Island Health Paradise

Living one day at a time-the Healthy Islander

Bad Days Cure

Posted by wellnesspartnersdotcom on January 19, 2009

Vitamins are very important for your health. Exercise is great! But that is not what I am going to speak about today. I believe the most important factor that influences our health and which we can control is not our diet or the supplements we take, but the way we think and the attitude we have.

That is why I have chosen to share the following video with you. It has a great encouraging message. Hope you enjoy. And you are very welcome to leave comments.

Have a nice weekend!



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Keep Tab of What You are Eating

Posted by maikeru76 on January 14, 2009

A new study, published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine on, has revealed the effectiveness of having a food journal as tool in losing extra weight. The study proponents, the Kaiser Permanente Center for Health Research, looked at the record and experiences of more than1,500 obese patients in their quest to lose their unhealthy extra poundage.

The strategies employed for the obese patients were lifestyle interventions like healthy eating, regular exercise, group sessions and keeping tab of what they eat through food journals. The patients who had food journals lost almost double than their counterparts who had none.

The average weight loss by participants as seen in the study was 13 pounds after five months. The food journaling group had lost almost double the average and the most significant thing was that they kept their weight off.

To have a journal might be an ‘inconvenient’ move for anyone wanting to lose weight. But as the study has shown, the ‘little things’ really do count. People don’t gain weight overnight. It is a process of bad habits snowballing until it gets really out of hand or out of our waistbands.

We have to stop our ‘excuses’ of us being overweight or obese like blaming our genes, lack of time, or simply it is really ‘inconvenient’ or ‘it takes time’ to eat right and exercise.

Which is more inconvenient, keeping the habit of being mindful of our activity levels and what we eat or having to dread the bad news from our doctor of our health deteriorating because of our bad habits?

Let us act now before the damage we have done to our bodies are irreversible.


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Alternative To Weight Loss Surgery?

Posted by maikeru76 on January 13, 2009

Courtesy of Ethicon Endosurgery, Inc., used wi...
Image via Wikipedia

The dream for all overweight and obese people to lose weight without surgery or having to go under a strict diet may come true…soon. Researchers from the company EnteroMedics has come up with a new technology and device called the VBLOC, which is an implant which blocks the hunger signal from the stomach. This blocking of the signal from the vagus nerve(located in the stomach) to the brain modifies the ‘hunger signal’ making a person eat less resulting in weight loss.

The device, which is under the final testing phase by the U.S. Food and Drugs Administration, has induced an average of 29.1 % reduction in weight in human study subjects, that figure is near the 30 % average weight reduction that results with gastric bypass and binding (weight loss surgery techniques currently available) but with far fewer complications.

Nausea has been the only side effect noted so far and EnteroMedics, manufacturers of the device, plan to perfect the technology so that a future device to be released may be passed through the esophagus thus eliminating surgical complications associated with present weight loss surgeries techniques such as gastric bypass and binding.

The final phase of testing with involve 300 people to further evaluate the technology and device’s safety and effectiveness.

The doctors and researchers involved in the study have expressed hope that this device would help stem the growing numbers of overweight and obese people in the U.S. “It is safe, effective and reversible.” said Henry Buchwald at the University of Minnesota (involved with the study).

If the technology and device would be deemed safe by the FDA, this might ultimately replace all other weight loss surgery techniques and would be prescribed for people who do not respond well to conventional weight loss techniques.


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Fruit Juice Linked to Type 2 Diabetes?

Posted by maikeru76 on January 10, 2009

I really love fruit juice (processed or home-made). There is an abundance of fruit here so it is really, really easy for me to prepare fruit crush or juice out of my favorite fruit, the pineapple.

I was browsing through my daily health news by email and then I find news like this one: Women who were followed for 18 years by a recently published study revealed that there was a higher risk (18% increase to be specific) of Type 2 diabetes among those who had an extra serving of fruit juice a day. What?! Run that to me again please.

Though the study cited it was done among women, I was definitely concerned for I am a heavy fruit juice drinker. I thought this was another instance of “confusing” health news being quite common nowadays.

I read through and found that there were positive news from the study such as the lower incidence of Type 2 diabetes among those who had at least 3 daily servings of fruit and vegetables. An 18% lower risk among those who had these servings and another 9% decrease for those who had an extra serving more of leafy vegetables.

Okay, the study proponents had a plausible explanation for this finding of linking fruit juice consumption to increased risk to Type 2 diabetes. Well, juice is really in liquid form and has concentrated with sugar (fructose and/or sucrose) and is absorbed quickly by the body. Thus, over time, drinking fruit juice might overwhelm and impair the capability of insulin to effectively transport sugar to the cells of the human body.

So its news to caution me on my affinity for fruit juice (drink moderately) and a reminder to us all to eat leafy veggies everyday.

I should take to drinking plain water more often. It has NO calories.


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Dairy Aids Weight Loss

Posted by maikeru76 on January 5, 2009

On a diet? You probably have cut back on your portions, calorie-heavy fare and carbohydrates especially sugary drinks and candy (like me). You may have to add one food group if you would want faster weight loss: Dairy.

Dairy products like milk and yogurt, especially the lower fat varieties, are rich sources of calcium, vitamin D, and vitamins (vitamin A and vitamin B-complex). The calcium in milk and dairy aids in burning off fat and controls the body from creating more fat from the food we eat.

A study done by researchers at the The University of Tennessee had confirmed the link of dairy consumption, specifically that of yogurt, with double-digit loss of body fat. The same study revealed that men who added 3 servings of low-fat yogurt to their daily diets, with regular exercise and healthy eating, lost an average of 61 % more body fat and 81% more abdominal (stomach area) fat than those who didn’t have yogurt in their diet.

Those are really good numbers I say and I would definitely add dairy products (the lower fat variety, of course) to my diet .


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Being Active May Lessen Cancer Risk

Posted by maikeru76 on January 4, 2009

A healthy active lifestyle brings a lot of benefits such as less stress, having a toned body and prevents life-threatening diseases like high blood pressure and diabetes. A recent study from Japan (July 10, 2008, Thursday), published in the American Journal of Epidemiology, found that active people had a lower risk of having cancer than their less active counterparts.

The study, done by the Japan Public Health Centre, involved a survey of 80,000 Japanese men and women between the ages of 45 and 74 in nine Japanese prefectures. The study concluded that the men in the active group had 13 percent less risk of developing cancer compared to their sedentary fellows. The women in the same study had 16 percent less risk as compared to the less active group. The study looked at overall daily activity not just exercise done as leisure activity.

There were trends also reported in the same study revealed colon, pancreatic and liver cancers as being more common among men and stomach cancer for women in Japan.

Being just more active everyday brings enough benefits. Small changes like walking more, taking the stairs, and doing medium to heavy household chores really do make a big difference.


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A Great Way to Get Around AND LOSE weight!

Posted by maikeru76 on January 2, 2009

Ever considered riding a bike to school, work, or just around the neighborhood? In Los Angeles, California USA, sales for bicycles has increased by 20% for the past month (June to July 2008 figures). With fuel prices no where close to falling to decent levels, people are increasingly heading to the nearest train station or bus stop to commute.

Did I mention, the bicycle store?

People are buying more bicycles (or freshening up what they have now) in LA . Sales for racks, fenders and other accessories for these two-wheelers are seeing an increasing trend. Riding bicycles are not for ‘health freaks’ nor for people on a shoestring budget anymore.

A really good ‘side-effect’ of riding a bike to wherever is that we expend calories in the process. It’s not rocket science really…Have you ridden a bike on a steep hill? You know what I am talking about. The amount of calories being used is really dependent on your level of exertion and body weight. Estimates for calorie expenditure on a bike hovers around 500-600 calories an hour…Talk about a fat-burning exercise with minimal stress on our knees.

So I am really thinking about getting a new bike and have cycling a part of my exercise program (I am currently brisk walking and jogging, with light weight training).

Getting around with a bicycle AND losing weight is just the right thing with fuel prices reaching record highs.

Get acquainted with practical and safety tips on the road with this clip:


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Non-prescription FDA-Approved Diet Aid, Has “Problems”?

Posted by maikeru76 on January 2, 2009

The first non-prescription diet aid approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration still has not performed as expected. The active ingredient of Alli, by GlaxoSmithKline, is Orlistat but it has half of the dose as compared to Xenical which is being manufactured by Roche Holdings.

As with Xenical, Alli prevents the absorption of fat in the intestines. The problem with this way of blocking the fat from food is that fat tends to pass through the intestines unexpectedly. There are lot of “situations” wherein users of the drug have had experiences leading to embarrassment for users.

To remedy this problem, both manufacturers have both issued warnings or contraindications about consumption of fatty food with the pills. In the case of Alli, the pill is being marketed with a kit that includes a healthy eating guide, food journal and calorie guide. The 60-pill kit retails at about $50 while the 90-pill pack retails at about $ 60. That translates, according to company representatives’ estimates, as $1.5 billion US dollars in annual projected earnings for Alli alone.

This might be good way to start for anyone (including myself) wanting to lose weight for fat contains 9 calories a gram compared to 4 calories a gram of protein or carbohydrates.

But I would really opt for the “smarter” way of doing losing weight. That is by eating right, having enough shut-eye, and effective stress management; that is, in my case, fitting exercise in my schedule. There are a lot of good and effective supplements out there too that would definitely work like green tea or green tea extracts.

I would not want to risk an “embarrasing situation” (if I took those diet pills) to spoil a date, business meeting or make me want to turn my back on my newly-formed good habits.


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Cholesterol Drugs for Kids?

Posted by maikeru76 on December 29, 2008

Children, as young as 8 years old, who are overweight are urged to have their cholesterol levels checked. This comes after the latest (July 07, 2008) American Academy of Pediatrics statement to see if these overweight children are already developing heart disease.

The test that is recommended is the fasting lipid profile where the measure of HDL (good cholesterol) and LDL (bad cholesterol) of an overweight child is known. It is definitely recommended to kids who are overweight or obese who have a family history of diabetes or high blood pressure. It is for overweight children with no known family history of the diseases mentioned.

Those overweight children who are found to be at greatest risk for cardiovascular (heart and blood vessels) problems may be prescribed treatment. This comes in the wake of the alarming statistics of the incidence of childhood obesity in the United States with 30 percent of American children in the obese category.

Doctors and researchers from the Academy of Pediatrics were quick to point out that a low-fat diet, regular exercise and other lifestyle modifications might be what the overweight or obese children only need to have their blood cholesterol levels be in normal or manageable levels. Those at greatest risk for the development of heart disease in their childhood may have to take cholesterol-lowering drugs (statins) in addition to lifestyle modification that have been prescribed by their respective pediatricians.

This is a sad development for children in America and in nations that have seen those overweight and obese on the rise. Sedentary lifestyles have seen even children having to take cholesterol-lower drugs of their elders.

It is not too late for kids to develop healthy habits now so that they may live more healthy and productive lives in the future.

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Move over Viagra, Levitra, Watermelon is up to Bat!

Posted by maikeru76 on July 7, 2008

Researchers at Texas A&M University, recently, have released a new study that finds watermelons having a compound that has the same effect as prescription medicines for erectile dysfunction(ED).

Watermelons were found to have a compound called citrulline that reacts with the human body’s natural enzymes relaxing the blood vessels. This effect can be seen also with medicines prescribed for erectile dysfunction(ED) such as Levitra and Viagra. Thus, raising the possibility that this compound might provide relief not only for ED but for high blood pressure due to its other cardiovascular benefits as other researchers and doctors in America are finding out.

Just don’t gorge on that watermelon yet. As everybody knows, eating too much of this fruit makes you go to the bathroom more often due to its diuretic effect. The study also found much of the citrulline in the rind of the watermelon. The kind of watermelon also counts for the amount of citrulline one could get; the yellow-fleshed varieties have the highest amount of citrulline.

Found in the flesh and rind of watermelons, citrulline reacts with the body’s enzymes when consumed in large quantities and is changed into arginine, an amino acid that benefits the heart and the circulatory and immune systems.

Citrulline has a reaction with our body’s enzymes, when you intake larger quantities of it, and it is converted into arginine. Arganine is an amino acid that is beneficial to the heart, circulatory and immune systems.

“Arginine boosts nitric oxide, which relaxes blood vessels, the same basic effect that Viagra has, to treat erectile dysfunction and maybe even prevent it,” said Bhimu Patil, a researcher and director of Texas A&M’s Fruit and Vegetable Improvement Center. “Watermelon may not be as organ-specific as Viagra, but it’s a great way to relax blood vessels without any drug side effects.”

As always with all early-phase studies, this is yet to be conclusive due to the fact that further studies are needed to confirm these amazing findings. What we could do for the time being to prevent or manage erectile dysfunction are preventive measures such as stress management, eating the right food, getting plenty of the right exercise and adding proven and safe supplements to our daily diet.

Someone did send me a link to a natural supplement site, I thought I would pass it on for review:

A natural way to battle Erectile Dysfuntion

Here is a vid on Watermelon and it’s ED effects:

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