Fat: the Good and the Bad

What do we really know about fat other than to avoid it like the plague? This article explores fat: the good and the bad.

What is Fat?

In chemistry, nutrition, and biology, fat generally means any ester (a chemical compound derived from an acid) of fatty acids or a mixture of such compounds, most commonly those that occur in living beings and food.

Basically, fats are nutrients in food that the body utilizes to form nerve tissue, including the nerves, brain, and hormones.

What is Fat’s Function?

The body utilizes fat as a fuel supply, and fat is the primary storage form of energy in the body. Fat additionally has numerous other essential functions in the body, and it requires a modest amount in the diet for good health. However, too much fat or too much of the wrong type of fat can be unhealthy.

A modest amount of fat is a vital component of a healthy, balanced diet. Fat is a supply of crucial fatty acids that the body cannot make itself. Fat aids the body with the absorption of vitamin A, vitamin D, and vitamin E. These are known as fat-soluble vitamins.

Where is Fat Found?

Fats in food are found in several forms, which include saturated, monounsaturated, and polyunsaturated.

Some foods containing fats are butter, oil, nuts, meat, fish, and some dairy products.

Types of Fat

For good health, in the long run, some fats are healthier than others. Good fats are composed of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. The bad ones contain industrial-made trans fats. Saturated fats land someplace in the middle.

All fats have a comparable chemical structure: a sequence of carbon atoms linked to hydrogen atoms. What makes one fat dissimilar from another is the length and shape of the carbon chain and the number of hydrogen atoms attached to the carbon atoms. Deceptively slight differences in structure transform into crucial differences in form and function.

Bad Fats

The worst type of dietary fat is known as a trans fat. It is a byproduct of a process called hydrogenation used to turn healthy oils into solids and prevent them from becoming rancid. Trans fats do not have any known health benefits, and there is no safe level of consumption. Therefore, they are banned officially in the United States and many other countries.

In the early 20th century, trans fats were found chiefly in solid vegetable shortening and margarine. As food makers discovered new ways to utilize partially hydrogenated vegetable oils, they commenced appearing in everything from commercial cookies and pastries to fast-food French fries.

Ingesting foods loaded with trans fats elevate the quantity of bad LDL cholesterol in the bloodstream and diminishes the amount of good HDL cholesterol. Trans fats additionally create inflammation, connected to heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and other chronic conditions. They also contribute to insulin resistance, which adds to the risk of producing type 2 diabetes. Even minute amounts of trans fats can affect health significantly: for every two (2) percent of calories from trans fat consumed daily, the risk of heart disease rises by twenty-three (23) percent.

The In-between saturated fats

Saturated fats are a regular in the American diet. They are conspicuous in that they are solid at room temperature. For example, think bacon grease when it has cooled, but what is saturated fat? Known sources of saturated fat include whole milk, red meat, and other whole-milk dairy foods, cheese, coconut oil, and numerous commercially prepared baked goods and other foods.

Fat: the Good and the Bad - Types of Fats
Fats – some good, some not much!

The word “saturated” here represents the number of hydrogen atoms encompassing each carbon atom. The chain of carbon atoms contains as many hydrogen atoms as possible. They are saturated with hydrogens.

Is saturated fat bad for you? A diet rich in saturated fats can drive up total cholesterol and tip the balance toward more harmful LDL cholesterol, prompting blockages to form in arteries in the heart and elsewhere in the body. For that reason, most nutrition experts recommend limiting saturated fat to fewer than 10% of calories a day.

A handful of recent reports have clouded the connection between saturated fat and heart disease. One meta-analysis of twenty-one studies reported that there was not enough evidence to conclude that saturated fat increases the risk of heart disease, but replacing saturated fat with polyunsaturated fat can decrease the chance of heart disease.

Two (2) other significant studies narrowed down the prescription slightly, concluding that replacing saturated fat with polyunsaturated such as vegetable oils or high-fiber carbohydrates is the best course for reducing the risk of heart disease but substituting saturated fat with highly processed fats carbohydrates could do the reverse.

Good monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats

Good fats come primarily from nuts, seeds, vegetables, and fish. They are different from saturated fats by having a smaller number of hydrogen atoms bonded to their carbon chains. Healthy fats are not solid at room temperature but remain liquid. There are two main       categories of beneficial fats: monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats.

Monounsaturated fats – When bread is dipped in olive oil at an Italian restaurant, that action yields mainly monounsaturated fat. Monounsaturated fats have a single carbon-to-carbon double bond. The outcome is that it has two (2) fewer hydrogen atoms than saturated fat and a bend at the double bond. This composition maintains monounsaturated fats liquid at room temperature.

Good resources of monounsaturated fats are olive oil, canola oil, peanut oil, avocados, and the majority of nuts, as well as high-oleic safflower and sunflower oils.

The finding that monounsaturated fat may well be healthful came from the Seven Countries Study during the 1960s. It uncovered that individuals in Greece and other parts of the Mediterranean region enjoyed a low rate of heart disease despite a high-fat diet. However, the primary fat in their diet was not the saturated animal fat common in countries with higher rates of heart disease. It was olive oil, which contains chiefly monounsaturated fat. This finding formed a surge of interest in olive oil and the “Mediterranean diet,” which is considered a healthful choice today.

Even though there is no suggested daily intake of monounsaturated fats, the Institute of Medicine offers using them as much as possible along with polyunsaturated fats to replace saturated and trans fats.

Polyunsaturated fats – When liquid cooking oil is poured into a pan, there is a good chance that it is polyunsaturated fat. Sunflower oil, safflower oil, and corn oil are typical examples.

Polyunsaturated fats are essential fats. This statement means they are crucial for normal body functions, but the body cannot produce them. Therefore, they must be obtained from food. Polyunsaturated fats are used to construct cell membranes and the covering of nerves. They are also required for muscle movement, blood clotting, and inflammation.

A polyunsaturated fat has two or more double bonds in its carbon chain. There are two (2) principle categories of polyunsaturated fats: omega-3 fatty acids and omega-6 fatty acids. The numbers signify the extent of the distance between the beginning of the carbon chain and the first double bond. Both types offer health benefits.

Consuming polyunsaturated fats instead of saturated fats or highly refined carbohydrates lowers harmful LDL cholesterol and improves the overall cholesterol profile. It additionally lowers triglycerides (the main ingredient of natural fats and oils).

High-quality sources of omega-3 fatty acids include fatty fish such as mackerel, salmon, and sardines, canola oil, flaxseeds, walnuts, and unhydrogenated soybean oil.

Omega-3 fatty acids can help prevent as well as treat heart disease and stroke. On top of raising HDL, reducing blood pressure, and lowering triglycerides, polyunsaturated fats can aid with the prevention of lethal heart rhythms from arising. Data additionally suggests they can help diminish the need for corticosteroid medications in people with rheumatoid arthritis. Research linking omega-3s to a wide range of other health improvements, including reducing the risk of dementia, is inconclusive. According to a systematic review of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality evidence, some of this research has significant flaws.

Omega-6 fatty acids are additionally linked to protection against heart disease. Foods abundant in linoleic acid and other omega-6 fatty acids include vegetable oils such as walnut, safflower, sunflower, soybean, and corn oils.

For individuals who feel that their diet does not ultimately provide the benefits of consuming the good fats, supplementation may be an avenue to explore.

There is a premium supplement that:

  • Supports heart health and function
  • Supports proper inflammatory response
  • Reduces oxidation of cholesterol
  • Supports brain health
  • Supports circulatory health
  • Supports energy production

This supplement is called Cotrexin. Cotrexin is a premium CoQ10 and Omega-3 dietary supplement that sustains antioxidant function and

cotrexin bottle 200x300

healthy heart activity. CoQ10 is an enzyme shown to help improve heart health and blood sugar regulation.

This advanced formula was produced by renowned Cardiologist Dr. Chauncey Crandall and includes Bioperine, which can drastically enhance the absorption and bioavailability of CoQ10. Higher absorption converts into strengthened support of the cardiovascular system, fewer free radicals produced, improved performance of the mitochondria, and increased energy, stamina, and endurance. These powerful ingredients in the Cotrexin formula may provide the above benefits.

Shop for Cotrexin online.

Fat is a substance that is very beneficial for the body. However, as with so many other substances, it must be consumed carefully.

Any questions, comments, concerns, or experience with the subject may be left below.

Good Health!!

All about the Delta Variant

We have already published an article on the original covid19 virus. However, as the COVID-19 pandemic persists globally, public health officials are watching specific coronavirus mutations and variants that can be more contagious or deadly than the original strain. Viruses continually modify themselves to adapt and survive, and variants emerge when a subspecies has one or more mutations that differ from others. As a result of these mutations, we face a more infectious virus named the Delta Variant. Why is it more infectious? The article is all about the Delta Variant.

The CDC and World Health Organization (WHO) observe these variations to ascertain if the transmission can lead to a surge in COVID-19 cases and deaths and whether current vaccines can provide protection. The U.S. classifies them and places them in one of three categories. They are either a “variant of interest,” which can lead to outbreaks but isn’t widespread in the country, a “variant of concern,” which exhibits evidence of amplified transmission and more acute disease, or a “variant of high consequence,” which causes vaccines and treatments severely less likely to work well.

As of this writing, the United States has not classified any coronavirus variants as “high consequence,” however, many strains have been categorized as “variants of concern” that require them to be followed closely. In particular, the Delta variant has attracted focused attention recently due to a sharp increase in COVID-19 cases in several countries, including the United States.

What is the Delta Variant?

The Delta variant was first recognized in India in December 2020 and contributed to significant outbreaks in the country. It has spread rapidly and is presently reported in 104 countries, according to the CDC.

As of early July, the Delta variant has become the main form of the coronavirus in the U.S., U.K., Germany, and other countries. In the U.K., for example, the Delta variant at present involves more than 97% of new COVID-19 cases, in accordance with Public Health England.

According to the CDC, The Delta variant, otherwise known as B.1.617.2, can spread more quickly. The strain has changes on the spike protein that enable it to infect human cells easier. What that means is individuals can be more contagious if they contract the virus and spread it to others more effectively. It is now the predominant strain in the United States.

According to the Washington Post, researchers have determined that the Delta variant is approximately 50% more contagious than the Alpha variant, first identified in the United Kingdom. Alpha, also known as B.1.1.7, was previously 50% more virulent than the original coronavirus, first identified in China in 2019.

According TO YALE MEDICINE, health experts estimate that the average person who gets infected with Delta spreads it to three or four other people, compared with one or two other people through the original coronavirus strain. The Delta variant may also have the ability to rise above protection from vaccines and some COVID-19 treatments, though studies are nevertheless continuing.

What is the Delta plus Variant?

According to CBS News, the Delta Plus variant, otherwise known as B.1.617.2.1 or AY.1, is considered a “subvariant” of the Delta version. It has a mutation that allows the virus to attack lung cells more effectively and possibly escape vaccines.

Initially identified in India, the Delta Plus variant has now been established in the United States, the United Kingdom, and nearly a dozen other countries. India has categorized it as a variant of concern, but the CDC and WHO have not.

Is the Delta Variant More Deadly?

According to a recent study published in The Lancet, scientists are presently tracking the data to establish how lethal it is. Based on hospitalizations in the U.K., the Delta variant does appear to be increasingly likely to lead to hospitalization and death, predominantly among unvaccinated individuals.

What Makes the Delta Variant More Infectious?

To infect human cells, SARS-CoV-2 has to enter the body and attach to receptors on the exterior of cells. The virus, studded with mushroom-All About the Delta Variant - shaped spike proteins, latch onto a receptor called ACE2 on human cells. This receptor is found on many cell types and includes those that line the lungs. It is comparable to a key fitting into a lock.

Mutations that help the virus bind more tightly can make transmission from one person to another easier. When an individual breathes in a droplet containing the virus and that droplet holds viruses with better binding capabilities, they will also be capable of discovering and infecting one of their cells. Scientists have yet to know how many particles of SARS-CoV-2 have to be inhaled for one to become infected, but the bar to cross would most likely be lower for a virus that is better at grabbing onto ACE2 cells.

Researchers study binding in the lab by creating simulated viruses. These are lab-engineered viruses that cannot replicate. However, researchers can fine-tune them to express the spike protein on their surface. That allows them to perform test binding efficiently without the need to use a high-security laboratory. The researchers combine these simulated viruses with plastic beads covered with ACE2 cells and then work out how much of the virus sticks to the beads. The better the quantity of virus, the more efficient the virus is at binding. A Preprint Posted in May, shows that some of the mutations present in Delta do enhance binding.

However, improved binding not only lowers the bar for infection. Since the virus is better at grabbing ACE2 cells, it will additionally infect more cells inside the body. This factor causes the infected individual to have more of the virus in them, as the virus is duplicating more efficiently.

After the virus binds to an ACE2 cell, the next step is to fuse with the cell, which begins when enzymes from the host cell (a cell infected by a virus) cut the spike at two different sites. This action is a process known as cleavage. Cleavage sets in motion the fusion machinery. If binding is like the key fitting in the lock, cleavage is like the key turning the lock. The virus is unable to enter cells without cuts at both sites.

The Good News!

The good news is we have vaccinations that yield strong protection against the Delta variant. A recent study from Public Health England illustrates that the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine was 88% effective in preventing symptomatic disease due to Delta in fully vaccinated people. The AstraZeneca vaccine provides slightly less protection. Two (2) shots were 60% effectual against the variant. However, the effectiveness of one (1) dose of either vaccine was much lower— just 33%.

All about the Delta Variant - mRNA Vaccines
mRNA Vaccines are effective against the Delta Variant!

In any case, just around 42% of the population is fully vaccinated in the United States and the United Kingdom. In India, where the virus surged and was fueled in part by the rapid spread of Delta, only 3.3% of the population has achieved full vaccination.

At a press briefing, Dr. Fauci implored those who were not vaccinated to obtain their first shot and reminded those who are partially vaccinated not

All About the Delta Variant - Dr. Fauci
Dr. Fauci

to skip their second dose. The Biden Administration hoped to have 70% of the population at the least be partially vaccinated by the Fourth of July. In the United Kingdom, Delta quickly replaced the Alpha variant to become the dominant strain, and cases are now rising. Dr. Fauci issued a forewarning, “We cannot let that happen in the United States.”

It is best to be vaccinated to be protected against this variant and any possible future versions. The technology used in formulating the current vaccines is safe and effective. For more information on this technology, read the article, What is mRNA Technology on this website.

Any questions, comments, concerns, or experiences with the virus or vaccines may be left below. You will receive a response.

For more articles, logon to www.universal-health-products.com

Good Health is the best asset!!




Soy: the Good and the Bad

Soy is commended as a health food by some, claiming the calming of hot flashes, defending against osteoporosis, and guarding against hormonal cancers such as breast and prostate. On the other hand, others reject soy for fear that it may cause breast cancer, thyroid problems, and dementia. So, in all fairness, this article covers soy: the good and the bad.

What is Soy?

Soy comes from the soybean, which is a species of legume local to East Asia, which has abundant uses. Conventional, unfermented food uses of soybeans involve tofu and tofu skin.

What is Soy used for?

Soybeans are harvested for their oil as well as meal for the animal feed. A smaller percentage is processed for human ingestion and made into products including soy protein, soy flour, soymilk, tofu, and many retail food products. Soybeans are additionally used in many non-food or industrial products.

For human consumption – Practically, all soybeans are harvested for their oil. Soy processors obtain the raw soybeans and remove the oil from the meal. The oil may be processed for cooking and other safe to eat uses or sold for biodiesel production or industrial services. The processors oven-bake the high-protein fiber after the oil is removed and sell it for animal feed.

Soybean oil is used in the cooking and frying of foods. Margarine is also a product made from soybean oil. Mayonnaises and salad dressings are produced with soybean oil.

Various foods are packed in soybean oil (i.e., sardines, tuna, etc.) Crackers, baked bread, cookies, cakes, and pies generally contain soybean oil.

Animal Feed – The high-protein fiber that remains after the oil has been removed is toasted and prepared into animal feed for cattle, pork, poultry, and other farm animals and pets. The swine and poultry industries are foremost buyers of soybean meal. More than half of the soybeans developed for livestock feed are fed to poultry, about one-quarter are fed to swine, and the balance is used for pet food, dairy cattle, and beef cattle.

Soy protein is found in fish food more and more, for both home aquariums and fish raised for eating. At one time, most marine species were fed fishmeal, but the scarcity and increasing cost of fishmeal has led producers to switch to high protein soymeal for various marine species. Presently, soy protein may be found in feed for most animals around the world.

Additional Uses – Soy additionally has a plethora of industrial uses.

Biodiesel — biodiesel fuel for diesel engines can be formed from soybean oil by a straightforward process known as transesterification. This procedure eliminates the glycerine from the oil, resulting in soy biodiesel. Soy biodiesel is cleaner burning than diesel oil that is petroleum-based. Using it reduces particulate emissions, is non-toxic, renewable, and environmentally friendly.

Biocomposites—Biocomposites are building materials produced from recycled newspapers and soybeans. They substitute other products conventionally prepared from wood, such as flooring, furniture, and countertops.

Laminated plywood, particleboard, and finger-jointed lumber are produced with soy-based wood adhesives.

Soy products are additionally established in many well-known home and commercial carpet brands and auto upholstery applications.

Soy oil yields an environmentally welcoming solvent that safely and rapidly removes oil from creeks, streams, and shorelines without causing harm to humans, animals, and the environment. Soy is also an ingredient in numerous cleaners, solvents, industrial lubricants, and paints.

Candles that are made with soybean oil will burn longer but with less smoke and soot.

Soy ink is more excellent than petroleum-based inks for the reason that soy ink is renewable, non-toxic, and environmentally friendly, and it is easy to clean up.

Soy crayons made with soy oil replace regular crayons that use petroleum oil making them non-toxic and safer for children.

Soy-based lubricants are as good as petroleum-based lubricants, but they can also withstand higher temperatures. Additionally important, they are renewable, non-toxic, and environmentally friendly.

Soy-based hydraulic fluids and rail flange lubricants are together with the more up-to-date products produced with check-off funds.

Soy-based foams are presently being produced to use in automotive interiors, coolers, refrigerators, as well as footwear. Vehicles rolled off the production line with soy foam in the seats beginning in 2007. The latest automotive and equipment industry uses followed, including lubricants, body parts, interiors, and seating.

What are the Health Benefits of Soy?Soy: the Good and the Bad - The Health Benefits of Soy

Soybeans are innately plentiful in protein and have all of the essential amino acids the body requires. They are also rich in plant fats, fiber, and several essential minerals, vitamins, and valuable plant compounds.

In addition to their vitamin and mineral components, soybeans are a natural source of polyphenols, a class of antioxidants that may protect the body against cell damage and conditions like heart disease.

Soybeans are particularly rich in isoflavones, a subclass of polyphenols known as phytoestrogens, because of their ability to attach to and activate estrogen receptors in the body.

Soy isoflavones are thought to be one of the principal reasons behind the many professed health benefits of soy-based foods. Boiled soybeans have 90–134 mg of isoflavones per 3.5 ounces (100 grams), depending on the grade of the bean.

Due to their resemblance in structure, soy isoflavones are often considered to imitate the hormone estrogen. However, research suggests that soy isoflavones differ from estrogen in numerous ways, each having distinctive effects on the body.

As a result of the above, soy-rich diets have been connected to a few potential health benefits.

May aid in lowering cholesterol – Several studies propose that diets abundant in soy foods can aid with the lowering of LDL (bad) cholesterol and the raising of HDL (good) cholesterol.

For example, one recent analysis proposes that a median intake of 25 grams of soy protein daily may help reduce total and LDL (bad) cholesterol levels by around 3%.

However, the report’s authors believe that, in practice, reductions may be more significant when individuals consume soy protein in place of animal protein. However, additional research is necessary to confirm this.

Another review proposes that soy-rich diets may help reduce complete and LDL (bad) cholesterol levels by 2–3%. They may additionally raise HDL (good) cholesterol by 3% and lower triglyceride levels by approximately 4%.

At this time, individuals with current risk factors for heart disease, such as high cholesterol, obesity, or type 2 diabetes, appear to be among those who benefit most from soy-rich diets.

Additionally, soy foods that are minimally processed, such as soybeans, tofu, tempeh, and edamame, appear to improve cholesterol levels more than processed soy products and supplements.

Can protect heart health – According to a study, diets that are rich in legumes that include soy may aid in lowering the risk of heart disease.

It additionally emerges that soy isoflavones may aid in the reduction of inflammation in blood vessels and improve their elasticity — two factors believed to protect the health of your heart (17Trusted Source).

A new study further links soy-rich diets to a 20% and 16% lower risk of stroke and heart disease, respectively.

Additional research proposes that diets plentiful in soy foods may reduce the risk of dying from heart disease by up to 15%.

Can lower blood pressure – Soybeans and foods produced from them are generally rich in arginine, an amino acid believed to aid with regulating blood pressure levels, according to a study.

Soybeans are additionally plentiful in isoflavones, which is another compound believed to offer blood-pressure-lowering benefits.

In one study involving postmenopausal women, eating 1/2 cup (43 grams) of soy nuts daily was found to reduce diastolic blood pressure (the bottom number of a blood pressure reading) by around 8% in some, but that does not include all women.

Other studies connect daily intakes of 65–153 mg of soy isoflavones to blood pressure reductions of 3–6 mm Hg in individuals with high blood pressure.

On the other hand, it is unclear whether these small blood-pressure-lowering benefits apply to individuals with normal and elevated blood pressure levels.

Some studies suggest both may benefit, while others offer that only individuals with high blood pressure would experience this effect.

Undoubtedly, more research is required on this topic, but in the meantime, the blood-pressure-lowering effects of soy, if any, seem to be minute.

Can lower blood sugar – A review
including 17 randomized control studies, which is the gold standard in research, proposes that soy isoflavones may slightly aid to reduce blood sugar and insulin levels in menopausal women.

Soy isoflavones can additionally help lower insulin resistance, which is a condition in which cells no longer act in response to insulin normally. Eventually, insulin resistance can result in high blood sugar levels and lead to type 2 diabetes.

Additionally, there is some verification that soy protein supplements may help slightly lower blood sugar and insulin levels in individuals with type 2 diabetes or metabolic syndrome.

Metabolic syndrome refers to a group of conditions, including high blood sugar, cholesterol levels, blood pressure, and abdominal fat, that collectively tend to increase a person’s risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and stroke.

However, these results aren’t unanimous, and several studies have failed to find a strong link between soy foods and blood sugar control in healthy people and those with type 2 diabetes (25Trusted Source, 26Trusted Source, 27Trusted Source).

Therefore, more studies are required before solid conclusions can be made.

Can improve bone health – The low estrogen quantities experienced during menopause can cause calcium to leach from the bones.

This resulting bone loss can cause postmenopausal females to develop weak and brittle bones as a consequence, a condition known as osteoporosis.

There is some evidence that suggests intakes of 40–110 mg of soy isoflavones per day can reduce bone loss and progress markers of bone health in menopausal women. However, additional research is required to confirm these findings.

Can reduce the risk of certain types of cancer – Soy-rich diets can also help lower the risk of certain types of cancer.

For example, studies propose that high ingestion of soy isoflavones can reduce the risk of endometrial cancer (cancer of the uterus) by around 19%.

Additionally, some studies have connected soy-rich diets to a 7% lower risk of digestive tract cancers and an 8–12% lower risk of colon and colorectal cancers, particularly in women.

Conversely, according to a recent study, men eating soy-rich diets can benefit from a lower risk of prostate cancer.

Lastly, one recent review of 23 studies connected diets plentiful in soy foods to a 12% lower risk of dying from cancer, mainly cancers of the stomach, large intestine, and lungs.

What Foods Have Soy?

Soy: The Good and the bad -  Foods that have soy
                                                                          Soy Foods

Various foods include soy, for example, soy sauce, soy meat alternatives, tofu, soy flour, and soybean oil, which may be found in supermarkets and natural, health, and Asian food stores.

The following foods contain soy:

Whole Soybeans – When soybeans advance in the pod, they ripen into a hard, dry bean, similar to other legumes. For the most part, mature soybeans are yellow, but a few are brown and black.

Whole soybeans are a first-rate supply of protein and dietary fiber. They may be heated and used in sauces, stews, and soups. Whole soybeans that have been soaked can be roasted for snacks and available in natural food stores and select supermarkets. When grown minus the chemicals, they are referred to as organically grown soybeans.

Tofu – Tofu, also called soybean curd, is a soft, smooth soy product made by curdling fresh, hot soymilk with a coagulant. Tofu contains a mild flavor and quickly absorbs the flavors of marinades, spices, and other ingredients. Tofu is full of high-quality protein and B vitamins and is low in sodium. There are two(2) significant varieties of tofu:

  • Water-packed tofu comes in extra-firm, firm, and soft varieties. This tofu is thick and solid and stands up well in stir fry dishes and soups, on the grill, or anywhere that it is desired for tofu to maintain its shape.
  • Silken tofu comes in extra-firm, firm, soft, and reduced-fat varieties. This tofu is made by a slightly different procedure that results in a smoother product. Silken tofu works agreeably in pureed or blended dishes.

Meat Alternatives – Meat substitutes containing soy protein or tofu are used to emulate meat, for example, sausages, burgers, hot dogs, and bacon. Usually, they are cholesterol-free and have less fat than meat. They are first-rate suppliers of protein, iron, and B vitamins.

Edamame – These soybeans are collected while the beans are still green and sweet tasting. They can be handed out as a snack or a major vegetable after boiling in lightly salted water for 15 to 20 minutes. They are potent with protein and fiber and contain no cholesterol. Edamame can be purchased shelled or in the pod in the supermarket’s produce section or frozen food aisle.

Miso – Miso is a robust and salty soy paste used in Japanese cooking. The Japanese produce miso soup and use miso to flavor various foods, for example, sauces, dressings, and marinades. Miso paste requires refrigeration. Miso contains minimal soy protein and is high in sodium.

Soymilk – Soybeans that have been soaked, ground fine, and strained yield fluid called soybean milk. Plain, unfortified soymilk is a first-rate supply of high-quality protein and B vitamins, but it lacks calcium, and vitamin D. However, fortified versions are available.

Soymilk can be sighted in non-refrigerated containers or the dairy case at the supermarket. It is additionally sold as a powder to be mixed with water.

Soymilk is a great milk substitute for individuals who are lactose intolerant. It may be used as a beverage or as a substitute in place of milk for cooking.

Soy Nuts – Roasted soy nuts are whole soybeans that have been saturated in water and then baked until browned. Soy nuts are available in an assortment of flavors. They are rich in protein and isoflavones and comparable in texture and flavor to peanuts.

Soy Sauce (Tamari, Shoyu and Teriyaki) – Soy sauce is a dark brown liquid made from soybeans through fermenting. Soy sauce contains small amounts of soy protein and is high in salt.

Two (2) types of soy sauce are shoyu and tamari. Shoyu is a combination of soybeans and wheat. Tamari is produced only from soybeans and is a by-product of miso. An additional sauce containing soy sauce is teriyaki sauce. It has soy sauce and other ingredients, for instance, sugar, vinegar, and spices.

Tempeh – Tempeh is a soybean product that is tender and chunky. Whole soybeans, occasionally mixed with another grain like millet or rice, are fermented and pressed into a bar or cake with a nutty or smoky. It may be marinated, sliced, grilled, and added to casseroles, soups, or chili. It is usually found in Asian and health food stores.

Textured Soy Protein – Textured soy protein (TSP) pertains to products made from textured soy flour, textured soy protein concentrates, as well as spun soy fiber. Textured soy flour contains approximately 70 percent protein and maintains most of the bean’s dietary fiber. Textured soy flour can be purchased dried in granular and chunk style. When mixed with water, it has a chewy texture. It is commonly used as a meat extender. One (1) of the more well-known brands is called Textured Vegetable Protein (TVP).

There are many kinds of food alternatives made with soy, such as “chicken-less” nuggets, hamburgers, hot dogs, soy bacon, cheese, corn dogs, and ice cream.

What are the Health Concerns about Soy?

Soy: the good and the bad - The health concerns about soyrns
The Concerns about Soy

Some individuals are concerned about including soy in their diets because of the following areas of concern:

  • Antinutrients. Soybeans have compounds that can lessen the body’s ability to take in the vitamins and minerals they contain. Soaking, sprouting, fermenting, and cooking are ways to alleviate these antinutrient levels in soy (study, study, study, study).
  • Cancer risk. Some people suppose that soy isoflavones can raise the probability of breast or endometrial cancer. However, a majority of studies find no adverse effect. In some cases, they may even offer some protection against certain cancers.
  • Danger to babies. Many people fear that soy formula can negatively affect the brain, thyroid, sexual, or immune development. Despite that, studies typically fail to observe any long-term adverse effects of soy formula in healthy, full-term babies.
  • Digestive issues. Animal studies indicate that the antinutrients in soy can reduce the gut’s barrier function, possibly resultant in inflammation and digestive problems. On the other hand, more human studies are required to confirm this (study).
  • Estrogen-mimicking effects. Soy isoflavones are frequently believed to imitate the female reproductive hormone estrogen. Although they are similar in structure to this hormone, soy isoflavones have weaker and slightly different effects than estrogen (review).
  • Feminizing effects in men. Many are concerned that soy isoflavones can reduce the production of the male hormone testosterone. However, human studies find a weak connection between the two (study).
  • GMOs. Soybeans are frequently genetically modified (GMO). GMO soy can contain a reduced amount of nutrients and additional herbicide residues than conventional or organic soy. More research about the long-term health effects of GMO soy is required.
  • Thyroid function.
    Test-tube and animal research proposes that some compounds established in soy may lessen thyroid gland function. However, human studies find little to no adverse effects, particularly in humans with healthy thyroid function (study, study, study).

It is important to note that while these apprehensions are common, hardly any of them are supported by sound science. Furthermore, when adverse effects have been observed, they frequently followed the consumption of vast amounts of soy.

For example, men who expressed experiencing feminizing effects from soy consumed amounts up to 9 times larger than men’s average intake with soy-rich diets. Although possible, it would be difficult for most individuals to consume that amount of soy daily (study).

Soy-rich diets may boost heart health and decrease blood pressure, blood sugar, and cholesterol levels. They can additionally enhance fertility, reduce symptoms of menopause, and protect against certain cancers. However, more research is needed.

The concerns regarding soy are commonly cited. Generally, hardly any are sustained by solid science, and additional research is required to confirm the ones that have not been verified.

The Bottom Line

While there are mixed conclusions regarding soy, it appears that the health benefits outweigh the health concerns. Therefore, it seems that consuming soy in moderation is beneficial.

Of course, organic is the optimal way to go.

Questions, comments, concerns, and experiences with soy are welcomed below. You will receive a response.

For more articles, click www.universal-health-products.com

Good Health!!

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All about Dietary Fiber

There is a substance in some foods essential to our health, yet it is not a nutrient. This substance is fiber, also known as dietary fiber. There are other facts about this mysterious substance, so this article is all about dietary fiber.

What is Dietary Fiber?

First, dietary fiber is not a nutrient because it is not digested and absorbed by the human body. Also known as roughage, dietary fiber is the indigestible part of plant foods. This substance has a multitude of health benefits, including reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes and heart disease.

Where is Dietary Fiber Found?

Fiber is established primarily in vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and legumes. There are two (2) types of fiber, soluble and insoluble, and they both play essential roles in health:

  • Insoluble fiber does not disperse in water and adds bulk to the stool, which prevents constipation.
  • On the other hand, soluble fiber absorbs water, forming a gel-like substance in the digestive system. Soluble fiber can aid in lowering cholesterol levels and help manage blood sugar levels.

Health Benefits of Dietary Fiber

Dietary fiber is a central element of a healthy diet. It is vital for keeping the gut healthy and reducing the risk of chronic health conditions.

The majority of people in the U.S. do not get enough fiber from their diets. According to some estimates, only 5% of the population meets the adequate intake recommendations for dietary fiber. This small percentage indicates that most people in the U.S. could obtain health advantages from increasing their daily fiber intake.

Eating fiber has many health benefits. Some are listed below:

Protects against heart disease – Numerous studies over the past decades have examined dietary fiber’s effect on heart health, including preventing cardiovascular disease and reducing blood pressure.

In a 2017 review of studies, it was established that individuals eating high fiber diets had a considerably reduced risk of cardiovascular disease and lower fatality from these conditions.

It is said that these heart-protective effects may be because fiber reduces total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, also called ‘bad cholesterol,’ which is a primary risk for heart conditions.

Promotes a healthy gut – Fiber is essential for keeping the gut healthy. Eating sufficient fiber can prevent or relieve constipation by helping waste to move smoothly through the body. It additionally encourages healthy gut microbiota.

Dietary fiber produces increased fecal mass, frequency, and regularity of expelling feces, the reduced transit time of fecal material through the large intestine, and reduced stool solidity. The softer stool will result in less distress to the colon and anus and less pressure on the muscles involved in defecation.

According to a 2015 review, dietary fiber increases the bulk of stool, aids with promoting regular bowel movements, and lessens the time that waste spends inside the intestines.

According to a 2009 review, dietary fiber has a significant impact on gastrointestinal disorders, including:

  • colorectal ulcer
  • diverticular disease
  • gastroesophageal reflux disease
  • hemorrhoids
  • hiatal hernias

    All about Dietary Fiber - Dietary Fiber Benefits
    The Benefits of Dietary Fiber

A 2019 review indicates that fiber ingestion may decrease an individual’s

risk of colorectal cancer.

Reduced risk for diabetes – Adding more fiber to the diet may additionally have benefits for diabetes. Fiber can assist in slowing down the body’s absorption of sugar, helping to prevent blood sugar spikes after meals.

A 2018 review indicates that individuals who consumed high fiber diets, particularly cereal fiber, had a lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes. These persons also reported a slight reduction in blood glucose levels.

Weight Management – For individuals seeking to lose weight, a diet high in dietary fiber can aid in regulating weight loss. Foods high in fiber can help a person feel fuller for longer and help people adhere to a diet.

In a 2019 study, researchers determined that individuals who increased their dietary fiber intake increased their weight loss and dedication to their dietary caloric restrictions.

Types of Dietary Fiber

Fiber contains nonstarch polysaccharides, for example, cellulose, dextrins, inulin, lignin, chitins, pectins, beta-glucans, waxes, and oligosaccharides.

As mentioned earlier, soluble and insoluble are the two types of dietary fiber.

All about Dietary Fiber - Types of Dietary Fiber

Most high fiber-containing foods have both insoluble and soluble fiber, so individuals do not need to think much about the difference. However, they can focus on the whole fiber intake.

Soluble fiber – Soluble fiber liquefies in water and forms a gel-like substance in the stomach. Later, bacteria break the gel down in the large intestine. Soluble fiber yields a few calories to the individual.

Soluble fiber supplies the following benefits:

  • lowering LDL cholesterol in the blood by affecting how the body takes in dietary fat and cholesterol
  • slows the absorption of other carbohydrates through digestion, which can aid with the  normalizing of blood sugar levels

Excellent supplies of soluble fiber can be found in:

  • beans
  • fruits
  • nuts
  • oats
  • vegetables

Insoluble fiber – Insoluble fiber does not dissolve in water and passes through the gastrointestinal tract, generally whole. It provides no calories.

Insoluble fiber assists in forming bulk in the stool, which helps a person pass stool faster. It can also aid in the avoidance of constipation.

Good quality sources of insoluble fiber include:

  • fruits
  • nuts
  • vegetables
  • whole-grain foods

Plant-based foods are a superb supplier of dietary fiber. A few forms have more fiber than others.

Below are 38 high-fiber foods. They are some examples with their fiber contents according to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2015–2020:

Food itemServing portionCaloriesDietary fiber in grams
High fiber bran (ready-to-eat cereal)½–3/4 of a cup60–819.1–14.3
Chickpeas, canned1/2 a cup1768.1
Lentils, cooked1/2 a cup1157.8
Cooked  pinto beans,1/2 a cup1227.7
Black beans, cooked½ a cup1147.5
cooked lima beans1/2 a cup1086.6
White beans, canned½ a cup1496.3
Kidney beans1/2 a cup1125.7
Wheat bran flakes (ready-to-eat cereal)3/4 of a cup90–984.9–5.5
Raw pear1 medium fruit1015.5
Canned baked beans, plain1/2 a cup1195.2
Avocado1/2 a cup1205.0
Cooked mixed vegetables, from frozen1/2 a cup594.0
Raspberries½ a cup324.0
Blackberries1/2 a cup313.8
Collards, cooked1/2 a cup323.8
Baked sweet potato, in skin1 medium vegetable1033.8
Popcorn, air-popped3 cups933.5
Almonds1 ounce (oz)1643.5
Whole wheat spaghetti, cooked1/2 a cup873.2
Orange1 medium fruit693.1
Banana1 medium fruit1053.1
Bran muffin, oat1 small muffin1783.0
Pistachios, dry roasted1 oz1612.8
Pecans, oil roasted1 oz2032.7
Quinoa, cookedhalf a cup1112.6

Fiber supplements

All about Dietary Fiber - Dietary Fiber supplements

Individuals who are sensitive to high fiber foods may find it challenging to get sufficient fiber. In that case, they should consult with their physician about obtaining sources of fiber that will not cause an allergic reaction.

In such cases, an individual may want to consult with their doctor about fiber supplements. A doctor may advise these if the individual has constipation or trouble passing stool. Drug stores sell fiber supplements, such as Metamucil, Citrucel, Benefiber, and FiberCon. SHOP FOR FIBER SUPPLEMENTS ONLINE [affiliate link]

However, these products do not provide the same levels of vitamins and nutrients as natural, high-fiber foods. Nevertheless, they are beneficial when someone is unable to get enough fiber from their diet.

The following categories of individuals should use dietary supplements to make sure they are getting a sufficient amount of dietary fiber:

  • Individuals who constantly eat or drink out and are troubled about high blood sugar.
  • Individuals who often consume high-fat foods and who are concerned about high cholesterol levels.
  • Individuals whose blood pressure is elevated.
  • Individuals with erratic mealtimes and who are troubled about obesity.
  • Individuals who have a propensity to have constipation.

Signs of a Fiber Deficiency

If a diet is short on fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, it may not be yielding all the fiber required, raising the risk for weight gain, heart disease, and cancer.

While the symptoms of a fiber-poor diet aren’t always obvious, there are four key (4) warning signs to watch for:

Constipation – If an individual has fewer than three (3) bowel movements a week, and the stools are hard and dry, that is constipation. Constipation can result from a lack of fiber but also too little exercise and certain medications and supplements.

If the constipation is diet-related, it may be relieved by adding more fiber-rich foods such as broccoli, carrots, apples, raspberries, or whole grains.

Boosting fiber intake can help form soft, bulky stools, preventing and relieving constipation. It is best to add fiber slowly, enabling the body to get used to it. It also helps to stay regular by drinking plenty of fluids and exercising consistently.

Weight Gain- Fiber adds to fullness. The fullness one receives after a meal. If an individual is not experiencing that feeling, they may be eating more than their body requires.

In that case, it’s best to attempt to meet the recommended goal of 25 to 35 grams of fiber each day by enjoying fiber-filled foods like fresh fruit, whole grains, and seasonal vegetables. Choosing the fiber-rich foods enjoyed the most will more likely lead to eating favorites often.

Blood Sugar Fluctuations – If an individual has diabetes and finds controlling their blood sugar not easy, they should talk to their doctor: they may not be getting enough fiber.

Since fiber hinders the absorption of sugar, assisting with the control of blood sugar levels, it would be wise to try adding more fresh produce, beans and peas, brown rice, and other high-fiber foods to the diet. It is essential to discuss any change in the diabetes management plan with a physician.

Diet-Related Tiredness &  Nausea – If an individual receives most of their calories from a high-protein/low-carbohydrate diet: one rich in meat, eggs, and cheese and low in produce, may lead not only to a rise in cholesterol but also leave them nauseous, tired, and weak.

It may be good to boost the dietary fiber with the vitamin and mineral-rich whole grains, fruits, and vegetables the body requires and reduce consuming fatty foods.

Increasing fiber

All about Dietary Fiber - Increasing Dietary Fiber
Fruits and whole grains do the trick!

The daily intake of fiber can be boosted by making a variety of minor changes, such as:

  • consuming fruits and vegetables with the skins on, since the skins contain lots of fiber
  • adding beans or lentils to salads, soups, and side dishes
  • replacing white bread and pasta for whole-wheat versions
  • attempting to eat 4.5 cups of vegetables and 4.5 cups of fruit each day, as the American Heart Association suggest
  • for those unable to meet the daily requirements, think about using fiber supplements


Dietary fiber is a central element of a healthful diet. Research connects a high fiber diet with less risk of various health conditions, such as cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, and selected cancers. Fiber is additionally essential for keeping the gut healthy.

Various foods contain both soluble and insoluble fiber. As a general rule, the more natural and unprocessed the food, the higher it is in fiber. However, there is no fiber in meat, dairy, or sugar. Refined or “white” foods, for example, white bread, white rice, and pastries, as they have had all or most of their fiber removed.

All comments, questions, and concerns, or experiences with fiber to share are welcomed below.

Good health!!