Welcome to the holidays . . . the gift-giving, party-hopping, dessert-eating, over-indulging, stress-evoking frenzy! We all know it. The time from Halloween to New Year’s Day is precarious for health-conscious people and can throw anyone’s health routine out of whack.
Fat may seem like the enemy of civilized people—especially sedentary ones. Yet we cannot live without it.
Fat plays a key role in the structure and flexibility of cell membranes, and it helps regulate the movement of substances through those membranes. Special types of fat, known as eicosanoids, send hormone-like signals that exert intricate control over many bodily systems, mostly those affecting inflammation or immune function.
Have you ever wished for a quick way to test whether a client is burning fat? Scientists from Researchers Laboratories in Yokosuka, Japan, believe they have found an answer—in the form of a portable breath analyzer device.
The researchers developed the device to measure acetone, “a metabolite derived from fat-burning [and] produced in the blood, that is expelled through alveoli of the lungs during exhalation.”
You probably have clients who have been dieting most of their adult lives. A study published in the International Journal of Obesity (2013; doi: 10.1038/ijo.2013.138) shows that there may be a physiologic reason why diets could be a poor bet, especially for obese people.
For anyone who wants to get slim or maintain a healthy body weight, reading food labels is widely considered a vital dietary strategy. Supermarkets have thousands of them, those black-and-white Nutrition Facts labels telling shoppers how many calories each portion of a product contains. Many recipes in magazines and diet books also indicate the calories you’ll take in with every serving. But now science is showing that not all calories are created equal and those numbers aren’t always, well, black and white.
Set the mood before consuming food. That’s the apparent take-home message of a recent study reported in the August issue of Psychological Reports (111 , 228–32) showing that environmental cues such as lighting and music strongly bias eating behaviors.
The simple act of walking offers myriad health benefits—reductions in stress, blood pressure and mortality, to name a few. Despite these benefits and the accessibility of walking, the majority of U.S. citizens do not walk continuously for more than 10 minutes in an average week.