Best Nutrition Lessons from 2009

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The health and nutrition news updates were far more optimistic than any of the financial news for 2009. Studies keep showing that lower body weight, more fruits and vegetables, less salt, less sugar, less fat and getting enough Vitamin D from the sun are important. Here is an overview of what we learned from this year:

A Healthy Lifestyle Slows Aging?
If you follow a healthy diet and lifestyle you can add years to your life. Of course the flip side to this is that being overweight and smoking can both reduce lifespan.
You Better Pay Attention to Sodium?
Other studies found you can also increase your longevity by lowering the amount of salt you eat in your diet, mostly from processed foods and restaurant foods. The Center for Disease Control came out with a new recommendation that 69% of Americans need to cut their sodium to 1,500 mg per day. That represents a 50% reduction or more for most people.
High-Fat Diets Are Harmful
High fat diets promote heart disease. Evidence continues to mount that even healthy fats increase inflammation. People who followed a high-fat, low-carb diet for a long time suffered depression and anger.
Diet Trumps Exercise for Weight Control?
If you want to lose weight, exercise is good. But it is not enough. What people eat is the most important factor for weight loss and weight control over the long term. The best choice? A diet that is high in fiber, low in fat and low in refined carbohydrates. Fruits, vegetables, cooked whole grains and legumes are the base along with some fat-free dairy and lean protein items.
Vitamin D Is Important
Getting enough Vitamin D is vital for better health and reduction of many diseases, and a little time in the sun several days a week can help you get enough.
Diet and Lifestyle are Important for Breast Cancer Reduction
Most people were shocked when scientists changed the mammogram recommendations this year. A look into why they made their new rules shows that most people have false expectations for mammograms and cancer screening. The good news is that research shows that there are many things you can do to lower your risk for cancer and they are far more effective. By maintaining a healthy body weight and eating a diet low in animal foods and refined carbohydrates and rich in fruits and vegetables you can lower your risk. You should avoid alcohol or drink in moderation. And getting enough Vitamin D and exercise helps. Having children sooner and breastfeeding longer are very beneficial.
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