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Category Archives: Weight management

Categories Healthy eating, Healthy recipe, Nutrition, Uncategorized, Weight management

Struggling to keep weight on then a daily healthy nutritious build up drink may be what you need.

If you’ve recently been ill and lost some weight and need to gain it back or if you have difficulty keeping weight on why not opt for the Smart Nutrition build up drink…

Blueberry and Avocado Build-up drink

Sesame seeds            1 tsp (about 4g)
Whole almonds            1 tsp (about 4g)
Hemp seeds (shelled)            1 tsp (about 4g)
Silken tofu            35g
Large avocado (half of one) 75g
Blueberries            100g
Cloudy apple juice            100ml
Rice Milk            125ml
Honey            1 tbs (about 20g)
Coconut oil             75ml

This makes approximately 570ml

Grind the sesame seeds, almonds and hemp seeds to a fine powder in a blender or seed grinder.  Then combine with the other ingredients and blend until smooth in a blender.

Total calorie content:  A 200ml glass contains approximately 388.0 kcal

Do drink this straight away otherwise the avocado may brown slightly.

Categories Healthy eating, In the news, Latest Research, Nutrition, Save money, Uncategorized, Weight management

Save money, Ditch the credit card and eat more healthily

A study published this week showed that when we pay for food with cash we make healthier choices and steer clear of junk food and impulse purchases. Cash should also keep your weight down as researchers suggested that there is a link between rising obesity and the use of cash cards in America. Great news for those of us worried about the recent cuts and for those wanting to cut their waist line down too!

Categories Heart disease, In the news, Weight management

‘Healthy’ snacks are loaded with sugar.

The Times reported last week that supermarket snacks that are marketed as healthy may contain up to 69% sugar; more than three times the amount found in chocolate ice cream. It is common for low fat options to have more sugar than conventional products as manufacturers attempt to make these products more palatable.

Most processed foods contain some added sugar – baked beans, chilli, vegetables, sauces for pasta or curries and ready meals all contain significant amounts of sugar. Many breakfast cereals and cereal bars are also high in sugar, especially those that are being promoted for people who are trying to lose weight; Tesco Healthy living forest fruit and raisin bars contain 50% sugar and Kellogg’s Special K Fruits of the Forest bars are 39% sugar.

Snacks marketed for children are often high in sugar. Kellogg’s Fruit Winders Doubles contain 37% sugar and Fruit bowl apple and strawberry fruit flakes contain 69% sugar; that’s five times the amount of sugar found in fresh fruit, but with significantly diminished levels of vitamins, minerals, water and enzymes that are all important for good health. With more than 13.8g in a packet, a child has nearly 3 teaspoons of sugar from a bag of fruit flakes alone. Adding a carton of fruit juice and a yogurt (both healthy choices) could push the sugar content up to 45g – that’s 9 teaspoons. 

The food industry has been competing to sell low fat snacks in order to reduce obesity and heart disease. To increase their palatability, sugar has been added, but it is now known that people who eat more sugar are more likely to have lower levels of good cholesterol and higher levels of some blood fats, which are risk factors for heart disease.

It is important to keep sugar levels down to protect teeth, to reduce unwanted calories and also to prevent the mood swings and lethargy associated with imbalanced blood sugar. Refined sugar does not need digesting, so provides an instant blood sugar boost, but this is always followed by a crash as the body tries to rectify high blood sugar by producing insulin. In the long term, these patterns can lead to diabetes, hormonal imbalance and obesity, as extra energy is converted to fat in the body.

Fresh vegetables or fruit make the ideal alternative to shop bought sugary snacks. Cut up into crudités, vegetables can be dipped into hummus or used to scoop up cottage cheese or home-made mackerel pâté. Fruit can be transported easily, needing only a wash or to be peeled. For children, a new studycarried out in Europe shows that fruit is more likely to be eaten when it is attractively presented in a  fun shape such as a hedgehog. Many cereal bars, such as the Food Doctor bars contain no added sugar and are ideal for a more substantial snack, or oatcakes are delicious with nut or seed butter.

To make a mango hedgehog, slice down each side of a mango from top to bottom, close to the stone, so you have two ‘almost halves’ with a middle slice clinging to the stone (you may find that the children fight over who gets this bit!). Cut across the flesh of each mango half in parallel lines, carefully so as not to cut through the skin. Now cut across these lines in the same way, so you have criss-crossed flesh with the skin intact. Turn the skin in on itself so you have a mound of spikes to decorate with raisins for eyes and a nose.

 To make an orange dragon, lay an orange on a board with the stalk and base facing to the sides. Using a sharp knife, cut the orange asross the segments into generous rounds. Then, take a slice and at a point between two segments, carefully cut through the skin and as far as the centre of the slice. Carefully prise open the slice, seperating the little triangular segments: you end up with a flat line of orange skin with a series of little triangles poking out from it – the dragon fins. Repeat with the other slices. This is much easier to do than to describe in words – so give it a go and you’ll find your children will be keener to eat the oranges than if they’d had to peel them in the usual way.

To make grapes more appealing, slide onto skewars and freeze for an alternative to an ice lolly.

These ideas are taken from ‘Wonderfoods for kids’ by Natalie Savona

To make mackerel pâté, whizz up 4oz/100g smoked mackerel fillet with the same amount of cottage cheese in a blender.  Add 2 chopped spring onions, parsley and lemon juice to taste. Eat with rye bread, rice crackers, oat cakes or crudités.

Categories In the news, Latest Research, Weight management

Seaweed may reduce Obesity

Seaweed could be useful in the fight against obesity as it has been shown to reduce fat uptake by over 75%. In research published last week, scientists at Newcastle University discovered that alginate, found in sea kelp, stops the body from absorbing fat better then most anti-obesity treatments currently available over the counter.

Dr Brownlee and colleagues used an artificial gut in the lab; the next step will be to recruit volunteers to attempt to replicate the results and to see whether the seaweed can be tolerated in foods such as bread. Alginates are currently used in very low quantities in foods as thickeners and stabilisers and proved popular when added to standard white bread as part of a blind taste test during the research.

The research is part of a three year project being funded by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council.

The research needs to be viewed cautiously; whilst saturated fats can cause obesity, reducing life expectancy and causing health problems, it is important to eat essential fatty acids such as omega 3 fats found in fish oils and omega 6 fats found in cold pressed vegetable oils, nut and seed oils. These fats are vital for the maintenance of cell membranes, hormones, heart and circulation and for reducing inflammation. If supplements are taken that prevent the body from  absorbing these essential fats, then deficiency diseases may occur.

It is preferable to limit one’s intake of saturated fats found in fatty meat and dairy products but to ensure adequate intakes of essential fats by eating oily fish such as sardines, salmon and mackerel a couple of times a week and having a few raw nuts, some seeds or a portion of cold pressed vegetable, nut or seed oil every day.

Categories In the news, Latest Research, Weight management

Obesity drug suspended

The European Medicines Agency suspended the licence of the drug Reductil this week, suspecting that it may cause heart attacks and strokes. 17 deaths have been linked to the drug in Britain since 2001 and 1,105 suspected adverse reactions have been reported. Reductil contains Sibutramine which tricks the brain into feeling full, allowing people to eat up to 20% less.  Two years ago, another anti-obesity drug, Acomplia, was suspended on suspicion of causing suicidal thoughts.

Reductil is reported to achieve only modest weight loss, which may not be sustained after stopping the drug. The news demonstrates that there is no quick fix to weight loss; pills are often ineffective or carry health risks and embarrassing side effects.

The key to losing weight lies in burning more calories than you take in. Exercise helps to raise your metabolic rate and to burn excess calories; aim for 30 minutes of cardiovascular exercise  5 times a week. To reduce calorific intake, limit the amount of saturated fat, sugar and processed foods such as white bread or biscuits. These foods are all laden with calories and they can cause cravings for more of the same.

Essential fats found in oily fish, nuts and cold pressed vegetable oils are important for health and metabolism, so include these in your diet. To reduce cravings, balance blood sugar by eating three small meals and  snacks every day. Include protein, fruit and a small amount of wholegrain carbohydrates for energy, but allow the bulk of each meal or snack to be vegetables.

If you are struggling to lose weight, why not make an appointment with Emma? To find out more about consultations for weight loss Click Here.

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