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Fit in 5: 5 Protein Powders You May be Missing

Pamela Hernandez owns Thrive Personal Fitness in Springfield, MO where she focuses on weight training for weight loss. She writes a blog for her web site, www.thrivepersonalfitness.com, sharing vegetarian recipes from her kitchen, exercise strategies, lifestyle tips and stories from her own journey. You can also follow Pamela on Twitter @ThriveFit or pick up more tips on Facebook, www.facebook.com/thrivepersonalfitness.

In the fitness world whey protein is king. Everyone’s post-workout shake is whey. Everyone’s pre-workout shake is whey. Everyone is cooking and baking with whey. You would think it was the only kind of protein powder out there.
While whey protein is the most popular, it isn’t the only protein powder on the block. In fact, you may be missing the boat if you aren’t including some other protein powders in your nutritional arsenal. Depending on your lifestyle and goals, there may be a better fit for your nutritional plan.

Soy: A non-animal derived protein powder that is also a complete protein. Soy may be a better fit if you’re a vegetarian or avoiding dairy. A 2004 study at the University of Ohio indicated that soy could be better at protecting against oxidative stress than whey, making this easily digestible protein an alternative for your post workout shake.


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2 Supplements That Ease Menopause Symptoms

Hot flashes. Night sweats. Mood swings. With recent studies showing the dangers of hormone replacement therapy, women are looking to natural remedies for relief from symptoms of menopause.

Menopause is a natural, gradual process that ends ovulation. This means no more Aunt Flo visits once a month. The average woman begins menopause around age 51, but this can vary. Procedures like radiation can cause menopause to occur sooner and smokers are also more likely to begin menopause early.

Menopause has officially begun when your periods stop for 12 consecutive months with no other possible explanation. Here are some of the most common herbal supplements used for relief of symptoms during perimenopause, which is the gradual transition to menopause.


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Healthy Cholesterol Can Be Achieved Through Healthy Fats

High nutrient and whole foods: FOR THE WIN! A recent study was conducted to evaluate the effects of diet on cholesterol. It was observed that people who ate food such as nuts, soy, avocado, olive oil, and oats saw a greater drop in cholesterol than those who maintained a low-fat diet.

A 6-month study was conducted in four different locations in Canada. Two groups of participants were selected and all had elevated cholesterol levels. One group was put on a diet that included foods believed to improve heart health, yet were high in healthy fats. The other group was placed on a diet that emphasized low-fat foods, including whole grains and high-fiber options.

The first group obtained their food list from a US Food and Drug Administration list. This list contained approved suggestions for better heart health. Foods on that list included olive oil, avocado, oatmeal, soy, tofu, beans, lentils, almonds, hazelnuts, peanuts, pecans, pistachios, and walnuts. Many of these foods contain high fat levels. However, they are natural and healthy fats.


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Soy Foods and Isoflavones Don’t Increase Risk in Breast Cancer Survivors

Ever since research has come out about soy and its inherent properties that allow it to act like extra estrogen in the body, thereby possibly increasing the risk of breast cancer in women, I’ve been somewhat cautious about adding too much soy in my diet. While I’ve never suffered from breast cancer myself, it does run in my family, so I don’t like to take any chances. I know a lot of women who feel the same way, and I know some breast cancer survivors who are very limited with the amount of soy they consume for these reasons as well. Although the research of late on soy and cancer have been a little back and forth, new research presented at the AACR 102nd Annual Meeting 2011 that was held in early April has found that soy foods do not increase the risk of cancer recurrence or death among breast cancer survivors.

To understand the study, it’s helpful to know why soy foods have been suspect. Soy foods contain large amounts of isoflavones that are known to bind to estrogen receptors and have both estrogen-like and anti-estrogenic effects, according to the study. Scientists have been particularly concerned that the isoflavones in soy could compromise the effect of the breast-cancer-treatment drug Tamoxifen because both the drug and isoflavones bind to estrogen receptors.


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9 Heart-Healthy Foods You Should be Eating

February is American Heart Month, but that doesn’t mean you should only worry about having a healthy heart for 28 days out of the year. Heart health is incredibly important; if you take care of your heart, you’ll be less likely to suffer from heart disease and stroke, the most common killer in the USA.

The foods that you eat can have a great impact on your heart’s health. Think of your heart as a high performance sports car: if you put super-premium fuel in, you’ll get better results. Here are nine super-premium foods to keep your ticker in tip-top shape:

Oatmeal Oatmeal is good for your heart because it contains omega-3 fatty acids, fiber, potassium, and folate. The fiber in oatmeal is very beneficial for your heart because it can lower levels of your bad cholesterol (LDL), which can clear up your arteries.

Avocados Like oatmeal, avocados will help lower your LDL cholesterol levels; they will also raise the amount of good cholesterol (HDL) in your body. They also make it easier for your body to absorb other nutrients that are good for your heart, such as beta-carotene and lycopene.


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