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Jeff Novick's Blog

Jeffrey S. Novick, MS, RD, LD, LN

Jeff’s insightful and humorous approach to nutrition and health has helped thousands worldwide make the transition to healthy living. He holds both undergraduate and graduate degrees from Indiana State University in nutrition with minors in Exercise Science.

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Protein Availability PDF Print E-mail
Written by Jeff Novick, M.S., R.D.   
Wednesday, 08 April 2009 00:00

Another question I always receive in regard to protein is, "What is the most bioavailable protein?" which related to the question of, "How much do I need." Not only are many people worried about getting in enough, they want to make sure it is of the "highest quality."

My respsone is, "Why would you want something to be the most "bio-available" when more of it may not good for you?"    Current research is showing that the most available proteins are also the ones that rise IGF-1 the most, which in turn, may increase the growth rates of cancer.

Several studies have shown that elevated IGF-1 levels in adults can increase the growth rate of cancer. Even isolated plant proteins (like soy) can raise IGF-1 levels. While higher levels of IGF-1 may be appropriate when we are young and growing, as we age and get older, lower IGF-1 levels may be better.

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Protein Requirements PDF Print E-mail
Written by Jeff Novick, M.S., R.D.   
Wednesday, 01 April 2009 00:00

A question I get all the time is, "How much protein do I really need?" Sometimes, the question gets more specific and asks, "How many grams of protein do we need each day?"

My answer is, I don't know.

But then again, neither does anyone else. smile

All nutrient recommendation are given in relation to the needs that will cover over 98% of the population over time and therefore include built in safety margins for most people. None of them ever represent the actual daily needs of any one person.

The only way to know the actual protein needs of any one person on any given day is to do a nitrogen balance study. But, realize that whatever your needs where today, they may be different tomorrow.

In regard to national recommendations...

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Triage Your Health Efforts, The Good, The Bad & The Ugly, Part 3 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Jeff Novick, M.S., R.D.   
Sunday, 29 March 2009 00:20

Now for the Ugly

In a article published in the NEJM in 2005,

Olshansky, Butler,, NEJM, March 17, 2005

The authors predicted that For The First Time in US History Average Adult Life Expectancy May Be Decreasing. And that Obesity May Shorten Average Life Spans More Than Accidents, Homicides and Suicides Combined

Their famous quote from the study was

“If the childhood obesity problem continues to grow at its current rate, the new generation could be the first in history to have a life expectancy less than its parents.”

In January of this year, a study came out confirming that this has already happened.

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triage Your Health Efforts: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly, Pt 2 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Jeff Novick, M.S., R.D.   
Tuesday, 24 March 2009 12:01
Now, The bad news.. 

In their report, "Preventing Chronic Diseases: A Vital Investment' 06/06/2005," the WHO identified 10 misunderstandings that were obstacles to changing these modifiable risk factors. A few were relevant 

1) Chronic diseases are often viewed as primarily affecting old people. 

One quarter of all chronic disease deaths occur in people under 60 years of age. 

2) The solutions for chronic disease prevention and control are too expensive to be feasible for low and middle income countries (populations). 

In reality, a full range of chronic disease interventions are very cost- effective for all regions of the world. Many of these solutions are also inexpensive to implement. 

3) Half Truths and kernels of truth. In these cases, the kernels of truth are distorted to become sweeping statements that are not true. Because they are based on the truth, such half-truths are among the most ubiquitous and persistent misunderstandings. Two principal half-truths are refuted below. 
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Triage Your Health Efforts: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly, Pt 1 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Jeff Novick, M.S., R.D.   
Wednesday, 18 March 2009 12:01

I have often referred to the importance of prioritizing our efforts to lead a healthy life.   Often times, many people spend most of their time worrying about issues that will have little impact on their health and do not direct enough time, attention and energy to those things that will produce the most health "bang for the buck!"  So, if we want lead a healthy lifestyle, what are the behaviors that have been proven to be the most important to contributing to a long and healthy life?

Let us explore this issue together. 


Triage: 

The determination of priorities for action in an emergency; A process in which things are ranked in terms of importance or priority 

The Good: 

EPIC is a large study of diet and health having recruited over half a million (520,000) people in ten European countries: Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, The Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom.EPIC was designed to investigate the relationships between diet, nutritional status, lifestyle and environmental factors and the incidence of cancer and other chronic diseases. 

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