Category Archives for "Metabolic"

Alcohol And The Gluten Free Dieter

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When you’re eliminating gluten, it’s important to consider booze and the gluten free dieter. How will you be affected by alcoholic beverages? You may not have thought much about how alcohol is made, but it can affect your exposure to gluten.

Any beverages that are made from wheat, barley, or rye contain gluten. That means that malted alcoholic beverage that are made from barley also contain the gluten protein. If you’re trying to avoid gluten, you’ll want to avoid those beverages.

That mainly includes beer. However, there are other malted beverages such as wine coolers that are malted. It’s important to make sure that before you drink an alcoholic beverage you check the label to make sure it isn’t made from wheat, barley, or rye.

The good news is that many companies are coming up with ways to remove the gluten from their products so you can actually enjoy some beverages. They will bear the “gluten-free label”. But there’s even more good news.

Distilled beverages don’t contain gluten. Even if they’re made from grains that might include gluten, the distillation process removes impurities- and that includes gluten. That leaves a wide range of spirits that are safe for you to drink even if you have a gluten allergy or just want to remove gluten from your diet.

Vodka, whiskey, tequila, bourbon and most other hard liquors are safe to drink. The one thing you need to watch out for is added flavorings. If flavorings are added after the distillation process is complete and they contain gluten, then you may have a problem.

Wines are generally safe as they’re made from fermented fruits rather than grains. That means they don’t contain gluten. However, you should also take care to look and make sure that there aren’t added flavors to the wine that might contain gluten.

Champagne is also made from fermented fruit, so it falls into the same category as wines. If you’re not sure what whether or not a beverage is gluten-free, the best thing to do is to contact the manufacturer.

The company that makes the drink will be able to tell you whether or not the finished product contains gluten. If a manufacturer can’t answer you precisely, then you might be better off just leaving that product alone.

When you’re going gluten-free, you can still enjoy alcoholic beverages as long as you make sure to avoid products that contain gluten. Booze and the gluten free dieter don’t have to be mutually exclusive – there are plenty of gluten-free beverages to enjoy.

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Can Gluten Intolerance Lead to Health Problems And Weight Gain?

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With all the news about gluten and gluten-free diets, you may be wondering can gluten intolerance lead to weight gain? In fact, if your body can’t process gluten you can have many problems including weight gain. However, weight gain isn’t as common as weight loss.

With gluten intolerance, your body has trouble absorbing the protein gluten that’s found in wheat, barley, and rye. As you continue to eat these foods you may have a wide array of digestive problems – weight gain being one of them.

Gluten intolerance can cause gas, cramping, bloating, diarrhea, and constipation. The symptoms you experience will be individual. One of the best ways to discover whether or not you’re tolerant to gluten is to eliminate gluten from your diet and see if symptoms subside.

Many people find that a gluten-free diet can promote weight loss and better digestive health. A lot of that is because foods that are high in gluten also tend to be high in refined sugars, fats, and artificial ingredients.

But if you continue to eat gluten and you have an intolerance, you could actually end up having problems with too much weight loss. This isn’t the kind that helps you shape up for summer – it’s the kind that sends you to the hospital and makes you very ill.

Gluten intolerance can make it impossible for your body to absorb the nutrients from your food. Vitamin deficiencies can arise if your body isn’t able to absorb them from the food you eat. You might also develop inflammation in your gut and elsewhere in your body leading to problems with autoimmune disease.

Gluten intolerance can exacerbate problems such as diabetes, multiple sclerosis, arthritis, and other auto-immune disorders because it causes inflammation in your body. It can even cause a severe allergic reaction called celiac disease.

While weight loss is the more common than weight gain with gluten intolerance, if you’re overweight and switch to a gluten-free diet you’ll likely lose weight. You’ll definitely receive relief from digestive problems that are ailing you.

When you remove gluten from your diet, you’ll likely replace it with healthy fruits, vegetables, proteins, and other whole grains that are gluten-free. When you do this, you’ll likely lower your caloric intake and naturally have weight loss.

Many people find that a gluten-free diet helps with weight loss and also improves overall health. If you’ve wondered can a gluten intolerance lead to weight gain, you may want to try eating gluten-free to get the results you desire.

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Foods That Can Help Boost Your Immune System

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A number of foods have been found to benefit the immune system in a range of ways. One group of foods is thought to reduce inflammation in the body, leading to less wear and tear on all your bodily systems, including your immune system. Adding anti-inflammatory foods is thought to prevent disease, or reduce the more severe symptoms in those who are suffering from certain health issues, such as arthritis and inflammatory bowel disease.

Another group of foods has been found to trigger inflammation, so avoiding these foods can also provide relief from a range of troublesome symptoms, including allergic reactions such as eczema, asthma, gluten sensitivity and lactose intolerance. These allergies are obvious examples of how inflammation can affect anyone?s health. Avoiding inflammatory foods has shown clear benefits in relation to heart disease and all forms of arthritis, particularly rheumatoid arthritis (RA).

The third group of foods that can boost the immune system to prevent disease and enhance health are known as antioxidants. The normal wear and tear on our bodies every day as a result of stress, the environment, unhealthy foods we eat, smoking cigarettes, and so on, is called oxidative stress. It is thought to be a major cause of aging in the body.

Antioxidants are so named because they combat oxidative stress, thus decreasing the wear and tear on the body and reducing the effects of aging. Some antioxidants are so powerful, they have even been associated with cancer prevention.

Eating more anti-inflammatory foods while cutting back on inflammatory ones, and adding delicious antioxidants to your diet, is the best way to boost your immune system, reduce the effects of aging, and prevent disease. So, which are the best foods to eat, which are the best to avoid, and which foods are the best sources of antioxidants? We will list the top 10 for each category below.

Top 10 to Eat, to Reduce Inflammation

1-Salmon and Other Fatty Fish with Omega-3s
2-Probiotics, found in cultured foods like yogurt and kefir
3-Olive Oil
4-Sour Cherries
5-Walnuts and other tree nuts
6-Peppers
7-Ginger
8-Turmeric
9-Green leafy vegetables and cruciferous (pronounced CREW-sif-er-us) vegetables like broccoli and bok choy (Chinese cabbage)
10-Berries such as blueberries

Top 10 to Avoid If You Wish to Reduce Inflammation

1-Sugar
2-Salt
3-Standard Cooking Oils
4-Trans fats
5-Red Meat
6-Processed Meats/cold Cuts
7-Refined Carbohydrates
8-Artificial Sweeteners and Flavorings, such as aspartame and saccharin; Monosodium Glutamate (MSG)
9-Alcohol
10-Dairy Products

Top 10 Foods with the Highest Level of Antioxidants
1-Small red beans
2-Blueberries, wild
3-Red kidney beans
4-Pinto beans
5-Blueberries, cultivated
6-Cranberries
7-Artichokes
8-Blackberries
9-Raisins
10-Raspberries

It may seem overwhelming at first to make changes to your diet, especially if many of your favorites are on the foods to avoid list. Fortunately, a little effort can go a long way towards improving your immune system if you make healthy substitutions.

For example, if you love sweet, sugary foods, use more fruit to curb your cravings. Blueberries and raspberries can be eaten fresh or cooked as part of a healthy dessert. In our house we buy them frozen when they are on sale in the supermarket and eat them frozen in place of ice cream or another more fattening dessert. We add fresh ones to a range of recipes, from fruit salad to interesting sauces and rice pilafs.

If you are a meat eater, eating fish for 2 meals a week and beans such as the antioxidant-rich red kidney beans or pintos is easy and tasty too. Have fun looking up new recipes and exploring cuisines from around the world. For example, these beans are perfect for Mexican or Tex-Mex cookery. Many of the foods on the anti-inflammatory list are ideal for Chinese or Indian recipes.

Use these three lists to boost your immune system, and see how you can eat better than ever while fighting disease.

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A Gluten-Free Grocery List

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When you have gluten intolerance, it helps to have a gluten free grocery list as a reference. The good news is that many foods are naturally gluten free and you probably already eat many of them.

Grains – You’ll want to avoid wheat, barley, and rye. But that leaves many grains that are good including quinoa, gluten-free oats, millet, rice, corn, and buckwheat. You can find many of these at your local supermarket or health food store.

Vegetables – All vegetables are naturally gluten free. You can eat a wide variety to get the vitamins and minerals you need. A few examples are zucchini, green beans, peas, lettuce, carrots, eggplant, peppers, onions, broccoli, cauliflower, and potatoes.

Fruits – All vegetables are also naturally gluten free. There are many different fruits and it’s fun to add new ones to your menu. For example try watermelon, kiwi, clementines, star fruit, mango, pomegranate, and papaya.

Meat – Most meats are going to be gluten free. That includes beef, chicken, pork, and turkey. Where you need to pay attention is when it comes to processed meats. Make sure to carefully look at labels of sausage, hot dogs, lunch meats, and any other packaged meats. These can sometimes have gluten added to them.

Fish – Fish are generally gluten-free. Again, you’ll need to look at processed fish to make sure. For example, breaded fish filets are probably breaded using wheat flour-based breadcrumbs. That means they contain gluten.

Beans – Beans are a great source of carbohydrates and proteins when you’re eliminating gluten from your diet. Black beans, navy beans, black eyed peas, pinto beans, and white beans all are great for your diet. Where you need to pay attention is with soups and other flavored beans that might contain gluten.

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Health Conditions that Can Benefit from a Gluten-Free Diet

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While people who have celiac disease and gluten allergies most often eliminate gluten from their diet, there are other health conditions that can benefit from a gluten-free diet. In fact, you may find that eating gluten free is the answer for what’s ailing you.

One of the greatest benefits of eating a gluten-free diet can be weight loss. When you eliminate gluten, you eliminate a lot of the fatty foods that cause weight gain in the first place. For example, you’ll limit how many cakes, cookies, and donuts you can consume.

While it’s possible to eat gluten-free and not lose weight, most people will find that they drop quite a few pounds when they make the transition. Of course if you substitute all of your bread for French fries, you may not see those results.

Gluten has been known to cause inflammation in many people. As a result it can exacerbate conditions such as multiple sclerosis, chronic fatigue syndrome, and other auto-immune disorders. You’ll find that your symptoms may decrease from eating gluten free.

Diabetes is another condition that can often be helped by eating a gluten-free diet. Foods that are high in gluten are also often high in simple carbohydrates. These foods tend to cause insulin and blood sugar levels to go haywire.

Many people who have irritable bowel syndrome find relief from eating a gluten-free diet. Gluten can cause problems such as constipation, diarrhea, gas, and cramping. You may find that by eliminating gluten you can eliminate many of these symptoms.

Infertility, especially if it’s caused by polycystic ovarian syndrome, can be alleviated by letting go of gluten. Women who have insulin resistance and foods that are high in gluten tend to cause problems with blood sugar leading to hormonal imbalance.

Many cancers can also be prevented by eating a healthy diet that’s high in fruits and vegetables and low in foods that contain high amounts of gluten. That’s because most foods that contain large amounts of gluten are also high in sugar, saturated fats, and additives.

A gluten-free diet can also lead to lower levels of cholesterol and decreased risk of heart disease and stroke. You’ll be eliminating many unhealthy foods and focusing on adding healthful foods such as lean proteins, fruits, and vegetables.

While many people avoid gluten because of an allergy or intolerance, the benefits of a gluten-free diet extend beyond that. There are many health conditions that can benefit from a gluten free diet and you’ll experience overall good health.

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Inflammation and Your Immune System

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The word inflammation comes from the Latin inflammare, to set on fire. In the context of our immune system, heat, redness, pain and swelling form as a reaction to either injury, or a perceived threat in the body.

If you’ve ever hit your thumb with a hammer, you can see how inflammation normally occurs. In terms of illness, such as colds and flu, the swollen glands and puffy eyes and nose that most of us experience in response to those viruses clearly show the immune system at work trying to banish the disease from the body.

However, in some cases, the immune system can get confused. Inflammation can cause the immune system to start attacking various parts of the body that it sees as a threat. In turn, that inflammation can lead to damage and leave you open to more illness and even disability.

Picture what happens when you hit your thumb or get a cold happening all over your body, all day, every day. What could the health consequences of persistent chronic inflammation be?

Inflammation has now been linked to many serious illnesses, including:

-Heart disease;
-Diabetes;
-Various forms of cancer;
-Arthritis, especially rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and gout;
-Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD);
-Thyroid conditions that can lead to hypothyroidism (slow thyroid), which can make sufferers gain even more weight;

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is one example of the effects of inflammation in the body being clearly visible. With RA, the body attacks the tissue that lines the inside of your joints, known as the synovium. RA causes the synovium to thicken, causing swelling and pain around and inside your joints.

The synovium create synovial fluid, which helps lubricate your joints and keep them moving like a well-oiled machine. If the synovium are damaged, the joints are not lubricated properly, leading to pain, swelling and friction, which in turn leads to more pain. Due to the friction, the cartilage and bones can even become damaged if RA is not treated effectively. If you?ve ever seen someone with gnarled and twisted looking fingers and hands, you can clearly see the effects of RA on the body.

In Multiple Sclerosis (MS), the immune system starts to attack the myelin sheaths that protect our nerves. If these get damaged, it is like wires short-circuiting, leading to a range of symptoms all over the body, including:

-Blurred or double vision.
-Trouble concentrating.
-Clumsiness
-Lack of coordination and muscle strength
-Loss of balance.
-Numbness or tingling in a foot, arm or leg.

RA and MS are just two examples of the effects of inflammation. As we have said, most forms of arthritis, heart-related illness and cancers are linked to inflammation. There are many more illnesses in which inflammation has been discovered to play a key role.

Our immune system is therefore a delicately balanced system, with inflammation being a double-edged sword. On the one hand, it can be helpful in keeping germs under control so we do not get sick. On the other hand, if the immune system gets confused, inflammation will increase as the body starts to attack itself. Studies have shown that inflammation can affect almost every system in the body.

Fortunately, you can reduce inflammation by avoiding foods that trigger inflammation, steering clear of harsh chemicals, reducing your stress, stopping smoking, and exercising more. Focus on reducing inflammation and see what a difference it can make to your health.

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