Blog Posts by The Editors of Prevention

  • 3 Times You Should Never Use Olive Oil

    The best (and worst) oil to use for every cooking methodThe best (and worst) oil to use for every cooking methodBy Marygrace Taylor, Prevention

    From olive to coconut to flax, it's no secret that oils are having a major culinary moment. Good thing, too, since most of them are rich in unsaturated fats that'll help keep your heart in tip-top shape, says Stephanie Hoban, RD, a Houston-based natural foods chef. But what's the smartest way to fit all of these different lipids into your kitchen repertoire? And which oils hold up to each kind of cooking? Read on to learn the best (and worst) oils for eight everyday cooking methods.

    Sign up for our Recipe of the Day newsletter for even more quick and easy recipe ideas!

    You can't go wrong with safflower or canola oil. But if you're looking to add an Asian-inspired flavor, try toasted sesame oil. All stand up to stir-frying's hot temperatures because of their high smoke point, the temperature at which an oil starts to burn and emit (you guessed it!) smoke. "When oil smokes, it's actually oxidizing and turning rancid, and oxidized

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  • 12 Fish You Should Never, Ever Eat

    Steer clear of this seafood that's bad for you and the environmentSteer clear of this seafood that's bad for you and the environmentBy Emily Main, Prevention

    One fish, two fish, bad-for-you-fish. Yes fish, no fish, red fish…OK fish? Our oceans have become so depleted of wild fish stocks, and so polluted with industrial contaminants, that trying to figure out the fish that are both safe and sustainable can make your head spin. "Good fish" lists can change year after year, because stocks rebound or get depleted every few years, but there are some fish that, no matter what, you can always decline.

    The nonprofit Food and Water Watch looked at all the varieties of fish out there, how they were harvested, how certain species are farmed, and levels of toxic contaminants like mercury or PCBs in the fish, as well as how heavily local fishermen relied upon fisheries for their economic survival. It's perfect timing since fish is a staple at many holiday parties and celebrations. These are the 12 fish, they determined, that all of us should avoid, no matter what.

    PLUS: Which packaged goods aren't packed with toxins or

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  • 15 Worst Snacks for Weight Loss

    Snacking can be a total diet bomb--if you let it. Here's how to do it right.Snacking can be a total diet bomb--if you let it. Here's how to do it right.By Jessica Girdwain, Prevention

    Attacking the snacks
    From the Cheerio-toting toddler to the vending machine-loving employee, we're a nation obsessed with snacks. How obsessed? Most of us eat nearly 600 calories a day--that's roughly a third of our food--in snacks rather than meals, according to a 2010 study from the University of North Carolina.

    That's a lot of snacking, something that can make or break your weight loss efforts. "There is a right way and a wrong way to snack," says Katie Ferraro, MPH, a San Diego-based registered dietitian at Ingrain Health . Done right, snacking can keep your appetite in check, fuel your workout, and give you valuable nutrients. Done wrong, and you're downing gut-busting snacks loaded with sugar and fat, says Ferraro.

    And here's where it gets tricky--it's all too easy to be fooled into thinking seemingly healthy snacks are good for your waistline. Here are 15 weight loss-sabotaging snacks to avoid, and the tasty swaps to make instead.

    Instead of:

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  • 8 Surprising Foods with Hidden Trans Fats

    Do your favorite foods hide a ticking time bomb ingredient?Do your favorite foods hide a ticking time bomb ingredient?By Leah Zerbe & Emily Main

    Better late than never, as the saying goes: Twenty years after scientific studies began revealing the damage that trans fats are doing to America's collective cardiovascular health, the Food and Drug Administration has announced that they finally intend to ban the man-made fats.

    The agency has proposed a rule that would remove the "generally recognized as safe" (GRAS) designation for partially hydrogenated oils, the source of trans fats. Doing so would mean that any food company that wants to use partially hydrogenated oils would require FDA approval to do so. And the FDA has said, essentially, that will never happen.

    PLUS: 9 Disgusting Facts About Your Thanksgiving Dinner

    While the FDA has removed the GRAS designation from a number of lesser known ingredients and those that pose an acute health threat, this is the first time the agency has done so with an ingredient used on such a massive scale, says Benico Barzilai, MD, section head of clinical

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  • 5 Surprising Truths About Your Pet’s Food

    By Justine Lee, DVM, DACVECC, Prevention

    It's been quite a while since pet food stopped being a boring topic and turned into one that scared people half to death, thanks to a headline-making contamination with a deadly toxin called melamine. My fears have quieted since then, though many pet owners still have questions. My bottom line: Feeding your pet a healthy, tasty diet doesn't have to be complicated--so long as you keep a few key points in mind.

    Commercial pet food is a healthy option. If you're straining your purse to buy a boutique brand, relax. All the brands sold in supermarkets or pet stores are nutritionally adequate: They're regulated by the FDA and the Association of American Feed Control Officials, guaranteeing that they meet a cat's or dog's "basic" nutritional needs.

    RELATED: The Diet That Helps Your Pet Live Longer

    But you get what you pay for. Though I've seen some dogs live to a ripe old age on discount brands, I'm not a fan of buying the cheapest bag of

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  • 8 Health Test Secrets Doctors Don’t Tell You

    By The Editors of Prevention

    In the hectic flurry of your typical doctor's office, it's not surprising that doctors and nurses sometimes forget to share the helpful little directives that can make potentially lifesaving tests--like a Pap test or skin cancer screening--more accurate and comfortable. That's why we interviewed leading clinicians for the scoop on what to do and say to get the best care and results at your next health test.

    Related: 6 Symptoms To Never Ignore

    1. Chill out for 3 minutes before a blood pressure reading

    Relaxing for 3 to 5 minutes before your blood pressure is taken ensures you won't have an artificially high reading, which can result in unnecessary prescription meds, says Texas cardiologist Sarah Samaan, MD, author of The Smart Woman's Guide to Heart Health. Running in to your appointment after a traffic-packed drive to the doctor, for example, can nudge your systolic pressure (the higher number) by as many as 20 points. Sit quietly, flip

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  • 7 Weird Reasons You're Tired All the Time

    You can't (always) blame sleep deprivation. If you spend your days in a fog, one of these surprising culprits may be the cause.You can't (always) blame sleep deprivation. If you spend your days in a fog, one of these surprising culprits may be the cause.By Cindy Kuzma, Prevention

    You stayed up late binge-watching Homeland. Then you woke up extra early to beat the boss to the office. Some days, there's no mystery as to why you need an extra shot of espresso (and if you can't sleep no matter what you try, check out these 10 sleep myths and real solutions for better shuteye.)

    But sometimes, the root of your fatigue isn't so obvious, and everything from a hidden health issue to your gym habits could be to blame. "It's like asking a pediatrician why a baby is crying; the answer could be any number of things," says Tanvir Hussain, MD, a preventive cardiologist in Los Angeles.

    A challenging puzzle, yes, but your fatigue is a mystery you can solve. Here are 7 reasons you could be dragging--and how to regain more energy than you ever remember having.

    You're dehydrated
    Healthy women who failed to replace a mere 1.5% of their water weight experienced mood swings and low energy levels, according to a 2012 study in The Journal of Nutrition. The

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  • The Top 5 Halloween Pet Threats to Avoid

    .Don't let your spooky holiday turn into a real-life horror because of a Halloween pet disaster. .Don't let your spooky holiday turn into a real-life horror because of a Halloween pet disaster. By Leah Zerbe, Rodale News

    Halloween brings the promise of lots of holiday fun for kids, but it does pose some serious risk for pets. So before you stock up on sweets for trick-or-treaters, there are a few simple things you can do to protect your favorite four-legged friend from what The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) points out are five major Halloween pet threats.

    REMEMBER: The Pet Symptoms You Should NEVER Ignore

    1. Take costume precautions
    Pet Halloween costumes are becoming more common, but before you play holiday dress-up with your pet, make sure the costume doesn't impair the animal's movement, hearing, sight, or ability to breathe, bark, eat, drink, or go to the bathroom. Choking hazards are also common, so be sure to ID any potential problems with a pet costume before dressing your pet up. Better yet? Substitute elaborate (and probably uncomfortable) dog or cat costumes for a simple, festive bandanna.

    In addition to costume

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  • Is Your Wallet Making You Fat?

    The weird new risk to your waistlineThe weird new risk to your waistlineRemember when the biggest threat in the school cafeteria was having your lunch money stolen? These days, the biggest threat to kids may be the lunch money itself.

    According to a new Cornell University study in the journal Obesity, kids buy more healthy food when they pay in cash, and much more junk food when they pay with debit cards.

    "When they have the debit card rather than the cash, we know that it causes them to think about it slightly differently," says David Just, PhD, lead study author and professor at the Cornell Center for Behavioral Economics in Child Nutrition Programs. Debit cards give kids access to a pool of funds--$150 at once, let's say, instead of the daily $5 that parents might give them for lunch. That leaves a lot of room to purchase more unhealthy à la carte items like cookies and chips.

    Do you know that the average person eats 580 calories a day in snacks? Click here for 16 Ways To Curb Mindless Munching.

    Among the 2,314 public school students studied, the

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  • Top 3 Fitness Trackers for Weight Loss

    Meet your new fitness friend Meet your new fitness friend These easy-to-use gadgets track how much you move, eat, and sleep--providing real-time stats and analysis so you can make smarter lifestyle choices. When you see how simple tweaks like sitting less and taking a lunchtime lap around the office have big payoffs, you'll be motivated to improve your score day after day.

    Your Challenge: Log at least 10,000 steps a day, the doctor-recommended goal for optimal health. (Sound daunting? Here are 25 crazy-simple ways to add just 10 minutes of exercise into your busy day.)

    JAWBONE UP ($130; )
    The UP seamlessly becomes part of your everyday life, thanks to its extralong battery life (10 days) and sleek design. For extra motivation, use the app to keep an eye on the activity levels of friends who also have the tracker (more on how that improves your workout, here).

    How to use it: Wear all day around your wrist; just remove if taking a swim.

    Fun feature:
    The smart alarm wakes you up at the optimal time of your sleep cycle so you're

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