Monday, June 30, 2008

Red Wine a Weapon in Battle of the Bulge

Ask Glen!

Q. Glen, Can Red Wine Help You Slim Down?

A. Health Benefits of Resveratrol May Include Fighting Fat, Study Shows....

An antioxidant found in red wine and grapes known as resveratrol -- already thought to help keep the heart healthy and ward off cancer -- may also turn out to be a fat fighter, according to new research.

In the laboratory, exposure to resveratrol prevented pre-fat cells, termed pre-adipocytes, from increasing and from converting into mature fat cells, according to Martin Wabitsch, MD, PhD, a researcher from the University of Ulm in Ulm, Germany. Wabitsch presented the findings this week at ENDO 08, The Endocrine Society's 90th annual meeting in San Francisco.

We have to show it works in the same way in human beings,

The hope, he says, is to continue the research and, if it bears out, develop drugs that will use the same mechanism as the resveratrol in controlling the fat cells.

Health Benefits of Resveratrol: Study Details

In previous research, Wabitsch and his colleagues had found that the resveratrol protected lab mice fed a high-calorie diet from the health problems brought on by obesity by mimicking the effects of caloric restriction.

So the next step, they thought, was to see if the substance could mimic the effects of caloric restriction in human fat cells by changing them.

"We used a human fat cell strain," Wabitsch says, a stable cell strain that can be used over and over in the laboratory.

They exposed some fat cells to resveratrol and did not expose a comparison group of fat cells to the antioxidant. "Forty hours is the normal doubling time [of pre-fat cells]," Wabitsch says. "At 48 hours, the pre-fat cells in the control dish had more than doubled. In the resveratrol dish, the number of pre-fat cells had decreased by 40% to 45%," .

The volume of fat cells exposed to the resveratrol was also less, he says, in effect producing skinnier fat cells. Exposure to the resveratrol also reduced the secretion of substances called interleukin 6 and 8, which may be linked to the development o diabetes and clogged arteries, both thought to be obesity-related problems.

Wabitsch says the finding is consistent with the theory that red wine's resveratrol explains the so-called French paradox -- the observation that French people, who eat a relatively high-fat diet but enjoy their red wine, have a low death rate from heart disease.

Health Benefits of Resveratrol: What's the Mechanism?

The resveratrol affects the fat cells in many ways, Wabitsch says. "There's not just one mechanism."

"The reduction of the number of pre-fat cells works through SIRT1," says Wabitsch, referring to the activation of a gene associated with metabolism and aging.

When they "silenced" SIRT1 in animal studies, the resveratrol had no effect on the proliferation of the pre-fat cells, he says.

The study was partly funded by the German Research Association and the Ministry of Science, Research and Arts in Germany.

Health Benefits of Resveratrol: More Research Needed

The study is interesting, says Katherine Tallmadge, RD, an American Dietetic Association spokeswoman. "But we need more studies," she says.

She says that not enough is known about caloric restriction. Caloric restriction reduces body fat, which has multiple benefits, she says. But if it is too severe it can also be accompanied by health problems, including osteoporosis, she says.

Health Benefits of Resveratrol: The Future

When more is known about how resveratrol might inhibit fat, the hope is to develop a drug that will mimic the resveratrol's action, Wabitsch says. The pharmaceutical industry is already working on the concept

Any personal health questions or problems mental or physical or before starting any diet or exercise program. Please consult your physician !



Martin Wabitsch, MD, PhD

Katherine Tallmadge, RD

My mission is to provide you with "Trusted Advice for a Healthier Life."

Yours in good health

Any questions?

Ask Glen!

Friday, June 27, 2008

Outrageous Diet Myths

Ask Glen!

Q. Glen, When it comes to Diet what is true and what is purely a Myth?

A. You’ve been a yo-yo dieter your whole life, and you can’t figure out why it’s so hard to keep the weight off. Perhaps you’ve been following bad advice. The fact is, there are a lot of bogus claims out there—from misconceptions about carbs to falsehoods about fasting. Want to get the skinny?

Here re 7 of the most outrageous diet myths

1. All carbs are evil. With obesity and diabetes at an all-time high, carbohydrates have gotten a bad rap, mainly because dieters don’t distinguish between the two types: simple and complex. Although neither is inherently bad, complex carbs (found in whole grains, berries, and beans) are starches that cause a more gradual change in blood sugar than simple carbohydrates. Complex carbs keep you full for longer periods of time, contain more nutrients and don’t cause the crash associated with simple sugars, such as soda, candy, white bread, and processed snack foods.

2. Fat makes you fat. Like carbohydrates, fat has a bad reputation. Keep in mind, however, that not all fats are created equal. Saturated and trans fats can expand your waistline, raise your cholesterol, and increase your disease risk. But natural, unsaturated fats, found in foods such as olive oil, avocadoes, salmon, and nuts, are essential for good health and can help prevent certain diseases. When unsaturated fats are a part of daily meals, they can also help you feel fuller longer, decreasing the amount of calories that you consume.

3. As long as it’s healthy, you can eat ’til your heart’s content. A calorie is a calorie, despite the form that it takes. If you eat too much of anything, calories will add up and derail your weight-loss efforts. Watch out for foods labeled low-fat or low-calorie. A Cornell University study showed that people ate 28 to 45 percent more calories when eating low-fat foods because they thought it was acceptable to increase the amount they ate. Control your portions of all foods to keep the pounds off.

4. The scale is your savior. Depending on factors such as how much you’ve eaten and how hydrated you are, weight loss varies from day to day, so if you’re a slave to the scale, you could be doing yourself (and your sanity) a disservice. That said, if you want to shed pounds, most experts recommend hitting the scale once a week. In addition, you can monitor your progress with by other gauges, including how your clothes fit and the measurements of your waist, arms, thighs, and hips. If your favorite pants are looser and you’ve lost inches, you’re on the right track.

5. Fasting will jump-start your weight loss. No one can deny the fact that if you stop eating, you’ll lose weight. However, not only is crash dieting hazardous to your health; the results are only temporary—and you could actually impede your weight loss in the long run. Along with losing fat, fasting also removes lean muscle, and your body will start using fewer calories. As soon as you start eating again, your body will pile on these extra calories that it didn’t need before your fast.

6. Exercise isn’t necessary as long as you’re dieting. There have been an overwhelming number of conflicting studies about exercise, ranging from how often you need to do it to the intensity required for benefits. Some people even question whether it’s actually a necessary component for weight loss. However, although diet alone may cause satisfactory weight loss, a regular exercise program (even if it’s as simple as a daily walk after dinner) can accelerate your efforts by burning more calories, building muscle, and increasing metabolism. Additional benefits include increased energy, decreased appetite, and improved digestion, all things that can help with long-term weight loss.

7. Snacking will sabotage your diet. This is true—if your snacks of choice consist of large quantities of potato chips, candy bars, or leftover takeout. The good news is that snacking can actually help you lose weight if the foods (and portions) that you select are healthy. Research has shown that eating five or six small meals, or snacks, a day is more effective for weight loss than eating two or three larger ones. This method of grazing works by keeping your metabolism in a constantly active state, which can increase the amount of calories you burn and, ultimately, the number of pounds you can drop.

Any personal health questions or problems mental or physical or before starting any diet or exercise program. Please consult your physician !

My mission is to provide you with "Trusted Advice for a Healthier Life."

Yours in good health

Any questions?

Ask Glen!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Pain-free hands

Ask Glen!

Q. Glen, I have soreness in my hands ! Do you have any suggestions?

A. Many of us take our hands for granted — until pain or loss of function transform even a simple task into a painful ordeal. Arthritis can make it difficult to button a shirt or carry a shopping bag. Carpal tunnel syndrome can interfere with work or hobbies. Hand or finger deformities can make basic self-care routines such as getting dressed or brushing teeth difficult.

Hands are highly visible, so hand pain, swollen joints or finger deformities can cause embarrassment and feelings of helplessness. Problems of the hand range from the mechanical to the neurological. Two leading causes of pain are arthritis and carpal tunnel syndrome, but lupus, gout, cysts, tendonitis, and other injuries can also impair hand function.

Today, nearly one in three adults has arthritis or other chronic joint problems. The key symptoms of arthritis of the hands are stiffness, swelling, pain, and loss of motion and function, making it the leading cause of disability among Americans.

Although there are more than 100 different types of arthritis, the most common by far is osteoarthritis, sometimes called degenerative joint disease. An estimated 21 million Americans, mostly middle-aged and older, have osteoarthritis. In addition to the hands, osteoarthritis typically strikes the knees, hips, feet, and back. Many factors can increase the likelihood of developing osteoarthritis.

Muscle weakness and a history of joint injuries caused by sports or accidents may also make a person more prone to a type of osteoarthritis known as traumatic arthritis. Ordinary, repetitive activities such as typing or playing a musical instrument may worsen arthritis symptoms, but they do not cause osteoarthritis of the hands.

Carpal tunnel syndrome is another cause of hand pain. It affects nearly 2% to 3% of all Americans and is more prevalent among women, affecting nearly twice as many women as men. The classic symptoms are pain, weakness, and tingling in the thumb, index finger, middle finger, and half of the ring finger. Often, these symptoms occur at night and awaken you from sleep. Sleeping with the wrists flexed — a common habit — can contribute to the nighttime symptoms. After you awaken, you may need to shake your hand to restore normal feeling. Some people say their hands feel swollen and useless, even though their hands don’t appear swollen. As the condition progresses, you may start feeling tingling during the day, and the pain may radiate up your arm. It may become difficult to make a tight fist, grasp small objects, or do other things with your hands. In severe, chronic cases, the muscles at the base of the thumb weaken. You may even lose the ability to distinguish between hot and cold by touch. A procedure to ease this nerve disorder is one of the most common surgeries done in the United States, with more than 200,000 procedures performed each year.

Tips for pain-free hands at work

It’s a good idea to have an ergonomic evaluation of your workspace to avoid repetitive strain injuries. If that’s not possible, the following tips may help:

  • Keep your wrists in a neutral position, not flexed downward or extended upward, when using your computer. To check, place your wrist, palm facing down, on a flat, hard surface. Put a Band-Aid lengthwise over the top of your wrist, and then move to your keyboard and type. If the Band-Aid stretches or goes slack, your wrists aren’t in a neutral position.
  • Get up from your desk and stretch at least once every hour. In between, take shorter breaks to rest your hands, palms up, on your lap or on a wrist rest. You can install software on your computer that reminds you to take micropauses or rest breaks and restricts your daily time on the computer.
  • Be skeptical about new keyboard configurations (such as split keyboards) or mouse designs claiming to be ergonomic. It will take many years of study to learn whether such changes translate into fewer work-related upper-extremity musculoskeletal disorders.

I suffer from severe hand pain as well as hand muscle atrophy

Any personal health questions or problems mental or physical or before starting any diet or exercise program. Please consult your physician !

My mission is to provide you with "Trusted Advice for a Healthier Life."

Yours in good health

Any questions?

Ask Glen!

Monday, June 23, 2008

5 Best Ways to Burn Fat!

Ask Glen!

Q. Glen, What are some sure fire ways to burn fat?

A.The average American gains five pounds a year, every year over the age of 30. Some estimate that 60 percent of our society is overweight. Of course, the best way to avoid obesity is to resist temptation and never let the unwanted calories cross your lips in the first place. But what approach can we take that will help us balance exercise and food consumption?

1. Cardiovascular Exercise
Cardiovascular (aerobic) exercise has been touted for years as a key to effective fat burn. Most experts agree -- a fitness program with the main goal of achieving weight loss must include at least three weekly cardio workouts. This translates into 20 to 30 minutes (or up to 60 minutes when working at lesser intensities), of any physical activity that gets your heart to beat at a rate that's 60 to 90 percent of its maximum.

The specific exercise isn't as important as its affect on your heart rate (and breathing rate). Generally speaking, cardiovascular exercise involves working the major muscles of the lower body in a continuous, rhythmic fashion. Activities such as brisk walking, jogging, riding a bicycle and jumping rope all qualify as aerobic exercise and should be incorporated into your weekly fat burning regimen.

2. Strength Training
There seems to be a lot of misunderstanding regarding strength training, even amongst people that strength train on a regular basis. When you lift weights (or engage in any other type of strength training), you pit your body against a challenging (but controllable) level of resistance. If done right, muscles will adapt and grow stronger as they anticipate a progressively more difficult workout.

This muscle growth will take the form of a sculpted and more toned physique, and unless taken to an extreme, will usually not materialize into big and bulky muscles. But what about that layer of fat that floats over every inch of your otherwise sculpted body? An increase in lean muscle, if only slight, will result in an increased basal metabolic rate, your body's requirement for fuel at rest.

If you consider that almost all the burning of body fat takes place inside muscle tissue, it's logical to assume the more muscle you have -- the more fat you'll burn just to exist. This translates into a 24-hour-a-day increase in demand for fat as fuel, and if accompanied by a steady decrease in supply, will result in major fat loss.

3. Flexibility Training and Yoga
Many would question the connection between stretching and fat burning. Flexibility training increases the effectiveness of the rest of your fitness program in many ways. It cuts down on injury and recovery time, reducing next day soreness, getting you back in the gym sooner. Stretching improves performance, balance and speed of motion, allowing you to perform more work in less time.

Interspersing some stretching exercises into an otherwise strength training routine keeps you moving between sets, adding to the overall caloric consumption of your workout. Yoga, with its unique blend of stretching and strengthening exercises, has gained unprecedented popularity. Many fitness enthusiasts, who at one time wouldn't be caught dead in a cat pose, now find themselves attending regular yoga classes -- and looking as lean and fit as ever.

4. Sleep, Rest and Recovery
Most of us won't resist this one, but you'd be surprised at how often lack of sleep or rest is the culprit behind a failed weight loss program. More of a good thing isn't necessarily better. When putting together a fitness and weight loss plan, be sure to include adequate recovery periods between workouts. Rest at least 48 hours between full body strength training sessions and limit cardio to no more than 3 to 6 hours a week. If over-trained, your body will break down, you'll lose precious lean muscle mass and actually get fatter.

Do whatever it takes to ensure a good night's sleep. Get a new mattress, install heavier blinds or go to bed earlier. During sleep, the body's recovery processes go into high gear. Depending on activity levels and individual requirements, get 7 or 8 hours of sound, restful sleep every night.

5. Meditation and Stress Reduction
Meditation has been proven to minimize the body's reaction to stress and alleviate many stress-related health problems. But few realize that it can actually raise your body's levels of the anti-aging hormone, DHEA. Also available as an over-the-counter supplement, DHEA is a precursor to testosterone, which is necessary for muscle growth and fat loss. DHEA and testosterone levels decline with age, but tests conducted on people that meditate on a daily basis reveal that serum DHEA levels were restored to much more youthful levels.

In addition, stress has been found to generate dangerously high levels of the naturally occurring hormone cortisol, which is produced by the adrenal glands. Cortisol has a major role in the regulation of blood pressure and cardiovascular function as well as regulation of the body's use of proteins, carbohydrates and fats. When cortisol is secreted, it causes a breakdown of muscle protein, leading to the release of amino acids into the bloodstream. This process can also raise blood sugar levels.

Meditation, or any other form of stress reduction, can balance this hormonal shift. You can use your meditative sessions to visualize how you'd like to look, or even imagine yourself engaged in activities you once enjoyed. This type of visualization technique has been found not only to relieve stress, but also to increase your odds of achieving goals you've set -- a nice fringe benefit.

If your goal is to burn fat, take a five-pronged approach. Combine the above five methods with a sensible eating program, and you'll be on the road to unprecedented fat loss and a health and fitness program that you'll stay with for a lifetime.

Any personal health questions or problems mental or physical or before starting any diet or exercise program. Please consult your physician !

My mission is to provide you with "Trusted Advice for a Healthier Life."

Yours in good health

Any questions?

Ask Glen!

Friday, June 20, 2008

10 Healthy Foods Under $1

Ask Glen!

Q. Glen, Is there any way I can eat healthy without spending a fortune?

A. Even with rising food prices, it's possible to shop for healthy foods without spending a fortune.

Most of us don't need to hear it or read it ... we have felt it in our wallets every time we've gone to the grocery store. But just because food prices are rising doesn't mean you can't make healthy food choices.

The good news is that many foods that are good for you are also cheap. Here is our list of the top healthy foods you can find in your grocery store for under a dollar.

Prices may vary based on the store, location, and time of year.

1. Apples

Great for: Snacks, green salads, main dish salads, and fruit salads.

What's a serving? 1 large apple.

Price per serving: About $1. Apples sell for about $1.99 per pound, and an extra large crisp apple weighs about 1/2 pound.

Nutrition Info per serving: 117 calories, 5 grams fiber, 17% Daily Value for vitamin C, and 7% Daily Value for potassium.

2. Bananas

Great for: Snacks and fruit salads, yogurt parfaits, and smoothies.

What's a serving? 1 banana.

Price per serving: About 45 cents. Bananas sell for about $0.89 per pound, and a large banana weighs about 1/2 pound

Nutrition Info per serving: 121 calories, 3.5 grams fiber, 14% Daily Value for potassium (487 mg), 20% Daily Value for vitamin C.

3. Baby Carrots (in bags)

Great for: Snacks, casseroles, stews, veggie platters, and side dishes.

What's a serving? About 1/2 cup or 2 ounces raw.

Price per serving: 19 cents. A 16-ounce bag costs about $1 on sale and contains about 8 servings (2 ounces each).

Nutrition Info per serving: 27 calories, 2 grams of fiber, 200% Daily Value for vitamin A, and 7% Daily Value for vitamin C.

4. Canned Beans

Great for: Green salads, casseroles, stews, and chili. Types of beans range from 50% less sodium kidney beans and black beans to white beans and garbanzo beans.

What's a serving? Each can contains about 3.5 (1/2-cup) servings.

Price per serving: About 28 cents. You can buy a 15-ounce can for about $1 on sale.

Nutrition Info per serving: About 120 calories (for kidney beans), 7 grams protein, 6 grams fiber, and 6% Daily Value for calcium, and 10% Daily Value for iron.

5. Canned Tomatoes

Great for: Italian and Mexican recipes, chili, stew, and casseroles. Flavor options range from no-salt-added sliced stewed tomatoes to diced tomatoes with garlic and olive oil.

What's a serving? One can contains about 3.5 (1/2-cup) servings.

Price per serving: About 28 cents. You can buy a 14.5-ounce can for about $1 on sale (often less for store brands).

Nutrition Info per serving: About 25 calories, 1 gram fiber, 10% Daily Value of vitamin A, and 15% Daily Value of vitamin C.

6. Oranges (extra large navel oranges)

Great for: Snacks, green salads, and fruit salads.

What's a serving? 1 large or extra large orange.

Price per serving: 40 cents for a large orange and 79 cents for an extra large orange. Oranges sell for around $0.79 per pound, and a large orange is about 1/2 pound, whereas an extra large orange is about 1 pound.

Nutrition Info per serving: (for an 8 ounce orange): 106 calories, 5.5 grams fiber, 10% Daily Value for vitamin A, 200% Daily Value vitamin C, 17% Daily Value for folate, 9% Daily Value for calcium, and 12% potassium.

7. Pears

Great for: Snacks, as an appetizer with cheese, green salads, and fruit salads.

What's a serving? 1 large pear

Price per serving: about 45 cents for a large pear. Pears sell for about $0.90 per pound, and a large pear weighs about 1/2 pound.

Nutrition Info per serving: 133 calories, 7 grams of fiber, 16% Daily Value for vitamin C, and 8% for potassium.

8. Lentils (dry)

Great for: Soups and stews, cold bean salads, and casseroles.

What's a serving? 2 ounces (dry)

Price per serving: 14 cents. A 16 ounce bag sells for $1.12 (on sale) and contains eight servings.

Nutrition Info per serving: 195 calories, 14 grams protein, 6 grams fiber, 24% Daily Value for Iron, 10% Daily Value for magnesium and potassium.

9. Pearl Barley (dry)

Great for: Soups and stews, cold salads, and casseroles.

What's a serving? 2 ounces (dry)

Price per serving: About 12 cents. A 16 ounce bag of dry pearl barley sells for about $0.94 and contains about 8 servings.

Nutrition Info per serving: 199 calories, 9 grams fiber, 2.5 grams soluble fiber, 6 grams protein, 8% Daily Value for iron, and 11% Daily Value for magnesium.

10. Yogurt (plain, lowfat, or fat-free)

Great for: Smoothies, yogurt parfait, dips, and dressings.

What's a serving? An 8-ounce or 6-ounce container is usually a serving.

Price per serving: 60 cents. This is usually the price for an 8-ounce container of plain yogurt.

Nutrition Info per serving: (for 8 ounces of fat-free plain yogurt): 130 calories, 13 grams of protein, 45% Daily Value for calcium, plus active cultures such as acidophilus and bifidus.

Any personal health questions or problems mental or physical or before starting any diet or exercise program. Please consult your physician !

My mission is to provide you with "Trusted Advice for a Healthier Life."

Yours in good health

Any questions?

Ask Glen!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Workout Sins to Avoid This Summer

Ask Glen!

Q. Glen, Are There Any Work Out Regiments I Should Avoid This Summer?

A.Exercise is the best thing for your health regardless of your age, level of fitness or goals. However, it can also be dangerous if you don't avoid some common mistakes and take the proper precautions. Engaging in an exercise program with little foresight and planning can lead to burnout, frustration, injury and although rarely, death. Now that wouldn't make for a fun summer, would it?

If you want to maximize your workout and look your best this summer season, it is going to take a combination of motivation and the correct information. Heed the following deadly workout sins:

1. Skipping the warm-up. Doing too much too quickly will send your heart rate soaring and put unprepared muscles and joints at a high risk for injury. For beginners, rapid increases in heart rates can lead to light headedness, nausea, dizziness, fainting or ultimately heart attacks and stroke. Muscles need time to adjust to the demands placed on them during exercise. Before hitting the weight room or jumping into your regular cardio workout, you should take a few minutes to gently prepare the body for heavier activity by walking slowly, for example.

2. Jumping into the sauna or hot tub immediately following a workout.The temperatures of saunas and hot tubs can be detrimental to a body that already has an elevated temperature and blood vessels dilated from activity. Your body needs to dissipate heat in order to bring your heart rate back to a resting zone and re-circulate blood back to your organs. High temperatures in hot tubs and saunas will cause lightheadedness, dizziness, fatigue, nausea or worse -- heat exhaustion, heat stroke and heart attacks. Instead, try a cool shower or allow your heart rate to return to resting levels before getting into the saunas and tubs.

3. Holding your breath while lifting weights. Holding one's breath during weightlifting increases blood pressure significantly, possibly leading to lightheadedness, dizziness, nausea, hernia, heart attack or stroke. To avoid creating high internal pressures, inhale and exhale with each exercise phase of a repetition and breath naturally during cardiovascular activity.

4. Not having a physical prior to beginning an exercise program. You want to have the most benefit with the least amount of risk; it would never be wrong for you to get a complete check up prior to beginning activity -- especially if you are older than 45 or have other risk factors like smoking, hypertension, high cholesterol or a positive family history. If you have two of the above criteria, you are considered to be at risk for heart disease, diabetes or stroke. While exercise is the best thing for your condition, beginning a program without the proper guidelines can do you more harm than good.

5. Exercising above their determined heart rate range. Continually pushing your heart rates to the maximal limits during your cardiovascular workouts is overstressing your heart and lungs unnecessarily. When your heart rate is up to maximal loads, there is a greater chance for irregular heart rhythms. You do not need to place such high demands on your heart to see cardiovascular benefits or to burn fat.

6. Using hand or ankle weights while walking or during aerobic classes. Many fitness guidelines indicate that the use of hand weights during the aerobic portion of step training produces little if any increase in energy expenditure or muscle strength. The risk of injury to shoulder joints is significantly increased when weights are rapidly moved through a larger range of motion. It is recommended that hand weights be reserved for strength training, where speed of the movement can be controlled. In addition to shoulder injuries, ankle weights on the arms increase heart rate significantly and can lead to cardiovascular complications in less fit individuals.

7. Wearing head phones when exercising outside. The beat from your favorite musician or the intrigue of the latest audio book may keep your interest during an outdoor exercise session, but your awareness is diminished and the risk of twisting your ankle or getting hit by a car is increased. Besides, studies show that although music or entertainment may help you to exercise longer, your intensity is not as high.

8. Not listening to your body. Abnormal heart beats, pain, chest pressure, dizziness or insomnia following intensive exercise are signs of an over-trained body that may be at high risk for a heart attack and injury. Take a hint: slow down the pace or reduce the number of routines. It would be advisable to have a medical professional assess your condition if you experience any of the major warning signs of cardiac distress during an exercise session. If any symptoms persist during or following an exercise session, have your signs evaluated.

Any personal health questions or problems mental or physical or before starting any diet or exercise program. Please consult your physician !

My mission is to provide you with "Trusted Advice for a Healthier Life."

Yours in good health

Any questions?

Ask Glen!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Younger Women Miss Heart Attack Signs

Ask Glen!

Q. Glen, Can Younger Women Miss the Warning Signs of a Heart Attack?

A. Yes Misunderstood Symptoms Noted by Women Aged 55 and Younger Who've Had Heart Attacks

Heart Attack symptoms sometimes get missed or dismissed by women aged 55 and younger, a new study shows.

The study included 30 women aged 55 and younger (average age: 48) who had had heart attacks. The women were interviewed within a week of leaving the hospital after their heart attack.

In those interviews, the women talked about their initial recognition of their symptoms -- and what they did about those symptoms.

Here are the obstacles the women had in recognizing their symptoms:

  • They thought they were too young to be having a heart attack.
  • They had atypical symptoms that lasted for more than a day.
  • They chalked up their symptoms to other conditions, not to a heart attack.

While some women sought treatment straight away, others hesitated for a broad range of reasons, including uncertainty, preference for self-medication, a perception of negative treatment from health care providers, and even being too busy to get their symptoms checked right away.

"Young women described a complex internal dialogue as they decided when to engage the health care system," write the researchers, who included Judith Lichtman, PhD, MPH.

The women also noted that health care workers didn't always immediately recognize the fact that they were having a heart attack.

The findings were presented on May 1 in Baltimore at the American Heart Association's Quality of Care and Outcomes Research in Cardiovascular Disease and Stroke Conference 2008.

Heart Attacks in Women

Heart Attack is the No. 1 killer of U.S. women. And while Heart attack Disease Among Women becomes more common after menopause, it can -- and does -- affect younger women.

Every year in the U.S., heart disease kills about 16,000 young women and accounts for 40,000 hospitalizations in young women, according to the American Heart Association.

For both women and men, heart attack symptoms can include:

  • Squeezing chest pains or pressure
  • Shortness of breath
  • Sweating
  • Tightness in chest
  • Pain spreading to shoulders, neck, arm, or jaw
  • Feeling of heartburn or indigestion with or without nausea and vomiting
  • Sudden dizziness or brief loss of consciousness

Heart attack symptoms that are more likely to occur in women include:

  • Indigestion or gas-like pain or nausea
  • Unexplained dizziness, weakness, or fatigue
  • Discomfort or pain between the shoulder blades
  • Recurring chest discomfort
  • Sense of impending doom

Those symptoms don't always indicate a heart attack, but the stakes are too high to take chances. Call 911 at the first sign of a possible heart attack.

Any personal health questions or problems mental or physical or before starting any diet or exercise program. Please consult your physician !

My mission is to provide you with "Trusted Advice for a Healthier Life."

Yours in good health

Any questions?

Ask Glen!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008


Ask Glen!

Q. Glen, Do any of these so call Diet's (Weight Watchers, Atkins, Etc ) help with Diabetes?

A. Why Yes! The Mediterranean Diet May Thwart Diabetes, The study Shows Benefits of a Diet That Favors Legumes, Grains, Fruits, Nuts, Vegetables, and Fish May help in the Fight against Diabetes.

Eating a traditional Mediterranean diet may help prevent type 2 diabetes, a Spanish study shows.

The study included 13,380 Spanish university graduates (age range 20 to 90, average age 36) who were followed for about four years. They completed a dietary survey when the study started and follow-up questionnaires every two years after that.

The dietary survey included questions about foods, cooking methods, and olive oil consumption.
Based on the survey, participants were scored on a scale from 0 to 9 to show how closely they followed a Mediterranean diet. High scores meant they consumed a Mediterranean diet, meaning they favored legumes, grains, fruits, nuts, vegetables, fish, and moderate drinking and downplayed meat and dairy products.

A total of 33 people were diagnosed with type 2 diabetes during the follow-up period. Those who followed a Mediterranean diet were less likely to develop type 2 diabetes during the study.

For every two-point increase in the Mediterranean diet score, the odds of being diagnosed with type 2 diabetes dropped by 35%.

The study doesn't prove that the Mediterranean diet prevented type 2 diabetes. But the results held regardless of other factors such as physical activity and family history of diabetes.

The researchers -- who included Miguel A. Martinez-Gonzalez, MD, PhD, MPH, epidemiology professor at Spain's University of Navarra -- report their findings in the advance online edition of BMJ.

Because few participants developed type 2 diabetes -- and because the study only included college graduates in Spain -- the researchers call for further studies to validate their findings.

Any personal health questions or problems mental or physical or before starting any diet or exercise program. Please consult your physician !

My mission is to provide you with "Trusted Advice for a Healthier Life."

Yours in good health

Any questions?

Ask Glen!

Friday, June 13, 2008


Ask Glen!


A. The demand for organic food continues to grow every year. The organic food movement got its start in the 1960s, when increasing environmental awareness and concern about pesticides sparked a new demand for "green" products. Over the past 20 years, the market has grown exponentially, as more and more consumers are seeking safer, more eco-friendly food alternatives.

Enthusiasts claim that organic edibles offer other advantages over standard supermarket fare, including enhanced flavor and better nutritional value. In addition, organic food enjoys animal cruelty–free status (on organic farms, cattle and poultry aren’t bulked up with the usual antibiotics and hormones).

But there is a downside to the organic equation, and that’s the price. Because organic-food growers use more labor-intensive methods and enjoy fewer government subsidies, these foods are more expensive. And while organic fruit and vegetables cost only 10 to 30 percent more than non-organic items, frozen foods, processed foods, and animal products may be priced at 50 to 100 percent more, according to a United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) study.

What’s Worth Paying For?
According to the Organic Consumers Union, some standard foods contain higher levels of pesticide residue than others, even after washing. If you’re considering buying organic produce but can afford only a select number of items, you may want to consider apples, nectarines, peaches, pears, cherries, grapes, raspberries, strawberries, bell peppers, spinach, celery, and potatoes.

Some foods that do not retain large amounts of pesticides and may not need to be purchased as organic include bananas, kiwi, papaya, mango, pineapple, broccoli, cauliflower, corn, onions, and peas.

Beef, poultry, milk, and milk products may be worth buying organic because organically raised animals are believed to have a lower risk of contracting bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), also known as Mad Cow disease. Also, they’re not treated with hormones and antibiotics that could lead to antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

Understanding the Labels
If you intend to buy organic, it’s important to understand exactly what the labels mean. Also, bear in mind that the USDA makes no claims that organic food is more healthful or any safer than conventionally produced food. That said, the department does confirm that organic methods use reusable resources and conserve water and soil, preserving the environment for future generations.

In order to be labeled with the USDA approved organic seal, foods must meet the following criteria:
• Animals (used for meat or by-products like milk) are not treated with hormones or antibiotics.
• Animals are not given feed made from animal byproducts.
• Animals are given access to the outdoors.
• Produce is not genetically modified.
• Fertilizers used contain no synthetic ingredients.
• Chemical pesticides were not used.

It is possible for foods, like cereal or cookies, to be partially organic. If the food is only partially organic, it must be labeled as such, according to the Organic Consumers Union. Here are the guidelines:
• 100 Percent Organic: All ingredients are organic.
• Organic: 95 percent of the ingredients are organic.
• Made with Organic Ingredients: 70 percent of the ingredients are organic.

Foods labeled as “natural” or “all-natural” are not organic, but do not contain artificial flavoring. Organic produce may not be as pretty or as big as conventionally grown produce, but that doesn’t necessarily affect the taste and certainly doesn’t change the quality.

Any personal health questions or problems mental or physical or before starting any diet or exercise program. Please consult your physician !

My mission is to provide you with "Trusted Advice for a Healthier Life."

Yours in good health

Any questions?

Ask Glen!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Lower Blood Pressure

Ask Glen!

Q. Glen, Does Walking Help Lower Blood Pressure?

A. Yes Studies Show a Brisk Walk Can Help Improve Heart Health

If you have high blood pressure or are extremely overweight, walking may hold the key to improved heart health.

That's the message from researchers who spoke here this week at the annual meeting of the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) and the National Academy of Sports Medicine ( NASM )

A Korean study shows that walking just 40 minutes a day lowered blood pressure in people with hypertension. A U.S. study suggested that taking a stroll offers cardiovascular benefits for people who are morbidly obese.

The Korean researchers studied 23 men with prehypertension or hypertension. "Normal" blood pressure is a measurement of less than 120/80. Hypertension is defined as a reading of 140 over 90 or greater. Those with blood pressure readings between normal blood pressure and high blood pressure are considered to have prehypertension.

The researchers measured the men's blood pressure following a 40-minute brisk walking session and four, 10-minute brisk walking bouts. What's brisk? About 3 to 4 miles per hour, says Saejong Park, PhD, of the Korea Institute of Sport Science in Seoul.

Blood pressure dropped by similar amounts after each type of exercise session. The top number in the blood pressure reading dropped about 5 points after the 40-minute walk and 3 points after the four 10-minute walks, Park tells WebMD. The bottom number of the blood pressure reading dropped about 2 points for both walking sessions.

While longer studies are needed, "we think the benefits will be sustained over time if the men keep exercising," Park says.

The bottom line, she tells WebMD, is that you have a choice when it comes to exercise. "Some people like to work out all at once, but others say they can't comply with an exercise program because they have no time. These findings suggest people with time crunches and busy schedules can fit bits of exercise in throughout the day and reap the same health benefits."

The findings are in line with ACSM / NASM recommendations, which call for healthy adults to engage in at least 30 minutes of mo derate physical activity five days a week. The guidelines state that three 10-minute sessions are as effective as one longer session.

Jeffrey A. Ross, DPM, a clinical professor of medicine at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, recommends alternating walking with other activities.

"Instead of walking seven days a week, take a day off and go swimming or biking. That way you'll work out different muscles and reduce your chance of overuse injuries," Ross says.

Walking Helps Morbidly Obese

The U.S. study involved 14 morbidly obese patients who were scheduled to undergo weight loss surgery. Their average body mass index (BMI) was 46; a person with a BMI of 40 or over is considered to be morbidly obese.

Patients were asked to walk 1 mile at as brisk a pace as possible. They were able to stop and take breaks, but most walked the mile in under 30 minutes, says Thomas Spring, MS, a senior exercise physiologist at William Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak, Mich.

Results showed that all 14 "got their heart rate up to an adequate level to have benefits in term of cardiovascular health," Spring tells WebMD. "Walking is a great way for the overweight and obese to begin an exercise program, but always check with your doctor before starting any exercise program."

Reference: ACSM, NASM, WebMD

Any personal health questions or problems mental or physical or before starting any diet or exercise program. Please consult your physician !

My mission is to provide you with "Trusted Advice for a Healthier Life."

Yours in good health

Any questions?

Ask Glen!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Sugar and Eye Site.....

Ask Glen

Q. Glen, Is Sugar Bad for Your Eyes?

A Looks like there may be yet another reason to kick sugar and white flour out of your diet: eye health. Here is what I found on Real Age.....

Cutting back on processed carbs could lower your risk of advanced age-related macular degeneration (AMD), a leading cause of blindness in people 60 and older.

The Carb Connection
What makes refined carbs so bad for your peepers? Seems their high glycemic index may be partly to blame. High-glycemic-index foods boost a whole bunch of bad things linked to AMD -- like increases in oxidative stress, inflammation, and blood-fat levels.
See the Future
Along with replacing the "bad" carbs in your diet with high-fiber whole grains, try these other sight-saving steps: From Real Age:
Check out these five ways to cut down on dry eyes. RealAge Benefit: Choosing whole grains rather than processed grains can make your RealAge 1.2 years younger if you are a man and 2.3 years younger if you are a woman.

Reference :Real Age

Any personal health questions or problems mental or physical or before starting any diet or exercise program. Please consult your physician !

My mission is to provide you with "Trusted Advice for a Healthier Life."

Yours in good health

Any questions?

Ask Glen!

Friday, June 6, 2008

Strategies to improve memory

Ask Glen!

Q. Glen, I am getting older how can I improve my memory?

A. Normal age-related changes in the brain can slow some cognitive processes, making it a bit harder to learn new things quickly or to ward off distractions. The good news is that, thanks to decades of research, most of us can sharpen our minds with proven, do-it-yourself strategies. Here are some ways to boost your ability to remember as you age.

1. Economize your brain use.

Take advantage of calendars and planners, maps, shopping lists, file folders, and address books to keep routine information accessible. Designate a place at home for your glasses, keys, and other items you use frequently.

2. Organize your thoughts.

New information that’s broken into smaller chunks, such as the hyphenated sections of a phone number or social security number, is easier to remember than a single long list, such as financial account numbers or the name of everyone in a classroom.

3. Use all your senses.

The more senses you use when you learn something, the more of your brain will be involved in retaining the memory. For example, odors are famous for conjuring memories from the distant past, especially those with strong emotional content, such as the scent of your grandmother’s freshly baked cookies.

4. Expand your brain.

Widen the brain regions involved in learning by reading aloud, drawing a picture, or writing down the information you want to learn (even if you never look back at your notes). Just forming a visual image of something makes it easier to remember and understand; it forces you to make the information more precise.

5. Repeat after me.

When you want to remember something you have just heard or thought about, repeat it out loud. For example, if you’ve just been told someone’s name, use it when you speak with him or her: “So, John, where did you meet Camille?”

6. Space it out.

Instead of repeating something many times in a short period, as if you were cramming for an exam, re-study the essentials after increasingly longer periods of time — once an hour, then every few hours, then every day. Spacing out periods of study is particularly valuable when you are trying to master complicated information.

7. Make a mnemonic.

Mnemonic devices are creative ways to remember lists. They can take the form of acronyms — such as the classic “Every good boy does fine,” to remember the musical notes E, G, B, D, and F on the lines of the treble clef. For older learners, a particularly helpful system is a story mnemonic — that is, a brief narrative in which each item cues you to remember the next one.

8. Challenge yourself.

Engaging in activities that require you to concentrate and tax your memory will help you maintain skills as you age. Discuss books, do crossword puzzles, try new recipes, travel, and undertake projects or hobbies that require skills you aren’t familiar or comfortable with.

9. Take a course.

Memory-improvement courses are becoming more popular. If you decide to try one, choose a program run by health professionals or experts in psychology or cognitive rehabilitation. Stay away from courses that center on computer or concentration games, which generally won’t help you with real-life memory problems. Select a course that focuses on practical ways to manage everyday challenges.

You can also improve your memory with a good night’s sleep

Sleep is essential for memory consolidation as well as overall health. Research suggests that six to eight hours of sleep a night is ideal for most people. Perhaps even more important than the amount of sleep is the quality of sleep. For better sleep and memory, try the following:

  • Establish and maintain a consistent sleep schedule and routine. Go to bed at the same time each night and wake up at the same time each morning.
  • Plan to do your most vigorous exercise early in the day. Exercising in the hours immediately before bedtime causes physiological changes that interfere with sleep.
  • Avoid coffee and other sources of caffeine (e.g., chocolate, many soft drinks, some brands of aspirin, many types of tea) after midmorning, because caffeine is a stimulant that can keep you awake for hours afterward.
  • Avoid napping during the daytime. Napping can disrupt your natural sleep cycle and prevent you from feeling tired enough to fall asleep at night.
  • Don’t take sleeping pills unless nothing else works. If you do take a prescription sleep medicine, work with your doctor to use it effectively but only on a short-term basis.
  • Don’t try to sleep if you’re not tired; otherwise you’ll set yourself up for tossing and turning. If you’re still awake after about 20 minutes in bed, get up and read awhile to relax.

Any personal health questions or problems mental or physical or before starting any diet or exercise program. Please consult your physician !

My mission is to provide you with "Trusted Advice for a Healthier Life."

Yours in good health

Any questions?

Ask Glen!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

How Hypertension Damages Your Health

Ask Glen!

Q. Glen, How Damaging is High Blood Pressure?

A. Hypertension's consequences can be serious if not treated early.

Hypertension operates with great stealth. Although it seldom produces symptoms, the intense pounding of blood gradually damages the artery walls. Small arteries are especially vulnerable. The walls respond by thickening and losing their elasticity and strength. As a result, less blood can pass through them, depriving surrounding tissues of oxygen and nutrients. The vessel walls are also more prone to rupture. Eventually, hypertension damages not just the blood vessels themselves, but also the heart, brain, kidneys, and eyes. These are the "target organs" of hypertension — those most likely to be affected by the disease.

The longer you have hypertension, the greater your chances of developing target-organ damage and, consequently, major diseases such as heart disease, stroke, kidney disease, and eye damage.

African Americans are particularly at risk: Not only are they more likely to develop hypertension, but they are also more apt to suffer from its complications. African Americans with hypertension have higher rates of stroke, heart disease, kidney disease, and diabetes compared with whites with hypertension. African Americans are also more likely to die as a result of hypertension than whites are.

Reference: Heart Health

Any personal health questions or problems mental or physical or before starting any diet or exercise program. Please consult your physician !

My mission is to provide you with "Trusted Advice for a Healthier Life."

Yours in good health

Any questions?

Ask Glen!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008


Ask Glen!

Q. Glen, How are Hernias Treated?

A. Although not all hernias need to be repaired, hernias that cause symptoms or become larger should be repaired by a surgeon. The technique used to repair your hernia depends on its type, size and location. There are many options, including standard surgery, surgery using mesh plugs or patches, and surgery done using a telescope through a small incision (laparoscopic surgery). If you are considering having a hernia repaired, you and your surgeon will discuss which technique is most appropriate for you.

Hernias that become incarcerated or strangulated require immediate medical attention. Your doctor will try to push the hernia back through the hole in which it is stuck. If this can't be done, emergency surgery may be needed. Otherwise, most hernia repairs can be done on an outpatient basis at a convenient place and time.

Umbilical hernias usually are not treated surgically unless the hernia continues past the child's third or fourth birthday, becomes larger, causes symptoms or strangulates. Umbilical hernias are more likely to need surgery if the opening through which the hernia passes is greater than 2 centimeters.

Hiatal hernias that are not causing symptoms of acid reflux do not need to be treated. When symptoms occur, treatment is designed to decrease reflux. Surgery may be recommended for large hiatal hernias that cause continuing symptoms, or for hernias that become stuck inside the chest.

Any personal health questions or problems mental or physical or before starting any diet or exercise program. Please consult your physician !

My mission is to provide you with "Trusted Advice for a Healthier Life."

Yours in good health

Any questions?

Ask Glen!

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Home Blood-Pressure Monitoring Recommended

Ask Glen!

Q. Glen, Should you Monitor your Blood Pressure at home?

A.More than 100 million Americans should be monitoring their blood pressure at home, according to three major health organizations that are issuing recommendations on what to do and how to do it.

"We have an estimated 72 million [people] with hypertension [high blood pressure] and another 25 million with pre-hypertension," said Dr. Suzanne Oparil, professor of medicine at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

Hypertension is a pressure reading greater than 140 over 90. Pre-hypertension is a reading higher than 120/80, the desired level, but just below 140/90.

Oparil is immediate past president of the American Society of Hypertension, one of the organizations issuing the recommendations. Home monitoring should be done, because "hypertension is the most modifiable risk factor for cardiovascular and renal [kidney] disease," she said.

Added Dr. David Goff, chair of epidemiology and prevention at Wake Forest University, and one of the American Heart Association members who helped write the recommendations: "The evidence is quite strong that home blood pressure monitoring leads to better control of blood pressure, and the evidence is quite strong that blood pressure control lowers the risk of heart attack, stroke, kidney failure and sudden death."

Nancy Houston Miller, another guidelines co-author and a past president of the Preventive Cardiovascular Nurses Association, said in a prepared statement, "Home blood pressure monitoring also gives patients the physiologic feedback they need to see regarding blood pressure."

The guidelines are published online in Hypertension: Journal of the American Heart Association, the Journal of the American Society of Hypertension, and The Journal of Clinical Hypertension, and printed in the June issue of Journal of Cardiovascular Nursing.

"Only about one third of the people with high blood pressure have it under control, so clearly new approaches are needed to get better control," Goff said. Everyday monitoring is not necessary, but blood pressure readings should be taken "several times a week," he said.

Some of the specific recommendations include:

  • Patients should purchase a blood pressure monitor (some cost less than $100) with cuffs that fit on the upper arm, with advice from a health-care provider on its use. Wrist monitors are not recommended.
  • Two or three readings should be taken at a time, one minute apart, while resting in a seated position. The arm should be supported, with the upper arm at heart level and feet on the floor.
  • Readings should be taken at the same time every day, as recommended by a health-care provider.
  • The target goal is a reading under 135/85, or less than 130/80 in high-risk individuals.

The home monitoring recommendations open the door to a totally new way of controlling blood pressure, Oparil said.

"The future will be telemedicine," she said. "You would take your own blood pressure at home and transmit it to a computer, and someone, either a physician or another caregiver, will make recommendations for adjustments in your medication."

Any personal health questions or problems mental or physical or before starting any diet or exercise program. Please consult your physician !

My mission is to provide you with "Trusted Advice for a Healthier Life."

Yours in good health

Any questions?

Ask Glen!

Monday, June 2, 2008

How the Gut Works

Ask Glen!

Q. Glen,What Is a Sensitive Gut?

A. The "gut." It’s an ancient Anglo-Saxon word that refers to the human digestive system. Think of this marvel of nature’s engineering as a perpetual food processor, constantly mixing, grinding, and transforming the meats, vegetables, fruits, and snacks that people eat into biologically useful molecules.

Nearly 30 feet long if stretched out straight, the gut is a series of hollow organs linked to form a long, twisting tube that runs from the mouth to the anus. This string of organs is known as the alimentary canal, gastrointestinal (GI) tract, or digestive tract. It comprises the esophagus (or gullet), stomach, small intestine, and colon (which includes the rectum). These organs break down food and liquids, carbohydrates, fats, and proteins into chemical components that the body can absorb as nutrients and use for energy or to build or repair cells. What’s left is expelled by a highly efficient disposal system.

The organs of the gut are almost always moving, driven by muscles in the wall of the gut. These muscles consist of an outer longitudinal layer and an inner circular layer. The coordinated contractions of these layers push food and fluids the length of the canal, just as rolling waves deposit sand and shells on the shore. This dynamic movement along the gastrointestinal tract is known as peristalsis.

Helping the job of digestion is the mucosa, or lining, of the mouth, stomach, and small intestine, which harbors glands that produce digestive enzymes. The salivary glands, liver, and pancreas also secrete juices that help make food "soluble" (meaning dis solvable in water) so that nutrients can be easily absorbed into the bloodstream.

Any personal health questions or problems mental or physical or before starting any diet or exercise program. Please consult your physician !

My mission is to provide you with "Trusted Advice for a Healthier Life."

Yours in good health

Any questions?

Ask Glen!

Insanity Are you committed?

P90X Men Now it Begins!

P90X Women Now it Begins!

Polar Heart Rate Monitor FT40 FT60

Polar Heart Rate Monitor FT80

TRX Suspension Training Now offered at Fitness Builders 4 Life

Proform Better

About Me

My photo
Lawrenceville, Georgia, United States
Is the Founder of Fitness Builders 4 Life,the WorkOut GEM,G350,G180, G90, Eat 4 Life, Clean, Lean & Mean & Ask Glen. The mission of the Fitness Builders is to provide the community with health education and to empower people to change unhealthy lifestyles thereby increasing life expectancy. By educating the community on healthier lifestyle practices it is the intent of Fitness Builders to reduce the ravages of obesity, heart disease, cancer and other lifestyle or self inflicted diseases. Glen is also a AMA Certified Nutrition Specialist and a ACE, ACSM, NASM Certified Personal Trainer has 30+ years in Sports, Exercise Science and Nutritional Food Management, Learning and Mentoring Men and Women on a more Mental & Physical Healthy Life Style consisting of a low fat, low salt, Low carbohydrate, high protein, organic nutrition which also includes moderate exercise and mental awareness. Stay Informed, Live long and be Mentally and Physically Healthy! Any questions? Ask Glen!

Any Questions? Ask Glen!