home
RSS
Turkey skin: More good fat than bad, and other Thanksgiving truths
November 23rd, 2010
04:20 PM ET

Turkey skin: More good fat than bad, and other Thanksgiving truths

It's that time of year again when some people try to take the fun out of Thanksgiving dinner by highlighting just how many calories the average American will be consuming in this one, very special meal. It completely overshadows the fact that the individual, traditional components of this feast have some true health benefits and with some simple techniques can be prepared in a tasty AND healthy way. It's worth a reminder of what we're eating (in moderation) is truly good for us.

Turkey
"Turkey is a lean, flavorful protein source," says Marisa Moore, a registered dietitian and spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association. "It's also a source of trace minerals zinc and selenium, which helps with cell and tissue repair and growth," she adds. Harvard's health newsletter says it's hard to beat turkey when you're looking for a lean cut of meat: "A 3-ounce serving of skinless white meat [which is about the size of a woman's palm] contains 25 grams of protein, barely 3 grams of fat, and less than 1 gram of saturated fat." The newsletter also notes that turkey is a good source of arginine, which some research suggests may help open arteries.

You may not have to forgo the scrumptious skin either, suggests Lilian Cheung, editorial director of "The Nutrition Source" from Harvard's School of Public Health. "There is more monounsaturated fat than saturated fat in poultry skin.  The skin adds calories, but there is more healthful fat in it than unhealthful fat. So it's OK to enjoy, if you like it," she tells CNN.  Moore suggests having some, rather than a whole plateful of skin may be advisable.  "If you roast your turkey on a rack most of the fat will drip down" says Cheung. Cooking Light magazine offers a recipe for the ultimate roasted turkey .

FULL POST


October 29th, 2010
11:17 AM ET

Does wild game meat cause the same health problems as red meat?

Every weekday, a CNNHealth expert doctor answers a viewer question. On Friday, it's Dr. Melina Jampolis, a physician nutrition specialist.

Question asked by Rob of Colorado

Does wild game meat (deer, elk, antelope, etc.) cause the same health problems typically associated with red meat consumption or are its health benefits more akin to eating fish or chicken?

FULL POST


October 20th, 2010
09:43 AM ET

Are my symptoms from gallbladder problems, or something else?

Every weekday, a CNNHealth expert doctor answers a viewer question. On Wednesday, it's Dr. Otis Brawley, a chief medical officer.

Last week, Dr. Brawley answered a question about whether Jessie from North Carolina has symptoms that could indicate gallbladder problems. This week, he offers another theory for what could be causing her pain.

Question asked by Jessie, North Carolina

My mom, grandma and older sister have all had their gallbladders removed. For the past month, I have been getting nauseated and/or experiencing pain in my upper belly after many meals. It seems as though I can tolerate little of any type of fat. The only thing that makes my discomfort manageable is Mylanta and Zantac. Are my symptoms and family history indicative of gallbladder problems? My doctor didn't immediately think so.

FULL POST


September 8th, 2010
02:00 PM ET

Does eating gluten cause eczema?

Every weekday, a CNNHealth expert doctor answers a viewer question. On Wednesdays, it's Dr. Otis Brawley, chief medical officer at the
American Cancer Society.

Question asked by L. Rodriguez, Orange County, California

I have suffered from eczema for many years. I changed doctors last year and she thinks that my skin condition may be a result of being allergic to gluten.

Since I have an HMO, she cannot test me for the allergy because they will not pay for it. I have tried going gluten free and the skin condition got better but did not go away. Is there anything that I can do to be sure I was given the proper diagnosis before completely changing my diet and life? FULL POST


July 9th, 2010
02:00 AM ET

Obese kids at risk for acid reflux

Overweight and obese children are at risk for getting even more adult illnesses, researchers warn.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 17 percent of children and teens ages 2-19 are obese in the United States. Previous studies have linked childhood obesity to high blood pressure and diabetes. Now a new study says overweight and obese kids face another illness usually seen in adults: Gastro-esophageal reflux disease or GERD.

FULL POST


June 9th, 2010
09:30 AM ET

New tool may help ID acid reflux disease

By Trisha Henry
CNN Medical Producer

Researchers in India say they are developing a tool for identifying acid reflux disease that could lead to improved treatments.

Using a molecular imaging device for the first time in this manner, researchers were able to examine the differences between a healthy esophageal muscle and an unhealthy one. They found that a lack of tone or motility in the esophageal muscles may determine whether  someone will develop gastro-esophageal reflux disease, also known as GERD.  When this muscle fails to work properly the stomach acids back up into the esophagus.

Studies suggest more than 15 million people in the United States suffer symptoms of GERD each day.

The molecular imaging study, presented at the Society of Nuclear Medicine's annual meeting, included 49 participants who were scanned upright with a special molecular imaging device to see how their esophagus muscles and lower-esophageal sphincter were functioning. According to Society of Nuclear Medicine research chair, Dr. Peter S. Conti, what is different about this study is the specific test that was performed and how it was done.  "By positioning the patient different, you trigger the dis-motility, by making it more obvious on the scan, which then allows you to make the correlation better," says Conti.  In addition, a more traditional gastric reflux study was done on the patients while they were lying face down. While the participants reported varying degrees of symptoms, almost half showed some sort of problem with their esophagus muscle while lying down. This suggests the possibility that abnormal esophageal motility may be the main contributor to developing acid reflux disease.

Normally when you swallow, the lower esophageal sphincter – acts as a trap door and it relaxes, allowing for food and liquids to move into the stomach. The muscle then tightens, closing the gateway. When GERD is present, this circular muscle doesn't work, it either doesn't close all the way or it opens too often, so the gastric acid becomes stuck in the food pipe. This can cause inflammation in the esophagus, acid indigestion, or "heartburn" and can cause discomfort.  If these acids aren't removed from the esophagus, over time, they can lead to more serious issues, such as bleeding or breathing problems and even cancer.

While more research is needed to confirm the finding, it could lead to new drug treatments to correct the muscular movements in the esophageal wall. Conti says this new way of testing could also help doctors pinpoint the disease, which could lead to better diagnosis and follow-up examinations.

Editor's Note: Medical news is a popular but sensitive subject rooted in science. We receive many comments on this blog each day; not all are posted. Our hope is that much will be learned from the sharing of useful information and personal experiences based on the medical and health topics of the blog. We encourage you to focus your comments on those medical and health topics and we appreciate your input. Thank you for your participation.


« newer posts
Advertisement
About this blog

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.

Advertisement
Advertisement