Monday, February 24, 2014

5 Numbers to Know for Good Heart Health

We all have a lot of numbers in our heads, but heart experts at the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center say there are 5 you need to know to help keep your cardiovascular system healthy.
1. Blood Pressure - A normal blood pressure is under 120/80. Talk to your doctor if it's higher than that. Simple life-style changes can help lower it.
2. Waist Circumference - Fat carried around the abdomen increases the risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes. Measure your waist at the belly button.Women should be at least less than 35 inches and men less than 40 inches.
3. Cholesterol - It's important to know your total cholesterol number and your LDL number. LDL is the bad cholesterol that can cause problems. A healthy cholesterol number is below 200, and a healthy LDL number is below 100.
4. Blood Sugar - This indicates how much glucose is in the blood. High levels can cause diabetes, which increases the risk for cardiovascular disease. A healthy fasting blood sugar number is under 100 after not eating for 8 hours.
5. BMI (Body Mass Index) - This number indicates if you're at a healthy weight based on your age and height. Use an online BMI calculator to get your number. A BMI less than 18.5 is underweight; below 25 is normal; 25 through 29.9 is overweight; 30+ is considered obese.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women in the U.S., killing about 600,000 Americans each year.
If you can reduce any of the above numbers, you can lower your overall lifetime risk for cardiovascular disease.
Article courtesy of Epoch Times

Monday, February 10, 2014

Like humans, all organisms have genetic material. When scientists alter genetic material, or DNA, it's called genetic modification (GM). Historically, crops have been genetically tweaked to be herbicide-resistant or insect-resistant, and scientists are stacking traits to address both pest and weed problems.

Market watchers estimate that upwards of 70% of processed foods in your local supermarket contain genetically modified ingredients.

Here’s a look at the major genetically engineered foods that have made it onto the dinner plate.

Corn - Number 1 crop in the U.S. Nearly 88% of corn is genetically modified. In addition to being added to innumerable processed foods, genetically modified corn is a staple of animal feed.

Soy - 93% of soy is genetically modified. Soy is a staple of processed foods under various names including hydrogenated oils, lecithin, emulsifiers, and proteins.

Cottonseed - 94% of cotton grown in the U.S. is genetically modified. Cottonseeds are culled from cotton, and then used for vegetable oil, margarine or frying foods, such as potato chips.

Alfalfa - Farmers feed alfalfa to dairy cows, the source of milk, butter, yogurt, meat and so much more. Alfalfa is the fourth largest crop grown in the U.S., behind corn, soybeans, and wheat.

Papaya - 75% of the Hawaiian papaya crop is genetically modified.

Canola - 90% of the U.S. canola crop is genetically modified. Canola oil is used in cooking, as well as biofuels.

Sugar Beets - 54% of sugar sold in America comes from sugar beets. Genetically modified sugar beets account for 90% of the crop.

Statistics and information provided by the US Department of Agriculture and the Huffington Post.