When You Eat Matters

By Dr. Ann Kulze, M.D.

Evidence is quickly mounting that when you eat and the timing of your meals may be as important as what and how much you eat. In a fascinating new laboratory study, scientists found that lab rats that consumed high fat food over a restricted period of 8 hours a day gained significantly less weight and showed far superior metabolic health relative to an identical group of rats that consumed the same amount of high fat food calories over a 24 hour period of time. According to the study's lead author, it appears "every organ has a clock" and that there are times when they work at optimal capacity and other times when they operate more sluggishly.  Like our hunter-gatherer ancestors likely ate, this study suggests  that discrete meal times (not random munching) and protracted periods of no food intake over a 24 hour cycle (like from dusk to dawn) are best for metabolic health and weight control. I am currently working hard to eat my dinner before the sun goes down to optimize my metabolic machinery (5).

 

Even more, a large, first-of-its-kind study in human subjects was just published that supports the critical importance of regular meals, especially BREAKFAST! and refraining from grazing or snacking during the day. The objective of the study was to determine the associations between skipping breakfast, eating frequently, snacking, and the risk of weight gain and type 2 diabetes. Over 51,000 adult males were followed over a 30 year period of time to gather the relevant information for this evaluation. The conclusions of this landmark study were as follows:

  • Regular consumption of breakfast was associated with a reduced risk of type 2 diabetes independent of body weight. (Somehow eating breakfast protects metabolic health.)
  • Eating 2 or less meals a day was associated with a greater risk of obesity and type 2 diabetes.
  • Eating > 4 times daily or snacking was associated with an increased risk of weight gain and type 2 diabetes. (6)

 

Bottom line: For optimal weight control and metabolic health - eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner and no more than 1 daily snack.


Fast Food and Cancer..Did You Know?

By Dr. Ann Kulze, M.D.

After completing the most rigorous and comprehensive review of scientific data to date, an expert panel of world-renown cancer experts recommended, "fast foods be consumed sparingly, if at all." They concluded that limiting calorically dense food, especially fast foods and sugary beverages, was one of the most important steps an individual could take to reduce cancer risk. (World Cancer Research Fund/American Institute for Cancer Research. Food, Nutrition, Physical Activity, and the Prevention of Cancer: A Global Perspective. Washington, DC AICR, 2007)


Eating Healthy While Saving Money

Source: http://www.drannwellness.com
By: Dr. Ann Kulze

Buy your starch staples in volume. There is always superior "value in volume," and the starches I recommend are some of the very best nutritional buys of the entire grocery store, going for as little as 10 cents per serving. Choose the biggest bags or containers available for your brown rice, oatmeal, dried beans, quinoa, and barley. I am a big fan of wholesale grocers for purchasing my starch staples in bulk. They always have big containers at an excellent value, and even with the amount of healthy starches my family eats, we rarely run out!

I am always amazed by the number of people who consider avocados "unhealthy" or "fattening" when the delicious reality is that they are true wonder foods. Avocados are filled with heart-healthy monounsaturated fats that lower bad (LDL) cholesterol while boosting good (HDL) cholesterol along with fiber, vitamin E, B vitamins and special cholesterol-lowering plant substances called phytosterois. They can also boast making it into the top 20 most potent antioxidant foods. This unique package of sparking nutritional attributes renders them oh so valuable for heart and brain health - so go guacamole!

I include them in my diet daily. Although I find them divine plain and simple with a little sea salt and lemon, here are 2 recipes you are sure to enjoy.

Sesame Kale Salad with Avocado

Veggie and Quinoa Stuffed Avocados


We are too fat! Now what??

BY JENNY IVY

May 14, 2012 •

Source: Benefitspro

The nation's obesity epidemic is literally too big to ignore. And now the most respected names in medicine are hoping to galvanize citizens and employers to confront the problem.

Tonight, HBO will premiere "The Weight of the Nation," a four-part documentary series that examines the risks and consequences of obesity—everything from childhood prevention to community involvement.

The impact is certainly not out of reach for employers and HR professionals. They know obesity impacts business. Companies lose $4.3 billion annually due to obesity-related absenteeism, according to the Institute of Medicine. And for firms with offices around the country, it's obvious the costliest health plan claims are coming out of places in which obesity - and poverty - is rampant. [See 10 fattest states in America]

As a nation, we know it's a problem. We've already been told we're too fat. But why, after decades of increasing waistlines, would we expect a national campaign to suddenly change things?

It probably won't. But, in speaking with a Kaiser Permanente spokesperson just today, it seems the medical organizations and experts behind the documentary understand that. "This is only the beginning," she said. Campaign collaborators, including Kaiser, are hoping to start a movement, not just increase awareness.

With that said, as an employer or benefits manager, it wouldn't be a bad idea to check out the free resources available through this campaign. After all, this isn't just another wellness program promo. These are established research institutions that are serving up more innovative tools to get Americans to at least think about how to become healthier.

"We're going to have to think our way out of this in creative ways," Executive Producer John Hoffman told NPR on Friday. "We have got to really renovate tremendous aspects of our culture, and it's going to take a tremendous amount of invention and tremendous amount of intervention to really re-engineer our lives."

If you don't have HBO, don't worry. The movies aren't restricted to the cable network. Filmmakers are allowing the series to be broadcast on the campaign's website at http://theweightofthenation.hbo.com/.

 


Want to know what 2025 will look like?

BY KATHRYN MAYER

  1. Many needs, many models. This scenario is a natural extension of health care as many Americans know it. The scenario forecasts a shortage of primary care physicians, increased emphasis on disease prevention, growth in electronic medical recordkeeping, a shift from employee-based insurance to health insurance exchanges, and growing disparities in access to and quality of primary care based on income and where people live.
  2. Lost decade, lost health. This scenario forecasts a shortage of primary care physicians, declining income for practicing physicians and more uninsured patients, some of whom resort to black market care and unreliable online advice. Patients with good insurance have access to great care enhanced by advanced technology
  3. Primary care that works for all. This scenario assumes nearly universal health care coverage, with 85 percent of patients using integrated systems staffed by collaborative teams of health care providers, including physician assistants, nurse practitioners and health coaches who work closely with patients. Seeking to provide better care at lower cost while improving the health of the population they serve, primary care teams join with community partners to address factors that affect a community’s health, including employment, educational attainment, housing, transportation, and access to fruits and vegetables.
  4. Consumer is boss. Under this scenario, four of 10 patients opt for consumer-directed health plans, which include catastrophic insurance with high deductibles. For the most part, savvy consumers use advanced technologies, including noninvasive bio-monitors, as well as wellness and disease management apps, to stay healthy. Large vendors offer free avatar-based health coaching to consumers who purchase other integrated health products and services. Consumers shop for the best doctor and buy on the basis of high quality and low price.