fruit and vegetables Color Your Way to Daily Health

It’s important that we eat plenty of different fruits and vegetables every day. Diets rich in fruits and vegetables may reduce the risk of cancer and other chronic diseases. Fruits and vegetables provide essential vitamins and minerals, fiber, and other substances that are important for good health. Most fruits and vegetables are naturally low in fat and calories and are filling.

You’ve probably heard about the 5 A Day for Better Health program. It provides easy ways to add more fruits and vegetables into your daily eating patterns. It’s vital that we eat a wide variety of colorful orange/yellow, red, green, white, and blue/purple vegetables and fruit every day. By eating vegetables and fruit from each color group, you will benefit from the essential vitamins, minerals, and fiber that each color group has to offer alone and in combination.

There’s several different yet simple ways to start incorporating vegetables and fruit into your familiar and favorite meals. You can begin your day with 100 percent fruit or vegetable juice, slice bananas or strawberries on top of your cereal, or have a salad with lunch and an apple for an afternoon snack. Include a vegetable with dinner and you already have about 5 cups of fruits and vegetables. You may even try adding a piece of fruit for a snack or an extra vegetable at dinner.

Don’t be afraid to try something new to increase your vegetable and fruit intake. There are so many choices when selecting fruits and vegetables. Kiwifruit, asparagus, and mango may become your new favorite. Keep things fresh and interesting by combining fruits and vegetables of different flavors and colors, like red grapes with pineapple chunks, or cucumbers and red peppers.

Get in the habit of keeping fruits and vegetables visible and easily accessible – you’ll tend to eat them more. Store cut and cleaned produce at eye-level in the refrigerator, or keep a big colorful bowl of fruit on the table.

588 1 380 Top 5 Healthy Eating Habits

It doesn’t matter how aged or young you are, the choices you make on a daily basis can significantly impact your overall wellness. Fortunately, applying healthy eating habits does not have to be challenging. You can enjoy positive changes to your health through making little changes for your diet plan. The benefits can last for the rest of your life.

Eat Breakfast Daily

Eating breakfast is important for controlling your weight because it reduces the urge to overeat later in the day. Even if you have a busy schedule, you can eat breakfast. Grab a slice of whole-wheat toast topped with low-fat peanut butter and a piece of fruit. Low-fat yogurt topped with fresh fruit is another healthy option.

Cut Down On Sweets

Foods and beverages with added sugars can contribute to tooth decay and obesity. One way to reduce your consumption of sweet foods is to avoid sugary beverages. Instead, make a smoothie that contains fresh fruit, 100-percent fruit juice and low-fat yogurt. Eat fresh fruit for snacks and desserts instead of high-fat and calorie-dense foods such as cakes, pies and cookies.

Keep Your Hands Clean

Clean hands can keep you healthy. Proper hand washing techniques include using warm water and soap. Rub your hands together to form a lather. Continue rubbing your hands for 20 seconds. Rinse your hands by placing them under the running warm water. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer containing at least 60 percent alcohol if you don’t have access to soap and water.

Eat a Variety of Vegetables Daily

Vegetables containing bright colors provide essential and diverse nutrients. Consume dark green leafy vegetables including spinach, kale, collards and mustard greens. Get in the habit of choosing red and orange vegetables including carrots, sweet potatoes, red peppers and tomatoes.

Protect Your Bones

Protect yourself from osteoporosis by eating a variety of foods that support overall bone health and exercise regularly. Food sources of calcium include dairy products, almonds, dark green leafy vegetables and calcium-fortified foods. If you cannot drink milk or eat foods rich in calcium, take a calcium supplement. Daily calcium requirements vary throughout your life. Adults ages 19 to 50 require at least 1,000 mg of calcium daily, and adults older than 50 require at least 1,200 mg of calcium daily.

Honeyforhapfever 1382411c Ramp Up Your Body’s Natural Defense Against Allergies

Spring is finally here, and along with the gorgeous weather comes pollen. Many allergy sufferers know all too well the symptoms of hay fever, caused by pollen released from budding trees and plants. The airborne pollen is easily inhaled through the nose and mouth, and for sensitive people, it can cause a series of miserable symptoms, such as itchy watery eyes, sneezing and a scratchy throat.

The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America defines allergies as a reflection of an overreaction of the immune system to substances that usually cause no reaction in most individuals. It is estimated that 35-40 million Americans suffer from hay fever or other seasonal allergies. While over-the-counter drugs can provide some relief, they also cause side effects, especially drowsiness, fatigue and brain fog.

The best strategy against hay fever is to build up your immune system and promote a healthy response to inflammation, which is the primary cause behind uncomfortable allergy symptoms. Read more information about natural remedies for chronic inflammation here.

Hay fever results when the immune system identifies pollen as a foreign invader. Your body will produce antibodies in response—and these antibodies will bind with certain cells and release inflammatory chemicals such as histamine. Most antihistamines work to suppress histamine reactions and lessen your symptoms. However, there are natural ways to build up your body’s defenses to allergens instead of medicating with over the counter drugs.

Many doctors now know that providing your body with extra immune system support, as well as supporting the response to inflammation, is the best way to give yourself a fighting chance against seasonal allergies. Natural solutions include medicinal mushrooms that regulate the immune system and herbs which help the body cope with heightened inflammation. Medicinal mushrooms are immune modulators, able to naturally balance and support your immune system—and in the case of allergies, to reduce your body’s hypersensitivity to pollen and other allergens.

In addition to medicinal mushrooms, certain unique herbs and botanicals work together to balance inflammation, regulate healthy immune responses and provide antioxidant support. Tannins, flavonoids and polyphenols are considered “cooling” components that provide wide-spectrum immune support and help bring overall balance to the body’s systems.

Don’t let allergies make you miserable all season long! Prepare and strengthen your body by using natural strategies against hay fever, and skip the unpleasant side effects from drugs. Find out more about the health benefits of medicinal mushrooms by downloading my complimentary wellness guide.

Spring is here, and along with all the natural beauty of this season comes another common component: spring allergies.

menopause The Connection Between Menopause and Allergies

One of our readers asked a question about the development of allergies during menopause, any time of year. This is a complex area with many possible connecting threads.

Menopause is a time when the ovaries are no longer producing hormones in their usual cyclic fashion. Instead this job of female/male hormone production falls mainly on the adrenal glands during and after menopause. This extra work for the adrenal glands can lead to adrenal fatigue, which can make menopausal women more susceptible to allergies.

The Link Between Menopause, Adrenals and Allergies
After years of chronic stress, the adrenals become depleted and are no longer able to respond adequately to the ongoing pressure many of us experience. Inadequate adrenal function can produce symptoms such as sleep disruption, fatigue and anxiety. It can also lead to increased sensitivity to various foods and elements in the environment. This increased sensitivity can ultimately express itself as allergies. Read about natural detoxification at www.safedetox.org.

Many people have underlying food sensitivities that have never been diagnosed, and as a result, may worsen over time. In addition, there is the problem of chronic exposure to chemicals in the workplace and at home in the form of cleaning agents, new carpets and paint, solvents, molds, artificial lighting, computers and electronics, and many other toxin exposures. This cumulative toxic burden along with the overstressed adrenals and the hormonal fluctuations of menopause becomes an overload for many individuals. This overload can manifest as new allergies.

Natural Solutions
There are several ways to alleviate allergies and their related inflammation responses:

Reduce Stress: Meditation, yoga, Chi gong, Tai Chi, massage and other healing practices are important components in reducing stress and inflammation related to allergies.

Detoxify: The liver is the main detoxification organ, also becomes overtaxed and needs support during heightened allergies. Supplementing with liver supporting nutrients and herbs, along with safe chelating and binding agents to help eliminate toxins, is central to clearing allergies, balancing inflammation responses, and reducing toxic burden.

Balance Inflammation: Controlling inflammatory responses is important in reducing allergic reactions. Specific botanicals and herbs, like turmeric and quercetin, are important to reduce inflammation and support immune health.

For more information on detoxification, immune health and hormone balance, visit my website at www.safedetox.org.

vitamin k What You May Not Know About Vitamin KVitamin K is one of those vitamins that you do not seem to hear a lot about in the media or in the doctor’s office. So what is vitamin K and why should you care about it?

Vitamin K is an important nutrient for heart and bone health. There are two natural forms utilized by the body, including Vitamin K1 and K2. Vitamin K1 is used for blood coagulation, while K2, which is mostly found in meat, liver, cheese, and egg yolks, is used for calcium regulation. With prevailing low-fat and vegetarian diets, many of us eat reduced amounts of meat and opt for egg white omelets, basically eliminating the richest source of this essential vitamin. As a result, many people may be deficient in K2.

Natto, a fermented form of soy, native to Japan, is an excellent source of K2, but is not common in the United States. K1 is found in leafy greens such as kale, spinach, chard, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, parsley, and romaine lettuce. To get enough K1, however, you would need to eat an abundance of these foods daily, which unfortunately, most of us do not do. While K1 is also not very well absorbed by the body (usually about 10%, but absorption is improved when consumed in conjunction with fatty oils, so pour on that olive oil!), K2 is more bioavailable for the human body. Both vitamins work together to prevent cardiovascular disease in that K2 controls calcification in your arteries and K1 helps to thin the blood. Find out more by visiting www.DrEliaz.org.

Calcification of the arteries is a form of cardiovascular degeneration that can begin at an early age but usually goes unnoticed until more serious problems arise. K2 helps prevent this process by deciding where calcium gets delivered in the body. K2 ensures that the calcium you consume is deposited in your bones, not in your blood vessels and other soft tissues. Heart Disease Specialist, Dr. William Davis explains, “Normal deposition of calcium occurs only in bone and in teeth. Abnormal deposition of calcium in the body occurs in three places: the inner lining of the arteries of the body (the intima) that causes atherosclerotic plaque; the muscle layer of arteries (“medial calcification”); and heart valves. K2 appears to be the form of vitamin K responsible for controlling these phenomena (not K1, the form that plays a crucial role in blood clotting).” It is easy to see why Vitamin K2 is important in preventing heart disease and osteoporosis.

Without enough vitamin K (both K1 and K2), the vast majority of the population are at risk for age-related disease. Your arteries receive calcium they do not need or want, and your bones become more porous since the calcium is not delivered to them.

K2 also helps promote blood vessel elasticity by safeguarding elastin, the core protein in the muscle fibers primarily responsible for the elasticity of the arterial wall. Existing elastin is damaged and new production is inhibited by calcium deposition. If you are at risk for cardiovascular disease and/or osteoporosis, consider adding full spectrum Vitamin K supplementation to your diet. And if you are vegan or on a strict diet, it may be wise to consider K2 supplements. Adding some hard cheese to your diet or a hardboiled egg for a fast breakfast may greatly improve your heart health and decrease your risk for osteoporosis. Learn more healthy diet recommendations by visiting www.dreliaz.org/recommends-diet.

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