Sunday, December 30, 2007
Closing out the books on 2007 and situating everything for '08? Here's a fantastic article from today's Boston Globe/Washington Post:
Saturday, December 29, 2007
Friday, December 28, 2007
Perseverance is a positive, active characteristic. It is not idly, passively waiting and hoping for some good thing to happen. It gives us hope by helping us realize that the righteous suffer no failure except in giving up and no longer trying. We must never give up, regardless of temptations, frustrations, disappointments, or discouragements.
Thursday, December 27, 2007
Wednesday, December 26, 2007
...substances that are naturally occurring only in plants. Some of them may provide health benefits beyond those provided by essential nutrients (vitamins and minerals). Eating a variety of colorful, nutrient-rich fruits and veggies has been associated with a lower risk of some chronic diseases such as cancer, diabetes, and heart disease. According to "Core Performance" nutritionist Amanda Carlson, phytonutrients (also called "Phytochemicals") may act like anti-oxidants to help protect and regenerate essential nutrients and/or work to deactivate cancer-causing substances.
Each fruit and veggie contains specific phytonutritent based on its color. The blue/purple group (think plums, grapes, raisins, blueberries, and blackberries) contains anthocyanins and phenolics which have been linked with attenuating the aging process.
More to come...
Monday, December 24, 2007
Thursday, December 20, 2007
Sunday, December 16, 2007
-Your system of blood vessels – arteries, veins and capillaries – is over 60,000 miles long. That's long enough to go around the world more than twice!
-The adult heart pumps about 5 quarts of blood each minute – approximately 2,000 gallons of blood each day – throughout the body.
-When attempting to locate their heart, most people place their hand on their left chest. Actually, your heart is located in the center of your chest between your lungs. The bottom of the heart is tipped to the left, so you feel more of your heart on your left side of your chest.
-The heart beats about 100,000 times each day.
-In a 70-year lifetime, the average human heart beats more than 2.5 billion times
-An adult woman’s heart weighs about 8 ounces, a man’s about 10 ounces
-A child’s heart is about the size of a clenched fist; an adult’s heart is about the size of two fists.
-Blood is about 78 percent water.
-Blood takes about 20 seconds to circulate throughout the entire vascular system.
-The structure of the heart was first described in 1706, by Raymond de Viessens, a French anatomy professor.
-The electrocardiograph (ECG) was invented in 1902 by Dutch physiologist Willem Einthoven. This test is still used to evaluate the heart’s rate and rhythm.
-The first heart specialists emerged after World War I.
Source: The Cleveland Clinic Heart & Vascular Institute
Thursday, December 13, 2007
Sunday, December 09, 2007
One of my fav. berries, blueberries are quite the antioxidant powerhouse. According to a recent strength & conditioning web site...
"Just a couple of years ago, the Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that people who ate one cup per day had a perpetual increase in the amount of antioxidants in their blood. Maintaining this physiologic state, they guessed, probably plays a big role in the prevention of cancer, cardiovascular disease, and degenerative eye diseases."
Saturday, December 08, 2007
Friday, December 07, 2007
Anyone who has trained with me knows how big I am into getting people to seek out leaner sources of protein. Fish is a huge staple in my diet (had 4 different types this week alone). The American Heart Association (AHA) has some interesting info. on their site. Check out the following article I found:
Fish and Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Omega-3 fatty acids benefit the heart of healthy people, and those at high risk of — or who have — cardiovascular disease.
We recommend eating fish (particularly fatty fish) at least two times a week. Fish is a good source of protein and doesn’t have the high saturated fat that fatty meat products do. Fatty fish like mackerel, lake trout, herring, sardines, albacore tuna and salmon are high in two kinds of omega-3 fatty acids, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA).
To learn about omega-3 levels for different types of fish — as well as mercury levels, which can be a concern — see our Encyclopedia entry on Fish, Levels of Mercury and Omega-3 Fatty Acids.
We also recommend eating tofu and other forms of soybeans, canola, walnut and flaxseed, and their oils. These contain alpha-linolenic acid (LNA), which can become omega-3 fatty acid in the body. The extent of this modification is modest and controversial, however. More studies are needed to show a cause-and-effect relationship between alpha-linolenic acid and heart disease.
The table below is a good guide to use for consuming omega-3 fatty acids.
Summary of Recommendations for Omega-3 Fatty Acid Intake
Patients without documented coronary heart disease (CHD) Eat a variety of (preferably fatty) fish at least twice a week. Include oils and foods rich in alpha-linolenic acid (flaxseed, canola and soybean oils; flaxseed and walnuts).
Patients with documented CHD Consume about 1 g of EPA+DHA per day, preferably from fatty fish. EPA+DHA in capsule form could be considered in consultation with the physician.
Patients who need to lower triglycerides 2 to 4 grams of EPA+DHA per day provided as capsules under a physician’s care.
Patients taking more than 3 grams of omega-3 fatty acids from capsules should do so only under a physician’s care. High intakes could cause excessive bleeding in some people.
In 1996 the American Heart Association released its Science Advisory, “Fish Consumption, Fish Oil, Lipids and Coronary Heart Disease.” Since then important new findings have been reported about the benefits of omega-3 fatty acids on cardiovascular disease. These include evidence from randomized, controlled clinical trials. New information has emerged about how omega-3 fatty acids affect heart function (including antiarrhythmic effects), hemodynamics (cardiac mechanics) and arterial endothelial function. These findings are outlined in our November 2002 Scientific Statement, “Fish Consumption, Fish Oil, Omega-3 Fatty Acids and Cardiovascular Disease.”
The ways that omega-3 fatty acids reduce CVD risk are still being studied. However, research has shown that they
decrease risk of arrhythmias, which can lead to sudden cardiac death
decrease triglyceride levels
decrease growth rate of atherosclerotic plaque
lower blood pressure (slightly)
What do epidemiological and observational studies show?
Epidemiologic and clinical trials have shown that omega-3 fatty acids reduce CVD incidence. Large-scale epidemiologic studies suggest that people at risk for coronary heart disease benefit from consuming omega-3 fatty acids from plants and marine sources.
The ideal amount to take isn’t clear. Evidence from prospective secondary prevention studies suggests that taking EPA+DHA ranging from 0.5 to 1.8 grams per day (either as fatty fish or supplements) significantly reduces deaths from heart disease and all causes. For alpha-linolenic acid, a total intake of 1.5–3 grams per day seems beneficial.
Randomized clinical trials have shown that omega-3 fatty acid supplements can reduce cardiovascular events (death, non-fatal heart attacks, non-fatal strokes). They can also slow the progression of atherosclerosis in coronary patients. However, more studies are needed to confirm and further define the health benefits of omega-3 fatty acid supplements for preventing a first or subsequent cardiovascular event. For example, placebo-controlled, double-blind, randomized clinical trials are needed to document the safety and efficacy of omega-3 fatty acid supplements in high-risk patients (those with type 2 diabetes, dyslipidemia, hypertension and smokers) and coronary patients on drug therapy. Mechanistic studies on their apparent effects on sudden death also are needed.
Increasing omega-3 fatty acid intake through foods is preferable. However, coronary artery disease patients may not be able to get enough omega-3 by diet alone. These people may want to talk to their doctor about taking a supplement. Supplements also could help people with high triglycerides, who need even larger doses. The availability of high-quality omega-3 fatty acid supplements, free of contaminants, is an important prerequisite to their use.
As always, limit the fish which contains higher levels of mercury (shark, King Mackerel, and tuna). I eat the latter once/week. Cheap source of quality protein.