Tagged with '20-39'

Eating Like a Caveman: Controlling Insulin

Summer is the perfect time to give your diet a reboot and start thinking about the kinds of fresh foods and meats that our forefathers from wayyyyyy back ate, which is more of a Paleo Diet, which is becoming quite popular again, for obvious reasons. There’s lots of evidence to suggest that a back-to-basics approach to diet is the way to go for each and every system in our bodies. Today’s diet has too much sugar and it’s making us store our fat. It’s time to reclaim it. Use summer as the stepstone toward better health, with expert Brad King’s advice! Insulin has an especially dramatic influence on enzymes called lipases. Lipases are like little Pac Men who run around your body, releasing body fat from its cushy containers so it can be shuttled into muscle cells to get burned off (yeah!). When insulin levels are high, it hits the “off” switch on lipases, putting them into a holding pattern until further notice. In fact, the most prominent lipase involved in fat burning is called Hormone Sensitive Lipase, or HSL for short.[1] HSL is the premiere key holder that unlocks those fat storage containers which make you leaner. Unfortunately, the more insulin that’s present, the less HSL is available to release fat for energy and the end result is you become fatter (not so yeah!). As insulin is blocking fat burning it’s also creating an internal environment that is ripe for fat storage. It accomplishes this act through the aid of another lipase enzyme—this one’s called Lipoprotein lipase, or LPL for short, and it is so effective at bloating fat cells that some obesity researchers even call it ‘the Gatekeeper of Fat Storage’. It’s next to impossible for the body to store fat without a certain amount of insulin floating around. As you can see, insulin is something we need, but we don’t want too much of it. Otherwise, we end up with a body that acts as a 24/7 fat-storing factory (as too many people already experience)! Controlling Insulin Almost any food—including the mere thought of food—can cause insulin release, but carbohydrates are the primary driver to a flood of insulin. High-carb foods—especially the highly processed and refined variety—cause glucose levels in your blood to shoot way up.[2] However, the body doesn’t work very well when glucose gets too high, so it sends out a stream of insulin to control the rising tide of glucose. Gobs of insulin will definitely drive glucose down, but it will also turn the vast majority of that glucose into newly formed fat. On the other hand, when insulin levels are under control, the body swiftly transitions into fat burning mode. Normal insulin levels cause lipases to spring into action. Also, a hormone often viewed as insulin’s opposite, glucagon, starts to rise. Glucagon travels around the body, ordering fat cells to relax and let go of the fat they’re clinging to. It’s accurate to view eating and lifestyle as a hormonal event. In a primitive dietary world made up of fresh—and local—produce (including roots, shoots, seeds and nuts) and wild game meat, our hormones were never a problem – in other words there weren’t many, if any, obese cavemen or ladies . If a caveman was lucky enough to stumble upon a beehive filled with honey or a bush sprouting plump berries, insulin was there to process the carbohydrates properly. But for the most part, the diet that our pancreas was designed for, only called insulin into action on a part-time basis. Our modern-day fast food/processed/high glycemic diets forces our pancreas to work double or triple shifts! Our body was simply not designed to metabolize all these carbs. The real kicker is that, because of our ravenous appetite for insulin-stimulating processed foods, the weight we’ve been accumulating over the last few decades is pure, unadulterated fat, which isn’t just unsightly but brings with it a whole host of health issues to boot![3] Magré, J., et al. (1998) Human hormone-sensitive lipase: genetic mapping, identification of a new dinucleotide repeat, and association with obesity and NIDDM. Diabetes. 47:284-286 Ludwig, D. S. (2000) Dietary glycemic index and obesity. J. Nutr. 130:280S-283S. Due A, Larsen TM, Mu H, Hermansen K, Stender S, Astrup A: Comparison of 3 ad libitum diets for weight-loss maintenance, risk of cardiovascular disease, and diabetes: a 6-mo randomized, controlled trial. Am J Clin Nutr 2008, 88(5):1232-1241  http://www.pno.ca/?p=1336&option=com_wordpress&Itemid=201

Getting To Know Your Thyroid: Supporting Thyroid Health Naturally

What is the Thyroid Gland?The thyroid is a small butterfly-shaped gland located at the base of the neck. It weighs only approximately 20 grams, but the hormones it secretes control growth and metabolism. The primary circulating thyroid hormones – thyroxine (T4) and triiodothyronine (T3) – are essential regulators of crucial body functions such as heart rate, blood pressure and body temperature. Adequate level of T4, and its efficient conversion to T3, also ensures that we have energy and burn carbohydrates and fats at an optimal rate. How Prevalent are Thyroid Diseases?According to the Thyroid Foundation of Canada, about 200 million people in the world have some form of thyroid disease. Thyroid disorders are found in 0.8-5% of the population and they are 4 to 7 times more common in women. What are the Types of Thyroid Diseases?There are many types of thyroid diseases. The main conditions present in most thyroid illnesses are hypothyroidism (the thyroid is under active) and hyperthyroidism (the thyroid is over active). The thyroid can also be affected by nodules and cancers. Are Thyroid Diseases Treatable?For the most part, thyroid disorders are treatable and if left untreated, thyroid diseases can produce serious consequences in other parts of the body. Hypothyroidism What is Hypothyroidism?Hypothyroidism occurs when the thyroid gland isn’t producing enough hormones, and the symptoms occur because all metabolic processes in the body “slow down” as a consequence. How Prevalent is it?By in large, hypothyroidism is the most common form of thyroid disorder, affecting approximately 2 individuals in 100. According to another source[2] and based on my clinical experience, as many as 10% of women may be suffering from some degree of thyroid hormone deficiency. Although the problem can usually be identified with a simple blood test, millions of women still remain undiagnosed. Signs & Symptoms of HypothyroidismIf you experience some of these symptoms, you need to discuss them with your clinician. Signs & symptoms of Hypothyroidism Fatigue Weakness Weight gain or difficulty losing weight Coarse, dry hair Dry, rough pale skin Hair loss Cold intolerance Muscle cramps and aches Constipation Depression Irritability Memory loss Abnormal menstrual cycles Decreased libido What are the Causes of Hypothyroidism?There are two main causes of hypothyroidism. The first one results from an inflammation of the thyroid gland, affecting its cells’ capacity to produce sufficient hormone. The most common form of thyroid inflammation – Hashimoto’s thyroiditis – is an autoimmune condition in which the immune system attacks the thyroid gland, with the resulting inflammation leading to an underactive thyroid gland. Grave’s disease is another type of auto-immune thyroid diseases (AITD) but in this case, the thyroid gland becomes overactive. What Can I do to Support My Thyroid’s Health?Even if you are currently taking thyroid medication such as Synthroid, you can bolster thyroid function with a well-balanced diet that includes lots of protein and healthy foods, certain supplements and a good lifestyle. Let’s explore some of these natural allies. Diet: The Gluten Connection Several studies have shown a strong connection between AITD and gluten intolerance. The explanation behind this process seems to be one of ‘mistaken identity’ in which the person’s antibodies to gliadin – the protein portion of gluten – cause the body to attack the thyroid tissue when gliadin breaches the protective barrier of the gut to enter the bloodstream. The confusion occurs due to gliadin’s molecular resemblance to the thyroid gland. Since standard lab tests aren’t very accurate in diagnosing gluten intolerance, it’s usually better to remove gluten from the diet. Cutting gluten off may appear scary at first due to its prevalence, but the truth is it usually results in a wider variety in our diet and there are no nutrients in gluten-containing foods that you can’t get from foods that don’t contain it. Certain clinicians even recommend eliminating all grains, soy and dairy as well in order to prevent cross-reactivity and reduce antibodies. On a side note, white bread often contains bromine which can cause iodine deficiency and interfere with thyroid gland function. The Stress Connection Whether we’re talking about the usual emotional stressors or the ones that disturb the body’s natural balance (homeostasis) such as food intolerances, gut dysfunction, chronic infections and inflammation or blood sugar swings, stress has a major impact on thyroid health. When we experience stress, our adrenals glands secrete the hormones cortisol, epinephrine and norepinephrine that regulate the stress response and play other key roles, some of which directly ...

5 TIPS TO START A MEATLESS DIET

All right foodies, it’s time to talk about the elephant in the room: we need to eat less meat. It’s no secret that adopting a vegetarian diet can have numerous benefits to your health (including lower cholesterol, decreased risk for heart disease and cancer AND better moods), but did you know that eating a plant-based diet is much better for our planet as well? In addition to causing mass deforestation, pollution and contamination of water sources, livestock farming also accounts for 18% of global greenhouse gas emissions (that’s more than transportation!). Growing fruits and vegetables is also a more efficient use of resources than livestock – it takes the same amount of land resources to feed 16-20 vegetarians as it does a single meat eater! What’s one of the easiest ways to cut down your carbon footprint? Go Veg!      We know that adopting changes to your diet can be a little intimidating, so we’ve put together these five helpful tips for you to keep in mind as you begin your plant-based journey.   STICK TO ORGANIC AND NON-GMO FOODS. While it’s well known that organic and non-GMO foods are better for our bodies, they have numerous environmental benefits as well. Organic farming enriches our soil, increases biodiversity, keeps toxic fertilizers and pesticides out of water sources and can even slow global warming by reducing the amount of carbon dioxide in the air.(8) BUY LOCAL PRODUCE! In addition to supporting your local farmers and economy, buying local also cuts down drastically on transportation costs! Find a farmer’s market (or small community grocery store) near you and purchase seasonal, organic produce. Buying straight from the source ensures that your fruits and veggies are fresh and haven’t been frozen. If you have the space, grow your own food! Can’t find a product grown locally in your area? Purchase fair trade and organic alternatives (like Alter Eco’s fair trade quinoa!)! While fair trade certified companies are typically known for their advocacy for fair wages and ethical working conditions, many are deeply committed to protecting the environment as well(7). Do some research and support companies that meet rigorous environmental standards. HAVE FUN COOKING! It’s great when you find a great meatless dish at your favorite restaurant, but the only way to fully know what’s going into your meal is to make it yourself. If you’re new to cooking and don’t know where to start sign up for a vegetarian cooking class with a friend or family member! Don’t be afraid to experiment with different foods and flavors and you might just find your new favorite go-to dish (check out our plant-based recipes below)! PLAN YOUR WEEKLY MEALS AHEAD OF TIME. This is an important part of adopting any new diet! Avoid last-minute decisions by creating a weekly meal schedule to make sure you’re diversifying your diet and getting all the protein that you need (the recommended dosage is 40-60 grams of protein per day, depending on your body size). ALWAYS READ THE INGREDIENTS AND NUTRITION FACTS! Some products like to sneak in hidden animal products that could compromise your diet. Other products compensate with an unhealthy dose of sugar. When in doubt, speak to a professional! Reference: http://www.alterecofoods.com/5-tips-for-meatless-diet/

Why Magnesium?

The hardest-working mineral in the body does more than you know! Very few people give a moment’s thought to what goes on at the cellular level in our bodies. We have trillions and trillions of cells in our bodies, each one less than a nanogram, each one performing enzymatic reactions, energy transfers every millisecond. Magnesium is a pivotal part of this dance in and around our cells. The Multi-Tasking Mineral Every cell in our bodies relies on magnesium. It’s known as the ‘the spark of life’ because without magnesium, the very process by which our cells derive energy ceases to function. Magnesium is critical for the success of hundreds of biochemical or enzymatic reactions across all bodily systems: for our nerves, brain, muscles, bones, organs and hormones, magnesium is essential. There are only 7 macro-minerals in the body, and magnesium is ranked 4th in terms of abundance. Magnesium’s multi-tasking properties are linked to the way it partners with other nutrients. Magnesium is a cooperative mineral, aligning itself with other nutrients to help them perform their functions. Magnesium and Calcium Magnesium lives in the centre of the cell, and with adequate levels, keeps calcium on the outside of the cell where it belongs – until the body calls for energy and then calcium floods the cell. Too much calcium and not enough magnesium creates an unhealthy balance, allowing calcium to seep into the cell. Calcium in the centre of the cell puts the body in a perpetual state of excitement. There is ample evidence that tension-based conditions such as migraines, restless legs, muscle cramps, PMS and even day-to-day stress can be attributed to the troubling imbalance of too little magnesium and too much calcium. Health Benefits of Magnesium Every muscle and nerve in your body relies upon magnesium to maintain normal function. This includes the biggest muscle of them all – your heart – and magnesium also has a direct connection to the electrical system of your heart, keeping heart rhythm steady. Magnesium supports a healthy immune system, in part through its work with omega-3s. It has a crucial, yet little-known role in maintaining strong bones and teeth. Magnesium is the mineral that activates the vitamin D that assimilates calcium into your bones to help keep them strong. This critical mineral also regulates blood sugar levels, promotes normal blood pressure, and is known to be involved in energy metabolism and protein synthesis. Protein synthesis is an enormously complicated process that utilizes DNA, RNA, amino acids and ATP (energy) to form proteins at the rate of hundreds of proteins per second in a healthy cell. Magnesium’s multi-tasking properties are so diverse that deficiency is thought to be a key contributor to the diseases described as Metabolic Syndrome. “Metabolic” refers to the chemical processes of an organism. Metabolic Syndrome is so named because the diseases of Metabolic Syndrome – specifically Heart Disease and Diabetes – show similar deficiencies at the cellular level. Magnesium is also instrumental for temperature regulation, electrolyte balance, and activating nutrients including the vitamin B group and Omega 3s, as well as crucial hormones such as melatonin and serotonin. How Much Magnesium Do You Need? According to Dr. Carolyn Dean, M.D., N.D. and bestselling author of The Magnesium Miracle, most North Americans aren’t getting enough magnesium. Dean recommends 500 mg daily as a healthy starting place, in line with the intake common for adults 100 years ago. Health Canada sets a lower bar, suggesting 350 mg/day as an adequate intake. Even based on this modest figure, up to 65% of us fall short. Today, many Canadian adults are getting only 200 mg/day. Unlike many nutrients, magnesium is depleted every twelve hours. It must be constantly replenished. As a supplement, it’s non-toxic; any excess is safely eliminated. While too much magnesium is almost never a problem, too little can be a health disaster. Who Is Deficient and Why “Both our current diet and tendency to over-supplement with calcium…makes getting enough magnesium almost impossible.” – Carolyn Dean, M.D., N.D. Author of The Magnesium Miracle We just aren’t getting enough magnesium through food. Lifestyle, processed foods, and modern agriculture’s depleted soils are to blame. What magnesium we do ingest is often poorly absorbed or depleted by medication, caffeine, sugar, alcohol, excess calcium and stress. Low magnesium is even more dangerous given Canadians’ high intake of calcium through dairy, fortified foods and supplements. Calcium and magnesium need to be in balance for the chemistry of our cells to function properly. When calcium is in excess, we may experience symptoms of ...

Tips for Scheduling Your Supplements

A natural health product is only effective if its ingredients are absorbed well. It may be the best formulated product on the market – and the best product for your personal health needs – but if you are taking it at the wrong time or with the wrong foods, your body may not be able to properly utilize the nutrients! There are many possible interactions that may occur with your supplements, thereby decreasing their absorption and effectiveness, or the safety of other medications. Here are some basic guidelines to improve your supplement scheduling:   Minerals should be taken away from foodGenerally speaking, minerals such as magnesium are best absorbed on an empty stomach. If taken with food, other minerals and food components may interact and reduce absorption. Iron should not be taken with Calcium These minerals bind with one another and drastically decrease absorption. In general, iron should be taken with vitamin C to improve absorption, but it should not be taken with any minerals. Zinc should be taken with foodThis will reduce the likelihood of experiencing nausea, the most common side effect of zinc supplementation. All thyroid medications should be taken away from food, supplements and other medicationsThyroid medications, including Synthroid, Cytomel, Eltroxin and desiccated thyroid, all should be taken on an empty stomach. The dosages are so minute that any interaction with other substances can alter the effectiveness in the body. Calcium is best taken at nighttime Some research has found that calcium is best taken before bed because our bodies are more active at building bone while we sleep. Strontium should not be taken at the same time as Calcium These two minerals compete with one another for absorption. Do not take your supplements with tea or coffeeThese drinks contain flavonoids and other compounds that decrease the absorption of various minerals. When possible, divide your dosesAlthough some nutrients or products are designed to be taken in a high dose all at once, generally it is best to take 1 pill, twice per day instead of 2 pills, once per day. Take fat-soluble nutrients with a meal containing fatsVitamins A, D, E and K are all fat-soluble, just as Coenzyme Q10, Lutein and Zeaxanthin are. All of these are best absorbed when taken with a fat-base. Don’t mix prescription medications and natural health productsWhile there are many exceptions to this rule, it is generally best to avoid taking drugs at the exact same time as your supplements. It is always best to speak with your pharmacist or healthcare provider to learn more about your personal prescriptions and what should, or should not, be taken with them.     Now that you have a better idea of when to take your supplements, it is always important to remember that Natural Health Products are most effective when you take them regularly. This can be problematic for those who are always on-the-go or have trouble even remembering where they left the car keys. Here are some extra tips to ensure that you will always take your pills, even on the most hectic days: Purchase a pill containerOrganizing your morning, afternoon and evening pills into a weekly container can be one of the most effective ways to improve compliance. This way, you only need to count out each pill once per week – let’s say, every Sunday? For the rest of the week, you can just go into cruise control and don’t worry about remembering which ones to take at which times. Use a reminder appThere are many phone apps available now that can set alarms to go off at specific times of the day when you will need to take your pills. If you are the type of person to always have your phone with you, download a free app and give it a whirl. Keep two sets of pillsOne at work and one at home. By doing this, you’ll never have the excuse of not having your pills on hand when you think about taking them. Depending on the product, even keeping some in your car may be beneficial so that if your alarm goes off or you remember to take them while on route, you have them ready to go! Develop a routineWhatever your routine may be, it’s most important to have one. Eat your meals in the same location, always brush your teeth before bed and so on. These actions will allow you to develop a routine with your supplements, too. For example, if you take certain pills before bed, brushing your teeth may act as a trigger to take them. In the end, everyone has unique and different circumstances that may make it more difficult to take their supplements. Find out what is most effective for you! And if you do have some great tips for scheduling your supplements that we missed, please leave a comment and share with us below.  Reference: https://drnibber.com/tips-for-scheduling-your-supplements/

Your Survival Guide for Seasonal Allergies

So many of us suffer from seasonal allergies or hayfever. For many Canadians, anywhere from the beginning of May right through to October can be difficult either entirely or sporadically depending on the growing season and what affects us. There are so many products on the market. But if you’re like me, these cause a variety of unpleasant side affects, most prominently drowsiness. I am busy, I can’t be having a drowsy day because I am fighting itchiness, sneezes and general discomfort. The great thing is that there are lots of great natural remedies, as expert Dr. Marita Schauch describes in this month’s blog below. I’ve tried Immuno-Care. It’s a great natural product. Here’s Dr. Marita’s great advice: We were fortunate enough this year on the West Coast: while the rest of Canada had it’s share of snow and below freezing weather, Victoria, BC, experienced one of its mildest winters on record. But the warmer weather and the early signs of spring like flower buds and blooming trees for many of us actually mean nasal congestion, sneezing and itchy eyes. This past month allergy season has crept up on many of my patients, which, for some can cause a significant reduction in their quality of life. What is an Allergy? An allergy is an over-reaction of the immune system that causes the release of histamine from mast cells. Allergies create inflammation in the body and can also aggravate existing chronic conditions. What most people don’t know is that the presence of underlying food allergies can actually worsen seasonal allergies (hay fever). These delayed reactions from food can cause cumulative stress on the immune system which makes the body that more sensitive and reactive. The good news: allergy season doesn’t have to be miserable! Here is your survival guide to keep those seasonal allergies under control: Quercetin: As mentioned above, determine underlying food allergies and avoid those foods – especially during allergy season. Common food allergies are: dairy,wheat/gluten, egg, soy and corn. Supplement with the bioflavonoid Quercetin, which has been shown to be effective in individuals suffering from allergies. Quercetin inhibits the release of histamines and other inflammatory compounds from mast cells, thus reducing the allergic/inflammatory response. Look for Bioactive Quercetin (EMIQ) which is a highly bioavailable form of Quercetin. EMIQ has been shown to provide a 40 times greater absorption than regular Quercetin. Vitamin C: Vitamin C is key in any allergy treatment program because it has so many beneficial functions. Vitamin C not only acts as an antioxidant, helping to reduce allergic reactions, but it also has mast-cell-stabilizing properties that reduce histamine release. Probiotics & Fermented Foods: Support the intestines by re-establishing the “good bacteria” (acidophilus and bifidobacteria) to ensure proper digestion of foods and optimal immune function. A good portion of your immune system resides in your gut and the use of antibiotics, the birth control pill or excess sugar, food allergies and stress can affect our gut bacterial balance. A healthy gut is therefore essential for a strong immune system! Omega-3: Omega-3 essential fatty acids are healthy fats that are necessary for the formation of every cell in the body. Supplement with a clean fish oil with a minimum of 1000 mg EPA and 600 mg of DHA daily. Immunocare: Plant Sterols (found in Immuno-Care) help to modulate immune function and reduce inflammation. They also reduce allergies by dampening down basophil, eosinophil and mast cells, the immune cells that release histamine, causing the typical “allergic reaction.” Sublingual Immunotherapy: Sublingual Immunotherapy has shown efficacy for seasonal allergies. Drops of liquid containing minute quantities of the offending allergen are placed under the tongue. This type of therapy is much more convenient as there is no need to go into the doctors office for shots. I always recommend physician supervision with the initial use of the sublingual immunotherapy. Although it is much safer than the shots, allergic reactions may still occur. Happy Spring! References AAAI Board of Directors. J. Allergy Clin Immunol. 1995Amelia, M. et al. Planta Medica. 1985Johnston, C.S. J Am Coll Nutr. 1992Lindfors K, et al. Clin Exp Immunol. 2008Dry, J. Allergy Apply Immunol. 1991http://www.pno.ca/?p=1305&option=com_wordpress&Itemid=201

Probiotics May Make You Happy!

  By David Perlmutter, M.D.   You’ve heard of the term probiotics and likely prebiotics as well, but now we are hearing about what are called, “psychobiotics.” These have been defined as “a live organism that, when ingested in adequate amounts, produces a health benefit in patients suffering from psychiatric illness”. That’s a pretty impressive new term, and claim for that matter. But the reason that scientists have developed this terminology is because new research clearly demonstrates that certain probiotic organisms have a dramatic effect in terms of regulating mood. In recent double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized trials, it has been demonstrated that people taking a combination of two fairly common probiotic bacteria, including lactobacillus helveticus and bifidobacterium longum, had a dramatic reduction in their level of psychological stress as compared to people given a placebo. In addition, researchers demonstrated that the level of cortisol, the so-called “stress hormone”, was much lower in those receiving these probiotics as opposed to those who received placebo. We know that certain probiotic bacteria have an effect on the level of various neurotransmitters that can affect mood, like serotonin and dopamine. In addition, inflammation is a cornerstone of depression, and current research clearly identifies the stability of the bowel lining as a regulator of inflammation throughout the body. This stability is regulated to a significant degree by the level of good bacteria living within the intestines. These are just two proposed mechanisms whereby specific probiotic bacteria can affect mood. That said, well beyond just the idea of intervening with probiotic supplements as an attempt to help with mood, an important take-home message from this research should be that we should do everything we can to preserve and protect our gut bacteria today by reassessing our food and medication choices, as well as various other lifestyle factors like sleep, stress and exercise. It makes sense that if we compromise the levels of these and other probiotic bacterial species within us, it may well pave the way for debilitating mood disorders.   References: https://www.gardenoflife.com/content/probiotics-may-make-happy/

Dead Sea Mud Mask- The Ultimate Skincare Solution

DEAD SEA MUD MASK – THE ULTIMATE SKINCARE SOLUTION Skincare and beauty products have always been the most essential components of one’s beauty kit. These products not only promise externally beautiful and radiant skin; but also guarantee an internally healthy one. However, many skincare products contain dangerous chemicals that might remove spots on the surface of the skin initially, making it appear clearer; but their prolonged and continuous use results in infections and acne breakouts. Due to the uncertainty associated with these beauty products and their possible side effects; beauty experts, advise users to opt for natural based products. They say that natural beauty solutions might take longer time to show the desired results; but they do not contain harmful ingredients that can affect the texture and color of the skin in the long run. One such natural and renowned skin alluring product is the Dead Sea mud mask. It is considered as a proper skincare therapy that cleanses and moisturizes the skin, making it free from spots, blemishes, aging marks, and more. Applicable on all types of skin; the Dead Sea mud mask is a tested solution, with evident and effective results. Medical studies are finding the Dead Sea mud’s effectiveness against acne, psoriasis, dry skin, eczema, and so on. Thus, the Dead Sea mud mask has now become a vital skin healing formula. WHY THE DEAD SEA MUD MASK IS SO EFFECTIVE? Are you wondering why this mud mask is beneficial for the skin? Or what makes it the best mask amongst all? If this is so, then here is the answer. The Dead Sea is the most salty sea in the world, with a salinity level of 28% to 35%. Usually seas don’t have a salt concentration of more than 6%; but it is not the case with the Dead Sea. It is a landlocked area, with high evaporation rate, which is why the excessive amount of minerals in the water gets absorbed into the deep mud of the sea. Thus, when applied onto the skin; it helps it in regaining the essential minerals that were lost due to pollution or over-exposure to the sun. ADVANTAGES OF USING THE DEAD SEA MUD MASK By dilating the blood vessels and improving the flow of blood near the skin; the Dead Sea mud mask provides the following benefits to your skin: It starts a healing process in the damaged skin tissues. It prevents the excessive secretion of oil from the sebaceous glands, and maintains adequate moisture on the surface of the skin. It helps to relieve allergies on the skin, and helps to prevents them from recurring. It also cleans the skin, by removing dirt particles from the pores of the skin. The Dead Sea mud mask helps with acne; remove dark spots and blemishes, and is also effective against wrinkles and other signs of aging. Now that you know about the benefits of the Dead Sea mud mask; try it out for yourself today.

The Lowdown on Getting Up for Your Workout: 8 Keys to the Perfect Pre-Workout Drink

Pre-Workout supplementation has been one of the hottest categories in supplementation for more than a decade. and with good reason. Getting effectively motivated with the ideal nutrients before your workout can mean the difference between success and failure. Selecting a great pre-workout supplement can be a daunting task and isn’t for the faint of heart. There are literally dozens of selections out there, for every gym rat you ask you’re likely to get a different answer from each one. Here we’ll breakdown the elements that make up a great pre-workout supplement so you can make an informed decision. Caffeine Pre-workout supplements give you a pretty huge advantage in the gym for a few reasons. First and foremost, they work on motivation and energy. Typically, not unlike an energy drink, the main ingredient is tried and true caffeine (methylxanthine). Whether it comes from a coffee, a caffeine pill or in the form of a pre-workout supp, this ingredient is a potent one that provides a long list of benefits. Most importantly to your workout is its ability to stimulate your brain to get you motivated. Aside from waking you up and giving you mental energy, it has the effect of reducing your perception of exertion. Simply put, you’ll push harder because the weight actually feels less heavy than it normally would. The result – you’ll simply get more out of your workout, you’ll lift more, run harder and go longer. This is why (at least for a time) caffeine in elevated amounts was considered to be a banned performance-enhancing substance. 1-3, Dimethylamylamine or DMA In the last few years, there have been additional stimulants introduced to further enhance this effect. They, like caffeine, work on increasing the secretion of norepinephrine (NE) by the adrenal glands. One of the most contentious of these is called 1-3, Dimethylamylamine or DMA for short. This ingredient is a chemical that was said to have come from Geranium extract, but this has been scientifically challenged scientifically both for and against. It has since been declared illegal in many countries and banned by certain sports organizations like WADA. Hordenine, Synephrine and Octopamine There are other key ingredients that you can rely on to provide a very similar stimulant action, Hordenine, Synephrine and Octopamine. All of these exert very similar stimulant actions and complement caffeine very nicely. Naringin is an ideal addition, as it extends the action of the stimulants by reducing the rate at which your body breaks them down. This increases the activity time of the stimulant and improves their effect. Yohimbine The one stimulant that is unique to the others and highly effective is Yohimbine. Unfortunately, this ingredient in illegal in Canada, but is very popular in US formulations. The advantage with this ingredient is that it is known to increase blood flow and act on specific fat receptors in the buttocks and thighs, generally lowering body fat. In terms of pre-workout supplementation, it produces a strong stimulant effect that tends to work well in conjunction with caffeine. Aside from the stimulant effect so important to getting your head in the game, the elevation of norepinephrine also has a strong fat-burning effect. So, in addition to getting the mental focus and motivation critical to getting a good workout, you will simultaneously burn more fat. The mechanism of action is a liberation of stored fat in the form of long-chain fatty acids that can be burned by the body to produce energy. L-Carnitine The addition of L-Carnitine to your pre-workout supplement is an ideal complement to your pre-workout stack, but it should be taken between an hour and 30 minutes before you train (whereas your pre-workout absorbs very quickly and should be taken right before you train.) L-Carnitine in the body transports the long-chain fatty acids (LCFA) into the cell where the mitochondria burn the LCFA as energy. It is well known that mitochondria are the powerhouses of the cell, but less well known is how the supplementation of L-Carnitine supports this process. Arginine Arginine is a primary component of most of these pre-workout supplements, and for good reason. It has been a standard in medicine for increasing nitric oxide in cardiac patients for decades. Nitric oxide (NO) relaxes blood vessels and increases blood flow. One of the keys to Arginine is uptake and absorption. This is why you will often see blends of varied forms of Arginine to ensure that your body actually uses the Arginine for NO production. Another key factor of Arginine that is lesser known is its ability to help stimulate the release of growth hormone. Arginine also happens to be one of the substrates that your body uses to endogenously make Creatine. Ginkgo Biloba, Ginseng and Citrulline Ginkgo Biloba, Ginseng and Citrulline are top favorites and worth having in any pre-workout supplement – Ginkg ...

Immune-Boosting Recovery Foods

BY: JULIA REISS, CNP Baby, it’s cold outside! This time of year, focus naturally shifts to protecting the body from increased amounts of circulating cold and flu viruses. Everyone has a trick and many of these are proven effective! But what’s equally important is supporting your body through and beyond illness so that your immune defenses aren’t lowered long-term and your body recovers from the damage inflicted by a week-long cold. Lowered immunity post-cold or flu creates the perfect opportunity for bacteria and viruses looking for a way in – you want your immune defenses back up to healthy (or beyond healthy!) levels so you don’t get stuck in the uncomfortable cycle of winter cold after winter cold. My tips? Drink a LOT of water or herbal tea and sweat it out at the gym or in a sauna as often as possible to help your body clear out any remaining debris left by bacteria or viruses. Eat often and eat well! Take the burden off your body and provide it with nourishing meals that are light but warming – soups are key here, but make them hearty! See my Anti-cold Soup for a very simple recipe that can work as a side or a main. Don’t stop immune-boosting supplements until 2 weeks after you’ve beaten your cold! Astragalus, mushroom blends, or even just a standard combo of increased vitamins C and D and zinc can be taken for a couple extra weeks to strengthen your defenses. Platinum makes an excellent, well-absorbed vitamin D3 – I usually keep a bottle in my purse to dole out to friends as needed! Don’t ignore your gut! Much of our immunity resides on our intestinal tract and is directly related to the probiotic bacteria that reside there. Make sure your community is healthy by adding kefir or fermented foods to your diet – try a tempeh stir fry or raw sauerkraut or kimchi as a side with your next meal! Most important of all? Let your body heal. Take an extra day off work, if at all possible and indulge in me-time. Nourish your mind while your body heals, stay warm, and sleep whenever you feel like it! There are very few things in life that can’t be delayed by 12 hours if your body is calling for rest and there is very little that’s more important that a healthy body! Stay healthy and stay warm!   Reference: https://platinumnaturals.com/blog/immune-boosting-recovery-foods/
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