Thursday, April 28, 2016

Beat the Monday Morning Blues

Do you find yourself dragging into work after the weekend experiencing the Monday morning blues? If so, you may be one of 63 million Tweaters a PLOS One study found leaving comments at the beginning of the week showing they are feeling down. Psychotherapist Chantal Gagnon, PhD contributes this to the stress many associate with the return to work on Mondays and research at the University of College London has found that just thinking about returning to work can increase cortisol and adrenaline levels which can lead to fatigue, anxiety, and even damage to the heart. The good news is that there are simple ways to help you battle the Monday morning blues.

Get a Chlorophyll Fix - Psychotherapist and editor of Live Happy, Stacy Kaiser, recommends having a plant on your work desk for a mood lift. This is backed up by research from Washington State University reporting that people doing computer work feel less stress and have lower blood pressure when they work near plants. You can also get a boost in energy by eating chlorophyll, which is the pigment that gives plants their green color. AFA bluegreen algae is the food with the highest concentration of chlorophyll and this algae and ubiquinol supplement provides an extra energy ingredient with the bioavailable form of Coenzyme Q10, ubiquinol. Or this algae supplement designed for those with active lifestyles that gives you wheatgrass juice, cordyceps mushrooms, bee pollen, turmeric, noni, and green tea along with your AFA.

Prepare for Monday – A little planning ahead for Monday morning can help get your week off to a less stressful beginning. Take care of everything on Friday that you can so that you start off Monday with a clean desk. If you do have anything leftover or something you particularly dislike doing, getting it done early in the day, according to career coach Rita Friedman, will help you avoid the dread and help you feel better. Also make sure you get a good night's sleep Sunday night and get to bed early, then get up a little earlier on Monday so that you aren't rushed and have time to eat a healthy breakfast, have a little "me" time, and maybe even get some meditation in to reduce stress before leaving the house. Ryan Kahn, The Hired Group founder, also advises taking that time to concentrate on what you enjoy about your work and have gratitude for in your job. On the way to work start your day off on an upswing by having some uplifting music to listen to.

Brighten Your Mood – Studies such as one found in Psychological Science report that smiling boosts the mood and helps the body recover from stress faster. A British study in 2011 reported that most workers don't smile until 11:16 am. Be aware of this and find something to smile about on the way to work and when you get there. Even if you have to fake it! You can also boost mood with probiotic supplements according to a study in Brain, Behavior, and Immunity in 2015. This is due to the friendly bacteria reducing inflammation and increasing serotonin, the feel good hormone. You can also get your probiotics, enzymes and the great nutrition of AFA bluegreen algae with these easy to carry anywhere packets. Another way to boost your mood is to look for ways to brighten someone else's day. This not only makes you feel good, but can give you something to look forward to at work and create a positive atmosphere at work which could be contagious and brighten the whole workplace. You don't have to go overboard; even something simple like complimenting a colleague, opening a door or holding the elevator for someone will do. 

Give Yourself A Break – Take the weekend to really rest up, enjoy your time away from work and rejuvenate. Also take breaks during the day to reduce stress and re-fuel. If you can take five minutes for meditation, you can really refresh yourself in mind and body. Physical movement or exercise triggers the release of endorphins for a mood boost, so taking a little time to go for a walk or do some jumping jacks is a good way to take a break. Walking away from your desk at lunchtime is another good break time. Even if you just go to the breakroom or outside to sit on a bench to eat, take a little time away from your desk. 

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Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Youthify Your Body and Mind at Any Age

You don't have to travel the world looking for the Fountain of Youth because the secret to staying young in body and mind no matter what age you are can be found right at home.

Stress has been found through research to promote signs of aging. When we are stressed, we release adrenaline and cortisol that creates a rise in heart rate and blood pressure that affect our physical and mental health. According to The Relaxation Response author, Herbert Benson, MD, stress related conditions such as anxiety, depression, insomnia, heart attack and high blood pressure make up between 60 and 90% of annual visits to the doctor. Dr. Benson advises using meditation with a technique involving deep breathing and repeating a mantra for 10 minutes daily to reduce stress. A Massachusetts General Hospital study from 2005 supports the use of meditation with findings that changes in the brain related to age can be reduced with meditation.

Yoga is another good de-stressing technique that can also increase your energy level, give you better posture and flexibility, and boost your mood. According to the founder of New York City's Om Yoga, Cyndi Lee, conscious yoga breathing improves the awareness of mind and body connection. It can send more oxygen to cells removing toxins, reduce health conditions, give you glowing skin, increase bone mass, and boost your digestive, reproductive and immune systems which all help with anti-aging.

Weight Control
Extra weight leads to a lot of problems for anyone, but especially as we age. One study in 2009 with 6583 participants followed over a 30 year period found that having extra belly fat in the middle age years leaves one at 3 times more risk for dementia. Extra weight also puts stress on bones, joints and tissues that old age has already taken a toll on. According to Dan Buettner, who wrote The Blue Zones and studies longevity, only eating until satiated or 80% full is a common characteristic shown by centenarians in Okinawa, Japan. Studies also indicate that although exercise and eating less both help in weight loss, the better way to lose weight for anti-aging according to research at St. Louis University is through diet as reducing calorie intake was related to reduction of T3 thyroid hormone which can slow aging. Studies with centenarians show they tend to eat beans, soy, and nuts rather than meat which can be part of a healthy weight loss plan.

Get the Right Fats
Omega-3 fatty acids are one of the good fats for heart and brain in particular, but that also can contribute to anti-aging. First, according to anti-aging expert, Nicholas Perricone, MD, they can help lower inflammation associated with aging signs, help balance mood, lower blood pressure, protect against heart disease, aid in skin health, and keep bone strong. They also help improve cognitive function and aid enzymes in using stored fat for energy. Experts agree that 2 grams a day by eating foods such as fatty fish, walnuts, olive oil, and AFA bluegreen algae is the optimal amount. Lisa Drayer, MA, RD, who wrote The Beauty Diet, says walnuts are one of the few nuts with lots of omega-3's. Monounsaturated fatty acids, such as found in avocados, are another good anti-aging fat as according to nutrition experts, it hydrates skin, is heart healthy, and helps keep inflammation down.

Some other good foods to add to an anti-aging diet include yogurt which according to Lisa Drayer, MA, RD, not only provides protein and calcium, but also B vitamins that are needed for growth and division of cells. Foods with zinc and selenium, such as chicken, lean beef, walnuts, chickpeas, and dried fruit, are also needed for healthy skin and according to Paula Simpson BASc, RNCP are necessary for producing collagen. And Robyn Flipse, MS, RD advises adding lots of colorful veggies to your anti-aging diet especially carrots and tomatoes that are loaded with antioxidants and phytonutrients and carotene and lycopene particularly to protect against the damage caused by free radicals, sun and that help repair cell damage. Spinach is another good addition to the diet with its lutein to aid eye health and folate for cell production. Another option for insuring you get the full spectrum of nutritional protection you need is with this wild foods supplement program that includes the powerhouse nutrients from marine and freshwater algae, tonic mushrooms, and sprouted grasses and grains as well as the basic nutrition provided by AFA, probiotics and enzymes. Another must is co-enzyme Q10 that activates cellular energy and is a critical antioxidant for cells to function. This ubiquinol and algae supplement is an easy way to get all the ubiquinol, which is the bioavailable form of Q10, necessary for every body cell.

As you can see there are ways to stay young in body and mind. With the right foods and activities you can have your own Fountain of Youth right at home.

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, April 21, 2016

3 Simple Secrets to Longevity and Healthy Aging

Healthy aging and longevity is something most of us seek, but are there really ways to achieve this or is it just luck of the draw? Why do some people seem to stay healthy and active well into their senior years while others have deteriorating health? There are many studies such as The Longevity Project that have looked at decades of lifestyle habits for those living long healthy lives that have found certain characteristics in common.

1. Help the Body Heal Itself
As we get older our telomeres at the end of the chromosomes get shorter which allows for many of the chronic diseases associated with getting older to take hold. Aging is not something that can be avoided, but there are ways to slow down some of the symptoms and conditions we experience in our senior years. The cellular level is the place to start with this slowing down and healthy eating along with regular exercise can help trigger more production of an enzyme that increases telomeres' length. Our lifestyles in these hectic times contribute to free radical damage that affects our cells and DNA. Our own natural stem cells are one of our most powerful allies against this type of damage. Having a diet full of colorful fruits and veggies increases the antioxidants we get to nourish our stem cells and repair the damage from free radicals. This stem cell support supplement is another option for increasing our intake of antioxidants. A healthy body that is well nourished with all the appropriate nutrients will produce the energy you need you be able to stay active. This is often challenging with all the nutrient depleted food sources we presently have. To fill in the nutritional gaps you can't beat AFA bluegreen algae with its wide range of vitamins, minerals, amino acids, essential fatty acids, and trace minerals. And to get the most nutrition out of the foods we eat we have to make sure our digestive systems are in top shape. This means probiotics and enzymes to support digestion and help the body absorb maximum nutrition. You can get all this nutrition in convenient packets of supplements making it easy to take anywhere, any time.

2. With a Little Help From My Friends
Like the Beatles song says, "I get by with a little help from my friends" and this is certainly applicable when it comes to healthy aging and longevity. One study from Australia reported elders with lots of social contact and friends lived longer. One of the reasons cited for how friends contribute to longevity and healthy aging has to do with the type of friends you choose. If you have friends that eat healthy, are active and have healthy lifestyle habits then you are more likely to follow suit. These type of relationships also can stimulate your brain with interesting conversation, give you outings to look forward to and fill your life with purpose, meaning, and laughter that can reduce stress. It also encourages you to stay physically active if you go out with friends and share activities. According to Bel Kaufman at age 101, laughter contributes to his longevity and good health. His view is that "you can't laugh and be angry, you can't laugh and feel sad, you can't laugh and feel envious" and seeing everything in a humorous light helps him. Friends also can give you an outlet for dealing with stressful problems and give you a sounding board to help resolve issues. Long term studies such as one from Harvard give evidence that maintaining our relationships with others is one of the most important longevity tips.

3. Keep On Going
Many centenarians give the advice to just keep moving. They feel if they spend too much time just sitting they won't be able to get back up. This could mean being physically active through exercise, sports, hobbies, volunteering, or just getting out and enjoying seeing new places. Exercise affects the body on all levels, even down to the cellular level and helps in energy production. It aids circulation and heart health, keeps weight and inflammation down, keeps skin toned, increases bone density, improves balance and cognitive function, and wards off stress, stroke, depression and many chronic diseases such as diabetes, cancer, and high blood pressure. Studies also have shown that exercise can increase the number of our own adult stem cells that repair damaged cells promoting anti-aging. The right nutrition can help your body be able to stay active longer and this algae supplement with a balanced blend of vegetable glucosamine, chondroitin along with AFA has the ingredients found to support joints. After all it's hard to keep going if you have painful joints. Another helpful nutritional option to keep on moving is this enzyme algae supplement with a combination of plant-based proteolytic enzymes -- bromelain, papain, protease, lipase, and serratiopeptidase, as well as nutritional organic wild bluegreen algae specifically designed for those with active lifestyles and athletes.

Genetics certainly plays a role in healthy aging and longevity, but you don't have to leave yourself in the hands of fate; there are ways you can control your own destiny. Consider the three we've talked about and start looking now for lifestyle changes you can make that will add up to a healthier and happier long life 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.


Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Simple Ways to Defend Against Annoying Allergies

Allergies not only can be annoying, but some allergies can be life threatening. If you are one of the one out of five Americans that suffer from allergic rhinitis, or hay fever, or have a serious life threatening allergy to certain foods or insect stings then you know what I am talking about. Symptoms range from coughing, sneezing, runny nose, itchy watery eyes, fatigue, and dark circles under eyes to even worse symptoms of feeling dizzy, itchy red rash, swelling and having trouble swallowing or breathing. When an allergen, the thing you are allergic to, gets into your body, the immune system releases IgE and histamine which causes your symptoms. Allergens can be dander from animals, pollen from plants, dust mites, household chemicals, mold, pesticides, heavy metals, or certain foods. For hay fever symptoms doctors often recommend antihistamines, decongestants or corticosteroids, but these only cut down on the symptoms and don't address the underlying problem of the allergy. These types of drugs can have side effects ranging from causing you to be drowsy, dizzy, nervous, irritable, have dry mouth, and headaches to causing a rise in blood pressure, causing you to be nauseous, have blurred vision, trouble urinating, and sleep problems.

Natural Allergy Relief
If these types of drugs are not for you and you're looking for more natural ways to deal with your allergies, enzyme therapy is a good place to start. You may associate enzymes with helping you to breakdown foods and better digest them. That is true, but enzymes actually have a part in all our biochemical processes.

Enzymes for Allergies
While drugs may temporarily alleviate symptoms they do not cure allergies. Symptoms usually re-occur because one has not addressed the chronic underlying problem that led to the reaction in first place. Fortunately there is a way to remedy allergies at their most fundamental level. Enzyme therapy corrects the overt immune response that constitutes an allergic reaction. Using enzymes to help the body deal with allergens has been documented since 1935 as in a study by Anton W. Oelgoetz MD et al. published in the American Journal of Digestive Disease and Nutrition that found using enzymes actually alleviated not just the symptoms patients had to food allergies, but the allergies themselves. Raw foods generally have their own enzymes making them easy to digest, but cooking foods kills off the natural enzymes in them and the body has to come up with the enzymes to help digest them. Often undigested food is able to get into the bloodstream from the intestines causing the immune system to react and the body to use up enzymes cleaning those food particles out of the bloodstream. A high quality enzyme supplement can help relieve the body of this stress by introducing extra enzymes. Along with enzymes, you can boost your digestive and immune system function with probiotics such as acidophilus and bifidus. There are actually studies that indicate that acidophilus in particular can help decrease pollen allergy symptoms. A convenient way to get your enzymes, probiotics, and the whole food nutrition of two forms of AFA bluegreen algae is with these daily packets you can easily take along with you anywhere. And to give your immune system a boost with beta glucan and mushroom power as well as get the super nutrition from AFA bluegreen algae, this immune support supplement is definitely worth checking out.

Herbs for Allergies
There are many different natural allergy symptoms solutions to try using foods and herbs to see which ones help you get relief from allergy symptoms. Quercetin found in bright colored fruits and veggies may help block histamine and help give you relief from the runny nose and watery eye symptoms of hay fever. There are also studies done with animals indicating that spirulina can block histamine release. Eating foods with vitamin C can also help with some symptoms as it acts like an antihistamine. When it comes to herbs there is a variety of traditional herbal remedies and Traditional Chinese Medicine herbs. You should of course check with your healthcare provider before taking any of these however since many of them don't mix with medications you may be on or can be detrimental or dangerous if you have certain medical conditions or are pregnant or breastfeeding. Some of the more common ones to try, if your doctor agrees they are safe, found to help particularly with hay fever symptoms include Butterbur, stinging nettle, astragalus, Chinese skullcap, ginkgo biloba, horny goat weed, and Japanese apricot. Of course if you have food allergies, the best solution is to avoid those foods that cause a reaction although some experts believe in some cases that enzyme therapy can cause the body to not have reactions to those foods. This is another case where working with your healthcare provider is advisable and in severe cases carrying an epipen with you.

Natural Lifestyle Changes for Allergies
For hay fever suffers it is always a good idea to check the pollen counts in your area and plan your outdoor activities when allergens you react to are low. Leave windows closed and use the air conditioner at home and in your car to reduce your chances of ingesting allergens. You can also shower and wash your hair and change clothes when coming in from outside to avoid bringing pollen into your home, use a HEPA air filter inside, and use a dryer instead of hanging clothes on a clothesline to dry. If your problem allergens involve mold, dust mites, or animal dander use a vacuum with a HEPA filter and vacuum often, hang blinds instead of curtains in your house, use flooring other than carpet, cover pillows and mattresses with special covers to reduce allergens such as dust mites, and possibly use an air purifier. If you have to work outside you can wear a dust mask. For mold allergies clean areas frequently where mold is likely to occur such as in air conditioners, swamp coolers, drip pans on refrigerators, and humidifiers. A dehumidifier can also be used to reduce humidity if you live in a humid area. Always have leaky pipes fixed quickly and make sure bathrooms, the kitchen and crawl spaces are well ventilated.

Allergy symptoms can certainly be annoying, but there are natural solutions that can alleviate some of these irritants and irritation. Try a variety of the suggestions here and find which help you with your particular allergies.

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, April 7, 2016

Is Your Vegetarian Diet Making You Tired?

If you have made the choice to eat vegetarian or vegan, the good news is that your diet is full of fiber, folic acid, vitamin C, vitamin E, potassium, magnesium, and antioxidants as well as low in saturated fat. The not so good news is that there may be vital nutrients that are missing from your diet that are found in meat and dairy and you may not be feeding your body properly to keep your energy level up. That doesn't mean you have to return to carnivore ways, but it does mean you need to make sure you are finding plant based substitutes for these nutrients. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics lists the main nutritional concerns for vegetarians and vegans as including protein, vitamin D, iron, zinc and omega-3 essential fatty acids.

Replacement Nutrition for Vegetarians and Vegans
Eating a vegetarian or vegan diet does require you to do a little planning to make sure your body is getting all the nutrition it needs to stay healthy and perform. Let's take a look at the nutritional concerns for these types of diets and ways to address them. Depending on whether you are eating vegetarian or vegan you may not be including dairy in your diet, but we are going to list any non-meat foods and you can pick what fits your particular diet.

Protein – Protein is necessary for building muscle, bone and skin, repairing damaged muscle tissue, for strong hair and nails, and making chemicals the body needs to function. Generally you can figure out how much protein you should eat daily by dividing your weight measured in pounds by 2.2. This will give you your weight in kilograms and the number of grams of protein you should eat each day. So for example if you weigh 180 lbs., that would be 81.81 kilograms and 81.81 grams of protein needed or rounded off to 82. Non-meat foods for protein include beans, legumes, nuts, soy, milk, eggs, cheese, tofu, soy milk, whole grains, and seeds.

Vitamin B12 – You need adequate amounts of vitamin B12 for your nervous system function and to make red blood cells. A lack of this vitamin that is prevalent in meat, dairy and eggs can lead to macrocytic anemia, heart palpitations, memory loss, dizziness, nerve damage and loss of vision. The recommended daily allowance of vitamin B12 for adults is 204 mcg. and spreading your vitamin B12 foods throughout the day can help you absorb them better. Non-meat food sources for vitamin B12 include vegan cheese, yogurt, eggs, dairy products, fortified cereals, fortified veggie burgers, and nutritional yeast.

Calcium – Calcium is of course needed for strong bones and if you are between the ages of 18 and 50 you need 1000 mg a day and 1200 mg a day if you are over 50. Milk and dairy products are a good source of calcium as are chickpeas, broccoli, dried figs, enriched breads, tofu that is calcium set, vegan cheeses that are calcium fortified, and fortified juices and cereals.

Iron – Iron is needed for taking oxygen from the lungs to body cells through the blood. There are two types of iron – heme and non-heme. The body is better able to absorb heme iron. The Institutes of Medicine and The Vegetarian Resource Group report that the iron obtained through meat, poultry and fish sources are 40% heme and 60% non-heme. Iron food sources that are plant based are non-heme which makes the RDA for iron more for vegetarians and vegans than for people who eat meat. After menopause for women and for men the Institutes of Medicine recommend 14 mg a day of iron and prior to menopause for women they recommend 33 mg a day. Non-meat food sources for iron include legumes, fortified vegetarian faux meats, soy products, dark chocolate, nuts, seeds, prunes, raisins, fortified cereals and grains, kale and broccoli and other dark green leafy vegetables. While spinach, beet greens, rhubarb, and Swiss chard also have iron, they also contain an acid that keeps the body from absorbing it. To increase the absorption of iron you can eat vitamin C rich foods along with your iron food sources, cook with cast iron pans and avoid drinking tea or coffee at the same time as your iron food sources.

Zinc – Zinc is needed for a healthy immune system, metabolism and for the body to heal. The National Institutes of Health recommend that those on a vegetarian or vegan diet get 50% more zinc than meat eaters. The recommended amount for meat eaters is 40 mg for adults. Zinc is another mineral that is not absorbed as well by the body when it comes from plant based food sources such as whole grains, wheat germ, tofu, miso, cheese, legumes, nuts, seeds, eggs and dairy. You can increase the absorption by soaking nuts, beans and legumes overnight before eating them and sprouting brown, green or French lentils.

Omega-3 fatty acids – Omega-3 fatty acids have a variety of health benefits including lowering risk of heart disease, eye health, brain health, decreasing blood pressure, helping with arthritic joint pain and inflammation, and reducing risks of dementia and depression. Meat eaters get this essential fatty acid primarily from fish, but you can also get it from flaxseeds and flaxseed oil, walnuts, soybeans and soybean oil, fortified soy milk and cereals, olive oil and hemp oil. AFA bluegreen algae is another excellent plant based source of omega-3's. This Aphanizomenon Flos-Aquae organic edible microalgae is one of the Earth's most basic and powerful raw foods that provides a wide variety of phytonutrients, plant-based proteins, minerals, essential fatty acids in the right balance, and lots of micronutrients. Similarly, this form of AFA has all the same nutrition that has been manufactured with a special process to remove the cell wall making it better able to cross over the blood brain barrier to nourish the brain. Both forms are also certified Kosher, Halal, Paleo Friendly, Vegan, and are Dairy-free, and Soy-free. Supplementing your diet with AFA bluegreen algae is a great way to fill in the nutritional gaps for nutrients that may be lacking in the diet. If you are particularly finding your vegetarian diet leaves you lacking in energy, this algae and ubiquinol supplement may be of interest to you. Ubiquinol is the active and bioavailable form of the antioxidant Coenzyme Q10 that body cells use to produce energy. Additionally, using a powerful digestive enzyme supplement with 12 natural plant based enzymes can help break foods down so that you get the most nutrition possible from your foods and supplements.

You can absolutely live a healthy life and keep your energy level high while eating a vegetarian or vegan diet. Just be sure you aren't missing out on any of the nutrients your body needs to perform and function its best. Picking the right foods in the right amounts and using whole food supplements when necessary can help you keep to your preferred diet and still get all the nutrition you need.

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.