Going Vegan in New York City

Vegan Benefits and Problems

There are many advantages to going vegan, but there are also some potential problems with it.  On the pro side, vegans are definitely helping the environment and in many cases, studies have shown that they are significantly slimmer, and have better cholesterol and blood pressure levels than their non-vegan counterparts.  On the negative side, however, vegans run the risk of being deficient in Iron, Calcium, and Vitamin D which increases their susceptibility to bone fractures.  This is due to the elimination of dairy in a vegan diet. Nonetheless, pro-vegans argue that this does not have to be the case since there is plenty of calcium in dark green leafy vegetables; soy; cereals; tofu; tahini, etc.

NYC Vegan Options

For those who have already decided it’s the new health path they want to take, should they want to dine out in New York City, what are their choices like?  There are online vegan restaurant guides for the area that provide listings via various categories.  These include:  the newest vegan restaurants; restaurants by price; neighborhood; level of “veganism”; cool features offered; price and more.  It provides a great resource that should be consulted on a regular basis for new updates.

Healthier Eating?

In addition, if you want to find out more about veganism (or at least vegetarianism) in New York City, check out the upcoming annual NYC Vegetarian Food Festival March 3rd to 4th.   For health benefits of this eating style, the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS)’s director of Public Health and Animal Agriculture, Dr. Michael Greger, will be one of the  main speakers.

New York Fashion Week Kicks Off with New Health Guidelines

The Council of Fashion Designers of America has recently initiated a set of new health guidelines in lieu of the New York Fashion Week.

The new measures work to promote awareness of eating disorders in the modeling industry, as well as to encourage education on nutrition and lifestyle decisions. One of the main goals is to relate the “overwhelming concern about whether some models are unhealthily thin and whether or not to impose restrictions in such cases.”

According to CNN, this year’s Spring 2012 New York Fashion Week’s models will be the first to walk the runway under the new guidelines, which include tobacco and alcohol free backstage areas, healthy meals, snacks and water provided throughout the shows, and a 16+ age restriction. The measure also requires models with eating disorders to pause their careers and seek help until they are approved to resume work.

The new guidelines are part of the fashion industry’s recent recognition of the serious issue. The National Eating Disorders Association is also involved in the efforts to make a change, stating that the fashion industry is one of the main causes of eating disorders in young women.

“Designers share a responsibility to protect women, and very young girls in particular, within the business, sending the message that beauty is health,” CFDA said in a statement.

Junk Foods Offered in 50% of Elementary Schools

A recent study shows that more than fifty percent of elementary school students have the option of buying junk foods like ice cream, potato chips and other snacks while at school. Researchers implied that schools should heed health warnings and be encouraged to improve nutrition at school, both during lunches and between periods.

When children are presented with appealing sugary and salty snacks, they are more inclined to skip the healthier, more balanced meals for trips to the vending machines.

According to Lindsey Turner of the University of Illinois, elementary school is “really a crucial period where the preferences and behavioral habits are being developed.

“If kids are early on in that environment where that junk food is around, then it potentially becomes a habit that’s harder to break,” she said. She added that the recent findings are “disappointing.”

Does Acupuncture Help with IVF?

Recent analysis of past research has revealed that acupuncture may in fact up the chances of successful IVF treatment. The method has been used throughout Chinese history as a means to treat all sorts of health problems.

The first study to imply that the practice may affect pregnancy rates in women undergoing IVF took place in Germany ten years ago. Over the past decade, research implications have been relatively inconsistent.

Dr. Frederick Licciardi of the New York University Fertility Center’s mind and body program explained: “I counsel women that the literature is not convincing yet that (acupuncture) helps you get pregnant.”

He continued, saying that the center offers acupuncture sessions as well as other mind/body programs, like yoga, but that they focus mainly on easing stress and boosting ‘wellness,’ and not necessarily IVF success.

He believes that “if acupuncture helps you feel well, if it helps you get through the IVF, then great.”