weight loss

  1. Lose weight to prevent diabetes

    Weight loss helps control diabetes

    You hear it from your doctor. You hear it from your friends. You even hear it from your spouse. You hear it so often that instead of well-meaning advice it starts to sound like nagging… so you tune it out.

    Don't.

    The advice is to lose some weight, and it's not just nagging. It's life-changing and even life-saving advice that could help prevent diabetes.

    If you don't have diabetes, weight loss can help you prevent diabetes. And if you already have the disease, it's even more important than ever to drop those extra pounds -- because weight loss is the single most effective way to slow the disease and even reverse some of the damage.

    And now, new research backs the benefits of weight loss in diabetics in a big way, showing how diabetics who lose about 9 percent of their body weight and keep 6 percent off for a decade are less likely to develop kidney disease, vision problems and depression than patients in a control group.

    More importantly, the new study shows how weight loss can also help prevent diabetes symptoms for getting worse by controlling blood sugar levels and reducing your need for medication.

    And most importantly of all, weight loss can decrease your risk of hospitalization and increase your overall quality of life, according to the study of more than 5,000 obese diabetics assigned to either weight loss or counseling sessions.

    The only surprise here is that weight loss didn't do much to reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke among patients in the study -- but that may be more because of how they lost their weight and kept it off.

    The program in the study consisted of calorie counting and, at times, meal replacement drinks -- and while these types of diets can be effective at weight loss, they're not necessarily the best ways to get the nutrients you need for heart protection, especially over the long term.

    In fact, a strict calorie-control diet can actually allow for junk foods and other unhealthy treats as long as they're within your daily allotment -- and those low-nutrition foods can increase your risk of heart attack, stroke and more even if you're at a normal weight and even if you're not diabetic.

    So lose the weight -- but do it with a diet that's proven to lower the risk of heart disease, heart attack and stroke. Do it by limiting saturated fats, avoiding processed foods and junk foods, and making sure you get plenty of the healthy omega-3 fatty acids your heart needs.

    I recommend the Mediterranean diet for diabetics and non-diabetics alike to prevent diabetes symptoms from getting worse, and for both weight loss and heart protection.

    I'm not done with natural heart protection yet. Keep reading for the most rewarding way to fight off heart disease yet.

  2. Slow down: 'Fast diet' is the wrong approach

    The too-good-to-be-true diet that's too good to be true

    Fad diets are never a good idea -- and the latest fad diet might be one of the worst yet.

    It's called the "Fast Diet," aka the "5:2 diet," and it allows you to eat pretty much whatever you want for five days a week -- as long as you stick to just 600 calories per day on the other two days.

    Supposedly, the fast diet helps people to lose about a pound a week and may even help lower both blood sugar and cholesterol levels.

    But even if that were true -- and, long-term, I doubt that any of those benefits are sustainable -- do you really think you would be healthy on a diet like this?

    It's almost certain that you wouldn't be -- because if you're eating junk five days a week, you will find yourself battling serious nutritional deficiencies that could set the stage for everything from mental health problems to major disease.

    For example, as I just told you, a diet high in saturated fats can rob your brain of a chemical it needs to remove damaging proteins, putting you at risk for dementia.

    And while short periods of fasting and low-calorie dieting can be beneficial in certain situations, they need to be carefully controlled to ensure you get proper nutrition for energy and overall good health.

    So skip the fads, especially the fast diet. Instead, commit to a healthy eating plan seven days a week. Trust me, it's not as hard as it seems sometimes.

    I've found there's one diet that allows for a wide variety of delicious foods -- including some of the foods you already love -- as well as filling meals every day, and it can help you to lose weight, improve nutrition and fight disease all at once.

    It's a Mediterranean diet rich in chicken, fish, fruits, vegetables and even allows for some chocolate -- and in recent studies, it's been shown to slash the risk of heart disease, stroke, dementia and more.

  3. Obesity linked to causes of sleep apnea

    New numbers show sleep apnea has increased by as much as 55 percent -- with obesity accounting for up to 90 percent of those new cases.
  4. Western diet linked to unhealthy aging

    The common ‘Western diet' leads to unhealthy aging, including an increased risk of diabetes and heart disease.
  5. Mediterranean diet can slash heart & stroke risk

    The common-sense Mediterranean diet can cut the risk of stroke by nearly half and reduce the risk of all major cardiovascular events by a third.
  6. Losing fat while losing weight

    The toughest part of weight loss often isn't losing the weight itself -- it's losing fat with it.
  7. Losing weight with a low-calorie diet

    Seniors have a special challenge when dieting: Losing weight without losing muscle. New research shows whey proteins and amino acids can help.
  8. Apples can cut cholesterol levels

    Want to lower your cholesterol? Don't try drugs -- try plain old apples. A new study shows how this fruit can help lower LDL and even raise HDL levels.
  9. Green tea can lower blood pressure

    Lower your blood pressure with every sip of healthy green tea.
  10. Sleep apnea linked to massive increase in cancer risk

    People with severe sleep apnea are nearly 500 percent more likely to die of cancer than people without the condition. Find out how to sleep better every night.
  11. New diet drug lorcaserin is not effective for weight loss

    New drug lorcaserin, approved by an FDA panel for weight loss, fails to meet even minimal FDA standards for effectiveness and is linked to cancer and heart problems.
  12. From KO'd to OK'd: Rejected diet drug stages a comeback

    Nearly two years ago, an FDA panel rejected the Qnexa diet pill over safety concerns. Now, that same panel has given the drug the OK, which means the agency itself will almost certainly approve it for sale soon.
  13. Fix your apnea, heal your heart

    Someone with apnea can go through dozens of breathless bouts per night and never even realize it -- but in this case, what you don't know can not only hurt you... it can kill you, too. Apnea has been linked to everything from sexual dysfunction and metabolic syndrome to diabetes and heart disease -- but now, researchers have confirmed that it's not too late for people already fighting that nightly battle.
  14. The worst way to lose weight

    Surgery is supposed to be the ultimate shortcut when it comes to weight loss: Let the doc put you under, and when you wake up you're on your way to a brand-new body. If only it were that simple.
  15. Green tea speeds weight loss

    There are no miracles when it comes to weight loss -- but that doesn't mean you can't get a little help. Green tea has been shown to boost the metabolism and help the body burn off fat -- and the latest research on mice shows why: One of the compounds in green tea can stop the body from absorbing fat and even help the body to better use the fat it does absorb.
  16. Rejected diet drug returns from the grave

    A "no" from the FDA never quite means "no" -- not when it comes to the agency's drug-industry pals, anyway. Case in point: The feds said "no" to the diet drug Contrave earlier this year over its potential for heart risk -- even after an FDA panel signed off on it.
  17. The dirt on colon cleansing

    Never take medical advice from Hollywood stars...One of the more recent trends in Hollywood's boutique medicine industry involves colon cleansings -- the idea that a very elaborate (and often expensive) chemically enhanced enema can somehow cure all sorts of health issues.
  18. Apnea in new heart risk link

    But now, researchers say that in addition to leaving you gasping for air in the night, sleep apnea could also be responsible for serious blood vessel abnormalities -- problems that can actually steal blood right from your heart.
  19. Weight loss boosts D in women

    Weight loss can also improve your life in about a thousand other ways, big and small -- and a new study finds yet one more: Obese women who shed the extra pounds have higher blood levels of vitamin D.
  20. Weight loss can ease apnea

    Since this breath-robbing condition is often caused or worsened by obesity, it doesn't take a whole lot of "research" to figure out that losing weight can lead to dramatic improvements.

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