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Psychology & Diet

Our scale and us: a toxic relationship



The scale tells us our weight but also a whole series of misconceptions and toxic beliefs. The goal: to identify them in order to better neutralize them in order to restore a peaceful relationship with our body and our food. Explanations and advice from Gérard Apfeldorfer, psychiatrist, specialist in eating behavior.

Whether it shows less than four kilos or more than 500 grams, the scale is not content with giving our weight. Like the teachers during the class councils, he gives us warnings, reproaches or congratulations. Because this machine, which we believe to be perfectly reliable and objective, generates or maintains a series of false ideas. About our relationship with the body, weight and food. Their power, and our dependency, would be less had we not given those few square inches of plastic and aluminum the status of supreme judge. The antidote to this poisoned relationship? Identify our erroneous beliefs one by one in order to better abandon them in order to reestablish a fairer, more comfortable and realistic relationship with our body, our weight and our image.

The scale claims to know our ideal weight

It all starts with a fantasy: to reach or regain our ideal weight. The problem is that the ideal weight we aim for is rarely our natural weight, that is, our balance or comfort weight. The ideal weight is often the one we reach after drastic diets or the one we never reach and that we pursue all our lives. The problem is that the very notion of ideal weight is supported by the medical profession, as Gérard Apfeldorfer points out. “Doctors refer to the BMI, the body mass index (weight divided by the square of the height, expressed in kg/m2). However, this calculation is made from epidemiological data, that is, from a population as a whole, which cannot be transferred to individuals. They do not take into account a person’s weight history, lifestyle, or genetic heritage. »

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Results: By choosing a magic number, which symbolizes both our beauty weight and our health weight, we transform the scale into an echo chamber of false and distressing data.

Conclusion ? “You shouldn’t waste your time and your health chasing your ideal weight, warns Dr. Apfeldorfer, but rather seek your balance weight. That which is also called “natural weight” and in which one settles permanently and effortlessly when you are really listening to your body and food sensations. »

She stigmatizes our weight fluctuations.

“If and then? We are all subject to relative weight instability. For example, we are lighter in late summer (less rich diet and higher physical exertion) and heavier in late winter (for opposite reasons). But also the chemistry of certain foods: the mixture of glycogen and water causes variations between 1 and 3 kg in the space of 12 to 24 hours!After this time, we return to our initial weight.

Another factor: our level of hydration. The less hydrated the body is, the more water the body retains. Stress can also cause excessive storage. The resumption of a sports practice also entails an increase in weight (between 1 and 3 kilos). Either fat is replaced by (heavier) muscle, or muscle has been gained without weight loss. Another cause of fluctuation: food “cracks” after crash dieting. Every time you put the body on food restriction, you activate a body defense memory card. Your body will go into the “starvation storage” mode that it is genetically programmed to do. This explains why 400 grams of pastries sometimes produce 2 kilos more on the scale! Finally, let’s not forget about hormones, which, especially in women, cause weight to fluctuate wildly. “The fat settles slowly and disappears slowly, emphasizes Gérard Apfeldorfer. Therefore, it is useless to go on a diet when you take 3 kilos in a week, the rapid variations always come from the movements of the water! »

She makes us believe that a good weight is a good body

And that is a lie! Or, more accurately, a dangerous interpretation of the role of scale in the construction of a positive image of oneself. “If the right weight is the balance weight, the one that does not cost us effort to maintain and that respects our morphology, specifies Dr. Apfeldorfer, then that good weight makes a beautiful body. An accepted body, that we like to care for and enhance, whether lean, thin, round or fat! But most of the time, when we say beautiful body, we always mean the current standard. Which is both an aberration and a source of great suffering for all those who are far from it. »

Therefore, by showing a weight that we consider distant from the “beautiful body”, we place the balance in the role of the intransigent and tyrannical superego. And due to a magical thought –“when I weigh 50 kilos, I will be beautiful”– we disconnect from our bodily sensations and deprive ourselves of the pleasure of inhabiting a singular body.

She thinks she’s a coach

The balance in the role of the ascending food coach bogeyman! “This is one of the most disastrous beliefs, regrets Gérard Apfeldorfer. The scale only maintains dangerous superstitions (“there are good foods, low in calories, that can be consumed even in a bulimic way, and bad, fatty and sweet, that must be prohibited”) that lead to cognitive restriction (by controlling my diet, control my weight). There are, according to the psychotherapist, two ways of eating: controlling oneself or listening to oneself. Balance leads to control, transforms the body into a potentially dangerous object that must be watched and constrained. While listening to food and bodily sensations, on the other hand, we make our body a partner and not an adversary. “The new puritanism that reigns over food has the effect of moralizing food: being overweight, even slightly, means that one has indulged in guilty pleasures and that one must regain order in one’s life,” says Gérard Apfeldorfer. deprivations that are as excessive as they are useless, because we now know that draconian diets “break” the metabolism and result, in the more or less short term, in more weight gain than loss.

She always wants to be right

And we believe it because we blindly and wrongly trust the numbers: “They can’t lie” we think. Wrongly. “This weight that is shown is not a scientific truth, corrects Dr. Apfeldorfer. The balance cannot be the right one because each being is unique, its morphology, its genetics, its way of life, its history, make it unique. However, the scale says nothing about this complexity, it reduces the being to a pile of kilos! »

In any case, says the psychotherapist, trusting a machine and depending on it deprives us of an essential freedom: that which consists in trusting ourselves to make the life choices that we consider to generate good.- To be physical and mental. According to your personal feelings.

Good use of weighing.

Weigh yourself regularly, why not? But on condition that this resource does not become addictive. For this, it is necessary, according to the psychiatrist Gérard Apfeldorfer, to take some precautions.

At what pace? Once a month. Considering normal a weight variation of 1 to 3 kilos.

When and how ? In the morning or at night, it doesn’t matter, but preferably dressed, so as not to “fetishize” your weight. The important thing is to have a global estimate. Example: knowing that we weigh between 59 and 61 kilos.

What scale? Much less an ultra-precise scale that, by registering the slightest variations in weight, becomes a machine for producing emotions (great, minus 200 grams! Horror, plus 200 grams!) Precision encourages obsession and maintains misconceptions about its relationship with the body and food. Also avoid speaking scales, which distribute good and bad points.

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Psychology & Diet

Are potatoes good for health?



Presse Santé

The potato is a staple in Western cuisine, often used as a side dish for protein and vegetables. This vegetable is inexpensive, available worldwide, and relatively easy to grow. So are potatoes good for your health, and if so, how much should you eat?

These are underground tubers that grow on the roots of potato plants and are one of the most popular tubers. Today, many types of potatoes can be found at any local grocery store, but the humble white potato remains a favorite and classic fall vegetable. It is typically baked, mashed, and fried, and added to countless recipes, from casseroles to savory pies.

health benefits

Potatoes alone offer a host of health benefits thanks to their impressive nutritional content. Remember, though, that if you start adding toppings, such as cheese, sour cream, bacon, or excess salt, or snacking on things like French fries, you’ll negate some of these potential benefits. . If you pay attention to your portions and toppings, potatoes have the following health benefits:

1. High in fiber

Potatoes are a good source of dietary fiber, which is essential for digestive health. Eating high-fiber foods promotes regularity, aids in weight loss, and improves cardiovascular health. Fiber also promotes healthy cholesterol levels.

2. High in vitamin C

Potatoes are considered an excellent source of antioxidants and vitamin C, a micronutrient that plays a role in maintaining the body’s connective tissue, protecting the heart, enhancing immunity, and stimulating the absorption of other nutrients consumed. Research shows that vitamin C also promotes healthy skin and the formation of collagen, an important protein that aids in wound healing and is used to form blood vessels, ligaments, and tendons. As adults age, their collagen production declines, so it is beneficial to consume foods that contain vitamin C.

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3. Helps digestion with prebiotics

The resistant starch found in potatoes serves as a prebiotic, an indigestible fiber compound that helps feed probiotics in the gut. Research suggests that increasing your intake of prebiotics may improve gut health and the body’s response to stress, reduce inflammation, promote weight loss, and improve digestion.

4. A good source of potassium

Potatoes are a good source of potassium, an essential nutrient needed to maintain fluid and electrolyte balance in the body. Potassium is also necessary for various bodily functions, such as maintaining hydration and allowing organs like the heart, kidneys, and brain to function properly. Studies show that eating potassium-rich foods promotes heart health, helps lower blood pressure, lowers the risk of stroke, and may even prevent PMS cramps and muscle weakness.

5. Contains vitamin B6

Although not as rich in vitamin B6 as animal meat, beans, and seeds, potatoes are a good source of this micronutrient and therefore help support a healthy metabolism and other important bodily functions. Thanks to their vitamin B6 content, potatoes help maintain brain function, improve mood, protect eye health, and reduce inflammation.

Potato Nutrition Facts (and Types)

Potatoes contain bioactive plant compounds that have health-promoting properties, such as lutein, chlorogenic acid, and glycoalkaloids. They are also rich in fiber and micronutrients.

A medium-sized (about 173 grams) baked potato with skin contains approximately the following:

161 calories
36.6 grams of carbohydrates
4.3 grams of protein
0.2 grams of fat
3.8 grams of fiber
16.6 milligrams of vitamin C (28% of the daily value)
0.5 milligrams of vitamin B6 (27% of daily intake)
926 milligrams of potassium (26% of daily intake)
0.4 milligrams of manganese (19% of the daily intake)
2.4 milligrams of niacin (12% of the daily value)
48.4 micrograms of folic acid (12% of the daily value)
48.4 milligrams of magnesium (12% DV)
121 milligrams of phosphorus (12% DV)
1.9 milligrams of iron (10% DV)
0.2 milligrams of copper (10% DV)
0.1 milligrams of thiamine (7% DV)
0.7 milligrams pantothenic acid (7% DV)
0.1 milligrams of riboflavin (5% DV)
3.5 micrograms of vitamin K (4% of the daily value)
0.6 milligrams of zinc (4% of the daily value).

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Potatoes come in all different shapes, sizes, and colors. The most common types of potatoes are:

White and Red Potatoes: White, red, and yellow potatoes are among the most common. They are cheap and easy to incorporate into meals. While other types of potatoes have higher nutritional value, these are good sources of fiber, vitamin C, potassium, and vitamin B6. Sweet potatoes: Sweet potatoes have an impressive nutritional profile, containing more fiber than white sweet potatoes, as well as more than 400% of the recommended daily value for vitamin A. They are also rich in vitamin C, manganese, vitamin B6, and potassium.

Purple Potatoes: Purple potatoes have an earthy, nutty flavor and offer similar micronutrient levels to white potatoes. They are good sources of vitamin C and potassium and contain a decent amount of protein per serving.

How to choose, cook and use

Potatoes are available year-round in grocery stores. A raw potato has a shelf life of about a week and can be stored at room temperature. Look for a firm potato with smooth skin and no cracks, bruises, or cuts. Before cooking, clean the skin of any residual dirt, but keep the skin on if possible.

There are many ways to prepare potatoes and add them to meals. They can be:

in the microwave

If you eat potatoes for their nutritional value, your best options are to bake, roast, or microwave them. These methods reduce nutrient loss and do not require cooking oils.

* HealthKey strives to convey health knowledge in a language accessible to all. In NO EVENT can the information provided replace the opinion of a health professional.

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Psychology & Diet

11 incredible virtues of cauliflower to discover!



Presse Santé

Looking for a nutrient-dense, low-carb vegetable? Look no further than cauliflower! This versatile vegetable is packed with health benefits, from promoting heart health to reducing inflammation. Read on to learn more about the health benefits of cauliflower.

The nutritional value of cauliflower:

One cup (128 grams) of raw cauliflower contains:

  • Cauliflower Calories: 25
  • Fiber: 3 grams

Cauliflower vitamins are:

  • Vitamin C: 77% of the RDA
  • Vitamin K: 20% of the RDA
  • Vitamin B6: 11% of the RDA
  • Folate: 14% of the RDA
  • Pantothenic acid: 7% of the RDA

The minerals that cauliflower contains are:

  • Potassium: 9% of the RDA
  • Manganese: 8% RDA
  • Phosphorus: 4% of the RDA

Cauliflower Benefits:

  1. An ideal source of antioxidants:

Cauliflower contains antioxidants (glucosinolates and isothiocyanates) and protects your body against damaging free radicals and inflammation. The antioxidants in cauliflower have the ability to control the growth of cancer cells.

  1. Promotes Weight Loss:

Cauliflower is an excellent substitute for high-calorie foods like rice and flour. Thanks to its high fiber content, cauliflower facilitates digestion and provides a feeling of satiety. By eating cauliflower, you can control your daily calorie intake, which is beneficial for your weight loss process.

  1. Contains a higher rate of sulfate:

Cauliflower is a food rich in sulforaphane (an antioxidant) that overcomes the problems of cancer development by blocking enzymes related to cancer and tumor proliferation. Some medical studies have claimed that sulforaphane is beneficial in preventing cancer growth by killing cells that are already damaged.

  1. Prevents stomach problems:

Cauliflower is richer in fiber, so it improves digestion. Cauliflower is also effective in eliminating toxins from the body thanks to its content of glucosinolates, glucoraphanin and sulforaphane. Also, cauliflower minimizes stomach problems like stomach ulcers and other gastric diseases.

  1. Strengthens bone health:

The vitamin C present in cauliflower promotes the secretion of collagen. Cauliflower also has benefits for treating rheumatoid arthritis. Since it has a high amount of vitamin K that protects men and women against bone loss.

  1. Detoxify your body:

Cauliflower has indole-3-carbinol and sulforaphane. These two components control the function of detoxifying enzymes that remove harmful elements from the body.

  1. Beneficial for your skin:

Sulforaphane found in cauliflower is beneficial in protecting the skin from UV damage. Sulforaphane helps protect your body from UV-induced inflammation, skin cancer, UV-induced erythema, and cell damage.

  1. Improve your hair growth:

Due to the presence of sulfur-containing amino acids (precursor in the production of hair keratin proteins) and silicon, cauliflower improves hair growth.

  1. Reduces high blood pressure:

Thanks to its glucoraphanin and sulforaphane content, cauliflower minimizes oxidative stress and also reduces LDL levels. It can also improve HDL levels and lower blood pressure. Additionally, the fiber and omega-3 fatty acids in cauliflower are also beneficial in preventing hardening of the arteries.

  1. Helps in fetal growth:

Due to the presence of folic acid, cauliflower is effective in pregnancy. Folate is beneficial for fetal neuronal development and thus prevents neural tube defects.

  1. Promotion of heart health.

Thanks to its high fiber content, consuming cauliflower helps reduce cholesterol levels and prevent heart disease. Since its antioxidant properties help protect the heart. Just as magnesium helps relax blood vessels and reduces the risk of hypertension. While all of these factors contribute to heart health, they are especially important for people at high risk for heart disease. Therefore, adding cauliflower to your diet is a simple yet effective way to promote heart health.

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* HealthKey strives to convey health knowledge in a language accessible to all. In NO EVENT can the information provided replace the opinion of a health professional.

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Psychology & Diet

All You Need To Know About Amla Or Ceylon Gooseberries



Presse Santé

Have you ever heard of Indian gooseberry or amla? This sour and spicy fruit is a common ingredient in Ayurvedic medicine and has only recently become popular in the Western world. But what exactly is amla, where does it come from and what are its characteristics? Let’s explore this unique fruit and find out!

Amla or Indian Gooseberry:

Amla (or Phyllanthus emblica) is a tree native to India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Nepal, and other Southeast Asian countries. The fruit itself is a small, round berry that varies in color from green to yellow. It has a sour taste with some sweet undertones.


Amla contains 37% of the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) in vitamin C, 8% of the RDA in vitamin E and 19% of the RDA in B vitamins. Regarding minerals, amla contains 8% ( RDA) manganese, 9% (AJR) potassium, 6% (AJR) copper, 4% (AJR) phosphorus, 3% (AJR) calcium, 2% (AJR) magnesium and iron, and 1% (AJR) zinc.

How to consume Amla?

Amla can be eaten fresh or dried, but most people prefer to eat it dry due to its intense acidity. To prepare amla for consumption, you need to rinse off any dirt or debris, then cut off the top of the berry before cutting it into thin pieces so that it can be easily chewed. You can then sprinkle honey or sugar on top for more sweetness if you like. Since you can make amla juice, mix several pieces of the berry with water to form a paste, then strain the pulp for a refreshing drink.

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The health benefits of amla juice.

Better digestion:

Amla juice is a popular home remedy for indigestion in India. The sour and slightly astringent taste of amla is believed to stimulate the production of digestive juices, which help break down food and make it easier for it to pass through the digestive system. Amla is also a good source of fiber, which can help bulk up your stool and prevent constipation. Additionally, amla juice is rich in vitamin C, which is said to protect the stomach lining from damage caused by acid reflux. Therefore, regular consumption of amla juice can help improve digestion and prevent some of the discomfort associated with indigestion.

An increase in energy levels:

Amla juice is rich in antioxidants and vitamin C, both of which are important for maintaining energy levels. Antioxidants help fight free radicals, which can contribute to fatigue. Vitamin C is also essential for the production of energy-containing molecules such as ATP. Additionally, amla juice contains a variety of other nutrients important for health and energy levels, including iron, calcium, and magnesium. Research suggests that amla juice may also help improve blood sugar control, which can greatly contribute to fatigue.

Improved cardiovascular health:

Some research suggests that amla juice may help lower cholesterol levels and blood pressure. It can also help prevent blood clots from forming. Additionally, the antioxidants in amla juice might help protect cells from damage and inflammation.

An increase in skin elasticity:

Of course, amla juice is packed with antioxidants, which help protect skin from environmental factors and keep it looking young and healthy. One of the main benefits of amla juice is that it can help increase skin elasticity. This means that it can help prevent wrinkles and sagging skin. Furthermore, amla juice also helps to even out skin tone and reduces the appearance of blemishes. To reap these benefits, simply apply amla juice to your face and neck using a cotton ball. Leave on for 15-20 minutes before rinsing with lukewarm water. For best results, use this treatment 2-3 times a week.

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Hair Growth Enhancement:

Since amla is rich in vitamin C, this nutrient is essential for collagen production. Collagen is a protein that helps keep skin and hair strong and healthy. Also, amla juice contains other nutrients like iron, calcium, and phosphorous that are necessary for hair growth. Amla juice can be applied directly to the scalp or taken orally. For best results, it should be used in combination with other natural hair growth remedies, such as fenugreek seeds and olive oil.

Strengthening of the bones:

Due to its richness in vitamin C, amla juice is capable of increasing collagen production, which is essential for better bone health. Combined with other nutrients like calcium and phosphorus, this trio helps protect bones from damage and reduces the risk of osteoporosis.

A reduction in inflammation:

Thanks to its anti-inflammatory properties, amla juice works by helping to reduce oxidative stress and inflammation. Some studies have shown that amla juice can help reduce markers of inflammation, such as C-reactive protein (CRP). It can also help improve blood sugar control and lipid levels.

Does amla juice promote weight loss?

Drinking amla juice regularly can help promote weight loss by boosting metabolism, which helps burn fat faster while reducing cravings by providing the essential nutrients your body needs without overloading it with calories or unhealthy fats/sugars, etc. Plus, the high fiber content helps your digestive system work efficiently while promoting satiety, so you stay full longer, cutting down on snacking that often leads to weight gain.

Where is amala located?

One option is to order online from an Indian grocery store. Another option is to go to a specialty market that caters to the South Asian community. Finally, you can find amla powder or capsules at your health food store. While amla can be hard to find, its many health benefits are worth it.

* HealthKey strives to convey health knowledge in a language accessible to all. In NO EVENT can the information provided replace the opinion of a health professional.

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