Drug testing

The Portfolio Diet: The Solution to Heart Disease

What if there was a combination of foods that were as effective at lowering LDL cholesterol as prescription drugs? Would it be worth adding some new foods to what you eat each day to avoid medication?

This is what the latest in a series of research studies Dr. Jenkins from the University of Toronto shows. Studies have previously shown that various foods, such as nuts, soy protein, oat bran, and plant sterols all can have a cholesterol-lowering effect. But what if you combined all these foods together? Dr. Jenkins' latest research shows that combining all these foods together is as effective as taking a statin drug. The results showed a 30.9% decrease in LDL cholesterol from the statin and a decrease of 28.2% from the portfolio combination of all these foods.

Dr. Jenkins is calling this a dietary portfolio, but it's becoming known as 'The Portfolio Diet'. The concept is to add all of these foods, in a type of portfolio plan, like investments, to cover all possibilities for better heart health. This is not a weight loss diet, however, although the concepts for weight loss and lowered cholesterol could certainly be combined, with proper education and guidance by a qualified nutrition expert.

What is the Portfolio Diet?

Just follow these guidelines:

1. Substitute soy foods for meat. Drink soy milk instead of milk and substitute soy protein foods for other meats.

2. Eat as much 'sticky' fiber as possible. People in the study took three daily servings of natural psyllium supplements. Oats and barley replace other grains and preferred vegetables include eggplant and okra.

3. Include plant sterol-enriched margarines, such as benecol and Take Control. Plant sterols are also available in capsule form as dietary supplements.

4. A handful of nuts every day. In the study, almonds were eaten and the Almond Board of California offers portfolio diet recipes on its website (look at recipes on http://www.almondboard.com/), but any tree nut will reduce cholesterol.

Here are some examples of a typical day:

Breakfast ? Include soy milk, oat bran cereal with chopped fruit and almonds, oatmeal bread with sterol-enriched margarine, and some jam.

Lunch ? Soy lunchmeats, oat bran bread, bean soup, fruit.

Dinner ? Stir fry with vegetables, tofu, fruit and almonds.

Snacks ? Include nuts, yogurt, and soy milk thickened with a psyllium supplement such as Metamucil.

Has this diet shown to be effective?

Jenkins et al were curious how this diet would work in the real world, so they signed people up who said they wanted to lower their cholesterol levels. They told them what to eat and gave them sample menus -- but they didn't provide any prepared foods.

Dr. Jenkins said that about 30% of the people had a 20% reduction in their LDL cholesterol levels after six months. Another 30% had a 15% reduction in LDL levels, and another third failed to lower their cholesterol levels, believed to be because they were unable to follow the diet as strictly as those with good results. What seemed to be the biggest obstacle for people was eating soy food products. Dr. Jenkins said that most people could eat almonds and substitute plant sterol products for margarine.

Is the diet for you?

Many people are concerned about heart disease and stroke, especially if they are struggling with weight control and high blood cholesterol levels. However, many people are not comfortable going on prescription medications. Since this is an eating plan that does not eliminate food groups or follow some type of fad, there is no risk to going on this 'diet'. In fact, it's not really a 'diet' at all, but a way of eating. And no one has to do anything but substitute some of the recommended foods for foods they normally eat today.

So, let's say you would like to try the diet, but, like many other Americans, are concerned about adding soy foods to your diet. You have never eaten them and don't even know where to find them! Well, they are actually in your favorite supermarket already! It may be time to experiment, though, because not everyone is going to like all the soy foods that are available. For more on soyfoods, check out the Soyfoods Association of American at http://www.soyfoods.org/. Here is a list of foods to consider:

Soy milk. There are multiple brands and different fat levels. You can buy whole fat, low fat and non fat. You can buy 'regular' (no flavoring), or any number of flavors. I have personally found one brand that I like over others and you may have to experiment to find one you like, as well.

Edemame. These are frozen whole soybeans that are harvested when still green. They can be found in most health food stores, such as Trader Joes or Whole Foods Market, in the frozen food section, usually next to the lima beans. These can be found shelled or in the shell. You can add them to soups or stews or eat them by themselves. I like to eat them as my protein for breakfast.

Tofu. Also known as 'bean curd', tofu is a soft, cheese-like food made my curdling soymilk. The curds are then pressed into a solid block. There are different levels of firmness; silken, soft and firm. Silken is a creamy, custard-like product that works well with pureed or blended dishes. Soft tofu is best used in recipes that call for blended tofu, or in soups. The firm tofu is more dense and solid and holds up well in stir fry dishes, even on the grill. The firm tofu is higher in protein, fat and calcium than the other forms, but since this is a plant fat, this should not be an issue. For recipe ideas, see this link from the Indiana Soybean Board; http://www.soyfoods.com/soyfoodsdescriptions/tofu.html

Textured Vegetable (or Soy) Protein Products. This is the soyfood product that many soy burgers and other 'meat substitute' products contain. The best way to determine if these foods are for you are to experiment with a few options.

Miso. Miso is a rich, salty paste condiment that characterizes the essence of Japanese cooking. Traditionally, miso is made by combining with a grain, salt, and a mold culture and then aged in cedar vats for one to three years. Readers may recognize the name because this is a popular soup.

Soy nuts. Soy nuts are whole soybeans that have been soaked then baked. They can be found in snack isles and manufacturers now include soynuts in any number of coatings, including chocolate.

Tempeh. This is a traditional Indonesian food that is most commonly found in Asian stores. It is a chunky, tender soybean cake. It can be marinated and grilled or added to soups, casseroles, or even chili.

It can be very easy for some people to add nuts to their diet. In fact, it may be harder to not add too MANY nuts! It may also be 'doable' to add more sticky fiber to your diet, also, with a little planning. However, it may be a greater challenge to find soy foods that can be enjoyably substituted for meats you are used to eating. However, if your health depends on it, and you refuse medications, this may be a great thing to try, especially since there are no risks involved with adding these foods to your diet. Just remember that these are foods to be substituted, not added, to the diet. Since calories do also still count, adding extras to your current diet could result in weight gain, leading to new concerns.

Marjorie Geiser helps people overcome their confusion and distress they may feel when trying to add healthy eating and fitness into their busy lives. She offers a free, weekly teleclass phone series to subscribers of her Health Focus teleclass series, which covers all aspects of health each week. She is a Registered Dietitian, Personal Trainer and Life Coach. To learn more about her services, go to her website at http://www.megfit.com or email her at margie@megfit.com.

In The News:

A family in Bainbridge, Ga., had the “surprise of a lifetime” when they found a massive alligator soaking in some sun in their front yard.
Two huge male rat snakes were caught fighting over a female in North Carolina, in a rare video.
Scientists have discovered layers of ice buried a mile beneath Mars’ north pole that could help unlock the Red Planet’s history.
Two orphaned bear cubs have been rescued from a huge 70-foot spruce tree in Canada.
Male Egyptian fruit bats will allow female bats to take food straight from their mouths and scientists believe they know why -- the bats are trading food for sex.
In May 2018, a startling study revealed that there was an "unexpected and persistent increase" of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) in the atmosphere. At the time, scientists could not pinpoint the exact location of the ozone-depleting gas, but subsequent media reports suggested that the clues lead to a rural, industrial town in China. Now, a new study confirms that the rise in CFCs is indeed coming from northeastern China based on atmospheric observations.
A doughnut-loving bear is “staying out of trouble” after it traveled thousands of miles to return home, say wildlife officials.
The “violent tornado” that tore through Jefferson City, Missouri overnight has highlighted the terrifying destructive force of tornadoes.
An incredibly rare skeleton of the extinct dodo bird is slated to go up for auction tomorrow and it could bring in big bucks, perhaps surpassing $750,000.
A leatherback sea turtle gave Florida beachgoers a rare sight last week when she was spotted nesting in broad daylight.

Body Calling: Maintaining Excellent Health

Our bodies are truly incredible machines. What makes cells healthy?... Read More

The No 1 Reason Why Most Diets Fail & What to Do About It

How many times have you tried to diet/lose weight in... Read More

The Worshipful Company of Bakers

Bread is one of the oldest known recipes to man.... Read More

The Top 10 Ways to Improve Your Diet, Your Health & Your Life!

Because I believe diet and exercise are so important, I'm... Read More

Building Better Bones

"It is a bone-deep change you are going into, my... Read More

Fattening Foods: Not So Fattening After All?

Have you seen those "fat free" foods in supermarkets? Have... Read More

Anti oxidants ? Why Its a Must in Your Diet

While oxygen is the key to human survival, it is... Read More

Inflammation Pain Eased with Glyconutrients

Every person on earth has experienced pain at one time... Read More

The Meat You Eat: How Corporate Farming Has Endangered Americas Food Supply

Factory FarmingThe big names in American agriculture would like you... Read More

Understanding Vegetarianism

Like the Sun, Moon, and Earth, there are three kinds... Read More

Factors that Affect the Nutritional Requirements of an Individual.

The factors that affect the nutritional requirements of an individual... Read More

Correct Your Acid / Akaline Balance by the Water You Drink: What the Experts Say

In health circles there has been much recent talk about... Read More

What Really Happens To The Food You Eat

After we have eaten a meal -- and often we... Read More

Chocolate Splendor: Food For The Gods; Bodybuilding Nutrition

A fictional overheard conversation at a Thelma's Fine Dining.Hi, I'm... Read More

The Glycemic Index and Dieting

The field of nutrition is awash with charts, tables, diagrams,... Read More

Ocular Nutrition and Eye Health Food

Understanding ocular nutrition and eye health can be one of... Read More

Simple Easy Health and Home Fixes From The Days Gone By

How did we cure ourselves of many aches pains and... Read More

The Two Faces of Chlorine

If you are like most people, you don't enjoy the... Read More

Focus On Fiber: How Much Is Enough?

Looking for an easy and natural way increase your vitality... Read More

Healthy Eating Myths Destroyed

Some of the things you think you know that just... Read More

Olive Oil, the Healthy Choice

Olive oil is a healthy choice over other fats such... Read More

Omega 3 Fat is Good for Your Heart and for Your Brain

Scandinavian fishermen are a healthy bunch. It had long been... Read More

Stress and Aging - Human Growth Hormones

Modern life can be stressful. There are so many concerns... Read More

The Fountain of Youth - Right in Front of Us All This Time!

Can we really stop the aging process, slow it down,... Read More

The New Biology of Health ? the Way to Perpetual Youth?

Just what is the "New Biology of Health?" And who's... Read More

led garage light street light costs Pete's produce ..