Archive for the ‘Nutrition’ Category

The Benefits of Supplementation



It’s a tough world out there. Our air and water are often full of toxic chemicals and many of our food choices are less than nutritious. Most of us have highly busy lives and devote too little time to being physically active. Despite the fact that nearly 7 out of 10 Americans are overweight to obese, we are ironically often under-nourished. In fact, up to 90 percent of Americans are lacking key nutrients in our diets.i

Ensuring we are getting the nourishment needed to support our bodies optimal function can be a challenge, but nutritional supplementation can help fill in those gaps that exist in just about everyone’s diet. Countless research studies and health experts agree that supplementing with key nutrients, including a multivitamin, adequate vitamin D, and omega-3 fatty acids provide a good nutritional foundation.

To understand the relationship between supplementation and long-term health, a first-of-its-kind Landmark Studyii was conducted in collaboration with researchers from the University Of California, Berkeley, School Of Public Health.

Researchers gathered a group of Shaklee long-term (20+ years) multi-supplement users and compared their health to non-supplement users. Results were adjusted to account for a number of potential confounders, including age, sex, education, income, and body mass index (BMI).

Questionnaires, on-site physical examinations, and blood work were used to compare nutritional status, serum biomarkers of health risk, and self-assessed health status between the three groups.

The dietary supplements consumed on a daily basis by more than 50 percent of the multi-supplement users included a multivitamin/multimineral, B vitamin complex, vitamins C and E, antioxidants, calcium with vitamin D, omega-3 fatty acids, probiotic, soy protein, glucosamine and an herbal immune supplement.

Researchers discovered that the overall health of long-term multiple supplement users was dramatically different than that of non-supplement users.

The multiple supplement users had improved levels of important heart-healthy biomarkers including 33 percent lower triglycerides, 36 percent lower homocysteine, 59 percent lower C-reactive protein levels, along with 11 percent lower cholesterol to HDL ratio when compared to the non-supplement users. As expected, the multiple supplement users also had higher blood levels of vitamin A, C, E, D, folate, and iron than non-supplement users.

Risk of disease was also much lower in these multiple dietary supplement users than nonusers. As a group, the multiple supplement users had lower risk of high blood pressure (39 percent), lower risk of diabetes (73 percent), and multiple measures of cardiovascular risk were directionally better with supplementation. Multiple supplement users were also four times more likely to describe their health as “very good” or “excellent” compared to non-supplement users.

In most cases, the single supplement users’ health markers fell between these two groups, suggesting that multiple supplementation use was both safe and effective.

Quality supplements can help fill nutritional gaps left by less than optimal food choices, our overworked bodies, and our toxic environment.

i http://www.crnusa.org/benefits/files/CRN-BenefitsBrochure-2012.pdf
ii Block G, Jensen CD, Norkus EP, Dalvi TB, Wong LG, McManus JF, Hudes ML. Usage patterns, health, and nutritional status of long-term multiple dietary supplement users: a cross-sectional study. Nutr J. 2007 Oct 24;6:30. PMID: 17958896.

Detox: Internal Cleaning for the New Year…A New Beginning

With all the chemicals our body has to filter out, it’s really important to cleanse your body systems.  Use the following five Shaklee products to provide a thorough detoxification as part of your personal internal cleaning.

1) Alfalfa:

Alkalizes and detoxifies the body, especially your liver. Used for centuries to treat numerous conditions including kidney stones, fluid retention, arthritis, sinus problems, body odor, bladder infections, allergies, asthma, and hay fever. A wonder herb, often called the “King of All Plants”, alfalfa is one of the most complete and nutritionally rich foods available. Shaklee’s Alfalfa Complex is so much better because it is made from premium quality alfalfa, goes through a rigorous herbal evaluation process to ensure protection of the natural plant from first planting to final manufacturing.  Shaklee Alfalfa Complex is grown without pesticides, herbicides, or inorganic fertilizers and contains no fungicides, bactericides, synthetic hormones, growth regulators or chemicals. It goes beyond the certification of “organic”.  For more information on Shaklee Alfalfa Complex or to order it online go to: Shaklee Alfalfa Complex.

 

 

2) Herb-Lax:

Constipation and irregularity are a by-product of our modern diet. Both contribute to toxic build-up in the blood and lymphatic system. Shaklee’s Herb-Lax, originally formulated by Dr. Shaklee with an enhanced proprietary blend of nine herbs including senna leaf, is the perfect choice for colon and cleansing health. For occasional irregularity, Herb-Lax is very safe and gentle in cleansing the entire system of toxins without the harmful effects of chemical laxatives. It softens stools and makes them easier to eliminate. For more information or to order Shaklee’s Herb-Lax online go to: Shaklee Herb-Lax

 

3) Liver DTX:

Your skin is the largest external organ of the body and your liver is the largest internal organ. The liver helps your body detoxify, and performs hundreds of other important functions. Shaklee’s Liver DTX Complex supports liver function by providing antioxidant protection to cells and for liver cell repair by supporting protein synthesis. It helps maintain bile flow to eliminate compounds detoxified by the liver. Liver DTX also helps to combat allergies, bronchitis and free radical damage due to toxicity. It also helps with bad breath and body odor, increases immunity and helps lower cholesterol levels.  For more information or to order Shaklee’s DTX online go to: Liver DTX Complex

 

 

4) Optiflora:

There’s an old saying that goes, “death begins in the colon”. Keeping the colon clean helps to keep bad bacteria in check and allows good bacteria to flourish. Good bacteria must be in the colon to restore good health. Shaklee’s Optiflora System is arguably one of the biggest breakthroughs in supplementation in the last few years. This patented Daily Colon Care System is guaranteed to deliver 500 million live friendly bacteria to the intestine. The microflora in many other competitive products never make it that far. Using Optiflora daily is a good idea for everyone, but especially if you have digestive problems, heart burn, gas or bloating, constipation or diarrhea, have taken antibiotics, suffer from psoriasis, eczema or acne, have food allergies, are afflicted with colon or rectal cancer, prone to cold sores or have candida, yeast infections or autoimmune diseases. For more information on Shaklee’s Optiflora Daily Colon Care System or to order it online go to: Optiflora Probiotic

 

5)  Fiber:  Let’s face it: We don’t always do what’s best for us. While the FDA recommends that we eat 25 grams of fiber a day for a 2,000 calorie diet, most Americans typically consume half of that amount. And yet the benefits are clear: a healthier colon as well as better digestion and regularity.* So how can you get the fiber you need on a “regular” basis? Each serving of Shaklee Fiber Plan Tablets provides 3 grams of dietary fiber with just 5 calories – making it simple to do what’s good for you. For more information on Shaklee’s Fiber Tablets or to order it online go to: Shaklee Fiber Plan Tablets

Keeping Our Immune System Healthy All Winter Long

How does our Immune System Function ?

As most of you remember from high school biology, we have red blood cells and white blood cells.  The purpose of the white blood cells is to swim through the bloodstream looking for things that don’t belong there.  When they find foreign substances (germs), …for instance, bacteria or  virus, these white blood cells surround the germ, open up and gobble it up!  This only becomes a problem for us when a germ shows up and our white blood cells fail to function properly.  That’s when we come down with virual infections, colds, sore throats, etc. Our immunity is much more a factor of resistence than it is exposure.

What would keep the White Blood Cells From Functioning Properly?
There are certain foods that we know suppress the immune system and slow down our white blood cells, such as, sugar, alcohol, and some medications.  Stress and negative emotion plays a major role in suppressing the immune system as well.  Another thing that distracts our immune system and pulls it away from it’s work involves the health our lower intestine.   Proper functioning of our immune system is directly related to the health of the microflora in our lower intestine.  If our lower intestine has less of the “good guys” (acidolphilus and bifidus bacteria) and more of the “bad guys” (e-coli, salmonella, candida, etc), then a great deal of our immune function is deployed down in the lower intestines attempting to keep the  bad bacteria in check so that they don’t completely over-run the body.  This means that there is less immune function for the rest of the body. 
Which Nutrients Play an Effective Role in Strengthening Our Immune System?

Whether dealing with allergies and recurring sinus infections or something more chronic such as Lupus, Chronic Fatigue, Cancer, rheumatoid illnesses or other auto-immune diseases, nutrients play an effective role in strengthening our immune system.

Having concern for the functioning of our immune system starts with overall strengthening of all of our cells for the basic health of the body.  There is nothing better than eating a balanced diet, while supplementing with our Rx for Healthier Life nutrition program.  This includes Vivix, Nutriferon, Cinch Soy Protein and a Vitalizer strip which contains 2 Vita-Lea,  1 B-Complex – Vita-C combo, 2 Caroto-E-Omega 3 combo and 1 optiflora probiotic .

 

Vita-C (the infection fighter) … contributes to the health of the white blood cells.  Deficiency symptoms include bruising easily, bleeding gums, nose bleeds, varicose and spider veins.  Vita-C is essential for building our connective tissue and the walls of our blood vessels.  It also is very important for healing of wounds.  Chronic infection is often an indication of a vitamin C deficiency.  Allergies, frequent colds, prickly heat, swollen

glands, anemia and even polyps in the colon are all associated with the classic vitamin C deficiency and a weakened immune system.  Vita-C  is categorized as an antioxidant nutrient because of it’s protective effect of the body against everything from smog, smoke and air pollution to preservatives and additives in our food that can be toxic like nitrates and processed foods.  Shaklee’s Vita-C  is a vitamin C Complex and not just ascorbic acid.

Formula I is a unique proprietary formula that Shaklee scientists developed which brings together eight nutrients, found to be essential for our immune system. Studies showed that this formula of nutrients increased the T-Cells, which is one form of white blood cells. 

NutriFeron is a another unique formula that Shaklee developed and is truly an advanced nutraceutical—not even vitamins and minerals (it is made from seeds and flowers!!). This amazing product prompts the body’s natural production of interferon and increases the activity of the immune system cells.

Vita-E  is also part of the antioxidant family and is very important for the immune system and for healing.

 Zinc works as a trigger for over 70 different enzymes whose function range from making the genetic material of DNA and RNA to helping with the metabolism of fatty acids.

Garlic is a natural antibiotic / anti-viral product.  It is also a natural  decongestant, therefore, it is very helpful for people who have upper respiratory issues.  It is beneficial for circulation, lowering cholesterol, and lowering blood pressure as well as helping to kill off intestinal parasites and yeast.  Most companies  heat and age their garlic so it loses it’s natural potency.  Shaklee was able to capture this potency and  it gives us all the properties of fresh raw garlic without the odor. 

Shaklee  DR is to be taken on a periodic basis when feeling like getting sick or like the immune system is depressed. This stimulates the white blood cells to kill bacteria.  It has positive side benefits…not side effects.

Opti-flora  is the acidolphlius- bifidus product that gradually restores the proper flora in the lower intestines and pushes out the bacteria and candida yeast as well as other things growing in the intestine that weakens the immune system. If we increase the health of the colon by introducing the good bacteria then it frees up immune function to go to other parts of our body so that we stay healthy.

What Other Factors Help the Immune System  to Function Better?

Detoxification This is important for the filtering mechanisms of the body.

DTX… detoxifies the liver.

Herb-Lax… speeds the elimination of toxic substances through the intestines and out of the body.

Fiber… traps and removes toxins. 

Rest has a large impact on the immune system.  We need seven to eight hours sleep each night.   It is during our periods of rest that our bodies work on the repairing, rebuilding and restoring of our cells, which are constantly dying off and needing to be replaced.

Exercise contributes substantially to our immune system.

Water is also very important to our immune system.  Our bodies are 70% water.  It plays a crucial role in building up and strengthening the body by carrying nutrients to the cell as well as by carrying toxins out of the body.  Drink eight glasses of get clean water a day. 

Positive Mental Attitude is very necessary for a strong immune system.  Stress will suppress our immune system more than any other factor.  We may feel life is closing in on us and really want to have a happy mood, but can’t seem to be happy.  If this is the case, we may need to add more B Complex as well as Moodlift, and Stess Relief Complex.  

Building Health at the Cellular Level

Cells are building blocks of the body. Cells are made of minerals, vitamins, protein and some other important nutrients such as water, carbohydrates, fats and oxygen,   but think of it as MVP, most valuable player.  The vitality of a person is only as strong as their cells.  The human body is made of about 75 trillion of them.

The body is really a miraculous thing.  Cells have great powers to take care of themselves unless they are overwhelmed by things such as poor diet, unhealthy habits or environmental hazards.

Each cell has a wall, the membrane, whose purpose it is to keep out toxins, bacteria, viruses and other harmful substances.   This cell membrane also prevents necessary material from leaking out.  This membrane is made mostly of fats and oils.  However, when made out of the wrong fats and oils, our cells do not function properly.  For instance, trans fats are rigid molecules, so they create a rigid cell membrane that lacks elasticity…so we end up with torn tissues, blood vessels and so on.  Essential fatty acids like omega guard with full spectrum omega 3 fatty acids helps to keep this elasticity.

Every day millions of cells die off and need to be replaced with new ones which must perform certain functions and communicate with other cells. Chronic shortage of MVP, causes the cells to malfunction.  In other words, they may not communicate as well, not build new ones as quickly, etc.  Specific vitamins called Anti-oxidants (which means “against oxidation”) protect the cells against oxidation or rusting of the cell, caused by free radical damage.

As we go through our daily lives, we may be unaware this shortage is happening.  However, the body does give us warning signs.  (more…)

Vitamins- Are you confused? Become a smart consumer!

Vitamins- Are you confused? Become a smart consumer!

Many people believe that all vitamins and dietary supplements are the same, so why not just buy the cheapest or the one that has the catchy advertising? How can all those different brands be that much different?

Let’s compare the three main types of supplements, using Vitamin C as an example.

A whole food Vitamin C uses Mother Nature as the raw ingredient and contains nutrients naturally occurring in an organic orange. This type of vitamin C contains co-factors such as bioflavonoids, hesperidin and rutins. These nutrients are recognized by the cell as food and therefore, feed the body on a on a cellular level.

Another type of supplement, a synthetic Vitamin C, does not use Mother Nature as the source and is made in a laboratory setting. It is chemically derived ascorbic acid and has no co-factors present. Most of the food supplements sold on the market today are synthetic and they are the cheapest to produce.

A third type of supplement is a natural isolate. The ascorbic acid is isolated from a natural source, with heat, high pressure and a chemical solvent. Again, no co-factors are present since they are lost or damaged in the processing and Mother Nature’s balance is not present.

Now, how do we make sure we are getting Mother Nature’s best vitamin? How do we know that the claims a company makes are valid? There are literally dozens of companies out there that are producing products. What are the differences in these companies?

·Are the products bioavailable? In other words, do the products break down for use within the body at the right place and within the right time frame to get into the bloodstream? Many products end up passing right through the system without ever breaking down. A simple test is to use a 1:1 solution of vinegar and water (simulating stomach acid) and see how long it takes for the vitamin to dissolve. It should take no more than 17 minutes.

· Has the company conducted clinical research that has been accepted for publication in refereed or peer reviewed scientific professional journals? This should be published research done by scientists employed by the company or those on their advisory board concerning work on the actual products they are selling. Very few companies have done this.

· How does the company process their raw ingredients? Many companies resort to harsh chemical, high heat and pressure methods to cut the cost of processing. No detrimental ingredients should be included such as genetically modified crops, pesticides, refined sugar, artificial colors, artificial flavors, artificial sweeteners (such as aspartame, sucralose or saccharin), preservatives, synthetic fillers, binders, or coatings.

· What kind of quality control standards does the company have? Quality, purity and safety testing should be done on all raw materials and continue right through to the final product on every batch produced, not just the original test batch.

· Do all their products carry a 100% unconditional guarantee.

Taking Charge of Our Life As We Age

According to the most recent data, people are living longer.  In 1950, there were 14.5 million people in the world who were age 80 and older.  In 2009, that number climbed from 14.5 million to nearly 102 million.  Experts project that by 2050, there will be 395 million people who are 80 or older.  Many could be engaged, alert, active members of society with relatively few disabilities.�

Lifestyle choices definitely affect longevity.  It’s also true that genes play a role.  Most experts believe that only about 30% of how long we live is determined by our genetic makeup and up to 70% of lifespan differences may be explained by lifestyle choices that include our activity level, whether or not we smoke, alcohol consumption and  if we are a healthy weight.

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Why Take A Multivitamin/mineral Supplement?

Why do we need vitamins and minerals?

Vitamins and minerals are essential for human development. Our bodies consist of millions of cells that are constantly being regenerated. To perform optimally and to stay healthy, each cell needs a certain amount of vitamins and minerals. Vitamins are necessary for the production of red blood cells and to maintain the nervous, skeletal and immune systems while minerals are needed to help regulate body functions, release energy and assist growth. In the US today, poor or inadequate diets are associated with 4 of the 10 leading causes of death (coronary heart disease, certain types of cancer, stroke and type 2 diabetes).

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Top Ten Longevity Foods

1. Healthy Greens – Chlorophyll, present in all green plants, has anticancer and detoxifying properties. Green, leafy vegetables are high in vitamins and minerals that naturally reduce inflammation and help protect against cognitive decline. Many green foods contain calcium, which helps build strong bones and teeth and improve vision. It is recommended you eat at least one serving daily of leafy green vegetables. Alfalfa is becoming increasingly popular as a nutritional supplement that is rich in chlorophyll. If you choose to supplement with alfalfa, it is best to select a product that is made from premium alfalfa leaves (Medicago sativa) grown under carefully controlled conditions. (more…)

Ten Healthy Ways To Love Yourself

  1. Make adequate sleep a priority- Getting to bed a little earlier will help protect your mood and your health. Most of us need about 8 hours a night. Chronic sleep deprivation has also been linked to the development of obesity, impaired immunity, heart disease, and several kinds of cancer. You’ll know you are getting enough sleep each day if you wake up feeling refreshed. If you find that you have trouble staying focused, or it takes only a few minutes to fall deep into sleep, or that you ‘nod off’ during the day, chances are you’re not getting enough sleep. Sleep also helps us in less visible ways. During sleep, the body secretes a hormone that repairs and regenerates tissue throughout the body. It may also be instrumental in reinforcing our memories. (more…)

Breakfast, a necessary “break” in the “fast”

Did your mom tell you to always eat your breakfast because it is the most important meal of the day? Well, she was right. Eating a healthy breakfast is important for both short term and long term mental and physical health. (more…)