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Diet Rich In Fiber

Eating foods rich in fiber is very healthy and is good for health. However, that these foods are and what benefits they bring to the organization? Are there any side effects at excessive intake of fiber? A high fiber diet lowers the risk of heart disease, stroke and type 2 diabetes, in addition, assists in solving for digestive problems, constipation, diarrhea and piles. However, it can cause damage depending on how the fibers are inserted into the diet.

The fibers are usually found in grains, beans, vegetables and fruits. Although scientific evidence supporting the benefits of fiber in the diet are weak, the practical results are evident, although it varies according to the individual. Currently, however, most people do not consume the recommended amount of fiber, often for lack of information about what is fiber, where to find it and what are your real health benefits.

What is fiber?

It is difficult to define fiber as something unique. Initially, fiber was considered any substance found in the outer layers of grains or plants that were not digested by the intestine. Currently, however, the fiber definition encompasses a number of different substances which fall into two groups: soluble and insoluble.

The soluble fiber is comprised of carbohydrates which dissolve in water. Foods rich in this type of fiber include: fruits, oats, barley and legumes. Since the insoluble originates from the plant cell that does not dissolve in water, such as wheat bran.

Benefits of a high fiber diet

The benefits of fibers vary according to the type and also the consumption of each individual organism. Generally, the insoluble fiber is recomentada fordigestive treatments, it helps in passing stool regularly by the intestine, although not considered a laxative.

Since the soluble fiber can reduce the risk of arterial disease and myocardial from 40% to 50% compared with a diet low in fiber. They also reduce the risk of Type 2 diabetes, in addition to helping to control glucose levels in blood for patients with diabetes 1 and 2.

In some cases the fibers also help people with irritable bowel syndrome and diverticulosis, however, and these cases vary greatly depending on the patient, the fibers may worsen symptoms.

Side effects

The recommended for a healthy diet is to consume 20-35 grams of fiber daily. But suddenly add the right amount of dietary fiber can bring some consequences for the body such as abdominal bloating and gas. To minimize these effects, it is recommended to add small amounts to the diet and increase gradually until it reaches the recommended levels.

It notes that some people, including patients who have irritable bowel syndrome, can not tolerate fiber supplements and thus is best to seek a nutritionist on how to proceed with the fiber intake.

Is it Really Necessary to Take Vitamin Supplements

For most people, taking a vitamin supplement sounds like a good idea, when they remember or get around to it. It is not very high on most peoples priority list, and that is unfortunate, because it is becoming more and more unhealthy.

Now I know most readers are thinking how can not doing something like taking a vitamin supplement make your health situation worse? I eat a good diet, if I have not been taking vitamins supplements up until now and I’ve been doing OK, why do i you think I will be less healthy in the future?

The simple answer is that the foods you eat are getting less and less nutritious. A study performed by the US department of agriculture, illustrated this perfectly. In that study 100 grams of spinach from a specific farm was processed to determine the exact amount of iron it contained. The study showed that in 1940 100 g of spinach yielded 158 mg of Iron. In 1965 100 g of spinach yielded only 27 mg of Iron, and in 1995 100 g of spinach yielded just 2.2 mg of Iron. This study clearly demonstrates the growing problem of mineral and vitamin depletion in the farming soil. Farmers have tried different measures to combat this with little success. Air pollution, chemicals, pesticides, over utilization, Steroids and growth hormones have radically reduced the fundamental nutrition in our fruits and vegetables. Here are a couple of alarming quotes from US Senate Document Number 264 “No man today can eat enough fruits and vegetables to supply his stomach with the mineral salts he requires for perfect health, because his stomach isn’t big enough to hold them! And we are turning into big stomachs.” “The alarming fact is that foods (fruits, vegetables and grains) now being raised on millions of acres of land that no longer contain enough of certain minerals are starving us … no matter how much of them we eat.”

This is just one of the many reasons the modern diet is growing more and more deficient. There are many other reasons that contribute to the problem. With all of this in mind, vitamin supplementation is no longer a luxury we can continue to put off. It is now essential to supplement your diet to achieve optimal health and vitality.

Pharmacologic Treatment of Dementia

I came across two very interesting articles, both from the Annals of Internal Medicine, 2008 Mar 4;148:370 and Mar 4;148:379.
These article authors reviewed an astounding 59 randomized clinical trials testing Alzheimer’s Disease medications which are on the market including: Aricept, Exelon, Namenda, Razadyne and Tacrine.
Here are their conclusion:
“…, based on an extensive evidence review, …-in particular, that these medications do not lead to dramatic clinical improvements for dementia patient. In the editorialist view, “development of new agents with more-meaningful clinical benefits should be a high priority than further research on the currenly available ones (Richard Saitz, MD MPH FACP FASAM).

This tells me once again that the current medications have very limited value but are helpful for some subjects. I recommend after 6 months if the pt and family do not note any “meaningful” stablization of functional ability or continued decline is noted, or side effects (wt loss, increased confusion, urinary incontinence, etc.) to discuss with the prescribing doctor the possiblity to wean off the medication. Consideration of reseach participatin should always be part of a dialogue among the pt, caregiver and physician.

The More Alcohol You Drink The Smaller Your Brain Gets

The more alcohol an individual drinks, the smaller his or her total brain volume, according to a report in the October issue of Archives of Neurology, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Brain volume decreases with age at an estimated rate of 1.9 percent per decade, accompanied by an increase in white matter lesions, according to background information in the article. Lower brain volumes and larger white matter lesions also occur with the progression of dementia and problems with thinking, learning and memory. Moderate alcohol consumption has been associated with a lower risk of cardiovascular disease; because the brain receives blood from this system, researchers have hypothesized that small amounts of alcohol may also attenuate age-related declines in brain volume.

Carol Ann Paul, M.S., of Wellesley College, Mass., and colleagues studied 1,839 adults (average age 60) who were part of the Framingham Offspring Study, which began in 1971 and includes children of the original Framingham Heart Study participants and their spouses. Between 1999 and 2001, participants underwent magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and a health examination. They reported the number of alcoholic drinks they consumed per week, along with their age, sex, education, height, body mass index and Framingham Stroke Risk Profile (which calculates stroke risk based on age, sex, blood pressure and other factors).

“Most participants reported low alcohol consumption, and men were more likely than women to be moderate or heavy drinkers,” the authors write. “There was a significant negative linear relationship between alcohol consumption and total cerebral brain volume.”

Although men were more likely to drink alcohol, the association between drinking and brain volume was stronger in women, they note. This could be due to biological factors, including women’s smaller size and greater susceptibility to alcohol’s effects.

“The public health effect of this study gives a clear message about the possible dangers of drinking alcohol,” the authors write. “Prospective longitudinal studies are needed to confirm these results as well as to determine whether there are any functional consequences associated with increasing alcohol consumption. This study suggests that, unlike the associations with cardiovascular disease, alcohol consumption does not have any protective effect on brain volume.”

Association of Alcohol Consumption With Brain Volume in the Framingham Study
Carol Ann Paul, MS; Rhoda Au, PhD; Lisa Fredman, PhD; Joseph M. Massaro, PhD; Sudha Seshadri, MD; Charles DeCarli, MD; Philip A. Wolf, MD
Arch Neurol. 2008;65(10):1363-1367.
Click here to view abstract online

This study was supported by a contract from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute’s Framingham Heart Study, National Institutes of Health; grants from the National Institute on Aging; and a grant from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. Please see the article for additional information, including other authors, author contributions and affiliations, financial disclosures, funding and support, etc.

Vitamin B Does Not Slow Cognitive Decline In Alzheimer’s

For all my readers who “swear” by vitamin B12, please read below. Kindly note that the only value for supplmental B12 by mouth, sublinqual or by subcutaneous injection is for those who have documented B12 deficiency by a reptuable laboratory.

Vitamin B Does Not Slow Cognitive Decline In Alzheimer’s

Article Date: 15 Oct 2008 – 1:00 PDT

A clinical trial led by Paul S. Aisen, M.D., professor of neurosciences at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine, showed that high-dose vitamin B supplements did not slow the rate of cognitive decline in patients with mild to moderate Alzheimer disease. The study will be published in the October 15 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).

Aisen is director of the Alzheimer’s Disease Cooperative Study (ADCS), a multi-center network spanning the United States and Canada, which conducted the clinical trial to determine if reduction of an amino acid called homocysteine would reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease or slow its progression. Homocysteine is known to be involved in neurological disease, including Alzheimer’s, and its metabolism is affected by B vitamins. Therefore, it was thought that B vitamin supplements might offer a new therapeutic approach in treating Alzheimer’ disease.

“Prior studies using B vitamin supplementation to reduce homocysteine levels in patients with Alzheimer’s weren’t large enough, or of long enough duration to effectively assess their impact on cognitive decline,” said Aisen. “This study of several hundred individuals over the course of 18 months showed no impact on cognition, although it resulted in lower levels of homocysteine in these patients.”

The study included supplementation with folic acid and vitamins B6 and B12 for 18 months in 409 individuals with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s disease. Participants were randomly assigned to two groups of unequal size; to increase enrollment, 60 percent were treated with high-dose supplements and the remaining 40 percent treated with identical dosages of placebo. A total of 340 participants (202 in active treatment group and 138 in placebo group) completed the trial while taking study medication. Cognitive abilities were measured via testing with the Alzheimer Disease Assessment Scale (ADAS-cog).

The researchers found that the ADAS-cog score did not differ significantly between treatment groups, but that symptoms of depression were more common in the high-dose supplement group.

“Our study does not support the treatment of individuals with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s disease and normal vitamin levels with B vitamin supplements,” the authors conclude.

The ADCS, a consortium of more than 50 research institutions in the United States and Canada, is headquartered at UC-San Diego and funded by the National Institute on Aging (NIA), part of the National Institutes of Health.

Additional contributors to the paper include Lon S. Schneider, M.D., M.S.; Mary Sano, Ph.D.; Ramon Diaz-Arrastia, M.D., Ph.D.; Christopher H. van Dyck, M.D.; Myron F. Weiner, M.D.; Teodoro Bottiglieri, Ph.D.; Shelia Jin, M.D., MPH; Karen T. Stokes, B.A., B.S. and Ronald C. Thomase, Ph.D.

November Is National Alzheimer’s Disease Awareness Month

Twenty five years ago, November was designated as National Alzheimer’s Disease Awareness Month. At the time, fewer than 2 million Americans had Alzheimer’s. Today, as many as 5.2 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s disease – 120,000 of them in Massachusetts. Alzheimer’s can occur as young as age 35, and is currently the sixth leading cause of death in the country. By 2050, 11 to 16 million people will likely have Alzheimer’s.

“While there is much we don’t yet know about Alzheimer’s disease, tremendous progress has been made since 1983,” said James Wessler, President and CEO of the Alzheimer’s Association MA/NH Chapter. “In November we focus on raising awareness of Alzheimer’s disease and shedding light on the importance of finding breakthroughs in diagnosis, prevention, treatments and, eventually, a cure.” The Alzheimer’s Association will be offering educational programs throughout the state during the month of November. To find out what activities are planned in your area visit the Alzheimer’s Association website at

The Alzheimer’s Association is the leading voluntary health organization in Alzheimer care, support and research. In Massachusetts, programs include a 24/7 Helpline, support groups, education offerings for families, and training for health care professionals. The Association has headquarters are in Watertown, and regional offices in Lowell, Raynham, Springfield, and Worcester, MA and Bedford, NH