Thursday, October 19, 2017

Reduce Stress for a Healthy Lifestyle

To have a healthy lifestyle, stress reduction is a must. 70% of visits to the doctor can be attributed to stress. Stress signals the body to release cortisol which raises your blood sugar and your blood pressure and has been known to increase cravings for sugary and fatty foods. Cortisol also encourages the body to store body fat. Stress interferes with getting good quality sleep. Not getting enough quality sleep can lead to weight gain, lack of energy, poor memory and cognitive function and have a negative impact on your immune system. Stress can also affect digestion, cause heartburn, stomach cramping and diarrhea and research is showing it can affect brain tissue that regulates emotions and self-control. It can also be linked to skin conditions such as psoriasis and acne, and to an increase in risk of stroke.

Natural Solutions for Reducing Stress
  1. Stock up on healthy snacks when cravings hit. You know to maintain a healthy lifestyle it's better to snack on fruits and veggies than on donuts and potato chips.
  2. Exercise can help reduce weight gain and relieve stress, so instead of reaching for your favorite comfort food when stressed, go for a walk.
  3. Prepare yourself for sleep by establishing a bedtime routine, don't eat a heavy meal right before bed, and turn off all lights including blue light such as the kind from smart phones or PDAs.
  4. Massage therapy can help reduce stress, anxiety, pain, muscle tension and insomnia stemming from stress. If you find yourself stressed beyond your limits of coping, try getting a massage.
  5. Socializing and laughing are another natural solution for dealing with stress. Laugher has been shown to support immune cell function, be a stress reducer and research has shown that a healthy lifestyle is linked to our relationships and activities with other people.
  6. Eat foods that have stress relieving vitamins and minerals such as magnesium, B vitamins, coenzyme Q10 and chlorophyll. Eating foods rich in vitamin C and omega-3 fatty acids can help lower stress hormones, but when you are under stress, your body uses them up more quickly. So just at the time you need them the most, you don't have enough of them. Making sure in times of stress to eat foods such as oysters, halibut, spinach and other leafy greens, nuts and seeds and bluegreen algae to help in relieving stress.
  7. Supplements that can help with having a healthy lifestyle through stress reduction include:
  • Our bodies also need more proteins when we are under stress. Be sure to get the "good proteins" though, as in the type from whole grains, soy, sprouts and bluegreen algae. Good proteins support your body's ability to handle stress, both physically and mentally. If you can't get all the extra protein you need from your food, consider taking this supplement with bluegreen algae and sprouts. Another great supplement to add to your diet is this one with nine different algae rich in minerals and phytonutrients, combined for full-spectrum nutrition.
  • Another supplement we find useful combines bluegreen algae, eleuthero, Ginkgo biloba, Lion's Mane, bee pollen, wheatgrass juice, and noni and was created especially for high-performance athletes and those with active lifestyles who depend on concentration and mental clarity. The blue green algae is a good source of whole food nutrition, bee pollen is reported to have a high amino acid content useful for stimulating memory and concentration, wheatgrass juice has been found to provide nutrients that support brain health and clearer thinking, and Gingko biloba has been used for a long time to promote increased memory and mental concentration by increasing circulation and providing increased oxygenation of brain cells. This combination means support to help you function when stress overwhelms you.

You can use these and other natural solutions to help reduce stress for a healthy lifestyle. If you find yourself dealing with stress that can affect your health, making some lifestyle changes, eating foods that help reduce stress and taking supplements that can help with stress reduction are natural solutions that make sense 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, October 12, 2017

Great Sources of Sustainable Food

As more people jump on board the "green" movement and turn to sustainable living practices, sustainable food sources are becoming in big demand. Informed citizens are more aware than ever about issues such as global warming, pollution of air and water, depletion of natural resources, soil erosion and many others that have led them to seek out everything from alternative energy sources to sustainable food.

Sustainable Food
Sustainable food involves a comprehensive practice of how food is raised, harvested, packaged and supports local communities. It comes from crops and animals raised using sustainable agriculture practices that protect the environment and the planet, replenish and conserve natural resources, provide healthy high quality food that does not use processing methods, support humane methods of raising animals used for food sources and support local community economies. Some of the ways we can all support sustainable food include buying products with minimal packaging to reduce waste, eating less animal products and more veggies, fruits and grains that are locally produced, and supporting products that are imported from other countries that carry a Fair Trade certification. Eating a diet of mainly fruit and vegetables has been shown in numerous studies to have a positive effect on blood pressure, increase life expectancy, be heart healthy and reduce risks of Type II diabetes and obesity. A reduction in the demand for meat also increases the availability of usable space to humanely treat animals as well as reduces the need for feeding these animals with grains rather than grass and the use of antibiotics and hormones that reduce the quality of our food.

AFA Alage: The Earth's First Sustainable Food
AFA (Aphanizomenon Flos-Aquae) bluegreen algae from Klamath Lake in Oregon is one of Earth's first foods, the first oxygen producing organism that is responsible for 90% of the photosynthesis on this planet and a perfect source of sustainable food. Algae has been used as a plant based supplement to the human diet for thousands of years and this AFA bluegreen algae in particular provides a balanced source of protein, all 20 amino acids, essential fatty acids, vitamins, minerals, trace elements, antioxidants, fiber, carbohydrates and complex sugars. Unlike other vitamin and supplement sources, algae being a single cell is 98% absorbable. This nutrient rich algae regenerates itself quickly, grows in a unique, healthy ecosystem, is harvested by a company using a sustainable, ecologically sensitive harvest technique with minimal environmental impact and that offers a business plan that provides a strong and sustainable opportunity by creating a solid, reliable income stream. Any way you look at it, AFA bluegreen algae from Klamath Lake fits the sustainable food and sustainable living model.

As an example of how powerful a superfood AFA bluegreen algae is, consider a study done with malnourished children in Nicaragua. This study reported children given 1 gram of an AFA supplement every day for six months greatly improved in all areas (physical appearance, nutritional status, school attendance, behavior and academic performance), while the control group children's conditions became worse.

Other Sustainable Food Sources
Sustainable food sources can be found in just about any area. Granted those living in more rural areas may have an easier time finding local farmers or being able to have a home garden, but there are ways to engage in sustainable food practices no matter where you live. CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) programs, farmer's markets, small organic grocery stores that buy from local farmers, shared community gardens and finding a space for growing patio gardens in pots or hanging baskets are all sources for sustainable food. There are also innovative businesses being formed all around the country that support sustainable food practices. For example, in Brooklyn, New York local grocers and restaurants can get produce year round that is free from pesticides from Gotham Greens' rooftop greenhouse. Other companies are concentrating on eliminating packaging by allowing customers to bring their own containers or provide pick your own fruits and vegetables. To see some of the companies engaging in these type of businesses check out this website.

Our future and the future of the planet depends on adopting sustainable agriculture practices. No matter where you live or what type of community you live in, you can start contributing in some way to supporting or producing sustainable food. Pick one or more of the practices we have explored in this article and make the commitment to increase your health and save the planet in whatever way you can. 

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, October 10, 2017

The Flat Stomach Diet Anyone Can Use

Starting a flat stomach diet isn't all about fitting into tight jeans or looking good in a bikini, it's also about being healthy. Subcutaneous fat, is the fat we can see that accumulates just under the skin usually in the buttocks, hips, thighs, and abdominal areas. Seeing too much subcutaneous fat is an indication that we also have too much visceral fat. This is the fat that is around our vital organs such as liver, heart, lungs and digestive tract. This fat cushions the organs, but too much of it can lead to high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease, stroke, breast cancer, colon cancer and other health conditions. Research is also finding fat to be linked to bone loss and other bone related problems. This is why getting on a flat stomach diet is important to keep healthy. Getting rid of visceral fat allows us to have better sleep, more energy and better overall health. According to Travis Stork, MD, emergency room doctor and a host of the daytime talk show The Doctors, diet and exercise work better on fat on the belly than on other body fat.

When we talk about a flat stomach diet though, we're not talking about a specific counting calories, follow this meal plan flat stomach diet. We are talking more about making lifestyle and dietary changes to get rid of fat and keep it off. Diet results will vary for individual people according to genetics, level of activity and other factors, but these lifestyle change tips can help reduce belly fat and leave you healthier overall.

Start being picky about the kinds of foods you eat. Avoid processed foods and junk food with their preservatives, sugars, fats and salt. Opt instead for organic whole foods. Then find healthy nutritious foods that you enjoy that will fill you up. Finding what works for you to satisfy hunger without adding extra fat, sugar or salt will help you lose weight without feeling deprived or starved. Also consider the types of foods and how your body processes them. For example, it takes more energy to process protein than it does carbohydrates or fat or eating certain types of foods can increase metabolism or eating raw foods to get more enzymes helps digest the foods you eat. Start giving some thought to what foods you will and will not eat. This may involve making a big change in your diet, but establishing a new way of thinking about eating can be a lifelong change that will have a major effect on your health.

Antioxidant foods rich in flavonoids seem to be particularly good at improving metabolism and warding off belly fat. These are found most prevalently in fruits and vegetables which are also low in calories and help fill you up making them a good food choice. Pears, apples, onions, leeks, and sweet peppers all fall in the flavonoid category. Tea and dark chocolate are also good sources of flavonoids as long as you don't go overboard on the chocolate since it does have more calories than veggies. Berries are also a good source of antioxidants and studies have shown they can keep fat cells from increasing in size and help them release a hormone that helps in the reduction of inflammation and lowering blood sugar.

Ubiquinol is an active form of Coenzyme Q10 which works much like antioxidants in keeping our cells healthy. There are very few foods that can supply us with enough so supplementation is important. One supplement that has the ubiquiol to help support cell energy, also has reishi mushrooms which are a complete whole food rich in proteins, enzymes, minerals, and complex polysaccharides and oyster mushrooms that give us fiber, vitamin D, niacin, iron and the antioxidant ergothioneine and has the many added benefits of superfood bluegreen algae loaded with omega-3s.

MUFAS are monounsaturated fats or monounsaturated fatty acids and PUFAS are polyunsaturated fats or polyunsaturated fatty acids. Both of these are in the "good" fats category as our bodies do need some fat in order to function properly. For example, fat is needed to dissolve certain vitamins that are vital for a healthy body. Research has found that eating MUFAS helps keep blood cholesterol and blood sugar levels stable, reduces the risk of heart disease and helps burn off belly fat. They are also more filling so you don't have to eat as much as with other foods to satisfy hunger. PUFAS can help release fat, increase metabolism and the body burns them faster than saturated types of fat. Good sources of MUFAS are nuts, olive oil, seeds, and avocados. PUFAS are found in fish and fish oils, bluegreen alage, nuts and seeds. Omega-3 fatty acids are a type of PUFAS and have many benefits for physical and mental health.

Transfats or trans fatty acids are considered one of the "bad" fats. This type of fat increases LDL cholesterol levels and lowers HDL cholesterol levels and can increase triglycerides. Some transfat is naturally occurring such as animal fat in meats, but transfat can also be created by taking vegetable oil and adding hydrogen to it. This is done to help give processed foods a longer shelf life and you may find it listed on food labels as partially hydrogenated vegetable oil. Margarine, cookies, crackers and pasta are some of the foods to watch for this to be listed in ingredients. Transfats can take fat from other parts of the body and move it to the belly section. Even those of us who read labels have to be careful because in the U.S. the label can list 0 grams of transfat if it contains less than 0.5 grams per serving. That may not sound like much, but eat several servings and it adds up. Avoiding foods that have this type of fat will help with your flat stomach diet.

First eat breakfast. You've probably heard this before that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but especially if you are on a flat stomach diet, don't skip breakfast. Besides eating breakfast, don't skimp on breakfast. You may be starting your day out with more calories, but it will pay off throughout the day. Eating a good healthy breakfast in the morning helps curb the appetite the rest of the day and starts your day out with a boost for physical and mental energy. Then the rest of the day start making the lifestyle change of going for several smaller meals instead of the typical 3 meals a day mentality. Eating several smaller healthy meals every few hours helps reduce cravings for unhealthy foods, helps keep you away from the junk food, keeps you feeling full thus avoiding hunger pains and keeps you from feeling food deprived so that you don't go on a binge later.

When working on a flat stomach diet, good digestion is a must. If food doesn't keep moving through the digestive system it can become stuck which causes belly bulge. Probiotics, such as acidophilus and bifidus, are the friendly bacteria that naturally live in your small and large intestines. These bacteria help your body process and digest the foods you eat and move them through the digestive system. Foods such as yogurt and kefir with live active cultures can help give you some probiotics, but usually not enough. What I like to do is take these convenient daily packets of capsules that give me not only acidophilus and bifidus, but also digestive enzymes and 2 kinds of AFA bluegreen alage. The probiotics and enzymes add to a flat stomach diet by aiding the digestion process and the algae provides a rich source of omega-3 and a lean source of protein. In fact did you know this form of microalgae has 75% usable high quality protein compared to just 18% in red meat?

Many research studies have reported that eating foods high in soluble fiber can help get rid of belly fat. This would include adding foods such as oatmeal, flaxseeds, beans – especially black beans, kidney beans and navy beans, vegetables like Brussels sprouts, turnips, sweet potatoes, and asparagus and fruits like apricots, oranges, grapefruit, and mangoes into your diet. If you are not used to eating a lot of these, then you may need to start slow adding them in to avoid gas buildup. Beans and legumes also have the "good" carbohydrates that can help keep burning fat after eating and help you feel full so you eat less. And to add even more to their health benefits, they are a lean protein source.

Cutting down on sodium and increasing fluids can help in a flat stomach diet by reducing water retention. Read food labels to see how much sodium they contain, stop reaching for the salt shaker, and avoid recipes with excess salt. When you consider that one teaspoon of table salt has 2325 mg. of sodium and Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends between 1500 – 2300 mg. a day, you can see how we easily can end up with too much sodium in our diets. We do need some sodium to help balance body fluids, transmit nerve impulses and help muscles contract and relax, but too much is bad for heart, kidneys, fluid retention and blood pressure. Start experimenting with various herbs and spices to flavor foods instead of the traditional salt and pepper flavoring.

Drinking more water can help increase metabolism, help the liver to convert stored fat into energy and help in burning off fat. Most people need about 2 quarts of water throughout the day. Drinking water is important, but drinking green tea everyday can also help in a flat stomach diet. Green tea has EGCG which is a great antioxidant for increasing metabolism.

There you have it, 8 tips to help you make lifestyle changes that will equal a flat stomach diet for you to develop for yourself. You may already be doing many of these things and you won't have so many changes to make. If you aren't then don't get overwhelmed and stressed out by these suggestions. Take one or two at a time and start incorporating them. Once you are comfortable with those you can add another suggestion. Any of these tips can help you get a flat stomach diet going for yourself, but more importantly they will help you develop healthy dietary habits for the rest of your life.

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, October 5, 2017

Got Burnout? Natural Supplements So You Can Enjoy Life Again

Burnout can leave us feeling tired, unmotivated, moody and depressed. There are many factors that can lead to burnout from lifestyle stress to adrenal fatigue or burnout. According to Dr. James Wilson our lifestyles have become more and more stressful over time, but our bodies haven't changed.

Adrenal Fatigue or Adrenal Burnout
The adrenal glands, which are just over our kidneys, secrete over 50 vital hormones. Among these are the ones necessary for producing energy by converting carbs, proteins and fats into blood glucose. The adrenal glands also help the body deal with stress. When we are under great periods of stress these glands don't work properly which means the more stress we have, the less energy production takes place and the less able the body is to deal with the stress. Stress factors that can contribute to this type of adrenal fatigue or adrenal burnout include allergies, smoking, lack of sleep, poor nutrition and too much caffeine. Adrenal fatigue or adrenal burnout can cause symptoms such as anxiety, sleep problems, salt cravings, dizziness, low blood pressure, sugar cravings, irritability, feeling overwhelmed, and palpitations.

How to Deal With Adrenal Fatigue or Adrenal Burnout
Finding ways to allow your body to relax is the best way to give your adrenal glands a break and help you cope with lifestyle stresses. Yoga, a soothing warm bath, aromatherapy, massage, meditation, taking naps, and deep breathing are all natural solutions to help relieve stress. Light, regular exercise such as walking or a slow bike ride not only can help with stress relief, but getting outside in the sunshine and fresh air gives your pineal gland a lift and sharpens your stress response. Other stress relievers that can help relieve adrenal fatigue include laughing, avoiding negative people, eating nutritious regular meals that include antioxidants, magnesium and calcium foods, and getting adequate amounts of B vitamins and vitamin C.

Nutrition To Help with Stress and Mood
There is a proven link between mood and the foods we eat. When stress levels are high, there are certain foods that can help combat the damage caused by stresses and help stabilize our moods. Omega-3 fatty acids have been found to be very effective at mood stabilization, even in the case of bipolar disorder. This type of fat feeds the brain which is a vital player in mood. B vitamins, especially folate and B12, have been reported in studies to have a positive effect on mood also. Our bodies should produce enough B vitamins, but many people are not able to absorb these vitamins from foods. This is typically a problem in the digestive tract and taking a quality probiotic supplement can help with production and absorption of B vitamins. Coenzyme Q10 is another contributor to good mood. According to Chris D. Meletis, ND, based on a January 2013 study, CoQ10 may have some antidepressant properties.

Serotonin is a hormone that has a key role in mood. Tryptophan is an amino acid needed for regulation of serotonin levels. The more serotonin that exists in your bloodstream, the better your mood is. Our bodies cannot create tryptophan on their own, so we have to get them from foods like plant and animal proteins or from supplements.

Supplements For Burnout
If you are stressed enough that it is making your life miserable, you're tired and overwhelmed, chances are you aren't finding the time to fix nutritionally balanced meals that have the types of foods with the above mentioned properties. If that is the case for you, then there are whole foods nutrition available from supplements that can help. Here are some of our favorites that are not synthetic vitamins or supplements, but actual whole foods nutrition from wild foods of the earth, forests, oceans and freshwater sources.

Algae such as AFA bluegreen algae, chlorella, kelp, fucoidan, Dunaliella salina, Ecklonia cava, dulse, and bladderwrack are rich in minerals, proteins, Omega-3 fatty acid and Omega-6 fatty acid, chlorophyll and other vital phytonutrients. This algae supplement combines 9 colorful algae for neurotransmitter support which affects mood.

Mushrooms from the forests are rich in antioxidants, beta glucans, enzymes, polyphenols, proteins, and triterpines and are among nature's most nutrient-dense foods. Mushrooms such as cordyceps, reishi, maitake, wild black trumpet, and Poria cocos are thought to be among the most powerful and beneficial foods on earth and can all be found in this whole food supplement for a rich source of proteins and antioxidants. Then there is an antioxidant supplement full of chlorophyll, glutathione, enzymes, vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients delivered through a unique blend of kale sprouts, red clover sprouts, wheat sprouts, concentrated wheat sprouts, and Dunaliella salina algae.

Our bodies need more help than ever to deal with the stressful lifestyles we find ourselves facing today. Find a way to spend some time relaxing and giving your body a break from stress, and if you can't make yourself find the time or energy to fix regular nutritious meals, then at least check out some of these supplements to give your body the support it needs during really stressful times.

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.