Health and Fitness News

Welcome to the Stars Hollow Gazette‘s Health and Fitness News weekly diary. It will publish on Saturday afternoon and be open for discussion about health related issues including diet, exercise, health and health care issues, as well as, tips on what you can do when there is a medical emergency. Also an opportunity to share and exchange your favorite healthy recipes.

Questions are encouraged and I will answer to the best of my ability. If I can’t, I will try to steer you in the right direction. Naturally, I cannot give individual medical advice for personal health issues. I can give you information about medical conditions and the current treatments available.

You can now find past Health and Fitness News diaries here and on the right hand side of the Front Page.

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Health Benefits of Red Wine vs. Grape Juice

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Tony Cenicola/The New York Times

Red wine is probably better for you than grape juice because the fermentation process involved in making wine changes the makeup of the juice, and the skin of the grape, which is loaded with healthful antioxidants, is more likely to be used in the winemaking process, said Dr. Antonia Trichopoulou, a professor and director of the World Health Organization Collaborating Center for Nutrition at the University of Athens School of Medicine in Greece.

The color of the wine indicates how many healthful nutrients known as polyphenols the drink contains. “Red has more than white, and white more than beer,” said Dr. Miguel Ángel Martínez González of the University of Navarra in Spain. Red wine also contains alcohol, and many observational studies have shown that drinking alcoholic beverages in moderation reduces the risk of coronary heart disease, he said, by increasing levels of healthy HDL cholesterol and reducing the clumping of platelets that can lead to clots inside blood vessels.

New Dietary Guidelines Urge Less Sugar for All and Less Protein for Boys and Men

New federal dietary guidelines announced on Thursday urge Americans to drastically cut back on sugar, and for the first time have singled out teenage boys and men for eating too much meat, chicken and eggs.

Despite those warnings, the guidelines were also notable for what they did not say. While draft recommendations had suggested all Americans adopt more environmentally-sustainable eating habits by cutting back on meat, that advice was dropped from the final guidelines. And longstanding limits on dietary cholesterol were also removed, a victory for the nation’s egg producers, which have long argued that cholesterol from eggs and seafood is not a major health concern.

The Best Diets if You Want to Lose the Winter Pounds

During the winter season it’s only natural for people to put weight on. With all the late eating during Christmas and the New Year’s Eve, you start noticing that you are getting a fuller figure. Another reason why people tend to put on weight in winter is because less outdoors activities are done, and people stay more in their homes because of the cold outside and well, they eat. If you are looking for some tips, here are the best diets if you want to lose the winter pounds.
The DASH diet has been named the best diet for six years in a row. This diet includes lots of vegetables, fruits and nonfat or low fat dairy. It also includes nuts, beans, fish, poultry, lean meats and whole grains. So it’s basically a low in fat and high in fiber diet. The plan also follows the dietary guidelines offered by U.S., focusing mostly on potassium, vitamins and minerals. Foods that are high in calories or processed foods are discouraged by the diet.

Feds probing norovirus outbreak at Chipotle

A series of high profile foodborne illness outbreaks at the Mexican restaurant chain had already seen it hit with a slew of lawsuits and a 43 percent drop in its stock price in less than three months — and now the company says it has been served with a federal grand jury subpoena as part of a criminal investigation of an outbreak of norovirus in California.

Chipotle revealed the subpoena in a Securities and Exchange Commission filing Wednesday in which it also acknowledged that the fallout from the scandal saw its sales plunge at existing stores by 30 percent in December.

‘The Pill’ Not Tied to Birth Defects

Some small studies have suggested that oral contraceptive use may be associated with an increased risk of birth defects, possibly by altering vitamin levels in the blood. But a large new study has found that taking oral contraceptives around the time of pregnancy did not increase the risk.

The study, in BMJ, used records of 880,694 infants born in Denmark over 14 years, through March 2011. Danish records include dates of prescriptions for oral contraceptives, and researchers divided women into four groups: those who never used the pill, those who stopped more than three months before pregnancy, those who stopped less than three months before, and those who were taking the pill when they became pregnant.

Parasitic Infections Common in Roman Times

Two thousand years ago the ancient Romans introduced public multiseat toilets, hand-washing stations, sewage systems, aqueducts for drinking water and heated public baths.

A new study finds that despite these sanitation advances, Romans of the time suffered just as many, if not more, parasites and ectoparasites, like lice and fleas, as their counterparts in the preceding Iron Age.

This may have been the indirect result of laws that required residents to remove excrement and rubbish from their towns, said Piers Mitchell, a paleopathologist at the University of Cambridge in Britain and one of the study’s authors.