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EatingWell Blogs (Page 8)

August 7, 2014 - 11:54am

A growing body of research has shown that the teeming populations of gut bacteria within us have evolved complex connections that can affect our body’s basic functions — from metabolism to sleep to mood.

Changes in the makeup of the gut bacteria in the human digestive system have been associated with a growing number of diseases.

It’s important to remember, though, that the science is still young and evolving.

Here we highlight the most intriguing of the cutting-edge studies.



Healthy Heart

Some of the many beneficial compounds that certain gut bacteria produce for us are carotenoids—antioxidants that are believed to protect against stroke and angina.

In a 2012 study in Nature Communications, researchers in Sweden compared the gut microbiome of stroke...

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August 7, 2014 - 11:26am

When it comes to ice cream, I’m what you might call a “goodie miner”—I dig out all of the chunks of yumminess and eat them first—so the more “stuff” in my ice cream, the better. Since I often feel that ice cream makers don’t add quite as many treats as I’d like, I’ve been known to take it upon myself to get the right ratio at home. I just buy some plain light ice cream, let it soften up for a few minutes, then stir in my own combination of nuts, fruit, chocolate or whatever suits my fancy that day. If this idea piques your fancy, here are some serving-size guidelines to follow, as well as a few of my favorite combinations to get you started.

Feeling inspired? Start with our homemade chocolate and...

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July 30, 2014 - 11:47am

The GMO labeling debate is hot!

This spring, Vermont became the first state to pass a no-strings mandatory GMO labeling law. (Connecticut and Maine have passed labeling laws, but they don’t go into effect until other requirements are met.)

Groups in at least 36 other states have efforts under way to pass state labeling bills.

GMO in Your Life: In 2013, 27 countries grew GMOs and even more imported them. In the U.S., genetically modified field corn (for oil, syrup, meal and starch), soybeans, canola, cottonseed (for oil) and sugar beets (for sugar) are used in processed foods.

In the produce section, you can find genetically modified Hawaiian papaya and small amounts of sweet corn, zucchini and yellow squash.

It’s estimated that about 75% of processed food in ­America contains genetically modified...

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July 30, 2014 - 9:51am

Most Americans get 10 to 15 grams of protein at breakfast, but 30 grams may be the magic number to keep your appetite in check throughout the day and prevent weight gain. New research presented at the Obesity Society’s annual meeting found that women who ate a protein-packed breakfast (30 grams from eggs and sausage) felt more satisfied and ate about 100 calories less at lunch compared to those who ate a low-protein pancake breakfast. A high-protein morning meal also quelled evening snacking (by about 135 calories) in a small study of teenagers.

“Protein is key for satiety because it activates the body’s signals that curb appetite, reduce food cravings and prevent overeating,” says Heather Leidy, Ph.D., lead author and assistant professor in the Department of Nutrition and Exercise Physiology at the University of Missouri. Her research shows protein...

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July 23, 2014 - 3:11pm

Sweet cherries are here, and because most are grown along the lengthy West Coast the season lasts from mid-May in California to the end of the harvest in Washington in August. Intensely flavorful and juicy, cherries are not a hard sell. But their long list of powerful nutrients seals the deal: they’re rich in anthocyanins (potent antioxidants with anti-inflammatory properties) and boast plenty of blood-pressure-reducing potassium. They often grow in pairs, because multiple flowers bloom from a single bud and when they fruit, the cherries stay together. And these heart-shaped treats really are magical culinary partners when you match them with other foods. Try them in a refreshing cherry lemonade or combined with nutty farro in a hearty summer salad. Or wrap sweetened cherries and creamy ricotta in store-bought crêpes for an easy-to-make blintz. Whether...

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