Nutrition tips from Dr. Oz

Fran Berkoff, QMI Agency


I've been to Oz and back.

Okay -- I've had a chance for an up close and personal interview with Dr. Oz. In the big Apple no less!

Just recently I attended the big Food For Your Whole Life symposium in New York City, sponsored by the California Walnut Commission. It was a power-packed two days' worth of amazing talks from renowned health experts from across the spectrum who gave us some of the most interesting and up-to-date information that I'll be sharing with you over the next little while.

One of the highlights for me was the opportunity to sit down for a chat with Dr Mehmet Oz. He's just as dynamic in person as he is on TV, all tall, chatty and kind. With Father's Day around the corner, I asked him for some sage words of wisdom for the men in our lives. Here are some of his golden nuggets:

EAT FOODS THAT FIGHT INFLAMMATION: Inflammation is a normal body function and is the response of your immune system working to heal wounds and fight infections. However, the ongoing release of some of the inflammatory compounds is a risk factor in many conditions like heart disease, stroke, and even some cancers. Some of the foods that can help subdue this inflammation include oily fish such as salmon, mackerel, trout which provide omega-3 fats that have anti-inflammatory properties, fruits and vegetables, especially the richly coloured vegetables and berries which have compounds that fight inflammation and nuts such as walnuts and almonds which have healthy fats, antioxidants and fibre.

DAILY PHYSICAL ACTIVITY: Physical activity is important for men and because they tend to have more muscle mass, they often lose weight more easily. Dr Oz advises finding physical activity you can incorporate into your daily life and that you enjoy doing consistently.

AUTOMATE: Dr Oz says start developing automatic habits to make good food decisions. It's really helpful. For example, keep snacks handy - in your desk drawer or jacket pocket. Your snacks should be fruits and nuts, simple things that you can keep around all the time so you won't have to go to the vending machine or variety store at 10 a.m. when you get hungry.

EAT SPICES: Spices are wonderful alternatives to salts and sugars. We've known for a long time that they have medicinal benefits, but most importantly they are more satisfying and add wonderful flavour to foods.

Dr Oz adds these secrets of living a longer, fuller life:

-- Eat real, whole, unadulterated foods that come out of the ground - fruit, vegetables, nuts, whole grains - the real stuff. These are not just foods that are good for you but foods that you can love that also happen to be good for you. Eat minimally processed foods and bypass all the overly refined foods like white sugar, white bread, things that keep you coming back for more.

-- Develop and maintain healthy social connections.

-- Learn to manage stress. We all have some stress in life but there are strategies you can learn to help control it.

-- Ask yourself, "What can I do today to keep me well - things I can enjoy and keep doing?" The more you can make good habits automatic, the better. Look for ways to make it easy to do the healthier things.