Monthly Archives: November 2016

Studies on Supplements

There has been an ongoing vigorous debate in the past decade regarding the effectiveness of supplements, and whether or not taking additional doses of vitamins and additives is ultimately beneficial for health. The industry of dietary supplements, minerals, herbal products, and vitamins generates annual revenue of over $30 billion in the U.S. A recent study published in a medical journal in October revealed that 52% of adults used one or more supplements in 2012.

Data reveals that supplements are essential in treating vitamin and mineral deficiencies; moreover, certain combinations of nutrients have been found to help treat several medical conditions, like age-related macular degeneration. Evidence further suggests that those at high risk for Vitamin D deficiency—which is highly prevalent in several areas—may face serious, long-term implications for public health.

While no pill can supply the nutrients found in healthy, wholesome food, it is critical that we learn more about the ways in which vitamins and supplements work and interact, in addition to their untapped potential for wellness and nutrition.

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Dangers of Dieting

A new study presented to the American Heart Association on Tuesday communicated the real, imminent dangers of the fad ‘yo-yo dieting.’ The research conveyed the possibility of this type of dieting increasing the risk for coronary heart disease—which can lead to heart attacks and other serious health issues— and sudden cardiac death, in post-menopausal women.

On-and-off dieting has been a trend for 20% to 55% of the female U.S. population, a common issue that has received little attention in terms of its inherent risks. Dr. Michael Miller, a professor of cardiovascular medicine at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, stated: “You can look and appear healthy, but you don’t know what your risk factors are.”

The findings from a group of normal-weight women who ‘weight cycled’ indicated that they were 3 ½ times more likely to have sudden cardiac death than women with stable weights. Yo-yo dieting in normal-weight women was also associated with a 66% increased risk of coronary heart disease deaths. Weight cycling can additionally result in fluid shifts and electrolyte changes, which have the potential to cause deadly heart arrhythmias in susceptible middle-aged women.

Popular diet fads and trends advocate for losing weight quickly, primarily by severely reducing caloric intake. When this occurs, the dieter’s levels of magnesium, calcium, and electrolytes become depleted, which is dangerously hazardous to the body, and engenders adverse effects on health.

Losing weight in a drastic fashion is now not only considered unhealthy, but also scientifically proven to be possibly deadly. Restricting food should be replaced with the implementation of a healthy diet and increasing physical exercise.

Learn more about our Certification in Weight and Lifestyle Management, and help patients achieve weight loss goals through effective lifestyle changes, techniques, and tools. 

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Genetic Damage Caused by Smoking

Smoking, the most preventable cause of death, is responsible for at least 6 million deaths annually, worldwide.

New research confirms extensive genetic damage caused by smoking: not only in lungs, but also in other organs that are not directly exposed to smoke. The study further demonstrates that a pack of cigarettes a day causes an average of 150 mutations a year in lung cells.

While scientists have known that smoking contributes to at least 17 types of cancer, the ways in which smoke exposure damages DNA was previously unknown—specifically, how cigarettes cause tumors. Though lung tissue was shown to produce the greatest number of genetic mutations, other parts of the body displayed altered DNA, which clarifies the correlation between smoking and other various forms of cancer.

Working towards tracking genes and root causes is significant, as the underlying causes of most types of cancer are still not fully understood. The new research of smoking-related cancers will help researchers and scientists better understand the development of the disease, and potential preventions.

Yet despite the data collection and scientific studies, a continuation of the current trend indicates that smoking will kill over 1 billion people in the 21st century, according to the World Health Organization.

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