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Newsweek: Diet & Carbs

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Gammel 20-02-04, 23:35   #1
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Newsweek: Diet & Carbs

Health For Life:
Diet & Carbs
- What You Really Need To Know'
NEW YORK, Jan. 11, 2004 NEWSWEEK-- Scientists are now recognizing that healthy-lifestyle factors-proper diet, exercise and weight control -- that lower the risk of heart disease, strokes and vascular dementia, may also lower the risk of Alzheimer's disease, Newsweek Correspondent Anne Underwood reports in current issue. "Over the last three years, the single most significant trend in research is the evidence that risk factors for heart disease track with those for Alzheimer's," Bill Thies, vice president of medical and scientific affairs of the Alzheimer's Association, tells Newsweek.

As Underwood reports, in the last three years, still more cardiac risk factors have been implicated in Alzheimer's disease-obesity, smoking, atherosclerosis, high cholesterol and excessive levels of a substance in the blood called homocysteine. Want to lower your chances of dementia? A heart-healthy diet is a good place to start. The Alzheimer's news is part of the January 19 Newsweek special report on living longer and better, "Health for Life: Diet & Carbs: What You Really Need to Know" (on newsstands Monday, January 12). With reports from experts at Harvard Medical School, the cover package starts by examining pros and cons of low-carb diets. Highlights of the cover package:

* General Editor Peg Tyre reports that with life expectancy rising, aggressive new fertility treatments are making it possible for those in midlife and even older to have children. The number of moms between the ages of 40 and 44 is the highest it's been since the 1960s, before the pill. In 2002, more than 5,000 women between 45 and 49 gave birth-a rate that has more than doubled in 10 years-and more than 200 babies were born to women 50 to 54. Although the statistics are sketchy, numbers of midlife and late-life fathers are also rising. In 2002, more than 20,000 children were born to men between the ages of 50 and 54-up from 14,000 in 1992-and more than 8,000 men 50 and older became fathers that year. Dr. Marc Goldstein, chief of male reproductive medicine at New York Presbyterian-Weill Medical College, says the cutoff age for people seeking fertility treatment is dissolving. "Treating people who five years ago would have been considered too old is becoming routine," Goldstein says.

* In the age of the Atkins diet craze, it's now clear that carb-rich food
can inflate appetite and foster type 2 diabetes, and that low-carb diets
promote short-term weight loss. But healthy eating is not quite as
simple, or as boring, as living on fat and protein, explain Walter C.
Willett, M.D., and Patrick J. Skerrett in Newsweek. "You can have your carbs and eat them too. You just have to know how to choose them." They offer some "rules of thumb" for choosing the best carbs.

* Tyre also reports on another key to healthy aging: exercise. Health-club memberships for those 55 and older climbed from 1.9 million in 1990 to 7.4 million in 2000. According to the Sporting Goods Manufacturers Association, the trade group that tracks fitness and exercise trends, the number of Americans 55 and over using strength-training equipment on a regular basis has quadrupled in the past decade, from 1.1 million to 4.9 million. The key to healthy aging is finding a fitness routine that can last a lifetime. "You don't drive a vintage car the way you would a new race car," says Dr. Nicholas DiNubile, spokesman for the American Orthopedic Society for Sports Medicine and a consultant for the Philadelphia 76ers and the Pennsylvania Ballet. "You have a different body than you had in your 30s. It's going to need kinder, gentler handling." Older athletes often switch from high-impact sports to lower-impact ones.

There's no question that carbs can make you fat. But are bunless burgers the best alternative? Here's a healthier, and tastier, way to cut carbs.
By Walter C. Willett, M.D., and Patrick J. Skerrett

A middle-aged man, tired of being fat and having trouble losing weight, happens on a low-carbohydrate diet. He tries it for a few months and watches happily as the pounds slip away without the gnawing hunger and cravings that other diets have caused him. He writes a book that is a huge hit with the public, even though the medical establishment scorns it. The book is William Banting's "Letter on Corpulence, Addressed to the Public." It was published in London in 1863.

Imagine Banting's delight if he could listen in on a 21st-century cocktail party. We're still duly obsessed with our corpulence. And thanks to Dr. Robert Atkins, the cantankerous cardiologist who revived Banting's theories in the 1970s, most people now assume that carbohydrates are part of the problem. We don't "diet" anymore. We "go on Atkins," trusting that bunless burgers will do for us what fat-free doughnuts never did. Our faith is not entirely misguided. It's now clear that carb-rich foods can inflate appetite and foster type 2 diabetes, and that low-carb diets promote short-term weight loss. But healthy eating is not quite as simple, or as boring, as living on fat and protein. The truth is, you can have your carbs and eat them, too. You just have to know how to choose them.

When Atkins came out against bread, potatoes and pasta 30 years ago, mainstream nutritionists dismissed him as a crank. Fat was the demon of the day, and carbohydrates were seen as their exorcist. That's still true today, at least according to the poorly built USDA Food Guide Pyramid. But many experts now believe that Atkins was at least half right in condemning carbohydrates. Last year five well-designed clinical trials indicated that low-carbohydrate diets were as good as low-fat diets -- and in most cases better -- for helping very overweight people shed pounds quickly. Study participants stuck better with low-carb diets than with low-fat diets. And though low-carb dieters increased their fat intake, they didn't suffer harmful changes in blood cholesterol. They enjoyed reductions in LDL (bad) cholesterol and triglycerides (fat-carrying particles associated with heart disease), and increases in HDL (good) cholesterol.

Granted, short-term weight loss is not the best measure of a diet's ultimate value. There is still no clear evidence that Atkins-style diets are better than any others for helping people stay slim, and their broader health effects are still unknown. Will moderately overweight people enjoy the same improvements in triglyceride and HDL levels as the obese study participants? Could the abundant protein in an Atkins-style diet cause kidney damage or bone loss over time? These important questions deserve answers. But the case against carbs doesn't rest entirely on weight-loss trials. Other recent research shows that certain carb-rich foods can cause extreme surges in blood sugar and insulin surges that contribute to weight gain and increase your risk of developing diabetes and heart disease.

The Atkins diet, in its cruder variants, assumes that any food rich in carbohydrates will trigger this toxic cascade. But carbs differ greatly in their potential to do this. The key variable is the glycemic index, a ranking of foods according to how rapidly their sugars are released into the bloodstream. The body converts all digestible carbohydrates into glucose, the sugar that our cells use as fuel. When glucose molecules pass from the gut into the bloodstream, the pancreas releases insulin, a hormone that activates cells to absorb it. Muscle, fat and other cells then sponge the excess glucose from the blood, and insulin levels return to normal. The concept of a glycemic index emerged in the 1990s, when researchers at the University of Toronto showed that some foods (cornflakes or potatoes, for example) raised blood sugar faster and higher than others (oatmeal or brown rice), placing greater demands on the insulin system. That discovery led to an even more useful measurement called glycemic load, developed by a team from the Harvard School of Public Health. It takes into consideration both a food's glycemic index and how much carbohydrate the food delivers in a single serving. Most fruits, vegetables, beans and whole grains have low glycemic loads: their sugars enter the bloodstream gradually, triggering only a moderate rise in insulin. But when fruits are squeezed into juices, or grains are pulverized into fine flour, they become the equivalent of sugar water.

After a snack or meal with a high glycemic load, blood-sugar levels rise higher and faster than after a meal with a low load. The insulin needed to stuff all that sugar into muscle and fat cells also blunts the activity of glucagon, a hormone that signals the body to burn stored fuel when blood-sugar levels fall below a certain point. Glucose levels plummet as a result, leaving the brain and other tissues starved for energy. Concentration flags, muscles get shaky and the body perceives an emergency. In search of a quick fix, the gut and brain send out hunger signals long before it's time for another meal. And if you respond to these signals by downing another high-glycemic snack, the cycle repeats itself. The fluctuating sugar levels and elevated insulin levels lead to excessive snacking -- and calories.

Foods with a high glycemic load pose another problem for a growing number of Americans. The tissues of people who are overweight or physically inactive resist insulin's signal to pull in glucose from the blood --a condition known as insulin resistance. This keeps blood sugar at high levels for prolonged periods. It also forces the pancreas to produce extra insulin in order to jam glucose into cells. Overworked insulin-making cells can wear out and cease production, leading ultimately to diabetes.

The good news is that you needn't swear off carbohydrates to avoid these problems. The trick is to choose foods with low glycemic loads. As you can see from the table at health.harvard.edu/newsweek, a serving of orange juice has nearly three times the glycemic load (13) of an orange (5), and a serving of cornflakes carries five times the load (21) of a serving of All-Bran (4). Whether you're shopping, cooking or ordering out, it's wise to focus on foods that fall into the low teens and below, and to save those at the high end for the occasional snack or meal. But you don't have to carry a food chart to eat wisely. Here are some rules of thumb for choosing the best carbs:

Eat plants. Eaten whole, most fruits and vegetables have a modest effect on blood sugar and insulin. They also deliver fiber and other healthful nutrients. Starchy vegetables such as potatoes and corn have high glycemic loads, so use them sparingly. And don't count fruit juices as fruit servings. Most fruit juices contain too little fruit, too much sugar and too many empty calories.

Bank on beans. They're an excellent source of protein. They're rich in fiber, vitamins, minerals and other micronutrients. And they generally have a small effect on blood sugar and insulin.

Go nuts. Almonds, hazelnuts, peanuts, pecans, pistachios and walnuts are great low-carbohydrate alternatives to crackers, chips or pretzels made with refined flour. Walnuts also have heart-healthy omega-3 fats. Keep in mind that at 185 calories an ounce, eating a handful of walnuts a day without cutting back on anything else could make you gain 10 pounds or more during the course of a year.

Choose the best fats. Fats tend to slow the passage of food from the stomach to the intestine. So eating good fats with a carbohydrate -- olive oil with bread, for example -- can curb increases in blood sugar. Good fats are unsaturated fats, such as those found in vegetable oils (olive, canola, peanut, corn, soybean), fatty fish, nuts and avocados.

Switch to whole grains. Until the 19th century, humans ate grains either whole or roughly ground. In this form, grains offer a carbohydrate package rich in fiber, healthy fats, vitamins, minerals, plant enzymes and hundreds of other nutrients. Today's refined grains -- white bread, white rice and many breakfast cereals -- have a higher glycemic load. Fortunately, whole grains are making a comeback. There are at least a dozen options, from brown rice and cracked wheat to quinoa and spelt. Make a habit of starting the day with a bowl of whole-grain cereal. If you're partial to hot cereals, try old- fashioned or steel-cut oats or Kashi. Quick and instant oatmeals are also fine, but they have higher glycemic loads. If you'd rather have cold cereal, the less glycemic ones include Wheaties, Great Grains, Wheat Chex and Grape- Nuts. And don't give up on pasta. Whole-wheat pasta is now more widely available. If you don't like the texture, try one that is half whole-wheat flour and half white flour.

Can you eat all these carbs and still lose weight? Consider a recent study of overweight teens at Children's Hospital in Boston. One group was assigned to an all-you-can-eat diet that emphasized fruits, vegetables and whole grains, and reduced carbohydrates to about 45 percent of total calories. The other group got the traditional advice for overweight people. Instead of reducing glycemic loads, participants were encouraged to limit overall food intake and reduce fat, so that carbohydrates supplied between 55 percent and 60 percent of calories. The teens on the first diet lost more weight and body fat -- and stayed slimmer -- than those on the second. But weight control is only one benefit of eating the right carbs. Several large, long-term studies suggest that people who eat two to three servings of whole grains a day are less likely to develop heart disease, diabetes and digestive problems such as diverticulitis and constipation.

Robert Atkins deserves credit for publicizing the perils of refined carbohydrates, but the centerpiece of the original Atkins diet -- eating unlimited amounts of beef, sausage, butter and cheese -- is a bad idea. Although such a diet may be good for short-term weight loss, it's not a prescription for optimal health. A diet that includes fish, poultry, beans, nuts, fruits and vegetables, whole grains and vegetable oils can work for weight control even as it reduces the risks of heart disease, diabetes and several cancers. In other words, it can bring you greater benefits than any medicine yet invented. It tastes better, too.


Noe du lurer på? Sjekk FAQen."Kommunikasjon har ikke bare med offentlig transport å gjøre".
HP er avlogget   Min kostholdsfilosofi: Keto Svar med sitat
Gammel 21-02-04, 00:24   #2
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HP er bare helt fantastiskHP er bare helt fantastiskHP er bare helt fantastiskHP er bare helt fantastiskHP er bare helt fantastiskHP er bare helt fantastiskHP er bare helt fantastiskHP er bare helt fantastiskHP er bare helt fantastiskHP er bare helt fantastiskHP er bare helt fantastisk

FOR THE FULL ARTICLES ON THIS ISSUE SEE THE January 19, 2004 issue of Newsweek (on newsstands Monday, January 12): "Health for Life: Diet & Carbs - What You Need to Know." In this special report on living longer and better, Newsweek examines new findings on lowering the risk of Alzheimer's, the benefits of low-carb diets; how exercise keeps you young; the spurt in older adults having children and advice on sleep and nutrition from Harvard Medical School experts

Noe du lurer på? Sjekk FAQen."Kommunikasjon har ikke bare med offentlig transport å gjøre".
HP er avlogget   Min kostholdsfilosofi: Keto Svar med sitat
Gammel 21-02-04, 08:21   #3
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Takker HP

Gøy å se at dette nå blir mere mainstream. Minnet meg forresten på at jeg trenger å kjøpe meg den store matvaretabellen. Nå som jeg skal introdusere mere karbo så synes jeg det er greit å se på den glykemiske belastningen der jeg kan. Litt mye styr men som en pekepinn er det utrolig greit. Fant f.eks ut at kokte gulrøtter ikke var fullt så stor synder som bare GI fikk meg til å tro.

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Gammel 21-02-04, 10:18   #4
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Skorpia har veldig mye å være stolt avSkorpia har veldig mye å være stolt avSkorpia har veldig mye å være stolt avSkorpia har veldig mye å være stolt avSkorpia har veldig mye å være stolt avSkorpia har veldig mye å være stolt avSkorpia har veldig mye å være stolt avSkorpia har veldig mye å være stolt avSkorpia har veldig mye å være stolt av

For en flott artikkel,har en sak på gang og håper at det norske folk skal få øynene opp for et bedre og lengre liv etter dette:-)

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