Family Health & Wellness Blogs
Unfortunately eating healthy can be more expensive but there are exceptions. Here is a list of tasty, superfoods that have a low cost per serving.
Lentils: High in fiber, plant-based protein and minerals like iron, magnesium and zinc. Also may help with digestion and gut bacteria. Easily add lentils to a salad or make a hearty lentil soup.
Kale: High in vitamin K and A, lutein and zeaxanthin. Besides using kale in soups and salads, you can add kale to your smoothie. Or sauté with vegetables as a side dish.
Red Cabbage: Part of the family of awesome cruciferous vegetable. Full of vitamins C and K, fiber, and detoxifying compounds. Contains anthocyanin, an antioxidant for heart and brain health. Great to add to a detox salad.
Chia seeds: Contains fiber, antioxidants, calcium, iron, a complete protein, high in omega 3 fatty acids. You must try chia seed pudding. You can also add them to yogurt or your favorite smoothie.
Broccoli: Similar benefits of red cabbage. Full of B vitamins, vitamin C and calcium as well as glucoraphanin – an antioxidant that supports your body’s detoxification pathway. You can buy frozen broccoli for extra cost savings. Easily add to any lunch or dinner, raw, steam or sauté.
Green tea: Delivers potent antioxidants, like EGCG. Also a natural source of l-theanine an amino acid. Sip on hot or cold green tea during the day.
Oats: Rich in thiamine, magnesium, phosphorous and manganese. The fiber in oats may also reduce your hunger by making you feel fuller longer and stabilize sugar levels. Easy to make for breakfast. Try to stay away from instant oats which are the most highly processed variety.
Sweet potatoes: Packed with vitamins, minerals and fiber. One of the healthiest starches to include in your diet. There are lots of different sweet potato healthy recipes: oven roasted, soups, pancakes, and mash, to name a few.
Carrots: Rich in vitamins and minerals such as potassium, vitamin K, vitamin A. Easy to add to any meal raw, steamed or cooked.
Black beans: Like lentils, high in fiber and protein, black beans help with digestion and gut health. Also packed with antioxidants. Combine with brown rice for a complete protein meal. Can also be added to salads, and taste wonderful as a soup or bean dip.
Bananas: Provide not only potassium but a variety of vitamins and minerals. Great as a snack or an addition to a healthy dessert.
- Maday Labrador
- Tags: Meals
A Good Night's Sleep
A good night’s sleep can make a huge difference in how you feel and function during the day. Yet a third of US adults report that they usually get less than the recommended 7 hours of sleep a night. (https://www.cdc.gov/sleep/data_statistics.html).
Below is a list of top 10 things that can be done to improve your sleep each night (from the book Happy Cells Healthy You). These are easy, small changes that can be made, which could have a significant impact on how well you sleep and how great you feel in the morning!
- Get out into the sunshine as soon as you can. Exposure to natural light can reset your inner body clock and boosts your alertness and mood for the entire day.
- Cut the caffeine. If you drink caffeine, drink beverages early in the day to minimize their negative effects on your sleep.
- Exercise. The National Sleep Foundation reports that people who exercise regularly sleep better than those who sit on the couch! But there is one caveat: be sure not to exercise too close to bedtime as this could affect your sleep.
- Nap smart. If you nap, nap no longer than thirty minutes and get that cat nap in earlier rather than later in the day or you could risk interfering with your sleep.
- Turn off all your electronic devices. Your smartphone, your computer, your tablet, your wide-screen TV, are constantly emitting high energy blue wavelengths. All that blue light exposure is interfering with your brain’s production of melatonin which is vital to your sleep.
- Keep your room dark. A dark room will increase melatonin. If necessary, you can invest in blackout drapes or wear a soft eye mask which limits your exposure to light in your room.
- Eat light. Avoid ingesting a heavy meal just prior to bedtime. Your body is not made to be digesting food while you are sleeping.
- A warm soak or shower. Your body, as it gets you ready for sleep, already experiences a drop in temperature. You can kick-start this by getting warm in the tub or shower.
- Use lavender essential oil. In a 2005 study in Chronobiology International, lavender was shown to increase the amount of slow wave (deep) sleep in both women and men, with all subjects reporting increased well-being in the morning, underscoring the restorative nature of slow wave sleep.
- Give in. Occasionally, you may just have one of those nights where no matter what you try, you just can’t get to sleep. Getting up, sitting in a comfortable chair and relaxing by listening to some calming music, reading under soft lights, or meditating until you feel sleepy is probably best.
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) supports a recommended sleep of 9 to 12 hours per day for children 6 to 12 years of age and 8-10 hours a day for teenagers. Children not getting enough sleep each night has been associated with injuries, obesity, and depression. Many of the above recommendations can also help with children who are having trouble getting a good night’s sleep.
- Maday Labrador
- Tags: Sleep
Natural Ingredients That Help Manage Stress
Stress is your body’s reaction to a harmful, or potentially harmful situation, whether real or imagined. From dealing with a difficult boss or coworker, caring for an aging parent, paying bills or just dealing with the nightly news, stress is everywhere! When you are under stress of any kind, your mind and your body feel threatened.
When this happens, an actual chemical reaction occurs in your body to help protect yourself. This response is known as the ‘fight or flight’ response. Your heart rate goes up, you breathe faster, your blood pressure gets higher and your muscles tighten. All of this happens automatically and without you really having any control over it.
While the human body is prepared to handle small amounts of stress over the short-term, it’s not equipped to deal with stress on a constant, day-to-day basis. But it’s precisely this kind of constant, never-ending stress that we are bombarded with in today’s fast moving, twenty-four seven world. And, no part of your body is immune to the negative effects of stress; emotionally, physically and cognitively. Low energy, trouble sleeping, headaches, frequent colds, dry mouth, racing thoughts, upset stomach, cold or sweaty hands and feet…these are just a few of the ways your body and mind responds to unrelieved, constant stress.
Because stress has so many negative effects on both your body and your mind, it’s important to effectively manage stress. Here are some key natural ingredients that can be taken daily to help manage stress:
- SOD (superoxide dismutase) is an extremely powerful antioxidant enzymefound naturally in almost all living cells. SOD functions to repair cells and works to reduce the damagefrom the most rampant free radical in the body, superoxidase. Plus, clinical double-blind scientific research studies show SOD helps to manage stress and improves sleep quality.*
- Chamomile is one of the most ancient medicinal herbs known to human beings, containing a variety of bioactive phytochemicals,including apigenin, a potent flavonoid. Apigenin, as well as other flavonoids present, acts in the brain to help induce relaxation and sleepand help to reduce anxiety.*
- Lemon Balm, a member of the mint family, is a soothing, calming herband was used as long ago as the Middle Ages to reduce stress and anxiety and to promote sleep. In addition to its calming, soothing effects, lemon balm is also an antioxidant.*
- Ashwaganda is a powerful adaptogen. Adaptogenic compounds help the adrenal system to regulate hormonesand help your body manage stress.Ashwaganda is especially helpful with sleep when stress is a factor.*
- Maday Labrador
- Tags: Stress
How To Support Prostate Health
It’s unlikely that a conversation about the prostate will come up at your office or next dinner party. However, this is an important topic. Every man should be concerned about their prostate health. There are several things you can do, regardless of your age, that can help keep your prostate healthy. Here are some simple suggestions when it comes to diet, lifestyle and supplements that support prostate health:
- Eat more fruits.When it comes to fruit, look for brightly colored such as berries which are high in vitamin C and other antioxidants. Also, watermelon and tomatoes which are a great source of the potent antioxidant lycopene.
- Don’t forget your veggies. For vegetables, cruciferous ones are by far your best choice. These include broccoli, kale, brussel sprouts, which contain sulforaphane. These phytonutrients help with the activity of the body’s detoxification enzymes.
- Include more healthy fats in your diet.For instance, snack on a small portion of pecans, almonds or walnuts. These are also high in zinc, an important mineral for prostate health.
- Drink green tea. Green tea contains potent antioxidant compounds, such as EGCG.
- Replace animal fat with plant-based fats.For example, instead of butter, use olive oil.
- Don’t smoke.I’m sure you know this already but let’s emphasize the importance: Anyone who is conscious about their health should not be smoking.
- Get a PSA blood test and examannually, beginning at age 50.
- Exercise.Too much body fat, especially around the stomach increases the risk of an unhealthy prostate. Exercise helps you maintain a healthy weight and feel great!
- Take probiotics.Probiotics are “good” bacteria. They can help with the balance of good and bad bacteria in the intestinal tract, with the additional benefit of supporting the immune system.
- Try phytosterol supplements.Phytosterols are a group of natural compounds found in plants. Two popular ones for prostate health are beta-sitosterol and saw palmetto extract.
- Maday Labrador