Eat and Walk Your Way to Health

Okay. It sounds like a clich: Get out there and exercise, plus eat a healthy diet. Science has now confirmed this advice goes beyond platitudes.

I attended a recent scientific evidence conference on diet – the 5th International Congress on Vegetarian Nutrition. The researchers focused on disease risk and diet. They admitted they need more data, but did show some connection between diet and cancer, heart disease and diabetes. Meat consumption is tied to colon cancer. Alcohol to breast cancer, they reported.

Diets that include vegetables and fruit were credited with protection against Alzheimer’s Disease and the effects of aging, generally.

Locally, Public Health Officer Dr. Rick Johnson said both diet and exercise are very important. He said life expectancy is now much longer than it used to be, so habits are more important when it comes to quality of life.

Exercise and diet make the difference, Dr. Johnson said. The Doctor offered new research results that show a simple reduction in physical activity for as short as two weeks can cause an increase in fat and signs of pre-diabetes and heart disease.

Bottom line – if you abstain from exercise, your risk of chronic disease is likely to increase markedly.

At the recent Vegetarian Congress Conference at Loma Linda University, Dr. David Heber, a professor in the UCLA Medical School and Director of the UCLA Center for Human Nutrition, talked about the simple things to do eat more fruits and vegetables and less meat.

Dr. Heber’s findings show that the addition of colorful fruits, vegetables and vitamin supplements reduce risk of diseases like cancer, diabetes and heart disease. We’ll have more on diet and health on later web editions.

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