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Health Tips #77 ~ [Issue 1205-2]  Wellness Weekly
 Dec 14, 2005 10:52 PST 

* 8 Tips for Holiday Calorie Cutting

Feasting with family and friends warms the heart, but it can wreak
havoc on your healthy eating habits. Fortunately, there are several
things you can do to control fat and calories, and not change the fun
of the feast.

1. Cutting back or eliminating the butter, oil, or margarine you use
dramatically cuts the calories in holiday meals. And you do not have
to sacrifice flavor: Try sautéing vegetables in wine or broth. Add
horseradish, chives or roasted garlic to potatoes instead of butter.
And skim off the fat when making gravy from meat drippings, (or buy a
special gravy boat that allows the fat to rise to the top and leaves
just the meat juices).

2. Switch to lower-fat versions of milk, yogurt, cream cheese, and
sour cream. And skip prepared dips for a mix of low-fat yogurt and
fat-free sour cream with a touch of seasoning.

3. Pick your protein wisely. Roast meats are your best bet. Most of
the calories in turkey, chicken, or duck are in the skin; remove that
and you have got a lean (and delicious) protein. Also keep an eye out
for high fat, salty meats such as bacon or sausage that can be
trimmed from recipes.

4. Sneak fruits, vegetables, and whole grains into your traditional
dishes. Since these foods are higher in fiber, they are going to be
more filling and you are likely to eat less of them. Start a stuffing
from scratch and toss in your favorite veggies and fruits like apples
or cranberries. Plus, you will cut out the high sodium found in
store-bought mix.

5. Skip the deep-fryer and pull out your nonstick cookware, which
requires very little fat for sauteing. Just by using lid and a
drizzle of water can help you avoid throwing in more fat to cook
vegetables. Or surprise your guests and throw a few things on the grill.

6. Save crucial calories by dusting cake with powdered sugar or
cocoa. (Drape a decorative doily over it to make a design.) For
muffins and quick breads, reduce fat without sacrificing taste and
texture by replacing half a cup of oil with a quarter-cup of oil and
a quarter-cup of applesauce.

7. Make one-crust pies. Pies with top and bottom crusts mean double
the calories. The filling can also make a big difference: Pumpkin and
sweet potato pie, which are packed with vitamin A, are better options
than the calorie-dense pecan pie. And limit the extras such as
whipped and ice cream.

8. Enjoy yourself! A little self-control and exercise go a long way,
and are good habits to follow throughout the year.

* Food Combinations For Health

We all know that certain foods can be categorized as bona fide cancer
preventers. But what do you get when those foods are combined? There
are currently 40 studies underway that examine specific food
combinations and their preventative health benefits. Early results
show that combining foods can offer even greater cancer prevention
and overall healthier combinations of nutrients than any one food can
offer individually. How about a filet of salmon on a bed of
watercress surrounded by a ring of broccoli florets, and crushed
walnuts dusted across the top - sound like an incredible dinner plate
at a fancy restaurant? It is also a cancer killer extraordinaire. You
see, each of these foods has a cancer-fighting ingredient. But
something magical happens when they are combined into one dish.
Together, they are particularly high in two nutrients - sulphoraphane
and selenium. The combination of these two nutrients is 13 times more
effective than either one alone.

* Cinnamon, Cayenne, And Oregano

Cinnamon helps control blood sugar levels in type-2 diabetics and
also helps normalize serum cholesterol and triglyceride levels. It
also aids digestion and reduces nausea. It has antibiotic properties
and can help prevent bladder infections. Oregano has more
antioxidants by weight than any other food tested so far. It also can
be used to help regulate digestion and prevent indigestion and gas.
It has antifungal, antibiotic, and antiparasitic properties, and also
helps regulate blood sugar. Cayenne pepper is well documented to
reduce indigestion, gas, and cramping. It has also been used
medically to reduce inflammation and pain. It is widely used in a
topical creams, containing Capsaicin, that helps relieve pain of
arthritis when used 3 to 4 times daily. Herbalists have used it to
treat stomach ulcers. It also dilates blood vessels, increasing
circulation throughout the body. People with high dietary levels of
cayenne have lower levels of heart disease.

* Coffee, Tea, For Healthy Liver

Drinking more than two cups of coffee or tea a day may help reduce
the risk of chronic liver disease in people at high risk for liver
injury, a new study suggests. This protective effect was observed in
people at higher risk for liver injury due to heavy drinking, being
overweight, diabetes, or iron overload. The study was conducted by
researchers from the U.S. National Institute of Diabetes and
Digestive and Kidney Diseases and from Social and Scientific Systems,
Inc. They analyzed 19 years of data on nearly 10,000 people whose
coffee and tea intake had been evaluated over time. Reporting in the
December issue of the journal "Gastroenterology," the researchers
found that people who drank more than two cups of coffee or tea a day
developed chronic liver disease half as often as people who consumed
less than a cup of tea or coffee a day.

* Stress May Lead To Quicker Skin Cancer

Stress speeds up the onset of skin cancer, at least in mice,
according to researchers at the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center in
Baltimore. The study, published in the "Journal of the American
Academy of Dermatology," found mice exposed to stressful conditions
and ultraviolet light - which is contained in sunlight - develop skin
cancers in less than half the time it took for non-stressed mice to
grow tumors. The researchers said if their findings are relevant in
humans, then stress-reducing programs such as relaxation and
meditation techniques may help those at high risk for skin cancer
stay healthy longer. "Chronic stress dampens our immune system and
impacts various aspects of our health," said study leader Dr.
Francisco Tausk.
	
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