Who Exactly Takes Nutritional Supplements and Why?

I shot this video in the parking lot of a local store that sells  nutritional supplements.  As you can see, the parking lot is busy,
and customers entering and leaving the store exhibit a wide range of age  and characteristics.

People who take nutritional supplements are sometimes labeled as
“Health Nuts” as if they were part of some weird minority. It might surprise you to learn that most U.S. adults, 68%, use dietary supplements according to an October, 2015 survey by the Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN).

This Consumer Survey on Dietary Supplements, conducted by IPSOS Public Affairs, found that when it comes to safety, quality and effectiveness of specific dietary supplement categories, Americans have the most confidence in the “Vitamins & Minerals” category (85%).  Results show that the vitamins and minerals category has the highest  usage compared to specialty supplements, herbals & botanicals, and sports nutrition and weight management.  79% of male supplement users and 77% of  female supplement users take vitamins and minerals, followed by vitamin D (32%),  vitamin C (27%) and calcium (24%) which are three nutrients that government reports have  identified as shortfall nutrients. Continue reading Who Exactly Takes Nutritional Supplements and Why?

Massive Attack on Supplements by FDA

FDAwarningsignscaled     There’s bad news for supplement users in the long-awaited revision of FDA guidance rules for new supplements which are finally here, very bad news.

The rules if implemented without modification will basically result in the supplement industry not being allowed to innovate and create new supplements.

This looks like more of the FDA’s usual stance, working as usual on behalf of the drug industry.
The DSHEA (Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act of 1994) was passed by Congress in response to the publication of the FDA’s Task Force Report on Dietary Supplements in 1992 which included a statement that dietary supplements represented a “disincentive for patented drug research.”  Over two million letters went to Congress, which led to the passage of DSHEA.

Under DSHEA, any dietary supplement introduced to the market in the US after 1994 is considered “new” and must notify the FDA at least 75 days in advance of marketing the product. The FDA was to provide guidance on this process and in 2011 published draft guidance which would have crippled, if not eliminated, the supplement industry.  After a major backlash Congress once again stepped in and added language to an appropriations bill urging the FDA to revise the draft guidance.

As noted in our opening paragraph the revision is finally here, over twenty-two years after the passage of DSHEA.  Little better than the original guidelines on new ingredients/supplements, they represent a dire threat to the supplement industry, and by extension, consumer access to supplements.
ANH USA, the Alliance for Natural Health, has published an article in their online newsletter with full details on the negative impact of the revised FDA guidance.  The article also provides information on how you can get involved in responding to the FDA’s revised guidance on new supplements.

What’s your opinion about nutritional supplements?  Do you use them, and do you find them beneficial?  Please leave a comment below.

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Dietary Supplements – 12 Tips for Consumers

Supplements Pic   It’s a safe bet that you’re taking a dietary supplement or have taken them in the past.

According to the results of an October 23, 2015 survey commissioned by the Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN) the majority of U.S. Adults – 68 percent – take dietary supplements.

There is a wide variety of choice when purchasing dietary supplements – choice in selecting product categories and specific products and choosing the company or source that sells them.   Some choices are smarter than others, and CRN recommends that consumers do their homework when making their choice of dietary supplements.  Based on CRN’s recommendations here are 12 tips to help you in selecting a dietary supplement.

1.  Manage your expectations.  Dietary supplements are meant as supplements to other healthy habits and should be used in combination with other smart lifestyle choices like exercising regularly, trying to eat a healthy diet, getting enough sleep and seeing your healthcare professional periodically.   Dietary supplements are not drugs and are not intended to have the same immediate impact that drugs are expected to provide.

Continue reading Dietary Supplements – 12 Tips for Consumers

Teams Should Share A Common Vision

When team members or employees share a common vision it impacts the achievement of the team’s goals and the enterprise’s mission.  When the vision is shared by all participants and goals are understood, projects can be completed in an efficient manner leveraging the talents of everyone involved.

This short video of children at a nursery school “working” on a “project” illustrates so many points about teams, participation, vision, and rewards.  It is clear that they don’t share the same vision.  Some declare that they are building a train, while others say they are building a castle, and still others a tower.

Similar to your team members or employees, these kids have different personality types and probably derive different rewards or satisfaction from their participation.  Is job satisfaction an important factor for everyone?  Positively.

Do you have any comments about vision and goals and their importance to success?  Please leave a comment.

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Seven Exercises You Can Do In Bed

exercise in bedFINAL     Bed exercises are a healthy way to help you get in shape, burn calories, tone you up, and transform your body.  They’re convenient for all kinds of reasons.  Perhaps you have neither the time nor the desire to get up extra early to do a morning workout at the gym.  Some bed exercise in the morning can get you perked up and firing on all cylinders to start the day with an advantage.  Done in the evening they can help you get a restful evening of sleep.  They  stimulate the production of the mood-enhancing brain chemical serotonin, leaving you feeling calm and relaxed.  As a result, you will find that you sleep better when you do these exercises at night, and feel invigorated when you do the routine in the morning. Here are a few bed exercises you can do that won’t take more than 10 minutes out of your busy schedule.  They are designed for anyone, but they can be especially helpful for people recovering from an illness or injury and confined to bed and for people who just can’t find time during the day to exercise.

Important:  When you perform these exercises, breathe in slowly while you count to four, hold for a count of one, and then exhale for a count of four.

ARMS-SHOULDER SEESAW
Purpose: Tones and stretches the shoulders and upper back.
What to do: While lying on your back, place your arms at your sides. Slide your right arm and shoulder toward your right foot. Next, raise your right shoulder toward your head, while at the same time sliding your left arm and shoulder toward your left foot. Then raise your left shoulder toward your head, while lowering your right arm and shoulder toward your right foot. Repeat five times on each side, moving your shoulders up and down like a seesaw.  Continue reading Seven Exercises You Can Do In Bed

Coffee Is One Of The Healthiest Drinks

Coffeescale   Despite being criticized in the past, coffee may be one of the healthiest beverages you can drink.  Perhaps you’ve just enjoyed this dark-colored liquid for it’s taste and to help you stay alert and awake without thinking whether it’s healthy or unhealthy.

Coffee actually contains hundreds of various compounds (caffeine is just one), some of which have important health benefits.  Many of these compounds are antioxidants which fight aging and common diseases like heart disease and cancer.

EIGHT REASONS COFFEE IS GOOD FOR YOU:

1.  Coffee can help you burn fat due to the fact that it stimulates the central nervous system, raising metabolism and increasing the oxidation of fatty acids.

2. Coffee can improve athletic performance by mobilizing fatty acids from fat tissues.  Studies have shown that caffeine increases exercise performance on average of 11 – 12%.

3. Coffee can make you smarter.  Caffeine blocks the inhibitory effects of a neurotransmitter in the brain called adenosine and actually increases neuronal firing in the brain and increases the release of other neurotransmitters like dopamine and norepinephrine.

4. Studies have shown that coffee is associated with a lower risk of Type II Diabetes.  A review of 18 studies with over 450,000 participants showed that each additional cup of coffee per day lowered the risk of diabetes by 7%.

5. Coffee appears to lower the risk of liver cancer by 40% and cirrhosis by as much as 80%.  Cirrhosis is the last stage of liver damage caused by diseases such as alcoholism and hepatitis.

6. Coffee may lower your risk of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.  Studies have shown that coffee drinkers have up to a 60% lower risk of Alzheimer’s and dementia and a lower risk of Parkinson’s by 32 – 60%.

7. Several studies show that people who drink coffee live longer than those who don’t.  One study showed that the more coffee people drank, the lower their risk of death was, with the optimal amount being 4 – 5 cups per day.  This resulted in men having a 12 percent reduced risk and women having a 16
% reduction.

8.  Coffee is a major source of antioxidants and contains a respectable amount of several vitamins and minerals including Pantothenic Acid (Vitamin B5), Riboflavin (Vitamin B2), Niacin (B3), Thiamine (B1), potassium and Manganese.

Nutrition Loss in Fruits and Vegetables

A friend of ours in the grocery business brought by a cornucopia of fruits and vegetables the other day.  Apples, lemons, lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, pears, lemons, grapefruits, bananas, potatoes, strawberries, oranges, and pineapple.

He had come by for a detox session using our Aqua-Chi detox foot bath.  He believes like we do that it’s healthier  to put the good stuff in and get the bad stuff out.

Good nutrition is the key to good mental and physical health. Eating a balanced diet is an important part of good health for everyone. The kind and amount of food you eat affects the way you feel and how your body works.

What are Nutrients?

Nutrients are ingredients in food that help you:

* Grow

* Repair body tissue

* Build new muscle tissue.

No single food will provide you with the right amount of nutrients. By combining foods from all the different food groups, you can meet your body’s daily needs.

The most nutrient-rich foods are fresh fruit and vegetables.  Most of us don’t eat anywhere near enough of these!

Sadly, even our ‘fresh’ produce loses many nutrients due to soil depletion, genetic modification, time taken in transport and storage, and preparation and cooking losses.  Furthermore, farming and processing methods fill our food with ‘foreign’ chemicals which are toxic to our bodies.

Even if you could eat the recommended 10-13 servings a day, nutrients are depleted due to corporate farming techniques, genetic modification, soil depletion, and green harvesting and more nutrients are lost in processing and food preparation.

It’s little wonder we’re suffering from an epidemic of lifestyle malnutrition.  Fast food, junk food, and processed food have placed edible “food-like” substances at the top of most peoples’ menus.

We have a real problem with our food today.  Even those people who are trying to eat right by including raw fruits and vegetables in their diet can find their goal sabotaged by the lack of nutrition in the food available at the market.   How bad is the problem with our food?  In the 1950’s a woman could get the recommended daily allowance (RDA) of vitamin A from two peaches.  Today it takes 58 peaches to satisfy the requirement. Continue reading Nutrition Loss in Fruits and Vegetables

Toxic Toilet Paper?

roll of toilet paperThe FDA refused in July of this year to ban bisphenol A (BPA), the toxic chemical that leaches out of plastic containers and cans and into our foods.

Now there is more disturbing news about BPA and it’s chemical “cousin” bisphenol S (BPS).  According to two recent studies both toxins are present in a variety of paper products including toilet paper.

BPA has estrogen-like effects and acts as an endocrine disruptor and interupts our hormone signals.  It has been linked to heart disease, diabetes, cancer, liver disease, thyroid dysfunction, obesity, and birth defects.

In addition to its use in food containers, BPA is in thermal paper such as cash register receipts.  The chemical can be absorbed through our skin or via hand-to-mouth contact.  As the evidence against BPA grows, some paper manufacturers have been replacing it with BPS – which also has estrogen-like effects.

Hundreds of paper products contain BPA and or BPS – thermal paper (cash register receipts), paper towels, napkins, newspapers, flyers, envelopes, currency, facial tissue and, yes, toilet paper.

What can we do to protect ourselves?  If you must touch thermal paper frequently, wear gloves.  Wash your hands right after handling newspapers, magazines, flyers, or paper money.  Use alternatives like cloth dish towels as an alternative to paper towels and napkins to dry your hands.  Instead of using recycled toilet paper (which may have BPA and BPS from other paper products mixed in during the recycling process) use virgin pulp toilet paper.

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The Shocking Truth About Food

Almost all the foods people are eating today have been genetically modified, not to make them more nutritious but to keep the bugs from eating them, to increase shelf-life, to make them bigger, to make them more attractive, and to make more money.  Unfortunately the flavor and taste of these modified products is not even close to what it should be, and the nutrition is long gone.

Did you know that Americans spend 90% of their food dollars on processed foods?

Instead of spraying corn with pesticides, Monsanto had a better idea.  They changed the DNA of the corn to have pesticides in the DNA so when corn grows the pesticide automatically emits from the corn.  They say it doesn’t have enough toxins left to harm us, but corn today is regulated as a pesticide.

How about gluten intolerance?  It’s epidemic today!  Do you know that we have genetically modified wheat more than 8 times in the last 40 years?  Our bodies are finally saying TIME OUT!. . . I don’t get it.  I don’t recognize it.  Is it food?  And your body is rejecting it because it doesn’t recognize it as real food.

And this is not happening just to wheat.  It’s happening to many other products that we eat on a daily basis.  Strawberries have been genetically modified over 17 times in the last 20 years.

How about those boxes of blueberry muffin mix you see at the grocery store with pictures of blueberries on them?  You won’t find a blueberry in it.

Dead moths from Mexico are used to color blueberry yogurt.  These same moths were originally used to dye fabric blue.  Continue reading The Shocking Truth About Food

A Bigger Brain or A Bigger Butt?

Choose brain food for vibrant healthWhere do you want the food you eat to go, to your brain or to your butt and belly?

Some foods we eat seem to be directly tied to an increase in the size of our belly, hips, and derriere.  We know what those are; fatty foods like fast foods, sweets, and junk food.

But did you know that other foods have been proven to increase cognitive abilities and the actual size of your brain?  And with brains, the bigger the better!  A study published this past January in Neurology showed that people who eat certain foods are more likely to have larger and smarter brains.  Researchers used brain scans and 12 cognitive tests to see whether certain diets were associated with improved mental performance.

What helped the brain:  A high concentration in the blood of vitamins B, C, D, and E and omega-3 fatty acids was associated with better decision-making, attention, and visual and spatial skills.  Also, participants with the best memory skills were more likely to have higher levels of HDL “good” cholesterol as well as higher levels of two antioxidants – lutein and zeaxanthin.

Specifically, which foods should we eat to improve brain function?  Eat vegetables that are especially high in vitamins and antioxidants, such as zucchini, spinach, broccoli, and other deeply colored vegetables and fruits as well as foods that are rich in omega 3’s, such as flax seeds, walnuts and salmon.

For people concerned that they don’t get enough of such nutrients in their daily diet, dietary supplements like Ambrotose, Omega-3 with Vitamin D3, and PhytoMatrix are available.

What hurt the brain:  Participants in the study with the highest level of trans fat in their blood had more “brain fog” and smaller brains than other participants.  The study results indicate that we should avoid trans fats.  Trans fats are found mostly in fried, processed and commercial, packaged foods.

Why do some foods help the brain and others hurt it?  It is thought that some of the nutrients listed above may protect the outer walls of the brain’s cell membranes allowing the cell “machinery” to keep working properly.  One of the ways trans fats harm us is that they take the place of the “good” fats in our cell membranes and that may lead to deterioration of the cells’ structure.

When research like this shows that there is a direct link between what we eat and how well certain parts of our bodies function, it is clear that we can impact our health by the choices we make.  Do we want bigger brains or bigger butts and bellies?