• Socks, oedema & preventing varicose veins

    During my medical rotations, I started writing short stories about patients and experiences where I thought prevention would have made a big difference. The stories were tucked away on my computer, and have now found their way out! Many of the things I saw made me feel puzzled, some made me feel angry. This one made me want to invest in compression sock stock. During my dermatology intership, I learned three things. One, dermatologists are extremely busy people. Two, they don’t just deal with the face, but three – they also deal with the legs. So much so that, to my surprise, I spent most of my dermatology internship staring…

  • SASP

    Boyfriend (from now on will be referred to as The Scientist) and I talk at dinner about science, senescence and SASP (yes, we talk about stuff like this at dinner, we be nerdin’). The Scientist: “Did you know that studies have found chemotherapy leads to an increase in senescent cells?”Me: “Ah, yes, senescent cells – SASP!”The Scientist: “SASP! Yeah! Hmm… what’s that again?” SASP. Senescence-associated secretory phenotype. Organs, tissues and cells Our human body is made up of organs and tissues. These are made up of cells. For example, the liver is made up of liver cells, the kidneys are made up of kidney cells and so on. Cells and…

  • falafel bowl recipe

    Falafel Bowl with Spinach, Pomegranate & Mint

    It’s November 2018. The weather is cold but I was looking for an alternative to a heavy, winter meal. Salad-like, but still substantial. Warm but fresh. Filling but light. Something so full of vitamins and minerals that I could say – wow, Ana, you’ve outdone yourself again! Get ready to seduce your taste buds with explosive flavours of: *fresh mint *sweet pomegranate and *nutty hummus   Not unimportantly, I had a pretty good time preparing this meal since it was all easy to bake, cook and put together. Or, as I’ve illustrated in a graph: You can make your own falafel by looking up a recipe online, but I just bought it ready-made. Tried the…

  • Oops, honey, I changed my lifestyle (Before & After of My 90-day No Sugar Challenge)

    What started as a 30-day experiment on 2 August 2018 has escalated into a full-blown 90-day no sugar challenge. This is the story about the before and the after, and how much sugar I ended up not eating by changing my sweet-tooth, chocolate-loving ways.  In the recent posts, you can read about the start of the 30-day no sugar challenge, and how it turned into a long-term project once my cravings only stopped after 28 days. BEFORE Basics Chocolate = necessity of life Sweets = treats Meals = sweet/savoury (half/half) Cravings per day = 5 (usually in the morning, during long afternoons & after dinner) Attitude = sugar will solve…

  • 67 Days Without Added Sugars | Challenges so far

    No ice cream, no soda, no store-bought pasta sauces, no chocolate, no chips, no scones, no cheesecake, no cookies, and almost no processed food of any kind (because when you look at the labels, there’s added sugar in almost everything). That’s what it’s like to not eat added sugars. For 67 days, I have been sticking to this rule. Here are the challenges I’ve been facing so far. On August 2nd, 2018 I set out (completely terrified of what was to come) on a journey of 30 days without added sugars. You can read about my start of this experiment in my last post “Sugar addict? Me too, until recently”.…

  • Sugar addict? Me too, until recently

    All sorts of medical guidelines recommend a maximum of around 30 grams of added sugars per day. There is no required minimum. You won’t die if sugar is not added to your food. Although you might feel as if you might die. Which brings me to sugar addiction. When I realised I was a player in that game, I decided to embark on an experiment. Today marks day 43 of my no added sugar diet.  Ever since I remember, I have been eating sugar every single day, except for two occasions – one summer a couple of years ago where I went 30 days without artificial sugar (but still had…

  • The Two Bizarre Things I Think about Weight Loss

      Today I’m using my medical knowledge to tackle a big topic – no pun intended. Medical school takes six years, then add the five for biomedicine and on top of that hours and hours, evenings and weekends spend reading articles related to nutrition, lifestyle and health – and this is what you get. Two bizzare ideas – that I think are the actual truth about weight loss. Losing weight is a very complex and difficult issue, and you might need to come back to this blog post and use many others for inspiration on your weight loss journey. But, there is something about the secrets in this post that just might…

  • evidence pyramid, science, food blog, nutrition

    Understanding Scientific Articles: 4 Questions You Need to Ask to Make Science Easy & Keep Your Health

      Many a hundred of scientific articles get published in (bio)medical journals each year. Some of them about disease, some of them about prevention, and some of them about health and nutrition. Only a tiny miniscule proportion of those get portrait correctly in the media, and lots of times you will find yourself being misinformed, while you actually want to know what’s going on. With the following tips, you can decipher any (bio)medical article, find out which ones apply to you and easily know which ones to discard. The four questions you need to ask are: What is the population studied? Has the study been carried out in cells, animals…

  • Rice 101 | How to Buy, Cook & Eat rice + Health benefits

      AS A STUDENT, I would often make rice for dinner, paired with deep-freeze spinach and something crazy on the side, like plain mixed lettuce. I know, I know… that doesn’t make any sense. TO MAKE MATTER WORSE, the rice would usually turn to mush (be overcooked), sometimes be too chewy (undercooked) and almost never turned out just right. AFTER YEARS OF OCCASSIONAL EXPERIMENTING, and thanks to the influence of good cooks around my friends and family, plus a lot of trial & error, I’ve got a grip on making good rice. IF YOU ALSO STRUGGLE with making rice because it hardly turns out right – or if you love…

  • Top 5 Things I Discovered About Food While Travelling India and Thailand

      Are you trying to eat healthy but noticing that your eating routine feels plain or is missing rich, exciting flavours? Or you want to eat fresh and raw foods but find it time-consuming to make meals from scratch every day? When trying to eat healthy, even if you do have variety and you do have the time, sometimes it is simply hard to follow a healthy eating plan what with all the organic produce and expensive ingredients you need to keep buying. I felt the same way. Being a foodie in a Western country, I am immensely curious about how different foods contribute to health. I want to eat healthy and…