Posts tagged zinc

Ultimate Guide to Staying Healthy in the Colder Months by Herbal Papaya

Ultimate Guide to Staying Healthy in the Colder Months by Herbal Papaya

http://www.herbalpapaya.com

The colder months provide us with a certain nostalgia, of changing foliage and winter wonderland memories. Don’t let this cold season be tainted with feeling less than your best.

As the weather gets colder and more friends start getting the flu, it’s time to take a step back and look into what we should be doing for our own health this holiday season.

You may hear time and time again that your body is a temple and you should treat it as such, but have you taken the time to think about what that means for your busy lifestyle?

The following tips for staying healthy in the colder months may come as obvious to you, but really think about if you do in fact focus on these parts of your health every week. Sometimes we need a simple reminder in the form of a blog post to get us back on track and thinking about putting our health first.

You’ll notice that this guide to staying healthy is not just about nutrition, although that’s a big part of it. Health begins with a balance of wellness in both the mind and body.

If you’re eating nutritious food but constantly stressed about little things at work, you will not reach your full healthy potential. Likewise, if you’re starting to exercise everyday but never getting enough sleep at night, you probably won’t feel at all energized or happy the next day.

Read through this list, take it in, and start to realize how interconnected every aspect of our mind and body are in terms of health. Try to hit each one of these goals for a month straight and see if you notice a difference in how you feel. It may seem like a lot of different aspects to focus on right now, but once you get into the habit, you will thank yourself later.

Hydration is Key

Hydration, hydration, hydration…hydration. The fact is, it’s hard for the average person to stay properly hydrated throughout the day, to reach that impossible 8 glasses of water.

The best advice I can give you is it’s all about making it a habit. When you wake up, have a glass of water with your morning coffee. Before you go to bed at night, drink a glass of water. Instead of reaching for that coke at lunchtime, you guessed it, reach for water instead.

Some people have a hard time enjoying the taste (or lack thereof) of water. If you’re one of those, opt for sparkling flavored water or hot tea.

Goal: Stay conscious of how much water your getting a day, and always try to one up yourself until you reach your personal goal of water intake.

Focus on a Nutritious Diet

The winter can be the hardest time to have a nutritious diet, there are so many indulgences around this time of the year it’s very easy to slip into bad habits.

Instead of the the warm comfort foods or canned overly-salted soups that are taunting you, try making your own soups and stews from home with fresh winter vegetables that have a high amount of vitamins and nutrients. Sweet potatoes, green leafy vegetables, and beetroot are all great winter vegetables to try in a soup.

It’s great if your diet also includes plenty of legumes, wholegrains, nuts and seeds, and uses a lot of herbs and spices to round it out.

Try to eliminate sugar as much as possible – I realize this is easier said than done with the giant more chocolate popping up in the grocery store these days.

Goal: Try to go a whole month with little to no sugar in your diet (before Christmas!) and make 2 new homemade soups with delicious winter vegetables.

Exercise Regularly

There’s no doubt about it, it’s hard to exercise regularly as it starts getting colder outside. Your body’s natural response is to curl up under mountains of blankets and watch Netflix marathons while sipping hot cocoa.

I get it, I really do, but you have to start thinking about your body too! If it’s more attractive, think of moving your exercise indoors where it’s warmer. At the gym, or at home with weights, or a yoga mat and your ability to do jumping jacks. Whatever will keep you moving, do that.

If you’re more of the runner type or still want to spend time moving around outdoors, make sure to spend extra time warming up your joints inside to avoid any unnecessary strains or discomforts.

Goal: Exercise 3x a week for 1-2 hours at a time. If you’re feeling adventurous, try out a few different types of exercise – both indoors and outdoors – to see what motivates you the most.

Reduce Stress

Stress takes everything happy out of your life and puts it into a pinhole perspective of negativity. And ironic enough, the most stressful time of the year is usually around the holidays.

A small amount of stress can be good and keep you motivated to do what you need to get done. For the most part; however, stress is a very, very bad thing to give into.

Some of us lead much more stressful lives than others, usually depending on our socioeconomic status or our careers. Regardless of your amount of stress in life, there are always ways to at least try to reduce it or combat it completely. A lot of those de-stressing tactics use the idea of mindfulness.

Taking a step back to survey your life and the root of your stress, can be incredibly successful in making you realize either how unimportant that stressful item is in the scheme of things, or how unhelpful stress is in working through the issue.

Goal: Take up a mindfulness hobby this month – whether that be yoga, meditation, or singing away your blues in the shower. Whatever works for your personality and gets you out of your stress bubble.

Get Enough Sleep

This is such an important tip to follow in life, and one that’s hard to adhere to sometimes in our busy lives. Sleep allows your body to recover and renew.

Similar to an iPhone that’s low on battery charge and stressing you out with the chance it could shutdown on you, your body can get overwhelmed mentally and physically a lot quicker with a lack of sleep.

Everybody is different in the amount of sleep you need, and it also depends on how active you are on a day-to-day basis. In general, it’s best to set aside 7-9 hours of sleep a night for your body to rest and feel good the next day.

Goal: For the next month, never dip below 7 hours of sleep. Download an app such as SleepCycle onto your phone, which records your sleep patterns and gives you insight on how your sleep could be better depending on your lifestyle.

Wash Your Hands

You may think this as a way too obvious recommendation, but I can’t tell you how many times I’ve walked into a public bathroom stall, heard the stall door open next to me and footsteps echoing out the door without a squeeze of soap or a hint of water spilled from the faucet.

That my friends, is what I call gross. And more importantly, unsanitary. So many germs are spread from not washing our hands before cooking, after taking out the trash, and yes, even after using the bathroom.

Take that extra minute to let the tap warm up and use hot soapy water to wash your hands properly.

Goal: This should be a life goal – always wash you hands after using the bathroom. That goes for you too, guys!

Boost Immunity

Although a nutritious diet is one of the most important gifts you can give to your body, sometimes you need an extra little kick in immunity as well. We’ve talked a lot on this blog about how you can boost immunity and why it’s important to do so.

Immunity makes your body strong to fight against those viruses and seasonal attacks that can be so nasty once they get inside your body.

However, there are a variety of ways you can go about boosting your immunity depending on your preference. Echinacea, garlic, vitamin C, and zinc are also great for supporting a healthy immune system, whether you decide to take supplements or find them in fresh foods.

It could also be the time to start thinking about getting that flu shot if you haven’t already yet.

Goal: Focus on boosting your immunity once a day through herbal tea, food that contains one of the immune boosting elements above, or through a daily supplement.

Stay in Contact With Loved Ones

Don’t you always feel a rush of contentment or happiness after a long catch-up on the phone with a friend/mom/dad/you name it that you really love?

How about when you get a surprise postcard in the mail from your daughter who’s living across the country right now? How about just making a house call to your grandma who lives down the street?

Again, with busier and busier lives in the modern age, we sometimes push these interactions to the side and justify it by saying we’ll see them at the holiday.

Not only is life short and we’ll never truly know how much time we have with our loved ones, but these interaction provide you with a type of social proof and acceptance that makes you feel part of a community. This is very important to our mental wellbeing as humans.

In other words, these connections make you feel loved and respected, they tend to make you have a positive outlook on life, and thus provide you with a healthy mindset. Plus, it never hurts to make other around you feel nice and fuzzy inside.

Goal: Send a few handmade notes in the mail this month to people you respect and love, just to say hi and let them know you’re thinking of them.

Surround Yourself with Natural Light

Did you know that on average about 4 to 6 percent of people suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder or SAD? Up to 10 to 20 percent of people can have a mild version of it, and SAD is also four times more common in women than it is in men.

There are a few ways to combat this type of seasonal depression, but one of the best ways is through light therapy. You can do this by purchasing a light box and/or surrounding yourself in places that provide a lot of natural lighting.

I’m attracted to places with a lot of natural light because I know it makes me feel happy, whether that be in a new cafe or the apartment that I choose to lease. I’m not the minority in thinking this way either, natural light has proven to be effective it making people feel content, happy, productive, and even inspired creatively.

Unfortunately, with the colder months and the lessening sunshine, natural light isn’t always possible or easily accessible. When this happens, try out a light box and see if it makes a difference in your overall wellbeing this winter.

Goal: Find a new cafe to go to in the morning that has great natural light, and notice if it makes you feel overall more happy when you start your day there.

– – – – – – – –

As I’ve said before and I’ll say it again, our happiness and wellbeing our interlinked by a multitude of aspects in life pertaining to our health. I hope you’ll try out a few of these tips and notice a difference this holiday season in your energy levels and health.

As Andy Williams once said, “it’s the most wonderful time of the year”. Don’t let poor health spoil a time meant for appreciating your family, friends, and the little things in life that make us happy.

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Everything You Need to Know About Super Immune Boosters by Herbal Papaya

Everything You Need to Know About Super Immune Boosters by Herbal Papaya
http://herbalpapaya.com

What you should be eating to boost your immunity, and the importance of a healthy digestive tract.

As the nights get shorter and the days get colder, it’s time to start thinking about boosting our immunity for the long haul of fall and winter. After all, it’s no fun being sick during the holidays!

Firstly, it’s important to understand how your immune system functions. Your immune system is your body’s natural defense mechanism from bacteria, viruses, microbes, toxins, and parasites.

Your immune system goes about protecting your body from these infections through 3 actions:

1. It creates a barrier against said infections

2. If the bacteria gets through the barrier, the immune system tries to identify what that bacteria is and attempts to block it from reproducing in your body.

3. If the bacteria successfully reproduces and therefore causes you to have physical symptoms, such as strep throat or a cold, it’s the immune system’s job to then find a way to eliminate it.

Your immune system is made up of various components inside your body that work together, some of which include your thymus, spleen, bone marrow, white blood cells, antibodies, and hormones.

By taking care of your body, getting enough rest, drinking a lot of fluids, and paying attention to what you eat, you’re able to support how well your immune system functions.

In this article, we’ll focus specifically on what to eat and how certain foods can help increase the chance of your immune system fighting off nasty viruses and bacteria.

These are our recommendations for the best super immune boosters to take this fall with your health in mind.

Garlic

Italian food enthusiasts unite! Garlic has been known for years for its healing properties and immunity boosting capabilities. Garlic contains the active ingredient allicin that helps fight bacteria and infections and thus helps to boost your immunity.

Yogurt

Natural probiotics are a type of healthy bacteria that actually help keep the gut and intestinal tract clean from tenacious germs. Two 6 ounce doses a day of yogurt is recommended for the most immune boosting benefits.

Oats/Barley

Some studies have proven that oats and barley are even more beneficial than the immunity-friendly echinacea. What makes them so great for boosting immunity is the beta-glucan they possess, which is a type of fiber that has antimicrobial and antioxidant properties.

Mushrooms

A food that has been linked to a healthy immune system for awhile now, mushrooms help to increase the production of white blood cells in your body and can even make them more aggressive against outside invaders. The kinds that have the biggest immunity boosts are shiitake, maitake, and reishi.

Cut down on the sugar

Have you ever noticed that kids tend to get sick after Halloween, Easter, and Christmas? There have been multiple studies linking the negative side effects of too much sugar, mainly it tends to decrease your natural immune responses.

Fermented/Pickled Foods

Whether you prefer miso soup, pickles, or something in between, fermented and pickled foods add good bacteria into your digestive tract and help boost your natural defenses.

Zinc

One of the more important nutrients for digestive health, zinc also helps with hormone regulation, neurological function, and of course, immune health. Beans, mushrooms, cocoa, wheat germ, spinach, pumpkin seeds, and nuts are all high in zinc.

Ginger Root

Ginger is another diet-friendly food that has been known for its health benefits for years. It helps to improve digestion, clean the GI tract, increase antioxidant levels, reduce inflammation, and boost immunity.

This is just brushing the surface of possible foods you could add to your diet to boost your immunity, but these are some of our favorite ones that we would consider the “super” immune boosters for anyone’s diet.

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A note on digestive health and the immune system

You may have noticed a common thread with many of these foods, and that’s the fact that a lot of them help with digestion. You may be surprised to learn that your digestive tract and immune system are closely tied together. Your digestive tract is actually responsible for a lot of the daily functions in your body that you’re probably not aware of.

Your digestive tract relies on the abundance of “good bacteria” to function properly, but it works vice versa as well. Your immune system also relies on your digestive tract for strength and consistency.

The reason why your digestive tract is so important to your immunity is because you intake so many pathogenic organisms each day. The digestive tract has most of the innate immune responses in your body that naturally kill bacteria from saliva and stomach acid. A clean digestive tract therefore helps the immune system focus on and protect the rest of the body through its automatic responses.

This is why it’s so important to create a well-rounded diet that includes foods that naturally help to cleanse out your digestive tract and keep it healthy – it’s connected to so much of your wellbeing!

This fall, it’s time to start thinking about the key aspects of your body that do so much for your daily health – your digestive tract and immune system!

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Nutrition to Balance Hormones That Affect Your Mood

Nutrition to Balance Hormones That Affect Your Mood
From Herbal Papaya Newsletter – http://www.herbalpapaya.com

Now that summer is on the way, you’re undoubtedly ready to get outside and start doing “summer things.” You’ve probably noticed that you’re feeling better and that your mood is a bit more buoyant.

That’s not just a coincidence; vitamin D deficiency has been linked solidly to being moody, and sunshine is the only natural source of vitamin D. Therefore, when you’re out getting plenty of it, it’s entirely possible that your mood improves, too!

You may be surprised how much a healthy diet contributes to balanced hormones and helps with your mood, but there’s plenty of solid research to back up the theory that you are what you eat.

B vitamins are also being studied for their link with unhappy mood. Specifically B12, and to a lesser degree B6 and folate, have been linked strongly to feeling sad. This is a particular concern for vegetarians and vegans because B12 is found almost exclusively in animal products. Supplementation is necessary for that part of the population.

Vitamin C has historically been known as the vitamin that boosts the immune system. However, people who are unhappy often report significant boosts in mood after taking vitamin C. The studies here are fairly new but are promising.

One particular group of nutrients called carotenoids are linked significantly to brain, prostate, heart, eye and mental health. Carotenoids are phytonutrients found in yellow, red and orange fruits and vegetables and are powerful antioxidants. Some, but not all, convert to vitamin A in the body. Others, such as lycopene, may not convert but are still extremely valuable for their ability to bond to free radicals and help keep you healthy.

For instance, the minerals zinc and magnesium are being closely studied in relation to brain health. Both seem to play significant, though largely mysterious, roles in assisting with mood chemical production and uptake in the brain. A notable percentage of people who suffer from mood swings are found to be deficient in one or both of these minerals.

The carotenoids lutein, beta-carotene and zeaxanthin were studied in a group of almost 1800 people age 20-85. People with the highest levels of circulating carotenoids were a whopping 37% less likely to suffer from mood swings than those who had low levels.

A Japanese study of men only showed that men with the highest levels of carotenoids were an astounding 67% less likely to suffer from mood issues than those with the lowest levels. The studies are piling up.

Carotenoids are found in high amounts in foods that are bright orange, yellow, red or green such as:

sweet potatoes
papayas
red peppers
mangos
green leafy veggies
carrots
squash
dried apricots
cantaloupe

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Why Sea Vegetables? by Brian Hetrich, Greenhouse Manager at Hippocrates Health Institute

From The Garden by Brian Hetrich, Greenhouse Manager at HHI – Hippocrates Health Institute http://www.hippocratesinst.org

Why Sea Vegetables?

Sea vegetables are more commonly known as seaweed. They grow in salt water oceans all over the world. There are thousands of different types of sea vegetables, which are classified into categories by color, known either as brown, red or green sea vegetables. Each is unique, having a distinct shape, taste and texture. A wide range of sea vegetables are enjoyed as foods. This includes Kelp, nori, dulse, wakame, arame, Irish moss, kombu, hiziki, and many more.

Sea vegetables are among the World’s healthiest foods because of their incredibly rich mineral content and other unique health benefits. Sea vegetables are exploding with nutrients, including: Vitamins A, B, C, D, E, and K. They are rich in minerals like iron, zinc, calcium, magnesium, iodine, sodium, potassium, silica, germanium, and phosphorus to name just a few. Sea vegetables also contain Proteins, Fiber, Carotenes, Enzymes, Oxygen, Phytonutrients, and Phytohormones.

The use of sea vegetables for food is not a new concept. Archaeological evidence suggests that Japanese cultures have been consuming sea vegetables for thousands of years. In ancient Chinese cultures, sea vegetables were a noted delicacy, suitable especially for honored guests and royalty. In fact, most regions and countries located by waters, including Scotland, Ireland, Norway, Iceland, New Zealand, the Pacific Islands and coastal South American countries have been consuming sea vegetables since ancient times. And they taste great!

Most food produced for commercial distribution on factory farms are on a life support fertilizer usually consisting of just three nutrients: nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium. The other 95 minerals needed for good human health such as iron, calcium, copper, zinc, and magnesium, are missing. Minerals are missing from our foods because of soil depletion. As a result, the ocean is now the most fertile area for plants to grow. Sea vegetables absorb these minerals and convert them into a living form that our bodies can recognize and utilize.

Only plants, including sea vegetables, can convert dead, inorganic mineral compounds into living, organic mineral compounds that can be assimilated by the human body. When you supply the body with all the necessary raw materials to reconstruct tissues and organs correctly, everything gets better. All your organs, tissues, cardiovascular system, neurological system, and immune system get stronger and function with greater efficacy. Every aspect of your physical, mental, and spiritual health will improve when you supply the body with an adequate supply of the correct nutrients and remove toxins from your environment. That includes brain function, energy levels, physical appearance, and vitality.

Dulse is a popular one at Hippocrates. It is a delicious purple sea vegetable harvested off the Atlantic coasts for the U.S., Canada, and British Isles. It is rich in trace minerals and as a condiment, gives a slightly salty flavor to your other foods. Two tablespoons gives you many times the US RDA of iodine, which is just one of the highly desirable rare minerals contained in dulse. Iodine is an essential component of the thyroid hormones. Thyroid hormones regulate many important biochemical reactions, including protein synthesis and enzymatic activity, and are critical determinants of metabolic activity. They are also required for proper skeletal and central nervous system development in fetuses and infants. Sea vegetables are able to accumulate iodine many times more concentrated than sea water alone!

And people need it now more than ever. Sea vegetables protect the body from radiation exposure by attacking radiation and neutralizing it. Sea vegetables also protect the thyroid against the damaging effects of fluoride, and they boost your immune system. About two tablespoons a day is all that an adult needs, and one tablespoon a day for children.

While fresh is always best, sea vegetables are very tough for general use when fresh. They are typically eaten in small quantities finely chopped or powdered. Larger pieces are commercially distributed in dried form which should be soaked in warm water for 10-20 minutes until they are soft enough to slice – this also removes some of the excess salt. Discard the soak water because it has an extremely high salt content. The drained sea vegetable can then be dried in a dehydrator until it is crunchy.

Since sea vegetables detox, I also recommend drinking copious amounts of pure, filtered water – at least ½ ounce of pure, filtered water for every pound of body weight per day. A squeeze of a fresh lemon wedge will alkalize you and help you to absorb the water more efficiently.

I use kelp and dulse as a garnish on my salad or I use them in homemade salad dressing to give a salty flavor. I use nori sheets to make raw vegan “sushi” wraps. Or, in powder form, I sprinkle a little kelp or dulse powder on my salad or I use them in homemade salad dressing to give a salty taste to my meals. I eat a lot of sprouts, a land vegetable, as well, because sprouts are live foods.

Here are some specific health benefits attributed to sea vegetables:

Detoxifier
Helps remove radioactive particles and heavy metals from the body
Rejuvenate gastrointestinal health and aid digestion
Blood purifier
Relieves arthritis stiffness
Promotes adrenal, pituitary and thyroid health
Normalizes thyroid-related disorders like overweight and lymph system congestion
A demulcent that helps eliminate herpes outbreaks
A decongestant for excess mucous
Helps normalize blood pressure
Powerful skin healing
Helps reduce breast and uterine fibroids and adhesions
Normalize menopausal symptoms
Promotes soft, toned, wrinkle-free skin
Enhances glossy hair and prevents its loss
An excellent adrenal stimulant
Recovery from arthritis
Recovery from gout
Effective in combating the herpes virus
Valuable for increased intimacy
Boosts metabolism
Strengthens hair, skin and nails

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