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Dr K K Aggarwal

Eating junk food: it�s in the brain

By Dr K K Aggarwal
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When it comes to eating junk food one may blame the brain. Addiction is a disease and the same has been proved by a study. Two areas of the brain have to work together to give the self control to reject unhealthy foods. California Institute of Technology researchers used MRI to scan the brains of volunteers as they looked at photos of dozens of types of foods and decided which ones they d like to eat. They found significant differences in the brain activity between people who had self control in terms of making food choices and those with no self control. An area of the brain called the ventromedial prefrontal cortex is involved in all value based decisions. When ventromedial prefrontal cortex activity decreases a person will probably reject an item whereas increased activity means they ll probably choose it. The study published in the issue of Science found that in people with no self control the ventromedial prefrontal cortex seemed to take into consideration only the taste of a food. In people with good self control another area of the brain called dorsolateral prefrontal cortex becomes active and modulates the basic value signals so that the self controllers also incorporate health considerations into their decisions.

Some facts on healthy eating

By Dr K K Aggarwal
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• Natural fast food is good for health.

• Examples of natural fast foods are milk, dry fruits and fruits.

• Artificial fast food or junk food is bad for health.

• Junk food contains refined sugar, bad fats and trans fats.

• Trans fats reduce the amount of good cholesterol and raised the levels of bad cholesterol in the body.

• Soft drinks, if taken more than one in a day, are harmful to the health.

• Sweets contain more than 30% sugar and are harmful to the body.

• White sugar, white maida and white rice should be avoided.

• Jaggery is better than sugar. • All girls should eat jaggery and white gram once a week.

A diet that is healthy for a person may be junk food for another

By Dr K K Aggarwal
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We have all wondered why some people do not seem to gain weight, while others do. A study has found that even if we all ate the same meal, we would all burn it differently and have different blood sugar levels later. These findings draw attention to personalized nutrition. High blood sugar levels are associated with several diseases including obesity, diabetes, heart disease, cancer and strokes. Blood sugar levels of 800 individuals of varying weights continuously were monitored with a glucose monitor for over a week as they ate nearly 47,000 meals. Some had prediabetes. The study subjects used a smartphone app to log when they slept, exercised, and ate. Stool samples were also taken to analyze gut microbiome. The study revealed a vast variability in the responses to even identical meals. Some people who ate bread did not show any variation in blood sugar levels, while others had high blood sugar with the same meal. Eran Segal, PhD, another researcher who worked on the study noted that one prediabetic obese woman had a blood sugar spike when she ate a tomato, which is a healthy food. The researchers next examined if personalizing the diet improved blood sugar levels for 26 people. The personalized diets reduced the blood sugar levels after meals and altered their gut bacteria. (Medscape)

High Court Bans Junk Food in Polythene Packs In Himachal

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The Himachal High Court has directed the state government to ban sale of ‘junk food’ in non bio-degradable packs from April 1 but exempted essential items like edible oil and milk from the ban, reports Express News Service.

The list of non-essential items (junk food) included chips, wafers, biscuits, namkeen, candy, chewing gum, ice cream, chocolates, noodles, sugary cereals etc.

The court however clarified that they are not banning the junk food because that is not within the purview of the court but the least the court can do is to direct that these harmful items, which are classified as junk foods, if sold in the state in packing condition should be sold only in bio-degradable packing. The Bench proposed use of options such as tetra packs, tin packing or biodegradable plastic of 20 micro metre thickness is proposed.

Distributing prizes for the baby show held at winter carnival organised by Bal Bharti School Dwarka, Padmashri and Dr B. C Roy National Awardee Dr K K Aggarwal President Heart Care Foundation of India said that unlike junk food fast food is good for children.

Fast food includes fruits, raw vegetables, coconut water, lemon water, fresh juices etc.  they need no preparation. Sattu is another prepared natural at food.

Junk food on the other hand has refined carbs and animal fat with hydrogenated oils and is bad for the heart.

The foundation also trained children on hand only CPR 10.