Some forms of chocolate can be a rich source of health-promoting phytochemicals, but not all.
Valentines Day is just around the corner, and many of us will say, I love you! with the classic gift of chocolate. Ever since scientists discovered that cocoa beans contain potentially health-promoting biologically active compounds, chocolate treats have taken on a healthy halo. February seems like the perfect time to examine the current state of science around this crave-worthy confection.
Cooking decreases content of some nutrients but increases availability of others.
Vegetables are an excellent source of vitamins, minerals, phytochemicals, and fiber, and health-conscious consumers naturally want to know how to get the most nutritional impact from these powerful foods. Nutritionally, there are pluses and minuses to cooking vegetables, says Helen Rasmussen, PhD, RD, a senior research dietitian at Tufts Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging.
Leptin is a hormone that has potential anti-obesity and anti-diabetes effects. Tufts researchers may have just discovered how it works.
More than 20 years after the discovery of the so-called obesity hormone leptin, a team at Tufts may have at last found this important compounds target in the brain. In the 1960s, researchers made a surprising discovery: There was a biological mechanism behind the ravenous appetites of obese mice. Labs around the world immediately set out to find out what was making these mice so hungry.
Americans consume 17 teaspoons of added sugars a day on average (more than one-third cup). Thats not to say we scoop that much into our coffee or tea. Sugar, in one form or another, is added to a huge variety of processed foods, from sweet drinks to cakes, cookies, candy, ice cream, and even breads, yogurt, and seemingly savory condiments and sauces such as ketchup and tomato sauce. Sugars and high added-sugar foods are not healthful choices, and switching sweeteners (say, from high fructose corn syrup to raw cane sugar) is not the answer.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), about 34,000 cancer deaths per year worldwide are attributable to diets high in processed meats. While that number pales in comparison to the one million or so global cancer deaths related to smoking, it is significant enough to warrant a hard look at processed meats in our diets, especially because they are also associated with cardiovascular disease and other health conditions.