Health Tips

11 Best Foods to Boost Your Brain and Memory

1. Fatty Fish When people talk about brain foods, fatty fish is often at the top of the list. This type of fish includes salmon, trout and sardines, which are all rich sources of omega-3 fatty acids. About 60% of your brain is made of fat, and half of that fat is the omega-3 kind. Your brain uses omega-3s to build brain and nerve cells, and these fats are essential for learning and memory. Omega 3-s also have a couple additional benefits for your brain. For one thing, they may slow age-related mental decline and help ward off Alzheimer’s disease. On the flip side, not getting enough omega-3s is linked to learning impairments, as well as depression. In general, eating fish seems to have positive health benefits. One study found that people who ate baked or broiled fish regularly had more gray matter in their brains. Gray matter contains most of the nerve cells that control decision making, memory and emotion. Overall, fatty fish is an excell...

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How Eating Nuts Can Help You Lose Weight

Nuts Are High in Fat And Calories Nuts are high in calories. This is because a large part of them is fat, which is a concentrated source of energy. One gram of fat contains 9 calories, while one gram of carbs or protein contains just 4 calories. Nuts contain mostly unsaturated fat. This type of fat is associated with protection against many different diseases, such as heart disease. The calorie and fat contents per one-ounce (28-gram) serving of some commonly eaten nuts are shown below: Walnuts: 183 calories and 18 grams of fat Brazil nuts: 184 calories and 19 grams of fat Almonds: 161 calories and 14 grams of fat Pistachios: 156 calories and 12 grams of fat Cashews: 155 calories and 12 grams fat Because they are high in fat and calories, many people assume that adding nuts to their diet will lead to weight gain. However, as discussed below, scientific studies do not support this. Regularly Eating Nuts Is Not Linke...

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7 Health Benefits of Plums and Prunes

1. They Contain Many Nutrients Plums and prunes are impressively high in nutrients. They contain over 15 different vitamins and minerals, in addition to fiber and antioxidants. Here is an overview of the nutrition profiles of plums and prunes. Plums Plums are relatively low in calories, but contain a fair amount of important vitamins and minerals. One plum contains the following nutrients: Calories: 30 Carbs: 8 grams Fiber: 1 gram Sugars: 7 grams Vitamin A: 5% of the RDI Vitamin C: 10% of the RDI Vitamin K: 5% of the RDI Potassium: 3% of the RDI Copper: 2% of the RDI Manganese: 2% of the RDI Additionally, one plum provides a small amount of B vitamins, phosphorus and magnesium. Prunes Prunes are higher in calories than plums. A 1-ounce (28-gram) serving of prunes contains the following: Calories: 67 Carbs: 18 grams Fiber: 2 grams Sugars: 11 grams Vitamin A:...

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Why Tempeh Is Incredibly Healthy and Nutritious

What Is Tempeh? Tempeh is a traditional Indonesian food made from soybeans that have been fermented, or broken down by microorganisms. Following fermentation, the soybeans are pressed into a compact cake that is commonly consumed as a vegetarian source of protein. In addition to soybeans, tempeh may also be made from other bean varieties, wheat or a mixture of soybeans and wheat. Tempeh has a dry and firm but chewy texture and a slightly nutty taste. It can be steamed, sautéed or baked and is often marinated to add more flavor. Much like other meatless sources of protein, such as tofu and seitan, tempeh is a popular choice among vegans and vegetarians because it’s packed with nutrients. Tempeh Is Rich in Many Nutrients Tempeh boasts an impressive nutrient profile. It is high in protein, vitamins and minerals but low in sodium and carbs. A 3-ounce (84-gram) serving of tempeh contains these nutrients: Calories: 162 Protein:...

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Top 6 Types of Creatine Reviewed

1. Creatine Monohydrate The most common supplement form is creatine monohydrate. This is the form that has been used in the majority of research on the topic. This means that most of creatine’s beneficial effects, such as improved upper and lower body exercise performance, have been observed almost exclusively when creatine monohydrate was used. This form is made up of a creatine molecule and a water molecule, though it can be processed in a few ways. Sometimes, the water molecule is removed, resulting in creatine anhydrous. The removal of water increases the amount of creatine in each dose. Creatine anhydrous is 100% creatine by weight, whereas the monohydrate form is about 90% creatine by weight. Other times, the creatine is micronized, or mechanically processed to improve water solubility. In theory, better water solubility could improve your body’s ability to absorb it. Despite these minor differences in processing, each of these forms is probably equa...

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5 Potential Problems With Vegan Diets

1. Vegans Are Deficient in Some Nutrients Humans are omnivores. We function best eating both animals and plants. There are some nutrients that can only be gotten from plants (like Vitamin C) and others that can only be gotten from animals. Vitamin B12 is a water soluble vitamin that is involved in the function of every cell in the body. It is particularly important in the formation of blood and the function of the brain. Because B12 is critical for life and isn’t found in any amount in plants (except some types of algae), it is by far the most important nutrient that vegans must be concerned with. In fact, B12 deficiency is very common in vegans, one study showing that 92% of vegans are deficient in this critical nutrient. But B12 is just the tip of the iceberg, there are other lesser known nutrients that are only found in animal foods and are critical for optimal function of the body. Here are a few examples: Animal protein contains all the...

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How to Make Your Meat as Healthy as Possible

Eating Only Muscle Meats Can Create an Imbalance Throughout evolution, humans didn’t just eat muscle meats. Back in the day, we used to treasure the organs. Hunter-gatherers ate “nose-to-tail” – muscles, organs and other tissues. Organs like liver tend to have a lot more micronutrients than muscle. Muscle meat also tends to be very high in the amino acid methionine. There is some evidence that eating less methionine has health benefits in rats. I’m not really sure if this is relevant to humans on a lower-carb, higher-fat, moderate-protein diet though. Dangers of High-Heat Cooking There are some dangers when cooking meat at a very high heat. This can form unhealthy compounds called Heterocyclic Amines (HAs) and Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs). This happens when some of the nutrients in meat react to form these unhealthy compounds at very high temperatures. These compounds have been linked ...

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Top 9 Reasons to Avoid Sugar as if Your Life Depended on it

1. Added Sugar Supplies a Large Amount of Fructose The reason added sugar (and its evil twin… High Fructose Corn Syrup) is bad for you, is that it supplies a very large amount of fructose. Sugar (and HFCS) are half glucose, half fructose. Glucose is essential and can be metabolized by pretty much every cell in the body. If we don’t get it from the diet, our bodies make it from proteins and fat. Fructose, however, is not essential to our functioning in any way. The only organ that can metabolize fructose is the liver, because only the liver has a transporter for it. When large amounts of fructose enter the liver and it is already full of glycogen, most of the fructose gets turned into fat. This process is probably one of the leading causes of the epidemics of many chronic, Western diseases. I’d like to point out that this does NOT apply to fruit, which are a real food with vitamins, minerals, fiber, lots of water and are v...

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How Magnesium Can Help You Sleep

What Is Magnesium? Magnesium is one of the most common minerals on earth and is present in many foods. It’s essential for human health and is used in over 600 cellular reactions throughout your body. In fact, every cell and organ need this mineral to function properly. It contributes to bone health, as well as proper brain, heart and muscle function. Magnesium supplements have been linked to a number of benefits, including fighting inflammation, relieving constipation and lowering blood pressure. In addition, magnesium may help treat sleep problems. It Can Help Your Body and Brain Relax In order to fall asleep and stay asleep, your body and brain need to relax. On a chemical level, magnesium aids this process by activating the parasympathetic nervous system, the system responsible for getting you calm and relaxed. First, magnesium regulates neurotransmitters, which send signals throughout the nervous system and brain. It also regulates the hormo...

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11 Reasons Why Real Foods Help You Lose Weight

1. Real Foods Are Nutritious Whole, unprocessed plant and animal foods are packed with vitamins and minerals that are great for your health. Conversely, processed foods are low in micronutrients and can increase your risk of health problems. Processed foods can slow down weight loss in several ways. For instance, a diet of processed foods that doesn’t provide enough iron could affect your ability to exercise, since iron is required to move oxygen around your body. This would limit your ability to burn calories through exercise. A diet low in nutrients may also prevent you from losing weight by making you feel less full after eating. One study in 786 people compared participants’ feelings of fullness when they were on a low-micronutrient diet versus a high-micronutrient diet. Nearly 80% of participants felt fuller after meals on the high-micronutrient diet, even though they were eating fewer calories than on the low-micronutrient diet. When y...

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