Posts Tagged With: Vitamins

Vitamins

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Hello fitness friends! I’ve already written a post about supplements. There were a few that were not on the list that I wanted to mention today.

Omega 3 fatty acids
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These lovely vitamins are so beneficial for your health. They are naturally incurring in eggs enriched with Omega 3s, flaxseed, fish oil, sardines, salmon, dairy, winter squash, edamame, walnuts, kidney beans, black beans, tuna, anchovies, grass fed beef or dairy produced by grass fed cattle.

“The omega-3 acids in most plants are alpha-linolenic acids (ALAs). ALAs have short chains of carbon. Humans and animals convert them into two long-chain forms that are usable by their bodies: eicosapentaenoic acids (EPAs) and docosahexaenoic acids (DHAs),” http://health.howstuffworks.com/wellness/food-nutrition/healthy-eating/5-foods-high-in-omega-1111.htm.

These acids are wonderful for fighting off free radicals that increase the signs of aging, and easing depression (see your doctor if you battle with depression). They also help with dry, flaky, and inflammation in your skin. Your hair, heart, and brain will also benefit from a balanced diet including Omega 3s. Some studies have suggested Omega 3s have cancer fighting abilities.

I’ve been taking Trader Joes Molecularly Distilled Odorless Fish Oil. You want to make sure if you’re taking supplements they are free of mercury, heavy metals, and PCBs. Omega 3 Supplements can also irritate your stomach for some people, so use caution and talk to your doctor.

I’ve seen noticeable improvements in my skin, hair, and increase in energy since it started taking them.

Vitamin C:

This super vitamin is great at fighting those free radicals! Here are some other benefits of this super vitamin.

*Help protect cells from free radical damage
*Lower your cancer risk
*Regenerate your vitamin E supplies
*Improve iron absorption

Don’t skimp on those citrus fruits, broccoli, strawberries, kiwi, pineapple, bell peppers, or other dark leafy vegetables. Nature has given us great resources for things to help our bodies function properly. Vitamin C also helps reduce the signs of aging!

Multi vitamins:

I take a women’s energy whole food vitamin by Alive. It’s best to get your vitamins from food. If you’re not eating a balanced healthy diet, try to change that! If you are, you still may be missing out on key vitamins. I try to eat well, yet certain vitamins I still take supplements for.

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Hunger Pains

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Hi friends! Sorry for the neglect. Work has been super busy lately! I haven’t had time to write. I have not forgotten about you. Tonight, I wanted to talk about something I have been dealing with-hunger pains. Often we think we are hungry and we are not hungry at all.

Things to ask when you feel the stomach screaming for food:

1. Are you hydrated? Many mistake thirst for hunger. Before popping any food in your mouth, go grab a glass of water. If after drinking 8 ounces of water there is still hunger, eat something healthy.

2. Are you sleeping well? The hormones that regulate hunger and feeling full (grenhlin and leptin) are disrupted if we are not sleeping well. So, our bodies scream, “Feed me,” and “I am not satisfied!” Lack of sleep leads to overeating.

3. Are you stressed? Food makes us feel good. Especially those sugary, salty, fatty foods. Many times we are not hungry, we are stressed out and our bodies are crying out for comfort. Take a walk instead, workout, journal, call a friend and not Ben and Jerry. 😉

4. Are you bored? Boredom can lead to all kinds of trouble. It’s not good to be overworked or busy all the time. It is also not good to sit and eat and eat. Food is fuel, and as we know every gas tank has a limit. Put in too much, and it spills out. Eat too much, gain weight. I like the phrase, “Eat to live, not live to eat.”

5. Are you eating in front of the TV or media? Studies have shown that people who eat in front of the TV or at the movies consume far more than those who eat at the dinner table or other places. I watched this study where they gave people in the movie theater stale popcorn and they ate all of it. When they exited the movie, they gave them samples and the people spit it out. Because they were so engrossed in the movie, they didn’t register how much they ate or what they were eating. If we can, don’t eat in front of the TV, etc…

6. Are there vitamins in your food? I will say it again and again. The quality of food we eat is important. Trans fats, sugary, salty, processed, and most fast food do not contain the vitamins and minerals our bodies need. So, since the body views food for fuel, it says, “Feed me more.” The nutrients are not there so the body keeps craving real food. Also, the foods I mentioned make the body want more sugary, fatty, highly processed food. The body is never satisfied. Taking multivitamins and eating poorly does not solve the problem either. The best way is to eat whole foods.

7. Are you getting enough fiber? Fiber is a great asset. It helps to regulate blood sugar, cleanse the body, and help us feel full. If there is no fiber in our diets, we are probably HUNGRY! Many diet programs work because they encourage the consumption of fiber.

8. Are you hormonal? Emotional? This isn’t just for the ladies. Many times when something is not going well for us, we turn to food. For some it’s sweets, others it’s alcohol, for some it’s pizza and wings…whatever the choice it’s due to wanting comfort. As for the hormones, many women have tremendous cravings based on hormone shifting. You may not be able to stop the cravings, but you can choose better options-fruits, veggies, lean protein, and choose to workout instead of pig out.

So, my friends, those hunger pains may not be due to the bodies need for food. I have had to stop myself in the busy last few weeks and ask, “Am I hungry or stressed? Is there a better option than what I have chosen? Maybe I am dehydrated not hungry.”

I hope you keep on the wellness journey! It’s a lifestyle change; one I am excited to take with you. You can do it! I believe in you! Have an awesome week. I hope you feed your body real food and make time to work it out! Cheers,~Erin.

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Simply Supplements

Pills Pouring out of Bottle

There are so many pills on the market. They are marketed to us to fix all our health problems. Are supplements good or bad? I will say there are some that are bad for us. I am not a fan of most diet pills. Especially those loaded with stimulants. I believe the best way to help the body is through whole foods. Supplements are not a cure. They are not to be used to replace proper nutrition. Our food contains most of the nutrition we need. If you have not seen Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead, it’s a great documentary on how whole foods help to heal the human body.

Before taking any supplements, talk to your doctor. Do not just run out and take whatever is on the shelf or on this list. Many supplements can cause adverse side effects and interfere with prescription medications. I am not a physician nor am I here to give medical advice.

Here are some you may have heard of:

Acai:

Acai is a berry found naturally in South America. If you ever get the chance to go to Brazil, you will find acai in fruit smoothies, drinks, in many places. Eating the fruit and drinking the juice are the most beneficial. Acai berries may be a good source of antioxidants, fiber and heart-healthy fats. People have claimed acai is a miracle superfood. Before you spend copious amounts of money on buying supplements, do some research. The best sources are natural sources.

CLA:

Conjugated linoleic acids naturally occur in meats and dairy products. They are also found in safflower oil. CLA has received lots of good press for its ability to aid in the reduction of abdominal fat/body fat and increase in muscle tissue. CLA has been reported to reduce cancer risks, help with heart health, and much more. Should you run out and by some? I tried it and found it helpful with reducing body fat. However, once I stopped taking it, I gained fat back. My recommendation is to buy 100% safflower oil and use it in replacement of vegetable oil. It’s great for making salad dressing, to bake with, cook with, etc…I no longer take the supplement and use the oil. Safflower oil is high in fat, yet it’s a good fat.

Creatine:

Creatine is a compound synthesized (made) in the body and transported to muscle tissues where it fuels short bouts of intense energy production. To meet the demands of a high-intensity exercise, such as sprinting or power sports, muscles generate energy from chemical reactions involving adenosine triphosphate (ATP), phosphocreatine (PCr), adenosine diphosphate (ADP), and creatine. Stored PCr can fuel the first 4-5 seconds of a high intensity effort, but after that, another source of energy is needed. Source http://sportsmedicine.about.com/od/performanceenhancingdrugs/a/Creatine.htm

Garlic:

Garlic promotes the well-being of the heart and immune systems with antioxidant properties and helps maintain healthy blood circulation. One of garlic’s most potent health benefits includes the ability to enhance the body’s immune cell activity.

The active component in garlic is the sulfur compound called allicin. Allicin is the chemical produced when garlic is chopped, chewed, or bruised. Allicin is quite powerful as an antibiotic and a potent agent that helps the body to inhibit the ability of germs to grow and reproduce. Source http://www.disabled-world.com/artman/publish/garlic-benefit.shtml#ixzz2IS93KgdU

Biotin:

Biotin is a coenzyme and a B vitamin, also known as vitamin H. As a supplement, biotin is sometimes used for diabetes, brittle nails, and other conditions (WebMD). It’s been used to deal with brittle nails, skin problems, hair growth, and much more. Biotin naturally occurs in food. here is some information from WebMD.

Biotin occurs naturally in many foods. Wheat germ, whole-grain cereals, whole wheat bread, eggs, dairy products, nuts, Swiss chard, salmon, and chicken are all sources of biotin. The biotin in food is usually attached to protein and has relatively poor absorption. Source http://www.webmd.com/vitamins-and-supplements/lifestyle-guide-11/supplement-guide-biotin.

Glutamine:

Many body builders take glutamine.

Glutamine is the most abundant amino acid (building block of protein) in the body. The body can make enough glutamine for its regular needs, but extreme stress (the kind you would experience after very heavy exercise or an injury), your body may need more glutamine than it can make. Most glutamine is stored in muscles followed by the lungs, where much of the glutamine is made.

Glutamine is important for removing excess ammonia (a common waste product in the body). It also helps your immune system function and appears to be needed for normal brain function and digestion. Source: http://www.umm.edu/altmed/articles/glutamine-000307.htm

Multivitamins:

Some people pop pills instead of eating healthy. I am not against vitamins. I take multivitamins. However, many of the over the counter vitamins are not fully absorbed to provide maximum benefits. There are so many on the market and it’s best to do some research and find vitamins that dissolve easily within the body.

Protein:

There are several forms of protein supplements; whey protein, soy protein, pea protein, and other vegetable proteins. Some people cannot tolerate whey protein and therefore choose vegetable protein. Protein is important for building lean muscle. Protein also keeps us full longer. Protein helps us to ward off cravings. We need to use caution when adhering to a high protein diet. High protein diets can lead to dehydration, and kidney problems. You can read more online if you search for high protein diets online. Also read the labels on your protein. Some contain additives, and preservatives that are not good for you.

Lastly, I will say it’s best to get nutrients from whole foods. If you choose to use supplements, talk to your doctor. Make sure if you are taking any prescriptions some supplements will cause adverse side effects. Supplements are not a quick fix nor a replacement for a healthy diet.

 

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Eating Healthy (Healing Foods)

There are so many nutrients found right at our local Farmer’s Market that can help our bodies function properly. God gave us medicine in food. I have been exploring local markets this summer. I even traveled to Amish country to purchase cheese from cows not treated with hormones and dry goods. If you’re living on a budget, one thing you can do is purchase strawberries, other berries, and avocados while they are in season, and freeze them. I’ve also visited this site http://www.ewg.org/foodnews/summary/ that lists the foods we should purchase organic and those that are lower in pesticides. It’s called the dirty dozen list. I don’t purchase organic foods that are lower in pesticides or those I don’t eat often. Trader Joes has become my favorite place to buy healthy food, as the prices are reasonable, and I love the people who work there.

I found that fat loss wasn’t the only benefit of eliminating unhealthy processed foods and added sugar, my skin began to improve. My energy levels increased. I had better focus than before. I think we all know that we should eat our fruits, vegetables, and healthy food. There’s so much we are missing out on when we don’t eat them. Once I ditched the unhealthy food, I needed to replace the items I threw out with healthy food. Check out some of the nutrients in the food I currently consume.

Here are just some of the healthy foods and their benefits:

Almonds (raw)– High in fiber, vitamin E, calcium, phosphorous, iron, magnesium, zinc, selenium, copper, and niacin. Almonds contain the most nutrients in comparison to all other nuts.

Apples– Antioxidants– protect cells from free-radicals (chemicals that damage cells), fiber– promotes colon health, and stable blood sugar.

AvocadosFiber, magnesium, cartenoids- “antioxidants that help with cell to cell communication which controls cell growth,” K. Collins American Institute for Cancer Research, vitamin E, lutein– helps with eye health.

BlueberriesAnthocyanins-(may fight cancer, anti-aging properties, help with inflammation, bacterial infections), vitamin C, manganese, and dietary fiber.

Berries (all kinds)– Listed as cancer fighting foods. contain antioxidants which may protect your cells from damage linked to cancer. Vitamin C, and fiber.

Cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, kale, cabbage)– Contains potential cancer fighting chemicals such as glusinolates, crambene, and indole-3-carbinol according to the American Institute for Cancer Research.

Dark Leafy VegetablesFolate– protects DNA, and carotenoids.

Garlic– Good for the heart, the immune system, and may inhibit colon tumor formation and cell growth.

GrapesReservatol (antioxidant and anti-inflammatory chemical), American Institute for Cancer Research studies shown they may keep cancer cells from growing and inhibit tumors.

Legumes (peas, beans, lentils)Fiber, cancer fighting foods according to the American Institute for Cancer.

Pears– High in fiber (6 grams per serving), vitamins A, C, K, B2, B3, and B6, and folate.

QuinoaFiber, internal cleanser, iron, high in protein.

TomatoesLycopene (protects cells from damage, helps destroy those that aren’t growing properly), cancer fighting food.

Sweet PotatoesVitamin B6, D, iron, C, magnesium, potassium, cartenoids.

Whole GrainsFiber, antioxidants, packed with vitamins (check to make sure it’s really whole grains. Some say it on the front, then you check the ingredients and it’s stripped of vitamins). I recommend Ezekiel 4:9 bread, or other sprouted grain breads. Since these breads do not contain preservatives I place in the freezer as they mold faster.

Wild SalmonOmega-3 fatty acids, This omega-3 fat comes in two forms: EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid).  Contains vitamin D and selenium.

I also started purchasing only nitrate free lunch-meat, and bacon. Nitrates have been shown to be linked to several forms of cancer including colon cancer. This preservative is not good for our bodies. Google sodium nitrates and health effects. You can find nitrate free meat at your local grocery and most don’t cost more. Since they aren’t packed with preservatives you must eat them quickly (within a week or two weeks) or freeze them. Instead of shopping for the month, I shop weekly. It’s costing less money to eat healthy. I eat less food because healthy foods fill you up.

So, friends. Here’s to a healthy you! I will hopefully start putting recipes up soon.

P.S You can do anything you set your mind to. Tell that voice inside your head that says, “I can’t change,” “I can change. I will change. Just watch me!

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Categories: Nutrition | Tags: , , , , , | 3 Comments

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