Healthy Choices

Soft Drinks Increase Diabetes Risk

A recent study of 43,000 women confirms soft drinks and sweetened fruit drinks, such as fruit punch, increase the risk of developing diabetes. Women who drank two or more soft drinks daily were 51 percent more likely to develop type 2 diabetes during the 10-year follow-up than women who seldom drank soft drinks. They also gained more weight. For sweetened fruit drinks, the risk was 37 percent higher.

How to Build and Maintain Strong Muscles

Here are two key principles for preventing muscle loss with aging and increasing strength at any age. First, do muscle strengthening exercises such as lifting weights or push-ups at least two–three times a week. Second, supply muscles with liberal amounts of amino acids by eating healthy protein foods at every meal and after training sessions. A good protein food should provide at least 10–15 grams of protein per serving (such as a soy burger, 1 cup beans or 1/2 cup cottage cheese).

Fruits and Vegetables Decrease Diabetes Risk

People who ate the most fruits and vegetables had a 74 percent decreased risk of getting diabetes compared to those eating the least, according to a recently completed 12-year study. European researchers charted fruit and vegetable intake with a food frequency survey and by measuring the amount of vitamin C in the blood. In this study, only the vitamin C from fruits and vegetables decreased diabetes risk, not taking vitamin C supplements. For the best health, aim for seven to nine or more servings of fresh fruits and vegetables daily.

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October 01, 2008 / Health