High Fiber Breakfasts For Busy Mornings

high fiber breakfastsIf you’re faced with the challenge of serving a high fiber breakfast as your family is racing out the door in the morning, here are a few suggestions to help you get the job done.

Oatmeal – A one-half cup serving of plain rolled oats is packed with 6 grams of fiber and is a perfect way to get the day started off right. Add in a high fiber fruit like strawberries, raspberries or blueberries and you’ll easily have a delicious breakfast with more than 10 total grams of fiber.

Yogurt and Berries – This delicious combination of tastes can also pack a fiber punch. One cup of strawberries or blueberries each has more than 4 grams of fiber. Or you can choose to add a cup of raspberries with 8 grams of fiber. Regardless of your choice, yogurt and berries is a fast way to satisfy a sweet tooth and get your fiber at the same time.

Apple, Peanut Butter and Whole Grain Toast – With two grams of fiber in each slice, whole grain bread makes a perfect piece of toast. Spread on 1 Tbsp. of peanut butter on your bread and layer with apple slices. With 5 grams of fiber in the apple, this breakfast provides more than 6 grams of fiber.

Some additional high fiber fruits to add to your daily meal plan are grapefruit and pears. Prunes, which provide a laxative action, are not a high fiber food.

With all of the breakfast meal suggestions listed above, keep in mind that you must use fruit in its natural form with the skin (that’s where a lot of the fiber is!). Frozen fruit is fine, as long as it is not in a sugary sauce.

Two Medical Careers That Are Definitely Worth a Look

While many careers aren’t as profitable or rewarding as they used to be, some are actually predicted to get better over the coming years. Those two are nurse practitioner and dental assistant.

Let’s begin with dental assisting. One of the reasons why dental assisting is growing so rapidly is because it’s a long lasting and rewarding career. Also, the education requirements aren’t very steep.

Most people that decide to become dental assistants usually attend some type of online dental assistant school. But, in some U.S. states, you can become a dental assistant with nothing more than a high school diploma!

Another reason why this career is expected to last a long time is because as long as there are dentists, there will be dental assistants. After all dentists need someone to clean their tools, help prepare patients and work the front desk. A fun specialty to consider is pediatric dentistry.

Those that are prepared for a lot of education should definitely keep an eye on the nurse practitioner career. Nurse practitioners are some of the highest paid nurses in the world. And while nurse practitioners definitely have a long and rewarding career, the nurse practitioner education requirements are quite steep compared to other careers.

How steep you ask? Think doctorate degree. As you can imagine it isn’t a career for people that aren’t committed. But, for people that are, it’s definitely a good choice. It’s been shown that some nurse practitioners make upwards of $115,000 per year! But, believe it or not, that isn’t the most interesting thing we found out.

Unlike any other nurses, nurse practitioners have the ability to work without the supervision of an MD. The interesting thing about that is that a nurse practitioner can serve as a person’s primary healthcare provider. And that leads to the most interesting point of all, private practices. Yep, that’s right. Nurse practitioners have the ability to open their very own practice if they desire.

*Article source: pediatricdentistinasheville.com

How Safe is Laser Eye Surgery?

Laser eye surgery is the most common elective surgery currently being performed with over one million people worldwide undergoing the procedure each year. Laser eye surgery has actually been around a lot longer than most people realize with the first procedure actually being carried out over 25 years ago. Refractive surgery, which relates to any surgery which corrects people’s vision has actually been carried out for over 30 years but this was not performed using a laser.

As you would expect, the techniques involved with the surgery have been improved and refined over the years and the technology behind laser eye surgery is unrecognizable from what it was when the procedure was first carried out. The main advancements have come with the laser themselves which are now extremely accurate and reliable, meaning the results of the surgery are very consistent.

The surgeons themselves have also significantly improved and laser eye surgeons are now regulated, which was not the case when the procedure first started being performed. Laser eye surgery is now considered to be an extremely safe procedure with a very low risk of complications.

Although there is variation between surgeons, a respectable complication rate is generally accepted to be around 0.1% of all procedures carried out. This means that only 1 in 1000 laser eye surgery procedures result in any sort of complication. You may be reading this thinking that 1 in 1000 procedures is actually too big a risk to take, but it is important to realize that the vast majority of the complication that do occur can be easily rectified by your surgeon, meaning you end up with perfect vision anyway.

When you are considering the risks of laser eye surgery it is probably better to think of them in terms of the likelihood of there being a complication which the surgeon is unable to rectify to a satisfactory conclusion. Again there will be variation between different surgeons but this figure averages out at about 1 in 25,000 procedures. If you are unlucky enough to fall into this category then there is a chance that your vision may actually be worse than it was before surgery.

A commonly asked question about laser eye surgery is what are the chances of going blind following the procedure? The easiest way to answer this is to say that to date no one has ever gone blind as a result of the surgery and most surgeons estimate the risk of blindness to be about 1 in 5 million procedures; which is about the same chance of dying in a plane crash!

Most of the complications of laser eye surgery are relatively minor and include things such as dry eyes and night vision problems. Complications such as these are becoming far less common as the laser technology continues to improve. What’s more, such complications generally improve to the point of resolution over the first 6 months following surgery as the eyes heal.

In summary, while there are risks involved with the procedure, laser eye surgery is generally considered to be extremely safe. The biggest disappointment following laser eye surgery is generally experienced when people’s expectations are too high and it is important that such expectations are managed by the surgeon. It is also important that your surgeon explains exactly what you can expect following surgery as it is when people experience things that they were not expecting that they are likely to be disappointed.

A good example of this is that people who are having laser eye surgery to correct their near sightedness may find that their reading vision is actually worse following the surgery than it was before. Such people’s distance vision will be massively improved which is the reason they had the surgery in the first place, but if it was not explained that their reading vision could be worse following the procedure, then they may perceive the surgery as a failure. If this was fully explained to your prior to surgery then you are unlikely to be disappointed. The single most important factor in having a successful surgery is in choosing a surgeon who you feel comfortable with and one that has the necessary experience to deal with any complications should they arise.

This post was written by Tim Harwood, A laser trained Optometrist from the UK. In addition to his clinical practice ,Tim also provides information for his own website TreatmentSaver – Laser eye surgery which covers all aspects of laser eye surgery including both the cost and risks of the procedure.

DASH Diet is Number One Again

U.S. News & World Report’s  Best Diets 2012 was announced earlier this week and the DASH Diet (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension), which was created by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, finds itself in the top spot for the second year in a row.

Originally developed as a way to lower blood pressure through diet, this eating plan focused on high fiber foods such as whole grains, fruits and vegetables; low fat dairy products, poultry, legumes and nuts (see this list). As a result, it is high in fiber and low in sodium, saturated fat, cholesterol and added sugars.

A typical day on the DASH Diet will find you consuming the following:

  • 7 to 8 servings of whole grains,
  • 4 to 5 servings of vegetables
  • 4 to 5 servings of fruit
  • 2 to 3 servings of low fat dairy
  • 1 to 2 servings of meat, poultry or fish
  • 2 to 3 servings of fats and oils

One a weekly basis, you can also add in:

  • 4 to 5 servings of nuts, seeds or legumes
  • less than 5 servings of sweets

The U.S. News  & World Report’s Best Diets 2012 results were calculated by 22 member of a panel with expertise in obesity, nutrition, diet, food psychology, diabetes and heart disease.  Twenty-five diet plans were considered for the honors. The experts look at the following categories when evaluating the plans: is the plan easy to follow; what type of long term and short term results do they produce; nutritional profile and completeness; safety and effect on heard disease and diabetes.


Omega 3 EPA May Help Search and Destroy Leukemia

As if there weren’t already enough amazing benefits of omega 3 fatty acids found in fish oil, along comes a new study from Penn State researches, published in the recent issue of Blood (Blood 2011 118:6909-6919), with the promise of a possible cure for Leukemia.

Granted, there is much more to learn about this connection, since the studies have only been performed on mice at this time, but the possibilities are exciting. According to researchers, our bodies have the ability to produce a compound from EPA, an omega 3 fatty acid, which actually targets AND kills stem cells of “chronic myelogenous leukemia” or CML for short.

This compound, called “delta-12-protaglandin J3 (or D12-PGJ3), is the only thing that’s been shown to kill leukemia stem cells. In fact, the mice in the study were not only cured, but their biomarkers returned to normal and the leukemia never returned.

Currently, the only approach available for treating leukemia fails to completely cure the patient. It will lower the number of leukemia cells and extend their life, as long as the person keeps receiving therapy, but it will not kill the stem cells or give them any hope of complete recovery. So you can see why this breakthrough is so exciting for researchers and leukemia sufferers alike.

But the excitement doesn’t end there! Apparently leukemia stem cells have a sneaky ability to “hide” from the current form of treatment, frustrating both doctors and patients. Later down the road these hidden stem cells can easily give rise to more leukemia cells, compounding the problem. However, D12-PGJ3 has the ability to search and destroy leukemia cells, so if they are trying to hide the D12-PGJ3 will find them and kill them.

We look forward to more studies into the benefits of D12-PGJ3. Can you imagine a world without leukemia?

High Protein Diets Are Off the Hook

Good news for all of you body builders and dieters out there. Research recently conducted at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center in Baton Rouge, La has suggested that diets focusing on high protein foods are no more likely to increase body fat than diets low in protein.  Researchers went on to conclude that “calories alone, however, contributed to the increase in body fat.”(JAMA: The Journal of the American Medical Association, 2012; 307 (1): 47 DOI: 10.1001/jama.2011.1918)

The main objective of the study was to “To evaluate the effects of overconsumption of low, normal, and high protein diets on weight gain, energy expenditure, and body composition.”  The scientists studied 25 healthy men and women volunteers between the ages of 18 and 35.  The study started with the first volunteer in June of 2005 and concluded with the last volunteer in October 2007. All study participants were kept in an inpatient metabolic unit for 10 – 12 weeks.

For the first 13 to 25 days, these volunteers were fed a weight-stabilizing diet – in other words, their weight stayed the same. For the remaining 8 weeks, volunteers were overfed one of 3 different diets – low protein (5%), normal protein (15%) or high protein (25%), with the intention of weight gain.

All of the study volunteers, both men and women, gained weight on the 8 week, overfeeding plan.  However, all 3 groups gained similar amounts of body fat. The study authors summarized their findings with this statement, “In summary, weight gain when eating a low protein diet (5 percent of energy from protein) was blunted compared with weight gain when eating a normal protein diet (15 percent of energy from protein) with the same number of extra calories. Calories alone, however, contributed to the increase in body fat. In contrast, protein contributed to the changes in energy expenditure and lean body mass, but not to the increase in body fat.”