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Now, listen, I get it. Movement is my life. I love it in all of its incredibly sweaty glory and you might too. So I get why not being able to go to the gym, pound the pavement with your running group, take a class, or teach a class might be a big deal to you. I, too, am now sweating at home. I, too, am teaching classes from home. And I, too, am privileged to be doing so.

In the spirit of getting through this thing together, here are nine assorted tips I want to share with anyone whos thinking about their fitness right now.

I know I said it already, but Im going to say it again. Being in a position to think about your fitness goals during this time is a privilege. Take a moment to let that sink in. And I mean sink all the way in. Let it seep into your veins until you are radiating with gratitude. Your body is an incredible vessel, and movement is a blessing. So its not that you cant or shouldnt focus on your fitness goals if thats what you want and are able to do, but I do think its important to remind yourself of how fortunate you are to do so. Value and appreciate your ability and position during this chaotic time. Maybe meet yourself on your mat or living room floor with a little more compassion and rejoice in your progress with a little more awe.

Of course, understanding that our society is basically built on some of us having privilege while others don't or, even more specifically, that some people suffer so that others have certain privileges, is imperative. Social stratificationbased on race, class, gender, sexuality, size, ability, and moreis deeply woven into the fabric of this country. So whether were speaking of fitness or literally anything else, disentangling these threads of privilege necessitates acknowledgement that they do, in fact, exist and then figuring out how we can challenge the systems that continue to weave them deeper. It means being cognizant of the fact that some of us having what we need and want probably means that other people arent getting what they need and want. This pandemic is shining an extra-bright light on all of this.

If youre feeling like I often dothat merely acknowledging privileges we might have doesnt really do that much to right any wrongsI suggest doing some things to put your privileges to good use.

Think through some ways you can contribute to your community that makes use of your privilege. Can you donate money to a mutual aid fund? Can you volunteer to shop for groceries for an elderly or immune compromised person in your neighborhood? Can you sew masks or provide tutoring or other virtual services? Or, in the context of these online classes, can you donate maybe a bit extra for someone else to be able to take class?

Just because a lot of us have more time at home, it doesnt mean we are obligated to spend it working out. While everyone is on all the Insta and FB Lives, its okay if you sit out to be live in your own life. Even though I, myself, am one of the trainers/instructors offering live classes and other online offerings, I hope that you look at all these options as exactly that: options. Offerings. Opportunities. Not pressure-filled, FOMO-inducing obligations. If you sit one or two (or all) of them out, its okay. They will still be there later. And if youre just not that into working out at home, thats okay too!

Maybe nows not the time to dial in your next-level fitness goals. Maybe you couldnt even if you wanted to because you dont have access to the space or equipment youd need to do it. Thats fine. Try not to let the pressure to keep going as you always have contribute to the stress that is already surrounding us. Because it is surrounding us on every platform and channel, empty grocery store aisles, and taped-off markers on the ground. Instead, use movement for release and relief, for fun, and to keep yourself healthy when and how it best serves you.

Theres no one right way to feel now. Feeling upset about an event being canceled, to feel lost or confused about how to switch up your routine, or to be frustrated that you feel like your hard-earned progress has suddenly been thwartedthis is all natural and okay.

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Lets Talk About the Privilege and Pressure to Work Out Right Now - Self

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May 8th, 2020 | Filed under Diet Safely

As the nation continues to socially distance during the COVID-19 pandemic, Barratt Homeshas joined forces with Wessex Heartbeattohighlight the importance of maintaining a healthy routine while self-isolating.

Following the recent announcement that the UK will need to comply to a further lockdown period, the 5-star housebuilder and leading cardiac charity have released guidelines on how to keep mentally and physically healthy with a particular focus on heart health.

John Munro at Wessex Heartbeat said:

Hampshire currently has one of the highest rates of infection in the country and, following the advice from the government and Public Health England to self-isolate, it is crucial to raise awareness on the effects that staying indoors can have.

There is already a huge strain on the nations health and social care services, and with those living alone being 50% more likely to access emergency care services*, we cannot afford to over-exert these anymore.

Tammy Bishop from Barratt Homes added:

As part of our ongoing commitment to helping the communities we develop in; it is key for us to highlight the importance of staying healthy while self-isolating.

During the pandemic we have strived to play our part on a local and national scale. This includes giving hundreds of PPE masks to hospitals, to donating 1,000 defibrillators across Hampshire, Dorset and the Isle of Wight. We hope that the following guidelines can also be of great use to those in need.

John Monro shares some vital advice for those who are facing self-isolation, in a bid to help tackle this growing issue:

Barratt Homes is currently brining new homes to the area through its developmentHawthorn Meadows (East Cowes) andSt Georges Gate (Newport).

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May 2nd, 2020 | Filed under Diet Safely

Though it might not be on quite the same level as bread, milk, and eggs, yogurt is definitely a staple food.

Not only is yogurt super-versatile (you can use it as a base for dips, smoothies, and baked goods, or just dig in with a spoon), but it also packs an impressive nutritional punch.

Yogurt is a good source of bone-strengthening calcium and gut-healthy probiotics, says nutritionist Keri Gans, RD, author of The Small Change Diet. It can also be a solid source of protein (many varieties contain double-digit grams of the stuff).

Despite its perks, though, the snack gets lost in the fridge pretty easilyoften leaving you with an expired tub of yogurt when you do find it.

Which, of course, raises some major questions, like: Is it okay to eat yogurt past the expiration date? How can you tell if the creamy stuff has gone bad? And, honestly, what's the worst that can happen if you dare to eat expired yogurt?

Well, dont stress about wasting food the next time you rediscover that long-lost (and now-expired) tub. Its good for longer than you probably realize.

If you get freaked out by expired food, know this: With the exception of baby formula, federal law doesnt require that food products have dates on them that say how long they're good for.

Oh, and the date on your yogurt isnt ~technically~ an expiration date. Usually, its actually a best by date.

A lot of this comes down to qualitynot safety issues, says food safety specialist Benjamin Chapman, PhD, a professor at North Carolina State University. Basically, the date stamped on your yogurt just lets you know when the yogurt company thinks the product will be at its peak flavor.

So, yogurt with a "best by" date that's come and gone isn't technically expiredand it is 100 percent okay to eat yogurt beyond this date. Its really only going to get more acidic and ferment more over time in your refrigerator, Chapman says. All thats going to happen to the flavor is that it will get tangier.

That doesn't mean you want to dig into yogurt that's been chilling in the fridge for years, though.

While theres no set time after which your yogurt will suddenly turn to total crap, in general, you can safely enjoy many unopened yogurts for a month or so past the "best by" date, says Chapman.

Howevercaveat alert!not all yogurts are created equal.

If your yogurt has fruit on the bottom, it's a totally different story. In this case, I would stick with that date, Chapman says. Yeast and molds will grow on that fruit and create a totally different experience.

And, if you already opened your yogurt, it may only last a week past the date printed on it, Gans says. This is especially true if you dipped an already-licked spoon back into the tub at any point, since microorganisms in the air and bacteria in your mouth can make your yogurt go bad more quickly, adds Chapman.

If your tub of yogurt has truly turned foul, your nose will give it away.

Even the slightest rancid odor means that the yogurt has gone bad, says Gans. Chapman agrees. If theres a terrible odor, something else is growing in your yogurt that you dont expect to be there, he says.

A growing layer of liquid at the top of your tub can also indicate that your yogurt may be off, says Gans.

When in doubt, though, do a quick taste test and chuck anything that has a funky flavor.

If your yogurt is on the vintage side, but comes from an unopened container, it may just upset your stomach a bit, says Chapman. However, if it's bad enough to bother your belly, it'll probably taste off enough that you won't want to eat it.

That said, if you eat yogurt that's been opened and gone bad, it could cause a foodborne illness and leave you with diarrhea, stomach cramps, and vomiting, Gans adds. Again, though, it will taste bad.

To safely make that yogurt last, good refrigeration is key. Make sure your yogurt goes into your fridge (which should be set to 40 degrees or below) as soon as possible after you buy it, Gans says.

Once your yogurt is in there, dont open it until you need it, recommends Chapman. And, if you bought a larger container, make sure the spoon you use to scoop out your portions is cleanand that you reseal the container tightly after using it.

Fun fact: If you buy more yogurt than you think you'll eat within a few weeks, pop it in the freezer. Yogurt may be frozen for one to two months without affecting the taste, says Gans. From there, defrost and spoon away.

The bottom line: You can typically eat yogurt beyond its "best by" date, but be wary of any changes in smell or flavor and note that fruit-at-the-bottom yogurts have a shorter life span.

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Can You Eat Expired Yogurt? Heres What Food Safety Experts Have To Say - Women's Health

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May 2nd, 2020 | Filed under Diet Safely

Deciding whether to head outdoors or to stay at home has never before felt so fraught, as many of us continue the weigh the benefits of getting some fresh air versus the risks of getting sick. For many, however, the enticements of a spring day are too powerful to resist.

Yesterday it was raining and we felt kind of sorry for ourselves, but its hard to feel sorry for yourself on a sunny day like today, said Nancy Penman, a resident of Manhattans Upper West Side.

Ms. Penman was one of many who were maintaining a safe distance between themselves and others while they walked in Riverside Park on a recent afternoon. I hope they dont close the parks, she said. We need our sun. Ive heard it boosts the immune system.

Ms. Penman may have a point. There is now limited but convincing evidence that moderate sunlight exposure is capable of modulating the immune system and improving health, said Daniel Gonzlez Maglio, a professor at the University of Buenos Aires and researcher in the growing field of photo-immunology.

A daily dose of sunlight wont fend off or cure coronavirus, though researchers continue to explore the effects that warmer weather and ultraviolet rays might have on the virus. But scientists are finding that exposure to the sun has numerous other benefits that may be especially important now including helping to elevate mood, to improve the quality of our sleep and to strengthen the bodys innate defenses against a variety of pathogens.

The impact of sunlight on human health would not have been news for our ancestors, said the British researcher Richard Hobday, author of The Healing Sun: Sunlight and Health in the 21st Century.

Hippocrates, the father of medicine, said that if you have a city that is properly oriented toward the sun you dont have so many diseases in it, Dr. Hobday noted. Throughout history and all over the world, sunlight has been worshiped for its health-giving properties and used as a medicine.

These ancient beliefs received scientific validation in the early 20th century, when sunlight was employed to kill tuberculosis bacteria and to treat the deficiency disease, rickets. Inspired by sun advocates like the pioneering nurse Florence Nightingale, hospitals and sanitariums were designed with large east-facing windows and skylights to maximize sun exposure for their patients.

During the Spanish flu pandemic of 1918-19, patients who were treated in overflow tent hospitals and regularly taken out in the sun when they were in recovery had lower death rates than those who were left indoors in dark and poorly ventilated wards, Dr. Hobday reported in a study published in the American Journal of Public Health.

Enthusiasm for sunlight as medicine waned after antibiotics began to be widely used during the 1930s, but it has recently revived, as evidence mounts for the complex role that vitamin D sometimes called the sunshine vitamin, because the skin creates it when exposed to sunlight plays in human biology.

Over half of Americans do not produce enough vitamin D, a result of spending some 90 percent of our time indoors, according to Dr. Michael Holick, a professor of medicine at Boston University. And thats a problem, he says, because too little vitamin D can weaken our bodys ability to fight off infections.

Dr. Holick recommends to many of his patients that they take supplements of vitamin D. Overweight people, he says, may need extra high doses. But consult your doctor before doing so, since high doses can cause kidney problems and other complications.

Dr. JoAnn Manson, the chief of preventive medicine at Brigham and Womens Hospital in Boston and a Harvard professor, says that the jury is still out on optimal levels of vitamin D, though some people might benefit from supplements to hedge their bets.

The best approach is to have a heart-healthy diet and get the nutrients from foods, Dr. Manson said, and to spend time outdoors in the fresh air and sunlight. Being physically active outdoors helps people to maintain proper weight, reduces the risk of diabetes and heart disease, benefits bone health, lowers stress and improves emotional well-being. The list of benefits from physical activity is extensive. Moreover, sun exposure enables the skin to create nitric oxide, which lowers blood pressure and improves cardiovascular health, Dr. Manson said.

But the fact that a little sunlight is good for health does not mean that a lot is better. Too much exposure suppresses the ability of the human immune system to efficiently detect and attack malignant cells, which can increase the risk of skin cancer, Dr. Maglio cautioned.

To gauge how long one can safely remain in the sun at different latitudes, seasons and times of day, Dr. Holick helped develop a free app called D Minder Pro that tracks the amount of vitamin D that your body is getting from exposure to the sun and warns you when you are staying outdoors too long.

Exposure to daylight is also critical for accurately setting our internal circadian clock, which in turn regulates sleep and waking, said Mariana Figueiro, the director of the Lighting Research Center at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, N.Y.

Without adequate light, we can go into a kind of permanent jet lag, Dr. Figueiro explained, where we get more easily irritated and depressed, our immune function is suppressed and our overall health may deteriorate.

Not everyone will be able to get outside now, or feel safe doing so. Those who remain indoors may have to take some extra steps to be exposed to the light that they need to remain healthy.

If possible, work facing a window, especially in the morning hours, and avoid working in your basement, Dr. Figueiro advised. If you have one table lamp in the living room, you might want to increase that number to get the amount of light you need to stimulate the circadian system. You dont need special bulbs, she says, since ordinary incandescent lighting emits the wavelengths of light that we need to help set our biological clocks.

While exposure to morning light helps us to get a good nights sleep later on, in the evening it has the opposite effect. Turn off and dim your lights two hours prior to bedtime, because that is when your body starts producing melatonin, which is telling your body that it is night and time to go to sleep, Dr. Figueiro said.

She also recommends taking a daily 15 to 45 minute walk when possible, while being careful to maintain adequate social distance between yourself and others, since outdoor light, even on a cloudy day, is far brighter and more biologically potent than indoor light.

Scientists also continue to explore whether sunlight might fight the coronavirus directly, as it does for other viruses. Paul Dabisch, an aerobiology specialist with the Department of Homeland Security, together with several colleagues, published a paper in November that found that flu viruses are rapidly inactivated when exposed to the UV radiation in sunlight.

This is the first study to show that simulated sunlight will greatly decrease the infectivity of influenza virus contained in aerosol particles, he said.

These results might partly explain why flu transmission is lower during the summer, when people spend more time outdoors in the sun. It may be due to a combination of the fact that sunlight actually degrades the virus, and also that vitamin D has been shown to be effective in fending off infections, Dr. Dabisch said. His team and others are currently conducting research to determine whether sunlight also destroys the Covid-19 virus, or mitigates its effects.

While few scientists believe that the sun will prove to be a magic bullet against the pandemic, medical research already amply demonstrates that exposure to sunlight can help to make us happier and healthier at a time when we are in need of both.

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Let the Sunshine In - The New York Times

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May 2nd, 2020 | Filed under Diet Safely

Are you doing beach workouts?I like the beach, but in Aruba, you can only go if its for workouts. No one can go to chill. Makes the beach a little more boring. But I do some running drills that strengthen your legs and lower body.

Have you been watching anything lately to pass the time?I just watched a documentary on Pablo Escobar, I watched Money Heist, and I saw that movie with Arnold Schwarzenegger about eating plant-based.

Oh yeah, The Game Changers. Do you eat a plant-based diet?No, no, no. But I was surprised that these guys still have so much energy, or even more energy, without eating meat. It was kind of crazy to hear. Lately Ive been eating a lot of rice and chicken, ribs, and home-cooked meals that I dont get to eat during the season. During the season I only cook for myself on the off-days. I can make a good curry chicken. Im actually going to eat it now, but my mom made this one.

Is the curry chicken your cheat meal?No, I like french fries, man. I dont know what my obsession with them is, but thats it. Not a huge dipping sauce guy, though. Maybe just ketchup.

During the season, when the team provides many of your meals, what does your diet typically look like?I definitely eat a lot of eggs in the morning, drink some coffee or tea, and then once youre at the stadium, they have everything you need. Theyre trying to keep us healthy. Ill have a ham-and-cheese sandwich after workouts, and then usually have a protein shake before a game as a snack. Dinner is pretty late at night.

You had a career year last season, with a big uptick in homers. Were there any changes you made to your workouts or diet to achieve that?Not really, Im eating the same stuff. I think its just more experience, and the year prior, we had some coaching changes that helped unpack some stuff that I had hidden. It made me become a much better player. All of my hitting coaches have had good, different philosophies, but this one kind of took me to another level.

Wheres your head at about a baseball season happening? Are you feeling hopeful or pessimistic?I want to play for sure, but its such a tough time and I know were dealing with a very serious situation. To be honest, its hard to do workouts because youre like, are we even going to play? In the off-season, you work out and look forward to February reporting day. You know you have to be ready for that specific day. Now, you dont have anything like that. Well have to wait and see when the experts say its the right time to play.

Are you open to the idea of all MLB games being played one city, as has been suggested?I saw thatsomething in Arizona? Ive been away from my family for all the years Ive been playing baseball, but [playing all games in one city] would be tougher on the American guys whove never experienced it. The guys from the Latin countries are more used to that. But thats going to be hard. I dont know how they would do that.

This interview has been edited and condensed for clarityReal-Life Diet is a series in which GQ talks to athletes, celebrities, and everyone in-between about their diets and exercise routines: what's worked, what hasn't, and where they're still improving. Keep in mind, what works for them might not necessarily be healthy for you.

Jefferson dishes on working out with Coach O and predicts the final score of a one-on-one basketball game against LSU quarterback Joe Burrow.

The Boston Red Sox All-Star talks baseball caps, Jordans, and the Sox-Yanks rivalry.

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The Real-Life Diet of Xander Bogaerts, the Red Sox All-Star Doing Beach Workouts (Safely) at Home in Aruba - GQ

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Apr 26th, 2020 | Filed under Diet Safely

Without the luxury of sheltering at home, essential workers are experiencing unprecedented levels of stress and anxiety, according to mental health experts.

Were in the battlefield, said Paul DiCarlo, co-owner of Jimmys Food Store, a small Italian grocery in Dallas. Youre just trying to get the customers in and out quickly.

Nearly half of all American adults say the COVID-19 pandemic is hurting their mental health, according to a recent KFF Health Tracking poll. But those numbers could be much higher for bus drivers, bank tellers and other critical workers, said Alison Holman, a psychologist and nurse.

This virus is a major chronic stressor for all levels of essential workers. It can make every day seem like a year, and weeks seem like a decade, said Holman, an associate professor at the University of California, Irvine. She researches trauma-related mental health problems.

Theres a lot of free-floating anxiety because of this ambiguous invisible threat. Were unsure whats coming next, and thats terrifying for people.

Earlier this month, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued new guidance for how essential, or critical, workers can return to work after being exposed to a suspected or confirmed case of COVID-19. For example, essential workers must have their temperature taken before starting work.

DiCarlo said hes taken steps to ease anxiety among employees and customers, like suspending the stores popular sandwich-making service, which was creating crowds.

At home, he took the additional action of cutting back on alcohol after work.

The fear of getting the virus is a big deal in my brain. Im diabetic, so Ive got to keep that blood sugar down, and cutting down on drinking helps me sleep better, too, said DiCarlo, 61.

In addition to getting enough sleep, Holman said essential workers can help reduce anxiety by eating a healthy diet and exercising regularly. She also suggests deep breathing as soon as the worrying starts.

Try 4-7-8 breathing, she said. Get in a comfortable position, breath in through your nose for a count of four, hold it for seven counts, and exhale through your mouth for eight counts. Then do it four times in a row.

While we all continue to practice social distancing, essential workers should also practice news distancing, she said.

Research has shown that negative cycle of distress, media, distress and more media is not good for you, she said. Limit exposure to one or two fact-based sources of media once or twice a day. You dont need to inundate yourself with the media 18,000 times a day.

Some essential workers can dial back their anxiety by talking about what theyre going through with friends and family members.

While most of the pandemic is beyond our control, essential workers can lessen stress by focusing on what they can controlfollowing guidelines, such as regular hand-washing, to protect themselves and minimize risk, limiting exposure to media coverage, and voicing concerns to public officials, Holman said. Workers also can discuss concerns with their employers.

They can demand, for example, that they have protective equipment. Call whoevers in charge of policymaking. Thats your right. Its something thats in your control, she said.

Wearing face masks also might help lower anxiety. DiCarlo said he noticed his fellow workers and customers seemed less stressed after store workers began regularly wearing masks. It just seems to help everyones comfort level, he said.

Essential workers also might be able to reduce acute anxiety by focusing on positive aspects of their jobs, Holman said.

Look for a silver lining, she said. Some people might find strength and meaning in their commitment to helping people, which can buoy them against the negative impact COVID-19 is having.

And, of course, people who arent essential workers can help out.

For starters, wash your hands, follow social distancing rules and take other precautions recommended by the CDC, including wearing masks in public.

Its so frustrating when people dont understand how serious this really is, said Coco Balalau, a Dallas emergency room nurse.

To de-stress after work, she makes surgical caps for fellow health care workers. I cant be idle. If I stop and think about it, it gets too overwhelming.

She can predict the exact moment each morning when her work-related anxiety will kick into high gear.

Theres a spot on the highway exit ramp, right before I get to workthats where the tears start.

During times like that, it helps to acknowledge the anxiety and then gently let it go, she said.

For me, its important to be mindful. I pause and say, They need you. Youre good at what you do you got this.'

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When can we safely get back to work and school?. - Brinkwire

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Apr 26th, 2020 | Filed under Diet Safely

Diabetes diet: Create your healthy-eating plan

Your diabetes diet is simply a healthy-eating plan that will help you control your blood sugar. Here's help getting started, from meal planning to counting carbohydrates.

A diabetes diet simply means eating the healthiest foods in moderate amounts and sticking to regular mealtimes.

A diabetes diet is a healthy-eating plan that's naturally rich in nutrients and low in fat and calories. Key elements are fruits, vegetables and whole grains. In fact, a diabetes diet is the best eating plan for most everyone.

If you have diabetes or prediabetes, your doctor will likely recommend that you see a dietitian to help you develop a healthy-eating plan. The plan helps you control your blood sugar (glucose), manage your weight and control heart disease risk factors, such as high blood pressure and high blood fats.

When you eat extra calories and fat, your body creates an undesirable rise in blood glucose. If blood glucose isn't kept in check, it can lead to serious problems, such as a high blood glucose level (hyperglycemia) that, if persistent, may lead to long-term complications, such as nerve, kidney and heart damage.

You can help keep your blood glucose level in a safe range by making healthy food choices and tracking your eating habits.

For most people with type 2 diabetes, weight loss also can make it easier to control blood glucose and offers a host of other health benefits. If you need to lose weight, a diabetes diet provides a well-organized, nutritious way to reach your goal safely.

A diabetes diet is based on eating three meals a day at regular times. This helps you better use the insulin that your body produces or gets through a medication.

A registered dietitian can help you put together a diet based on your health goals, tastes and lifestyle. He or she can also talk with you about how to improve your eating habits, such as choosing portion sizes that suit the needs for your size and activity level.

Make your calories count with these nutritious foods. Choose healthy carbohydrates, fiber-rich foods, fish and "good" fats.

During digestion, sugars (simple carbohydrates) and starches (complex carbohydrates) break down into blood glucose. Focus on healthy carbohydrates, such as:

Avoid less healthy carbohydrates, such as foods or drinks with added fats, sugars and sodium.

Dietary fiber includes all parts of plant foods that your body can't digest or absorb. Fiber moderates how your body digests and helps control blood sugar levels. Foods high in fiber include:

Eat heart-healthy fish at least twice a week. Fish such as salmon, mackerel, tuna and sardines are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which may prevent heart disease.

Avoid fried fish and fish with high levels of mercury, such as king mackerel.

Foods containing monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats can help lower your cholesterol levels. These include:

But don't overdo it, as all fats are high in calories.

Diabetes increases your risk of heart disease and stroke by accelerating the development of clogged and hardened arteries. Foods containing the following can work against your goal of a heart-healthy diet.

You may use a few different approaches to create a diabetes diet to help you keep your blood glucose level within a normal range. With a dietitian's help, you may find that one or a combination of the following methods works for you:

The American Diabetes Association offers a simple method of meal planning. In essence, it focuses on eating more vegetables. Follow these steps when preparing your plate:

Because carbohydrates break down into glucose, they have the greatest impact on your blood glucose level. To help control your blood sugar, you may need to learn to calculate the amount of carbohydrates you are eating so that you can adjust the dose of insulin accordingly. It's important to keep track of the amount of carbohydrates in each meal or snack.

A dietitian can teach you how to measure food portions and become an educated reader of food labels. He or she can also teach you how to pay special attention to serving size and carbohydrate content.

If you're taking insulin, a dietitian can teach you how to count the amount of carbohydrates in each meal or snack and adjust your insulin dose accordingly.

A dietitian may recommend you choose specific foods to help you plan meals and snacks. You can choose a number of foods from lists including categories such as carbohydrates, proteins and fats.

One serving in a category is called a "choice." A food choice has about the same amount of carbohydrates, protein, fat and calories and the same effect on your blood glucose as a serving of every other food in that same category. For example, the starch, fruits and milk list includes choices that are 12 to 15 grams of carbohydrates.

Some people who have diabetes use the glycemic index to select foods, especially carbohydrates. This method ranks carbohydrate-containing foods based on their effect on blood glucose levels. Talk with your dietitian about whether this method might work for you.

When planning meals, take into account your size and activity level. The following menu is tailored for someone who needs 1,200 to 1,600 calories a day.

Embracing your healthy-eating plan is the best way to keep your blood glucose level under control and prevent diabetes complications. And if you need to lose weight, you can tailor it to your specific goals.

Aside from managing your diabetes, a diabetes diet offers other benefits, too. Because a diabetes diet recommends generous amounts of fruits, vegetables and fiber, following it is likely to reduce your risk of cardiovascular diseases and certain types of cancer. And consuming low-fat dairy products can reduce your risk of low bone mass in the future.

If you have diabetes, it's important that you partner with your doctor and dietitian to create an eating plan that works for you. Use healthy foods, portion control and scheduling to manage your blood glucose level. If you stray from your prescribed diet, you run the risk of fluctuating blood sugar levels and more-serious complications.


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Diabetes diet: Create your healthy-eating plan - Mayo Clinic

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Apr 25th, 2020 | Filed under Diet Safely

In order to to see their son Mark in the flesh and not from the flat screens of their phones the Millers had to go incognito.

Sharon Miller donned a white bunny costume and painted on a nose and whiskers. Husband Max drove the getaway vehicle, a Buick with a moon roof. The bunny popped out of that and cheerily, but quickly to avoid being outed, waved to five men outside a group home for people with disabilities. One of those five was Mark, who is 34 and has, in general, the comprehension of a preschooler.

The scene was a poor substitute for being able to run up to Marks wheelchair and give him a hug, tell him knock-knock jokes and watch him light up with his characteristic 1,000-watt smile.

But this is life in the novel coronavirus era. Safety means one of the last places of comfort loving human touch from immediate family is out for many, including people like Mark who live apart from parents.

Max and Sharon Miller, both 62, present too big a health risk to their son, his housemates at Mosaic and the staff members who care for them. Mosaic, like a lot of facilities, had to say no visitors. If his parents came at all, they would have to do so outdoors and at a safe social distance from their son.

It would be too hard to explain that to Mark. And because Mark needs consistency, the Millers have made the difficult but, they feel, necessary decision to keep their visits virtual for now or through a surreptitious drive-by.

It would be too upsetting for him, said Sharon, a retired elementary school teacher. We didnt want to scare him. We didnt want him to wonder whats going on. Were trying to keep things as normal with him as possible.

We are now seven weeks into social distance practices that have separated grandparents from grandchildren, nursing home residents from visitors, ICU patients from loved ones and new babies from the aunts-uncles-cousins-neighbors-friends parade.

Human contact by the people we love but dont live with is one of the hardest things the coronavirus has taken from us. Typically in a crisis, we have at least each other. This still-evolving crisis steals even that, placing households in isolation in order to contain community spread and keep people as healthy as possible and hospitals as able as possible to provide life-saving care.

Many have developed work-arounds: front-yard happy hours with lawn chairs spaced out. Back-yard visits, from a distance. Drive-by birthday parties with honking horns. Signs held up the window. And, of course, screens.

The ability to visit Mark through FaceTime is one saving grace right now for the Millers. They can interact safely and in a way that is familiar. Mark, who has lived apart from his folks for the last 14 years, is used to the phone-video app during their winters in Texas when they travel to see Marks sister. Mark is used to his dad calling from the cab of his tractor, which they do in planting season.

But as this grinds on, the Millers wish they could just do what any parent can in a scary time: Hug your child.

Mark was born healthy but suffered seizures starting when he was about six months old. Doctors couldnt do anything to control his seizures, which kept getting longer. When he was 10 months, he had a fever and a seizure that was so bad he had to be taken by medical helicopter from York, near where the family lived and still farms, to Omaha.

His brain had sustained damage and Mark suffered developmental delays, putting him on the trajectory that resulted in his challenges in comprehension today. The injury did not take Marks infectious smile, his penchant for jokes nor his ability to bring joy.

He cant verbalize his thoughts but he is expressive and his family and caregivers can understand his wants. But would that happen in a hospital emergency room if Mark were to suffer serious symptoms of the coronavirus?

Its why we moved to Omaha to go to appointments, Sharon said. I can say, This is what Marks trying to tell you. This is how Mark shows pain. This is how Mark is telling you hes happy. People who cant express that, if they get sick with this, its the concern you have as a parent. Will your child be treated the same as everyone else?

The virus forced Sharon and Max, both healthy, to recognize that their age puts them at higher risk. They updated their wills. And they found resources online through the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services to use if an emergency happened.

Mark has lived outside his family home since he turned 21, the age at which federally-mandated educational services end. For about 10 years, he lived in Axtell, Nebraska, in a facility formerly known as Bethphage. It merged with another Nebraska facility for people with disabilities and, with locations throughout Nebraska and the United States, is called Mosaic. Mosaic is headquartered in Omaha.

He got very sick in the winter of 2016 and 2017, so sick he again had be taken by medical helicopter to Lincoln, where he was hospitalized for 70 days. He did recover and when Mosaic had an opening in another facility in Omaha, his family moved him there.

By then, his two siblings were launched a brother in Los Angeles, his sister in suburban Houston, Texas. His mother had already retired. His folks sold the family home in Geneva while keeping the farmland. The Millers bought a townhouse in Omaha to be near Mark, who lives in a specialty house that provides a higher level of care than he had been getting before. Mark doesnt require breathing assistance. He eats a special diet but has a stomach tube for his anti-seizure medication.

The Millers are used to visiting several days a week and would do it more but had been trying to give Mark his space, and balance his needs as a young man, his mother said. Before coronavirus, the Mosaic staff would take Mark and his housemates to the movies or other outings.

Weve always tried to respect that Mark has his own life, she said.

Sharon likes to come during lunch and read him books. She cant say enough good things about the setup, about the caregivers or about her son and feels, despite the challenge of not being with Mark right now, that the family is lucky. Marks in a small facility. He gets good care.

Still, the separation is hard. Sharon and Max had been in Houston visiting their daughter and her family since Dec. 15, although they flew home for eight days in January to see Mark. They returned to Omaha on March 15.

Normally they would have gone straight to see their son. But the couple had driven through four states and realized all the stops made them too exposed. They self-quarantined for 14 days.

We didnt want to carry anything into his home, she said.

By the time their quarantine was over, Mosaic was saying no to visitors. The Millers thought about social-distancing ways to still see Mark: Visit but stay outside. Read to him, but from a distance. But that would have been hard for Mark. Hes physical and the family is huggy. Instead, the best way to have a normal routine was FaceTime.

FaceTime was his normal, she said. Thats what we continued to do.

It doesnt make it easy. Which is why Sharon came up with her costume idea.

On Good Friday, when the weather was better than it was forecast on frigid Easter, she put on the costume and face paint. She FaceTimed with her grandchildren in Texas and then hopped in the Buick Encore. Max drove. They had made arrangements with the Mosaic house staff to have the men outside for a surprise visit. They were pretty far away from the street and the Millers gambled that Mark wouldnt know them.

It worked.

He did look a little questioning when I said, Happy Easter, she said. So then I just waved and blew kisses.

Friends, from left, Ariana Alvarez-Arroyo, Mackenzie Henson and Georgia Brown dance in the road while maintaining social distance due to the novel coronavirus pandemic in Omaha on Friday.

Marcus Butler handles a to-go order Friday at Dante Pizzeria. Many business owners in the Omaha area went into planning mode after Gov. Ricketts announced a series of new directed health measures that will allow restaurants, barbershops, tattoo parlors, salons and massage therapists to reopen on a limited basis.

The dining room space at Dante was converted to help with the take-out only service.

Workers place food in the trunks of a cars in an alley behind the Capitol District in Omaha. Volunteers distributed food to employees of the Capitol District who arent working due to the coronavirus.

Peppers sit in a box in an alley behind the Capitol District. Volunteers distributed food to employees of the Capitol District who arent working due to the coronavirus.

Jim Bartling in one of his familys hog barns in Unadilla, Nebraska, on Wednesday. The problem with being a hog farmer is that I just cant shut the door and lock it like store owners, Bartling said. This is a wound and there is no way to stop the bleeding.

Jim Bartling walks back toward his home after making rounds on his hog farm Wednesday in Unadilla, Nebraska. "I saw this coming all the way back when it was in Wuhan. If what was happening was enough to make them shut down so much, I knew it was coming our way," he said.

Jim Bartling in the farrowing facility on the Bartling Brothers farm. It is only going to get worse if things keep going the way they are going, he said.

Handmade signs to support essential workers during the novel coronavirus pandemic outside a home in Omaha on Wednesday, April 22, 2020.

A chalk rainbow hot air ballon rises up a home's front porch steps in Omaha on Tuesday, April 21, 2020.

A woman takes a photo of the bright but empty stadium at Papillion-La Vista South. Schools across Nebraska have turned on their stadium lights at 20:20 to honor the class of 2020 that will not be able to have prom or graduations.

Ella Pelletier and Matt Jones, both Papillion-La Vista South seniors, watch as the schools stadium is lit up as part of the Be the Light campaign on Wednesday.Schools across Nebraska have turned on their stadium lights at 20:20 to honor the class of 2020 that will not be able to have prom or graduations.

Nebraska Strong is written in chalk on a homes fence in Grand Island on Friday.

A message is written on a home's window on Friday in Grand Island.

A quarantine snowman wears a cloth mask and holds a toilet paper on Friday in Grand Island.

Fireworks erupt during a drive-in fireworks show at Werner Park on Saturday, April 18. The park would have hosted a minor league baseball game that day, but the start of the season has been postponed because of the coronavirus. Thousands watched the fireworks from the stadium's parking lots and surrounding areas.

People watch fireworks during a drive-in fireworks show at Werner Park on Saturday, April 18. The park would have hosted a minor league baseball game that day, but the start of the season has been postponed because of the coronavirus. Thousands watched the fireworks from the stadium's parking lots and surrounding areas.

Snow falls at a drive-up mobile food pantry run by the Food Bank off the Heartland and Millard Public Schools in Millard on Thursday. The mobile pantry more than doubled the number of packages of fresh fruits and vegetables, bread, potatoes and pantry staples they normally give out each month in anticipation of increased need due to the novel coronavirus pandemic.

Snow falls at a drive-up mobile food pantry run by the Food Bank off the Heartland and Millard Public Schools in Millard on Thursday. The mobile pantry more than doubled the number of packages of fresh fruits and vegetables, bread, potatoes and pantry staples they normally give out each month in anticipation of increased need due to the novel coronavirus pandemic.

Terri Connell loads a vehicle at a drive-up mobile food pantry run by the Food Bank off the Heartland and Millard Public Schools as snow falls in Millard on Thursday. The mobile pantry more than doubled the number of packages of fresh fruits and vegetables, bread, potatoes and pantry staples they normally give out each month in anticipation of increased need due to the novel coronavirus pandemic.

A message of good health hangs from a homes front porch in Omaha on Thursday, April 16, 2020.

A window message shows form a home in Omaha on Thursday, April 16, 2020.

An image of Jesus is reflected in a puddle during an Easter service at King of Kings Church on Sunday in Omaha. The church installed a large screen in the parking lot to enable drive-up and park services.

A home displays a message in a front window in Omaha on Friday, April 10.

Astrid Mitchell, right, and her mother, Katie Mitchell, observe the drive-thru stations Good Friday event at the Prairie Creek Inn Bed & Breakfast on Friday in Walton, Nebraska.

Hank, a Labrador retriever, does not respect social distancing and gives Morgan Henderson, the owner of Dirty Doodles, a kiss while being groomed at Dirty Doodles in Omaha. The dog grooming service has moved work stations outside so employees can remain six feet apart during the novel coronavirus pandemic.

A message written in chalk on a wall along Martha Street in Omaha on Wednesday, April 8, 2020.

Traffic is sparse at time on Interstate 80 through Omaha as people are encouraged to stay home amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Handwritten notes for customers at Nite Owl in Omaha on Wednesday, April 1, 2020. Nite Owl has been writing personal notes to customers and offering specials, like the Social Distance Daiquiri, while offering curbside take-out as the novel coronavirus pandemic continues.

Karna Gurung answers a text on his phone at his store located at 822 N 40th Street on Thursday, April 02, 2020. Gurung is translating important information about coronavirus for non english speaking members of his community.

Rita Otis leads an outdoor Tai Chi class on a grass island at Glenwood Road and Sunset Trail on Wednesday, April 01, 2020. Participants had to maintain a distance of six feet due to coronavirus social distancing measures.

Rita Otis leads an outdoor Tai Chi class on a grass island at Glenwood Road and Sunset Trail on Wednesday, April 01, 2020. Participants had to maintain a distance of six feet due to coronavirus social distancing measures.

The Easter Bunny waves to families as they drive by at the Hy-Vee near 144th and Stony Brook Blvd. in Omaha on Saturday, April 4, 2020. The grocery store usually hosts an Easter egg hunt, but went with a drive-thru Easter Bunny visit this year to encourage social distancing in response to the novel coronavirus.

This sign was installed at Zorinsky Lake Park in Omaha on April 4. The mayor later closed all city parks.

A ball field is seen through a chainlink fence, at Lee Valley Park in Omaha on Saturday, April 4, 2020. Playgrounds and athletic fields are closed in all Omaha parks.

A ball field sets empty at Prairie Lane Park in Omaha on Saturday, April 04, 2020. Playgrounds and athletic fields are closed in all Omaha parks.

A Washington Elementary School sign reads 'Nebraska Strong' on Thursday, April 02, 2020, in Fremont, Nebraska.

About 100 people line up outside Brickway Brewery & Distillery in Omaha on Monday, April 6, 2020. The Old Market business was giving away free hand sanitizer on tap to anyone who brings their own bottle of 64 ounces or less.

Don Rupp wears a face mask made by his wife while waiting in line outside Brickway Brewery & Distillery in Omaha on Monday, April 6, 2020. The Old Market business was giving away free hand sanitizer on tap to anyone who brings their own bottle of 64 ounces or less.

Streets in downtown Grand Island are mostly empty. In Hall County, 35.5% of tests for the coronavirus have come back positive, compared to the 7.65% positive rate statewide.

Playground equipment is seen wrapped in caution tape at Pier Park on April 6 in Grand Island. Playgrounds are closed to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

Russell Hatt smokes a cigarette outside of Fonner Park on April 6 in Grand Island. "I'm a widower, so this is what I do to stay busy. I bet on horses and play Texas Hold 'Em."

The Kroc Center is illuminated as a symbol of hope in Omaha on Monday, April 6, 2020.

Rabbi Daniel Blotner puts together Seder-To-Go kits at Chabad House in Omaha on Monday, April 6, 2020. The Seder is a ritual dinner to mark the beginning of Passover, which began on April 8. The free kits and were available for delivery for anyone who is homebound during the novel coronavirus pandemic.

Leah Hanson and others visit their grandmother from outside the Douglas County Health Center in Omaha on Tuesday, April 7, 2020.

From left, Carol Ann Hixson, Terri Rohmeyer and Carol Carol Coffey wave and blow kisses to a family member from outside the Douglas County Health Center in Omaha on Tuesday, April 7, 2020.

A woman walks a dog as the sun sets on Elmwood Park in Omaha on Wednesday, April 08, 2020. Omaha has closed all city parks until April 30 to combat COVID-19. The trail system will remain open, but parking lots at trail heads are closed. People must walk or bike in.

Walking is still allowed at West Papio Trail. Omaha closed all city parks through April 30 to combat COVID-19. While trails and sidewalks remain open, everything else in the parks is closed. Groups larger than 10 people are prohibited, and people must keep a physical distance of 6 feet or more.

Kennedy Cascio has decorated her home's front door with a symbol for medicine and hearts. Cascio is an intensive care unit nurse at the Bellevue Medical Center and created the display to "show that I am thankful for everyone working on the frontlines," as the novel coronavirus pandemic continues. Photographed in Omaha on Wednesday, April 8, 2020.

A message is left along a fence at Lewis and Calrk Middle School in Omaha on Thursday, April 09, 2020. Omaha Public Schools have been closed since mid-March, with remote learning for all students, as the novel coronavirus pandemic continues.

Traffic signs on Dodge Street, near 168th, display self quarantine guideline suggestions on Monday, April 06, 2020.

A sparrow sit in its nest in the letter "g" in Walgreens sign at 5038 Center Street on Friday, April 10, 2020.

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Apr 25th, 2020 | Filed under Diet Safely

Amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, grocery shopping has transitioned from being a routine errand to a potentially challenging, and even dangerous, task. Many shoppers are awaiting the day when waiting in line before even getting inside the store is a distant memory. But regardless of when that day comes, it's likely the pandemic will transform the way we shop for food for many years to come.

TODAY Food spoke with a few industry insiders to get their take on the future of food shopping. Here are their predictions on what to expect in the post-pandemic era.

According to a consumer behavior survey released by Florida-based marketing agency Acosta, shoppers are currently making 52% fewer trips than they were before the pandemic. And 47% said it's extremely or very likely they'll continue to make fewer trips post coronavirus.

Dawn Jackson Blatner, a registered dietician in based in Chicago, told TODAY Food that most people she knows used to shop for food items almost every other day. "And there would be extra trips to additional stores for specialty items that aren't in their usual store," she added. While she doesn't know if people will stick to the biweekly, one-store shops they're doing now, she agreed that it's unlikely people will be shopping as frequently as before.

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The survey also found that nearly half of respondents think they'll continue to stock up more in the future. Now that people have adopted the habit of shopping for seven-plus days at a time, Jackson Blatner said the stockpiling trend is likely to continue, but doesn't think people will continue to hoard such vast quantities of essentials.

"Stocking up is a skill people will likely keep using to save time once regular pace of life takes over again," she said.

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The days of spending hours browsing through the aisles may be over. If stores keep up two-cart social distancing rules, the days of impulse buys while waiting to checkout may also be a relic of the past. Instead, expect more lists.

"Right now, we're trying to go to the store as infrequently as possible, which requires forethought and creative menu planning," Trae Bodge, a lifestyle journalist who covers shopping trends, told TODAY. "I can see this kind of efficient shopping continuing once the worst of the pandemic has passed."

But even if menu planning remains a thing, recipes might not. "With fewer trips to the store there's more flexibility and creativity when people don't have all the ingredients a recipe calls for," said Jackson Blatner, who sees cooking "off script" becoming increasingly popular.

Jon Roesser, general manager at Weavers Way Co-op, a small chain of grocery stores in Pennsylvania, told TODAY he predicts customers will continue to want curbside pickup. For the foreseeable future, his stores will continue to offer the service.

Meanwhile, some major grocery chains are looking into offering online shopping only. Online grocery spend in the past month has already doubled, according to a new report by the fulfillment platform Fabric.

"After this is all over, I can see shoppers continuing to order online, especially those who, before COVID, struggled to squeeze shopping into their busy schedules or found shopping to be physically challenging," said Bodge. She credits the coronavirus with forcing older consumers to learn how to use technology to shop. "They'll have figured out the process and will greatly enjoy the benefits."

There was a large outcry when Costco first announced it had suspended in-store sampling back in March, but it's unlikely that many stores are going to bring that practice back anytime soon, experts say. Decreasing touch points and limiting areas where cross-contamination may occur will continue to be a priority for store management teams.

"It's incredibly hard to predict when we'll be able to open things back up for our customers," Roesser said. He also thinks it would be a shame if customers could no longer try before they buy since many of his vendors are from smaller farmers markets and rely on in-store samples to introduce customers to new products.

While not every store can be Costco and have gloved employees handing out samples, he hopes smaller stores will be able to find a different and regulated way to do it safely after the pandemic.

Year-on-year, fresh produce sales have continued to rise. Last month's increase was largely driven by demand for fruits, including oranges and lemons, that last longer. Potatoes have also become more popular. For weeks, they've been the top growth leader for fresh produce according to an industry report.

"Potatoes were demonized by diet trends, but during quarantine they're a life saver," said Jackson Blatner. She predicts that because they're so versatile, potatoes will have a special place in our diets and pantries going forward.

If you've noticed the freezer aisle shelves look emptier than usual, you're not imagining things. Fewer trips to the store means more food needs to be freezer friendly. Some stores are even limiting the amount of frozen vegetables customers can buy. While the practice of limiting might end, demand won't disappear. "People have been reminded of the convenience of frozen veggies so they'll likely stay around post-coronavirus," said Jackson Butler.

When farm-to-table and buy local movements surged in popularity in the early 2000s, frozen and canned goods got a bad rap. But they've made a huge comeback recently. Plus, most frozen produce is just as nutritious as its fresh counterpart.

Canned food is also poised to remain a shopping-cart staple. In fact, many canned goods don't have expiration dates so in theory, they can last for years.

Consumers have become all too familiar with hour-long waits at big-box retailers, so many smaller grocers have seen their businesses boom. Mike Geller, owner and manager of Mike's Organic, a grocery store in Stamford, Connecticut, told TODAY he's seeing an influx of new customers over the past month.

Initially, Geller said he received feedback that shoppers came in because they were "stymied" elsewhere. Now, however, they say they're coming back for the convenience and the diverse organic offerings.

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Apr 25th, 2020 | Filed under Diet Safely

The Carnivore Diet consists entirely of meat and animal products, excluding all other foods.

Its claimed to aid weight loss, mood issues, and blood sugar regulation, among other health issues.

However, the diet is extremely restrictive and likely unhealthy in the long term. Plus, no research backs its purported benefits.

This article reviews the Carnivore Diet, including whether it can aid weight loss, its potential benefits and downsides, and how to follow it.

The Carnivore Diet is a restrictive diet that only includes meat, fish, and other animal foods like eggs and certain dairy products.

It excludes all other foods, including fruits, vegetables, legumes, grains, nuts, and seeds.

Its proponents also recommend eliminating or limiting dairy intake to foods that are low in lactose a sugar found in milk and dairy products such as butter and hard cheeses.

The Carnivore Diet stems from the controversial belief that human ancestral populations ate mostly meat and fish and that high-carb diets are to blame for todays high rates of chronic disease.

Other popular low-carb diets, like the keto and paleo diets, limit but dont exclude carb intake. However, the Carnivore Diet aims for zero carbs.

Shawn Baker, a former American orthopedic doctor, is the most well-known proponent of the Carnivore Diet (1).

He cites testimonials from those who follow the Carnivore Diet as proof that it can treat depression, anxiety, arthritis, obesity, diabetes, and more (1, 2).

However, no research has analyzed the effects of the Carnivore Diet.

Whats more, in 2017 Bakers medical license was revoked by the New Mexico Medical Board due to concerns about his competency (3).

Following the diet involves eliminating all plant foods from your diet and exclusively eating meat, fish, eggs, and small amounts of low-lactose dairy products.

Foods to eat include beef, chicken, pork, lamb, turkey, organ meats, salmon, sardines, white fish, and small amounts of heavy cream and hard cheese. Butter, lard, and bone marrow are also allowed.

Proponents of the diet emphasize eating fatty cuts of meat to reach your daily energy needs.

The Carnivore Diet encourages drinking water and bone broth but discourages drinking tea, coffee, and other drinks made from plants.

It provides no specific guidelines regarding calorie intake, serving sizes, or how many meals or snacks to eat per day. Most proponents of the diet suggest eating as often as you desire.

Certain aspects of the Carnivore Diet may lead to weight loss. Specifically, some studies have shown that high-protein and low-carb diets can promote weight loss (4, 5, 6).

This is mostly because protein can help you feel more full after meals, which may lead to reduced calorie intake and subsequent weight loss. Protein can also increase your metabolic rate, helping you burn more calories (7, 8, 9).

Therefore, following the Carnivore Diet would likely cause you to feel fuller and eat fewer calories overall at least in the short term.

One 3-month study in 132 adults with excess weight or obesity compared the weight loss effects of 4 energy-restricted diets containing varying amounts of carbs and protein (4).

Those who ate high-protein diets with 0.40.6 grams of protein per pound (0.91.3 grams per kg) of body weight per day lost significantly more weight and fat mass than those who ate 0.30.4 grams of protein per pound (0.60.8 grams per kg) of body weight per day (4).

Other studies show similar results, suggesting that increasing protein intake and reducing carb intake may lead to more sustained weight loss than diets that are lower in protein and higher in carbs (10).

However, you do not need to completely eliminate carbs to lose weight. Rather, reducing your overall calorie intake, which may be easier to do with a higher intake of satisfying protein, is the main driver of weight loss (11).

Plus, the highly restrictive nature of the Carnivore Diet makes it difficult to follow long term.

Since the Carnivore Diet excludes carbs, it eliminates cookies, cakes, candy, sodas, pastries, and similar high-carb foods.

These foods are low in beneficial nutrients and often high in calories. Thus, they should be limited in a healthy, balanced diet.

High-sugar foods can also be problematic for people with diabetes, as they can spike blood sugar levels. In fact, limiting refined carbs and sugary foods is often recommended to control diabetes (12).

However, the complete elimination of carbs on the Carnivore Diet is not recommended or necessary for diabetes management. Instead, eating smaller amounts of wholesome, high-fiber carbs that dont cause spikes in blood sugar is recommended (12).

Due to its highly restrictive nature and complete elimination of the majority of food groups, there are many downsides to the Carnivore Diet.

Given that the Carnivore Diet consists solely of animal foods, it can be high in saturated fat and cholesterol.

Saturated fat may raise your LDL (bad) cholesterol, which may increase your risk of heart disease (13).

However, recent studies have shown that high intakes of saturated fat and cholesterol are not strongly linked to a higher risk of heart disease, as was previously believed (14, 15).

Still, consuming high amounts of saturated fat on the Carnivore Diet may be of concern. No research has analyzed the effects of eating animal foods exclusively. Therefore, the effects of consuming such high levels of fat and cholesterol are unknown.

Moreover, some processed meats, especially bacon and breakfast meats, also contain high amounts of sodium.

Eating a lot of these foods on the Carnivore Diet can lead to excessive sodium intake, which has been linked to an increased risk of high blood pressure, kidney disease, and other negative health outcomes (16).

Processed meat intake has also been linked to higher rates of certain types of cancer, including colon and rectal cancer (17).

The Carnivore Diet eliminates highly nutritious foods like fruits, vegetables, legumes, and whole grains, all of which contain beneficial vitamins and minerals.

While meat is nutritious and provides micronutrients, it should not be the only part of your diet. Following a restrictive diet like the Carnivore Diet may lead to deficiencies in some nutrients and the overconsumption of others (18).

Whats more, diets that are rich in plant-based foods have been associated with a lower risk of certain chronic conditions like heart disease, certain cancers, Alzheimers, and type 2 diabetes (19, 20, 21).

This is not only due to the high vitamin, fiber, and mineral contents of plant foods but also their beneficial plant compounds and antioxidants (20).

The Carnivore Diet does not contain these compounds and has not been associated with any long-term health benefits.

Fiber, a non-digestible carb that promotes gut health and healthy bowel movements, is only found in plant foods (22).

Thus, the Carnivore Diet contains no fiber, which may lead to constipation in some people (23).

Additionally, fiber is incredibly important for the proper balance of bacteria in your gut. In fact, suboptimal gut health can lead to a number of issues and may even be linked to weakened immunity and colon cancer (24, 25).

In fact, one study in 17 men with obesity found that a high-protein, low-carb diet significantly decreased their levels of compounds that help protect against colon cancer, compared to high-protein, moderate-carb diets (25).

Overall, following the Carnivore Diet may harm your gut health.

The Carnivore Diet may be especially problematic for certain populations.

For example, those who need to limit their protein intake, including people with chronic kidney disease, should not follow the diet (26).

Also, those who are more sensitive to the cholesterol in foods, or cholesterol hyper-responders, should be cautious about consuming so many high-cholesterol foods (27).

Furthermore, certain populations with special nutrient needs would likely not meet them on the Carnivore Diet. This includes children and pregnant or lactating women.

Lastly, those who have anxiety about food or struggle with restrictive eating should not try this diet.

The Carnivore Diet includes only animal products and excludes all other foods.

Specifically, someone on the Carnivore Diet can eat:

According to some proponents of the diet, salt, pepper, and seasonings with no carbs are allowed.

In addition, some people choose to eat yogurt, milk, and soft cheese, but these foods are typically not included due to their carb contents.

All foods that do not come from animals are excluded from the Carnivore Diet.

Restricted foods include:

While some people incorporate some of these foods, a true Carnivore Diet does not permit them.

The Carnivore Diet is difficult to follow long term and does not offer much variety.

Heres a five-day sample menu for the Carnivore Diet:

The Carnivore Diet is extremely restrictive, consisting entirely of meat, fish, eggs, and small amounts of low-lactose dairy.

Its said to aid weight loss and several health issues, but no research backs these claims.

Whats more, its high in fat and sodium, contains no fiber or beneficial plant compounds, and is difficult to maintain long term.

Overall, the Carnivore Diet is unnecessarily restrictive. Eating a balanced diet with a variety of healthy foods is more sustainable and will likely afford you more health benefits.

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Carnivore Diet Review: Benefits, Downsides, and Sample Menu

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Apr 24th, 2020 | Filed under Diet Safely
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