What it Means to Be “Gut-Healthy”

Since commercials first started appearing on regular television about the importance of probiotics, people have increasingly been paying attention to the importance of their intestinal flora and what good gut bacteria can do for their health. Many people do not realize the far reaching effects that a healthy gut can have on their overall well being and health or how they should go about getting healthy bacteria to thrive in their gut. The Benefits of a Healthy Gut Preliminary studies have showed the benefits of healthy intestinal flora to be many and far reaching. For example, a preliminary review of the intestinal bacteria in the elderly, published by Nature, has shown that those with a varied and healthy gut were much more cognitively alert and less frail than those who did not. In other studies, the gut flora has been shown to aid digestion, help the body to produce the (Read More)

Greek vs. Regular Yogurt

Greek yogurt has been all over the media lately, but how does it vary from the regular variety? A slight alteration in the manufacturing process makes all the difference in the nutrition between them and is why Greek yogurt earns the “power food” label. Any form of yogurt is a byproduct of fermented milk. When manufacturers make Greek yogurt, however, they strain it to remove the whey, or liquid portion, of the milk. This is what gives the Greek yogurt a thicker consistency than the regular variety. As a result, the strained yogurt is lower in sodium and carbs, but slightly higher in both calories and protein. We wanted a closer look, so we ran to the store and grabbed a single serving of nonfat greek and nonfat regular yogurt  to compare.           Greek yogurt seems to be the winner if you’re looking for weight loss, but (Read More)

Vitamin B12: All Cobalamins Are Not Equal

Look at your multiple vitamin or B complex bottle. You’re probably taking cyanocobalamin, the stable and less expensive form of vitamin B12. Because it is stable, it has a longer shelf life. However, the active form of B12 is methylcobalamin and the two are NOT equal in effectiveness. If you have symptoms of GI disorders, lethargy, confusion, slow thought processes, heart rate variability, atherosclerosis, sleep disorders, or immune dysfunction, you may need the methyl as well as the cobalamin component. The two vitamin B12 coenzymes known to be metabolically active in humans are methylcobalamin and adenosylcobalamin. Vitamin B12 is usually absorbed from the gut from the fermentation of intrinsic factor by intestinal flora. However, production can be disturbed by nutritional deficiencies, intrinsic factor deficiency, bacterial overgrowth, malabsorption, alcohol, and antibiotics. Nitrous oxide anesthesia in surgery and nitric acid from normal metabolism and inflammation also reduce our vitamin B12 levels. Cobalamins (Read More)