Displaying items by tag: Health

Debunking Diet Myths

In today’s health-oriented world, the four major players – diet, exercise, smoking and alcohol abuse – are in the spotlight. Diet weighs heavily on this equation and has also been a subject of a lot of pervasive myths and misinformation. Today, we shall review some of the most popular misconception about diet.

Fasting is the best way to start.

Fasting is the wrong way to start, or even “punctuate,” your dieting schedule.  Fasting has no place at all in controlling weight or quality of nutrition for our body. The temporary weight loss resulting from fasting is thru water loss (dehydration). The best way to maintain your weight is to burn the calories your take in daily (example: if you take in 2000 calories, you should exercise off 2000 calories that day). It is a matter of intake and output, an obvious common sense approach. If one is overweight and wants to lose weight, then the calories burned should be higher than the calories ingested, until the goal is reached…and at that point, the maintenance intake and output formula should prevail. Those who want to gain weight to reach the ideal weight, obviously, should have more intake than output of calories.

 

Low carb - hi protein diet is best

Not true. Those on low carbohydrate diet alone, but on high protein (meats, egss, etc) had good initial weight loss, but regained the weight after six to 12 months, as shown by some studies. They faired better than those on low fat diet, which is actually more healthy as far as cardiovascular diseases, metabolic illnesses and cancers are concerned. However, low carb diet, combined with low fat diet and exercise, has been found to be the best regimen. This means the diet mainly consists of fish and bean curd, beans, grains and nuts (as the main source of protein and oil) and a lot of green leafy and other vegetables, and fruits. Among diabetics, fruits should be included in the calculation of the total daily restricted calorie intake.

 

Enemas aids in dieting

False! This is a myth that is unhealthy. Enemas for cleansing “to get rid of toxins in our body,” is not medically accepted as a means of detoxification and weight control. To detoxify our body, the best way is to abstain from smoking, minimize alcohol intake and exposure to other toxic agents, eat a lot of vegetables, nuts, some fruits, and to exercise daily. There have been reports of deaths with frequent self-prescribed enemas. They could lead to diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, electrolyte imbalance, heartbeat irregularity, and bowel perforation. The so-called designer coffee enema for colon cleansing is not only expensive but also useless and very dangerous.

 

Eating late at night leads to more weight gain and fats

This is no more true than the myth that Elvis Presley is alive. Of course, it is best not to have a full stomach close to bedtime. Going to bed 3 to 4 hours after a meal is fine. The calories taken at night have the same effect as those taken during the daytime. While you burn less calories while sleeping, you lose these when you get up in the morning and start your daily routine, especially if you exercise every day. 

 

“Slimming Tea” works

This is a myth. “Slimming Tea,” or other drinks that are advertised as effective for weight reduction, are per se, useless and a waste of money.  Any beverage, so long as they are zero calorie drinks, can help in weight reduction, if taken in lieu of a ton of calories. And I repeat, in lieu of. Not together with thousands of calories. If you drink them and still eat more calories than you burn, then you will gain weight, regardless of what fluid you drink. There is absolutely NO beverage on the market that will lead to weight reduction, per se. There is no easy solution to overweight; it takes education, discipline, determination and hard work. But the dividends are worth the sacrifices. 

 

Drinking a lot of water leads to weight gain

Only if you heart or kidney is not healthy. Heart or kidney failure patients tend to retain water, so water restriction is part of the treatment among many of them. However, for someone who is otherwise healthy except for excess body weight, drinking two glasses of water before each meal is a great strategy in appetite and calorie control (it “fools” the brain into thinking the stomach is already full), which reduces the food intake, and, subsequently, the weight. The recommended fluid intake is at least 8 glasses of water a day. However, if the beverage ingested is loaded with a lot of calories (like regular cola drinks, fruit drinks, smoothies, etc.), then rapid weight gain results. Fruits juices (fresh fruits are better than the juice) should be limited to 4 oz a day since it has a high concentration of added sugar. Sugar-loaded pop beverages are among the top culprits in the calorie explosion of today, and should be avoided. Purified water is the healthier and cheaper universal beverage for all seasons.

 

Eating grapefruit will help burn body fats

A caveat to remember: there is no food known to man today that can burn or “melt” body fats, or that can reduce weight without proper dieting. Eating grapefruit is good, if done (again) in lieu of eating tons of calories. Grapefruits, like many fruits and multi-colored and green leafy vegetables, are loaded with good anti-oxidants that protect our body from the ravages caused by free radicals. So, eating them daily is healthy for us, but for fat and weight reduction, the only guaranteed formula is our basic common sense principle: output must be equal to intake (calories taken in = calories burned) in order to maintain a certain weight.  And you can extrapolate from there to suit your personal goal.

 

Soft drinks is safe?

Soft drinks, regular or diet, cola or uncola, caffeinated or not, are not only unhealthy but toxic to the body, especially for children. They increase the risk for the development of metabolic syndrome, number one killer among diseases. For those on a diet, drinking soft drinks is like pouring water on someone who is already drowning. Taxes for soft drinks, like taxes for cigarettes, are being increased through legislation to discourage people from using these toxic agents.

 

Diet without exercise

While dieting or watching our diet, pushing ourselves away from the dining table less than full to maintain a healthy weight, body, and mind, doing this disciplined strategy, adding exercise to this healthy lifestyle regimen, more than triple its beneficial effects as far as boosting our immune system, our physiology, disease prevention, and overall well-being for health and longevity.

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Life-saving device for all hotels pushed

  • Published in Health

The executive members of the Friends of the Filipino/American Community (FFAC), a not for profit political action committee (PAC) of the greater Northern California met with Philippine Consul General Henry S. Bensurto Jr. and his staff at the San Francisco office on May 11 to discuss and advocate for Hotels in the Philippines to have in their establishment a life saving device known as a "Defibrillator". Defibrillation is a treatment for life-threatening cardiac dysrhythmias, specifically ventricular fibrillation (VF) and non-perfusing ventricular tachycardia (VT). A defibrillator delivers a dose of electric current (often called a countershock) to the heart. In attendance for FFAC was former Union Vice Mayor Jim Navarro, Atty. Ben Reyes, Atty. Cesar Fumar, Evelyn Centeno and Rose Pavone.

Each year, many Filipinos die from sudden cardiac arrest during their stay at the Philippine hotels because the device was not available during the cardiac event that could otherwise have saved their lives.

The key to survival is timely initiation of a "chain of survival", including CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation). Because of recent technological advances, a portable lifesaving device, called an "automated external defibrillator" or "AED" has recently become an important medical tool. Trained non-medical personnel can use these simplified electronic machines to treat a person in cardiac arrest. The AED device guides the user through the process by audible or visual prompts without requiring any discretion or judgment.

FFAC will work closely with the Consulate General Office (CGO), the Department of Tourism (DOT) and the Department of Health (DOH) to bring this very important issue to the forefront and advocate to become a law that having an AED will be a standard of operation (SOP) in all the hotel industries in the Philippines.

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Facts about coconut water

Facts about coconut water

Coconut water (buko juice) is a popular drink in Asia and South America. The top ten countries on the list of world-leading coconut producers according to volume are: Indonesia, Philippines, India, Brazil, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, Papua New Guinea, Mexico, Thailand, and Malaysia. The Philippines export more than $1 billion worth of coconuts to the United States alone.

What actually is coconut water?

Coconut water is the clear liquid inside coconuts which, in early development, “serves as a suspension for the endosperm of the coconut during its nuclear phase” of growth. The endosperm matures into “cellular phase and deposits into the rink of the coconut meat.” The coconut water and the soft meat of young coconut is a delicacy, popular among locals and tourists in those tropical countries and others where coconuts thrive. They are sold fresh on the street by vendors with machetes who cut a hole at the top for drinking, with or without a straw. They are also available bottled, soft-packed, and canned, usually consumed chilled.

What are the other coconut products?

Besides its water and meat, other coconuts products include copra, coconut oil and coconut milk (gata) for cooking and for cosmetics, palm sugar, flower syrup, butter, desiccated coconut, powdered sugar, jelly, cream, kefir (probiotic), flour, vinegar, nata de coco fruit jelly, etc. Indeed, coconut is a versatile fruit, nut, and seed, all in one.

Can it reverse Alzheimer’s?

The popular claim that coconut oil products can reverse Alzheimer’s disease is baseless and unfounded. There is no scientific evidence to this effect. The same is true with the other medicinal claims for other illnesses, like depression, diabetes, obesity, high blood pressure, allergies, As a matter of fact, there is a controversy that coconut oil and products can be detrimental to the consumer’s blood cholesterol/lipids levels and cardiovascular health, if consumed regularly. Fresh uncontaminated coconut water is deemed acceptable and safe. Scientifically, the use of coconut oil for hair, skin, and lips, as conditioner-moisturizer has been proven to be of good cosmetic value.

What are the nutritional values of coconut water?

Coconut water is 95 percent water and 100 ml provides only 19 calories, 4 percent carbohydrates, under 1 percent protein and fat. It does not contain any vitamin or dietary minerals of any significant value. Unless contaminated by a handler, fresh coconut water is sterile, free of microbes.

While this has been marketed as “natural energy drink or sport drink,” claiming it has significant electrolyte content, this is not true. The potassium, magnesium, calcium and sodium in unprocessed coconut water per 100 ml are insignificant and not balanced. The health benefit claims, that it is antiviral, that it lowers cholesterol and regulates blood sugar, are false, and the US Food and Drug Administration has warned producers against misleading marketing.

Various firms have faced class action lawsuits over false advertisements that coconut water was “super-hydrating,” nutrient-packed,” and “mega-electrolyte” source. The suit was settled with a US$10 Million award in April 2012.

Was coconut water used as IV fluids?

During World War II, coconut water was used as intravenous fluids for rehydration when medical fluids was not available during emergencies. It is actually not similar in composition as our plasma. Intravenous coconut water is not accepted as within safe standard of care today and must not be performed at all as it would be malpractice. Drinking it occasionally is the safer way to take coconut water.

Is excessive consumption safe?

No, drinking a large amount of coconut water is unsafe. As a matter of fact, coconut water is used in southern districts of Tamil Nadu, India, for senicide of the elderly, a traditional accepted practice performed by family members called thalaikoothal, an involuntary euthanasia for those incapacitated and seriously ill, where “the elderly is made to drink an excessive amount of coconut water, eventually resulting in fever and death.” Besides pulmonary (excess water in the lungs, as in drowning) due to fluid overload, the exact mechanism causing the demise is not clear.

Are coconut food products healthy for us?

Olive oil is preferred over coconut oil for cooking and overall use. The virgin variety of each is considered better than their regular form. While olive oil is universally recommended as a healthy oil, there is a lot of controversy about coconut oil because of its high saturated fat content (albeit from non-meat source). The use of virgin coconut oil in cosmetics (skin moisturizer and hair conditioner-shiner, lip balms, etc.) has been proven beneficial, but not as a food or as a cooking ingredient for DAILY consumption. Advocates, including some physicians, think differently. While the controversy lingers, occasional indulgences and in moderation are safe. For many, the great unique appetizing taste of coconut milk (gata) in main courses (red meat/chicken/vegetables) and in desserts is hard to resist. I confess, I am one of them.

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