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CNM pioneers online natural health diploma courses

Responding to the current worldwide health challenges, the College of Naturopathic Medicine (CNM) is now offering online its internationally recognised diploma and short courses to overwhelming positive response from the public.

CNM graduates and students know:

  • that a healthy and robust body can resist infections better and return to health faster
  • that a strong immune system is important
  • how to boost the immune system naturally

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Covid-19 sparks interest in veganism

One in 10 British people say that a vegan diet has become more appealing since the outbreak of Covid-19, new research has revealed.

The findings, from market intelligence agency Mintel, also revealed that a quarter of young British Millennials (aged 21 to 30) are becoming interested in following a vegan diet. The survey was carried out among 2,000 British internet users aged 16 and over.

The research indicates that there is a strong belief in the healing power of plants, as half of the respondents (51 per cent) believe that plant/botanical ingredients (such as herbs and spices) can have medicinal benefits. ‘Five a day’ is a higher priority too, as a quarter (23 per cent) of Brits say they are eating more fruit and vegetables since the start of the outbreak. Overall, almost two in five (37 per cent) of Brits say the Covid-19 outbreak has prompted them to add more nutrients that support the immune system to their diet.

Alex Beckett, Associate Director, Mintel Food & Drink, said: “People want the world to change for the better right now and they are searching for ways to show compassion. For consumers struggling to know how to make a positive difference, cutting out animal protein may be seen as a way of tackling the climate crisis, showing compassion for nature and boosting their own nutrient intake. Even before the spread of Covid-19, we were seeing a growing interest in plant-based food and drink across global markets. It may well be that the pandemic is accelerating this trend.”

Late eating may lead to weight gain, study shows

Eating a late dinner may contribute to weight gain and high blood sugar, according to a new study.

The researchers studied 20 healthy volunteers to see how they metabolised dinner eaten at 10pm compared to 6pm. The researchers found that blood sugar levels were higher, and the amount of ingested fat burned was lower with the later dinner, even when the same meal was provided at the two different times.

“On average, the peak glucose level after late dinner was about 18 per cent higher, and the amount of fat burned overnight decreased by about 10 per cent compared to eating an earlier dinner,” said the study’s first author Chenjuan Gu, M.D., Ph.D., of the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore.

“This study sheds new light on how eating a late dinner worsens glucose tolerance and reduces the amount of fat burned,” said the study’s corresponding author Jonathan C. Jun, M.D. “This shows that some people might be more vulnerable to late eating than others. If the metabolic effects we observed with a single meal keep occurring chronically, then late eating could lead to consequences such as diabetes or obesity.”

Outdoor exercise is on the increase

Running, cycling and yoga have all increased in popularity since the outbreak of Covid-19, new research shows. A survey of more than 7,600 UK adults, carried out by sports store Decathlon, found that Brits are placing greater emphasis on health and exercise since the pandemic and are keeping fit through these activities whilst gyms remain closed.

The findings revealed that almost half (42 per cent) of British adults are exercising more than they were prior to when social distancing measures were introduced – and this is something that 52 per cent plan to keep up as the rules are eased. One in three of respondents said that working out has helped to improve their mental health.

Joshua Gutteridge, sports manager at Decathlon said: “Exercise is a great way to alleviate stress, clear your mind, and helps you to feel both physically and mentally strong – as many have discovered over these past few months. Finding the time to exercise regularly is one of the best things you can do for your health.”

Increased fruit and veg could help prevent diabetes

Boosting fruit and vegetable intakes could help to prevent type 2 diabetes, a new study has shown.

The research was led by a team at the University of Cambridge and published in the British Medical Journal. The researchers analysed data from more than 340,000 adults from eight different countries. The diets and blood samples of 9,754 participants with existing type 2 diabetes were compared with those from 13,662 healthy individuals. Blood levels of vitamin C and carotenoids (bioactive compounds found in orange/yellow/red fruits and vegetables) were assessed and an overall ‘bioactive score’ was calculated.

The results showed that having higher blood levels of vitamin C and carotenoids, as well as a higher overall bioactive score, was statistically linked to a lower risk of type 2 diabetes. The researchers therefore concluded that increasing fruit and vegetable intakes could help to prevent type 2 diabetes.

The researchers also considered which foods in the diet were most associated with a higher bioactive and nutrient score, finding that the top scoring categories for vitamin C were fruit and vegetable juices followed by citrus fruits, fruiting vegetables (e.g. tomatoes, avocados, peppers, courgettes) and cabbage. The top scoring foods for the overall bioactive score were root vegetables, fruit and vegetable juices, fruiting vegetables and citrus fruits.

Dietitian Dr Carrie Ruxton commented: “While it’s important to eat at least five portions of fruit and vegetables daily, this study suggests that certain categories are more effective than others for raising blood levels of specific compounds.”

Lockdown effects on arthritis revealed

People with arthritis saw their symptoms worsen during the Covid-19 lockdown according to research from the University of East Anglia.

A 12-week survey of 264 people with inflammatory arthritis (such as rheumatoid arthritis) found that 39 per cent of patients reported worsening symptoms, and 42 per cent experienced lower energy levels. The majority also spoke of emotional fluctuations, from feeling positive to being isolated, depressed and anxious.

Lead researcher Prof Alex MacGregor, from UEA’s Norwich Medical School, said: “The majority of patients had reduced levels of physical activity, largely because they were not getting out of the house to exercise. The most worrying thing that we found is that a lot of patients reported worsening symptoms, along with lower energy levels. Symptoms such as pain flare-ups and stiffness were in many cases put down to reduced activity and exercise. We also found that some patients were working at home in ways which were not optimal for joint health – such as using laptops on dining tables. Only a few gained support from employers to set up ergonomic work spaces at home. Others struggled with additional demands such as childcare or had less help with household tasks whilst shielding.”

The research team have set out a series of recommendations so that health professionals can better support those at risk of poor health and wellbeing during the Covid-19 pandemic. They hope their work will help people cope better with pain, worry and symptoms during this time.

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