Low-Carb Diets: Are You Losing More than Weight?Written by Monique N. Gilbert, B.Sc.
Low-Carb Diets: Are You Losing More than Weight?
by Monique N. Gilbert, B.Sc. http://www.MoniqueNGilbert.com
The average American eats about twice as much protein than what they require. Some people, in pursuit of thinness, are going on low-carb diets and are eating up to four times protein their body needs. Protein deficiency is certainly not a problem in America. So exactly how much protein do you really need? Much less than you think. Protein is a vital nutrient, essential to your health. In its purest form, protein consists of chains of amino acids. There are 22 amino acids that combine to form different proteins, and 8 to 9 of these must come from foods we eat. Our body uses these amino acids to create muscles, blood, skin, hair, nails and internal organs. Proteins help replace and form new tissue, transports oxygen and nutrients in our blood and cells, regulates balance of water and acids, and is essential for making antibodies. However, too much of a good thing may not be so good for you. Many people are putting their health at risk by eating to much protein. Excessive protein consumption, particularly animal protein, can result in heart disease, stroke, osteoporosis, and kidney stones. As important as protein is for our body, there are many misconceptions about how much we really need in our diet, and best way to obtain it. According to American Heart Association and National Institutes of Health, as little as 50-60 grams of protein is enough for most adults. This breaks down to about 10-12% of total calories. Your body only needs 0.36 grams of protein per pound of body weight. To calculate exact amount you need, multiply your ideal weight by 0.36. This will give you your optimum daily protein requirement in grams. Since amount of protein needed depends on how much lean body mass you have, ideal weight is used instead of actual weight. Infants, children, pregnant and nursing women require more protein. People on low-carb diets are consuming up to 34% of their total calories in form of protein and up to 53% of total calories from fat. Most of these people are unaware of amount of protein and fat that is contained in foods they eat. For instance, a typical 3-ounce beef hamburger, which is small by American standards, contains about 22 grams of protein and 20 grams of fat. You achieve quick weight loss on these diets because of this high fat content. High fat foods give you sensation of feeling full, faster, so you end up eating fewer total calories. However, this type of protein and fat combination is not healthiest. Animal proteins are loaded with cholesterol and saturated fat. Many people on these diets also experience an elevation in their LDL (the bad) cholesterol when they remain on this diet for long periods. High levels of LDL cholesterol in blood, clog arteries and is chief culprit in heart disease, particularly heart attack and stroke. So while you may lose weight in short-run, you are putting your cardiovascular health in jeopardy in long-run.
Obesity & it's relationship to Anoraxia, Bulimia and other eating disorders.Written by Mahesh Bhat
Obesity is a disease that affects approximately 60 million people in United States, and women are especially affected. Over o≠ne-third of women between ages of 20 and 74 are obese, majority of them being African American or Mexican American. With more and more pre-packaged food and less and less activity, number of obese people in America has steadily increased since 1960ís.
But what is obesity? Many people think obesity means that a person is overweight, but thatís not exactly true. An overweight person has a surplus amount of weight that includes muscle, bone, fat, and water. An obese person has a surplus of body fat. Most health professionals concur that a man is obese if he has over 25 percent body fat, and a woman is obese if she has over 30 percent. Women physiologically have more body fat than men, so that why thereís a difference in percentage.
It is difficult to determine exact percentage of body fat a person has, but estimates can be made in a number of ways. First, using a tweezer-like tool called a caliper, you can measure thickness of skin folds o≠n different points of your body and compare results with standardized numbers. You can also use a small device that sends a harmless electrical current through your body and measures your body fat percentage. The most commonly used method to determine if a person is obese is to look at his/her Body Mass Index (BMI). A person with a BMI over 30 is considered to be obese, and a BMI over 40 is considered to be severely obese. Itís important to remember though that BMI could be misleading in pregnant or lactating women and in muscular individuals.
With obesity, comes increased risk of diseases such as high blood pressure, Type II Diabetes, heart disease, and breast, colon, and prostate cancer. In addition, obesity has been linked to mental health conditions such as depression or feelings of shame and low self-esteem. Health experts say that even losing 10 to 15 percent of your body weight can dramatically decrease risk of developing these serious conditions. In addition, many obese people are discriminated against and targets of insults and other verbal abuse.
A number of factors, such as poor diet, lack of physical activity, genetics, and certain medical disorders, cause obesity, but it can be conquered. The following information seeks to educate about obesity and methods used to treat it. It does not take place of a physician.
Obesity and its Relationship to: Anorexia, Bulimia, and Other Special Eating Disorders
Obesity itself is not an eating disorder, but people who are obese or who fear becoming obese may develop o≠ne. Letís take a look at obesity and its relationship to special eating disorders.
Binge Eating Disorder - The most common eating disorder is binge eating disorder. Approximately 4 million Americans have this disorder. Binge eating disorder is more than just occasionally overeating. It is characterized by eating uncontrollably, quickly eating an unusually large amount of food at o≠ne sitting, even when person is not hungry, and eating in secret because person is embarrassed about amount of food he/she eats.