In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review

Beyond the antioxidant buzz: Plant foods boost our health in multiple ways

By Sharon Palmer, R.D.

JewishWorldReview.com | Antioxidants are all the rage. Yet the health properties of plant foods, such as fruits, vegetables, grains, and legumes, go beyond mere antioxidant status.

The buzzword today is "antioxidants." You can find the term plastered on food labels and dietary supplements, all over the media, and even in smart phone apps, which can help you identify the antioxidant values of hundreds of foods as you shop.

While surveys show that most people recognize "antioxidants" as a good thing, most do not fully understand how they work. And, ironically, scientists are in the same boat--they simply do not know enough about how these plant compounds work in the human body. In fact, the benefits of eating whole plant foods--rich in thousands of different compounds and nutrients--may be due to many factors beyond antioxidants.

Plant foods contain phytochemicals--nonessential nutrients that may be bioactive and affect human health. The largest group of phytochemicals is the polyphenols, comprised mainly of the flavonoids, which are commonly called "dietary antioxidants."

The establishment of antioxidant levels in foods is based on chemical laboratory analysis, such as ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity)--a common analysis technique that measures the total antioxidant capacity in foods or phytochemicals. So, when a food or dietary supplement company talks about the "high antioxidant" level of their product, whether it's blueberries or goji berries, the level is usually based on a laboratory analysis, such as ORAC.

So what's the problem with boasting about high antioxidant levels? It can be misleading, says Jeffrey B. Blumberg, Ph.D., Professor and Director of the Antioxidants Research Laboratory at Tufts University (Medford, Mass.), because, "Many of these compounds act to quench free radicals effectively only in vitro (test tube experiments), not in vivo (living organism experiments)."

He notes that these compounds are certainly bioactive, serving to fight inflammation, increase detoxification, and trigger some antioxidant enzymes. But the ORAC is a test tube analysis, which does not account for bioavailability and metabolism in the body. Scientists have yet to fully understand what compounds are found in particular foods, as well as how they are absorbed and broken down, and what amount gets into the tissues.

The emphasis on "high-antioxidant" foods has encouraged people to shop for foods based on their reported antioxidant levels. This is why the U.S. Department of Agriculture recently removed the USDA ORAC Database for Selected Foods from its website, citing mounting evidence that the antioxidant values listed have no relevance on the effects of specific bioactive compounds on human health.


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The USDA reports that ORAC values are routinely misused by food and dietary supplement manufacturing companies to promote their products, and by consumers to guide their selections.

Scientists have embarked on a new journey in the world of plant research. They are now moving out of the test tube and into the human body, as they try to solve the mystery about what happens to all of those phytochemicals in plant foods once you eat them.

An emerging body of research is exploring the effects of consuming particular plant foods, such as walnuts, blueberries, strawberries, tomatoes and soy, on human health.

"We have learned that for many phytochemicals, it's not the parent plant compound that is bioactive; it is the metabolites created by the gut flora, liver, lung, retina, or other tissues in the body," says Blumberg, who reports that conversion of these metabolites also may be related to nutrigenomics--the field of science that examines the effects of foods on an individual's genetic makeup. For example, someday scientists may be able to tell you if you have the ability to convert phytochemicals from a food into cancer-preventing compounds.

To be sure, phytochemicals and antioxidants are good for you; it's just that we're putting too much emphasis on one aspect of eating plant foods. Blumberg says, "People may think that it's no longer the vitamins, minerals or fiber, but only the phytochemicals that promote health. But the reason plant foods are good for you is because of everything they contain. There is synergy for all of these ingredients--synergies between ingredients within one food and between multiple foods; that's why the Dietary Guidelines recommends we consume a diversity of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains."

This synergy of nutrients in foods also explains why it's difficult to gain the same benefits from eating isolated nutrients--vitamins, minerals, phytochemicals--in supplement form, compared to eating the whole food.

Studies have indicated that foods rich in phytochemicals may reduce the risk of several chronic conditions, including neurodegenerative diseases, atherosclerosis, and certain forms of cancer. In fact, some research has found that dietary antioxidant levels in food are linked to lower disease risk in humans.

For example, a 2012 Swedish study published in Stroke, which included more than 31,000 women, assessed the impact of dietary total antioxidant capacity on risk of stroke incidence. Researchers found that the highest intake of antioxidants was linked with a lower risk of stroke in both cardiovascular disease (CVD)-free women and women with CVD history.

Antioxidants are just the tip of the iceberg in regard to the benefits of eating more whole, plant foods, including fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, seeds, nuts, tea, herbs and spices. And the best advice is to eat them frequently with a wide variety.

By choosing from an array of plant foods in all colors of the rainbow, you can receive the benefits of nutrients working together in your body. This is just what the USDA had in mind when they developed MyPlate, which tells you to fill your plate at least three-fourths full of plant foods.

(Reprinted with permission from Environmental Nutrition, a monthly publication of Belvoir Media Group, LLC. 800-829-5384. www.EnvironmentalNutrition.com.)

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