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Jan 8

Keto diet ranks last on 2018 ‘best diets’ list – CNN

Both stress eating a ton of protein and minimal carbs, putting the dieter into “ketosis,” when the body breaks down both ingested and stored body fat into ketones, which it uses as energy. People on such diets often deal with fatigue and light-headedness as they adjust to a lack of carbohydrates.

Though the experts on the US News and World Report panel that created the list said eating that way isn’t harmful short-term, they ranked the diets poorly on long-term weight loss success, ease of use and overall impact on health.

“When you are on the keto diet, you drastically cut your carbs to only 20 per day. That’s less than one apple!” said nutritionist Lisa Drayer, a CNN contributor. “The keto diet is just not sustainable over the long term. It doesn’t teach you how to acquire healthy eating habits. It’s good for a quick fix, but most people I know can hardly give up pasta and bread, let alone beans and fruit.”

The expert panel was particularly concerned for people with liver or kidney conditions, “who should avoid it altogether,” the report said, adding that there was not enough evidence to know whether the diet would help those with heart issues or diabetes. Because of the recommended “cycling” nature of the diet, taking breaks and then starting it again, experts also warn that hormones could fluctuate.

The panel slammed the diet as having “No independent research. Nonsensical claims. Extreme. Restrictive.” and tied it with the raw food diet as “the worst of the worst for healthy eating.”

First place is a tie

“What I love about both the DASH and Mediterranean diets is that they offer guiding principles for eating, like eating more fruits and vegetables, as well as whole grains, fish, legumes, nuts and low-fat dairy foods,” Drayer said. “I personally love the fact that a daily glass of red wine is encouraged as part of the Mediterranean diet.”

The DASH diet is often recommended to lower blood pressure. Its premise is simple: Eat more veggies, fruits and low-fat dairy foods while cutting way back on any food high in saturated fat and limit your intake of salt.

The meal plan includes three whole-grain products each day, four to six servings of vegetables, four to six servings of fruit, two to four servings of dairy products and several servings each of lean meats and nuts/seeds/legumes.

The Mediterranean diet also ranked first on the US News and World Report list for easiest diet to follow, best plant-based diet and best diet for diabetes. It came in second for best heart-healthy diet, just behind DASH.

The diet emphasizes simple, plant-based cooking, with the majority of each meal focused on fruits and vegetables, whole grains, beans and seeds, with a few nuts and a heavy emphasis on extra virgin olive oil. Say goodbye to refined sugar or flour. Fats other than olive oil, such as butter, are consumed rarely, if at all.

Meat can make a rare appearance, but usually only to flavor a dish. Meals may include eggs, dairy and poultry, but in much smaller portions than in the traditional Western diet. However, fish are a staple, and an optional glass of wine with dinner is on the menu.

The ever-popular Weight Watchers diet was ranked fourth, followed by the MIND diet, a combination of the Mediterranean and DASH diets that some may find a bit easier to follow, as it requires less fish and fruit.

Best weight-loss diets

Weight Watchers topped the list of best weight-loss and best commercial diet plans, and it tied with HMR for best fast weight-loss diet. HMR, the Health Management Resources program, involves purchasing meal replacements, such as shakes, nutrition bars and multigrain cereals, and adding vegetables and fruits to round out the meals.

Since 2015, Weight Watchers has been focused on its Beyond the Scale program. It is designed to help people move more and focus on overall well-being, including more “me” time, which includes mindfulness and self-compassion.

Drayer agreed: “I’ve always been a fan of Weight Watchers because it teaches you how to incorporate all types of foods into your diet, and it also offers a support component, which can be extremely beneficial.”

But whatever diet you choose, she recommends choosing the one that fits your lifestyle and that you can stick to over the long term.

“I always recommend meeting with a registered dietitian, who can take into account your health history, lifestyle habits, likes and dislikes, and develop an eating plan that is specific to your needs,” she added. “I also recommend checking with your doctor first before starting any new diet plan.”

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Keto diet ranks last on 2018 ‘best diets’ list – CNN

Dec 31

Risk Factors: Diet – National Cancer Institute

Scientists have studied many foods and dietary components for possible associations with increasing or reducing cancer risk.

Credit: National Cancer Institute

Many studies have looked at the possibility that specific dietary components or nutrients are associated with increases or decreases in cancer risk. Studies of cancer cells in the laboratory and of animal models have sometimes provided evidence that isolated compounds may be carcinogenic (or have anticancer activity).

But with few exceptions, studies of human populations have not yet shown definitively that any dietary component causes or protects against cancer. Sometimes the results of epidemiologic studies that compare the diets of people with and without cancer have indicated that people with and without cancer differ in their intake of a particular dietary component.

However, these results show only that the dietary component is associated with a change in cancer risk, not that the dietary component is responsible for, or causes, the change in risk. For example, study participants with and without cancer could differ in other ways besides their diet, and it is possible that some other difference accounts for the difference in cancer.

When evidence emerges from an epidemiologic study that a dietary component is associated with a reduced risk of cancer, a randomized trial may be done to test this possibility. Random assignment to dietary groups ensures that any differences between people who have high and low intakes of a nutrient are due to the nutrient itself rather than to other undetected differences. (For ethical reasons, randomized studies are not generally done when evidence emerges that a dietary component may be associated with an increased risk of cancer.)

Scientists have studied many additives, nutrients, and other dietary components for possible associations with cancer risk. These include:

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Risk Factors: Diet – National Cancer Institute

Dec 31

Diet – SIBO- Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth

Dietary Treatments

All dietary treatments strive to reduce the food sources for the bacteria. They seek to feed the person but starve the bacteria. Our diet has a significant impact on our intestinal bacterial population. Bacteria primarily eat carbohydrates so all the recommended diets decrease carbohydrates to reduce the bacteria by limiting their food supply. The only carbohydrate that bacteria do not eat much of is insoluble fiber. The established SIBO treatment diets are the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD), the Gut and Psychology Syndrome Diet (Gaps Diet), the Low Fodmap Diet (LFD) or a combination of these diets such as SCD + LFD (see below). The established prevention diets include all the above plus the Cedars-Sinai Diet (see below). “Fermentable” refers to what bacteria eat.

Fermentable Carbohydrates/Saccharides:StarchResistant StarchSoluble FiberSugar (in all it’s forms)Prebiotics (inulin, FOS, MOS, GOS, arabinogalactan)

Sources of Fermentable Carbohydrates/Saccharides:Starch- grains, beans, starchy vegetablesResistant Starch- whole grains, seeds, legumesSoluble Fiber- grains, beans, nuts/seeds, vegetables, fruitSugar- fruit, sweetenersPrebiotics- agave, beans, vegetables, roots/herbs, supplements

My hope was that practitioners would customize the SIBO Specific Food Guide into more specific diet plans for their patients. Thats just what Dr. Jacobi did with the SIBO Bi-Phasic diet, and countless doctors and patients have benefited from it. The SIBO Bi-Phasic Diet puts the SSFG into phases, which are then combined with other treatment such as antimicrobials.

SIBO Bi-Phasic Diet

The Diet

This diet is famous for explaining and including lactose-free dairy foods, especially the introduction of 24-hour homemade yogurt as well as introducing nut-flour (predominantly almond flour), as a substitution for standard wheat and grain flours in baked goods or breading.

ResourcesBesides the book (BTVC), which contains great recipes (Lois Lang’s Bread and Basic Muffins are my favorites), there are a plethora of SCD websites which include free recipes, supplies and mail order foods. I highly recommend getting 1 or more of the SCD Cookbooks.

SCD Legal & Illegal Food Web ListSCD Legal & Illegal Food Handout- 4 pages (2 legal, 2 illegal) from healththroughdiet.comAlso see the Gaps Diet Food List for an easy 1 page version of allowed and not allowed foods.

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Diet – SIBO- Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth

Dec 31

Military Diet Review – Meal Plan, Results, Substitutions…

Weight loss is never easy. In fact, it requires a strong will and unyielding determination. Your weight loss results also greatly depend on the lifestyle youre leading. If youre more into lazing around the house rather than heading for the gym, your chances of dropping a few extra pounds are seriously undermined. But that doesnt mean that there is no way to lose some weight. Continue reading about The Military Diet below

The Military Diet is one of the latest weight loss trends, which has virtually taken the world like wildfire, mostly because of its simplicity and effectiveness.

If youre already familiar with it, then your first association is probably lose 10 pounds in a week or 30 pounds in a month. This will sound implausible to most people, simply because we are all rather skeptical when it comes to diet plans that guarantee fast weight loss results. But, the Military Diet is not a typical starvation diet. While its low in calories, at the same time it comprises carbohydrates, protein and healthy fats, all of which are needed for optimal body function.

Losing 10 pounds a week without depriving your body of the essential nutrients it depends on for proper function may sound too good to be true. But, the truth is most of those dieters whove tried it, vouch for its efficacy.

The Military Diet, however, is not walking a path of roses. If you want to know how this diet gives such great weight loss results in no time, and more importantly, whether its suited for you, read on and find out!

The Military Diet has been conceived as a form of intermittent fasting that covers a period of one week. In other words, there are two phases to this diet a set low-calorie meal plan for the first 3 days of the diet followed by a less restrictive 4-day dietary regimen.

The total calorie intake for the 3-day phase ranges from 1,000-1,400 calories per day. The remaining 4 days revolve around healthy food as well and dieters are advised to keep their calorie intake low.

The diet can be repeated several times until a desired weight loss goal is reached.

Despite the common belief that the Military Diet has originally been intended for the US army, in reality, it has nothing to do with any military organization. Its also knows as the navy diet, the army diet, even the ice cream diet.

There are a number of reasons that make the Military Diet so effective. First of all, its low in calories meaning itll lead to a calorie (energy) deficit in your body. To make up for it, your body will have to use stored fat as fuel. In other words, youll lose weight.

Next, it involves intermittent fasting, which is extremely beneficial for weight loss. Fasting increases insulin sensitivity, which means the nutrients you ingest go into your muscle and liver cells rather than your fat cells.

You may say that the Military Diet plan is not really fasting as you have 3 meals a day. However, the daily calorie intake is very low and any diet plan with a calorie intake of 1,000 calories per day or lower is considered fasting.

Last, but not least, this dietary regimen aims at increasing your metabolic rate; a metabolic rate being the number of calories burnt. The foods in the Military Diet plan include high protein foods, high fiber foods and foods rich in calcium. They are highly beneficial for increasing your fat-burning metabolism.

Aside from its fast diet efficacy, there are several other factors that contribute to the widespread popularity of the Military Diet. First, its the time factor. Namely, this diet lasts 3 days only, and taken that most diet plans cover longer periods, this is extremely motivating for dieters. You do have to continue the low calorie intake for the remaining 4 days (this is actually a 7-day diet plan!), but these are not as restrictive as the first three days. You can eat whatever you want, whenever you want during the day as long as your calorie intake remains around 1,500. Plus, you see the results in very short time, which is highly motivating for dieters to continue losing weight and increase their weight loss results even more.

Then, theres the simplicity factor. This diet is so simple that you dont have to count calories or search high and low for magic potions that will miraculously reduce your waistline. All you need is some common foods you probably already have in your kitchen. Even if dont, they are all easily available at any grocery store.

Finally, its the no-starvation factor. You get to eat three nutrient-rich meals a day and drink as much coffee and tea as you like (you do need to watch out for calories from cream or sugar though!). The meals on this diet plan may be low in calories, but they are a great combination of dietary fat, carbohydrate and protein, which reduce cravings. Plus, the meals are simple and easy to prepare and require spending very little time in the kitchen. And, its probably the only diet that allows ice cream and hotdogs!

One of the most appealing aspects of the Military Diet is that it helps you lose up to 10 pounds in only 3 days, which makes it ideal for people who want to slim down fast. Some important events in life, such as your best friends engagement party or simply an unplanned beach holiday, often catch you off-guard. If you want to look your best at the party or get beach ready, then this diet is just what you need. Itll get your body back in shape in virtually 72 hours.

This diet is also well-suited for people who are time-bound and cant afford spending their time shopping for ingredients or preparing time-consuming meals. The meals on the Military Diet are very simple and straight-forward making this dietary regimen very easy to comply with.

Over eaters can also benefits from this diet as the portions are rather small, which prevents going over the board with meals. Plus, you dont feel food-deprived in any regard because the meals include fat, carbs ad salt.

Vegetarians can also follow the Military Diet by replacing the animal protein and dairy with vegan alternatives.

The meal plan for the first day totals about 1,400 calories.




The meals for the second day of the dietary regimen amount to 1,200 calories.




The meals for the third day of the diet plan equal around 1,100 calories.




While the first 3 days of the diet have a set menu, the remaining 4 days are far less restrictive. You should stick to a healthy, well-balanced diet and keep your calorie intake below 1,500.

For people with dietary restrictions or food sensitivity, substitutions are acceptable for the 3-day diet plan. For instance, if youre allergic to peanuts, you can swap peanut butter with almond butter. Or, if youre a vegetarian, you can replace tuna with a serving of almonds. The only thing to comply with is the number of calories you consume.

Last, but not least, avoid drinking diet sodas and other artificially-sweetened beverages, even if they have zero calories, as these only reduce your weight loss results. Instead, increase your water intake as water is the staple for any diet plan it promotes fat burning and toxin elimination while curbing food cravings.

If you want the diet printed, click here to download it.

Even though the Military Diet is quite effective and gives great results in only a weeks time, you can lose even more weight by implementing several things on the way. As you already know, exercise is extremely beneficial for any weight loss plan simply because you burn calories when exercising. Since your calorie intake on the Military Diet will be very low, the calories burnt during exercise will be drawn from your fat stores. This will further increase your weight loss results than simply dieting without exercise.

But, dont worry if you are time-bound or cant afford expensive gym membership fees. Brisk walking for 20-30 minutes on a daily basis is all you need to speed up the fat burning process.

Another thing to have in mind is the importance of drinking lots of water. Water is filling and will help you feel full longer. Drinking water before meals is highly beneficial because it reduces appetite and helps you eat less than normal. Plus, its calorie-free, which means you can drink as much as you want.

Last, but not least, you can extend the duration of the Military Diet. In this case, your diet plan will cover a whole week as youll repeat days 1-3 and then day 1 again to complete a weeks duration. Although this will give optimal weight loss results, have in mind that it will also be quite challenging.

Its a fact that the military diet can help you lose 10 pounds in a week simply because its a low-calorie diet plan. However, it cant prevent weight gain in the long-run, i.e. when you start eating normally again, especially if your calorie intake exceeds the recommended limit. The thing is, all the excess calories in your body remain stored as fat and unless this fat is burnt through creating a calorie deficit in the body or physical exercise, theres no way you can possibly prevent weight regain.

On the other hand, 2,000 calories a day is all an average woman needs to avoid weight gain. And, you have to admit, this isnt a small amount of calories. If you cut out fast food (an average 14-inch Pizza hut pizza contains 2,400 calories, a Big Mac 550 calories, and a liter of Coke 400 calories) and stick to a healthy, well-balanced diet that provides no more than 2,000 calories a day, youve got all it takes to prevent weight gain in the long run.

The Military Diet is ideal for people who want to slim down fast. Its a simple, straight-forward diet plan thats very low-cost and no time-consuming. It has fast diet efficacy and can help you lose up to 10 pounds a week.

However, this dietary regimen only gives temporary results. It is not recommended as a long-term weight loss plan due to its extremely low calorie allowance and nutrient deficiencies.

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Military Diet Review – Meal Plan, Results, Substitutions…

Dec 11

Home – The Paleo Diet

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Home – The Paleo Diet

Sep 7

Treating Reflux With Diet – New York Times


A small study has found that a plant-based diet is just as effective as proton pump inhibitors in treating laryngopharyngeal reflux, or LPR.

LPR is a disease in which stomach acid comes up into the throat to the level of the laryngopharynx. It is not the same as gastro-esophageal reflux, or GERD, which involves a backflow of stomach acid into the lower esophagus.

The retrospective study, in JAMA Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery, included 85 patients with an average age of 60 treated with the P.P.I.s Nexium and Dexilant, and 99 treated with alkaline water and the Mediterranean diet, a regimen low in meat and dairy, and rich in olive oil, nuts, fish, beans, fruits and vegetables. The study ran for six weeks.

The scientists used an index that measures severity of symptoms excess throat mucus, annoying cough, heartburn and others on a zero to 45-point scale.

In the P.P.I. group, 54 percent achieved a clinically significant six point reduction on the index, compared with 63 percent for the diet cohort. The average score reduction was 27 percent for those in the P.P.I. group and 40 percent for the dieters.

If you think you have LPR, you should do a diet-based approach, instead of initiating these drugs that have potential side effects, said the lead author, Dr. Craig H. Zalvan, chief of otolaryngology at Phelps Hospital in Sleepy Hollow, N.Y. A lot of patients with GERD symptoms also get better on the diet.

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Treating Reflux With Diet – New York Times

Sep 7

Buck Institute study suggests high fat diet may be healthy – The Mercury News

In the Woody Allen movie Sleeper, health-store owner Miles Monroe is awakened after being cryogenically frozen for 200 years to discover that deep fat, steak, cream pies and hot fudge are now regarded as health foods.

Two new studies one by scientists at the Buck Institute for Research on Aging and the other led by a professor at the University of California, Davis have produced similarly counterintuitive results.

The two independent mouse studies found that a ketogenic diet high fat, low protein and extremely low carbohydrates significantly improved memory in aging mice and increased the animals chances of surviving to old age. Both studies have been published in the Sept. 5 issue of Cell Metabolism.

I think the reason why the paper was published in a high-profile journal like Cell Metabolism is probably for that very reason, said Eric Verdin, CEO of the Buck Institute and senior author of the Buck Institute study. It sort of puts the whole world upside down in terms of what people think they should be doing.

The establishment has been pushing low-fat diets for the last 30 years and we only have a population that is getting more and more obese and developing more and more problems, Verdin said.

What these papers will hopefully do is force people to revisit some of their assumptions about what is and is not healthy, he said.


The health benefits of a low-fat diet were called into question by a major federal study in 2006, which found that such a diet had no effect on the risk of heart disease or cancer.

In the Buck Institutes study, mice were fed three diets: a normal high-carbohydrate diet, a zero-carbohydrate ketogenic diet and a high fat, low carbohydrate diet that was not ketogenic.

The mice fed the zero-carbohydrate ketogenic diet had a lower risk of dying as they aged from 1 to 2 years old, although their maximum lifespan remained unchanged. These mice performed at least as well on memory tests at old age as they did at middle age. Mice fed the normal diet demonstrated an expected age-associated decline.

The other study, overseen by Jon Ramsey, a professor at UC Davis, also found that the mice fed a ketogenic diet maintained physical fitness, such as grip strength, in old age.

The magnitude of the changes surprised me, Ramsey said.

Previous animal studies had shown that calorie restriction delays aging. It has been shown that both fasting and exercise can trigger ketosis, in which the liver ramps up production of the ketone body beta-hydroxybutyrate acid (BHB) to provide energy for organs, especially the brain.


In 2012, Verdin and colleagues published a paper in the journal Science that showed that in addition to acting as a fuel, BHB also produced cell signaling.

One of the major pathways that controls aging is insulin signaling, Verdin said. Insulin is the hormone that one uses for metabolizing carbohydrates, so the idea was if the mice did not have any carbohydrates they would have low insulin signaling and therefore would age more slowly.

And that is what both Verdin and Ramsey found in their new studies.

Verdin said that ketogenic research is still in its early days. While ketogenic diets are used clinically for life-threatening conditions such as epilepsy, he cautioned that most people should consult a doctor before trying it on their own.

There are no guarantees that research on mice will accurately predict effects on humans. For example, mice fed a ketogenic diet will eventually become obese. In Verdins study, the mice were periodically taken off the ketogenic diet to control their weight while the Ramsey study limited the calories given to the mice.

Humans fed a ketogenic diet, however, typically lose weight.

In fact, an early approximation of the ketogenic diet was promoted by Dr. Robert Atkins, a cardiologist who prior to his death in 2003 advocated a high-fat, low-carbohydrate diet.

What were proposing is sort of a revised version of the Atkins diet, Verdin said.


Verdin said even though the mice in his study were fed Crisco, there appeared to be no negative effect on their hearts or cholesterol levels.

Actually, we did not see any of this, Verdin said. That is a very paradoxical thing. This diet tends to improve cholesterol and triglycerides.

Verdin said while more research needs to be done, There is a whole group of biohackers who are not waiting for us to the do the clinical trials.

For example, Bulletproof Executive, a Seattle-based company, sells Bulletproof Coffee: a coffee blended with butter from grass-fed cows. According to Bulletproof founder Dave Asprey, he was inspired to create the ketogenic beverage after imbibing a cup of tea mixed with yak butter during a trek in the Himalayas.

Verdin said people following the ketogenic diet have reported improved mental function, including increased clarity and powers of concentration. The Verdin lab is exploring beneficial effects of a ketogenic diet in a mouse model of Alzheimers disease.

Adhering to a ketogenic diet which prohibits the consumption of virtually any fruit, bread, pasta, rice, potatoes or other carbohydrate is notoriously difficult, Verdin said.

In the long run if we want this type of discovery to really have an impact we have to be looking to directly administer the ketone bodies themselves, Verdin said. That is one direction were working on. Weve synthesized a whole series of these BHB precursors and were feeding them to mice to see if we can recapture some of the same effects as with the whole diet.

Buck Institute study suggests high fat diet may be healthy – The Mercury News

Sep 7

5 Crazy-Easy Ways To Add More Protein To Your Diet Without Even Trying – Women’s Health

If you’re on the road and only have time to make pit stops, make sure you choose the best option available. Shakes and bars are great if you’re stuck in the driver’s seat, but if you’re riding shotgun, go for Greek yogurt, beef jerky, or a hard-cooked egg. You won’t have to spend 15 minutes deciphering dense labels, and most convenience stores stock them.

To round out your arsenal of protein-rich shakes, bars, and convenience-food store snacks, try these quick and easy mini meals made at home.

Carrots contain complex carbs to sustain your energy levels, and provide enough potassium to control blood pressure and muscle contractions. Add 2 tablespoons of hummus to your mini meal for slow-digesting carbs, protein, and unsaturated fatsall the right elements to fuel activity. Plus, most varieties are made with olive oil, which contains oleic acida fat that aids in warding off the gene responsible for 20 to 30 percent of breast cancers, according to research from Northwestern University.

Sargento String Cheese Snacks keep your calories in check with 8 grams of protein in just 80 calories. Add edamame for another 9 grams of protein and a dose of heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids.

Remix your lunch box fave. Spread a tablespoon of natural peanut butter on sprouted grain Ezekiel bread. Top with a handful of sliced strawberries instead of jelly for a mini meal that contains 10 grams of protein in less than 200 calories.

Not sure if you want something sweet, salty, or cheesy? Surprisingly, you can have all threeand be healthy! Try 2 tablespoons of natural peanut butter on a whole grain English muffin with 1 stick of part-skim string cheese (torn into strands). The result is a mess-free mini meal with 23 grams of protein.

Roll a Laughing Cow light cheese and 2 thin slices of deli turkey into a large lettuce leaf. Pack two for a low-fat meal that tallies up 25 grams of protein in 160 calories.

Be sure to pack a spoon. Two tablespoons of pumpkin seeds and 1/2 cup Kashi Go Lean cereal on top of 1/2 cup cottage cheese satisfies your need for crunch and savory flavor. The seeds supply omega-3s, magnesium, and iron to fuel your muscle recovery. The combo with Kashi and cottage cheese pumps your protein intake up to 25 grams in one dish.

This selection was excerpted with permission from The 12 Week Head-To-Toe Transformation: A Beginner’s Guide To Fitness And Strength Training In 3 Easy Steps, by Holly Perkins.

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5 Crazy-Easy Ways To Add More Protein To Your Diet Without Even Trying – Women’s Health

Sep 7

SNAP benefits aren’t enough to afford a healthy diet – Medical Xpress

Credit: North Carolina State University

A new study from North Carolina State University and the Union of Concerned Scientists finds that the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly known as Food Stamps, only covers 43-60 percent of what it costs to consume a diet consistent with federal dietary guidelines for what constitutes a healthy diet. The study highlights the challenges lower-income households face in trying to eat a healthy diet.

“The federal government has defined what constitutes a healthy diet, and we wanted to know how financially feasible it was for low-income households, who qualify for SNAP benefits, to follow these guidelines,” says Lindsey Haynes-Maslow, co-author of a paper on the study and an assistant professor of agricultural and human sciences at NC State.

This can be a tricky question to answer, as federal dietary guidelines vary based on age and gender. SNAP benefits also vary, based on household income and the number of adults and children living in the household. For the purposes of this study, the researchers used average monthly SNAP benefits for 2015.

To address their research question, the researchers looked at the cost to follow federal dietary guidelines based on the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s monthly retail price data from 2015 for fruits, vegetables, grains, protein, and dairy. They calculated costs under a variety of scenarios. For example, what would it cost to comply with dietary guidelines if one only ate produce that was fresh, not frozen? What if one only consumed fruits and vegetables that were frozen? What if a household followed a vegetarian diet? The researchers also included labor costs associated with shopping and preparing meals, based on 2010 estimates produced by other economics researchers.

“We found significant variability in the costs associated with following federal dietary guidelines,” Haynes-Maslow says. “For example, it was most expensive to consume only fresh produce, and it was least expensive to consume a vegetarian diet.”

To place this in context, consider a four-person household that has one adult male, one adult female, one child aged 8-11 and one child aged 12-17 – all of whom qualify for SNAP benefits. They would need to spend $626.95 per month in addition to their SNAP benefits if they ate only fresh produce as part of their diet. That same household would need to spend $487.39 in addition to SNAP benefits if they ate a vegetarian diet.

“Many low-income households simply don’t have an additional $500 or $600 to spend on food in their monthly budget,” Haynes-Maslow says.

The researchers did find that SNAP is sufficient to meet the healthy dietary needs of two groups: children under the age of 8 and women over the age of 51. However, SNAP was insufficient to meet the needs of older children, younger women, or men of any age.

“Even though SNAP is not designed to cover all of the cost of food – it’s meant to be a supplemental food program – this study makes it clear that there would be many low-income households that would not be able to cover the gap needed to eat a diet consistent with federal dietary guidelines,” Haynes Maslow says. “Even without including labor costs, a household of four would need to spend approximately $200-$300 in addition to their SNAP benefits to follow the dietary guidelines.”

The paper, “The Affordability of MyPlate: An Analysis of SNAP Benefits and the Actual Cost of Eating According to the Dietary Guidelines,” is published in the Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior. The paper is open access. Lead author of the paper is Kranti Mulik, a senior agricultural economist in the Food and Environment Program at the Union of Concerned Scientists.

Explore further: Testing effects of combining incentives, restrictions in food benefit program

More information: Kranti Mulik et al, The Affordability of MyPlate: An Analysis of SNAP Benefits and the Actual Cost of Eating According tothe Dietary Guidelines, Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior (2017). DOI: 10.1016/j.jneb.2017.06.005

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SNAP benefits aren’t enough to afford a healthy diet – Medical Xpress

Sep 7

Pizza? Fried chicken? Cubs and White Sox players talk about their … – Chicago Tribune

Cubs and White Sox players and Cubs manager Joe Maddon discuss how nutrition has changed in baseball.

Joe Maddon on how fitness and nutrition have changed over the years

It’s night and day. It’s completely different. For a long time nobody really … believed that a change in your diet or your methods of eating would actually help your performance. … Even in 2008 in Tampa Bay we tried to do that with a large amount of revolt. … But even going back before that, the spreads, whatever you want to call them, were just thrown out there without any kind of really message. There were Coke machines, soda machines, those little dispensers, the 7-Eleven stuff was all over the place. Nobody was really paying attention.

Like 2005 or so, 2010 in that area, it has become more prominent. I think guys have really understood that, ‘Hey, it does make a difference what I put in there.’ It just makes all the sense in the world. Even though the education may have been out there nobody was really listening. So I think it’s absolutely here to stay. This is not going to go away. Everybody is going to continue to try and improve their methods regarding nurturing themselves. And it’s a good thing. It’s actually a really good thing. Right now, every place we go over the last couple of years it’s even gotten better because we’re paying so much attention to it.

Pitcher Nate Jones on how his diet changed

In the minor leagues, they start teaching you about what’s good and not good to eat. Once you get up here, you start adding vitamins and supplements. I stay away from anything greasy and fatty foods. Even though they taste good I try to stay away from them. You realize how important fish is and obviously grilled chicken breast. Little bit of red meat here and there and, of course, all the vegetables you can eat.

Mike Montgomery on nutrition

I’m very aware of it. They do a good job of providing us with stuff that is healthy and supplements that you maybe don’t know but, hey, this will really help your recovery. That’s pretty cool that they do that. You’re aware that you want to feel good or play good you want to give yourself the best chance and feel as good as you can.

Montgomery on foods he eats to stay healthy

It’s just really a lot of fruits and vegetables. That’s very important recovery-wise and getting the right proteins. And just staying away from fatty foods, fast food. I’m not a super health freak, but I try to be a little bit conscious of it. I’d rather just go with that healthier option.

Ben Zobrist on his diet

When I was younger I’d eat whatever I wanted. It didn’t matter. Now you just feel the effects a lot more as you’re into your mid-30s.

I always eat greens. I always take vitamins. I always drink a lot of water. During the season when you’re playing every day you have to get a lot of calories and protein. I watch a little bit more of the bread intake. Just simple sugars. I try to keep down the simple sugars and keep filling my stomach with natural vitamins. I think greens are the thing that, I’m always like, ‘I know I have to eat this.’ I have to keep eating these vegetables, fruit, stuff like that.

Zobrist on his cheat food

Usually like something very bready like pasta. I can’t do that multiple days in a row. I can do that once a week, maybe just crush a bunch of pasta because I need the calories and carbs. I try to watch that a little bit more.

Montgomery’s cheat food

Fried chicken. I love me some fried chicken.

Pitcher Zach Putnam on his diet

I eat a lot of seafood. But my diet changes from what part of the year it is. During the season you’re constantly in recovery mode, so a lot of proteins and particularly fish and chicken. During the offseason I try to go low-carb to try and keep my body lean and trim and stuff. That provides its own challenges. Eating a grilled chicken breast and a salad on paper sounds great, but day 30 in a row of that, you’re asking where the real food is at. It’s a constant battle for me to maintain sanity and also walk that line between what’s healthy, what’s tasty.

Infielder Matt Davidson on healthy foods he enjoys

I eat a lot of vegetables. Kevan Smith and I, we started in spring training where we would eat handfuls of raw spinach. We’re not afraid of anything that doesn’t taste good.

Putnam on his cheat foods

I’ll go six days of just completely clean eating and like a Saturday or Sunday, sit down in front of the TV for some football and where I live, there’s a cheesesteak place that’s a regular stop for me on a cheat day. Pretty usual stuff: cheeseburgers, tacos, pizza, buffalo wings. Really, I try to do a really good job on the other six days so I can appreciate the cheat day.

Jones on his cheat foods

I would call that a pizza night. We even try it at home, because I have two kids, we even try to do a homemade pizza and sometimes my wife does a cauliflower crust for it and that makes it even better.

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Pizza? Fried chicken? Cubs and White Sox players talk about their … – Chicago Tribune

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