"I Eat Because I'm Depressed And I'm Depressed Because I Eat"

May 28, 2012

Have you ever watched the movie “Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me”? If not, you should because it’s hilarious.
During movie, one of the villains named “Fat Bastard”, after having an emotional breakdown, tearfully confesses “I eat because I'm unhappy, and I'm unhappy because I eat. It's a vicious cycle. Now if you'll excuse me, there's someone I need to get in touch with and forgive: myself,"
This is one of the most famous quotes of the Austin Powers franchise and, today scientists affiliated with the University of Montreal Hospital Research Center and the university’s Faculty of Medicine, have found out, with a sophisticated neuroscience research, that there is actual truth behind that quote.

"In addition to causing obesity, rich foods can actually cause chemical reactions in the brain in a similar way to illicit drugs, ultimately leading to depression as the 'come-downs' take their toll," explained lead researcher, Dr. Stephanie Fulton. As is the case with drug addicts, a vicious cycle sets in where "food-highs" are used as a way to combat depression.
"Data shows that obesity is associated with increased risk of developing depression, but we have very little understanding of the neural mechanisms and brain reward patterns that link the two," Fulton said. "We are demonstrating for the first time that the chronic consumption of palatable, high-fat diets has pro-depressive effects."
A molecule in the brain known as dopamine enables the brain to rewards us with good feelings, encouraging us to learn certain kinds of behaviour. This chemical is the same in humans as it is in mice and other animals.
The research team feed mice different kinds of food and monitored how the diet affects the way the animals behave.
Mice that have been fed a higher-fat diet exhibit signs of being anxious, such as an avoidance of open areas, and of being depressed, such as making less of an effort to escape when trapped. Moreover, their brains have been physically altered by their experiences.
The study has been published in the current issue if the International Journal of Obesity, there is also a video that has been released on the Journal of Visualised Experiments (JoVE). It’s pretty interesting if you have 10 minutes free to watch it, and can be found at this link.
"Although popular culture jokes about these illnesses and even mocks the people who are suffering, obesity is a serious and major public health issue that already affects hundreds of millions of people. As a society, we must avoid creating stigma and discriminating against obese and depressed people," Fulton said.
"With regards to research, it is urgent that we identify the molecules and neural pathways involved in obesity and obesity-related illnesses. My colleagues and I are committed to identifying the brain circuitry involved in these diseases and to improving the tools available to researchers working in the same field."

The above story is reprinted from materials provided by Universite de Montreal, via EurekaAlert!.

The Importance Of Adding Curcumin To Your Diet

May 27, 2012

We have already talked in the past of the magic wonders of turmeric, which are mainly due to its high curcumin content. And the more researchers dig into the properties of this compound, the more awesome stuff they found about it.
The newest findings have been made by researchers in the Linus Pauling Institute at Oregon State University and published in the Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry, in collaboration with scientists from the University of Copenhagen in Denmark.
In this study researchers discovered that curcumin can cause a modest but measurable increase in levels of a protein that’s known to be important in the “innate” immune system, helping to prevent infection in humans.

Broccoli and Chickpea Vegan Patties

May 24, 2012

Sometimes you have to try and try and try recipes in order to perfect them. This was the case with these vegan patties. I took a recipe, tried it, good but not fantastic. Change it several times. Good but never amazing.
However, hard work and dedication always pay-off because at the 23rd attempt I succeeded.
This tested final version is rad.

Never Ever Give Up! (The Truly Inspiring Story Of Arthur Boorman)

May 22, 2012

This is one of those stories so inspiring and powerful, that it will have an impact on your life.
When I stumbled on it for the first time last night I almost couldn’t believe it. I watched the video over and over again.
This is the tale of American paratrooper Arthur Boorman, who returned injured from the Gulf War. One too many jumps led to chronic back and knee problems, and the doctors told him that he’d never walk again without assistance.
For 15 years Boorman believed them, and gained weight to 297 lbs because of inability to move.
But, at 47 years old, the US veteran discovered yoga in a newspaper article.
He started practising a particular sequence of non-impact yoga, and in just months he dropped an astonishing 140 lbs.
The improvements he made in a very short period of time have been so incredible that the Arthur-after is a complete different person from the Arthur-before.

This is proof that yoga (or, I would rather say, exercise in general) can be really the solution to many (if not all) problems.
People tend to forget this. It just takes some willpower and the real changes in life are just around the corner.
I honestly hope you’ll be inspired by this story in the same way I’ve been. Because it is truly amazing!

The Iron You

White Bean Protein Bundt Cake

May 15, 2012

Do you know the feeling when you come across a recipe and you instinctively know that it’s great one?
Well that was the case for me when I first saw the White Bean Bundt Cake recipe on JoytheBaker.
I never thought in my life that it would have been possible to bake a cake from beans (I know, how provincial of me).
Also, I never thought it would be possible that the resulting cake would actually taste unbelievably good.
Finally, I never thought that I could manage not only to bake that cake but also to made few tweaks to make it more IronYou proof.
But no matter what I thought because this protein cake is R-A-D!

Why Going Long Is Still A Valid Training

May 14, 2012

A new fad is sweeping the triathlon and running communities.
Athletes and coaches are moving away from “long slow distance” workouts in their training plans in favor of shorter, more intense workouts of the “P90X” or “Crossfit” variety.
While I think there is a lot of value to exercising at a high intensity workouts; I still believe that there are a few good reasons or situations to go long and steady if you’re planning on doing triathlons, long distance runs, other endurance discipline or if you just want to know yourself a bit better.

Three Really Bad Eating Habits

May 13, 2012

There are many bad eating habits out there, but three of them make the top of my list: portion distortion, distracted eating, and skipping meals.
I personally don’t know if one is worst than the other.
Truth is, if you have any of those three you better make sure to break them as soon as you can, because they might compromise your health!

A Diet Rich In Omega-3 Fatty Acids Foods May Lower Risk of Alzheimer's Disease

May 8, 2012

Being a Columbia University Alumnus, I like to give evidence to studies conducted at the institution where I studied. I might be biased, but who’s not when it comes to your Alma Mater?
Anyway, in this study, Nikolaos Scarmeas, MD, MS, with Columbia University Medical Center in New York and a member of the American Academy of Neurology, and his team, found that a diet rich in foods that contain omega-3 fatty acids (such as nuts, fish and chicken) may be associated with lower blood levels of a protein that is related to Alzheimer’s disease and memory problems.

Be Healthy To Reduce Cancer Risks

May 6, 2012

I recently took a class in Nutrition and Dietetics at the University of Gastronomic Sciences. We focused on the links between nutrition and degenerative diseases such as cancer, diabetes and Alzheimer disease.
I  was utterly fascinated by the topic, in particular by the inextricable link between food and cancer.
How cancer can be related to food? Are there ways to prevent it just by following a correct diet? And how exercise falls into the equation?
The answers to these questions are much simpler than one might think!

What is Cancer?

According to the American Cancer Society, cancer is a group of diseases characterized by uncontrolled growth and spread of abnormal cells. If the spread is not controlled, it can ultimately results in death.
About 1,638,910 new cancer cases are expected to be diagnosed in 2012. And sadly, about 577,190 Americans are expected to die of cancer, which is more than 1,500 people a day. Cancer is the second most common cause of death in the US, exceeded only by heart disease, accounting for nearly 1 every 4 deaths.

Crunchy Nut-Raisin Granola Bars

May 5, 2012

Crunchy Nut-Raisin Granola Bars

Munching a granola bar during training it’s one of the best things in the world. They're crunchy, delicious, and packed with energy that can propel you throughout your routine. 
Granola bars are evidence that sportman also enjoy a good snack, it’s not only about sweat and tears.  
I have to confess, I’ve tried almost all granola bars available on the market, and I have some favorites.
However, there’s nothing quite like making your own. My absolute favorite homemade granola bar is this Crunchy Nut-Raisin bar.

Wanna Live Longer? Regular Jogging Shows Dramatic Increase In Life Expectancy

May 4, 2012

Wanna live longer? Then you should give jogging a go.
Why? Because undertaking regular jogging increases the life expectancy of men by 6.2 years and women by 5.6 years, according to the latest data from the Copenhagen City Heart study presented at the EuroPRevent2012 meeting, in Ireland.
Peter Schnohr, MD, who is chief cardiologist of the Copenhagen City Heart Study, revealed that the study most recent analysis (still unpublished) shows that jogging at a “slow or average” pace, as little as 20 minutes, three times a week delivers optimum benefits for longevity.

Female = Ironman

May 3, 2012

This post is dedicated to all our women readers.
When we started TheIronYou we thought that this blog would have been much more appealing to a male audience than a female one.
Well, we were pretty wrong. Today we have lots of women readers, probably even more than men. And this post is our way to thank y’all for that!

As you can see you girls have a clear advantage on us, because you’re already an Ironman to start with. We, instead, have to do so much in order to become one!

The Iron You

You Can Eat Whatever You Want As Long As You Workout: True Or False?

May 2, 2012

There's a popular belief postulating that you can eat anything you want as long as you exercise and burn those calories off.