New Research means Bright Future for Type 1 Diabetics

Type 1 diabetics that are currently controlling their disorder through pills or injections may never need to poke themselves every again! Since type 1 diabetics cannot produce insulin, a naturally-occurring hormone of the human body, human guts cells that may be able to produce insulin might help to solve their condition. 

Researchers from Columbia University studied gastrointestinal cells located in the human torso. What they have found is that by turning off a single gene, named FOX01, in these arrangements causes those cells to start producing insulin. From this information, there is possible hope for a drug creation that would reinstruct cells in diabetics to start producing this much needed hormone. 
Researchers, using stem cells, created a tissue model of a human intestine and trained those cells to stop the FOXO1 gene which, within a week, started producing the crucial hormone. What really made this research plausible, was the cells only started producing insulin when they were provided with sugar, just like the natural process of the human body. 

Since the human immune system can reject cells that are foreign to them, current procedures using stem or embryonic cells, will become obsolete. With this research, patients will be able to train their own cells to produce insulin allowing the prevention of procedural rejections and increasing the amount of successful patients. 

More research is still needed before this becomes available to the public. However if it does the efforts of medical researchers over the past twenty years will finally end in victory. 

Production of insulin in the gastrointestinal cells investigation was published in the journalNature Communications.

Is Sushi Really Healthy?

International Sushi Day is upon us and every year sushi is becoming more and more popular. It is looked at as the healthier choice of take out, date night, or girl’s night out. However, as healthy as it might sound, some maki sushi rolls can be loaded with more calories and fat than a cheeseburger! 

Use these tips to keep your rolls tasty but still nutritious:  

1. Ask for Brown Rice: Although this option only saves you a handful of calories, it is the whole grains that make it healthy. Whole grains have been proven to be heart healthy and protective!
2. Skip on Tempura or any fried rolls: Fried anything is filled with extra calories and fat. You can still eat your favorite rolls by asking the restaurant not to deep-fry it. 
3. Choose Veggies: Vegetables rolls, such as avocado, cucumber, shiitake mushrooms, and many others only offer heart healthy goodness while keeping the calories low. 
4. Eel is an ill choice: Eel is very high in calories and fat, and although it is delicious, limit yourself to this roll once in a while.
5. Be Selective on Spicy Mayo: Spicy Tuna rolls are delicious and tuna is a great choice, but when drenched in mayo it becomes a waste of calories. 

Try this Healthy Spin on your Favorite Sushi Roll at Home:

Quinoa Sushi

Ingredients – Serves 3:

- 3 sheets of nori

- 170g/half a cup of quinoa

- 3 tbsp thick greek yogurt

- 2 carrots, grated

- Half green pepper, sliced

- Half a salmon fillet, cooked

See the rest of the recipe here on Hungry Healthy Happy’s Blog

Good Carbs, Bad Carbs: Who’s to Blame?

Confusion about Carbohydrates – Change Your Diet, Change Your Body

By Brooke Huber

Yes, Carbohydrates are energy producing nutrients, but too much of a good thing can be bad! It is important to understand the difference between good carbs and bad carbs.

Good carbohydrates include high fiber foods containing an abundant amount of vitamins and minerals to maintain an even supply of energy. Good Carbohydrates Examples: whole grains, beans, fruit and vegetables. Bad carbs come from white bread, white rice, pastry, sugary sodas and other highly processed foods, which can lead to obesity. If you eat a lot of these bad carbs they will increase your risk for disease.

When you intake carbohydrates, your pancreas releases insulin, this hormone enables you to digest starches and sugars. The more sucrose you have (table sugar) the higher your insulin level becomes. When exercising, the first thing your body burns off BEFORE the fat, is insulin. So the more carbs you have in your body, the longer it takes to lose that weight. If you really want to be healthier and shed off those pounds quickly, cut out the bad carbohydrates and try replacing them for good carbohydrates and protein. The difference you will see in your weight loss is night and day. If you’re not in taking as many bad carbs, then there is less insulin in your body and you will begin to immediately burn off the fat. Here, use this diagram to help you better understand.

Notice the layer of carbohydrates (insulin) in the body above. When you intake carbohydrates, a layer of insulin formulates around the fat like you see in the picture. While many people will exercise and believe they are burning this fat, many have not even reached that stage. Many people will also leave the gym and have a high carb meal without being aware. This leaves your workout merely pointless. Replacing those bad carbs for good carbs and protein will keep that layer of insulin thin. Thus, making your goal to lose weight achievable and your risk for diseases much lower by obtaining a healthy balance in your diet. Feel and look great fast, change your diet and create a better you!

EZDOCTOR: Osteoarthritis Q & A with Rhuematologist: Dr. Santiago

Dr. Santiago-Casas joined Drs. Kahn and Riskin’s practice (South Florida Rheumatologist) after serving as an attending physician and Associate Professor of Medicine in the Department of Rheumatology at the University of Puerto Rico Medical Sciences Campus in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

You can book an appointment with Dr. Santiago-Casas in Hollywood, Florida here: 

FAQ with Dr. Santiago-Casas

What is Osteoarthritis?

It is the most common form of joint disease and represents a leading cause of disability among the elderly. OA is a slowly progressive arthritis that is typically seen in middle-aged to elderly people. The place where 2 bones meet is normally covered with a rubbery material called cartilage. This material allows the bones to slide over each other without causing pain. The disease occurs when the joint cartilage breaks down often because of mechanical stress or biochemical alterations, causing the bone underneath to fail. With this condition there are also bony changes of the joints, as well as deterioration of tendons and ligaments, and various degrees of inflammation.

It is commonly referred to as OA or as “wear and tear” of the joints, but we now know that OA is a disease of the entire joint, involving the cartilage, joint lining, ligaments, and bone. Although it is more common in older people, it is not really accurate to say that the joints are just “wearing out.” OA can occur as a primary entity; however, it can also occur together with other types of arthritis, such as gout or rheumatoid arthritis.

How common is this arthritis?

About 27 million Americans are living with OA, the most common form of joint disease. Studies suggest that the lifetime risk of developing OA of the knee is about 46%, and the lifetime risk of developing OA of the hip is 25%.

What are the joints typically affected by OA?

OA tends to affect commonly used joints such as the hands, great toes, and spine, and the weight bearing joints such as the hips and knees.

What are the most common symptoms of OA?

OA symptoms (what you feel) can vary greatly among patients. The most common symptoms include joint pain and stiffness, joint swelling, grinding noise with joint movement, and decreased function of the joint.

Who gets osteoarthritis?

OA affects people of all races and both sexes. Most often, it occurs in patients age 40 and older. However, it can occur sooner in the presence of other risk factors including family history of OA, obesity, joint injury or repetitive use (overuse) of joints, joint deformity such as unequal leg length, and bowlegs or knocked knees.

How is osteoarthritis diagnosed?

Most often doctors detect OA based on the typical symptoms and on results of the physical exam. In some cases, X-rays or other imaging tests may be useful to tell the extent of disease or to help rule out other joint problems. A rheumatologist can detect arthritis and prescribe the proper treatment.

Osteoarthritis of the knee

The bones that meet at a joint usually do not rub against each other because they are covered by a rubbery material called cartilage. In people with osteoarthritis, the cartilage wears away, and the bones can grind against each other. Sometimes the bones also form spurs.

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6 Simple Healthy Resolutions for 2014

First off, EZDOCTOR wants to wish you a Happy and Healthy New Year! We know that New Year’s Resolutions can be hard to stick with, but by doing these simple changes you can help keep yourself on track and start feeling those benefits sooner.

Skip the soda. Having at least one less can per day can save about 150 calories and 40 grams of sugar (The daily recommendation is 25 or under). Kick the habit completely and you could lose almost 16 lbs. by the end of 2014!  Plus, your body doesn’t recognize those calories you drink as easily, making your brain think you are hungry and overloading on calories and sugar.  New Year’s Resolution Tip: Try adding lemon and lime to you water or trying iced tea if you’re craving something other than water.

Get Some Shut Eye! Skimping on sleep does a lot more than make you cranky or slow the next day, it has also been linked to a greater risk of heart attacks and stress levels. New Year’s Resolution Tip: Make yourself a bedtime time and stick to it! Take at least 30 minutes each night to unwind with a book, bath, or meditation (that means no cell phones, tablets, or laptops).

Focus on the Positive. Research shows that thinking positively and telling yourself that you are going to do it then you most likely will! New Year’s Resolution Tip: Stop focusing on the negative and the past, look to the future and move forward knowing that you CAN do it!

Add Some Greens to Your Diet. Start this year right by getting in your daily recommendation of 5 vegetables a day. It’s actually easier than you think! Eat them raw, steamed, or mixed into your smoothies. Those leafy greens help ward off countless types of cancer. New Year’s Resolution Tip: By adding 3 different vegetables to your morning smoothie you are already getting in more than half of the recommended amount. Also, try baking cauliflower with spices in the oven (Trust us, it’s delicious!)

Do 25 Jumping Jacks…Right Now! By getting your body in motion, just for a little bit a couple times a day, you help trigger your endorphins (happy thoughts) and your blood flow (metabolism). New Year’s Resolution Tip: Yes stick to working out at least 30 minutes a day, but try and spread it out during the day, work included. Keeping your body in motion all day long keeps the weight at bay and a happy and healthy body to stay.

Keep Yourself on Track. With today’s technology it is even easier than ever to keep your calories intake and exercise on track. Download the MyFitnessPal app, pick a goal weight, and let them do the rest. MyFitnessPal helps you easily keep track of foods, exercises, and you can even meet people who will help you reach those goals. OR pick up an Activity Tracker like a FitBit, or Nike’s Fuelband. These nifty bands automatically track your movements and sleep and help you stay on track to that end goal by having you meet daily goals (all with automatic reports and stats sent to your phone or laptop). New Year’s Resolution Tip: Keeping yourself on track and accountable will help you learn and realize what you were doing to pack that weight on and will keep you focused to reach your goals.

Image courtesy of Vlado /

Change Your Life: Be Gluten Free this Holiday Season

The Truth about Gluten

by Brooke Huber

How many of you would like to live a happier and healthier life in just a few short weeks? Why not make this a goal for this holiday season?

More and more research is proving that giving up gluten is the simple answer to all of this. Gluten is a protein combined with starch that naturally occurs in a number of grains including wheat, barley, rye, and some cereals. The truth is, about 30% of us are allergic or highly affected by gluten, and the other 70% are actually sensitive to it. Imagine gluten being the root of some of the most common diseases, such as Auto Immune disease, and even Alzheimer’s. Some of our favorite and most delicious foods are packed with gluten. As some of you may say how hard it is to eliminate eating these foods, are you really ready for the truth? Eliminating all of this from our diets goes way beyond the obvious of just losing weight. Other factors of becoming gluten free result in clearer skin, feeling better emotionally, less joint pain due to inflammation, more brain power, and a higher level of energy. Imagine seeing and feeling all of these results in just weeks. That’s fast!

Here are some quick and easy switches you can make today:

Swap out pasta for quinoa pasta or spaghetti squash

Brown rice wraps or Romaine lettuce can replace wheat wraps

When baking, try almond or coconut flour instead of wheat or rye flour

And if you’re craving pizza, melt a little goat cheese and tomato sauce on a Portobello mushroom or squash

Keep in mind, you don’t need to deprive yourself of eating when you remove gluten. Instead, find smarter alternatives for those gluten-containing foods you used to enjoy. Always remember to double the veggies, cut out the starch, and no excess bread at the dinner table. Also remember to always check for the “gluten free” labels at the grocery store. The science is there, and the results are real, make the change for a better you!

Be a Hero. Take a Stand. Fight Pancreatic Cancer.

It’s Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month.

The pancreas is a vital organ in the human body. It contains 2 glands that help balance the level of sugar in your blood and help break down fats and proteins. Having cancer of the pancreas is basically having your body slowly shut down. According to the American Cancer Society only 23% of patients with this disease live past the first year of diagnosis. It is the forth leading cause of cancer death with a maximum of a 5 year survival rate.

Pancreatic Cancer is no joke, but there are many ways to help out and fight this battle!

First and foremost, know the symptoms:

-Jaundice: yellowing of the skin and whites of the eyes

-Pain in the upper and/or middle abdomen and back

-Loss of appetite


-Unexplained weight loss


Second, know the risk factors:


-Chronic pancreatitis

-Inherited conditions

-Long-standing diabetes

Third, take a stand and fight!

Being aware, keeping a healthy weight (with diet and exercise), and knowing your risks are a great way to start. Become a hero in your own community and help the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network raise awareness and money for the cure. Join in on the PurpleStride Run/Walks in your state! Help this month, and throughout the year, by being a volunteer to raise awareness, run or walk as a team or individual to help raise money for research and to take a stand against Pancreatic Cancer.

This month PurpleStride is coming to:

-Houson, Texas-November 23rd

-Central Florida-November 23rd

-South Florida-November 24th

Find an event in your state and how to help out here:

Has pancreatic cancer affected you and your family? Please share your story below to help raise awareness, bring hope, and stick together to fight this disease! 

Breast Cancer Awareness Month and How You Can Help

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Show Your Support:

-Run for the Cause

Susan G Komen's Race for the Cure is dedicated to finding a cure. Find a race in your state and show your support here: 

-Buy Anything "Pink"

Products that are helping support research and have the authentic ribbon are giving back usually 20 percent or more.

Find Jewelry, Beauty, and Fashion items that support Breast Cancer Research Here:

-Donate Directly

By donating directly to the National Breast Cancer Month Foundation 100 percent of your donation is used for research.

Donate Here: National Breast Cancer Month :

Hope totes- Buy Business Merchandise 

Your business can even help by buying directly from National Breast Cancer Awareness Month's website, which can be personalized with your businesses' logo. (in bulk starting at 50)

(Photo: Hope Totes) 
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National Nut Day and their Health Benefits

We are nuts about nuts!

Reasons to Be Nuts About Them Too:

-Packed with Healthy Vitamins and Fats:

- Unsaturated Fats (fats that your body needs on a daily basis that digest easily and promote better health)

- Omega-3 Fatty Acids (Which is proven to help with heart health)

- Vitamin E

- Fiber

-Great for Energy and Fuel:

- Nuts are a great pre-workout snack to help give you that added boost to perform well in your daily workout

- Healthy everyday snack that will give you the nutrients your body needs while leaving you full and satisfied

Helps With:

- Weight Management

- Stress

- Prostate Cancer

- And Many More

Just be aware that these benefits come from nuts in their raw form, meaning no salt, sugar, chocolate or other additive.

Read More About the Benefits of Nuts Here:

Chocolate Lovers Rejoice. The Health Benefits of Dark Chocolate

Chocolate Lovers Rejoice: It's National Chocolate Day!

Although chocolate can be high in fat and sugar, which isn't really a great choice for your health, Dark Chocolate provides a healthy alternative that can actually be beneficial to you in the long run.

To get the full benefits you must...

Pick The Right Dark Chocolate:

70% or higher cocoa (the higher cocoa content, the higher the antioxidant levels)

Choose Organic (processed dark chocolate gets stripped of most of their antioxidants and vitamins)

Dark Chocolate Benefits:

1. Can Help Lower Blood Pressure:

Dark Chocolate helps to regulate and improve blood flow to the heart, which helps keep blood pressure low. It also helps control blood sugar and fight off Type 2 Diabetes.

2. Good For Your Brain:

Dark Chocolate not only improves blood flow to the heart but also to the brain, which helps reduces the risk of a stroke. Phenylethylamine (PEA) chemical is released and sent to the brain, much like the feeling of falling in love, dark chocolate helps to make you happier and lighten your mood.

3. Chock Full of Antioxidants:

Antioxidants are proven to help free your body of free radicals that can cause damage to your cells. Dark Chocolate proved to have more antioxidants than most fruit, even blueberries. These same antioxidants help to fight off UV rays and in turn help with wrinkles, sun spots, skin hydration, and even help with your overall complexion.

4. Stress Reliever:

The cocoa in dark chocolate helps reduce stress hormones that cause collagen breakdown in the skin. Thus meaning a calmer day with fewer wrinkles.

So indulge yourself today, but keep in mind that to receive these health benefits stick to no more than one ounce a day.  Makes for the perfect midday or evening treat!