New Study Suggests That Belly Fat Is Worse Than Obesity For Your Heart Health


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The Body Mass Index (BMI) is generally used to assess overall fitness, however, a new study has found that weight concentrated around the middle can be more harmful than obesity itself.

The waist to hip ratio is proving to be a better predictor of heart disease and other illness than BMI alone.

Participants were divided into six groups based on which of the three BMI groups they fell into, and whether they had a normal or high waist-to-hip ratio. Men whose waist measurement was 90 percent or more of their hip measurement were considered to have a high hip-to-waist ratio. The same was true of women; those with waists that were 85 percent of their hip size were classified as having a high hip-to-waist ratio.

Participants with normal BMI but a high waist-to-hip ratio had the risk of dying of cardiovascular disease, and the highest risk of dying from any causes among the six groups.
The risk of cardiovascular death was 2.75 times higher, and the risk of death from any cause was 2.08 times higher among normal-weight people with “central obesity,” compared with normal-weight people who had a normal waist-to-hip ratio.
“The high risk of death may be related to a higher visceral fat accumulation in this group, which is associated with insulin resistance and other risk factors,” said study researcher Dr. Karine Sahakyan, also of Mayo Clinic.

Men can be highly susceptible to accumulating belly fat and inactivity, poor diet and stress contribute to visceral fat.

Keeping your abs toned and your middle “whittled” is the best way to avoid disease and keep your heart strong.

Three Health Issues Every Man Should Discuss With His Doctor


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Most men are squeamish about discussing their concerns about testosterone, erectile disfunction or trouble urinating, however these embarrassing topics could shed light on deeper more serious health issues like heart disease, cancer or hormone imbalance.

Since most visits to the doctor last less than 20 minutes, getting warmed up can take some effort.

Be armed with a list of questions and concerns to get the most out of your time with your physician.

Glutathione, the antiaging secret

Have you ever heard of glutathione (pronounced; gloota-thigh-own)? Neither has almost anyone else. Many researchers say it’s probably the most important substance we require to stay healthy. Many go as far to say it’s the secret to prevent aging. So where’s Oprah, and the rest of the media? A quick search of the term “glutathione” on PubMed.gov reveals 94,117 scholarly articles, reviews and abstracts.

Present in every cell of our body, glutathione levels just might be one of the best biochemical markers there is; the higher your glutathione levels are the healthier you will be. Glutathione deficiency is found in almost all patients with extreme illnesses, e.g., cancer, heart disease, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s, arthritis, liver disease, diabetes and more. In fact, researchers are concluding glutathione deficiency may play a role in patients with schizophrenia. In cerebrospinal fluid of drug-free schizophrenic patients, a significant decrease in the level of total glutathione was observed as compared to controls. EJN

Glutathione’s importance to a properly functioning immune system has been shown in many studies. According to Dr. Gustavo Bounous, “The limiting factor for the proper activity and multiplication of our lymphocytes (white blood cells) is the availability of glutathione”.

Every day our bodies are exposed to stress, pollution, infection, drugs (illicit or licit) and alcohol, poor diet, infections and injury, which drain our bodies of glutathione; this depletion leaves our bodies susceptible to high levels of oxidative stress, which leads to aging, disease and eventual death. I predict that concern about glutathione levels will eventually be on par with other preventative health issues.

Calorie disclosure labels at restaraunts don’t change eating habits.

Many cities and counties around the country have imposed regulations that require restaurants to post the calories of all their meals. Big brother’s reason for the legislation? Once consumers saw the ramifications, i.e., number of calories, of their dietary choices, they would opt for a healthier one. However, not surprisingly, the evidence is indicating that mandatory labeling is having no effect on consumer choices.

There is a great concern among many of the people who study calorie labeling that the policy has moved way beyond the science and that it would be beneficial to slow down,” said George Loewenstein, a behavioral economist at Carnegie Mellon University who studies calorie labeling. In a recent editorial in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, he asked: “Given the lack of evidence that calorie posting reduces calorie intake, why is the enthusiasm for the policy so pervasive?”

“In New York, the first big city to adopt menu labeling, NYU researchers studied the eating choices of low-income fast-food diners, focusing on those who saw the labels. “Even those who indicated that the calorie information influenced their food choices did not actually purchase fewer calories,” the study says.”

The Washington Post

If human beings always based decisions on whether something they were doing was unhealthy, we wouldn’t have so many doing drugs, becoming obese or smoking. The fact is, most people disregard obvious information, even if it’s unhealthy, when it’s in-congruent with what they want.

Benefits of Health Food Stores

First Lady Michelle Obama launched a worldwide campaign to fight obesity. The White House launched a campaign that focuses on prevention and the weight loss industry is worth more than $61 billion. One would think that with all of the campaigns and billions of dollars poured into weight-loss products and plans, America would be well on it’s way to becoming the healthiest nation in the world. Not so. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), despite recent reports stating that the obesity rate for Americans has leveled off, nearly 34 percent of adults are obese, more than double the percentage 30 years ago. The share of obese children tripled during that time, to 17 percent.

So why is it so difficult for Americans to lose weight or stay healthy? Could it be the large number of food deserts across the nation? Or maybe the lack of grocery stores isn’t fully to blame. Maybe it’s the type of grocery stores that contribute to the problem. Maybe health food stores like Whole Foods, Mothers Market, and Wild Oats can help solve America’s obesity epidemic, or at the very least, help America develop better eating habits. Sure, traditional grocery stores do carry some healthy foods, but they also carry some of the unhealthiest foods you can find. Unless you’re committed to being healthy, it’s just too easy to choose Cocoa Puffs and whole chocolate milk over Kashi and rice milk. Health food stores don’t give you the option to choose one over the other. The only choice is “healthy!”

Health food stores rarely carry household names such as General Mills, Kellogg’s, and Wonder. You’re more likely to find health food brands such as Kashi, Muir Glen, Nature’s Path, Eden Organic, and Stonyfield Organic. Health food stores stock their shelves with foods that contain few to no chemicals, no additives, and no preservatives. Also, foods are mainly organic. Even the non-organic foods are made with healthy ingredients and without harmful chemicals. Meats, poultry, and dairy are usually organic, and the seafood is fresh and wild caught. If farmed, seafood is always antibiotic and hormone free, and raised in an environmentally conscious setting.

Health food store products can do more than just curb obesity. They can help those that are already healthy stay healthy, and they can help individual’s that may be an average weight, get healthy. Health foods stores are also the best places to shop if you have food allergies (peanuts, milk, gluten), if you are on special diet due to a medical condition (diabetes, heart disease, digestive conditions) , or if you’re a vegan, vegetarian, raw foodist, or follow a macrobiotic diet.

How to Locate Health Food Stores

If you live in a major city, chances you have a number of health food stores to choose from. Even some smaller cities have a local health food store. In some areas, finding a health food store may be a bit more challenging. Fortunately, several directories can help you search for health food stores by state. One of the best is GreenPeople.org. You can search for health foods stores by zip code or city, state, and country. The site lists thousands of health food stores. A search in Illinois alone returned more than 100 results.

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