Nine Quick Food Facts
Nine Quick Food Facts
Susan Silberstein & Marilyn Joyce (Health and Nutrition Educator & Heath Counselor) gives expert video advice on: Is diet soda healthier than a regular soda?; Does coffee have health benefits?; What are the effects of drinking liquids with my meal? and more...
Are potatoes and french fries considered vegetables?
The difference between french fries and potatoes, obviously a potato is much more nutritious than french fries. Are they a starch or a vegetable? They are a starch, they're not a vegetable. Anybody who wants to group them in the vegetable family needs to understand that they're not nearly as nutritious - nutrient dense as vegetables in general are. Nor do they have the you know, multitude of phytochemicals and bioflavonoids, etc. that will protect you. So potatoes are a starch, not a vegetable.
Why are french fries considered so unhealthy?
The problem with potatoes in a french fry form is that they are hazardous to your health. Research has shown that just having french fries three times in a month will increase your likelihood of developing breast cancer by 27%. I'm sorry, I don't want that in my life. And when we look at how many young women today are developing breast cancer, maybe we need to look at that aspect of their diet. Many kids today have been weened on french fries and hamburgers. So it's really looking at that very closely. As far as french fries go, you know, I'll just say, I'm from Scotland, we love our chips. We call them chips, not french fries. We love them. But I know the hazard they are to my health. So, do I say no to them? No, I have them once a year or once every couple years. I'll have my fix and then I'm done. And, you know, that's the way to do it, not the way we're eating them today.
Is diet soda healthier than a regular soda?
Diet soda is probably less healthy than regular soda. When you think in terms of what they use, the artificial sweeteners, these are what we call excitotoxins. They disrupt the central nervous system. Such things as aspartame, NutraSweet, Equal, they're all the same thing, those are - that is not a healthy alternative. And we're now changing over to things like Splenda. Well Splenda is chlorinated sugar molecules. Chlorine is one of the most carcinogenic agents on the planet. So whatever we use to sweeten other than sugar, you sweeten sodas other than sugar, doesn't seem to be very good for us.You know they always end up having a negative repercussion down the road, so I don't recommend artificially sweetened sodas. I don't recommend any sodas, but definitely not artificially sweetened.
Does excess salt cause high blood pressure?
Overall, eating too much salt is not the positive factor in high blood pressure. The positive factor in high blood pressure is a whole conglomeration of lifestyle habits: too much fast food, on the run, no exercise, no meditation or time out, no relaxation, eating a diet that is void of nutritional balance that will assist the body in keeping all the metabolic functions running in complete efficiency. It is really about creating a healthy body from all of the lifestyle things we do and the food that we eat and then salt is not really a huge problem then. If you are eating a healthy diet then 1. The food tastes so great that you don't need to add a lot of salt to begin with. 2. All foods contain a certain level of natural sodium. So it's all about keeping a balance in your lifestyle and a balance in your diet, and then you can enjoy a little salt on foods that you really want salt on. Perhaps a hard boiled egg or fresh tomatoes from your garden.
Does coffee have health benefits?
About two years ago I was invited to be part of a survey on coffee, and I was astounded this particular company, and I can't remember their name now, but they actually had hundreds of references and resources showing the high antioxidant level of coffee. Now unlike a lot of my associates, I don't believe that coffee will harm you if it's organic coffee. The problem is that with the regular coffee that we buy in the supermarkets, most of it has gone from between being planted and the time it's finished roasting, it's gone through at least 18 chemicals being added to it. So one or two cups of coffee a day, as long as it's organic, I don't believe can hurt anyone. I think it has a lot of antioxidants that are very beneficial, and as - you know, I will make one preface here though, if you're a person who has high blood pressure you might want to go with decaffeinated, but make sure you do not get regular decaffeinated coffee that is decaffeinated with methylene chloride which is a known carcinogenic agent. Make sure it's water processed, or Swiss Water Processed.
Should I include eggs in my diet?
Eggs are an excellent source of inexpensive protein. What's important is that we choose eggs from good quality sources and that we prepare them correctly. We would prefer eggs from free roaming hens. We would also prefer eggs that are soft cooked because when we hard cook the egg, we expose the fatty acids in the yolk to the heat. This will denature those fats and create the free radicals that our body then must repair by sending cholesterol to take care of the nicks in our arteriole walls. It is not the egg that produces cholesterol. In fact, many research studies have shown that eggs do not raise cholesterol at all. However, when we hard cook them or when we fry them, that's when we create the damage to our arteries, and the cholesterol that the body already produces now has to be sent to do some repair work.
Are nuts a healthy food?
Talking about nuts, I absolutely believe that nuts are a very healthy food for us. However, not roasted and salted. The minute that you roast and salt nuts (they're usually roasted and salted at very high temperatures), you've actually destroyed the molecular structure of the oil. Raw nuts are by far the best, and it doesn't really matter which raw nut. I believe that variety is the spice of life in everything. You need a variety of the different nuts, but here's the deal; five servings a week is good. Some people may have more. I mean, I will tend to have nuts as a snack everyday of the week, but not lots of them. They're very high in calories and fat, and if you eat a lot of them, you're going to add a lot of calories and fat to your diet. For example, a cup of nuts can be around 1,500 to 3,500 calories. So, you've got to be careful how much of those you're having. A handful is what we usually say is enough. Just have a handful of nuts. Have different ones each day or get a trail mix that has a variety in the trail mix, and then you're getting variety right there, but make sure it's raw.
What are the effects of drinking liquids with my meal?
Drinking liquids with your meal is not really a good idea. It's ok to have water or liquids before your meal and it's ok to have water or liquids half an hour or an hour after you eat. However, when you drink with your meal you are actually diluting your digestive enzymes that your body is producing. You're not going to assimilate your food as well when drinking with meals, and it will lead to indigestion, flatulence, cramps for some and can even become as serious as nausea, which is not a pleasant experience after a meal. It's really important to understand that you want your enzymes that your body produces to work completely efficiently. They need to be in full power not diluted by you drinking with meals.
Why is food coloring considered unhealthy?
The dyes that they use in food are probably one of the worse, because we've actually seen a tremendous relationship between hyperactivity in kids and food dyes. So, I absolutely recommend no food with dyes in it. And you know, it can slip into the most unlikely places. For example, people buy salmon that is farmed, and low and behold, that salmon is as grey as this-- well, this carpet's not grey, but it's as grey as the metal here, if it didn't have the dye to make it red. And that's a tragedy, when you think that we don't even know what we're eating, and we're eating dye in fish. Who would have thought?