Tag Archives: Health News

Jillian Michaels Finally Pops the Question to Heidi Rhoades

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image via E! News

Congratulations are in order! Long time couple and stars of the hit reality show Just Jillian Jillian Michaels and Heidi Rhoades are engaged!

The cameras were rolling when America’s toughest trainer popped the question in front of friends and family, starting with a heart felt video about their relationship and ending with Jillian on one knee, presenting an engagement ring to Heidi that matched one on Jillian’s own finger.

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FitBit’s Stock Falls Amid Lawsuits and Low Sales

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FitBit’s bad year just got a whole lot worse.

Amid lawsuits that the heart rate monitor mechanism on the FitBit was giving inaccurate readings, which then threw off other statistics like daily calorie burn, Fitbit‘s stock plunged almost 20% Tuesday February 23, 2016 after the company announced late Monday that sales and earnings for the first quarter would fall short of what analysts’ had projected.

FitBit reported strong holiday sales last year, but investors are growing increasingly concerned that Fitbit is just another flash in the pan fad, likening it to the GoPro, another form of wearable technology that at one point was the must-have camera, but quickly disappointed on Wall Street.

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KIND Snacks Petitions FDA to Redefine the Term “Healthy”

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KIND Snacks, with support from nutrition and public health experts, has filed a Citizen Petition urging the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) to update its regulations around using the term “healthy” in food labeling.

Currently, the FDA mandates that the term “healthy” only be used as a nutrient content claim reserved for foods with 3 grams or less total fat and 1 gram or less of saturated fat per serving. Fish and meat must have 5g or less total fat and 3g or less saturated fat per serving in order to use healthy as a nutrition content claim. This guideline was established over 20 years ago and KIND Founder and CEO Daniel Lubetzky claims that it’s outdated, excluding whole, nutrient-rich foods we know to have numerous health benefits like almonds, salmon, olive oil and avocados because of their naturally occurring higher fat content.

The policy effort, which cites evidence from multiple nutrition studies in addition to current federal Dietary Guidelines, is supported by a number of leading health and wellness experts including Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts and Connie Diekman, Registered Dietitian and former President of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

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The Biggest Loser Returns for Season 17 with Big Changes

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The Biggest Loser is back January 4, 2016 for its 17th season, but with a new host, a new gym and even a brand new logo, this season will be anything but business as usual.

America’s favorite trainers Dolvett Quince and Jen Widerstrom return this season to train eight teams of two contestants, all competing to shed the most weight for the $250,000 grand prize. Seven of the teams know each other well, with couplings including spouses, parents and adult children, siblings, and best friends, all looking to improve their lives and heal old wounds through losing weight and getting their health under control.

The members of the eighth team are strangers to each other, but you may know them quite well:  former “Survivor” winner and “Celebrity Apprentice” contestant Richard Hatch, 54, and “The Voice” season two semi-finalist Erin Willett, 26.  While they may be used to the bright lights and cameras, this team will still have to work  just as hard as the other contestants to lose their excess weight while figuring out how to work together and support each other in making lasting lifestyle changes.

While this season will have all the calorie-burning, sweat-dripping excitement you’ve come to know and love from The Biggest Loser, season 17 brings with it a lot of changes, too.

The new host is a friendly, familiar face: beloved former The Biggest Loser trainer Bob Harper. The newly renovated “Biggest Loser” gym features a brand new look, logo and modernized state-of-the-art equipment, including eight individual high-tech wall monitors that track each contestant’s stats in real time, including calorie burn and heart rate. The gym will be split, with one half dedicated to Team Dolvett and the other half dedicated to Team Jen. Weigh-ins are also getting a revamp, featuring double scales so teams can weigh in and face off side by side.

The theme for this season is ‘Temptation,’ and will focus on real world situations and roadblocks that everyone faces in their pursuit to live a healthy lifestyle. Players will spend more time off-campus this season than ever before to better prepare them for what they will face when they return home, and offer viewers helpful take aways they can implement immediately in their own fitness journeys.

The Biggest Loser season 17 premieres Monday, January 4 (9-11 p.m. ET) on NBC.

Weight Watchers is the Best Diet Deal at $377 to Lose 5 Pounds

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Want to kickstart your weight loss journey but unsure where to begin? A new study suggests that Weight Watchers diet program and the weight loss drug Qsymia may give you the best bang for your buck.

ABC News aired a story about Duke University comparing the costs and effectiveness of three diet programs and three weight loss prescription medications. Weight Watchers came out on top with the price of $155 per kilogram lost (2.2 pounds).

“If you are about to embark on a major weight loss attempt, there is more than just the number on the scale to consider. You want to make your money matter,” says ABC News’ senior medical contributor Dr. Jennifer Ashton.

The average annual cost of Weight Watchers was $377, and users lost an average of 5.3 pounds, according to the study. Our resident nutrition expert, Mary Hartley, RD, comments that as diet plans go, “Weight Watchers is good for providing peer support, basic nutrition education, and flexibility to individualize food selections.” Though she warns that it is still a “diet” with the external focus of translating food into other quantifiable values.

This means people have two different mentalities of what they can eat when they are either “on the diet” or “off the diet,” and Hartley is “never impressed by weight loss that is only to be regained.” (more…)

Taco Bell Divulges What’s Really in Their Beef (HINT: It’s Not Just Meat)

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Taco Bell had an announcement this week that certainly surprised us. The fast food corporation decided to divulge what’s actually in its meat—and it turns out, it is mostly actually meat! Or at least, it’s almost 9/10ths meat. 

In an official statement, Taco Bell stated that their beef is “88% beef and 12% signature recipe.” The company also assured the nation that their beef is not grade D beef, but that it is as quality as any ground beef that you might find in a grocery store.

So what makes up the “signature recipe” that accounts for the other 12% of the filling? Mostly spices and thickeners, the chain insists. “Ingredients like oats and sodium phosphates help make sure the texture is right.” We’re of the opinion that “beef texture” is probably best produced by beef, but I guess when you operate a worldwide chain you need consistency. Maybe these fillers make the beef used in Kansas taste the same as the beef used in California?

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Vodka Shortening Life Span of Russian Men

A shocking statistic concerning Russian men has garnered some attention recently, though this one has nothing to do with the upcoming Olympic games.

An article posted on TheGuardian.com on Friday, January 31st, detailed how a large number of young Russian men’s deaths have been linked to vodka consumption. Between the years 1999 and 2010, researchers interviewed over 150,000 men in various Russian cities concerning their drinking habits. When the researchers followed up with the same men years later, they had discovered that around 8,000 of them had died since the first interview.

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From this initial selection of Russian men, the researchers concluded that approximately 35% of Russian men younger than 55 drink three or more half-liter bottles of vodka a week—which is the equivalent of more than 33 shots of vodka in a seven-day period.

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Rx for Better Health: Eat More Apples

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You’ve heard the expression, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away.” It’s an old English adage, but there’s actually a lot of truth to the saying: Study after study shows the merits of eating antioxidant-rich apples include everything from cancer prevention to reduced risk of heart attack to improving the health of your brain. Best of all, the fruit weighs in at under 100 calories a pop, which means they’re part of a healthy diet and may even help you lose weight!

Take a look at our list of the health benefits that come from eating apples then stock up on the red and green fruits at the grocery store. (Use our handy apple guide to select the right type for you.) Remember, much of the health benefits of apples can be found in the peel, so aim to eat whole apples, not apple sauce or apple juice.

The latest research shows:

Apples may work as well as statins: A majority of adults over 50 are prescribed statins to lower cholesterol, but a new study from the UK found that eating an apple each day is just as effective at reducing risk of heart attacks and strokes. As in, you get the same health benefits as with statins but without any side-effects.

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HealthBuzz August 24: Green Coffee Bean Fad, Worst Movie Snacks, and Healthier Mexican Recipes

It’s the start of the weekend, and that means it’s time for a dose healthy news. This week’s HealthBuzz features a story about Dr. Oz and his over-hyped recommendation of Green Coffee Bean Extract, the worst snacks at the movie theater, and savory Mexican recipes that are actually good for you. Don’t wait until the end of the week to hear from us! Follow us on Twitter and Pinterest, and like us on Facebook.

Dr. Oz’s Green Coffee Bean: Conflicts of Interest and Flawed Studies Abound

Dr. Oz’s new magic pill of the month is Green Coffee Bean Extract (GCBE). According to a study, a mere 16 men and women in India who took GCBE lost a tremendous amount of weight in 22 weeks. However, there are some flaws to the study and Dr. Oz failed to mention to his audience the conflict with his guest expert. Find out why Dr. Oz is promoting GCBE on his show.

Reggie L. Smith Leads Retired NFL Players Losing Weight With Retrofit

After retiring from the NFL, Reggie Smith gained 70 pounds of unhealthy weight. Last year, Mr. Smith started shedding pounds with Retrofit. The program helped Reggie gain control of his weight and life, and career! He was named the new Vice President of Business Development for Retrofit Weight Loss this week. Reggie is excited to spread the benefits to other fellow retired NFL players and the rest of the country.

Michael Strahan Named Ripa’s New ‘Live’ Co-Host: IS He Fit Enough for the Job?

Since Regis Philbin retired from the show months ago, many people wondered if Kelly would ever get a new co-host. Well earlier this week the network announced that Michael Strahan, another retired NFL star, will be the new face of Live, co-hosting with Kelly Ripa. The fit host will begin appearing on the show September 4, and we can’t wait! (more…)

HealthBuzz August 17: Yoga at School, Best Health Blogs, and Sweet Vegan Recipes

We’re just hours away from the weekend! So that means it is time to catch up on buzz-worthy health news. This week’s headlines include a story about yoga classes helping students succeed at school, the best fitness blogs of 2012, and three recipes for delicious vegan treats that you could sneak past anyone!

Our First-Ever Food Awards

DIR spent the summer scouting grocery shelves for the best nutritional food. Mary Hartley, RD, our resident nutrition expert, developed a nutritional criteria for 13 different grocery categories. Find out which brand of bread, ice cream, and many more food items were given the DIR approval badge.

Is MSG Bad for You? The Facts about Monosodium Glutamate Make for a Hung Jury

Monosodium Glutamate (MSG) is an ingredient in countless numbers of processed foods. MSG enhances the flavor of food without giving a flavor of its own. So is the ingredient good or bad for your health? A number of experts weigh in on the argument.

Students Succeeding with Yoga Curriculum in the Classroom

School is back in session! What will the school year be like for millions of kids across the country? For starters, cafeteria food is getting a healthy make-over and P.E. programs are being shut down. But, schools are using yoga to replace or enhance physical fitness classes. Not only is yoga benefiting a student health, but it is helping them perform better in and out of class. (more…)