Handy diet trick

alt  Do you often eat more than you should? Join the club. Many of us mindlessly munch out of habit or occasion (e.g., movies, parties). Even the repetitive motion of hand-to-mouth can take on a momentum all its own. 

Researchers at USC wanted to see if they could break up such unconscious eating behaviors by changing things up on study subjects who were habitual popcorn eaters -- simply by getting them to switch the hand with which they scoop their snack.


Metabolism Boosters


What Is Metabolism?
Metabolism is the process by which the body breaks down food to produce energy. When you’re young, muscle mass stores up energy, preventing weight gain.

However, with age, we lost that muscle, which gives way to more body fat. By the time you hit 40, your metabolism starts to slow down 5% every decade, making weight loss particularly challenging.
The goods news is you can beat this metabolic slowdown.

Here are some great tips from Dr. Oz’s 7-Day Miracle Plan to Boost Your Metabolism.


Can MSG make you fat?

  Mono-Sodium Glutamate Linked to Higher BMI

Mono-sodium glutamate (MSG) is a food additive used to enhance flavor, particularly in savory Asian dishes. While researchers remain split on whether MSG is one more factor contributing to obesity, a study from University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill (one of the universities connected to the North Carolina Research Campus) suggests there may indeed be a link.

The study published in Obesity examined MSG intake over 4 days among 368 Chinese women and 384 men, ages 40-59. MSG intake was then assessed against the subjects' weight as measured by the Body Mass Index (BMI). Even when numerous variables (e.g., exercise, calorie intake) were controlled, the trend analysis found that those who consumed the most MSG were 70% more likely to be overweight (with a BMI of 25 or greater).

Why might this be? Some researchers believe that the glutamate molecule blocks an area of the brain which regulates the secretion of leptin, thus potentially messing with satiety signals. While this theory remains controversial, there's no doubt that keeping food as real as possible -- fruit, veggies, beans, nuts and lean protein in their least processed form -- will maximize nutrition and minimize calories.

Also, keep in mind that MSG is a type of salt -- which in
excess may raise hypertensive risk. Indeed, the American Dietetic Association suggests that reducing salt intake by a mere 15% could save 9 million lives a year.  

Content provided by the Dole Nutrition Institute

Binge drinking increases bacterial count


Binge Drinking Increased Bacterial Counts 2,200%, Basic Study Found 

Eggnog for Christmas...champagne for New Year’s...and cocktails all around: If ever there was a season for over boozing it's the holidays. Of course, the same time frame is fraught with seasonal colds. Could there be a connection? New animal research suggests binge drinking may lower immunity overall -- particularly increasing vulnerability to foodborne bacteria.
A study published in Toxicological Sciences examined how alcohol affected the ability to fight off bacterial infection over a 72-hour period. Compared with those drinking water, mice on the equivalent of the holiday-cocktail-party-circuit had stomach bacterial counts that were 750% higher at 8 hours, and 2,200% higher at 24 hours.


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