Monthly Archives: February 2010

How to Talk to Your Doctor About Thyroid Medication


Mary…you’ve made my day! I am glad you found my suggestion about “how to talk to your endocrinologist”, helpful. I am absolutely serious about approaching your physician in this way, since it makes them aware valid new information is available explaining why some people need t3 to recover from symptoms of hypothyroidism. This approach is much more likely to elicit a sympathetic response from a physician than quoting from a book by a non-physician or using the more general “I read it on the internet” statement.

Here is what Mary had to say to metabolism.com:

Dr Pepper, thank you so much for this article. I love the last part of where you give us the perfect phrases to say to our doctor. I have been suffering with hypothyroidism for 14 years now (10 years undiagnosed, 4 years insufficiently treated). Over these years I have come to know quite a bit about my condition and can speak with my doctor using the correct terminology most of the time, but not always (I have to get through the brain fog). Your phrases are just what I need to say to my doctor since I believe I have a conversion problem. I will enjoy presenting the study to him an talking to him about polymorphism and deiodinase! :) Some people tell me I should have changes doctors along time ago. My doctor may have given up on me but I will not give up on him. I am determined to educate him. He did recently admit to me that he doesn’t know much about the thyroid. I fail to understand why the vast majority of General Practitioners don’t get up to speed on this subject since so many of their patients are suffering from thyroid problems. My doctor has wasted time and money giving me anti-depressants and appetite suppressants (Reductil) and sending me to a counsellor. Thanks again for helping.

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Radiation Poisoning Remains a Concern in 2010…… by BethEllen DiLuglio


As a clinical nutritionist and author, it can be difficult to prioritize issues and actions.  For several years, my number one concern is the fact that radioactive elements, known to cause childhood and adult cancer, osteoporosis, anemia and immune deficiency, are regularly released into our air and water.  I first learned of this iniquity in 1997 when I became involved in the RPHP “Tooth Fairy Project” at the suggestion of Dr. Ernest Sternglass.  Dr. Sternglass is an author, director of RPHP and professor emeritus of Radiological Physics at the University of Pittsburgh Medical School. CLICK HERE to learn more about the Tooth Fairy Project.

The study basically measures radioactive Strontium 90 (Sr90) in children’s teeth and in drinking water supplies.  Strontium is an essential nutrient important to bone structure and health.  The radioactive form, Sr90, can be taken up into teeth and bones where it basically radiates the bone marrow.  This constant bombardment damages red  blood cells and white blood cells (the foundation of our immune system!).  Its breakdown products can also travel to other organs such as the brain, pancreas, breast and prostate.  The resulting anemia, immune deficiency, osteoporosis,  leukemia and other types of cancer can be easily predicted.

The cancer causing effects of radioactive nutrients is well known, and led the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to recommend that counties close to a nuclear power plant stock Potassium Iodide to be taken as a protective measure in the event of a nuclear accident.  Saturating the thyroid with the natural element should prevent the radioactive iodine from doing as much damage.

Dr. Sternglass discussed the health effects of low level radiation in his article about childhood cancer in the June 1963 issue of the journal Science. CLICK HERE to link to the article abstract.  Dr. Sternglass presented his paper and findings to President John F. Kennedy and Congress in 1963.  Awareness that Strontium 90 could cause cancer and other health anomalies contributed to a partial Nuclear Bomb Test Treaty between the USA and USSR.
I do hope that they stop releasing these harmful radioactive elements, but until they do, I recommend a few things to reduce your exposure.

First and foremost try to remove the Sr90.  Dr. Sternglass told me that REVERSE OSMOSIS and DISTILLATION will both remove Sr90 from drinking water.  To replace any minerals, be sure to eat lots of mineral rich foods (grown from healthy, nutrient rich soil).  I use Willard Water with Lignite for a trace mineral source.

Secondly, consume lots of antioxidants from FOOD SOURCES such as fresh, vine-ripened fruits and vegetables to protect against free radical damage from the radiation.  Antioxidant superstars include pinto beans, blueberries, prunes, raisins, cranberries, pomegranates, kiwi fruit, red bell pepper, kale, spinach, Brussels sprouts, and broccoli just to name a few! CLICK HERE for a list of 277 foods analyzed by the USDA.  See, they are paying attention!  You can also get a pamphlet from the AICR on antioxidants. CLICK HERE to see the PDF or visit AICR.ORG.   Ingestion of seaweed such as kelp appears to be protective as well.

If you are not eating the MINIMUM 5 servings of fruits and vegetables per day or are still working toward the RECOMMENDED 9-12 servings per day, consider a personalized NUTRITION CONSULTATION with me!

Beth Ellen DiLuglio, MS, RD, CNSD, CCN, LD/N

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Old, Old News About Diabetes Medicine Danger Makes Headlines Again


In 2007 I published an article entitled, “Old News About Avandia and Actos Makes Front Page New York Times”. This article criticized the media for publishing an old story about the potential danger of Avandia, then a popular diabetes medication. Even in 2007 the potential hazard of Avandia was a story which had been beaten to death by experts with the conclusion that the hazard of using this drug was probably exaggerated by a few vocal critics. Since then much more information has come to light supportive of the safety of using Avandia. Just a week ago the whole issue again made front page news, making it seem as if something new had come to light on the safety issue. Close inspection of the reports show this to be virtually the same information that existed in 2007 without the benefit of more recent information, but now rehashed by a congressional committee. So here we have it…old, old news making headlines again but unenlightened by the passage of another 3 years.

Here is the original story about “old news” which I published at metabolism.com in 2007

Old News About Avandia and Actos Makes the Front Page NY Times

Today’s NY Times carries a front page article about the dangers of Actos and Avandia, two popular diabetes medications. The reason behind the news story is that the FDA has finally required the two companies that make these diabetes drugs to carry a “black box” warning (the strongest labeling warning that can be applied) about the potential for congestive heart failure (overload of fluid in the heart and lungs) in diabetics using these drugs. Is this warning really news? Not to doctors.

I have been to numerous seminars on the use of these two diabetes drugs and have been paid by the companies that manufacture these drugs to educate other health care professionals about the use and hazards of these drugs. Both companies gave all representatives and speakers the strictest instructions regarding their obligation to carefully mention the potential for fluid overload and congestive heart failure associated with the use of these drugs. I know that my colleagues, particularly the cardiologists (heart doctors) and endocrinologists (diabetes doctors), have been acutely aware of this information for years.

Did you know that the type of drugs known as sulfonylureas that have been used to treat diabetes since the 1960’s and remain popular today carry a “black box” warning since the 1970’s about the potential for causing heart disease? This class of drug include Diabinese, Orinase, DiaBeta, Micronase, glyburide, and glipizide. Why are these drugs still in widespread use, and where are the stories notifying the public about this? What’s the big deal about the black box warning on Actos and Avandia?

I think I smell some politics going on. The Commissioner of the FDA, Dr. von Eschenback, was appointed by President Bush in 2005. The harshest critics of the FDA on this issue are the Democrats on the House Panel. Coming out of the woodwork are various “injured” parties who were criticised by company representatives for speaking out against these drugs in 1999. These stories warrant a separate column in The Times today.

Are there real risks to taking Actos and Avandia in the treatment of diabetes. Of course there are, just as there is a real risk of treating diabetes with just about any drug. It is up to the medical profession to remain vigilant and educated about these risks and to balance them with the benefits. Inflammatory front page news stories which create an atmosphere of mistrust and hysteria may serve only narrow political purposes.

This blogged comment at metabolism.com is not intended to convey medical advice. Diabetics are encouraged to contact their own healthcare professional about advice about what to do at this time. Most authorities encourage the public not to panic and to wait instructions from their physician before altering their medical treatment.

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Good News About an Old Enemy….Cholesterol!…….. by Beth Ellen DiLuglio M.S., R.D., C.N.S.D., C.C.N., LD/N


Why is everyone picking on cholesterol !?  It is certainly one of the most misunderstood, demonized molecules that our bodies make!  It is so important as a precursor to many important molecules in our bodies and even acts as an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory!  We produce cholesterol on an ongoing basis, for an ongoing reason.  If we make too much or eat too much cholesterol, a feedback loop will kick in and slow down production for most people.  Cholesterol drugs called “statins” triger that feedback loop and inhibit cholesterol production.  Unfortunately they reduce production of squalene and Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) as well  so people on statin drugs often experience side effects such as muscle cramping and exhaustion.
You must be asking why would we produce cholesterol when drug companies are telling us it is bad for us, so let’s review “Cholesterol 101″.  We are able to convert cholesterol into “vitamin” D, bile acids, cortisol and other vital hormones including DHEA, progesterone, testosterone and estrogen. Cholesterol is incorporated into our cell membranes and is one of the primary lipids in brain tissue! Does that sound like a poison to you?  OF COURSE NOT! Cholesterol is clearly vital to our health.
I put “vitamin” D in quotes for emphasis and to get your attention. Vitamin D is actually a hormone, but that’s another lecture!  It is produced from cholesterol in the skin, in the presence of UV light from the sun.  We can make up to 10,000 units of vitamin D with 30 minutes or so in the sun.   Vitamin D has several target organs including the central nervous system, GI tract, immune system, pancreas and reproductive organs.  Vitamin D is thought to protect us from tuberculosis, multiple sclerosis and even some cancers!  Make sure you are making or taking plenty of the “sunshine vitamin”!
What about “bad” or “good” cholesterol?  People like to call LDL a “bad” cholesterol but that is actually misleading.
The liver produces cholesterol and sends it out for delivery on the “LDL bus.”  It can be delivered to the cells that need it at the time.  The “HDL taxi” will pick up left over cholesterol and return it to the liver for recycling or disposal.  Be aware that LDL and HDL can become elevated in response to toxins such as organic solvents, pesticides, heavy metals or even dry cleaning fluid!  Elevated blood lipids should be completely assessed before any drug therapy is initiated!
There is one “bad” cholesterol and that is OXIDIZED cholesterol.  This can lead to a cascade of events that build up plaque in our arteries.  So, how do we prevent OXIDATION?  ANTI-OXIDANTS of course!  Vitamin C and full spectrum natural Vitamin E are especially important.  No wonder why a deficiency of Vitamin C (master antioxidant) can lead to a type of heart disease known as  atherosclerosis (“hardening of the arteries).  Apparently heart disease and atherosclerosis are not “statin deficiency” diseases after all!
P.S., eat the yolk of your eggs.  Not only do they contain cholesterol that should kick in your feedback loop, but they contain important nutrients such as choline, B12, vitamin E and even vitamin D!
So there, I hope you’ve started to fall in love with cholesterol.  I just had to defend that vital, yet defenseless molecule! Stay tuned for more !  Clinical Nutritionist Beth Ellen DiLuglio, MS, RD, CNSD, CCN, LD/N.  Metabolism.com

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EMT Offers Advice for Coping with High Metabolism


While many members of metabolism.com struggle with low metabolism, fatigue and weight gain, there are those who struggle with the opposite. Being underweight can be as difficult to cope with as being overweight. Here is advice from one of our members who is an emergency medical technician, on how he has adjusted to this issue.

BeachEMS writes:

I am 28 y/o 5′9″ and I weigh 146 lbs. I have a high metabolism and it bothers me, too. I currently go to the gym at my rescue squad (which is free, thank god!) 3 days a week. I know that I have to eat more protein, carbs and high calorie foods in order to “pack on the lbs” especially since I workout regularly, but it is difficult to really discipline myself to eat them daily and in abundance because I get tired or sick of eating them. Anything worthwhile isn’t easy so its discipline, discipline, and more discipline.. and its pasta, pasta, and more pasta lol

I used to be really stressed out through highschool and college, too.. because of being in school, being underweight, having mild acne, not sleeping much at night, etc. Finally, I am in a good place in my life. I am with EMS, got a good job as an EMT, I go to the gym frequently, manage my stress levels with quiet/down time to myself and have cleared my acne.. I am slo getting plenty of sleep at night, which is a huge factor for those of you who work out in the gym.. because you know your muscles need time to repair and rebuild (plenty of water helps, too.. ) STRESS can cause weight loss so it might be a good idea for those of you with high stress levels to MAKE time for yourself to reduce stress. Consider every day events and feelings that cause you stress and work on eliminating them.. not for peace of body, but for peace of mind, too. Pilates, yoga, breathing exercises, meditation and a good self image are all good sources of stress relief.

How you see yourself is who you are. If you see yourself as being weak and nothing then you are telling yourself thats who you are.. and ultimately that is who you will be. A huge part of becoming someone you want to be (the best version of yourself) is to become that person from the inside out. Think like the beast and tell yourself “I am a raging beast!” When you’re at the gym, let out some groaning and moaning or shout something aggressive when you reach your peak rep of whatever set you’re doing. It will push you to go harder. What you put into the gym is what you get out of it and I have learned that recently. I’ve got to “step it up”.

Plenty of water, good/lean protein, carbs, vitamins, sleep at night (at least 8 hrs) and aggressive workouts are doing it for me, little by little, but I’ve got to step it up. My goal is 160 lbs by summer 2010. I am going to acheive my goals.. ARE YOU??

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Marion Touts New Adkins Diet for Weight Loss for Ex-Smokers


Marion brings us up to date on her progress after stopping smoking, gaining and then losing weight. Thank you Marion for sharing your experience with metabolism.com members!

Marion writes:

Just wanted to give you an update, quit smoking 8 months ago and have gained exactly 20 pounds, seems like the weight gain has finally slacked off. Last Monday a week ago I started Atkins, lost 9 lbs in 7 days, must be alot of fluid. Just the effects of being on Atkins, I feel so much better, but the best part is it forcing your body to burn fat and increases your metabolism. Try it its not as hard as you think. The NEW Atkins is alot more flexible and easy to learn than the old version. Basically the same with a few easier ways of understanding it. Good Luch I hope it works. Thanks, my goal is to wear a bikini this summer, not in public of course just at home in my pool, lol.

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More from the Mayo Clinic Diet: Overcome Weight Loss Barriers


Action Guide to Weight-Loss Barriers
By the weight-loss experts at Mayo Clinic and Donald Hensrud, M.D., M.P.H.
Authors of The Mayo Clinic Diet: Eat well. Enjoy life. Lose weight.

Long term success with a weight program sometimes follows a bumpy, uneven path. Many obstacles can keep you from achieving a more healthy weight.

Learning to identify potential roadblocks and confront personal temptations is an important part of being successful in losing weight. To make it past the rough spots, it’s important to have strategies ready to guide your response as problems arise.

This easy-to-use action guide identifies common weight-loss barriers and practical strategies for overcoming them. If you find a strategy that helps you, include it with your weight-loss program.

The barriers are grouped into three categories: nutrition, physical activity and behaviors. To lose weight — and to maintain that weight loss — it’s important that you address all of these components.

Behaviors obstacle
I’ve tried to lose weight before, but it didn’t work. Now, I don’t have confidence that it’ll work this time.

For many people, losing weight will be one of life’s most difficult challenges. Don’t be discouraged if you’ve tried losing weight in the past and you weren’t able to — or you lost weight but gained it all back. Many people experiment with several different weight-loss plans before they find an approach that works.

Strategies
Following these tips may help you succeed this time around.

* Think of losing weight as a positive experience, not a negative one. Approaching weight loss with a positive attitude will help you succeed.

* Set realistic expectations for yourself. Focus on behavioral changes and don’t focus too much on weight changes.

* Use problem-solving techniques. Write down the obstacles that you experienced in previous attempts to lose weight, and come up with strategies for dealing with those obstacles.

* Make small, not drastic, changes to your lifestyle. Adjustments that are too intense or vigorous can make you uncomfortable and cause you to give up.

* Accept the fact that you’ll have setbacks. Believe in yourself. Instead of giving up entirely, simply start fresh the next day.

Behaviors obstacle
I eat when I’m stressed, depressed or bored.

Sometimes your most intense longings for food happen right when you’re at your weakest emotional points. Many people turn to food for comfort — be it consciously or unconsciously — when they’re dealing with difficult problems or looking for something to distract their minds.

Strategies
To help keep food out of your mood, try these suggestions.

* Try to distract yourself from eating by calling a friend, running an errand or going for a walk. When you can focus your mind on something else, the food cravings quickly go away.

* Don’t keep comfort foods in the house. If you turn to high-fat, high-calorie foods whenever you’re upset or depressed, make an effort to get rid of them.

* Identify your mood. Often the urge to eat can be attributed to a specific mood and not to physical hunger.

* When you feel down, make an attempt to replace negative thoughts with positive ones. For example, write down all of the positive qualities about yourself and what you plan to achieve by losing weight.

Behaviors obstacle
I have a hard time not eating when I’m watching television, a movie or a live sporting event.

There’s nothing inherently wrong with eating while watching a show, film or live event, but when you’re distracted, you tend to eat mindlessly — which typically translates into eating more than you intended to eat. If you’re unable to break this habit, at least make sure you’re munching on something low in calories.

Strategies
Here are suggestions you might consider.

* If you’re at a theater or stadium, order a small bag of popcorn with no butter and work on it slowly.

* Eat something healthy before you leave home so that you’re not extremely hungry when you arrive.

* Drink water or a calorie-free beverage instead of having a snack.

* Try to reduce the amount of time that you spend watching television each day. Studies show that TV watching contributes to increased weight.

Behavior obstacle
When I go to parties, I can’t resist all of the snacks and hors d’oeuvres.

In most social situations where food is involved, the key is to treat yourself to a few of your favorite hors d’oeuvres, in moderation. If you try to resist the food, your craving will only get stronger and harder to control. By following a few simple strategies, you can enjoy yourself without overeating.

Strategies
Next time you step up to the hors d’oeuvre table, try these strategies.

* Make only one trip and be selective. Decide ahead of time how much you’ll eat and choose foods you really want.

* Treat yourself to one or two samples of high-calorie or fatty foods. Fill up on vegetables and fruits, if you can.

* Take only small portions. A taste may be all that you need to satisfy your craving.

* Nibble. If you eat slowly, you’ll likely eat less — but don’t nibble all night long.

* Don’t stand next to or sit near the hors d’oeuvre table. As the old saying goes, “Out of sight, out of mind.”

* Eat something healthy before you arrive. If you arrive hungry, you’ll be more inclined to overeat.

Behavior obstacle
I’m a late-night snacker.

Avoid eating late at night because loading up on calories right before bed only intensifies the challenge of not overeating. There’s less chance for you to be active and burn off those calories until next morning. It’s better to eat during the day so that your body has plenty of time to digest the food before you go to bed.

Strategies
Here are suggestions if you often find yourself battling the late-night munchies.

* Make sure you eat three good meals during the day, including a good breakfast. This will help reduce the urge to snack late at night, simply because you won’t be so hungry.

* Don’t keep snack foods around the house that may tempt you. If you get late-night munchies, eat fruits, vegetables or other healthy snacks.

* Find something else to keep you busy in the hours before bedtime, such as listening to music or exercising. Your snacking may be more of a mindless habit than actual hunger.

Behavior obstacle
When I lapse from my eating plan, it’s hard for me to get back on track.

Lapses happen. Many times a minor slip — a busy day when you couldn’t find the time to eat right or get exercise — leads to more slips. That doesn’t mean, though, that you’ve failed and all is lost. Instead of beating yourself up over a lapse, accept that you’re going to experience bumps along the way and put the incident behind you. Everyone has lapses. Think back to the initial steps you took when you first began your weight program and put them to use again to help you get back on track.

Strategies
Here are suggestions to prevent a lapse from turning into a full-blown collapse.

* Convince yourself that lapses happen and that every day is a fresh opportunity to start over again.

* Guilt from the initial lapse often leads to more lapses. Being prepared for them and having a plan to deal with them is important to your success.

* Keep your response simple. Focus on the things that you know you can do and stick with them. Gradually add more healthy changes until you’re back on track.

* Open up an old food record and follow it. Use those meals like a menu to help get you back to a healthy eating routine.

The above is an excerpt from the book The Mayo Clinic Diet: Eat well. Enjoy life. Lose weight., by the weight-loss experts at Mayo Clinic and Donald Hensrud, M.D., M.P.H. The above excerpt is a digitally scanned reproduction of text from print. Although this excerpt has been proofread, occasional errors may appear due to the scanning process. Please refer to the finished book for accuracy.

Reprinted from The Mayo Clinic Diet, © 2010 Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research. Published by Good Books (www.GoodBooks.com). Used by permission. All rights reserved.
About Donald Hensrud, M.D.
Donald Hensrud, M.D., M.P.H., is chair of the Division of Preventive, Occupational, and Aerospace Medicine and a consultant in the Division of Endocrinology, Metabolism and Nutrition at Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. He is also an associate professor of preventive medicine and nutrition at the College of Medicine, Mayo Clinic. A specialist in nutrition and weight management, Dr. Hensrud advises individuals on how to achieve and maintain a healthy weight. He conducts research in weight management, and he writes and lectures widely on nutrition-related topics. He helped publish two award-winning Mayo Clinic cookbooks.

About Mayo Clinic
Mayo Clinic is the first and largest integrated, not-for-profit group practice in the world. Doctors from every medical specialty work together to care for patients, joined by common systems and a philosophy that the needs of the patient come first. Over 3,600 physicians and scientists and 50,000 allied staff work at Mayo, which has sites in Rochester, Minn.; Jacksonville, Fla.; and Scottsdale/Phoenix, Ariz. Collectively, Mayo Clinic treats more than 500,000 patients a year.

For more than 100 years, millions of people from all walks of life have found answers at Mayo Clinic. Mayo Clinic works with many insurance companies, does not require a physician referral in most cases and is an in-network provider for millions of people.

For more information, please visit www.goodbooks.com/mayoclinicdiet.

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Elderly, Broke, Blind, and Left Behind by New Diabetes Treatment Guidelines and Big Pharma.


Here is a clear example of how the new Diabetes Treatment Guidelines and big Pharma have failed to protect the needs of diabetics who are disadvantaged by economic circumstances and disease. This is the story of one of my patients, an elderly, blind and impoverished woman with blindness due to diabetes. She managed to maintain some degree of independence and did not complain about what a lousy hand life had dealt her. One of the ways she remained independent was by using a device known as an insulin pen. The pen is an all-in-one device equipped with a needle , contains an insulin reservoir and is adjusted to a specific insulin dose by a twist of its dial. With this device she was able to inject her insulin dose daily by herself with sufficient accuracy to control her diabetes. The older method of using a separate syringe and insulin vial required too much dexterity and vision for her to use safely and would have require someone to help her on a regular basis. The type of insulin she uses, NPH, dissolves slowly so her risk of low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) was less than if she used the newer insulins which contain rapid acting insulin. What’s more, NPH insulin is still relatively inexpensive, costing about one half the price of the newer insulins.

I became aware of her problem at her visit with me last week. I learned the NPH insulin pen was being discontinued and there is nothing on the market to replace it. The only insulin pens now available contain insulin with rapid action or are at least twice as expensive as her present pen. What could have caused this sudden shift in the medical supply chain? I recently reviewed the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE) new Diabetic Treatment Guidelines (see http://www.metabolism.com/2010/01/18/diabetes-treatment-guidelines-flawed/ ) which dismisses NPH insulin as out moded and recommends the newer (more expensive) insulins be used in its place. The company’s decision to stop making NPH insulin pens coincides almost simultaneously with this new AACE policy statement. In my mind the close timing of the corporate and the professional actions implies cross communications between them. Could the AACE decision to downgrade the use of NPH in some way support corporate economics? I wouldn’t be suprised at all.

Diabetes is the most common cause of blindness in the U.S. . My guess is that there are more blind, and poor diabetics who could make good use of the inexpensive NPH insulin pen. In the case of my patient, we are scrambling to put together a support plan for her so she can maintain her independence, her pocket book and still control her diabetes to a reasonable degree. I hope others in her position can find a similar support network.

Gary Pepper, M.D. Editor-in-Chief, Metabolism.com

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5 Steps to a Healthy Being by Beth Ellen DiLuglio M.S., R.D., C.N.S.D., C.C.N., LD/N,


5 steps, 5 simple steps can help us reduce dis-ease and induce ease.

1)  EAT WHAT GROWS OUT OF THE GROUND.  A pretty simple concept, yet the best way to have a healthy diet high in fiber, antioxidants, phytonutrients, good fats and good carbs.  Eating 5 or more servings of fruits and vegetables combined can reduce your risk of cancer, heart disease,  high blood pressure and even osteoporosis.  Ideally eat 9 or more servings per day for optimal health.  Add whole grains, legumes,  nuts, seeds, herbs and spices and you are on your way to a truly health promoting diet.  Of course it is important to minimize exposure to pesticides and toxins that can end up in our produce and we’ll cover that in a future post.

2)  HYDRATE.  Drinking adequate amounts of fluids is extremely important to our metabolism.  Our bodies are at least 60% water and even mild dehydration can lead to headaches, fatigue and impaired athletic performance.  Preferably our fluid intake will mostly come from purified water (I recommend Reverse Osmosis for several reasons we will cover in a future post).  You can use RO water to make tea, coffee, lemonade and fruit seltzers.  Most of us need at least 1 ounce per kilogram of body weight to start.  We need to take in additional fluid in case of hot weather, losses during exertion, fever and other specific conditions.

3)  BE ACTIVE.  We all know that a sedentary lifestyle can increase our risk of heart disease and even cancer!  Moderate activity that lasts at least 60 minutes should be done daily , or at least 5 days per week.  To improve our fitness level, aerobic activity can be added a minimum of 3 times per week along with some weight training to build and maintain lean body mass.

4)  RELAX.  Stress can be as detrimental as a poor diet.  The “fight or flight” response is great if you have to wrestle a foe or escape from one.  A chronic “fight or flight” response is not great as the hormones coursing through our bloodstream can actually wreak havoc on our systems over time.  A constant barrage of cortisol can even negatively affect parts of the brain.  Deep breathing can reverse the stress response and begin to restore balance and harmony.  Plan play time and get adequate sleep in order to keep that balance.

5)  SMILE!  Just the thought of a smile can make us feel really good.  Imagine what the real thing can do!

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