Category Archives: body fat

Reduce body fat; keep muscle mass – Infographic

I thought there was some good info in this. Enjoy!

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Tony
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Filed under abdominal fat, belly fat, body fat, Exercise, exercise benefits, fat, fat loss, fat tissue, Fats, Weight

Sugar Overpowers Fat in Cravings Test

As a person who has battled his belt line over the years, I have overindulged in sweet treats like ice cream as well as fat treats like pizza. I know that each felt compelling at the time, but it turns out that sugar has more powerful impact on the brain’s pleasure centers than fat, according to a recent study published in the US National Library of Medicine.

Hostess Ho Ho's

Hostess Ho Ho’s

The New York Times picked it up and explained that it is the sugar and not the fat that primarily triggers the brain’s receptors.

“The new research tracked brain activity in more than 100 high school students as they drank chocolate-flavored milkshakes that were identical in calories but either high in sugar and low in fat, or vice versa. While both kinds of shakes lit up pleasure centers in the brain, those that were high in sugar did so far more effectively, firing up a food-reward network that plays a role in compulsive eating. Continue reading

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Filed under body fat, calories, chocolate, eating, fast food, fat, junk food, sugar, Weight, weight control, weight loss

Insights into Heart Health – Mayo Clinic

Not long ago I posted some logistical suggestions from Harvard on aging. Now comes the Mayo Clinic with some excellent internal insights.

“As you age, your heart rate becomes slightly slower and your heart might become bigger. Your blood vessels and your arteries also become stiffer, causing your heart to work harder to pump blood through them. This can lead to high blood pressure (hypertension) and other cardiovascular problems.

healthy-heart

“What you can do
 to promote heart health:
Include physical activity in your daily routine. Try walking, swimming or other activities you enjoy. Regular moderate physical activity can help you maintain a healthy weight, lower blood pressure and lessen the extent of arterial stiffening.

Eat a healthy diet. Choose vegetables, fruits, whole grains, high-fiber foods and lean sources of protein, such as fish. Limit foods high in saturated fat and sodium. A healthy diet can help you keep your heart and arteries healthy.

Don’t smoke. Smoking contributes to the hardening of your arteries and increases your blood pressure and heart rate. If you smoke or use other tobacco products, ask your doctor to help you quit.

Manage stress. Stress can take a toll on your heart. Take steps to reduce stress — or learn to deal with stress in healthy ways.”

It’s true that everyone already knows all of these but I think it is good to have them repeated by a reputable source to get us going in the right direction.

These are part of a Mayo Clinic page on healthy aging that covers bones, memory and other aspects of it.

Tony

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Why Do You Feel Tired? – Oleda Baker – Guest Post

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As you can see from her photos, Senior Supermodel Oleda Baker is aging magnificently. I interviewed Oleda last December. She is a treasure trove of information on everything this blog stands for, namely weight control, healthy living and healthy aging, so I asked her if she would share some of her ideas with us. She has written 10 books on beauty and health. Her latest, written at the age of 75, Breaking the Age Barrier – Great Looks and Health at Every Age – was released in November 2010 and is available from Amazon or from her website www.oleda.com where she also sells her own line of health and beauty aids.

Being tired not only zaps your brain cells and energy level at the moment – it can also be a sign that your body needs some serious and immediate attention. Unlike the illness known as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, which can be manifested by headache, tender lymph nodes, weakness, muscle and joint aches and an inability to concentrate, the feeling I’m referring to here is just plain old tiredness. It is a symptom that affects both body and mind. It slows reflexes and reduces function in your day-to-day life.

Staying tired, washed out or exhausted too long can lead to other problems, some serious, so let’s nip it in the bud right now.

American families are so much busier than they used to be. Often both parents are working and there is too much to do in every 24 hours. There is not enough time for sleep and not much time to cook balanced meals. No wonder they feel tired so often.

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I see my daughter-in-law with three children, a husband, a job. She takes care of the house, attends school functions for the children when needed and cooks for the family. My son helps out but he also has a job, helps with the children, takes care of the yard and is on the go with errands. This is typical of households today.

Then there are also those who are not overworked or stressed out but they still feel tired all the time. It’s hard for them to get up in the morning. Some can’t sleep at night so they wake up tired and remain tired all day.

General Reasons For Tiredness:

You may not be able to change your life style this very moment, so here are some things you can do to compensate until then. Listed are ways to fight that never ending tired feeling.

Not enough sleep: There are two parts to “not enough sleep.” They are not enough hours to sleep and insomnia.

Not Enough Sleep: If you feel you can’t find enough hours to sleep… better rethink it. Find some way to get that extra hour or two. In general the body needs about eight hours each night to repair itself for the next day and more so for a long range healthy, longer life. If you wake up feeling groggy instead of refreshed, you’re not getting enough sleep. If you feel sleepy during the day or yawn (off and on) all day you are not getting enough sleep. Don’t minimize the importance of enough sleep, as it will affect your body… anywhere from feeling tired all day to dark circles under the eyes to a breakdown in the immune system which can lead to illnesses.

Insomnia: Insomnia is not only difficulty in falling asleep but also difficulty in staying asleep or sleeping soundly. There can be many causes, and if you cannot solve it on your own check with your doctor and find out why. Without enough sleep other problems could arise. A lack of calcium and magnesium can cause you to wake up after a few hours and not be able to return to sleep. Continue reading

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Filed under body fat, energy, Exercise, fat, healthy eating, healthy living, obesity, Oleda Baker, overweight, sleep, sleep deprivation, water, Weight

Should We Cut Carbohydrates to Lose Weight?

“Carbs are fattening – cut down on them” is another of the popular food myths. Many people think that by reducing their carbohydrate consumption they will lose weight.

Not true, according to Erin McCarthy, MS. RD, LDN, professional dietician at the Center for Lifestyle Medicine at Northwestern Memorial Hospital.

McCarthy said that no matter what food group you choose, if you cut out the items from that group, you will reduce your caloric intake and lose weight.
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So, cutting down on carbs is not necessarily the way to go if you want to lose weight.

Back when I first started writing this blog, I took a course called Nutrition Made Clear from the Great Courses.

It was taught by Professor Roberta Anding, registered dietician and a certified specialist in sports dietetics.

Professor Anding said that carbohydrate is a maligned nutrient. She considers it a nutritional powerhouse.

“It is the exclusive fuel of the central nervous system, your brain and for exercising muscle.”

It is necessary for both brain and muscle function. She considers carbohydrates central to our human physiology.

“For most of us, Carbohydrates should account for about 50 percent of our diets,” Anding said.

The functions of carbohydrates to provide energy. “folks on a low carbohydrate diet are irritable, fatigued and lethargic….” and the reason is that they have eliminated a major source of energy.

One further function of carbohydrates is that they protect proteins which are used for building our muscles and tissues. If we are low on carbohydrates, the body will burn protein for energy. Ironically, it is protein and not fat that is taken by the body when carbs are low. The liver is able to convert protein into carbohydrates, but not fat.

So, as always, the answer is balance. Cut out extra calories, but don’t distort the basic nutrients. Try to eat a balanced diet. I have written repeatedly about the benefits of the Mediterranean Diet. You can read further by typing Mediterranean Diet into the search box at the right.

Tony

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Filed under body fat, carbohydrates, health, healthy eating, healthy living, nutrition, Weight

What Are Some Differences Between Fat and Muscle Tissue?

So many people are hung up on their body weight, but fail to realize that the more important issue is their body composition.

All there is to us is fat, muscle and bone. Our body weight is equal to the sum of these parts.

I hope this illustration will help you to see the issues clearer.

It is clear from this picture that fat weighs less than muscle, so it takes up much more room than muscle.

It is clear from this picture that fat weighs less than muscle, so it takes up much more space than muscle.

Once you have an idea how much more space in your body that fat takes up, you can understand the importance of knowing your percentage of body fat. You can read about how to measure your body fat percentage in an earlier post.

Once you know this you will have a baseline from which to work. This is important because often when a person starts to do cardio and resistance exercises his weight doesn’t tell him there is much change going on. Yet, if he is burning fat and building muscle, his body will be changing in important ways. Shirts will fit differently, pants will become looser around the waist line.

Another important consideration in body composition is that one pound of fat burns about 5 calories each day while one pound of muscle burns 50 calories in a day. So, once you get yourself on the road to fitness and start building muscle and burning fat, you will be transforming yourself into a calorie and fat burning machine. You will have started a wonderful positive spiral.

It is important to understand your body fat composition because while you may presently think you are at a good weight, if you have too large a percentage of fat, you may not be all t hat healthy and may be headed for medical problems despite you ‘good weight.’

Similarly, if you are overweight, once you learn your percentage of body fat you will have a guideline against which to measure yourself by and you won’t be troubled by the fact that you ‘aren’t losing weight,’ when you begin an exercise program and start trying to eat in a more healthy manner. You will be burning off fat and muscle weighs more than fat. Often when an overweight person starts working out and getting healthy he/she finds that their close fit looser/better despite no change in their weight.

Tony

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Filed under belly fat, body fat, calories, cardio exercise, Exercise, healthy eating, healthy living, nutrition, obesity, overweight, percent of body fat, Weight

How Does Sugar Affect My Body? CSPI

Because most nutrition labels give the sugar content in grams, here is the translation:

Grams to teaspoons: There are 4.2 grams of sugar in one teaspoon.

SUGAR

In case it isn’t obvious to you in the section – 385 Calories consumed daily from added sugars…. It is the combination of the four exercises mentioned: walking, basketball, biking and jogging to burn off those 385 calories, not any single one of them.

You can take a very cool quiz on sugar right now. I posted it earlier this week.

Tony

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February 28, 2013 · 8:24 am

Baby Boomers Aging Badly

I always thought that boomers were busy running triathlons and skiing down the slopes these days. They are reported to have the longest life expectancy of any previous generation and exploit the latest medical technology, so why wouldn’t they be? I am talking about that 78 million Americans born between 1946 and 1964.

JAMA researchers found otherwise.

Alice Park writing in Time.com reports that boomers have “higher rates of hypertension, diabetes, obesity and high cholesterol than members of the previous generation.

Junk foods like these are part of the reason boomers are failing the most important test of all.

Junk foods like these are part of the reason boomers are failing the most important test of all.

“The revelation comes from data in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), a national snapshot of health measures and behaviors conducted by the U.S. government. Dr. Dana King, a professor in family medicine at West Virginia University School of Medicine and his colleagues compared baby boomers aged 46 years to 64 years between 2007 and 2010 to similar aged Americans in 1988 to 1994. Overall, only 13% of baby boomers rated their health as ‘excellent’ while nearly three times as many, 32%, of those in the previous generation considered themselves in excellent health.” Continue reading

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Filed under aging, arterial plaque, arteries, baby boomers, blood pressure, body fat, calories, cancer, cardiovascular risk, childhood obesity, diabetes, Exercise, fast food, health, healthy eating, healthy living, heart, heart disease, heart problems, junk food, life challenges, living longer, Weight

Southern fried foods heart-risky – Study

Reasons to think twice before you order chicken from the colonel …

Cooking with Kathy Man

Eating Southern-style foods may be linked to a higher risk of stroke, according to research presented at the American Stroke Association’s International Stroke Conference 2013.

In the first large-scale study on the relationship between Southern foods and stroke, researchers characterized a Southern diet by a high intake of foods such as fried chicken, fried fish, fried potatoes, bacon, ham, liver and gizzards, and sugary drinks such as sweet tea. In addition to being high in fat, fried foods tend to be heavily salted.

“We’ve got three major factors working together in the Southern-style diet to raise risks of cardiovascular disease: fatty foods are high in cholesterol, sugary drinks are linked to diabetes and salty foods lead to high blood pressure,” said Suzanne Judd, Ph.D., M.P.H., lead researcher and a nutritional epidemiologist at the University of Alabama Birmingham’s biostatistics department.

Previous research has shown that Southerners are about 20 percent more…

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Filed under arterial plaque, arteries, blood pressure, body fat, calories, chicken, childhood obesity, cholesterol, fast food, heart, heart disease, heart problems, southern diet, stroke, Weight

Anti-Sugary Drinks Video Winners Announced

As regular readers know, I don’t drink sugary or diet soft drinks and consider them some of the most damaging junk foods available.

A Nashville family’s rap video is the winner of a contest aimed aimed at raising awareness of the harmful health effects of overconsumption of sugary drinks.  The winning video “Just Pour One Out” features an original rap song from the Sullivan family, inspired by 41-year-old stay-at-home dad Peter Sullivan’s personal struggle with soda consumption.

“I was surprised by how much the process changed my drinking habits,” Sullivan said of making the film.

Announced by the nonprofit Center for Science in the Public Interest in October 2012, the Pour One Out video contest invited the public to produce short videos demonstrating the pouring out of sugary drinks in a creative way.  Advertising pioneer Alex Bogusky joined CSPI staff in judging contest entries based on creativity, originality, and effectiveness of the health message.  CSPI offered a $1,000 prize for the winning film, and $500 and $250 prizes for the second- and third-place films.

The runner up video


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Filed under aging, body fat, calories, childhood obesity, diet soda, healthy eating, healthy living, hydration, junk food, men's health, obesity, Oleda Baker, sugary soft drinks, Weight

Is it Healthy to Eat Eggs Regularly?

Not long ago a study published in the journal Athersclerosis reported that the more egg yolks a people ate the thicker their artery walls became. That indicates a higher risk of heart disease. Also, the effect was nearly as bad as from smoking cigarettes. The Egg Nutrition Center and American Egg Board voiced other ideas.

The incredible edible egg

The incredible edible egg

Researchers measured the buildup of carotid plaque in the arteries of 1,231 subjects. The men and women in the study were all patients at cardiovascular health clinics. For comparison’s sake, the team also measured the carotid plaque buildup of smokers in the study.

Plaque buildup increased according to age – after age 40 in a fairly steady fashion. But among the 20 percent of participants who reported eating the most egg yolks – three or more per week – carotid plaque increased “exponentially,” according to the study. The buildup equaled about two-thirds of that seen among the heaviest smokers in the group.

Arterial plaque buildup is a major risk factor for heart attack and stroke; as plaque accumulates on artery walls, it narrows the space through which blood can pass, making the heart’s job of pumping more difficult. Moreover, plaque buildups can break away from the arterial wall, forming clots that can do terrible, even fatal, damage if they reach the heart or brain.

For the record, here is the nutritional breakdown of a large (56 gram) egg from SELFNutritionData:

Calories 80
Total Fat 6 grams
Saturated Fat 2 grams
Cholesterol 237 mg
Sodium 78 mg
No Carbohydrates
No Fiber
No Sugar
Protein 7 grams

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Filed under aging, arterial plaque, arteries, blood pressure, body fat, calories, eggs, Exercise, fast food, fat, portion size, protein, Weight

Xtreme Eating Awards 2013- CSPI

A milkshake with a slice of apple pie blended right in. A 3,000-calorie plate of pasta. A breakfast that includes deep-fried steak and pancakes (and hash browns and eggs and gravy and syrup). Obesity rates may show signs of leveling off, but it looks like America’s major restaurant chains are doing everything possible to reverse the trend, according to the nonprofit Center for Science in the Public Interest. The group unveils the latest “winners” of its Xtreme Eating Awards in the current issue of its Nutrition Action Healthletter.

“It’s as if IHOP, The Cheesecake Factory, Maggiano’s Little Italy, and other major restaurant chains are scientifically engineering these extreme meals with the express purpose of promoting obesity, diabetes, and heart disease,” said CSPI executive director Michael F. Jacobson. “You’d think that the size of their profits depended on their increasing the size of your pants.”

bad-food
Most people wouldn’t sit down to eat a 12-piece bucket of Original Recipe KFC all by themselves, says CSPI. Yet The Cheesecake Factory somehow crams about that many calories into a single serving of its Crispy Chicken Costoletta—though the bucket of KFC has less than half the saturated fat, “only” two days’ worth as opposed to the four-and-a-half days’ worth in the costoletta. In fact, the Crispy Chicken Costoletta has more calories (2,610) than any steak, chop, or burger meal on The Cheesecake Factory’s famously oversized menu.

To put these numbers into context, a typical adult should consume about 2,000 calories and no more than 20 grams of saturated fat and 1,500 milligrams of sodium per day. The Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends consuming no more than six teaspoons of added sugars for women and nine teaspoons for men. The Xtreme Eating dis-honorees include:
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Filed under arteries, blood pressure, body fat, calories, cholesterol, diabetes, fast food, fat, heart, heart problems, IHOP, Johnny Rockets, junk food, KFC, Maggiano's Little Italy, McDonald's, Olive Garden, portion control, portion size, Smoothie King, Snacking, sodium, soft drinks, sugar, The Cheesecake Factory, Uno Chicago, Weight

Oleda Baker on the Benefits of Quercetin- Guest Post

Click on this to see full size

Click on this to see full size

As you can see from her photos, Senior Supermodel Oleda Baker is aging magnificently . I interviewed Oleda last month. She is a treasure trove of information on everything this blog stands for, namely healthy living and healthy aging, so I asked her if she would share some of her ideas with us. She has written 10 books on beauty and health. Her latest, written at the age of 75, Breaking the Age Barrier – Great Looks and Health at Every Age – was released in November 2010 and is available from Amazon or from her website www.oleda.com  where she also sells her own line of health and beauty aids including Quercetin.

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Science has proven that antioxidants are beneficial to our health. One of the most prominent dietary antioxidants, Quercetin, is a flavonoid found in fruits, vegetables, tea, wine and many supplements. Quercetin is also an anti-inflammatory. Unfortunately, it is not possible to get sufficient antioxidants from diet alone because you cannot physically eat a sufficient amount of vegetables and fruits in a given day. On the positive side, supplements are available.

Quercetin promotes the thermogenic processes which increase your metabolism. This will increase your energy level without the unwanted effects of caffeine or other stimulants. Quercetin helps your body burn excess carbohydrates and fat, while providing antioxidant support for your body’s needs.

Fresh fruits and vegetables are an excellent source of Quercetin

Fresh fruits and vegetables are an excellent source of Quercetin

Quercetin is a Free Radical scavenger helping to reduce oxidation within cells in order to fight off the damaging effects of these unstable molecules. As unstable free radicals move throughout the body they are able to bond to healthy/stable molecules in healthy cells. Once in the cells these free radicals damage cell membranes, chromosomes, and enzymes. This damaging of the cells will affect the rate of aging by accelerating the aging processes. Free radicals weaken the immune system, reducing the body’s ability to fight off infection from germs and viruses. A weakened immune system cannot fight off the effects of stress or overwork. Quercetin works to rid the body of these harmful unstable molecules, helping to prevent and repair the damage caused.

If Quercetin is this good how do I get it into me?
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Filed under aging, antioxidants, body fat, fat, free radicals, quercetin, Snacking

12 Benefits of Physical Exercise

So nice to see someone else talking about the mental benefits of physical exercise!

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“We need to keep in mind that doing something is better than nothing, and doing more is better than less,” says Concordia professor Simon Bacon. “Even the smallest amount of activity is beneficial.”

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Public Largely Ignorant About Obesity Risks

It shouldn’t be surprising that since 60 percent of us are overweight and 30 percent obese that many people don’t understand the risks of obesity. Duh. This is twice as many as 20 years ago. Even our children are getting fatter. Among young people, 15 percent of those ages 6 to 19 are seriously overweight. That’s nearly 9 million, triple the number in 1980.

Maybe if people had a better idea about how damaging obesity is, there wouldn’t be so many overweight.

About one out of four people think it’s possible for someone to be very overweight and still be healthy, according to a poll by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research.

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Only seven percent of people in the survey mentioned cancer. Yet doctors have known for years that fat increases the risk of a number of cancers. It was recently reported that cancers of the esophagus, uterus, pancreas and kidney have risen despite declines in cancer rates. Experts said that excess weight triggers production of insulin and hormones that play a role in cancer growth.

Also, with overweight people excess fat makes it difficult to spot some tumors.

John Seffrin, the American Cancer Society’s chief executive officer, said in a statement.”For people who do not smoke, excess weight and lack of sufficient physical activity may be among the most important risk factors for cancer.”

As an arthritis sufferer, I was not surprised to learn that excess weight takes a toll on one’s joints, especially the knees. Only about fifteen percent of people were aware that obesity can contribute to arthritis, which then aggravates joint pain and makes it harder to exercise creating a vicious downward spiral in health.

The study also found that half of the people think their weight is just about right and only 12 percent of parents think their child is overweight. Nevertheless, about 60 percent of adults and 30 percent of children and teens are either overweight or obese.

If you want to know how much you should weight, please check out What is My Ideal Weight?

The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research study took place between late November and mid-December, by phone interviews with just over 1,000 adults.

For significantly more detail on obesity, you can read How Does Obesity Affect You posted here in May. Or you can click on the obesity tag at the right for a number of similar items.

Tony

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Filed under arthritis, body fat, childhood obesity, fat, fat kids, general well-being, health, healthy eating, heart problems, men and healthy eating, men's health, obesity, Weight

Oleda Baker Gives Some Tips on Losing Weight: Guest Post

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As you can see from her photo, Senior Supermodel Oleda Baker is aging magnificently . I interviewed Oleda last month. She is a treasure trove of information on everything this blog stands for, namely healthy living and healthy aging, so I asked her if she would share some of her ideas with us. She has written 10 books on beauty and health. Her latest, written at the age of 75, Breaking the Age Barrier – Great Looks and Health at Every Age – was released in November 2010 and is available from Amazon or from her website www.oleda.com where she also sells her own line of health and beauty aids.

Septuagenarian Oleda Baker

Septuagenarian Oleda Baker

Here are some of Oleda’s thoughts on losing weight:

So often an “expert” will tell you what you MUST do … I only explain why it’s best for your long range healthy life … and tell you also that you most certainly can lose weight IF it’s most important to you.

First of all, forget about diet books and structured diets. If you find one that works, you’re lucky. More often than not they merely serve as a temporary crutch that people revert from. The high recidivism rate among dieters is well documented. Fad diets are a waste of time and money.

Next, you must realize this is a job for you and you alone … no diet book, or person, can be responsible for YOUR weight loss. 
If you’re not serious about it, read no further, but, if you are, consider what I’m about to say; it could change your life for the better.

You KNOW that you’re gaining weight or eating too much when your clothes begin to tighten up a little. At that point, you have two choices … Cut back on your food intake so you can fit into that favorite garment again OR go out and buy the next size up. We all have the same choices …. Of course, the correct one is just eat less. That’s all I do. I check the fit whenever I put my favorite jeans on, and then do what I have to do.

What does it mean Just Eat Less … less than what?

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Filed under body fat, brain, diet food, fat, healthy eating, Oleda Baker, portion control, portion size, Snacking, Weight