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VARIETIES OF MILK AND ITS BENEFITS

Posted by Elizebath Bijoy Tuesday, October 30, 2012 0 comments

In an age where nutrition is increasingly seen as an appendage to daily living, we tend to lose out on various vitamins and minerals. 

For instance, most of us believe that milk only provides calcium and is only meant for children. But did you know that, no matter the age, we can always benefit from skimmed or low-fat milk varieties. And when picking which milk to drink, there is lots of choice today. Today we're looking at the different types of milk available in grocery stores and their health benefits.

Coconut milk:
Coconut milk is a common ingredient in South Indian cooking that makes the curry rich and delicious.

What are the health benefits of coconut milk?
Coconuts provide vitamins, minerals and fibers that prevent diseases like gallbladder stones and liver diseases, inflammation and skin diseases, to name a few. If you want proteins, coconut milk is a good source. It also provides iron, selenium, sodium, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus and potassium, vitamins: C, E, B1, B3, B5 and B6. Surprisingly coconut milk is far richer in calcium than regular milk.

Rest assured that coconut milk also supports the immune system, helps in weight loss and is great for digestion.

Almond milk:
Almonds are a great snack if you are fasting or if you simply want a potent healthy snack to keep you full for longer. Some dishes also use almonds as garnish and it is an excellent medium in desserts.

What are the health benefits of almond milk?
Almond milk, just like coconut milk, is a great alternative for vegans. Almond milk is a good source for proteins; it is also low in calories unlike cow's milk. This milk contains vitamin E, magnesium, monounsaturated fats, manganese, copper and ribloflavin. Boost your energy and lower heart diseases with almond milk.

Cow's milk:
This is the most commonly used milk in India. Cow's milk is also used to make enticing Indian sweets or mithias.

What are the health benefits of cow's milk?
If you have calcium deficiency, you will be told to drink cow's milk. This milk contains fats, minerals and vitamins like vitamin D, proteins, vitamin B, potassium, iodine and it is a good substitute to Omega 3. Cow's milk is not fattening but it should be complimented with a healthy diet.

Besides strengthening the bones with calcium, cow's milk is known to control blood pressure as it contains potassium, iodine promote thyroid function and prevents gout.

Goat's milk:
Most Indians may not use goat's milk, but high up in the hilly regions of northern Indian, goat's milk is widely used. But the buck does not stop there, globalisation and India's love for Italian food has seen an increase in the import of goat cheese.

What are the health benefits of goat's milk?
Indian women are prone to iron deficiency and the answer could lie in goat's milk. According to researchers, goat's milk helps prevent softening of bone and anemia. It also aids digestion and 'metabolic utilization of minerals such as iron, calcium, phosphorus and magnesium.'

The secret lies in the high presence of iron, calcium, phosphorus and magnesium. Apparently goat's milk has less fat, builds your immune system, and reduces anti - inflammation of the bowel.

We maybe accustomed to cow's milk, but did you know goat's milk is better than cow's milk?

Raw milk:
Consuming raw milk is a trend that promotes the importance of organic food. But is it a wise choice?

What are the health benefits of raw milk?
The debate still continues on the health benefits of raw milk over pasteurised milk. Raw milk contains proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins and minerals, but scientists do not believe the claims of health benefits of raw milk. There are healthy bacteria in raw milk; some say that pasteurised milk kills these microbes, but scientists believe it's all for a good cause.

You need to know:
- Pasteurization DOES NOT reduce milk's nutritional value.
- Pasteurization DOES kill harmful bacteria.
- Pasteurization DOES save lives.

Soy milk:
This is a common substitute for those who are lactose intolerant or vegetarian. Soy milk also comes under probiotic food choice.

What are the health benefits of soy milk?
Soy milk contains fatty acids, proteins, fiber, vitamins and minerals that are beneficial for the smooth functioning of our body. You can count on soy milk to improve good cholesterol and help in weight loss; the omega 3 and 6 in soy milk strengthens the blood vessels, claims to prevent prostrate cancerosteoporosis and postmenopausal syndrome.

Soy milk is easily available in large departmental stores.

Cardamom or eliachi milk:
May not be a common ingredient in milk, but flavoured milk is always refreshing on a hot day. Cardamom milk is healthier than having flavoured milk like chocolate and strawberry.

What are the health benefits of cardamom milk?
Cardamom contains potassium, calcium, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin-C and magnesium. It is also used as an antiseptic, antispasmodic, carminative, digestive, diuretic, expectorant, stimulant, stomachic and tonic. These are the traditional uses of cardamom.

How to prepare?
It is very easy. Just like turmeric milk, immerse two or three pods in your milk and heat.

THESE FOODS SAVE YOUR HEART

Posted by Elizebath Bijoy Sunday, October 21, 2012 0 comments


Bariatic surgeon Dr Muffazal Lakdawala tells you what you should eat and avoid

The World Health Organization defines overweight and obesity as abnormal or excessive fat accumulation that may impair health. The most common health consequence of being overweight or obese is cardiovascular disease — mainly heart disease and stroke. The more overweight a person is the more likely he/she is to develop heart disease. Increased weight is a determinant of higher levels of triglycerides, elevated LDL (commonly known as bad cholesterol) and low HDL (commonly known as good cholesterol). The good news, however, is that even a slight reduction in weight (5- 10 per cent) can reduce a person's risk of heart disease. Healthier food choices and increased physical activity are the easiest ways to reduce weight and the risk of heart disease.

Dos
Fruits and vegetables - They are a great source of fibre, that helps increase satiety and reduce cholesterol levels. Choose brightly coloured fruits and vegetables like carrots, tomatoes, spinach, bell peppers, berries, oranges, papaya, etc. as they are rich in antioxidants.
Whole grains - Include whole wheat and multigrain products like whole wheat breads, rotis, pasta, brown rice, oats, ragi, jowar, bajra and quinoa.
Legumes - Sprouts, kidney beans, chickpeas, etc. are a great source of soluble fibre, which helps reduce cholesterol.
Nuts and seeds - Almonds, walnuts, pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds are great source of omega-3 fatty acids, which can help decrease bad cholesterol and increase good cholesterol.
Flaxseeds - A great source of omega-3 fatty acids and fibre, a sprinkle of this on one's breakfast cereal can help improve cholesterol profile.
Low fat dairy products - Low fat milk, yoghurt, homemade paneer are excellent sources of calcium and also help in reducing body fat.
Fatty fish - Especially Salmon and tuna, contain omega-3 fatty acids that help increase good cholesterol.
Soya and soya products - Soya contains isoflavones, which help prevent clogging of arteries and improve cholesterol profile.
Tea - Green tea especially helps lower total cholesterol and increase good cholesterol.
Physical Activity - Include a minimum of 30 to 45 minutes of moderate physical activity daily - brisk walking, jogging, swimming, cycling etc to increase energy expenditure and therefore help in weight reduction.

Don'ts
Refined cereals - Maida, white breads, pasta should be cut out from one's diet completely and replaced with whole grain or multigrain varieties.
Saturated fatty acids - Avoid intake of full cream dairy products like whole milk, cheese, yoghurt, butter, cream and coconut as they increase levels of bad cholesterol.
Processed and packaged foods - Avoid biscuits, chips, cakes and pastries as they contain high levels of saturated and trans-fatty acids, in addition to higher content of sodium.
Fatty meats - Avoid intake of fatty meats like mutton and beef, have skinless chicken and fish instead.
Fried and deep fried foods - Avoid junk foods like pizzas, burgers, fries and other deep-fried snacks. Deep fried foods contain trans-fats, which increases one's risk of arthrosclerosis clogging of arteries.
Smoking - Smoking is a major cause of atherosclerosis — a buildup of fatty substances in the arteries, which could lead to angina pectoris or heart attacks.
In a nutshell, reducing intake of calories, especially calories from fats, regular physical activity together with the inclusion of heart healthy foods can help to reduce weight and eventually the risk of developing heart disease.

USE COCONUT OIL FOR SHINY & CURLY HAIRS

Posted by Elizebath Bijoy Sunday, October 7, 2012 1 comments

The best remedy for frizzy hair is right under our noses - coconut oil 

Feel envious of those with smooth silky hair when your own curly mop turns into a frizzy, unruly mess? Well, there's hope. Curly hair requires more care and attention than straight hair but at the end of the day, it will all be worth it; shiny, natural curls can look as good, or even better than dead straight locks, when set properly. 

Frizz on the hair is an indication that the hair lacks moisture and oil content. The reasons could be many, from a dry climate, chemical treatments, excessive blow-drying, over-exposure to the sun, lack of proper water intake/nutrition, even stress. A quick solution would be generous use of hair serum but serum only coats the hair and is of no use in the long term. But no, you don't have to spend thousands on high-end products or hair spas for healthy, moisturised hair. 

The best answer is right under our noses, which is totally free of side-effects, chemical free and inexpensive - coconut oil. Unlike mineral oils, coconut oil penetrates the hair shaft and replaces natural moisture in the hair. "The benefits of coconut oil for the scalp and hair have been mentioned in ancient ayurveda as well," says Dr Sureshkumar, an ayurveda doctor. "It also has a cooling effect." 

Give your hair a hot oil massage and leave it on for at least an hour. Follow with a mild shampoo but do not blow dry. An additional tip would be to comb your hair with a wide toothed comb before it dries. 

Coconut milk is also a good alternative but again, it takes a bit more of effort. Grind a coconut in a blender. Add lemon juice to this and refrigerate. After a while a layer of cream will form on the top. Apply this to your hair and cover the head with a hot towel. Wash off with shampoo after an hour. This concoction is even said to relax tight curls and make them more manageable. Do any of these treatments once a week and you are assured of frizz-free, healthy curls! 

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Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Warm welcome to my health blog! This was introduced with an objective to educate and spread awareness among people, encouraging them to live healthier lives with longevity. Let me emphasize that our contemporary situation in individual’s life are so fast moving that we tend to neglect and spare some moments for our own health. My inspiration has turned into passion in a health care that turned into a blog. The ample of support and response was tremendously changed into positive results. I dedicated this blog for all those people who are very conscious for their health and life style. Hope so, I can bring differences for healthy living the fore my viewer comments are always valuable and your continued patronage is important for me. Wish you a happy and healthy life ahead!

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