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Bowl Of Cereal Vs. Organic Apple & Grapefruit

Bowl Of Cereal Vs Organic Apple & Grapefruit
Graphic: © herbs-info.com. Images source – Pixabay (PD).

In the words of nutritionist Adelle Davis, “Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a pauper.”

Breakfast is rightfully regarded as the most important meal of the day – it makes us happier, lowers the risk of Type 2 diabetes, boosts our cognitive performance, and prevents weight gain. [1][2][3][4] However, these health benefits have more to do with the content of your breakfast than the timing.

What is in a Bowl of Cereal?

As far as convenience is concerned, a bowl of cereal is an easy pick for most people – but at a cost. Cereals are often loaded with unhealthy carbohydrates, high-processed foods, unnecessary additives (e.g., preservatives), and sugars that may wreak havoc on your body.

Word of Advice: Ignore the marketing ploys and health claims in the commercials or on the front of the box. Always read the ingredients list before indulging in a bowl of cereal – the devil is in the detail! That said, there are several healthier alternatives such as whole foods (fruits, grains, vegetables, etc.) or dairy products.

What is in an Organic Fruit-Based Breakfast?

Rather than eating a bowl of cereal with questionable ingredients, consider single-ingredient foods such as grapefruits and apples.

As one of the most nutritious citrus fruits, grapefruit is rich in fiber, nutrients, and antioxidants. [5] A medium-sized grapefruit contains vitamin C (64% RDI), vitamin A (28% RDI), fiber (2 grams), low calories (52), protein (1 gram), magnesium, folate, thiamine, and potassium.

Likewise, a 182-gram apple is rich in fiber (4 grams), potassium (6% RDI), vitamin K, manganese, vitamin C (14% RDI), vitamin E, and B vitamins. Additionally, apples contain polyphenols (micronutrients packed with antioxidants), especially on the skin.

So, what is your choice? A bowl of cereal or organic apples and grapefruit?

Please note that this content should never be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinicians.

References:

[1] Breakfast Cereal and Caffeinated Coffee: Effects on Working Memory, Attention, Mood, and Cardiovascular Function http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0031938499000256.

[2] Eating patterns and type 2 diabetes risk in older women: breakfast consumption and eating frequency http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/early/2013/06/12/ajcn.112.057521.abstract.

[3] Effect of breakfast composition on cognitive processes in elementary school https://ase.tufts.edu/psychology/spacelab/pubs/MahoneyEtAl.pdf.

[4] Association between Eating Patterns and Obesity in a Free-living US Adult Population http://aje.oxfordjournals.org/content/158/1/85.full.

[5] Grapefruit, raw, pink and red, all areas Nutrition Facts & Calories https://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/fruits-and-fruit-juices/1905/2.

Children Eating 12 Or More Hotdogs

Children Eating 12 Or More Hotdogs
Graphic: © herbs-info.com. Image sources – Wikipedia – lic. under CC 3.0

According to figures from the National Cancer Institute, cancer is among the leading cause of death among children younger than 14 years. [1] It’s estimated that over 11,000 new cases were diagnosed in 2019, with leukemia, lymphomas, and brain cancers being the most common.

With such worrying statistics, findings associating hotdogs with an increased risk of developing leukemia in children are a merited source of concern. In particular, research conducted by a team of scientists from the University of Southern California School of Medicine in Los Angeles claimed that children who ate more than a dozen hotdogs every month were 9 times more likely to develop leukemia. [2]

The findings, which were published in the Journal of Cancer Causes and Control, shed light on the relation between “food items thought to be precursors or inhibitors of N-nitroso compounds (NOC) and risk of leukemia.” This might help explain the high incidence of childhood brain tumors and leukemia over the last few decades.

The researchers suggest that nitrites used to preserve processed meats (such as those used in hotdogs). When consumed, nitrites are converted into nitrosamines – which are highly carcinogenic. Similarly, the American Cancer Society has long warned against the regular consumption of processed meat and red meat due to their documented carcinogenic properties. [3]

Takeaway
While the study is neither conclusive nor meant to make hotdogs the villain, it’s worth considering the risk of leukemia – especially with the increased number of incidences. Rather than consume processed meats, we should opt for healthier alternatives such as beans, poultry, fish, whole grains, fruits, and vegetables.

Please note that this content should never be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinicians.

References:

[1] Childhood Cancers https://www.cancer.gov/types/childhood-cancers.

[2] Peters, J. M. 1994. Processed meats and risk of childhood leukemia (California, USA). https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8167267.

[3] What’s Wrong with Hot Dogs, Hamburgers, and Bacon? https://www.cancer.org/latest-news/hot-dogs-hamburgers-bacon.html.

Depression, Anxiety and Panic Attacks

Depression, Anxiety and Panic Attacks
Graphic: © herbs-info.com.

Struggling with depression, anxiety, or panic attacks? Always keep in mind that you’re not alone – there are millions of people affected by these mental health illnesses. In fact, the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA) claims that 40 million American adults are affected by anxiety disorders, another 17.3 million have a depressive disorder, and 6 million are affected by a panic disorder.

Although there are several effective treatments to manage these conditions – including psychotherapy and behavioral therapy – most cases remain untreated. The World Health Organization notes that up to 85% of victims in middle- and low-income countries do not receive treatment.

Most health care providers identify social stigma and misdiagnosis as one of the main barriers to effective mental health care – and it’s easy to see why. Some people are afraid of speaking out due to statements such as “pull yourself together” or “everyone gets anxious and depressed, just snap out of it.” This is often fueled by the assumption that admitting you’re going through depression or anxiety is a sign of weakness – but it couldn’t be further from the truth.

Sure, most of us feel anxious, depressed, or experience a panic attack from time to time. But in the case of clinical or diagnosable mental health issues, there’s more to it than ‘shaking it off’ – professional medical care and social support are necessary to avoid adverse mental and physical effects. Remember, sharing your experiences and offering support is a sign of strength!

Please note that this content should never be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinicians.

References:

[1] Anxiety And Depression Association of America Facts & Statistics https://adaa.org/about-adaa/press-room/facts-statistics.

[2] Depression https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/depression.