Friday, May 27, 2016

Health Benefits of Banana

Health Benefits of Banana

by: Arlene Gentallan

        Banana is a popular fruit around the world. It's available year round. Perfect to be eaten raw, but with a wide variety of culinary application.


Based on USDA, here is the nutritional content of Banana:

1 medium Banana (118g) = 422mg Potassium
                                           = 1mg Sodium
                                           = 105 calories
                                           = 3.1g Dietary fiber
                                           = 0 mg Cholesterol
                                           = 1.3g Protein
                                           = 14g Sugar
                                           = 0.4mg Vitamin B-6
                                           = 76 IU Vitamin A
                                           = 10.3mg Vitamin C


1. High Blood Pressure
        Banana is an excellent source of potassium while very low in sodium. Foods high in potassium has been shown to benefit cardiovascular health since it lowers blood pressure and aids in the removal of excess sodium from the body. Too much sodium can pull water into the circulation thus further increasing blood pressure so it's crucial to take this mineral in moderation.



2. Minimize stroke Death
        In a study by Barrett-Connor and Kay-Tee Khaw published on New England Journal of Medicine, consuming banana as part of daily diet can reduce risk of dying from stroke by up to 40 %.



3. Banana makes you Happy :)
        Banana contains "tryptophan" which is converted inside the body into neurotransmitter "serotonin." Serotonin is important in maintaining mood balance as it uplifts the mood. Did you know that a deficiency in serotonin can result to depression?

        Stress out? Munch a banana instead of artificial sweets.



4. Energy Booster
        One piece of medium sized banana contains about 105 calories. That'll keep you up during the morning. It's also a great alternative nutritious snack. Did you know that consuming high calorie fruits can prevent your from craving. Also, a medium size banana contains no cholesterol. That'll be a help to maintain or lower your weight.



5. Hyperacidity & Heartburn
        Banana acts as a natural antacid. So it's a good practice to eat banana after a meal.


6. Diarrhea
        Banana is recommended for people suffering from diarrhea. It's part of the BRAT diet (bananas, rice, apple, and toast.) It's rich in electrolyte potassium and non-irritating to the stomach.



7. Constipation
        Banana is a good source of dietary fiber, the bulk that absorbs water in your colon. Fiber is essential to prevent gastrointestinal problems like constipation and colon cancer.



Health Benefits of Fiber

Health Benefits of Fiber

by: Arlene Gentallan


What is Fiber?
        Fiber is a type of carbohydrate that humans are unable to digest. It provides us zero calories but it is essential to our digestive system since it forms the bulk. Soluble and insoluble fiber are it's two types. Here are the health benefits we can get fiber.


1. Reduces cholesterol
        Water soluble fiber dissolves easily in water forming a viscous solution. This decreases the absorption of cholesterol.



2. Steadies blood sugar
        Water soluble fiber also reduces your absorption of sugar. This is important especially to those people suffering from diabetes.



3. Loose weight faster
        Water soluble fiber decreases the speed at which food empties from the stomach into the small intestine. This means that you'll stay full longer. This will minimize overeating and craving. Plus, fiber has zero calories and no fat. It's a perfect companion with your weight loss diet.



4. Constipation
        Insoluble fiber absorbs water and forms the bulk to promotes regular bowel movement and prevents constipation and diverticulitis.



5. Lowers Risk of Cancer
        A high fiber diet decreases your risk of colon and colorectal cancer.


6. Cleans the colon
        Insoluble fiber helps cleans the bowel of toxins by encouraging regular bowel movement.



7. Controls Acid Reflux
        Insoluble fiber increases the speed at which food empties from the stomach into the small intestine, which helps prevent GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease) and heart burn.




What is the recommended daily intake of fiber?


        The recommended daily intake of fiber based on the Dietary Reference Intakes of Institute of Medicine is:

Adults (50 years old and below) = 25 g for Women
                                               = 38 g for Men
Adults (more than 50 years old) = 21 g for Women
                                               = 30 g for Men



        Let's check if your daily diet meets this daily recommendation for fiber intake. Here are the Fiber content of foods based on to USDA:


  • 60 g Dietary fiber = Corn bran (1 cup, 76g)
  • 31 g Dietary fiber = Pearled Barley (1 cup, 200g)
  • 31 g Deitary fiber = Hulled Barley (1 cup, 184g)
  • 30 g Dietary fiber = Raw pinto beans (1 cup, 193g)
  • 28 g Dietary fiber = Dried oriental radish (1 cup, 116g)
  • 25 g Dietary fiber = Wheat bran (1 cup, 58g)
  • 17 g Dietary fiber = Oats (1 cup, 156g)
  • 16 g Dietary fiber = Boiled lentils (1 cup, 198g)
  • 14 g Dietary fiber = Oast bran, raw (1 cup, 94g)
  • 12 g Dietary fiber = Peanut (1 cup, 146g)
  • 12 g Dietary fiber = Yellow corn (1 cup, 166g)
  • 11 g Dietary fiber = Avodaco (1 cup, 150g)
  • 11 g Dietary fiber = Seeded raisin (1 cup, 165g)
  • 11 g Dietary fiber = Almonds (1 cup sliced, 92g)
  • 11 g Dietary fiber = Hazelnuts (1 cup chopped, 115g)
  • 11 g Dietary fiber = Dark chocolate (1 bar, 162g)
  • 10 g Dietary fiber = Pecans (1 cup chopped, 109g)
  • 9.0g Dietary fiber = Green peas, boiled (1 cup, 160g)
  • 9.0g Dietary fiber = Mixed nuts, oil roasted, with salt (1 cup, 134g)
  • 7.0g Dietary fiber = Green peas (1 cup, 145g)
  • 6.0g Dietary fiber = Cooked pearled barley (1 cup, 157g)
  • 6.0g Dietary fiber = Seedless raisin (1 cup, 165g)
  • 5.2g Dietary fiber = Boiled broccoli (1 cup, 156g)
  • 5.0g Dietary fiber = Walnuts (1 cup, 80g)
  • 4.5g Dietary fiber = Peas, boiled (1 cup, 160g)
  • 4.4g Dietary fiber = Apple (1 medium, 182g)
  • 4.3g Dietary fiber = Boiled spinatch (1 cup, 180g)
  • 4.2g Dietary fiber = White sweet corn (1 cup kernels, 154g)
  • 4.0g Dietary fiber = Oatmeal (1 cup, 243g)
  • 3.7g Dietary fiber = Potato (1 small, 170g)
  • 3.5g Dietary fiber = Brown long-grain cooked rice (1 cup, 195g)
  • 3.3g Dietary fiber = Cashews (100g)
  • 3.1g Dietary fiber = Banana (1 medium, 118g)
  • 3.0g Dietary fiber = Bread, multi-grain (1 large slice, 41g)
  • 2.8g Dietary fiber = Flaxseed (1 tbsp whole, 10.3g)
  • 2.6g Dietary fiber = Mango (1 cup, 165g)
  • 2.4g Dietary fiber = Broccoli (1 cup chopped, 91g)
  • 2.3g Dietary fiber = Pineapple (1 slice, 166g)
  • 1.9g Dietary fiber = Radish (1 cup sliced, 116g)
  • 0.7g Dietary fiber = Spinatch (1 cup, 30g)
  • 1.7g Dietary fiber = Carrots (1 medium, 61g)
  • 1.7g Dietary fiber = Cooked white glutinous rice (1 cup, 174g)
  • 1.6g Dietary fiber = Lemon (1 fruit, 58g)
  • 1.6g Dietary fiber = Peas (1 cup whole, 63g)
  • 0.6g Dietary fiber = White long-grain cooked rice (1 cup, 158g)
  • 0.6g Dietary fiber = Cucumber (1 cup, 104g)
  • 0.8g Dietary fiber = Grapes (1 cup, 92g)
  • 0.3g Dietary fiber = White chocolate (1 cup chips, 170g)








Thursday, May 26, 2016

13 Health Benefits of Lemongrass

13 Health Benefits of Lemongrass

by: Arlene Gentallan

        Lemongrass is an aromatic plant which tastes like lemon. It's an all purpose grass used for it's culinary, medicinal, aromatic, cosmetic and ornamental properties. Here's a list of lemongrass' many benefits and uses:



1. Cancer Fighter & Antioxidant
        In as study by Dudai, Weinstein, Krup M, et al, it was found out that "Citral", a component of the lemon-scented essential oils induces natural programmed cell death in several cancer cells.

Lemongrass is rich in antioxidant that helps the body counteract the harmful effects of free radicals we get from the environment and the foods we eat.



2. Insomnia
        If you're having trouble sleeping, then lemongrass can work wonders for you. Just drink 1 cup lemongrass tea before sleeping to facilitate relaxation. Lemongrass has a sedative like effect on the body.


How to make lemongrass tea?

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoon dried or fresh lemongrass leaves or stalk
  • 1 cup boiling water
Instructions:

  1. Cut fresh lemongrass into 1 inch length strips.
  2. You can also use dried leaves or stalk
  3. Put 2 tablespoon dried or fresh lemongrass leaves or stalk in a cup
  4. Pour boiling water into the cup
  5. Allow 5-10 minutes to pass
  6. Serve as it is or add sweetener
  7. Serve and enjoy!


3. Stress
        Lemongrass' ability to educe relaxation is beneficial especially to those people under a lot of pressure and stress. Sip a cup of lemongrass tea to cool your nerves.



4. Aids Digestive Problems
        If you'd have a large meal and felt bloated afterwards, you'll know how uneasy this is. To help your tummy with the digestion, drink 1 cup of lemongrass tea. It will also help reliever stomach spasm, stomachache, gas pain, flatulence, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and constipation.



5. Pain Reliever and Anti-inflammatory
        You can apply lemongrass oil topically on the affected area for a wide range of bodily pain such as headache, muscle pain, sprain, rheumatism, arthritis, dysmenorrhea (menstrual cramps), and abdominal pain. It also has anti-inflammatory property.

        According to research, lemongrass is comparative to aspirin in relieving migraine headache but without the side effects.



6. High Blood Pressure
        Lemongrass is a natural remedy for high blood pressure. Drink a glass of lemongrass tea a day to help normalize your circulation.



7. Reduce cholesterol level
        Lemongrass oil and tea can reduce your cholesterol level in the blood. In a study published in the medical journal Lipids in 1989, researchers from Department of Nutritional Sciences, University of Wisconsin, found that several participants had significant decrease in blood fats.



8. Detoxifies
        A glass of lemongrass tea aids the body in getting rid of toxins by acting as a natural diuretic. This help cleans the kidneys, bladder, liver, pancreas, and colon. Reducing excess fluid also helps those people with edema.



9. Antibacterial and Anti-fungal
        According to a research, lemongrass works against streptococcus aureus. You can use lemongrass oil as a mouthwash for gingivitis, periodontal disease and bad breath.

        It also works against fungal infection. Apply it topically to get rid of athlete's foot or ringworm. You can also add it to your bath water, shampoo, and perfume. You can soak your feet for about 10-15 minutes in a basin of warm water infused with a few drops of lemongrass oil.


10. Lowers Fever
        John Heinerman, author of Heinerman's Encyclopedia of Healing Herbs & Spices, recommends taking in 1 cup lemongrass tea every 4 hours to lower fever.



11. Insect Repellent
        Outdoor activities such as picnics and camping will be a lot better without those pesky bugs. Lemongrass works as an alternative natural toxic-free insect repellent. It keeps off disease causing insects such as mosquitoes, fleas, moths, and chiggers with it's strong citrus fragrant. Also, it's an excellent outdoor plant because it's beauty works hand in hand with it's insect repelling ability.


How to make an insect repellent using lemongrass?

Ingredients:

  • Spray bottle (8 ounce or 1 cup)
  • 2 ounce carrier oil: hazel extract / alcohol / castor oil / coconut oil / vodka
  • 30 drops Lemongrass essential oil
  • 5 ounce Water (sterilized)


Instructions:

  1. Put 2 ounce hazel extract into the bottle. You can also use alternatives like alcohol, castor oil, coconut oil or vodka.
  2. Add 30 drops of lemongrass essential oil. You can increase the amount to make it stronger.
  3. Fill the spray bottle with 5 ounce sterilized water. You can sterilize water by keeping it boiling for at least 1 minute. You can also use distilled water.
  4. Make sure you leave extra space in the bottle so you won't have a hard time shaking and mixing the ingredients.
  5. Shake the bottle until the ingredients are evenly distributed.
  6. Spray or rub the preparation directly into your skin to protect yourself from insect bites.
  7. Re-apply as necessary every 2-3 hours. Don't forget to shake the bottle every time you use.

Important Reminder: Using citrus base oil like lemongrass can increase your skin's sensitivity to sunlight so make sure you avoid sun exposure. You may want to use a broad spectrum sunscreen with SPF15 or 30 for added protection.



12. Culinary
        Lemongrass is popular for it's lemon-like taste. It's a cheaper but healthy substitute to lemon. Add it up to your favorite dishes like soups and curry to obtain that refreshing aroma and taste.



13. Aromatherapy
        The scent if lemongrass has a calming effect to our sense. It eases stress, calms the nerves, and relieves insomnia. Simply crush fresh lemongrass leaves and allow it's fragrance to sooth you.




Monday, May 23, 2016

How to Get Rid of Wrinkles?

How to Get Rid of Wrinkles?

by: Arlene Gentallan

        It's a common consensus that wrinkles comes as a natural part of aging. It's an inevitable part of life. But that does not mean that we can do nothing about it. In fact, studies have given us insight that our habits and lifestyle does an impact as to how soon these line will appear on your faces and betray our age.


1. Use Sun Protection
        In studies involving identical twins, it was identified that the twin who prefers going out under the sun had more wrinkles compared to the other twin. Sun exposure is the leading cause of wrinkle so you'll have to make sure you are protected against the harmful ultraviolet rays.

Using sun protection not only helps combat premature wrinkle but it prevents  skin cancer as well.


What is the difference between sunblock and sunscreen?
Sunscreens provides chemical protection by absorbing ultraviolet radiation, as opposed to bouncing it off, which prevents it from reaching below into your skin. Sunscreen tend to be less visible when applied on the skin as opposed to sunblock. 


Sunblocks provides physical protection by reflecting / bouncing off ultraviolet radiation thus preventing this harmful ray from reaching your delicate skin. It's active ingredient is titanium dioxide and zinc oxide.

TIPS:

  • Experts recommend using SPF 15 and SPF 30. Sun Protection Factor (SPF) is the sunscreen's measure of protection level against UVB rays.
  • Choose a sun protection product with broad spectrum coverage for both types of ultraviolet radiation UVA and UVB rays which are associated with skin cancer, wrinkles, darkening and sunburn.
  • To protect yourself from skin cancer and premature wrinkle, use a broad spectrum sunscreen with SPF 15 up.
  • Water-resistant sunscreen provides protection even after 40 minute of submerging in the water. While, water-proof sunscreen provides protection even after 80 minutes of water exposure. Therefore, water-resistant sunscreen is more recommended
  • Reapply sunscreen as needed. Sunscreen only protects you for a for a certain period of time so it will be wise to reapply after 2 hours.
  • Remember, no sunscreen offers 100% protection. So you may want to take other measures to protect yourself:
                  > Avoid direct sun exposure

                  > Stay in the shade

                  > Use hat and sunglasses



  • Watch out when UV ray is more intense:

                  > During the summer

                  > At high altitude

                  > Places closer to the equator

                  > Cloudless days

2. Use Moisturizer

        Individuals with dry skin tend to have more visible wrinkles. Keep your skin hydrated by applying moisturizer, especially before you apply facial powder.

           If your looking for a natural moisturizer, try virgin coconut oil. It's cost effective, non greasy, antibacterial, and anti-fungal.

          Also, keep yourself hydrated by drinking 11 cups of water for women and 15 cups of water for men.

        Don't sleep with your make-up on and avoid washing your face excessively as this may remove protective oil from your skin.


3. Avoid "bad habits"

        Studies have shown that several factors contribute to the premature wrinkle appearance, so it's better to avoid these stuffs:

  • Smoking
  • Too much alcohol intake
  • Dehydration
  • Not enough sleep


4. Sleep on your back

        Sleeping on your side and front pushes your face against the pillow, creating creases and deepening wrinkles. It's better to sleep on your back.


5. Don't Frown

        Your facial expression can have a profound impact when it comes to wrinkle. Excessive facial expression can impress those lines deeper. Watch out for involuntary facial expression like frowning.


6. Egg Whites

        Obtain fresh egg white and lather it on your face using your index and middle finger. Let it rest for at least 30 minutes. You can also leave it overnight. This will temporarily make your skin firmer and tighten your pores, reducing the appearance of your wrinkles.


7. Lemon

          Lemon is a rich source of antioxidant Vitamin C. Squeeze fresh lemon juice and apply it directly into your face. This will not just help get rid of those troubling wrinkles but will also lighten your dark spots. If you have a sensitive skin, pure lemon juice may give you a burning sensation on your face. You can dilute it with water to minimize the prickly sensation.


8. Cucumber

          Put a fresh slice of cucumber right on top of your eyes to minimize the appearance of wrinkles, crow's feet, and eye bugs. Cucumber's natural coolness will relax your eyes while providing a natural hydration to your skin.




Thursday, May 19, 2016

12 Health Benefits of Peppermint

Health Benefits of Peppermint

by: Arlene Gentallan

Peppermint is known for it's distinctive refreshing aroma and cool blast. There's more to this mint that meets the eye. Here are a list of health and medicinal benefits of peppermint:


1. Memory Enhancer
        In a study by Moss M, Hewitt S, et al., just the simple aroma of essential oil peppermint is revealed to enhance both alertness and memory. what an amazing aroma!


2. Stress Reducer (Anti-anxiety / anxiolytic)
        Peppermint contains rosmarinic acid that inhibits GABA transaminas leading to decrease anxiety. Enjoy a cup of peppermint tea to help you soothe your nerves and go through your day.


3. Relieves Tension Headache
        In a study by Göbel H, Fresenius J, Heinze A, et al., it is revealed that topical application of peppermint oil into the temple and forehead alleviates tension-type headache (which is the most common headache.) It also gives us insight that peppermint's oil effect in reducing headache is comparable to acetaminophen (a medicine for pain)

        The topical solution they've used is 10 gram peppermint oil combined with 90% ethanol.

Based on their study, they concluded that:

        "Compared to the application of placebo, a 10% peppermint oil in ethanol solution significantly reduced the clinical headache intensity already after 15 minutes"

        "There was no significant difference between the efficacy of 1,000 mg of acetaminophen and 10% peppermint oil in ethanol solution."


4. Natural Pain Killer

        With peppermint's deep cooling sensation, it can relieve the most common bodily pain like headache, arthritis, muscle strain and stiffness. Simply apply peppermint oil over the affected area to ease the pain and swelling / inflammation.


5. Tummy Upset: Stomachache, indigestion, gas, and cramps

        Drink a cup of peppermint tea after a meal to help prevent dyspepsia and indigestion. Peppermint has a soothing effect to the smooth muscle of the digestive system which helps prevent cramping. It also relieves irritable bowel syndrome which is characterized by sign and symptoms of abdominal pain, cramping, bloatedness, increase flatulence (gas), diarrhea and constipation.
        That's a healthy cup of alternative for medications Buscopan (anti-spasm medicine) which has side effects.


6. Insect Repellant
        Here's an economic and environmental friendly way to get rid of those annoying mosquitoes, horseflies and other insects. Simply apply peppermint oil into your skin. Enjoy it's coolness.


7. Relieves Itchy Skin
        You can apply peppermint oil into the area bitten by insects like mosquitoes. This will reduce your urge to scratch the area which can leave visible marks on your skin. And if you ever had the the misfortune of accidentally brushing a poison ivy, you'll know how painful and itchy the rash can be. Just apply peppermint oil into the affected area to obtain relief.


8. Anti-Cancer
        Peppermint contains perillyl alcohol which is a monoterpene that has an anti-cancer property. In studies done involving animal specimens, it was shown that perillyl alcohol inhibits the growth of cancer cells, like cancer of the breast, colon, lungs, prostate and rectum.


9. Antioxidant
        The rosmarinic acid content of peppermint has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory property. This rejuvenates the body and prevent the damaging effects of free radicals we get from the foods we eat and our surroundings.


10. Antibacterial
        Peppermint oil has been shown to inhibit the growth of certain bacteria and fungus. You can apply it to your skin and scalp to get rid of pungent smell or dandruff.


11. Freshens breath and Whitens teeth
        You can use peppermint as an efficient cost effective oral hygiene tool. Gargle 1 tablespoon of peppermint oil for that cool healthy blast. Aide from keeping your breath fresh and your teeth white, this simple routine can also alleviate your gingivitis and mouth sore.


12. Respiratory Remedy
        Stuffy and runny nose can ruin a good day. Peppermint extract can relieve the symptoms of allergic rhinitis, asthmabronchitis, colds, cough, flu and tuberculosis.




Fast Facts:

Did you know that peppermint is actually a cross breed of watermint and spearmint?

Peppermint is an ingredient to a wide variety of stuffs, such as:

  • Chewing gum
  • Candies
  • Cigarette and tobacco
  • Tea
  • Mouthwash and toothpaste
  • Soap



Saturday, May 14, 2016

Exercise to Fight Cancer!

Exercise to Fight Cancer!

by: Arlene Gentallan

Exercise inhibits tumor growth! Enhances recovery....Prevents cancer recurrence!
Exercise inhibits tumor growth! Enhances recovery....Prevents cancer recurrence!

        Cancer is one of the most dreaded condition worldwide. It comes with the popular notion that when you are diagnosed with "CANCER", you'll only have 6 months to live. For some people, it entails the end. But this is not the case because your see, there are cancer survivors out there.

What is Cancer?

        Under normal condition, old and worn out cell die and new healthy cells replace them. But cancer cells do not. They grow and proliferate uncontrollably. Cancer cells are abnormal and interfere with the normal functioning. They are destructive and have potential to spread to other areas of the body.


What is the difference between tumor and cancer?
        A tumor is a simply a mass or a lump, which can either be cancerous or not. There are two types of tumor: benign and malignant. A benign tumor is localized to a certain area of the body. It stays there and do not spread to other areas of the body. On the other hand, a malignant tumor is what we call "CANCER." Cancer cells rapidly multiplies in number and spread to other areas of the body.


Did you know that even a short term exercise can have a significant contribution to fight cancer growth?

        In a study by Rundqvist H, Augsten M, Stromberg A, et al, blood samples was obtained from 10 male participants before and after they undergo a 60 minutes bycycling at increasing intensity. The obtained blood serums were then incorporated with LNCaP (a cancerous tumor cell.)
        Compared to the serum obtained before the exercise, the serum obtained after the exercise shows "31% inhibition of tumor cell growth."
        It was found out that 9 out of 10 serums obtained from the participants after the 60 minute exercise were shown to prohibit the proliferation of cancer cells.

EXERCISE IS BENEFICIAL TO CANCER PATIENTS

       Exercise' role in physical and mental well-being can not be downplayed. In fact, even those people who are already diagnosed with cancer are encouraged to have an exercise program that their doctor approves.

List of Benefits of Exercise to Cancer Patients:
  1. Increase life expectancy
  2. Alleviates anxiety and ease your mind
  3. Fights depression
  4. Enhances your physical mobility
  5. Reduces pain, fatigue, and stress
  6. Improves your energy level
  7. Improves your appetite
  8. Improves your heart and lung function
  9. Helps you sleep better
  10. Helps with recovery
Exercise is also strongly recommended for cancer survivors to prevents recurrence of this dreaded disease.
Exercise is recommended for everyone

        Obesity and sedentary lifestyle are the two common risk factors associated with many diseases such a stroke, heart attack, diabetes, cancer and others. One of the best ways to eliminate these is through exercise.

Sunday, May 8, 2016

How does L-carnatine burn fat?


How does L-carnatine burn fat?

by: Arlene Gentallan

FAT BURNER
        L-carnatine burns fat by transporting long-chain fatty acids found in the blood into mitochondrias which are the "power house" that produces energy for the body. In short, fats are "burned" in the mitochondrias of cells to produce energy.

This enables you to burn more calories. So instead of having those fats stored in your body, you use them as an energy source.

PROMOTES ENDURANCE
        Aside from this, did you know that L-carnatine also helps increase your body's endurance during exercise. This is due to the fact that it prevents the build-up of lactic acid within your body. When lactic acid accumulates on your muscle, it's acidity increases resulting to the burning and aching sensation you feel.

        In fact, it can be used by athletics as a supplement to enhance their performance.


WHAT IS L-CARNATINE?
        It is an amino acid that our kidneys and liver can normaly produce from  amino acids "lysine" and "methionine." But there are times when it's production does not meet our body's requirement, such as in periods of streneous exercises, renal failure, and among premature babies.