What are some foods to ease your anxiety?

People can make a variety of lifestyle changes to help manage their anxiety. Eating a diet high in vegetables, fruit, legumes, whole grains, and lean protein can be helpful.

Anxiety is a widespread condition, affecting millions of people globally. Symptoms vary, and some people only experience them now and then. However, someone who experiences symptoms for 6 months or longer may have a generalized anxiety disorder (GAD).

The symptoms of GAD include psychological and physical symptoms, such as:

  • fear
  • tension
  • excessive worry about everyday events and problems
  • irritability

Full story at Medical News Today

The diet that could reduce the risk of depression

A new study has provided further evidence that a healthful diet is good for the mind as well as the body, after finding that a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains may help to lower the risk of depression.

Researchers have found that people with closer adherence to the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) were less likely to have depression over 6.5 years than people with lower adherence to the diet.

Study co-author Dr. Laurel Cherian, of the Rush University Medical Center in Chicago, IL, and colleagues are due to present their findings at the American Academy of Neurology’s Annual Meeting next month, which will be held in Los Angeles, CA.

Full story at Medical News Today

New Study Suggests Low Vitamin D Causes Damage to Brain

A new study led by University of Kentucky researchers suggests that a diet low in vitamin D causes damage to the brain.

In addition to being essential for maintaining bone health, newer evidence shows that vitamin D serves important roles in other organs and tissue, including the brain. Published in Free Radical Biology and Medicine, the UK study showed that middle-aged rats that were fed a diet low in vitamin D for several months developed free radical damage to the brain, and many different brain proteins were damaged as identified by redox proteomics. These rats also showed a significant decrease in cognitive performance on tests of learning and memory.

“Given that vitamin D deficiency is especially widespread among the elderly, we investigated how during aging from middle-age to old-age how low vitamin D affected the oxidative status of the brain,” said lead author on the paper Allan Butterfield, professor in the UK Department of Chemistry, director of the Center of Membrane Sciences, faculty of Sanders-Brown Center on Aging, and director of the Free Radical Biology in Cancer Core of the Markey Cancer Center. “Adequate vitamin D serum levels are necessary to prevent free radical damage in brain and subsequent deleterious consequences.”

Full story of vitamin D and brain damage at Science Daily

Beedie Savage – President of Quantum Units Education

How much sex is considered exercise?

When I think of the ultimate sex workout, I picture the scene from “Mr. and Mrs. Smith” where Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie throw each other around their kitchen for an hour. Unfortunately, not every sexual experience is quite that… well, high-intensity. But how many calories do we really burn in the act?

The rumor: A bout of sexual activity can burn between 100 and 300 calories

We hear all the time that sex is a great workout, but what are the hard facts? How much sex is considered exercise? On a scale from fast asleep to Brangelina, where does the average sexual encounter lie on the calorie-burning scale?

The verdict: Sex burns a few calories, but frequent friskiness isn’t going to replace the gym

You may not be getting quite as good of a workout between the sheets as you think. According to a study conducted by the New England Journal of Medicine, sex lasts six minutes on average and only burns about 21 calories.

As an exercise physiologist and someone who even finds ways to burn calories while driving and working on my computer, I found this to be a very disappointing statistic. According to WebMD, 30 minutes of sex can burn in the neighborhood of 85 to 100 calories; if you feel like you have a pretty vigorous sex life, you’re probably on the higher end of that statistic.

Full story of burning calories during sex at CNN Health

Beedie Savage – President of Quantum Units Education

You’re eating more calories than you think

Calorie counting has long been touted as an effective tool for losing pounds or maintaining a healthy weight. But new research published in the British Medical Journal shows many of us are underestimating the calories we’re eating, especially when we visit fast food restaurants.

The study

Researchers interviewed more than 1,800 adults, 1,100 adolescents and 330 children at several fast food chains in New England. The interviews were done at McDonald’s, Burger King, Subway, KFC, Dunkin’ Donuts and Wendy’s around dinnertime and lunchtime.

Study participants were asked to estimate their meal’s calorie count. Researchers then collected the bill to later tally the correct amount of calories using nutrition info posted on the chain’s website.

The results

At least 40% of the study participants reported eating at the restaurant where they were interviewed at least once a week. More than 20% of the adult participants noticed posted calorie information, but only 5% said they used that information when purchasing food.

Full story of the calories we actually consume at CNN Health

Beedie Savage – President of Quantum Units Education