Plant Sterols: A Simple Way to Lower Cholesterol

Plant Sterols: A Simple Way to Lower Cholesterol

Early in my career as a dietitian, I faced a common problem. I was working in medical centres and seeing clients who would be bulk billed, so their session was free of charge. When I would ask “what are we looking to do today?” I would often get a response along the lines of “I have high cholesterol and my doctor said I should come see you. I don’t really think I’ll get much out of this, but they told me to come anyway.” Obviously giving standard nutrition advice to reduce cholesterol would not really cut it. Advice that is…
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Ashwagandha for Health and Performance

Ashwagandha for Health and Performance

Ashwagandha (also known as Withania somnifera) is a herb that is common in Ayurveda, which is a type of alternative medicine that originated in India more than 3000 years ago.  This herb falls into the category of an “adaptogen” which is defined as substances that are used in herbal medicine to help your body to respond to stress, anxiety, and fatigue, or to improve overall wellbeing. A Quick Preface Although it seems out of place for an evidence-based dietitian to be talking about a herb used in alternative medicine, it makes a bit more sense when we look at it from…
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Collagen Supplements and Osteoarthritis

Collagen Supplements and Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis can be incredibly frustrating. It makes total sense to be exploring any option that could help improve it. There are a lot of options that are proposed to help. Collagen supplementation, in various forms, is an option that has been promoted to help. This post aims to cover the current research on the topic, while also exploring whether it is worth taking. Understanding Osteoarthritis – Background to Understanding How Collagen Could Help Osteoarthritis is defined as the degeneration of joint cartilage and the underlying bone. It often causes pain and stiffness. Cartilage is a tough, but smooth and slippery…
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Nutrition for Reducing Blood Pressure: A Comprehensive Guide

Nutrition for Reducing Blood Pressure: A Comprehensive Guide

High blood pressure (hypertension) is well known for increasing the risk of complications like heart disease and stroke. There are many options for how to reduce it, which in turn can reduce the risk of a lot of health complications.  One thing I want to address with this article is to provide a relatively comprehensive guide, while also keeping it relatively easy to read. Somebody recently asked me if I had any good resources to send them on how to reduce blood pressure. Although I had not yet written anything personally, I did not think it would be hard to…
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Rhodiola Rosea: A Dietitian’s Review

Rhodiola Rosea: A Dietitian’s Review

Rhodiola Rosea has long been used in certain countries for medical purposes but has recently gained popularity in the western world. There have been claims that it can help with a variety of conditions. It is most known for its properties as an adaptogen, which means it theoretically helps your body handle stress. In this post, I will be going through a couple of the proposed benefits of Rhodiola and examining the evidence on the topic. Stress Decreasing stress and handling burnout-like symptoms is one of the most common claims for Rhodiola. One promising study on the topic featured over…
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Vitamin D: Are You Deficient? Here’s What to Do About It

Vitamin D: Are You Deficient? Here’s What to Do About It

Vitamin D (also called calcitriol) is a fat-soluble vitamin that is well known for its role in absorbing calcium from the small intestine, bone mineralisation, and for regulating calcium and phosphorous levels in the blood and bones. Calcium and phosphorous are critical for building and maintaining healthy bones, but vitamin D has many other roles in the body. These include immune system function, reducing respiratory illness, and potential protection against diabetes, hypertension, dementia, and even certain cancers.  Vitamin D has many other potential health optimisation considerations in which research is still developing.  Where do we get it? 80 to 100%…
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How To Improve Sleep With Nutrition: Everything You Need To Know

How To Improve Sleep With Nutrition: Everything You Need To Know

Nutrition plays a role in our sleep and vice versa. That much is obvious. But the bigger questions are:  How much impact can it have? How much impact is it likely to have on the average person? What if you are not average and you have some clear gaps/issues? This post will cover a lot of those aspects. It will also cover specific areas to focus on to achieve these benefits.  But one of the reasons I have held off on writing about this topic for a while is because it is so broad. There are so many variables. To get past that, I am going to try…
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How to Reduce Cholesterol Through Diet

How to Reduce Cholesterol Through Diet

Cholesterol can be a complex topic with a lot of mixed messaging. Some commonly accepted assumptions are: High cholesterol, particularly LDL cholesterol is often a bad thing for overall health outcomes. The goal is often to reduce it.Diet, exercise, and other lifestyle factors play a role.Genetics play a role. One of the things that make it hard to write about this topic is that is kind of a straightforward topic, but it has many layers. There are a lot of common themes that consistently work for reducing cholesterol that likely carries over to improved health, and these are the things…
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Nutrition for Hashimoto’s Disease: Things You Need to Know

Nutrition for Hashimoto’s Disease: Things You Need to Know

Hashimoto’s disease or Hashimoto’s thyroiditis is a thyroid condition that affects a lot of people. There are a lot of aspects of how nutrition can play a role in the management of it, so this post will cover a lot of key points that are worth being aware of. What is Hashimoto’s? Hypothyroidism is a condition where not enough thyroid hormone is being produced. This can happen for a variety of reasons, but Hashimoto’s disease is one of the most common ones. With Hashimoto’s, the body’s own cells attack and damage the thyroid gland. Basically, the immune system mistakenly views…
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Does Coffee Stunt Your Growth?

Does Coffee Stunt Your Growth?

Coffee is probably one of the most well-studied beverages around. If you received a dollar for every time you saw a news article citing recent research about the benefits or risks of coffee drinking, you would probably get pretty rich, pretty quickly.  But have you ever heard someone say that coffee stunts your growth?  There are quite a lot of reasons why you may not be wanting to pump your kids up with coffee. Hyperactivity due to the caffeine probably being at the top of that list.  Another reason parents often cite though is not wanting to stunt the growth…
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