Eating 10 Servings of Fruits, Vegetables reduces the risk of Heart Disease, Stroke and Cancer

 Increasing the dietary intake of vegetables and fruits has long been recommended to reduce the incidence of heart disease and cancer, but now a recent meta-analysis research review published in the International Journal of Epidemiology (22Feb2017) has confirmed just how significant the benefits really can be. And the results are quite remarkable. Eating just 200 grams of fruit/vegetables per day, (equivalent to one apple and one medium sized carrot) reduces the incidence of heart disease by 16%, stroke reduction by 18%, and risk of premature death by 15%. Even more impressive is that eating ten servings per day (800 grams per day equivalent to two fruits, a generous sized salad, plus one cup cooked vegetables) produced dramatically increased benefits - a 24% reduced risk of heart disease, a 33% reduced risk of stroke, a 28% reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, a 13% reduced risk of total cancer, and a 31% reduction in premature deaths. Interestingly though, not all fruits/vegetables were credited with equal results. To see which fruits and vegetables were best at preventing heart disease and stroke, versus those that were best at cancer prevention, click on the link to a short summary article here

Reference: Aune D,Giovannucci E, Boffetta P, et al. Fruit and vegetable intake and the risk of cardiovascular disease, total cancer and all-cause mortality–a systematic review and dose-response meta-analysis of prospective studies. (published online February 22, 2017). Int J Epidemiol, 2017. dyw319. doi: 10.1093/ije/dyw319

15 Houseplants that can clean your indoor air

A breath of fresh air - 15 houseplants for improving indoor air quality

Remember learning in your biology class that plants produce oxygen? Did you also know that certain indoor potted plant systems are very capable of removing harmful indoor contaminants such as benzene, formaldehyde (a known carcinogen), trichloroethylene (TCE) and carbon monoxide in addition to carbon dioxide from the air? Various building materials (especially particleboard and spray polyurethane foam (SPF) insulation products), some types of furniture, new carpets and fabrics, paints as well as household cleaners may contain various hazardous volatile organic chemicals (VOC) that can be released into the air inside our homes. Once released these VOC's get trapped and are recirculated by closed ventilation systems which can, in turn, can lead to a host of health problems such as respiratory and allergic reactions, sensitivity to chemicals, and "Sick Building Syndrome". This link, 15 houseplants for improving indoor air quality, connects to an article published in January 2016 on the Mother Nature Network website that references way back to the collaborative NASA and the Associated Landscape Contractors of America (ALCA) research project led by Dr. B. C. Wolverton in 1989.

Comment: So if you want to provide both decorative and effective air scrubbing benefits inside your home, replace your artificial, dust gathering, plastic or silk plants with real, live, indoor potted house plants. This article, by Julie Knapp, will show you pictures and give details on fifteen of the most effective, easy to find and care for plants that will give your home fresh, plant filtered air. (Note: Dr. Wolverton observed that keeping the plant root/soil zone area uncovered, e.g. removing lower leaves, appeared to be even more effective at removing air contaminants. He also found covering each of the potted plant soil surfaces with 2-3 centimeters (approximately 1") of washed pea gravel helped deter the growth of undesirable soil surface molds/fungi).

For a more exhaustive list you may also want to check in your local library or online for Dr. B. C. Wolverton's book, How to Grow Fresh Air: 50 houseplants that purify your home or offices.  

Take a look at this short 2016 YouTube video on the topic of improving indoor air quality with houseplants.

Indoor air pollution in your home or office can cause health issues like dizziness, asthma or allergies. The most common solution is to install ventilation systems. But researchers may have found a cheaper, simpler option to remove indoor air pollutants: houseplants. Video produced by Research Square https://www.researchsquare.com/

Another link to the American Chemical Society is found here:

Efficacy of DMSA Therapy in a Sample of Arab Children with Autistic Spectrum Disorder

"Efficacy of DMSA Therapy in a Sample of Arab Children with Autistic Spectrum Disorder". This 2012 study published in Maedica, A Journal of Clinical Medicine, provides objective evidence that DMSA detoxification treatments cause a reduction of the heavy metal burden in the autistic, and that this reduction lessens neurological symptoms associated with ASD (Autistic Spectrum Disorder).

Comment: While we don’t think that oral Dimercaptosuccinic acid (DMSA) is the whole solution for autism, as this clinical study shows, using DMSA appropriately when indicated, can be helpful in reducing some symptoms typically associated with autism.

Antibiotic use in infants linked to adult diseases

Antibiotic use in infants linked to adult diseases

A new study led by researchers at the University of Minnesota has found a three-way link among antibiotic use in infants, changes in the gut bacteria, and disease later in life. The study titled "Antibiotics, Pediatric Dysbiosis, and Disease", was published in the scientific journal Cell Host and Microbe, Volume 17, Issue 5 on May 13, 2015. Researchers reported that imbalances in gut microbes, called dysbiosis, have been tied to infectious diseases, allergies, atopy (eczema), autoimmune disorders, and even obesity, later in life. See link here for summary article.

Comment: One of the leading causes of undesirable changes in the bacteria balance within the digestive tract, also known as dysbiosis, is from the use of antibiotics in both children and adults. These research findings are just another example of the emerging evidence that shows the importance of stabilizing and maintaining a healthy bacterial microflora within the digestive tract, even beginning in infancy.

Ever wonder if a healthy lifestyle really pays off?

Research published in the January 6, 2015 Journal of American College of Cardiology confirms just how substantially young women can lower their future heart disease risk by adopting a "healthy lifestyle". Six "healthy lifestyle" factors were assessed and followed over a period of twenty years in young women (age 27-44) and were found to be independently and significantly linked to less future heart and cardiovascular disease risk. The researchers found that compared to women who had none of the "healthy lifestyle" habits, women who had all six healthy habits were 92 percent less likely to have a heart attack and were 66% less likely to have diabetes or high blood pressure by the time they were in their 40's or 50's.

Comment: Many young women are so busy they may not take the time to take care of themselves properly. Even though they may look and feel healthy at the moment, this study shows how the long term benefits of taking the time and making the effort now, will pay off with the promise of a more productive and healthier future. In case you were wondering, the six "healthy lifestyle" habits were: not smoking, watching less than seven hours of TV per week, drinking no more than one alcoholic beverage per day, getting at least 2.5 hours of exercise per week, eating a healthy diet, and maintaining a normal body weight.  See more . . .