Health and Medical News and Resources

General interest items edited by Janice Flahiff

Sugar can be hidden in a lot of processed food products that make health claims.  Yogurt is one of them.

When I see the yogurt aisle in the supermarket, I am amazed at all the different types available now.  This slideshow gives us some guidance on the various types to choose.  Here’s where label reading is a necessity.  Some people think that yogurt is healthy and most are, but notice the grams of sugar (some can be quite high) and the grams of protein (which often differ considerably).

This is a start on some different choices if you want to choose yogurt as a dairy alternative protein source.

CLICK HERE.

 

FOOD, FACTS and FADS

Sugar can be hidden in a lot of processed food products that make health claims.  Yogurt is one of them.

When I see the yogurt aisle in the supermarket, I am amazed at all the different types available now.  This slideshow gives us some guidance on the various types to choose.  Here’s where label reading is a necessity.  Some people think that yogurt is healthy and most are, but notice the grams of sugar (some can be quite high) and the grams of protein (which often differ considerably).

This is a start on some different choices if you want to choose yogurt as a dairy alternative protein source.

CLICK HERE.

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March 22, 2013 Posted by | Nutrition, Uncategorized | , , , | Leave a comment

Societal Control of Sugar Essential to Ease Public Health Burden, Experts Urge

From the 1 February 2012 Science Daily news article

Sugar should be controlled like alcohol and tobacco to protect public health, according to a team of UCSF researchers, who maintain in a new report that sugar is fueling a global obesity pandemic, contributing to 35 million deaths annually worldwide from non-communicable diseases like diabetes, heart disease and cancer.

Non-communicable diseases now pose a greater health burden worldwide than infectious diseases, according to the United Nations. In the United States, 75 percent of health care dollars are spent treating these diseases and their associated disabilities….

….

Sugar, they argue, is far from just “empty calories” that make people fat. At the levels consumed by most Americans, sugar changes metabolism, raises blood pressure, critically alters the signaling of hormones and causes significant damage to the liver — the least understood of sugar’s damages. These health hazards largely mirror the effects of drinking too much alcohol, which they point out in their commentary is the distillation of sugar.

Worldwide consumption of sugar has tripled during the past 50 years and is viewed as a key cause of the obesity epidemic. But obesity, Lustig, Schmidt and Brindis argue, may just be a marker for the damage caused by the toxic effects of too much sugar. This would help explain why 40 percent of people with metabolic syndrome — the key metabolic changes that lead to diabetes, heart disease and cancer — are not clinically obese.

“As long as the public thinks that sugar is just ’empty calories,’ we have no chance in solving this,” said Lustig, a professor of pediatrics, in the division of endocrinology at the UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital and director of the Weight Assessment for Teen and Child Health (WATCH) Program at UCSF.

“There are good calories and bad calories, just as there are good fats and bad fats, good amino acids and bad amino acids, good carbohydrates and bad carbohydrates,” Lustig said. “But sugar is toxic beyond its calories…

…”We’re not talking prohibition,” Schmidt said. “We’re not advocating a major imposition of the government into people’s lives. We’re talking about gentle ways to make sugar consumption slightly less convenient, thereby moving people away from the concentrated dose. What we want is to actually increase people’s choices by making foods that aren’t loaded with sugar comparatively easier and cheaper to get.”..

February 6, 2012 Posted by | Consumer Health | , , | Leave a comment

Coffee, energy drinkers beware: Many mega-sized drinks loaded with sugar, MU nutrition expert says

From the February 3, 2011 Eureka news alert

COLUMBIA, Mo. – Starbucks recently announced a new-sized 31-ounce drink, the “Trenta,” which will be in stores this spring. The mega-sized coffee joins the ranks of other energy drinks that can pack plenty of caffeine and calories. Ellen Schuster, a University of Missouri nutrition expert, says that Americans should be wary of extra calories and sugar in the quest for bigger, bolder drinks.

“The sheer size of new coffee and energy drinks increases consumers’ potential for unhealthy calorie and sugar consumption,” said Schuster, state specialist for MU Extension and the College of Human Environmental Sciences. “A ‘Trenta’-sized Starbuck’s lemonade could include 21 teaspoons of sugar – much more than should be consumed at one time, or in one day.”

Excess sugar is common in many prepared beverages. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, people who consume drinks with added sugars consume more total calories, and studies have found that drinking sweetened beverages is related to weight gain.

Health experts at the Mayo Clinic note that moderate consumption of coffee and other caffeinated beverages is unlikely to cause harm, but large quantities in excess of 500 mg, or more than four cups of coffee, can cause difficulty sleeping, irritability, restlessness, stomach problems and irregular heartbeat. Especially of concern is caffeine consumption among children and adolescents.

“Energy and coffee beverages are subject to the same nutrition rules as other foods and drinks; it’s all about moderation,” Schuster said. “Ideally, it’s best to avoid drinking calories, because drinks leave you less full than solid foods. By eating calories in the form of high-calorie, high-sugar drinks, people crowd out other nutritious foods. However, like any indulgence, it’s fine to order a ‘Trenta’ drink as an occasional treat.”

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These tips are based on findings from MU research conducted throughout the year. For more information, visit: missourifamilies.org and nutritionmythbusters.blogspot.com. The research is conducted through MU Extension and the MU Department of Nutrition and Exercise Physiology – a joint department in the College of Human Environmental Sciences, the School of Medicine and the College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources at MU.

 

A few other recent nutrition related press releases


During the cold winter months, Minnesotans know how to stay warm. They also know how to stay healthy! Try one (or all) of these recipes from the Minnesota state government this month.


February 4, 2011 Posted by | Nutrition | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

   

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