According to a new study, people with hypertension can see a reduction in blood pressure if they replace some of the carbs in their diet with soy and low-fat dairy products.
The findings weren’t necessarily revolutionary as scientists have long known that high-carb diets were unhealthy for the heart while soy based products decrease the risk of heart disease. Although these facts were known, less was understood about how these foods affected blood pressure.
To figure out an answer to that question, these researchers tested over 350 people with higher than normal blood pressure on different daily supplements (soy protein, milk protein and carbohydrates) for two months. The results showed that the carbohydrate supplement caused no change in blood pressure whereas the soy and milk supplements reduced systolic blood pressure by about two points.
The decreases in blood pressure were small on the individual level “but they would be very, very important at a population level…[as] annual deaths from heart disease and stroke could be expected to drop by 6% and 4%, respectively”. That being said, the researchers cautioned patients saying that this study was not a reason to go overboard on soy and dairy at the expense of a balanced diet.
 Anne Harding, “Swapping carbs for soy, dairy protein may help lower blood pressure”, http://www.cnn.com/2011/HEALTH/07/18/swap.carbs.protein/index.html
Everyone wants to feel younger. Whether it’s to help deal with that aching back, constant tiredness or diet, these solutions have been coveted for generations. Use these simple tips to help you feel a lot younger:
Go to bed earlier – getting adequate amounts of sleep is one of the best ways to feel younger fast. Henry Lodge (MD and co-author of “Younger Next Year for Women”) calls sleep “the only time your body can truly restore itself…it helps build a more vibrant body and brain”. It’s very likely you aren’t currently getting enough sleep. It is recommended that adults get 7-8 hours of sleep a night. Try to get to this number for six weeks straight and you’ll feel the energy difference.
Eat healthier, revitalizing food – Try to have something healthy at the start of every meal. It can be simple like a big glass or water or your favorite fruit. But by increasing your vitamin and antioxidant intake you will feel refreshed and recharged all the time.
Go to the gym – A good, regular gym workout can help you feel 10-20 years younger. This is because a good workout involving weights causes micro-tears in your muscles which then allow your body to create thicker, stronger muscle fibers. Working out will also increase your stamina and reduce your risk of injuries during everyday activities.
Freestyle a bit – your brain and body love variety so you need to stimulate that to help create that sense of novelty that you had when you learned something new as a child. These don’t have to be drastic changes every day. They can be as simple as trying out a different workout machine at the gym or getting a different coffee in the morning.
Try these tips and you’ll be making the right steps toward feeling 25 again.
 Sarah Jio, “Defy your age: What truly helps you stay younger inside and out”, http://www.cnn.com/2011/HEALTH/07/19/defy.your.age/index.html?hpt=he_c2
Dieters think they are doing themselves a favor when checking restaurants calorie counts for certain items before ordering. Apparently that’s not the case as a new study from Tufts concludes that nearly 1 in 5 restaurants had inaccurate calorie ratings of their offerings.
The researchers found that several foods had over a 100 calorie disparity with what the restaurant stated on its website. This study encompassed 42 fast food and sit-down restaurants in three states including Chipotle, Olive Garden, Outback Steakhouse and Boston Market.
Lead researcher Lorien Urban, a former Tufts graduate student, and others bought the foods from the restaurants without revealing their purpose and then brought them back to Tufts for testing. In most cases the calorie counts were accurate but about 20% of foods tested had a large variation (over 100 calories off). Sit-down restaurants had more inaccurate readings probably because their foods are more subject to individual variation when compared to fast food places.
This brings up a huge issue for dieters who expect to be staying on course by ordering a soup at Olive Garden or salad at Chipotle. It turns out that these “healthier” offerings were the ones that unexpectedly had more calories. Although the new labeling law has helped many, this study illustrates one of the places it can still be improved. Linda Van Horn, a research nutritionist and professor of preventive medicine at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago, said: “Labeling is a wonderful thing, but periodically, there should be some external monitoring so restaurants would need to know they should be conscious of any changes that take place”.
Although a 100 calorie discrepancy per day doesn’t seem like much, over the course of a year that can add 10-15 extra pounds. So it is important that restaurants display more accurate numbers for the well-being of everyone and hopefully this study speeds the correction process up.
 Kay Lazar, http://www.boston.com/lifestyle/health/articles/2011/07/20/restaurant_calorie_counts_often_inaccurate_study_finds/?page=full
It has long been advised by doctors that everyone should reduce their salt intake due to its effects on blood pressure and overall health. New research supports that reducing salt intake keeps blood pressure down but is inconclusive on its effects in preventing heart attacks and cardiovascular disease.
Professor Rod Taylor of the University of Exeter and his team examined data of 6,500 patients and found a correlation to lower blood pressure but no evidence of effectiveness in preventing death or cardiovascular disease. The authors concluded that further, more rigorous studies are needed to actually draw strong connections between salt intake and cardiovascular events.
Despite this, there is still an abundance of research from a consensus of experts that agree that excess salt intake hurts cardiovascular health. Therefore, you should take any of these preliminary studies with a grain of salt.
There is a healthy amount of salt you should have in your diet (2,300 mg daily for adults is the government dietary guideline) but most people go way over that amount. The easiest way to reduce your sodium intake is to cut out frozen, processed and packaged foods in favor of fresh fruits and vegetables. You can also minimize your use of the tabletop salt shaker. Overall, until new, more conclusive studies are done you should stick with the advice of a trained professional to suit your own needs.
 Meredith Melnick, “Does Cutting Salt Really Improve Heart Health?”, http://healthland.time.com/2011/07/07/cutting-salt-may-not-reduce-heart-attacks-or-risk-of-death/
Alzheimer’s disease is a growing concern in modern society as over 26 million people globally are affected by it each year. It is known as the incurable, terminal brain disorder that slowly steals the minds of its victims. The emotional and financial costs for families experiencing this disease with a loved one can be enormous. There has recently been an increase in research relating to this disease in an effort to help slow the effects and find a cure.
This is where a nutritious diet comes in. A healthy diet has been proven to be important for your body but recent studies say it is good for your brain and can help prevent Alzheimer’s as well. The study concluded that “diet may be a powerful environmental factor that modulates Alzheimer disease risk”. The results are only preliminary but definitely seem to indicate a connection between eating healthier and reducing your risk for Alzheimer’s.
Similarly, another study isolated fruits, vegetables and omega-3 fatty acids as specific dietary elements that were beneficial in reducing the risk of Alzheimer’s. This study discovered that people who followed the diet above were “38 percent less likely to develop Alzheimer's disease”.
Overall, it is clear that diet has some effect on reducing Alzheimer’s but more research is necessary to confirm the correlations described in the studies above.
 “About Alzheimer's Disease”. http://www.ahaf.org/alzheimers/about/
 LiveScience, “Can Changing Your Diet Decrease Your Risk of Alzheimer's?”. June 14, 2011. http://news.yahoo.com/s/livescience/20110614/sc_livescience/canchangingyourdietdecreaseyourriskofalzheimers
 Todd Neale. April 13, 2010. “Alzheimer's and Diet: Good for Heart May Be Good for Brain”. http://abcnews.go.com/Health/Alzheimers/alzheimers-diet-foods-lower-dementia-risk/story?id=10359869
By Arjun Vellayappan / Hotel Recovery, Inc.