Issuu on Google+

total wellness

a ucla student welfare commission publication

health applications resources at your fingertips


what are they and what's the controversy? your guide to


& what it has

to offer

doctor yourself to better health


boosting your immunity

winter 12 | vol 12 | issue 2

thoughts on the new year director’s letter Happy New Year! The start of the new year brings a fresh beginning. It's the time for resolutions and thoughts for self-improvement. For many, New Year's resolutions revolve around health - whether it's going to the gym more often, being more mindful of what foods we eat, or getting more sleep. While it's important to have a goal, I've found that it's even more important to have a plan for how to achieve the desired outcome. But without the appropriate resources it's sometimes difficult to even know where to begin. Total Wellness hopes to make reaching your goal of becoming healthier a manageable task by directing readers towards relevant resources and self-help guidance. In this issue, you can find information ranging from how to choose more nutritious breakfast cereals (p. 11) to how to use your smartphone to help you become healthier (p. 44). We also invite you to explore health benefits of various yoga practices (p. 8), ways to better take care of your dental health by addressing various types of toothaches (p. 17), and lots more. Making a commitment to achieve your new years resolution can seem like a Herculean task, but forming a pack with your friends can keep you on track and make it more enjoyable. With Total Wellness, your friends, and a growing amount of resources at your fingertips, we hope that this year, the path towards reaching your health goals is an enjoyable and rewarding journey.

Best wishes on your resolutions,

total wellness ▪ winter 2012

Shannon Wongvibulsin Director

Total Wellness is a division of the Student Welfare Commission that is dedicated to spreading awareness of and sharing knowledge on issues of student health and health care. By providing an understanding of health and lifestyle issues, elucidating health concepts, providing recommendations for physical, mental, and social well-being, and making visible and accessible various health resources, programs, and events occurring at UCLA, Total Wellness seeks to empower students with up-to-date and accurate knowledge on the appropriate management of their health.


editor’s note With the start of a new year comes the pressure to make a new year’s resolution. In the past, I have made resolutions that are both too broad (“Be positive” or “Listen more”) and too narrow (“Floss every day” or “Get more vitamin C”). No matter what the resolution is, I, like many others, tend to forget it by April. With this issue of Total Wellness, we thought about highlighting ways to better your health in the new year (essentially, offering you a guide to potential new year’s resolutions). Of course, we came to the realization that if people rarely stick to their January goals, maybe a resolution isn’t the best strategy. Fresh off Winter Break, people seem energized and motivated; the gym is packed at all hours, and suddenly even the biggest sweet tooth is eating a salad. If only there were a way to capture this flurry of positive choices and sustain it for the rest of the year, then people would enjoy lasting lifestyle changes and have the satisfaction of actually sticking to their goals. So maybe the best answer isn’t a yearlong resolution. In a world where headlines change by the minute, it’s sometimes hard to think long-term. Maybe a better option would be to make a resolution every month – something simple, but worthwhile. The exuberance of the new year could be present at the start of every month, and as different challenges arise, each month’s resolution could match the most important issues of the moment. Even if you find it difficult to stick to a month-long resolution, take comfort in the fact that, by picking up this magazine, you have already made a conscious effort to take an interest in your well-being. And while we didn’t make every page a possible resolution for you, there are plenty of articles in this issue to help you make positive lifestyle changes. Our spread on cold and flu prevention (p. 26) can help you stay healthy this Winter, while the article on health-related apps (p. 44) will show you how to use your phone for nutrition, exercise and more. The article on healthy cereal swaps (p. 11) can give your mornings a makeover, and our spread on yoga (p. 8) can show you how to incorporate this exercise into your fitness routine. However you decide to start off your year, we at Total Wellness wish you health and happiness in 2012. And if your resolution is to learn more about your physical and mental well-being, then we welcome your readership for this issue, and (if you stick with it) for those to come.

Leigh Goodrich Editor-in-Chief







Art Director

Art Director

Copy Editor

Managing Editor

Outreach Director

tw total wellness

love what we do? join us! now accepting applications if you are interested in... writing or designing health advocacy

building your resume networking with healthcare professionals apply online at


total wellness â–Ş winter 2012

join total wellness magazine

total wellness Director Editor-in-Chief Co-Art Director Co-Art Director Outreach Director Managing Editor Copy Editor

Shannon Wongvibulsin Leigh Goodrich Amorette Jeng Karin Yuen Cindy La Julia Bree Horie Nicole Lew

Staff Writers Cristina Chang, Julia Duong, Teni Karimian, Shamim S. Nafea, Brian Khoa Nguyen, Nabeel Qureshi, Kevin Sung, Leanna Tu, Jennifer J. Wilson Design Chloe Booher, Amorette Jeng, Madeline Kleinman, Coco Liu, Jennifer Shieh, Rebecca Wang, Elizabeth Wang, Shannon Wongvibulsin, Karin Yuen Advisory & Review William Aronson, MD

Professor, UCLA School of Medicine

Susan Bowerman, MS, RD, CSSD

Assistant Director, UCLA Center for Human Nutrition

Leah FitzGerald, RN, FNP, PhD

Assistant Professor, UCLA School of Nursing

Dena Herman, PhD, MPH, RD

Adjunct Assistant Professor, UCLA School of Public Health

Eve Lahijani, MS, RD

Nutrition Health Educator, UCLA Bruin Resource Center

Melissa Magaro, PhD

Clinical Psychologist, UCLA Counseling and Psychological Services

Lilia Meltzer, RN, NP, MSN

Lecturer, California State University, Long Beach

William McCarthy, PhD

Adjunct Professor, UCLA School of Public Health

Rena Orenstein, MPH

Assistant Director, Student Health Education

Allan Pantuck, MD, MS, FACS

Associate Professor, UCLA School of Medicine

Raffi Tachdjian, MD, MPH

Assistant Clinical Professor, UCLA School of Medicine

Elisa Terry, NSCA-CSCS

FITWELL Services Program Director, UCLA Recreation

Alona Zerlin, MS, RD

Research Dietitian, UCLA Center for Human Nutrition

total wellness â–Ş winter 2012

Total Wellness is a free, student-run, biquarterly publication published 7 times a year and is supported by advertisers, the Arthur Ashe Student Health and Wellness Center, the On Campus Housing Council (OCHC), the Student Welfare Commission (SWC), UCLA Recreation, and the Undergraduate Students Association (USAC). Contact 308 Westwood Blvd., Kerckhoff Hall 308 Los Angeles, CA 90024 Phone 310.825.7586, Fax 310.267.4732 Subscription, back issues, and advertising rates available on request Volume 12, Issue 2 Š 2012 by Total Wellness Magazine. All rights reserved. Parts of this magazine may be reproduced only with written permission from the editor. Although every precaution has been taken to ensure the accuracy of the published material, Total Wellness cannot be held responsible for the opinions expressed or facts supplied by authors. We do not necessarily endorse products and services advertised. The information in Total Wellness is not intended as medical advice and should not replace the advice of your physician. Always consult a health care provider for clarification.


contents IN EVERY ISSUE 2 6 7 46 47

Director's Letter & Editor’s Note In the News Q&A Food Pick Credits


Get Active 8 Yoga: Inner Peace and Overall Wellness

Eat Right 11 Cereal Swap: Finding Nutritious Cereal Choices 14 Ingredient Substitution: Options for a Healthier Meal

Body in Focus 17 What Your Mouth is Telling You

Mind Matters 21 Out of Sight, Out of Mind: Types of

total wellness

Headaches and How to Treat Them

a ucla student welfare commission publication


26 Combating the Common Cold 31 Elements for Your Health 34 Choosing Your Spread: Exploring Alternatives to the Classic Peanut Butter 36 CPR 38 Household Bacteria Havens: Five Easy Ways to Shoo Them 41 Does This Corn Taste Funny? A Closer Look at Genetically Modified Foods and Organisms 44 Better Health at Your Fingertips: Free Apps for Everyday Wellness

health applications resources at your fingertips


what are they and what's the controversy? your guide to


& what it has

to offer

doctor yourself to better health

total wellness ▪ winter 2012

cover: magdalena kucova/istockphoto; left: chris gramly/istockphoto; right: matka_wariatka/istockphoto

winter 2012


boosting your immunity

winter 12 | vol 12 | issue 2

ON THE COVER 44 41 8 26

Health Applications GMOs Yoga Boosting Your Immunity


in the news

what’s happening in health? by shannon wongvibulsin | design by amorette jeng


While farmers have been administering antibiotic drugs to their livestock through animal feed since the 1950s, increasing concern over drug resistance of human pathogens has led to the United States Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA’s) decision that farmers must restrict the use of cephalosporin, a class of antibiotics, in cattle, pigs, chickens, and turkeys. Because cephalosporin is also one of the most commonly prescribed types of antibiotics for treatment of pneumonia, strep throat, and skin and urinary tract infections in humans, many microbiologists believe that the use of cephalosporin in agriculture has contributed to the development of more resistant bacteria. In addition to costing thousands of people their lives, antibiotic resistance accounts for approximately $20 billion of additional healthcare costs in the United States each year. Nevertheless, debate remains over this issue as organizations such as the American Veterinary Medical Association argue that administering antibiotics only after animals become ill can result in uncontrolled spread of the disease across the entire farm.


From the analysis of data on 67,470 women from the Nurses’ Health Study, Harvard School of Public Health researchers found that women who daily consumed four or more cups of coffee had a 25 percent reduction in the risk for endometrial cancer, which is the most common form of uterine cancer, compared with those who drank less than one cup per day. These findings are consistent with prior research that has shown that coffee reduces levels of estrogen and insulin, which are hormones associated with increased risk of endometrial cancer when present at high levels. Although this study reveals a link between coffee consumption and a lower risk for endometrial cancer, the senior author acknowledges that further research still needs to be conducted. Additionally, he warns that the protective effects of coffee seem to be unrelated to caffeine. Thus, caffeinated products, such as most soft drinks, would not confer the same anticancer properties.

total wellness ▪ winter 2012



percent of Americans eat breakfast daily

19.3 percent of Americans ages 18 and over currently smoke cigarettes


Researchers of an Amgen Inc. funded project announced at the American Heart Association annual meeting that their preliminary research suggests that injecting a synthetic protein, AMG145, lowers levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL), which is also known as “bad” cholesterol, for up to 30 days. The cholesterol lowering properties of this protein are thought to derive from its ability to shut off the cholesterol regulator that normally hinders the liver from clearing bad cholesterol from the bloodstream. In fact, administration of this new cholesterol lowering shot has reduced LDL cholesterol by up to 64 percent. Some cardiologists view this novel treatment as a potentially effective method for treating hypercholesterolemia.



The use of cell phones now goes beyond simply making phone calls, sending text messages, and browsing the Internet. In fact, UCLA Engineering professor Aydogan Ozcan has developed the technology to transform an ordinary cell phone into a powerful microscope. The implications of this invention, which The Scientist magazine named the top innovation of 2011, are profound; because the microscope is both lightweight (weighing less than 50 grams) and inexpensive (costing approximately ten dollars in parts), it has great potential for providing heathcare to underserved populations around the world. Some of the diverse applications of this cell phone microscope include analyzing blood and saliva samples to monitor diseases such as the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and malaria, counting red and white blood cells, and testing water quality. t w

25 gallons of water are typically used in a ten minute shower; centers for disease control and prevention (cdc);

left: james mcquillan/istockphoto; malerapaso/istockphoto; right: peter booth/istockphoto



Q: A:

What is fair trade? by julia duong | design by karin yuen

No longer considered an underground trend, today the label “fair trade” is ubiquitous in nearly every coffee shop, restaurant, and grocery store. The reputation that the shiny label “fair trade” carries on products such as cotton, coffee, and produce seems honorable in principle. Here we break down what fair trade really means. Fair trade goods are defined as products that come from farmers and workers who have been justly compensated and treated fairly. The purpose of fair trade is to promote social justice by combating poverty for producers from developing countries or small scale farmers, allowing them a more equal status in the world market and better control over their lives. The chocolate industry, for example, has been accused of using child labor on its cocoa farms and plantations. By buying certified fair trade products, a consumer is not only socially aware and environmentally responsible regarding the origins of his or her product, but is also playing an indirect role in the worker or farmer’s life. The process of certification is, in principle, simple. Fair Trade USA is a nonprofit organization that works with US companies and international suppliers, and is dedicated to auditing and certifying products that comply with the following international fair trade standards:

> Fair prices

Farmers who produce fair trade products are paid a fair price for their labor. This price usually covers the costs of sustainable production, serving as a “safety net” for farmers if the market prices ever fall due to harsh farming conditions or an underproduction of goods. These farmers are given an active role in selling their goods: they can negotiate prices based on factors such as quality and whether or not the goods are organic. In Guatemala, for example, farmers are paid $1.55 per pound for organic coffee, almost ten percent more than the market price.

> Premiums

> Workers Rights

Fair Trade USA attempts to empower marginalized farmers and workers and give stability to their working lives. Workers must be granted basic rights such as health and safety standards, freedom of speech, and protection from illegal child labor.

Concerns about the reality of fair trade have blossomed along with the increase of products. According to the Inter Press Service News Agency, fair trade statistics do not account for differences by region or by countries’ income category. Thus, it is difficult to see the extent to which fair trade truly benefits developing countries. Likewise, a private industry survey conducted in 2008 and published in Time Magazine showed that more than half of farmers’ families were still going hungry for several months a year, despite being paid fair trade prices. Despite these raised concerns, the concept of fair trade deserves merit, and the industry has certainly proliferated in the past decade. In an ideal situation, fair trade products can give consumers the satisfaction of knowing that workers were treated fairly. The availability and variety of these goods will surely continue to grow. t w

got a question? We love curious readers. Send

your question over to and the answer may appear in a future issue.


total wellness ▪ winter 2012

Farming organizations are also paid a premium, which is used for farming improvements such as replacing machinery, creating education and public health projects, and investing in facilities. How this premium is used is decided by elected members of the organizations, usually worker representatives whose goal is to improve the social and economic benefits of the workers. For example, in 2010, banana growers in co-operatives were paid a premium of $23.4 million dollars, which was used to invest in healthcare, education facilities, and training.

Fair trade certification has only been around for a little over a decade, yet there has been a great proliferation of products. Over 10,000 products on U.S. store shelves are fair trade, and in the second quarter of 2011, sales of Fair Trade certified products skyrocketed by 63%. According to Paul Rice, the CEO of Fair Trade USA, fair trade has become more popular in the past few years due to greater consumer concern about social and environmental issues. From a corporate perspective, fair trade has also been more mainstream due to the serious ramifications a company can face if accused of relying on child labor or giving low wages to farmers from third world countries.

get active

by julia bree horie | design by coco liu


inner peace and overall wellness For over 5,000 years, yoga has served as an ancient mode

o 8

Most Westernized yoga classes combine physical poses (asanas) and breathing exercises (pranayanas). The large number of yoga practitioners (up to 30 million in the United States) can be attributed to the versatility of yoga styles - some classes are designed purely for relaxation, while others, like Bikram and power yoga, incorporate high levels of physical activity. Although yoga was originally designed as a method of discipline to guide people to spiritual enlightenment,

yoga has found itself many other purposes as well. Whether it be for spiritual cleansing, preventive medicine, or a fitness method, yoga has found a different niche for millions of people. Yoga has undoubtedly planted its roots in the culture of America - so much that researchers have even been studying how it can grow into a method for disease treatment and prevention. Below are a handful of ways that yoga can benefit your body:

left: goldmund/istockphoto; right: dolgachov/istockphoto; bottom illustration: kumarworks/istockphoto

total wellness â–Ş winter 2012

of relaxation and self awareness, but its benefits extend past an inner bliss. By integrating the body with the breath and the mind, yoga can serve as a holistic approach to healing. An increasing number of studies exploring the science behind yoga show that the inner peace achieved from yoga goes hand-in-hand with outer wellness and physical health. Yoga not only enhances life, but it can also extend it through healing and preventing disease.

Increase flexibility The physical yoga poses safely stretch the muscles, releasing built up lactic acid that causes stiffness, pain, and fatigue. The stretches extend beyond the muscles to all of the body’s soft tissues, including the ligaments, tendons, and fascia (the sheath that surrounds your muscles). Yoga also aides flexibility by increasing the range of motion and lubrication in joints. Along with having an improved range of motion, more flexible people are less prone to exerciserelated injuries and arterial stiffness (which is associated with heart disease and kidney failure) .

Increase strength More vigorous yoga styles, such as ashtanga and power yoga, actively strengthen the body and improve muscle tone. However, even styles like Iyengar or hatha yoga, which focus more on alignment than movement, provide strength and endurance. Poses such as upward dog, downward dog, and plank pose, build upper body strength, while standing poses build strength in hamstrings, quadriceps, and abdominal muscles.

Aid posture

The lymphatic system is the fluid network that spans the entire body, carrying bacteria-fighting white blood cells, as well as clearing away cellular waste products. It is the body’s way of targeting infection and filtering out garbage from the system. Exercise generally speeds up the filtering process by encouraging the flow of lymph throughout the body. Yoga, in particular, has perfected this process -- according to Dr. Mehmet Oz, cardiac surgeon at the New York Presbyterian Hospital, animal studies have shown that certain yoga poses indeed stimulate the lymph system. The position of a dog stretching its paws out, strikingly similar to the yoga position called “downward-facing dog,” has been shown to increase the lymph flow in dogs.


Decrease stress The body’s autonomic nervous system is made up of the sympathetic system, identified with the fight-or-flight response, and the parasympathetic system, identified with the relaxation response. The deep breathing, stretching, muscle-relieving movements, and calm self-awareness involved in practicing yoga work in harmony to shut off the fight-or-flight system and turn on the relaxation response. This in turn slows the heartbeat, decreases breathing rates, and lowers blood pressure. Thus, yoga can provide a breath of fresh air in the midst of the rat-race of life, during which exams, jobs, and relationships can easily consume one with stress. Stress raises pressure and releases catecholamies (stress hormones), causing platelets to aggregate and making heart attacks more likely. According to a 2002 study published in The Journal of the Associated Physicians in India, yoga counteracts this stress response by lowering levels of the stress hormone catecholamine. The result? A quieting of the “mind-chatter” that underlies stress and a feeling of longawaited peace and calm.

Yoga Sutras


The philosophy behind yoga is to increase relaxation and balance the mind, body, and spirit. The word “yoga” is derived from the Sanskrit word yuj, describing the union between the mind and the body. The Yoga Sutras, the first known text about yoga, outlines the eight foundations of yoga practice that serve as spiritual guidelines: ❯ ❯ ❯ ❯ ❯ ❯ ❯ ❯

yama (moral behavior) niyama (healthy habits) asana (physical postures) pranayama (breathing exercises) pratyahara (sense withdrawal) dharana (concentration) dhyana (contemplation) samadhi (higher consciousness)


total wellness ▪ winter 2012

Increased flexibility and strength automatically lead to a better posture. Maintaining each pose when practicing yoga relies heavily on the deep abdominal muscles for support -- the same muscles that are required to maintain proper posture. The heightened awareness gained from practicing yoga makes the yoga practitioner more conscious of adjustments that need to be made to his posture throughout the day. Maintaining good posture reduces risk of injury and improves breathing by opening respiratory passages. This in turn improves concentration due to the increased flow of oxygen into the brain.

Cleanse the lymph

o Feel happier

Types of Yoga

total wellness ▪ winter 2012

Iyengar Also called “furniture yoga,” Iyengar uses props like blocks, straps, harnesses, and incline boards to perfect the positions. As it provides foundation for other styles, Iyengar is great for beginners and will work every part of the body. Hatha As one of the six original branches of yoga, Hatha yoga was intended to prep the body for meditation. If you ever need to calm down or de-stress before an exam, Hatha yoga is best for you.


Power In terms of getting a calorieblasting work out, power yoga ranks right up there with Bikram. Adapted to please aerobiccraving Westerners, power yoga was developed specifically for athletic purposes. The poses are not set, but the sequences all stem from movement and will certainly leave you feeling strong and sweaty. Ashtanga This is the mother of the popular “vinyasa” or “flow” classes offered at many yoga studios. Ashtanga practitioners move through six strenuous poses, linking each pose with controlled breath. To get the best of an Ashtanga class, it is best to be familiar with the basic poses by first attending a slower-paced Iyengar class.

Heal the heart Yoga’s benefits to the heart are perhaps the most extensively studied by researchers. The studies have been so rewarding that more and more health institutions are offering massages and yoga as a recovery method for heart patients undergoing cardiac surgeries. A 2007 study published in Evidence-based Complimentary and Alternative Medicine found yoga to be suitable for cardiac rehabilitation due to its ability to lower heart rate and promote relaxation. Yoga has also been associated with decreased triglyceride levels and stronger immune systems.

It may sound unlikely, but science and spirituality may have found a common ground with yoga. Combining meditation, breath, and a healthy sweat, yoga does more than just nurture the soul. It improves flexibility, strength, and balance, and enhances the quality of life by healing the body from the inside out. tw

left: laflor/istockphoto; right: vasiliki varvaki/istockphoto

Bikram Yes, it’s yoga in a sauna. At 105 degrees Fahrenheit and 40% humidity, Bikram yoga is sure to get you sweating. If tolerating the heat is not a challenge in itself, getting through 26 basic yoga poses will put your endurance to the test. The reward? Burning up to 350-700 calories in one session, as well as increased flexibility and endurance.

Although harder to measure accurately, many yoga practitioners attest to mood improvements after a yoga session. Through deep breathing and increased mind consciousness, yoga increases the body’s levels of oxytosin, also known as the cuddle hormone. Deep breathing warms the body, and warmth plays a key role in the release of this hormone. People have even turned to yoga as therapies for depression and other disorders -- a 2005 study published in the Psychiatric Rehabilitation Journal conduced in a New Hampshire psychiatric hospital noted significant drops in tension, anxiety, depression, anger, hostility, and fatigue in patients with bipolar disorder, major depression, and schizophrenia.

eat right

cereal swap:

finding nutritious cereal choices by leanna tu | design by amorette jeng

Research shows again and again that

total wellness â–Ş winter 2012

breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Nevertheless, your choice of breakfast food is important; while a healthy meal can kick-start your metabolism and give you energy for the rest of the day, an unhealthy breakfast leaves you hungry by midmorning. Cereal is a quick and convenient option for many students, but selecting a nutritious cereal is not a straightforward process.



Choosing a healthy cereal can be a difficult task. In the cereal aisle with hundreds of colorfully packaged products, it can be confusing and overwhelming to find a healthful choice. As a guideline, look for: ❯ Whole grains : like oats, whole wheat, brown rice, and rye, at the top of the ingredients list ❯ High fiber content : preferably at least 5 grams per serving ❯ No more than 10 grams of added sugar : Watch out for sugar’s many names including the following: high fructose corn syrup, maltodextrin, fructose, sucrose, malt flavoring, cane syrup, corn sweetener, agave nectar, cane juice, dextrose, molasses, and fruit juice concentrate. Make sure to keep in mind that the nutrition facts are for one serving size, and what you consume for breakfast might constitute more than ¾ to a cup of cereal. Denser, heavier cereals tend to be more calorie-heavy but more filling than puffs, so also factor that into your choice.

total wellness ▪ winter 2012

One way to determine the healthiness of a cereal, and of food in general, is to consider its glycemic index. The glycemic index (GI) is a measure of how quickly carbohydrates break down into sugar and raise blood glucose levels. High GI foods result in spikes in blood sugar levels that are linked to conditions such as type II diabetes, obesity, and cardiovascular disease. Thus, it is wise to limit the amount of high GI foods you eat. In contrast, low GI foods tend to be higher in fiber and protein and take longer to digest than high GI foods, which keeps you fuller longer. Here we’ve taken a look at some of the most popular children’s cereals and how you can find healthier alternatives.


in ¾ cup: ❯ 22 g carbohydrates ❯ 10 g sugar ❯ 2 g fiber ❯ 2 g protein

alternative: The marshmallows of Three Sisters Marshmallow Oaties may not have colors that are quite as vibrant as those of Lucky Charms, but they do not contain any artificial colors. Instead, they are dyed with blueberry, pumpkin, and carrot concentrates. Regardless, both types of marshmallows are high in sugar making them high GI foods, and do not constitute a very sustaining or healthy breakfast. The main difference between Lucky Charms and this product is the presence or absence of artificial ingredients.


in ¾ cup: ❯ 25 g carbohydrates ❯ 10 g sugar ❯ 2 g fiber ❯ 1.6 g protein

the lowdown: Although Cinnamon Toast Crunch is not the worst in terms of nutrition among these conventional cereals, it makes a significant dent into the recommended daily allowances set by the American Heart Association (AHA). The AHA recommends only six teaspoons of added sugar per day for women, nine teaspoons for men, and four teaspoons for children ages four to eight; just one serving of Cinnamon Toast Crunch contains about two and a half teaspoons of simple sugars. It also contains 15% of the recommended daily sodium intake, a significant portion for only ¾ cup of cereal. According to Time Magazine, this cereal has the most television advertisements aimed at children out of a group of ten evaluated cereals, with six 11 year-olds seeing an average of 82 commercials for Cinnamon Toast Crunch throughout a 15-month study. It is no wonder that unhealthy habits start early, and the effects of those choices can carry on to adult life.

alternative: Cascadian Farm Organic Cinnamon Crunch has the same flavors as Cinnamon Toast Crunch but is made of whole grain wheat, rice, and oat fibers, which adds some variety to the corn and wheat-heavy American diet. Although it is still coated with sugar, it has a few less grams of sugar and carbohydrates than the amount present in Cinnamon Toast Crunch.

right: alasdair thomson/istockphoto

Some breakfast cereals you may have loved as a child are notorious for being loaded with added sugars and low in fiber. Luckily, there are many options and alternatives in the aisles of supermarkets and health stores alike.

the lowdown: The largest health concern with Lucky Charms deals with the characteristic marshmallows that give the cereal its unique shapes and colors. The marshmallows contain the synthetic colors Yellows 5 and 6, Blue 1, and Red 40, and artificial flavors. The Center for Science in the Public Interest’s findings suggest that Yellow 5, Yellow 6, and Red 40 contain contaminants that are carcinogenic and may cause hyperactivity in children, and is currently calling on the US Food and Drug Administration to ban these dyes. Although there is a lack of conclusive evidence proving either the certain danger or safety of these substances, it is something to be aware of, especially for consumers who look for products with only natural ingredients. Nutritionally, Lucky Charms are sugar-heavy and full of refined carbohydrates. On the nutrition label, sugar appears in the form of both sugar and corn syrup in the marshmallows and in the cereal pieces.


in ¾ cup: ❯ 23 g carbohydrates ❯ 12 g sugar ❯ 0.7 g fiber ❯ 1.2 g protein


the lowdown: Although it claims to be a “nutritious and easy-to-prepare breakfast,” Cap’n Crunch is made with only refined, not whole, grains. Combined with the high sugar and low fiber content, a breakfast of Cap’n Crunch will digest quickly and although it may give you an initial boost of energy, it will likely leave you hungry within a few hours.

alternative: Kashi Squares in the Honey Sunshine flavor provides a light, honey-flavored option to the classic Cap’n Crunch. Most notably, it incorporates a wide variety of grains including whole grain corn meal, wheat, barley, oats, rye, brown rice, triticale, buckwheat, and sunflower seeds. These whole grains introduce diversity into your breakfast, and fill the cereal with more than 21% of one’s daily value of fiber compared to the 3% offered by refined flours. It also has half the amount of sugar present in Cap’n Crunch.

in 1 ¼ cup: ❯ 29 g carbohydrates ❯ 4 g sugar ❯ 0.3 g fiber ❯ 2.6 g protein

the lowdown: Although this cereal is not very sweet relative to others, three out of the five ingredients in Rice Krispies are sugar: sugar, malt flavoring, and high-fructose corn syrup. High-fructose corn syrup is of particular concern. Although Rice Krispies is fortified with vitamins and minerals like many other cereals, fortification should not take the place of a well-balanced diet. In addition, it is deficient in fiber.

alternative: The Whole Foods Brand 365 Organic Brown Rice Crisps is sweetened with organic cane syrup, which is, although still a type of sugar, less processed and has raised much fewer health concerns than high-fructose corn syrup. More notably, however, this cereal is made of popped whole grain brown rice rather than white rice, which provides 2 grams of fiber compared to the negligible amount in Rice Krispies. Its greater fiber content makes it a slightly better choice, although it lacks significant vitamins and minerals.


in ¾ cup: ❯ 22 g carbohydrates ❯ 12 g sugar ❯ 3.5 g fat ❯ 1 g fiber ❯ 2 g protein

the lowdown: As to be expected of a cereal made to taste like its namesake candy, Reese’s Puffs contains a high amount of sugar, is made from no whole grains, and a quarter of its calories are from fat.

Of course, each cereal has its own unique, distinctive texture and sugar content. If you are looking for an option with minimal added sugars and artificial colors and high fiber content, then there are many healthier alternatives to choose from. You can also make your cereal bowl healthier by topping it with fruit or nuts. tw

total wellness ▪ winter 2012

alternative: Envirokidz Leapin’ Lemurs Cereal, made by Nature’s Path Organics has the same peanut butter and cocoa flavors as Reese’s Puffs, but is made with all organic ingredients and has no artificial coloring. It has eight grams of sugar compared to the 12 grams in Reese’s Puffs, and has only a total of one and a half grams of fat. The puffs are made from whole grain corn meal, which provides more fiber than the conventional Reese’s Puffs. In addition, it uses natural vitamin E rather than chemical preservatives to prolong its shelf life.


eat right

ingredient substitution options for a

total wellness ▪ winter 2012

by julia bree horie | design by karin yuen

Tired of letting nutrition labels take over your life? Gain control of your diet by creating flavorful culinary masterpieces in your own kitchen – using ingredients you choose. Although fats, salts, and sugars are all healthy diet components in moderation, many people struggle with consuming too much of these rather than too little. Replacing unhealthy ingredients with healthier alternatives can be done without sacrificing texture or flavor – however, it is important to first understand that each ingredient plays its own role in building a satisfactory culinary product.


❯ Fat: enhances flavor and richness, improves texture and tenderness in baked goods, makes baked goods flaky and light, promotes smoothness and creaminess in foods ❯ Eggs: thicken and emulsify (help to mix fat and water), provide structure and add volume to foods when beat ❯ Sugar: increases flavor, tenderness, and browning in baked goods, helps yeast breads rise, aides preservation in jams, jellies, and pickles ❯ Salt: enhances flavor, slows the action of yeast in yeast breads, preserves canned foods and some dried foods

With this understanding, in conjunction with the tables below, you can start to modify recipes to decrease unhealthy fats, lower salt, reduce sugar, increase fiber, and replace meat (for the vegetarians out there).

left: floortje/istockphoto ; right (in order): okea/istockphoto; craftvision/istockphoto; eyewave/istockphoto; kryczka/ istockphoto; david franklin/istockphoto

healthier meal



try this:

Butter, shortening, or margarine

1 cup melted

¾ cup liquid oil. Canola, safflower, sunflower, corn, peanut, olive and soybean oil contain the lowest percentages of saturated fat (6%-15%), while coconut oil, butter, palm oil, animal fat and lard contain the most saturated fat (41-54%).

Shortening, butter, or oil (baking only)

1 cup

½ cup applesauce, prune puree, or pumpkin puree + ½ cup shortening, butter, or oil. The baking time may be reduced by 25%. This works for banana breads and other sweet breads, but yeast breads and piecrusts require the full portion of oil.

Stir-frying or frying with butter

1 tbsp.

½ meat or vegetable stock + ½ oil. Also, experiment with other methods such as baking, poaching, broiling, roasting, and grilling.

Sour cream

1 cup

1 cup yogurt or 1 cup cottage cheese pureed in blender. While 1 cup of sour cream has 495 calories, 48 grams of total fat, and 30 grams of saturated fat, 1 cup of lowfat yogurt has just 145 calories, 4 grams of total fat, and 2.3 grams of saturated fat. For best results, add 1 tbsp. of cornstarch to every one cup of yogurt to prevent separation when beating.

Cream or whipping cream

1 cup

1 cup evaporated skim milk or non-fat whipped cream or 1cup yogurt.


1 cup

1 tbsp lemon juice or vinegar + enough milk to fill 1 cup (let stand for 5 minutes).



Omit or reduce by ½ (except in yeast products).

Canned vegtables

Rinse canned vegetables to reduce sodium. Choose no-salt-added frozen and canned vegetables whenever possible.

Spice mixes and sauces with salt

Experiment with salt-free seasonings and spices and use herbs, spices, lemon juice, or vinegar to flavor food. Seasonings highest in sodium include ketchup, barbeque sauce, soy sauce, chili sauce, bouillon cubes, Worcestershire sauce, and meat tenderizers.


total wellness ▪ winter 2012

instead of:

TO REDUCE SUGAR: instead of:

try this:

Sugar (includes sugar, Reduce sugar by 1/3 in baked goods and desserts. Then add cinnamon, vanilla, or brown sugar, corn syrup, almond extract to give the impression of sweetness. honey, and molasses) Syrup

Pureed fruit, such as applesauce.

TO INCREASE FIBER: instead of:

try this:

All-purpose white flour

½ cup whole wheat flour + ½ cup white flour. Whole grains can add fiber to your diet, which may reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases. Replace no more than half the amount of white flour with wheat flour – too much wheat flour in a recipe that calls for solely all-purpose white flour will result in a heavier product with reduced volume.

White rice & enriched grains

Whole grain, brown rice, wild rice, whole barley, bulgur, quinoa, whole wheat couscous.

White bread

100% whole wheat bread; 100% whole grain bread.

Iceberg lettuce

Romaine lettuce, baby spinach, kale.

A plain baking mix

Throw in a handful of crushed flaxseeds to the mix to boost omega-3 fatty acid levels and increase the beneficial fiber in your diet.

instead of:

try this:


Beans, cheese, seitan (wheat meat), tempeh (cultured soybeans), TVP (textured vegetable protein), tofu, whole grain, brown rice, wild rice, whole barley, bulgur, quinoa, whole wheat couscous.

Meat or seafood stocks

Vegetable stock, vegetable bouillon cubes, miso (fermented soybean paste) diluted with water.


Agar powder or flakes, arrowroot powder, guar gum (made from seeds), xanthan gum (made from corn), or kudzu powder. These can all be purchased at your nearest health food store or Whole Foods Market.


Almond milk, rice milk, soymilk.



With these simple tricks under your culinary belt, you can skip out

on the often salty, fattening, and expensive restaurant meals and impress your friends and family with healthy home-cooked meals instead. They will surely appreciate your consideration for their wellbeing without compromising a pinch of flavor. tw

left (in order): eyewave/istockphoto; kryczka/istockphoto; david franklin/istockphoto; right: original illustrations by rebecca wang

total wellness ▪ winter 2012


body in focus

What Your Mouth is Telling You by teni karimian | illustration and design by rebecca wang

A toothache is your mouth’s way of saying something is wrong. Regular episodes of debilitating toothaches can be avoided by maintaining good oral health. However, when a toothache strikes, it may help to know what is actually causing the pain. By getting to know your toothaches better, it can shed light on what lifestyle changes may be required and what kind of treatment to seek.

total wellness â–Ş winter 2012


Painful Eating

Chronic Toothache

Pain upon eating will feel like a sharp shooting pain when chewing with that tooth. This can be caused by tooth decay or a small fracture.. In the case of tooth decay, restoration such as a filling or root canal will be required, depending on the extent of the decomposition. On the other hand, cracks and fractures are caused by grinding, trauma to the tooth, or from years of wear and tear. To treat a cracked tooth, a dentist will apply a protective covering over the crack or the entire tooth depending on the size and depth of the fracture. If the crack however reaches the root of the tooth, that tooth is deemed “unrestorable” and would have to be extracted since there is no way to fill the crack. At that point a bridge restoration or implant would replace that tooth.

An acute, long-lasting pain indicates nerve damage. This could result from grinding teeth, severe tooth decay or trauma to teeth (through injury). Treatment for tooth decay requires restorative treatment such as a composite or amalgam filling. T  reatment for severe tooth decay that has reached the nerve of the tooth requires a root canal.

Back of Jaw Pain

This kind of pain is intermittent and felt in a general area as opposed to on a specific tooth. I  t is usually indicative of an infection or abscess and is often accompanied by a swollen face. I  t can be caused by severe gum problems or a tooth that’s close to dying. I  mmediate dental attention is required and treatment for an infection or abscess starts with antibiotics and pain treatment, which then gives way to root canal treatment. Depending on the severity of the decay and the resulting abscess, the last step is strengthening of the tooth with a filling, crown or veneer. I  f an infection is ignored, the tooth may die, which will result in permanent loss of the tooth.


Back of jaw pain resulting from problems with the third molars (wisdom teeth) can arise from several different situations. In some instances, wisdom teeth may surface and not cause any problems at all, impacted wisdom teeth however refers to the third molars physically growing into the second molars causing destruction. This can crowd and shift other teeth, which can be a source of great discomfort. Additionally, wisdom teeth may only partially erupt creating an “uncleansable” area where food and bacteria can get stuck under the gums causing infection. Most of the time, treating pain associated with wisdom teeth requires oral surgery to remove the teeth.

original illustrations by rebecca wang

total wellness ▪ winter 2012

Intense, Throbbing Pain

A pain felt in the back of the jaw is indicative of either wisdom teeth that are impacted or temporomandibular disorders (TMD), which result from problems with the jaw or surrounding facial tissues. More commonly TMD refers to grinding of the teeth. Pain caused by grinding is also likely to be felt in other areas of the face such as the cheekbones, eyes, and ears. If the pain is caused by teeth grinding, a dentist will make a mouth guard which will be used during sleep and can help protect the teeth from fractures, unevenness, and a shift in bite, which can all be caused by grinding.

Bleeding Gums


Bleeding gums usually are first noticed with bleeding after brushing teeth. T  his can be a sign of more serious problems such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, stroke and tooth loss, among other things. Further signs accompanied by bleeding gums that indicate gingivitis (infection of the gums) are sore and swollen gums, formation of deep pockets between teeth and gums, loose or shifting teeth, changes in bite and receding gums.

This kind of pain is a sharp, stabbing sensation that comes and goes upon exposure to certain stimuli. T  eeth can be sensitive to different things such as cold, heat and sugary foods. P   aying attention to what brings about the pain can give insight to the root of the problem.

The main cause of bleeding gums and, in turn, gingivitis is the bacteria in the mouth that will grow exponentially when proper care is not being given to the teeth and mouth. T  he bacteria will turn into plaque and over time cause inflammation of the gums. D   epending on the severity of the gum disease, patients will require either a deep cleaning from a dentist or specialty care from a periodontist who specializes in diseases of the gums.

Sensitivity of teeth to cold (air, food, or drinks) is most likely caused by gum recession, wear and tear of a cavity or enamel loss, which results in exposed dentin (the dense, bony tissue underneath the enamel that makes up the bulk of a tooth). S   ensitivity to heat may indicate a small cavity, an abscess (infection), a  crack in a tooth or severe decay. S   ensitivity to sugary foods is most likely caused by decay. To treat tooth sensitivity, it is first important to see a dentist to ensure that the sensitivity is not caused by cavity or abscess. T  hese issues will require professional treatment. S   ensitivity resulting from enamel loss and exposed dentin, however, can be treated by applying desensitizers, which can be applied at the dental office. T  his will require re-application when the sensitivity returns. O   ver-the-counter desensitizers can also be helpful.

Chronic Bad Breath


total wellness ▪ winter 2012

Although bad breath may seem easy to fix, chronic bad breath, or halitosis, is persistent and is usually a sign of far more complicated and severe problems. Halitosis can be caused by the sulfur-producing bacteria on the tongue and throat, tooth decay, gum problems and abscesses and infections in the gum that produce bad smelling pus. Dental attention is required to identify the source of the problem and proper oral hygiene is required to prevent reoccurrence.


Cavities, more specifically called dental caries, are a demineralization of the hard tissues of the teeth, the enamel, dentin and cementum, and destruction of the organic matter of the tooth, by production of acid in breakdown of food debris on the tooth. .    Although there is not one specific cause for tooth decay, there are several components that factor into why some people have more cavities than others. T  he most obvious of these reasons is a person’s willingness to maintain their oral hygiene through brushing, flossing, and regular check-ups.

    Prevention   is the best medicine when it comes to cavities and to do so diet and nutrition should be of the utmost importance. R   eplacing sugary foods and sodas with crunchy fruits and vegetables like carrots, apples, broccoli and cucumbers helps protect teeth by promoting saliva production and stimulating the gums. I  n doing so, the saliva breaks down sugar and food particles present on the teeth. C   heese also neutralizes the pH of the mouth and stimulates saliva production, which further reduces acidity, leaving teeth less susceptible to acid erosion. A   dditionally, fluoride is also linked to prevention of dental caries. D   rinking black or green tea for the naturally occurring fluoride can protect teeth from decay.  

total wellness ▪ winter 2012

Diet and nutrition also play a big role in the causation of tooth decay in that they are responsible for the construction of teeth and as such, poor nutrition make teeth more vulnerable to decay. A   lthough a balanced diet is essential, vitamin D in particular has been linked to development of healthy teeth as well as prevention of tooth decay. A   dditionally, a 2001 study in the Journal of Dental Research indicates that the role of sugars and other fermentable carbohydrates is directly correlated to tooth decay. More specifically, the presence of sugar around a plaque-covered tooth is necessary for tooth caries, or decay, to develop, and some sugars such as sucrose are more cariogenic than glucose, fructose or maltose. In addition to nutritional factors, there is also a genetic component to tooth decay. A   person’s unique bacterial composition, salivary components and immunological factors also play a role in tooth decay.


Overlooking oral hygiene until there is some kind of pain may be more damaging, both to your overall health and your wallet, than taking the steps to ensure there is no toothache to begin with. Maintaining a good relationship with a dentist and getting check-ups every six months, and practicing good oral hygiene will almost guarantee that. tw

left: original illustrations by rebecca wang; right: aldo murillo/istockphoto

Causes of Tooth Decay

mind matters

out of sight, out of mind:

types of headaches & how to treat them by nabeel qureshi | design by karin yuen

Headaches have a nasty habit of popping up at the worst times. The constant pain of headaches never seems to go away, especially when you are sick, congested, stressed out, or even recovering from another headache. The best way to treat them? Well, it depends on what kind of headache you have. Read on to learn about the different types of headaches and how to deal with them effectively to finally get that last nagging pain out of sight and out of mind.

total wellness â–Ş winter 2012 21

Migraines: what they are: Usually the worst and most debilitating type of headache, a migraine can ruin just about anyone’s day. These headaches can last anywhere from four hours to three days and usually manifest with throbbing pain to one side of the head and prevent routine activities like going outside, walking, and talking. If nausea, vomiting, or sensitivity to light or sound occurs, a migraine is most likely your culprit. how to treat them: For the few who often get these headaches, a foreshadowing or aura usually presents and over-the-counter painkillers and prescription medication can be taken in advance to lessen the painful sensation. According to a 2011 study published in CNS Drugs, an “aura” is a feeling or premonition that precedes a migraine headache. This usually consists of a tingling or numbness a few minutes to an hour before a migraine. Roughly 11% of migraine suffers experience some type of aura before the actual event. Unfortunately, these headaches are the most difficult to treat, but if they persist, physicians will prescribe a drug to dull the pain and reduce the time they last.

what they are: These nasty headaches have a tendency of creeping up during particularly stressful and tense days. Most experts believe that these headaches come from tension in your shoulder and neck muscles, often associated with physical stress and mental stress presenting itself in the body. These headaches are usually pretty mild, but extremely common, especially for students where the constant stress of exams, projects, papers, and meetings is a part of everyday life. The pain is commonly a constant ache or pressure in the head, but not enough to ruin the day like a migraine headache.

total wellness ▪ winter 2012

how to treat them: Even though these headaches are the most common, they are also very easy to treat. Most over-the-counter aspirins, ibuprofens, or acetaminophens (more commonly known as Tylenol) can kick these headaches down a notch. These methods are effective and can deal with a tension headache quickly so that you can get back to your day faster. These medications are great at blocking the pain, but do not deal with the source of the pain. alternative therapies: Students can also avoid the over-the-counter treatments for pain and try a new therapy that has gained a lot of recognition in the scientific community. According to a 2011 study published in Neurological Sciences, researchers found that acupuncture has proven to provide many of the same results as over-the-counter remedies, but deals with the source of the pain, muscle tension. Although this form of therapy varies from person to person in its implementation, due to the exact muscle tension causing the headache, with continued treatment, a marked decrease in chronic tension headaches was shown and could prove to be an effective long-term solution to this persistent problem. Not only is acupuncture effective, the same research also shows that it is a cost-efficient way for chronic headache sufferers to get long term relief from their pain.


alternative therapies: Besides taking common over-the-counter pain relievers or heavy medications from a physician, spinal manipulation has become a popular, safe, and effective form of treatment for chronic migraine headaches. According to a 2000 study published in the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics, spinal manipulation commonly performed in chiropractic offices proved to be as effective as over-the-counter and prescription solutions to chronic migraine headaches, but had the added bonus of producing none of the side effects of drug treatments (including rebound headaches) and was more effective long-term. Patients who suffered from chronic migraines were subjected to both popular drug therapies and spinal manipulation therapies and data showed that not only was spinal manipulation just as effective short term, it reduced the frequency and severity of migraines in the future as well.

left (in order): landysh/istockphoto; daniel laflor/istockphoto; right (in order): ivan kmit/ istockphoto; shantell/istockphoto

Tension Headaches:

Hormone Headaches:

Cluster Headaches: what they are: By far the most uncommon form of headache, but also one of the most harsh and persistent, cluster headaches are notorious for severe, debilitating pain on one side of the head in groups or in cycles. Watery eyes and nasal congestion on the same side of the face usually characterize these headaches and point to this unique type of pain, often mimicking a migraine headache. These headaches are persistent and are not a one-time phenomenon. This condition is much more common in men than in women and usually has a genetic component to it, so managing it is the best you can do.

alternative therapies: A doctor can help better assess the treatment options based on whether it is related to the menstrual cycle, from taking birth control pills, or from an unhealthy lifestyle, which can also cause fluctuations in hormone levels. It is important to exercise regularly, eat right, and monitor your period schedule to make sure your menstrual cycle is regular and your hormone levels are cycling at a constant rate to stay healthy. The best treatment for these types of headaches is simply being active, eating healthy foods, exercising, and taking care of your body. Hormone headaches arise when these levels fluctuate wildly from the normal fluctuations of your own cycle, so staying healthy and regular is the most effective treatment.


total wellness â–Ş winter 2012

how to treat them: Most physicians do not know why these headaches happen, but when they occur, physicians quickly recognize cluster headaches because of their more unique presentation than other types of headaches. These headaches are known for their cyclic nature, presenting a sharp, debilitating pain, then diminishing, only to start again. If this sounds familiar and the pain is unbearable, seek a physician’s aid in determining an effective therapy. Over-thecounter painkillers are minimally effective and generally can curb the pain, but rarely make it go away. alternative therapies: After consulting a doctor, however, it may be a good idea to take a look at a new treatment option for cluster headaches. According to a 2000 study in Cephalgia, capsaicin gel applied intranasally (in the nostrils) provides a great deal of relief from these headaches. Initial application leaves a strong burning sensation for about ten minutes, but additional applications reduce this down significantly, making it better as a regular treatment than a one-time-only solution. Capsaicin, the active ingredient in cayenne pepper, targets pain sensation nerve fibers and effectively blocks pain reception from your cluster headache, significantly reducing the amount of time in pain. Not only is capsaicin gel effective for cluster headaches, but research from the same study has shown that any debilitating head pain can be treated with this therapy and the results are just as effective.

what they are: Hormone headaches are headaches that are caused by the changing levels of estrogen and progesterone in the body. Many women also experience this regularly while they are menstruating and these headaches can range from very benign and hardly noticeable to severe and debilitating. how to treat them: Just like any other headache, over-the-counter treatments are effective. Like most other headaches, over-the-counter painkillers work because they do not react very strongly with other drugs. Take these moderately and consider talking to a physician if there is no relief or they prevent day to day activities. According to a study done in 2011 by Fertility and Sterility, taking birth control pills has a profound effect on hormone headaches. Women on birth control pills (the oral contraceptive) tend to have shorter and less frequent headaches caused by hormone fluctuations.

Rebound Headaches:

total wellness â–Ş fall 2011

alternative therapies: Definitely do not take anything to deal with these headaches. They are short and feel more like pressure than pain, so tough it out (but only for a bit!) and things should be as good as new. Take a look at the alternative methods to deal with headaches provided and reduce the onset of these rebound headaches. Acupuncture, spinal manipulation, and natural remedies, including capsaicin gel for extreme headaches are all effective forms of treatment for headaches that bypass any form of medication. The best course of action is up to the individual; medication and natural solutions are both effective in dealing with headaches.


Sinus Headaches: what they are: Most people have probably had a sinus headache or two in their lives. At the peak of flu season, these are incredibly common because unlike other headaches, the cause is pretty simple. An inflamed sinus, usually caused by an infection, can present a dense, pulsing pain in the head that can last for just as long as the infection does. how to treat them: Unlike other types of headaches, over-the-counter painkillers just do not cut it. The only way to kick a sinus headache is to treat the inflamed sinus. Stock up on antihistamines, antibiotics, and decongestants, because most of these usually have pain killers in them to boot. Once you treat the cause of the sinus headache, you will have one less thing weighing you down. Consulting an allergist may help figure out the cause of the sinus inflammation, and the potential allergic causes. alternative therapies: A simple, cost effective way to both tackle sinus headaches and reduce allergy symptoms is investing in a humidifier or taking regular, hot showers. Research in the Alternative Medicine Review published in 2006 reports that sleeping with a humidifier or taking hot showers, hot enough to produce steam, clears the sinuses in a way that reduces the side effects of medications. Since steam is just vaporized water, it does not react negatively in your body and provides a simple lifestyle change that is cheap, easy to put into practice, and risk-free. These results are also long term and preventative, meaning you reduce the number of sinus headaches you have and avoid the pain before it even starts. t w

left (in order): andrewsoundarajan/ istockphoto; doug cannell/istockphoto; right: teresa kasprzycka

what they are: Believe it or not, overmedicating a headache can also cause more headaches. Be wary of your over-the-counter painkiller use because overdoing the painkillers could put you in more pain later. Rebound headaches most commonly occur when overthe-counter painkillers are taken excessively, but strong pain relievers prescribed by a physician also cause them. Luckily, these headaches are not very common, do not last long, and are not that painful. Physicians are not sure why these occur, but they believe that the painkillers could excite the brain and cause it to crash later, producing the rebound headache. Another possibility is that the painkillers leaving your bloodstream can cause a slight withdrawal that causes a short, but noticeable pain. how to treat them: There are no medications to take when these headaches occur. In fact, if these are common, seek a physician’s aid to build better therapies for headache relief than medication because these headaches are always the consequence of medication.

total wellness ❯❯ on the cover

– Wayne Dyer


total wellness ▪ winter 2012

"You can set yourself up to be sick, or you can choose to stay well."


Combating the Common Cold

Boosting Your Immune System: Although most turn to supplements, such as vitamin C and zinc, for boosting their immune system, there are many other things you can do on a daily basis to keep your immune system in tip-top shape.

by shannon wongvibulsin | design by amorette jeng

Regular exercise can boost your

total wellness ▪ winter 2012

pox, or take a pill to treat a headache, but with the illness that likely plagues you the most – the common cold – you find yourself stuck in bed having to ride it out. For obvious reasons, there is great interest in cold prevention and symptom treatment. Many of these possibilities go beyond simple pharmaceutical options and explore natural methods to prevent and treat the common cold.

immune system by increasing leukocyte levels and the release of endorphins. Leukocytes are a part of the immune system that plays an active role in fighting infections. On the other hand, endorphins can indirectly strengthen your immune system by amplifying your sense of happiness, well-being, and quality of sleep, all of which contribute to the maintenance of a healthy immune system.

Adequate sleep, typically seven to nine hours for adults, is essential for proper functioning of the immune system. Consequently, sleep deprivation leaves you more susceptible to becoming ill. In fact, a 2009 study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine reported that participants who slept less than seven hours a night were approximately three times more likely to become sick compared with individuals who slept eight or more hours. Additionally, a study conducted with students at the University of Chicago reported that when the participants were restricted to only four hours of sleep a night for six nights and then injected with a flu vaccine, their immune systems produced half the number of antibodies compared with when they slept a normal amount. Although it is still unknown why sleep is necessary for optimal performance of the immune system, current research clearly illustrates the detrimental effects of inadequate sleep on immune function. Maintaining a diet rich in antioxidants and adequate amounts of vitamin D and omega-3 fatty acids

❯ Vitamin A, C, and E are common vitamins (compounds that help protect the body against free radicals) that are found both naturally in many fruits and vegetables and as dietary supplements. However, studies have shown that obtaining these vitamins through whole food sources is more beneficial than intake as supplements since it is the synergistic interaction of the nutrients within the food that confers maximal benefits.


main: stocklib/istockphoto; right: robyn mackenzie/istockphoto

You can get a shot to prevent the chicken

❯ Although vitamin D is found naturally in foods such as fish, eggs, and dairy products and vitamin D synthesis is triggered when the skin is exposed to ultraviolent rays from the sun, vitamin D deficiency is common in individuals who get minimal exposure to the sun or follow a vegetarian or dairy-free diet. While vitamin D is commonly known for its essential role in maintaining strong bones, it is also important for immune health. In fact, a 2009 study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine found that participants with the lowest vitamin D blood levels (less than ten ng) were approximately 40 percent more likely to suffer from respiratory infections, such as the common cold or flu, compared with those who had vitamin D levels of 30 ng or higher. ❯ Omega-3 fatty acids are polyunsaturated fats with immuneenhancing and anti-inflammatory properties. Since omega-3s cannot be produced by the body, it is important to consume these fatty acids in adequate amounts. Eating fish, nuts, and beans in moderation can provide you with a good source of omega-3 fatty acids. According to Dr. Raffi Tachdjian, MD, MPH, Assistant Clinical Professor of Medicine and Pediatrics in the Division of Allergy & Immunology at the UCLA School of Medicine, “getting such antiinflammatory ingredients in your diet can help not just one part of the body, but the whole mind/body connection.”

Relaxation can help boost the immune

Vitamin C:

Even though vitamin C is widely used for its believed properties for protection against the common cold and for aiding in recovery from the illness, there remains scant scientific evidence supporting vitamin C use for these purposes. In fact, a 2009 review article published in the Journal of the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners examined the evidence for the use of vitamin C in the prevention and treatment of the common cold and found that regular vitamin C consumption does not confer protection against or reduce the severity of cold symptoms. However, regular intake of vitamin C can decrease the length of the cold.


Great debate remains over the efficacy of zinc in preventing and fighting colds. However, a 2011 review conducted by the Cochrane Library, an international network of experts who systematically evaluate published research, concluded that zinc is effective in treating colds if it is consumed when the first signs of a cold are apparent. The reviewers found that zinc intake was related to a significant decrease in the duration and severity of cold symptoms. Nevertheless, they also noted that participants taking zinc suffered from nausea and bad taste to a greater extent than those not taking zinc. Currently, the mechanisms behind the ability of zinc to confer protection against and aid in the recovery from common colds is not understood. However, some propose that zinc could prevent rhinoviruses from attacking nasal cells and slow down virus replication.

Incorporate immune boosting foods into your diet. Below are just a few examples of foods that can help enhance the function of your immune system. ❯ ❯ ❯ ❯ ❯ ❯ ❯ ❯

Almonds ❯ Broccoli ❯ Cabbage ❯ Garlic ❯ Ginger ❯ Grapefruit ❯ Lemongrass ❯ Low-Fat Yogurt with Active Cultures ❯

Mushrooms Oysters Red Pepper Spinach Sweet Potato Tea Watermelon Wheat Germ


total wellness ▪ winter 2012

system by countering the effects of chronic stress on suppression of the body’s natural defense mechanisms. In fact, a 2008 study published in Brain, Behavior, and Immunity suggested that relaxation during stressful times is correlated with the reduction of stressinduced pro-inflammatory cytokines (signaling proteins that contribute to inflammation) compared with subjects experiencing similar levels of stress without practicing relaxation. Additionally, participants who relaxed also experienced an increase of antiinflammatory cytokines. A 2008 review article that appeared in the same journal highlights the interest in mindfulness stress reduction in the field of psychoneuroimmunology. While methods to cope with stress vary widely from person to person, consider mindfulness meditation, yoga, Tai chi, massage therapy, journaling, and more to help yourself relax, feel better, and boost your immune system.

Common Supplements Thought to Aid in Cold Preventions:

Natural Remedies for Cold Symptoms: It may seem that the easiest way to treat a cold is running to the nearest pharmacy and getting over-thecounter medications to help alleviate your symptoms. However, over-the-counter medications typically contain drugs to treat a wide variety of cold and flu symptoms, so you may be over-treating symptoms that you don’t actually have. If you’re looking for natural ways to help your body recover from a cold, consider the following options.

Getting an adequate amount of sleep is always important for health. However, when you are fighting off a cold, your body will benefit from increased hours of sleep. Staying in bed and resting will allow the body to direct its energy towards the immune system, battling the invaders and fending off germs.


Drinking lots of water helps mucus flow freely, aids in reducing congestion, and flushes germs out of your system. Additionally, staying hydrated helps prevent bronchitis and ear infections that may develop as you fight off a cold.


WebMD suggests gargling to bring temporary relief to sore throats. Some formulas to try for alleviating throat pain include: ❯ salt water: half a teaspoon of salt, eight ounces of warm water ❯ astringent gargle: teas with tannin ❯ thick, viscous gargle: one teaspoon of honey, one tablespoon of raspberry leaves or lemon juice, two cups of hot water Make sure all gargles are cooled to room temperature before use.

total wellness ▪ winter 2012

Chicken Soup:

For centuries and in multiple cultures, chicken soup has been used to help alleviate cold symptoms. Current scientific research suggests that the mechanism behind chicken soup’s beneficial properties is derived from its anti-inflammatory effect in the upper respiratory system. Additionally, consumption of chicken soup increases hydration and mucosal clearance.


Nasal Irrigation and Neti Pot:

Rinsing out the sinuses with a saline solution can help alleviate congestion. One of the most popular methods of nasal irrigation is the use of a Neti pot, which WebMD describes as “a ceramic pot that looks like a cross between a small teapot and Aladdin’s magic lamp.” The Neti pot helps thin the mucus and flush it out from nasal passages. Increasing the speed and coordination of the cilia, or hair-like structures in the sinus cavities, is the basic mechanism behind the functioning of the Neti pot and other nasal irrigation techniques with saline solution. With greater coordinated motion, the cilia can more effectively remove the mucus and irritants from the system. Neti pots can be purchased from most drug and health food stores and online. However, be sure to have proper guidance on how to use the Neti Pot because potential problems can result when using them inappropriately. In fact, Dr. Tachdjian recommends “using saline sinus irrigation such as the Neti Pot more as a preventative measure, as their use may be uncomfortable in individuals already suffering from a cold or in those people with sensitive Eustachian tubes.”


Aromatherapy is the use of essential oils – plant’s aroma-producing oils - for therapeutic applications. These oils are derived from various plant parts including the flowers, leaves, stalks, bark, rind, and roots. Many of these oils can help alleviate cold symptoms: ❯ Eucalyptus, peppermint oil: as decongestants ❯ Menthol: for nasal congestion and inhibiting infection ❯ Rosemary, thyme, mint, basil, tea tree oils: to relieve general cold symptoms ❯ Add lavender, cedar, lemon to steam: to refresh nasal passages

Common Medications to Treat Cold Symptoms: Decongestants:

While over-the-counter decongestants may temporarily make breathing easier through the reduction of mucus in nasal passages, these decongestants typically contain pseudoephedrine, which may increase heart rate and blood pressure. Consequently, WebMD recommends checking with a doctor before using decongestants especially if you have heart disease, high blood pressure, prostate problems, diabetes, or thyroid problems.


Histamine release by cells in your sinus and nose when infected with a cold virus results in the secretion of mucus from the interaction of histamine with nasal tissues. Antihistamine cold medicine reduces sneezing and runny nose by preventing histamine from irritating nasal tissues and thus relieving some of the symptoms associated with colds. Since antihistamine medications can result in drowsiness, they are most commonly taken during the nighttime.

Cough Suppressants:

Although cough suppressants may be beneficial for those suffering from intense coughing that interferes with sleep, it is important to allow yourself to cough as a means to remove mucus and germs from your throat and lungs. Nevertheless, remember to cover your mouth to minimize the spread of germs.

left: christopher ames/istockphoto; right: antimartina/istockphoto


Herbal Remedies: Echinacea:

Of the herbal remedies commonly used to treat cold symptoms, echinacea is the most widely used due to its believed immune strengthening properties. While research remains inconclusive concerning the benefits of echinacea for cold treatments, studies have demonstrated that echinacea increases white blood cells and stimulates the activity of other immune cells. However, it is difficult to design appropriate studies to demonstrate the direct benefits of echinacea for preventing and recovering from colds. In fact, a 2005 study published in the New England Journal of Medicine proposed that variability in echinacea plant species, location and season of cultivation, techniques for extraction and preparation, and the chemical constituents of the remedy could have an impact on its biological activity and its effectiveness for fighting colds.

Cautioning Remarks Concerning Herbal Use:

Even though herbal use in the Western world is growing in popularity, caution should be executed whenever herbs are used. Keep in mind that herbs are typically potent substances and should never be taken without appropriate guidance. Additionally, the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) considers herbs dietary supplements and thus, under the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act of 1994 (DSHEA), the manufacturer of the supplement, and not the FDA, is responsible for the safety of the ingredient before its marketing. As a result, there have been issues with heavy metal contamination of herbal products. Since herbs are classified as supplements, the FDA does not require manufacturers to prove their health claims, which often results in misrepresentation of information on labeling and advertisements. Consulting a practitioner familiar with herbal medication remains the safest method to obtain treatment with the appropriate herbal formulations. t w

Other common herbal remedies for cold treatment and prevention:

environmental issues? Want to plan

events and

activities that show how our health is directly connected and related to environmental health?

If you answer yes to these questions, then apply to be on staff in the

SWC EARTH committee!

For more information please feel free to contact us at

You can also check out the UCLA Marina Aquatic Center on the web at MAC for more water sports such as rowing, surfing, windsurfing, and sailing. They can also be contacted at (310) 823-0048 or

tw total wellness

healthy living

made simple Pick up a copy! Ashe Center Blood & Platelet John Wooden On the Hill Bruin Resource Center ASUCLA stands Kerckhoff Hall SWC Office

find us online at


total wellness ▪ winter 2012

❯ Astragalus ❯ Elder flower ❯ Eyebright ❯ Gan Mao Ling ❯ Garlic ❯ Ginseng ❯ Goldenseal ❯ Yarrow ❯ Yin Chao

Want to learn more about current

seafood: s ­ arah lee/istockphoto; nut mix: ever/istockphoto

total wellness ▪ winter 2012



elements for your health

by kevin sung | design by amorette jeng

Close to 99% of the human body is made of oxygen, carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, calcium, and phosphorus. While less than one percent of the body contains these trace elements, they play a considerabe role in health. Although severe deficiencies can be present in special circumstances, such as an extremely restricted diet or prolonged hospitalization, most people obtain a healthy dose of these elements by eating a balanced diet. Though you may not put much thought into getting enough of these nutrients, they are constantly working to optimize bodily functions. Here we give a review of some important trace elements and how they work to keep you healthy:


Iodine Iodine plays a critical role in the homeostasis of the thyroid gland, which lies around the front of the neck and helps regulate metabolism. Thyroglobulin, long chains consisting of amino acid residue, binds with iodine to form hormones that elevate the metabolic rates of tissues in the body.

getting enough...

Severe iodine deficiency can lead to the enlargement of the thyroid gland, a condition known as goiter. In a newborn, poor levels of iodine can result in mental retardation or even death. A fetus can also develop cretinism, a condition resulting from severely stunted physical and mental growth, if the mother also suffers from iodine deficiency. In most industrialized nations such as the United States, iodine deficiency no longer poses a great concern. Iodized water and salt with trace levels of iodine are enough to prevent iodine deficiency.

Good Sources: ❯ Fish, Seafood ❯ Iodized Salt, Iodized Water ❯ Kelp: 415 mcg/ 0.25 cup (1 serving) ❯ Low Fat Yogurt: 87.22 mcg/ 1 cup (1 serving) ❯ Cow’s Milk 2%: 58.56 mcg/ 1 cup (1 serving) ❯ Boiled Egg: 23.76 mcg/ 1 each (1 serving)

Suggested Daily Amount: ❯ Ages 13 and up: 150 mcg ❯ Pregnant Women: 220 mcg

but not too much...

Although the human thyroid gland can adapt to a wide range of iodine levels, high levels of iodine, which may be induced from medication and dietary supplements, can lead to an abrupt spike in thyroid hormone production. This can cause hyperthyroidism, leading patients to feel high-strung due to their metabolism being thrown into overdrive by the increased hormone levels.

total wellness ▪ winter 2012




Although it is not categorized as an “essential” mineral, boron is integral for the body’s synthesis of specific types of steroid hormones, such as sex hormones and vitamin D. Boron has also been linked to the regulation of calcium levels in the body. For this reason, boron has been suggested as a potential treatment for osteoporosis and arthritis.

Manganese has been tied to overall health of the human body: connected to the development of strong bone structure, the elimination of free radicals that may damage cells, and the alleviation of inflammation, among other benefits. High levels of manganese can prove neurotoxic and cause symptoms such as confusion and dyscoordination. Workers who are exposed to aerosolized manganese in welding or industries such as steel should take precautions, as they are more at risk to come in contact with high levels of manganese.

getting enough...

A review article published in 2008 in Nutrition Reviews highlights the several key functions of boron. In reviewing several studies that looked at realistic low levels of boron in the diets of humans and other animals, researchers found that boron deficiency can cause impairements in bone health, brain function, and immune response. There is no specific range of boron intake established in the U.S., but the average American consumes anywhere from 1.7 to 7 mcg boron a day. These amounts are well within safe ranges.

but not too much...

At amounts of 100 mg or more, however, toxic effects begin to manifest. Physical presentations include vomiting, diarrhea, and red rash. 15 to 20 grams of boron is the fatal dose to adults, though under normal circumstances, a regular diet will not contain boron levels anywhere near toxic levels.

Symptoms of manganese poisoning, however, usually do not arise from a dietary overdose of manganese. The upper tolerable intake level is the amount of a mineral that a person can take that will pose almost no harm to most of the population. In the case of manganese, this level has been set at 11 mg for people older than age 19, including pregnant and lactating women. Deficiency of manganese is highly unusual, but has been reported in individuals with extremely restrictive diets. Supplementation for manganese often comes in tablets that contain anywhere from 10 mg to over 50 mg of manganese. Because supplements may contain over the upper tolerable limit, consumers should be wary and make sure they read supplement labels carefully before ingestion. Often with a balanced diet, one can obtain an adequate amount of manganese. Even individuals such as vegetarians can already have a significant amount of manganese intake (10-20 mg daily), and do not need further supplementation. Alona Zerlin, a registered dietitian at the UCLA Center for Human Nutrition states that “a person who is deficient in minerals will benefit from supplementation. However, if a person is nutritionally stable, extra minerals in supplement form can become toxic if taken above the Recommended Daily Allowance.”

Good Sources:

Good Sources:

total wellness ▪ winter 2012

❯ Legumes ❯ Prunes ❯ Nuts ❯ Fruits and Vegetables ❯ Almonds - 2.82 mg/ 100g ❯ Peanut Butter - 1.92 mg/ 100g ❯ Avocado - 2.06 mg/ 100g

Suggested Daily Amount: ❯ No specific number has been set. The typical American diet includes an intake from 0.5 mg to 3 mg of boron.


Suggested Daily Amount: ❯ Adults – Up to 11 mg per day

cloves: burwell and burwell photograhy/istockphoto ; hazelnuts: redhelga/istockphoto; roast beef: alle12/istockphoto ; broccoli: angorious/istockphotoв

❯ Meat, fish, poultry, nuts, fruit (absorption is variable, depending on the amount of mineral in the soil) ❯ Ground cloves - 0.6 mg per teaspoon ❯ Saffron - 0.3 mg per teaspoon ❯ Toasted wheat germ - 1.41 mg per tablespoon ❯ Hazelnuts - 3.5 mg per oz



Selenium is instrumental in the body for creating proteins. Amino acids act as building blocks of proteins. Those such as selenocysteine and seleno-methionine require selenium for the body to synthesize them. Over 30 selenium-containing proteins have been identified. A special class of these proteins, known as antioxidant enzymes, helps the body prevent cell damage.

Chromium is a metal that can exist in two states. While one is a severe carcinogen and used in the production of stainless steel, the other serves as an important dietary nutrient. Trivalent chromium, having very low toxicity, has been speculated to be connected with glucose metabolism. A 2004 article published in Diabetes Care showed that chromium supplements have positive effects on glucose absorption in diabetic patients. However, researchers found no additional benefit when healthy patients were given chromium.

getting enough...

Although normal balanced diets supply the required amounts of selenium, do not discount the importance of this mineral. Selenium deficiency has been linked to skeletal muscle dysfunction, as well as abnormalities in the heart muscle.

but not too much...

Although under normal conditions an individual is safe from selenium poisoning, there have been rare cases in the United States where manufacturing errors introduced a high dose of selenium into supplements. Four hundred micrograms is the upper tolerable intake of selenium, and even then, a substantially higher level of selenium is required before it reaches toxic levels. Once it does selenium poisoning can potentially cause diarrhea, hair loss, and even changes in mental status. Most foods containing selenium such as tuna or beef requires a person eating more than a pound of it before even reaching the upper tolerable intake. One major exception is Brazil nuts, which can contain up to 544 mcg of selenium per ounce.

This trace metal also plays a key role in the breakdown of fats and carbohydrates in the body. In addition, chromium supports fatty acid and cholesterol synthesis, both crucial for functions of the brain and other body processes.

Good Sources: ❯ Broccoli: ½ cup - 11 mcg ❯ Garlic, dried: 1 teaspoon - 3 mcg ❯ Basil, dried: 1 teaspoon - 2 mcg

Suggested Daily Amount: Good Sources:

❯ Males age 14-50: 35 mcg/day ❯ Females age 19-50: 25 mcg/day

❯ Vegetables (depends on how much natural selenium was in soil) ❯ Fish ❯ Red Meats ❯ Brazil Nuts (1 oz) - Up to 544 mcg (Large amount, but not necessarily a good source due to such high selenium) ❯ Tuna Canned in Oil (3.0 oz) - 63 mcg ❯ Cooked Beef (3.5 oz) - 35 mcg ❯ Cooked Cod (3.0 oz) - 32 mcg

Suggested Daily Amount: ❯ Ages 14 and up – 55 mcg/day


total wellness ▪ winter 2012

These five trace minerals are only a small representation of all the different elements that one’s body needs to function optimally. In order to get a sufficient amount of each mineral without consuming too much of them, Zerlin advocates simply eating right, saying that “it’s best to eat a balanced diet of vegetables, legumes, whole grain cereals, nuts/seeds, and seafood.” In other words, this is just another incentive to eat healthy! tw


choosing your spread:

exploring alternatives to the classic peanut butter

by leigh goodrich | design by karin yuen

Peanut butter is widely considered a staple ingredient in the lunches of children and,

left: lucas cornwell/istockphoto ; right (in order): alasdair thomson/istockphoto; kaan ates/istockphoto; alasdair thomson/istockphoto; kaan ates/istockphoto; kaan ates/istockphoto; jill fromer/istockphoto; alina solovyova-vincent/ istockphoto; alasdair thomson/istockphoto; matka_wariatka/istockphoto

total wellness â–Ş winter 2012

often, adults. Recently, however, there has been a growing shift away from the classic spread and towards alternative nut and seed butters. One reason for this may be an increase in the prevalence of peanut allergies (according to WebMD, the rate of childhood peanut allergies more than tripled between 1997 and 2008). Of course, these butters have much more to offer

besides simply being peanut-free. Along with their unique flavors and consistencies, the spreads highlighted below boast distinctive health benefits and nutritional profiles. Keep in mind that whatever spread you choose to buy, read the label and opt for simple ingredient lists that include just the nut or seed and possibly a touch of salt. Remember that all these butters are healthful in moderation and adding a variety to your pantry could spice up your diet.


Peanut butter:

Almond butter:

Macadamia nut butter:

Despite growing interest in alternative butters, the benefits of peanuts should not be dismissed. For one, peanuts are a good source of healthy fats (poly and monounsaturated) that are associated with lower triglyceride levels and risk of heart disease. Also, peanuts contain more protein, niacin, folate, and phytosterols (plant compounds that lower cholesterol) than any nut. With these health benefits, and a versatile and kid-friendly taste, it’s no surprise that peanut butter is consumed in 90 percent of U.S. households.

One of the most common peanut butter alternatives, almond butter has been touted as a great option for athletes with its high levels of calcium, magnesium, and potassium. The combination of these nutrients can help lower blood pressure, control blood sugar, and help with weight management. Almond butter is also high in vitamin E (two tablespoons provide over a third of the daily recommended value), which is a beneficial antioxidant.

Macadamia nut butter, like the nuts themselves, should be consumed as a decadent treat. With 24 grams of fat in every two-tablespoon serving, it has the highest fat content and the highest saturated fat content among other nut butters. Still, much of that fat comes from healthy sources, as macadamia nuts contain the highest percentage of monounsaturated fats compared to other oils. One option to consider is also nut butter blends, such as cashew-macadamia mixtures that provide a unique taste combination.

Walnut butter:

Soy nut butter:

Tahini butter:

One of the classic options for those with peanut or tree nut allergies, soy nut butter is low in fat and high in protein. Soy protein is unique among other nut butters because it is a complete protein, meaning it contains all nine essential amino acids. Additionally, soy is a significant source of isoflavones, which are organic compounds that have been studied for their link to decreased risk of certain cancers.

Tahini is a ground sesame seed paste and the butter is creamy and smooth, with a texture similar to peanut butter. Tahini is traditionally used in Middle Eastern cooking (including hummus) and is a healthy vegetarian source of low-fat protein and fiber. Tahini is also a good source of B vitamins and calcium, along with methionine, an amino acid that aids in liver detoxification.

Hazelnut butter:

Pecan butter: Pecans are great sources of antioxidants and pecan butter is rich in vitamins A, B, and E, along with folic acid, magnesium, and zinc. In fact, a single tablespoon of pecan butter has 25 percent more oleic acid, which is a hearthealthy fat shown to promote antioxidant production, than an equal amount of olive oil. Pecan butter is one of the less common nut butters, and is often made with some walnuts added to make the consistency easier to spread.

Sunflower seed butter: Sunflower seeds often accompany nuts in granola bars, trail mixes, baked goods and snacks. However, they are nutritious and versatile in their own right, especially in the form of a spread. Sunflower seed butter is peanut-free, gluten-free and soy-free, making it a safe and increasingly available alternative to other spreads. Sunflower seed butter is lower in fat than other butters and is a good source of vitamin E, thiamin, and magnesium. t w


total wellness ▪ winter 2012

Hazelnut butter has a similar taste to the popular Nutella spread, but with many more health benefits. Hazelnuts are the richest food source of proanthocyanidins, polyphenol compounds that promote blood vessel relaxation. Arginine, an amino acid found in hazelnuts, also contributes to blood vessel health. Additionally, hazelnuts boast the highest concentration of folate among all tree nuts, which is important for maintaining red blood cells.

Walnuts are often eaten as “brain food” since they are chock full of omega-3 fatty acids. Walnut butter is similarly high in alphalinolenic acid, the omega-3 fatty acid that aids in circulation and promotes healthy blood pressure, cholesterol, and metabolism. Walnuts have traditionally played a large role in the Mediterranean diet, which has been linked with lower rates of cardiovascular disease and other chronic conditions. Some studies have even found that walnuts are more effective than olive oil in countering the negative effects of high-fat foods.


When a person stops breathing and EMS is still on the way, it’s sometimes up to everyday bystanders to step up and help. Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) is a procedure that consists of mouth-to-mouth resuscitation and chest compressions and has saved countless lives. And with certification, anyone can learn how to use it. Getting CPR-certified at UCLA The CPR and First Aid Program at UCLA provides American Heart Association Heartsaver Certification courses most weekends of every quarter for student, staff, faculty, and the public. Heartsaver CPR consists of educational modules on Adult, Child, and Infant CPR and how to use an AED (Automated External Defibrillator). Heartsaver First Aid (FA) covers rudimentary emergency measures and what to do in cases such as external bleeding, splints, venomous bites, and hypothermia. Certified UCLA undergraduates serve as the instructors of these courses. “The program prepares its students for emergency situations in various contexts, be it an emergency room in a hospital, a lecture hall, or at home next to the fireplace,” said Alexander Dinh, co-program director of the committee.

The certification process UCLA undergraduates and community members can register for a Heartsaver CPR or First Aid class online at the committee’s website for a $5 registration fee for students and $10 for other members of the community. After enrolling, each student must complete the 3.5 hour course in either Heartsaver CPR or First Aid. During the course, there are two waves of evaluation for instructors to assess the technical competency of their students. At the conclusion of the course, each student walks away with their own certification card, which will authorize them to perform CPR or First Aid measures outside the classroom.

Why should people get certified in CPR? People who are CPR certified provide a valuable resource to their community. According to the American Heart Association, a victim’s chance of survival from cardiac arrest can double or triple if they are given immediate and effective bystander CPR. However, less than one third of out-ofhospital sudden cardiac arrest victims actually receive bystander CPR. The UCLA program gives students not only the chance to get certified, but also to become instructors themselves. As a certified student, one contributes to curbing the rising trend of preventable pre-hospital deaths by becoming a first contact between sudden cardiac arrest and the emergency response network.

The Paris Academy of Sciences officially recommends mouth-to-mouth resuscitation for drowning victims.


Dr. George Crile reports the first successful use of external chest compressions in human resuscitation.


While the basic science of CPR does not change greatly over the years, with new research minor enhancements to the procedure have been made. Every few years, the American Heart Association gathers a number of professionals (cardiologists, neurologists, EMTs, etc.) to evaluate new research and its implications for CPR. Here’s a look at CPR over the years:


CPR over the years


total wellness ▪ winter 2012

To get certified and learn more about CPR/FA visit:

by christina chang | illustration and design by chloe booher

CPR: An overview Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) is necessary when the heart has stopped beating. Primary signs a person may require CPR include unresponsiveness and apnea, or suspension of external breathing. If these signs are apparent, CPR can be used. Even in doubt, it is better to give CPR to a person who does not need it than to not give CPR to a person who needs it. For those who have not been trained in CPR, the American Heart Association recommends Hands-Only CPR, which consists of only the chest compression component of CPR. After certification, this is an outline of how CPR is done:

1. Check to see if the scene 4. Begin chest compressions is safe. in the middle of the chest (intersection of the sternum 2. Check the person and nipple line) by pushing in for responsiveness and two inches 30 times (at a rate regular breathing, tapping of over 100 times per minute). and shouting at them if As a reference, some people necessary. push to the beat of the Bee song “Stayin’ Alive,” 3. If there is no response, Gees’ according to the American call for help or call 911 Heart Association. yourself. An emergency dispatcher can lead you through the instructions of CPR.

5. Tilt the head back and lift the chin. Pinch the person’s nose and cover their mouth with yours. Blow until you see the person’s chest rise, giving two breaths that last a second each. 6. Continue to alternate between chest compressions and blowing until trained medical personnel arrive and relieve you.

More advanced forms of CPR, such as giving breaths and taking the pulse, require additional training. t w

A program to provide telephone instructions in CPR begins in King County, Washington. The emergency dispatchers would give instant directions while the fire department and EMT personnel were still on their way. Dispatcher-assisted CPR becomes standard in the United States.


Leonard Cobb holds the world’s first mass citizen training in CPR in Seattle, Washington. The program, called Medic 2, trains over 100,000 people.



Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) is developed. The American Heart Association begins a program to train physicians for closed-chest cardiac resuscitation; this becomes the forerunner of CPR training for the general public.

total wellness ▪ winter 2012

The United States military adopts the mouth-to-mouth resuscitation method to revive unresponsive victims.



household bacteria havens five easy ways to shoo them away

Bacteria are a part of our life. They have become our everyday neighbors, found in our food and on our skin. The bacteria that live in the intestines of humans help in digestion and even produce vitamins required by the human body. While many bacteria are essential for our existence and live commensally with our bodies, other bacteria are disease carrying microoganisms. Germs like cold viruses and bacteria can lurk in some of the most unexpected of spots. Getting a sense of where these bacteria frequently conglomerate is important because these uninvited guests are known to be the leading cause of a number of illnesses. Using common sense and these few simple tricks can keep your living space clean and make it less likely for microbes to contaminate your surroundings.


main: elise gravel/istockphoto;right: illustrations by amorette jeng

total wellness â–Ş winter 2012

by cindy la | design by amorette jeng

Washing Machine Clothes that get tossed into the washing machine can come out dirtier than they were to begin with. This happens because dirty clothes, particularly undergarments with fecal matter, carry harmful bacteria that can withstand the rigors of a normal washing and drying process. Even detergent and hot water might not be able to control these germinfesting culprits.

Ways to Reduce:

Toothbrush The damp, micro-crevices in the bristles of toothbrushes make it easy for bacteria to hide. When the toothbrush contacts the mouth, it takes up all the bacteria from the leftover pieces of food eaten throughout the day. Since toothbrushes are often moist, they give bacteria a good environment to grow and these bacteria can find their way back into your mouth.

Periodically let your machine go through its regular cycle without adding any clothes. When transferring clothes to the dryer, it is important to wear gloves or wash your hands afterwards because the moist clothes are most likely teeming with bacteria. If time and weather permit, an even better way to ensure that clothes are bacteria-free is to forgo the dryer in place of the sun—a highly effective germ killer. To prevent clothes from getting wrinkles due to the sun, try putting clothes in the dryer for five minutes before lining them on a clothesline.

Ways to Reduce: Easy cleaning solutions will ensure that the toothbrush cleans your mouth as opposed to contaminating it. The best way to protect a toothbrush from contamination is to have it air dry, preferably far from the toilet. Flushing the toilet often spews pollutants into the surrounding air that linger before hitting surfaces. Soaking toothbrushes in a cup of vinegar for a few minutes will also help eliminate some of the germs and bacteria present. It is also important to change toothbrushes often—at least once every three months and especially if you get sick —in order to eliminate those germs.

Kitchen Sink Despite the constant running water generated by the kitchen faucet, the kitchen sink remains a common breeding ground for bacteria such as E. coli and Salmonella. Dishes and plates with leftover food are crawling with bacteria. Faucet handles in particular are common contact points where germs often get transmitted.

Ways to Reduce:


total wellness ▪ winter 2012

Clean the kitchen sink by pouring boiling hot water into it, making sure to douse off areas that have direct contact with food. A simple way to moderate the accumulation of germs in the sink is to avoid dirty dish piles. After cutting raw foods—items generally known to be teeming with pathogens—be sure to immediately sanitize the sink. By keeping the sink area dry, you not only limit bacterial growth but also mold proliferation.

Borax: A Natural Alternative to Bleach Bleach tends to be the go-to solution for fighting off germs, but bleach has a number of toxic chemicals that aren’t the best for health or for the environment. Chlorine bleach releases dioxin, furans, and other organochlorines into the air. These chemicals, after enough exposure, can lead to sore throats, coughs, wheezing, and shortness of breath. The best alternative to bleach is borax. Borax—a combination of baking soda and lemon juice –forms an excellent natural cleanser and disinfectant. Another efficient and even cost-effective cleaning item is hydrogen peroxide. Not only can it ward off bacteria, but it can also serve as a great whitener to use with laundry.

Sponges Sponges are notorious for their bacteria-breeding environment. With their little nooks and crannies, it is no wonder why bacteria are so effective in clinging on to their surfaces. Sponges such as loofahs in the showers can feed on dead skin cells and sponges used to clean dishes can have food particle residues that help to nourish bacteria.

Ways to Reduce: To eliminate bacteria, a good method is to soak sponges in a lemon solution for three to five minutes to prevent infections. Also, it is important to assign different jobs for separate sponges, a system that can reduce the possibilities of cross contamination. Another good alternative is to pack sponges into a dishwasher or toss sponges into a microwave to sterilize them.

Desktops and laptops not only harbor dust particles, but many also carry germs because of frequent contact with germ-ridden hands. Eating near computers in school or at work makes it easy for food deposits to linger around. These residue food bits tend to accumulate into a cesspool of germs and encourage the growth of millions of food-borne bacteria.

Ways to Reduce:

total wellness ▪ winter 2012

An easy and effective way to prevent the spreading of bacteria on the computer is to wash your hands before and after using the computer. When cleaning a component of the computer, make sure to turn off the computer to avoid any damage. Remember that the keyboard and mouse generally accumulate the most bacteria, so using a dust-off computer cleaner or an alcohol swipe is a simple way to ward off germs.


It isn’t necessary to feel so threatened by bacteria that you go on an antibacterial cleaning frenzy. Being a firstclass germaphobe and trying to wipe out all bacteria will actually disrupt the balance of bacteria in the home and make way for more dangerous and resistant forms of bacteria to thrive. Instead, take the necessary precautions and make routine sanitary habits such as washing your hands before and after a meal. Remember that unexpected places that you contact daily do harbor disease-causing germs, so keep your living space clean—your health and your roommates will thank you for it. tw

left: illustrations by amorette jeng; left: creativeye99



Does This Corn Taste Funny? A Closer Look at Genetically Modified Foods and Organisms

A savvy grocery store shopper can easily shy away from foods with nutrition labels that list aspartame, trans-fat and MSG, but avoiding genetically modified organisms and foods (GMOs) is nearly a Herculean task. GMOs are not labeled and are prevalent in processed foods. But what exactly are GMOs? And why are they so controversial? by julia duong | design by jennifer shieh


A 2010 study conducted by National Public Radio (NPR) showed that 64% of respondents were unsure about the safety of genetically modified foods. “People are wary of them because it’s not natural in the sense of traditional methods of crossbreeding plants,” says Susan Bowerman, Assistant Director at the UCLA Center for Human Nutrition. “When people hear about a gene from another organism being inserted into the genetic makeup of a plant, it’s understandable that this might seem like a foreign object and something they may choose not to consume.”

Currently, most genetically modified foods do not need to be labeled for consumer awareness. The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) only requires labeling if an allergen is identified, if an ingredient is toxic, or if the food has a different nutritional value than the original. As a result, many processed foods may not contain GMO labels, even though they incorporate common genetically engineered foods such as corn or soybeans. However, foods certified as organic by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) do not contain genetically modified ingredients. For example, organic meat coming from livestock were fed only organic grain, not genetically modified grain.


total wellness ▪ winter 2012

Genetically modified organisms refer to organisms that contain DNA from other species. These DNA transfers contain desired traits that are inserted from one organism into another, resulting in, for example, a plant that has an increased resistance to a certain herbicide or a plant with greater nutritional content.

GMOS AND NUTRITION According to Bowerman, many genetically engineered foods are not different from the originals in terms of nutrition. "It doesn’t affect the nutritional value of a food per se," said Bowerman. If you’re just talking about genetically modified soybean, for example, one that’s been modified to be resistant to a herbicide (a chemical used to kill weeds and other plants), it doesn’t affect the overall nutritional content (vitamin and mineral content). Thus, the concerns of genetically modified foods do not stem from issues of calorie, fat, or vitamin content; rather, the possibility of potential health hazards due to the genetic manipulation itself. Bowerman mentions a controversial GMO: golden rice. Golden rice is a species of rice with two genes that allow beta-carotene production, a precursor for vitamin A. The production of golden rice was intended for developing countries in which levels of vitamin A in the country’s diet is low, leading to health conditions such as weakened immune systems. However, Bowerman indicates that "the rice is not currently on the market because of the lengthy regulatory process, controversy over its actual nutritional content, and intellectual property issues regarding the use of technology already licensed by companies.”


total wellness ▪ winter 2012

2. 70% of processed foods in American supermarkets now contain genetically modified ingredients. 3. According to the USDA, the following statistics represent the percentage of crops grown in the United States that has been modified through biotechnology, including for resistance to insects or herbicides: ❯ 86% of field corn in 2010, up from 85% in 2009 ❯ 93% of upland cotton in 2010, up from 88% in 2009 ❯ 93% of soybeans in 2010, up from 91% in 2009

About 200 million acres of farmland are currently used to grow genetically modified crops, which have mostly been engineered to be resistant to pesticides, allowing only weeds to die. However, as weeds become resistant to these chemicals, farmers use these pesticides in greater and more concentrated amounts, leading to environmental pollution, health risks for farms and farm workers, and toxic produce.

Some current FDA-approved GMOs and their origins

1. The Non-GMO Project, a non-profit organization that preserves non-GMO products, educates consumers, and provides verified non-GMO choices, researches food products in order to verify if they contain genetically modified ingredients. This verification process includes testing of so-called “risk ingredients” like corn or soy. Their list of investigated products can be found at http://www.nongmoproject. org/consumers/search-participatingproducts.


Source of Gene

Tomatoes that stay ripe longer

Monsanto Company

Bacteria (Pseudomonas chlororaphis)

Tomato has a slower softening rate

Canola resistant to the glyphosate herbicide

Monsanto Company

Bacteria (Agrobacterium sp. strain CP4, Ochrobactrum anthropi strain LBAA )

Resistance to glyphosate, the most commonly used herbicide

Soybeans with more monounsaturated oleic acids

DuPont Agricultural Products


Corn resistant to Lepidopteran insects

Syngenta Seeds, Inc.

Bacteria (Bacillus thuringiensis)


Function of Inserted Gene

Suppresses a desaturase enzyme that would create another double bond within the fatty acid chain. This leads to a higher concentration of monounsaturated fatty acids, which are healthier than trans fats and saturated fats because monounsaturated fats raise levels of high density lipoproteins (“good cholesterol”) and decrease levels of low density lipoproteins (“bad cholesterol”) Increases resistance to Lepidopteran insects, including common plant pests like moths


Currently, no genetically modified animals have been approved by the FDA to enter the food supply. However, scientists have genetically engineered salmon to grow five times faster than wild breeds, hens to lay low-cholesterol eggs, and chickens to produce anti-cancer drugs. Despite these results, the FDA, as of January 2009, issued a final, strict guidance on genetically modified animals, explaining a process of how the FDA will regulate GMOs for future producers. Additionally, genetically modified organisms and foods do undergo a process of review and regulation before being made commercially available in the United States. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulates genetically modified plants and food additives, while the USDA regulates genetically modified eggs, meat, and poultry. The Environmental Protection Agency also plays a role in terms of regulating pesticides.


A primary concern is that people with allergies will consume genetically modified food that contains substances they are allergic to. For example, if genes from nuts are inserted into another crop, the consumer might not realize this if there is no labeling. Moreover, the combinations of different genes may cause new allergies that have never previously been identified.

Gene mutation

There has not been enough extensive research done to show if genetically modifying foods will create mutations and abnormalities, nor have there been studies to show the effect of GMOs on a human’s DNA.

Antibiotic resistance

Almost all genetically engineered (GE) foods contain antibiotic resistance marker genes that help producers know whether the new genetic material was transferred to the host plant or animal. GE food could make disease-causing bacteria even more resistant to antibiotics, which could increase the spread of disease throughout the world.

Human consumption

A 2010 study in the International Journal of Biological Sciences found that many genetically modified foods also contain residues of pesticides or herbicides, though further research is required to determine any lasting health risks of exposure to these chemicals.

Damage to the environment


total wellness â–Ş winter 2012

Insects, birds and wind might carry genetically altered pollen to other fields and forests, pollinating plants, and randomly creating new species that would carry on the genetic modifications. Critics also voice concerns over the environmental consequences of the introduction of genetically modified foods, particularly the potential for accidental cross-pollination of non-GMO crops and the possible effects of toxins on other insects, like monarch butterflies. t w


Better Health at your Fingertips: Free Apps for Everyday Wellness

total wellness â–Ş winter 2012

Making healthy choices can often seem too confusing, time consuming, and

difficult. However, the advent of new technology is quickly revolutionizing this situation. With Smartphone apps, health resources are literally at your fingertips. Whether you are looking for ways to cook a wholesome meal, de-stress, or get a challenging workout, there's an app that can help you reach your goal. Here are snapshots of just a few of the numerous free health-promoting apps.


main image: brandon laufenberg/istockphoto; icons: mightyisland/istockphoto

by shannon wongvibulsin | design by amorette jeng

Healthier Food Choices

Sleep & Relaxation

Relax Melodies: A White Noise Ambiance for Sleep, Meditation & Yoga: iLBsoft


Take a Break! – Guided Meditations for Stress Relief: Meditation Oasis

Meal Planning by Food on the Table

Having trouble falling asleep or relaxing? Use Relax Melodies to relieve your tension and help you experience deeper and more rejuvenating sleep. This app features 39 soothing sounds and two binaural frequencies that claim to help your brain reach a state of relaxation.

Interested in trying meditation, but don’t know where to start? With guided meditation, the instructor will direct you with calming verbal cues to relax both the body and the mind. Look no further than this app for guided meditation to help you get started with a seven-minute work break relaxation meditation and thirteen-minute stress relief meditation.

Yoga Free – 250 Poses & Yoga Classes: Arawella Corporation

No time to enroll in a regular yoga class? With Yoga Free you can do guided yoga on your own schedule. Featuring 250 poses with photos and guidance, this app has something for everyone, whether you’re just starting or you’re already at an advanced level. Additionally, you can follow a ready-made program or custom design your own practice. With the built-in calendar, you can track your activity and monitor your progress.


Confused about deciphering food labels? With Fooducate, all you have to do is scan the barcode of the item in question and the product profile will display its health details along with healthier alternatives. This app brings attention to excessive sugar, trans fats, additives and preservatives, high fructose corn syrup, artificial colorings, and more.

Looking for a quick and easy way to prepare healthy meals and save money at the same time? This meal planning app provides thousands of recipes for you to choose from and then suggests a personalized grocery list highlighting store specials and sale items.

Good Food Near You: Global Fitness Media, LLC

Traveling and don’t know where to eat other than familiar fast food chains? Good Food Near You helps you locate nutritious dining options and make healthy decisions by providing menus with nutritional information for fast food restaurants, dining restaurants, grocery stores, and convenience stores. Rather than attempting to decode which menu items are actually wholesome options, you can use this app to access a list of the healthiest choices at each location based upon your request of the meal lowest in carbohydrates, calories, or fat.

Health Resources

Everyday Health: Everyday Health, Inc. Nike Training Club: Nike, Inc.

Daily Ab Workout Free: Daniel Miller

Want to build up your core strength but don’t have time for the gym? Try Daily Ab Workout’s five to ten minute guided core routines for ab-sculpting exercises you can do right at home. This Daily Ab Workout app features easy-to-follow video guidance and timers for every exercise routine.

WebMD: WebMD Health Corporation

Not sure about what ailment you might be suffering from? Use WebMD’s Symptom Checker to analyze the part of the body that is troubling you, select the relevant symptoms, and get feedback about potential conditions that may be responsible for the issue. The app also features an extensive database on drugs, supplements, and vitamins including content on appropriate uses, side effects, and warnings. WebMD also suggests local physicians, hospitals, and pharmacies based on your location or search. Additionally, this app provides a guide to medical emergencies with a first aid essential database that gives detailed information on how to deal with common emergency situations. t w


total wellness ▪ winter 2012

Looking for a personal trainer? With the Nike Training Club app, it’s as if you have your own personal trainer whenever and wherever you desire. You can choose from full-body workouts of 30 or 45 minutes, focused 15-minute workouts to target specific areas, and drills to build the fundamentals of strength, cardio, interval, and core training. You can keep track of your performance and training history with this app and share your stats with friends through Facebook and Twitter if you are inspired!

Feel lost about how to handle everyday health issues now that you’re away from home? With Everyday Health, you can look up easy-to-follow advice about common health problems, such as ankle sprains, toothaches, allergies, colds, sleep disorders, and more. More importantly, Everyday Health also provides tips of the day for maintaining wellness.

food pick


by jennifer j. wilson and leigh goodrich | design by karin yuen

from the cookbook

As members of the nightshade family of ➺ vegetables, eggplants are used in various cuisines

Grilled Eggplant & Tomato Stacks


Preheat grill to medium-high or a grill pan on medium high heat until hot. Cut medium eggplant into 6 ½ inch rounds. Brush both sides of eggplant slices with 2 teaspoons of oil and sprinkle ¼ teaspoon on slices. Grill eggplant slices for five minutes. Then turn eggplant slices for three to five more minutes until tender and marked with grill lines. Transfer grilled eggplant slices to larger platter or plate. Spread each eggplant slice with 1 teaspoon pesto and then top each one with a slice of tomato, a slice of mozzarella, and a basil leaf. Lastly, drizzle each stack with vinegar and sprinkle the remaining salt and pepper on the stacks.

Eggplant Pomodoro Pasta

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 1 medium eggplant, (about 1 pound), cut into 1/2-inch cubes 2 cloves garlic, minced 4 plum tomatoes, diced 1/3 cup chopped pitted green olives 2 tablespoons red-wine vinegar 4 teaspoons capers, rinsed 3/4 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper, (optional) 12 ounces whole-wheat angel hair pasta 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley, or basil Bring a pot of water to a boil. Add pasta in boiling water and cook pasta, until tender, for six minutes or according to package directions. Meanwhile, heat oil in a large nonstick skillet on medium heat. Add eggplant, stirring occasionally, until softened. Then add garlic and cook, until fragrant about 30 seconds to 1 minute. Mix into skillet tomatoes, olives, vinegar, capers, salt, pepper and crushed red pepper (if using) and cook, stirring, 5 to 7 minutes more until the tomatoes begin to break down. Serve pasta into six shallow bowls and spoon sauce over pasta. t w

left: dny59/istockphoto; right: julia kaptelova/istockphoto

❯ Phytochemicals are compounds that function as antioxidants to protect the body against the oxidative damage that leads to chronic diseases like cancer and cardiovascular disease. In eggplants, the dominant phytonutrient compound is chlorogenic acid, which is known for its high antioxidant activity. Chlorogenic acid is also found in coffee, and besides neutralizing free radicals, can also help regulate metabolism. A 2003 research article published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that chlorogenic acid can also modulate glucose uptake, possibly contributing to eggplant’s low glycemic index value (a measure of a food’s effect on glucose levels). ❯ Eggplants are also high in the phytonutrient nasunin, a flavanoid that combats cancer cells’ ability to increase their blood supply. A 2005 article published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry confirmed the antiangiogenic activities of the compound. Nasunin also has high antioxidant activity and protects brain cell membranes from free radical damage. To reap the benefits of nasunin, be sure to prepare eggplant with the peel intact, as the nutrient is found in the dark purple skin of the vegetable. ❯ Considering the low energy density of eggplant (a onecup serving has just 27 calories and no fat), it may come as a surprise that there are a host of essential nutrients packed in. Eggplant is a good source of vitamins A, B and C, along with folate, magnesium, calcium and phosphorous. Eggplant is particularly a good source of potassium, which has been shown to help lower blood pressure, support muscle and nerve function, and maintain the balance of electrolytes. ❯ A single cup of eggplant contains 11 percent of the daily recommended value of fiber. With recipes that highlight eggplant as the star of the dish, it’s easy to get several cups in one meal. High dietary fiber intake is important for preventing colon cancer, keeping the digestive system regular, and slowing the progression of cardiovascular disease. Fiber can also aid in reducing high cholesterol levels and lowering the risk of developing type II diabetes. The skin of the eggplant has additional fiber, so keep that in mind when preparing eggplant recipes.

2 teaspoons plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, divided 1 medium eggplant (3/4-1 pound), cut into 6 rounds about 1/2 inch thick 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt, divided 6 teaspoons prepared pesto 2 large beefsteak tomatoes, each cut into 3 slices about 3/4 inch thick 4 ounces fresh mozzarella, cut into 6 thin slices 6 fresh basil leaves 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper


total wellness ▪ winter 2012

across the globe. Eggplants are native plants of India and are also cultivated in other parts of Southeast Asia. Interestingly, founding father Thomas Jefferson is credited with introducing the eggplant to North America. Eggplants are versatile and can be used in a variety of cooking recipes, such as soups, salads, and main dishes. These vegetables are a dieter’s friend, low in calories and fat, but they are also packed with nutritional benefits. Read on to learn about what eggplant has to offer.

credits We would like to acknowledge the following people for their contributions to this edition. We would also like to make special mention of the following UCLA physicians, professors and faculty members who donated their time and expertise to ensuring the accuracy of content published in the following articles:


â?§ q&a

Susan Bowerman, MS, RD, CSSD, Assistant Director, UCLA Center for Human Nurition

yoga: inner peace and overall wellness Kathy Cass, MA, Nationally Certified Counselor and Board Certified Dance, Movement, and Yoga Therapist

cereal swap: finding nutritious cereal choices

Susan Bowerman, MS, RD, CSSD, Assistant Director, UCLA Center for Human Nurition

ingredient substitution: options for a healthier meal Eve Lahijani, MS, RD, Nutrition Health Educator, UCLA Bruin Resource Center

what your mouth is telling you Scott Ngai, DDS UCLA Department of Pediatric Dentistry

out of sight, out of mind: types of headaches and how to treat them Raffi Tachdjian, MD, MPH, Assistant Clinical Professor of Medicine and Pediatrics, Division of Allergy and Clinical Medicine at UCLA

Raffi Tachdjian, MD, MPH, Assistant Clinical Professor of Medicine and Pediatrics, Division of Allergy and Clinical Medicine at UCLA

elements for your health

Alona Zerlin, MS, RD, Research Dietition, UCLA Center for Human Nutrition

better health at your fingertips: free apps for everyday wellness

Eve Lahijani, MS, RD, Nutrition Health Educator, UCLA Bruin Resource Center

Leah FitzGerald, RN, FNP-C, PhD, Assistant Professor, UCLA School of Nursing


food pick

Judith Sperling, Risk Manager, Training & Development at UCLA Recreation

Eve Lahijani, MS, RD, Nutrition Health Educator, UCLA Bruin Resource Center

household bacteria havens: five easy ways to shoo them away

copy-edits and review

Raffi Tachdjian, MD, MPH, Assistant Clinical Professor of Medicine and Pediatrics, Division of Allergy and Clinical Medicine at UCLA

does this corn taste funny? a closer look at genetically modified foods and organisms

Susan Bowerman, MS, RD, CSSD, Assistant Director, UCLA Center for Human Nurition

Leigh Goodrich and Shannon Wongvibulsin

layout revisions

Karin Yuen, Amorette Jeng, and Shannon Wongvibulsin

cover & table of contents

Designed by Amorette Jeng & Karin Yuen


total wellness â–Ş winter 2012

combating the common cold

choosing your spread: exploring alternatives to the classic peanut butter

A proud supporter of


















Discover all we have to offer @

Classes vary by quarter, consult the Rec Quarterly for the current schedule:

2131 John Wooden Center Los Angeles, CA 90095 (310) 825-3701

Doctor Yourself to Better Health