healthy

  1. How berries boost your brain

    Despite what you've heard, you don't NEED to eat fruits and vegetables to stay healthy -- and some of them are outright bad for you.

    Want to know what's inside an orange, apple or grape? Sugar! And not much else -- even the famous antioxidants in grapes and apples are concentrated in the skin, not the wet sacks of sugar inside.

    But berries are different. Berries do have natural sugars, but they're also loaded with incredible nutrients, including some you won't get anywhere else. And now, a new analysis shows why you don't need drugs to protect your brain from the ravages of aging -- just a handful of berries.

    Researchers looked at studies on just about every level -- human, animal, and cellular -- and found not the usual weak "association" between a food and a benefit I'm always warning about it.

    Instead, they found actual, specific benefits -- especially in the brain.

    In this case, they say the nutrients in berries enhance neuron communication, which in turn can not only help keep your mind sharp -- it can help keep you steady on your feet, too.

    One study even finds that berries can take over when your own body falls short.

    Over the years, we lose the ability to clean the trash out of our brains -- and I don't mean stray thoughts (although that can happen, too). No, in this case, cells called microglia that normally clean up the debris of aging start to peter out.

    But the polyphenols in berries can wake them up again and get them back on the job -- helping to keep your brain cells neat and tidy.

    These same nutrients also prevent inflammation. Throw in the fact that they taste great, and you've got my permission to eat berries every day.

  2. Cake for breakfast? Not on your life!

    I've told you about some daffy diets over the years.

    The candy diet, cookie diet, potato diet, Twinkie diet, oat diet. Now, you can add one more to the list.

    It's the "cake for breakfast" diet as researchers claim that eating junk in the morning -- and only in the morning -- can actually help you to lose weight.

    You'd have to have batter between your ears to believe that one, but apparently a small study found that obese people given junk like cake, cookies and donuts in the morning lost as much weight as obese people who didn't get junk in the morning.

    The one difference here is that the junk eaters ate a bigger breakfast and a smaller dinner, while everyone else had small breakfasts and big dinners.

    But overall, they all had the same number of calories throughout the day -- so is it really any surprise that they all managed to lose the same amount of weight?

    After the study, however, the cake-eaters lost some more weight... while the rest re-gained. But since no one was actually taking part in the study anymore, that proves zippo.

    And besides, even if you did lose weight on cake, do you really think you'd be healthy?

    Heck, no!

    Trust me, you're better off being a little overweight and eating all the right things than stick-thin on cake, even if you can manage to pull it off. But that's not an "either-or" proposition, because if you eat all the right things you won't weigh an ounce more than you should anyway.

    And you won't have to count a single calorie.

    Enjoy all the fresh steak, bacon, and eggs you want -- eat until you're full -- and skip all the carb-loaded junk, and you'll be in the best shape of your life on the foods you love anyway.

    It's like having your cake and eating it, too. Minus the actual cake of course.

  3. Nothing fit about Wii Fit

    You'd have to be Miss Pac-Man to believe videogames can help keep your kids active and healthy.
  4. The deadliest McDiet around

    Everyone knows a kid who's addicted to McDonald's -- but I bet you don't know anyone quite like 17-year-old Stacey Irvine.
  5. An 'F' for fat kids

    French diet "guru" Dr. Pierre Dukan -- creator of the cockamamie "Dukan Diet" that involves stuffing yourself with oats until you neigh -- says obese children should get lower grades in school just for being fat.
  6. Latest chocolate study isn't so sweet

    Not sure which category the researchers behind the latest study fall into, but it would have to be one or the other. How else would you explain their claim that chocolate in any form -- including white chocolate, which technically isn't even chocolate -- can slash your risk of heart disease, strokes, and diabetes?
  7. "Health" food foolery

    It's bad enough that junk food lines our supermarket aisles. It's even worse when that garbage is dressed up as healthy food.
  8. Fast-food kids meals crammed with fat and calories (what else is new?)

    According to a new study, most of the kids' meals at fast food restaurant chains have entirely too many calories to be considered healthy. Wow. Shocking.

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