Why you should eat Purple Sweet Potatoes!

I can not say I always knew what they were, but about 5 years I discovered this amazing root at the store! At first I just thought it was a colorful sweet potato, until I started doing some research! Purple sweet potatoes are high in the flavonoids: cyanidnin and peonidin. These two anthocyanin have been shown to reduce inflammation by lowering COX-2 levels, MCP-1, and IL-6! For my friends in medicine, we know these inflammatory markers all too well! At first I was skeptical, I figured all the studies were in vitro with 1000x concentrations, but to my relief there are human studies showing the effects on participants’ metabolic factors, hepatic function tests, and inflammatory markers.

Can Walnuts Prevent Colon Cancer?

From the literature that we have, and our current understanding, walnuts slow the growth of malignant tumors. Now they don’t prevent malignant cells from forming, but they slow the growth of tumors and suppress cancer stem cell growth through gene expression changes and pro-apoptotic pathways. 

Wait, berries can do what?

Chronic exposure to calorie dense foods, typically in the form of a standard high-fat diet, causes metabolic stress effecting mitochondrial respiration and dissipation of the mitochondrial proton gradient in adipose tissue causing mitochondrial dysfunction. Previously we knew that anthocyanin-rich diets were beneficial for maintaining healthy body weight, improving glucose and lipid metabolism, and determining inflammatory status of key metabolic tissues. The anthocyanins, malvidin, petunidin, and peonidin (in berries) were found to improve body composition and enhance mitochondrial respiration and dissipation of the mitochondrial protein gradient when under chronic metabolic stress. 

Drinking Tea may reduce risk of Glaucoma

Glaucoma, the leading cause of blindness in the world, is from optic nerve and retinal ganglion cell damage resulting in vision field loss most likely caused by increased intraocular pressure (IOP), blood flow abnormalities, oxidative stress and potentially autoimmune processes. For years, researchers speculated that coffee/tea could increase glaucoma risk because caffeine potentially increases IOP and homocysteine levels. In this study, researchers looked at the correlation of different beverage consumption and glaucoma prevalence from the National health and nutrition examination survey.

Are you ever too old to start working out?

You all know I love my exercise, but is it ever too late for someone to start? Exercise, as you know, has played a huge role in my life! I exercise ever single day, without fail, BUT you do not have to go to those extremes to see lasting effects! For sedentary individuals, the heart undergoes a number of changes that ultimately can lead to heart failure. The development of heart failure, with a preserved ejection fraction, is likely mediated through increased left ventricular stiffness - a consequence of sedentary aging. In the study shown in the second image, sedentary adults were able to improve their maximal oxygen uptake and decrease the cardiac stiffness potentially protecting against the future risk of heart failure by preventing the increase in cardiac stiffness with 2 years of supervised high-intensity training.

Day 57: 400 Day Challenge Thoughts – “Dr.” or doctor

And while there is a small, yet subtle, difference in wording - the framework and context of how we  set up our goals and aspirations shapes how we work day in and day out. At the end of the day, I don't want to just be a Dr. I don't just want the title of being a doctor. I want to embody what it means to be a physician. I want to be a doctor to my friends, my patients, my family, to the community around me, and everyone I come in contact with. Yes, I still have a long way to go to be a board certified physician, but I can work day-in and day-out to serve as an example of what it means to truly be a physician.  A doctor isn't what I do, A doctor is who I am.