Photo is Courtesy of NPR News
I specialize (that is I am board certified) in Internal Medicine. Internal Medicine is a real specialty, though I am not usually referred to as a specialist. Sometimes as a primary care doctor I’m called a GP (General Practitioner), an old term that applies to doctors 1 year out of medical school with a state medical license and no board certification.
I’m also called an internist (though I take care of more than people’s insides!). I’ve also been referred to as an “adult medicine physician” and sometimes for a laugh, I call myself an “Adult-atrician” – since everyone seems to know what a pedi-atrician is!
As a practicing internist, I have to know great deal about many aspects of our bodies and minds – and keeping current is hard work. One way I like to keep up with modern medicine is by reading journal articles. Every week I get several journals in the mail such as the New England Journal of Medicine, The American Journal of Medicine and my specialty journal, Annals of Internal Medicine – as well as several others on dermatology and more. I probably read dozens of these publications a week! So here’s a shout out to all the primary care doctors out there who are spending their precious free time striving to stay smart and informed for their patients!
Here’s some fun and interesting stuff I read this week on food and health:
As you know, my philosophy on food and wellness is that no matter what way you choose to eat, whether it be a plant-based diet, Mediterranean, Paleo or otherwise – I believe firmly that your everyday diet should be composed of real food. This means no harmful chemicals, processed foods, dyes, flavor substitutes or fat-reducers – to name just a few of the culprits. I was amused and also a little shocked to read “The Autopsy of Chicken Nuggets Reads Chicken Little” in the American Journal of Medicine.
This particular study detailed an account of doctors from the University of Mississippi Medical Center (the state that tops the list at #1 in America’s obesity epidemic ) cutting open chicken nuggets from two national fast food chains and examining them as though they were pathology specimens to see what types of tissue they contained.
**** WARNING: THIS IS GROSS!! Keep in mind that meat is muscle (a reason why some people are vegetarians). In these chicken nuggets, doctors from the University of Mississippi found only 40-50% muscle – the rest was fat, skin, blood vessels, nerves, viscera – a.k.a. GUTS (sorry again) and BONES! Add to that the fat and carb crust found on a chicken nugget and you have a pretty useless non-food “chicken product” not too much different from the nefarious pig-snout-containing hot dog. It is extremely important that over time consumers around the world become increasingly aware and weary of these kinds of processed foods – becoming informed and educated is the very first step to living a clean, happy and healthy lifestyle! And certainly, this is not the sort of “food” we want to be putting into our bodies.
OK, on to a less gross article.
In the Annals of Internal Medicine there was an article that noted that people with an exceptional diet in their midlife (defined as late 50s early and 60s!) significantly decreased their risk of encountering major physical or mental limitations in later life.
What does this mean?
1) It’s never too late to eat better!
2) If you don’t want to just live longer but live longer and better, drop the nugget and pick up a real food. Eat more things with fewer than 6 ingredients on the label! Eat more fruits, veggies and fiber.
From time to time as I read up in these journals, I will pass along more interesting tidbits. Hopefully you found this stuff as interesting as I did!
Have a great weekend as always,
Emily A. Nolfo……..Doctor of Internal Medicine