June marks the start of National Employee Wellness Month, a time to highlight how fostering and maintaining a culture of wellness in the workplace is more important than ever. With so many Americans affected by obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, cancer and other health conditions, many people are looking for ways to be healthier in every aspect of their lives.
According to a study conducted at the University of Groningen in the Netherlands, the average full-time American employee works approximately 1,700 hours per year, accounting for nearly 20 percent of their time. The Cleveland Clinic notes that we sit far too much and that prolonged sitting puts individuals at risk for heart disease, cancer and diabetes. Knowing this, where better than work to start taking steps to be more active and improve your health?
That’s why the Strategies to Overcome and Prevent (STOP) Obesity Alliance is again hosting National Employee Wellness Month (NEWM), along with Virgin Pulse, Partnership to Fight Chronic Disease and WorldatWork. We are thrilled that AICR has signed on as a proud supporter. Now in its sixth year, NEWM seeks to motivate both employers and employees to focus on health and develop healthy behaviors that they can stick with, not only for one month, but throughout the year. Continue reading
In the battle of beverages, diet drinks made the headlines this week, beating out water as a weight loss aid according to a new study. Understanding how our food and beverages may affect weight gain or loss is important to cancer prevention, because being overweight or obese is a major risk factor for eight cancers, including colorectal and post-menopausal breast.
The study adds to the limited, but growing body of human research on diet beverages. The role of diet beverages in weight control is controversial, but the role of sugary beverages is not. AICR recommends avoiding sugary sodas and drinks because they are strongly linked to weight gain, overweight and obesity.
The study, published online in Obesity, found that of the approximately 300 overweight participants, those consuming the diet beverages lost more weight over 12 weeks than the group consuming water. The difference was small, but significant, with the diet drink group losing an average of 13 lbs and the water group, 9 lbs.
For the trial, one-half of the participants were instructed to drink at least 24 ounces of water daily and not to consume any diet beverages. The other half were told to drink at least 24 ounces of diet drinks, but they could also drink water. Continue reading
Today is Whole Grains Sampling Day – a great time to try one (or more) of these delicious cancer-fighting foods.
Whole grain foods are fiber-rich and they promote health in many other ways. But most Americans fall short of the US Dietary Guidelines’ recommendation to make at least half of their grain choices whole grains.
You an explore new choices, one step at a time. Here are some tips I’ve shared with patients and ways that I swap out refined grains for delicious whole grain foods:
If your day typically starts with coffee and a donut or even a white flour bagel:
- At Home: Try a whole wheat tortilla – Spread on some peanut or other nut butter, add banana or apple slices, roll it up and eat it at home or on your way to work or school.
- On Your Way: Choose the oatmeal to go at the coffee shop or fast food drive through. Ask for the nuts, fruit and sugar on the side to keep the calories right for you.
For lunch – whether you bring your own frozen meal or grab a sandwich at the local deli:
- Frozen entrée – take a close look when you’re shopping in the freezer aisle and choose one that includes brown rice.
- Deli sandwich –ask for whole wheat bread or roll; or look for soup that includes barley or wild rice.
Dinner - this can be a great time to gradually add more whole grains for you and your family:
- Spaghetti dinner – cook half whole-wheat thin spaghetti and half white flour spaghetti and top with your favorite sauce.
- Try whole grain muffin or cornbread mixes for a great accompaniment to your stew, soup or salad meal.
Check out our latest Foods that Fight Cancer- Whole Grains, for ways to start replacing your refined grains with whole grains along with recipes and tips for buying and storing them.
What are ways you put whole grains on your plate?