Wake Up to Wellness: Issue #1
What’s new in the world of health and wellness this week?
We’ve got you covered:
- The NYC Health Department is making a bold statement.
- There’s a new protein-rich snack you may have never heard of that you’ve got to try.
- Coffee has yet another health perk (as if we needed another reason to drink it).
- And more!
The NYC Health Department Takes a Stance on Sugar
We are happy to announce the NYC Health Department is spearheading change and pushing companies to decrease the amount of sugar in packaged food and drinks. The obesity epidemic is only getting worse. At least 35% of adults in seven states across America were obese in 2017. In 2016, there were only five states. Companies that produce store-bought items are starting to play their part in creating positive change.
The initiative is led by Dr. Oxiris Bardot, the acting commissioner of the Health Department. She stated, “The current health status of our country just demands that. Part of this is really starting the conversation and creating consumer demand, creating more momentum.”
Dr. Bardot wants companies to reach certain goals by 2025, including a 40 percent sugar reduction in soda, juice and sports drinks, and sweetened milk and a 20 percent sugar reduction on packaged foods.
The Candy Industry Is Doing What?
The candy and chocolate industry has joined forces with the Partnership for a Healthier America to create a new campaign called Always a Treat. The goal is to make people feel a little better about eating candy and chocolate while helping families manage their intake.
Everything in moderation, right? Christopher Gindlesperger, the senior vice president of public affairs and communications of the National Confectioners Association, commented, “Most people understand that chocolate and candy are treats, and they consume it that way. We’re doing this initiative to have an impact on people as they manage their sugar intake. Of course, we’re just one piece in a much bigger picture.”
The initiative aims to encourage portion control, transparent nutrition labels, and robust customer education. Learn more about the initiative here.
The Latest Snack Craze: Biltong
If you haven’t heard about this new protein-rich snack yet, keep reading. It’s like jerky got a makeover. South Africans developed this snack centuries ago and it’s gaining popularity in America.
Biltong is made by curing meat covered in spices (think coriander, salt, pepper, and allspice) and then topped with a little vinegar. The meat is then hung to dry for several days. That’s it. Biltong is ready to eat on its own, used in salads, sandwiches, or dips.
It may sound like jerky, but there are key differences. Jerky is dried in a dehydrator or cooked in an oven, making it tough and dry. Most jerky is drenched in sugar-loaded marinades and salt to add flavor and make it more tender.
What’s the difference? Biltong is air-dried with no heat for much longer, which naturally makes it more tender. It doesn’t require any sugar, just salt, vinegar, and spices for flavor. There’s no need for flavor additives, nitrates, or unnecessary MSG.
Best of all, Biltong has great health benefits. It contains amino acids, iron, zinc, and vitamin B12. Plus, it’s packed with 50 percent more protein than jerky, helping you stay full and avoiding hunger pangs.
Caffeine as a Rosacea Treatment?
In the past, coffee had been found to be a possible trigger for those with rosacea because the heat of coffee can cause the skin to flare, but a new study may prove that it actually helps the skin condition.
The study found that the polyphenols in up to four servings of caffeinated coffee might curb the flushing and redness effects of rosacea. Dr. Rajani Katta, a board-certified dermatologist, said, “This is certainly a surprising finding. While we believed that hot beverages were rosacea triggers, coffee is not something that’s been on our radar as ‘good’ for rosacea.”
Coffee is a vasoconstrictor, which reduces the flow of blood to the surface of the skin. This can help reduce redness and flushing. It is also chock-full of antioxidants and has an immunosuppressant effect that reduces inflammation.
Jumping for joy yet? Read the full story here.
Want to Live Longer? Adopt an Anti-Inflammatory Diet
If you want to live a long, healthy life (so, everyone), new research advocates for an anti-inflammatory diet.
A recent study published by the Journal of Internal Medicine found that a diet rich in fruits and vegetables and low in processed foods resulted in an 18 percent reduction in mortality and lowered the risk of dying from cancer by 13 percent and heart disease by 20 percent.
So, what exactly is an anti-inflammatory diet? It’s pretty simple. Foods high in nutrients and antioxidants are shown to lower inflammation markers in the body. Focus on fruits, vegetables, legumes, and healthy fats such as olive oil and avocado. Eat fish, nuts, and other lean proteins.
Good news for chocolate and wine lovers: In moderation, red wine and dark chocolate play a role in an anti-inflammatory diet, too. Limit your consumption of foods high in sodium, saturated fats, and refined carbohydrates to reap the greatest health benefits. Learn more about the anti-inflammatory diet here.