Tag Archives: nutrition

To diet or not to diet

The debate rages on:

In one corner, we have the current champion: The Atkins/South Beach/Abs/Fat Smash/ You on a Diet KID.

In the other corner, we have the challenger: Healthy Lifestyle

And the winner is…..

With sales of $58 billion in 2007, the diet industry kicks butt. Healthy Lifestyle butt.

But maybe 2008 is a comeback year for Healthy Lifestyle.

Here is some more research showing that a health focused lifestyle is the better way to a trim waistline.

The focus of this study was the effect that stress had upon the health of obese women in New Zealand.

They found that obese women can improve their health and prevent further weight gain by ditching their diets and learning to deal with stress.

The study encouraged women to break free of chronic dieting and make lifestyle changes, including listening to their feelings of hunger and fullness rather than focusing on weight loss.

Following a group of 225 women, the research showed that the women who lost weight by dieting often regained the weight they lost, and more, within five years.

The researchers found that “the most successful intervention involved providing intensive training in relaxation techniques while equipping the women to recognize and avoid stress-related triggers for eating.’’

“Many overweight women had a fearful and guilt-ridden relationship with food, and their eating was often emotionally triggered”.

Additionally, the research showed that this lifestyle approach resulted in “significant improvement in reducing psychological symptoms, such as anxiety and depression, and medical symptoms including headaches, fatigue and lowered blood pressure”

The study can be found in the American Journal of Health Promotion.

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Nutrition, Environment and Epigenetics

Take a look at the ‘About this blog‘ page: you will see that I close out my intro by saying that Genetics is Not Destiny.

I truly believe that. I have to believe that.

As a kid, I was always ‘husky’.

Through research, discipline and hard work, I was able to transform my body from fat to fit.

During the past 19 years, I have given my knowledge and perhaps more importantly, my confidence in that knowledge to the people that came to me and asked me to help them re-shape their bodies.

While most of them already knew what they had to do to become physically fit; they just couldn’t do it.

But they had seen their friends / my clients sculpt lean, strong, fit bodies out of the over-sized lumps of clay that they had previously called home.

So they came to me for the secret. Even after I told them there was no secret, and even after I had helped them transform their own bodies, most of them believed that I was responsible for their transformations.

Years of being fat and out of shape had become normal for them. They were fat. Even when they had lost the weight, there was still this little voice in the back of their heads telling them that this was just temporary. If they stopped working with me, they would re-gain their original shape.

It was their genetics.

How wrong they may have been.

Ever since Darwin‘s Survival of the Fittest theory of evolution became accepted as truth, genetics and in particular our DNA has shaped the progress of human biology.

Science searched for a genetic answer to every human ailment. It even spawned a genetic ‘gold rush’ called the Human Genome Project.

But recently, that absolute faith in genetics as fate has been shaken. So


Epigenetics looks at the impact our environment has upon our genetic coding.

How is it that one identical twin can develop cancer while the other twin does not?

Was the life-long smoking habit of one of the identical twins responsible for their diagnosis of cancer? Did the healthy lifestyle of the second twin prevent their potential diagnosis of cancer?

While the science is still new, I think down deep, we all know that how we live our lives has a strong impact on our health.

Where we live. Our friendships, or lack thereof. The air we breathe. The water we drink. The amount and type of exercise we perform. The food we eat.

Nature v.s. Nurture.

Bruce Lipton is currently the biggest ‘name’ in Epigenetics. The following two video clips serve as an introduction to Lipton and the science behind Epigenetics.

Like most scientific endeavours, epigentics seems to result in more questions being raised rather than answering the ones that we already have.

For those interested, I will report back with new & interesting research into this field of science and how it applies to health & nutrition.

Remember, genetics is not destiny

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Book Prize for the 100 Mile Diet

On April 21, I wrote a review of the 100 Mile Diet.

In today’s Vancouver Sun, Rebecca Wigod reports that The 100 Mile Diet has won a British Columbia book prize. The book won the Roderick Haig-Brown Regional Prize and was also a finalist for the Hubert Evans Non-Fiction Prize.

Congratulations to the authors, J.B. MacKinnon and Alisa Smith.

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Re-name the Bagel-ful

While I am sure that Kraft spent a bazillion dollars coming up with the perfect name for this engineered food-type product, I think I can do better.

How about you?

Here is what I came up with:

Bagel-ful-of-artificial cheese product
Bagel-ful-of-chemicals & preservatives
Bagel-ful-of-impaired insulin sensitivity

(pardonnez moi mon francais)

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Apples lower Metabolic Syndrome risk

There is a new scientific paper being discussed today that claims that people who eat the equivalent of one large apple a day are at lower risk of metabolic syndrome.

The paper, presented at the Experimental Biology 2008 meeting was produced by Nutrition Impact, LLC , paid for by the American apple industry and heartily endorsed by the author of the 16th C rhyme “An apple a day keeps the doctor away…” .

The paper analyzed data collected in the 1999-2004 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. After crunching the data, Nutrition Impact concluded that adults who eat apples and/or apple products (juice, sauce) are 27% less likely to have metabolic syndrome than non-consumers.

Other benefits for the apple eaters include: smaller waistlines, less abdominal fat, and lower blood pressure.

Not too suprisingly, when compared to apple abstainers, those who chose to indulge eat more fruit in general. They ingest higher levels of fibre, vitamins A and C, calcium and potassium. They also eat less total fat, saturated fat, modified fats and total sugar.

From this paper, I think it is safe to say that apples make up part of a healthy diet. When compared to other fruits, the apple is not a magic anti-Metabolic Syndrome pill. However, when compared to the typical North American diet of sugar, modified fats and a variety of non-foods, the apple is a superstar.

I found out about this paper in my daily National Post – Apples & Metabolic Syndrome

I thought this blogger did a great job with this topic. I wish my post was half as well written. medinnovationblog


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