September 2015 Edition
Some common cold stats: There are about 1 billion colds in the US every year, with every child catching it 6-10 times a year, resulting in 22 million school days being lost every year!
Natural Ways to Prevent and Treat Colds & Flu
When it comes to cold and flu season, prevention really is the first line of defense. To keep your body’s defense system–the immune system–in peak condition, follow our immunity-boosting tips to help your body fight off the bugs looking for a host. And, for times when you are feeling ill, the second set of tips can help ease your symptoms and support a quick recovery.
Cold & Flu Prevention Tips
Your immune system is at work 24/7! The best approach to supporting immune function is a healthy lifestyle that includes stress management, exercise, whole foods, nutritional supplementation, and the use of plant-based medicines. On a daily basis, you can take the following steps to help your immune system keep you healthy:
Wash your hands regularly to help prevent transfer of bacteria.
Stay clear of people sneezing or coughing. Avoid shaking hands or other close contact with anyone whom you know to be sick.
Make sure your home and work space are well-ventilated. Even on a cold day, open a window for a few minutes to clear out stale air.
Follow a consistent sleep/wake schedule so the immune system can repair and recover.
Drink plenty of water and eat a balanced diet that includes a variety of fruits and veggies, which contain antioxidants that help the body neutralize cellular damage.
Rest. Sometimes the body’s only way of getting your attention is to force you to slow down by getting sick. Don’t push through fatigue. Honor your body and sleep/rest as needed to promote healing. Reduce activity at home and at work as much as possible.
Increase fluid intake to include water, diluted vegetable juices, soups, and herbal and green teas.
Eat light meals and eat more soup. Whether you choose a vegetarian broth or a heartier bone-broth, soups for healing should be loaded with a variety of herbs and veggies.
Manage stress. Even just 10 minutes of meditation a day has positive effects on the immune system and promotes a positive mindset.
Laugh–it truly is good medicine. Patch Adams was onto something when he brought humor to his patients’ bedsides. Read a funny book. Watch stand-up comedy. Share jokes with a friend or your kids. Laughter lowers the stress hormones and elevates your mood–both are good for healing.
Vitamin, Mineral, and Botanical Support for the Immune System
There’s no panacea, but a growing body of research has shown that certain vitamins, minerals, and plant-based supplements can help prevent/curtail the symptoms of colds and flu. Some that you may want to include are listed below. Talk to your practitioner as these suggestions must be tailored to your specific needs and health status.
Multivitamin and mineral formula
Bioflavonoids, 1000 mg/day
Vitamin D, 2000 IU/day
Zinc, 30 mg/day
Echinacea, elderberry, and astragalus (tea, capsule, or liquid extract) help prevent common cold and viral infections. Physician-scientists continue to study the immune-enhancing effects of these and other botanical remedies.
Food for Thought. . .
“He who cures a disease may be the skillfullest, but he that prevents it is the safest physician.”
– Thomas Fuller
Eating Well for Super Immunity in the Winter Months
A healthy immune system is vital for helping your body deal with infections caused by viruses, bacteria, fungus, and environmental toxins. As the winter months approach, it becomes even more important to support your immune system by consistently eating a balanced diet, exercising, and making healthy lifestyle choices. But the real fuel for a strong immune system is using food as medicine.
An immunity-boosting diet includes light, easily digestible meals throughout the day, especially soup. A myriad of health benefits and flavors are derived from the herbs, vegetables, and broth. Soups also can help curtail the onset or ease the symptoms of colds and flu. Look for soups that include immunity-enhancing ingredients such as ginger, onion, garlic, mushrooms, and a variety of veggies and herbs in a broth-base. As always, food made from scratch is best!
Super-Immunity Diet Guidelines
Include healthy fats such as extra virgin olive oil.
When it comes to seasoning your foods, incorporate a variety of herbs and spices for flavor.
For veggies, choose steamed broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, carrots, leafy greens, and sweet potatoes.
Fermented foods such as miso and yogurt help promote healthy intestinal flora and combat harmful bacteria in the GI tract.
Limit red meat; instead, eat moderate amounts of fish and poultry.
It’s also smart to limit sugar in your diet. Studies have shown excessive sugar intake can interfere with optimal immune system function.
As far as beverages, the constituents in green tea have been shown to be both anti-inflammatory and immune enhancing.
Cheers to your good health this winter!
Immunity Boosting “Better than Chicken Soup”
This immunity-boosting soup is made with a virtual garden of powerful ingredients (in bold) that contain beneficial nutrients for your immune system:
Turmeric adds a subtle flavor and a beautiful yellow color. The active ingredient is curcumin, a powerful antioxidant.
Black pepper also has antioxidant properties.
Cayenne pepper can clear congestion due to the main active compoundcapsaicin, which has anti-inflammatory properties.
Shiitake mushrooms are rich in vitamins and minerals and contain unique phytonutrients that contribute to good health.
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 small yellow onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, sliced
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
8 fresh shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and sliced
4 cups low-sodium mushroom, vegetable, or chicken broth
1 1/2 cups finely sliced kale
1 cup cubed butternut squash
2 tablespoons grated fresh ginger
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
6 slices astragalus root (optional)
1 fresh lemon, Juice of
1 teaspoon miso
In a sauce pot over medium-high heat, add oil and cook onion and garlic, stirring frequently, for 3 minutes.
Stir in turmeric and mushrooms, and cook 2 minutes more.
Add broth, kale, squash, ginger, cayenne, and astragalus. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover, and simmer 15 minutes.
Remove from heat and let cool slightly, add lemon juice and miso. Cover and let sit 5 minutes before serving.
Nutrition Information per Serving: 90 calories (5 from fat), 0.5g total fat, 0g saturated fat, 0mg cholesterol, 160mg sodium, 19g carbohydrate (6g dietary fiber, 5g sugar), 2g protein
Next to iron, zinc is the most common mineral in the body and is found in every cell. It has an important role in the workings of the muscular system, reproductive systems in both men and women, and proper insulin and thyroid function. Zinc is a catalyst for the vitality of the skin and wound healing. However, zinc is probably best known for supporting the healthy functioning of the immune system.
Several studies have shown that zinc lozenges or syrup reduced the length of a cold by one day, especially when taken within 24 hours of the first signs and symptoms. Studies also show that taking zinc regularly might reduce the number of colds each year, the number of missed school days, and the amount of antibiotics required in otherwise healthy children. New studies are also looking at how the body uses zinc and whether or not taking zinc can improve the treatment of celiac disease, diabetes, and inflammatory bowel disease.
There are several forms of zinc, but not all are easily absorbed or appropriate for every person. The two best forms are zinc gluconate, and zinc citrate. According to the National Academy of Health Sciences, the need for a zinc supplement varies based on age, gender, pregnancy status, and other health factors. Zinc can interfere with the actions of some medications and can even affect the utilization of other minerals, such as copper. It’s best to first consult with your wellness practitioner before taking zinc.
Elderberry (Sambucus canadensis)
For millennia, physicians and herbalists have found medicinal uses for all parts of the elder tree, including its wood, leaves, flowers, and berries. The branches of this native European plant were believed to cast off evil spirits. Leaves were used in ointments to heal wounds. Flowers and berries were used to make wine; infusions were a common treatment for colds and rheumatic conditions. Today, herbalists and holistic physicians commonly recommend elderberry for its immunity-boosting properties.
Elderberries are rich in vitamin C and flavonoids that act as antioxidants and exhibit anti-inflammatory properties. Studies have shown that elder extracts may inhibit the replication of viruses.
Elderberry syrup is made from an extract of elder fruits. Lozenges are often prepared with zinc and other herbs. Both are commonly used to help tame colds, coughs, and relieve flu symptoms. Syrups and lozenges are available on the market, but always check with your personal wellness practitioner to be sure it is a quality product and you are taking an appropriate dose.
Important caution: Unripe berries are not safe to eat nor are the other parts of the elder plant. Since elderberry stimulates the immune system, it is not recommended for people with autoimmune conditions.
Alleviate Congestion with Magic Socks
You’d probably never guess that a pair of wet socks could pull congestion from your head and stimulate your immune system. Sounds like hocus-pocus promoted by a traveling charlatan, right?
Historically, this hydrotherapy was called “Wet Sock Therapy.” At some point, a marketing savvy naturopath explained to young patients that the overnight drying of the socks was a “healing magic trick” and the name quickly evolved into “Magic Socks.” Kids love it and it actually does work like magic to arrest the onset of mild colds and flus. Here’s how:
When covered (insulated) with wool, damp socks draw congestion from the head and work overnight to stimulate systemic circulation. This treatment reflexively decreases congestion in the upper respiratory passages, head, and throat.
The socks will dry overnight as the body brings warm, fresh blood to the feet. This, in turn, invigorates the immune system and helps fend off acute illness. Magic Socks can be used nightly when any concern exists about the onset of an acute infection or illness and with any ongoing insomnia.
For best results repeat treatment for three nights in a row or as instructed by your doctor. If you develop a loss of sensation in your feet while using Magic Socks, remove the socks and check in with your doctor. Do not use this therapy with any condition that has resulted in loss of sensation or circulation to the feet unless first consulting with your doctor.
Make a Pair of Magic (Wet) Socks
Before bed, wet a pair of thin, cotton anklets in cold water.
Wring out excess water and place in the freezer for 5-10 minutes.
Put the socks on your feet.
Pull a pair of heavy wool socks over the anklets and climb into bed.
Cover well; sleep all night with the socks on.
Thanks to much of what we hear in the media, detoxing has earned a reputation for being unhealthy and even unsafe. When you hear the word “detox,” so you immediately think of all-liquid diets, expensive supplements and short-term deprivation for short-term gains?
The truth is, a detox doesn’t have to involve any of the above—and if you detox in a healthy, supportive manner, you can achieve lasting results in weight loss, energy gain and full-body health.
The following are four myths you may have heard about detoxing. Understandably, these myths may cause you to be hesitant to try a detox.
Keep reading to find out the truth behind these myths and why detoxing might be just what your body is craving.
Myth # 1: You won’t enjoy anything you’re eating while on a detox.
While you might have to eliminate certain foods that you enjoy, detoxing isn’t all about eating lettuce with a drizzle of olive oil. There are many delicious recipes that can be prepared using healthy ingredients that not only taste amazing, but nourish and detox your body.
The best part is, many of them don’t involve any fancy ingredients and can be prepared even by a cooking novice. In fact, my detox participants always discover new foods and recipes that they absolutely love that have become staples in their diets long after the detox ends.
Myth #2: You’ll constantly be hungry while detoxing.
While you might end up consuming fewer calories while following a detox, you shouldn’t feel deprived or hungry. Going on an extremely low-calorie diet can actually disrupt your hormones and metabolism, making your body less efficient in the long run.
Everyone’s caloric needs are different, so a detox should never dictate how many calories you consume. By consuming whole foods that provide you with the right nutrients, you help detox your body while feeling satisfied. My participants are always amazed that they never feel hungry during my detoxes.
Myth #3: You need to do an all-liquid detox to remove toxins from your body.
Liquid-only detoxes have had more than their fair share of popularity. These types of detoxes can backfire: Not only do people often gain the weight back as soon as the detox ends, but such restrictive eating for several days can be detrimental to your health. An effective detox will include a variety of whole foods to help nourish your body and produce long-term results.
Myth #4: Detoxes are just a way for people to make money on expensive supplements.
Supplements involved in a detox should be just that, a supplementary part of the program, not the primary source of your nutrition. While on a detox, you get most of your vitamins and minerals from whole-food sources.
Supplements may be recommended to help your body make the most of the nutrients it receives from these foods. For example, by including probiotics in your diet, you help your body produce vitamins, absorb minerals and remove toxins from the body.
Aside from the benefits discussed above, detoxing is an incredibly effective way to identify if you have any food sensitivities, balance your hormones, and establish healthy habits for the long term.
I’ve worked with detox participants who not only have lost weight and kept it off, but who have also seen their energy level skyrocket, their skin clear up and even their allergies disappear.
Are you ready to discover the benefits of healthy detoxing for yourself?
Click here to learn more about my upcoming 14 Day Summer Detox.
It starts on June 8. Register by May 31 to save $50.
What questions or concerns do you have about participating in a detox?
Before you try something new, like a detox, it’s normal to feel hesitant. I want to hear from you. Hit “reply” or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I read every email that comes into my inbox and I promise to email you back personally.
You cannot watch a television or walk down a grocery store aisle these days without seeing the word Fiber advertised in multiple places. There are Fiber supplements, high Fiber diets, and Fiber pills. What is all of the fuss about? To understand why Fiber is so important, we need to look at Fiber and its uses.
What is fiber?
Fiber is a plant based material that is commonly referred to as roughage. In the scheme of nutrients and fuels, Fiber is considered a carbohydrate. However, Fiber is far different than the standard carbohydrates our bodies use for fuel.
What is Insoluble Fiber?
Insoluble Fiber is a strictly plant based material that cannot be digested by the body. This type of fiber will not dissolve when added to water. Commonly, insoluble fiber is used as a laxative.
What is Soluble Fiber?
Soluble Fiber is created by polysaccharides. This type of fiber will dissolve in water, therefore it could easily be mixed into beverages. Soluble Fiber is highly beneficial to blood sugar levels and lowering bad cholesterol.
What foods are high in Fiber?
The most common places to find Fiber naturally are in fruits, vegetables, bean, and whole grain cereals and breads. Wheat and Rice Bran contain the most Fiber per serving of any food in the world. After bran, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, and berries are the next highest natural sources for Fiber intake.
How does our body use Fiber?
Fiber is very important for the entire digestive system. Starting in your mouth, fiber is chewy and takes longer to consume. Therefore you slow down the ingestion process which controls how fast sugars enter your blood. When the Fiber gets to your stomach it makes you feel fuller than any other food you could consume. Often, you will eat less per meal if the meal consists of high fiber. In the small intestine, Fiber dilutes the contents of your digestive system. By diluting the contents they are able to absorb better and pass through more easily. Fiber is very important for colon health. High fiber foods nourish the colon while also lowering the amount of pressure on the organ.
How much Fiber should we eat in a day?
According to the leading experts, women need to consume 25 grams of Fiber per day while men require 38 grams of Fiber per day. Unfortunately, most people only eat the equivalent of 15 grams of Fiber each day. While doubling your Fiber intake may seem extreme, it is really not that difficult. If you ate one cup of kiwi, one banana, a half cup of black beans, and two large carrots; that is the equivalent of 25 grams of Fiber. Of course, this is not all you would have to eat. Another reason why we should try to eat high fiber foods is the added bonus nutrients they can supply our bodies. Kiwis and bananas have more to give us like potassium and vitamin A. If you find it difficult to eat that many high fiber foods per day, there are a plethora of fiber supplements available to keep your intake where it should be.
Like many of my clients, you have probably spent an incredible amount of time and effort trying to get in shape with no luck. No more junk food and your fridge and cabinets are stocked up with fruits and vegetables. Yet still, those flabby arms still dangle embarrassingly when you wave goodbye to someone. You wonder why? Well, your diet might be the problem. Not all fruits and vegetables help to burn fat; in fact, some make you gain weight.
Here are seven foods that will surely help you burn fat:
- Lean Meat – This can be from chicken or beef steak, etc. The protein found in lean meat provides a high thermogenic effect on the body. This means that your metabolic activity will be raised and thus whatever fat that is present in your body will be broken down and burnt up. The protein also builds your muscles and gives you a healthy build.
- Green Tea – Contains plenty of antioxidants. The main one that is exclusively found in green tea and is known to be responsible for burning fat is Epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG). This antioxidant speeds up your metabolic activity by collecting fat that is stored under your skin and around your internal organs, e.g. the intestines, into the circulation to level up with the high rates of metabolism. This way, it helps you burn the fat under your skin and in your abdomen without even exercising.
- Grapefruit – is especially popular for shrinking the belly fat. The exact pathway for fat burning has not been established but evidence suggests that grapefruit lowers insulin to levels that allows the body to speed up metabolism which in turn burns fat. It is currently being tried on people with obesity and diabetes to help them lose weight.
- Green Leafy Vegetables – Filled with fiber and antioxidants, green leafy vegetables increase your metabolic activity by up to 40%, allowing your body to get rid of excessive fat. It also improves movement of food through your alimentary canal, ensuring very little fat is absorbed and the rest is burnt up and excreted.
- Whole Grains, Beans & Legumes – Besides preventing the storage of fat, beans help burn fat but improving digestion. These foods are also rich in protein and enhance muscle building.
- Pepper (Chilli) – Contains capsaicin which is what gives it the hotness in the mouth. As the heat travels down your digestive tract, it increases the rate of metabolism which pulls fat from its reserves and burns it.
- Dairy Products – These include milk, eggs etc. They are rich in protein and calcium. The main nutrients that help with burning fat include protein and calcium—protein is what builds the muscle. A well-built muscle means no space for fat to accumulate. Therefore, consuming dairy products ensures a constantly active metabolism which burns fat.
A lot of attention needs to be directed to what you eat so that it complements your exercise well. If you want to burn fat, always look for foods that are rich in protein, fiber, antioxidants, high density lipoprotein, and nutrients such as soluble vitamins e.g. Vitamin A, D, E, and K.
Whenever you hear Vitamin D, you immediately think of bones and teeth. And yes, that’s where most of its functions lie. Rickets is another thing that crosses your mind which is basically the other name for Vitamin D deficiency. Do not confuse Rickets with Rickettsia as many of us do; they are completely different illnesses. Rickettsia is an infection whereas Rickets is caused by a mineral deficiency.
Vitamin D is known for the many important roles it plays in metabolism especially regulation of calcium and phosphate which keep our teeth and bone healthy. This means that it controls the amount of calcium and phosphates that is absorbed into the intestines as well as by the bones. It is also an important component in cell-growth.
We get vitamin D naturally from being exposed to the sun. The chain of reactions that occur once your skin is in contact with sun rays is what leads to the absorption of these nutrients in Vitamin D. Other sources include: oily fish, cereals, orange juice, meat—liver, eggs, milk etc.
Vitamin D provides plenty of benefits not only to our metabolic processes but also to other systems in our body:
Bones – Vitamin D helps prevent rickets in children and osteoporosis in adults. Vitamin D promotes normal development of teeth and bones in children.
Cancer – The nutrient calcitriol helps prevent the spread of cancer by interfering with the blood supply of cancer cells. When these networks of nourishment are cut off, the tumor shrinks and cancer cells die. This has been seen with breast cancer and many other types of cancer.
Reduces Abdominal Fat – Those who exercise and supplement their diet with Vitamin D found that they lost abdominal fat faster than those who didn’t.
Memory & Concentration – In a study conducted among 3,000 European men, it was found that those with high levels Vitamin D in their serum has increased mental acuity as well as increased attention span.
Pregnancy – Every pregnant woman should take vitamin D as required. This is helpful in preventing hypertension (eclampsia) that normally occurs during pregnancy. Vitamin D also boosts the mother’s immune system therefore protecting her and the child against infections such as Urinary Tract Infections (UTI) etc.
Sadness & Depression – In winter, because of very little sunshine, most people get gloomy and sad. Vitamin D is known to stimulate the production of dopamine and serotonin which directly affect our mood. So when we have little vitamin D, our neurotransmitters are inhibited and our mood levels drop leaving us depressed and murky.
Prevents PCOS – Polycystic ovarian syndrome is leading cause of infertility in young women. Women with Vitamin D deficiency showed a multiplied risk of developing PCOS than those with sufficient levels of Vitamin D.
Cold & Fever – Studies show that people who take Vitamin D supplements, especially during winter, have a significantly low risk of getting infected with Influenza.
Reduce Risk of Diseases – These include Diabetes, Multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, Alzheimer’s disease and etc.
Vitamin D is an essential and vital mineral. We should ensure that we consume it in proper amounts to be able to get all the health benefits it provides both physically and mentally.
There have been a lot of outstanding testimonials on how green tea has helped people get rid of extra body fat easily. Most people do not have to endure hours of strenuous and back-breaking exercises—they just sip some tea throughout the day as they attend to their daily tasks. A few weeks or months later, they stand on a scale and count how many kilograms they have lost since the start of their green tea regimen.
Green tea is by far the healthiest beverage in the world. It contains the richest nutrients and bioactive substances that protect us against a number of diseases and also keeps us fit without needing to hit the gym or pace ourselves on a treadmill. What makes green tea a dozen times better and healthier than any other drink, even water, is how rich it is in antioxidants, caffeine, amino acids and many other beneficial nutrients.
Green Tea Provides Antioxidants and Aids Weight Loss
Catechin which is an antioxidant found mainly in tea is the driving force behind the weight loss effects of green tea. A specific type of catechin that is only found in green tea is Epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG). EGCG is the element that contributes greatly to weight loss—it increases the rate of the metabolic course by up to 14%. Once metabolism is increased, fat that is stuck under the skin or around internal organs is moved into the blood to catch up with the new rates of metabolic demands. This boost in metabolism is what helps our body burn fat (shed pounds) effortlessly.
· EGCG and Epinephrine
EGCG blocks the enzyme that inhibits the action of epinephrine in our system. This way, it detaches the fat around our internal organs such as the heart, and takes it into the circulating blood, making it available for use. As a result, you end up burning lots of calories even at rest. It also reduces appetite which optimizes the utilization of unwanted fat in your body.
Caffeine is a stimulant—it gets our body ready to exercise—it fills us up with energy and preparedness to engage in physical exercise. Caffeine makes us alert and active, so after having a cup of green tea, you might find yourself feeling the need to take a walk, go for a jog or get things done. It maximizes our exercise performance and boosts to weight loss.
· Amino Acids
Stress is one of the main reasons why most of us gain weight. A sedentary lifestyle is normally induced by stress: whether you are bored with your life or hate your job; you find yourself engaging in either binge eating or sitting around watching the telly or sleeping to calm yourself down. L-theanine, an amino acid in green tea has calming effects. It increases the levels of GABA neurotransmitter in your brain which in turn calms your nerves, bringing your internal state to harmony and peace.
The combination of an increased metabolic process as well as its calming effects, makes green tea the drink you need to include in your weight loss program. Start today with a cup or two. Do not exceed five cups a day.
Do you have a green tea, weight loss success story? Please share it with us below!
Losing weight using a restrictive diet program is not effective in the long run – most dieters gain back their weight and more, it can also be hazardous to your health.
If a certain food group is avoided, there can be a gap in the nutrition that the dieter is taking in, and this will create deficiency in the long run. Nutrient deficiency is one of the main causes of cravings, which of course can lead to binging and weight gain.
If calorie intake is restricted, the body will slow down metabolism, and when the diet program is over and food intake is back to normal, the body is not burning as much calories and the dieter will gain the weight back just by eating the normal amount.
Restricted caloric intake affects metabolism and can have an impact on thyroid function, and can potentially lead to hypothyroidism.
Restrictive diets are not sustainable. It can be alienating, and have an impact on the dieter’s social life. Sometimes these protocols require supplements because certain foods are eliminated, and supplements can be expensive.
If body fat level drops too low, it can lead to irregular periods (or absence of period altogether). This is caused by low estrogen level – which can also lead to osteoporosis.
On the other hand, a balanced lifestyle that includes a variety of wholesome foods is sustainable, and is the best way to combat cravings (cravings often lead to weight gain). A few dietary and lifestyle changes can lead to pleasurable and effortless weight loss that can bring you a lifetime of benefits.
Be sure to get my FREE report: 5 foods to help you lose weight naturally right here!
There are so many forms of exercise that will help you burn calories, fat and support your weight loss efforts but it can also be hard on your body. Your joints can get a little stiff and tight as you age. Yoga is a form of exercise that is much gentler on the body but can still help you burn the calories and also help you build muscle at the same time. Yoga is great at keeping your body lean by stretching the ligaments and keeping your joints limber. Yoga can be done easily by attending a local class or in the comfort of your own home or online. The benefits of yoga can be physical and mental as well. Give yoga a try!
Refined table sugar, also called sucrose, is extracted from either sugar cane or beets and then refined. During the process, it is striped of its vitamins, minerals and fiber. It actually requires extra effort from the body to digest and assimilate. The body must deplete its own store of minerals and enzymes to absorb sucrose properly. Therefore, instead of providing the body with nutrition, refined sugar creates deficiencies.
Sugar has a lot of negative health impacts: it can suppress the immune system, weaken eyesight, cause hypoglycemia, cause weight gain, exacerbate arthritis, contribute to the development of osteoporosis, increase cholesterol, lead to prostate and ovarian cancer, contribute to development of diabetes, speed up skin aging, increase fluid retention, cause poor concentration, and lead to mood swings and depression. Sugar is also related to ADD and ADHD, in both adults and children.
If sugar causes us so much trouble, why are we still hooked? The reason is, sugar is an addictive substance, because:
- Eating even a small amount creates a desire for more; and
- Sudden quitting causes withdrawal symptoms such as headaches, mood swings, cravings and fatigue.
It is important to realize that sugar is an addictive substance – just like caffeine and even alcohol – because then psychologically you won’t blame yourself for being “weak” and give up when you try to “quit” and fall off the wagon. It’s not just about willpower – your cravings have a physical cause and in the next few weeks I am going to teach you the tools so that you can get to the root cause of your cravings, and wean off your intake gradually and painlessly.
15 Steps to Better Digestion
- More fruit and vegetables, less red meat.
- More whole foods, less processed foods.
- Drink freshly squeezed lemons in spring or filtered water. This is alkalizing and helps to clean the stomach of any residual debris.
- Do not ignore the urge to have a bowel movement. Listen to your body.
- Eat more fiber (#1)
- Skip the NSAID’s/non-steroidal anti inflammatory drugs. Regular use of these drugs can cause peptic ulcers in the digestive tract.
- Be careful of use and overuse of other drugs that create digestive problems. Too many antibiotics can strip your gut of good bacteria and you can end up with c-difficile.
- Don’t overeat.
- Use herbs for digestion. (article to follow)
- Drink your liquids before and after meals, not during.
- Take your time and really chew-chew-chew. Your body can use energy for other things if you chew your food instead of relying on acid and enzymes.
- Eat slower so you do not swallow a lot of air while you eat.
- Do all of the above and skip the laxatives, as your body becomes reliant on them and they are habit forming.
- Smoking and drinking can cause ulcers and heartburn.
- Don’t be afraid to enlist the help of a specialist (gastroenterologist). You may want to get a referral from a friend or relative. Remember that they are there to diagnose and treat, prevention lies in your hands.