Posts Tagged ‘health’
Coca Cola, Pepsi , Mountain Dew, Sprite. You name it. I’m not a fan. Patients and loved ones often wonder why I’m so against drinking soda. One can of Coke has the equivalent of 10 teaspoons of sugar. 10. Almost 13 billion gallons of cola were consumed in the U.S. last year. That’s 130 billion teaspoons of sugar just from drinking colas. High sugar content is just one of the reasons I recommend avoiding soft drinks.
* Phosphorus- weakens bones and decays teeth. A major contributor to osteoporosis.
* Formaldehyde. Yes. An ingredient in plywood and fungicides. A known carcinogen.
* High fructose corn syrup- Increases body fat, cholesterol, diabetes risk,and triglycerides. Also stimulates appetite.
* Fake sugars. Known to be neurotoxic, carcinogenic, and damage optic nerve. More info.
* Food dyes and coloring- linked to hyperactivity, impairment of brain function, lack of impulse control, cancer.
* A diuretic. Makes you pee and dehydrates you. Leading to fatigue, headaches, constipation, irritability, rapid heart rate, and more.
I hope now you’re looking for healthier options. But still feel you need the sugar and caffeine boost?
For bubbles- kombucha or sparkling water with lemon or lime
Energy- chlorophyll rich foods- sea vegetables, spinach, kale,
parsley, cilantro, blue-green algae, sprouts, wheatgrass.
Sugar buzz- the best source. Nature’s finest. Fruit.
Next time your thirsty or looking for more energy, have a water and a smile.
Live natural. Live well.
What’s the first suggestion I give to all my patients? Drink lemon water first thing in the morning. Even better? Sip on lemon water through out the day. For those of you who don’t like to drink water, lemon is the perfect addition to a ‘plain’ glass of water. No need for soda, sugared drinks or overly sweet juices.
The Benefits of Lemon
*Aids in absorption of water and hydrates the lymphatic system.
* Mini detox to support the liver’s ability to flush out toxins.
* Alkalizes the body leading to less inflammation and disease
* Stimulates metabolism, especially helpful for those prone to constipation.
* High in vitamin C. There are approximately 28 mg in one lemon, which is close to half of what you need in a day to maintain a strong immune system and youthful skin.
What could be simpler? Squeezing half or a whole lemon in a glass of water or over your fresh salad has so many fitness promoting properties. A lemon a day truly keeps the doctor away.
Live natural. Live well.
We all have aspirations and goals. Whether it’s a New Year’s resolution list, a spiritual or religious holiday, a milestone birthday, or just plain ready for a change, those hopes are valid and genuine. But manifesting them is a whole other story.
Why? We usually set ourselves up for disappointment by making these dreams unrealistic, get too busy with life to follow through, we don’t believe we can achieve them, or we don’t or can’t make the commitment it can some times take to quit smoking, lose weight, or go back to school in our 40s. This year can be different.
4 Tips a Better You
1- List five goals you hope to achieve. These goals can be health, relationship, finances or anything areas in your life you want to improve. Make sure you are realistic. Lose 50 pounds by February or have a best selling book in two months when you haven’t started writing, might be stretching it a bit.
2- Make a game plan for each goal. This plan should be daily, weekly, and monthly action steps. Stick to them. Cross them off your check list as you achieve them. Crossing items off is incredibly therapeutic!
3- List five to ten potential obstacles to manifesting all that you want. Be totally honest with yourself on this one. Are you ready to overcome these obstacles? Do you need a degree, more time, or a loan? Do you need to build your confidence before you take that first acting class?
4- Recruit a support team. Ask friends and family, make like-minded new friends, or join a support group to help you on the road to success. Everyone who can your cheerleader will aid in you in sustain you and keep you on track.
Let’s make 2014 your healthiest and happiest yet. Email me your success stories. And good luck!
Live natural. Live well.
Got you, didn’t I? Addiction is such a buzzword. Most people associate addiction with skid row types or the weak willed. The very opposite is true. All of my patients are addicted to something, but usually it’s to socially acceptable things. Coffee, soda, love, alcohol, shopping, approval, and dairy are at the top of the list. The hardest to give up? And the most prevalent? Sugar. Yep. Sugar. This epidemic of abuse of sugar in this country has gotten so bad that a 12 year old needed a liver transplant due to his intake of soda.
It is now a common occurrence to see children taking blood pressure medication and having what used to be called adult onset diabetes- type 2 diabetes. 5-year-olds weighing more than 100 pounds is normal. 100 pounds. Almost 13 percent of children ages 6 to 17 are obese. Something is very wrong. Teenage boys consume an average of 34 teaspoons of sugar a day. It’s recommended that adult males should eat no more than 9 teaspoons of added sugar per day.
The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition published a study conducted at Harvard proving that sugar consumption and foods that drastically raise blood levels triggers activity in the brain associated with addiction. Sugar and other stimulating addictions increase dopamine in the short term, leading to wanting more. Dopamine is released when you experience pleasure. Since 1970, American sugar consumption has gone up 17 percent. See the connection?
Unless you make all your own food from home, sugar is hidden in everything including tomato sauce/ketchup, salad dressing, soup, flavored chips, yoghurt, cereal, canned vegetables, breakfast bars, bread, fast food and chain restaurants, Do you think you’re choosing the healthier option at fast food places by ordering a salad? Think again. A McDonald’s Big Mac has 9 grams of sugar and the chicken salad raspberry vinaigrette has 13 grams. Jarred pasta sauce isn’t any better. A serving of Prego tomato sauce has more sugar than one serving of Oreos.
Tips for getting off the junk.
* Daily acupuncture is an effective way to ease the suffering of withdrawal. It helps with cravings. It also safely and effectively aids a patient in dealing with whatever emotions might come up.
* Avoid having sweet breakfasts, such as sweetened yoghurt and fruit, sugared cereal, and sugar-laden oatmeal. Starting your day off with sugar sets up your entire day to wanting more.
* Eat healthy snacks to give you energy instead of reaching for an energy bar, coffee with sugar, or donuts. Try hummus, veggie sticks, and nuts.
* Stop eating and drinking all sugars, sweeteners, and fruit juice. The slightest amount can retrigger your cravings.
* Enjoy plenty of omega 3 rich foods- walnuts, kale, hemp seeds, and seaweed snacks. They help with insulin control and healthy brain function.
* If you are having something sweet, add a little cinnamon to help regulate blood sugar levels.
Addiction. It can be an action or substance that is in any way negatively affecting your daily life, and you find it virtually impossible to stop. How many times have you said to yourself, “No more,” only to reach for another piece of cake? It’s time to take charge of your health and give up sugar.
Live natural. Live well.
Are you one of those people who seems to always be coming down with something? How many special occasions have you missed, because you or a family member is sick? How many days have you called in sick this year? The stress of our every day lives taxes the body. Bad food, late nights, little to no sleep, caffeine and sugar addiction, and high stress levels every day would wear out anyone. Chinese medicine and proper nutrition can help you stay healthy and recover quickly from colds and the flu. Traditionally in China patients only paid their doctor when they were healthy. This motivated doctors to prevent illness instead of frantically trying to put out fires. Can you imagine, if we still did this today?
A lot of people have weakened immune systems due to the fast paced lifestyle most of us lead. This makes them prone to colds and the flu and even more serious illnesses. Having a lower immunity can also make you prone to being really sick for longer periods, especially when compared to someone who is relatively healthy. It’s rare to just get a case of the sniffles.Improving one’s immune system, so you don’t get sick is ideal. This process can start immediately and have a long-term impact on one’s health.
Once a person is sick, the sooner treatment is administered, the quicker the recovery. The use of Chinese medicine and herbal supplements gets rid of an infection without the side effects of antibiotics. Naturally treating an infection doesn’t suppress the contagion, but helps the body heal itself. So the bug doesn’t come right back.
9 easy preventative measures
* Eat lots of garlic
* Take vitamin C daily
* Avoid dairy and sugar
* Minimize inflammatory foods
* Support your adrenal glands
* Minimize stress
* Take a non-dairy probiotic
* Indulge in Epsom salt baths
* Mushroom or algae source of D3 daily
These tips result in:
* No more feeling miserable
* Have more energy
* Save money
* No more calling in sick (unless you want to)
* Avoid side effects of antibiotics and other medications
* Enjoy your life
* Make your boss happy
I can’t stress enough how prevention is key. Start today. Pick a quality probiotic and vitamin C. Make dinner using fresh garlic. Throw out all sweets. Staying healthy is really that simple.
Live natural. Live well.
Did you know that we’re supposed to get at least 30 grams of fiber a day? The average American eats only 15 grams per day. No wonder everyone is bloated, irregular, and at high risk for heart disease. Also, if you don’t poop, your body reabsorbs toxins it’s trying to flush out. One of the results- Colon cancer is now the third leading type of cancer related deaths in the US.
Keep in mind that that fiber is found only in plant foods and never in animal products. No wonder those who consume the Standard American Diet (SAD) are clogged up. We’re supposed to go three times a day. I can tell you most of my patients are lucky, if they go #2 once a day. I’ve seen some cases of once every ten days!
Health Benefits of Fiber
• Prevents colon cancer, constipation, colitis, hemorrhoids, gallstones, and varicose veins.
• Lowers cholesterol and helps prevent and manage diabetes.
• Slows the absorption of food. Thus, reducing blood glucose levels and increasing weight loss.
• Removes heavy metals and toxins and reduces the side effects of radiation.
Sources of Fiber
Fruits and vegetables- 1 medium size, unless otherwise noted.
Apple with skin 3.0 g
Banana 2.0 g
Pear with skin 4.5 g
Orange 2.0 g
Prunes 3.0 g
½ cup Brussels sprouts 4.5 g
1 large Carrot 2.9 g
½ cup Broccoli 1.5 g
Potato with skin 4.0 g
1/ 2 cup Corn 1.5 g
Beets 1.85 g
All half cup for legumes, grains, nuts and seeds
Barley 4.0 g
Black beans 5.5 g
Brown rice 1.5 g
Garbanzo beans 6.0 g
Green peas 6.9 g
Hemp seeds 16.8 g per serving
Kidney beans 6.5 g
Lentils 4.5 g
Lima beans 6.5 g
Oats 3.0 g
Pinto beans 5.9 g
As you increase your fiber intake, pay attention to your use of medications and certain minerals- calcium, iron, and zinc. You may need to adjust your medications, especially insulin. If you take a fiber supplement, never take your medications or supplements at the same time.
Your body could take a little while to adjust to getting the fiber it needs. So you might be a bit gassy at first. This will pass. Drinking plenty of water and chewing on fennel seed will reduce the toots.
See how important it is to get enough fiber? And how easy it is? Stock up on hummus, carrot sticks, and split pea soup, and you’ll be good to go. No pun intended.
Live natural. Live well.
What is all this hype about vitamin D deficiency? It’s sort of the new health trend. Most doctors didn’t test for it or even ask about D until a couple of years ago.
So why is there such a problem?
First, if you live north of Los Angeles on the west coast or Florida on the east coast, you can’t get enough D from the sun in winter. If you:
* Work indoors
* Always wear sunblock
* Avoid going out in the sun
* Are over 60
Vitamin D is responsible for your immune system, bone & heart health, reducing cancer risk, muscle flexibility, and mood elevation. The agreed upon intake amount per day is 2,000 IU.
Signs that you might be vitamin D deficient.
* Osteoporosis or arthritis
* Poor memory
* Fractured or broken bones
* Weak or sore muscles
* Autoimmune disease
* Prostate cancer
* Frequent colds
Sources of Vitamin D
* Sunlight with out sunblock 5-30 minutes per day on arms and legs
* Take a vegan D3 supplement
* Mushrooms, especially shiitake
* Fortified organic soymilk
Have you doctors check your vitamin D levels, especially if you’re experiencing any symptoms mentioned above. Get outside and enjoy a little sun. It does the body good.
Live natural. Live well.
You might have heard that your liver is in charge of filtering out toxins. But did you know your liver is also in charge of filtering out anger and resentment? It’s true. In Chinese medicine, each organ has an emotion or emotions that affect it. If you don’t release or process what you’re feeling, it starts to cause internal imbalances. The liver is weakened or compromised by anger, resentment, frustration, and/or stress. Experience any of those lately? In the last week? In the last hour?
If you are stressed out or frustrated about your job, you might be experiencing some physical symptoms related to your mental health.
Symptoms that can manifest from suppressing your anger.
* High blood pressure, PMS, headaches
* Vertigo, hair loss, & blurry vision
* Muscle spasms & ringing in the ears
* Crave sour tasting foods, dizziness, & red eyes
Avoiding anger and stress is pretty much impossible unless you live in a cave. But you can do something about it. How you deal with it is key. One of those ways is through the foods you eat. Chinese nutrition gives very detailed guidelines on what to eat when needing emotional support.
Foods to Eat
* Beets, apple cider vinegar, & dill
* Broccoli, pine nuts, & mustard greens
* Romaine lettuce, alfalfa sprouts, & cauliflower
* Basil, mint, cabbage, peaches, strawberries, & quinoa
So instead of going through PMS hell, try the above foods instead. Find ways to simplify your life. Maybe take up yoga or meditation. A kickboxing class might be just the trick. Most importantly, acknowledge and accept your what you’re feeling. Don’t suppress or ignore it, even if it’s uncomfortable. You’ll not only feel your mood lift, but any physical ailments will start to disappear.
Live natural. Live well.
The information out there can be so confusing. Have any of these thoughts run through your head?
My doctor says I HAVE to eat meat.
Is it safe for my baby?
All I can think is I need to: get rid of the baby weight pronto, have energy, keep my baby healthy.
Breastfeeding is definitely the best choice for guaranteeing better health for your child. Keep in mind that everything you eat, your baby is eating, too.
What to avoid and why
* Caffeine including chocolate (Sorry!): irritability, poor sleep, and colic.
* Sugar: poor sleep, irritability, decreased immune function, thrush, diaper rash, and eczema.
* Alcohol and recreational drugs: lethargy, poor physical and/or mental development, decreased immunity, thrush, and diaper rash.
* Medications: Talk with your doctor to see if there are safer options while lactating. There may be a safer medical or herbal version. Side effects may vary, depending on the medication.
* Spicy food, cabbage, dairy, raw onion, and broccoli: colic.
* High allergen foods (gluten, nuts, dairy, soy) as your baby may develop an allergy from early exposure.
What to Eat
• Eat whole unprocessed foods including fresh fruits and vegetables, seeds, and whole grains daily.
• Because of brain development, eating a balance of essential fatty acids is key. Limit meat and dairy products and include hemp seeds, kale, flax seeds, avocado, and seaweed into your diet.
• Keep taking your whole foods source pre-natal for added nutrients. If you haven’t already, add a probiotic for your immune system and digestion.
Now that you’ve made the best possible choice for you child, your breast milk will help your baby to thrive. Every child is different. How your diet affects her may change or be different from child to child. Watch how she responds from meal to meal and you’ll know what’s best.
Live natural. Live well.
I’m writing this article based on a FRED talk I’m giving tonight. I realized 6 minutes isn’t enough to share all of these great tips, so here they are on my site. Have you made any resolutions? Is the thought of committing to them stressing you out? Then this list is perfect for you. Now and throughout the year.
First, I’d like to point out that stress makes you sick. It keeps you awake at night. Makes you crave the bad stuff even more. It even makes you gain weight. I’m not saying don’t put pressure on yourself to do better and more. But setting yourself up for failure and then beating yourself up isn’t going to make you healthier. And definitely not happier.
* Make realistic goals for the year. Make goals that you know you can keep. You know what you’re capable of. If going cold turkey on alcohol, sugar, or coffee or maybe all of the above terrifies you, then don’t do it. Pick one thing you want to give up. Commit to it daily. Set the intention to keep this commitment every morning. For all of you twelve steppers reading this- one day at a time does help. Thinking- “I can never have another pint of ice cream ever again in my entire life” will make the most sane of us go crazy.
* Want it. You’ve got to really, really want it. What ever your goal or commitment is- every cell in your body should crave it. Whether it’s adding a daily yoga practice or giving up meat. People come to me all the time to get over an addiction. Unfortunately, most of them aren’t really ready. They usually do it out of pressure from loved ones. If that’s the case, you might not even last a day. A great example- someone came in to quit smoking a few weeks ago. They called me the day after their first treatment to tell me acupuncture wouldn’t work for them. They had a cigarette on the way home from my office. They hadn’t even gone 2 hours. They still had cigarettes in the car. So of course acupuncture didn’t help. It reduces cravings, detoxes your body quickly, and helps you deal with any emotional stuff that comes up. But you have to be ready to let go. So, if you really want to give something up, don’t have any of it in your home. Throw it away. Give it to a neighbor. Make that commitment.
* Stop buying stuff. Yes, I said it. Stop shopping. Buy only what you need. If you see something you like, wait a week. Stop buying stuff. Yes, I said it. I know that’s considered blasphemy in our culture. But it can be done. Stop shopping. Obviously, uy what you truly need. If you see something you like, wait a week. If you can’t stop thinking about it, then indulge. Give away whatever is in your home that doesn’t inspire you. Go through your closets and cabinets. If you don’t love it or haven’t worn it, it’s time to say goodbye. Many charities will even come pick up for you.
* Eat more plant based, locally grown whole foods. I don’t consider this a diet. It’s a lifestyle. Going to your local farmers market or even having organic produce delivered to your doorstep by a CSA- Community Supported Agriculture. You can find recipes for anything online. Start today. Why not? Your body, the planet, and our fellow earthlings will all thank you.
*Give yourself a treat. I’m not talking about cupcakes or a third cocktail. I’m talking a massage or a day off in the middle of the week. Visit your best friend. Go to your favorite restaurant or yoga class regularly. You deserve it.
* Volunteer. A lot of my readers already do this. There’s nothing more fulfilling than helping others. Whatever your cause. Getting out of your head and giving back will definitely bring more joy in to your life. It helps gain perspective on our own lives. An added benefit is that we end up learning so much. So whatever your passionate about- protecting children, the environment, animals, find a group. Maybe use your expertise to help your favorite cause.
*Consume less caffeine and sugar. They might make you feel great in the moment. But believe me there are consequences. No way around it. The crash can make you cranky, tired, and want more of it. So why not just stay away? I have to say that all that I’ve written, the one on coffee upset the most people. It wasn’t the ones on giving up plastic, meat, or sugar. It was coffee. Luckily, I’ve never had it. But I can relate when it comes to sugar. Especially after all the desserts I had in the last week.
*Nature. Most of us are so busy; we don’t take the time to get outside. Which is really sad for any of my followers living in southern California. We can comfortably be outside 300 days out of the year. Go on a hike. Get to the beach. Or just go to your local park in put your bare feet in the grass.
* Forgive yourself and others. Do a meditation apologizing to yourself and the person. I like this guided meditation to help. Visualize the person you feel has hurt you. Forgive them. Then apologize to them for any harm you may have caused them. Then forgive yourself. Pick one person or event a night. See how the weight has been lifted.
What I want you to end with this thought- what are you wiling to change in 2013?
Live natural. Live Well.