August 14, 2019 — 12:22 PM
Functional doctors agree—greens are one of the healthiest foods on the planet. Whether you’re munching on cilantro, spinach, or kale, you’re benefiting from better digestion, inflammation-fighting powers, and tons of antioxidants. We all know we should eat a heaping amount of green goodness daily—but how do you fit all of that fiber in? We reached out to the healthiest people we know to steal their genius tips for munching greens all day long.
1. Make marinated kale.
Some people refer to this technique as massaged kale, but the idea is less giving those greens a deep-tissue rub down and more ensuring that each and every leaf gets covered with a mixture of acid, oil, and salt. This helps draw out some of the kale’s natural moisture, softening and tenderizing it in the process. It works similarly to a ceviche, taking the texture of the greens from woody and raw to wilted and semi-cooked. This also makes it easier for your body to break them down. My favorite is this basic kale salad.
2. Use leftover grease.
A favorite in my household is to make some meat in the pan, like bacon or ground beef, and then throw some leafy greens in the grease and use the grease to cook up the greens. Culturally, we shy away from meat grease because we’ve been taught it’s unhealthy. Everything in moderation, of course, but I would argue that most of us actually improve our health by incorporating reasonable amounts of fat from healthy animals. I get bacon from pastured pigs, free of nitrates and sugar. The grease from that is actually an excellent cooking fat with a high smoke point, and it adds flavor and nutrition to the greens. The fat also helps us absorb the fat-soluble vitamins (vitamins A, D, E, and K) in the leafy greens.
3. Sauté them in ghee.
Sautéed in ghee or even bacon fat! I’m not kidding. Many of the vitamins in leafy greens are fat-soluble, so adding a little fat will not only increase the flavor but also allow your body to absorb the vitamins. I never eat kale raw, as it can go through your system like sandpaper. If you suffer from any sort of bloating or gas, please consider eating fewer raw kale salads, a common mistake I see many of my nutrition clients make.
—Diana Rodgers, R.D., founder of Sustainable Dish
4. Make a smoothie
I always add organic and fresh leafy greens to my smoothies and smoothie bowls, especially during the summer. Spinach is a go-to, and you can freeze them to make them last longer. Using leafy greens in your smoothies makes a great foundation and can be easily balanced with fruits, nut milk, and, my favorite, coconut butter for yummy healthy fats.
I love adding leafy greens to ketotarian smoothies as you can add a lot without noticing a huge change—if any—in flavor. Mix in some coconut milk, berries, MCT oil, and adaptogens, and you have a delicious, creamy plant-based keto smoothie.
5. Stir ’em into an omelet.
My favorite way to eat leafy greens currently is in an omelet. I typically use baby spinach or kale, and it is a great way to get in some greens with breakfast or brunch!
6. Serve meals on a bed of greens.
Eating my meals on a bed of greens is my favorite way to incorporate them into my diet. It not only makes the plate look pretty, but it also ensures I’m getting nutritious vegetables with every bite! My favorite is the Organic Girl Protein Greens variety.
—Allison (Aaron) Gross, M.S., RDN, CDN, founder of Nutrition Curator
7. Chiffonade them.
Most people don’t like leafy greens because they’re either bitter or tough to eat. I usually chiffonade my leafy green leaves so they’re easy to eat with a fork and toss them in a dressing with fat or something sweet. The fat (like a ghee or pairing with an avocado) helps dial back the bitter, as does a drizzle of honey.
8. Make a salad
My favorite way to enjoy baby greens is in salad form—baby kale is my current favorite. I also love adding leafy greens to soups, stews, and chili to bulk up the dish and add nutrients. They’re also an easy and delicious way to add nutrients and color to scrambled eggs or an omelet. When fresh isn’t available, I love to add frozen spinach to a smoothie.
9. Stir-fry them up.
I love incorporating green leafy veggies into stir-fries (I love a mix of edamame, leek, and Swiss chard), a pesto (think spinach or kale pesto), or soups (wilting spinach into turkey chili).
Liz Moody is a contributing food editor at mindbodygreen. She’s contributed to Glamour, Women’s Health, Food & Wine, goop, and many other publications and is the woman behind the…
And it’s becoming increasingly resistant to disinfectants.
A diarrhea-causing bacterium is evolving into a new species, one that thrives on your sugar-rich Western diet, according to a new study.
The Clostridium difficile bacteria produce spores that spread through contact with feces, and so can commonly be found in bathrooms or on surfaces that people touch without properly washing their hands. What’s more, this bacterium is becoming increasingly resistant to disinfectants used in hospitals, said study lead author Nitin Kumar, a senior bioinformatician at the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute.
Patients taking antibiotics face the greatest risk of developing diarrhea from C. difficile, because antibiotics clear away healthy gut bacteria that typically fight off the infection, Kumar told Live Science.
In the new study, Kumar and his team collected 906 different strains of C. difficile from the environment, from humans and from animals such as dogs, pigs and horses. The researchers analyzed and compared the DNA for these various strains and found that C. difficile was evolving into two separate species.
In order to be considered the same species, two groups of organisms have to share 95% of their genomes, and the two emerging species of C. difficile share 94% to 95%, Kumar said. That indicates that “they are on the verge of speciation.”
It’s not uncommon for bacteria to evolve, but “this time, we actually see what factors are responsible for the evolution,” Kumar said.
One of the emerging species, C. difficile clade A, is the one that is thriving in hospitals. The team found that it made up 70% of the samples collected from hospital patients. DNA analysis suggested that this emerging species started evolving 76,000 years ago and eventually gathered mutations in its genes that better allowed it to metabolize sugars and form disinfectant-resistant spores.
The researchers then introduced the C. difficile clade A bacteria to mice that were eating various diets. Results showed that the bacteria were more likely to thrive and colonize the gut when the mice ate diets rich in simple sugars, such as glucose and fructose.
Essentially, our diet and other lifestyle factors, like the type of disinfectant commonly used in hospitals, are helping this bacteria to evolve more effectively, Kumar said. These results suggest that it might be useful to consider a “low-sugar diet for those patients who are infected with C. difficileclade A or [for hospitals to] look for new disinfectants as well.”
The findings were published Aug. 12 in the journal Nature Genetics.
Originally published on Live Science.
When we eat things that are toxic: medications, processed foods, food dyes, dairy, grains, alcohol, …we develop Leaky Gut, the beginning of health problems and inflammation.
A team of Duke researchers has discovered that cells lining the gut of zebrafish—and probably humans too—have a remarkable defense mechanism when faced with certain kinds of toxins: they hit the eject button.
“The gut has the challenging job of handling all the chemicals that we consume or produce, and some of those chemicals can be damaging. So the gut has evolved many interesting ways to defend against damage,” said Ted Espenschied, a Duke graduate student who led the effort as part of his dissertation research.
The Duke team was testing more than 20 non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID) in an attempt to make the zebrafish a new model for studying chemical injury in the gut. The fish are cheap to maintain, easy to breed, and most importantly, translucent for the early part of their lives, Rawls said. It’s also easy to administer chemical exposures and measure their environmental conditions via the tank water.
The researchers found something unexpected.”It’s often the case that drugs have multiple off-target effects,” said John Rawls, an associate professor of molecular genetics and microbiology and director of the Duke Microbiome Center.
But only one of the drugs they tested seemed to create any measurable differences in the fish, an old NSAID called Glafenine. It had been an over-the-counter oral painkiller used in Europe and the Middle East for three decades, but was taken off the market after being linked to kidney and liver damage.
Glafenine was making the fish shed up to a quarter of the cells lining their intestines overnight by a process called delamination. What hadn’t been recognized before is that delamination, which seems catastrophic, is actually a highly effective defense strategy.
The lining of the gut is a single layer of finger-like epithelial cells packed closely together. When a gut epithelial cell is distressed, it somehow becomes marked for destruction. During delamination, neighboring epithelial cells push against the doomed cell to loosen its anchor to the basement membrane they all stand on. The neighbors squeeze in on it and crowd it out until it pops up and is carried away to die in the gut.
A cross-section of zebrafish gut showing the junctions between epithelial cells in green and a protein expressed on absorptive cells in pink. Credit: John Rawls Lab, Duke University
“We weren’t expecting delamination to be protective,” Espenschied said.
Espenschied pivoted on the unexpected finding. “Only one NSAID had this remarkable effect of causing delamination of the gut epithelium and we were wracking our brains trying to figure it out,” Espenschied said.
“So we chased it,” Rawls added.
After many experiments and a detailed analysis of Glafenine’s chemical properties, Espenscheid determined that it wasn’t the drug’s NSAID qualities that harmed the gut, but rather its ability, apparently unique among NSAIDs, to inhibit a cellular structure known as the multidrug-resistant, or MDR, efflux pump.
These pumps exist to help purge unwelcome chemicals from the interior of the cell. Cancer researchers have been very interested in finding ways to block MDR efflux pumps because tumors ramp them up dramatically to push chemotherapies out of cancer cells, foiling cancer therapy.
Much less is known about what the pumps do in normal cells. “We do know that if you block these pumps, cells are unable to clear toxic chemicals and problems ensue,” Rawls said. When Glafenine blocks the MDR efflux pumps in zebrafish, the gut responds with delamination, by means the researchers haven’t yet identified.
“We don’t know yet which cells leave and why,” Espenschied said. “What separates that cell from its neighbors is a really fascinating question that we don’t know the answer to yet.”
“Delamination is a common solution to a lot of different insults,” Rawls said. “But it’s been challenging to understand if that is contributing to damage and disease, or a beneficial adaptation to the insult. Our work shows that it’s actually beneficial.”
The patients who were prescribed cholesterol-lowering statins had at least double the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes, suggests a study.
The study published in the ‘Diabetes/Metabolism Research and Reviews’ analyzed health records and other data from patients to provide a real-world picture of how efforts to reduce heart disease may be contributing to another major medical concern, said Victoria Zigmont, who led the study.
Researchers found that statin users had more than double the risk of diabetes diagnosis compared to those who didn’t take the drugs. Those who took the cholesterol-lowering drugs for more than two years had more than three times the risk of diabetes.
“The fact that increased duration of statin use was associated with an increased risk of diabetes — something we call a dose-dependent relationship — makes us think that this is likely a causal relationship,” Zigmont said.
“That said, statins are very effective in preventing heart attacks and strokes. I would never recommend that people stop taking the statin they’ve been prescribed based on this study, but it should open up further discussions about diabetes prevention and patient and provider awareness of the issue.”
Researchers also found that statin users were 6.5 per cent more likely to have a troublingly high HbA1c value, a routine blood test for diabetes that estimates average blood sugar over several months.
The study included 4,683 men and women who did not have diabetes, were candidates for statins based on heart disease risk and had not yet taken the drugs at the start of the study.
About 16 per cent of the group — 755 patients — were eventually prescribed statins during the study period, which ran from 2011 until 2014. Participants’ average age was 46.
Randall Harris, a study co-author and professor of medicine, said that the results suggested that individuals taking statins should be followed closely to detect changes in glucose metabolism and should receive special guidance on diet and exercise for prevention.
Zigmont was careful to take a wide variety of confounding factors into account in an effort to better determine if the statins were likely to have caused diabetes, she said. That included gender, age, ethnicity, education level, cholesterol and triglyceride readings, body mass index, waist circumference and the number of visits to the doctor.
Ingredients- Water, Soy Protein Concentrate, Coconut Oil, Sunflower Oil, Natural Flavors, 2% or less of: Potato Protein, Methylcellulose, Yeast Extract, Cultured Dextrose, Food Starch Modified, Soy Leghemoglobin, Salt, Soy Protein Isolate, Mixed Tocopherols (Vitamin E), Zinc Gluconate, Thiamine Hydrochloride (Vitamin B1), Sodium Ascorbate (Vitamin C), Niacin, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (Vitamin B6), Riboflavin (Vitamin B2), Vitamin B12.
It’s mostly soy, and that is problematic as soy is not fit for human consumption;
Soy foods contain trypsin inhibitors that inhibit protein digestion and adversely affect pancreatic function. In test animals, diets high in trypsin inhibitors led to stunted growth and pancreatic disorders. Soy foods increase the body’s requirement for vitamin D, needed for strong bones and normal growth. Phytic acid in soy foods results in reduced bioavailability of iron and zinc which are required for the health and development of the brain and nervous system. Soy also lacks cholesterol, likewise essential for the development of the brain and nervous system. Megadoses of phytoestrogens in soy formula have been implicated in the current trend toward increasingly premature sexual development in girls and delayed or retarded sexual development in boys. A recent study found that women with the highest levels of estrogen in their blood had the lowest levels of cognitive function; in Japanese Americans tofu consumption in mid-life is associated with the occurrence of Alzheimer’s disease in later life. Soy isoflavones are phyto-endocrine disrupters. At dietary levels, they can prevent ovulation and stimulate the growth of cancer cells. As little as four tablespoons of soy per day can result in hypothyroidism with symptoms of lethargy, constipation, weight gain and fatigue.
Twice in June, ingredients used by both of America’s most popular plant-based meat companies were called into question.
On June 21, a consumer interest group issued concerns around one of the ingredients in Beyond Meat’s production process. And earlier in June, the World Health Organization said that eating heme—a main ingredient in the Impossible Foods burger—is linked with the formation of carcinogens in the gut.So far, both companies have weathered the criticism. But increased scrutiny of Beyond Meat and Impossible Foods’ meat alternatives poses a big question for all companies offering substitutes to edible animal flesh. How do they truthfully and thoughtfully communicate what they are making—highly processed food—to consumers who are invested in their social missions, yet dubious of food that humans have tinkered with?
While plant-based meat companies are ultimately making processed foods, their marketing is more in line with natural, organic offerings. “I was encouraging the plant-based companies to recognize this a couple years ago,” says Jack Bobo, a food technology consultant who works with companies making meat alternatives.
At the time, the companies didn’t seem to consider the fact that groups opposed to genetically-modified and processed foods would eventually come after them. “They often tried to position themselves as being in the organic, gluten-free, natural product space,” Bobo says.
Now, Beyond Meat and Impossible Foods are increasingly facing questions around how their products are made. The first backlash arguably hit in 2018, when the US Food and Drug Administration expressed concern over a key ingredient in the Impossible Foods burger. The company uses genetically modified yeast to produce the soy leghemoglobin, or “heme,” that gives its burger a meat-like flavor. The agency later gave the company its nod of approval.
Others are concerned that leghemoglobin—again, a new ingredient in the food supply, since humans don’t typically eat soy roots—hasn’t gone through enough testing to prove it’s safe, and agree with the FDA that Impossible Foods’ GRAS notification came up short. “The point of some of us that are being critical of this is not that everything that’s engineered is unsafe or anything like that,” says Michael Hansen, senior staff scientist at the Consumers Union, which was also not involved in the FOIA. “It’s like, look, any new food ingredient, some new food additive, of course it should go through a safety assessment process. Ingredients include wheat protein, to give the burger that firmness and chew. And potato protein, which allows the burger to hold water and transition from a softer state to a more solid state during cooking. For fat, Impossible Foods uses coconut with the flavor sucked out. And then of course you need the leghemoglobin for heme, which drives home the flavor of “meat.
An even newer category of meat alternative companies would do well to pay attention. Cell-cultured meat producers like JUST, Aleph Farms, and Memphis Meat make animal protein that doesn’t require the slaughtering of animals. If the plant-based meat concerns catch enough public attention, they rusk hurting the perception of all meat alternatives—including the cell-cultured products that haven’t even hit the market. “Anybody can poison the well for everybody,” says Bobo.
Some cell-cultured food companies are tackling their messaging even before products hit shelves. “We spend a lot of time trying to make sure everyone understands what we’re doing,” says Mike Selden, the co-founder of cell-cultured fish company Finless Foods. “There’s just too many people and they don’t all go for the same news sources and channels of communication.” But some messaging has to wait. “No matter what a lot of our communication is going to be right at the endpoint of use, like in the restaurant on the menu, and what it tastes like.”
As Bobo explains, how people use language around their products matter, especially when consumers are shopping and eating in an environment in which there’s suspicion (much of it scientifically unwarranted) around genetically-modified ingredients and the health impacts of processed foods. For these meat alternative companies, the issue boils down to how they truthfully and thoughtfully communicate what they’re making.
So far, though, the plant-based alternatives have demonstrated a winning playbook. Beyond Meat’s stock price has climbed more than 129% since its initial public offering in early May, from an opening price of $25 per share to $154.13 when the US markets opened Friday (June 28).
Beyond Meat’s stock has only hit small road bumps—when Nestlé announced plans to launch a veggie burger in the US this fall, when both Perdue Farms and Tyson Foods touted intentions to sell hybrid plant-meat products later this year, and when a story broke that grocery store chains are still mulling whether plant-based burgers should be sold in the meat aisle instead of the specialty foods section.
From the perspective of cell-cultured meat companies, that early resilience could even make it easier to enter the market. Bruce Friedrich runs The Good Food Institute, a non-profit that represents, supports, and sometimes lobbies on behalf of both plant-based meat companies and startups working on cell-cultured meat.
“The more we can get the conventional meat industry normalizing eating plant-based meats the better,” says Friedrich. “All of that will help make mainstream the idea of cell-based meats as an alternative to meat.”
Honestly, Just Use Garlic Powder I came across this article that says we should give up the hassle of chopping garlic and just use garlic powder. White there are several dishes where garlic granules (I like the texture and flavor way better from granules) are better we difinetly need to use fresh garlic often for it’s health benefits.
Garlic Contains Compounds With Potent Medicinal Properties– Garlic is a plant in the Allium (onion) family. Scientists now know that most of its health benefits are caused by sulfur compounds formed when a garlic clove is chopped, crushed or chewed. Perhaps the most famous of those is known as allicin. However, allicin is an unstable compound that is only briefly present in fresh garlic after it’s been cut or crushed. Other compounds that may play a role in garlic’s health benefits include diallyl disulfide and s-allyl cysteine. The sulfur compounds from garlic enter the body from the digestive tract and travel all over the body, where it exerts its potent biological effects.
Garlic is a plant in the onion family that’s grown for its distinctive taste and health benefits. It contains sulfur compounds, which are believed to bring some of the health benefits.
2. Garlic Is Highly Nutritious But Has Very Few Calories Calorie for calorie, garlic is incredibly nutritious. A 1-ounce (28-gram) serving of garlic contains: Manganese: 23% of the RDA, Vitamin B6: 17% of the RDA,Vitamin C: 15% of the RDA, Selenium: 6% of the RDA, Fiber: 0.6 grams, Decent amounts of calcium, copper, potassium, phosphorus, iron and vitamin B1. Garlic also contains trace amounts of various other nutrients. In fact, it contains a little bit of almost everything you need. This comes with 42 calories, 1.8 grams of protein and 9 grams of carbs.
3. Garlic Can Combat Sickness, Including the Common Cold– Garlic supplements are known to boost the function of the immune system.One large, 12-week study found that a daily garlic supplement reduced the number of colds by 63% compared to a placebo. The average length of cold symptoms was also reduced by 70%, from 5 days in the placebo group to just 1.5 days in the garlic group. Another study found that a high dose of aged garlic extract (2.56 grams per day) reduced the number of days sick with cold or flu by 61%.
4. The Active Compounds in Garlic Can Reduce Blood Pressure– Cardiovascular diseases like heart attacks and strokes are the world’s biggest killers.High blood pressure, or hypertension, is one of the most important drivers of these diseases. Human studies have found garlic supplements to have a significant impact on reducing blood pressure in people with high blood pressure. In one study, 600–1,500 mg of aged garlic extract was just as effective as the drug Atenolol at reducing blood pressure over a 24-week period. Supplement doses must be fairly high to have the desired effects. The amount needed is equivalent to about four cloves of garlic per day.
5. Garlic Improves Cholesterol Levels, Which May Lower the Risk of Heart Disease– Garlic can lower total and LDL cholesterol. For those with high cholesterol, garlic supplements appear to reduce total and/or LDL cholesterol by about 10–15%. Looking at LDL (the “bad”) and HDL (the “good”) cholesterol specifically, garlic appears to lower LDL but has no reliable effect on HDL . High triglyceride levels are another known risk factor for heart disease, but garlic seems to have no significant effects on triglyceride levels .
6. Garlic Contains Antioxidants That May Help Prevent Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia– Oxidative damage from free radicals contributes to the aging process. Garlic contains antioxidants that support the body’s protective mechanisms against oxidative damage. High doses of garlic supplements have been shown to increase antioxidant enzymes in humans, as well as significantly reduce oxidative stress in those with high blood pressure . The combined effects on reducing cholesterol and blood pressure, as well as the antioxidant properties, may reduce the risk of common brain diseases like Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.
7. Eating Garlic May Help Detoxify Heavy Metals in the Body– At high doses, the sulfur compounds in garlic have been shown to protect against organ damage from heavy metal toxicity. A four-week study in employees of a car battery plant (excessive exposure to lead) found that garlic reduced lead levels in the blood by 19%. It also reduced many clinical signs of toxicity, including headaches and blood pressure. Three doses of garlic each day even outperformed the drug D-penicillamine in reducing symptoms.
8. Garlic Is Easy to Include in Your Diet and Tastes Absolutely Delicious– The last one is not a health benefit, but is still important. Garlic is very easy (and delicious) to include in your current diet. It complements most savory dishes, particularly soups and sauces. The strong taste of garlic can also add a punch to otherwise bland recipes. Garlic comes in several forms, from whole cloves and smooth pastes to powders and supplements like garlic extract and garlic oil. However, keep in mind that there are some downsides to garlic, such as bad breath. There are also some people who are allergic to it. If you have a bleeding disorder or are taking blood-thinning medications, talk to your doctor before increasing your garlic intake. A common way to use garlic is to press a few cloves of fresh garlic with a garlic press, then mix it with extra virgin olive oil and a bit of salt. This a healthy and super satisfying dressing.
The Bottom Line– For thousands of years, garlic was believed to have medicinal properties. Science has now confirmed it. HEALTHLINE CHALLENGES
Belgium’s Royal Academy of Medicine recommended last week that children, teens, pregnant women and nursing mothers do not follow a vegan diet.
An estimated 3% of Belgian children follow this type of vegetarianism that excludes meat, eggs, dairy products and all other animal-derived ingredients, according to the academy’s statement. The eating plan is “restrictive,” creates “unavoidable” nutritional shortcomings and, if not properly monitored, could lead to deficiencies and stunted development, the academy said.
The medical opinion was requested by a representative of a national human rights organization, who sought guidance for pediatricians and other health care workers. The Royal Academy of Medicine functions as an advisory agency for Belgium’s government institutions.
Dr. Georges Casimir, a pediatrician at Queen Fabiola Children’s Hospital and head of the commission appointed by the academy to study the issue of veganism, discouraged the diet for children and pregnant women due to the possibility of “irreversible” harms. A potential health issue caused by a vegan diet is a lack of sufficient proteins and essential fatty acids for the developing brain.
Vitamins, including essential ingredients such as D and B12, calcium or even trace elements and nutrients essential for proper development are “absent from this diet,” according to a statement from Casimir.
Change your diet to combat climate change in 2019
Isabelle Thiebaut, a co-author of the opinion and president of an European organization for dieticians, said that it is important to explain to parents about “weight-loss and psychomotor delays, undernutrition, anemia” and other possible nutritional shortfalls caused by a vegan diet for children. If parents do not follow the new recommendation, children who continue to follow a vegan diet should receive supplements, medical followup and regular blood tests, according to the academy.