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4 Reasons Why You Should Use Turmeric

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You may be familiar with curries that have a yellowish hue to them. What causes this yellow coloring is turmeric, a spice from the South Asian subcontinent that is gaining immense recognition for various health benefits.

Turmeric has been used for about 4,500 years to alleviate symptoms from congestion to wounds and bruises. The most potent substance found in turmeric is curcumin, which has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Here are a few ways in which turmeric can boost your overall health.

1. Increases Antioxidant Quantities in the Body

Curcumin contains antioxidant properties that prevent oxidative damage, which causes aging and other diseases. These radicals alter the composition of organic molecules including genetic material, proteins, and fatty acids.

Antioxidant properties protect our bodies from this radicalization, and consumption of turmeric not only blocks radicals directly but also initiates self-defense mechanisms that combat radicalization in any shape or form.

2. Strengthens Brain Function

Turmeric can increase the number of neurons because it’s curcumin component stimulates brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) hormone. An increase in the BDNF hormone can “[delay] or even [reverse] many brain diseases and age-related decreases in brain function.”

Consumption of turmeric could be the next step in reducing diseases such as Alzheimer’s or depression. More neuronal connections will lead to overall stronger brain function!

3. Bolsters Body’s Anti-Inflammation Mechanisms

Inflammation is extremely crucial in upkeeping your body’s defense mechanisms and repairing any tissue damage. However, it becomes counterproductive when inflammation is chronic and eventually attacks its own body.

urmeric helps fight against this by blocking NF-kB, which is a molecule present in the nucleus and turns on inflammatory genes. Interestingly, curcumin’s levels of anti-inflammation is so high that it matches that of some anti-inflammatory drugs.

4. Reduces the Contraction of Heart Disease

Curcumin can prevent heart disease because it reverses steps in the contraction of heart disease by improving the function of the endothelium. The endothelium is the lining of the blood vessels, and turmeric plays a role in increasing endothelial function. This helps us regulate blood pressure and blood clotting among other factors.

The bottom-line is that turmeric is very versatile in its benefits and is not too hard to incorporate in food intake. One to two teaspoons in cooking can make a world of a difference in flavoring your food and enhancing your health for years to come.

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Lifestyle

Does Eating An Apple A Day Really Keep the Doctor Away?

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We have probably encountered the saying “an apple a day keeps the doctor away.” But is there any actual truth to that? Will eating an apple keep you away from the doctor? According to Medical News Today, there is not any statistically significant evidence to show that the frequency of doctors visits decreases while consuming apples every day. However, the study did note that daily apple intake kept the pharmacist away.

This study, conducted by the University of Michigan School of Nursing, set a few standards in place to ensure proper experimental design. First of all, the participants should not visit the doctor more than once a year while eating apples every day. Secondly, the apple must be seven centimeters in diameter. The researchers found that daily apple eating is “not associated with successfully keeping to a maximum of one self-reported doctor visit a year.”  What is interesting to note is that participants who ate apples had a higher level of education, were more likely to be a racial minority, and did not smoke. Additionally, apple-eaters also successfully avoided prescription -based medication, and this data “survived statistical analysis.” Therefore, there was an association between eating an apple every day and avoiding the pharmacist.

Although apples do not keep the doctor away, they still have quite a few nutritional benefits. Apples have high levels of Vitamin C, antioxidants, and phytochemicals in the skin. Cornell University researchers treated colon cancer cells with apple extract and found that it decreased the cancer cell growth by 43%. The combination of phytochemicals coming from fruits and vegetables can induce positive health benefits, which may prevent cancer and other diseases in the future. While apples are a healthy fruit, they are not correlated with the number of doctor visits per year.

Sources:

  1. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/291683.php
  2. https://www.webmd.com/food-recipes/news/20000621/benefits-of-eating-fruit#1

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Lifestyle

Lack of Exercise is More Damaging to Heart Health Than Smoking

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We all know that smoking leads to lung cancer, but did you know that a new study has stated that a lack of exercise is more harmful to your heart health than smoking?

The study was conducted by measuring the level of fitness in participants who were asked to walk quickly and then run on a treadmill. Individuals deemed unfit through the exercise stress test often had a more severe prognosis than the average patient with diabetes, hypersensitivity, or a patient that is a current smoker. Moreover, people that did not perform well on the treadmill test had double the risk of future kidney dialysis.

While smoking is a detrimental habit, a lack of fitness can lead to a surge of cardiovascular disease and diabetes cases. More than $200 billion per year is used for treating the complications of these diseases, thus placing an extensive burden on the healthcare system. In addition, not exercising will expose you to a risk of higher mortality. The risk associated with fatality is estimated at 500% higher in individuals that lead a very sedentary lifestyle.

For individuals that live in a sedentary lifestyle, it may be a wise idea to start making some quick life changes. Even something as simple as introducing a regular walk around the block each night can help you to reduce your overall risk for several different diseases. As you continue to scale up your exercising effort, you can continue to lower these risk factors and increase the longevity of your health.

Source:

  1. https://www.cnn.com/2018/10/19/health/study-not-exercising-worse-than-smoking/index.html

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Lifestyle

Why Korean Skincare Is So Popular

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Photo Source: https://commons.wikimedia.org/

Korean skincare products are becoming increasingly popular around the world. The Korean beauty market sits in a top 10 slot around the world, and the products produced here account for $13.1 billion in sales. The trend for Korean skincare partially stems from consumers wanting the same flawless, clear skin that Korean celebrities (or K-pop stars such as BTS) exhibit. This popularity is part of the cultural wave known as “hallyu” in which South Korean pop culture including food, drama, and makeup have propagated through social media and online platforms, thus attracting a global audience.

The improvements made in bioscience for skincare has allowed Korea to come up with products that have anti-wrinkle properties, elasticity boosters, sun blocking elements, and pigment fading effects. Therefore, Korean skincare products have real merit when it comes to skin treatment.  The traditional skin care routine includes a 10 step routine that involves the following steps:  “pre-cleanse, cleanse, exfoliation, and then apply the following: toner, essence, ampoule, face mask, eye cream, emulsion, and moisturizing cream.”

What makes this routine standout is that the products use an oil-base to help remove makeup rather than a strong surfactant.  The products also contains humectant, which is known to hydrate the skin and make it more supple. With regard to the face-masks, the usage of aloe allows the skin to increase its absorption through a fermented botanical component. The fermented botanical component has micro-organisms that “ferment and break down molecules into the raw material,” thus synthesizing a material that reduces skin irritation.

Although a 10 step skincare routine may seem out of reach for most people,  it can improve many habits and can ultimately lead to much healthier skin. Let us know in the comments if you have tried this Korean skin-care routine.

Sources:

  1. https://www.cnn.com/2018/04/11/health/korean-makeup-beauty-health-benefits/index.html
  2. https://www.elle.com/beauty/makeup-skin-care/news/a30379/korean-dermatologist-on-beauty/

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