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4 Healthier Ways to Satisfy Nagging Pregnancy Cravings

By Emily Wade Adams, CNC for Natal-Nutrition.com

Chips, crackers, doughnuts, bagels, candy … these easy-to-grab comfort foods are a quick way to relieve pregnancy’s hunger pangs. But caving to your cravings isn’t necessarily healthy for your baby. Processed foods in particular are some of the most unhealthy and potentially dangerous options for moms-to-be, because they make your baby more likely to have health problems. According to Dr. Weston A. Price, your baby is at risk for health problems even if you ate processed foods before conception, even if it wasn’t you but the baby’s father who ate them, and even if you ate well but the foods you consumed were grown in depleted soil (Singer, 2004).

What are processed foods, and why are they so bad for you? They’re food products that have been manipulated, refined, enriched and/or preserved – in short, almost anything that has been changed from its natural state. Most packaged foods are processed. If you read a label and don’t recognize the ingredients, it’s likely that food has been processed. Items in the center of the grocery store tend to be processed. Generally, foods are processed to lengthen their shelf life and are packaged in a way that’s convenient for us to grab on the go.
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HealthBuzz August 31: 30 Minutes of Exercise Better Than 1 Hour, Tracy Anderson Attacked in Media, and Breakfast Recipes for Labor Day Weekend

The best part about this weekend is the fact that Labor Day is Monday and many Americans will enjoy their day off observing the holiday. But before the weekend can officially commence, it’s time to wrap up the week with some healthy news. This week’s HealthBuzz includes several stories, including why you should consider ditching soda, how exercising for 30 minutes is better for weight loss than one hour, and breakfast recipes for a healthy four-day weekend.

30 Minutes of Exercise May Yield More Weight Loss Than 1 Hour

Researchers from the University of Copenhagen followed 60 overweight Danish men for 13 weeks. One-third of the group performed 30 minutes of intense aerobic exercise, another one-third of the group exercised for 60 minutes, and the last group was ordered to remain inactive. The study found that 30 minutes of physical activity helps produce more weight loss than one hour.

How Much Sleep Do You Really Need? New Research Points to a Magic Number

It seems people are never getting enough sleep in today’s fast pace society. According to a new study, eight hours of sleep isn’t the magic number for sleep anymore. Find out what the new magic number is!

Celebrity Trainer Tracy Anderson Attacked in Media

Tracy Anderson is known for providing her fitness and diet expertise to stars like Jennifer Aniston, Reese Witherspoon, Jennifer Lopez and Gwyneth Paltrow. This week, she came under fire for some statement she made in DuJour Magazine regarding woman and their post-baby bodies. Tracy appeared on Good Morning America to defend her comments. What was her controversial quote?
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Celebrity Trainer Tracy Anderson Attacked in Media

I’ve never had a baby, let me first say that. In fact, one of the things that terrifies me most about pregnancy is that it may change my body forever. Call it narcissistic, I call it “I care about what I look like.” When did wanting to look and be fit become such a crime?

This week, celebrity trainer Tracy Anderson made famous by her Method Workouts and string of celebrity client endorsements, came under fire for comments she made in DuJour Magazine regarding women and post-pregnancy bodies. But as the media loves to do, it was all taken a bit out of context.

Tracy was quoted saying, “A lot of women use pregnancy as an excuse to let their bodies go, and that’s the worst thing. I’ve seen so many women when who come to me after having children with disaster bodies that have gone through hell,” she said, adding that they use their kids as an excuse for letting their bodies go.

Sure, at first glance this seems harsh. Pregnancy is difficult and it changes our bodies, and it’s certainly a season in which we put the needs of our baby before our own.

But isn’t she right to a certain extent? My own mother had two very difficult pregnancies during which she gained a fair amount of weight. But as soon as she was able to, she started right back up on her walking routine and got back to her pre-baby weight within a year of giving birth.

To me, that’s normal. So when I see women who gain a lot of weight during pregnancy as a result of eating poorly and being inactive, I don’t feel that bad for them just like I don’t feel bad for myself after week of heavy eating and I’m left a few pounds heavier for it. It all comes down to personal responsibility.
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Moderate Drinking During Pregnancy May be OK, Study Suggests

I recently wrote a story about caffeine consumption during breastfeeding being practically harmless to children. And of that news, I was in near celebration. Within that article I also mentioned one of the other difficulties I anticipate during pregnancy being forgoing alcohol, as I’m a lover of wine and an occasional cocktail. But according to new research, that may not be as big of a concern.

A collection of Danish studies is suggesting that moderate amounts of alcohol during pregnancy does not appear to affect the child’s mental abilities.

To conduct these studies, researchers examined children up to the age of five whose mothers drank moderate amounts of alcohol while pregnant. The more than 1,600 Danish mothers involved in the study were an average age of 30 and each drank a varied number of alcoholic beverages during pregnancy.

While this type of study is rightfully viewed as dangerous, women in Denmark don’t generally consider slight drinking during pregnancy to be a health concern. A very small percentage of the women involved in the study were actually consuming large amounts of alcohol: almost half were abstaining completely; a small portion was consuming one to four drinks a week; around 175 were having five to eight drinks; and only 20 were consuming nine or more beverages a week.
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The Benefits of Breastfeeding and the Attachment Parenting Controversy

When it comes to motherhood, everyone has an opinion on how it should be done. So it was no surprise when 26-year-old model Jamie Grumet caused a near-cosmic stir when she posed on the cover of Time Magazine, breastfeeding her nearly 4-year-old son.

Grumet’s approach to motherhood is attachment parenting, which is a concept developed by Dr. William Sears, 72, as outlined in his 1992 book, “The Baby Book.”

Sears, raised by a single mother himself, believes that moms should be in near constant contact with their child, wearing their baby if possible, letting them sleep in the same bed with them, and tending to their every want and need.

Of the many benefits of this practice, Sears argues that attachment parenting produces children who are physically, emotionally and psychologically healthy, stating that children who are a product of this kind of parenting rarely – and possibly even never – turn out to be bullies or have other developmental issues.

One of the other prongs of attachment parenting is breastfeeding until the mother  – and child – feel the time is right to stop, which explains why Grumet still breastfeeds her almost 4-year-old son.

Grumet, who told The Today Show that she knew full well what she was getting into by posing so provocatively on the Time Magazine cover, says she was breast fed herself until she was six years old, and believes 100% in the concepts of attachment parenting.
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