempt to profit from new research.

A healthy eating plan

Listening to the experts would be a good start. We also need to recognise that a healthy dietary plan and the pursuit of weight loss are two separate issues.

The most current news comes from the recent Finding Common Ground summit in Boston, attended by 75 nutritional experts and scientists from the U.S., Canada and Europe. The objective of this summit, organised by Oldways, a non-profit food and nutrition organisation, was to find common ground about healthy eating. Apart from scientists from leading universities and research organisations, speakers included proponents of major diet programs like the Paleolithic, Mediterranean, vegan, and low-fat diets.

The consensus to which the summit agreed was that healthy diets consist of abundant fruits, vegetables, nuts, whole grains, legumes and minimal amounts of refined starch, sugar, and red meat, especially processed red meats.

The thing to remember is that this was the consensus from 75 nutritional experts. Like any communique produced by a convention, committee, or an assembly of experts, the end result will be a compromise of different opinions. There will inevitably be generalisations.

Controversy still surrounds issues like saturated fats, read meat and whole grains and your convictions will depend on which particular diet program you may support.

The recent release of the 2015 U.S. Dietary Guidelines has more serious problems and has been the subject of negative critique by prominent scientists. If you are interested in what expert scientists has to say about these dietary guidelines, read the TIME article titled “Here’s What 10 Experts Think Of the Government’s New Diet Advice“.

In the main, controversy still surrounds issues like saturated fats, red meat and grains, especially whole grains vs. refined grains.

What we have to accept is that scientific conclusions are very demanding and require evidence-based research and trials. Such trials and surveys are extremely difficult to organise and control. Disagreements and controversy exist because such evidence has yet to be produced.

Also, a lot of research is funded by the food industry with predictable results.

You are welcome to peruse this blog for nutritional issues that are supported by current research.

How do you make intelligent decisions about your food choices? Let’s address that question next.

What is real food?

To maintain good health, we are supposed to eat real food. But what is real food?

Real food is natural food. The soil in which the food is grown should be rich in nutrients which become absorbed into the vegetables and into our bodies.

  • Animals including poultry should be pasture-raised, organic, and contain no hormones or antibiotics.
  • Fish and seafood should be wild and not raised in fish farms.
  • Fruits and vegetables should be grown in protein rich soils and free from pesticides. This means organic produce.
  • Cooking oils should not have an excess level of Omega-6 fats which is common with hydrogenated vegetable oils.

Beyond this, we should lower or eliminate the consumption of packaged foods that contain chemicals, preservatives, colourings as well as sugar-laden soft drinks.

The inevitable compromises

With some exceptions, depending on where you live, it is almost impossible to procure and prepare real food in our modern, industralised society.

So compromise is inevitable. However, you cannot compromise unless you first know what it is your are compromising, can you?

The Adulteration of our food supplies

The sad truth is that commercial industry controls a substantial part of our food production.

  • Livestock raised in “concentrated animal feeding lots” (CAFOs) and fed corn and soy, very likely GMO varieties, to which are added antibiotic supplements.
  • Fruit orchards and agricultural fields sprayed with pesticides, Unless banned in your country, these pesticides could well contain glyphosate, a known carcinogen.
  • High fructose corn syrup is used in almost every conceivable food and drink and it is not a healthy sweetener.

Add to this sugary beverages, sodium, chemicals, preservatives, and colourings added to package food products.

The next issue is the fast-food restaurants and takeaways. What ingredients and cooking oils do they use?

The bottom line is that chemicals, preservatives, sugar and incomplete carbohydrates cause havoc with our immune system. It produces anti-bodies which destroy the good gut bacteria. Sugar and sweets proliferate, destroy good bacteria and produce bad bacteria which thrive in the environment of a destructive digestive system. The end result is excessive body inflammation which gradually gives rise to our modern-day diseases.

A depressing picture, isn’t it?

With some exceptions, depending on where you live, it is almost impossible to procure and prepare real food in our modern, industralised society.

So compromise is inevitable.

 

 

60 Years of Bad Nutrition: “Tips for Healthy Weight Loss”

May 3, 2014 by  
Filed under Unhealthy Food, Unhealthy Body

My name is Alex Beckis but, you may well ask, who am I to write with authority about health and fitness, nutrition, or tips for weight loss? My only claim to fame is that I am a published author and an accomplished researcher. I have a number of books and an author page on Amazon.com. I have a blog and a Facebook page where I publish articles about healthy nutrition and the best way to lose weight. Most recently, I have found a passion in writing about the dreadful practices that now prevail in our industrialized food supply chain and how these practices have caused an obesity epidemic and the unnecessary rise of all our modern day diseases.

Home cooking has, during the last 60 years, largely been replaced by industrialized cooking and made “unfashionable” by clever advertising campaigns. The end result is the unhealthy packaged foods that fill our supermarket shelves and fast-food outlets using equally bad ingredients.

I am currently researching and writing a book that most likely will be titled The Adulteration of Our Food Supplies: “The Ugly Side of Profiteering”.

The answer to these maladies, incumbent on those of us interested in preserving our health and well being, is a healthy eating plan coupled with some physical activity.

The fastest growing eating plan is without doubt the Paleo Diet. The biggest problem with Paleo is the unfortunate names assigned to it. References to a Caveman Diet or Stone Age Diet are at best misleading. Nobody wants to turn the clock back to our Stone Age. Paleo is better known as the paleolithic nutrition and is scientifically based. It represents the food choices to which our human digestive system is genetically based. For example, a large majority of people today get no less than 67% of their food intake from wheat, corn and soy products. Our Paleolithic humans, on the other hand, only obtained 1-2% of their food from wild grains. Agricultural based nutrition has only existed for a duration less than 5% of human existence and human biochemistry and physiology has simply not had time to adjust to modern day agriculture.

But it gets worse, a lot worse. Combined with excessive consumption of unhealthy sugar (fructose), industrialized cooking practices that use chemicals, preservatives and toxic substances, has given rise to an unprecedented rise in diseases like diabetes, coronary heart disease, cancer, high blood pressure and eventually the dreaded Alzheimer’s and Parkinson diseases. The can all be avoided by simply choosing a healthy eating plan.

Why 26 Million People in the US Suffer Diabetes

October 25, 2013 by  
Filed under Unhealthy Food, Unhealthy Body

This is curated content supplied from Dr. Joseph Mercola’s website mercola.com. I am sharing this content, adding my own interpretation, because it is, to say the very least, absolutely shocking.

Diabetes has increased by 700% in the last 50 years and now affects some 26 million people in the U.S. This has happened because these people chose to consume unhealthy food products foisted upon them by the unscrupulous practices of the multi-billion dollar food industry.

Our food culture, supported by government subsidies and riddled with unhealthy chemicals and substances is the primary driver of diabetes and disease rather than the driver of health.

First, let’s make sure we understand the true meaning of Type 2 diabetes. It is NOT a disease of blood sugar, but a disorder of insulin resistance and leptin signaling.

Before I comment on the functions that insulin and leptin serve, I’d like to share comments made by Dr. Mercola as to why tainted foods supplied by agribusinesses cause diabetes.

The excessive consumption of fructose in the typical western diet is a major factor in the rise of diabetes. .

Your body uses glucose as energy whereas fructose breaks down into a variety of toxins that can devastate your health.

Dr. Mercola quotes from a book titled The Fat Switch, written by Dr. Johnson, who identifies the bodily damage cause by fructose:

  • It elevates uric acid.
  • It leads to insulin resistance.
  • It tricks your body into gaining weight by deceiving your metabolism.
  • It causes what is known as the metabolic syndrome (weight gain and abdominal obesity), as well as decreased HDL (the good cholesterol) and increased LDL (the bad cholesterol), elevated triglycerides (blood sugar content), and high blood pressure.
  • It metabolizes like ethanol (similar to alcohol) which causes fatty liver diseases.

Unhealthy foods, like corn, soybeans and wheat, are heavily subsidized, all of which have been identified as underlying causes of diabetes.

The corn industry produces High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS), apparently the number one source of calories in the U.S. It appears in anything from processed foods. diet foods, infant formulas to soft drinks (sodas).

To make things worse, the diet most commonly recommended for sufferers of diabetes is the exact opposite to what actually works.

The common recommendation emphasizes high complex carbohydrate and low saturated fat. The truth is that, except for legumes, diabetics should eliminate grains and sugars for foods like, protein, green veggies, and healthy fats. The most important change is to eliminate fructose from the diet.

So, if you are still here, what is it that our common, modern diet does to cause diabetics?

  • Fructose is the major underlying cause of diabetes. It triggers a powerful biological switch that causes weight gain.
  • Insulin decreases the level of glucose in your blood stream. When blood sugar becomes elevated, insulin is meant to store the extra energy for future consumption. It’s supposed to direct the extra energy for storage. A small amount is stored in the liver as glycogen, while the majority is stored as fat, your main energy supply.
  • Leptin regulates our appetite and body weight. It essentially tells us when to eat, how much to eat, and when to stop eating.
  • Diabetes is caused by insulin resistance and poor leptin signaling. This is caused by substances like fructose.

What is the Solution?

According to Dr. J. Mercola, diabetes is very much reversible. The key is a change in diet.

 

 

10 Foods That Will Harm Your Health

October 24, 2013 by  
Filed under Unhealthy Food, Unhealthy Body

Food shopping, like many of our daily activities, involve decisions, decision, decisions…. Our modern life style often prevents us from making good nutritional decisions. There’s not enough time, convenience takes precedence, old habits dictate. As far as nutrition is concerned, the ugly truth is that poor decisions will play havoc with your health. Have you ever stopped and considered the research you do and the decisions you make about your nutrition and compared these decision with those you undoubtedly make in regard to your most valuable possessions, e.g. you house, car, computer or washing machine etc. You would not knowingly put toxic substances into your car engine, or infect your computer with viruses, would you? Neither would you knowingly tolerate termites eating their way into your home. Yet, this is exactly what a great many people do to the most precious possession they have – their own body. The foods produced by our modern day food industries – who have existed less than the last 5% of human existence – are the main cause of modern day diseases like coronary heart disease, cancer, stroke, diabetes, osteoporosis, and others. Moreover, they are the cause of what has now become a worldwide epidemic – obesity. The food producers stock our supermarket shelves with unhealthy and outright poisonous foods, often with false and totally misleading labeling. False advertising is supposedly illegal in most countries but this law does not seem to apply to the food industry. However, you do have a choice; you are under no obligation to consume these foods.

You just need to make sound decisions when you stand at the doorstep of your supermarket, or when you are ordering your take-away food for lunch or fast food at a restaurant or food stall. So, let’s reveal the food choices you should limit or not consume at all if you care about your health and well being. Beware that this is a LONG blog post. It is full of depressing information but ends with some recommendations on the type of decisions you can make to better look after yourself and your family.

Beware These Foods

Wheat

The wheat produced today is not the wheat our forefathers consumed. Instead, it is a genetically modified and scientifically engineered food product that has been developed and “refined” over the last 50 years. Tragically, it has also been observed that the history of wheat parallels the history of modern day chronic disease and obesity. To quote Dr. Mark Hyman, M.D. (Huffington Post, 18 Feb 2012) “There are 3 reasons why wheat products, not just gluten, in parallel with sugar consumption, is a major contributor to obesity, diabetes, heart disease, cancer, dementia, depression and so many other modern ills.” This new modern wheat is different in three important ways:

  1. It contains a super Starch, a substance that contains high levels of a starch called amylopectin A which is very fattening.
  2. It contains a form of gluten that causes several inflammatory diseases like diabetes and obesity.
  3. It contains forms of an addictive drug that causes hunger feelings and makes you more hungry.

Gluten itself can trigger inflammation, obesity and chronic disease in several major ways.

  1. Celiac disease is an autoimmune disease that causes inflammation that can lead to insulin resistance. This, in turn, may cause weight gain and diabetes as well as autoimmune diseases, irritable bowel, reflux, cancer, depression, osteoporosis and more.
  2. Low-level inflammation reactions to gluten trigger the same problems even if you don’t have full-blown celiac disease but just have elevated antibodies.
  3. Recent research has also revealed that adverse reactions to gluten may result from problems in very different parts of the immune system than those implicated in celiac disease. This means that people can be gluten-sensitive without having celiac disease or gluten antibodies and still have inflammation and many other symptoms.
  4. Wheat germ agglutinin (WGA) present in whole wheat causes body inflammation as well. It can lead to heart attacks.

Sugar

There is little doubt that sugar, as far as nutrition goes, is public enemy number one. If in doubt, watch the video that appears in my blog post titled “The Uncomfortable Truth About Sugars“. Food products rich in sugar are cakes, biscuits, muffins, bagels, fruit juices, soft drinks and also breads.

Artificial Sweeteners

These substances are most commonly added to soft drink products. The greatest fallacy is their presence in the “diet drinks” and “sports drinks”, often advertised as “health drinks”. Nothing could be further from the truth. Artificial sweeteners like aspartame and saccharin actually cause greater weight gain than sugar. The dishonesty of drink suppliers does stop there either

  • High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS), a sweetener first manufactured in Japan as early as 1965. Also called glucose/fructose, it is a substance that has undergone enzymatic processing to convert glucose into fructose to improve the sweetness. Fructose is essentially a toxic substance that our bodies do not digest properly. HFCS is a very common additive in all sorts of foods. Check your food labels and you will find that it commonly appears in packaged and processed foods.
  • Aspartame, made up of aspartic acid and synthetically modified phenylalanine which, in this sweetener, creates methanol. The methanol easily enters sensitive body tissue like brain and bone marrow where an enzyme converts it into a substance which damages proteins and DNA. Certain studies claim this toxin aids in the development of dementia like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson disease. Stay clear of it.
  • Splenda (sucralose) is an artificial sweetener that contains no elements of natural sugar. In fact, it contains a degree of chlorine. Splenda destroys healthy essential gut bacteria.

Soy Products

For many years, I believed the hype about soy milk being a healthy drink. The truth is the most soybeans that enter the food chain today are genetically modified in order to withstand high levels of pesticide. The ONLY soy products which are healthy are those made from organic soy that has been properly fermented. Unfermented soy products have, in numerous scientific studies, been linked to immune system degradation, thyroid problems, cognitive damage, reproductive disorders and infertility, even cancer and heart disease. The damaging ingredient in unfermented soy is called glyphosate and can be found in products like protein bars, soups and sauces, baked goods, breakfast cereals, dietary supplements and bottled fruit drinks. It is simply amazing that soy industry representatives, either active within regulatory bodies or influencing such bodies, have been able to hide the ugly truth from the public. Food producers even get away with using synonym names for soy to label their products; names like bouillon, natural flavor or textured plant protein.

Processed Meats

A 2011 review, produced by the World Cancer Research Fund, which was based on more than 7,000 clinical studies, found that processed meats are unhealthy and should be entirely excluded from your diet. These foods include deli meat like sausages, salami and ham. The problem with these foods is the origin of the meats used and the chemical processes used to prepare the foods. Most meats used originate from animals raised in feed lots where they are given growth hormones, antibiotics and other drugs meant to promote their growth despite deplorable living conditions. These meats contain sodium nitrite which is a preservative that also contains an agent that destroys microorganisms that might carry disease. Good for the animals, maybe, but read on to discover what it does inside your body. Nitrates are converted in your body into cancer producing chemicals (nitrosamines) which are linked to colon, stomach and pancreatic cancers. And it doesn’t stop there. Most deli products may also contain harmful chemicals that do not originate in animal feed lots but are produced during the manufacturing process. These include:

  • Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAHs). Many deli products are smoked as a curing process and excess smoke generated during this process can transfer PAHs to the meat. PAHs are known cancer producing chemicals.
  • Heterocyclic amines (HCAs). These compounds are created when meats, or other foods, are cooked at high temperatures. They are associated with stomach, colon and breast cancers.
  • Advanced glycation products (AGEs). Again, these compounds are formed when foods are cooked at high temperatures and particularly when grilled or fried without water. AGEs absorbed in your body increase the risk of heart disease, diabetes and disease.

See separate blog post about Advanced Glycation End Products here. Further References .If You Eat Processed Meats, Are You Risking Your Life at Mercola.com.

Vegetable Oils and Margarine

Vegetable oils include palm oil, soybean oil, corn oil and even canola oil. I choose to quote Mike Geary, a Certified Nutrition Specialist and originator of The Truth About ABS program, who explains the dangers of hydrogenated oils and margarine in a no-nonsense fashion . “Hydrogenated oils are industrially produced, chemically altered oils subjected to extremely high pressure and temperature, with added industrial solvents such as hexane for extraction, and have a metal catalyst added to promote the artificial hydrogenation, followed by bleaching and deodorizing agents…..and somehow the FDA still allows this crap to pass as food. These oils aren’t even worthy of your lawnmower, much less your body! They’ve been linked to obesity, heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and more. Even small quantities have been shown in studies to be dangerous. If you care about your health, check the ingredients of everything you buy, and if you see partially hydrogenated oils of any kind, margarine, or shortening, protect yourself and your family by choosing something else.” If you don’t believe him, then allow me to quote Dr. Mercola, in his article on foods to avoid: “Of all the destructive foods available to us, those made with heated vegetable oils are some of the worst. These oils may be healthy in their natural stage but are anything but healthy after the manufacturing process they undergo to become commercially available.” Oxidized cholesterol is introduced into your system every time you eat something cooked in vegetable oil. The oil you use for cooking should be stable enough not to change its chemical structure when heated. Processed vegetable oils DO change their chemical structure and become oxidized (rancid). This oxidization converts good cholesterol to bad cholesterol. In introduces oxidized cholesterol into your blood and this will cause build-up of plaque like substances in your arteries. The manufacturing process for vegetable oils also introduces trans fats which happen to be the worst fat you can consume. And, finally, you should be aware that many of these commercial oils are made from genetically modified crops Further Reference: Why Hydrogenated Oils Should be Avoided at All Costs”.

Foods Packaged in Grease Proof Food Wrappers

The best example of foods packaged in these types of toxic materials may be microwave popcorns. Chemicals in a group called perfluoroalkyls which contain perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) are embedded in grease proof food wrappers in order to stop grease leaking through the wrapper. Bodies like the Environmental Protection Agency has classified these chemicals as “likely carcinogens” and claimed that PFOA causes reproductive risks for humans. Various researches have also linked PFCs to health dangers like infertility, thyroid disease, cancer, immune system damage and increase LDL cholesterol levels. So, how do you protect yourself from this type of industrial food packaging assault? Be aware that these substances occur in non-stick cookware, foods sold in grease-proof food packaging such as fast foods and microwave popcorn.

Canned Foods

The problem here is the protective coating applied to canned food containers. The epoxy resin used contains Bisphenos A (BPA), a chemical widely used in the manufacturing of polycarbonate plastics and epoxy raisins. This chemical is linked to reproductive abnormalities, breast and prostrate cancers, diabetes and heart disease. The canned foods identified as high risk are acidic foods which can cause the chemical to leach into the food stored. Canned tomatoes have been identified as the acidic food product most likely to be contaminated. BPA can leach into the food you consume from products such as polycarbonate tableware, food storage containers, water bottles, and baby bottles. The leakage is said to depend on the temperature of the liquid stored and the age of the container. To minimize exposure to this chemical, do NOT microwave polycarbonate plastic food containers , avoid canned foods, and choose glass, porcelain or stainless containers as a preference.

Fruit Juices

A great many people would consider fruit juices a healthy addition to their nutrition. However, I caution you to read the label to determine the sugar content in juice you purchase. In many cases, it is as high as 10%. Such a ratio of sugar would put the juice into the same category as Coke or Pepsi.

Table Salt

The problem with table salt is that it is a processed product, not a natural product. Processed salt contains 98% sodium chloride to which has been added chemicals such as iodine, moisture absorbents and, in some European countries, fluoride. By contrast, natural, unprocessed salt is made up of 84% sodium chloride. The remaining 16% of its content are natural minerals such as silicon, phosphorous and vanadium.

Further Bad News

I have outlined a large range of foods which are best avoided if you care about your health. To add to the list, and I apologize if this blog post is getting just a bit depressing, recent research has revealed another range of poisonous substances that may well have found their way into your food supplies. The following substances are banned in most countries but, depending in which country you live, may well appear in common foods you purchase.

  • Ractopamine. This substance is banned in the EU and China. However, various consumer reports have found this substance in 20% o all pork products.
  • Antibiotics. Recent studies have found that no less than 80% of supermarket meats in the U.S. contain antibiotics which damage your gut flora.
  • rBGH. This substance commonly appears in milk production in the U.S. This substance has been banned in Canada, EU, Australia, New Zealand, Japan and Israel because it the levels of the hormone IGF-1 which, in turn, increases the risk of cancers.
  • Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs). Although more than 50 countries around the world require GMO foods to be labeled, and many countries have banned such foods, GMO foods are NOT labeled in the U.S. The disturbing fact is that close to 90% of soy, corn, canola and sugar beet products in the U.S. are not genetically modified. A 2012 study on animals revealed that GMO foods revealed serious health risks from the consumption of GMO foods, including the development of tumors and liver damage.
  • Potassium bromate. This substance appears in breads and was identified by the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSP), a non-profit Washington based consumer advocate group, as a potential cancer risk in 1991. This substance has been banned in several countries.

The horrible truth is that the best way to avoid foods that are bad for your health, is to steer clear of food products labeled as “health claims”. Such labeling is often a blatant scam that promotes “whole grains” in processed foods that are full of sugar and wheat.

 

AGEs Cause Premature Aging and Disease

October 12, 2013 by  
Filed under Unhealthy Food, Unhealthy Body

AGEs stands for “Advanced Glycation End Products, a term which prompts an immediate further question: “What is glycation?”

Disclaimer

I am neither a medical expert, nor a nutritionist. However, I can read and I can pass on information provided by qualified experts. Medical science is not static, so I urge you to surf the Internet to verify, question or comment on what I am saying. I should also mention that I have not attempted to explain the biochemistry associated with AGEs as I am in no way qualified to do so. Let’s concentrate only on the essentials of AGEs.

What Is Glycation?
In biological terms, it is the bonding of protein and fat (lipid) molecules with sugar molecules. Some experts explain it as a process in which glucose molecules attach themselves to hemoglobin in a destructive process called glycation. Hemoglobin is the protein molecule in red blood cells. These molecules carry oxygen to body tissues and expel carbon dioxide. To summarize:

  • Glycation interferes with your body’s cellular functions.
  • Glycation is mainly caused by the presence of high blood sugar levels.
  • Glycation affects the ability of your red blood cells to carry oxygen to your organs.

So far, this probably does not make any practical sense. However, the damage these processes cause should wake you up and pay attention.

Skin Problems Caused by Glycation
Let’s start with the skin problems. Glycation causes glucose molecules to attach themselves to skin proteins like collagen and elastin which are the proteins that give people a youthful complexion. The sugar molecules cause the skin proteins to become discolored and weak which then causes skin wrinkles and skin sag. Smoking exasperates the damage as a recipe for premature aging.

Diseases Caused by Glycation
There are many more serious issues at stake here:

  • Detructive effects of your blood vessels – primarily damage to collagen in blood vessel walls – which can cause high blood pressure, heart disease or strokes.
  • Microvascular effects –like damage to the pancreas – that can cause diabetes.
  • The formation of plaque-like substances in your brain cells and nerve tissue – a pre-cursor or cause for memory loss, dementia or the dreadful Alzheimer’s disease.
  • Nerve damage which can affect hearing and eye sight.

AGEs are formed by food you eat or formed naturally inside your body (in technical terms, when sugar molecules attach to protein or fat molecules without an enzyme).
The lining of blood cells are particularly sensitive as are blood capillaries of the kidneys and eyes, brain and nerve cells. As already said, they are a major cause for skin wrinkles and sagging skin tissue.

Nutritional Aspects of Glycation
It is the presence of glucose (sugar) molecules in your blood stream which, in combination with certain foods and cooking processes, that cause glycation.

  • Animal foods high in fat and protein are more susceptible to the formation of AGEs.
  • Browned and roasted foods like fried meats and packaged foods.
  • Modern diets are largely heat-processed and, as a result, contain high levels of AGEs.
  • Cooking of food at high temperatures without water (frying) causes the sugar in foods to bind with the proteins or fats to form AGEs.

How To Protect Yourself and Minimize Glycation

  • Reduce or eliminate sugars from your diet, particularly High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) and fructose.
  • Cook meats at lower temps. Cook in broth.
  • Do NOT eat the crispy skin from turkey or pork. It is as bad as your fried breakfast bacon.
  • Avoid or reduce the amount of “browned” foods you consume. These include brown bread, browned or grilled meat, bacon, crispy brown cookies, donuts, chips, and crackers.
  • Minimize the amount of sodas and sweetened drinks that you consume, including sweetened fruit juices.
  • Avoid processed foods – they often have high sugar content.
  • Avoid browned, roasted, grilled or fried foods.
  • Avoid dark colored sodas as they contain caramel coloring.
  • Endeavor to keep your blood sugar level at or below 90 mg/dl.
  • Avoid or minimize grains – especially wheat and corn (they raise blood sugar levels). Don’t eat brown breads because they are baked or fried. Don’t eat donuts, muffins, pastries and bagels.

The End Benefits
Make these simple change and you will feel leaner, stronger, more alert and in a better mood. You will also sleep better, your joints will be stronger and your sex drive will improve.

Where To From Here
You will find several blog posts about nutrition on this site and I am progressively adding more.
I do it because of personal interest and because I am getting horrified discovering what the farm, fish, processed food and drink industries have done to an entire generation of people. The effects of the unhealthy foods we are sold is a worldwide obesity epidemic. If in doubt, just look around you.

Learning how to buy or access healthy foods and how to prepare healthy meals would require an entire book. Let’s leave this to the experts who are telling the truth and ignore the misleading propaganda and advertisements that you are exposed to every day, on TV and in magazines and newspapers. Fortunately, I have found experts who tell the truth in print and via easy to absorb videos.

The road towards a healthy diet and a healthy body involves 85% nutrition and 15% exercise. The first step is to acquire a sound eating plan.

I always place “diets” inside quotation marks because the term itself is contradictory. The word has two separate meanings, but is too often interpreted as a reduction in the amount of food you consume. This is entirely unnecessary. By eating the right kinds of food, you can actually eat more and still lose weight.

The Uncomfortable Truth About Sugars

I was utterly stunned when I stumbled upon the video shown below. It is a long video, it is very technical but I do feel it is absolutely essential viewing if you want to learn and appreciate the blatant adulteration of our food supply that has now been going on for some 30 years.

What Dr. Robert Lustig, a Professor at UCSF, reveals in this video is essential if you want to avoid the curse of obesity that has now become a worldwide epidemic.

Here are some of the issues you will appreciate after listening to Dr. Lustig.

  • Why fructose and High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS), commonly used in a vast variety of processed foods, poison your body.
  • The myth about low-fat nutrition.
  • The inaccurate research that has guided nutritional advice for the last 30 years.
  • The Coca-Cola conspiracy and the bitter truth about sodas and fruit juices.
  • The complete story about on how your body metabolizes good and bad foods.
  • The bitter truth about bad sugars and how they are the underlying causes of obesity and diabetes type 2.

And much, much more. It’s a long video but you’ll be well advised to sit through it all. There’s some good humor included as well.

Original source: UC Television.

The Foods that Fight Aging

December 24, 2012 by  
Filed under Unhealthy Food, Unhealthy Body

This is a MUST-READ if you want to protect your skin, organs, muscles, and joints from aging…

Mike Geary, of “The Truth About ABS” fame, has turned his attention to what he claims to be his newest passion – Healthy Eating and Nutrition.

The FREE article, referenced by the first link below this post, will identify the #1 worst food (marketed as “healthy”) that harms your blood sugar levels, and how this also ages your body faster. This particular food also happens to be the subject of the top ranked Nutrition book on Amazon, a book written by a medical practitioner.

Mike has partnered with Catherine Ebeling to release a brand new manual called “The Top 101 Foods that FIGHT Aging”, and they’re celebrating this release by offering this little gem to you for UNDER ten bucks! That’s a whopping $30 savings by grabbing it today. Once you know the No1 worst food the causes aging, continue on to find out what particular foods PREVENT aging. I have the book myself and I  can thoroughly recommend it as an eye-opener.

The manual is MUCH more than a list of foods… it’s actually 83 pages jam packed with all sorts of unique foods, herbs, spices, teas, little-known nutrients, and dozens of other tips and tricks to help you FIGHT the aging process and keep youthful joints, skin, organs, and muscles so that you look and feel 10 years YOUNGER than your real age!

I think you’ll love this new manual as it has so many powerful tips that will protect your health and the youthfulness of your body.

Here’s the links you need:
The WORST Food that CAUSES Aging
The Top 101 Foods that FIGHT Aging.