14 non-dairy foods that are high in calcium

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Calcium builds healthy bones and teeth and ensures your muscles, cells, and nerves work properly. Adults need about 1,000 milligrams a day—that’s a little more than three 8-ounce glasses of milk—but what if you’re vegan, lactose intolerant, or just don’t like the taste of dairy products? Here’s a little-known fact: there are lots of non-dairy foods with calcium. Here are 14 of them.

Collard greens
Calcium content: 268 milligrams per 1 cup cooked
Plus: In addition to serving up more than a quarter of your daily calcium needs, this Southern favorite is also loaded with nearly three days worth of vitamin A, a nutrient that helps keep your eyes sharp as you age. Though collard greens are traditionally cooked with butter and fattening meats like bacon, they also taste great sauteed with olive oil and garlic.

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Broccoli
Calcium content: 86 milligrams in 2 cups raw
Plus: Believe it or not, in addition to calcium this cruciferous veggie contains nearly twice the vitamin C of an orange. Research also shows that diets high in cruciferous vegetables like broccoli may be linked to a lower risk of certain types of cancer, including colon and bladder cancer.

Broccoli rabe
Calcium content: 100 milligrams in one 2/3-cup serving
Plus: Broccoli rabe (pronounced “rob”) is the slightly more bitter cousin to broccoli. It provides more than half your daily value of immune-boosting vitamin C and about 3 grams of belly-filling protein. It’s also a great source of vitamin A.

Kale
Calcium content: 101 milligrams in 1 cup raw, chopped
Plus: This superfood has it all: it racks up just 30 calories per serving, provides a day’s worth of vitamin C, and twice the recommended daily intake of vitamin A, not to mention that 101 milligrams of calcium per serving. It also provides a hefty dose of vitamin K, a nutrient that helps your blood clot. Without it, you wouldn’t stop bleeding when you cut or bruise yourself.

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Edamame
Calcium content: 98 milligrams in 1 cup cooked
Plus: Edamame has been eaten in China and Japan for thousands of years, and it’s no wonder: it’s a nutritional powerhouse. Edamame—which are immature soybeans in the pod—is among the few non-animal foods that is a complete protein, meaning it contains all nine essential amino acids. You also get 8 grams of fiber per serving.

Bok Choy
Calcium content: 74 milligrams per 1 cup shredded
Plus: A cup of bok choy—also known as Chinese cabbage—sets you back just 9 calories. It’s also a great source of vitamin A, vitamin C, and potassium. Bok choy cooks fast, making it perfect for stir-fries, and is available year-round.

Figs
Calcium content: 121 milligrams per 1/2 cup dried
Plus: Bite into a dried fig, and you’ll think you’re indulging in a super-sweet and sticky dessert, when in fact you’re chowing down on a fiber- and potassium-packed fruit. Figs also supply you with magnesium, a nutrient the body uses in more than 300 biomechanical reactions, such as maintaining muscle function, keeping your heart rhythm steady, and strengthening your bones.

Oranges
Calcium content: 74 milligrams in one large orange and 27 milligrams in a cup of orange juice
Plus: You know oranges for their immune-boosting vitamin C content, but they’re also low in calories and brimming with antioxidants.

Health.com: 12 Foods With More Vitamin C Than an Orange

Sardines
Calcium content: 351 milligrams in one 3.75-ounce can
Plus: Don’t be scared of sardines—these salty little fish add tons of umami flavor to salads and pastas. And they serve up even more than just calcium: they’re an amazing source of vitamin B-12, which is a key nutrient for brain and nervous system health. Sardines also contain vitamin D, which is essential for bone health and notoriously difficult to get through food.

Canned Salmon
Calcium content: 232 milligrams in half a can
Plus: If you can’t find environmentally friendly farmed salmon or simply can’t afford wild-caught salmon (which can cost twice as much), try canned salmon. Half a can provides 44% your daily calcium needs, as well as a whopping 38 grams of belly-flattening protein.

White Beans
Calcium content: 63 milligrams in 1/2 cup cooked
Plus: These meaty little guys are rich in fiber, protein, and iron, and they’re also one of the best nutritional sources of potassium. Additionally, they contain resistant starch, a healthy carb that boost metabolism.

Okra
Calcium content: 82 milligrams in 1 cup
Plus: Okra contains constipation-fighting insoluble fiber, as well as vitamin B6 and folate. And don’t write off this veggie if you’ve only ever had a boiled, slimy version; oven-roasting, sautéing, or grilling bring out the best flavor.

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Tofu
Calcium content: 434 milligrams per half cup
Plus: You know tofu as a vegetarian source of protein. Turns out it’s also a great source of calcium. Tofu is incredibly versatile—it takes on the flavor of whatever else you’re cooking with it.

Almonds
Calcium content: 75 milligrams per ounce (about 23 whole almonds)
Plus: Almonds, which are among the best nuts for your health, contain about 12% of your necessary daily protein, and are rich in vitamin E and potassium. And although they are fattening, it’s the good kind of fat that helps lower your bad cholesterol levels as long as you enjoy them in moderation.

This article originally appeared on Health.com.

Exercise boosts tumor-fighting ability of chemotherapy in cancer patients, researchers say

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 (Reuters)

While exercise has been found to benefit cancer patients both physically and psychologically, researchers say a new study proves it can also boost the effect chemotherapy has on a patient.

In a study by a team at the University of Pennsylvania, researchers using a mouse model of melanoma found that combining exercise with chemotherapy shrunk tumors more than chemotherapy alone.

The researchers sought to find whether exercise would protect against negative cardiac-related side effects of the cancer drug doxorubicin, which is known to damage heart cells.

The team first injected melanoma cells into four teams of mice. They then injected two groups with doxorubicin and the other two with a placebo. Over a two-week period mice in one of the groups injected with the drug and one of the untreated groups walked 45 minutes, five days a week, on treadmills, while the other two groups did not.

While data showed that exercise did not help protect against cardiovascular damage, it did show that in mice that had received the drug and exercised, tumors significantly shrunk.

“We looked, and the exercise didn’t do anything to the heart – it didn’t worsen it, it didn’t help it,” Joseph Libonati, senior author of the study and associate professor at Penn School of Nursing, said in a news release. “But the tumor data – I find them actually amazing.”

The team plans to examine further how exercise enhances the effect doxorubicin has on tumors, but are encouraged that results may help find ways to cut down on cardiovascular damage caused by the drug.

“If exercise helps in this way, you could potentially use a smaller dose of the drug and get fewer side effects,” Libonati said.

All Pregnant Women Need Flu Shot: Ob/Gyn Group

All Pregnant Women Need Flu Shot: Ob/Gyn Group

A group representing U.S. obstetricians is calling for all pregnant women to get a flu shot. According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), several studies released in recent years have upheld the safety and effectiveness of flu vaccination during pregnancy.

“The flu virus is highly infectious and can be particularly dangerous to pregnant women, as it can cause pneumonia, premature labor, and other complications,” Dr. Laura Riley, chair of the college’s Immunization Expert Work Group, explained. “Vaccination every year, early in the season and regardless of the stage of pregnancy, is the best line of defense,” she advised.

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The best time to get vaccinated is early in the flu season, regardless of the stage of pregnancy, the guidelines state. However, pregnant women can get a flu shot at any time during flu season, which typically lasts from October to May.  All women who are or become pregnant during the flu season should get the inactivated flu vaccine, which is also safe for women who have just given birth and those who are breastfeeding.

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However, pregnant women should not be given the live attenuated version of the flu vaccine (the nasal mist), according to the guidelines. Before the 2009 H1N1 swine flu pandemic, flu vaccination rates for pregnant women were only 15%.  That rose to 50% in the 2009-2010 flu season and has been around that mark every flu season since. However, vaccination rates could and should be even higher, according to the ACOG.

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Flu shots not only protect pregnant women, but their infants as well. Babies can’t be given flu vaccine until they are 6 months old, but receive flu antibodies from their vaccinated mother while in the womb. This provides them with protection until they can be vaccinated directly.

Source: http://www.healthfinder.gov

Provided by Rebecca McGonigle of the Valley Schools Employee Benefits Trust (VSEBT) in the September 2014 Wellstyles Monthly Newsletter.

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Diet Changes Can Alter Gut Bacteria, Study Says

Diet Changes Can Alter Gut Bacteria, Study Says

Dietary changes can dramatically alter the balance of bacteria in the gut on a daily basis, according to a new study. These fluctuations could lead to monitoring systems that might help detect and ease flare-ups for people with certain chronic illnesses, such as inflammatory bowel disease (ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease), the researchers said.

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Trillions of bacteria live in the digestive tract, but their effect on human health isn’t well understood, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) scientists noted. To better understand the role of bacteria in the body, the research team monitored changes in the bacteria of two people over the course of one year. Stool samples were collected daily to monitor the amount and types of bacteria present. The participants also used an iPhone app that tracked lifestyle factors—such as diet, sleep, mood and exercise—that could have an impact on their gut bacteria.

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Both people experienced an event during the study period that had a significant impact on their gut microbiome, or the number and types of bacteria in their digestive tract. One developed diarrhea while on a two-week trip to a developing nation. This person had significant changes in the balance of gut bacteria. After returning home to the U.S., however, the gut bacteria returned to normal, according to the study. Meanwhile, the other participant developed food poisoning from salmonella. As a result, gut salmonella jumped from 10% to nearly 30%. Moreover, populations of helpful bacteria nearly disappeared. After the person recovered from food poisoning, the beneficial bacteria rebounded

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to about 40% of the total microbiome. But the researchers pointed out that most of the strains were different from those originally present.
“On any given day, the amount of one species could change manifold, but after a year, that species would still be at the same median level. To a large extent, the main factor we found that explained a lot of that variance was the diet,” study senior author Eric Alm, an associate professor of biological and environmental engineering, said. Looking ahead, the researchers said they plan to explore why gut bacteria tend to return to their normal levels after fluctuating widely.

Source: WebMD, Inc.

Provided by Rebecca McGonigle of the Valley Schools Employee Benefits Trust (VSEBT) in the September 2014 Wellstyles Monthly Newsletter.

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Two Friends of Mine, Both Just 23, Fighting Cancer, Please Help!

Two young people I know, Kyle and Victoria, seemed to have everything.  Kyle worked with his family at the local coffee shop and cafe Hob Nob’s.  A smart, great-looking guy, buff and witty, who reminded me of my own son.  Victoria the smart, sweet, gorgeous young model with all-American girl next door looks.

Then, this year, both found they had serious cancer.  I get updates on Kyle from his family and he has suffered dramatic surgery for soft tissue carcinoma.  He seemed fine one day, then he ended up having much of his chest and ribs removed with cancer.  He is now going through extensive chemo and radiation treatments.  His brother shaved his head in support of Kyle, who has lost his hair.

Victoria had a small spot her on leg.  It turned out to be melanoma that had already metastasized.  She is in and out of the hospital and going through all sorts of suffering.  Still, she is reaching out to help others with awareness.

I don’t usually do this, but:

1) if you are in metro-Phoenix, stop by Hob Nobs and buy a Kyle-strong bracelet.

http://www.hob-nobs.com/

2) Please go to the donation site below to donate to help Victoria and also watch her video.  Thanks.

http://www.gofundme.com/e34gk8

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UF9CFcR2b30&feature=youtu.be