Mediterranean Diet vs. Cancer Clinical Trials

Lower incidents of cancer and “arrest progression” of  Breast, Colon, and Prostate, as well as a slowed “Aging” process across all micro organisms, are being attributed to nutrients consumed from the Mediterranean Diet.  Organs effected by Alzheimer, Cardiovascular, Diabetes, Hypertension, and Parkinson Disease once thought to be pre-dispositioned diseases, are now completely avoided due to the higher intake of a plant based-fish/poultry diet that includes a lifestyle change with exercise. In order to understand nutrition related disease we first have to address nutritional intake for the Standard American Diet (S.A.D.) and understand what nutrients are common within the Mediterranean Diet that promote well-being.

Compare and Contrast the Standard American Diet (SAD) to the Mediterranean Diet on the following pie charts:

Standard American Diet: 2,594 cals/day

Caloric Sweeteners, Flour, and Cereal Products make up 41% of the S.A. D., Fruits and Vegetables are only 7% of the S.A.D.

Standard American Diet
Fruit/Vegetable 205 .08%
Fats 340 13%
Dairy 256 10%
Sweeteners 440 0.17%
Pork/Meat/Chxn 298 0.11%
Nuts 175 .07%
Pasta/Bread 619 23%
 Calories/day 2,594

Two critical points that Doctors raise as red flags. 1. Higher amounts of calories are  in the Standard American Diet. 2 Empty calories that promote aging is due to how the body is required to process calories that the body cannot use and have small to no amount of  vitamins, minerals, or antioxidants available.

Chemical Sweeteners and Refined Flour

  1. In contrasting the diets, note that 41% of the Standard American Diet is dedicated to the consumption of chemical sweeteners, refined flour, and cereal products.
  2. The Mediterranean Diet has no chemical sweeteners and only 17% of the dietary intake is in pasta and breads.
Calories Mediterranean Diet
Fruit/Vegetable 400 22%
Olive Oil 360 20%
Dairy 257 15%
Wine/Liquor 150 0.09%
Pork/Fish/Chxn 105 0.06%
Nuts 175 1%
Pasta/Bread 300 17%
 Calories/day 1747

Fats, Oil and Dairy products are almost an even draw in calories.

S.A.D 596 calories or 23% of dietary intake  vs Mediterranean Diet 617 or  35% of dietary intake.

  1. S.A.D. utilizes fats such as Margarine, Canola Oil, Butter, and processed cheese.
  2. Mediterranean Diet utilizes Olive Oil (3 Tbsp/day), daily fresh made or aged cheese.

So far the Standard American Diet in just two arguments has shown that 1,655 calories, or 64% of an average American’s diet is composed of sweeteners, refined flour, and processed saturated animal fat. The Mediterranean Diet demonstrates that 917 calories, or  52% of it’s nutritional intake comes from grains, refined flour, plant based oil, and freshly made or aged saturated animal fat.

S.A.D. Protein intake is 473 calories or 18% vs. Mediterranean Diet 235 calories or 13% of total intake.

  1. S.A.D. is heavily loaded with red meat some chicken / pork and low amounts of fish. It is important to note that red meat has 92 calories per ounce.
  2. Mediterranean Diet loads up on fish, poultry and some pork with red meat entering their dietary intake only once every 7-10 days. White meats and fish range from 32-37 calories per ounce are easy to digest and the amount of available oils high in omega 3 promotes healthy organs.

Protein intake is a critical part of everyone’s diet. Vitamins B12 & B16 are most prominent in meats and provide nutrition for the central nervous system.  However, balance is most important when consuming protein. Omega 3 and Protein are in all the meats, fish, and poultry, however the omega-3 is in higher amounts within certain fish (Anchovies, Sardines, Herring, Mackerel, Salmon) also easier to digest. Red meat can take 48-72 hours to digest, therefore a contributor to the aging process of the body as organs endure a work out to utilize and expel what is not needed. In many cases saturated fat is then deposited into the arteries and begin to engulf the organs.

Benefits of Fruits, Vegetables, Herbs, Spices, and Resveratrol

  1. S.A.D. shows that Americans consume only 205 calories or .08% of fruits and vegetables through out the day. (Eat the skin if not hard or bitter.)
  2. Those who follow the Mediterranean Diet are more likely to consume 400 calories or 22% of fruits and vegetables through out the day. Consuming wholesome nutrients found within natural wrappers provides the human body systems with vitamins and minerals that it needs to function daily.

    Free Radicals expedite the aging process by harming the cell membrane. Anti-oxidants neutralize the free radicals, and therefore protect all cell membranes. Eat a variety of colorful fruits, vegetables, herbs, and spices to keep your body loaded up on anti-oxidants.

Clinical trials are executing nutrition in plant extract form as a way of combatting disease and researching compounds that come from Mediterranean herbs and spices:

  • Basil / Bay Leaves:  Antibacterial, antiviral, and antioxidant properties. New evidence suggests basil can decrease carcinogenesis, and help protect against the proliferation of cervical cancer (HeLa cells).
  • Cardamom: Is loaded with anti oxidants that purge the body from free radicals that help prevent multiple forms of cancer. Found to be anti-proliferatvie, anti-invasive, anti-inflammatory, anti-angiogenic. Colon Cancer
  • Oregano: Has flavonoids and phenolic acids (antimicrobial properties) found to prevent colon cancer and restrict growth of malignant cancer cells
  • Rosemary: Aids in preventing oxidative stress which causes prostate and ovarian cancer

Studies have shown utilizing plant extracts from Mediterranean Spices that are linked to reduced incidents of cancer or arrested progression of cancer are:

  • Cinnamon / Cloves: Increased levels of iron and calcium are components that may be attributes of the anti carcinogenic, pro-apoptotic, anti-proliferative properties. Cervical Cancer, Colon Cancer.
  • Ginger: Has shown that it inhibits cancer cell growth in prostate cancer patients.
  • Sumac: Has both anti-oxidants and anti-microbial properties, preventing the on set of cancer.
  • Turmeric:  Contains anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-viral, anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, and anti-carcinogenic activities and thus has a potential against various malignant diseases, diabetes, allergies, arthritis, Alzheimer’s disease, Breast Cancer, Colon Cancer and other chronic illnesses.  Plant based resveratrol is known to slow the aging process and is tested to see which cancers that it can prevent, arrest, and cure.  “Resveratrol (1 mg/kg orally) reduced the number and size of the esophageal tumors in rats treated with a carcinogen; and in several studies, small doses (0.02–8 mg/kg) of resveratrol, given prophylactically, reduced or prevented the development of intestinal and colon tumors in rats given different carcinogens. Similarly, topical application of resveratrol in mice, both before and after the UVB exposure, inhibited the skin damage and decreased skin cancer incidence.”

Add resveratrol to your meals, finding it within a variety of sources: purple grapes, cranberries, blueberries, peanuts, pomegranate and Italian Red Wine.

Making small dietary changes will promote overall health and reduce incidence of nutrition related disease and cancers, therefore leading to days of improved strength, stamina, and endurance.

By: Kimberly Crocker-Scardicchio

References

Hypertension: Best Fall & Winter Foods to Reduce Blood Pressure

Fall & Winter Foods that contribute to overall reduction of blood pressure are in abundance as we move through the cooler moths. Eating seasonally is important for your body’s overall health as the variety of nutrients contribute to the body’s natural cleansing and healing abilities.

Fruits and vegetables that are higher in potassium rid the body of excess sodium, providing balance for the body and reducing overall blood pressure and contribute to weight loss. The following list of nutrition have all been researched and have shown evidence of reducing hypertension. Include them in your daily dietary intake!

Vegetables                                                                                             Fruits  

  • Baked Potato                                                                         Bananas
  • Beans                                                                                      Dried Apricots
  • (brown, kidney, lima, pinto, white)                                  Oranges
  • Lentils                                                                                     Prunes
  • Dark Chocolate (1 square per day)
  • Mushrooms                                                                            Dairy
  • Olives and Olive Oil                                                               1% Milk/Skim
  • Pumpkin                                                                                  Yogurt
  • Soybeans
  • Spinach                                                                                    Fish
  • Sunflower Seeds                                                                     Salmon
  • Winter Squash
  • Yams
  • Zucchini

Herbs and Spices to Reduce Hypertension

The following list of herbs, spices and vegetables have shown to reduce blood pressure. Their protective properties also contribute to overall heart and kidney health.

  • Cinnamon
  • Cardamon
  • Hawthorn (found in supplement form)
  • Garlic
  • Onions

Salt, Sugar, Fat, Alcohol

Know your numbers, improve your health.

How well do you know: Salt, Sugar, Fat and Alcohol?
All are tasty! Consumption of Salt, Sugar & Alcohol should be enjoyed in moderation.  All three can bring satisfaction and too much can have a negative effect on an individual, promoting health problems.

Salt will lead to hypertension. Reduce your risk of high blood pressure, look for salt that is hidden in: can foods, soy sauce, chicken and meats (injected with saline water), salad dressing, cheese, fast foods, and prepared frozen foods.  Daily recommendation of sodium  consumption is no more than 2.3 grams per day (1/2 teaspoon) and 1.5 grams for those over 51 years old.

Sodium levels reflected in a blood draw should be 135-145 mEq/L. Increased levels are linked to dehydration or renal (kidney) disease. Decreased levels are indicative of heart failure or edema. An individual that suffers from hypertension is strongly encouraged to follow the DASH Diet, designed to promote a low sodium diet and promotes overall wellness.

Sugar as we know and enjoy it! What other forms of sugar do you consume?

Sugar comes in many forms. A few common names are: sucrose (white), fructose (fruits and veggies), lactose (milk) and glucose (fuel for  our body’s energy). Studies of how sugar impacts both individuals and society are being conducted. For now, (within the context of healthy eating) studies show that sugar does not raise blood glucose any more quickly than do other starchy carbohydrates such as potatoes, rice, or pasta. Keep in mind, it is ones best interest to consume fruit, vegetable and grain carbohydrates as the element of fiber (both soluble and insoluble) will stabilize blood glucose levels by ridding the body of what is not important.

  • Fasting glucose normal levels 70-99 mg/dl.
  • Pre-diabetes 100-125 mg/dl.
  • Diabetes  >125 mg/dl.
  • Numbers that are over 125 mg/dl will prompt your doctor to ask you to return on a different day to draw blood a second time to better regulate the glucose levels.
  • Talk with your Doctor, Dietitian, or Diabetes Educator about obtaining optimal glucose levels by following  a balanced meal plan
Oil is a healthy fat that keeps the body well lubricated.

Oil is a healthy fat that keeps the body well lubricated.

Fats, when possible, should be consumed in liquid (unsaturated) form at room temperature. Olive Oil is an example of a healthy fat and lubricant for veins, arteries and organs. The presence of fat assists fat soluble vitamins with digestion and are stored in the liver. 3-4 tablespoons a day will keep the body healthy.

The Meditarranean Diet is an easy lifestyle to follow and allows for an individual to enjoy a wide variety of foods.

Reduced amounts of meats should be consumed 3 times a week, 4 ounces/day. Fish is light, easy to digest and contributes to raising healthy (HDL) cholesterol and lowering lousy (LDL) cholesterol. Enjoy fish 4 times a week! Solid fats (saturated) like cheese and butter should be consumed in lesser amounts of 1 ounce a day for cheese and 2 eight ounce glasses of 1% milk of choice (almond, cow or soy).

Ideal Cholesterol & Triglyceride Numbers
HDL cholesterol 40-60 mg/dl.
LDL cholesterol <100-129 mg/dl
Triglycerides <150 mg/dl

Wine in moderation is good for the body.

Wine in moderation is good for the body.

Alcohol
Alcohol can make your blood sugar levels fall too low and put you at risk of hypoglycemia, so people with diabetes are advised to drink alcohol with a meal or snack and not by itself.
Alcoholic beverages and drink mixers contain sugar and carbohydrates, so they must be figured into your overall meal plan. Your body will burn the alcohol as a source of fuel instead of burning fat.
If you use insulin, limit alcohol to two drinks per day.  Consume alcoholic drinks only with a meal or snack, and do not reduce your usual amount of carbohydrate.

Alcoholism is determined through a blood draw. A quick look at potassium levels maybe an indication of kidney or heart problems. Lower levels or potassium  is also a clue to a problem with alcoholism.  Potassium levels should be 3.6-5 mEq/L.

All our favorite vices can be included in our daily diet. Done in moderation, we can benefit from the joy of having them, but excessive consumption can damage our organs. Monitor your blood draw by requesting a copy of your blood results and know your numbers to stay healthy.

Kimberly Crocker-Scardicchio

References
Sugar and Diabetes  http://www.bddiabetes.com/us/main.aspx?cat=1&id=274
Fiber stabilizes blood glucose http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15173415
Reference Range for Blood Draw http://labtestsonline.org/understanding/features/ref-ranges/

Mediterranean Diet Low Sodium Meal Plan

The Mediterranean Diet is high in fruits, vegetables, and lean meats and seafood. The common thread is an abundance of Vitamin E found in many meals. Lastly, socialize and exercise with family and friends to make this a complete Lifestyle Change!

The following sample daily menu is a plan that incorporates both the Mediterranean and “DASH” diets, with the latter focused on reduced sodium intake.  By structuring meals throughout the week improved health will soon be noticed. One change that is noticeable with listed meals is that the calories are loaded in the morning and afternoon, the calories then taper off in the evening.

A key element to the success of this diet is reduced low salt intake in the food preparation. Fluids are equally important for a healthy lifestyle, add 6-8 glasses of water to your daily routine, choosing to squeeze the contents of 1/2 -1 whole lemon to a single  glass of water each day.

Please contact the listed telephone number if you are interested in more information or would like to establish a consultation. kimberlyscardicchio@yahoo.com

Breakfast

  • 1 slice whole wheat toast (I choose Aunt Millies “5 Grain Bread Light”, 2.5 grams fiber/slice.)
  • 1 tbsp Raspberry Jelly
  • Oatmeal (preferably 1 or 5 minute stove top)
  • 1 orange
  • (1.5  breads, 1 grain, 1 fruit)
  • 2 glasses of water (one glass of water with the juice squeezed from a fresh lemon.)

1 glass of water

10:30 am Snack
Chop and Combine

  • 1 Tbsp unsalted nuts  or sunflower seeds
  • 1 (choose 1) apple, plum, pear, peach
  • 1 four ounce low fat yogurt
  • 1 glass water
  • (1 protein, 1 fruit,  1 dairy)

Lunch

  • 2-3 oz fillet of fish, lean meat or poultry with 1/4 tsp salt or Mrs. Dash salt substitute
  • 1 c. ea. sliced carrots / zucchini (sautee 15 min’s with 1/8 c. olive oil. Add minced garlic, parsley)
  • diced 1 potato, 1 pepper, 1 peeled onion season with rosemary, thyme, 1/4 tsp salt, 1/8 c. oil. (Heat on med. for 20 minutes.)
  • 1 glass of wine
  • 1/2 cup grapes
  • (3 vegetable, 1 fruit, 1 protein,  1 fat)
  • 1 glass of water

2:00 pm   Snack

  • 1 Banana, or 1/4 cup berries, or 7 prunes
  • 1 glass of water
  • (1 fruit)

1 glass of water

Dinner

  • 1 cup lettuce
  • 1/2 cup tomato
  • 1 cup VEGETABLE: avocado, beans, sweet potato, or baked potato
  • 4 ounces of fish or chicken
  • 1 ounce of low fat cheese
  • 1-2 tsp Olive Oil and Vinegar
  • Glass of water with lemon
  • 1 Fruit of choice
  • (3 vegetable, 1 fat, 1 dairy, 1 protein, 1 fruit)

2 glasses of  water before bed

Calculate Cholesterol, Choose TLC Diet to Menu Plan

Being informed and understanding what cholesterol is will provide stronger knowledge of individual “Specimen Information”, which should be requested from your Doctor after having blood drawn. Compare your numbers to the information listed below,  choose your foods wisely to improve your daily nutritional intake, and cleanse your body, optimizing it’s overall function in keeping you healthy.

Cholesterol is a fat,  lipid, or a sterol, from which hormones are made. It is a waxy substance that resembles the very fine scrapings of a whitish-yellow candle. Cholesterol flows through your body via your bloodstream, lipids are oil-based and blood is water-based, they don’t mix. If cholesterol were dumped into your bloodstream, it would congeal into unusable globs.

The fat in these particles are made up of cholesterol, triglycerides and a phospholipid, which helps make the whole particle stick together. Triglycerides are a particular type of fat that have three fatty acids attached to an alcohol called glycerol, composed of 90 percent of the fat in the food you eat. The body needs triglycerides for energy, but as with cholesterol, too much is bad for the arteries and the heart.

  • Total Cholesterol Reference Range: 125-200 mg/dl     
  • HDL Cholesterol Reference Range: 40-60 mg/dl 
  • TriglyceridesReference Range:  <150mg/dl                   
  • Direct LDL Cholesterol Reference Range: 100 – 129 mg/dl

                                                                                                                                                                                                               

Healthy Cholesterol Levels, (HDL) should be greater than 50-60 mg/dl.   HDL is a cholestrol that works within the arteries to reduce accumulation of plaque, that can lead to artherosclerosis, in turn, reducing your risk for heart disease. HDL is monitored to ensure there is enough of it to fight off the plaque build up within the arteries.

 “LDL cholesterol”, explained by Harvard University“in most people, (60-70 % of cholesterol) is carried in LDL particles, which act as ferries, taking cholesterol to the parts of the body that need it. Unfortunately, if you have too much LDL in the bloodstream, it deposits the cholesterol into the arteries, which can cause blockages and lead to heart attacks. The good news is that the amount of LDL in your blood-stream is related to the amount of saturated fat and cholesterol you eat. So, most people can decrease their LDL if they follow a reduced-fat diet.”

VLDL, stated by the “Clinical Reference Laboratory”, expressed as: “VLDL is a major carrier of triglyceride (60 -70% triglyceride 10-15% cholesterol). Circulating fatty acids are converted by the liver to form triglycerides.” Dr. Ginsberg of Columbia university simplifies the definition, “Very-Low Density Lipids are complexes of lipids and proteins assembled in the liver in response to nutrients and hormones. When VLDL are secreted, they carry almost all of the triglyceride in the blood-stream (they are about 85% triglycerides themselves), transporting triglycerides from the liver. When we are overweight, insulin resistant, or have diabetes, our livers secrete more VLDL with more triglycerides on every VLDL particle”.

People have varying degrees of success in lowering their cholesterol by changing their diets.  Meal Plan changes and Exercise both contribute to  lowering cholesterol and are highly recommended before pharmaceuticals are introduced. High cholesterol due to dietary intake of high saturated  foods (anything with animal fat) could be lowered by 5% to 20% with nutritional changes. The Therapeutic Lifestyle Change (TLC) Diet is recommended by the National Cholesterol Education Program of the U.S. National Institutes of Health. 

Calculating total cholesterol helps to put the pieces of the whole together.   The math equation for calculating total cholesterol is:

Total Cholesterol Formula  (TC) = LDL + HDL + (Triglycerides/5)

  • Sample lipid panel
  • Cholesterol, Total=195
  • HDL Cholesterol=55
  • Triglycerides = 100  (100/5=20)
  • Direct LDL Cholesterol=120

How Total Cholesterol is calculated using the sample numbers listed above.

  • example: (LDL) 120+ (HDL) 55 + 20= 195 (TC) Total Cholesterol

Calculating:  VLDL=Triglycerides/5

  • Triglycerides=100
  • example: 100/5=20 (VLDL)
  • Reference Range for VLDL is 5-40 mg/dl

Calculate Cholesterol Ratio

  • Total Cholesterol (mg/dl) / HDL Cholesterol (mg/dl)
  • Example: Total Cholesterol 200 mg/dl/ 50 mg/dl  HDL Cholesterol = 4.1  According to the American Heart Association is to keep your cholesterol ratio at 5 to 1 or lower.
  • Ideal ratio will be 3.5 to 1. Higher cholesterol ratio indicates a risk of heart disease, a lower ratio indicates a reduced risk of heart disease.

 

Various foods, beverages and spices are known for reducing, or interfering with bad cholesterol (LDL) and carrying it out of the body. Choose a variety of foods from the following lists including them at all your meals.

  •  Fruits and Vegetables (totaling 9 per day)
  • Teas
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Cinnamon1-4g (1/3 tsp – 1 1/2 tsp a day)
  • Ginger (250 mcg/day capsule form)
  •  Honey 3 1/2 tablespoons / day

Reduce the saturated fat in your diet 

  1. Eat fish 3-4 times a week and benefit from Omega 3!
  2. Limit the amount of meat and milk products.
  3. Choose low-fat products from various food groups.
  4. Replace butter, a saturated fat with: Extra Virgin Olive, Canola, or Peanut oils.  7% of your daily calories should come from saturated fat (200 mg)   with 25% to 35% of daily calories  from unsaturated fat. 
  5.  Your diet should include calories to maintain your desired weight and avoid gaining weight.

Fluids are equally important to a successful diet.  Add 1-2 glasses of water with 1/2 to 1 whole lemon each day. Drink 1-2 cups of Oolong tea each day. Oolong tea burns over 157% more fat than Green Tea and is a popular tea designed to accelerate weight loss. 

TLC Diet is recommended by Doctors as a path for reducing high cholesterol.  Calories/day  1100 – 1695

Lean meat, poultry, fish, dry legumes Choose 5 ounces (140 g)  per day  

  • Anchovies, Mackeral, Sardines, Salmon,
  • Substitute 1/4 cup tofu, or 1/2 cup dry beans or peas for 1 ounce of meat or fish.
  • 2 tablespoons (1 oz) nuts (Almonds, Walnuts, Hazelnuts, Peanuts Soynuts) or seeds
  • Eggs, 2 yolks per week, 1 whole egg. Egg whites or substitutes are okay to eat.
  • Lean Meat. 3 0z. 165 calories, 0 g carbohydrate, 21 g protein, 9 g fat

Low-fat milk products.  Choose 2 per day     

  • 2 to 3 per day
  • 1 cup nonfat or 1% milk
  • 1 cup nonfat or low-fat yogurt
  • 1 ounce fat-free or low-fat cheese
  • Each serving. 80-110 calories, 12 g carbohydrate, 8 g protein, 0-3 g fat

Fruits.  Choose 4-5 per day the selection is endless!    

  • Apple, Apricots, Berries, Banana, Grapes, Melons, Orange, Pear, Plums, Prunes
  • Each serving.  60 calories, 15 g carbohydrate, 0 g protein, 0 g fat

Various Vegetables!  Choose 5-7 per day          

  • Artichokes, Avocado, Peppers, Zucchini, Cucumbers, Mushrooms,Eggplants, Asparagus, Legumes, Broccoli.
  • 1/2 cup cooked (season with garlic parsley and oil), Grilled, or Raw vegetables
  • Each serving.  25 calories, 5 g carbohydrate, 2 g protein, 0 g fat
    1 cup raw thick green leafy greens

Whole grains for bread, cereals, pasta, rice .  Choose 4-6 servings per day.

  •  Whole Grains, Choose Aunt Millies breads.
  • 1 slice whole grain bread
  • 1/2 wheat or multi-grain bagel, or English muffin
  • 1 ounce cold cereal (Bran)
  • Oatmeal for breakfast. (Quaker Oatmeal steel cut. Avoid 1 minute oatmeal)
  • 1/2 cup cooked whole grain pasta, rice, noodles, or other grains
  • Each serving. 80 calories, 15 g carbohydrate, 3 g protein, 1-3 g fat

Fat and oils.  Choose 2-3 servings per day

  • Each serving.  45 calories, 0 g carbohydrate, 0 g protein, 5 g fat.
    No Trans Fat (hydrogenated oils)
    1 teaspoon monounsaturated oil, such as Canola, Corn, EVOO, or Peanut
    1 tablespoon salad dressing (vinagrette)
    1 tbsp MCT Oil

By:  K. Crocker

Literature Research

  1.  Diet Low Sodium Meal Plan
  2. VLDL http://www.crlcorp.com/testDetails.cfm?facilityID=TLS&testID=510
  3. VLDL Dr. Ginsberg  http://www.medscape.org/viewarticle/569664av
  4. LDL Harvard University  http://www.health.harvard.edu/newsweek/Understanding_Cholesterol.htm
  5. Ginger reduces LDL Cholesterol  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed?term=ginger%20reduces%20ldl
  6. Cinnamon reduces LDL Cholesterol http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14633804
  7. Honey Reduces Cholesterol http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18454257
  8. Calculate Cholesterol Ratio  http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/cholesterol-ratio/AN01761

Foods that Increase HDL and Reduce LDL

“Consumption of fruits, vegetables and whole grains is critical to lowering blood cholesterol levels and in turn limits excess cholesterol absorption in the intestines.” According to Net Wellness, “you might be interested in how quickly blood levels of other things change with diet and exercise, since they are all related to heart disease. Insulin and triglyceride levels (in the bloodstream) will fall within two weeks, HDL (high density lipoprotein/’good’ cholesterol) is slightly slower and reductions may take up to 6 weeks (and you may not want to reduce this part of the cholesterol), and LDL (low density lipoprotein/’bad’ cholesterol) is the slowest of all with the maximum reductions taking 3-4 months. ”

Biosynthesis of cholesterol is one way that cholesterol is found in our bodies, however, cholesterol is also taken in from dairy and meat products

Biosynthesis of cholesterol produced in the body’s liver  is key to an individual’s overall health. About 20-25% of cholesterol is made in the liver and its production is needed as:

  • A precursor to bile acids,
  • Assisting in the absorption of fat soluble vitamins A, D, E, K across the digestive tract
  • It plays a part in the synthesis of vitamin D,  estrogen, testosterone, progesterone and other various hormones.
  • Properly structures membranes allowing for the function of proton, hydrogen and sodium ions. The insulation of the brain’s myelin sheath also comes from cholesterol and maintains the proper conduction of impulses.

Cholesterol comes from the Greek language; chole (bile), stereos (solid), -ol (AN alcohol referred to as an organic substance, such as a waxy steroid or fat) 

Not all fats are created equal. Fats found in fried foods and baked goods should be eaten in lesser amounts. Aim for including healthy oils that come from vegetables, seeds and nuts

There is little use for animal cholesterol which comes from dairy, meat and fish products. Cholesterol from animals is responsible for increasing LDL cholesterol known as the non-healthy cholesterol, leading to blocked or hardening of arteries.

Plants have very little cholesterol which comes from phytosterols,  (flax seed, peanuts and olives), responsible for competing with LDL cholesterol and reducing it’s negative impact on the body.

HDL is a healthy cholesterol needed to keep our hormones, organs, muscles, veins and arteries operating properly. It works as a sponge, collecting loose cholesterol within the blood stream.

Consumption of fruits, vegetables and whole grains is critical to lowering blood cholesterol levels and in turn limits excess cholesterol absorption in the intestines.

FRUIT 4 servings/day Great for Reduction of LDL Cholesterol and Increase HDL Cholesterol:

  • blueberries
  • apples
  • prunes
  • pears
  • plums
  • apricots

Choose fruits whose skin can be eaten. Eating fruits with membranes or seeds are also helpful for reduction of LDL and increase of HDL cholesterol:

  • oranges
  • grapefruit
  • pomegranates

VEGGIES 5 servings/day Great for Reduction of LDL and increase HDL Cholesterol: Any leafy green, introducing roughage into the diet:

  • Avocado
  • broccoli
  • lentils/legumes
  • rapini
  • kale
  • collard greens
  • spinach
  • lettuce
  • zucchini

WHOLE GRAINS promoting soluble fiber

  • 1 cup of oatmeal
  • Seeds: flax, pumpkin or sunflower seeds added to salads
  •  add barley to soups.

Cholesterol from meat is linked to increased LDL cholesterol overtime and should be consumed in moderation. 4 ounces twice a day is considered sufficient. LDL cholesterol should be less than 100

 Fish, Lean Meat, Poultry 2 servings/day. 3-4 ounces per serving. Eat more Fish which contains healthy omega 3  oils such as;

  • Mackerel
  • Salmon
  • Sardines
  • Anchovies

Nuts about 1 tsp 4 times a week.  (Monounsaturated fats.)

  • Almonds
  • Chestnuts
  • Hazelnuts
  • Pecans
  • Pistacchios
  • Walnuts

Cholesterol from phytosterols found in seeds and olives is considered effective in lowering LDL cholesterol and known to be linked to healthy cholesterol or HDL which should be measured between 40-60.

OILS 2 tbsp per day Extra Virgin Olive Oil is a monounsaturated fat and contributes to raising HDL (healthy cholesterol) and causes LDL cholesterol to be reduced.
Water 8 glasses / day

LDL is an unhealthy cholesterol only when it becomes oxidized.  Oxidation of LDL is due to free radicals floating around in our body which are  O+ broken off from degenerating protein called homocysteine. The positively charged oxygen then attaches itself to LDL cholesterol and plaque begins to form in your arteries and veins. Hence forth, why anti-oxidants from fruit and vegetables need to be a part of ones daily intake, to clean up the free radicals.

LDL cholesterol is established through our nutrition,  it is found in trans fats and animal fat.  Trans fats or elaidic acid, is defined as a carbon within a molecule that has been transcended, commonly through hydrogenation of oils, making the trans fat “plastic like” within arteries and veins.  Trans fats are found in margarine, shortening, cookies, and oil-frying.

Animal fats, or saturated fats, are found in milk, butter, cheese, ice cream, meats, poultry, pork and fish.  Although we need a certain amount of meats for vitamin B and fish for Omega-3, they should be consumed in small amounts 3-4 ounce (84-112 g) servings, twice a day.

3 Effective Steps to Increase HDL

  1. Walk 30-60 minutes five times a week for a total of 2 1/2 hours per week.  Walking twice a day for 20-30 minutes each time will increase your metabolism, strengthen bones, muscles and keep your heart pumping…increasing the HDL cholesterol, which removes LDL cholesterol from your arteries.
    z’From an overall health promoting angle it is advisable to endeavor to have 2-3 bowel movements per day to eliminated waste, toxins and cholesterol from your system. For everyday that goes by without having a bowel movement, the toxins are reabsorbed.”
  2. Consume foods that increase HDL levels:  Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Canola and vegetable oils, Walnuts, Fish and fiber,  which are Fruit and Vegetables . Shoot for a total of 4 1/2 cups servings a day of fruits and vegetables.  Please refer to:  Daily Serving Guidelines.
  3. Beverages that assist in increasing HDL levels: Cleanse your body with water and lemon water  throughout the day.  Wine and alcohol in moderation; 1 glass for a woman, 2 glasses for a man.

By: K. Crocker

References:

Kidney Disease Low Phosphorus Diet

We are all provided with two equal fist sized organs, found in our lower back on either side of the spine just above the waist called Kidneys. Renal physiology is the study of kidney function, while nephrology is a medical specialty that focuses on kidney disease.

In brief, the kidneys perform multiple functions to sustain the life of the body, cleanse the body by removing waste and excess fluid through urine, provide a balance of water, salt, potassium, phosphorus and produce an active form of Vitamin D.  Multiple hormones and enzymes are produced in the kidneys and released into the body affecting the function of other organs, signaling red blood cell production, regulating blood pressure (Renin) and calcium metabolism.

The degradation of the kidneys can be influenced by a variety of factors. Having regular check-ups is key to kidney health. Do not miss doctor appointments if you have diabetes, high blood pressure, chronic urinary tract infection, bladder issues, chronic lower back pain. Any of all of these factors should be monitored an communicated in a timely manner.

   When kidneys begin to function improperly an individual may have any, or all of the following symptoms: nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, fatigue and weakness, loss of energy, sleep problems, any change in output or color of urine, decreased mental awareness, muscle twitches or cramps, hiccups, swelling of feet or ankles, persistent itching, chest pains, shortness of breath, high blood pressure. Symptoms should be discussed with your Doctor. Early detection of kidney disease can be addressed, so that the health of the kidneys can be sustained.

A diet low in phosphorus, sodium and balanced protein is critical when addressing kidney disease. Listed below are foods allowed for patients facing kidney issues taken from DaVita who specializes in Renal Disease.  Four important points should be reviewed with your Doctor or Dietitian.

  • Foods Low in Phosphorus (less than 110 mg per serving)
  • Consume 800-1000 mg of phosphorous per day.
  • Portion Size is critical to staying in range of low phosphorus.
  • (A normal phosphorus blood level is 3.5 to 5.5 mg/dL)
Additional information on the kidneys can be reviewed at The National Kidney Foundation. Learn more about Renal Health, disease and locate professionals that can answer your questions.
By: Kimberly Crocker-Scardicchio
References
The National Kidney Foundation http://www.kidney.org/index.cfm
DaVita http://www.davita.com/
Webmd http://www.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/understanding-kidney-disease-basic-information
Mayo Clinic http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/kidney-failure/DS00682

LOW PHOSPHORUS FOOD SERVINGS & mg/100g

Low-phosphorus meat and poultry choices
Fresh or frozen red meats without additives or enhancements are better choices (be sure to check ingredient labels; even fresh chicken and pork may be injected with phosphates and sodium) for a kidney diet.

** Choose meats without breading, marinades or sauce. On average, fresh meat contains 65 mg of phosphorus per ounce and 7 grams of protein per ounce. Check with your Doctor or Dietitian on serving size per meat. While most will say that 3 ounces is fine the following serving size has been modified to a 2 ounce serving size.

Phosphorus content for a 2-ounce portion, cooked:

Beef, pot roast: 104 mg Beef, sirloin steak: 126 mg
Chicken breast, skinless: 126  mg Chicken thigh, skinless: 100 mg
Hamburger patty 90% lean ground beef: 114 mg Lamb chop: 122 mg
Pork roast: 126 mg
Turkey breast meat, skinless: 122 mg Turkey thigh meat, skinless: 114 mg

 Low-phosphorus fish choices 

Fish is a high-quality protein that contains omega-3 fatty acids. Fatty saltwater fish such as salmon and tuna are highest in omega-3, reducing inflammation and protecting against heart disease and cancer.

Phosphorus content for a 2-ounce portion, cooked:

Mahi Mahi: 104 mg
Tuna, canned: 88 mg

 

Low-phosphorus seafood choices

Seafood is an excellent source of very low-fat, high-quality protein. However, there are differences in varieties of the same species. For example, Pacific oysters contain 50 mg more phosphorus in a 3-ounce serving compared to Eastern oysters.

Phosphorus content for a 3-ounce portion, cooked:

Shrimp: 120 mg
Oysters, Eastern: 120 mg
Snow crab: 120 mg

 Low-phosphorus breads

Bread is a good source of carbohydrates and calories needed by your body fo renergy production. While whole grain bread is a healthy source of fiber, it also has more phosphorus and potassium than white flour bread.

Phosphorus content for a 1-ounce portion, (usually one piece of bread):

Bagel, cinnamon raisin, blueberry, plain, onion, 1 ounce: 53-70 mg Corn tortilla, 6-inch: 75 mg
English muffin, 1 ounce: 52-76 mg Flat bread: 48 mg
Flour tortillas, made without baking powder: 20-37 mg French bread or rolls: 28 mg
Italian bread or rolls: 29 mg Light wheat bread: 38 mg
Pita bread, white: 58 mg Sourdough bread: 30 mg
White bread: 25 mg

 Low-phosphorus pasta and rice

Pasta, rice and other grains are a great source of carbohydrates, calories and B vitamins, plus zinc, copper and iron. For a kidney diet, whole grains like brown rice, oat bran and wild rice ARE LIMITED due to the higher phosphorus content. A half cup of brown rice has 75-81 mg of phosphorus which can add up if you eat a larger portion.

Phosphorus content for a 1/2 cup portion, cooked:

Couscous: 20 mg Egg noodles: 50-60 mg
Macaroni: 40 mg Pearled barley: 43 mg
Plain white rice, short, medium or long grain: 35 mg Rice noodles: 14-28 mg
Spaghetti: 42 mg

 Low-phosphorus dairy, dairy substitutes and egg whites

Milk and milk products are high in calcium and phosphorus, so finding an acceptable lower phosphorus substitute is a must. A half cup of milk (4 ounces) contains 111-138 mg of phosphorus. Some liquid dairy substitutes can be used in cooking to replace milk, but not all products are interchangeable. Read ingredient lists to look for phosphate additives in nondairy products. Some products are fortified with calcium-phosphate. Beware of the ones that promote “high in calcium” as these are also high in phosphorus. Eggs are a great protein source but also contain 95 mg phosphorus in a large egg. Remove the yolk and phosphorus is only 5 mg for each egg white.

Phosphorus content for a 1/2 cup portion, unless stated otherwise:

Almond milk, Almond Breeze®, original: 50 mg Nondairy creamer without phosphate additives: 40-53 mg
Nondairy whipped topping, 2 tablespoons: 0-10 mg Sherbet: 38 mg
Sour cream, 2 tablespoons: 20-40 mg Soy milk varies by brand: 50-125 mg
Unenriched rice milk without calcium-phosphate additives: 29 mg Egg whites, pasteurized 15 mg

 Low-phosphorus snacks

Crackers, cookies, candy, fruits or vegetables — all are appealing snack foods.There are many low-phosphorus choices for your kidney diet.

Apple, 1 medium: 10 mg Applesauce, 1/2 cup: 6 mg
Baby carrots, 9 pieces: 25 mg Biscotti, without chocolate or nuts, 1 ounce: 35-50 mg
Blueberries, 1/2 cup: 9 mg Celery, 1 stalk: 10 mg
Cherries, 1/2 cup: 15 mg Fig bars, 2 bars: 10-25 mg
Fruit candies, hard candy, chews or gummy: 0 mg Fruit cocktail, 1/2 cup: 17 mg
Gelatin, without phosphate additives: 20-30 mg Low sodium crackers, 1 ounce: 20-35 mg
Peach, 1 medium: 10 mg Lemon Juice, 3 fluid ounces: 3.6 mg
Pineapple, fresh, 1/2 cup: 6 mg Radishes, 10: 9 mg
Shortbread cookies, 4 cookies: 17-35 mg Sorbet, 1/2 cup: 2-6 mg
Strawberries, fresh, 1/2 cup: 18 mg Unsalted popcorn, 1 cup: 8 mg
Unsalted pretzels, 1 ounce: 20-40 mg Vanilla wafers, 1 ounce = 5-8 cookies: 12-20 mg

 Lower phosphorus cheese choices

All cheese contains phosphorus with most having 120-250 mg per ounce; some contain more than 300 mg per ounce. The suggested portion for a dialysis diet is usually one ounce of cheese 1-2 times a week if phosphorus is controlled. Check with your dietitian for individual recommendations. Cream cheese-based spreads are much lower in phosphorus than cheese-based spreads. Portion control is key when it comes to cheese!

Low-phosphorus cheese choices:

Blue cheese, 1 ounce: 110 mg Cottage cheese, 1/4 cup: 92 mg
Cream cheese, 2 tablespoons: 20-40 mg Feta cheese, 1 ounce: 96 mg
Neufchatel cheese, 1 ounce: 39 mg Parmesan cheese, grated, 2 tablespoons: 72 mg

 Managing a low-phosphorus diet

Avoid dried fruits which are higher in phosphorus levels including: raisins, prunes, peaches, pears, dates, currants, bananas. Legumes should be reviewed with your dietitian, some are higher in phosphorus and may not be allowed.

FRUITS

Most fruits can be factored at 10 mg phosphorus per serving. Some fruits do not have any phosphorus. Fresh fruits with higher levels of phosphorus can be eaten in moderation. Weigh your food carefully to configure the amount of mg/100g.

GREAT CHOICE, No present phosphorous in fruit; Raspberries, Cherries, Grapefruit, Lychee, Apricots, Pineapple, Plum, Pumpkin

Banana 27 mg; Blackberries 27 mg; Kiwi 71 mg; strawberries 27mg; Tomato 63 mg; Watermelon 26 mg; Mango 23 mg; Orange 18 mg

VEGETABLES

GREAT CHOICE, No present phosphorus in vegetables: Brussel Sprouts, Chicory, Cucumber, Pickles, Leeks, Olives, Radish, Red Paprika,

Asparagus 49 mg: Artichoke 103 mg; Avocado 82 mg; Broccoli 46 mg; Baked Beans 132 mg; Cabbage 36 mg; Carrots 23 mg; Cauliflower 20 mg; Corn 79 mg; Green Beans 26 mg;  Green Peppers 14 mg; Mushrooms 36 mg; Onion 23 mg; Peas 187 mg; Potato 78 mg; Spinach 15 mg; Zucchini 7 mg; Lima Beans 178 mg;

If baking at home, explore substitutes in baking found at DeVita.com. Bakers Active Dry Yeast provides a good solution when baking.  Another TIP to adding levitation is to follow the recipe backwards, eliminate baking powder and salt. Beat the egg whites in a separate bowl until foamy, add a few grains of cream of tarter, beat another 10 seconds. Lastly, fold egg whites into the other ingredients.