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Being overweight and cholesterol


If one is overweight, it probably means you consume a lot of either fatty food or eat sugary stuff which includes drinks. Remember alcohol breaks down into sugars which inevitably stores as fat if not burned through activity.

So what really is bad for us.

  1. Non HDL cholesterol (LDL) and triglycerides
  2.  Sedentary lifestyle or inactivity
  3. Smoking
  4. Diet high in saturated fat and trans fat

What happens when you get active is this, the body stimulates to move bad (Non-HDL)  cholesterol to the liver for disposal rather than staying in the cells and blocking arteries. Making you healthier, so the more active you are the better.

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Why teff is good for your digestive system

This tiny grass seed is a staple food in Ethiopia and Eritrea. The seeds produce a harvest proportionally hundreds of times greater than wheat or other staple grains. This, combined with its ability to withstand high temperatures in which to grow, has meant teff thus staved off famine many times.

Teff has much to offer nutritionally without being a superhero. It has a particularly high calcium content plus plenty of iron and protein; it is gluten-free and colours vary from white through to very dark brown. White teff is generally preferred.

The flavour is mild, somewhat bland but nutty, and being so benign has very many culinary uses, ground into flour or as a whole grain.

In Ethiopia its major use is in injera, a lightly fermented (sourdough) but flatbread; this is made big enough to form a thin, pancake-like platter on which food is served and it is also torn off to use as an eating aid.

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Know the fibre you eat

There are different types of fibre, the Insoluble and the soluble, all have various effect on our bodies and on our health.  Insoluble fibre is probably what we all think of as fibre. It helps us to have a good digestive system by passing through our bodies without being broken down. In doing this, it further helps other foods go along with it.

High fibre breakfast cereals, whole grains, vegetables, potatoes with skin, nuts, seeds are the kind of foods that make up the insoluble fibre.

Soluble fibre, however, dissolves in water and forms a gel in the gut. Thus preventing constipation and also helps to lower cholesterol. This is found in grains, oats, barley, rye, fruit, beans, pulses, and vegetables, such as potatoes.

Recently, resistant starch which now is included in dietary fibre and found in such foods as banana, potatoes, grains, and beans.

There are a few  suggested ways of helping you include  more fibre to your food, these are;

    1. Choose wholegrain instead of white bread
    2. Choose porridge, cereals, muesli, and bran flakes for breakfast
    3. Add one portion of fruits or veg every time you have a meal
    4. Include a salad to your sandwich each time
    5. Choose jacket potato, bean soup, whole grain bread
    6. Choose pasta, brown rice or bulghur wheat to white rice



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Why you need to eat food with fibre in them



Fibre, which is formally known as roughage by some, is a substance in plant food that is not completely broken down when food digests. It is found in plants and complex carbohydrates, fruits, lentils and beans.

Fibre is good in the sense that, it helps keep our digestive system healthy. The more fibre we have in our foods, cereals, whole grain meals, pulses, pasta. The likelihood of us suffering from heart and circulatory problems, type 2 diabetes and even some cancers, is greatly reduced

Research shows that many of us are not eating enough fibre. The food we eat should be balanced. It should comprise of having fruits, vegetables, bean, nuts seeds and lentils.

An adult person should have at least 30g of fibre in their diet per day. At the moments the average is about  20g. Our meals and snacks should be high in fibre. We should be choosing whole grain options at meal times.

If you are buying ready-made products like bread, pasta, or ready-made meals, check out for the ‘traffic lights’ on the package. Look out for fat, sugar and salt contents, along with the ‘sauce of fibre’ in the content.

If you are not already eating fibre based foods, this should be introduced gradually, because different types of fibre can have a different effect, on our bodies and health.

As someone said ” having fibre in your diet makes you go” we all know where.

In my next article, I shall talk about the different types of fibre and how they affect our health.
































































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Why you should avoid processed foods if you can

Processed foods need little preparation before eating. For example, ready-made meals, fish fingers, burgers, sausages pies etc.
They often contain hidden fats and salts. If you have to eat them please check the labels for saturated fat and high salt content.

We are all aware  that saturated fat is processed into cholesterol by the liver. Cholesterol which is made up of fatty deposits would clog the arteries that supply your heart muscle with oxygen-rich blood. As the fatty deposits increase, the arteries become narrower, to the extent that less and less oxygen now reaches your heart. The heart then becomes starved of oxygen leading to coronary heart diseases.

This situation can be avoided by a change in lifestyle, so ‘ food is your best medicine’ as some would say.