Nutrition

Will eating more chilis help you live longer?

Robert H. Shmerling, MD

Senior Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publishing

A new report suggests eating chili peppers regularly could lower the risk of dying of cancer or cardiovascular disease. One theory attributes such health benefits to capsaicin, an antioxidant that brings the heat. But just how strong are these findings?

21 spices for healthy holiday foods

The holiday season is probably the hardest time of year to resist rich, indulgent foods, but too many salty, fatty, sugary choices can harm your health. Instead, try adding natural flavor to holiday foods with herbs and spices, many of which contain substances that have a beneficial effect on health.

Quarantine snacking fixer-upper

Eating more than you should since the start of the pandemic, especially unhealthy, highly processed snack foods? If you’re looking for advice on how to break your snacking habits and form new, better habits with healthier snacks, try these tips.

Intermittent fasting: Does a new study show downsides — or not?

Growing evidence shows that intermittent fasting leads to significant weight loss. A recent study contradicted these findings, but the way this study was designed and implemented raises some questions about its conclusions.

Whole grains or no grains? Food labels can be misleading

Food labels contain useful information about the nutritional value of the product, but a recent study found that consumers are more likely to be swayed by potentially misleading language on the front of a package than they are to pay attention to the information contained in the Nutrition Facts panel. Knowing how to interpret this information can help consumers make healthier choices.

Food insecurity, COVID-19, and eating disorders

The COVID-19 pandemic shone a light on disparities in health care and socioeconomic status, and drove food insecurity to an all-time high, particularly in communities most affected by the virus. Research shows links between food insecurity and eating disorders like bulimia and anorexia.

Envisioning food security: Steps we take now can help

Along with historically high unemployment rates, the COVID-19 pandemic has caused a significant increase in food insecurity for millions of Americans, and this problem disproportionately affects lower-income people and racial and ethnic minorities. Temporary measures have helped a bit to ease the situation, and new proposals could do more.

How to stock a plant-based pantry (and fridge) on a budget

Uma Naidoo, MD

Contributor

Given the economic stresses stemming from the current pandemic situation, many of us are trying to maintain healthy eating habits while also spending less. Adjusting your food purchases to include more plant-based choices can help your health and your budget.

Better heart health in eight weeks? Double down on fruits and veggies

Want to improve heart health? New research based on blood samples from the original DASH diet shows the DASH diet and another diet high in fruits and veggies can lower measures of heart strain and heart muscle damage within eight weeks.

Study gives insight — and advice — on picky eating in children

Claire McCarthy, MD

Senior Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publishing

All children are picky eaters at some point in childhood, but some are pickier than others. What’s a parent to do? Researchers looked at this phenomenon and reached some helpful conclusions.