Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Latest Health Research

The big news is in the area of diet – based on recent reports, I have decided to resume taking orlistat (alli) despite the unpleasant side effects, cost, and lack of results from my previous experience with it. I already eat a fairly low-fat, low carb diet, so according to these reports I should lose weight, something I have not been able to do at all :

Studies had already indicated that a low-carbohydrate diet and prescription-strength orlistat combined with a low-fat diet are effective weight loss therapies. In a new study, the average weight loss for both groups was nearly 10 percent of their body weight.

Orlistat, known by the brand names Xenical and Alli, is both an over-the-counter and a prescription drug in the United States. Orlistat use is often limited by gastro-intestinal side effects, however.

In those treated with orlistat, blood pressure fell by an average of 2.5 mm Hg systolic and 1.9 mm Hg diastolic. Systolic blood pressure is the top number in a blood-pressure reading (like 120/80) while diastolic is the bottom number. Blood pressure fell significantly more with a low-carb diet.

IN another report,

New studies show that overweight and obese people using alli® (orlistat 60 mg) with a reduced calorie, lower-fat diet can significantly reduce weight, visceral fat, and waist circumference and therefore may reduce their risk of type 2 diabetes, hypertension, heart disease and stroke.

alli is the only FDA-approved OTC weight loss aid that is clinically proven to boost weight loss by 50 percent and significantly reduce excess visceral fat. Working in the digestive tract, alli prevents about 25 percent of the fat that a person eats from being absorbed.

Visceral fat is a dangerous type of fat that surrounds the vital organs in the abdomen and when present in excess disrupts the normal functioning of organs, increasing the risk of life-threatening diseases. Even modest weight loss can result in significant reductions in visceral fat and substantially improve health. In fact, when losing weight, visceral fat is among the first fat lost, which is associated with noticeable health benefits such as reductions in total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein (LDL). This helps reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes, hypertension, heart disease and stroke.

Lots of other things I am doing now are are good for me according to latest research reports

I try to eat a low carb meal after exercise, but not necessarily low-calorie.

Exercise is good for me, according to several reports.

But especially soccer! according to this report:
A just published research experiment on inactive men with high blood pressure shows that just 3 months of soccer practise twice a week causes a significant fall in blood pressure, resting pulse rate, and percentage of body fat, and is more effective than the doctor's usual advice on healthy diet and exercise. Other parallel experiments on both women and men further demonstrates that a regular game of soccer affects numerous cardiovascular risk factors such as maximal oxygen uptake, heart function, elasticity of the vascular system, blood pressure, cholesterol and fat mass far more than e.g. strength training and just as much if not more than running.

And tea and exercise are probably good for my mental health as well, as they each appear to fight depression.

Fish oil is good for my physical and mental health and may even protect against aging.

Dark chocolate is good for me too:
Eating about an ounce and a half of dark chocolate a day for two weeks reduced levels of stress hormones in the bodies of people feeling highly stressed. Everyone’s favorite treat also partially corrected other stress-related biochemical imbalances.

I have started taking zinc recently, which is good, and don’t eat much meat or eat cereal with much iron in it, or supplements with any iron:

“It seems clear that large segments of the population are at risk for toxicities from free copper and free iron, and to me, it seems clear that preventive steps should begin now." The article details those steps for people over age 50, including avoiding vitamin and mineral pills that contain cooper and iron; lowering meat intake: avoiding drinking water from copper pipes; donating blood regularly to reduce iron levels; and taking zinc supplements to lower copper levels.

The blueberries I eat regularly are good for me, but I can’t remember why:
Blueberries improve memory

Stretching may be good for my heart.

Nuts are good for me but most come with too much salt:

Reducing salt in the American diet by as little as one-half teaspoon (or three grams) per day could prevent nearly 100,000 heart attacks and 92,000 deaths each year, according to a new study. Such benefits are on par with the benefits from reductions in smoking and could save the United States about $24 billion in healthcare costs, the researchers add.

And I should consider taking magnesium:
Magnesium enhances learning and memory

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