Monday, September 24, 2012

What's making news in nutrition this month?

Reading Food Labels Could Keep you Thinner

A recent study showed women who read food labels weighed nearly 9 pounds (4.5kg) less than women who didn't read labels. The results showed reading labels played a role in reducing obesity, especially among women.
So next time you pick up a product in the supermarket, read the label! Pay particular attention to the total energy (calories/kilojoules), saturated fat and sugar. A general rule of thumb is to aim for saturated fat <2g/100g and sugar <15g/100g. The energy depends on whether it is a meal or snack. Try and choose snacks with <200 calories per serve (and be sure to stick to 1 serve!).

A good reason to go to bed early

An article in the Canadian Medical Association Journal showed significant evidence that inadequate sleep is contributing to obesity, through affecting appetite-regulating hormones. The Canadian Obesity Network has included adequate sleep in its new set of obesity management tools for physicians. No longer is achieving a healthy weight just about healthy eating and exercise; but it is also about getting enough sleep. What a great excuse to hit the sack early tonight!

Eating Well During Pregnancy Reduces Baby's Obesity Risk

Research is showing that obesity likely begins in the womb. A study recently showed that  babies born to mothers who followed a low fat diet during pregnancy (13% calories from fat) could better metabolise fat and glucose. Babies born to mothers who ate a high fat diet had worse metabolism. This alterered metabolism was irrespective of whether the mother was a healthy weight, overweight or obese. This means that even if you are overweight and pregnant; your baby isn't destined to a life of obesity. The food choices you make during pregnancy DO weigh heavily on your baby's future metabolism.
The interesting fact about this study was that the low fat diet (13% calories from fat), is far lower than the 20-35% generally recommended for health and well-being. The study did not differentiate between healthy or unhealthy fats. Watch this space! 

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