1. Sugary Cereals
3. Diet Soda
4. Hard Liquor
1. Sugary Cereals
3. Diet Soda
4. Hard Liquor
Research published this month in the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology found that having balanced baking soda, or bicarbonate, levels in your body could reduce your chances of an early death.
The study examined data compiled in the Health, Aging and Body Composition Study for 2,287 participants. Participants were healthy adults who, at the onset of the study in 1997, were between the ages of 70 and 79, and were followed for approximately 10 years. Survival data were gathered through February 2014.
Study author Dr. Kalani Raphael, associate professor and nephrology and hypertension specialist at the University of Utah, and colleagues investigated pH, carbon dioxide, and bicarbonate in association with long-term survival. According to the University of Utah press release, “Critically ill patients with severe acid-base abnormalities have a very low likelihood of surviving their illness, but it’s unclear whether more subtle changes in the body’s acid-base status have an effect on the longevity of relatively healthy older people.”
Raphael and colleagues found that low levels of bicarbonate may be linked to an increased risk for premature death by 24 percent. Sodium bicarbonate assists your body in balancing pH levels, possibly extending life. “What we found was that generally healthy older people with low levels of bicarbonate had a higher risk of death,” Raphael said. “Adding the pH measurement into the equation didn’t change the results, which is important because pH is not routinely measured.”
The study’s findings may assist clinicians in better assessing a patient’s risk of premature death by analyzing their blood bicarbonate concentrations more closely. Clinicians can recommend dietary adjustments to patients with low bicarbonate concentrations to optimize health.
Vitamin B12 deficiency is one of the most common nutrient deficiencies in the world, especially among the elderly age group. Vitamin B12, also known as cobalamin, is very important in keeping the body’s nerve and blood cells healthy. So when there is insufficient levels of this vitamin, the body suffers.
Vitamin B12 plays an important role in the production of DNA and RNA, two molecules that are quite essential in the coding, decoding, regulation and expression of genes. Moreover, just like other B vitamins, B12 plays a role in the conversion of carbohydrates into energy.
Given its many uses in the different bodily processes, one is bound to suffer when this vitamin is lacking. For pregnant women, low levels of vitamin B12 could mean an increased risk of neural tube defects. For others, they may be at risk of developing Type 2 diabetes and other health issues.
Fortunately, vitamin B12 deficiency can be easily addressed once identified and diagnosed. What’s also good here is there are certain signs and symptoms that could help determine the presence of this condition. There are even those that could be seen just by examining the eyes.
According to Mercola, a slight yellowing of the eyes could be indicative of the condition. Eye twitching and eyelid spasms are also signs that could help pinpoint vitamin B12 deficiency. In rare cases, optic nerve damage that could lead to vision loss may happen.
Should these signs become evident to you one day, you need to go see a doctor right away. Vitamin B12 deficiency may be easily reversed with intravenous vitamin B12 treatment and supplementation. The signs and symptoms may appear suddenly or gradually, so it’s best to have regular checkups.
Vitamin B12 can be obtained through diet. Meat and meat by-products are good sources of this nutrient. This means strict vegetarians and vegans are at a higher risk of developing this deficiency. For these types of eaters, Medical News Today recommends consuming yogurt, low-fat milk, cheese, eggs, fortified cereals and nutritional yeast.
It’s also important to note that even meat-eaters are at risk of developing this deficiency. Apparently, there are people that absorb nutrients poorly due to the insufficient stomach acid needed to break the protein bond in the different meats consumed. So experts advise to take vitamin B12 supplements.Continue reading Deficiency in Vitamin B12? Start looking at your eyes!
Power naps are those short, revitalizing rest periods we take throughout the day to get our energy back up when we need it most. They’re short, sweet, and certainly feel effective whether you’re a sleep-deprived college student or working long hours at your job. But it’s natural to wonder whether these short naps can actually help you catch up on sleep, or if they’re setting you back even further.
“Short naps or power naps definitely do work,” said Rafael Pelayo, MD, a professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the Stanford Center For Sleep Sciences and Medicine. Though the sweet spot for naps seems to be between 30 and 40 minutes, he told POPSUGAR, if you have time in your schedule for a short nap when you need one, it can give you a quick bump of energy.
And for people who struggle with narcolepsy, a sleep disorder that leads to chronic drowsiness during the daytime, Dr. Pelayo said that short, scheduled naps can be an effective treatment.
You should pay attention, though, to what happens during your short five- to 10-minute naps. Typically, Dr. Pelayo explained, it takes our bodies about 90 minutes to enter REM sleep, which is the period in which you’ll experience dreams. If you’re not getting enough sleep at night, that REM period is typically the part you’re cutting off. Your body responds by slipping directly into REM as soon as you get a chance to nap.
In practice, this means that if you’re remembering dreams that you have during short 10- to 20-minute naps, “then really your body’s screaming at you that you’re not getting enough sleep,” Dr. Pelayo said. Short power naps feel good and are good for you, helping you to catch up on sleep, but if you’re relying on them regularly and experiencing deep sleep and intense dreams during that rest period, it’s worth reevaluating your sleep schedule and trying to get more of your shut-eye at night.
How many times can you recall having a bloated belly while trying to squeeze into a tight-fitting pair of jeans? Even if you watch what you eat and exercise, belly bloat can still be to blame. It can sneak up on you in surprising ways, depending on what you eat, certain habits you have, and even from select medical conditions. Fear not though: We know how to get rid of bloating.
When you want to shrink your stomach as quickly as possible, you’ll want to rely on these digestion-promoting methods that can help you get rid of your ballooning belly in just 24 hours. We’ll help you identify which habits and foods can help reduce bloating, bringing your digestive system into balance and revving up your metabolism in the process.
There will be no more squeezing into your favorite pair of jeans anymore when you follow our 24 tips for how to get rid of bloating—see results in less than 24 hours! 1
When people are bloated, they tend to skimp on water because they think it will make their bloating worse. Since water retention is the body’s way of holding onto fluid so it doesn’t dehydrate, the opposite is true. Drinking lots of water (and skipping dehydrating booze) signals the body that it no longer needs to hold onto every last drop to stay hydrated. “Fluids, specifically water, are absolutely key for optimal digestion,” says Isabel Smith, MS, RD, CDN, registered dietitian and founder of Isabel Smith Nutrition. Need a little flavor in your cup? Whip up a glass of detox water instead. 2
Bananas are packed with potassium, a nutrient that helps regulate fluid balance to flatten belly bloat. (It’s just one of the amazing benefits of bananas!) The potassium offsets the effects of sodium in your diet, which is a common cause of water retention. And bananas won’t just help you beat bloat overnight; An Anaerobe study found that women who ate a banana as a pre-meal snack twice a day for 60 days experienced a 50 percent reduction in bloating.
Even though they’re filled with health-promoting nutrients, foods that are high in FODMAPs (Fermentable Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides, and Polyols) also contain sneaky belly-bloaters that may be contributing to your ever-clinging food baby. The culprit is poorly absorbed carbohydrates and sugars. When your body ferments these carbs in your gut, it produces gas, which causes bloating. Avoid foods like…
Not only does chewing gum cause you to swallow tummy-bloating air, many gums also contain sugar alcohols and artificial sweeteners like sorbitol and xylitol. Because these sugar alcohols are not absorbed by your body, they can cause discomfort and bloating, according to a Clinical Nutrition study.
Eat This! Tip: If you need to have something to chew on, go for an organic gum variety like Glee gum or Simply gum instead. They’re still low-cal, but they don’t use those sweeteners that’ll make you puff up. If that makes you cringe, then you’ll definitely want to see the most horrifying things found in food! 6
Fasting: it’s the slim-down secret of models and celebrities. But for those of us who’d like to actually enjoy our lives, it’s not exactly an appealing prospect. But here’s a secret: You actually fast every night, while you’re asleep—that’s why they call the first meal of the day “breakfast.” The longer you can stretch out that period of fasting, the fewer calories you’ll take in. The fewer calories you consume, the less opportunity you have to eat something that will bloat your stomach. Cut off food intake by 7 p.m. or 8 p.m. at night, and delay breakfast a little further into the day. Make sure you have at least 12 hours between your last meal tonight and your first meal tomorrow. You’ll give your digestive system time to recover, and deflate your bell
Another method is to eat the bulk of your calories before 3 p.m. You’ll be more likely to have a flatter stomach than your splurge-at-dinner peers, says a 2013 International Journal of Obesity study.y quickly
Once you have awakened your digestion, start your day of eating with a burst of protein. We all get distracted or busy through the day, but a high-protein breakfast will prevent surprise mid-morning or early afternoon energy crashes that leave us reaching for a quick jolt of energy via ultra-processed foods that are high in bloat-inducing ingredients like excess sodium.
Eat This! Tip: Add a morning protein shake or a breakfast of eggs and nut butter waffles. The goal: don’t leave the house without first loading up on at least 15 grams of protein.8
A sluggish digestive system equals a slower metabolic rate. Wake up your innards by starting the morning with a cup of ginger tea. This fast-friendly drink will help improve the digestion and elimination of your food, according to a 2000 study, and is a key part of The 7-Day Flat-Belly Tea Cleanse. Another reason for your bloated belly is inflammation, which is often brought on by spicy foods, dairy and chemical additives. According to numerous studies, ginger, traditionally used to ease stomach pain, blocks several genes and enzymes in the body that promote bloat-causing inflammation. Not a fan of ginger? There are plenty of other teas that make great bloating remedies.
Eat This! Tip: Boil 1/2 tsp grated ginger with 1 cup of water and pour into a cup with your favorite tea bag.9
To keep your metabolism revving throughout the day, focus on small, protein- and fiber-packed snacks or small meals every 3 to 4 hours. You will not only burn more calories eating a series of smaller meals, but also avoid the afternoon crash and end of the workday slump. (Make sure to eat that first protein-packed meal; skipped breakfasts leave many of us grabbing for more food than we really need.)
Eat This! Tip: Use your smartphone or computer to remind you of these intervals. Some go-to snack ideas include:
When you finally get home after a long day, you’re totally famished — we get it. But that doesn’t mean you should scarf down your dinner in a hurry. Eating too quickly causes you to swallow excess air, which can lead to uncomfortable gas and bloating. Slowing down the chewing with your mouth closed, on the other hand, can have the opposite effect. Fight off the urge to vacuum your entire meal by snacking on something like a small piece of fruit or an ounce of nuts on your way home. Then, after you’ve settled in, sit down and have a leisurely supper.11
As much as we love the benefits of coffee, drinking it when you’re trying to shrink your belly in 24 hours is a no-no. “Consuming beverages that are high in sugar or caffeine can not only be dehydrating, but in some cases can add to excess calorie intake, too,” explains Smith. When your body is dehydrated, it will hold onto water, which causes excessive bloating.12
Just like sucking in air by inhaling your meals can cause you to feel puffy, sipping through a straw can cause you to take in extra air and experience a bloating.
Many beans, including soybeans, contain oligosaccharides. These are nondigestible sugar molecules that the body can’t break down entirely. With nowhere to go, these oligosaccharides hang out in the where they ferment, causing gas and bloating of the stomach. It should be easy to avoid beans in just 24 hours, but make sure you’re on the lookout for other sources. You probably don’t think “beans” when you unwrap a protein bar, but a lot of them include protein isolate derived from soybeans—something many people find just as gas-inducing as the musical fruit.
Foods made with white flour like white bread, white pasta, and white rice are relatively low in fiber and may cause you to get a little, uh, backed up. “Choosing whole grains can help with this,” says Smith. A simple switch from white bread to whole wheat or from white rice to brown will keep things moving along smoothly.
High fiber foods that are free of indigestible fibers mentioned before include:
Foods that are high in grease or are really fatty, like a McDonald’s breakfast, can cause gastrointestinal upset. While some fats are great for your gut, like omega-3s found in fish or nuts, these fats don’t interact with your body the same way. Stuff like fast food often contains high levels of unhealthy fats like saturated and trans fatty acids that cause an inflammatory response in the body, meaning your body wants it out!16
Alcohol can directly damage the digestive tract and research has also found it to mess with the good bacteria in your gut. But more importantly for when you’re trying to shrink your stomach in 24 hours, alcohol inhibits digestion, as well. “Alcohol inhibits digestion and causes dehydration, causing the digestive tract to slow down—which results in constipation,” says Rebecca Scritchfield, RDN. When you drink alcohol, your body switches to processing the alcohol out of your system first before digesting any food, which can leave you with a bloated stomach. It may be tough, but avoid the hard stuff during this day.
Instead of lounging around after supper, head outside for a 15-minute nighttime stroll—it’s a great way to get things moving again when you are feeling backed up and bloated. And if you regularly experience constipation, consider making walking part of your nightly routine. And if you tend to toss and turn, check out these tips for how to get better sleep.18
Dairy can be very bothersome to the belly because many adults naturally produce less of the necessary digestive enzyme lactase as we get older. If you consume dairy products pretty regularly, try cutting them out for 24 hours (and maybe even beyond this day) and see how your body reacts.19
We didn’t say these 24 hours were going to be sweet! “Foods that are processed with added sugars, particularly with artificial sweeteners, can be seriously upsetting to the intestinal tract and can cause gas and bloating for many,” says Smith. Furthermore, artificial sweeteners like sugar alcohols are part of that group of poorly-digested FODMAPs, that will only cause your belly to bloat more.20
The older, wiser, less-bendy sister of yoga, meditation is an amazing activity that people can reap major rewards from. A 2014 study in Eating Behaviors found that individuals who meditate are less likely to overeat or give in to emotional eating—and this is key if you want to stay on track with your anti-bloat plan over the next day. To get started, unroll a yoga mat or sit on a carpet in a sunny room (east-facing if possible) and take five uninterrupted minutes thinking about something that you’re grateful for.
Getting a good night’s rest will help keep your energy levels high the next day as well as make it easier for you to keep a smart eating plan. According to a University of Wisconsin study, people who get more sleep have reduced ghrelin and increased leptin levels. These two hormones work together to help control your appetite throughout the day, making sure you don’t overeat.22
Eating large portions can leave you feeling inflated, which isn’t what you’re looking for at the end of your 24-hour debloat period. Eat slowly and put your fork down between each bite. A good rule of thumb is to eat until you’re about 90 percent full and then call it. You can also practice portion control by portioning out your meals ahead of time.23
Good for the tastebuds, but potentially bad for the stomach, high-sodium foods may lead to water retention and temporary weight gain. When you overload your system with sodium, your kidneys can’t keep up; sodium that would otherwise be flushed away has to sit in your bloodstream, where it attracts water, causing increased blood pressure and bloating. If you tend to eat at fast food restaurants a lot, you’ll want to read up on these low-sodium fast food orders.24
Honeydew melon has a diuretic property that fights water retention. Its high potassium levels help displace sodium, flushing excess water from your system and acting a natural electrolyte replacement. Honeydew is just one of the best foods that beat bloating!
“Inflammation is a common contributor and possible cause underlying all diseases, whether you are talking about heart, liver, kidney problems, obesity, or psychiatric disease,” says Dr. Daniel Lee, clinical professor of medicine at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) Medical Center and School of Medicine.
In general, when your mental energy takes too much from your physical energy, it puts your body in a state of deficit, and inflammation in the body occurs.
It takes mental energy when we use our brains to think and analyze. In fact, we are constantly using our brains to think, analyze, and figure stuff out. This continual thinking from the brain takes energy from our body. At some point our body needs to rejuvenate.
We need to take time to relax, and get out of our heads, so our body can rejuvenate. There is such a thing as “too much thinking,” just like too much of anything is not good. Thinking needs to be balanced with non-thinking. Balance is good. Take time for thinking, then take time to relax. This allows for optimal functioning of the brain and the body.
What happens when we think too much?
When the thinking of the brain takes too much energy from the body, this depletes the energy of the body. Lower body energy affects our immune system — it functions more slowly. The immune system is our natural response to inflammation in the body. An impaired immune system results in incomplete repair of cells and tissue, and inflammation in the body expands.
We’ve all heard the saying, “keep your mind active,” especially as we age. Well, this is a little bit of a misnomer; more precisely it’s saying, “keep your brain active.” While brain activity is all well and good, there needs to be balance. There needs to be brain activity, and rest. Just like anything, balance is best.
We are thinking when we work and when we play. Our brain is “on” all day during work or at school. Our brain is “on” when playing sports, or other games such as cards, board games, checkers or chess. If you are, for example, constantly working, playing games, or thinking, you are not giving yourself downtime — a chance to rest, relax, and renew.
This can lead to inflammation in the body.
Common examples of inflammation are arthritis, irritable bowel syndrome, and other autoimmune problems. Be active, get going during the day, but give yourself time to rest, too. Balance. Then the body gets a chance to recuperate, and your immune system ramps up to repair damaged cells and tissue. Isn’t an awesomely functioning immune system invaluable?
This is similar to exercise. Exercise is good for the body, but you need to rest after exercise.
A good way to relax the brain is to get into the mind. The mind only knows balance and does nothing in excess. The flowing energy of the mind brings our bodies back to balance.
Meditation teacher and author, Ron W. Rathbun, says, “We need to get out of our brain activity, and into our minds, so the mind can balance the brain and the body. In mind, we balance the body and reduce inflammation. The mind allows for mental and physical rejuvenation.”
Nature is simple. There is the brain and the mind. By learning to access your mind, you move away from the brain and into a more relaxed state of renewal.
Kelee® meditation is a way to access the mind.
In a study at UCSD, patients who did Kelee meditation for 12 weeks saw a significant reduction in stress, anxiety and depression. Lead author of the study, Dr. Daniel Lee, says, “These days, researchers are looking for answers on how to control inflammation to fight disease. However, Kelee meditation provides a unique way to access the mind to calm and quiet brain activity, which helps to relax the physical body allowing for recovery and rejuvenation. It is through understanding the concept of moderation and the balance between mind function and brain function that ultimately leads to the improvement of quality of life and begins the process of the reversing the disease process naturally, without having to rely on medications.”
Wondering how to access your mind and balance your brain and body? You can download this simple-to-follow ebook, Kelee Meditation: Free your Mind, and practice Kelee meditation today.
You’ve probably wondered how you developed diabetes. You may worry that your children will develop it too.
Unlike some traits, diabetes does not seem to be inherited in a simple pattern. Yet clearly, some people are born more likely to develop diabetes than others.
Type 1 and type 2 diabetes have different causes. Yet two factors are important in both. You inherit a predisposition to the disease then something in your environment triggers it.
Genes alone are not enough. One proof of this is identical twins. Identical twins have identical genes. Yet when one twin has type 1 diabetes, the other gets the disease at most only half the time.
When one twin has type 2 diabetes, the other’s risk is at most 3 in 4.
In most cases of type 1 diabetes, people need to inherit risk factors from both parents. We think these factors must be more common in whites because whites have the highest rate of type 1 diabetes.
Because most people who are at risk do not get diabetes, researchers want to find out what the environmental triggers are.
One trigger might be related to cold weather. Type 1 diabetes develops more often in winter than summer and is more common in places with cold climates.
Another trigger might be viruses. Perhaps a virus that has only mild effects on most people triggers type 1 diabetes in others.
Early diet may also play a role. Type 1 diabetes is less common in people who were breastfed and in those who first ate solid foods at later ages.
In many people, the development of type 1 diabetes seems to take many years. In experiments that followed relatives of people with type 1 diabetes, researchers found that most of those who later got diabetes had certain autoantibodies in their blood for years before.
(Antibodies are proteins that destroy bacteria or viruses. Autoantibodies are antibodies ‘gone bad,’ which attack the body’s own tissues.)
Type 2 diabetes has a stronger link to family history and lineage than type 1, although it too depends on environmental factors.
Studies of twins have shown that genetics play a very strong role in the development of type 2 diabetes.
Lifestyle also influences the development of type 2 diabetes. Obesity tends to run in families, and families tend to have similar eating and exercise habits.
If you have a family history of type 2 diabetes, it may be difficult to figure out whether your diabetes is due to lifestyle factors or genetic susceptibility. Most likely it is due to both. However, don’t lose heart. Studies show that it is possible to delay or prevent type 2 diabetes by exercising and losing weight.
Have you recently been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes? Join our free Living With Type 2 Diabetes program and the information and support you need to live well with diabetes.
In general, if you are a man with type 1 diabetes, the odds of your child developing diabetes are 1 in 17.
If you are a woman with type 1 diabetes and your child was born before you were 25, your child’s risk is 1 in 25; if your child was born after you turned 25, your child’s risk is 1 in 100.
Your child’s risk is doubled if you developed diabetes before age 11. If both you and your partner have type 1 diabetes, the risk is between 1 in 10 and 1 in 4.
There is an exception to these numbers. About 1 in every 7 people with type 1 diabetes has a condition called type 2 polyglandular autoimmune syndrome. In addition to having diabetes, these people also have thyroid disease and a poorly working adrenal gland. Some also have other immune system disorders. If you have this syndrome, your child’s risk of getting the syndrome — including type 1 diabetes — is 1 in 2.
Researchers are learning how to predict a person’s odds of getting diabetes. For example, most whites with type 1 diabetes have genes called HLA-DR3 or HLA-DR4. If you and your child are white and share these genes, your child’s risk is higher. (Suspect genes in other ethnic groups are less well studied. The HLA-DR7 gene may put African Americans at risk, and the HLA-DR9 gene may put Japanese at risk.)
Other tests can also make your child’s risk clearer. A special test that tells how the body responds to glucose can tell which school-aged children are most at risk.
Another more expensive test can be done for children who have siblings with type 1 diabetes. This test measures antibodies to insulin, to islet cells in the pancreas, or to an enzyme called glutamic acid decarboxylase. High levels can indicate that a child has a higher risk of developing type 1 diabetes.
Type 2 diabetes runs in families. In part, this tendency is due to children learning bad habits — eating a poor diet, not exercising — from their parents. But there is also a genetic basis.
If you would like to learn more about the genetics of all forms of diabetes, the National Institutes of Health has published The Genetic Landscape of Diabetes. This free online book provides an overview of the current knowledge about the genetics of type 1 and type 2 diabetes, as well other less common forms of diabetes. The book is written for health professionals and for people with diabetes interested in learning more about the disease.