Nutrition: Fructose, Immunity and Vitamin D3

Everyone is focused on COVID-19, vaccines and anything that may help or hurt. Well there have been numerous studies showing how critical it is to keep vitamin D3 levels high enough. I’ve shared in my book Natural Tips for Staying Healthy, that getting adequate magnesium and vitamin K2 is important in order to be able to absorb and use vitamin D3 effectively. Well there is something else I have learned about regarding Vitamin D3 levels that actually makes perfect sense to me.

A variety of studies have demonstrated how high sugar intake (and fructose in particular – such as high fructose corn syrup) contributes not only to oxidative stress but to the inactivation of a usable form of vitamin D as well.

This is particularly important since much of the standard American diet is a high sugar, high fructose diet. Packaged, processed (junk and fast) “foods” as well as fruit juices and sodas are loaded with high fructose corn syrup (HFCS). As this study shows, high dietary fructose intake inhibits vitamin D3 levels. You may be getting sensible sun exposure and supplementing with vitamin D3 yet your levels are not improving. Could this be why?

People with diabetes and heart disease are among those who have had the worst outcomes when exposed to this virus. As I say quite often, if we begin with nutrition, it can make a big difference.

The bottom line for me is this: reducing sugar and removing high-fructose corn syrup from your diet is critical.

Could this be why your Vitamin D3 levels are not improving despite all you are doing?

Want to see more articles like this?   Subscribe to this blog (just click on “Follow”) and get each new post delivered to your email or feed reader.  To follow me and get even more tips on how to live your life in 3-D, including improving your diet, choosing cutting edge nutritional products and effective weight loss strategies be sure to like me on Facebook here and here, sign up for my FREE weekly No-Nonsense Nutrition Report (and get a free gift!), follow me on Pinterest and Twitter!

Make gradual changes. Boost health, vitality and energy. Become your best YOU

2 Comments

Health: Why Just Drinking Water Isn’t Enough

Over half of your body is made of water (about 55% for adult women and 65% for men) and your body works to keep it that way by constantly monitoring how much water you’re losing and how much you need to restore. That’s why you get thirsty. In fact one study found that the human body can trigger that thirsty sensation after losing just 1% of its total amount of water.

While everyone’s needs are different and other factors come into play like whether you are exercising, in a hot environment, sweating profusely, my basic formula is at least one-half your body weight in ounces with ¼ tsp of natural, unprocessed salt for every 32 ounces you drink. I have gotten a lot of push-back about including the salt. But there is a good reason.

If you drink a lot of water throughout the day and yet still feel thirsty, parched and dehydrated there may be a simple fix: you need to be sure you are getting enough electrolytes. If you drink distilled or filtered water, you probably need to remineralize it.

I typically use distilled water to which I add ½ to one teaspoon of trace mineral drops in each gallon. I also follow the formula mentioned above and include salt in my water several times a day, particularly first thing in the morning upon arising.

Natural, unprocessed salt is loaded with minerals your body needs and if you just drink water all day long you can actually be flushing electrolytes out of your body. The salt helps pull water into your cells through sodium transporters and enables more water to be absorbed by the intestines than plain water alone. Fresh fruits and veggies and even teas add to your hydration but be sure you focus on water.

How much water do you drink daily? Do you still feel dehydrated?

Want to see more articles like this?   Subscribe to this blog (just click on “Follow”) and get each new post delivered to your email or feed reader.  To follow me and get even more tips on how to live your life in 3-D, including improving your diet, choosing cutting edge nutritional products and effective weight loss strategies be sure to like me on Facebook here and here, sign up for my FREE weekly No-Nonsense Nutrition Report (and get a free gift!), follow me on Pinterest and Twitter!

Make gradual changes. Boost health, vitality and energy. Become your best YOU

4 Comments

Nutrition: Is Red Meat Dangerous to Your Health

Many people believe this to be true and you can see that by the explosion of fake, plant-based meat products in the supermarket. If you are a vegetarian or vegan, that’s perfectly fine. We all are free to choose our style of eating. What I want to talk about very briefly here is the misconception that red meat is “bad.”

I honestly do not feel any food should be demonized and totally eliminated. There are “foods” that have no nutritional value that should be limited like fast foods, packaged, processed foods full of sugar, high fructose corn syrup, artificial sweeteners and seed oils. Actually I don’t truly consider them foods since they have no nutritional value. But even if you have those occasionally, you will not ruin all your good work.

That being said, we’ve heard for years that red meat causes heart disease. This study examined how the intake of fresh and processed meat affected 135,000 study participants from 21 countries. The researchers found no association between fresh red meat and the risk of early death, heart disease, cancer or stroke.

Another study analyzed 59 published reviews examining how dietary fat affects different health outcomes. The researchers found no association of total fat, monounsaturated fatty acids, polyunsaturated fatty acids and saturated fatty acids with risk of chronic disease.

Keep in mind that we don’t eat these foods by themselves. They are part of our entire diet. I always stress food quality. Here is another facet of that. If you eat red meat, even grass fed and finished red meat, within a highly processed, refined food diet, it is not going to have the same effect on your body as it would if you eat it with fresh, whole, high quality one-ingredient foods. So it matters what your entire diet is, not just one food or food group.

So the bottom line remains the same for me: choose the highest quality, fresh, one-ingredient foods that agree with your make up including both properly grown and raised animal and plant foods.

Do you avoid red meat or fat because you believe it is unhealthy?

Want to see more articles like this?   Subscribe to this blog (just click on “Follow”) and get each new post delivered to your email or feed reader.  To follow me and get even more tips on how to live your life in 3-D, including improving your diet, choosing cutting edge nutritional products and effective weight loss strategies be sure to like me on Facebook here and here, sign up for my FREE weekly No-Nonsense Nutrition Report (and get a free gift!), follow me on Pinterest and Twitter!

Make gradual changes. Boost health, vitality and energy. Become your best YOU

6 Comments

Weight Loss: Early Bird Advantage

Exercise, whenever you are able to do it, is a good thing. Some people prefer exercising first thing in the morning and others prefer later in the day. I always recommend opting for first thing whenever possible because that way nothing that comes up during the day can change the plan. That’s one of my suggestions in Today is Still the Day and it is my preference as well. However, if you like working out after work, go for it!

I did a post not long ago on how working out early in the day may be more cancer protective. You can read it here. According to this 10-month study, exercising earlier in the day (between 7 am and noon) was found to be more effective for weight loss. The study compared those early birds, to those who preferred to exercise later in the day (between 3 and 7 pm) and sporadic exercisers who switched around their sessions.

The study results showed weight loss was significantly greater in both the early exercisers and sporadic exercisers. The researchers concluded that timing of exercise sessions may be important for weight loss. Since obesity is epidemic in our country, perhaps this is an important piece of the puzzle many are overlooking.

Evidently timing really is everything – even when it comes to exercise.

When is your preferred time to exercise?

Want to see more articles like this?   Subscribe to this blog (just click on “Follow”) and get each new post delivered to your email or feed reader.  To follow me and get even more tips on how to live your life in 3-D, including improving your diet, choosing cutting edge nutritional products and effective weight loss strategies be sure to like me on Facebook here and here, sign up for my FREE weekly No-Nonsense Nutrition Report (and get a free gift!), follow me on Pinterest and Twitter!

Make gradual changes. Boost health, vitality and energy. Become your best YOU

8 Comments

Nutrition: The Case for Eating Leftovers

So many people tell me they do not like or eat “leftovers.” I honestly don’t get that. It is was good today, it will still be good in a day or two. But that’s not what I wanted to highlight here. There are certain foods that are actually healthier when eaten as “leftovers.”

I’m talking about grains like rice and pasta and starchy veggies like white and sweet potatoes as well as legumes.. Simply by cooking, cooling, refrigerating overnight and then gently reheating to eat the next day, more of their starch content is changed to resistant starch.

Why does this matter? Resistant starch has numerous benefits including healing leaky gut, helping to minimize bone loss, improving insulin sensitivity and helping with weight loss. You can read about all the benefits here.

This means by simply doing this, you can boost the nutritional value of foods that are already healthy (think sweet potatoes or beans) and make those that are not thought to have the same nutritional value (white potatoes, pasta) even healthier! It may take planning your meal ahead, but the benefits are sure worth it.

Are you familiar with resistant starch? How do you feel about eating leftovers?

Want to see more articles like this?   Subscribe to this blog (just click on “Follow”) and get each new post delivered to your email or feed reader.  To follow me and get even more tips on how to live your life in 3-D, including improving your diet, choosing cutting edge nutritional products and effective weight loss strategies be sure to like me on Facebook here and here, sign up for my FREE weekly No-Nonsense Nutrition Report (and get a free gift!), follow me on Pinterest and Twitter!

Make gradual changes. Boost health, vitality and energy. Become your best YOU

8 Comments

Nutrition: 2021 Clean 15 Dirty Dozen List

The Environmental Working Group’s new 2021 Dirty Dozen, Clean 15 list came out recently. I will share it below. The list indicates which crops tend to be treated with the highest volume and variety of pesticides. Definitely important information to have.

There are a few changes from last year. The biggest change from previous years is the inclusion of bell and hot peppers on the dirty dozen list. The report found that almost 70% of non-organic samples tested positive for at least one pesticide and a single sample of kale, collard and mustard greens contained up to 20 different pesticides! Even though citrus isn’t on the Dirty Dozen list it was found that almost 90% of citrus samples analyzed in 2020 tested positive for imazalil, a fungicide that can interfere with hormone levels. Spinach samples had 1.8 times as much pesticide residue by weight than any other crop tested.

If that doesn’t convince you to choose organic whenever possible, I’m not sure what will.

  1. Strawberries
  2. Spinach
  3. Kale, collard, and mustard greens
  4. Nectarines
  5. Apples
  6. Grapes
  7. Cherries
  8. Peaches
  9. Pears
  10. Bell and hot peppers
  11. Celery
  12. Tomatoes

Here is this year’s Clean 15 list:

  1. Avocados
  2. Sweet corn
  3. Pineapple
  4. Onions
  5. Papaya
  6. Sweet peas (frozen)
  7. Eggplant
  8. Asparagus
  9. Broccoli
  10. Cabbage
  11. Kiwi
  12. Cauliflower
  13. Mushrooms
  14. Honeydew melon
  15. Cantaloupes

While you do not have to purchase everything organic, I hope you will pay attention to the produce that is most contaminated and choose accordingly.

Do you purchase any of your produce organically?

Want to see more articles like this?   Subscribe to this blog (just click on “Follow”) and get each new post delivered to your email or feed reader.  To follow me and get even more tips on how to live your life in 3-D, including improving your diet, choosing cutting edge nutritional products and effective weight loss strategies be sure to like me on Facebook here and here, sign up for my FREE weekly No-Nonsense Nutrition Report (and get a free gift!), follow me on Pinterest and Twitter!

Make gradual changes. Boost health, vitality and energy. Become your best YOU

Posted in Nutrition, Overall Health and Wholeness | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Health and Fitness: No Gym Membership Required

How well your heart and lungs, function and, in turn, how they allow your muscles to perform during physical activity is referred to as your cardiorespiratory fitness. I’m sure you will agree that is very important. You don’t need a gym membership or to train hours a day in order to keep those systems operating optimally. And that’s great news! Who has hours a day to spend in the gym?

Turns out that as little as 11 minutes of body-weight exercises several times a week can really impact your fitness levels. A 6-week study had participants doing a body weight fitness plan created in the 1950’s for the Canadian Air Force called 5BX three times a week. It is an interval style workout where each of the exercises (burpees, high knees, split squat jumps, squat jumps and running in place) is done for 60 seconds at a challenging pace. They then were allowed to have a short, active recovery break between exercises. In doing the circuit in this way, it is a high intensity interval training workout.

At the end of the 6 weeks, those who followed the plan had higher cardiorespiratory fitness than those who did not. Pretty impressive considering it doesn’t require any equipment and can be adjusted to fit anyone’s fitness level.

So if you thought you couldn’t improve your fitness level unless you invested in a gym membership or in some pricey exercise equipment, this is good news for everyone!

Would you consider doing a HIIT circuit like this one to improve your fitness from home?

Want to see more articles like this?   Subscribe to this blog (just click on “Follow”) and get each new post delivered to your email or feed reader.  To follow me and get even more tips on how to live your life in 3-D, including improving your diet, choosing cutting edge nutritional products and effective weight loss strategies be sure to like me on Facebook here and here, sign up for my FREE weekly No-Nonsense Nutrition Report (and get a free gift!), follow me on Pinterest and Twitter!

Make gradual changes. Boost health, vitality and energy. Become your best YOU

Posted in Brain health, Fitness, Heart Health, Intentional Exertion/Exercise, Weight loss | Tagged , , , , | 13 Comments

Happy Mother’s Day from a Grandmother

Before I get into the slightly different way I want to approach this, I want to wish every mother, godmother, stepmother, foster mother, honorary mother a truly blessed and beautiful Mother’s Day. Whether you have young children, babies, toddlers, teens, grown children or are pregnant now doesn’t matter. You are a mom and I salute you. I have watched my daughters-in-law as they have been raising their children and am now privileged to see my daughter put her own unique spin on motherhood. Even though I have been through it 3 times, watching them teaches me completely new things and allows me to appreciate just what an incredible undertaking it truly is – especially during these unprecedented times we are living in.

For me, being a mother is a calling and something I consider sacred. It’s what I always wanted and God was gracious enough to give me the desire of my heart. That belief has only increased and intensified now that I am the blessed grandmother of 5. So this year I want to acknowledge in a special way all the grandmothers. We focus on moms, especially as they are in the midst of raising infants, toddlers and teens and rightfully so. But just for today, let’s look at why grandmothers are so important. I truly believe they are because I know how greatly my grandmother impacted my life. She is my role model. I can only hope to be half as positive an influence on my grandchildren as she was.

According to this study, grandmothering was the initial step toward making us who we are, by helping us to develop “a whole array of social capacities that are then the foundation for the evolution of other distinctly human traits, including pair bonding, bigger brains, learning new skills and our tendency for cooperation.” This is referred to as the “grandmother hypothesis” which suggests we ensure the survival of our genes through younger generations by providing sustenance and support to our families.

As grandmothers we can also provide an example for our children and grandchildren. I often think and hope my kids remember things I do for them and their kids and will do that for their children and grandchildren in the future. I try to model my relationship with God for my grandchildren, making Him real and approachable. Here is a link to a beautiful song that so perfectly expresses my heart.

One of my primary ways of showing love is by cooking. I can’t begin to tell you how it blesses my heart when my 4 year old grandson Carter asks if I baked him any cookies.

While all my grandchildren are quite young – from 4 years old down to 8 months old – as they get older I look forward to sharing some deep and meaningful conversations and sharing my faith and hopefully some wisdom born of experience.

If you are a grandmother I just wanted to celebrate you and say you may not think what you do matters all that much, but it really does. I can’t tell you how often I think or say something and it reminds me of my own wonderful grandmother.

Regardless of what stage of mothering you are in, I wish you a blessed Mother’s Day.

8 Comments

Weight Loss: Good as Gold

You may be aware that we have different types of fat in our bodies – white, brown and even beige. Brown fat is metabolically active and actually helps your body burn fat. I spoke in this past post about what it is and how exposure to cold can activate it.

According to this study, researchers found that that curcumin, the active compound in turmeric, is capable of inducing browning of white fat cells. Besides its anti-inflammatory properties, this research indicates that curcumin seems to be an anti-obesity agent due to its ability to support brown fat as well as by reducing inflammation which is implicated in obesity as well as diabetes and heart disease. This is a huge finding.

You certainly could take a turmeric supplement. You can also include the spice turmeric in your meals and also use turmeric tea. I use all of these methods. There are numerous ways to include this healthy spice in your meals and to take advantage of its weight loss benefits.

Would you include turmeric in your routine if it can stimulate and support brown fat?

Want to see more articles like this?   Subscribe to this blog (just click on “Follow”) and get each new post delivered to your email or feed reader.  To follow me and get even more tips on how to live your life in 3-D, including improving your diet, choosing cutting edge nutritional products and effective weight loss strategies be sure to like me on Facebook here and here, sign up for my FREE weekly No-Nonsense Nutrition Report (and get a free gift!), follow me on Pinterest and Twitter!

Make gradual changes. Boost health, vitality and energy. Become your best YOU

Posted in Brain health, Cancer, Diabetes, Heart Health, Nutrition, Weight loss | Tagged , , , , | 6 Comments

Benefits of Intermittent Activity

Most of us have heard of the benefits of intermittent fasting. We’ve also heard of the dangers of sitting too much. Well this research shows the benefits of short, periodic bouts of movement – what I am calling intermittent activity. I have talked about this in detail in Today is Still the Day. I suggest setting a timer to go off every 30 to 45 minutes and then engaging in some type of activity or movement.

While this study used 5 minute walks, you could substitute any type of movement/activity you prefer. Depending on whether you are at home or in an office setting, I recommend things like stretches, squats, jumping jacks, lunges, high knees as well as short walks.

The reason these periodic, intermittent activity breaks are so important is this: when people sit uninterrupted for 3 hours, it negatively impacts the ability of the of the lining within their leg arteries to expand and dilate as needed in response to blood flow. This symptom may be a precursor to heart disease. When people break up their 3 hours of sitting with 5-minute walking breaks once an hour, the function of the arteries in their legs is not negatively impacted.

Making these intermittent activity breaks a part of your daily routine is a simple and painless way to protect your circulation and heart health.

Do you regularly get up during the day and move intentionally throughout your day?

Want to see more articles like this?   Subscribe to this blog (just click on “Follow”) and get each new post delivered to your email or feed reader.  To follow me and get even more tips on how to live your life in 3-D, including improving your diet, choosing cutting edge nutritional products and effective weight loss strategies be sure to like me on Facebook here and here, sign up for my FREE weekly No-Nonsense Nutrition Report (and get a free gift!), follow me on Pinterest and Twitter!

Make gradual changes. Boost health, vitality and energy. Become your best YOU

Posted in Brain health, Fitness, Heart Health, Intentional Exertion/Exercise, Overall Health and Wholeness, Weight loss | Tagged , , , , , , | 8 Comments