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7 ‘Most Addictive Foods’ to Avoid for a Healthier Life

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7 foods to reduce in your diet for better health

When people think of addiction they usually think of drugs such as opioids and marijuana. However, it is worthy of note that some of the most addictive foods can be as addictive as opioids and marijuana. By cutting back on the consumption of these seven most addictive foods according to science, many have found a myriad of health benefits and also lost excess weight.

Understanding that ‘exorphins‘, a chemical in foods, can act as a drug in your body and thus fuel addiction can help many patients to better monitor their weight and to successfully fight off those late night eating binges and their excessive cravings.

Here are the 7 most addictive foods according to science:

  • Dairy

The protein in your dairy foods is called casein. This casein is very addictive and interestingly the same medications that are administered in an emergency room for a drug overdose can eliminate the craving for dairy. This gives you an idea of just how very powerful the craving for casein is in your body. 

  • Meat

Many people crave meat however, what they are really craving is the albumin as well as the hemoglobin and gamma globulin that are in the meat. These specific chemicals are well known for their ability to activate the opioid receptors in the brain. If these patients are treated with medications that block opiate receptors their craving drops dramatically.

  • Sugar

Sugar, especially when combined with fats, act as an opiate. In fact, when treated with opiate blockers the person will stop craving the combination very quickly. Sugar and fats are responsible for obesity in many patients.

  • Fats

Combine fats with sugar and you have an epidemic of obesity. Many people think that if they just eat donut holes in lieu of the actual donut that they are okay. This couldn’t be further from the truth. The combination of sugars and fats work together to act as opioids on the system.

  • Salt

If you suffer from high blood pressure one of the first things you’re advised to do is take the salt shaker off of the table and stop using salt with your cooking. Salt forces the body to retain fluids and thus increases the blood pressure. Sadly many of us learn to crave salt from a young age. This salt craving is very difficult to break but well worth the effort if you, like many of us, are suffering from high blood pressure.

  • Rice And Wheat

A protein in wheat and rice called gliadin acts as an opiate on your system. Again, your body begins to crave its ‘drug’ and you crave more and more bread when you’re dining. The more bread you eat the more you’re feeding the addiction. The same goes with the rice. If you’re craving more than a normal serving you may need to wean yourself off of bread and rice.

Conclusion

If you’re struggling with any of the above food addictions there is hope. Cut back on the amounts of the above mentioned foods and make sure you’re only eating normal sized portions. Stock your kitchen, pantry and work desk with healthy snacks such as fresh fruits, nuts and whole grains. Eat only healthy serving sizes when you do snack.

 

5 Surprising Benefits Of Eating More Fat

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5 surprising benefits of eating more fat

Fat has, for years, been depicted as a big evil when it comes to our diet. It has been shown to cause obesity, heart diseases, as well as high cholesterol. However, there have been recent scientific studies that show that people should consume more fat since it does have many benefits. A doctor by the name of Perlmutter has stated that the many health conditions such as anxiety, chronic headaches, ADHD, depression, as well as Azheimer’s have been a result of the brain and bodily inflammation resulting from carbs. Here are a few benefits that fat actually provides:

Essential For Brain Health

Our brain tissue consists of as much as 60% of fat. This means that a diet low in fat will not be able to provide the brain with the essential material that it needs to keep functioning properly. Fat that you consume should not only include omega 3s, but also essential fatty acids found in avocados, nuts, and salmon. Fats should also include the natural animal fat that we have been told to avoid for years.

The essential vitamins like A, D, E, and K aren’t water soluble, and hence will require fat for them to be absorbed and transported throughout the body. These vitamins are extremely important for the vital organs including the brain.

Keeps Your Lungs Functioning Properly

A substance that is coated onto our lungs is mostly saturated fat. Premature babies who lack the substance are normally given surfactant so that their lungs can continue to function properly. If we do not consume sufficient saturated fat, then our lungs can be affected.

Boosts Your Immune System

The saturated fats that are found in coconut oil and butter are known to play an important role in boosting immune health. If the body does not have sufficient saturated fatty acids within the white blood cells, then this can hamper their overall ability of recognizing and destroying foreign invaders like bacteria, fungi, and viruses.

Keeps The Skin Healthy

Our cellular membrane consists of huge amounts of fat, and our skin consists of a huge number of cells. If we do not consume good amounts of fat, then our skin can get compromised by becoming chapped and dry. This can then result in infection.

Great For The Heart

There have been many studies conducted on the benefits of consuming saturated fats. A particular study was done on the population of the Pacific Isles where people consumed 60% of the diet in the saturated coconut oil form. Therefore, the incidence of heart disease is practically nil.

Also, fat provides a lot more energy than carbs, and therefore, will help in giving an individual sufficient energy to sustain themselves throughout the day. A person, in turn, will also eat less. However, you should not have trans-fats since they are actually harmful for the body.

So, why not enjoy more of salmon, walnuts, butter, and olive oil throughout the day to make sure you remain full of energy.

Good and Bad Salt

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good and bad salt

How much salt are you REALLY eating each day? A recent study by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) indicates that we are getting a majority of our salt content from common foods even before we add that little extra from the salt shaker. In fact, over 44% of our daily food intake is made up of these foods. Are you increasing your chances of heart disease and hypertension?

Here is the list of the saltiest foods:

  • Bread and rolls
  • Lunchmeats (cold cuts)
  • Pizza
  • Processed chicken
  • Soups
  • Cheeseburgers
  • Cheese
  • Pasta
  • Meat dishes
  • Snack Foods

The amount of sodium can dramatically vary from product to product. Some companies use salt as a preserving agent, some use it to promote the flavor, and still others use it to cultivate your appetite. Before you put it into your mouth, take a look at the nutritional information on the back of the container to find out how much sodium that you’re ingesting.

How much sodium do you need in a day?

Our bodies are comprised of around 1% salt, and we need 500 mg per day to survive. That salt that we ingest helps with muscle function as well as transmitting signals from our brain through the nerves. The extra salt, ingested through foods and through the iodized salt that we put on the table, is excreted through our pores and processed through our kidneys. When the levels of sodium are too high, our bodies store it in our veins, creating an excess of plaque and other hypertensive concerns.

The Institute of Medicine recommends:

  • 1,500 mg for people aged 9 to 50
  • 1,300 mg for adults aged 51 to 70
  • 1,200 mg for people over 70/

The average salt intake for people above the age of 2 is 3,436 mg. This is twice the recommended daily amount, and over 1,100 mg over the recommended upper limit of 2,300 mg per day. According to Thomas Freiden, director of the CDC, “Heart disease and stroke alone kill more than 800,000 Americans each year and contribute an estimated 273 billion dollars a year in health care costs. Reducing the sodium content of the ten leading sodium sources by just 25% would lower total dietary sodium by more than 10% and prevent an estimated 28,000 deaths per year.”

The Good Salt

Since our bodies need a certain amount of salt to survive, where can we find salt that is not as harmful as the table salt which we are ingesting?

Look to the natural salts like Himalayan sea salts, pink salt, or black salt. The table salt that we ingest has been processed, bleached, and sterilized to flow better and look better. This salt has been heated to over 1200 degrees and refined to the point where it is merely sodium and chloride. The natural salts which have not been processed also contain trace elements which promote good health and well being.

Sea salts are more flavorful than regular table salt. The impurities within the sea salt give it varying flavors depending on its origin. While the sea salts are generally more expensive in the grocery store, they can also add subtleties to your eating experience.

When considering your family’s food choices, put down the salt shaker and consider spicing your foods with other flavors.  Chances are, the food that you’re eating has enough sodium in it to receive the recommended daily allowance. Try putting aside the salt shaker for a day and experimenting. Your body will thank you for it.

Coconut Water Craze

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coconut water craze

Coconut Water, “Natures Energy Drink” is becoming quite a popular health drink that we see more and more people experimenting with. Celebrities too are becoming quite accepting of this new drink, as well as supporting to its multimillion dollar industry now.

Fresh coconut water, found in an immature green coconut is abundant with minerals and nutritional (coconut water nutrition) traits. Coconut liquid (coconut water calories) is the purest of all waters and is fat free, low in calories (46 calories), excellent in hydration (600 mg of Carbohydrates), so no wonder its becoming high in demand.

Benefits of Coconut Water

Contains Electrolytes

Coconut liquid contains more electrolytes (conducts electricity) than in any fruit, vegetables juices or sports drinks available in stores, and contains salts, sugars and vitamins needed for a healthy athlete. It provides athletes with a quick nutrition source for quick energy needed. It is made up of copper, sulfur and phosphorus which are necessary to correct any electrolyte (coconut water electrolytes) imbalances in the body. A proper amount of electrolytes is necessary for appropriate heart and nerve functions, coordination, absorption of fluids, and muscle control.

Packed with Vitamin C

Coconut fluids also contain the proper amount of vitamin c to meet the bodies daily requirement in the body, as well as other vitamins such as niacin, pantothenic acid, biotin, riboflavin, folic acid and thiamin. It even contains 600mg of potassium per serving! Coconut fluids contain an abundant amount of vitamins and minerals.

Aids Digestion

Drinking coconut water improves digestion, improves calcium amount, and absorption of magnesium. Magnesium absorption is needed to support the development of strong bones and teeth, and protects the body against chance of developing osteoporosis . Osteoporosis is a disease in which the bones are brittle and can fracture easily.

Boosts Immune System

Drinking coconut liquid boosts the immune system, stops fatigue, controls diabetes, eases stomach pain, assists in proper circulation, improves intestinal health and prevents hypertension (elevated high blood pressure).

Cures Hangovers?

Could this new health drink offer you anything better? Well, for those who enjoy drinking, you may be ecstatic that it can cure hangovers too! Remember those unpleasant symptoms after drinking a lot of alcohol? Symptoms such as headaches, nausea, body aches, dizziness, loss of appetite, sensitivity to light, and thirst? Well, that unpleasant feeling can be avoided by drinking a good amount of coconut juice. It’s hard to function properly when your body is hurting all over, but with coconut water you can function much better. The key to cure hangovers has always been hydration, and with the extensive amount of hydration offered through drinking coconut water, it might be worth to try. Drinking coconut water  rehydrates the body, as well as offers lots of potassium, which alcohol depletes your body of.

So next time you are suffering from a hangover, resort to drinking coconut water; it can help!

The Super Pomegranate!

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the super pomegranate

A pomegranate is a unique fruit in comparison to many of the others. It consists of a hard exterior which protects the pomegranate seeds embedded inside.Pomegranates have been used in many literary works as a symbol of fertility and marriage. There have been numerous myths written based on pomegranates! People in the early ages even believed in the pomegranate’s ability to heal and restore health.

In this century, pomegranates are considered to be one of the healthiest fruits out there. Pomegranates contain an abundance of vitamins and other beneficial properties. These consist of: antioxidants, folic acid, iron, and more.

The antioxidants aid the heart by lowering plaque buildup in the arteries. Plaque buildup can cause high blood pressure or even worse conditions such as heart attack or stroke. There are numerous other types of heart conditions that can occur. Reducing plaque in the blood vessels allows proper blood flow. In addition, pomegranates have been found to lower levels of LDL (low density lipoprotein) cholesterol.

Drinking about ¼ cup of pomegranate juice regularly allows for good circulation and control of blood pressure. Better yet, it has also been found that pomegranates can help prevent certain cancers like lung cancer, breast cancer, and prostate cancer.

Pomegranates are also a great source of fiber. The fiber is found in the pomegranate seeds. Just a half cup serving of pomegranate seeds provides about five grams of fiber. That’s 20% of the recommended daily intake of fiber! Moreover, pomegranates have the ability to reduce inflammation. For this reason eating pomegranates can be especially beneficial for arthritis patients. It has also been found that pomegranates are able to stop cartilage from progressively deteriorating.

Despite all the benefits of pomegranates, they are still not eaten to as large of a scale as other fruits. It’s “[A pomegranate] a day that keeps the doctor away!” Some even believe that eating pomegranates when you are sick can get rid of the common cold. It’s up to you to determine whether this is a myth or not. Try it for yourself!

Foods That Reduce Stress and Anxiety

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foods that reduce stress

The biggest health disorder in the USA is stress, which leads to various more serious conditions. Breathing exercises and nutritious foods reduce stress. Stress is a common condition that can be caused by many factors. For some people, the best way to relieve stress is to eat. However, not all foods are good for stress relief. In this article, we will explore what types of food can help you reduce your stress levels and which ones should be avoided at all costs.

Foods that reduce stress hormones

Vegetables contain magnesium and vitamin C, which are both important for reducing stress levels and enhancing moods. They also contain antioxidants that help reduce inflammation in the body which can cause or worsen depression symptoms or anxiety attacks. People who deal with chronic pain may find relief from eating vegetables as well since they contain natural painkillers such as capsaicin (found in hot peppers) and curcumin (found in turmeric).

Next up we have nuts and seeds, these high-fat foods are great for reducing tension because they contain omega-3 fatty acids which have been shown to improve tension by relaxing your nervous system.

Walnuts and pumpkin seeds are great for beginners because of their low-fat content. Next up we have dark chocolate, which is packed with flavonols, antioxidants that reduce tension by increasing blood flow to your brain. This can increase your ability to be alert and concentrate on tasks which can decrease symptoms of anxiety.

Anxiety is not just a mental health issue; it also has physical effects such as increased inflammation and high cortisol levels. Foods that help fight inflammation are avocado, berries, mint leaves and turmeric. Turmeric is great because it has been shown to have anti-inflammatory properties. and also contains curcumin which has been shown to improve cognitive performance. For those who are vegan or vegetarian, get your turmeric from supplements.

Stress can cause both physical and mental effects that can cause loss of function. Food that should be avoided if you’re trying to reduce your stress include fast food, fried foods and sugar-sweetened beverages. In addition to drinking alcohol, try journaling each day or listening to calming music while relaxing in a bubble bath.

What foods worsen stress and anxiety?

Some foods can worsen anxiety. These include foods that increase stress hormones and oxidative stress. Different people react to food differently, but there are some general guidelines for what can worsen anxiety.

High-sugar foods, caffeine, and alcohol all increase the risk of anxiety symptoms. These include candy, donuts, ice cream and many other sugary snacks that can worsen anxiety symptoms. In particular, sugar increases stress hormones and these can lead to an increase in anxiety symptoms.

Fat and Protein

High fat or protein foods can also increase oxidative stress in the body which has been linked to increased anxiety symptoms.

Caffeine

Contrary to popular belief caffeine is not good for overall health but it may worsen anxiety due to its effects on the body’s stress hormones and cortisol levels.

Alcohol

Alcohol can lead to anxiety and make the symptoms worse.

Health Concerns About Dairy

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You Should Skip Milk

Calcium means strong bones and helps us build muscle, but there are other sources of calcium than milk. Milk actually has harmful effects on our health. People with chronic constipation, arthritis, and allergies have had their condition disappear when they stop eating dairy. Here are the most common dairy health concerns:

Low Quality Forage (Dairy cow health concerns)

Low quality cattle feed can alter the milk, and can cause health conditions in the cow. Cows are fed soy, corn, cottonseed meal or commercial foods. These contain a lot of bad things; chicken manure, and pesticides are just a couple of the ingredients in dairy cows food.

Cattle feed is an essential source of nutrients needed for milk production. It provides protein, energy, as well as fiber needed fur cud chewing, rumination, and rumen health. Dairy farms need to think about how much and what quality of cattle feed they should use before deciding on the diet that they’re going to give their cows. Grains, proteins, and other supplements are added to cattle feed to provide the same nutritional value as fodder.

Pasteurization

Pasteurizing milk means that the milk has been heated to a high enough temperature to kill specific bacteria and stop enzymes. Unfortunately it also destroys vitamins, denatures milk proteins, kills valuable bacteria and encourages pathogens. Calves that are fed pasteurized milk are not healthy and often die young. Pasteurization was started in the 1920’s to stop many diseases started by dirty production methods, but now that production methods have been cleaned up pasteurization is no longer necessary.

Raw milk contains living food of all types, such as delicate enzymes and probiotic bacteria. However, it often goes through a very high heat process which kills these nutrients. The result is lost vitamins and minerals and changes in flavor or texture.

Ultra-pasteurized (UHT)

This is used to kill heat resistant bacteria. It increases the milks shelf life, but lowers it safeness. Ultra-pasteurized milk goes from refrigerated (cold) to above boiling in less than two seconds. This has the same effects as regular pasteurization just to higher effects: less vitamins, more pathogens. UHT alters the taste of regular pasteurized milk and can lose up to 20% less folate, riboflavin, vitamin A, vitamin B12, vitamin C and thiamin.

Homogenized

Homogenization breaks down fat pieces so they do not rise to the top. This type of milk is harder to digest. Rather than proteins being digested in the stomach, they are being broken down and absorbed into the bloodstream. These unusual proteins can cause the immune system to be inflamed. Homogenized milk has been known to increase your risk of heart disease.

If you want to drink milk, rather than buying any milk it is suggested to buy pure raw milk from grass-fed cows. The problem is not the milk, but rather the processing it goes to from cow to store.

6 Health Benefits of Watermelon

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Health Benefits of Watermelon

Watermelon is not only juicy and thirst quenching – it is also packed with vitamins and antioxidants that are beneficial to your health. Summer means watermelon – here are some reasons why you should stock up on this crunchy, delicious fruit this summer.

Mood: Watermelon is full of vitamin B6 which helps the function of the chemicals in the brain that moderate anxiety and panic.  People usually take vitamin B6 to stabilize their mood and improve their metabolism.

Healthy Heart: Lycopene is an antioxidant that is found in some red fruits, such as watermelon.  This antioxidant reduces people’s risk of prostate cancer and heart disease. In addition, it has been found that if you eat a diet high in lycopene you are less likely to suffer from a heart attack.  Watermelon is the only fruit that contains high concentrations of lycopene.

Immune System: Watermelon is high in vitamin C, an important substance if you want to boost your immune system. The vitamin C in watermelon will prevent you from becoming sick and will slow down the progress of medical conditions such as cataracts.

Anti-Aging: Watermelon is a natural source of the most powerful antioxidants. The beta-carotene in watermelon will help prevent a number of illnesses, and provide health benefits such as anti-aging. The components in watermelon will neutralize the free-radicals in your body and slow down your aging processes. The fluid in watermelon will keep your skin hydrated and beautiful.

Good Eyesight: Most people look to carrots to provide them with good eyesight, but there is plenty Vitamin A in watermelon too. This will prevent blindness and will also help boost your immune system.

Replenishing: Watermelon is rich in electrolytes, sodium, and potassium, which we lose when we sweat.  Have some watermelon after an intense workout to refresh your body.

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