Maintaining Healthy Calcium Levels

As a student, it’s so easy to forget to eat properly.  But for optimum health, it’s so important.  What’s good to look at (even at a relatively young age) is your family history.  If you have a mother and grandmother for example who suffered from osteoporosis then you want to keep your calcium levels elevated.  Even if you have no symptoms of brittle bones or problem teeth, chances are, as you age, you will.  So in this case, you can enrich your diet with calcium in a relatively easy way.  Good sources of the mineral include: dairy produce, tahini, sesame seeds, spinach, broccoli.  No matter what your taste buds enjoy, there are dozens of recipes on the Internet these days that will tempt them somehow.  Taking a calcium supplement isn’t a bad idea either, but do not think it is in place of the calcium-enriched diet.  Take notes from a proper physician on what the best supplement would be. You can even do an early detection test for osteoporosis if it is in your family, but the best thing to do is take preventive measures, like adding it to your diet earlier rather than later.

Broaden Your Horizons Learning Meditation

College is a time of unparalleled opportunity.  You have perhaps more time to justifiably explore new things in life than maybe ever before. Soon you’ll be working around the clock trying to make mortgage payments, so use these precious years to discover something new that also might act as a good tool for you in later life. Something like meditation. The benefits of meditation are tremendous and include: a) reduction in anxiety and depression; b)  increase in capacity to concentrate; c) reduction in oxygen consumption; d) assists in relaxation; e) decreases pre-menstrual syndromes; f) can reduce blood pressure; g) increase blood flow to the heart and more. By learning meditative methods when you are not stressed or pushed for time (like in college), you can take the tools and apply them at a time when things are getting too much. As well, knowing how to meditate may later on lead to you not having to take drugs for anxiety or depression.  You will be able to deal with these trials through your meditative skills.

England Tells Toddlers “Drink Your Milk!”

England is now enmeshed in a debate on whether their ‘Nursery Milk Program’ is “outdated, ineffective, and too expensive” as Ann Milton, the Health Minister asserts. The program supplies 189ml of milk for free to children in childcare until they reach their fifth birthday. Begun in wartime England in the 1940s, the idea was to give young children a little bit extra by way of nutrition when food was rationed and in short supply.

Today, however, according to Ms. Milton, food is cheap and readily available, and there is ‘no evidence’ that the costly free milk program contributes in any way to the health of young children in England. Ann Milton believes it would be better to give families a voucher for the value of the milk supplied by the day care centers so that families can purchase milk as well as other sources of nutrition, such as vegetable, fruit, cheese and meat on their own.

The government decided, however, to go against the advice of the Health Minister, and to stick with the milk program. The government explained that milk is a special food which can easily give children a real ‘nutrition boost’ due to its ‘nutrient dense’ quality. Milk is an amazing source of lots of great nutrients, like protein, zinc, vitamins A, B2 (riboflavin), and B12. Milk also aids in the absorption of iodine, niacin, and vitamin B6.

Milk is also a rich source of calcium which is crucial for growing children. Lots of calcium in the diet assures the development of strong bones. In just 189ml of milk which the milk program provides the children receive half of the daily recommended amount of calcium for children aged four to six. Although there are other sources for calcium and vitamins, such as leafy green vegetables, fruit, nuts, and seeds, it is much easier to get children to drink a cup or two of milk than to have them “finish your vegetables!”

According to the government, which is retaining the milk program, “milk is the ultimate fast food.” It is a quick and nutritious snack which would be a pity to take away from nutritionally vulnerable young children.

Cooking in College

There is quite a lot to learn for students who have always had their meals cooked for them until they are suddenly out on their own.  The big challenge is also how to keep it all healthy.  It is so easy to get into very bad habits when you are first beginning to test out your culinary skills.  So make sure you always have a lot of fruit and vegetables on hand and check on the Internet for recipes.  You can even type in “easy vegetable recipes” if you don’t want to spend too much time in the kitchen.  The more fresh produce you have, the better.  And make sure you make stuff that you like.  There is no point in making healthy dishes that you know you are never going to eat.  Soups are very good for winter; they pack in a lot of essential vitamins and minerals through the vegetables and are incredibly filling which means that you are less likely to eat junk after.  So start doing some internet searches and see what you can come up with.  It really does make a difference and will give you a ton of energy if you do it right that you will need for your college experience.

Warnings for Pregnant Women Eating Licorice

Few pregnant women would think to take licorice off of their diet, but a recent study at London’s Great Ormond Street Hospital and the University of Helsinki shows that it may be wise to do so. Apparently, children exposed to licorice in the womb were found, during this study, to have up to one-third higher levels of cortisol. Cortisol is a hormone that is linked to diabetes, high blood pressure and obesity.

Mothers were asked how much licorice they ate during pregnancy, and the children were then tested at the age of 8 for coritsol levels. Children with higher cortisol levels had mothers who ate a half a gram of licorice a week or more during pregnancy.

Twizzlers Black Licorice has issued a warning about glycyrrhizic acid on its website. They state, “In excessive amounts, glycyrrhizic acid has been associated with undesirable side-effects including headache, sodium and water retention, loss of potassium, high blood pressure, and heart irregularities.”

Benefits of Swimming

Everyone can benefit from swimming. There are so many health benefits, no matter what your age or physical fitness.  Plus, since most cities have swimming pools that are relatively cheap in the States, you won’t break the bank or drive yourself crazy trying to get your workout in.  Also, no one needs to be intimidated before they start swimming; it is such an easy exercise.  You don’t have to be in good shape to start with.  And you won’t have to over-exert yourself either; you can just take it in your stride and go at your own pace.  Plus, especially on a hot day, you will come out of the pool feeling so refreshed.  You can spend an hour in the pool and not even be exhausted afterwards, even if you’re not in great shape.  So try it out and start improving your fitness level one stroke at a time.