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PostPosted: Tue Jan 13, 2015 1:17 pm 
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Unlocking the secret to running faster

If you've clicked on this, chances are you're motivated to kick off 2015 with some solid exercise goals. Me? I've got a goal, too, but this year it's a little different.

I'm already motivated about my fitness and have some triathlons marked into my diary over the next few months, so I'm kind of sorted in that department. Instead, I've used the arrival of the new year to drill down into different ways I can improve my performance.

There's the usual things to be done, like paying more attention to diet, injury prevention and managing rest and recovery. These require constant vigilance, especially alongside a full-time job, a family and um, an ageing body.

But recently I've been reminded of a really simple ingredient that's often missing from my training and racing routine and which could really impact performance. It might be the same for you. I'm determined - call it a resolution - to use it as much as possible, and especially when the going gets tough.

It's called smiling.

I've been reminded about the strength of a smile from three directions recently. In December as I cycled through some remote villages in Vietnam, Cambodia and Thailand, I was struck by the genuine smiles that greeted me along the way. And if you were to use wealth and possessions as a gauge of happiness, these people were not entitled to be smiling. They had very, very little of either. They worked all day, every day, in a subsistence culture, but when our crazy little peloton rode past we only saw people waving at us or welcoming us into their homes.

So there's the smile of friendliness and keeping things simple. It's about paring back all the extraneous stuff and just appreciating what we've got - like the opportunity to pursue mad hobbies like running.

There's also the smile of distraction. We talk a lot about the post-exercise high that generates a smile and puts a spring in your step for hours afterwards. That's the effect of the exercise-induced release of brain chemicals called endorphins.

Tim Oberg, the director of parkrun Australia, was blown away last November by the response to a Facebook post he wrote about the relationship between exercise and mental wellbeing. Hundreds of people emailed him with their stories of how parkrun - the free, timed, weekly 5km run that's held every week in 100 or so parks around Australia - had helped them beat, or at least manage, depression.

Another powerful sort of smiling - and the one I'm particularly keen to try - is smiling in the face of discomfort, during a training session or a race. Smiling when I feel like lying down, smiling when I feel like I should have stayed in bed on a dark morning like the rest of the world, smiling when my legs are screaming, or when I'm hot and generally suffering.

I was alerted to this via news that Australian performance sports brand 2XU has this month signed an exclusive sponsorship with world champion Australian triathlete, Craig Alexander and his triathlon coaching company, Sansego.

"Crowie" is one of the fittest humans on the planet, a three-time Hawaii Ironman world championship winner and two-time Ironman 70.3 world champion. His Sansego triathlon coaching team is equally impressive.

One coach is Joanna Lawn, a Kiwi whose claims to fame include being a six-time top 10 Hawaii Ironman finisher. Lawn wrote a blog on the Sansego site about smiling that resonated with me.

After watching and participating in nearly 30 Ironman triathlons, she observed that the most successful athletes seemed able to smile when under extreme duress.

"The power of confidence one can take from a simple smile is priceless, something that I hear time and time again from world champions Natascha Badmann and Chrissie Wellington," Lawn writes. "They continuously say 'smile and everything will be wonderful'.

"How can that be? We are doing the same thing, we are doing the same distance, we are experiencing the same elements and the feeling the same pain. The difference is that they CHOOSE to ignore these signals, they CHOOSE to find positive thoughts, they simply take long deep breaths, smile and soldier on.

"I definitely believe there is a power of energy in this, and it is not just coincidence they both have won numerous world titles."

Lawn argues that smiling can be used as a training tool. "I believe if we could enjoy, stay focused and be happy in our workouts, race day 'should' be a very enjoyable experience. The road to success should be simple," she writes.

All of us could probably do with a reminder of the power of a positive thought and the action of a smile when the alternative is far more seductive. After all, your thoughts are what drive your actions.

So this year I'm resolved to try to take more long, deep breaths and soldier on with a view to finding a positive in any situation I find myself in. Whilst wearing a smile. And with any luck I might notice an improvement in my performance, too.

http://www.canberratimes.com.au/executi ... 2mn5u.html


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 15, 2015 2:31 pm 
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Napping helps infants form memories, study shows

Babies are champion learners: Born with just a few basic reflexes, they quickly teach themselves to navigate their world by observing, remembering and making sense of their surroundings, the language spoken around them and the nature of such elusive notions as time, space and permanence.

Babies are also champion nappers, snoozing away the majority of each day in brief interludes of peaceful slumber.

It turns out those two facts about babies are probably related. When it comes to learning, those naps are at least as purposeful as they are peaceful.

A new study suggests that, for babies, napping plays a key role in the formation of declarative memories--the process of learning from first-hand experience what things are and do, how they work, and how they relate to one another and to the self.

While few of us have explicit memories of infancy, it is a period when the young human is committing to long-term storage a vast trove of facts that can later be retrieved at will. That "declarative memory" will become the basis for a lifetime of further learning.

Without timely naps, new research suggests, much of what babies learn about the world around them might be promptly forgotten. If frequent daily naps did not follow intensive learning sessions in the first years of life, our path to walking, talking and purposeful exploration would probably take longer. It might not happen at all.

Researchers from the Ruhr University in Bochum, Germany, and the University of Sheffield in Britain explored the purpose and timing of babies' naps with a series of experiments on 6- and 12-month-olds. Their findings were reported online this week in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Because most babies at those ages are not yet talking, the researchers had to find a nonverbal way to measure how the timing of sleep influenced the strength of a memory. Four furry puppets--two resembling mice and two resembling rabbits, each wearing a detachable felt mitten on one hand--helped researchers infer whether or not a baby had successfully committed his or her experience with the puppets to memory and stored that information for later use.

On a researcher's first visit to a baby's home, he or she sat across from baby and caregiver, showed the baby the puppet, and demonstrated how the mitten could be removed, how shaking the mitten would cause a little bell inside the mitten to tinkle, and how the mitten could be replaced on the puppet's hand.

Some of the 60 6-month-olds and the 60 12-month-olds were assigned to a "nap" condition: Researchers timed their arrival, and their puppet demonstrations, to come several hours after a baby had last napped. Since babies in their first year can rarely stay awake for much more than four hours between naps, the researchers could be confident (and parental logs recorded) that the baby would fall asleep soon after the puppet demonstration and nap for at least 30 minutes (and more likely for about 80 minutes).

A "no-nap" group of babies had their visits and puppet demonstrations just after awakening from a nap. Though the babies were recently rested, the timing of the researcher's visit made it highly unlikely that the baby would snooze soon after her introduction to the puppets.

Twenty-four hours after that first visit, a researcher returned to the baby's home with the puppets and held them out for the baby to touch. Over the next 90 seconds, researchers looked for evidence of whether the baby recalled the salient facts of the previous day's demonstration: that the puppet's mitten could be removed, that shaking the mitten should result in a tinkling sound, and that the mitten could be replaced on the puppet's hand. How many of those moves a baby initiated on a second visit might indicate how strong the memory was.

Whether or not a baby had napped just before the puppet demonstration made little difference in the strength of the memory--not right after the demonstration and not 24 hours later. But 24 hours later, the babies who quickly followed the puppet demonstration with a solid nap were much more likely to demonstrate their recall of the puppets' special qualities than did babies whose naps came four hours after the puppet demonstration.

For adults, too, sleep appears to play a crucial role in memory consolidation. That fact is routinely demonstrated in neuroscience experiments and shown in studies that illustrate the memory-impairing effects of sleep deprivation in adults. Slow-wave sleep--the deep, restorative kind--appears to be particularly important for adults to record new, long-term declarative memories.

But babies have so much to learn. Moreover, the authors of the current study conjecture, the hippocampal region of their little brains, which is so crucial to memory formation, may even have limited storage capacity. Hence, they suggest, the need for frequent bits of sleep in infancy: to capture and store more of the day's learning experiences before those potential memories are lost in the never-ending torrent of new stuff to learn.

That may also explain why, as we grow out of childhood and our exposure to completely new experiences slows, we need fewer naps.

http://www.latimes.com/science/sciencen ... story.html


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 17, 2015 2:29 pm 
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'High-intensity' disruptive behavior may indicate future problems for children

Tamper tantrums, stealing and throwing toys around are forms of disruptive behavior that many young children exhibit when growing up. However, if this behavior is "high-intensity," it could indicate a psychiatric problem that predicts future antisocial behavior.

While most children lose their temper from time to time, children with conduct disorder frequently display high-intensity antisocial behavior.

The conclusion comes from a new study, published in The Journal of Pediatrics, in which researchers from Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, MO, assessed the behavior of children at both preschool age and then school age.

Conduct disorder refers to a range of behavioral and emotional problems that are experienced by children and adolescents. The condition leads to youngsters having difficulty following rules or behaving in a manner deemed socially acceptable.

"Children who had high-intensity symptoms as preschoolers were likely to have conduct disorder," said first author Dr. Ji Su Hong. "And those symptoms also tended to predict conduct disorder when they reached school age."

For children exhibiting such symptoms, the researchers recommend that a mental health professional should be seen, in order for any potential disorders to be diagnosed and treated.

"Previously, we did not understand the empirical differences between normal disruptive behaviors in preschoolers - like temper tantrums, for example - and behaviors that signal problems," says Dr. Joan L. Luby. "If you went to your pediatrician and said, 'My 3-year-old is having tantrums,' the pediatrician wouldn't tell you to see a psychiatrist."

For the study, 273 children were investigated from preschool age. First, the caregivers of the children were interviewed to assess their child's mental health. The participating children were then assessed at school age with age-appropriate diagnostic interviews.

The following symptoms were most likely to be exhibited by preschoolers with conduct disorder:

Aggression towards others
High-intensity deceitfulness (including stealing)
High-intensity defiant behavior
High-intensity destruction of property
High-intensity peer problems.

"We characterize a symptom as high-intensity when it's really 'high-pitched' - so just how severe the anger is," says Dr. Luby. "A high-intensity symptom is one that is very acute or severe, occurs over a long duration of time and happens in a number of different contexts."

'Unable to adapt to the demands of adulthood'
Young children displaying these symptoms were more likely to continue exhibiting antisocial behavior symptomatic of conduct disorder when they reached elementary school.

Around one in 20 preschool children has conduct disorder, roughly equating to one child in every preschool classroom, according to Dr. Hong.

The researchers also observed a number of disadvantages that were often shared by children with conduct disorder at school age. Almost half came from families with an annual income of $20,000 or less. A total of 57% lived either in a single parent home or did not live with either parent. Around half had a history of abuse or neglect and more than half were diagnosed with preschool depression.

The American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry (AACAP) stress the importance of treatment for children with conduct disorder:

"Without treatment, many youngsters with conduct disorder are unable to adapt to the demands of adulthood and continue to have problems with relationships and holding a job. They often break laws or behave in an antisocial manner."

The findings of the study could be used as a guide for primary care clinicians to aid them in identifying preschool children with clinical conduct disorder, the authors conclude. "In young children, violent and destructive behavior that's deliberate really seems to be a key warning sign," says Dr. Luby.

Earlier this week, Medical News Today reported on a study published in Circulation finding that psychosocial experiences in childhood may influence future cardiovascular health.

http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/288134.php


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 19, 2015 2:51 pm 
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Royal commission to investigate children abused in foster care

A national inquiry is about to lift the lid on foster care – a mostly hidden system in which more than 20,000 children are potentially vulnerable to abuse.

In March the royal commission into child sexual abuse will hold public hearings in Sydney into the abuse of children who were placed in out-of-home care (OOHC) by government agencies.

The hearings follow two years of private sessions and research during which foster care survivors told harrowing stories of abuse.

The public investigation comes as the number of children needing foster care grows and those willing to take on the job declines.

The commission’s focus was welcomed on Friday by Melbourne-based author and academic Nell Musgrove, who is two years into a research project on foster care in Australia.

She and Dr Dee Michell at the University of Adelaide have Australian Research Council funding to examine the history of foster care based on the experiences of foster children and carers.

Musgrove said their research showed people abused in foster care were less likely to find a way of reporting the abuse.

“We can definitely say there is more evidence of children in institutions finding a way to try to tell someone that something was wrong than we can find evidence of foster children finding ways to do that.”

She said this was often because of the psychological hold foster parents had over children or because foster carers found ways to be in the room when a child was being interviewed by a case worker.

In its interim report last June, the royal commission into institutional responses to child sexual abuse carried nine stories of people who had been abused while in out-of-home care.

OOHC includes kinship care and family group homes as well as foster care for children aged from new born to 17.

A commission issues paper on OHCC abuse prevention attracted 63 submissions last November.

Musgrove said the matter needed careful handling because major issues now were the shortage of foster homes and the retention of foster carers.

She said foster carers were motivated by the desire to do good work but did not always get the support promised or were assessed for one job – looking after teenagers – and given another such as caring for an infant. She welcomed the critical examination of the issue.

The commission will ask whether there is effective regulation, training and support for foster carers and how states and territories handled complaints when they were made.

http://www.theguardian.com/australia-ne ... oster-care


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 21, 2015 1:25 pm 
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British man drops out of university after experiencing déjà vu for eight years straight

A BRITISH man who experienced Groundhog Day every day for eight years has experts puzzled.

The 23-year-old who did not wish to be named was so overcome by the daily déjà vu that he dropped out of university and was unable to lead a normal life. He told doctors he was “trapped in a time loop”, an experience that made him believe he was reliving the past day after day, according to the Telegraph.

He is now the subject of a detailed report published by the Journal of Medical Case Reports which revealed his case could be the first of its kind.

Report author Dr Christine Wells from Sheffield Hallam University’s psychology department said the man stopped watching television, listening to the radio and reading newspapers because he believed he had seen or read the material before. She said the case was unusual because “most cases like this occur as a side effect associated with epileptic seizures or dementia”.

“In this instance it appears as though the episodes could be linked to anxiety causing mistimed neuronal firing in the brain which causes déjà vu and in turn brings about more anxiety,” Dr Wells said.

The former student told researchers he first started experiencing the symptoms in 2007, shortly after starting his university studies. He had a history of anxiety which worsened over time.

In 2008, he was referred to specialists for a brain scan and tests for epilepsy. In 2010 he was assessed again where anxiety was found to be the main cause.

“If proved, this could be the first-ever recorded instance of psychogenic déjà vu, which is déjà vu triggered by anxiety rather than a neurological condition such as dementia or epilepsy,” Dr Wells said.

“In relation to our case, distress caused by the déjà vu experience may itself lead to increased levels of déjà vu: similar feedback loops in positive symptoms are reported in other anxiety states e.g. panic attacks.

“It is plausible on neurobiological grounds that anxiety might lead to the generation of déjà vu.”

Similar cases have been linked to damage to the temporal lobe, of which the patient showed no signs.

http://www.news.com.au/technology/scien ... 7191725012


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 23, 2015 9:44 am 
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Should I Drink Almond Milk?

4/5 experts say yes.

This one’s no cold case. Almond milk is a worthy addition to your fridge, according to most of these experts.

The darling of the plant milk substitutes, almond milk is an obvious choice for vegans and people with lactose allergies, and almond milk is 50% lower in calories than cow’s milk, says Kristin Kirkpatrick, registered dietitian and manager of wellness nutrition services at Cleveland Clinic’s Wellness Institute, making it a good for people trying to lose weight. Because it’s not an animal product, it has no cholesterol.

But even though it can stand in for cow’s milk in smoothies, oatmeal and cereal, it’s not milk’s nutritional clone.

“Unlike dairy milk and soy milk, almond milk is naturally low in protein,” says Alicia Romano, registered dietitian at Frances Stern Nutrition Center at Tufts Medical Center. While a glass of cow milk or soy milk has 8 grams of protein, a glass of almond milk has a single measly gram. That may seem strange, since almonds are little ovals of protein: an ounce of the nuts has 6 grams. But its “milk” version is mostly water, and most of the nutrient-dense almonds get strained out of the final product. You don’t get as much calcium, either, unless it’s fortified.

That’s part of the confusion around a product like almond milk, which gives you neither the well-known nutritional benefits of almonds (protein and good fat) nor milk (calcium). “I’m staunchly against plant-based foods disguising themselves as [animal-derived] options,” says Jo-Ann Jolly, registered dietitian at American University. “A lot of times this process can leave foods with more additives and sometimes more calories, fat and sugar.” If you like the taste of almond milk, then by all means drink it, she says, but make sure to read labels. Unsweetened almond milk lets you avoid the surge of added sugar in the flavored kinds, says Outi Mäkinen, a researcher who’s studied plant milks like almond milk.

Almond milk isn’t for everyone, says Dr. Julie Lemale, a researcher at Hôpital Trousseau in France. Her study last year suggested that substituting milk with alternative milk beverages—including almond milk—in infants under a year old may result in nutritional deficiencies and the growth problems that can come with them.

If you’re not an infant, though, almond milk’s a safe bet. And if you find the non-sugary version delicious, you may have found your perfect non-dairy cereal match.

http://time.com/3677300/almond-milk-nutrition/


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 25, 2015 1:31 pm 
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The ingredients for a healthy life

THE key to good health is to be a food-label detective. Knowing how to decode the hidden sugars and the fat content of foods will lead to a longer, healthier life.

Health experts agree on that. While they may debate the ideal daily intake of sugar, salt and fat, there is a consensus that everyone should, at least, know what they are eating.

That sounds straightforward, but food labels can be hard to interpret.

Researcher and health writer, Bill Statham, wrote The Chemical Maze because he was concerned about the health effects of synthetic chemicals in food and cosmetics.

In April, 2008, for instance, he was alarmed that synthetic colours, which had been removed by the Food Standards Agency (FSA) in Britain, were still in some foods on sale.

So, he has revised his book several times and you can download his shopper’s guide as an app and refer to it as you wheel your trolley around the supermarket.

But chemicals are only part of the story. A customer is likely to instinctively avoid products that contain colouring, preservatives, and ingredients that are impossible to pronounce.

Shopping becomes more fraught when the claims made in bold letters on the packaging — low-fat, source of vitamins, low in salt — mask other unhealthy ingredients listed in the small print.

But that is changing.

Under European Union regulations, it is now mandatory to declare nutrients, list salt instead of sodium (salt is made up of 40% sodium and 60% chloride), replace ‘calories’ with ‘energy’ and state any allergens.

But none of that is any good if we don’t read labels.

And not many Irish people do. A study by the Food Safety Authority of Ireland found that just a quarter of us read labels, while 44% said they rarely or never check what they are buying.

Consultant dietician, Aveen Bannon, says lack of time, information overload and focus on price all contribute to ‘label illiteracy’, but she warns that it has a big impact on the health and weight of the nation.

Last November, Bannon, in conjunction with Motivation Weight Management, devised a food-label talk because, as she says, “food-label education is the key to ensuring a healthier and leaner Ireland.

“The lack of knowledge in this area is incredible,” she says.

“I really do believe it will affect the health of the nation.”

Here is her guide to understanding food labels:

Shelf life: The shorter the better, as it’s less likely to contain artificial additives. Aim for less than 10.

Sugar has many disguises: Agave nectar, fructose, fruit juice concentrate, glucose, honey, lactose, maltodextrin, sorbitol, maltose, maple syrup, molasses, sucrose, golden syrup, glucose, fructose syrup, sucrose and maltitol. “Remember, your body doesn’t care what the label says, it’s all just ‘sugar’.”

Start counting: In terms of sugar, greater than 15g per 100g is high, while 5g per 100g is low.

One teaspoon of sugar is about 4g. With fibre, 6g/100g is high. “Aim for products that have more fibre and less sugar.”

All calories are not created equal: Look at the quality rather than the quantity of calories. A low-fat biscuit may have the same number of calories as a piece of fruit, but the latter will offer fibre, vitamins and minerals, while the biscuit will not.

Look for more: Fibre, protein, mono-unsaturated fatty acids, and Omega3 fatty acids. Just what you need for added energy.

Look for less: Fat, saturated and trans fat, salt and sugar.

Portion size: The recommended serving may not be the portion that you actually eat — it may be two or three times the serving size on the pack.

http://www.irishexaminer.com/lifestyle/ ... 08471.html


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 28, 2015 1:13 pm 
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Potential peanut allergy cure: researchers

Australian researchers have found a possible cure for people with potentially fatal peanut allergies.

The Melbourne-based study has already transformed the lives of many of the children who took part in the clinical trial.

Researchers from the Murdoch Childrens Research Institute gave around 30 allergic children a daily dose of peanut protein together with a probiotic in an increasing amount over an 18-month period.

The probiotic used in the study was Lactobacillus rhamnosus and the dose was equivalent to eating about 20 kilos of yoghurt each day.

At the end of the trial 80 per cent of the children could eat peanuts without any reaction.

"Many of the children and families believe it has changed their lives, they're very happy, they feel relieved," said lead researcher Mimi Tang.

"These findings provide the first vital step towards developing a cure for peanut allergy and possibly other food allergies."

Almost three in every 100 Australian children have a peanut allergy.

"We focused on peanut allergy because it is usually lifelong and it is the most common cause of death from food anaphylaxis," Associate Professor Tang said.

Further research is now required to confirm whether patients can still tolerate peanuts in the years to come.

"We will be conducting a follow up study where we ask children to take peanut back out of their diet for eight weeks and test them if they're tolerant after that."

Assoc Prof Tang warned about trying the treatment at home.

"Some families might be thinking about trialling this at home and we would strongly advise against this, in our trial some children did experience allergic reactions, sometimes serious reactions.

"For the moment this treatment can only be taken under the supervision of doctors as part of a clinical trial."

http://www.9news.com.au/health/2015/01/ ... esearchers


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 31, 2015 11:56 am 
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Best Ways to Cook Your Veggies for the Most Nutrition

Alot of us are looking to get the most “bang for our buck” when it comes to nutrition and cooking our food. Afterall, we’re not spending our money on healthy foods to waste the nutrients in them, right? This is one reason the raw food movement has become so popular. The idea is to get more nutrients without “destroying” them through cooking them, or that’s at least the theory.

Many people also opt for boiling veggies hoping to avoid the bad effects of the dreaded frying method, and a large percentage also fear the microwave nowadays when we hear this “electrocutes” our veggies, or exposes us to toxins we so often hear about through radiation. However, you might be surprised that when it comes to veggies, not one method suits them all. In fact, some even increase in antioxidant content when cooked, while many antioxidants remain untouched, and oh, that microwave? Well, it might not be something to fear so badly after all.

What Research and Experts Says About Cooking Our Veggies
Dr. Michael Greger is a go-to for learning about vegan nutrition and to obtain medical advice from. He recently provided a video on how to get the most “bang for your buck” in terms of nutrition when it comes to getting the most nutrients from how we cook vegetables. Showcasing a study conducted by health professional that compared six different cooking methods with 20 different vegetables, we learn that veggies all differ in their nutrition content depending on how they’re prepared. . What they found was pretty surprising, especially to those individuals that fear the microwave and think all raw is always the best way to go.

Check out the video below and explore some of our recipes below that showcase some super star vegetables cooked in a variety of ways.

http://www.onegreenplanet.org/natural-h ... nutrition/


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2015 8:51 am 
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Beyoncé Partners With Vegan Meal-Delivery Service to Get the World Healthier!

It takes 21-days to make a habit, at least that’s the premise behind 22-Days Nutrition’s vegan meal delivery service, and now Beyoncé has signed on with the company in order to get everybody else on board.

22-Days Nutrition is the company that Beyoncé and husband Jay Z famously used in 2013 when they embarked on their short-lived foray into eating plant-based. Though they didn’t stick with eschewing animal based foods entirely once the 22 days were up, Beyoncé has credited the company with inspiring her to incorporate far more plant-based dishes into her daily diet.

Founded by exercise physiologist Marco Borges, his reasoning behind the plan is simple. “We all know the importance and value of eating plant-based foods but often times find ourselves trapped in a series of bad habits that sabotage optimum wellness. The Vegan Meal Delivery program makes it easier to reset your habits with healthy and delicious plant-based foods.”

Ranging from from $9.76 to $16.50 per meal, all of the offerings are 100 percent plant-based, made with organic ingredients, non-GMO, gluten-free, soy-free, dairy-free and are delivered once a week. While the vegan meal delivery service is focused solely on plant-based foods, Borges’s plan isn’t to “make everyone turn vegan.” Rather, it’s about helping people make better choices for their health.

Studies are on Borges side, showing that a whole foods, plant-based diet is one of the best options for long term health and longevity. It’s becoming so widely accepted that this is the best choice, managed care company, Kaiser Permanente, even recommends it as their official diet.

Reducing our intake of animal-based foods is something that everyone should strive to do for a huge variety of reasons, health included. Evidence suggests that meat production has one of the largest negative impacts on the environment compared to any other industry today. If everyone took meat, dairy and eggs out of their diets even just one day per week, the water and carbon savings would be sizable.

While Beyoncé and Jay Z got plenty of negative press after their “vegan cleanse” with 22-Day Nutrition – after they very obviously didn’t stick with it for the long haul – the fact that Bey has chosen to adopt more plants than before and wants to spread that message is a great thing.

“I am so grateful that I took the challenge and credit Marco with leading by example,” she says of her experience with the company and Borges. “He is the most energetic person I know and it’s all because of his decision to live a healthy lifestyle. He came up with a great program to get people motivated to make better nutritional choices. All you have to do is try. If I can do it, anyone can.”

This meal delivery service is certainly making it easier to choose plant-based options over animal ones. While providing such high profile visibility to the benefits of going plant-based, we are glad to see the message shared regardless of an individual’s “lack of perfection.” We applaud Beyoncé and services like 22-Day Nutrition for trying to make a difference in the way people eat. The environment, animals and we’re sure a cardiologist or two, thank them as well.

http://www.onegreenplanet.org/news/beyo ... healthier/


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 07, 2015 8:03 am 
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Woman Dies After Taking Paracetamol to Treat Severe Earache

Rebecca Jeffs, 31, from Crawley, West Sussex, accidentally killed herself when she overdosed on paracetamol to relieve the pain from a severe earache.

She ingested more than twice the recommended dosage over 24 hours after complaining of severe pain in her right ear. She was rushed to the Royal Bolton Hospital and was discharged on Oct. 7 last year after the doctors ruled that she had recovered.

Rebecca had a history of abdominal pains and insomnia so the doctors prescribed her with the sleeping pill Zopliclone. Dr. Arun Ramachandran from the hospital's Ear, Nose and Throat unit also prescribed her antibiotics after seeing that she had an ear infection. He explained to the former care worker that ibuprofen and paracetamol wouldn't work on her.

Her mother, Elizabeth Carter, admitted during the investigation that she knew that her daughter was also taking 30 to 50 sleeping pills per day that she ordered online, according to Mirror UK.

"She had been living with someone who was giving her medication, buying it on the internet," Mrs. Carter told the Bolton hearing. "Then when she moved up here and she didn't have access to the internet. I used to give her one a night. She had just got her life back on track."

But two days after being discharged from the hospital, Rebecca was found dead at her partner's home. Pathologist Dr. Patrick Waugh said that her lungs were severely damaged and her liver was also congested, Express UK reported.

Coroner Simon Jones gave a verdict of misadventure for Rebecca's case, clearing the hospital of possible neglect.

"I'm satisfied she had an ear infection, had taken an overdose of paracetamol and taken to hospital, they had to treat that and stop the damage and deal with the ear infection...Problems have developed after discharge."

http://www.hngn.com/articles/67141/2015 ... arache.htm


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 10, 2015 11:52 am 
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Why many low-fat foods fail

The ability to taste fat could be the reason many low-fat products struggle in popularity over time, according to sensory science researchers.

Deakin’s newly formed Centre of Advanced Sensory Science has found there is overwhelming evidence for the tongue’s ability to detect fat, suggesting it is the sixth taste.

“There is great potential for the food and health industries to develop new low energy products using the knowledge on fat taste,” says Professor Russell Keast, head of the Centre of Advanced Sensory Science.

“If we think about the food industry in particular, there’s a lot of low fat foods that were put out for dieting back in the 80’s and 90’s that had subsequently failed because over time they failed to deliver in terms of what the consumer wants, which is the acceptance and liking over time of foods.

“This presumably is because fat has a taste component to it wasn’t taken into account.”

“Fat has multiple effects in foods, it provides mouthfeel, acts as a flavour carrier and helps with flavour release,” Keast says.

“What we are saying is that in addition to those attributes, fat also activates taste receptors. If fat taste had been considered during low fat food development, perhaps there would not have been so many low fat failures.

“Part of the role of having a taste is embodying the fix that the nutrients bring to the food so if you reduce them or take them out, the sensing mechanisms that we have to identify those nutrients isn’t necessarily there.”

While failed low-fat foods were able to mimic the mouth-feel and flavour-release properties of fat, what they weren’t able to mimic is the actual fat or fatty acid activating the taste receptors and the responses that happens from that activation.

“The key is to find some of these fatty acids that are higher activating. If they are higher activating then you can effectively reduce the level of fat in foods but still activate those taste receptors that provide the feelings that we want from fat and that would in the long term have a great benefit for the development of low fat foods that are sustainable over the long term for consumers.”

The evidence that fat is a sixth taste has opened the door on low-fat product innovation, but Keast says more research still needs to be done.

“We don’t know which fatty acids are higher activating and that’s going to take a bit of effort to work out but I would say that the dairy industry in particular should be trying to take advantage of this type of research because they have fractured the first fatty acid profile from bovine milk.”

“It’s not an easy thing to discover, it will take time and effort on part of the dairy industry and maybe even the meat industry to be able to find what fatty acids are best to apply into foods.”

http://www.foodmag.com.au/news/why-many ... foods-fail


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 12, 2015 11:41 am 
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HEART ATTACKS: DOES STRESS SLOW RECOVERY FOR WOMEN?

Young and middle-aged women report being more stressed than men, which means they may have a harder time recovering from a heart attack, new research suggests.

“Women tend to report greater stress and more stressful life events than men, potentially because of their different roles in family life and work, as compared to men,” says first author Xiao Xu, assistant professor in the obstetrics, gynecology, and reproductive sciences at Yale School of Medicine.

“This difference in the level of stress may be an important reason for sex-based differences in recovery after acute myocardial infarction.”

UNPREDICTABLE AND OVERLOADED

For a new study published in the journal Circulation, Xu and colleagues used data from the Variation in Recovery: Role of Gender Outcomes on Young AMI Patients (VIRGO) study, which is the largest prospective observational study of young and middle-aged women and men who had heart attacks, also known as acute myocardial infarction (AMI).

VIRGO studied AMI patients 18 to 55 years old from a large, diverse network of 103 hospitals in the United States, 24 in Spain, and 3 in Australia from 2008 to 2012.

Patients reported self-perceived psychological stress during their initial hospital stay for AMI using 14 questions, which asked about the degree to which their life situations during the last month were unpredictable, uncontrollable, and overloaded.

One sample question asked, “In the last month, how often have you been upset because of something that happened unexpectedly?” Response to each item was scored as never (0), almost never (1), sometimes (2), fairly often (3), and very often (4).

The team measured each patient’s recovery based on changes in their angina-specific and overall health status between initial hospitalization for AMI and one month after AMI.

Compared with men, women had significantly higher rates of diabetes, chronic lung disease, chronic renal dysfunction, depression, and cancer, as well as previous stents, congestive heart failure, and stroke.

Women were also more likely to have children or grandchildren living in their household, while experiencing greater financial strain.

“This study is distinctive in focusing particularly on young women and going beyond traditional predictors of risk to reveal how the context of these people’s lives influences their prognosis,” says senior author Harlan M. Krumholz, principal investigator of the VIRGO study.

“Helping patients develop positive attitudes and coping skills for stressful situations may not only improve their psychological well-being, but also help recovery after AMI,”Will Xu says. “Stress management interventions that recognize and address different sources of stress for men and women would be beneficial.”

The study was funded in part by the National Institutes of Health and the Department of Health and Human Services.

http://www.futurity.org/stress-heart-at ... ry-854202/


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 15, 2015 5:48 am 
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Nanna’s berries may be contaminated with hepatitis A

Consumers have been warned to avoid an imported frozen mixed berry product which may be contaminated with Hepatitis A.

Victoria’s Chief Health Officer, Dr Rosemary Lester, said today anyone with the 1 kg packets of Nanna’s Frozen Mixed Berry in their freezer should dispose of them immediately.

The warning follows notifications of Hepatitis A in four adults – three in Victoria and one in New South Wales.

Hepatitis A virus can take between 15 to 50 days to develop and the onset of the illness ranges from early January to mid-February.

The product is made from four berries – strawberries, raspberries, blackberries from China, and blueberries from Chile – and is packed in China and distributed in Australia by Patties, based in Bairnsdale.

It is distributed mainly to Woolworths, Coles and IGA supermarkets.

Dr Lester said frozen berries have been implicated in past outbreaks of Hepatitis A virus infection.

“Hepatitis A virus infection is uncommon, and normally associated with travel to countries affected by endemic hepatitis A,” Dr Lester said.

“The only common link between the cases is consumption of this product – there is no overseas travel or common restaurant exposure.

“Sampling of the product will be undertaken to identify the virus, but it is difficult to find hepatitis A virus even in a contaminated batch,” Dr Lester said.

As a precaution, the department is advising the company to recall this product.

Hepatitis A is spread when traces of faecal matter containing the virus contaminate hands, objects, water or food and is then taken in by mouth.

Symptoms of hepatitis A include abdominal pain, nausea, fever and chills and yellow skin or eyes.

Anyone experiencing these symptoms should contact their GP or Nurse On Call on 1300 60 60 24.

http://outbreaknewstoday.com/australia- ... s-a-59814/


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 18, 2015 8:04 am 
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Wests Tigers players caught in hepatitis A scare over Chinese berries

THREE senior Wests Tigers players will be tested for hepatitis A after consuming what they believe were the same contaminated Chinese-grown berries linked to Australia’s superbug outbreak.

The Tigers trio came forward after club doctor Peter Lorentzos briefed the entire playing squad about the impact of the infection prior to a training and community visit at Campbelltown on Tuesday.

Under the guidance of Wests Tigers high physical performance manager Corey Bocking and his consultant Keegan Smith, the majority of the Tigers players have committed to a strict gluten-free, clean-living diet regimen since last October.

The diet features smoothies and health shakes, which includes the use of frozen berries.

Victorian company Patties foods have recalled at least two of their frozen mixed berries products, including Nannas and Creative Gourmet, amid fears they are contaminated with hepatitis A.

Having come forward of their own accord, the three Tigers players were provided with a referral for an appointment with their local GP, where they will be tested for any possible infection.

Aware of the food scandal which has forced the removal of frozen berries from supermarket shelves, Wests Tigers chief executive Grant Mayer said it would be naive of the club not to take the matter seriously.

“As soon as the club were aware of it and the players put their hands up and said “we believe we’ve eaten these berries” the club doctor issued referrals for the boys to get tested,’’ Mayer said.

“From a duty of care point-of-view the club has taken this very seriously with the view of that the players are treated appropriately.’’

Tigers coach Jason Taylor said he saw no sign of illness or condition from the three players who were subjected to the recalled berries and that tests were required merely “as part of a process.’’

“The doctor spoke to the guys about the brands of berries which have been recalled and how we’ll handle that going forward,’’ Taylor said.

“We were having a meeting before training and the doctor wanted to talk to the players about it because a couple of the boys had said they may have eaten the berries.

“So the doctor briefed the group about what hep A is and how it works. It was all very straight forward.

“Now they’ll get a test, like anyone else would.’’

Taylor said he was hopeful that three players would be available for the club’s final trial match against Cronulla at Campbelltown on Saturday night.

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/sport/ ... 7223240420


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