3 Surprising Ways to Fight Seasonal Allergies

Some 40 million Americans suffer from seasonal allergies, but you don’t have to be one of them. When it comes to warding off allergies, paying attention to the pollen and allergens count in your area isn’t nearly as important as tending to your own immune system.

Here’s something that may surprise you: The underlying cause in people’s allergy is not the excess pollen or allergens in the atmosphere, even when it is a high count. If that were the underlying factor, EVERYONE would get sick and symptomatic, right? The underlying cause is your immune system not able to successfully adapt and fend off these outside invaders.

Here are three surprising but highly effective ways to give your immune system a big boost – and thus help your body create natural immunity to the potentially miserable symptoms of pollen and allergens:

Add and Subtract: Ensure your daily diet includes an inflammation reducing (and thus immune system enhancing) Omega-3 source food such as wild, cold water fish (preferable practitioner grade), along with adequate amounts of Vitamin’s C and D. Some people are afraid nowadays to let their skin see the sun, but the sun is the primary reason there is life on this planet, because it allows H20 to be in the liquid state. In moderation, the sun is healthy for us, and our immune systems.

Also, eliminating highly-processed and refined foods—hint: almost anything that comes in a plastic wrapper or box – will also help reduce inflammation in the body and boost your natural immunity.

The Anti-Allergens ‘Dynamic Duo’: Two little-known but highly potent allergy fighters include raw garlic (use one bulb, chopped up and swallowed just like a pill) and Apple cider vinegar, just add a shot to a glass of water. These simple but powerful additions to your daily diet will work wonders for many health concerns, but are especially potent in bolstering your system against allergens.

The Usual Suspects: When possible, simply avoid altogether the most common allergens – pet dander, for example – along with ragweed, pollen, dust mites, and air pollution. But when that’s impossible, take these steps: Install a quality air filter in your home, and especially in the room where you sleep. Keep any areas where water collects or lays dormant – dirty dishes collecting overnight in a wet sink, bathroom floors, etc., — clean and dry, as they’re a breeding ground for mold growth. Being proactive in your environment can make a huge difference in avoiding your exposure to allergens.

Are you affected by seasonal allergies, and what have you used to relieve your symptoms? I would love to hear your thoughts, questions or comments below!

Dr Josh

Is Giving This to Your Child as Unhealthy as Soda?

Most of us know about the health dangers associated with consuming soda. From empty calories to actually compromising the body’s ability to stay healthy and fight off disease, soda is a well known health culprit. But there’s another drink on the market that many of us unknowingly not only consume, but give to our children daily…

So what is this dangerous drink that the average American child consumes more than forty liters of annually? Fruit juice.  Yes, the fruit juice you’re giving your child may be doing more harm to their developing bodies than good…really.

Are You Fueling A Fructose Addiction in Your Child or Self?

We hear about high fructose corn syrup and how it’s an unhealthy (and unnecessary) food ingredient in many of our processed and refined foods. So what’s the big deal with not just high fructose corn syrup but fructose in general in the foods we consume on a daily basis?

Fructose is a naturally occurring, simple sugar found in certain ripe fruits, a few root vegetables, and honey. So if it’s all natural, then what’s the problem?

When fructose is found naturally in whole foods such as fruits and root vegetables it comes with fibers, enzymes, antioxidants, minerals, vitamins, and other important nutrients that help the body to properly assimilate the fructose. However, even too much of these whole food sources of fructose can present a problem.

Today’s typical Western diet involves an extremely high consumption of sugar, particularly fructose, mostly from highly processed food sources not whole food sources.

Diets High in Sugar can Lead to:

Obesity
Hypertension
Diabetes
Certain chronic diseases
Kidney problems
Weakened immune system
Hyperactivity (particularly in children)
Certain mineral deficiencies
Chronic inflammatory conditions
Obesity, hypertension, diabetes, mineral deficiencies, and a weakened immune system open the door to a host of chronic diseases and health issues.


It’s vital that you take a serious look at your own sugar consumption and that of your family. Remember in the beginning of this article when I mentioned fruit juice being as harmful as soda? It really is and if you’re drinking it and giving it to your family on a regular basis you should re-evaluate this product as a healthy drink choice as it simply is not.

Too much sugar from any source, whole foods or processed foods, is simply a bad idea. We must learn to live and eat with balance. Of course eating a whole food, such as an apple, is far superior to consuming apple juice.  Think about it – eating an apple (or an orange, or peach) is natural.  Drinking the juice is the equivalent of crushing 8 apples or oranges and think of how much extra sugar that is?  Would anyone sit down to take a snack break and eat 8 apple or oranges?  Absolutely not.  But that is what we are doing when we have fruit juice.  The amount of sugar going into our body is staggering.

Fruit Juice, Fructose, and Children

Many parents with only the best intentions have been lured in by clever marketing to think that fruit juice is a healthy, smart, and nutritious drink choice for their child. 

It’s vital that you remove fruit juice from your child’s diet. When you give your child a juice box or glass of juice, it is highly processed, refined, and devoid of the nutrients that the original, ‘real food’ fruit contained that enables the body to properly use it. It’s like dumping heaps of teaspoons of sugar into a glass of water, adding a few food colorings, and serving it to your child.   Even if it is 100% juice, it is containing far more fructose in a single serving than nature intended to consume at once.

The body gets mostly sugars with fruit juice and very little or none of the other nutrients that help it to slowly assimilate the sugars.  Look at it like handing your child (or yourself) a glass of water, sugar, and food dyes.

I urge you to eliminate fruit juices, truly a fake food, from your life and your child’s. Take a look at labels and start noticing fructose on them. Think about the fruits you eat on a daily basis, reference the above chart and see just how many grams of fructose your family is consuming everyday.

Make the change now. Do it for your child’s health today and down the road. Encourage consumption of whole foods such as fruits that are balanced with other whole foods low in fructose.

Remember the rule; Juice Vegetables, Eat Fruits (in moderation)

9 Common UNhealthy Ways to Lose Weight

There are a number of ways to lose weight that can be hazardous to your physical and mental well-being. Here are several of the common Unhealthy ways to lose weight.

No Calorie Diet: Our bodies need fat, plus healthy fats actually help you burn fat. Unfortunately, the zero-calorie trend is one of the most popular, leading people to consume harmful artificial sweeteners in the name of losing weight. Also, diet drinks can actually cause weight gain because your body reacts to the sweetness the same way it would if you had sugar = fat storage!

Drugs and pills: We’re all familiar with this one and we know there’s not a magic pill that will make you skinny. Sadly, some drugs, whether illicit or over-the-counter, are often used as a quick fix for weight-loss. But in the long run they can severely damage your heart and your brain. There are certain supplements that can aid in fat-burning, but they must go along with healthy eating and exercise, and the healthy supplements should be whole-food based.

Fad Diets: The Annals of Internal Medicine reviewed 10 of the nation’s most popular weight-loss programs and found that except for Weight Watchers, none of them show proof that they actually work at helping people lose weight and keep it off. About 45 million Americans diet each year, spending $1 billion to 2 billion each year on weight-loss programs. Yet America remains the most obese country on earth. Not eating a balanced diet will not help you lose weight and can actually inhibit any weight-loss. Even Weight Watchers has recently shifted their entire model because the “calorie counting” methodology is inherently flawed.  It is not the AMOUNT of calories you consume, but the QUALITY of the calories that makes the difference.

Skipping Meals: This approach may appear to make sense, but really it’s a harmful and unhealthy way to lose weight. Your metabolism increases after eating, and if you chronically skip meals, your metabolism can slow down and actually lead to weight gain. Starving or skipping meals is extremely ineffective in weight-loss because it puts your body into “survival mode” meaning it is going to store fat because it doesn’t know when it is going to eat next.

Purging: Purposely throwing up is incredibly dangerous to your health. Purging often comes with serious psychological effects on the individual. The act of throwing up is either a symptom of, or leads to bulimia and it can also increase your cravings for unhealthy foods. Purging creates an illusion that the hunger craving has been satisfied by consuming food, but the calories/nutrition are lost by throwing it up.

Laxatives: Excessive use of laxatives in the form of pills, powders, suppositories and teas in order to lose weight is not a new concept. Continuous use will weaken your digestive system and can cause abdomen related complications.

Smoking: Another popular way to suppress hunger. Smoking sends vague signals to the brain which increase the metabolic rate, and consequently kill hunger. Chronic smokers can skip meals and not feel any effect. However, this method causes long term damage as the body becomes weak and more susceptible to cancers and other infections.

Over-Exercising: If your body is already undernourished, over-exercising can be one of the worst things you can do to lose weight. Sticking to a rigorous exercise regime can rarely be considered a bad thing, but extensive amounts of cardio won’t help you drop the remaining weight. Burst training for 20 minutes, 3-5 times per week is an appropriate amount, especially with strength training.  Oftentimes the traditional “80s” workout regime of 45+ minutes intense cardio 3+ times a week causes more cortisol to be released (a stress hormone) which again puts the body in “fat storage” mode.

1 day Indulges: Many of the fad diets now-a days either promote a 1 day a week “eat whatever you want” or eat that way before beginning the diet.  At first glance it makes no sense, right?  At second glance, you see the proponent’s goal is to stimulate the body to begin creating the necessary hormones and steps to detoxify and burn the junk you just binged on.  This hypothesis is superficial and falls apart.  It is like saying drive your car to empty before each oil change.  Conceptually it holds ground, realistically, you are just poisoning your body when you purposely eat garbage for an entire day.  AND, it doesn’t do anything for your commitment and will power in shifting your desires for high quality food sources. 

Working out and sticking to a healthy diet should complement one another in order to lose weight in a healthy way. Losing weight requires a lifestyle change, especially if you want it to stay off. It’s hard work, eating healthy and exercising.  More often than not, 80+ % of your desired, healthy weight loss will come form consistent dietary change rather than burning calories and sweating.  The initial 5+ lbs will shed from exercise, after that, it is your diet for the most part.  

**Check out my homepage for the free eBook, Access: Nutrition.

Speaking From the Heart

In addition to seeing patients at The Life House, I love spending some of my free time going around New York City, giving a variety of presentations on the latest healthy living strategies to health-conscious businesses, associations and retail outlets.

That’s why I’m so honored to be asked to join the prestigious Clarins Skin Spa Keynote Speaking Panel, which features some of New York’s leading health and wellness experts. I’ll be doing regular presentations at Clarins Skin Spas throughout the city (I’ll keep you posted on upcoming dates and locations), which allows me to showcase additional health-related areas I’m really passionate about, such as effective weight loss and anti-aging strategies. Torque Release Technique is the foundation of my private practice, but that’s just the start to really optimize your overall wellness.

On May 23, I’ll be speaking at the Clarins Skin Spa on Columbus Ave (on the upper west side) about “Why You Can’t Lose that Extra Weight” and here’s a sneak preview: There’s a hormonal element that plays a major role in why you can’t tip the scales in your favor m ore often than not. And it’s not the amount of hormone that is the issue, rather, is the hormone able to do its just correctly? When we really see the underlying mechanisms of hormonal deregulation, and understand how our diet can alter this, we see new results in our body and weight.

When I founded The Life House, I envisioned not only offering the latest in chiropractic care, but in offering my patients the very latest in healthy living strategies, and helping them incorporate ALL aspects of wellness into their lifestyles. I believe the comprehensive approach — mind, body and spirit – creates the most lasting results for true well-being, and these speaking engagements allow me to share this information with those eager to lead happier, healthier lives.

I’m also so excited to have started making this information available online: many of you have my “ACCESS: Pathways to Express Your Potential” nutritional transformation eBook (or you can download it from the homepage), as well as the “Freedom From Fibromyalgia” eBook, which teaches people with this condition how to see amazing relief from Fibromyalgia, naturally. Next up is an anti-aging eBook, which outlines easy, daily steps one can take to stem the degeneration process and the little known but phenomenal supplement line that many people are now using, with wonderful results.

The future of The Life House will incorporate breakthrough wellness vacation retreats catering to those not just in NY to have an experiential vacation retreat based on learning the latest healthy living strategies and how to effectively incorporate them back into your lifestyle. These will take place in beautiful spots around the globe and truly re-wire participants mentalities for healthy living, regardless of lifestyle or circumstances, for life long strategies for conscious and healthy living.

It’s going to be a great summer, so be sure to join me at one of my upcoming speaking engagements, call or email the practice if you have any questions, or if you haven’t yet, keep up with the latest news and health and wellness tips via my Facebook and Twitter.

To your great week,

Josh

Mercury Levels in Fish: Concerned?

 

 

 

Be aware of the amount of fish you consume, especially ones on the bottom list.  Mercury is one of the most hazardous elements to our health, and is becoming increasingly found in more and more fish populations.

LEAST MERCURY

Enjoy these fish:
Anchovies
Butterfish
Catfish
Clam
Crab (Domestic)
Crawfish/Crayfish
Croaker (Atlantic)
Flounder*
Haddock (Atlantic)*
Hake
Herring
Mackerel (N. Atlantic, Chub)
Mullet
Oyster
Perch (Ocean)
Plaice
Pollock
Salmon (Canned)**
Salmon (Fresh)**
Sardine
Scallop*
Shad (American)
Shrimp*
Sole (Pacific)
Squid (Calamari)
Tilapia
Trout (Freshwater)
Whitefish
Whiting

MODERATE MERCURY

Eat six servings or less per month:
Bass (Striped, Black)
Carp
Cod (Alaskan)*
Croaker (White Pacific)
Halibut (Atlantic)*
Halibut (Pacific)
Jacksmelt
(Silverside)
Lobster
Mahi Mahi
Monkfish*
Perch (Freshwater)
Sablefish
Skate*
Snapper*
Tuna (Canned
chunk light)
Tuna (Skipjack)*
Weakfish (Sea Trout)

HIGH MERCURY

Eat three servings or less per month:
Bluefish
Grouper*
Mackerel (Spanish, Gulf)
Sea Bass (Chilean)*
Tuna (Canned Albacore)
Tuna (Yellowfin)*

HIGHEST MERCURY

Avoid eating:
Mackerel (King)
Marlin*
Orange Roughy*
Shark*
Swordfish*
Tilefish*
Tuna (Bigeye, Ahi)*
* Fish in Trouble! These fish are perilously low in numbers or are caught using environmentally destructive methods. To learn more, see the Monterey Bay Aquarium and the Blue Ocean Institute, both of which provide guides to fish to enjoy or avoid on the basis of environmental factors.

** Farmed Salmon may contain PCB’s, chemicals with serious long-term health effects.

How often are you eating the above?

Beyond the Back: My Personal Path to an All-Natural Healing Practice

So many people have asked me, “How does a chiropractor come to know so much about natural healing, nutrition, and supplements?” After all, we’re specifically trained to focus solely on treating chronic back and neck pain, right?

For me, the traditional, one-dimensional approach to chiropractic care was never really an option. As anyone who visits my blog, Facebook or Twitter pages knows, I am a passionate advocate for ALL kinds of health and wellness information — body, mind and spirit. I believe optimum health begins with a healthy spine, yet that’s also the starting point, and my treatment focus includes addressing your nutrition, and mental and spiritual self, as well. There is no separating them; if one is out of whack, the others are inevitably compromised.

My path to understanding the body and its amazing natural healing powers has certainly been a journey, and that journey continues today. Early on, I was groomed to be holistically inclined thanks to my mother, who was skeptical of immediately medicating health conditions. I also greatly admired my older brother, who refused to consume any artificial supplements (steroids/creatine/even protein powder) in his pursuit of muscle growth and body building. So when I began to pursue a chiropractic career during my undergraduate years at NYU, this understanding and philosophy of healthy living resonated with me from the very start.

What’s most interesting to me is that my growing understanding of chiropractic actually led to my spiritual growth. The underlying premise of chiropractic is to deliver a specific adjustment to the spine in order to restore greater neurological connection throughout the body. When one understands that the innate intelligence that controls and coordinates all function, healing, and growth of the body travels primarily through the nervous system, it is relatively easy to see how comprehensive and valuable the chiropractic adjustment is to an individual, whether they’re currently in good health or poor health.

When I came to understand that the body’s own innate intelligence is merely an individuation of the intelligence that coordinates and runs nature, (i.e., the world, think of all the natural laws, deemed “universal intelligence”), the chiropractic adjustment immediately took on a greater significance in the metaphysical sense of “re-connecting man physical to man spiritual” as the founder of chiropractic, D.D. Palmer, exclaimed in 1895.

This spiritual component came into play for me through a greater understanding of Universal Intelligence, due in large part to the writings of authors such as Neale Donald Walsch (whose work I was gratefully introduced to before I even started chiropractic school). This universal organizing intelligence is responsible for how the world operates and evolves in every sense, essentially the law of cause and effect (i.e. nothing happens at random). Many people use the term God to interpret this. Many people interpret God as something else. To each his own!

But Neale’s books shed light on questions that I had never asked, never had been exposed to, and cleared up many confusions or grey areas in the more meaningful areas of life like our relationship with ourselves, others, the world as a whole, and what is our purpose in life.

Through my own personal growth while studying in graduate school, I came to understand that the key dis-connection in a person’s body almost always begins first consciously, in response to a person’s mindset, beliefs and attitude. This then triggers the spine to mis-align subtly, or “lock up” (think of an angry or depressed person’s posture compared to an optimistic, enthusiastic person’s posture). So even though spinal misalignment can also be the cause for affecting the emotions and consciousness of the individual, it is a constant feedback loop that reinforces the other, and being able to impact a person’ s conscious to better “re-connect” him/her is an invaluable gift, along with the chiropractic adjustment.

The works of Eckhard Tolle, Deepak Chopra, Wayne Dyer, John DiMartini, Werner Erhard (to name just a few), and many of the traditional philosophical foundations such as Buddhism have played an intricate role in my developing strategies to also contribute to others on a conscious level purely through communication.

I look at healing as a comprehensive journey and experience, and that ‘natural’ is always best. That’s why I chose to specialize in what to me was the most amazing, powerful (and natural) chiropractic healing modality, Torque Release Technique. The amazing results I see my patients achieve is highly gratifying, but never a surprise. I know there are no limits to the body’s extraordinary ability to increase performance level, heal and achieve extraordinary health, and my life experience and training only adds to that belief.

Now it’s your turn. Who are some of your favorite authors, or health mentors or role models? What are your beliefs about healing and creating optimum health? Send me your thoughts and inspirations (use the box, above right), and I’ll look forward to hearing from you.

4 Simple Steps to Greater Wellness in 2012

No matter what your New Year’s fitness plan may be, substantial weight loss, muscle-building and increased energy don’t happen overnight. But here’s a list of fast, simple, yet highly effective steps you can take TODAY to enhance your wellness.

Remember, wellness is a process and a lifestyle, but by implementing these steps into your daily life right away, you’ll feel some immediate benefits.

First Step Always…Hydrate! To make sure your body is absorbing the liquids you drink, leave a full glass (12-16 ounces) of water by your bed at night (add a dash of sea salt to aid the body’s absorption process), and drink the whole glass upon waking, first thing in the morning (it will be at room temperature, for best absorption). Before you even move around, drink up!
Pass the (Sea) Salt: Natural salts, that is. Use Himalayan or Celtic sea salt for any and all salting needs, because they’re some of the body’s best alkalizing agents, giving your body a greater internal environment to create health. Iodized or white table salt get the ejector button, pronto.

Breathe from Your Belly: Oxygen exchange through breathing is the single greatest and simplest tool for promoting a proper pH environment in your body (important for healthy metabolism and immune function). Here’s quick test to find out if you’re breathing properly: Take several breaths in with one hand on your chest and one hand on your belly. Which hand is moving up and down? See what it takes to make your belly hand move. You can train yourself to automatically breathe this way by practicing this for several minutes a day. Learn to breath from your belly; fully, deeply, and calmly, and you’ll give your emotional well-being a boost.

Chew the (Healthy) Fat: Consuming healthy fat stimulates your body to start burning fat, rather than storing it. You’ll feel more energy, boost your immune system, prevent depression, control inflammation and promote mental focus and clarity. Olive and coconut oil are great sources of healthy fats, along with avacados, walnuts, Brazil nuts and grass-fed beef.

And watch for many more tips and healthy ideas in 2012, including my new video newsletters, and via Twitter and Facebook. Happy New Year, everyone!

Do You Know the Importance of Probiotics?

Did you know that our ancient ancestors regularly consumed fermented foods at nearly every meal?  The majority of these fermented foods came in the form of both of fermented vegetables and fermented dairy products.  These foods helped strengthen their digestive tract and maximize their nutrient absorption.  Additionally, these foods bolstered their immune system and allowed them to fight invading bacteria and viruses more effectively than our current society. 

In John Robbins book, Healthy at 100, he studied all the longest lived modern (20th Century) cultures such as the Okinawans in Japan, theVilcabambans in Equador, the Hunzans in India and the Abkhazians in Eastern Europe.  All of these cultures consumed fermented foods at every meal and had their own unique fermented raw dairy.

Naturally fermented foods provide a mega-dose of healthy probiotics, enzymes, anti-oxidants and amino acids.  They also enhance the bioavailability of the nutrient components of anything they are combined with.  Fermented vegetable foods include kimchi, pickles, sauerkraut, miso, & horseradish among others.  Raw, fermented dairy products from grass-fed cow, goat, or sheep are the most desirable form of living food.  They provide easily absorbed forms of cysteine and glutamic acid which are precursors for the formation of glutathione – the bodies best anti-oxidant.  They are also a rich source of  L-glutamine which the intestinal tissue utilize to form a strong, protective layer and prevent gut infection and leaky gut syndrome.  

A probiotic enriched, wholefood diet is one of the best defenses against inflammatory processes that breakdown tissue and cause degenerative conditions and diseases.  Many experts agree that 90+% of our society have a dysfunctional balance of gut bacteria. They are slowly inflaming their bodies and building disease.  This could be remedied with the addition of high quality fermented foods in their diet.

Do you consume probiotic enriched foods throughout the day?  If not, your diet is inadequate and will cause long-term problems. 

How to Lose 10lbs in 30 Days, Naturally!

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in 2009 thirty-three of our great states had obesity prevalence equal to or greater than 25%Nine of those states had obesity prevalence rates of greater (or equal to) 30%.

These nine states with the heaviest residents in the United States are as follows:

 

  1. Alabama
  2. Arkansas
  3. Kentucky
  4. Louisiana
  5. Mississippi
  6. Missouri
  7. Oklahoma
  8. Tennessee
  9. West Virginia

 

It doesn’t matter where you live, if you’re overweight your health will be compromised. And what’s more is that the rate of obesity for children is hitting unprecedented and dangerous levels as well. Is your child or are your children overweight?

If you and your children are overweight it’s vital to make the changes today to lose those unwanted pounds. You’ll not just look better, you’ll feel better – body, mind, and soul – too.

The Plan

I’ve developed a holistic plan to help you lose weight. In fact, if you follow this plan strategically you’ll be able to lose close to (or in some cases even more) than 10-20 lbs in just 30 short days. Keep on the plan and you’ll melt away the rest of that dangerous weight and live a life of vitality and abundance.

I want to emphasize to you here about weight, health, and lifestyle. You can’t expect to follow my plan, lose 10 pounds, return to old lifestyle and eating habits and stay at a healthy weight (or even keep off those 10 pounds.) It simply doesn’t work that way. If you make and take the time to watch what you eat, exercise, take the proper supplements, and nurture a healthy mindset, you’ll find yourself in a better place than ever before.

The Foods

As you know I’m a strong advocate of eating real foods as opposed to fake foods. Real foods are the ones that are direct from the Earth made for us to eat from the beginning. I highly recommend you get rid of all the fake foods in your home when you begin this plan.

Fake foods are most of the foods that come in packages, boxes, or bags. The ones you find down the aisle after aisle in the grocery store. Avoid these not only while you’re on this eating plan but for your overall life too.

Focus on eating the following foods. (Be certain the meats are free range and all other foods are organic, whole foods.)

  • Meats
  • Vegetables
  • Flaxseeds
  • Beans
  • Berries

Here is a sample eating plan you can follow:

  • Breakfast – Berry Smoothie
    • 1/2 cup berries
    • 1/4 coconut milk
    • 1 Tbsp. flaxmeal
    • 1 scoop raw protein powder.
  • Lunch
    • 6 oz Chicken
    • 1/2 cup beans (kidney beans are great)
    • 2 servings of vegetables
  • Dinner
    • Salmon
    • 3 servings of veggies

The Exercises

When it comes to exercising I encourage you to do some at least 4 days per week. Rather than spend long minutes or even hours, as some people mistakenly do, on the treadmills or other aerobic exercise machines, I do burst training.

In addition, I suggest you do weight training along with burst exercises. That is using free weights and your own body weight engage in strength building exercises on each day that you do the burst training. This should be done a minimum of 4 days per week.

Follow this workout plan 4 days a week for 30 days

45 Minutes total

  • 25 minutes of weights 
  • 20 minutes of burst exercises 

The Supplements

Again, it’s most important to get your nutrition straight from the original source but I do encourage you to supplement as well for certain items. On this weight loss plan I suggest you take the following supplements:

Each of these supplements will provide your body with the exact nutrition it needs to burn fat and you’ll lose weight.

Again, it’s essential that you be sure to follow this plan strictly and avoid all fake foods not just while you’re on this diet but when you’ve lost the unwanted weight also.

Being overweight and obese isn’t just something you should worry about and feel badly about, it’s a serious problem that can predispose you to health problems not just today but down the road. Following this plan will enable you to lose about 10 pounds in just one short month. Again, keeping on this plan will bring you to your ideal weight and you’ll welcome in optimal health for life. You’ll look and feel better than ever!

References:

http://www.cdc.gov/obesity/data/trends.html

http://www.cdc.gov/obesity/childhood/index.html

Summary

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC,) 80% of obese children go on to become obese adults. Obesity brings with it not just embarrassment but also a host of potential health problems. Follow my plan today and lose 20 lbs in just 30 days. Get started now.

Can Chocolate Be Good For You?

If you’re like me, you like to eat chocolate. Chocolate lovers rejoiced when the benefits of anti-oxidants found in chocolate and other foods began to be marketed. But in reality, the potential benefits of anti-oxidants in processed chocolate are slim to none.

But unprocessed, dark chocolate is actually great for you. It’s very high in anti-oxidants and flavanols.

Let’s take a look at how anti-oxidants and flavanols work in our bodies.

Anti-oxidants

Free radicals are unbalanced compounds created by cellular processes in the body that can run wild, creating damage in the body and interrupting normal functioning.

Anti-oxidants are compounds that are believed to neutralize free radicals and protect the body from such damage. Anti-oxidants include vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals—helpful plant compounds.

Flavonols are one of these antioxidant phytochemicals that may protect us from damage caused by aging and environmental toxins. Flavonols are a type of flavonoid found in chocolate and cocoa.

dark chocolateFlavonols are said to promote heart health and reduce the risk of cancer. Flavonols may also help lower blood pressure and improve blood flow to the brain and heart. They may reduce cholesterol levels and arterial plaque. Some studies suggest that flavonols may reduce stickiness in blood platelets, reducing the risk of stroke, say Cleveland Clinic and University of Alabama doctors.

Chocolate manufacturers have gone wild marketing these health claims for their products, but these assertions warrant another look. Sometimes things that seem too good to be true really are.

Studies on Chocolate

These studies have been conducted with chocolate that contains high levels of flavonols. Unfortunately, the chocolate that most of us eat has been processed in ways that destroys flavonols.

Cocoa is naturally bitter and very strong-tasting (as anyone who’s tried a taste of baker’s chocolate knows!) Chocolate-makers mellow this flavor by processes such as alkalizing, fermenting, roasting and adding milk and/or sugar, all of which can destroy flavonols, alter our ability to use them or negate their health effects with unhealthy additives.

Most studies of the beneficial effects of chocolate are simply observational: they’re not clinical trials.They’ve looked at people who eat chocolate and measure health effects without accounting for other dietary aspects or lifestyle habits. So a person that eats a bit of chocolate every week and is healthy might also be the person that works out three times a day or avoids other processed foods.

Types of Chocolate

Flavonol is a pigment that gives chocolate its color, that’s why dark chocolate is preferable to other options. White chocolate contains no flavonols at all. Ordinary plain chocolate, says a study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, has only 43% flavonol-containing cocoa. Milk chocolate, says the study researchers, typically contains only 30% cocoa and the average candy bar only 15%.

Milk chocolate is America’s favorite, says University of Alabama doctors. A recent study posted in Nutrition and Metabolism suggests that milk interferes with the absorption of flavonols. This is especially true if the milk is pasteurized.

That’s why I only recommend you eat small amounts of minimally processed dark chocolate with at least 70% cocoa content. This type of chocolate will contain the most powerful anti-oxidants and the least amount of sugar.

Sources: Cleveland Clinic (2010)University of Alabama at Birmingham (2008),  BMJ Group Partnership (2010)

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