diabetes http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/3421/all en-US 5 Ways to Keep Your Desk From Killing You http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-keep-your-desk-from-killing-you <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-ways-to-keep-your-desk-from-killing-you" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/man_sore_back_000036902880.jpg" alt="Man living longer despite his sedentary desk job" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Sitting at a desk all day might literally be killing you. A study in Diabetologia shows that sedentary time in adults can actually lead to <a href="http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22890825">increased chance of death</a>, even if you exercise regularly after work. Sitting at a desk all day at work can lead to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, and cancer. Even worse, sitting still for six or more hours makes you 40% likelier to <a href="http://www.diygenius.com/your-desk-job-is-killing-you-the-truth-about-sitting-down-infographic/">die within 15 years</a> than someone who sits less than three.</p> <p>While everyone would love to leave their desk job and pursue something outside of the office, sometimes that's not feasible. And unless you quit office jobs altogether and go a different route, you're going to spend a lot of time sitting in a chair at a coffee shop crafting your master plan. So here's what to do:</p> <h2>1. Adjust Your Workspace</h2> <p>Evaluate your surroundings. Is your back hunched? Is your head straight when you look at your monitor? You might need to adjust your chair or move your monitor. Nerd Fitness recommends some great ways to <a href="https://www.nerdfitness.com/blog/2015/07/13/how-to-survive-sitting-all-day/">move your monitor</a> and chair around to get the right heights for your neck, back, and shoulders. You can also check out <a href="http://www.ergotron.com/tabid/305/language/en-us/default.aspx">Ergotron's online evaluation</a>. You enter in your height and the system generates exactly how high your chair and monitor should be. You might also need a new chair altogether, so talk to your HR department to see if there is one in storage.</p> <h2>2. Move Around</h2> <p>Experts recommend <a href="http://breakingmuscle.com/mobility-recovery/sitting-at-your-desk-is-eating-your-muscles">five minutes of standing</a> for every 30 minutes of sitting. In fact, most say you should do something every 30 minutes to improve your concentration and your muscles. Instead of sending an email to a coworker, go talk to them. Go for a walk outside while contemplating your next steps. The <a href="https://www.focusboosterapp.com/">Focus Booster</a> app can give you reminders every 20 minutes to take a break! There is a small monthly fee, but there is a free (no credit card required!) trial you can do to see if it works for you.</p> <h2>3. Deskercise</h2> <p>I was so excited when I thought of the word &quot;deskercise,&quot; only to realize it wasn't original at all. Isometric squats are a good place to start: just place your feet firmly on the floor and push down like you are standing up without actually standing up. Also check out these 33 <a href="http://greatist.com/fitness/deskercise-33-ways-exercise-work">work exercise moves</a> from Greatist, and these <a href="http://www.fitbodyhq.com/fitness/12-great-stretches-for-tight-hip-flexors/">stretch techniques</a> from Fit Body HQ to loosen up.</p> <h2>4. Stand at Your Desk</h2> <p>...But don't stand all day. While standing is better than sitting, standing still is not the answer. Be sure to walk around and stretch your legs every once in awhile. While studies show that standing can increase blood flow, it can also cause <a href="https://www.bostonglobe.com/lifestyle/health-wellness/2014/11/03/yes-sitting-work-bad-but-standing-actually-better/7ceei6fb0B7QjgAH3FlOrK/story.html">joint or muscle pain</a>. In a June study conducted by the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, respondents who worked at a sit/stand desk showed a <a href="http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/?term=Using+Sit-Stand+Workstations+to+Decrease+Sedentary+Time+in++Office+Workers%3A">happier mood</a> and increased energy. For more information, check out <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1137278994/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=1137278994&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=XZFO5AMJO4P25AGF">Get Up!: Why Your Chair Is Killing You and What You Can Do About It</a>.</p> <h2>5. Exercise Daily Outside of the Office</h2> <p>Although exercising daily doesn't decrease your chances of premature death if you're sitting all day, <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/14-reasons-youre-bad-at-exercising">don't stop exercising</a>! Make sure to walk, run, or do cardio at least 30 minutes every day on top of using the tips above. By doing all of these things, you'll combat most of the negative effects of sitting all day.</p> <p><em>What do you do at your desk to break up the day?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/jennifer-holder">Jennifer Holder</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-keep-your-desk-from-killing-you">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-simple-ways-to-get-more-exercise-without-working-out">6 Simple Ways to Get More Exercise Without Working Out</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-apps-that-pay-you-to-workout">6 Apps That Pay You to Workout</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-resistance-bands">The 5 Best Resistance Bands</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-reasons-why-you-should-take-a-walk">25 Reasons Why You Should Take a Walk</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/get-a-great-workout-for-free-with-11-simple-moves">Get a Great Workout for Free With 11 Simple Moves</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Career and Income Health and Beauty desk jobs diabetes exercise fitness heart disease living longer sedentary sitting Mon, 28 Sep 2015 11:00:35 +0000 Jennifer Holder 1568891 at http://www.wisebread.com 13 Natural and Easy Ways to Lower Your Blood Sugar http://www.wisebread.com/8-cheap-ways-to-lower-your-blood-sugar <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/8-cheap-ways-to-lower-your-blood-sugar" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/blood-sugar-454954461.jpg" alt="blood sugar level" title="blood sugar level" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Being diagnosed with Type II diabetes can be a bummer, and it can be a struggle to keep blood sugars under control.</p> <p>Sometimes, you may find yourself with blood sugar levels that are higher than normal (let's say around 150, for example), but not excessive enough to necessitate taking more medication. You don't feel very good with the higher blood sugar, but taking medication can make your blood sugar TOO low.</p> <p>So what can you do to lower your blood sugar up to 40 points without taking more medication? Try the following these 13 tips and see if you can lower your blood sugar naturally. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-can-do-to-reduce-your-risk-of-diabetes?ref=seealso">How to Reduce Your Risk of Diabetes</a>)</p> <p><em>Health Disclaimer:<span style="color: rgb(0, 0, 0); font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;</span><span style="font-size: 13px; line-height: 1.7em;">As always, you need to be careful to monitor your sugar levels so as not to become hypoglycemic (that's when your blood sugar is too low, which is dangerous). Talk to your physician before making any changes to your diet. And remember, these 13 tips for lowering blood sugar may work for many people, but they won't work for everyone.</span></em></p> <h2>Carb Intake</h2> <p>Carbs are basically sugar, and everybody should make an effort to control their intake, especially diabetics.</p> <p><img width="605" height="303" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u784/bldsugar-ims234-029-ggnoads.jpg" alt="" /></p> <h3>1. Cut Back the Carbs</h3> <p><strong>Effects seen:</strong> Immediate</p> <p>Your diet is something you want to talk to your physician about, but the simple fact is that a lower carb diet makes it easier to maintain stable blood sugar levels. It's part of why you're hearing so much about the <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paleolithic_diet">Paleo Diet</a> these days.</p> <p>Carbohydrates are found in starchy foods &mdash; root vegetables, grains, rice, and legumes &mdash; and all of their derivatives, like bread, pasta, sushi, French fries, mashed yams, and even lentil soup. As someone who has been diabetic for nearly 20 years, I can attest that eating a diet low in carbohydrates, but rich in leafy greens, nuts, dark fruits like berries, and lean meats has had an amazing effect on my blood sugar control. I get all of the nutrients that I need without consuming grains. It takes a lot more effort to choose low-carb snacks over something as delicious as pie, but it makes a huge difference in the way that I feel. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-delicious-healthy-and-inexpensive-snack-options?ref=seealso">12 Cheap and Healthy Snacks</a>)</p> <h3>2. Spread Out the Carbs</h3> <p><strong>Effects seen:</strong> Immediate</p> <p>For the carbohydrates that you do eat, try to spread them out evenly throughout the day. For instance, if you really love apples, but eating an entire apple raises your blood sugar, simply eat your apple wedge by wedge over the course of a few hours, rather than all at once. The apple will likely raise your blood sugar, but not in a huge spike. If you can keep your blood sugar levels more steady (without big jumps and drops), you'll feel less hungry and grumpy.</p> <h2>Move Around</h2> <p>Exercise helps in the short term by immediately lowering blood sugar, and in the long term helps your body burn glucose more efficiently.</p> <p><img width="605" height="303" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u11/000022236513.jpg" alt="" /></p> <h3>3. Get Some Light Exercise</h3> <p><strong>Effects seen:</strong> Within 1 hour</p> <p>Light exercise can lower your blood sugar level, often within minutes. I'm talking about a brisk walk or bicycle ride &mdash; not a long run or weight lifting. I've personally lowered my blood sugar by 40 points with a 20-minute walk. Light exercise is my go-to technique for lowering my blood sugar. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-ways-to-exercise-in-under-5-minutes?ref=seealso">Ways to Exercise in Under 5 Minutes</a>)</p> <h3>4. Weight Training</h3> <p><strong>Effects seen:</strong> Long term</p> <p>Strength training may temporarily raise your blood sugar, but over time, it will help you build the kind of muscle that can <a href="http://www.denverpost.com/ci_22988125/how-weightlifting-can-help-regulate-blood-sugar-control">burn glucose more efficiently</a>.</p> <h2>Drink These</h2> <p>Several beverages can bring your blood sugar down quickly, too.</p> <p><img width="605" height="303" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u11/000051836094.jpg" alt="" /></p> <h3>5. Unsweetened Tea</h3> <p><strong>Effects seen:</strong> Within 30 minutes</p> <p>Unsweetened black, white, and <a href="http://www.webmd.com/diabetes/news/20090730/black-tea-may-lower-blood-sugar">green tea can help lower your blood sugar</a> within as little as a half hour. Green tea supplements also have a positive effect on blood sugar levels. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/drink-your-tea-types-health-benefits-and-how-to-brew-a-perfect-cup?ref=seealso">Types and Benefits of Tea</a>)</p> <h3>6. A Glass of Red Wine</h3> <p><strong>Effects seen:</strong> Within 1 hour</p> <p>Many kinds of alcohol have the effect of lowering overall blood sugar levels (beer may have the opposite effect because of the total carbohydrate content). <a href="http://www.drweil.com/drw/u/WBL02086/Red-Wine-Tea-May-Help-Control-Blood-Sugar.html">Red wine lowers your blood sugar</a> by preventing the absorption of glucose by the intestines. Keep in mind that alcohol is not an effective long term blood glucose control, because it can contribute to the build-up of liver fat. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-wine-openers?ref=seealso">Best Wine Openers</a>)</p> <h2>Take a Supplement</h2> <p>Lots of people take supplements for long term health benefits, but these will bring down blood sugar relatively quickly.</p> <p><img width="605" height="303" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u11/000069164885.jpg" alt="" /></p> <h3>7. Cinnamon Pills</h3> <p><strong>Effects seen:</strong> Within 1 hour</p> <p>Cinnamon has been shown to <a href="http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&amp;dbid=68">reduce blood sugars</a>, although not effectively in <a href="http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/diabetes/AN00939">post-menopausal women</a>. In order to take enough cinnamon to lower your blood sugar, take it in capsule form. I take approximately 3,000 mg at each meal.</p> <h3>8. Chromium Picolinate</h3> <p><strong>Effects seen:</strong> Within 1 hour</p> <p>Chromium picolinate has been shown to lower blood sugar levels in Type II diabetics in many studies. Go easy on this particular supplement, though &mdash; it can do damage to your liver if you take too much.</p> <h3>9. Green Tea Extract</h3> <p><strong>Effects seen:</strong> Within 1 hour</p> <p>If you're not a fan of drinking tea, you can also take green tea extract in pill form.</p> <h3>10. Fenugreek Powder</h3> <p><strong>Effects seen:</strong> Within 1 hour</p> <p>Fenugreek is a seed that is used in the production of artificial maple syrup flavors. It's often prescribed to new mothers to help with the production of breast milk. It also slows the absorption of sugar into the bloodstream. Although studies showing the <a href="http://www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements/ingredientmono-733-FENUGREEK.aspx?activeIngredientId=733&amp;activeIngredientName=FENUGREEK">fenugreek lowers blood sugar</a> test the actual seed soaked in hot water, I've personally used fenugreek powder capsules to lower my blood sugar. Fenugreek is a laxative, so don't take too much. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/herbal-supplements-know-what-you-re-getting?ref=seealso">Guide to Buying Herbal Supplements</a>)</p> <h3>11. Apple Cider Vinegar</h3> <p><strong>Effects seen:</strong> Within several hours</p> <p>Apple cider vinegar has been shown to <a href="http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2009/06/02/apple-cider-vinegar-hype.aspx">help control blood sugar levels</a> in both pre-diabetic and Type II diabetics. If you don't want to drink a couple tablespoons of it, it also comes in an extract, which can be easier to tolerate. Note that apple cider vinegar takes longer to lower blood sugar levels than other supplements, and may be more effective as a preventative measure than as a reactive one.</p> <h2>Chill Out</h2> <p>And if you can't get your hands on any of the foods, beverages, supplements, and exercise equipment noted above, take a chill pill.</p> <p><img width="605" height="303" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u784/bldsugar-78771991-ggnaods.jpg" alt="" /></p> <h3>12. Scale Back on Stress</h3> <p><strong>Effects seen:</strong> Long term</p> <p>Stressful situations can <a href="http://www.rd.com/images/newsletter/rddiabetes/2005apr/045_chgd_newsletter2.pdf">release hormones that will raise your blood sugar</a>. If you are feeling anxious, try relaxation techniques like meditation and deep breathing to lower your blood sugar. Or go sit in your car and scream until you feel better. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/banish-stress-easy-ways-to-get-calm-now-and-forever?ref=seealso">Easy Ways to Get Calm Now</a>)</p> <h3>13. Get More Sleep</h3> <p><strong>Effects seen:</strong> Long term</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-effective-sleep-tips-you-havent-tried-yet">Getting adequate sleep</a> is a good way to help lessen your body's insulin resistance. You might even notice that you have higher blood sugar when you don't get enough sleep. Actually, bad sleep and high blood sugar is a bit of a vicious cycle &mdash; once your <a href="http://www.webmd.com/sleep-disorders/excessive-sleepiness-10/diabetes-lack-of-sleep">blood sugars get too high, you don't sleep well</a>, and when you don't sleep well, your blood sugars keep climbing.</p> <p>If you can manage it, scale back on whatever it is that keeps you up late, like watching TV or drinking too much caffeine.</p> <h2>A Quick Note on Internet Diabetes Advice</h2> <p>There are some shockingly irresponsible articles on the Internet (I won't link to them because they don't deserve the clicks) that suggest eating foods like oranges and grapes to lower your blood sugar.This is patently false information. Not only will eating an orange <em>not</em> lower your blood sugar, eating an orange will <em>raise</em> your blood sugar (possibly requiring medication to lower it).</p> <p>Remember, there are no miracle foods that will cure diabetes.</p> <p><em>What do you do when you need to lower your blood sugar?</em></p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="//www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F8-cheap-ways-to-lower-your-blood-sugar&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F13%20Natural%20and%20Easy%20Ways%20to%20Lower%20Your%20Blood%20Sugar.jpg&amp;description=13%20Natural%20and%20Easy%20Ways%20to%20Lower%20Your%20Blood%20Sugar" data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-config="above" data-pin-color="red" data-pin-height="28"><img src="//assets.pinterest.com/images/pidgets/pinit_fg_en_rect_red_28.png" alt="" /></a> </p> <!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><script type="text/javascript" async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/13%20Natural%20and%20Easy%20Ways%20to%20Lower%20Your%20Blood%20Sugar.jpg" alt="13 Natural and Easy Ways to Lower Your Blood Sugar" width="250" height="374" /></p> <div style="display: none;"> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/13%20Natural%20and%20Easy%20Ways%20to%20Lower%20Your%20Blood%20Sugar_0.jpg" alt="13 Natural and Easy Ways to Lower Your Blood Sugar" width="212" height="605" /></p> </div> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-karim">Andrea Karim</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-cheap-ways-to-lower-your-blood-sugar">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/30-unexpected-uses-for-mineral-oil">30 Unexpected Uses for Mineral Oil</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/want-to-keep-your-dispoable-razor-blades-sharp-use-your-arm">Want to Keep Your Disposable Razor Blades Sharp? Use Your Arm</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/24-places-to-buy-inexpensive-natural-beauty-products">24 Places to Buy Inexpensive Natural Beauty Products</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-clever-tricks-to-make-your-new-years-resolution-stick">7 Clever Tricks to Make Your New Year&#039;s Resolution Stick</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-sneak-more-exercise-into-your-busy-schedule">7 Ways to Sneak More Exercise Into Your Busy Schedule</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Life Hacks Health and Beauty blood sugar diabetes lower blood sugar Thu, 20 Feb 2014 10:36:14 +0000 Andrea Karim 589 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Things You Can Do to Reduce Your Risk of Diabetes http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-can-do-to-reduce-your-risk-of-diabetes <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-things-you-can-do-to-reduce-your-risk-of-diabetes" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/exercise-4773257-small.jpg" alt="women exercising" title="women exercising" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>It's one of the diseases everyone seems to be talking about lately. Diabetes. It's been called a disease of civilization, an overweight person's inevitability, and more. However, it can be difficult to know exactly what this monster is and what you (or anyone!) can do to reduce the risk of getting it. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-cheap-ways-to-lower-your-blood-sugar">Cheap Ways to Lower Your Blood Sugar</a>)</p> <p>There are two types of diabetes. The first (called, not-so creatively, Type I) is caused by a <a href="http://www.diabetes.org/diabetes-basics/genetics-of-diabetes.html">combination of genes and other factors</a>, and there's not much you can do except manage it. While the second (Type II) is also influenced by genetics, it is often brought on by lifestyle factors.</p> <p>In Type II diabetes, the body becomes <a href="http://diabetes.niddk.nih.gov/dm/pubs/insulinresistance/#resistance">resistant to insulin</a>. You may make enough of it, but your body can't use it effectively, and so it cannot metabolize the sugars you consume. This leads to all sorts of other problems, and they can lead to an early death if you don't manage it.</p> <p>If you've been told you're at risk for Type II diabetes, other people in your family have the disease, or you just want to do your best to make sure you don't end up with it, there's a lot you can do to develop a plan to combat it.</p> <h2>1. Be Open to Lifelong Change</h2> <p>Before you do anything else, have a long, honest talk with yourself. Avoiding diabetes usually means making changes and sticking to them for the rest of your life. Are you ready to do that? Are you willing? If you can answer &quot;Yes!&quot; to both of those questions, and only then, proceed to think about a plan.</p> <h2>2. Make a Plan</h2> <p>While defeating a disease sounds like a lot of work, the truth is that the things you need to do to give yourself the best chance against diabetes are pretty simple (and outlined below). However, changing your life is always hard. Therefore, come up with a step-by-step plan to give yourself the best chance at success.</p> <h2>3. Find a Partner</h2> <p>If you can, find someone, or a group of people, who also want to change their lives and who are willing to include you in their plans. Making lifestyle changes with others gives you your own private cheering section, which will provide motivation for the times when you really want to quit. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-make-yourself-accountable">5 Ways to Hold Yourself Accountable</a>)</p> <h2>4. Eat Fewer White Carbs and Sugars</h2> <p>Since diabetes has to do with the amount of sugars in your bloodstream, reducing the amount of sugar that you take in will help your body. You will avoid the blood sugar spikes that require it to produce more insulin that normal. White carbs (think white bread, white potatoes, most pasta, and any other easily-digestible carbs) become sugars when they're digested, so begin avoiding them, along with sugar itself.</p> <h2>5. Eat More Fruit and Vegetables</h2> <p>On the flip side, fill up your plate with more fruits and vegetables. These not only provide your body with the nutrients it needs for health, but they also don't create the same blood sugar spikes that white carbs and sugars do, so your body won't have to work overtime to get them all digested. While fruit does contain some sugar, it's not nearly in the amounts that are in processed foods, so you don't need to worry about eating almost as much as you want.</p> <h2>6. Get Out and Move</h2> <p>Exercise helps your body fight insulin resistance and diabetes. In fact, there's evidence that a simple <a href="http://www.foxnews.com/health/2013/06/12/walking-after-meals-may-reduce-diabetes-risk/">15-minute walk after eating can reduce your diabetes risk</a> significantly. Not only does exercise help you lose weight and help your body function better, but it also helps you feel better about yourself and your life. Feast on endorphins, and you won't crave the sugary snacks! (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/fitness-for-people-who-hate-exercise">Fitness For People Who Hate Exercise</a>)</p> <h2>7. Lose Weight</h2> <p>If you're changing your diet and moving more, losing weight is almost inevitable. It gets its own point, though, because it is essential to lowering your diabetes risk. While not everyone with Type II diabetes is overweight, losing weight helps nearly everyone who has it. The ideal weight for avoiding diabetes depends somewhat on your ethnicity and gender. For instance, studies show that <a href="http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/Diabetes/Pages/Avoiddiabetes.aspx">Asian adults have a higher risk at a lower weight</a> than white or African American populations.</p> <h2>8. Get Enough Sleep</h2> <p><a href="http://news.menshealth.com/reduce-your-diabetes-risk-tonight/2013/06/19/">Extended and uninterrupted rest</a> has been shown to raise the body's sensitivity to insulin, thus reducing Type II diabetes risk. No one knows quite why this works, but you don't need to know why to implement the strategy. Do what it takes: go to bed earlier, sleep in your own room, or shut off the alarm clock when you can.</p> <h2>9. Set Realistic Goals</h2> <p>Eat better. Exercise more. Get enough sleep. These things seem easy enough, but they encompass some of the most basic and habitual things that we do in our daily lives. To change effectively in these areas, set realistic goals. Maybe you want to start by having fruit instead of bread with your lunch. When that works, have a piece with dinner, too. Begin taking your family on short walks after dinner. Intentionally sleep in on the weekends. Slowly, these small changes will add up and reduce your risk of illness. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/staying-fit-and-beautiful-in-mind-body-and-wallet">Stay Fit and Beautiful in Mind, Body, and Wallet</a>)</p> <h2>10. Evaluate Your Success</h2> <p>Whether you find these changes hard or easy to make, it's important that you evaluate yourself now and then. Maybe you will want to look at things weekly, monthly, or quarterly. Be sure to record your goals and your success or failure on a daily basis. You may find that some changes come much easier than others. Use what you learn to reformulate your goals so they're achievable for you!</p> <p>If you're looking for more ideas for reducing your risk of diabetes or information on the disease, the <a href="http://www.diabetes.org">American Diabetes Association</a> is a great place to start. They also have information on finding support groups in your area, if you're not sure who can help you achieve your goals.</p> <p><em>What are you doing to avoid (or manage) Type II diabetes?</em></p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" data-pin-save="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F10-things-you-can-do-to-reduce-your-risk-of-diabetes%3Fref%3Dseealso&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F10%2520Things%2520You%2520Can%2520Do%2520to%2520Reduce%2520Your%2520Risk%2520of%2520Diabetes_0.jpg&amp;description=10%20Things%20You%20Can%20Do%20to%20Reduce%20Your%20Risk%20of%20Diabetes"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/10%20Things%20You%20Can%20Do%20to%20Reduce%20Your%20Risk%20of%20Diabetes_0.jpg" alt="10 Things You Can Do to Reduce Your Risk of Diabetes" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sarah-winfrey">Sarah Winfrey</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-can-do-to-reduce-your-risk-of-diabetes">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-habits-that-are-quietly-making-you-fat-and-have-nothing-to-do-with-eating">7 Habits That Are Quietly Making You Fat (and Have Nothing to Do With Eating)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-turn-your-walk-into-a-real-workout">5 Ways to Turn Your Walk Into a Real Workout</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-eat-more-slowly-and-lose-more-weight">7 Ways to Eat More Slowly — and Lose More Weight</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/thinking-of-going-on-a-diet-heres-how-to-figure-out-which-one-is-right-for-you">Thinking of Going on a Diet? Here&#039;s How to Figure Out Which One Is Right for You</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-losing-weight-will-make-you-richer">7 Ways Losing Weight Will Make You Richer</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Health and Beauty Lifestyle diabetes diet fitness weight loss Fri, 30 Aug 2013 10:24:28 +0000 Sarah Winfrey 981620 at http://www.wisebread.com Do plastic baby bottles cause diabetes and heart disease? http://www.wisebread.com/do-baby-bottles-cause-diabetes-and-heart-disease <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/do-baby-bottles-cause-diabetes-and-heart-disease" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/nipple.jpg" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="375" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Me, I&#39;ve been a big proponent of doing away with <a href="/bottled-water-bottled-hype-part-1">plastics</a> for a while now. I&#39;d like to feel vindicated, but today&#39;s issue of USA Today just sort of made me sad. Check out the slide show <a href="http://www.usatoday.com/news/health/2008-09-14-bisphenol-danger_N.htm">here</a>.</p> <p>A <a href="http://www.usatoday.com/news/health/2008-09-16-bpa-heart_N.htm">study was released today</a> that some scientists believe implicates bisphenol A in the formation of diabetes and heart disease in humans. Results are preliminary, and more studies need to be done. And, of course, the FDA still says that plastics are more or less safe. </p> <p>&quot;Some scientists say the study — released today to coincide with a Food and Drug Administration meeting— shows that bisphenol A, or BPA, is too dangerous to allow in consumer products, especially those used by babies and pregnant women.&quot; USA Today</p> <p>&quot;Higher BPA exposure, reflected in higher urinary<sup> </sup>concentrations of BPA, may be associated with avoidable morbidity<sup> </sup>in the community-dwelling adult population. &quot; <a href="http://jama.ama-assn.org/cgi/content/full/300.11.1303">JAMA</a></p> <p>&quot;Two weeks ago, the National Toxicology Program said it has &quot;some concern&quot; that BPA alters development of the brain and prostate gland in children and babies, both before and after birth.&quot; <a href="http://www.usatoday.com/news/health/2008-09-14-bisphenol-danger_N.htm">USA Today</a> </p> <p>A number of stores are <a href="http://www.redorbit.com/news/health/1428831/walmart_toys_r_us_to_remove_products_with_bpa/index.html">removing products</a> that contain bisphenol A from their shelves - Toys R Us and Walmart have both been pulling toys and plastic baby bottles since early summer.</p> <p>The plastic industry is, of course, fighting every attempt to reduce or change the way we use plastic in our everyday lives. From <a href="http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/local/378828_bags12.html">fighting the plastic bag fees</a> that are being instituted in my fair city of Seattle and <a href="http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/23596727/">elsewhere</a>, the American Chemistry Council is <a href="http://www.marketwatch.com/news/story/new-bisphenol-study-has-limited/story.aspx?guid=%7BC461568B-7EB6-4598-A98A-668C147D7DCD%7D&amp;dist=hppr">doing their darndest</a> to keep a lid on this possibly dangerous substance. To be fair, the Canadian plastics industry is <a href="http://www.newswire.ca/en/releases/archive/September2008/16/c3392.html">no better</a>.</p> <p>Of course, I see the value of having plastics in our lives. I certainly wouldn&#39;t want to ride my motorcycle wearing a helmet made of tree bark and sheepskin. And it IS difficult to know if studies like this one are truly causal: it&#39;s possible that high levels of bisphenol A in humans with diabetes and heart attacks are linked, but it doesn&#39;t necessarily mean that the relationship is causal. Perhaps people with heart disease and diabetes eat more prepared (unhealthy) food from plastic packaging, hence the higher levels of the chemicals in their blood.</p> <p>I don&#39;t like fear-mongering, but I&#39;m also aware of an industry&#39;s deep-seated need to <a href="http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/06/19/AR2005061900691.html">fight scientific evidence</a>.</p> <p>In any case, I have been limiting my exposure to products containing bisphenol A as much as I possibly can, and will continue to do so.</p> <p><a href="http://www.sixwise.com/newsletters/06/02/16/bisphenol-a_why_makers_of_toys_medical_equipment__amp_more_dont_want_you_to_worry_about_bispheno.htm">Six Wise</a> has some good tips on how to avoid BPA in your life (following list is taken from Six Wise).</p> <p>If you want to avoid products with BPA, keep in mind the following:</p> <ul> <li>Plastic that contains BPA carries the #7 recycling symbol.</li> <li>Most clear plastic baby bottles and child cups are made of BPA-containing plastic.</li> <li>Dental sealant may leach BPA; this is being debated. You may want to avoid dental sealants on your children&#39;s baby teeth.</li> </ul> <p>You can minimize your BPA exposure by:</p> <ul> <li>Replacing plastic food and drink containers and utensils with glass, ceramic or metal varieties.</li> <li>Purchasing glass baby bottles.</li> <li>Using baby bottles and sippy cups made of polyethylene plastic (#1, #2, #4 recycling symbols) or polypropylene (#5) (these are usually colored, not clear, and should still not be heated).</li> <li>Not using canned foods or foods wrapped in plastic.</li> <li>Not letting children put plastic toys in their mouths. </li> <li>Being careful with BPA-containing plastics, if you choose to use them. This means not exposing them to heat (microwave, dishwasher) or harsh detergents (bleach, etc.) and not letting food or beverages sit in the containers for too long.</li> </ul> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-karim">Andrea Karim</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/do-baby-bottles-cause-diabetes-and-heart-disease">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/is-plastic-killing-us-the-true-cost-of-convenience">Is Plastic Killing Us? The True Cost of Convenience</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-keep-your-desk-from-killing-you">5 Ways to Keep Your Desk From Killing You</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/is-green-tea-all-its-cracked-up-to-be-its-close">Is Green Tea All It&#039;s Cracked Up to Be? It&#039;s close.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-wonderful-uses-for-witch-hazel">15 Wonderful Uses for Witch Hazel</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-cheap-and-easy-homemade-mosquito-repellents">4 Cheap and Easy Homemade Mosquito Repellents</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Green Living Health and Beauty baby bottles bisphenol A BPA cancer cells diabetes heart disease human DNA plastic poison Tue, 16 Sep 2008 22:48:52 +0000 Andrea Karim 2433 at http://www.wisebread.com FREE food for diabetics http://www.wisebread.com/free-food-for-diabetics <p><img width="391" height="175" title="Glu1" alt="Glu1" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/wisebread_imce/pg_nwp_glucerna_520X233.jpg" /></p> <p>Get them quick folks, because I can't find an expiration date on either of these special offer pages. The good folks at Glucerna are giving away cereal and milkshakes completely free. That's great news for you frugal readers who have to live with diabetes, or know someone who does.</p> <!--break--><!--break--><p><img width="267" height="150" title="Glu2" alt="Glu2" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/wisebread_imce/header_shake_0.jpg" /></p> <p><strong>FREEBIE 1 - SHAKES (up to $11 value)</strong><br /> <a href="http://glucerna.com/offer/landing.aspx?s=shakes">Click here</a> and enter the promo code COOKING2.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><img width="317" height="156" title="Glu3" alt="Glu3" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/wisebread_imce/header_cereal.jpg" /></p> <p><strong>FREEBIE 2 - CEREAL (up to $5 value)</strong><br /> <a href="http://glucerna.com/offer/landing.aspx?s=cereal">Click here</a> and enter the promo code JOURNAL</p> <p> <strong>Other GREAT offers</strong></p> <p>Register at <a href="http://www.diabetescontrolforlife.com" title="www.diabetescontrolforlife.com">www.diabetescontrolforlife.com</a> <a href="http://diabetescontrolforlife.com/">here</a> and use promo code <strong>CATALINA </strong>to receive an email with a printable $10 off coupon for a multipack of shakes or 2 boxes of Glucerna bars. You can print the coupon twice!</p> <p>You can also get a $1.25 printable coupon for Glucerna <a href="http://glucerna.com/offer/">here</a></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/free-food-for-diabetics">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/optical-illusions-that-make-you-fatter-and-your-wallet-lighter">Optical Illusions That Make You Fatter and Your Wallet Lighter</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/free-copy-of-what-to-expect-the-first-year-book">FREE copy of &quot;What To Expect The First Year&quot; book.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/free-day-of-doggie-camp">Free Day of Doggie Camp</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/free-2gb-ipod-shuffle-from-compass-bank">FREE 2GB iPod Shuffle from Compass Bank</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-can-do-to-reduce-your-risk-of-diabetes">10 Things You Can Do to Reduce Your Risk of Diabetes</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Freebies cereal diabetes diabetic diet drink Food free free food Glucerna shake suger-free Tue, 22 May 2007 22:58:21 +0000 Paul Michael 672 at http://www.wisebread.com Is Green Tea All It's Cracked Up to Be? It's close. http://www.wisebread.com/is-green-tea-all-its-cracked-up-to-be-its-close <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/wisebread_imce/green_tea.jpg" alt="http://www.flickr.com/photos/kankan/" title="Green tea by Kanko" width="250" height="188" /></p> <p>I&#39;ve been enjoying the snarky articles at Slate.com recently focusing on the commoditization of Eastern traditions, such as <a href="http://www.slate.com/id/2162283/">yoga</a>. As someone who purchases but never uses yoga clothing, mats, and accessories, I can truly appreciate the hypocrisy in the American tendency to turn something that is supposed to be purifying and healthy into something that is really a money-making scheme.</p> <p>However, I have to take issue with Jacob Weisberg&#39;s recent article that more or less tries to <a href="http://www.slate.com/id/2163503/nav/tap1/">dismiss the trend that is green tea</a>, mostly by linking to the myriad of products that use green tea as an ingredient. I&#39;m bothered by a few issues that he raises, mostly because, well, I really freaking love green tea.</p> <p>Now, I long ago discarded the notion that the East has much to teach us about metaphysical stuff. Don&#39;t get me wrong - I&#39;m an Asiaphile. But it&#39;s not because I find any deep and inherent wisdom in the cultures that make up &quot;the Orient&quot;. I like Asia because the land is stunning, the languages are fascinating, the history is long, and the men are handsome.</p> <p>That said, Easterners are as messed-up as as Westerners. Sure, there are some lovely traditions to be had all across Asia, both found in extinct rituals and current practices. But there are lovely traditions to be found in Portugal, too. Only we don&#39;t categorize the Portugese as particularly deep, whereas I think that Asians get put on a spiritual pedestal that isn&#39;t fair to anyone.</p> <p>Commercialism and greed are rampant everywhere in the world, and I don&#39;t think that someone who grew up in, say, Vietnam, has any more to teach the world than someone who grew up in Alabama. So my defense of tea-drinking isn&#39;t stemming from any illusion that the West is merely a commercial shell of a place with no soul, and Asia is the land of enlightenment or anything.</p> <p>There&#39;s no Ganesh on my bookshelf at home, get it?</p> <p>OK? Good. Now that that is out of the way. Green tea.</p> <p class="sub-heading"><strong>It&#39;s an acquired taste...</strong></p> <p>Like coffee, beer, and avocados, your first impression of green tea might have been something like, &quot;Oh. That&#39;s, uh. Hm. Ick.&quot; When I first tasted green tea at the age of 12, I can&#39;t say that I was delighted with it, either. Our exchange student, who hailed from Tokyo, had brought packets of <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Matcha">matcha</a> with her for us to sample. To me, it was like drinking a ground-up version of the hay that we fed the horses in 4-H. Only bitter.</p> <p>It wasn&#39;t until I traveled to Japan for the first time that I started to really appreciate green tea, if not the long ceremonies surrounding it that caused me to experience some severe Charlie horses (I do appreciate the meditation and skill and patience involved in tea ceremonies, I simply can&#39;t sit on my knees for the length of one). After that trip, I developed a real love for green tea, of which there are many kinds. Also, I decided that green tea flavoring was the best. thing. ever.</p> <p>So, my feathers get ruffled when I read someone who wants to disparage green tea for no good reason, other than the fact that they are sick of hearing about it, and kind of want to make fun of a few products and their respective marketing campaigns. </p> <p>If Slate.com&#39;s Jacob Weisberg had written an article saying &quot;I&#39;m really sick of hearing about green tea&quot;, I&#39;d be fine, because that&#39;s honest. But alas, that was not his tactic. I understand the need to snark about some things, but the green tea attack feels forced and pointless. Also, there are some criticisms of the green tea fad that I just don&#39;t find legitimate.</p> <p class="sub-heading"><strong>The Snark: Eastern Tradition Hijacked by the West</strong></p> <p class="blockquote">In the United States, &quot;Eastern&quot; tends to blur together Hinduism, Buddhism, and hucksterism. It inevitably involves something to buy and usually something to eat as well. Only this harmonic-entrepreneurial convergence can explain the invention of <a href="http://www.serendipitychocolates.com/detail_pages/greentea_truffle.htm" target="_blank"><font color="#0066cc">New Zen Green Tea Truffles</font></a> and <a href="http://www.amazon.com/Bissingers-Green-Gummy-Pandas-Three/dp/B000BNLF3W" target="_blank"><font color="#0066cc">Green Tea Gummy Pandas</font></a>, snacks that transform a foggy idea of virtue into morsels of vice. </p> <p>Now, I agree that the whole <em>East=Wisdom &amp; Peace</em> thing can be tedious. I throw up a little when I see Chinese character stepping stones in gardens. But I don&#39;t think we can apply this to green tea. </p> <p class="sub-heading"><strong>The Truth: They Started It!</strong></p> <p>It&#39;s a fallacy, and kind of cocky, to assume that just because a trend is popular, it must have started in the West. Green tea is a very popular flavor throughout Asia, and has been for a long time. You can get green tea EVERYTHING in China, Japan, and Korea. Yogurt, Pocky, ice cream (the only ice cream I like, actually), mochi, chocolates, cookies, gum - the list goes on forever. (Also, there&#39;s lots of melon-flavored stuff, and I sincerely believe that honeydew-flavored yogurt is the closest thing to heaven that most people can ever hope to experience).</p> <p>The traditional Asian palette hasn&#39;t (yet) been tuned to super-sweet tastes, and green tea is a nice flavor in that it tones down the hyper-sugary taste of many desserts and treats. Desserts in East Asia tend to favor sweetened red beans, lightly sweet gelatin, and sometimes sweetened milk. But usually, dessert in Asia is fruit. </p> <p>Recap: the green-tea-in-everything trend didn&#39;t start in the US, but I&#39;m glad it being adopted here, because it&#39;s freaking delicious.</p> <p>Also, sure, &quot;Zen&quot; food might sound pretensious, unless you happen to understand the &quot;Zen&quot; that is a good piece of chocolate. &quot;Zen&quot; truffles are logical to anyone who finds <a href="http://faculty.washington.edu/chudler/choco.html">bliss</a> (scroll down to &quot;Chocolate and The Nervous System&quot;) in cocoa.</p> <p class="sub-heading"><strong>The Snark: Who Knows if It&#39;s Good for You? </strong></p> <p>Next, Weisberg attacks claims that green tea is really, really good for you.</p> <p class="blockquote">Under the Food and Drug Administration&#39;s policy of permitting &quot;qualified health claims&quot; for which there is <em>some </em>evidence—often based on industry-funded research—marketers can make all sorts of improbable boasts (see under <a href="http://www.pomwonderful.com/" target="_blank"><font color="#0066cc">pomegranate juice</font></a>). Even when it rejects such assertions, <a href="http://www.cfsan.fda.gov/~dms/qhc-gtea.html" target="_blank"><font color="#0066cc">as it has for green tea and all cancers</font></a> as well as <a href="http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/12718769/" target="_blank"><font color="#0066cc">heart disease</font></a>, the FDA seldom does anything to stop them. </p> <p>He has a point here, and the long-term benefits of green tea may not be well-established. In fact, I&#39;m sick and tired of studies that show <em>this</em> and studies that show <em>that</em>. Bran, beta carotene, vitamin C, chromium, soy - we&#39;re told to consume them like crazy to prevent cancer, and then told a few months later that they CAUSE cancer. </p> <p>Until we really buckle down and have some less biased studies, I wouldn&#39;t recommend that anyone drink lots of green tea, especially in the stead of actually exercising and eating well. I don&#39;t know if green tea can really prevent health problems or cancer or anything else.</p> <p class="sub-heading"><strong>The Truth: It&#39;s Good for ME </strong></p> <p>But I do know this: I am a diabetic (Type 2, for those who need to know), and drinking green tea<strong><em> lowers my blood sugar</em></strong>. </p> <p>I know this because I have tested my blood sugar before and after drinking green tea, and it will drop my sugar by as much as 30 points. I&#39;m not saying that it works for everyone (it has the opposite affect on my sister, who has a bad blood sugar spike with any caffeine), but it works for some people, and shouldn&#39;t be discounted. Not that my experience alone is enough to validate the health benefits - but I think it should be studied, in the same way that cinnamon was.</p> <p class="sub-heading"><strong>The Snark: Coprorations Blah Blah Blah Fat Americans</strong></p> <p>Weisberg follows up with the familiar &quot;Well, BIG BAD COMPANIES put green tea in stuff that isn&#39;t healthy, but you <em>think</em> it&#39;s healthy because it has green tea in it, but it&#39;s <em>not</em> healthy because it&#39;s Starbucks&quot; spiel. He even goes so far as to diss my local favorite green-tea joint <a href="http://www.kootsgreentea.com/">Koots</a> (Holla!), as a seller or less-than-healthy green-tea-infused items (green tea cheesecake - try it when you&#39;re in town).</p> <p class="blockquote">This follows on the success of Starbucks&#39; <a href="http://www.starbucks.com/retail/nutrition_beverage_detail.asp?selProducts=185&amp;strAction=GETDEFAULT&amp;x=21&amp;y=7" target="_blank"><font color="#0066cc">Tazo Green Tea Frappuccino</font></a>, which also uses matcha, green tea in pulverized form. A &quot;venti&quot; has 560 calories if you hold the whipped cream. (The unappreciated business genius of Starbucks is not charging $4 for a latte but rather giving adults permission to drink milkshakes, on the pretext that they are merely tea or coffee.) This is exceeded by the 640 calories in the &quot;power&quot; version of the <a href="http://jambajuice.com/menuguide/matchagreenteablast.html" target="_blank"><font color="#0066cc">Matcha Green Tea Blast</font></a> from Jamba Juice, a <a href="http://www.jambajuice.com/talk/franchiseinformation.html" target="_blank"><font color="#0066cc">franchise chain</font></a> chasing Howard Schultz&#39;s caffeinated footsteps. </p> <p class="sub-heading"><strong>The Truth: It&#39;s Tasty, and No One is Lying About the Calories </strong></p> <p>You know, I don&#39;t think there&#39;s a single item at Starbucks that I enjoy that comes in at under 400 calories. And it is possible that people in line at Starbucks are saying to themselves &quot;Hm. The white chocolate mocha with raspberry... that sounds good. Oh, wait, green tea frappucino! That&#39;s GOT to be good for me!&quot;. But those people are dumb, and they&#39;d choose something terrible whether the green tea was there or not. </p> <p>[Also, I know a lot of women who have Starbucks for breakfast. Just a drink. 500 calories for breakfast isn&#39;t that bad. 3 meals a day x 500 calories + 200 calorie snack = 1700 calories a day. Now, if a 500 calorie drink is being consumed as a snack, then you&#39;ve got a problem, but I don&#39;t know many women who &quot;snack&quot; at Starbucks, and their frappucinos are a meal.]</p> <p>A trend is a trend, Weisberg! The next big push from Starbucks is going to be South American-influenced flavors. You got something against mangos and pretty Brazilian women in skimpy bikinis? Eh? Everyone loves a Brazilian!</p> <p class="sub-heading"><strong>The Snark: Down with White-tea! (Get it? White-tea? Whitey? Har!)</strong></p> <p>Next, in what I can only assume is an attempt at humor, Weisberg goes after the beauty industry for putting green tea in its products, and says this [emphasis mine]:</p> <p class="blockquote"><a href="http://www.origins.com/templates/products/mp.tmpl?CATEGORY_ID=CATEGORY5756" target="_blank"><font color="#0066cc">Origins &quot;Perfect World&quot; products</font></a> are made with increasingly fashionable white tea, which is sort of baby green tea (think baby arugula). According to the company, white tea is &quot;among the most potent antioxidants, anti-agers, anti-stress, anti-smoke, anti-pollution antidotes.&quot; <em><strong>How is it that tea becomes more medically potent as it loses color and flavor?</strong></em> Next in this progression will be an invisible <em><strong>ghost tea with the regenerative properties of fetal stem cells</strong></em>. </p> <p>Ha! Stem cells! What a riot! It&#39;s funny AND it&#39;s topical! </p> <p>Well, it was topical a few months back, anyway.</p> <p class="sub-heading"><strong>The Truth: A Lesson in Oxidation</strong></p> <p>First let&#39;s look at the beauty argument; beauty-wise, green tea is mostly good for tightening your skin. </p> <p>Bonus beauty tip: Steep a bag of green tea, and use the cooled water to water your houseplants. Take the tea bag (if you are using bagged tea) and swipe it around your face. It&#39;s like a tiny facelift. It doesn&#39;t last all day, but it&#39;s nice for a couple of hours. All caffeine is great for reducing puffiness, so you can dab a little aloe and green tea around your eyes to reduce puffy skin during allergy season. </p> <p>Next, there&#39;s Weisberg&#39;s unfortunate belief that white tea can&#39;t possibly be as good, medicinally, as green tea.</p> <p>Here&#39;s a <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tea">brief explanation</a> for those who, like Weisberg, think that young tea has LOST flavor, as opposed to NOT DEVELOPING THE FULL FLAVOR OF GREEN TEA:</p> <p class="blockquote">...[T]ypes of tea are distinguished by the processing they undergo. Leaves of <em>Camellia sinensis</em> soon begin to wilt and <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oxidation" title="Oxidation">oxidize</a> if not dried quickly after picking. The leaves turn progressively darker because <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chlorophyll" title="Chlorophyll">chlorophyll</a> breaks down and <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tannin" title="Tannin">tannins</a> are released.... The next step in processing is to stop the <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oxidation" title="Oxidation">oxidation</a> process at a predetermined stage by heating, which deactivates the enzymes responsible. In black tea this is done simultaneously with drying.... Young leaves (new growth buds) that have undergone no oxidation; the buds may be shielded from sunlight to prevent formation of chlorophyll. White tea is produced in lesser quantities than most other styles, and can be correspondingly more expensive than tea from the same plant processed by other methods. It is less well known in countries outside of China, though this is changing with increased western interest in organic or premium teas. </p> <p>Basically, the message is this: it&#39;s a leaf that grows until it is picked. After it is picked, it begins to oxidize unless it is dried. As it oxidizes, it gets darker. The darker it gets, the less beneficial stuff it has in it. It&#39;s still good for you, but not as good for you as it was when it was lighter and less oxidized. How difficult is that?</p> <p>Weisberg ends up by snarking some more about green tea-infused booze, which I think we can all agree simply isn&#39;t an argument worth making. It&#39;s alcohol. Ergo, it&#39;s good. </p> <p><strong>MY</strong> point is the green tea is da bomb, whether on your mug or in your mug. </p> <p class="sub-heading"><strong>Yeah, but it tastes... meh.</strong></p> <p>I know some of you are thinking this. I&#39;ve known a lot of people who claim that <em>they just can&#39;t get into green tea</em>. This is almost always because:</p> <ol> <li>They are buying crappy tea and</li> <li>They are burning the tea when they brew it</li> </ol> <p class="sub-heading"><strong>Buying</strong></p> <p>If you want to enjoy a cup of green tea, you have a couple decisions to make. First, decide if you want to pay more for good tea. Yes, you can buy bagged tea, and yes, there are good bagged teas. But you might as well buy loose leaf tea. It&#39;s just better quality, and you have more choice over what you are getting. With ground-up, bagged tea, who knows what kind of leaf is in there?</p> <p>Tea bags are filled with ground up tea, either because ground up tea brews faster and the industry is worried that you won&#39;t wait more than 30 seconds for your tea, or because what you are drinking is the dust that is swept off of the floors in tea factories and farms around the world. Either way, you can guarantee higher quality tea if you buy it loose leaf.</p> <p>Don&#39;t go nuts. Go somewhere that sells the tea, like a Whole Foods or an Asian market, and buy a little bit. Not much. No more than $10 worth. Oh, and do your darndest to buy organic. </p> <p class="sub-heading"><strong>Brewing</strong></p> <p>White and green tea have more anti-oxidants, and for some reason, scald really easily. Scalded tea is really bitter, and one bad cup can be enough to put someone off of tea for a while.</p> <p>Although you can brew a tasty cup of Earl Grey with boiling water, you have to use cooler water to make a cup of white or green tea. In fact, in many tea houses in Asia, the water you use is close to tepid, just under steaming. Me, I just pour a cup of boiling water and then add about 1/5 cup of cold water, and that does the trick. I steep my tea for about three minutes the first time and about seven minutes on the second round (you can reuse the leaves).</p> <p>Enjoying green tea doesn&#39;t have to be a transcendental experience or a guilt-trip. It&#39;s just a tasty thing that might be good for you.</p> <p>Photo by <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/kankan/">Kanko</a>.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-karim">Andrea Karim</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/is-green-tea-all-its-cracked-up-to-be-its-close">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-11"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-reasons-to-drink-tea">10 Reasons to Drink Tea</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/make-these-5-diet-moves-now-or-youll-regret-it-in-20-years">Make These 5 Diet Moves Now or You&#039;ll Regret It in 20 Years</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/alcohol-is-good-for-your-heart">Alcohol is good for your heart</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/stop-being-a-slave-to-starbucks-how-to-quit-caffeine">Stop Being a Slave to Starbucks - How to Quit Caffeine</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-keep-your-desk-from-killing-you">5 Ways to Keep Your Desk From Killing You</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Food and Drink Health and Beauty antioxidants beauty diabetes green tea heart disease Oprah skin tea weight loss white tea Thu, 05 Apr 2007 18:22:35 +0000 Andrea Karim 460 at http://www.wisebread.com