Martina M. Cartwright
The skin is the body’s largest organ, accounting for 20% of body weight and serving primarily as a physical barrier against microorganisms, ultraviolet (UV) light, abrasions, dehydration and pollution. Loaded with sensory nerve endings, skin regulates body temperature, excretes waste and synthesizes vitamin D. Human skin has three layers:Read More
“We will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called Opportunity and its first chapter is New Year’s Day.” —Edith Lovejoy Pierce
Change one habit. Changing too many habits at once can weaken willpower. Cultivating keystone habits has a ripple effect, improving other areas of life (Duhigg 2012; Hofmann et al. 2012).Read More
If your gut is in a rut, chances are your health is out of sorts too.
The gut, also known as the gastrointestinal (or GI) tract, hosts trillions of bacteria that can have profound effects on digestive health and overall wellness, which is why it’s a good idea to consume prebiotics and probiotics—dietary dynamos that work in concert to populate the gut with “microflora” that keep mind and body healthy.Read More
Sales of foods with “protein” on the label are skyrocketing, and new product launches of high-protein foods are soaring (Stagnito Media 2013). American shoppers want more protein in everything from cereals to snack foods, but in a society where protein intake is already adequate, are consumers getting too much of a good thing?
Nutrition and fitness professionals trumpeting the weight-loss and muscle-building benefits of dietary protein are instrumental in educating consumers hungry for information about the type, amount and timing needed for optimal health.
Not all proteins are created equal. We divide them into the “complete” proteins like soy and animal sources, which contain all nine essential amino acids (EAA), and the incomplete proteins found in most vegetables and grains, which lack one or more EAAs. This would seem to complicate life for vegans, but it turns out that building complete dietary proteins is easy for those who know how to “complement.”Read More
??Trent is a 20-year-old college student and intercollegiate football player who works outs daily and wants that extra competitive edge. Trent tells his trainer he’s been experiencing headaches, insomnia, rapid heart rate, irritability, upset stomach and facial flushing. He wonders if energy drinks are causing his misery.Read More
Everyone needs a quick pick-me-up now and then, but are we becoming a nation of energy addicts? So it would seem, based on skyrocketing sales of caffeine-infused products. Today’s 24/7 culture, long work hours and poor sleep habits drain stamina and encourage us to guzzle liquid pep to combat daily sluggishness. Energy drinks, with edgy names and catchy slogans, have captured the youth market, igniting sales—and side effects (Seifert et al. 2011).Read More
In a culture that associates dietary fat with culinary coronaries and diabetes, Americans have
embraced low-fat diets as a path to wellness. True, an overabundance of energy-dense fat can
enlarge waistlines, but restricting dietary fat limits essential fatty acid (EFA) intake. When it
comes to health, the type of fat matters.Read More
By Martina M. Cartwright, PhD, RD
Winter is nearly over, but is your metabolism still in hibernation? Even if your metabolic rate is slower than a snail climbing a hill of molasses, there are ways to ignite your calorie-burning machine. The key to a supercharged metabolism is stoking the metabolic engine with exercise, food and lifestyle habits that boost energy expenditure.Read More
Millions of Americans ring in the New Year with lofty intentions to lose weight and exercise more, so why is it that by March, most New Year’s resolutions have fizzled like stale champagne? Typically it’s because people start out with unrealistic goals, misjudging the difficulty of breaking deeply ingrained habits. Impractical goals lead to disappointments that undermine the willpower people need to keep their New Year’s resolutions.Read More
Longer days and warmer temperatures are a sure sign that summer is just around the corner. As millions perform the seasonal ritual of swapping bulky winter togs for skin-revealing summer shorts, many will notice that their skin looks and feels more like alligator hide than a smooth, hydrated surface. The cold, dry months of winter…Read More
Higher gas prices have many seeking fun in the sun close to home, and what better way to take advantage of spring’s bright sunny days and soft fragrant breezes than to picnic under nature’s canopy? Picnics have been around for as long as humans have eaten leisurely meals outdoors, but the contemporary form arose from the 19th century “Picnic Society,” a group of Londoners who shared refreshments in lush park settings.Read More
The workplace can be a minefield for people trying to shed pounds. Co-workers can unknowingly torpedo weight loss efforts. The seemingly endless office celebrations and corporate events provide a steady stream of sugary indulgence that can sabotage the most strident dieter’s efforts. Deskside chats can tempt the most health-conscious employee into mindlessly reaching into the ubiquitous desktop candy jar, spurring weight gain.Read More
As the economy slumps, health experts expect more Americans to develop paunchy guts and bigger butts by packing on “recession pounds.” Plunging personal earnings lead to tighter spending; and many people ditch their gym memberships and buy fewer fresh fruits, vegetables, fish and low-fat meats in favor of cheaper edibles loaded with sugar and fat. Couple that with the specter of unemployment and stress and we have the perfect recipe for weight gain.Read More