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The traditional Mediterranean diet has plenty of benefits for health, but do those benefits extend to the womb?

New research suggests that they do, by reducing a child's risk for asthma and allergies . But an expert on the subject says the study is far from convincing.

In the upcoming issue of the journal Thorax, researchers from Greece's University of Crete report that children born to mothers who closely
followed the traditional Mediterranean diet while pregnant were 45% less likely to develop an allergic disease before age 7.…
Published by Irene on Jan 27, 2008
The benefits of green tea might include blocking fat and keeping extra pounds at bay, according to preliminary lab tests in mice.

Don't skip over that word "preliminary." There's no proof yet that sipping green tea will do the same for people. Staying in shape continues to be a balancing act between calories and activity.

Here's what those preliminary lab tests in mice show:

* Less weight and fat gain. Among mice with an obesity gene, those that ate chow laced with green tea extract gained less weight and less fat.

* Less fat in the liver. There was less sign of "fatty liver" disease in the mice with the obesity gene that ate chow laced with green tea extract.

* Lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels in mice with the obesity gene that ate the chow laced with green tea extract, compared to other mice with the same obesity gene.

A healthy liver isn't fatty. But obesity - in mice or in people - can lead to fatty buildup in the liver and cause nonalcoholic fatty liver disease.

As for that green tea extract, the study used it in doses equal to what a person would get from drinking at least seven cups of green tea a day.
Published by Kristine on Jan 26, 2008
Scientific studies have shown that people who eat a lot of fruit and vegetables may have a lower risk of getting illnesses, such as heart disease and some cancers. For this reason, health authorities recommend that you eat at least five portions of fruit and vegetables every day - and it doesn't matter whether they're fresh, tinned, frozen, cooked, juiced or dried.
How much is a portion?

* One piece of medium-sized fruit - eg, an apple, peach, banana or orange
* One slice of large fruit, such as melon, mango or pineapple
* One handful of grapes or two handfuls of cherries or berry fruits
* One tablespoon of dried fruit
* A glass (roughly 100ml) of fruit or vegetable juice
* A small tin (roughly 200g) of fruit
* A side salad
* A serving (roughly 100g) of vegetables - eg, frozen or mushy peas, boiled carrots or stir-fried broccoli
* The vegetables served in a portion of vegetable curry, lasagne, stir-fry or casserole

So how does this advice translate to real life? How do you make sure that you get your five portions a day? Here's some ideas:

* Glass of pink grapefruit juice for breakfast = 1 portion
* Small pack of dried apricots for mid-morning snack, instead of a chocolate bar or bag of crisps = 1 portion
* Side salad with lunch = 1 portion
* Sugar snap peas and asparagus, served with main meal = 1 portion
* Strawberries with dessert = 1 portion
Published by RiVD on Jan 24, 2008
A new study published in the April issue of the journal "American Psychologist" finds that for most people, dieting just doesn't work. This comes as no surprise to Samantha Heller, a nutritionist with "Health" magazine. She answers questions and has tips that can really help you lose weight and keep it off.…
Published by Irene on Jan 24, 2008
Indulging in a typical Western diet of burgers, fries, and diet soda boosts your risk of getting heart disease and diabetes, a study shows.

And the amount of fast food the researchers linked to health problems may surprise you. Just two burger patties a day and one daily diet soda substantially boost the risk of getting metabolic syndrome, researcher Lyn M. Steffen, PhD, MPH, RD, tells WebMD.…
Published by Sergejus on Jan 23, 2008