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Could The Cholesterol Myth Be Harming Your Health?

Last Updated on Saturday, 11 December 2010 03:16 Written by chris Thursday, 12 August 2010 01:04

I remember watching Dr. Bob Barefoot a decade ago talking about how cholesterol was getting a bad rap and how vital it actually was to our health.  This really sparked something in me back then and I have been determined to get to the bottom of this ever since.  I emphasize that I am a personal trainer, not a Medical Doctor, but after 18 years of working very closely with many walks of life, asking countless questions and taking endless notes I believe cholesterol lowering drugs or Statins are unnecessary, extremely dangerous and a total scam.  Greed at it’s finest to put it quite simply.  My favorite Doc, Dr. Mercola, breaks it down.

Cholesterol could easily be described as the smoking gun of the last two decades.It’s been responsible for demonizing entire categories of foods (like eggs and saturated fats) and blamed for just about every case of heart disease in the last 20 years.

Yet when I first opened my medical practice in the mid 80s, cholesterol, and the fear that yours was too high was rarely talked about.

Somewhere along the way however, cholesterol became a household word — something that you must keep as low as possible, or suffer the consequences.

You are probably aware that there are many myths that portray fat and cholesterol as one of the worst foods you can consume. Please understand that these myths are actually harming your health.

Not only is cholesterol most likely not going to destroy your health (as you have been led to believe), but it is also not the cause of heart disease.

And for those of you taking cholesterol-lowering drugs, the information that follows could not have been given to you fast enough. But before I delve into this life-changing information, let’s get some basics down first.

What is Cholesterol, and Why Do You Need It?

That’s right, you do need cholesterol.

This soft, waxy substance is found not only in your bloodstream, but also in every cell in your body, where it helps to produce cell membranes, hormones, vitamin D and bile acids that help you to digest fat. Cholesterol also helps in the formation of your memories and is vital for neurological function.

Your Total Cholesterol Level is NOT a Great Indicator of Your Heart Disease Risk

Health officials in the United States urge everyone over the age of 20 to have their cholesterol tested once every five years. Part of this test is your total cholesterol, or the sum of your blood’s cholesterol content, including HDL, LDLs, and VLDLs..

The American Heart Association recommends that your total cholesterol is less than 200 mg/dL, but what they do not tell you is that total cholesterol level is just about worthless in determining your risk for heart disease, unless it is above 330.

In addition, the AHA updated their guidelines in 2004, lowering the recommended level of LDL cholesterol from 130 to LDL to less than 100, or even less than 70 for patients at very high risk.

In order to achieve these outrageous and dangerously low targets, you typically need to take multiple cholesterol-lowering drugs. So the guidelines instantly increased the market for these dangerous drugs. Now, with testing children’s cholesterol levels, they’re increasing their market even more.

The Insanity of Lowering Cholesterol

Sally Fallon, the president of the Weston A. Price Foundation, and Mary Enig, Ph.D, an expert in lipid biochemistry, have gone so far as to call high cholesterol “an invented disease, a ‘problem’ that emerged when health professionals learned how to measure cholesterol levels in the blood.”[iii]

And this explanation is spot on.

If you have increased levels of cholesterol, it is at least in part because of increased inflammation in your body. The cholesterol is there to do a job: help your body to heal and repair.

Conventional medicine misses the boat entirely when they dangerously recommend that lowering cholesterol with drugs is the way to reduce your risk of heart attacks, because what is actually needed is to address whatever is causing your body damage — and leading to increased inflammation and then increased cholesterol.

As Dr. Rosedale so rightly points out:2
“If excessive damage is occurring such that it is necessary to distribute extra cholesterol through the bloodstream, it would not seem very wise to merely lower the cholesterol and forget about why it is there in the first place.

It would seem much smarter to reduce the extra need for the cholesterol — the excessive damage that is occurring, the reason for the chronic inflammation.”

It seems pretty obvious that inflammation is the real issue.  Please read the full article.

Source: Dr. Mercola

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Tea Continues To Amaze!

Last Updated on Thursday, 8 July 2010 02:18 Written by chris Thursday, 8 July 2010 02:18

Drinking tea (camellia sinensis) has become more popular of late and for good reason.  I try to drink at least 1 cup a day myself but usually it’s two.  I like an occasional Earl Grey in the morning but green tea is my favorite!  When I started drinking green tea consistently, like many others, I was doing it mainly for the health benefits.  Over time I really began to enjoy and even crave it, especially with a good meal.  Not only do I love the state of mind sipping a hot cup of puts me in and how refreshing it is over ice but I love the fact that the health boosting benefits seem to be endless.  For a while there I thought maybe I was drinking too much because I was also trying to drink it instead of coffee.  Green tea all day while training my clients and I felt great!   Why did I ever question what my body was loving?  Like many I thought too much was dehydrating.  It turns out the opposite is true!  In addition to all the anti-oxidants, flavonoids and other goodies in tea can it really be more beneficial than water?  Drink a cool glass on a hot day and you tell me.  Here’s the real deal:

Research dispels the common belief that tea dehydrates. Tea not only rehydrates as well as water does, but it can also protect against heart disease and some cancers.

Rodale states that:

“As in previous studies, a strong link between the beverage and heart-protective qualities was established, most likely a result of the beneficial flavonoid activity in the tea.

The research suggests that drinking one to eight cups (cups, not gigantic mugs) a day is associated with a reduced risk of chronic disease.”

Dr. Mercola’s comments:

I still believe the majority of your daily fluid intake should be high quality pure water. However, if you use pure water as a base, adding a high quality organic tea can actually improve the health benefits you receive, as long as you avoid sweetening each cup with added sugar. I also do not recommend adding pasteurized milk to your tea.

Tea has been linked to a variety of health benefits, including:

  • Reduced risk of heart disease and cancer
  • Improved insulin response and reduced blood sugar levels
  • Reduced pain and inflammation associated with rheumatoid arthritis
  • Reduced risk of dementia
  • Reduced glaucoma risk
  • Improved digestion

A growing body of research suggests that many of the health benefits attributed to tea are largely imparted by its polyphenols (naturally occurring antioxidants), including epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), which is the main active component of the tea polyphenol’s biological activity.

There’s a common misconception that you’d have to drink an entire pot or two of tea to experience any significant health benefits. But much of the research on green tea, for example, has been based on about three cups daily.

One cup of green tea will provide you with 20-35 mg of EGCG, depending on the quality of your tea, so three cups a day will supply you with anywhere from 60 to 105 mg.

Source:  Dr. Mercola

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Discover What You Were Designed To Eat With Nutritional Typing.

Last Updated on Thursday, 1 July 2010 09:59 Written by chris Thursday, 1 July 2010 09:59

I have long noted that many of the foods that make me feel and perform my best are considered by most to be unhealthy and even cause disease.  Beef, whole eggs, butter and cream are staples in my diet and, at 42, I feel better than ever and I effortlessly maintain 10% body fat as well.  I remember back in the early nineties when I was just getting into bodybuilding.  Fat was the enemy!  I was really watching my fat intake and eating nothing but chicken and turkey breast, pasta or rice.  I was eating veggies too at least.  I was gaining muscle, which was great, but I was not getting “cut” like I wanted.  If anything the opposite was happening!  My energy levels were up and down too.  Eventually through much trial and error I dropped the egg whites, white meat and pasta for whole eggs, beef, salmon and brown rice.  The difference was noticeable immediately!  Energy all day and my body tightened up quick!  The more protein and less carbohydrates I ate the better I felt.  I discovered I am a protein type!   Protein types convert fuel to energy quickly and run more efficiently on animal protein and fats.  Makes sense really since I am of Nordic descent.  Carbohydrate types are just the opposite and run well on lighter meats, grains, legumes, fruits and veggies;  more of a Mediterranean or even vegetarian diet.   And, yes, some people are right in between.  Seems crazy huh?  Our ancestors are from all over the world, especially in this country, so it make perfect sense actually.  There should be at least 3 food pyramids!

These days, in addition to exercise, I guide my clients by helping them to discover their true blueprint or Nutritional Type.  The “one size fits all diet” just will never work.  Dr. Mercola sums it up best so read on and discover your Nutritional Type.

One of the dangers of living in a breakneck culture is the need for speed. The fast pace of life keeps your mind very busy, and it’s easy to ignore your body when it’s trying to tell you something. Many of you have long lost the ability to connect the dots of how you feel with regard to the foods you eat.

Many choose to place convenience before health when it comes to food selection, and simply fail to appreciate the concept of food as medicine — and how to give your body the type of healthy fuel it was designed to thrive on. Don’t get me wrong, I am not blaming you, as I have been there and done that. I have journeyed for many years through my own process of discovery, to learn how to connect the dots between the foods I eat and the way I feel after eating them.

What I learned is that there is no perfect diet for everyone. You were created with  unique genetics and experiences that will ultimately dictate what the best foods are for you to eat.

The practical challenge of course is to discover what those foods are. Do you really want to be wasting your time, money and energy choosing foods that are “supposed” to be good for you but in reality are making you sick?

Wouldn’t it be nice if someone designed a nutritional plan specifically for your body?For your personal needs?

I have some really great news for you! Someone has!

Chances are, you’d like to look — and feel — “like a million bucks”. And gain the health assets you get with those looks.

Just imagine feeling better than you’ve ever felt before. How would that feel?
Besides the compliments you’d probably get about your new energy and zeal for life, you get a bunch of benefits like these…

  • Look fantastic!
  • Decrease your signs of aging
  • Increase your energy levels
  • Develop a more effective immune system
  • Support a healthy heart and circulatory system
  • Normalize blood glucose levels
  • Normalize blood lipid levels
  • Maintain appropriate cell division rates
  • Support optimal inflammatory response
  • Achieve better-quality, deeper sleep
  • Support healthy joints and muscles
  • Maintain normal cholesterol levels

So, how can you achieve better overall health than you ever dared to dream or hope for? Let’s investigate further…

Source:  Dr. Mercola

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Is Yeast Creating Havoc In Your Life?

Last Updated on Thursday, 17 June 2010 01:34 Written by chris Thursday, 17 June 2010 01:34

Fungus is among us!   Yeast (Candida Albicans) overgrowth in the body is a major health issue these days that is being horribly overlooked.  Not just women are affected either!   This fungus, if not kept in check, can lead to a myriad of unpleasant symptoms and diseases and most people are completely unaware of it’s existence.  Keeping Candida in check could be the most important thing you do to ensure vitality and longevity.

Millions of people are currently fighting a battle against a single-cell fungus they cannot see. This fungus belongs to a family of yeasts called Candida albicans, and under normal circumstances it’s a harmless part of your skin, intestines, and for women, your vagina.

When we’re talking about Candida, it’s important to realize that vaginal yeast infections are not the sole health problem that can ensue. In fact, chronic fatigue is perhaps one of the most common ailments rooted in yeast and fungal overgrowth.

Yeast may even be a causative factor in cancer.

What’s worse most conventional doctors do not recognize the symptoms of Candida overgrowth, and are clueless about how to cure it.

Some common conditions that indicate you may have Candida overgrowth include:

  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Vaginitis
  • Food allergies
  • Migraines
  • Asthma
  • Chronic fatigue
  • PMS
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Yeast infections
  • Cancer
  • Weight gain
  • Depression

As you can see, the list is long and varied, and the symptoms mimic those caused by many other diseases. If you think you may be suffering from a yeast-related problem, keep reading.

Source: Mercola

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Probiotics Proving To Be Beneficial For A Host Of Ailments

Last Updated on Thursday, 17 June 2010 12:50 Written by chris Tuesday, 15 June 2010 01:41

And it’s about time too!  I have been personally taking and recommending probiotics for many years now.  In hind sight I am blown away by the results.  Taking probiotics regularly, especially if you have ever taken anti-biotics, is probably one of the easiest and inexpensive things you can do to help prevent disease and ensure good health.  Cultures around the world have been eating probiotics in the form of fermented foods for thousands of years so this is nothing new really.  Here is some insight on different strains of these miracle microbes and how they can help you.

Evidence on the benefits of probiotics is building, and much of it is positive. Studies suggest that these natural remedies, which contain beneficial microbes, may help prevent or treat some digestive problems. They may also help regulate the immune system. They may even protect against common respiratory infections.

Probiotics come in many forms, including foods such as yogurt, capsules, powders, and liquids. The various foods and supplements contain one or more of dozens of different probiotic organisms. Each is thought to have its own benefits.

So which probiotics may be right for your needs? Specific probiotic organisms appear to be effective for particular illnesses, so choosing the right kind is crucial. Many questions remain about the best way to take these remedies. But researchers say there is enough evidence to offer some guidance.

Click the following link to get the full breakdown.

Source:  WebMD

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Popular Protein Drinks Contain “Worrisome” Levels of Metal.

Last Updated on Thursday, 17 June 2010 12:33 Written by chris Thursday, 10 June 2010 01:47

Protein drinks are a simple and effective way to replenish vital amino acids stores, especially on training days, as well as a good way to add a little extra protein to your diet to help build and maintain lean muscle mass. However, you might want to take a closer look at your favorite product.

June 3, 2010 — Popular protein drinks with names like Muscle Milk and EAS Myoplex — favorites of teens, gym rats, boomers, and pregnant women — can contain potentially unsafe levels of heavy metals and other harmful substances, according to an investigation by Consumer Reports.

”Consuming these kinds of protein drinks on a regular basis can in some cases create the risk of chronic exposure, even at low levels, to heavy metals such as cadmium and lead that can pose health problems, particularly to vulnerable people,” says Andrea Rock, the Consumer Reports editor for the investigation. Among vulnerable people are children under age 18, pregnant women, and people with diabetes or chronic kidney conditions, she says.

Lab Tests on Protein Drinks

For the study, Consumer Reports had an independent laboratory test 15 protein drinks, including ready-to-drink formulas and powders meant to be mixed with milk, juice, or water. Three servings of the products tested provide from 27 to180 grams of protein.

Testing for contaminants — including arsenic, cadmium, lead, and mercury — found most products to be in the low to moderate range. But three products cause concern, Rock says, because people who have three servings a day could be exposed to higher levels of three substances — arsenic, cadmium and lead. Some products surpass the maximum limit  proposed by the U.S. Pharmacopeia (USP). The USP sets voluntary standards for health products.
Consumer Reports says these three products are of special concern:

  • EAS Myoplex Original Rich Dark Chocolate Shake has an average of 16.9 micrograms of arsenic in three servings — more than the 15 micrograms a day that is the proposed USP limit. It has an average of 5.1 micrograms of cadmium for three servings — above the USP limit of 5 micrograms a day.
  • Muscle Milk chocolate powder, at three servings, contained all four of the metals, and three metals were found at a level that was among the highest of all 15 products tested. Cadmium levels were 5.6 micrograms — above the 5-microgram limit. Lead was 13.5 micrograms — above the USP limit of 10 micrograms. The arsenic averaged 12.2 micrograms — near the 15-microgram daily USP limit.
  • Muscle Milk vanilla crème had 12.2 micrograms of lead per three servings — above the 10-microgram daily limit. It has 11.2 micrograms of arsenic — close to the 15-microgram daily limit.

Source:  WebMD

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Sodas are U.S.

Last Updated on Saturday, 29 May 2010 10:29 Written by admin Wednesday, 26 May 2010 05:19

Talk about pop culture…

Amazingly, according to these statistics, Americans consume close to 50 billion liters of soda per year, which equates to about 216 liters, or about 57 gallons per person. That’s a staggering amount of sugar! And not just any sugar, but some of the worst we know of – fructose, in the form of high fructose corn syrup (HFCS).

Tragically, high fructose corn syrup, in the form of soda, has become the number one source of calories in the United States, and it is very clear that it is the primary cause of the obesity epidemic.

For example, one independent, peer-reviewed study published in the British medical journal The Lancet demonstrated a strong link between soda consumption and childhood obesity. They found that 12-year-olds who drank soft drinks regularly were more likely to be overweight than those who didn’t.

In fact, for each additional daily serving of sugar-sweetened soft drink consumed during the nearly two-year study, the risk of obesity jumped by 60 percent. Just one extra can of soda per day can add as much as 15 pounds to your weight over the course of a single year!

At that rate, it’s no wonder more than 65 percent of all American adults struggle with overweight and obesity.

And those who drink diet soda are just downing another type of poison, as diet drinks contain artificial sweeteners instead of caloric sweeteners. They don’t do anything to curb the obesity epidemic since diet soda is clearly linked to obesity as well, but through different mechanisms.

It’s hard to decide which is worse long term, fructose or artificial sweeteners, but one thing’s for sure: If you are drinking soda of any kind, you are sabotaging your health and cutting years off your lifespan…

Source: Mercola

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Glutathione – The Master Antioxidant

Last Updated on Saturday, 29 May 2010 10:46 Written by admin Wednesday, 26 May 2010 04:17

Glutathione is your body’s most powerful antioxidant and has even been called “the master antioxidant.” It is a tripeptide found inside every single cell in your body.

Antioxidants are crucial in eliminating free radicals from your body. Free radicals are basically very reactive particles that bounce all around the cell damaging everything they touch. Most originate during the process of metabolism but they can also arise from exposure to toxins, irradiation, and toxic metals.

Because free radicals are so destructive, cells have a network of defenses designed to neutralize them. This antioxidant network is composed of numerous components that include vitamins, minerals and special chemicals called thiols (glutathione and alpha-lipoic acid).

Glutathione is comprised of three amino acids: cysteine, glutamate, and glycine.

Glutathione is sometimes confused with glutamine and glutamate due to the similarity in names. Although all three molecules are related, they are different in composition and function. When you are healthy, the three are balanced and do a delicate dance within your body…

Source: Mercola

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Eat Late, Gain Weight

Last Updated on Saturday, 29 May 2010 06:53 Written by admin Friday, 4 September 2009 07:00

Pig DreamsEating a big meal before going to bed has long been known to be a surefire way to pack on the pounds. Here’s an interesting study providing scientific proof of how food is metabolized during daylight and nighttime hours:

Excessive late-night eating has long had a bad reputation, with studies showing it leads to weight gain.

Now, in a new study, researchers from Northwestern University have found that eating at the “wrong” time leads to more than twice as much weight gain, even when the overall calories consumed are the same as those eaten at appropriate times…

At the end of the six-week study, the mice who were fed during the light phase — their ”wrong” time to eat — gained much more weight than those fed during the dark phase.

When the researchers compared the animals’ weight at the study start to their weight at the end, the mice that ate at the wrong time had a 48% weight increase, while those who ate at the correct time had a 20% weight increase.

While both groups gained, Arble notes, the mice that ate at the wrong time gained more than twice as much weight. “We did not restrict the amount of calories they were eating,” she says. Even so, between groups, ”there was no difference in the [average] amount of calories consumed.”

The only variable, she says, was when the food was consumed.

Arble can’t say for sure why the mice that ate at the ”wrong” time gained so much more weight. ”We speculate that it’s the interplay between body temperature, metabolic hormones such as leptin, and the sleep-wake cycle,” she says.

For humans, nighttime is a time for rest, as the body temperature declines, she says. “Eating at night is contradicting your body’s natural circadian rhythm,” she says. “The leptin levels are starting to rise, and are supposed to be discouraging you from eating.” Rising leptin levels suppress appetite.

Source: WebMD | Full Article

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Sunny “D”

Last Updated on Saturday, 29 May 2010 06:53 Written by admin Sunday, 2 August 2009 08:45

Happy SunWhen dermatologists treating you for skin cancer warn you about not getting enough sun for fear of not getting enough vitamin D, you know something is up. Read on…

Long considered just a supplement consumed with calcium for bone health, this humble vitamin may have untapped potential in fighting or preventing disease, suggests an explosion of new research. Not only has it shown promise in reducing the risk of, among other things, diabetes, pancreatic cancer, breast cancer and cardiovascular disease, but it also seems to improve infertility, weight control and memory…

Next week, hope and hype may collide. An Institute of Medicine committee will convene in Washington to discuss whether the recommended daily intake of vitamin D and calcium should be increased. There, researchers overwhelmed by the vitamin’s potential will square off against skeptics who say much more study is needed before people are urged to take vitamin D supplements. Getting the newly suggested amounts would be difficult otherwise…

Some researchers are advocating at least 600 IU a day, with an upper limit of 10,000 IU. Giving impetus to this push are the facts that many people seem to be deficient and that the nutrient appears to play a role in many conditions…

Vitamin D has long been known to be crucial to bone and muscle health by improving calcium absorption in the intestines and the way calcium is regulated in bones.

More recent research shows that receptors for it are found in almost every organ and tissue system in the body, suggesting that deficiencies may affect many types of cell functions.

When exposed to sunlight, the skin makes the vitamin, but not everyone spends the five minutes a day or so outside that is necessary for synthesis — and many more people today wear sunscreen to prevent skin cancer…

The July issue of the Annals of Epidemiology(09)X0007-4, devoted to vitamin D research, links the vitamin to lower risks of cancers of the breast, colon, ovaries and prostate. Animal and lab studies also demonstrate its importance in many of the cellular mechanisms that control cancer, such as cell growth, cell death, inflammation and DNA repair…

Source: LA Times | Full Article

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