Latest Blog Posts

Social Isolation Is Becoming an Epidemic Health Threat, Experts Warn

Lack of social connections can be as harmful to people’s well-being as suffering from diseases, stress, or poverty, and can even reduce life expectancy. Loneliness and isolation are not only on the rise among the elderly but growing parts of the general population as well. Paradoxically, neither the Internet nor social media – designed to promote communication and connectedness – seem to be able to mitigate these trends, according to several recent studies on the importance of social interactions for good health.

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Why Does Nutrition Advice Seem So Contradictory?

You’d think what you put in your mouth would be a personal choice, but there are plenty of messages weighing in about what you should and shouldn’t eat. When the 2015 Dietary Guidelines by the Advisory Committee (DAGC) recently released a 500-page document containing suggestions for updated nutrition standards, media stories on the subject spread like ink on a paper towel. The resulting coverage focused on counter-intuitive recommendations sure to drive controversial conversations and varying opinions from health professionals.

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No Need for Weight Gain When You’re Away from Home

It’s almost a foregone conclusion. Travel – for business or pleasure – likely results in unwanted weight gain, and not much can be done to avoid it. True, once you venture outside your own kitchen, it gets harder to make optimally healthy choices, and who wants to constantly think about diet restrictions anyway, especially on vacation. So, shall we just accept the inevitable and try to undo the damage after returning home, or is there a better way to stay on track regardless of the circumstances? I believe the latter is possible and deserves to be pursued.

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In the Fight Against Obesity, the Odds Are Stacked Higher Than Ever, Experts Say

By the end of this decade, diseases stemming from poor diet and unhealthy lifestyle choices will top all other causes of death worldwide. At the same time, there are no effective policies in place to tackle the most pressing problems such as the obesity epidemic and other so-called non-communicable diseases (NCDs) that are now affecting billions of people around the globe. Even in developed countries, these challenges are not yet fully understood and are not met with the necessary countermeasures to prevent further deterioration, experts say.

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Diet, Dog, and Dogma

The release of the 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee report does not officially give us new dietary guidelines just yet. Famously, there is a political element to this process. What actually emerges as guidance is determined by the federal agencies in charge, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). But given that, I like what I see so far. In fact, I think the advisory committee has done a stellar job.

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For Healthy Diet and Lifestyle Changes, Check Your Self-Talk

When it comes to making positive changes, many people are their own worst critic. A variety of harmful self-talk habits can get in the way of creating a healthy lifestyle. If you’ve had trouble starting or maintaining a better diet or lifestyle regimen in the past, perhaps the way you talk to yourself should get some of your attention.

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Can Meditation Make You Smarter?

People who meditate regularly over long periods of time in their lives suffer smaller age-related decreases in brain volume than those who don’t, according to a new study on the long-term effects of practices like transcendental meditation, yoga, tai chi, and other relaxation techniques.

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