Eating Fennel Seeds After a Meal

fennel-2617_640Something magical happens moments after you start chewing on fennel seeds after a meal: the taste in your mouth changes, replacing the aftertaste of what you have eaten with a cool freshness. The pleasant, licorice-like aroma of the seeds drifts around you as you chew, calming the senses.

The distinct taste of these little seeds combines with the release of volatile oils to give you that refreshing effect. But, the goodness of fennel seeds does not stop there.

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Fight Cold and Flu With Yogurt

Cacik-1You probably already expect garlic, chicken soup, or vitamin C-rich orange juice to help with cold and flu prevention and treatment. But now there’s a new food on the block that is kicking the butt of colds, flu, and other respiratory infections—yogurt. Exciting research shows that yogurt isn’t just for digestive health anymore.

Research published in the British Journal of Nutrition found that yogurt containing the probiotic strainLactobacillus casei DN-114001 had a significant effect on respiratory infections in three ways.

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Does Fibre Make a Difference When Dieting

Healthy Food Photo by stevepb

It’s a fact that many folk on diets don’t take enough notice of how much fibre they eat. If this is left to the extreme it can cause many problems.

However, as we will see from this short article, the remedy is simple and effective.

Should you eat fibre?

According to dieticians in the UK, their recommendation is that people should be eating between 18-24 grams of fibre a day. However, a recent survey sponsored by one of the large supermarkets has shown that the average UK intake is just 12grams. So the question is: can changing your diet and increasing your fibre give your digestive system a new lease of life?

Studies have shown that one way of decreasing colon cancer is to ensure that the food travelling from the mouth through the digestive system to the anus, when kept on the move, will prevent potentially harmful waste products from being easily absorbed. In a recent test – Dr Mark McAlindon, who is a consultant gastro-entroologist at the Royal Halampshire Hospital in Sheffield, carried out a recent test showing that increasing fibre can indeed quite dramatically change the way our bodies handle food.

The Test

In his test, he took two lorry drivers, who both had a high-fat, low-fibre diet, and tracked their bowel movement as they took one of their international journeys from Southampton to Turin. They were given a special pill which was used to measure the transit time of the food as it passed through the digestive system.

Before the diet, it took Don 22 hours and 39 minutes to allow the pill to go through his digestive system. Wolfgang, however, took an amazing 42 hours and 25 minutes. For the next ten days the truckers were given a diet that ensured that 50grams of fibre was consumed each day. The test was carried out again with both drivers showing a significantly quicker transit time. After increasing their fibre intake, the time taken for the pill to pass through their digestive systems had been reduced to an average of nearly 21 hours.

One of the things to bear in mind here, though, is that the two guys who were chosen to do this test do have a job that involves them sitting down for most of their working day. There is a direct correlation with how active you are as to how quickly your digestive system works. It should also be borne in mind that they were given 50g of fibre a day whereas the recommended allowance is between 18-24g per day.

Please do see our article on Fibre, available from the website.

Lower Calorie Intake Reduces Cancer Risk

Because a reduced Carbohydrate/ Higher protein diet is more satisfying to your body, you generally end up eating less than you would if you ate like so many others.

This has the marvellous effect of reducing your calorie intake. (That’s how low carb diets work by the way)

Research from the University of California has shown that a reduction in calorie intake by as little as 5% give your body’s cells more time to repair any damage to its DNA. If this was not repaired then a mutated cell could reproduce and thus starts the first step towards cancer developing.

Professor M Hellerstein the University of California Berkley explains that – Normally, a cell will try to fix any damage to its DNA. But if it divides before it has a chance to fix the damage then it becomes memorialised as a mutation in the resulting offspring cells. Slowing down the rate of cell proliferation essentially buys time for the cells to repair generic damage.

Obviously, we only want healthy cells to reproduce. There are two trains of thought here. If the body is not overloaded in having to process unused food, then more resources are available for it to look after itself more efficiently. Also, eating too much means that the body almost immediately converts the unwanted food to fat – that’s building cells in rapid succession, thus reducing the time available for proper DNA formation.

Trials on mice have shown that reducing calorie intake by only 5% was almost as effective as a 30+% reduction. In reducing the amount of (malformed) cell proliferation in skin, breast and T cells, another effect was an increase in life span.

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