Surprising Health Facts from the Past Four Decades
We can learn many things by reflecting on the past and seeing what works and what doesn't.
There have been some surprising health facts in recent headlines that have left many of us wondering if we are eating or practicing the right habits to keep us healthy.
With cancer risks heightened by eating the wrong foods, and with coffee having a more “healthy” appearance, we examine some of the most recent health facts in history that have made all of us question our eating habits and lifestyle choices.
Added Weight=Increased Cancer Risk
Over the past 15 years, surprising health facts about the link between weight gain and cancer have made many of us second guess the foods we eat.
Back in the 1960’s, researchers and scientists knew about the association between increased weight gain and endometrial cancer, but it wasn’t revealed until recently that heightened risks for other cancers seemed to make the biggest health headlines.
With the increase in the population of obese and overweight Americans growing, so has the list of cancers associated with this phenomenon. This list has grown to include postmenopausal breast cancer, as well as colon, esophagus, kidney, and pancreatic cancer.
With over 2/3 of our population being either overweight or obese, it is no surprise that risks for certain types of cancers have grown. For many of these cancers, the increased risk depends on where your body stores extra fat, and how much of a percentage you have.
When it comes to prostate, breast, and ovarian cancer, increased amounts of fat in your abdominal area tend to increase your risk of getting the disease.
Extra fat cells often make it easier for cancer cells to grow because of increased insulin production. This is also one of the major factors that promotes cancer growth in the human body.
If you are overweight, you may want to start eating healthy now. Your prospect of having a cancer-free life could depend on it.
More Java…Less Java???
One of the more surprising healthy facts of recent times is the discovery that more java may not be such a bad thing for your health.
Coffee has gotten a bad rep., but recent studies have shown that people who drink an average of two cups of coffee per day have a decreased risk of getting certain types of cancers.
Besides reducing the risk of certain cancers, caffeine found in your favorite brew can also decrease your risk of getting type 2 diabetes.
When researchers combined multiple studies with people drinking an average of four to six cups of decaffeinated and regular coffee, they found that most of these people had a 30 percent lower risk of getting diabetes, than those who never drank coffee.
If you aren’t a fan of coffee, you may want to check the health facts and brew yourself a cup or two. Just go easy on the sugar and the half and half…
Get Your ZZZ’s, or Gain More Weight…
With the age of technology and multi-tasking in full force, it may not be surprising that the average American gets about one to two hours less sleep each night than about 20 years ago.
There have been specific studies conducted on the direct links between sleeping habits and obesity, and most studies have found that short sleepers tend to be more overweight than long sleepers.
This may seem backwards, because most people tend to think that more sleep makes you less active, but research has shown otherwise.
A study conducted by the University of Chicago examined the sleeping habits of several volunteers who were only allowed to sleep for one to two hours a night. The researchers conducting the study found that the volunteers had more ghrelin (a hormone that increases appetite), and less leptin (a hormone that suppresses appetite).
Because of these fluctuations in hormonal changes, many of these volunteers craved high-carb foods and snacks, which led to an increase in weight gain.
Why does sleep restriction have this much effect on your diet? It’s simply because of the responses these hormones cause in the receptors of your brain.
A lack of sleep basically causes an increase in stress response, which causes you to become hungry.
Our recommendation: Get a healthy 7-8 hours of sleep a night to avoid high-carb snack overload. Your health, and your weight scale, will thank you for it.
These are just some of the surprising health facts that have been recently discovered, but there are definitely more.
To see how BistroMD can give you solutions to these surprising health facts, learn more about the health benefits of our program here.