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The Good & the Bad of your favourite food

Fish or cut bait?

THE GOOD

Fish is the best of protein you can get, and it's relatively low in fat. Many species pack heart-protective omega-3 fats, and those that don't are still better than a cheese burger. Those people who ate two to four fish meals a week, lowered their heart disease and stroke risk.

THE BAD

Although most fish is good for you, some fish can have high contents of mercury. This can cause brain damage. Children, women who are pregnant are considered high risk and need to restrict their intake of high-mercury fish because the heavy metal can interfere with youngsters' brain development.

BOTTOM LINE

If you do not fall into a high-risk category, eating fish twice a week is good for you. But do not eat the same fish twice in 1 week, and restrict highly polluted species you love (ie swordfish, king mackerel etc) to an occasional meal.

Incredible, but edible? eggs

THE GOOD

Eggs are not only harmless but healthy. Eggs have good-quality protein with the essential amino acids; choline, which might play a vital role in preventing memory loss; lutein and zeaxanthin, caroteniods that protect the eyes against cataracts and macular degeneration.

THE BAD

You can eat one egg a day but no more. The reason? Cholesterol. One egg yolk packs close to the daily cholesterol limit. As long as you watch your daily intake from other food ie shrimp or pastries which also contain eggs.

BOTTOM LINE

Go-ahead order the omelette, this may help your heart but limit it to once a week.

The has-bean? soy

THE GOOD

Soy is generally very good. Soys can lower cholesterol. Other reasons, they contain poly-unsaturated fats, and are a good source of fiber and have other vitamins. Their healthy subsitute for saturated fats but shouldn't expect them to be of any special benefit.

THE BAD

Soy, which is mildly estrogenic, may fuel estrogen-positive breast cancer, but if you're on medications like tamoxifen and aromatase inhibitor drug, you may want to err on the side of caution and stay away.

BOTTOM LINE

Stick to Soy foods and stay away from process foods with added isoflavones, the plant hormones in the beans.

Coffee serious perks?

THE GOOD

Coffee seems to be the most common source of antioxidants. It can lower the risk of liver cancer, type 2 diabetes, gallstones and even breast cancer in particularly vulnerable women with BRCA1 or BRCA2 genes. It increases alertness, improves athletic performance and preserves memory.

THE BAD

You may want to give up coffee when; pregnant (caffeine may trigger miscarriage); you have trouble sleeping (caffeine is a stimulant); or you have heartburn or gastroesophageal reflux disease (caffeine loosens the valve at the end of the esophagus and can allow for the backwash of stomach acid).

BOTTOM LINE

If you love coffee, don't give it up, but limit the drink to 1-2 cups a day. If you have heart disease, drink only filtered coffee and avoid that double shot of espresso or coffee made in a plunge pot.







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