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The Momentum of GOLD!

>> Sunday, February 23, 2014

At the close of the amazing Sochi Olympic Winter Games, wherever you are in the world, take a moment to feel the energy that the athletes from around the globe have brought to the global arena.  Ride the wave of excitement, and use the energy to empower yourself and your family to get involved!   Be it a renewed commitment to a walking program or involvement in a new sport, take one permanent step forward from the close of the Olympics to leading your Best Life forever.

And if you are Canadian, you're probably very tired but also feeling very empowered this Sunday morning....

Team Canada Women and Men of hockey and all winter sports, you've made us so proud.

 Follow me on twitter: @drsuepedersen © 2014


Should Sugar Be Removed From The FDA's 'Safe' List?

>> Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Sounds ridiculous, doesn't it - the notion that sugar, which was originally revolutionary in sustaining humankind, should now be considered unsafe (in excess).  There is in fact a longstanding strong outcry from public health advocates to the FDA to pull sugar from its 'generally regarded as safe' list, and a recent study adds to the data to tell us why.

The study, published by Yang and colleagues in JAMA Internal Medicine, examined data from the NHANES database to understand the relationship between added sugar consumption and risk of death from cardiovascular disease.

The study found that:

  • The risk of death from cardiovascular disease (CVD) starts to rise when intake of added sugar makes up over 15% of total daily calorie intake. (15% of daily calories in a 2,000 calorie diet is equivalent to a 600mL bottle of pop)
  • People who consume 1/3 or more of their daily calories as added sugar are at a 4 times increased risk of death from CVD. (According to the study, about 10% of Americans were consuming this amount)
  • Drinking one 355 mL can of soda per day increases the risk of CVD death by almost one third, independent of total calories consumed and other cofactors.
  • These findings were largely consistent, regardless of body weight, age, or physical activity levels.

As the excellent accompanying editorial by Laura Schmidt, PhD, notes:

"Physicians may want to caution patients that, to
support cardiovascular health, it is safest to consume less than

15% of their daily calories as added sugar."

The authors are picking on soda and other sugar sweetened beverages in particular for good reason - these beverage constitute 37% of the total added sugar intake in the American diet.  So, without a doubt, beverage consumption is the first place to look for an easy place to cut back on unneeded extra sugar.

Follow me on twitter: @drsuepedersen © 2014


Dangers of ‘Juicing’ – Steroids and Other Performance Enhancing Substances

>> Monday, February 10, 2014

In testing Olympic athletes so carefully for performance enhancing substances, it is not only because it is unfair and unsportsmanlike to use these drugs and hormones, but also because it's downright dangerous and must be harshly discouraged.

The list of potential adverse effects is long, and many are summarized in a recent case published in the Journal of Endocrinology & Metabolism.  The article also describes a case report that serves as a very serious warning to anyone taking performance enhancers or naturopathic supplements.

The case is that of a weight lifter and trainer who had a history of using a variety of performance enhancing substances, including various forms of testosterone (anabolic steroids), growth hormone, antiestrogens, and others.  He presented to hospital with a 10-day history of nausea, headache, abdominal cramps, and diarrhea.  He was found to be in liver, kidney, and heart failure. 

He did not survive.

The autopsy showed that he had suffered a combination of arsenic toxicity, and liver failure thought due to some of the testosterone (anabolic steroid) preparations that he was taking.  The source of arsenic toxicity was traced to an unlabelled bottle which was presumed to contain a performance enhancing substance.


As the article notes, studies have shown that anywhere from 5 to 64% of natural health products and performance enhancing substances are contaminated with one or more toxic elements.   As the author notes,

The ready availability of performance enhancing substances, its unregulated use, and the unreliability of the contents (at the source of raw material or manufacture conditions) … contributed to the tragic outcome in this case.”

Long before this patient fell ill, his doctor was trying to ‘monitor’ the patient’s health on performance enhancers with liver ultrasound and liver tests, which had been normal five months prior to falling ill.  We can also learn from this case that monitoring patients on naturopathic substances and performance enhancers may be

“futile to prevent or even minimize harmful consequences”,

as simply finishing one bottle and starting another can bring with it a toxic contaminant that was not present in the first bottle.  Also, we often don't know what is in these performance enhancers, nor have they been studied properly to teach us exactly how a doctor should go about monitoring a patient taking them. 

This article and case should be taken under very serious consideration by anyone taking performance enhancers or naturopathic substances.  For their own sake as well as for the sanctity of sport, let's hope that athletes at Sochi are competing on fair ground!

Follow me on twitter: @drsuepedersen © 2014


Post Super Bowl Crab Wraps!

>> Sunday, February 2, 2014

Got some leftover canned crabmeat after your Superbowl crab dip is polished off?  Here's a great suggestion that I whipped together....

Simply take 2 cans of crab meat, 1 small can of water chestnuts (cut into small pieces), 3 green onions (cut into small pieces), and mix it all together (with pepper to taste) to create a great wrap filling.  To make it stick together, use 2-3 tablespoons of ultra low fat Mayo, or even better, try this delicious yogurt-based Bolthouse Farms Caesar dressing at only 25 calories per tbsp:

As for choice of wrap, I suggest these awesome FlatOut wraps - packed with 8 grams of fiber and 7g of protein, they are the most nutritious wraps I have ever come across:

If you use the above mix for 3 wraps, your total energy intake will be in the neighborhood of 350 calories, and being packed with both protein and fiber, it will keep you feeling full for quite some time!

Follow me on twitter: @drsuepedersen © 2014



I am excited that you have arrived at my site, and I hope you are too - consider this the first step towards a Healthier New You!! As a medical doctor, Endocrinologist, and obesity specialist, I am absolutely passionate about helping people with weight management. Though there is certainly no magic cure for obesity, there IS a successful treatment plan out there for you - it is all about understanding the elements that contribute to your personal weight struggle, and then finding the treatment plan that suits your needs and your lifestyle. The way to finding your personal solution is to learn as much as you can about obesity: how our toxic environment has shaped us into an overweight society; the diversity of contributors to obesity; and what the treatment options out there are really all about. Knowledge Is Power!!

Are you ready to change your life? Let's begin our journey together, towards a healthier, happier you!!

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