Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Tips on Aging Gracefully with Antioxidants

If you are looking for tips on aging gracefully, antioxidants are a good place to start. Inside and outside your body, antioxidants can help you with a variety of age related health conditions such as wrinkles, cancer, heart disease, macular degeneration Parkinson's and Alzheimer's, creaky joints, aches and pains, tiredness, and cataracts. Before we give you some tips on aging using antioxidants, let's explore a bit about what antioxidants are and how they work.

Antioxidants and Free Radicals
To understand how important antioxidants are, we first have to understand a bit about free radicals. The average human body is composed of over 75 trillion cells. Cells are essential components to health and longevity. Our cells though are under constant attack by damaging, unstable molecules called free radicals. Basically free radicals are molecules in cells that are weakened to the point that they lose an electron. This weakness is caused by such things as toxins in the body, exposure to UV rays, chlorinated water, pollution, and overcooked, fried and processed foods. These free radicals then go around taking electrons from other molecules and creating more free radicals. Free radicals damage the body, including cells, enzymes, and DNA, causing negative effects such as pain, inflammation, and chronic diseases.

Our bodies have free radical scavengers, called antioxidant enzymes, which help neutralize free radicals before they cause cell damage by replacing the missing electron. Our bodies do produce antioxidants naturally, but not enough to deal with all the free radical damage. Antioxidants are very important in promoting a healthy immune system and in the prevention of disease. They can possibly reduce the body's vulnerability to age-related health issues, thus helping us achieve a healthier life. Since our bodies do not produce enough naturally to deal sufficiently with free radicals we can get more of the antioxidant vitamins, minerals and enzymes we need through foods and dietary supplements.

Tips on Aging: Good Antioxidants for Aging Gracefully

Antioxidant foods to eat -
Resveratrol is an antioxidant compound found in the skin of red grapes, red wine, grape juice, peanuts, mulberries and a few Chinese herbs. It has been found to have antiviral, anti-inflammatory and anticancer properties. There are health conditions and medications that don't mix well with Resveratrol however, so be sure to check with your health care provider before taking supplements with this especially if you have any bleeding or hormone conditions or if you take prescription medications or supplements such as ginkgo, garlic or St. John's Wort.

Vegetables and fruits with bright colors are a good source for a variety of antioxidants. Studies have shown that eating foods high in the antioxidants vitamin C and E can help protect skin from UV damage and those foods particularly high in vitamin C can help fight dry skin and wrinkles. Another vegetable that is a good food for skin health is the tomato. Tomatoes contain lycopene which can also help protect skin from sun damage. One study done at the Erasmus Medical Center in the Netherlands reported findings that participants getting the most Vitamin C showed the lowest risks for stroke. Fruits and veggies high in antioxidants include:
  • Fresh and dried fruits, especially berries
  • Broccoli
  • Spinach
  • kale
  • Carrots
  • Sprouted greens
  • Kale
  • Nuts
  • Green tea
  • Kiwi
  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Butternut squash
  • Bell pepper
  • Papaya
  • Tomatoes
Antioxidants to Put On -
Besides eating foods with antioxidants to combat free radicals, you can apply antioxidants right to your skin. There are beauty products that have been created with antioxidant molecules made small enough to be absorbed by skin pores. Antioxidants that help skin with aging gracefully include Vitamin C and E and coenzyme Q10. Antioxidants applied to skin can help protect against damage from the sun and air pollution. If you are looking for tips on aging for your skin then finding a moisturizer or serum with antioxidant protection can help reduce or prevent wrinkles, and improve the tone of your skin.

I like this lotion  with its powerful antioxidants and immune support, fortified with high-performance levels of WGP (whole glucan particle) beta glucan, bluegreen algae, and aloe vera, as well as vitamins A, C, and E and other key ingredients that nourish my skin while leaving it soft without an oily feel.

Antioxidant supplements -
Every cell must have energy to survive and function. Coenzyme Q10 is needed for energy in every normal cell of the human body. In fact, Dr. Karl Folkers, winner of the Priestley Medal for his work on CoQ10, has declared, "We know today that CoQ10 is essential for life to exist." This supplement not only gives you coenzyme Q10, but also a combination of premium antioxidants and bluegreen algae. It contains 82% of the daily value of antioxidant vitamin A (beta-carotene) and includes the highest quality organic, cold-pressed flaxseed oil which is a rich source of omega-3 and omega-6 essential fatty acids.

Adult stem cells, that are already in our bodies and are not controversial like embryonic stem cell use is, maintain and renew body tissue and help in maintaining a healthy immune system. As we get older, we don't produce as many adult stem cells and they don't regenerate themselves as fast as when we were younger. This is where supplementation can help. Research has shown that certain nutrients such as are present in this stem cell support supplement can help promote the renewal of stem cells. It provides nutrition that supports the growth of stem cells and provides antioxidants that protect existing stem cells from free radical damage. One of the ingredients, carnosine, is an antioxidant amino acid naturally present in the human body that may delay the natural aging of cells and extend the lifespan of adult stem cells.

This antioxidant supplement  is loaded with chlorophyll, glutathione, enzymes, vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients. It contains a blend of kale sprouts, red clover sprouts, wheat sprouts, concentrated wheat sprouts, and Dunaliella salina algae.

The tips on aging with antioxidant use can help you get started towards aging gracefully, feeling and looking healthier and improving your quality of life. Whether you are eating them, putting them on skin or getting them through supplements, antioxidants are a key ingredient in a healthy lifestyle.

If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the feed to have future articles delivered to your feed reader. Also, check out the free health resources or order blue-green algae products  on our website.
Image courtesy of Photokanok / FreeDigitalPhotos.net


Thursday, December 5, 2013

How to Increase Immunity with Natural Solutions

Turns out Mom sure knew how to increase immunity when she'd pass out the chicken soup when we were sick. She may not have known that the amino acid cysteine created by cooking chicken simulates acetylcysteine which is a drug for bronchitis or that the chicken broth thins out mucus much like a cough syrup or that a University of Nebraska study found chicken soup could block inflammatory white blood cells so they couldn't build up in the bronchial tubes, but she somehow knew it was good for us when we were sick. I used to think my mom was psychic because she always seemed to know what I was doing, what I was thinking and how I was feeling without being told. Just a little scary, right? I realize now as an adult she was picking up on subtle clues from me that she was able to interpret by knowing me so well. The same thing is true when looking at your health and how well your immune system is working.

To know if your immune system is doing its job or not, do some observing of your overall health and diet. Here's a few questions you can ask yourself:
  • Do you seem to catch every illness that is going around? This is a big clue that your immune system may not be functioning its best. It is normal to get sick a few times a year with a cold, flu or virus, but more than that could be an indication of a weakened immune system.
  • Do you eat or drink much sugar? A study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition reported that even ingesting the amount of sugar found in 3 cans of soda a day could cause your white blood cells to fail in killing bacteria for 5 hours after eating or drinking sugary foods or drinks.
  • Is your nose dry? Mucus collects germs and helps to get them out of the body. If your nose is too dry and you are not producing enough mucus, you may be holding on to more germs than can be fought off.
  • Are you over-stressed? Stress has definitely been linked to a weakened immune system.
  • Do you get enough sleep? Inadequate sleep in amount or quality can over-stress the body and weaken the immune system.

If your answers to these questions indicate that your immune system is not doing the best job for you, then you may be looking for natural solutions for how to increase immunity. I have 2 tips today for how to increase immunity that Mom may not have known about or even heard of. Beta Glucan and Mushrooms. Let's take a look at how both of these work and can be natural solutions in how to increase immunity.

How To Increase Immunity: Mushrooms
According to Douglas Schar, DipPhyt, MCPP, MNIMH, director of the Institute of Herbal Medicine in Washington, DC, recent studies have shown mushrooms to be supportive of white blood cells that fight off infections. With their immunosupportive agents, they can help protect you from viruses, bacteria and even yeast. There are even mushrooms being used to kill cancer cells and for nerve regeneration. Shiitake, maitake, and reishi seem to be the ones that have the biggest impact for immune system support. Dr. Joseph Mercola tells us that polypores are the mushrooms that work best as antivirals and Paul Stamets has recently made the discovery that the polypore, Agaricon, can help fight off diseases such as smallpox and the flu. Dr. Mercola also believes it is better to go with a mushroom blend so that your body doesn't become resistant and adapt to one particular mushroom. There are 2 mushroom blend supplements that I like to help me with immune support. This one combines the powerful organic mushroom blend of reishi, maitake, cordyceps, wild black trumpet, and Poria cocos mushrooms and the other one  has a blend of reishi, cordyceps, maitake, shiitake, Turkey Tail, and Agaricus blazei, with astragalus, beta glucan and bluegreen algae.

This second one leads us to the next immune support tip – beta glucan. One of the reasons mushrooms are being found effective for immune support is that they have polysaccharides, glycoproteins, ergosterols, and triterpenoids. These are all precursors to beta glucans. Let's take a look at beta glucans and how they are another of the natural solutions for how to increase immunity.

How To Increase Immunity: Beta Glucan
Beta glucan is a complex carbohydrate of the simple sugar glucose. It can come from cereals like oats and barley or from yeast, bacteria and fungi. Beta glucans differ in structure according to how the glucose is linked. Yeast beta glucan is linked in such a way that it has been found to enhance and stimulate macrophages, a type of white blood cell that kills off foreign invaders and stimulates other immune cells to fight them off. The beta glucan that comes from baker's yeast is the most potent anti-infective beta glucan immunododulator. This is the type that I get from this supplement  along with the mushroom blend. Since the body does not produce beta glucans by itself, we have to get them from the foods we eat or supplements. Baker's yeast, shiitake mushrooms, barley, oats, rye, and wheat are all sources of beta glucan. One study from Norway reported that when animals got beta glucan from eating oats and barley they were less at risk for contracting flu, herpes and anthrax. They found it to be an immune booster for people by increasing the effectiveness of antibiotics and helping wounds heal faster. Other studies have found beta glucan to be effective against bacterial infections and viral infections and even lessen duration of symptoms of the common cold.

With cold and flu season upon us, building up our immune systems is extra important to stay healthy and productive. So get out the chicken soup, mushrooms and beta glucans to help your immune system do the best job it can for you.

If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the feed to have future articles delivered to your feed reader. Also, check out the free health resources or order blue-green algae products  on our website.


Thursday, November 21, 2013

How to Get Flat Abs, Really

Isn't it frustrating to be eating healthy and exercising and still find yourself facing the question of how to get flat abs? It is to me and one survey showed that 72% of women between the ages of 45 and 64 list this area as being the part of the body they feel the most insecure about. So I know I'm not alone. It is often very tricky to get that midsection flattened out. There are a variety of reasons for this including:
  • water retention
  • stored fat
  • poor digestion
  • diet
  • stress
  • age
How To Get Flat Abs Dos and Don'ts
Christine Rosenbloom, PhD, RD, Georgia State University professor emeritus, says that the key to controlling belly fat is the acronym SED:
  • S: Strength training to preserve muscle mass 
  • E: Exercise aerobically to burn fat
  • D: Diet that is healthy, calorie-controlled, and includes heart-healthy fats
When looking at how to get flat abs there are some do's and don'ts that can't help. For example, you probably know that eating protein and fiber foods can help, but did you know that drinking alcohol can slow down the fat burning process? According to Diane Henderiks, R.D., personal chef and founder of Dish with Diane, alcohol is processed by the liver before carbohydrates and proteins are, so if you overindulge in alcoholic beverages that could be a contributing factor to your bulging belly. Let's take a look at some other do's and don'ts that play a role in the how to get flat abs game.

Do Cope with Stress
Finding a way to cope with stress whether it is meditation, deep breathing, a hobby, massage or whatever helps you relax is an important DO. When we are stressed or anxious our bodies produce more cortisol. Cortisol is a hormone that signals the body to store fat. This fat is quite often stored in the abdominal area.

Don't Eat Heavy
This seems like an obvious don't, but take it further to include changing your eating habits to several smaller meals throughout the day instead of eating the traditional breakfast, lunch and dinner. Many people are stuck in the routine of it is time to eat so let's eat instead of checking in with their bodies to see if they are actually hungry. Eating to satisfy the hunger instead of eating until you are full is another consideration. Do you really need to eat that huge restaurant serving for lunch or is your hunger satisfied by only half of it? Usually when I go to a restaurant I find the portions enough to make 2 meals or more instead of one if I really pay attention to hunger pains instead of focusing on cleaning my plate.

Do Build Muscle
Whereas fat tends to be stored instead of being used up by the body, muscle can help raise your metabolism and burn calories. To build more muscle make sure your exercise regimen includes strength or resistance training exercises. This would include exercises of the type that cause the muscles to contract against an external resistance to increase strength, tone, mass or endurance. The external resistance could be from objects such as weights or dumbbells or even your own body weight or exercise mat such as with lunges, leg abductions or plank type exercises.

Don't Miss Sleep
According to the National Sleep Foundation, Americans getting 8 hours of sleep a night dropped from 35% to 26% in a 7 year period. A lack of sleep can slow down the metabolism and increase fat storage.

Do Support Digestion
Your digestive system needs healthy friendly bacteria to digest your food. If you do not have enough of these bacteria working for you, your digestion is slowed and bloating occurs as well as having undigested food causing belly bulges. Yogurt and kefir are good sources of probiotics vital to this digestion process. When buying yogurt or kefir, make sure you get the ones with live active cultures. You can also add a full spectrum probiotic supplement to your diet. Our favorite probiotic supplement  has twelve key good bacteria that are microblended with bluegreen algae. Digestive enzymes are another way to help with digestive support. Enzymes can help break down all kinds of foods including fats, carbohydrates, protein, and fiber for improved digestion.

Don't Eat Processed Foods
Processed foods generally have a lot of sugar. Check the labels on boxes, jars and packages and how many do you find that say high fructose corn syrup? Sugar can be hidden in these types of foods under different names so know what you are getting by looking up ingredients that you are not sure what they are. Or even better, just stick with natural, unrefined foods such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, beans, seeds, and sources of lean protein. These are not only healthier for you overall, but will help you in your quest of how to get flat abs.

Do Ab Flattening Exercises
Celebrity trainer Gunnar Peterson recommends working on big and multiple muscle groups through exercise rather than isolation movements. That means doing exercises such as squats and lunges will be more beneficial in flattening abs than leg curls and burn off more calories. Exercise physiologist Tom Holland recommends also adding some periods of high-speed, more intense exercise into your routine to burn more calories in a shorter time period. To help you get the most out of your exercise routine, we've found taking this supplement  high in antioxidants and bluegreen algae superfood to be supportive in giving you a boost. When you feel good you improve your amount and quality of exercise. The nourishment from bluegreen alage and antioxidant nutrition help you feel your best. 

Do Eat Fat
What?? I'm trying to flatten my abs and you say eat fat! As long as it is the right type of fat and of course you don't overdo it, then yes. The fats to look for are the monounsaturated fats such as you find in olive oil, avocados, nuts, soybeans, flax and sunflower oil. Research is showing that this type of fat has many health benefits including helping lose belly fat. They also help you fill full so that you can avoid overeating.

Do Support Overall Health and Energy
Every body cell must have energy to survive and function. Coenzyme Q10 is needed for energy in every normal cell of the human body. Our favorite COQ10 supplement contains 82% of the daily value of antioxidant vitamin A along with a full spectrum of carotenoids (natural antioxidants) from red beta algae and bluegreen algae. In addition, this Conenzyme Q10 supplement is emulsified in organic cold-pressed flaxseed oil which makes the body absorb it better than powders and provides a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids. CoQ10 is essential for life to exist, as it is an integral part of energy production within every cell. Having your cells energized and supporting overall health and vitality means you feel better and have the energy to get those ab flattening exercises done everyday.

When wondering how to get flat abs, consider these dos and don'ts and how making a few exercise and lifestyle changes can lead to a healthier flat bellied you.

If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the feed to have future articles delivered to your feed reader. Also, check out the free health resources or order blue-green algae products  on our website.
Image courtesy of marin / FreeDigitalPhotos.net


Thursday, October 17, 2013

Healthy Living with Leaky Gut Syndrome

If there is anything the medical communities can agree on about leaky gut syndrome it is that not enough is known about it. Time was when the majority of doctors did not even recognize leaky gut syndrome as a real condition. The alternative medical community recognized the seriousness of leaky gut syndrome before traditional medical personnel and came up with some treatments to reduce symptoms. Even though the condition is becoming more accepted by doctors of all kinds, the dilemma still exists that there is just too much still not known and too broad a spectrum of causes and manifestations to have one simple sure-fire treatment. If there is a second thing that the medical communities all can agree on about leaky gut syndrome, it might be that healthy living habits such as diet and stress reduction are the best first lines of defense.

What Do We Know About Leaky Gut Syndrome?
Whereas there is some controversy and varying opinions and theories about what causes leaky gut syndrome, we're not totally in the dark about it. Here are some things that are generally accepted about it:
  • the intestinal lining which normally acts as a filter, only allowing very small particles through to the bloodstream, becomes more porous
  • larger molecules of undigested food, toxins, yeast and other waste are not being filtered properly by the intestinal wall and get into the bloodstream
  • the immune system identifies these extra particles as foreign bodies and reacts to them as such
  • the immune system cannot keep up with the extra stress put on it trying to fight off all these extra foreign bodies and they are able to pass into various body organs resulting in inflammations
  • the immune system becomes weakened and less able to fight off other types of bacteria, viruses and germs that cause sickness
  • symptoms include chronic diarrhea, constipation, skin rashes, headaches, brain fog, poor memory, food intolerances and fatigue and can lead to conditions like Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Celiac Disease, MS, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Ulcerative Colitis, and Fibromyalgia

Immune System and the Gut
You may be asking yourself at this point what your gut has to do with your immune system. The intestinal system is actually the largest immune system organ. Dr. Campbell-McBride, author of Gut and Psychology Syndrome, sums it all when he says:
"A well functioning gut with healthy gut flora holds the roots of our health. And, just as a tree with sick roots is not going to thrive, the rest of the body cannot thrive without a well-functioning digestive system."
The lining of the intestines with its millions of cells plays a huge role in immune system defense. Simply put, ideally as food is digested and nutrients extracted, the intestinal system exercises a screening process. Those particles that are ready to be passed along through the bloodstream to feed parts of the body are allowed through the tight junctions of cells making up the intestinal wall. These same tight junctions hold back particles that should not move on into the bloodstream or that are not yet ready to pass along. Micronutrients, vitamins, minerals and other nutrients and macronutrients, proteins, carbohydrates and fats, need to be broken down in order to be absorbed and used by the body. Proteins break down into amino acids, carbohydrates break down into sugars like glucose, sucrose and fructose and fats break down into fatty acids and glycerol. Until they are broken down into these small molecules that the body can use, they should not be allowed to pass through the intestinal wall.

In leaky gut syndrome, this process does not work ideally and toxins, undigested food molecules, yeast and other pathogens that should not be getting into the bloodstream are. Once these particles enter the bloodstream the liver jumps into action and attempts to filter out what the intestinal lining failed to. As the liver becomes overwhelmed fighting off all this extra overflow, other parts of the immune system jump in to help fight them off. At this point most of the immune system resources are being used to fight off these invaders and there are not as many immune resources left to attend to "normal" business. There are also so many of these invaders floating down the bloodstream to various body organs that the immune system cannot usually fight them all off. It releases white blood cells to help in fighting them. These white blood cells release chemicals that induce swelling and inflammation. As the invaders are absorbed into body tissues, the immune system's attempts to destroy them results in inflammations in whatever tissues and organs they have entered. The immune system in turn becomes overworked and stressed which can lead to a variety of autoimmune conditions.

You can see now why there are so many ways that leaky gut syndrome can manifest in such a variety of conditions and symptoms and where the controversy comes in for the medical communities. It is a problem for sure, but since there is still a lot of information lacking as to why this all happens and there are so many different locations in the body that can be affected and so many different results or reactions a body can demonstrate, it is often hard to pin down a diagnosis and treatment.

Leaky Gut Syndrome and Healthy Living
Now that you understand a bit about the problems leaky gut syndrome can cause and how it comes about, you might think you are doomed to living with it. Not true. And if you are living with leaky gut syndrome, you are probably a lot less interested in the causes and conditions than you are in getting relief from your symptoms. Having a basic understanding of how it all works though will give you insight into how these natural solutions can help.

Enzymes to Break Down Foods
Some sources we consulted indicate that if you show sensitivity to more than a dozen foods you can assume you have leaky gut syndrome. Undigested foods getting through into the bloodstream are seen as foreign invaders causing the immune system to put up defenses against them. Once the immune system recognizes these as "unfriendly" it will continue to do so anytime these same foods are introduced into the system. Increasing your intake of digestive enzymes can help break foods down into nutrients that will be used by the body. In other words, the problem isn't necessarily the foods you are eating, it is that they are being allowed into the bloodstream before they have been properly digested. It is also cited that those with leaky gut syndrome have low stomach acid. Since digestion begins in the stomach with hydrochloric acid breaking down foods, this can get the digestive process off to a bad start. Taking a digestive enzyme supplement can help facilitate the digestive process. Enzymes help in breaking down food into smaller particles, but they also go through the intestinal system removing toxins, bacteria and damaged cells. Bromelain and papain enzymes are also useful in reducing inflammation in the intestinal lining as well as other body tissues. Using enzymes to help fight off inflammation can give some relief to the overworked immune system.

Because many of the foods we eat lack the enzymes necessary for digestion, we have to take extra enzymes to help digest our foods. While raw organic foods usually have enough enzymes to digest themselves, so our bodies don't have to provide extra enzymes, most of the foods we eat are cooked, packaged, or otherwise enzyme-light. Taking enzymes with each meal helps ensure that your food is properly digested in the stomach before it goes into your intestines. Taking enzymes between meals also helps with digestion, since these enzymes roam the body and "digest" toxins, extra fecal matter, and even proteins that have slipped into the bloodstream through the stomach wall.

Healthy Eating
When dealing with leaky gut syndrome, it is helpful to be aware of the types of foods you are eating. The less ammunition, the shorter the battle. If you eat a lot of processed foods, foods high in refined sugar and preservatives, for example, you are adding fuel to the fire. These types of foods bring chemicals into the body that are identified as toxins. Sugar also feeds yeast and can lead to an overgrowth of them getting into the bloodstream and adding damage to the intestinal wall. In a system that is already overwhelmed with toxins and fighting them off, it can be helpful to eat foods that don't introduce more. To help the gut heal, eat food without any sugar, avoid foods with gluten, processed foods, dairy foods, alcohol, caffeine and simple carbs that break down into sugars. Instead eat whole foods that are high in fiber, essential fatty acids, complex carbohydrates, and are nutrient rich.

Stress is another factor that can lead to a weakened immune system. Finding a way to cope with stress can take another burden off the immune system that is already overworked. Exercise, meditation, yoga, deep breathing exercises, massage, sports or hobbies can all be stress relieving tools. Making sure you get enough good quality sleep can also help with stress. Various herbal teas and Rescue Remedy can be helpful in relieving anxiety associated with stress. Try a variety of different things to see what works for you to reduce stress.

Zinc is a vital mineral for strengthening the intestinal lining. It can also help strengthen a weak immune system and helps in the building of 100 different enzymes. Calf liver, crimini mushrooms, shiitake mushrooms, and spinach are all foods high in zinc. Other foods that are good sources of zinc include shellfish such as crab, lobster, shrimp, clams, oysters and mussels, lamb, sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, oats, wheat germ, and yogurt.

Clean Your Digestive Tract
There are many ways to cleanse your body, but the simplest one I know of is to do a castor oil pack on your abdomen once a week for 4 weeks. Castor oil packs are an old Edgar Cayce remedy and they work really well to help your body get rid of any kind of waste. They work equally well on anything from clogged up intestines to unwanted bone spurs. Castor oil literally dissolves any kind of unnatural material in the body.

You can buy full castor oil packs (which include a wool flannel cloth, castor oil, and a heating pad) at most health food stores. You can also order these supplies online at the Heritage Store. You will also need to have some baking soda on hand for cleaning up after you have done the pack.

A short version of how to do the castor oil pack are as follows:
  1. Soak the wool flannel with castor oil, and place the flannel in an ovenproof dish.
  2. Warm the wool flannel in the oven, until warm to the touch. Meanwhile, plug in the heating pad and warm it. Also, mix the baking soda with water so it forms a paste.
  3. Once the wool flannel is warmed, place it directly on your abdomen, and then place the heating pad on top. Leave the "pack" in place for 1 1/2 hours.
  4. Once you are done with the pack, wipe your entire abdomen with the baking soda paste. This converts the toxins released by the pack into harmless salts that can be washed out of your body through the lymphatic system. This step is very important so don't skip it. If you do, your body will not be able to excrete the toxins released by the pack.
After cleansing your system with the castor oil pack, be sure to replenish the probiotics that live in a healthy intestine.

Probiotics are the "friendly bacteria" in your intestines that are necessary in the digestive process after food has passed out of the stomach and to fight off the bad bacteria and yeast. The probiotics acidophilus and bifidus are especially important. They can help in the healing process of the intestinal lining, help in the absorption of nutrients, and the normal movement of food through the intestines. Eating yogurt "beefed up" with probiotics can help, but to fully replenish your supply of healthy intestinal bacteria, oral supplements are your best bet. Yogurt tends to not have enough density of probiotics to truly replenish.

Hopefully you have some ideas now that will lead you to seek help with your symptoms of leaky gut syndrome. If you need more help, seek out a doctor or nutritionist that will be willing to help you work through the process. Including some or all these healthy living tips into your lifestyle are definitely a good place to start whatever other routes you take. Eating right, reducing stress, and supporting a healthy immune system will never lead you in the wrong direction on the path to healthy living.

If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the feed to have future articles delivered to your feed reader. Also, check out the free health resources or order blue-green algae products  on our website.
Image courtesy of John Kasawa / FreeDigitalPhotos.net


Tuesday, October 8, 2013

The Flu Vaccine - To Vaccinate or Not?

When flu season comes along many people are faced with the dilemma of whether to vaccinate or not with the flu vaccine. We hope to provide you with the information here to make an informed decision to vaccinate or not.

How the Flu Vaccine Works
The flu vaccine is different from other types of vaccines in that it has to be re-created every year because there are different strains of flu. Each year the people that make the vaccine have to try to figure out which strains will be dominant that year and design the vaccine accordingly. This is tricky, since without a crystal ball there is no way to guarantee that the vaccine they create will cover all the strains that will show up for the season. Then there are other factors that influence whether or not the vaccine will work for you or not. Age plays a role. Health officials predict the current vaccine to be 56% effective for children and adults up to age 64. For adults over 64, it is reported to be only 9% effective. For seniors however, the vaccine can prevent them getting a more severe version of the flu which reduces the chance of having to be hospitalized by as much as 70% and reduces the risk of death by as much as 80%. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that overall getting the flu vaccine reduces the risk of getting the flu by 70-90% and they especially recommend the flu shot for anyone with a weakened immune system such as those with HIV or cancer. It is also recommended that children under the age of 6 months do not get the flu vaccine.

Generally, the flu vaccine works best in healthy adults. The older you get, the weaker your immune system can become. The flu vaccine is made with a dead or weakened virus that doesn't give you the flu, but rather alerts the immune system to recognize it. Then if you are exposed to the flu, your immune system recognizes it as a threat to be fought off.

Your Immune System's Role
Since the vaccine is alerting your immune system to identify and fight off the flu virus strains in the vaccine, obviously the stronger your immune system is, the better able it is to combat the virus. Older adults often have weaker immune systems either because they don't produce as many immune cells as they did when they were younger or their nutrition doesn't contain enough of the nutrients they need for a healthy immune system. When deciding whether to vaccinate or not with the flu vaccine, also consider how you can boost your immune system. That way whether you decide to get the flu shot or not, your immune system will be in tip top shape to fight off not only viral infections like the flu, but also bacterial infections that also go around during flu season.

Natural Solutions for a Healthy Immune System
The immune system is a combination of cells and organs that fight off foreign chemicals, bacteria, viruses, fungi, yeast, parasites and other invaders that make us sick. You have cells that block intruders and those that track down intruders to fight them off. Your body produces antibodies that can kill off intruders such as viruses and bacteria that make us sick. Keeping your immune system healthy and strong starts with eating a diet with lots of fruits and vegetables that are high in antioxidants, reducing stress, and getting enough sleep. Here are some other things that can help you in strengthening your immune system.

IgA -
IgA is a protein that is part of the immune system and helps fight off infections by preventing invaders from getting into the body. Stress reduces these levels leaving the immune system more vulnerable. Levels of IgA can be increased by activities such as laughing, social activities, music, and sex. Reducing stress or learning methods of coping with stress can go a long way towards strengthening your immune system.

Exercise –
Too much exercise can actually weaken the immune system. Exercising 3 times a week for 20 minute sessions can help strengthen the immune system.

Wash Hands -
Washing your hands is one of the most effective ways to beat germs. Wash with soap and warm water periodically during the day especially before touching food, after interacting with someone who is sick, being out in public and after using the restroom.

Diet –
Antioxidants fight off the damage created by free radicals which age our bodies and weaken the immune system. Flavonoids in fruits and vegetables as well as Vitamin C, E and A are all antioxidants. Green tea is another good source of antioxidants. Zinc is also an important nutrient for a healthy immune system in the development of white blood cells that help fight off infections and is lacking in most of our diets. Eating foods such as lean meats, seafoods such as crab, oysters and lobster, peanuts, cashews, almonds, dairy products and wheat germ are all ways to get zinc in your diet. Avoid saturated fats and instead add the healthy fats such as omega-3 to your diet. Drink at least 2 quarts of pure water daily.

Intestinal Support –
The digestive tract is a large part of the immune system and healthy probiotics in this system are necessary to support good digestion and aid in the elimination of waste from the body. Lifestyles that include chlorinated water, environmental toxins, stress, and diets high in processed and refined foods as well as foods with many of the nutrients cooked out of them contribute to reducing our probiotic population. Taking supplements of acidophilus and bifidus can support the digestive system and the repopulation of these necessary intestinal flora. Acidophilus helps absorb nutrients in food, strengthens the intestinal wall, activates vitamin production and helps with overall food digestion. It also produces Acidophilin which is a natural antibiotic and inhibits growth of 23 toxic producing microorganisms. Bifidus helps absorb water from food, helps reduce bloating and gas and helps with elimination of waste from the body.

Immune Support Supplement –
To help fortify the body's immune system, you can also add a dietary supplement that contains WGP beta glucan. Beta glucan is a complex carbohydrate of glucose that can come from yeast, bacteria, fungi or cereals like oats, barley and rye. In the 1960s, scientists discovered the immune boosting properties of beta glucan. Numerous studies have shown WGP beta glucan to be able to activate macrophages which are a type of white blood cell in the immune system that help fight off invaders.

As you can see your immune system is the key to defending yourself against illness. When flu season comes around it's up to you whether you decide to vaccinate or not, but building a healthy and strong immune system is a must. I hope you now have the information you need to make the decision on whether to vaccinate or not when it comes to getting the flu shot and also have some ideas on changes you can make to your lifestyle to strengthen your immune system. Flu season comes around every year, make sure you are ready for it.

If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the feed to have future articles delivered to your feed reader. Also, check out the free health resources or order blue-green algae products  on our website.
Image courtesy of Ambro / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Essential Nutrients for Animals

For thousands of years, animals in the wild thrived on a diet of natural raw foods. These foods provided all of the nutrients, vitamins, organic minerals, trace elements, chlorophyll and antioxidants, as well as the beneficial bacteria and enzymes their bodies are designed to use. But today, whether animals live in our homes, on our farms, or are otherwise under our care, their diets are often dramatically different.

Many essential nutrients are heat sensitive; therefore, critical nutritional properties are destroyed by modern processing and storage methods. They are often replaced in animal feeds with synthetic minerals and vitamins, or vitamin isolates that do not provide the same benefits to the body that whole foods do. If these nutritional needs are unmet for an extended period of time, animals will develop an impaired immune system, evidenced by any number of symptoms, including allergies, dry skin, dull hair coat, and increased susceptibility to parasites.

In your quest to find holistic, natural answers for the health of your animal you can find great natural solutions in our online store. This product line, originally developed for humans, offers superior nutritional support for animals. Supporting the health and immune system of your animals with high quality nutrition is the best and most cost-effective choice for their bodies.

If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the feed to have future articles delivered to your feed reader. Also, check out the free health resources or order blue-green algae products at wholesale prices on our website.
Image courtesy of photostock / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Shiny Happy Pets

At one August Celebration, a gathering where many New Earth distributors get together and swap health and business tips and success stories, Elinda McKenna talked about the benefits of the algae products for animals. Want to know her signature line for all her emails?

"My dog and cats don't fart, they have clean teeth and gums, great, shiny coats and eyes and wonderful attitudes."

If you've ever been in a room with a stinky dog you know how bad it can get. Stinky breath, farts and "dog smell" are all signs of poor health. Same for cats, horses and most four-leggeds. The key to having shiny happy pets is to make sure they stay clean both on the inside and the outside. Here's how you get your pets from stinky to squeaky clean.

Clean on the Inside:
  •     Feed enzymes to help your pet digest his food - particularly commercial varieties.
  •     Add probiotics for a healthy immune system, coat, and teeth/gums.
  •     Give powdered algae for micronutrients including vitamins and trace minerals.
  •     Offer antioxidants for sick, aging, or working animals to prevent free radical damage.

We've found that staying clean on the inside helps our pets stay clean (and stink-free) on the outside as well!

Read more or order algae products online HERE.

If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the feed to have future articles delivered to your feed reader. Also, check out the free health resources or order blue-green algae products at wholesale prices on our website.
Image courtesy of akeeris / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Preventing Pollen Allergies and How to Reduce Symptoms

  1. A stronger immune system is never I repeat, never a liability....with one lone exception...if you have just received a transplanted organ....other than that lone exception...a stronger, healthier, more responsive immune system is the best friend we will ever have.
  2. What is the essence of the "allergic response"?
    Answer: the body reacting to the intentional or unintentional ingestion of pollen.....and pollen-like substances...pet dander, mold spores, dust bearing dust mites...etc. (the reaction to toxic fumes and fragrances is similar but involves a different causative agent.)In reaction to the ingestion of pollen and pollen-like substances, the body produces histamine, which is a chemical responsible for the production of watery mucous in an attempt to wash away the irritating pollens...Anti-histamines block this natural response of the body.
  3. What is pollen? Pollen is "a micro-spore of seed plants." Pollens are microscopic "seeds" and like all other seeds are surrounded by a protein skin that protects them from sprouting prematurely.
  4. The classic "allergic response" to any over-ingestion of pollens...should be the same for everyone....sneezing...watery mucous...and the urgent need to blow your nose and clear your throat of the nasty little pollens!!!
  5. Under ideal circumstances, the body possesses enough digestive and metabolic enzymes.......particularly the enzyme protease....to break down the protein skin of the pollen....thus neutralizing its antagonizing effects...the histamine flows in order to escort the neutralizing, and downsized (digested) pollens out of the body. This usually happens within a matter of minutes and can be over within a matter of minutes...with no further irritation or "allergic response" until the next over-exposure to pollens.
  6. People who suffer from "persistent allergic reactions"(ie symptoms that linger for more than the normal few minutes immediately following the over-exposure) suffer from two basic causes:
  •  deficiencies in digestive and metabolic enzymes...particularly protease and protease partner enzymes.
  • not enough histamine production, or histamine that is not strong enough when it is produced and needed.

Proactive Strategies:
  1. Drink more water... half your body weight in ounces per day...with a pinch of organic seasalt per ounce...and more during the allergy seasons. The histamine production centers of the body are controlled by our internal hydrologic cycles.
  2. Consume adequate amounts of digestive enzyme products.
    What's an "adequate amount"? It varies from person to person but a good rule of thumb is always before meals...1, 2, 3 or more capsules of digestive enzymes before all meals and snacks. You must "experiment" and find out what works best for you and your body! If you are "enzyme deficient" you may need to "restore your enzyme bank"(read Victoras Kulvinskas on enzymes.) Consuming digestive enzymes throughout the day is a really good idea...every hour...every other hour...before going to bed. This constant inflow of "protease" and other digestive enzymes will provide the needed assistance when pollens are ingested.
  3. Consume adequate amounts of bluegreen algae: whole algae and without the cellwall, acidophilus, bifidus, this sprouts and algae supplement to get lots of antioxidant power, CoQ 10, Mazama Mix,........because each of these products nourish and strengthen every cell organ, system and "function" of the body...
  4. When was the last time you did a good 30 days "cleanse"? A good cleansing at the change of each and every season can also be helpful!

To summarize:
  1. Take digestive enzymes to break down the protein skin of the pollens.
  2. Consume all the other above mentioned supplements to make sure all other "systems" are functioning at optimum levels...particularly the "system" responsible for the production of histamine....which is the body's own personal escort service for pollen....and many other irritating, foreign, toxic, and non-nutritious substances. (escort as in "exit" as in "get outta here")
  3. Drink adequate amounts of water every single day.
  4. Be proactive and keep learning common sense approaches to the improvement of your diet and lifestyle.

If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the feed to have future articles delivered to your feed reader. Also, check out the free health resources or order blue-green algae products at wholesale prices on our website.
Image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Monday, September 9, 2013

Natural Diets for Your Pets

Did you know that over 60% of American families have at least one pet? Our pets are always there for us, loving us no matter what kind of mood we're in and offering lots of support. Because they are such an important part of our lives it's our job to make sure that they get all the nutritional support they need so that they'll stay healthy and happy for years to come.

Many of the commercial animal foods are often very low in nutrition. Did you know that many dog and cat foods contain low quality ingredients, including diseased animal meat laced with high levels of antibiotics?

What can you do to make sure your pet is getting all the nutrition he or she needs?

If you buy commercial pet food, make sure it has no additives, which can very detrimental to your pet's food. These days there are many organic, additive free foods on the market. Check on the Internet for a greater selection.

All pets benefit from fresh foods - it's what they would eat if they were in the wild. Even dogs and cats do well with occasional greens and salads, as well as fresh meat.

Offer your pet fresh, clean non-chlorinated water 24 hours a day. Hydration is just as important to your pet's health as it is to yours.

Commercial foods are usually heat-processed, which means they lack enough enzymes for proper digestion. To make sure your pet can digest his or her food, sprinkle enzymes on their food. Order New Earth high-grade enzymes online.

If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the feed to have future articles delivered to your feed reader. Also, check out the free health resources or order blue-green algae products at wholesale prices on our website.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Signs That Your Immune System Needs a Boost

How is your immune system working for you? Do you find yourself catching every "bug" that comes along while others you know seem to rarely get sick? The difference could be how you are treating your immune system. It may be that your immune system needs a boost to function more efficiently.

Your Immune System
First let's take a look at how your immune system works and how it protects you from catching those "bugs". Your immune system is made up of cells, tissues and organs all working together to protect your body by fighting off invaders that can cause infection. It consists of proteins and cells, bone marrow, lymph nodes, adenoids, appendix, blood vessels, thymus, tonsils and parts of the gastrointestinal tract and spleen. This network protects the body from antigens such as bacteria, viruses, fungi, toxins, and cancer cells. Antibodies, which are proteins, are produced by your immune system and along with white blood cells fight and destroy these antigens. As we age, our immune system doesn't function as well because lymphoid tissues shrink and our bodies don't produce as many white blood cells.

What Can Suppress Your Immune System?
There are many factors that can influence how successful your immune system is at protecting you. Here are a few that may be causing your immune system to not be doing an optimal job at fighting off illness.

Obesity –
We've all heard about the obesity problem in the U.S. and know how it can affect our general health. But did you know this is one factor that can cause hormonal imbalances and inflammation that affects how your immune system works? One study showed that people with a body mass index over 40 (which is definitely in the obese category) are more likely to become seriously ill with swine flu.

Diet –
Too much sugar in your diet can not only contribute to obesity which affects your immune system, but also can affect your white blood cells. According to a study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, eating 100 grams of sugar can significantly affect white blood cells' ability to kill bacteria for up to 5 hours after it is consumed. (http://ow.ly/jQN98) Other studies show that diets high in saturated fat also suppress your immune system function. Your diet should not have more than 30% fat and choosing healthier fats can help out your immune system.

Drinking Water –
The type of water you drink can also make a difference to your immune system. If your water source contains chlorine, it could be doing damage to the probiotics or good microflora in your intestinal tract. The EPA cautions that around 25 million people in the U.S. are drinking water from wells that have a higher level of arsenic than is safe. Arsenic has been shown to affect the immune system response to disease such as swine flu and is reported as being linked to some forms of cancer. Find out what is in the water you drink and you may need to consider filtering your water or using bottled water.

Stress –
Stress is another factor that can influence how well your immune system functions. Chronic stress ages the immune system leaving you much more vulnerable not only to colds and flu, but also to diseases such as heart disease and diabetes. Finding ways to reduce stress and ways to cope with stress you can't avoid, such as yoga and meditation, will help support your immune system.

Age –

As we get older, our immune systems naturally cease to function as well. Although research has not shown the cause for this, theories speculate that older bodies are not as able to produce immune system cells or that nutrition could be the problem as elderly people often have diminished appetites and don't get the nutrition the immune system needs to stay strong and healthy. We do know that as we age lymphoid tissues shrink and our bodies don't produce as many white blood cells which contributes to the immune system not functioning as efficiently as when we were younger.

Natural Solutions to Boost Your Immune System
If you get more than three or four colds each year, then your immune system may need a boost. Start with getting enough good quality sleep, exercising regularly and eating a healthy diet with lots of vegetables. Adding antioxidants to your diet is especially important as they fight off free radicals that can suppress your immune system. Vitamins C, E, and A and flavonoids found in fruits and vegetables are antioxidants that added to your diet can help give your immune system a boost. Green tea also has antioxidants. Zinc is a micronutrient that helps keep the immune system strong and often is lacking in our diets.

AFA Blue Green Alage
AFA blue green algae has a wide variety of micronutrients your body needs to stay in tip top shape. A type of algae supplement that is the whole algae can provide essential fatty acids, proteins, complex sugars, vitamins, minerals, and essential amino acids. The cell walls of this type of blue green algae are composed of peptidoglycan (carbohydrates and peptides), lipids (oils), polysaccharides (sugars) and proteins which makes it an easily digestible natural complex that is critical for the health and vitality of tissues and cells.

Another type of AFA blue green algae supplement that is the heart of the algae with the cell wall removed through a special process provides all essential amino acids which feed and enhance brain activity. This type of blue green algae is not only an abundant source of raw materials for enhancing activity in the brain, the most nutrient-demanding organ in the body, but also has amino acids which are the building blocks of the healthy nerve cells and neurotransmitters vital for proper brain function. It also provides essential omega-3 fatty acids necessary for cardiovascular health and that support immune system health and helps maintain normal, healthy blood chemistry.

Digestive Enzymes
Digestive enzymes also can help support immune system health. We have over 80,000 enzyme systems in our body and each has its own specific function. Some of these are designated to help with food digestion. Diets full of processed and cooked food that don't have any active enzymes keep our bodies from getting the enzymes needed to help with food digestion. This puts a lot of extra stress on the pancreas, liver and spleen as they then have to produce the enzymes we are not getting from our diets. This extra stress takes that energy away from the immune system causing it to be less effective. Adding a high quality digestive enzyme supplement to your diet can relieve this stress and help the body absorb the nutrients it needs from the foods you eat.

Probiotics are another important aid to your immune system. Acidophilus and bifidus are two of the probiotics found naturally in the intestinal tract. These "friendly bacteria" aid in the defense against "bad bacteria" and yeast in our intestines. Balanced levels of these beneficial microflora support proper digestion and help eliminate waste. When we do not have enough of these probiotics, more stress is put on our immune systems. Many of the foods we eat such as those high in fat and sugar, chlorinated drinking water, environmental toxins, antibiotics and other medications we take can all contribute to killing off these friendly bacteria leaving an imbalance. Taking high quality supplements of acidophilus and bifidus with active live cultures can help support the replenishing of these microflora.

All in One
So in our natural solutions section of this article so far, we have listed how 2 types of algae, enzymes, acidophilus and bifidus can all help support your immune system. If that sounds like a lot of hassle and a lot of bottles to you, then there is a way to get all these in one convenient packet. With 30 packets to a box, each packet contains one vegetarian capsule of each type of algae, 2 digestive enzymes, and a capsule of acidophilus and one of bifidus. Easy to grab on your way to work, when traveling or anytime and gives you the added nutrition for healthy digestion, assimilation and micronutrition.

WGP Beta Glucan Supplement
One last natural solution to help boost the immune system is a supplement that contains WGP beta glucan which studies have shown has the ability to activate macrophages, a type of white blood cell that is the body's first line of defense. Macrophages circulate throughout the body destroying foreign antigens.

You don't have to wait for cold and flu season to come around to get working on strengthening your immune system. Be one of those people that rarely catches the "bugs" going around by using the tips and natural solutions in this article to get your immune system in tip top shape so it can offer you the protection to fight off infections and illness.

If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the feed to have future articles delivered to your feed reader. Also, check out the free health resources or order blue-green algae products at wholesale prices on our website.

Image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Is Your Brain Starving?

Do phrases such as "brain fog" and "senior moments" resonate with you? Do you have trouble focusing, making decisions, or staying mentally alert? If so, then your brain may be literally starving-for nutrients as well as oxygen.

Did You Know That Feeding Your Brain is No Simple Matter?
Your brain is one of the "hungriest" organs in the body, demanding more fuel than other organs. At the same time, the brain is protected behind the "blood brain barrier," a layer of cells that keeps all but the smallest molecules from reaching the brain. So feeding your brain requires care.

How to Feed Your Brain
Feeding the brain is no simple matter. The blood brain barrier allows only small micronutrients and fat-soluble molecules to pass, yet the brain requires huge quantities of the nutrients and molecules. A hungry brain results in decreased mental alertness as well as affected mood. To feed the brain, you need to focus on specific foods that nourish the brain and can pass through the blood brain barrier.

One of the best ways to feed your brain is to get plenty of omega-3 fatty acids. Studies show that Americans get far too few of these fatty acids that the brain (made up of 60% fat) needs. In addition, other brain-healthy nutrients include:
  • ALA (alpha lineoleic acid)
  • B vitamins
  • antioxidants
  • protein (raises levels of mood-boosting neurotransmitters such as dopamine and norepinephrine)
  • plus many more...

If figuring out how to get some or all of the above nutrients seems too complicated for you, check out this simple recipe for brain food supplementation:

Food for Thought Program
Consider this formula if your lifestyle involves a lot of thinking.
1-2 capsules AFA blue-green algae a.m. or noon
1-2 capsules AFA blue-green algae (no cell wall) a.m. and/or noon
1-2 capsules acidophilus (probiotic)a.m.
1-2 capsules bifidus (probiotic) p.m.
1 gelcap coenzyme Q10 a.m.

Gabriel Cousens, M.D. on AFA Blue-Green Algae
Gabriel Cousens, MD, published two case studies on the use of AFA blue-green algae in the improvement of Alzheimer's disease. He reported "some significant return of function" such as decreased hand tremors, better balance, and improved short term memory, attention span, judgment, and reasoning"

If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the feed to have future articles delivered to your feed reader. Also, check out the free health resources or order blue-green algae products at wholesale prices on our website.

Image courtesy of dream designs / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Good Food for Skin and How to Avoid Wearing Food on Your Face!

Diet and good food for skin is important when it comes to having healthy, younger looking skin. Creams, lotions and beauty products of all kinds are popular ways that people take care of their skin, but skin has the added advantage of being able to be affected by what we put in our bodies', not just what we put on them. Our skin health reflects our overall general health and many doctors can tell how healthy you eat just by looking at the condition of your skin. If you are going to "wear your food on your face" so to speak, then adding a few of these good food for skin ideas to your diet can make sure what's seen on your face reflects well on you.

Eating a healthy diet with lots of fruits, vegetables, lean protein and whole grains can improve the texture and tone of your skin, protect skin from sun damage, hydrate your skin and reduce wrinkles. Here are some foods that are particularly good food for skin.

Antioxidant Foods
Antioxidants prevent oxidative damage to skin cells done by free radicals that cause skin to show signs of aging and help boost the immune system. Antioxidants that are especially good for skin include beta-carotene which the body converts to vitamin A, vitamin C and E. Foods high in antioxidants include:
  • Fresh and dried fruits, especially berries
  • Broccoli
  • Spinach
  • Carrots
  • Sprouted greens
  • Kale
  • Nuts
  • Green tea
  • Kiwi
  • Sweet Potatoes
Studies have shown that eating foods high in the antioxidants vitamin C and E can help protect skin from UV damage and those foods particularly high in vitamin C can help fight dry skin and wrinkles. Another vegetable that is a good food for skin health is the tomato. Tomatoes contain lycopene which can also help protect skin from sun damage.

Are you one of those that has such a hectic schedule you just can't get all the fruits and veggies your body needs into your day? You might need to supplement your diet then with something like a supplement of wheat sprouts with algae. No excuse to not get your antioxidants now that you can grab this handy supplement when you are on the run.

Essential Fatty Acid Foods
The more elasticity your skin has the younger it looks. Foods rich in essential fatty acids such as omega 3 and omega 6 help keep your skin elastic rather than saggy. For healthy looking skin you need to get 3 to 4 times more omega 3 fatty acids in your diet than omega 6 fatty acids. Most Americans eat diets that give them the reverse with as much as 10 to 20 times more omega 6 than omega 3. Foods that have the right balance of omega 3 and omega 6 include:
  • Fish such as wild salmon, sardines and tuna
  • Dark green leafy vegetables
  • AFA blue green algae
  • Seeds and nuts such as walnuts
  • Flax seeds and flax oil
  • Olive oil
Studies have shown that omega 3 fatty acids help hydrate skin and help in reducing wrinkles. If your diet is lacking in omega 3's then the solution for you may be supplementing your diet with AFA blue-green algae, one of Earth's perfect foods for healthy skin as it has the exact ratio of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Being on the run is no excuse not to get your essential fatty acids since blue green algae capsules or tablets are convenient and quick to pop in your mouth and swallow anywhere, anytime. 

The dark green leafy vegetables like spinach and swiss chard have the added bonus of possibly reducing skin cancer and those with vitamin K can help in prevention of varicose veins by strengthening blood vessels.

Probiotic Foods
Probiotics are the friendly bacteria that live in our guts and help in proper food digestion. But did you know they also play an important role in skin health? Studies have shown that adding foods rich in probiotics to the diet may reduce the incidence of eczema in children by 55% or more. Foods high in probiotics include:
  • Most fermented foods 
  • High quality yogurt (look for low-fat, low-sugar and Greek)
  • Kefir
Supplementing your diet with acidophilus and bifidus are another way to get the probiotics you need for healthy skin, immune system support, digestive support and overall general health. So if you are not wild about yogurt or fermented foods, you can still get the probiotic support you need. Yogurt though is one of the foods that can also be high in zinc which is needed for the formation of collagen. If yogurt is still just not for you then adding lean red meat, oysters, or white kidney beans to your diet can give you the zinc your skin needs.

Don't think just because you have neglected your skin health for most of your life that it is too late to start now. Healthy skin can start at any time, any age. Start adding as many of the good food for skin ideas we've listed and if you can't get them all in or can't get enough, then think like an astronaut and supplement your diet with healthy food in capsule form. You might not see results immediately, but give it some time and your face will start showing the improvement in what you're eating.

If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the feed to have future articles delivered to your feed reader. Also, check out the free health resources or order blue-green algae products at wholesale prices on our website.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Natural Solutions for Occasional Heartburn, Post-Meal Drowsiness, and Other Digestive Issues

Got occasional heartburn? Do you feel like taking a nap after eating a heavy lunch? Got other somewhat embarrassing occasional digestive issues like constipation, diarrhea, or gas?

Guess what? You are not alone! Did you know that according to the CDC, 51 million Americans seek medical help (from doctor visits to the ER) for digestive issues each year? And those are just the people who actually get help. Many people simple suffer through those occasional digestive issues rather than seeking medical attention.

What Digestive Issues Mean
These digestive issues are flags that your digestive system is not always working as well as it could. Possibilities include:

Need for digestive enzymes
Without enzymes, your body cannot convert the food you eat into usable fats, starches, and proteins. As you age, the number of enzymes your body produces decreases, increasing the need for supplemental enzymes. Lack of enzymes is the reason you might feel tired after eating a particularly large meal: your body doesn't have enough enzymes to digest the meal, and consequently spends a lot of energy on digestion!

Imbalance of bacteria in intestines
Stress, antibiotics, alcohol, tobacco, and drinking chlorinated water are all lifestyle factors that can cause an imbalance of the bacteria that live in your gut. When the non-beneficial bacteria, such as Candida, overtake the gut, the result can range from heartburn and gas to nasal congestion and heart palpitations.

Lack of probiotics in the gut
Imbalances of bacteria in the gut can also mean a lack of probiotics (or beneficial bacteria) in the gut. Such probiotics include acidophilus, bifidus, and numerous other friendly bacteria. Luckily, if you have a lifestyle that causes an imbalance in your gut between probiotics and non-beneficial bacteria, you can rebalance your gut by adding probiotic supplements to your daily regimen.

Insufficient nutrients for the gut
Like all organs in the body, your gut needs nutrients, including nutrients that soothe and heal the gut, plus nutrients that feed the probiotics in your gut. Insufficient amounts of these nutrients can lead to many symptoms of poor digestion.

Got Digestive Issues? Natural Solutions That Can Help!
If occasional digestive issues are really starting to bother you, you can make dietary and lifestyle changes to support your digestive system. Natural solutions for digestive support include:
  • Enzyme supplements
  • Probitoic supplements
  • Small simple lifestyle changes
Enzyme Supplements
In a perfect world, our food should include all the enzymes necessary for full digestion. Unfortunately, because of trends such as over-farming, genetic modification of foods, the use of chemicals in food production, and food packaging and cooking, most foods that arrive on the table lack enzymes.

In addition, as we age our bodies all produce fewer and fewer enzymes. Conversely, the lack of enzymes can also contribute to the aging process. According to Dr. Edward Howell, known for his enzyme research: "Diets deficient in enzymes cause a 30% reduction in life-span." Yowza!

Luckily, there are many enzymes for digestion that you can easily add to your daily diet. Simply take enzymes with meals to support your body's digestion, and take enzymes between meals to help "clean up" any undigested food in your gut!

Probiotic Supplements
Adding probiotic supplements to your daily regimen is another simple way to improve digestion. The probiotics that live in your small and large intestines are integral to healthy digestion. In addition, many of these beneficial bacteria, such as acidophilus and bifidus, play other important roles in our health. For instance, these bacteria are responsible for producing B vitamins, which contribute to health factors such as good mood, hair and nail growth, and energy production! We suggest taking probiotics before breakfast or right before bed. This schedule allows the probiotics to reach their intended destination without having to make it past any food in the stomach.

Lifestyle Changes
In addition to adding supplements to your diet, making small incremental changes in your lifestyle can make a big difference to your digestion. To keep it simple, we have borrowed a list of lifestyle changes from one of America's most notable doctors--Doctor Oz. According to him, these lifestyle changes can really support your digestive health (read more at http://bit.ly/11DSrkG)
  • Stay hydrated (we suggest non-chlorinated water)
  • Physical activity to speed digestion
  • Limit fats
  • Eat more fiber
  • Maintain healthy weight
  • Eat slowly
  • Dietary supplements (like probiotics and enzymes)
  • Decrease bloating ingredients like sodium and artificial sweeteners
Pretty Sweet and Simple, Right?
Nobody likes dealing with gas, heartburn, constipation, or other digestive issues--even if they are occasional. Luckily, the natural solutions that support healthy digestion are pretty simple. So follow these steps and you will actually be able to enjoy your favorite foods with fewer digestive issues!

If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the feed to have future articles delivered to your feed reader. Also, check out the free health resources or order blue-green algae products at wholesale prices on our website.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Want Better Hair? 5 Lifestyle Habits to Break Now

You can spend a fortune on beauty products that promise shinier, silkier hair, but to really have better hair you have to start with looking at your lifestyle. A healthy diet not only supports your overall body health, it also gives your hair the nutrition it needs to stay healthy. You really can't expect to have shiny, silky hair without it being healthy. So before you stock up on all the latest hair products, take a look at making some lifestyle changes to your diet and stress level. Here are 5 questions to ask yourself and determine which lifestyle changes you can make to have better hair.

1. Is Your Hair Getting Enough Protein?
Each strand of hair is made up mostly of protein. If you are not getting enough protein in your diet, then your hair will suffer. The average person has 120,000 to 150,000 strands of hair. Anywhere from 50 to 100 of these strands are shed per day. Hair growth goes through phases. Each one of your hairs has a growing phase of 2 to 3 years in which the hair grows about 1/2 inch each month and then a resting phase of 3 to 4 months. Hairs then are shed and new hairs grow to replace them. Without enough protein to support new hair growth you may have more hair in the resting phase than in the growing phase. If you start noticing a significant loss of hair, start noticing how much healthy protein you are getting in your diet.

When you start looking at the types of protein you have in your diet, make sure you are getting the "good proteins". This would include whole grains, soy foods, sprouts, blue green algae, fish, nuts, leafy greens, beans, carrots and white meat.

2. What Vitamins Does Your Hair Need?
Biotin is an essential B vitamin that promotes healthy hair growth, prevents breakage and protects against dry hair. As an extra bonus, biotin also contributes to healthy digestion of fats and carbohydrates. Foods such as beans, breads, egg yolks, fish, liver, meat, dairy products, nuts, peanut butter, whole grains and poultry are all sources for biotin. Your body however can produce biotin on its own. The healthy bacteria in your large and small intestine make biotin that is readily absorbed and used by your body. So one way to support your body in making more biotin for better hair is to support your gut probiotic growth with supplements of high quality acidophilus and bifidus.
Other nutrients to check for in your diet for better hair include vitamin E and certain trace minerals including selenium, copper, and magnesium
3. Are You Getting Enough Iron?
Iron is another must for healthy hair. Meat is the main way most people think of to get iron in the diet, but stick with healthy meats such as pork, lean beef and fish. For vegetarians, look for cereals fortified with iron, soybeans, white beans, spinach and lentils as good sources of iron. The body does not absorb iron from plant based foods as readily as it does from animal sources, so even if you eat a lot of soybeans and lentils you may not be getting enough iron. Iron supplementation may be needed to get enough iron and you should check with your health care provider for testing to see if you need iron supplements.

4. How's Your Stress Level?
More than 20 million Americans suffer from health problems related to chronic stress and 95% of visits made to healthcare professionals are for issues related to stress. Stress alone may not necessarily cause hair loss but there are certain stressors mostly related to physiological change in your body that can be the cause. So for example if you lose a considerable amount of weight or your body goes through some other type of drastic change, hair loss can be a result. High fever or a severe infection, major surgery, certain medical conditions such as thyroid disorders or a severe change in diet can all be physiological stressors that can affect your body and be related to abnormal loss of hair.

B vitamins, especially B-12, help us relax. When we are stressed, we tend to use up our body's supply of B vitamins and need to replace them before getting into a Catch-22 situation. Fortunately, we can replenish the body's supply of B vitamins naturally by replacing the probiotics or "friendly bacteria" in the intestines. These friendly bacteria produce the B vitamins in our bodies and taking probiotic supplements like acidophilus and bifidus can give your body a boost to keep producing these vitamins and help your body cope with stress.

5. Is Your Scalp Healthy?
Healthy hair comes from a healthy scalp. Getting omega-3 fatty acids in your diet does a lot to help keep your scalp healthy. Good sources for omega-3 include fish, nuts, leafy greens and AFA blue green algae. Most Americans tend to get too many omega-6 fatty acids in their diets and not enough omega-3s. AFA blue green algae is one of the best wholefood sources of omega-3 fatty acids and it has the exact ratio of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids that your body needs.

How did you do on answering these questions? We hope it gave you some tips and ideas on how to have better hair before investing in all the hair beauty products the media assures us will make us all look like hair models. For any part of the body to thrive and look good, being healthy is the key. Making some of these lifestyle changes can go a long way to helping you and your hair look good and feel good.

If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the feed to have future articles delivered to your feed reader. Also, check out the free health resources or order blue-green algae products at wholesale prices on our website.