NorthStar Nutritionals Blog

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  1. Is Monsanto’s Roundup Ready GMO soy making you sick?

    I’m what you’d call a conspiracy realist. While I don’t go off on wild goose chases, I DO believe in following the evidence, no matter where it leads me—even if that happens to be smack dab into the heart of a so-called “conspiracy.”

    After all, you know what they say, “Just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean they’re not out to get you.” And when it comes to the nightmare that is Roundup Ready GMO soy, despite cries of paranoia from the mainstream press, I’ve been warning you about the growing evidence of risk for years.

    Now, according to the results of a new study, this so-called “conspiracy theory” has suddenly become “conspiracy fact.” And those warnings can officially be labeled justified paranoia.

    Researchers have confirmed that Monsanto’s herbicide darling, Roundup, is indeed making its way into the food you put on your table. And the number one road of transport from the package, to the plate, to your belly is likely none other than that GMO soy.

    And as bad as this news is, it may be even worse than you imagine.

    What’s wrong with soy

     Let’s just start with the soy alone.

    Prior to the start of World War II in the late 1930s, soy wasn’t that big of a factor here in the United States. And although the crop grew in popularity after that, for a long time it was mainly used for animal feed. Now, the majority of the crops are being made into soybean meal (still primarily used for animal consumption) and oil (more on this in a moment).

    In fact, it wasn’t until the early 2000s that soy’s popularity truly exploded. Suddenly soy started getting top billing on food labels. It was being featured in everything from breakfast foods to desserts, and soy was unquestionably shaping up to be Big Food’s “It Food” of the decade.

    And you’ll never guess who’s largely credited with shy soy’s miraculous makeover into a health-food vixen. It was none other than our “friends” over at the Food and Drug Administration.

    In 1999 the FDA officially recognized the cholesterol-lowering effects of soy protein. Big Food’s marketers were then able to make the claim that 25 grams of soy protein a day could reduce your risk of heart disease… and Boy Howdy did they ever run with it.

    The only problem is those bright green legumes are hiding more than a few bad-nutrition secrets.

    They contain a substance called hemagglutinin that causes red blood cells to clump up, making it harder for them to effectively do their job of absorbing and distributing oxygen to the tissues in your body. And another one that inhibits the enzymes you need to digest proteins properly. Not to mention that soy has been linked to a number of food allergies.

    And this was true even BEFORE Monsanto got its greedy grubby paws on the stuff and started messing around with its genetic code.

    Of course, if you’ve been listening to my warnings, and you’ve already been avoiding unfermented soy products (soy’s bad effects disappear when it’s fermented, so feel free to indulge in natto, miso, and tempeh), you might have made the mistake of thinking you’re not at risk.

    But don’t be fooled by the food labels.

    Even when you don’t see soy lurking on a label, if it’s a processed food, chances are it’s in there. Remember earlier when I told you that the majority of soy crops are now being made into soybean meal and oil? If a food label lists “vegetable oil,” chances are very good that it’s soybean. In fact, soy accounts for 61 percent of vegetable-oil consumption in the U.S.

    And that “vegetable oil” has a high omega-6 content, which promotes inflammation when it’s not properly balanced with omega-3s. I bet I don’t have to tell you what omega American’s are typically severely lacking. (For more names GMO soy hides under on food labels click here.)

    Roundup chemicals linked to cancer and more

    But wait, it gets worse. Soy, which is now the second largest crop here in the states after corn, has been put in a stranglehold by the chemical industry. Shockingly, more than 90 percent of soybeans being grown on U.S. farms are genetically modified to withstand drenching in herbicide chemicals—mainly Monsanto’s Roundup.

    And now a new study, published in the journal Food Chemistry, has confirmed that glyphosate residues (the active ingredient in Roundup)—and AMPA, an acid into which glyphosate breaks down—were lurking in ALL ten of the GMO soy samples they tested. And the levels of this creepy chemical are even higher than what Monsanto’s OWN scientists have called “extreme.”

    We’re still in the process of figuring out all the bad effects glyphosate could have on our health, but just last year a bombshell study, published in the journal Entropy, linked glyphosates to Parkinson’s, infertility and cancer. In a chilling line from the study, MIT researchers referred to glyphosate’s negative impact on our health as “insidious,” saying it “…manifests slowly over time as inflammation damages cellular systems throughout the body.”

    If you eat any processed foods, it’s nearly impossible to avoid all GMO soy these days. Until more states follow in Vermont’s footsteps and require clear GMO food labeling, the best you can do is buy organic, and eat as many home-cooked meals as you can manage. Besides, the food will taste better and be better for you anyway.

  2. Popular breakfast cereals are more than 30 percent sugar

    You don’t need me to tell you that sugary breakfast cereals aren’t the healthiest choice you can make, but you still may be shocked by a recent report released by our friends over at the Environmental Working Group. (I was even bowled over by some of the numbers.)

    If you enjoy sweetened breakfast cereals you might want to look away now—otherwise hold on tight to your bowl and spoon. According to the EWG, 12 common breakfast cereals don’t just pack in a lot of sugar… they’re more than 50 percent sugar!

    Have a little cereal with your sugar

    Kellogg's Honey Smacks and Post Golden Crisp are two brands that found themselves in the EWG's Cereal Hall of Shame. One cereal, Lieber’s Cocoa Frosted Flakes, weighed in at a jaw-dropping 88 percent sugar!

    And while those are the most extreme examples the EWG reported on, the rest of the so-called kid’s breakfast cereals (come-on, we all know adults who scarf this stuff up by the boxful) in the analysis of over 1,500 brands didn’t fare a whole lot better. In fact, on average the children’s breakfast cereals were 34 percent sugar.

    Your child or grandchild could scarf down a whole bowl of ice cream, or a 6 pack of little powdered donuts, and still not be hitting such a high percentage of sugar. And if you’re the sugared cereal fan in your house, you should know that if you eat just one bowl of the sweet stuff a day you’ll be swallowing down around 10 pounds of sugar a year!

  3. Veterans die on secret VA hospital waiting lists

    Veterans die on secret VA hospital waiting lists We owe them absolutely EVERYTHING: Our freedom, and, let’s face it, our very way of life. I’m talking, of course, about the brave men and women who have selflessly guarded us during peacetime and defended us during wartime, our home-grown heroes, American Veterans. And how do “we” repay them? Well if you’re the Feds, apparently it’s by dooming them to a long and painful death on a VA hospital waiting list. By now, you likely have heard the appalling reports about the American Veterans who were left to die while sitting on sham waiting lists. If you haven’t, trust me when I tell you that you’re going to want to sit down for this. The story first broke with the shocking news that at least 40 American Veterans have already died while languishing on what amounts to little more than a secret death list at a Phoenix VA hospital. These 40 American heroes—along with as many as 1,600 other veterans—had gone to the Phoenix Veterans Affairs Heath Care system with a simple request... they asked for a doctor’s appointment. You see, when a veteran requests medical help from the VA system they’re supposed to be granted an appointment within 14 to 30 days. After all, decent medical care is the least we can do to help repay them for all they’ve sacrificed for us.

    At least 40 died while on a secret sham waiting list!

    But it turns out that the backlog at the Phoenix VA hospital had gotten so bad that the paper-pushing federal employees running the joint decided to cook up an elaborate plan to cover up the problem. Rather than admit to their inability to meet the deadlines they allegedly swept the vets onto a super-secret sham waiting list where they were left to suffer for months on end, in some cases even dying before being seen. Meanwhile, the “official” second list that was being submitted to Washington showed that the VA was not only providing Vets with timely appointments, they were IMPROVING wait times! This revelation is devastatingly horrific enough all on its own. And, frankly, it’s hard to imagine any way in which it could get worse. But believe it or not it does, MUCH worse. Reports are emerging that this isn’t an isolated incident pulled off by a few bumbling bureaucrats at one single Phoenix VA hospital. Now there’s evidence that the VA in Albuquerque came up with a very similar hideous wait list “solution” for handling the backlog of waiting vets in their city. We don’t know yet how many vets died while waiting on Albuquerque’s list, but judging by the Phoenix debacle there are likely to be hundreds who were left to suffer while waiting months to be seen. (As both a med student, and an intern at the VA hospital in Johnson City, Tennessee, I very much hope not all VA hospitals were involved.) But let’s face it, there’s every reason to believe that the Phoenix and Albuquerque VA’s are just the tip of a very big iceberg. There are already five more states being named as potential players in this horror story. Who knows how many more sham waiting lists, and how many more dead veterans, will be uncovered before we reach the end of this ghastly road?

    Feds have American vet’s blood on their hands

    And make no mistake about it; these incidents aren’t just the snafus of some low-level paper-pushing office workers in these two VA hospitals. Not only did top-management in at least one of the hospitals know about the “death list” (according to news reports they even defended the practice!), officials much higher up the food chain were well aware that there was a problem. Even before the story of the Phoenix VA scandal broke, the office of the Veterans Administration’s Inspector General had apparently launched an investigation into accusations that the Albuquerque VA hospital was covering up waiting times. And now, it would appear that our Veteran’s blood is on the hands of those at the very TOP of our government too. In fact, according to the Washington Times, the Obama administration has known about the inaccurate waiting times, and scheduling failures, for more than five years now! According to the report, VA officials warned the administration as far back as 2008 that the wait times that were being reported shouldn’t be trusted. I shudder to think how many brave men and women have suffered and died since then. Like 71 year old retired Navy vet Thomas Breen, one of the veterans who was apparently shuttled onto the Phoenix VA secret waiting list. Mr. Breen died an excruciatingly painful death from pancreatic cancer while waiting to be seen, despite the fact that after an ER visit to the VA hospital his chart clearly stated he should be seen within one week. According to his daughter-in-law, in the months before his death she watched Breen—a real tough guy by all accounts—literally weeping in pain as he sat at the kitchen table waiting for a call back from the VA. That call didn’t come until about a week AFTER he died, and well over a month after Breen’s VA emergency room visit and request for an urgent appointment. Our veterans have willingly made sacrifices for us and our country, and I think you’ll agree with me that the very least they can expect in return is decent, timely medical care. It’s time for us to demand a FULL investigation into this fatal scandal, and the stiffest punishments possible for those involved in this shameful nightmare.
  4. Lack of sleep could raise your stroke risk 54%

    I’ve told you before how dangerous a lack of sleep could be to your health. Now a new study out of Taiwan really drives that point home with a bang. Researchers found that sleeplessness, or insomnia, may boost your risk of stoke by a staggering 54 percent. The four-year-long study compared the health records of more than 21,000 people who suffer with insomnia to 64,000 who don’t have the condition. When the researchers crunched the numbers, and adjusted for other factors, they say there was a clear link between lack of sleep and stroke. And the worse your sleeping problem is the higher your stroke risk is.

    From diabetes to brain damage.. lack of sleep raises your risks

    As I’ve explained before, insomnia can raise your risk for a number of health problems including high blood pressure, cancer, diabetes and even brain damage. It now looks like we need to add stroke to that list. Perhaps must shocking of all is that younger insomniacs, people between the ages of 18 to 34, were eight times more likely to suffer a stroke when compared to their snoozing peers. Proving that no matter your age, you need to start taking sleep—or lack of it—seriously. But, whatever you do, don’t fall for Big Pharma’s dangerous sleep drugs. To find out why sleeping pills aren’t the answer to lack of sleep, as well as read up on some natural shut-eye tricks, click here.
  5. Depression raises heart failure risk by 40 percent!

    No matter what you call it—down in the dumps, feeling blue, in a funk, bummed out, being a Gloomy Gus, or in low spirits—it’s time to start getting serious about depression. Because a new study, presented at EuroHeartCare 2014, found that you might not just be dragging around feeling doomed, you very well could BE doomed if you don’t do something about those blues. Researchers in Norway uncovered a dramatic link between depression and deadly heart failure. In a study that included almost 63,000 people, scientists found that moderate to severe depression could send your risk of heart failure skyrocketing. The large, long-term HUNT study gathered a variety of data from their volunteers, including body mass indexes, physical activity levels, smoking habits, blood pressures, and depression levels. During the 11 year study 1,500 people developed heart failure. And when the data was crunched, a glaring link between depression and heart failure was uncovered.

    Depression kills

    People with mild depression had a 5 percent increased risk of developing the potentially deadly heart condition, when compared to the volunteers with no symptoms of depression. But, if you’re in the midst of a moderate or major soul-sucking depression you might want to sit down for this next bit. YOUR risk for heart failure could jump by a staggering 40 percent, according to the study data! In other words, the worse you feel the greater your risk. And being depressed could, quite literally, kill you. To make matters worse, when you’re depressed you’re your own worst enemy. If you’ve ever had a serious case of the blues you know exactly what I’m talking about. Depression makes it hard to care about anything, let alone our health. We stop watching what we eat. Getting up from the couch can seem like too much effort most days. And exercising? Forget about it. Bad habits, like smoking and heavy drinking, often make an appearance. And your weight can balloon. But if you’re thinking these factors might be responsible for that 40 percent leap in heart failure risk you’re barking up the wrong tree. The researchers adjusted the data for factors like obesity and smoking before they reached that shocking figure. No, for the real reason your heart failure risk skyrockets, you need to take a look at an old enemy… stress. You see, when you’re depressed your body reacts by sending your inflammation levels skyrocketing and having your adrenal glands pump out a horde of stress hormones, including adrenaline and cortisol. Your pulse rate rises, your breathing speeds up, your blood pressure climbs and your blood sugar spikes. And the more severe your depression, the more severe your stress reaction is going to be. Eventually, the build-up of all those stress hormones triggers inflammation and a hardening and narrowing of your arteries (atherosclerosis) that could lead to heart disease, heart attack or stroke. The truth is, ignoring your serious case of depression in the hopes that it might go away might not be just a costly mistake it may be a deadly one.

    Beat depression naturally with supplements

    Reducing your stress and reversing your depression is critical. But don’t become a victim of the failed mainstream medicine approach to the problem... heavy-duty antidepressants (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors). Because, despite Big Pharma’s cheerleading—and the wildly positive promises they make in their billion dollar ad campaigns—most depression drugs have been shown to be no more effective than a placebo at best, and linked to serious (and possibly even deadly) side effects at worst. Instead, turn to some tried-and-true natural approaches I’ve recommended before, starting with having your vitamin D levels checked. Running low on this important vitamin has been linked with depression. If you find your levels are subpar, top them up by spending more time outdoors and adding a D supplement to your routine. You can safely take up to 5,000 IU of vitamin D3 daily. Your doctor can help you decide the amount that’s right for you. Next, make sure you’re getting enough vitamin B6 and vitamin B12. Vitamin B12, often called the “energy vitamin,” is used by every single cell in your body, and B6 is needed to kick your “feel good” neurotransmitters (serotonin and norepinephrine) into action. And low levels of vitamin B6 and B12 have been linked to depression. Make sure that you’re taking a good quality B-complex supplement daily. If you’re not already following my advice to take an omega-3 supplement, you may want to start. Not only are omega-3s good for your heart health studies show they’re also linked to mood and may help reverse depression.(Bonus, they also help fight inflammation!) And, finally, you might want to give curcumin, nature’s antidepressant spice, a try. Curcumin has long been used by opened-minded doctors as a natural mood booster. In one study, curcumin performed at least as well as Big Pharma darling Prozac in beating serious cases of depression. And of course the spice managed this feat without dangerous side effects.
  6. Health benefits of almonds: The perfect snack food?

    If you’re a regular reader of the Guide to Good Health you know I’m a firm believer in the power of nuts (being a health nut myself!). These delicious nutrition-packed wonders can do everything from boosting your energy levels to helping head off heart problems and fight cancer. In fact, according to one study, just 30 grams of nuts a day (a modest handful) could significantly reduce your stroke risk. A half a cup of mixed nuts a day drove down the blood sugar and cholesterol levels in a group of type-2 diabetics. And the vitamin E found in many nuts may help slash your risk of deadly pancreatic cancer. Now, a stack of new research on the health benefits of almonds—presented at the American Society of Nutrition Scientific Sessions and Annual Meeting in San Diego late last month—points to almonds as a way to help ward off obesity, metabolic issues, and heart problems.

    Better blood sugar with almonds

    A study of over 24,800 adults found that people who eat almonds tend to make better diet choices and have better overall health than non-almond eaters. And in a crossover, randomized clinical trial on the health benefits of almonds, overweight pregnant women who snacked on 2 ounces of almonds felt fuller… and as a result had a reduced appetite. In another analysis on the health benefits of almonds performed at Purdue University, researchers showed that people who eat 1.5 ounces of dry-roasted, lightly-salted almonds daily have better appetite control and healthier blood sugar levels, as well as higher vitamin E and monounsaturated healthy fat intake, than those who skip the healthy snack. But it gets even better with some real world results. The daily almond eaters, who were all at risk for type 2 diabetes, were also able to maintain healthy weight levels despite the fact that they had increased their calorie intake by 250 extra calories a day! And in yet another study, 52 adults with high cholesterol were able to reduce belly fat and slash their risk of heart and metabolic problems just by eating a modest serving (1.5 ounces) of almonds every day.
  7. SlimSuccess: Has the key to your weight loss dreams been found?

    Spring has sprung. The sun is shining, the flowers are blooming, and you’re hiding in the house weeping over the shocking numbers on the bathroom scale. If you were blindsided by what you saw at your last weigh in, trust me, you’re not alone. Winter has a way of making us ALL pack on the pounds… especially around our comfort-food-loving bellies. And let’s face it, when you’re dragging around a little extra weight, getting out and “enjoying” the beautiful weather can seem more like a chore than it does a reward. You know what that means, right? Yes, it’s time to dust off the dreaded D-word... diet. But if you’re among the many who have struggled to lose weight the old-fashioned way, with diet and exercise alone... if you’ve tried to drop the pounds, but the number on the scale seemed practically super-glued in place… getting started can seem next to impossible.

    Pounds melt off 3 times faster!

    The truth is we could all use a little extra help when it comes to beating the battle of the bulge. But what if I told you that a LOT of help is available, in a new formula called SlimSuccess? And what if I told you that SlimSuccess is SO powerful that you could lose 3 TIMES MORE WEIGHT than you could with diet and exercise alone? It might sound outrageous, but I assure you, it’s true. In fact, for fourteen long years this incredible weight-loss breakthrough… an extract mix shown in 2 double-blind studies to help melt stubborn belly flab… has remained hidden away. Now, one brilliant doctor has finally revealed the truth about what could turn out to be the most potent weight-loss booster ever uncovered. And, believe it or not, it all started with “fat proof mice.” You see, over a decade ago a group of bright scientists stumbled across something amazing while studying our furry little friends. It was a sort of hidden “off switch” buried deep in the mice’s genes. And when they flipped that switch, no matter how much junk food the critters indulged in, they stayed trim and slim. And the most exciting part is that humans share this very same gene with mice. Known as the PLIN gene, this potential “off switch” controls the way we burn and store fat by releasing a protein called perilipin Perilipin is your belly fat’s best friend, essentially coating fat cells and protecting them from your metabolism—and your best efforts at losing weight. But if science could figure out way to break through that protective perilipin coating—essentially flipping the same “off switch” in HUMAN fat cells as they did in mice—than could mean exciting results for humans too. Unfortunately, scientists hit a brick wall, and unable to figure out how to make this incredible weight-loss breakthrough work for humans, the research was dropped and soon forgotten.

    Belly beating breakthrough

    That’s where that brilliant doctor I mentioned earlier comes in. Dr. Mark Stengler, was able to connect the dots between those old “fat proof” mice and some exciting new research being performed at UC Davis Medical Center. There, researchers studying plants used in the ancient Indian medical practice known as Ayurvedic medicine, stumbled upon two powerful tropical plants—Garcinia Mangostana and East Indian Globe Thistle—that both showed great promise in the fight against fat-protecting perilipin. And when the carefully combined and concentrated extracts were introduced to some fat cells, the scientists watched in amazement as the protective perilipin layer practically vanished from sight. But the research didn’t end with those petri dishes and microscopes; the powerful combo was soon put to the true test with real humans. The remarkable results of two double-blind placebo-controlled clinical trials showed that this powerful extract combo is the real deal. All of the trial volunteers took a 30-minute stroll every day, and ate a normal 2,000 calorie a day diet. But the lucky folks who got the extract lost an incredible 3 times more weight than the volunteers who didn’t get the extract! With results like that it’s easy to see why Dr. Stengler chose to put these two powerful weight-busting plants at the center of his new breakthrough formula SlimSuccess. But he didn’t stop there. Dr. Stengler knows how tough it can be to stick to your healthy-eating plan when you’re being tempted all the time by well-meaning friends and family. And snack attacks get to the best of us. That’s why he also included natural safranal. Research shows that this powerful compound, carefully extracted from the saffron plant, can help chase away the hungries. In other words, SlimSuccess (from our friends and affiliates at BestHealth Nutritionals) contains the perfect weight-loss-supporting dream team. By combining powerful botanicals that can help you burn fat faster, with one that can give you the willpower you need to say no to diet-sabotaging foods, Dr. Stengler has given you everything you need to say goodbye to that ugly flab faster than you ever dreamed possible.
  8. Fish oil could help you ace your next dental exam

    I’ve told you before about the link between un-healthy teeth and gums and heart disease. And you may know that mouth problems are often connected to other serious conditions like diabetes and leukemia. Well I’ve got some great news! It turns out that a simple supplement… one I already recommend for everyone… may be the key to keeping your chompers healthy. According to the results of a new study, omega-3-packed fish oil supplements could significantly improve your periodontal health.

    Keep your teeth in tip-top shape

    In the 12-week double-blind study, volunteers with moderate to severe periodontal problems were given standard dental treatments (scaling and root planning) and either a daily placebo, or an omega-3 fish oil fatty acid supplement (180 mg EPA and 120 mg DHA). The inflammation-fighting omega-3 fish oil produced some impressive results. The lucky volunteers who got the fish oil saw a significant improvement in their gingivitis and gum bleeding. And the deep pockets between their teeth and gums… a classic hallmark of periodontal disease… were vastly reduced, sliced almost in half. So if you haven’t already heeded my advice and started taking a daily fish oil supplement you now have one more reason to start. And if you’re already taking one, you can feel good that you’re helping to keep your teeth in tip-top shape.
  9. Vitamin D deficiency could be deadly

    Barely a month goes by when we don’t see yet one more unfounded attack on a vital vitamin or necessary nutrient. It’s become so predictable you can practically set your watch by it. They won’t be satisfied until supplements are removed from the picture completely—and along with them, your freedom to choose. This time it’s vitamin D that’s been placed on the chopping block, a nutrient critical to combatting bone loss, cancer, heart disease, depression, weight gain, inflammation and very likely diabetes, autism, dementia, autoimmune diseases, chronic pain, high blood pressure, and more. In fact, this vitamin is SO critical to our health and wellbeing that frankly this latest review trashing this valuable vitamin—published in the April issue of the British Medical Journal (BMJ)—is downright irresponsible. Even worse, when you consider how many of us have a dangerously low vitamin D deficiency, taking the researcher’s conclusions seriously could be as good as signing your own death warrant. According to the researchers, “Despite a few hundred systematic reviews and meta-analyses, highly convincing evidence of a clear role of vitamin D does not exist for any outcome…” Nonsense! Besides, it doesn’t take a genius to figure out that BAD science is going to lead to BAD results. And in the case of this BMJ-published “umbrella review,” they should have seen the bad coming from a mile away. Since the researchers chose to include flawed and poorly executed studies in the mix, it really isn’t surprising that the conclusions they reached are essentially rubbish, too.

    Vitamin D deficiency seriously bad for your health

    Let’s take a closer look at what research has already proven about vitamin D. But we’ll have to just hit some of the highlights, because we’d literally be here all day if I tried to cover EVERYTHING that D is good for. To begin with, despite its poor execution, the umbrella review in question still showed around an 11 percent drop in death risk for those taking a D supplement. In fact, study after study has shown us the value of this vitamin, demonstrating what a deficiency of D can lead to... starting with trouble for your ticker. In a seven-year collaboration, researchers from the University of Colorado and Massachusetts General Hospital uncovered evidence linking heart disease and vitamin D deficiency in men and women 65 or older. Seniors with the lowest levels of D were three times more likely to die from heart disease. And those volunteers who had a vitamin D deficiency at the start of the study were 2.5 times more likely to have died from ANY cause by the end of it. Now a new study confirms that if your vitamin D blood levels fall below 20 ng/mL (or 50 nmol/l), your risk of heart disease shoots up by a third. Even worse, if your levels dip into the dangerously low 10 ng/mL area, your risk for atherosclerosis (the hardening and narrowing of your arteries) doubles! But your heart isn’t the only organ that craves D: your brain is a big fan too. In fact, over the years research has linked D deficiencies to Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and even depression. And just last year, an animal study—published in the journal Free Radical Biology and Medicine—showed us just how critical the vitamin is to cognitive performance and memory.

    D doesn’t just target organ health either… it’s a whole-body elixir that could help to both keep cancer at bay,and drive down your diabetes risk.

    Vitamin D targets whole body health

    Studies have shown an association between vitamin D and cancer risk, and many experts agree that the vitamin likely offers some protection against a variety of cancers including breast, colon, prostate and bladder cancers. Even mainstream medicine organizations, like The National Cancer Institute, agree that there’s epidemiological evidence linking adequate D levels to a reduced risk. Research has also revealed that vitamin D could play an important role in preventing diabetes. For example, a Tufts University study found that higher concentrations of D are associated with a lower diabetes risk. And then there’s the meta-analysis of more than 100,000 people that sheds some light on how it is that D may be driving down diabetes risk. Blood work from 28 different studies revealed that those men and women with the highest D levels tended to avoid the dreaded collection of pre-diabetes symptoms… including high blood pressure, high fasting blood sugars, low HDL cholesterol, high triglycerides, and a large belly... that are commonly known as metabolic syndrome. The truth is that a vitamin D deficiency and diabetes link is so promising that even the mainstream medicine drones couldn’t ignore it anymore. Late last year the VERY mainstream National Institutes of Health (NIH) finally decided to fund a large-scale clinical trial to explore the effects of D on the disease. And those really are just a few of the D highlights. There are literally hundreds of studies linking D to good health. The evidence is so vast that public health guidelines here in the United States, as well as those in many other countries, recognize the critical importance of maintaining healthy D levels. Unfortunately, their D recommendations are entirely too low. That’s why up to 90 percent of us may be walking… or dragging… around with a vitamin D deficiency. Besides trying to spend a little bit of time every day outside in the sunshine, I typically recommend taking 2,000 to 4,000 IU of vitamin D3 daily. Your doctor can run a simple blood test to figure out what your current levels are.
  10. Cracking open a can of heart disease: Diet soda health risks

    I’ve warned you before about the link between that swill known as diet soda – health risks including diabetes. In short, just one can a day could send your diabetes risk skyrocketing. (If you missed that story, click here to catch up right here on the NorthStar Blog.) Now a new finding, from a study that tracked close to 60,000 women, has found that diet soda health risks are even worse than we thought -- drinking two or more of the dastardly drinks a day could be deadly. It turns out that the ladies with a bit of diet soda habit were FAR more likely to keel over from heart disease, than the women who rarely downed the drinks.

    30 percent higher risk of stroke or heart attack!

    According to the findings presented at a meeting of the American College of Cardiology on diet soda health risks, the diet soda drinkers had an incredible 30 percent higher risk of suffering a stroke or heart attack. (It’s not the first time we’ve seen a stroke connection. Click here to learn more.) Even worse, their risk of dying from heart disease was a staggering 50 percent greater than the women who hardly touched the stuff! And while those who tow the mainstream medicine line would like you to believe that diet sodas are really just the innocent bystanders in this story—and the steep rise in risk is simply because all of these women are making up for other bad health habits with their diet soda drinking—you and I know better, don’t we? Sure, no one would deny that other bad habits do play a role in raising your heart risk. But there’s no denying the mounting evidence that artificial sweeteners, like the aspartame and sucralose (Splenda) found in diet sodas, can monkey with your blood sugar and insulin levels.

    Artificial sweeteners overstimulate sugar receptors

    In addition, many experts believe these fake sweeteners can backfire, over-stimulating your sugar receptors, as well as literally causing you to crave and eat MORE sugary sweets. And frankly, with all these strikes against them, it doesn’t take a genius to see why diet-soda drinkers would have not only an increased risk for diabetes and obesity, but heart disease as well. The bottom line is, diet soda is anything but an innocent bystander. If you’re still drinking these killer “cocktails” in a can, it’s time to kick the habit before it kicks you.
  11. Actos side effects: Dodge this deadly diabetes drug

    The potentially deadly side effects from prescription diabetes drug Actos is liable to cost you a heck of a lot more than just your copay. But the “bill” might not arrive for a couple of years. Oh, and instead of cash you could be paying for it with your life. Now this isn’t the first time you’ve seen me lose my cool over a potentially dangerous diabetes drug… far from it, in fact. But the inexcusable—not to mention immoral—actions of two drug companies… and the blood that appears to be on their hands… has me positively fuming once again. Let me back up just a bit to set the sickening stage. I started warning you about the diabetes drug Actos side effects years ago. It was around this same time of year way back in 2011 that the drug’s maker, Takeda Pharmaceuticals, sent out some pumped up, over-the-top news releases about new research showing that their star of the drug stable, Actos, wasn’t just good for diabetics, it was also good for anyone with elevated blood sugars. They claimed Actos may be able to keep you from ever becoming diabetic. In other words, we should start force feeding this stuff to pre-diabetics too.

    Actos linked to bladder cancer

    Think that’s a bad idea? With stroke, heart failure, trouble breathing, liver problems, bone fractures and cancer (!) eventually finding themselves onto the list of potential Actos side effects, you’re absolutely right it IS a bad idea. In fact, it may be one of the worst ideas EVER. That didn’t stop the New York Times and Time magazine from jumping right on the Actos bandwagon, devoting valuable editorial space to coverage of the drug. But while they were reporting on the “astounding” results showing that Actos “reduces your risk of diabetes by 72 percent!” they totally missed the HUGE elephant standing smack dab in the center of the room. (Or ignored it to tell a more sensational story…you pick.) These findings were based on what amounts to a difference of 35 people. Yes, they were actually proposing that millions of pre-diabetics start popping a potentially risky drug essentially based on 35 people. Click here to read the rest of the ridiculous story here on the NorthStar Blog. Now, skip forward in time a couple of months and the Actos story really started to crumble. As I reported to you at that time, a study analyzing adverse event reports had linked the drug (not for the first time) to bladder cancer in what researchers called a “definite risk.” But the study was soft pedaled, and the news made barely a blip in the American mainstream media. Outside of the United States, countries like France, Germany and India reacted to the shocking cancer news by banning the drug (what I would call a reasonable response). And what did the FDA do? They had the company bury a bladder cancer warning in the labeling insert. (Surprise, surprise.) But I’m willing to bet if you’re already taking this drug you’ve never even noticed that warning, because, let’s be honest, how many of us get out a magnifying glass and actually read all that tiny type? Heck, many doctors aren’t even aware of the cancer connection. Fewer still bother to mention Actos side effects to their patients when prescribing it. And that finally brings me to the news that has steam coming out of my ears today.

    Dangerous Actos side effects kept secret

    A jury has just awarded a bladder-cancer sufferer, and victim of Actos side effects, a huge sum of money for punitive damages, effectively ruling that Takeda Pharmaceuticals and their marketing partner Eli Lilly purposefully withheld vital—potentially life-saving—information about the drug’s cancer risks. And information wasn’t just withheld, files were actually destroyed in what I dare say any sane person would likely see as an attempt cover things up. In fact, the judge in the case said, “The breadth of Takeda leadership whose files have been lost, deleted or destroyed is, in and of itself, disturbing.” Not only did the companies know about the link between their superstar drug and bladder cancer, it would appear that they’ve known about it at least since 2000… eleven years before that weak warning limped its way into the drug’s literature! But that’s not the only thing those rats in suits may have been hiding. According to one brave whistleblower—a former employee of Takeda—the company was likely well aware of at least some of those other serious Actos side effects I mentioned earlier, too. And who knows how many people are now suffering with heart disease or cancer as a result. Or worse, have lost their battles. Sure, we all know that profits before people is practically a mantra in the halls of Big Pharma, but seeing just how far they’re willing to go in pursuit of the almighty dollar, somehow still has the power to shock and anger me. Click here for some advice on how to tackle diabetes without ever going near Actos, or any other potentially dangerous diabetes drug.
  12. Silence the ringing in your ears

    Dear Dr. Spreen, For years now I’ve had this annoying ringing in my ears. The doctors say I’m fine, but it’s driving me nuts. Sometimes I have trouble concentrating at work, and now it’s even keeping me up at night. Am I just going crazy? J.L. from Texas Dear J.L., No, you’re NOT crazy, and you’re far from alone. In fact, experts estimate that up to 50 million Americans suffer with unexplained noises… like buzzing, hissing, or ringing… in their ears. But the medical mainstream can’t see it or measure it—and they certainly don’t have any answers for resolving it—so they dismiss it, calling it a “phantom” and sending you home to suffer. Luckily they couldn’t be more wrong. You can silence that racket in your head, and it all starts with nutrition. Yes, nutrition. You see, your ear is a very delicate instrument and nutritional deficiencies, free radicals, and even stress can throw things out of whack leaving you with an unwanted symphony of noises in your head. But the right combination of nutritional supplements can deliver blessed silence once and for all. Healthy circulation is critical to healthy ears, so start with gingko biloba that can help open up the fine blood vessels that feed your ears, allowing oxygen and nutrients to flow in. Next, add in circulation-promoting superstar dong quai. Toss in some Rehmannia glutinosa, commonly known as Chinese Foxglove, to deliver some free-radical-fighting antioxidants.  And then there’s the hearing helper magnesium that’s been proven to promote better hearing AND drive away the annoying buzzing, ringing and clicking. All of these, and over a dozen more hearing hero ingredients, can be found in NorthStar Nutritionals breakthrough formula Healthy Hear. Click here to learn more, or to order your own bottle of Healthy Hear, and be on your way to silencing that ringing in your ears once and for all.
  13. Don’t fall for bogus new statin guidelines

    Are you on a statin? If not, hold onto your hat, as you might be much sooner than you think. In fact, according to new statin “guidelines,” if you’re over 60 it’s practically a done deal… more on that in a moment. And if you are already on one, you better back up and make some room, because you’re about to get a LOT more company… around 13 million new statin users (I sure hope you have some extra guest towels on hand). You may have heard by now, while we were ramping up for the holidays—and still bundled up in mittens and scarves—the “geniuses” at The American Heart Association (AHA) and the American College of Cardiology (ACC) got together to dream up the most insane set of new statin guidelines you could imagine. But what Big Pharma’s best buds at the AHA and ACC actually did was give the drug companies the best late Christmas gift EVER. Their proposed Mickey Mouse guidelines vastly expand who can get these dangerous drugs, practically proposing every blessed American adult start popping these cholesterol-lowering “poisonous” pills. And if you suspect I’m exaggerating, unfortunately I’m not.

    Statins for everyone!

    If you’re over 40 you have around a 50% chance of your doc whipping out a prescription pad and dashing off a new statin prescription for you at your next checkup. And if you’re a man 60 or older, you may as well go ahead and clear a spot behind the bathroom mirror for your new statin bottle. If you don’t fall into those two categories, or your cholesterol isn’t elevated, don’t start celebrating too quickly. With the new statin guidelines you might still be getting an invitation to the statins party. Do you smoke? You’re on the guest list. Elevated blood pressure? Good news, your invite’s already in the mail. Diagnosed with diabetes? You get to join the statins club, too. In fact, a recent Duke University analysis found that what the new statin guidelines really mean is that HALF of every single person between the ages of 40 to 75 is now being advised to start downing a statin. And if that sounds crazy to you, that’s because it IS crazy. As I’ve explained before, statins are nothing but bad news.

    Avoid severe statin side effects

    Around 10 to 15 percent of statin users will suffer from—sometimes severe—muscle pain… not to mention serious aches and fatigue. And if you like to exercise for your health, if you become a statin user you better proceed with caution. Your risk for those debilitating muscle pains shoots up to 25 percent. Even worse, you could even be one of the unlucky souls who suffer from—sometimes permanent—muscle damage. But that’s far from the worst side effect that could be hiding in bottom of that statin bottle. Your brain needs cholesterol to stay in tip-top shape. That’s why so many statin users suddenly find themselves suffering from memory problems. And your eyes need the compound to stay crystal clear, so as a statin user you may have cataract surgery in your future. And while those statins are ridding your body of valuable cholesterol, they’re also depleting it of the important antioxidant CoQ10. I’ll give you one guess what organ thrives on the energy-producing abilities of CoQ10:yes, your heart.  In fact, the antioxidant has been proven to slash death risk in heart failure patients by 50 percent, according to researchers in Denmark. But we haven’t even gotten to the worst statin side effect yet. Statins cause your risk for type 2 diabetes to skyrocket. So you could be trading in elevated cholesterol (or even just the potential for elevated cholesterol) for a raging case of diabetes… not to mention all the complications that come along with the disease, including, ironically, hypertension, heart disease, and stroke. But with all those side effect risks, at least you can rest assured that statins are significantly lowering your chance of dying from heart attack or heart disease, right? Wrong. In a massive study of 10,000 people, researchers found that statin users still had the same death rate as those with high cholesterol who went the “usual care” route... watching their weight, getting some regular exercise, and not smoking. And, in fact, that’s exactly where my all-natural heart-healthy “prescription” for lowering cholesterol begins… skip the dangerous statin drugs, start watching what you eat, get a little exercise, and quit smoking. Next add in some heart-supporting supplements. To keep your ticker in tip-top shape I recommend L-Carnitine (1,000 mg), magnesium (500 to 800 mg), Coenzyme Q10 (100 mg), and mixed tocopherols vitamin E (400 to 800 IU). If your doctor is trying to force a statin on you because of the new statin “guidelines” it’s time to find a new doc. I recommend a naturopathic doctor you can trust to tailor an individual all-natural plan for you.
  14. Urinary tract infections / superbug threat continues to grow

    The superbug problem didn’t exactly sneak up on us. The writing has been on the wall for years. In fact, I first started warning Guide to Good Health readers about antibiotic resistance at least six years ago. Heck, even the mainstream media began to catch on a couple of years back. So, you’d think we’d be starting to get a handle on the issue by now. Sadly, that’s not the case. Not by a long shot, according to a recent study published in the journal Antimicrobial Resistance and Infection Control. According to researchers antibiotic resistant infections, such as urinary tract infections (UTIs), are actually on the RISE. It’s yet another case of mainstream medicine doing too little and doing it too late. Instead of dialing back on their overprescribing, many docs’ reaction to the superbug news was to simply switch from their now mostly-useless go-to antibiotics to different antibiotics. And I’m sure you can guess what happened next. These bad bugs, many of them forms of E. coli, are now becoming resistant to even more commonly prescribed antibiotics. Urinary tract infections are the second most common type of infection here in the U.S., with about 8.1 million people visiting the doctor every year looking for some relief. But these misery-causing bugs are now not only resistant to most antibiotics in the penicillin and cephalosporin families, they’ve also become highly resistant to some of the most commonly used drugs for treating urinary infections Ciprofloxacin and Trimethoprim-Sulfamethoxazole. The best way to deal with a urinary tract infection is, obviously, to not get one in the first place. I shared some specific advice on how to UTI-proof yourself a few years back, including some dietary guidelines and supplement tips. If you missed that issue, click here to catch up on the NorthStar Blog. And if you’re already suffering with one of these nasty infections, don’t turn to antibiotics first. They likely won’t knock out your infection anymore anyway, but they CAN destroy your good gut bugs, leaving you wide open for secondary infections.  Instead, consider giving D-mannose a try. D-mannose is the ingredient found in cranberries that naturally fights off infections. And while you may have heard some conflicting reports over the years about cranberries and UTIs, I can assure you that this powerhouse can knock out just about any bladder infection that’s caused by E. coli. You‘ll find D-mannose online and in most natural food stores. Drink a half to a full teaspoonful dissolved in water every half an hour or so for two days.  If you don’t see an improvement after forty-eight hours, THEN make an appointment to see your doc.
  15. Is your mix of meds causing dangerous drug interactions?

    Getting older sure isn’t for sissies. Your hair starts getting thinner, your middle starts getting thicker, and some days you wake up with your joints feeling stiffer than a frozen fish stick in the middle of February. Even worse, around 75 percent of older adults will also end up facing not just one, but multiple chronic medical conditions. And of course, if you’re going to a conventional medicine doctor, you know what that means; drugs, drugs, and MORE drugs and possible drug interactions. Is it really any wonder that with so many different meds (and their side effects) on board, you can start to feel like your head is spinning? But now a new study—published in the journal PLOS One—finds that many of us have to worry about a heck of a lot more than just those “standard” side effects.

    Docs ignore dangers of prescription drug interactions

    Shockingly, nearly 23 percent of older Americans are being prescribed drugs that directly conflict with each other. In other words, there’s a very good chance that one (or more) of the drugs you’re taking could cause dangerous drug interactions and make one of your conditions worse! For example, if you’re diagnosed with heart disease your doc will likely prescribe you a beta blocker to lower your blood pressure. But if you also suffer from COPD that beta blocker can suddenly become a BIG problem. You see, beta blockers can cause airway resistance. And I’m sure you don’t need me to tell you that anything that monkeys with respiration is a real no-no for COPD patients. But believe it or not, that’s not even the worst of it. In a case where competing prescriptions exist, you’d expect swift action to correct the potentially dangerous…or even deadly…drug interactions, right? Well, don’t hold your breath. It turns out that only in an appallingly low 16 percent of the cases, are changes made to the prescribed treatments. Meaning, of course, that 84 percent of patients are left to deal with whatever the consequences are of what the study’s authors quaintly refer to as “therapeutic competition.” (I don’t know about you, but when a doctor chooses to simply ignore the fact that his treatments are making me worse, I’m more inclined to call it malpractice. But hey, maybe that’s just me.)

    1 in 5 are prescribed conflicting drugs

    With one-fifth of older Americans receiving conflicting meds for common conditions including diabetes, COPD, dementia, heart failure, hypertension, osteoarthritis, coronary heart disease, and high cholesterol, the odds are good that you—or someone else you care about—will one day become a victim of this accident-waiting-to-happen practice. Yet it sounds like one of the study’s authors, David Lee, assistant professor at Oregon State University, would like us to give docs a bit of slack. According to Lee, “Many physicians are aware of these concerns, but there isn’t much information available on what to do.” Um, I have an idea, Dr. Lee. Call me crazy, but how about asking docs to apply a little common sense to FIX the problem?! For example, if you find out your heart patient also has COPD, don’t stick your head in the sand. Instead, prescribe a beta blocker that doesnt have respiratory side effects. Or, better yet, look for a non-drug alternative. (Hint, the mineral magnesium has been shown to naturally improve lung function, and black tea, vitamin D, and even dark chocolate have all been shown to help with high blood pressure.) But judging by that lousy 16 percent of people whose docs actually made changes, it’s pretty clear that common sense is in incredibly short supply these days. So it looks like, once again, your best bet is going to be to fend for yourself. Start by making sure your doctor takes your full medical history before he prescribes a single treatment. If he refuses, and tries to dash off a prescription and rush you out of his office in fifteen minutes instead, find yourself a new doc. I would suggest an integrative or holistic physician whose goal will be to get you OFF as many meds as possible by targeting your medical problems at their heart, rather than just treating single symptoms.
  16. Azodicarbonamide sandwiches for dinner?

    Back away from that bagel and put down that panini. I have some news you need to know BEFORE you take one more bite. Nearly 500 bread-based foods found lining supermarket shelves—or being served in restaurants all over the United States—could contain a potentially hazardous industrial chemical that’s used in plastic products. Azodicarbonamide (ADA) is typically used to “fluff up” the plastics found in products like flip flops and yoga matts. But now it’s turning up in common foods you likely eat every single day including breads, bagels, pizzas, buns and pastries. And do you want to know the worst part? It didn’t get there by accident. Somehow food manufactures figured out that plastics aren’t the only thing this creepy chemical can add some elasticity to—it works on bread dough too. If you’re wondering what the clowns at the FDA have to say about this, well, you probably won’t be surprised when I tell you that it’s totally cool with them if manufactures want to dump this petroleum byproduct into your food. Meanwhile, the World Health Organization says there’s plenty of evidence that ADA can induce asthma, respiratory issues, and skin problems in those who work with the toxic chemical. Australia and some European countries have already banned the stuff. But if you don’t live in a country with a ban the best way to avoid ADA is to buy only organic products from sources you trust, or make your own.
  17. Gambling on good health

    I’ve read so many outrageous studies in my day that it’s getting hard to surprise me anymore. And I know we’re only three and a half months into the year, but a new study, just published in The Journal of the American Medical Association, might just steal the title for most ridiculous study of the year. Researchers have essentially concluded that slot machines could be the key to keeping childhood obesity under control. Yes, I’m serious. According to the researchers, as casinos went up… or expanded… on tribal lands, obesity rates dropped. Now, of course, the implication is that, ultimately, it’s the flow of money into Native American homes from the gambling trade that made the difference. But I have to wonder if they also looked at alcohol and gambling problem rates in those same communities, what they would find. You want to know what the worst part is? JAMA, which is supposedly THE premier medical journal in the US, only publishes two or three original pieces each issue. And in the entire world of health, they considered this study to be important enough to take one of those coveted spots.
  18. Low fat diet is all wrong--Eat MORE fat to live longer and healthier

    Like a breath of fresh air. That’s how it felt when I ran across a recent editorial on the low fat diet craze, published in the BMJ journal Open Heart. Dr. James DiNicolantonio, a well-respected and leading cardiovascular scientist, did the unthinkable. He openly admitted that a diet low in saturated fat… the very low fat diet crammed down our throats by the entire medical establishment for more than 50 years… will NOT prevent heart disease or prolong life. Now as a Guide to Good Health reader his announcement might not seem all that revolutionary. After all, I’ve been telling you about the pitfalls of the saturated-fat-myth for many years now.  But make no mistake about it, for someone in the mainstream this was a very brave act. And that sound you’re hearing? No doubt it’s doors slamming as Dr. DiNicolantonio’s (ex) buddies in the mainstream turn their backs on him for daring to tell the truth about the low fat diet. No worries, Dr. D., we’ve got plenty of room for you over here on our (SANE) side of the fence.

    Saturated fat is not the problem!

    To understand where this ridiculous idea that a diet high in saturated fat will somehow harm your heart came from, we need to rewind all the way back to the 1950’s. It was then that another researcher lit the fuse, when he claimed to have found an association between fat calories as a percentage of overall calories and death from heart disease. For whatever reason this notion caught on like wildfire, and for over three decades now we’ve been told that if we don’t drastically limit the amount of saturated fat in our diets, we’re dooming ourselves to high cholesterol, heart disease, and an early death. The only problem? As Dr. DiNicolantonio pointed out in his editorial, the research on the low fat diet from the 1950’s study was flawed. I’ve warned you before about the dangers of cherry-picked data in studies, and that’s exactly what happened in the case of this fatally flawed fat study. Either deliberately, or through pure incompetence (take your pick), the researcher chose to use data from only six countries that happened to match his hypothesis. The data from sixteen other countries that didn’t that match were rejected, and never made it into the study. What followed was an overhauling of diet recommendations. Soon docs everywhere were preaching the evils of saturated fats—and suddenly refined carbohydrates and polyunsaturated fats were being pushed in their place.

    LOW-FAT diet leads to heart disease

    Fast forward, and over 50 years later we’re now being told to limit our saturated fats to less than 7 percent of our total daily caloric intake. Yet we’re fatter, sicker, and plagued with more heart disease than we ever have been before in history. And the evidence that cutting saturated fat will help reduce your heart risks? Oh, that doesn’t exist. But, according to Dr. D., what does exist in its place is research linking all those refined carbs and polyunsaturated fats you’ve being encouraged to gulp down to multiple health problems. You see, it’s no coincidence that heart disease, obesity, and diabetes have all reached epidemic levels in the last few decades.  We’re eating ourselves right into the grave with mainstream medicine’s so-called “heart-healthy” low-fat diet. And research, like the large-scale 2006 trial that found that low-fat diets don’t improve health outcomes or lead to fewer strokes or heart attacks –or the Spanish study that concluded we have to eat MORE fat to lower our heart attack risk—clearly shows that the mainstream approach has failed miserably. Dr. DiNicolantonio’s recommendations to turn this tide sound eerily familiar. In fact, as a Guide to Good Health reader you’ve heard them all before. Start by avoiding the deadly low-fat diet your doc is so fond of. Instead, choose unprocessed foods as much as possible, with lots of organic veggies, nuts, and grass-fed meats. I’d like to think this brave editorial signals a true sea change, but I sure won’t be holding my breath.
  19. Glucosamine relieves joint pain better with omega-3 fatty acids

    Don't think glucosamine alone can cut your joint pain? Try adding some extra fish oil to your regimen. A recent clinical trial from Germany showed that glucosamine worked better to relieve joint pain and stiffness when combined with omega-3 fatty acids. Researchers recruited 177 men and women with "moderate-to-severe" joint pain. Half of them received a 1500 mg per day of glucosamine sulfate. The other half received glucosamine plus omega-3 fatty acids (including 444 mg of fish oil, 200 mg of which were omega-3-fatty acids). After about six months, the researched assessed the patients' pain levels. Men and women who took glucosamine plus omega-3s reduced their morning stiffness more than the glucosamine alone group. Plus, they reduced pain in their hips and knees more than the group who just took glucosamine. So what's the big secret about omega-3s and your joints? According to the lead author of the study, "Omega-3 fatty acids inhibit the inflammation process...whereas glucosamine sulfate further supports the rebuilding of lost cartilage substance."
  20. Foods with trans fat may increase breast cancer risk by 40 percent

    Make sure you only use real butter (or olive oil) on the turkey this Thanksgiving. Skip the margarine or any foods with trans fat. Researchers from the University of North Caroline recently figured something out about foods with trans fat like margarine -- they‘re bad for you! They may even contribute to the development of breast cancer. For the study, UNC researchers extracted fat samples from 698 European women between the ages of 50 and 74. They found women with the highest amount of trans fats in their cells had a 40 percent greater chance of developing breast cancer than other women. Plus, women who consumed the most trans fats and the fewest polyunsaturated fats (such as those found in fish) were three and a half times likelier to develop breast cancer than their healthy counterparts. The researchers even accounted for other risk factors, such as smoking, weight, and family history of cancer. And still -- they found a 40 percent increase in risk. In fact, it‘s the first study ever to connect the dots between trans fats and breast cancer in women. But it doesn‘t surprise me in the least. Nutritionists like me have been preaching against foods with trans fat for decades. Foods with trans fat include French fries, baked goods, processed snack foods, and margarine. Trans fats are made by adding hydrogen atoms to the fat molecules to make them denser. This raises the melting point of the fat, so that it remains solid at room temperature. Hence, the Crisco and margarine stay solid sitting on your countertop and only melt when thoroughly heated. Foods with trans fat became popular in the U.S. because they don‘t spoil as quickly as regular fats. These products can sit longer on the shelf. That said, a lot of products now tell you if they‘re trans fat free. But the ones that still do contain them often try to hide the fact. They mislead you and tell you their product contains olive oil or DHA. So read all labels carefully. Skip anything that contains any amount of trans fats. Also, keep an eye out for "hydrogenated" or "partially hydrogenated" oils. These are also forms of trans fat.