Pumpkin Seeds: A Nature’s Gift

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Pumpkin Seeds are truly a gift from nature. They definitely taste great, but are also a healthy protein option too. Pumpkin seeds have long been valued as a source of the mineral zinc, and the World Health Organization recommends their consumption as a good way of obtaining this nutrient.

Here’s what these seeds have to offer:

Nutritional Facts & Health Benefits

  • These filled with plenty of minerals including phosphorus, magnesium, manganese, iron and copper. Is also a good source of vitamin K.

  • Contain phytoesterols, which have been shown to reduce levels of LDL cholesterol.
  • It is a good source of protein as well. It contains L-tryptophan which is an amino acid, which helps with good sleep and lowering depression. Tryptophan gets converted into serotonin and niacin, which in turn is converted into melatonin, the “sleep hormone.
  • Due to its high level of zinc, makes them a natural protector against osteoporosis. In a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutritionthey found a correlation between low dietary intake of zinc, low blood levels of the trace mineral and osteoporosis at the hip and spine.
  • Is a good source vitamin E: Although pumpkin seeds are not a very rich source of vitamin E in the form of alpha-tocopherol, but recent studies have shown that pumpkin seeds provide us with vitamin E in a wide diversity of forms. This also makes it a good anti-oxidant.
  • Is an excellent source of vitamin B (thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, vitamin B-6 (pyridoxine) and folates).
  • Pumpkin seeds and products like seed extract or oil have long been valued for their anti-microbial benefits, including their anti-fungal and anti-viral properties.

  • In recent studies, it’s not surprising to find some preliminary evidence of decreased cancer risk in association with pumpkin seed intake.
  • Raw nuts and seeds, including pumpkin seeds, are one of the best sources of plant-based omega-3s (alpha-linolenic acid or ALA).

  • Anti-Diabetic Effects: Few studies suggest that pumpkin seeds may help improve insulin regulation and help prevent diabetic complications by decreasing oxidative stress.
  • Benefits for Postmenopausal Women: Pumpkin seed is rich in natural phytoestrogens and studies suggest it may lead to a significant increase in good “HDL” cholesterol along with decreases in blood pressure, hot flashes, headaches, joint pains and other menopausal symptoms in post-menopausal women.
  • Anti-Inflammatory Benefits: Pumpkin seed has been found to exhibit anti-inflammatory effects. According to a study it may reduce inflammation for arthritis without the side effects of anti-inflammatory drugs.
  • Good for prostate health:The oil in pumpkin seeds alleviates difficult urination that happens with an enlarged prostate.

It can be consumed in many different ways. They can be roasted and eaten on their own, and they’re great to incorporate into recipes for their strong, sweet taste. But no matter how you eat them, you’ll be providing your body with a great amount of nutrients.

That’s the reason; the metabolic balance program recommends including pumpkin seeds in the diet. It not just supports the fat breakdown but also full of all the nutrients which is important for balancing the individual’s body. As once the body is balanced, we may control all the health issues.

Post by
Charu Bhardwaj
metabolic balance® & Nutritionist AktivOrthoTM


An Apple A Day Keep Doctors Away

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“An apple a day keep the doctor away” is an old welsh proverb that most of us are familiar with, but what make this fruit so special? What health benefits are associated with eating apples?

Apple: An Nutritional Powerhouse

Apple deserves to be called a “nutritional powerhouse”. It contains a wealth of nutrition:

Vitamin C: Powerful natural anti oxidant

B Complex Vitamins: Riboflavin, thiamine and vitamin B6 are considered vital in maintaining red blood cells and keeping the nervous system in good health.

Dietary Fibre: The British National Health Service says that a diet high in fibre can help prevent the development of certain diseases and may help prevent the amount of bad cholesterol in your blood from rising.

Phytonutrients: Apples are rich in polyphenolic compounds. These phytonutrients help protect the body from the detrimental effects of free radicals.

Minerals: Calciumpotassium, and phosphorus.

Health Benefits of Apple

Improves Neurological Health: Apple contains an antioxidant called “quercetin” which reduces cellular death caused by oxidation and inflammation of neurons.

Prevents Dementia: Apples may help “protect neuron cells against oxidative stress-induced neurotoxicity”, which could reduce the risk of developing neuro-degenerative disorders, such as, Alzheimer’s disease.

 Reduces Your Risk of Stroke: In a study done on men and women showed that those who ate the most apples over a 28-yearperiod had the lowest risk for stroke. “The results suggest that the intake of apples is related to a decreased risk of thrombotic stroke.”

Lowers Level of Bad Cholesterol:Apples really are a “miracle fruit”. They found that older women who ate apples everyday had 23% less bad cholesterol (LDL) and 4% more good cholesterol (HDL) after just six months.

Reduces Risk of Diabetes: Apples could also help lower your risk of diabetes. A study found that people who ate three servings per week of apples, grapes, raisins, blueberries or pears had a 7% lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes compared to those who did not.

In metabolic balance we use the old proverb : “An apple a day keep doctors away (Benjamin Franklin)”. No other fruit can compare to the vitamin and mineral in the cholesterol and uric acid lowering apple! In addition, apples provide the body with valuable fibre, since they are high in pectin and cellulose content. Apples are important for a speedier excretion of harmful metabolic waste products. Finally, fruits are simply a pleasure to eat!

Post by,
Farah Arfeen
metabolic balance® & Nutritionist AktivOrthoTM

Life-Enhancing Reasons to Eat Fish

seared-salmon-rawFish is a packed with quality protein. It is also loaded with omega-3 fatty acids and vitamins such as D and B2 (riboflavin). It is also, a rich source of calcium and phosphorus. Important minerals, such as zinc, iron, iodine, magnesium, and potassium are present to nourish the body. According to the American Heart Association  eating fish at least two times per week as part of a healthy diet is recommended

If you don’t eat non vegetarian products or have trouble including fish into your diet you can get your daily recommended amount of fatty acids through omega-3 fish oil supplements.

Fish is not just responsible for lowering the fat percentage hence decreasing the waist line or boost heart-health,  here are seven more ways adding a dose of fish to your diet can improve your health.

Prevent Heart Disease:

Women who ate little to no fish had 50 percent more heart problems than those who ate fish at least once per week – according to the study published in the Journal of the American Heart Association.  Other research has found that eating fish high in omega-3s can decrease blood fat levels, which can contribute to a lower heart-disease risk.

Reduce Alzheimer’s Risk:

Interestingly, many studies have shown that people who eat more fish have slower rates of cognitive decline. Eating fish as little as once a week can help preserve gray-matter neurons — the part of the brain linked to memory and cognition-according to the study presented at the Radiological Society of North America’s annual meeting. Researchers found that people who eat baked or broiled — but not fried — fish had larger brains and larger cells in the areas of the brain responsible for memory and learning.

Improve Skin and Hair:

With increase in trend of low fat diet, one of the biggest drawbacks came up is that, with low-fat diet you often deprive your skin and hair of the healthy fat it needs, leaving it dull and dry. The omega-3s in fish are exactly the type of healthy fat to eat to keep your skin looking nourished and hair shiny. Few researches have linked omega-3 to treatment of psoriasis as well.

Ease Depression:

Omega-3 fatty acids, found in fish, can prevent surges in stress hormones and protect you from suffering from heart disease and depression. For a steady supply of feel-good omega-3, include fatty fish, flax seeds and oils (flaxseed, canola, mustard or soybean) in your diet.

Boost Brain Development:

Omega-3 fatty acids are essential for growth and development. The omega-3 fatty (DHA) is especially important, because it helps in the developing brain and eye.  Some studies have even found that omega-3 consumption can help soothe symptoms of ADHD. Experts recommend, that parents ask their doctor before introducing supplements to a child’s diet.

Dose of Vitamin D:

Vitamin D has received a lot of mainstream attention in recent years. Fish and fish products are the best dietary sources of vitamin D, by far. Fatty fish like salmon and herring contain the highest amounts  which scientists say can help ward off disease, promote bone health, and with the help of the omega-3s in fish, ward off cognitive decline.

Stronger Sperm:

A recent study on men, found that those who ate more fresh fish — along with balanced diet had stronger swimmers than those who ate unhealthy diets. Researchers say that more study needs to be done, but initial data shows that the participants who takes good diet, produces the stronger; the shape and mobility of the sperm.

In metabolic balance program, each and every nutrient takes an important place in the plan. We believe that body can only function the way you want it to if you provide all the nutrients in the recommended amounts. So, omega-3 which plays such a significant role in our diet is also taken care of. In the initial stage of the plan, body first revives itself with good nutrition and then you can feel the difference.

Post by
Charu Bhardwaj
metabolic balance® Coach & Nutritionist, AktivOrthoTM

Amazing Benefits of Ghee

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“As long as you live, live happily
Beg, borrow or steal, but relish ghee” – An ancient Carvak saying

Relish ghee. Now that’s a philosophy to live by! Why did the ancients value ghee so much? What’s so great about it anyway? Consider this my ode to ghee.

  • Great for Cooking and Taste

Ghee has a high smoking point (250 °C 482 °F) and so it does not break into harmful free radicals soon as other oils do.Moreover, ghee does not spoil easily so there’s no need to keep it in the refrigerator.

  • Buttery taste without any dairy allergies

Ghee does not contain casein and whey protein so even lactose intolerant people can consume it without any fear. This is a boon as Lactose intolerenace is quite prevelent in India.

  • Increases your resistance to seasonal allergies and common ailments

While ghee is rich in healthy fat soluble vitamin A, D, E and K, it is also rich in antioxidants. It increases the body’s resistance to various infections and diseases by boosting the immune system.

  • Stimulates the digestive system

Ghee stimulates the secretion of stomach acids to aid in digestion while other fats and oils can slow down the body’s digestive process and sit heavy in the stomach.

  • Positive Food

Within Ayurveda, ghee is considered one of the most satvic foods. Satvic foods promote positivity, growth and expansion of consciousness.

  • Boosts Fertility

An optimal fertility diet should contain good quality protein sources and good fats. Pure ghee is the best form of fat. It increases the quality and quantity of semen.

  • Improves Skin

It rejuvenates the skin from inside and increases its glow.

In metabolic balance we say”no fear of fat”. An individual is allowed 3-6 tablespoons of oil/ fat with Ghee being recommended as one of the healthy fat options. Ghee contains mainly short and medium chain saturated fatty acids which improve digestion and strengthens the immune system. It also has  anti–inflammatory and anti-cancer properties.


– Post by

Farah Arfeen
metabolic balance® Coach and Nutritionist, AktivOrthoTM

Polo Season: The AktivOrtho Team with the winners of the SMS Gold Vase Cup – 14th Feb. 2015

FullSizeRender_croppedPolo Season, 14th Feb. 2015: The AktivOrtho team helped the Sona Team, owned and lead by Mr Sunjay J. Kapur, win the SMS Gold Vase Cup in a very close encounter with the Jindal Panthers, owned by Mr Navin Jindal. The score was 8-7 in the end.

AktivOrtho’s sports therapists provided the Sona Team players pre-game warm up and post-game cool down techniques and addressed their individual issues whilst also offering them stretching and other sports tips to help them play their games at optimum level. AktivOrtho is their Sports Medicine Partner for ‘Polo Season’ (February 2015) in Delhi.

At AktivOrtho, our combined approach, which includes physical therapy, physiotherapy, orthopaedic expertise and highly specific medical training with elaborate equipment, is most effective for recovery from a sports injury as well as for performance enhancement.

In addition, our state-of-the-art, European standard equipment allows us to monitor performance, so we can give valuable information to our patients about how to adjust training for a better sports performance.

AktivOrtho hosts World Cancer Day Information Session – 4th February 2015

255To mark World Cancer Day, we hosted an Information Session on 4th February 2015 at our Vasant Vihar centre. Our occupational therapist and senior nutritionist offered advice on how cancer patients can build-up their strength post cancer treatment, ensuring that their weight is kept under control and they receive all the nutrients they need.

Ms. Taranjeet Kaur, metabolic balance® coach and senior nutritionist, AktivOrtho, said, “Several types of cancer are associated with being overweight. Cancers of the colon, breast, endometrium, kidney and oesophagus are associated with obesity”.

Explaining the benefits of metabolic balance®, she said, “metabolic balance® is also suitable for women suffering from breast cancer.  They can gain weight during treatment with anti-estrogens so benefit from this nutrition program which shrinks fat cells so they then produce less estrogens, which are a high risk factor for breast cancer”.

The metabolic balance® coach emphasised the importance of healthy diet, good sleep, exercise and avoiding harmful indulgences like the use of tobacco.

Our therapist, Gundeep Singh, explained how occupational and physiotherapy can help cancer patients improve their functional abilities and stay independent. He said, “Exercise helps patients reduce their fatigue and prevent muscle wasting. It also helps to improve cardiovascular fitness, strengthen muscles and lower anxiety and depression. By following this advice, cancer survivors can feel better about themselves”.

The participants thoroughly enjoyed the meeting and raised queries which were promptly answered by our team. They were told about the appropriate exercises and diet for them. The participants were also eager to enroll themselves for our specialized programs that help cancer patients live a healthy, Aktiv life.

Healthy Eating Tips for the Elderly

1403728874Healthy Eating Tips for the Elderly

–By Taranjeet Kaur, metabolic balance® coach & senior nutritionist, AktivOrtho™

Good nutrition keeps muscles, bones, organs and other body parts strong. Eating vitamin-rich foods boosts immunity and fights illness-causing toxins. A proper diet reduces the risk of heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, type-2 diabetes, bone loss, cancer, and anemia. Also, eating sensibly means consuming fewer calories and more nutrient-dense foods, keeping weight in check.

  1. Fruit–  Focus on whole fruits rather than juices for more fiber and vitamins and aim for 1 ½ to 2 servings or more every day.
  2. Veggies– Choose antioxidant-rich dark, leafy greens, such as kale, spinach and broccoli as well as orange and yellow vegetables, such as carrots, pumpkins and sweet potatoes. Try for 2 to 2½ cups of veggies every day. In case you find it difficult to chew, have your salads grated or chopped finely.
  3. Calcium– Maintaining bone health as you age depends on an adequate calcium intake to prevent osteoporosis and bone fractures. Older adults need 1,200 mg of calcium a day through milk, yogurt, or cheese. Non-dairy sources include tofu, broccoli, almonds, and kale.
  4. Grains– Be smart with your carbohydrates and choose whole grains over processed white flour for more nutrients and fiber. Reduce the amount of processed carbohydrates, you consume—from foods such as pastries, cakes, pizza, cookies and chips—and replace them with fish, beans, nuts, seeds, peas, tofu, chicken, low-fat dairy and soy products.
  5. Omega-3 fatty acids: These have been proven to reduce inflammation, which can cause heart disease, cancer and They can be found in many different types of fish, canola oil, mustard oil, flaxseed oil, walnuts, cauliflower, broccoli etc.
  6. Protein–Try to divide your protein intake equally amongst your meals. Have a protein at each meal. It’s important to vary your sources of protein, so include fish, beans, peas, eggs, nuts, seeds, milk and cheese in your diet.
  7. Water– As we age, some of us are prone to dehydration because our bodies lose some of the ability to regulate fluid levels and our sense of thirst may not be as sharp. Keep a water bottle with your name so that you know how much water you drink. Keeping yourself well hydrated helps avoid urinary tract infections, constipation, and helps in the removal of toxins.
  8. Vitamin D– We get most of our vitamin D intake—essential for absorbing calcium and boosting muscle—through sun exposure and certain foods (fatty fish, egg yolk, and fortified milk). With age, our skin is less efficient at synthesizing vitamin D, so consult your doctor about supplementing your diet with fortified foods or a multivitamin, especially if you’re obese or have limited sun exposure.
  9. Reduce consumption of processed and packaged foods. Choose fresh foods with lesser artificial colour and preservatives. Avoid sugar sweeteners.
  10. Avoid skipping meals– This causes your metabolism to slow down, which leads to you feeling sluggish and making poorer food choices later in the day.

The AktivSupport™ Group Launch – 28th January 2015

New Delhi – AktivOrtho launches a support group for the elderly and differently-abled patients….

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We successfully launched our much-anticipated AktivSupport Group to help differently-abled and elderly patients live a more independent, healthy and Aktiv life. The first session took place at the Vasant Vihar centre on 28th January.  Many of our more senior patients attended the first meeting with relatives and care-givers.

The AktivSupport Group is an opportunity for patients and their care-givers to share their experiences and tips. The aim of the meeting was to ensure that they do not feel isolated due to their disability.

Our neuro-physiotherapist, Ms. Pooja Bajaj, along with other senior physiotherapists and our metabolic balance® coach and senior nutritionist contributed to the program.

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Dr. Gerd Mueller (MD), Co-Founder of AktivOrtho, also addressed the session and received many accolades from the attendees.  One lady, whom we must call ‘a tower of positivity’, praised him profusely and said that the centre is “The Haven of Peace!”

It was an informal (introductory) session and the participants chatted to each other, swapping stories and advice. Their queries were answered by our expert team.  Ms Pooja Bajaj gave them tips on the safety in the home as well as when going out. She explained how to avoid falls, which are common amongst the elderly patients. “Falls can be devastating. It can be prevented by being proactive and following some practical tips and opting for a few changes in the ergonomics of the house.” She said.

A host of other risk factors and advice on preventive steps were discussed by the AktivOrtho team including exercises under supervision and the importance of a proper home safety assessment.

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The zest and positivity displayed by many patients at the meeting was a lesson to us all. The session was full of humour and laughter. It was inspiring to see how people live their lives to the fullest in spite of challenging medical conditions and physical limitations.

The audience thoroughly enjoyed the first meeting of the AktivSupport Group and are eagerly awaiting the next. They were given copies of the health tips to keep at home.  All the forthcoming sessions will include group exercises under supervision as well.

Dates for the next meeting will be published soon on our website, digital social media pages and through posters at all our centres.

Our 5 Most Inspiring Weight Loss Stories of 2014

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The AktivOrtho™ team at the German Christmas Market – 6th & 7th December 2014

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We all enjoyed the German Christmas Market over the weekend.  The event is organised annually by the Indo-German Chamber of Commerce to celebrate Christmas the German way.

Our stand was the place to be for inquisitive visitors.  We offered on-the-spot consultations with doctors and physiotherapists. Taking part were Dr. (Col.) Rana Chengappa, MD, Clinical Director, Sports Medicine; Dr. Atul Prakash, MD, Medical Consultant,  Ms. Taranjeet Kaur, metabolic balance® Coach and Senior Nutritionist, Dr. Govind Singh Bisht, MD, Senior Consultant, Podiatry, and many senior physiotherapists with specialisations in fields such as neuro, occupational and sports therapy, and visceral osteopathy.

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Children and adults alike found it fun, interesting and useful to check their balance on AktivOrtho’s special Posturomed machine.  Our therapists also organised special activities for children including fine grip exercises, crosswords and mind-stimulating puzzles. Dr. Bisht evaluated several children’s feet for any foot-related abnormalities and offered tips to keep their feet healthy and Aktiv.

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Ms. Taranjeet Kaur spoke to visitors about various health concerns related to obesity, and emphasised the importance of healthy eating and physical activity to keep excess weight in check. Many visitors asked her about metabolic balance®, a German-developed weight management and personalized nutrition program exclusive to AktivOrtho in India.

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Dr. Rana Chengappa and Dr. Atul Prakash answered visitors’ questions on sports injuries, arthritis and various other orthopaedic ailments.

It was a fun and informative weekend for everybody involved and we are looking forward to next year.

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