Creation of US dietary guidelines correlate with rise in childhood obesity

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I was reading an article by Zoe Harcombe this morning where she covers why we eat carbohydrates. In the article she gives the year in which the United States started issuing dietary guidelines. It’s 1977 by the way. I had always thought the federal government’s involvement in the public school system, in particular the school lunch program, contributed to the rapid rise in childhood obesity. I found a chart on the CDC’s web site that tracks with the issuing of federal dietary guidelines.

When dietary guidelines were introduced in the US in 1977 and the UK in 1983, telling people to eat no more than 30% of their calories in the form of fat, this inevitably meant that people were being told to consume at least 55% of their calories in the form of carbohydrate. For the avoidance of doubt, the implication of setting a cap on fat was spelled out: “Increase carbohydrate consumption to account for 55 to 60% of calorie intake” (Ref 7).

The main reason we eat carbohydrates today, therefore, is because we were told to avoid fat. It was not because we had studied carbohydrates and found them to be optimally healthy at an intake of 55%. We had not even studied carbohydrates to know that they were safe at an intake of 55%. I can’t emphasise this point strongly enough. Our intake of carbohydrate is the consequence of demonising fat. However, official dietary advice doesn’t give this as the reason for eating carbs, as it hasn’t made this connection (Ref 8). Documents such as the Dietary Guidelines for Americans and the UK Eatwell Guide focus on telling you to eat carbohydrates rather than explaining why. 

Why we eat carbohydrates – Zoe Harcombe

In the chart you can clearly see from 1963 to about 1977 childhood obesity rates were relatively flat. Starting somewhere between 1976 and 1980 the rates increase dramatically. From around 5% in 1963 to 15% to over 20% by 2016. Is it just a coincidence that US dietary guidelines started at the same time the obesity rate skyrocketed? Correlation is not causation but this looks like pretty strong evidence to me.

Simple, Budget-Friendly Tips for Staying Healthy

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By Gabriel Patel of healthwise.com

If you’re like many other people right now, you’re open to trying any tricks or hacks that will cut costs. The good news is that you don’t have to sacrifice your healthy lifestyle to save money in your daily routine. You can actually improve your health, well-being, and financial standing all at the same time! Below, we share a few practical ways of getting healthy on a budget:

Save on keto.

It’s a myth that eating healthy is too expensive. There is no doubt that produce and meats are more expensive than their processed food counterparts, but when you consider the amount you have to spend to feel full and the costs associated with eating unbalanced meals (e.g., obesity, high cholesterol, chronic fatigue), the costs balance out.

Here are some ways you can save on a keto diet and still achieve the optimal healthy diet:

  • Buy in-season produce (check out the local farmer’s market).
  • Grow your own microgreens in your home.
  • Buy frozen fruits and vegetables (these are often picked and frozen at the perfect time retaining their wonderful nutrients).
  • Plan to eat most, if not all, of your meals at home.
  • Stick to simpler recipes with nutritional essentials.

Exercise for free.

Exercise does not have to come with a monthly fee. There are plenty of exercises that can be done outdoors like HIIT routines you get from the internet, recreational sports with friends, running, cycling, walking, and so forth. If you need to get in a quick indoor workout, you can do it using free videos, your body weight, and/or minimal equipment. Find what you love to do and there is sure to be a free version of it available!

Make money from your passion.   

It’s good for the soul to find an activity you love and do it regularly. Sure, work priorities and family obligations require time and energy, but you will find that if you invest time into what you love, everything else that seems tedious or overwhelming will be less so because you’ve filled your heart and mind with positive enjoyment.

While you’re at it, why not make some extra money by sharing what you love to do. For instance, if you love yoga, you can open a studio or start a YouTube channel to not only get in your practice but also share it with others and make some extra cash while doing so. If you are making lifestyle changes that are budget-friendly and find it invigorating, consider blogging about it and using affiliate marketing to make money off your recommendations.

If you do start a business, don’t let it become overwhelming by falling behind on some of the necessities to run it. Keep up on the collection of payments by using an invoice template that will allow you to create professional-grade invoices that fit your brand and use your logo. When you use the best invoice template, you can customize it as desired, and shoot it off to customers either before they receive the service or right after.

Reap the benefits.   

Eating well and exercising not only gives you immediate and long-term health benefits, but you will find that staying healthy will save you money in multiple areas of your life. Some insurance programs will give you rewards or cash for doing something you already do (e.g., going for a physical, achieving a certain number of steps during a certain period of time). Taking care of your body can prevent many physical ailments, resulting in less medical bills and long-term treatment costs.

If you learn how to cook superb meals at home, your dining out expenses will decrease, and you will find huge savings. Finally, if you are close enough to walk or cycle to work, school, grocery store, or any other errands, take the opportunity to both save on gasoline and get in a stellar workout.

Anything that you can do to cut costs and boost your health is a win. By implementing some of the tips above in your life, you can save big. Keep looking for other ways to combine physical and financial wellness in your life and enjoy the benefits!

Would you like to read more helpful content or access top-notch keto recipes? Visit KetoKooking.com today!

8 Mental Health Practices to Support the Keto Lifestyle

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Sheila Johnson of wellshelia.net

As critical as recipes and ingredients are to health and well-being, the keto way of life is not complete until you prioritize self-care. And we’re not talking about going to the spa now and then.

Self-care means fostering your overall wellness, and your mental health plays a crucial role. That’s why Keto Kooking has listed these eight creative ways to start boosting your mental health today!

1. Hit the books          

If you hate your job, you can give yourself a severe mental health boon by changing careers. Why not do something you’ve never done before? Whether it means working for another employer in a different industry or starting your own company, now could be the time for you to take the leap.

If you choose to go this route, you may need to pursue a degree in your desired field. Fortunately, online universities offer flexible programs that allow you to study at your own pace so that you can manage all of your other life responsibilities. Plus, online college is typically affordable.

2. Write to yourself

If you’re like most people, you have plenty of thoughts and emotions to express. One outlet is to write in a journal each day. Dedicate 10 or 15 minutes to write about whatever you want, and freely vent your emotions onto the page. You could even write about your self-care goals and the progress you’re making.

3. Make kindness rocks

Did you know that kindness rocks are not just for kids? Go outside and gather a few stones from your backyard. Then, draw fun images and write encouraging messages with a paint pen.

Once you have a few kindness rocks prepared, take a walk through the neighborhood and leave them on people’s doorsteps. Not only can this activity improve your neighbor’s day, but it can also boost your mental health!

4. Get plants         

Houseplants can go a long way in improving your home’s interior appeal. But they can also boost indoor air quality.

Air-purifying plants can boost well-being, enhance concentration, and even improve memory retention. Consider scattering some native houseplants in your home office and primary living areas.

5. Clean your house

Clutter and mess bring stress. Take a weekend to declutter your home and give it a thorough cleaning, and you will feel the stress and anxiety fall off your shoulders. While you’re at it, look for attractive storage solutions and develop a routine that helps you keep the clutter at bay.

6. Talk to people

As social beings, we thrive on human interaction. Isolating yourself can lead to severe mental health consequences, so be sure to prioritize your most important relationships. Carve out time to get lunch or coffee with your friends, and stay in touch with your loved ones, even if it’s through video chat.

7. Help others

No matter where you live, some charities are likely looking for volunteers. Whether it’s on a weekly or monthly basis, consider signing up to volunteer at your local soup kitchen, thrift shop, or homeless shelter. Giving your time and energy to help others in your community provides the opportunity to socialize, make new friends, and can add purpose and meaning to your life.

8. Pick up a paintbrush         

Art therapy comes with well-documented mental and emotional health benefits. If you’re dealing with excessive stress or anxiety, consider picking up drawing or painting as a hobby. Learning a new instrument will also do the trick if you are musically inclined!

If you want to optimize your keto lifestyle, now is the time to start practicing self-care. Consider the unique ideas above for boosting your mental health, and keep looking for other ways to prioritize your overall health and well-being. In no time, you’ll be less stressed, happier, and more productive.

Would you like to read more helpful content or access top-notch keto recipes? Visit KetoKooking.com today!

Image via (Pexels)

New study finds metabolism doesn’t change as previously thought

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I’m not sure what to make of this. I need someone more qualified to examine the study to make more sense of what the NYT is reporting. I thought some of this was already known. For example, metabolism changes with different stages of life. I’m not sure what they found is true across all populations though.

Central to their findings was that metabolism differs for all people across four distinct stages of life.

There’s infancy, up until age 1, when calorie burning is at its peak, accelerating until it is 50 percent above the adult rate.

Then, from age 1 to about age 20, metabolism gradually slows by about 3 percent a year.

From age 20 to 60, it holds steady.

And, after age 60, it declines by about 0.7 percent a year.

What We Think We Know About Metabolism May Be Wrong – The New York Times (nytimes.com)

I noticed my metabolism started to slow around age 35. What else would account for no change in diet and exercise but an increase in weight? My metabolism wasn’t measured it was just something I noticed so I changed my eating habits.

I hope this gets some scrutiny from metabolic health doctors and researchers I follow so I can get some trusted opinions.

High Fructose Corn Syrup may block Vitamin D increasing risk COVID-19 infection

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It’s increasingly clear that metabolic health and Vitamin D deficiency lead to more serious cases of COVID-19. Obviously I’m not a doctor but when I heard the information in this post I had to pass it along.

I ran across the following recording of Dr. Roger Seheult of MedCram.com. In this audio he explains how High Fructose Corn Syrup can block the Vitamin D in your body from being effective thereby hurting your immune system and leaving you possibly more susceptible to COVID-19.

Then I did a little searching and found this study from 2014 where they point out the same information.

… chronic intake of high levels of dietary fructose can lead to a decrease in circulating levels of 1,25(OH)2D3 independent of dietary Ca2+ levels and of physiological increases in Ca2+ requirement. This work is highly relevant since fructose, a sugar contained in many types of foods that are being consumed at high levels, may contribute to the increasing prevalence of vitamin D insufficiency…

nih.gov

Then I found the video mentioned in the audio clip by Dr. Seheult on YouTube where he goes more in depth about the effects of HFCS on Vitamin D.

Study: Metabolic Syndrome on the Rise

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Some of the unchanging facts during the COVID-19 pandemic is that most of the people that are having severe reactions and having difficulty recovering are those with metabolic syndrome.

What is metabolic syndrome?

Metabolic syndrome is a clustering of at least three of the five following medical conditions: abdominal obesity, high blood pressure, high blood sugar, high serum triglycerides, and low serum high-density lipoprotein (HDL).

Wikipedia

If you are suffering from these illnesses you are at a higher risk of death from COVID-19 than the rest of the population.

Some components of metabolic syndrome, such as obesity and hypertension, are associated with more severe COVID-19. Separately, research shows higher rates of infection, hospitalization, and deaths from COVID-19 among some racial and ethnic groups.

For example, hospitalization rates for COVID-19 among Blacks and Hispanics are four to five times higher than for non-Hispanic white people. Health disparities associated with COVID-19 may reflect a complex combination of elements — not just age and chronic medical conditions, but also genetic, social, environmental, and occupational factors. Similar factors probably play a role in why metabolic syndrome affects, and is rising in, some groups more than others. This is an area of active (and much needed) research.

Harvard

This latest study from Harvard shows that metabolic syndrome is on the rise and is especially escalating in women, Asians, and Hispanics.

A new study explores how common metabolic syndrome is and who is getting it. Researchers analyzed survey data from more than 17,000 people who were representative of the US population in gender, race, and ethnicity. While the overall prevalence of metabolic syndrome increased slightly between 2011 and 2016 — going from 32.5% to 36.9% — it increased significantly among

women (from 31.7% to 36.6%)
adults ages 20 to 39 (from 16.2% to 21.3%)
Asian (from 19.9% to 26.2%) and Hispanic (from 32.9% to 40.4%) adults.

Harvard

One of the tools to reverse metabolic syndrome is to immediately lower your carbohydrate intake and the Keto Diet is a great way to accomplish that. Of course, always seek your doctor’s advice before making any changes in your diet.

Nearly 50% of Americans over 60 suffer from metabolic syndrome

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The bad news is way too many people suffer from metabolic syndrome. The good news is that it’s relatively easy to reverse. It starts with your diet and getting off the sugar/carbohydrate addiction.

As many as 37 percent of all American adults have metabolic syndrome, placing them at increased risk for heart disease and other health problems, according to a study published Tuesday by JAMA.

In addition, nearly half of all U.S. adults aged 60 years and older have the condition, the researchers said.

UPI.com

It sounds like a fad but eating a low carb high fat diet combined with intermittent fasting works miracles when it comes to getting your metabolic health in order. It’s easier than you think and doesn’t require any calorie counting or calorie restriction. When you cut out the sugars and the carbs and replace them with high quality proteins you’ll find you won’t need to eat as much or as often.

Poor metabolic health is the weakness that allows COVID-19 to kill

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It’s not the virus that is the big killer. It’s the virus plus the Standard American Diet (SAD). The US will suffer the most because we are the least metabolically healthy.

The map above shows where U.S residents are at increased risk for severe Covid-19 illness, compared with the national average. It is based on the estimated proportion of adults in each county who have one or more of these conditions: diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity, heart disease and chronic lung disease, using survey data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

A majority of patients hospitalized with Covid-19 in the New York City area, an early epicenter of the nation’s outbreak, had one or more underlying health conditions. Studies from the C.D.C. and others suggest that, once infected with the coronavirus, people with such conditions are at particular risk for severe illness, including hospitalization and death. The conditions do not on their own increase a person’s chance of catching the disease.

New York Times

The American diet and COVID-19 mortality

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The link between poor metabolic health and death from COVID-19 keeps cropping up in the news.

Doctors and scientists are discovering two common characteristics among many of those who are losing their battle with COVID-19 — they are overweight or obese and suffer from a chronic disease. Ninety four percent of deaths from COVID-19 are in those with an underlying age-related chronic disease, mostly caused by excess body fat.

COVID-19 has pulled back the curtain to reveal just how unhealthy we are as a nation. Only about 12 percent of Americans are metabolically healthy, without a large waist, high blood pressure, high blood sugar, or high cholesterol. The major driver of poor metabolic health, which increases the risk of hospitalization and death from COVID-19, is the nation’s diet — rich in starch, sugar, and processed foods

msn.com

The latest on COVID-19 and obesity

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According to the study authors, one way that obesity might increase the risk of severe COVID-19 involves respiratory dysfunction.

People with obesity are more likely to have higher resistance in their airways, lower lung volumes, and weaker respiratory muscles, which are critical in the defense against COVID-19. These factors make an individual more likely to develop pneumonia, and they place additional stress on the heart.

Medical News Today