The Detox Debate

 Written by Hilary Rock BSc, Nutrition

Reviewed by Andrea Miller MHSc, RD

These days, consumers are paying closer attention to ways to improve their health and prevent disease. At the same time that interest in health is growing, so is the ease of which consumers can access health-related information to support self-care, online. The Canadian Council of Food and Nutrition Tracking Nutrition Trends survey revealed that 46% of Canadians use the Internet to find food and nutrition information; 76% use magazines, newspapers and books; friends, relatives and colleagues are the source for 66%. In other words, many of the most common methods for obtaining food, nutrition and health-related information are not necessarily science-based and may not be reliable. One area of current popular interest where misinformation abounds is detoxification (detox) and cleansing diets and other procedures supposedly designed to rid the body of toxins. Detox diets are popular strategies that claim to facilitate toxin elimination and weight loss, thereby promoting health and well-being.

Calcium

 

By: Dianna Yanchis, BSc (Nutrition)

Reviewed by Andrea Miller MHSc, RD

Calcium is an important nutrient that contributes to bone strength and density.  Calcium is important for people of all ages. It is the most abundant major mineral in the body. Calcium has other important functions including assisting in muscle contraction and blood clotting, and maintaining cell membrane integrity. It can be found in many foods such as, dark leafy greens, cheese, milk, yogurt, bok-choy, broccoli, almonds, and legumes.

All About Protein

By: Dianna Yanchis, BSc (Nutrition)

Reviewed by Andrea Miller MHSc, RD

Protein is an essential nutrient that performs a variety of important functions in the body. This includes cell growth and repair, forming the structural component of tissues, producing hormones, building enzymes, maintaining fluid and electrolyte balance as well as pH balance, producing antibodies to protect against disease and use as an energy source. Protein can also act as building materials for bones, ligaments, tendons, muscles and organs.

The Truth About Gluten

By: Dianna Yanchis, BSc (Nutrition)

Reviewed by Andrea Miller MHSc, RD

“Going gluten free” appears to be a diet trend that has grown in popularity over the past several years. Grocery stores devote entire aisles to gluten free foods and celebrities and fitness enthusiasts promote its’ “health benefits.”  Health claims that are associated with a gluten-free diet include weight loss, a reduction in bloating, improving skin tone, increasing alertness, and many others. Is a gluten free diet as beneficial as it is made out to be? What exactly is a gluten-free diet?

What Are Antioxidants and Why Are They Important?

By Dianna Yanchis BSc (Nutrition)

Reviewed by Andrea Miller MHSc, RD

Antioxidants: The superheroes in our body! Antioxidants include Vitamins A, C and E, plant chemicals like flavonoids and minerals such as selenium. Antioxidants act to protect many of the cells in the body and to ensure they are working properly. Cell damage occurs naturally with increasing age and with exposure to pollution or cigarette smoke. Cell damage can lead to chronic diseases such as heart disease and diabetes. A diet rich in antioxidant nutrients can help lower the risk of these diseases.

Everything You Need to Know About Vitamin D

By: Dianna Yanchis, BSc (Nutrition)

Reviewed by Andrea Miller MHSc, RD

May 9, 2016

Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that plays a very important role in our body. It is sometimes referred to as the “sunshine” vitamin, as our body is able to make the vitamin when exposed to the sun. It is necessary for bone, teeth, muscle and immune health. Vitamin D increases the absorption of calcium, which allows for proper bone and teeth development. It also lowers the risk of infection by helping immune cells to function properly. Vitamin D plays an essential role in muscle and nerve function. Recently, Vitamin D has been found to lower the risk of diseases and some cancers.

Fat: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly!

By: Sarah Chmielewski, BASc (Nutrition) Candidate
Reviewed by Andrea Miller MHSc, RD

Why You Don’t Need to be Fat-Free

There seems to be a lot of misconception that fat isn’t good for you. Fat has been getting a bad rep since about the 1980’s, when we heard that eating fat would basically, well, make you fat. But whether you’re trying to lose weight, or just simply trying to eat a little healthier, the answer isn’t to cut out all fat, but to just choose wisely.
Although it might be hard to believe, fat is actually good for you. Our body uses fat  to store energy, insulate tissues and organs, as well as absorb and transport fat-soluble vitamins. Some fats – the good ones – can actually help to increase your HDL (your good cholesterol) and therefore reduce your risk of heart disease.

Whole Wheat vs. Whole Grain

By: Dianna Yanchis BSc (Nutrition) Candidate
Reviewed by Andrea Miller MHSc, RD

Whole Grain or Whole Wheat?

Grain products, one of the four food groups, are foods that are made or derived from barley, cornmeal, oats, rice, wheat, or any other cereal grain. Grains are often the seeds of certain plants. The bran, the endosperm and the germ are the three main parts of the seed, or kernel.  All three parts contain valuable nutrients that play an important role in the diet.