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DPR Monthly Newsletter

May 2021


Picture by: Body Wise International

It's a Dog's Life
Dog ownership is at an all-time high. According to the American Pet Products Association, there are close to 90 million dogs in the United States.  And, over one-third of dog households have more than one. Dogs provide companionship and joy to both young and old. Being a past dog owner has given me an opportunity to make some observations. I thought my reflections about a dog’s life would be appropriate for everyone to ponder this week:
  • Dogs never pass up the opportunity to go for a walk.
  • Dogs love to ride in the car and experience fresh air and the wind in their faces.
  • Dogs stretch before they rise from sleep.
  • Dogs take naps.
  • Dogs romp and play daily.
  • Dogs drink a lot of water.
  • Dogs (many) are not allowed junk food (i.e., table scraps) and enjoy eating specialized, healthy dog food.
  • Dogs dance around and wag their entire body when they are happy or excited.
  • Dogs eat with gusto, and stop when they’ve had enough.
  • Dogs run to the door to greet loved ones when they come home.
  • Dogs get regular check-ups from their doctors.
  • Dogs realize when they are tired at night and therefore go to bed.
  • Dogs thrive on building loving relationships rather than accumulating material things.
Sounds like a pretty healthy lifestyle, don’t you think?

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April 2021



Supporting The Microbiome and Mental Health During the Pandemic and Beyond

The coronavirus pandemic has increased stress level, anxiety, and mental health in general for everyone in one way or another. Whether we are aware of it or not, the significant changes in work, home life, and ability to go places naturally cause increased stress. As the weeks have worn on with sheltering in place and trying to forge new routines, many people are struggling to navigate the continued uncertainty. Those with a prior history of anxiety and/or trauma may find themselves triggered by these new circumstances and frustrated with a sense of “going backwards” with their ability to manage life stressors. As things slowly begin to open up again, some people are noticing increased anxiety around figuring out how to return to their previous patterns, or whether they want to return to their old “normal” at all. 

While there are thoughts and feelings that accompany an increase in stress and anxiety, many people are also experiencing the tangible impacts of increased stress. These can include sleep disruption, increased food cravings (typically for comfort foods), digestive issues, and increased sedentary activities. Each of these has an impact on stress and anxiety levels and, when not addressed, can make them worse. Increases in stress and anxiety also take a toll on mood, generally making it worse, as well as our physical health. Most people think of weight gain as a common physical issue associated with worsening mental health, but reduced immune function is just as significant – especially during a time like this when concerns about illness are at an all-time high.

Mental health and the gut microbiome

One of the most important, but often ignored, aspects of mental health is gut health.

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March 2021



Refined grain consumption associated with increased risk for mortality,
and cardiovascular disease events. 
Refined grain consumption was associated with an increased risk for mortality and major CVD events, according to new data from the PURE study published in The BMJ.
“Previous studies have been conducted mostly in North America and Europe, with limited information from other parts of the world where the amount and types of carbohydrates consumed in the diet vary, as do their contributions to overall calories,” Sumathi Swaminathan, MD, associate professor in the division of nutrition at St. John’s Research Institute in Bangalore, India, and colleagues wrote. “The PURE study has the distinct advantage of examining diets from diverse populations in low-, middle- and high-income countries in multiple regions across the world.”
 Photo Source: Adobe Stock
The prospective cohort study included 137,130 participants (mean age, 50 years; 42% men) from 21 countries who were followed for a median of 9.5 years. Participants completed a country-specific food frequency questionnaire to evaluate consumption of refined grains, whole grains and white rice.
The primary outcome was the composite of mortality or major CVD events such as death from CV causes, nonfatal MI, stroke or HF. Participants were stratified by refined grain consumption: less than 50 g per day, 50 g to less than 150 g per day, 150 g to less than 250 g per day, 250 g to less than 350 g per day, and at least 350 g per day.
According to the researchers, 9.2% of participants experienced a composite outcome event during follow-up.
The highest level of refined grain intake (> 350 g per day) was associated with elevated risk for total mortality (HR = 1.27; 95% CI, 1.11-1.46; P for trend = .004), major CVD events (HR = 1.33; 95% CI, 1.16-1.52; P for trend < .001) and mortality or major CV events (HR = 1.28; 95% CI, 1.15-1.42; for trend < .001) compared with the lowest level of refined grain intake (< 50 g per day). There was also an association between higher refined grain consumption and higher systolic BP.
There were no significant associations found between whole grain consumption or white rice consumption and adverse health outcomes.
“Our study from 21 countries showed that higher intake of refined grains

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February 2021

Give yourself the gift of health this Valentine’s day and beyond

Love yourself enough to live a healthy lifestyle.
Take control of belly fat … 
and live a healthy life!


Belly fat doesn’t just look bad. It poses a real danger to your health.
Did you know that belly fat doubles the risk of death from heart disease, stroke, diabetes and cancer?
Every excess two inches around your waist – beyond your ideal size – increases the risk of early death by 17%.
Those are the findings of the EPIC Study that followed 360,000 people for ten years. The results of the study first appeared on November 13, 2008, in the New England Journal of Medicine.
What does abdominal fat do? It doesn’t just sit there. It doesn’t just make it difficult to button your pants.
Belly fat secretes harmful substances:
Angiotensinogen – Raises blood pressure.
Resistin – Leads to high blood sugar levels.
Adiponectin – Slows the metabolization of lipids and glucose.
Interleukin 6 – Associated with inflammation of arteries and heart attacks.
Once you pack on belly fat it can trigger a vicious cycle known as Metabolic Syndrome. This makes it more difficult to lose weight and more likely you’ll suffer adverse health events.
Take Control of Belly Fat … and Your Life . . . so what can you do? 

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January 2021



Have you made any resolutions this year? Getting healthier is a popular goal, but for any goal you are shooting for how do you turn that good intention into a resolution you can stick to? The key is breaking down that broad goal into smaller, achievable parts. Committing to even just one of these resolutions in the New Year will boost your health. Here are six achievable resolution ideas for a healthier you.
  • Make Water you default Beverage Sugar-sweetened beverages, like soda, coffee drinks, juices, and iced tea, are one of the top five foods that drive weight gain, according to a Harvard study. Choosing water instead of calorie-laden beverages is a smart and easy way to drive down your overall calorie intake, so you may end up losing weight. Plus, a 2010 study in the journal of Obesity found that adults who drank two cups of water before a meal ate less at the meal and lost more weight over 12 weeks than the group who didn’t drink water before eating.  

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