Products
View All Products

Alotin HA
TrueOmega3
TrueLife PB

Powered by WordPress

November 25, 2014

Optimal Level of Selenium Linked to Decrease in Depressive Symptoms

Filed under: Antioxidants — Emma @ 2:46 pm
Emma
Emma McGowan NatureCity author & contributor

Selenium is a trace mineral that plays a key role in metabolism, reproduction, DNA synthesis and protection from oxidative damage. A recent study suggests that maintaining the optimal levels of selenium may help improve mood and be associated with a lower risk of depressive symptoms in young adults.

Participants in the study included 978 people between the ages of 17 and 25 who recorded their negative and positive mood every day for 13 days, using an Internet diary. The researchers also examined serum selenium concentrations using inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry.

The researchers found that the selenium intake associated with the lowest occurrence of depressive symptoms were between 82 and 85 micrograms per day. They also discovered that the association was “U shaped,” meaning participants with the lowest and highest average levels exhibited noticeably higher depressive symptoms than those in the middle range.

Researchers from the Nutrition and Metabolism Center at the Children’s Hospital Oakland Research Institute conducted the study. It was published on November 5, 2014, in The Journal of Nutrition.

Selenium is an essential mineral that works as an antioxidant. Previous studies have shown that maintaining sufficient levels of selenium is important for reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease and immune dysfunction.

Selenium is also the only mineral the FDA has approved for a qualified health claim for general cancer reduction incidence.

Some foods rich in selenium are Brazil nuts, mushrooms, garlic, sunflower seeds, walnuts, raisins, pork and fish.



November 24, 2014

Higher PUFA Levels Associated With Stronger Muscles

Filed under: Omega-3 — Sarah @ 2:40 pm
Sarah
Sarah McGowan-Freije, NatureCity author & contributor

As we age, it becomes harder for our bodies to create and maintain strong muscles. A recent study suggests that increasing levels of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) such as omega 3s may be associated with larger muscles and further knee extension in mature adults.

Participants in the study included 836 adults between the ages of 66 and 96. The researchers followed them for an average of 5.2 years. The researchers measured PUFA levels at the onset of the study.

After testing various measures of muscle size and strength, the researchers found that higher PUFA levels at the beginning of the study period were associated with both bigger muscles and further knee extension strength. When they looked at individual PUFAs, they discovered an association between higher levels of arachnidonic acid and smaller muscles, while higher levels of alpha-linolenic acids (ALA) were associated with greater knee extension strength.

Additionally, higher levels of alpha-linolenic acid were associated with lower levels of intermuscular fat tissue. Higher levels of EPA, however, were associated with higher levels of intermuscular fat tissue. Previous studies have shown an association between high levels of intermuscular fat tissue and lower muscle strength.

Researchers from the US National Institute on Aging, the VU University Medical Center in the Netherlands, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, the Icelandic Heart Association Research Institute, and the University of Iceland conducted the study. It was published online ahead of print on October 29, 2014, in The Journal of Nutrition.

Omega-3s are a great source of PUFAs. They have been linked to a number of health benefits, including alleviating arthritis pain, improved mood, improved joint mobility, helping with age related macular degeneration, and aiding your immune system.

Because omega-3 fatty-acids are not found naturally in the human body, it is especially important to make sure that they are a part of your daily diet. Oily, dark fish such as tuna and salmon are high in omega-3s.

Alpha-lipoic acid is an antioxidant that previous studies have linked with improvements in symptoms of diabetes. It can be found in yeast, liver, kidney, spinach, broccoli, and potatoes.



November 21, 2014

High Protein Diet May Increase Metabolism and Create Lean Muscle Mass

Filed under: Uncategorized — Emma @ 5:51 pm
Emma
Emma McGowan NatureCity author & contributor

Athletes and dieters have utilized high-protein diets for years in order to boost muscle recovery and aid in weight loss. A recent study adds further scientific support to this move, finding that eating a protein-rich diet may increase lean muscle mass by as much as 45% and improve metabolism.

Participants in the study included 16 healthy adults. Over the course of eight weeks they were assigned excess calories diets that contained 5%, 15%, or 25% protein. In order to measure metabolic rate, the researchers looked at diet-induced thermogenesis (DIT), which they measured over four hours by indirect calorimetry after meals. They also measured excess calorie storage and body composition.

The researchers found that the high protein diet (25%) was associated with short-term changes in DIT but that no alteration occurred over a longer period of time. They also found that the increase in metabolism seen in the high protein group was not sustained once the participants returned to a normal protein diet.

Participants who ate high and normal levels of protein stored 45% of the excess calories as lean muscle, while the low protein group stored 95% as fat.

Researchers from Pennington Biomedical Research Center led the study. It was presented at the Obesity Society’s annual Obesity Week meeting on November 6, 2014.

Protein functions as a building block for bones, muscles, cartilage, skin, and blood. It is also a building block for enzymes, hormones, and vitamins. To get the optimal benefit from protein, it’s important to choose the right type. Some good sources of animal protein include fish, poultry, and lean meat. In addition, previous studies have found that proteins from dairy are especially good for building muscle mass.



November 20, 2014

Green Tea Linked to Improved Blood Pressure in Non-Smokers

Filed under: Antioxidants — Emma @ 3:04 pm
Emma
Emma McGowan NatureCity author & contributor

Studies examining the association between blood pressure and tea have come back with inconsistent results. A recent study sought to address that issue and found that green tea may help control blood pressure in non-smokers.

Participants in the study included 1109 Chinese men and women who took part in the Jiangsu Nutrition Study between 2002 and 2007. The researchers took blood pressure measurements at the onset and conclusion of the study. They assessed both black and green tea consumption in a follow-up survey in 2007.

After examining the data, the researchers discovered that both total tea and green tea consumption were inversely associated with smaller increases in diastolic but not systolic blood pressure. Specifically, drinking at least 10g per day of total tea daily was associated with a 2.41mmHg lower increase in diastolic blood pressure compared to those who did not drink tea. Drinking the same amount of green tea daily was associated with a 3.68 mmHg lower increase.

The same effects were not seen for black tea alone nor for smokers.

Researchers from the University of Adelain in Australia and the Jiangsu Provincial Center for Disease Control and Prevention in China conducted the study. It was published on October 14, 2014, in Nutrition Journal.

Green tea has been linked in previous studies with numerous health benefits. These benefits are usually attributed to the high level of powerful antioxidants found in green tea called polyphenols, which have been shown to promote weight loss, improve heart health, aid in digestion and decrease the risk of neurodegenerative diseases.



November 19, 2014

Probiotics May Improve the Effects of Prebiotics

Filed under: Probiotics — Sarah @ 4:38 pm
Sarah
Sarah McGowan-Freije, NatureCity author & contributor

Prebiotics serve as food for probiotics, which are best known for improving gut health. A recent study suggests that taking a specific probiotic strain may boost the effects of prebiotics, compared to taking just prebiotics.

Gut populations of beneficial microbes show a marked decline as we age. For their study, the researchers recruited six healthy mature adults. They were given 10 million colony-forming units per day of BC30 probiotic supplements. The researchers then took fecal samples from the volunteers to test in single stage batch culture anaerobic fermenters. They were then exposed to two different prebiotics: galactooligosaccharides and fructooligosaccharides.

The researchers found that beneficial bacteria, including Faecalibacterium prausnitzii, Clostridium litusburense and Bacillus spp., increased more in the fecal samples of participants exposed to the prebiotics, when compared with the placebo.

Researchers from The University of Reading of the UK conducted the study. It was published online ahead of print on September 16, 2014, in the journal Anearobe.

Prebiotics are nondigestible carbohydrates that nourish probiotics. Probiotics are most commonly linked to improving digestion and gut health, however they have also been shown to have other health benefits, including supporting a stronger immune system, and a reduced risk of chronic disease.

Probiotics can be found naturally in many foods, such as yogurt, milk and sauerkraut. You may also consider taking a high quality supplement but make sure it is packaged to block light, air and moisture, which can easily kill probiotics.



November 18, 2014

Pre-Breakfast Drink with Whey and Guar May Help Manage Blood Sugar Markers

Filed under: Lifestyle — Sarah @ 7:37 pm
Sarah
Sarah McGowan-Freije, NatureCity author & contributor

Previous studies have shown that large preloads of protein and fat can lower blood sugar levels after a carbohydrate-rich meal in diabetics. However this also adds a lot of calories to the diabetics’ diet. A recent study suggests that drinking a low-calorie beverage consisting of whey and guar proteins before a carbohydrate-rich breakfast may help lower blood glucose levels of pre-diabetics and type diabetics.

Participants in the study included 11 confirmed pre-diabetics and 13 type-2 diabetics. They consumed an 80-calorie, 50 g protein fiber mix or a placebo of water before breakfast every day for five days. The supplement contained 17 g of whey protein, 3 g lactose, 5 g guar, and 1 g of flavor material. The breakfast each day was two slices of bread for the women (three slices for the men) with margarine and jam.

In order to test blood sugar levels, the researchers did four finger prick tests per day.

At the conclusion of the study, the researchers found that the protein group had slower gastric emptying, increased insulin, and lower glucose by approximately 3 mmol/L. Peak fingerprick glucose was reduced by 2.1 mmol/L at 45 min. Average fingerprick glucose over 3 hours was reduced by 0.8 mmol/L

Researchers from the University of South Australia and the Baker IDI Heart and Diabetes Institutes conducted the study. It was published on October 25, 2014, in Nutrition Journal.

Whey protein is one of the two proteins found in milk, but is only approximately 1% of the composition of milk. It is obtained as a byproduct of cheese making and can be purchased in powder form from health food stores. Additionally, it can be found in ricotta cheese, which is one of the only cheeses that do not have the whey removed, and also in yogurt.

Guar is a bean protein that consists of more than 75% dietary fiber. It is rich in vitamin C, vitamin K, manganese, vitamin A, dietary fiber, iron, and potassium.



November 17, 2014

Vegan Diets May be Best for Weight Loss

Filed under: Diet & Weight loss — Emma @ 8:18 pm
Emma
Emma McGowan NatureCity author & contributor

Weight loss can be a difficult task, and there are many different methods to try. A recent study suggests that a vegan diet may be the best diet for weight loss.

Participants in the study included 63 people between the ages of 18 and 65 with BMIs between 25.0 and 29.9 kg/m2. Of those initial participants, 76% completed the trial.

The participants were instructed to follow one of five diets for six months: vegan (no animal products), semi-vegetarian (occasional meat), pesco-vegetarian (no meat except seafood), vegetarian (no meat), and omnivorous, which had no exclusions.

The researchers noted that the vegan group showed the most weight loss at the two and six month mark. Their weight loss was on average 4.3% higher than any of the other groups at 16.5 pounds. They also had lower levels of fat and saturated fat, lower BMIs, and improved macro nutrients when compared with the other groups.

The researchers also noted that the vegan group showed all of these improvements despite the fact that they consumed more carbohydrates that rate low on the glycemic index compared with the other groups.

Researchers from the University of South Carolina conducted the study. It was published online ahead of print on October 17, 2014, in the journal Nutrition.

Previous research has linked vegan diets with combating cancer and better overall health. If you’re interested in converting to a vegan diet, consult a nutritionist to make sure you’re getting all of the proper nutrients. Many vegans choose to supplement their diets with high quality supplements.



November 14, 2014

Omega-3 Fatty Acids May Reduce Nicotine Cravings

Filed under: Omega-3 — Sarah @ 9:19 am
Sarah
Sarah McGowan-Freije, NatureCity author & contributor

Cigarette smoking reduces the levels of omega-3 in the brain. Omega-3 deficiency makes it harder for the smoker’s body to overcome it’s craving for another cigarette. A recent study suggests that omega-3 supplements may reduce nicotine cravings, and may help smokers reduce the number of cigarettes they smoke.

Participants in the study included 48 smokers between the ages of 18 and 45 who smoked at least 10 cigarettes per day during the previous year and an average of 14 per day at the beginning of the study. The average age they started smoking was under 18 and the average age at the time of the study was 29, which means they had been smoking for an average of 11 years.

Over the course of thirty days, half of the group took five omega-3 capsules that contained 2710 mg of EPA and 2040 mg of DHA while the other half took a placebo.

The researchers measured levels of nicotine cravings and cigarette consumption including lack of control over tobacco use, anticipation of relief and satisfaction from smoking, and number of cigarettes smoked each day. These were assessed by asking the participants to not smoke for two hours and then exposing them to smoking-related images at the beginning of the study, after 30 days, and after 60 days (30 days after treatment ended).

The researchers found no difference between the omega-3 and the placebo group at the beginning of the study. However, at the thirty-day mark, the supplement group had reduced their cigarette consumption by an average of two per day (11% decrease), even though they hadn’t been asked to change their habits. They also had noticeable reductions in nicotine cravings. At the 60-day mark, 30 days after finishing the treatment, there was a slight increase in nicotine cravings but it was still significantly lower than pre-treatment levels.

The placebo group showed no changes.

Researchers from the University of Haifa in Israel conducted the study. It was published online ahead of print on June 4, 2014, in the Journal of Psychopharmacology.

DHA and EPA are the two omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil. Omega-3s have been linked to a number of health benefits, including improved joint mobility, helping with age related macular degeneration, better moods, and aiding your immune system.

Because omega-3 fatty-acids are not found naturally in the human body, it is especially important to make sure that they are a part of your daily diet. Oily, dark fish such as tuna and salmon are high in omega-3s. If you don’t like fish, consider taking a daily high quality non-fish supplement that has been tested for purity and potency.



November 13, 2014

Resveratrol May Help Improve Bone Health in Men

Filed under: Resveratrol — Sarah @ 4:53 pm
Sarah
Sarah McGowan-Freije, NatureCity author & contributor

Metabolic syndrome is associated with low-grade inflammation, which could potentially be harmful to bone health. A recent study suggest that supplements of resveratrol may help improve bone health by stimulating mineralization and bone formation in middle-aged men with metabolic syndrome.

Participants in the study included 74 men with an average age of 49 and an average body mass index (BMI) of 33.7. Over the course of 16 weeks, the men took either resveratrol supplements at 1000mg, 150mg, or a placebo daily.

At the conclusion of the study, the researchers noted significant improvements in bone alkaline phosphatase levels in the high resveratrol group when compared with the placebo. Levels of bone alkaline phosphatase increase when bones are growing or bone cells are active.

Additionally, both resveratrol groups had significant improvements in lumbar spine trabecular volumetric bone mineral density, with the higher dose correlating with greater improvements.

Researchers from Aarhus University Hospital in Denmark conducted the study. It was published online ahead of print on October 16, 2014, in The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.

Previous studies have shown resveratrol to be a powerful antioxidant with health benefits that include increasing energy levels, improving brain health, reducing the appearance of aging, improving metabolism, and improving liver function.

This antioxidant can be found in red wine, grapes, grape seed extract, and peanuts. A glass of red wine a day can provide a good amount of resveratrol, but excess drinking may counter balance the positive health benefits. Another good way to get resveratrol is through a high quality supplement.



November 12, 2014

Flavonoid-Rich Foods May Aid Healthy Aging in Women

Filed under: Flavonoids — Emma @ 7:55 pm
Emma
Emma McGowan NatureCity author & contributor

As our bodies age, they become more susceptible to chronic disease and health conditions. A recent study suggests that eating more flavonoid-rich foods may help women increase the probability of healthy aging.

Participants in the study included 13,818 women who took part in the Nurses’ Health Study from 1984-1986. All of them were in their late 50s at the onset of the study and none had chronic diseases. There was a follow up period of an average 15 years.

The researchers used food frequency questionnaires to determine that 1,517 of the women survived into their 70s and showed healthy aging, defined as “no major chronic disease or major impairments in cognitive or physical function or mental health.”

After examining the data, the researchers determined that the highest intakes of flavones, flavanones, anthocyanins, and flavonols increased the likelihood of healthy aging by 32%, 28%, 25%, and 18%, respectively.

Researchers from Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School, the French National Institute for Health and Medical Research, the University of Bordeaux, and the Harvard School of Public Health conducted the study. It was published in the December 2014 issue of The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Flavonoids are naturally occurring antioxidants which have previously been shown to decrease inflammation, protect our DNA from damage, and improve heart and brain health by increasing blood flow.

Foods high in flavonoids include citrus fruits, grapes, strawberries, tea, cooked greens and dark chocolate, all of which are can be easily incorporated into your daily diet.



Next Page »