high protein diet

A high-protein diet, often recommended as a way to lose weight and stay healthy, appears to be harmful to the kidneys in individuals with apparently normal kidney function.

Many previous studies have shown that a high-protein diet may harm kidney function, and this is why nephrologists recommend patients with known early stage chronic kidney disease (CKD) stick to a low-protein diet. But people who have mild CKD of which they are unaware or those at high risk may follow the trend of eating a protein-rich diet because they believe it is healthy. Unfortunately, the high-protein culture has emerged as the preferred, healthy, and safe way of eating. We are being told that getting plenty of protein is the revival of our hunter–gatherer ancestral spirit and it will help maintain our lean muscle and reduce fat mass. Dietary regimens such as the Atkins, Zone, South Beach, and Ketogenic diets have increased daily protein intake to 20% to 25% or more of the total daily energy intake for the day, considerably higher than the 10% to 15% recommended by most guidelines.

it is time to unleash the taboo and make it loud and clear that a high-protein diet is not as safe as claimed, as it may compromise kidney health and result in a more rapid kidney function decline in individuals or populations at risk of CKD. It is essential that people know there is another side to high-protein.

Chronic pain can be debilitating and have a significant socioeconomic impact. Beyond surgery and other interventions, both prescription and nonprescription medications have been standard protocol to help mitigate chronic pain. Pain is one of the leading reasons Americans turn to complementary healing modalities including diet and nutritional supplements.

Many individuals with chronic pain have elevated levels or proinflammatory substances, such as interferon, interleukin, and growth factors. Emerging literature suggest specific nutrients may help alleviate chronic pain through management of inflammation via oxidative stress.

The food supply in the United States is flooded with processed foods containing unhealthful fats, refined carbohydrates, sugar and sodium. This Western diet is low in fiber, micronutrients, and antioxidants, and is considered proinflammatory. Studies looking at the influence of diet on inflammatory markers show that consumption of foods high in fiber, healthful oils, fruits, vegetables and those low in sugars, refined starchy carbohydrates and unhealthful fats can reduce inflammation and disease.

Consumption of fruits and vegetables which contain many vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, are inversely associated with inflammation and oxidative stress: the higher the intake of plant foods, the lower the occurrence of oxidative stress.

Highly refined starches contribute to oxidative stress and low-grade inflammation. Whole grain starches are rich in bioactive compounds with anti-inflammatory properties. A study recently confirmed that unrefined starches were effective in reducing chronic inflammation.

Extra virgin olive oil, a monounsaturated fat, contains bioactive compounds that are characterized by their anti-inflammatory properties. Omega-3m fats (unlike omega-6 poly-unsaturated fatty acids) have been shown to decrease inflammation.

High red meat consumption is associated with elevated concentrations of inflammatory biomarkers. Red wine in contrast is rich in numerous molecules that fight inflammation. Tumeric and ginger have been studied extensively and have been found to have anti-inflammatory effects. Other supplements to consider would include but not be limited to glucosamine and chondroitin, and Vitamin D.

As many whole foods contain bioactive compounds with anti-inflammatory effects, diet and nutrition should be integrated in the approach to treating chronic pain.

Remember, it is not just what you are eating but what you are not eating.

Hitting a slump can happen but there are things you can do to get back on track

You’ve started a new healthy eating plan to attain your optimal weight but at some point, you find you just can’t lose more weight.  Though common to happen it is unnecessary.  Before you get so frustrated you want to give up, here are some tips to consider as you probe what might be contributing to the stall:

  1. Review Your Habits.
  2. Eat Lean Protein at Meals
  3. Resume or Increase exercise
  4. Increase Daily Physical Activity
  5. Get 7-8 hours of sleep a night
  6. Manage Stress Eating
  7. Watch Restaurant Overeating
  8. Reassess your weight goal

Younger people and women are more often stricken: obesity and diabetes stall the decline

One of America’s greatest achievements over the past century has been a huge decline in death rates from heart disease and strokes. However, progress has stalled which is helping to drive down life expectancy. The death rate for CVD has fallen just 4% since 2011 after dropping more than 70% over six decades, according to the CDC. Particularly alarming is that the death rate is actually rising for middle-aged Americans.

The researchers state that the obesity epidemic and related rise in the prevalence of Type 2 diabetes are key culprits in the new wave of cardiovascular disease mortality. Studies have linked obesity and diabetes to poor metabolic health, high blood pressure and other conditions that are damaging to the heart and blood vessels, increasing the risk of heart attacks, strokes and heart failure. Simultaneously abdominal fat produces proteins that drive inflammation, which research has shown to be linked to heart disease and stroke.

Though for decades a healthful diet has been the cornerstone for the prevention and treatment of diabetes and CVD, specific dietary patterns (e.g., the Mediterranean Diet) with accompanying nutrient recommendations has now repeatedly been linked to a low risk of cardiovascular disease. In addition to the traditional risk factors (e.g. lipids, blood pressure), research now focuses on controlling the conditions which predispose people to cardiovascular events such as endothelial function, chronic inflammation, oxidative stress., and metabolic syndrome. The MedDiet lowers triglycerides, LDL’s, and cholesterol and increases HDL’s while showing a significantly favorable effects on endothelial function and oxidative stress, probably by increasing nitric-oxide bioavailability and decreasing pro- inflammatory and pro-oxidant molecules.

With respect to obesity, a comprehensive program provides education, meal planning and behavior modification with the goal of resolving food problems and adopting life-long habits conducive to weight management and health promotion rather than temporary measures for acute weight loss. A personalized approach is needed to develop an enjoyable and sustainable meal pattern.

Poor diets are a key risk factor for cardiovascular disease (CVD), the leading cause of death among adults in developed countries.  While there is no doubt that poor diets contribute to CVD, precisely what constitutes a poor diet in terms of cardiovascular risk is still a matter of debate.  


The dietary fats at the center of the debate are saturated fatty acids, monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs) and polyunsaturated fatty acids PUFAs).  PUFA’s are further broken down into two groups; omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids. Each of these types of fats, depending upon how much is consumed in relation to other types, has a different effect on blood lipids as well as on other risk factors for CVD.


Based upon he media and popular culture’s fixation with the saturated fat controversy, one could easily assume that reducing saturated fat is no longer important for heart health.  This recent movement fueled by both media and some health professionals can be compelling at first glance. Without taking the entire body of research linking saturated fat intake with increased CVD into account, incorrect conclusions are promoted.


While it is true that some saturated fat can certainly be a part of a healthy diet and that cholesterol is needed by the body for a number of critical biological functions, the fact remains that the vast majority of scientific evidence supports reducing saturated fat.  


The issue should not be whether saturated fat contributes to CVD, but what to replace it with.  Overall, the body of research indicates that when saturated fats are replaced with refined carbohydrates, such as added sugars, CVD risk is unchanged, and some risk factors such as triglycerides actually increase.  However, the consumption of fiber-rich carbohydrates is associated with a decreased risk of heart disease without any detrimental effects on triglycerides.


Replacing saturated fats in the diet with MUFA such as those found in olive oil, is also associated with improvements in many cardiovascular disease-related risk factors, such as cholesterol and blood pressure.


Dietary fat-what types and how much-is an important consideration for cardiovascular health.  While controversies persist, it is currently possible to come to some evidence-based conclusions.  Lowering the amount of saturated fat in the diet is beneficial for cardiovascular health. However, what replaces the saturated fat is crucial.  Selecting MUFAs and PUFA’s (particularly omega-3s) reduce the risk of CVD. Likewise, replacing the saturated fat with whole, unrefined carbohydrates, including whole grains, is beneficial.  

How dietary patterns can influence our inflammatory response

Inflammation can be a positive reaction of fighting bacteria or viruses, or of bringing blood flow to an injured area to help the healing process. However, not all inflammation is beneficial. Often, undetected low levels of inflammation can remain for an extended period of time, wreaking havoc in the body. Repeated or uncontrolled inflammatory processes unleash various defensive responses that negatively disturb the normal function of cells, and set the stage for disease development. In fact, research suggests that chronic inflammation is at the root of many serious, age-related diseases including heart disease, cancer and neurodegenerative conditions such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases.

Diet is one of the key factors in impacting inflammation. Dietary patterns high in refined starches, simple sugar, saturated fat and trans-fatty acids, may cause an activation of the innate immune system that triggers the production of pro-inflammatory compounds. The good news is that a growing body of evidence is finding specific foods and eating patterns may help cool this response and lower levels of inflammatory markers. In fact, a study published in the Journal of Internal Medicine found an anti-inflammatory diet ay even reduce early mortality.

Recommendations include;
Whole over Processed
Select: fruit, vegetables, legumes, fish, poultry, whole grains and omega 3’s.
Avoid: refined starches, sugars, saturated fats, trans fats, red and processed meat.

Produce Power
A diet high in fruits and vegetables may be one of the best defenses again chronic
Inflammation, as they are packed with anti-inflammatory compounds.

Opt for omega
Evidence is growing that omega-3 fatty acids can moderate inflammation in the
body, and may in turn help reduce the risk and symptoms of a variety of disorders influenced by inflammation.

Fill up on Fiber
High-fiber foods appear to have a beneficial effect on inflammatory biomarkers.
Researchers have suggested high-fiber foods can feed beneficial bacteria living in
the gut, which then release substances that promote lower levels of inflammation.

Get Spicy
Not only do spices and herbs add delicious flavor, but ingredients like garlic,
ginger, and turmeric have been found to contain potent anti-inflammatory

Can Diet Prevent Alzheimer’s Disease?

As the American population ages, the incidence of Alzheimer’s disease also continues to rise.  Recent studies suggest diet may play a role in its prevention or delayed onset.

A plant based eating program that focuses on foods such as fruits, vegetables and whole grains while including healthy fats such as olive oil along with modest amounts of fish, poultry and dairy have been recommended.  

The Alzheimer’s Association now recommends the Mediterranean diet, the DASH diet or the combination MIND diet to decrease the risks of developing heart disease and dementia.

For successful weight loss, Interventions that exclusively focus on changing behaviors will be more successful if they incorporate changing habits.  Strategies are required to break the unhealthy habits and/or to form new healthy habits. These new habits are generally formed by repeating a behavior until it becomes more or less automatic, forging a direct link between the context and response.  A gradual shift will occur from intentional to automatic.


We make over 200 food decision a day.  It is not a lack of will power or poor knowledge but the power of situations to trigger past responses.  Habits keep up operating in the way we have always done, despite our best intentions to do otherwise. Breaking unwanted habits can be achieved through restructuring your environment and programming new responses.

If you have prediabetes, type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome or are obese, you are at an increased risk of nonalcoholic kidney disease. While symptoms can include fatigue and pain in the upper right abdomen, NAFLD is usually asymptomatic While genetics play a small role in the condition, prevention is essential and includes management of a healthy weight, a low-or no added sugars diet, regular physical activity, and a whole foods diet.

There are no FDA-approved medical treatments or drugs for NAFLD, therapies are geared toward reducing risk factors by improving patients’ diets, eliminating alcohol, and increasing physical activity. Simultaneous goals include weight reduction, glycemic control, management of dyslipidemia and improved cardiovascular profiles. The condition is reversible as long as it has not progressed to the later stages.

NAFLD is a multifactorial disease resulting from a complex interplay of genetics, diet, and lifestyle. Dietary change changes play a critical role in the prevention and treatment of NAFLD.

real food

Fiber if a group of nondigestible carbohydrates that are not broken down in your digestive

track. They can be broken down into:

Intact fiber (in fruits, vegetables, whole grains and other plants or a mix of plants)
Processed fiber (extracted from plants or made in a lab)

The problem is that they don’t all do the same thing and any processed fiber counts as fiber on the Nutrition Facts labels. There is no problem with intact fiber so if you eat a plant-based diet, you’re getting them all. But processed fibers are a different story. Many have no health benefit at all.

So what fiber do what?
It depends upon the physiological characteristics of the fiber:

Soluble: dissolves in water, then thickens or forms a gel
Insoluble: insoluble fiber does not dissolve in water and is left intact as food
moves through the gastrointestinal tract.
Fermentable: broken down by gut bacteria in the large intestines

Many processed fibers are soluble, non-viscous, and fermentable, making them
the least likely to do much for your health.

Why take fiber? – besides reducing the risk of death from any cause
To prevent constipation, look for fiber that increase stool mass and stool frequency, take both

Soluble: dissolves in water, then thickens or forms a gel
Insoluble (to be effective, it has to be relative coarse. The coarseness irritates
the liming of the bowels, which stimulates water to be secreted. And it’s this water that leads to the softening and bulking effect on stool).
Soluble is a gel-forming fiber, able to hold moisture in the large bowel.

To lower cholesterol: look for soluble, gel-forming fibers. As the fiber moves down
your intestine, it absorbs water from partially digested foods, making the mass
thicker and more sludge-like. That traps the bile acids our bodies make to break
fat down, preventing fat reabsorption and instead eliminating them thru the stool.
To replace the excreted bile acids your liver must use cholesterol, making is less available to travel your blood stream.
To manage blood sugars: look for soluble fiber. Once again by thickening the mush
of food traveling down the intestines, absorption of nutrients and glucose is
reduced, slowing the absorption of glucose.
To manage your weight: select whole foods with fiber. These foods tend to be more
filling than low-fiber foods, so you’re likely to eat less and stay satisfied longer.
And high fiber foods tend to take longer to eat and to be less “energy dense,”
which means they have fewer calories for the same volume of food.
If you ae getting a plant-based diet, a mix of fruits vegetables, beans, whole grains and
unrefined starch, you are getting all you need.