Need more energy in the morning? Consider starting your day off with a smoothie! According to a great article by Wed MD on energy, "You feel better, mentally and physically, when you've had a meal that combines carbs and protein." Fruits are a great way to get carbs without processed sugars and flours. Now for protein, how do you know if you're getting enough? See this handy article that explains how much protein you need and where to get it, even if you're vegetarian. Below are some smoothie ideas that combine carbs + protein. If you have a favorite smoothie recipe, please share! Oatmeal Smoothie 1 cup Water 1 cup Oats 1.5 cups Kale or Spinach 2 cups Chopped Fruit (1 banana, plus berries or whatever you have lying around) 1/4 cup Peanutbutter Add 4 Ice cubes (add ice after everything else is blended; it will add a nice texture & cool things down) Berry Smoothie - Easily disguises tastes like kale and flaxseed, Hooray! 1 or 2 Bananas 1/2 cup Frozen Berries Almond Milk (or Water - gives it a thinner consistency. Add ~1/4 cup at the beginning. At the end you can add more if you want it thinner) 1 spoon of Peanutbutter (gives a nutty taste, if you're into that sorta thing, plus a smoother texture) Kale or Spinach (optional, but adds a ton of nutrients, fiber, and a great plant source of calcium. The taste is hidden by the rest of the ingredients) Flax seed (optional. A plant source of Omega 3 fats. Also makes your hair + nails grow strong and faster!) 1 other fresh fruit of your choice (Optional, but makes it even more delicious! Choose from: peeled orange, pineapple, or any fruit sitting in the fridge that needs to be eaten) A few ice cubes (add at the end for texture) Want more? See this woman's facebook page - a ton of smoothie ideas here!
Recently, I heard about someone with breast cancer who starved their body to avoid chemotherapy. Ever since, the guts and I have been wondering: Can you starve cancer by following a certain diet? Or is it only a preventative measure? Because not eating seems.. hard. So we starting researching and came across this July 2013 Ted Talk by William Li about diet and cancer prevention. That's 200% awesome if you don't have cancer. But what if you already have it? Researchers already knew, in 1923, that cancer cells use a ton of glucose (the nutrient we get from digesting carbohydrates) - more than regular cells. This is because they grow much faster than normal cells, so they need the extra energy. If you starve your body, even for a few hours, your cells can switch to using fat or protein. But do cancer cells do the same thing? Research from MIT says yes. Lucky for us, then, in July 2013 some great people at the University of Southampton have found something that cancer cells need for survival that normal cells don't need. More research from July 2013, thanks to the Thomas Jefferson University, resulted in this study about starving cancer cells through manipulating diet. Have you tried a diet approach to overcoming cancer, or know someone who has? Or do you think it's all a bunch of bunk?
What do you know about your pancreas? You're about to know a whole lot more!
- These guys figured out how to grow mini pancreases.
- It's located behind your stomach, but in front of your spine.
- The pancreas shares a duct with the liver and gallbladder. It's called the Ampulla of Vater & is not anyone's father.
- It also makes hormones that keep blood sugar levels from getting too high or low.
- Pancreases make enzymes to help digest your food: amylases (breaks down carbohydrates), proteases (breaks down protein), and lipases(breaks down fat)!
- A shortage of amylase or lipase can cause diarrhea, because colons hate undigested starch; if you don't have enough protease, this can cause allergic reactions because of partially digested chunks of protein.
- Your pancreas is part of the endocrine system because it releases hormones into the blood (a closed, internal circuit); but it's also part of the exocrine system, because it releases enzymes into the digestive tract, which is considered an external tract, since it begins and ends with the outside world.
Have more interesting facts about the pancreas? Share below!
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This month is Celiac Disease Awareness Month. Chances are, if you don't have the disease, you don't know much about it (unless you work in the health field). So to understand Celiac disease, we first have to know what a little thing called gluten is. Gluten is a protein in grains like wheat, oats, barley, and rye. It means "glue" in Latin, because it holds bread together and gives dough its stickiness. Different grains have different amounts of gluten; the more gluten, the chewier it makes your baked goods. For example, the flour used for bagels and pizza has more gluten than the flours used in light, crumbly pastries. So what does gluten have to do with Celiac disease? If gluten goes into the small intestine of someone with the disease, it causes an immune system reaction. This means gas, bloating, etc. "True celiacs" will have these reactions even if they eat a small amount of gluten. Other people may just be sensitive to gluten and need to eat less of it. More about Celiac disease here.