Health Check: does caffeine cause dehydration?

For a long time people have been told that caffeine is a diuretic. For some, this translates into advice to avoid or remove caffeinated beverages from the diet of people at risk of dehydration, or during periods of extreme summer heat.

While possibly well meaning, this advice is wrong.

By definition, a diuretic is a product that increases the body’s production of urine. Hence water, or any drink consumed in large volumes, is a diuretic. Importantly, urinating more does not inevitably lead to dehydration (excessive loss of body water).

Drinking simultaneously provides the body with fluid for absorption (avoiding dehydration) and initiates urine production.… + Read More

Health Check: what are coffee naps and can they help you power through the day?

Health Check: what are ‘coffee naps’ and can they help you power through the day?

Coffee naps

Caffeine and napping have something in common. Both make you feel alert and can enhance your performance, whether that’s driving, working or studying. But some people are convinced that drinking a coffee before a nap gives you an extra zap of energy when you wake up.

How could that be? Is there any evidence to back the power of these so-called coffee naps? Or are we better off getting a good night’s sleep?

Feeling sleepy?

If you don’t get enough sleep, you incur what researchers call a sleep debt.

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The Paleo Diet – The new and the old

Paleo – The new, old diet

Paleo diet

The basis of the Paleo diet

The paleo diet (also nicknamed the caveman diet, primal diet, Stone Age diet, and hunter-gatherer diet) is hugely popular these days, and goes by one simple question: What would a caveman eat? Here, we explain what the paleo diet involves, its pros and cons, and, ultimately, what a modern person needs to know to decide whether or not to take the paleo diet plunge.

Paleo foods

The paleo diet runs on the same foods our hunter-gather ancestors supposedly ate: fruits, vegetables, meats, seafood, and nuts. “By following these nutritional guidelines, we put our diet more in line with the evolutionary pressures that shaped our current genetics, which in turn positively influences health and well being,” says Loren Cordain, PhD, professor of health and exercise science at Colorado State University and author of The Paleo Diet.… + Read More

The great debate – Pros and cons of dairy

Got milk?

One of the most common questions I get, what do you think of dairy? Is it healthy? Do I need it for strong bones? Do you drink milk….

Do I drink milk?

No, I don’t drink milk, I think it should be reserved for growing calves. Here is what I’ve found and I am sure if we keep digging there will be pros and cons for any argument, but what I ask is you to read the China Study. I do eat fermented dairy, yoghurt on occasion and cheese, they would make up less than 5% of my diet I don’t feel these are an issue.… + Read More

Peanut Butter Banana Smoothie

Peanut Butter Banana Smoothie

I don’t know about you, but I can easily get stuck making the same meals time and time again. Here is a winning peanut butter smoothie recipe I found that is absolutely amazing!!!

Serves 2

2 bananas
1 cup milk (I used coconut, but nut milks would be yum!)
3 heaped tablespoons 100% natural peanut butter
2 large tablespoons yoghurt (I used coconut)
2-3 handfuls of ice
1-2 large scoop of your preferred protein powder
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon vanilla powder or 1/2 teaspoon essence

Optional (for extra nutritional punch): 2 large handfuls of organic spinach (see green tinged smoothie below).… + Read More

Beetroot & Rosemary Healthy Chips

BAKED ROSEMARY BEETROOT CHIPS

Recipe Beetroot chips

Prep time –10 mins

Cook time – 20 mins

Total time – 30 mins

30-minute baked beet chips infused with rosemary and speckled with sea salt. Perfectly crispy, simple to make, and a healthy snack on the go.

Ingredients
  • 3 medium-large beets, rinsed and scrubbed
  • Olive or canola oil
  • Sea Salt + Black Pepper
  • 2-3 sprigs rosemary, roughly chopped
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F and place oven rack in the center of the oven.
  2. Thinly slice beets with a mandolin (or a sharp knife), getting them as consistently thin as possible. They should curl a little when cut.
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Zinc – Can’t Live Without It, Are You Getting Enough?

Zinc Essential For Health

You may currently take zinc when you have a cold or flu. However, did you know that your cells need it on a daily basis? The adult body contains approximately 2.0 to 3.0 g, mostly stored inside your cells. Zinc has far-reaching actions which affect the health of your whole body.

Are Your Levels Low?

If you experience any of the following symptoms, your zinc levels may be low:
•    Recurrent colds, flus and/or infections;
•    Poor appetite, reduced sense of taste and/or smell;
•    Sluggish digestion;
•    Slow growth and development;
•    Slow healing, acne and other skin conditions;
•    Infertility;
•    Sugar cravings; and/or
•    Stress, anxiety, and depression.

+ Read More

You can’t rely on fish oil supplements in pregnancy to make your children smarter

You can’t rely on fish oil supplements in pregnancy to make your children smarter.

Fish oil supplements that contain DHA (the omega-3 fatty acid docosahexaenoic acid) are marketed to pregnant women as a way to support brain development. After all, who doesn’t want their child to be smart?

However most clinical trials that have examined the impact of DHA on brain development are underpowered – that is, they don’t contain adequate subject numbers to draw reasonable conclusions – or have methodological limitations.

A large and robust trial of 500 South Australian mother-child pairs has just been completed. Women were given high-dose DHA or a vegetable oil placebo throughout the second half of pregnancy.

+ Read More
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Lindsay provided some great practical dietary and nutritional tips that I was able to put into practice easily because they realistically fit my lifestyle.

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