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Spot the clot

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Twenty-four-year-old Spanish skateboarding star Danny Leon got made up to look like a not-so-steady-on-his-feet 80-year-old man. His goal: To see if teens at a local skate park would teach him the sport. They obliged, but when Danny started speeding down the half pipe and doing aerial spins, well, the kids were blown away.

Being a force of nature disguised as a harmless old guy -- that's a pretty good metaphor for the way a blood clot can disguise itself as a simple bruise. Don't you fall for it.

Bruises can be painful and turn shades of black and blue, but generally they're not harmful. One caveat: Easy or spontaneous bruising can indicate underlying disease and a need to see your doc.

A blood clot, on the other hand, is a concentrated aggregation of blood. It forms from an external injury to blood vessels or internal injury to the lining of a blood vessel from plaque, or because of dysfunction in your blood's flow-and-clot chemistry. Clots can obstruct blood flow or dislodge and travel through your bloodstream, triggering heart attack, stroke, deep vein thrombosis (DVT) or pulmonary embolism (PE). So if you spot a clot, see your doc.

Some tips:

Near your skin's surface, clots can appear bruise-like, but are generally redder and the underlying vein may be hard to the touch.

A clot that's moved and is causing trouble may trigger swelling and pain in an extremity (DVT); slurred speech and vision problems (stroke); chest pain or upper body discomfort, shortness of breath and a rapid heart rate (PE or heart attack).

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How to Prevent the Widowmaker – the Worst Cardiac Attack

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The Widowmaker is a heart attack that is frequently fatal since it affects the left anterior descending artery (LAD). The LAD provides blood and oxygen to the entire frontal region of the heart, irrigating a more extensive area than other coronary arteries. The obstruction of the left anterior descending artery interrupts 40 percent of the blood that nourishes the heart, which leads to an increased risk of complications. The most common complications are irregular heartbeat, heart failure, and less frequently, sudden death.

A feature that makes the Widowmaker more fearsome is that it attacks silently. Most men who suffered sudden death due to coronary heart disease had no previous symptoms. Men 30 to 50 years old have a greater risk of death from coronary heart disease than women; this is because estrogen exerts protection against cardiovascular diseases.

Thanks to advances in medicine, an obstructed artery can be rapidly permeabilized with timely treatment. These procedures take place in a catheterization laboratory where the interventional cardiologist performs an angioplasty by threading a thin tube (catheter) in the blocked coronary artery expanding the diameter of the vessel and restoring blood flow.

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How to prevent a heart attack from a widowmaker

Understand what happens in your body

A heart attack is caused by a blockage in an artery due to atherosclerosis (a process in which the fat called plaque adheres to the inside of blood vessels). However, to be at imminent risk of a sudden heart attack, there must be a blockage greater than 60% of the blood flow. A 90% blockage can cause a life-threatening heart attack. Plaque is often formed as a soft, unstable reservoir instead of a hard, stable reservoir. As it is soft, a fragment of the plaque often breaks off, and the fatty material flows into the bloodstream until it clogs a smaller artery.

Risk factors such as smoking, eating fatty foods, obesity, and having high cholesterol make the rupture of the atheromatous plaque more likely.

Calculate your risk of heart attack

Through the ASCVD Risk Estimator Plus of the American College of Cardiology, you can obtain an approximate risk of developing atherosclerosis in the next ten years. You simply need to enter your age, your cholesterol values (HDL and LDL), blood pressure, and answer questions regarding your lifestyle. If you get a score higher than 7.5 percent, you should consult your doctor for a full evaluation and establish therapeutic behavior.

Adopt a healthy diet

Various studies in different populations have linked the consumption of high-quality, healthy foods with a lower risk of heart disease compared to the consumption of unhealthy foods of low quality, independent of other risks such as sedentary lifestyle, obesity, and smoking. To maintain a healthy diet, you must prioritize the consumption of vegetable proteins and reduce the consumption of red and processed meats. Foods such as vegetables, fruits, whole grains, nuts, legumes, fish, and yogurt also have a beneficial effect on your health.


The adult population should avoid a sedentary lifestyle. Performing any type of physical activity will provide great health benefits. To obtain recognizable benefits, you should get at least 2.5 hours of moderate physical activity a week or 75 minutes of intense physical activity. To obtain an additional benefit, physical activity should include 5 hours of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise or 2.5 hours of high-intensity aerobic exercise. Exercising has very positive effects on emotional health. When exercising, the body releases endorphins; metabolites that make the person feel more calm and happy. Also, physical exercise helps some people sleep better. It can also be of great help in some psychological problems such as mild depression.

Take the medications recommended by your cardiologist

One of the most commonly prescribed drugs is the statin. This drug is to reduce cholesterol levels even if you have not been diagnosed with heart disease. Statins have been shown to reduce the risk of heart attack by 25 to 33 percent by limiting unstable plaque deposits and reducing inflammation.

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Prediabetes – the Silent Enemy

[Image 1] With the growth of the population, changes in lifestyle, obesity, and other risk factors, diseases such as diabetes mellitus type 2 (DM2) and cardiovascular events have increased in parallel; both entities can occur independently or interrelated. DM2 is considered a public health problem, given its high prevalence and its accelerated increase in the last 20 years. The World Health Organization (WHO) has indicated that this increase can be up to 160% in the next 25 years. The support of epidemiological studies and the knowledge that it is possible to identify DM2 in an asymptomatic stage has allowed the development of early detection strategies with economic, simple, and sensitive diagnostic procedures, allowing timely prevention measures.

Prediabetes is a condition that precedes the diagnosis of type 2 diabetes and is characterized by an elevation in the concentration of sugar (glucose) in blood beyond normal levels without reaching the diagnostic values of diabetes. It is identified by evidencing alterations in the oral glucose tolerance test (140-199 mg/dl) and the change in fasting blood glucose values (100-125 mg/dl).

The evolution of prediabetes to type 2 diabetes can be avoided. Consuming healthy foods, incorporating physical activity into your daily routine, and maintaining a healthy weight can help you regulate your blood sugar level.

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Symptoms of prediabetes

Prediabetes is a condition that often goes unnoticed because it usually does not present evident symptoms. However, the main symptoms in people with prediabetes are found below.

Blurred vision: Sudden rises and falls in blood sugar levels (common in people with pre-diabetes) can affect the ability of the eye to focus, which results in blurred vision. Once the sugar levels are regulated, this symptom should disappear.

Excessive thirst: When there is excess sugar in the blood, the body eliminates it through urine, which prompts the need to go to the bathroom more than usual. That, in turn, causes dehydration which produces excessive thirst.

Wounds or infections that take a long time to heal: High levels of blood sugar slow down circulation, so the skin needs more time to heal itself. Therefore, small bruises and cuts take longer than normal to heal. Pre-diabetes can also promote the growth of bacteria and fungi, which lead to recurrent infections in the skin, vagina and or urinary tract.

Fatigue: Your body uses sugar in the blood as fuel, but prediabetes causes insulin resistance, which makes your body unable to convert glucose into energy efficiently. Consequently, you feel fatigue and excessive fatigue.

Skin areas darken: Some people with prediabetes may show signs of insulin resistance. High insulin accelerates the speed of reproduction of skin cells, resulting in pigmentary acanthosis. This happens when the skin of the neck, under the arm, or in the folds of the elbows begins to darken.

Unexplained weight gain or loss: When the body cannot get the energy it needs from blood glucose, it starts burning other things for energy which can cause sudden weight loss even if you do not diet or exercise. However, insulin resistance can also make the patient hungry and gain weight.

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Several clinical trials have been published regarding the treatment of prediabetes to investigate the effectiveness of these treatments in delaying or abrogating the progression of prediabetes to diabetes. In general, the studies provide optimistic data and establish that: 1) lifestyle changes are highly effective in slowing the progression of prediabetes to diabetes, and 2) pharmacological agents that increase insulin sensitivity (metformin, glitazones) or prevent the absorption of carbohydrates (Acarbose) also confer a delay effect in the progression of prediabetes to diabetes.

In a simplified form, the treatment of individuals with prediabetes primarily includes the change in lifestyle, with the goal of weight loss and increasing daily physical exercise. If these measures do not have the desired effect in a reasonable time, then medication treatment should be supplemented. This treatment scheme is fluid, especially taking into account the recent data obtained in the treatment with pioglitazone, where there is evidence of an 82% decrease in the incidence of diabetes in individuals treated with this drug.

Vitamin D, an Ally in the Treatment of Asthma

Vitamin D exerts various functions throughout the body including the immune system. This vitamin is synthesized in the skin when exposed to sunlight. The wide use of sunscreen, a characteristic of modern life, would partly explain the increase in the prevalence of vitamin D insufficiency.

Multiple epidemiological studies have shown strong associations between asthma and reduced serum levels of 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25 [OH] D), the main precursor in the circulation of vitamin D.

More severe asthma has been observed in patients with low vitamin D levels, but it is unknown at this time whether the linkages express causality or inverse causality. It is possible that the association between asthma and vitamin D is complex. The information as a whole supports the therapeutic role of vitamin D in reducing the risk of asthma exacerbations.

In the Childhood Asthma Management Program, an association was observed between baseline vitamin D insufficiency (<30 ng / ml) and the risk of severe exacerbations over four years.

Asthma triggered by allergens

The asthmatic inflammation was essentially due to immunological reactions in response to aeroallergens. In this situation, T-helper lymphocytes phenotype 2 (Th2), B lymphocytes (producers of antibodies) and mast cells have a fundamental role.

Th2 lymphocytes synthesize various interleukins (IL), such as IL-4, IL-5, and IL-13, involved in the etiopathogenesis of asthma. IL-4, in particular, induces the synthesis of immunoglobulin (Ig) E by B lymphocytes.

IgE binds to mast cells, and cross-linking induces rapid release of proinflammatory mediators such as leukotrienes and histamine, which cause bronchial obstruction and mucus production.

Adaptive immune responses are regulated by various classes of regulatory T lymphocytes (Treg), for example, Foxp3 positive Treg lymphocytes and Treg lymphocytes that synthesize IL-10. In healthy subjects, both lymphocyte subpopulations participate in the emergence of tolerance towards non-harmful antigens.

Vitamin D plays a decisive role in the function of responses mediated by Treg lymphocytes. In several studies, it has been observed that vitamin D is favorably associated with the frequency of Foxp3 positive Treg lymphocytes and with the levels of IL-10 in the airways of patients with asthma.

Likewise, the stimulation and the signals derived from dendritic cells (DC) determine the induction of tolerance or the appearance of inflammatory responses; Vitamin D regulates multiple functions of DC.

In vitro, vitamin D suppresses the synthesis of IgE by B lymphocytes and increases the synthesis of IL-10 with induction of a regulatory B phenotype. In children, vitamin D deficiency is associated with increased levels of specific IgE against aeroallergens.

Vitamin D inhibits the activation of mast cells so that it reduces the synthesis of histamine and tumor necrosis factor alpha; it can also increase the production of IL-10 with anti-inflammatory properties.

Epithelial damage and asthmatic inflammation mediated by cytokines

The epithelial damage is accompanied by the release of IL-25, IL-33, and thymic stromal lymphopoietin, which directly stimulate various cell subtypes, including innate lymphoid cells type 2 (ILC2) and mast cells. ILC2 synthesize Th2-type cytokines, for example, IL-5, which induce eosinophilic inflammation.

Vitamin D modulates the epithelial response, especially by inducing synthesis in bronchial epithelial cells of soluble ST2, a suppressor of IL-33, associated with proinflammatory effects on effector cells, such as mast cells.

Viral infections induce the epithelial release of IL-33; in asthma, the mechanisms dependent on the Th2 phenotype alter the antiviral responses. Vitamin D is associated with increased immunological antimicrobial responses, through various mechanisms, including the increased production of antimicrobial peptides, such as cathelicidin, and autophagy, an important mechanism in viral and bacterial infections.

In a meta-analysis, the intake of vitamin D reduced the incidence of acute respiratory tract infections in selected patients with asthma.

Asthma resistant to steroids and IL-17

The physiopathological mechanisms involved in corticosteroid-resistant asthma would be somewhat different. The colonization of the airways with proinflammatory bacteria such as Haemophilusinfluenzae, oxidative stress (associated with air pollution) and vitamin D deficiency would play an important role in this type of asthma. Vitamin D increases the antimicrobial pathways and induces antioxidant responses.

Patients with asthma resistant to corticosteroids synthesize less IL-10. In these patients, the contribution of calcitriol is associated with the recovery of the clinical and immunological response of IL-10. Likewise, in patients with asthma resistant to corticosteroids, IL-17 would induce pathological neutrophilic inflammation, a phenomenon that reverts after the administration of vitamin D.

Vitamin D and remodeling of the airways

The final result of the abnormal immunological responses in asthma is the remodeling of the airways, associated with smooth muscle contraction and mucus secretion in the short term, and with remodeling and fibrosis in the long term. Vitamin D prevents the proliferation of smooth muscle cells in the airways.

Clinical data on the use of vitamin D for the treatment of asthma

In the study, Vitamin D Add-on Therapy Enhances Corticosteroid Responsiveness in Asthma (VIDA), showed that for every 10 ng / ml increase in serum levels of 25 (OH) D, the rate of therapeutic failures and exacerbations was reduced in a meaningful way.

Although the rate of asthma exacerbations did not decrease significantly in the total group assigned to vitamin D therapy, the exploratory analysis revealed a significant decrease in the frequency of exacerbations in the group of patients who reached levels of 25 (OH ) D3 ≥ 30 ng/ml.

In multiple investigations and Meta-analyses, it was observed that vitamin D supplements substantially decreased the rate of severe asthmatic exacerbations in patients with asthma.

With the exception of asthma resistant to corticosteroids, the different asthma endotypes have not been studied in detail in controlled clinical studies. Although more work will undoubtedly be required to answer these questions, the information as a whole suggests that the optimal state of vitamin D is important regarding the appearance and clinical evolution of asthma.

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The Importance of Sleeping Well

Sleep is part of the daily routine, but most people find it difficult to sleep properly at some point in their lives, also known as insomnia. It usually lasts a short period, perhaps when the individual is worried, nervous, or stressed. When these situations disappear, you go back to sleeping normally. However, if the individual cannot return to sleep well, it can be a real problem because sleep keeps our minds and bodies healthy.

What is sleep?

Sleep is the regular period in every 24 hours during which we are unconscious and unaware of our surroundings. There are two main types of sleep:

• REM sleep (Rapid Eye Movement): It comes and goes throughout the night, and constitutes a fifth of our sleep. The brain is very active, our eyes move quickly from side to side and we sleep, but our muscles are very relaxed.

• Non-REM sleep: The brain is quiet, but the body can move. Hormones are released into the blood, and the body is repaired after the day's wear and tear.

There are four stages of non-REM sleep:

1. "Pre-sleep": the muscles relax, the heart beats more slowly, and the body temperature drops.

2. "Light sleep": the individual can be easily awakened without feeling confused.

3. "Slow wave sleep": the blood pressure falls, the individual can talk or walk asleep.

4. "Slow and deep wave sleep ": during this time, it is very difficult to wake up, if someone wakes you up, you will feel confused.

Sleep is a biological necessity that allows restoring the physical and psychological functions essential for a full performance. Sleep and wakefulness are brain functions and, therefore, are subject to alterations of the nervous system. Sleep is neither a passive situation nor a lack of vigil, but an active state in which changes occur in bodily functions, in addition to mental activities of great importance for the physical and psychological balance of individuals. During sleep, hormonal, biochemical, metabolic, and temperature changes are necessary for the proper functioning of the human being during the day.

Sleeping adequately allows the release of oxytocin during non-REM sleep. It has been proven that this hormone helps relieve anxiety, increases confidence, and reduces social fear. Along with serotonin (a neurotransmitter released during sleep), oxytocin increases the feelings of love, empathy, and connection with other individuals due to its activity in the 5-HT1A receptors. Furthermore, maintaining adequate sleep hours generates an increase in serotonin concentrations in the brain which has been linked to the treatment of mental disorders such as depression.

Sleep also releases dopamine, the neurotransmitter widely known as being responsible for the sensation of pleasure. However, the latest findings show that its main function could be motivation since it was shown that people more focused on meeting certain demanding goals were those with the highest concentration of dopamine in the prefrontal cortex and the striatum.

How much sleep do we need?

This depends mainly on your age.

• Babies sleep about 17 hours a day.

• Older children only need 9 or 10 hours each night.

• Most adults need about 8 hours of sleep each night.

• Older people need the same amount of sleep, but usually have only one period of deep sleep at night, usually in the first 3 or 4 hours. After that, they wake up more easily. We also tend to dream less as we get older.

There are differences between people of the same age. Most of us need 8 hours per night, but some people (few) manage with only 3 hours per night. However, this can have serious consequences in the future.

Sleep disorders in adult life

You may feel that you do not get enough sleep or that even if you sleep the necessary hours, you do not get a good night's rest. There are many reasons for not sleeping well:

• The bedroom can be too noisy, hot, or cold

• The bed can be uncomfortable or too small

• Not having a regular sleep routine

• Not doing enough exercise

• Eat too late and find it difficult to go to sleep

• Tobacco, alcohol, and drinks that contain caffeine such as tea and coffee

Other more serious reasons include:

• Emotional problems

• Anxiety and worries

• Depression: wakes up very early and cannot go back to sleep

What happens if I do not sleep well?

Scientific studies increasingly give evidence that not sleeping well can affect our daily lives and our health. There are multiple consequences, both physical and psychological when we fail to have a restful sleep.

According to experts, a person must sleep between 8 hours a day to maintain an optimal physical, emotional, and mental state. However, the changes in the lifestyle of today have made the quality of sleep and the ideal time to rest much worse.

Studies have shown the negative health effects of restricting nighttime sleep. The results indicate that short periods of sleep have a negative impact on carbohydrate metabolism and endocrine function. Both factors are considered fundamental parts of the normal aging process, so if the habit of shortening sleep periods persisted in the organism, the severity of the chronic disorders associated with aging would increase.

Multiple studies showed a marked increase in glucose concentrations, which predisposes to metabolic diseases and increases the risk of obesity. The sympathetic nervous system also suffered negative alterations, increasing adrenergic activity and consequently, plasma levels of adrenaline and cortisol which is widely related to cardiovascular diseases such as hypertension, arteriosclerosis, ischemic heart disease, among others.

In a study published by Harvard Health Publications, it was evidenced that with sleep deprivation, patients presented deterioration of verbal fluency, planning capacity, creativity and originality, slowing of reaction time, signs of deactivation in the EEG, and drowsiness. The performance of long, repetitive and monotonous tasks is affected, especially in the case of newly acquired skills. Short-term memory impairments or reversible neuropsychological disorders may also appear in tasks involving the prefrontal cortex.

According to research conducted by the National Sleep Foundation of the United States, people who cannot sleep at least 6 hours a day, triple the risk of falling asleep at the wheel as a result of deterioration of mental coordination. The mood can also be affected, with a slight increase in anxiety, depression, irritability, confusion, etc.

Also, sleep deprivation has immunosuppressive effects. The ability of lymphocytes to produce cytokines is negatively affected, and there is a decrease in the production of necrosis factor alpha tumors (TNF-alpha) and some interleukins, which predisposes to suffer infectious diseases, mainly those that affect the respiratory system. In fact, it was determined that those who slept less had a greater risk of dying at a young age compared to those who slept properly.

Other studies have indicated that sleep deprivation delays the recovery of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis and produces alterations in glucocorticoid feedback. Thus, lack of sleep can decrease resistance to stress and accelerate the effects of glucocorticoid excess on metabolism and cognitive functions.

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Alzheimer’s and Dementia Linked to High Blood Pressure

Every day, like millions of Americans, Dr. Walter Koroshetz, 65, who directs the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, takes a pill to control his blood pressure. He claims besides the therapeutic benefit of lowering his blood pressure, his medication helps him reduce his risk of dementia and helps keep his brain healthy and sharp.

Koroshetz is responsible for the institute's public health campaign called Mind Your Risks. Its goal is to let people know that there is a link between high blood pressure and stroke and dementia.

Koroshetz, as part of his campaign, also endorses efforts to keep your blood pressure down by exercising and paying attention to weight and diet.

The science underlying his concerns over high blood pressure is solid. Researchers have long understood that when blood pressure rises, it strains the tiny blood vessels that keep brain cells alive.

"With every pulse of your heart, you are pushing blood into these very small blood vessels in the brain… and when the heart pushes too hard, as it does when blood pressure is elevated, it can cause damage that can lead to a stroke.”

Koroshetz points to two recent large studies that have revealed an alarming trend among stroke patients…

"If you had a stroke, even a small stroke, your risk of dementia within the next two years was greatly magnified… So there's something about having a stroke that drives a lot of the processes that give rise to dementia."

The evidence is clearest for a type of dementia called vascular dementia, which occurs when something blocks or reduces the flow of blood to brain cells. Now, as a result of new studies, it seems that high blood pressure also appears to increase a person's risk of developing Alzheimer's disease, which is associated with the accumulation of plaques and tangles in the brain.

Koroshetz believes, as does many experts these days, if people really knew about the link between dementia and high blood pressure, they might be more inclined to do something about it…

"Only about 50 percent of people who have hypertension are actually treated," he says. "So I think there's a lot to be said for trying to get high blood pressure under control."

The Alzheimer's Association is helping get out the word through Koroshetz's campaign and via a presentation of new research on blood pressure and Alzheimer's at its annual scientific meeting in Chicago. And the group is encouraging people to control high blood pressure.

"The good news is that we can control blood pressure now," says Maria Carrillo, the group's chief science officer. "We can do that with exercise, with lifestyle, with healthy eating, and also with medications."

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Brain Scans Indicate Brain Health Could Be Tied to Feeling Younger Than Your Age

If you feel older than your age, your brain could be telling you to change your lifestyle!

The human brain – even with the tremendous leaps in science and medicine – remains largely a mystery. Neuroscientists barely comprehend which hemispheres of the brain control which functions of the human body and what causes some of the most common disease like Alzheimer’s.

The amount of false information on the brain and how it works could literally reach the moon and back laid-out on stationary paper and stacked. We do know, however, that there are exercises that can sharpen the human mind.

Now, according to new research published in the journal Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience, there could be another way of keeping human brains youthful.

Jeanyung Chey, a researcher at Seoul National University in Korea, decided to investigate the link between subjective and real brain age. She and a team recruited from her University 68 healthy people aged 59 to 84 years and performed MRI brain scans to analyze the amount of grey matter in different areas.

The participants also completed a questionnaire about how old they were and whether they felt older or younger; their cognitive abilities and perceived health was also assessed.

The people who said they felt younger than their age were more likely to get a better score on a memory test. Also, they appeared to consider themselves healthier, and were less likely to be depressed.

It wasn't just down to performance, as those who felt younger also had increased grey matter volume in the inferior frontal gyrus and the superior temporal gyrus – areas associated with language, speech, and sound.

"We found that people who feel younger have the structural characteristics of a younger brain," Chey said in a statement.

"Importantly, this difference remains robust even when other possible factors, including personality, subjective health, depressive symptoms, or cognitive functions are accounted for."

The researchers don't know for sure whether younger brain characteristics are responsible for someone's subjective age or not, but they think those who feel older may be more aware of the aging process of their brains.

Another possible explanation is people who feel younger engage in more physical and mental activity and lead a generally more stimulating life, which improves their brain health.

Those who feel older may have resigned themselves to their age and stopped being so agile and spritely, which impacts their cognitive abilities. According to Chey…

"If somebody feels older than their age, it could be a sign for them to evaluate their lifestyle, habits, and activities that could contribute to brain aging and take measures to better care for their brain health."

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Breakthrough Research Reveals Role Gut Bacteria May Play in Obesity-related Anxiety and Depression

A connection between obesity, anxiety, and depression has long been suspected by physicians and medical researchers, but the exact reason for the connection in human beings has yet to be proven. However, researchers at Joslin Diabetes Center have released a new animal study that is thought to give a better understanding of the connection between diet, gut bacteria, and mental wellness.

The Joslin Diabetes Center study focuses on Microbiome research and the intriguing subset of research into the growing connections that link gut bacteria and the brain. Research in this area focuses on the neurochemical effects stemming from the unique makeup of the gut microbiome and the connection to mental illness caused by everything from PTSD to depression.

The new study results indicated that when mice were fed a high-fat diet, they exhibited substantially greater depressive behaviors until microbiome-altering antibiotics returned their behavior back to normal.

It’s been long established by physicians that sufferers of type 2 diabetes and obesity all too often suffer with depression and anxiety at an exponentially higher rate than the rest of the general population. The direct cause of these debilitating psychological effects, however, has yet to be proven. However, many physicians and medical researchers have opined that it’s connected not only to diabetes, but to diet and excess weight.

There have been a handful of animal studies that have indicated that anxiety and or stress-related behaviors of mice can be reduced by changes in the gut microbiome via different bacteria. The Joslin research study was designed to examine how mice on high-fat diets react to microbiome alterations in hopes of proving that their moods can be altered.

Joslin Diabetes Center has already conducted prior research that proved the onset of disease could be modulated by specific changes in gut bacteria of mice both fed a high-fat diet and bred to develop various metabolic diseases such as diabetes. This new Joslin study was designed to specifically examine the influence of mood affected by high-fat diets and if microbiome alterations could be used to moderate mood.

The Joslin study showed at first, mice on a high-fat diet exhibited more clinical signs of depression and anxiety than control mice fed a normal diet. Then, researches administered antibiotics to those mice on a high-fat diet and saw their behaviors return to normal.

This was tested by giving the mice on high-fat diets two different broad antibiotics: vancomycin, with the goal of destroying gram-positive gut bacteria, and metronidazole, which is known to kill anaerobes. The researchers found that both antibiotics appeared to reverse any dietary-induced negative behavior, which improved insulin-signaling in the brain disrupted by the high-fat diet.

The researchers tested several different microbiomes by transferring gut bacteria from the test mice into mice genetically engineered to have absolutely no natural gut bacteria of their own. Mice that had transplanted gut bacteria exhibited the exact same behavior of the donor mice.

The Joslin study zeroed in on specific brain mechanisms that were affected by these microbiome alterations. The researchers found compelling observational evidence that many brain changes in the mice were clearly brought on by the high-fat diet and were reversed when the antibiotics were administered.

"We demonstrated that, just like other tissues of the body, these areas of the brain become insulin resistant in mice on high-fat diets," says C. Ronald Kahn, senior author on the new Joslin study. He went on to say…

"And this response to the high fat is partly, and in some cases, almost completely reversed by putting the animals [on] antibiotics. Again, the response is transferrable when you transfer the gut microbiome from mice on a high-fat diet to germ-free mice. So, the insulin resistance in the brain is mediated at least in part by factors coming from the microbiome."

The Joslin study did not specifically identify which bacteria triggered neurochemical changes or what physiological mechanism in the test mice may have generated improved mood. Yet, it's an exciting first step and yet another piece of strong observational evidence suggesting the bacteria in our gut could have a more profound effect on human mental well-being than medical science has ever believed.

C. Ronald Kahn, however, opined in this new Joslin study that antibiotics can be used to alter a broad spectrum of gut bacteria, but would never be an end result for human treatments. More research is needed…

"Antibiotics are blunt tools that change many bacteria in very dramatic ways," says Kahn. "Going forward, we want to get a more sophisticated understanding about which bacteria contribute to insulin resistance in the brain and in other tissues. If we could modify those bacteria, either by putting in more beneficial bacteria or reducing the number of harmful bacteria, that might be a way to see improved behavior."

The study was published in the journal Molecular Psychiatry. Source: Joslin Diabetes Center via EurekAlert

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Probiotics May Provide Stress Relief

A breakthrough study by researchers at the University of Colorado Boulder may have uncovered a type of "good" bacterium that could potentially protect the human brain from the harmful effects of stress. Human clinical trials may lead to probiotic-based treatments against stress, post-traumatic stress disorder, and anxiety.

For the first time, there’s hope that within a few years you’ll be able to immunize yourself against the ugly and dangerous effects of stress.

There have already been a good number of scientific studies exploring the complex links between the human brain and gut bacteria.

In one such study, co-author Dr. Gerard Clarke, of the APC Microbiome Institute at University College Cork in the Republic of Ireland, and colleagues recently reported their findings in the journal Microbiome which suggest the absence of certain bacteria in our guts could alter areas in our brains that are involved in anxiety and depression.

Another study released in 2014 by Premysl Bercik, associate professor of medicine at the Michael G. DeGrotte School of Medicine at McMaster University in Canada, and colleagues suggests stomach acid drugs may actually induce depression by disrupting the gut-brain axis.

Still another study has identified a link between gut bacteria and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) which could bring us closer to understanding the mechanisms of the complex condition. Researchers, including a team from Stellenbosch University in South Africa, reported their findings on the link between gut bacteria and PTSD in the journal Psychosomatic Medicine.

It is becoming increasingly evident that the association between human gut bacteria and our emotional well-being may be tied together. Not only does the absence of certain beneficial microbes lead to mood disturbances, but stress, for instance, has been shown to harm gut health just as much as junk food.

Laura Bridgewater, of the Department of Microbiology and Molecular Biology of Brigham Young University in Provo, UT, and her colleagues report that their findings indicate the gut microbiota may play a role in gender-specific health outcomes in response to stress.

This Brigham Young University study indicates that stressed female mice experienced changes to their gut microbiota — the community of microorganisms that reside in the intestine — comparable with what is seen in response to a high-fat diet. In male mice, however, stress appeared to have no effect on gut microbiota.

With all of these studies and data on the link between gut bacteria and mood disorders, is there a way to harness bacteria in our guts so we can immunize ourselves against stress?

The University of Colorado indicates there may be. Another recent study — led by Matthew Frank, a senior research associate in the Department of Psychology and Neuroscience — uncovered a potential beneficial bacterium that has anti-inflammatory properties that the researchers believe could be harnessed to stave off stress.

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4 Essential Nutrients You May Not Be Getting Enough Of

The USDA released its Dietary Guidelines, as well as information on the so-called “shortfall nutrients” that Americans are not getting enough of. Here are four important nutrients you may not be getting enough of and how to get them through the foods you eat.

1. Fiber
Why You Need It: Fiber can help prevent type-2 diabetes, certain types of cancer, and heart disease. Research also suggests that consuming fiber-rich foods might boost weight loss by helping you to feel fuller after you eat. Fiber is also important to keep the digestive tract moving. But most of us eat only about half as much fiber as we should. Nutrition guidelines recommend that women eat 25 grams daily and men eat 38 grams daily; the average American consumes only about 14 grams.

How to Get It: Load up on plant-based foods—the less processed the better. (Consider this: a medium orange has 3 grams of fiber; a cup of OJ has zero.) Whole grains, such as oatmeal (3 grams per 1/2 cup), and beans (about 6 grams per 1/2 cup) are also great sources.

2. Calcium
Why You Need It: Calcium is important for keeping bones and teeth strong, but it also helps muscles contract, nerves transmit signals, blood clot and blood vessels contract and expand. Adults aged 19 to 50 need 1,000 mg per day; for women 51-plus (and men 70-plus), it’s 1,200 mg daily.

How to Get It: Dairy products are good choices (choose nonfat or low-fat to limit saturated fat), delivering between 300 mg (milk) to 490 mg (nonfat plain yogurt) per 1-cup serving. Some dark leafy greens also offer calcium that’s well absorbed by the body: for instance, kale and collard greens provide 94 mg and 266 mg per cup, respectively.

3. Potassium
Why You Need It: Potassium is critical for helping nerves transmit signals, muscles contract and cells maintain fluid balance inside and out. Newer scientific evidence demonstrates that potassium helps maintain normal blood pressure.

How to Get It: By eating a variety of fruits and vegetables—they’re full of this nutrient. But according to the Centers for Disease Control, only 32.5% of adults eat 2 or more servings of fruit per day and only 26.3% eat the recommended 3 or more servings of vegetables per day. Here are a few easy ways to increase intake of fruits and vegetables:
• Make fruit filled smoothies with fresh or frozen (not canned) mixed fruit, bananas, orange juice and pomegranate juice for an anti-oxidant boost
• Have a side salad with lunch and dinner.
• Use leftover veggies in a protein packed veggie frittata
• Have mixed fruit with a drizzle of chocolate sauce for an anti-oxidant packed dessert

4. Vitamin D
Why You Need It: Vitamin D is a fat-soluble nutrient that’s important in bone building and has been linked with lower incidences of cancers and lower rates of immune-related conditions, such as type-1 diabetes and multiple sclerosis. The primary way we get vitamin D is by making it ourselves—UV rays from the sun help us to produce it. In the wintertime, in northern latitudes, many people start to run out of their internal vitamin D stores.

How to Get It: Soak up some sun (ultraviolet, or UV, rays cause skin cells to produce vitamin D). Eat vitamin-D-fortified foods, such as milk, soymilk and cereals. Vitamin D is also found naturally in a few foods: fatty fish, such as salmon, mackerel and sardines, and in egg yolks.

If you live in the northern part of the United States, spend lots of time indoors and/or slather on the sunscreen anytime you’re outside, you may not be getting enough. Some studies suggest that as many as 7 out of 10 Americans are deficient in vitamin D. To be absolutely sure you’re covering your needs for this nutrient, consider a vitamin D supplement (for folks ages 1 to 70, the recommended amount is 600 IU).

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Resveratrol: The Anti-Aging Powerhouse That’s Good for the Heart, Brain & Waistline

How do the French eat more fat, sugar and rich foods, plus drink more wine, but still have less heart health issues? The answer to this puzzling question, commonly known as the “french paradox,” is believed to be due to a higher intake of a specific phytonutrient called resveratrol, found naturally in “superfoods” like red wine. Like other antioxidants and phytonutrients, such as lycopene found in tomatoes or lutein found in carrots, resveratrol is a powerful compound that regenerates the body all the way at the cellular level.

Research published over the past several decades in many medical journals, including the European Journal of Food Pharmacology and American Journal of Hypertension, found that resveratrol (in this case from red wine) decreases the risk of heart disease among other common health concerns. Although he might not have known exactly how wine was able to promote better health, even Plato promoted the health perks of drinking it in moderation. He’s been quoted as saying, “Nothing more excellent or valuable than wine was ever granted by the gods to man.” (1)

In case you’re wondering, you don’t have to be a wine drinker to benefit from resveratrol. Other sources include deeply- olored berries and real dark chocolate/cocoa. Along with helping to keep arteries clear from plaque buildup and protecting an aging heart, this phytonutrient has many other health benefits too — including reducing inflammation, potentially helping to prevent obesity and protecting cognitive health among the elderly.

What Is Resveratrol?

Resveratrol is a polyphenic bioflavonoid antioxidant that’s produced by certain plants and found in foods and drinks that are known to halt the effects of aging. Resveratrol is classified as a phytoestrogen because of its ability to interact with estrogen receptors in a positive way. Plants that produce resveratrol and other types of antioxidants actually do so partly as a protective mechanism and response to stressors within their environments, including radiation, the presence of insects or other predators, injury, and fungal infections. Today, resveratrol is believed to be one of the most potent polyphenols and strongest protectors against symptoms associated with aging and free radical damage.

Studies show that the most naturally abundant sources of resveratrol (not to mention many other protective phytonutrients, vitamins and minerals) are plants, including the skin of red grapes, red wine, raw cocoa, and dark berries, such as lingonberries, blueberries, mulberries and bilberries. Red wine is probably the best known source, mostly due to its high levels thanks to the fermentation process that turns grape juice to alcohol. During production of red wine, grape seeds and skins ferment in the grape’s juices, which have positive effects on levels and availability of resveratrol.

The benefits of resveratrol were first discovered when researchers found that yeast and other microbes, insects and animals fed resveratrol experienced an increased life span as a result. Various studies continued to confirm its amazing anti-aging benefits, demonstrated in studies conducted on fruit flies, fish, mice and nematode worms, all of which lived longer compared to control groups that were not treated with this phytonutrient.

5 Resveratrol Benefits

1. Has Anti-Aging and Anti-Cancer Effects

Resveratrol is a powerful antioxidant that neutralizes free radicals produced during everyday bodily functions, such as eating and exercise. Free radical damage is accelerated due to poor lifestyle habits like smoking, eating an unhealthy diet, and in response to environmental pollution and toxicity. If left unchecked, free radicals can damage cells and are thought to be a cause of life-threatening diseases and earlier death. Consuming plant foods high in antioxidants and phytonutrients has been shown to offer antioxidative, anticarcinogenic and antitumor benefits that protect adults from many age-related diseases. (2)

According to research published by the Department of Pharmacology at the University of Seville in Spain, “One of the most striking biological activities of resveratrol soundly investigated during the late years has been its cancer-chemopreventive potential. In fact, recently it has been demonstrated that it blocks the multistep process of carcinogenesis at various stages: tumor initiation, promotion, and progression.”

It’s believed the mechanisms for its cancer-protecting activities involves downregulation of the inflammatory response through inhibition of synthesis and release of pro-inflammatory mediators, among other activities. (3)

2. Protects Cardiovascular Health

Because of its anti-inflammatory activity, resveratrol has been shown to offer protection against atherosclerosis (thickening of the arteries that cuts off blood flow), high LDL “bad cholesterol,” formation of blood clots and myocardial infraction. Consuming more has also been shown to help improve circulation and have beneficial effects on glucose and lipid metabolism in some with higher risk for metabolic syndrome. (4)

Itadori tea, one significant source of resveratrol, has long been used in Asian countries, including Japan and China, as a traditional herbal remedy for preventing heart disease and strokes.

3. Helps Protect the Brain and Cognitive/Mental Health

Resveratrol is particularly unique as its antioxidants can cross the blood-brain barrier to protect the brain and the nervous system, unlike other antioxidants. Recent studies done by researchers at the Nutrition Research Center at Northunbria University in the U.K. showed that resveratrol noticeably increased blood flow to the brain, suggesting a considerable benefit to healthy brain function and neuroprotective effects.

This means consuming more can increase protection against cognitive/mental problems, including Alzheimer’s, dementia and others. Other study findings, such as results published in the Journal of Agricultural Food Chemistry, demonstrated that even a single infusion of resveratrol could elicit neuroprotective effects on cerebral (brain) neuronal loss and damage. (5) This resulted from increased free radical scavenging and cerebral blood elevation due to resveratrol’s effects.

4. May Help Prevent Obesity

Findings from animal studies have found that resveratrol exerts beneficial effects on rodents fed a high-calorie diet, helping prevent fat storage and regulating insulin levels. (6) Others research has shown that resveratrol may help reduce body weight and adiposity in obese animals, which some experts believe is due to activating the SIRT1 gene that’s believed to protect the body against the effects of obesity.

It’s not totally clear how this translates to humans consuming foods or drinks like wine and berries, but studies have found links between adults eating balanced diets that include moderate amounts of wine and healthier body weights.

5. Benefits Those with Diabetes or Prediabetes

Animal studies involving diabetic rats have demonstrated that resveratrol may be able to reduce hyperglycemia and may also possibility be of use in preventing and/or treating both obesity and diabetes. Resveratrol may be helpful for those with diabetes and prediabetes by reducing complications (like nerve damage and damage to the heart) and helping manage insulin levels. It’s known that this phytoestrogen positively affects insulin secretion and blood insulin concentrations, according to animal studies. (7)

What Is Resveratrol Used For?

As you can tell from all the benefits described above, resveratrol and sources that provide it, including red wine, are more than just powerful heart-protectors. They’re also strong brain-boosters, among many other things. People use resveratrol for all sorts of anti-aging benefits, considering research suggests that it can help:

• Provide powerful antioxidant support

• Boost the body’s ability to fight oxidative stress (or free radical damage)

• Support cellular and tissue health

• Protect against cancer

• Promote better circulation, very important for protecting a healthy heart

• Protect against diabetes

• Protect memory, cognitive health and help prevent Alzheimer’s disease

• Preventing premature signs or symptoms associated with aging, including inflammation that leads to arterial damage and joint deterioration

• Supporting a healthy digestive system and improving elimination of waste or toxic compounds

• Improve energy and endurance

• Some research has even found that it helps protect against the effects of radiation, which we’re all exposed to in at least small amounts whether we realize it or not

Should You Take Resveratrol Supplements?

Because the FDA does not regulate supplements, many health authorities are not convinced that taking resveratrol supplements or extract will have much payoff. As with all herbs and extracts, you can’t be sure exactly what you’re getting and how effective the product may be.

Dosage recommendations vary depending on your current health and symptoms, but most resveratrol supplements are typically taken in about 250 to 500 milligrams/day dosages. It’s important to point out that this is generally lower than the amounts that have been shown to be beneficial in studies, but it’s not clear if taking very high doses is safe. Some adults choose to consume up to two grams daily (2,000 milligrams). (8) According to the New York Academy of Sciences, studies have found resveratrol to be safe and reasonably well-tolerated at doses of up to five grams per day, but this shouldn’t be taken without speaking with your doctor. (9)

It’s possible, however, to experience mild to moderate side effects at higher doses, so experts recommend starting with less until further studies demonstrate any added benefit of taking more. Resveratrol supplements may potentially interact with blood thinners like warfarin (Coumadin) and NSAID pain relievers (like aspirin or Advil), so be sure not to mix these.

How Resveratrol Works

Resveratrol works by modifying inflammation in the body, in addition to having other positive effects on hormone production, blood circulation and fat storage. Studies demonstrate that it specifically seems to work in some of the following ways: (10)

• It limits the body’s ability to produce sphingosine kinase and phospholipase D, two molecules known to trigger inflammation. Studies have demonstrated resveratrol’s ability to suppresses the expression and activity of cyclooxygenase enzymes tied to inflammatory responses that damage tissue throughout the body. Although the body naturally produces inflammation as a means of healing and protecting itself, such as to counter bacteria and viruses as part of the immune system, a state of chronic or constant inflammation is not a healthy state to be in. It ages the body and increases risk for almost every disease.

• Resveratrol has been found to lower insulin levels, which is key to staying young, at a healthy weight and fighting diseases like diabetes. In trials, Sirtris Pharmaceuticals found that those with diabetes who took resveratrol had lower glucose and insulin levels, making it a powerful aid to a healthy lifestyle. It also has positive effects on brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) that’s involved in the pathogenesis of obesity, type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome. Researchers have observed that BDNF levels are lower in people with type 2 diabetes mellitus and other insulin-related problems.

• It facilitates mitochondrial respiration and gluconeogenesis. In other words, it helps the “powerhouse” part of cells (the mitochondria) that supplies cells with energy to work optimally.

• Resveratrol keeps circulation flowing smoothly, preventing arterial damage and offering protection in the brain from memory loss and conditions, including Alzheimer’s disease. It may also prevent other disorders, such as stroke, ischemia and Huntington’s disease, in addition to mental health problems like depression, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and autism.

• It’s been shown to have positive effects on vascular endothelial growth factor — in other words repairing damaged blood vessels.

• Because it controls release of pro-inflammatory molecules, resveratrol thus has benefits for preventing autoimmune diseases. It also seems to positively alter gut microbiota and influences stem cell proliferation and differentiation.

• Finally, as a potent antioxidant, resveratrol is constantly fighting damage from free radicals that can increase cancer risk. It deeply penetrates the nucleus and mitochondria of each cell, helping repair harmful effects due to free radical damage that can alter DNA. It also modulates apoptosis (destruction of harmful cells) and therefore seems to have anti-cancer properties. Studies have found evidence of resveratrol triggering apoptosis of activated T cells and suppressing growth of tumors, in addition to acting against cancer.

Best Sources of Resveratrol

Now you know the benefits of resveratrol in your diet, you may be wondering what the best source of this compound is. Below are the best foods and beverages to add to your diet (albeit in moderation) in order to consume more resveratrol:

• Red grapes and red wine. In case you’re wondering, white wine has some too but much lower amounts since the grapes’ skins are removed earlier in the wine-making process.

• Certain types of traditional teas, including Itadori tea, common in Asian countries

• Raw cocoa (dark chocolate)

• Lingonberries

• Blueberries

• Mulberries

• Bilberries

• Cranberries

• Pistachios

• Although I don’t generally don’t recommend eating them often, peanuts and soy are other resveratrol sources.

Different plants supply various forms of resveratrol. For example grapes, peanuts and Itadori tea contain mainly trans-resveratrol glucosides. Red wine is primarily a source of the aglycones cis- and trans-resveratrol. Studies show that both Itadori tea and red wine supply relatively high concentrations of resveratrol compared to most other foods. Itadori tea is a good option for people who avoid drinking alcohol or for children.

Precautions/Side Effects Associated with Resveratrol

Although we have mentioned that red wine and cocoa are two of the best sources of resveratrol, unfortunately a diet of dark chocolate and red wine may be decadent but ultimately very unhealthy if you overdo it. The best way to obtain the benefits of resveratrol is through balance and moderation. I recommend consuming wine in small amounts, about one glass per day or less; according to most research, up to two glasses daily for men and one per day for women hasn’t been shown to cause any health concerns. If you do choose to take resveratrol supplements, still aim to consume antioxidants naturally from a healthy diet, including a variety of fresh plant foods.

While a large body of evidence has already suggested that resveratrol has many benefits, many experts feel that before we can promote drinking more wine or taking supplements to all adults, additional research is still needed. Overall there’s support for its positive attributes, but data is still needed to confirm its effectiveness for prevention of actual diseases in humans. It’s still not completely known how different people react to resveratrol and if some benefit more than others. For example, people with existing cases of diabetes or metabolic defects may need to take higher doses than mostly healthy adults to get the same effects. Talk to your doctor if you plan on taking supplements and are already on other medications.

Overall, most of the benefits of resveratrol have been shown in animal studies and at high dosages. Harvard School of Public Health points out, “The dose of resveratrol administered in experiments is always much higher than you’d normally consume in a daily diet. You would need to drink a hundred to a thousand glasses of red wine to equal the doses that improve health in mice.” (11)

That being said, resveratrol is not a cure-all and means to living a longer, disease-free life. It may be one piece of the puzzle, but the bottom line is that it probably shouldn’t motivate you to drink more wine than you already are.

Article originally from Dr Axe Food is Medicine -


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Found: The Link Between Sleep and Heart Health

Forty million Americans suffer from sleep problems, and 29% report averaging less than six hours of sleep a night. 70 million say they suffer from insomnia, while loss of productivity resulting from sleep issues costs U.S. employers $18 million per year.

New research shows that not getting enough sleep may have more serious consequences than missing a day or two of work.

In a study reported in the Journal of the American Medical Association, researchers at the University of Chicago found that too little sleep can promote calcium and plaque buildup in the heart arteries. This buildup can ultimately cause heart attacks and strokes.

The research team documented for the first time the exact risk of not getting enough sleep, finding that one hour less on average each night can increase coronary calcium by 16%.

The study was comprised of a group of 495 men and women aged 35 to 47. The results of the study showed that 27% of those getting less than five hours of sleep each night showed plaque in their heart vessels. Of those sleeping five to seven hours a night, 11% had plaque while only 6% of subjects sleeping more than seven hours each night had evidence of plaque buildup.

Dr. Tracy Stevens, spokesperson for the American Heart Association and a cardiologist at Saint Luke's Mid-America Heart Institute goes further and states that "We have enough evidence from this study and others to show that it is important to include sleep in any discussion of heart disease."

11 Year Study Finds that Insomniacs Are at Higher Risk for Heart Attacks

Insomnia can wreak havoc on your life. Chronic insomnia can last for months or years. Most people with chronic insomnia spend several nights a week struggling to fall asleep or stay asleep.

The results of a large-scale study investigating the connection between heart health and insomnia reinforce the findings of the University of Chicago team. Scientists at the Norwegian Institute of Science and Technology surveyed 52,610 men and women and follow up with the participants over a period of 11 years.

The results of the study were adjusted for several health and lifestyle factors, including age, sex, education, physical fitness, smoking, alcohol consumption and high blood pressure. What the researchers found was revealing:

• Study participants who had difficulty falling asleep had a 45% greater risk of heart attack compared to those who didn't have problems falling asleep.

• Participants having trouble staying asleep throughout the night had a 30% greater risk of heart attack than those participants able to sleep through the night.

• Those who woke feeling tired had a 27% higher risk of heart attack than people who woke feeling refreshed.

If you're having sleep problems, consider keeping a journal. By keeping regular track of bedtimes and wake times, as well as how you feel in the morning when you wake up, can give you a clear picture of how you're really sleeping. Check with your doctor if problems persist.

These and other studies are making it clear getting enough sleep could save your heart. Taking a supplement like Oraescin is another preventative step you can take to promote the overall health of your circulatory system.

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How to Beat the Flu

It looks like frequent hand washing or covering your mouth when sneezing may not be the only way to protect yourself from catching a cold or the flu.

Researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison have uncovered an unexpected way of preventing these all too common maladies -- one you may have never considered.

In a study published in the Annals of Family Medicine, initial findings suggest that meditation or exercise may lower how often you come down with the flu or common cold -- as well as how long it lasts and how severe the flare up. (1)

The focus of the study was intended to discover how to reduce the incidence of employees taking sick days during cold and flu seasons. Sick leave amounts to billions of dollars to businesses and society in terms of lost production and healthcare costs.

There were 149 participants, randomly split into three groups, which were then studied for a total of nine months. One group consisted of participants who meditated on a regular basis, another group exercised regularly and the control group neither meditated nor exercised.

The exercise and meditation groups took classes for 8 weeks, one for meditation and the other for exercise. They were then asked to keep up their activity regularly for several months afterwards during the peak of Wisconsin's cold and flu season.

The results were telling. Among the group that meditated, there were 27 bouts of colds or flu. The exercise group had 26 bouts. The group that did neither had 40 bouts.

What's more, the inactive group missed 67 days or work, the exercise group missed 32 days while the meditation group missed only 16 days.

"The results are remarkable; we saw a 40 to 50 percent reduction in respiratory infections," said Dr. Bruce Barrett, a UW Health family physician that headed up the research. He goes on to say that, "The bottom line is both the mental health and physical health matter in helping improve (the) flu and cold".

Fighting the Flu with Probiotics

Another effective way to ward off colds and the flu is to take probiotics. A double-blind and placebo controlled study reported in the medical journal Pediatrics that taking probiotics may help immune response and speed up recovery time. (2)

The study, which took place during the winter flu and cold season, was conducted on 326 children in China, aged three to five years old. They were given milk containing either one or two probiotic strains twice daily and followed for six months.

These two groups were compared with the placebo group, which didn't take any probiotics.

Results from this study are impressive. The group taking a single probiotic had 53% less fevers, 41% less coughs and 28% less runny noses than the placebo group. Their illnesses lasted 32% LESS time than the placebo group as well.

At the same time, the group taking two probiotics had 72% less fevers, 62% less coughs and 59% less runny noses. Their illnesses lasted 48% LESS time than the placebo group... and they used 84% LESS antibiotics compared to the placebo group.

If you're concerned about catching a cold or coming down with the flu, the combination of either meditation or exercise along with taking a probiotic supplement like Prosentials can help.

Prosentials is not only important for healthy digestion; it helps promote a healthy immune system as well. Take it daily for optimal digestive balance and overall health.

(1) Miller M, Mangano C, Park Y, et al. Impact of cinematic viewing on endothelial function. Heart 2006; 92:261-262.

(2) UMM/News: University of Maryland School of Medicine Study Shows Laughter Helps Blood Vessels Function Better. 7March2005. Retrieved from:

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Low-T and the Grim Reaper

Symptoms of low-testosterone such as a decreased sex drive, more belly fat and reduced vitality are alarming on their own... but several research studies are linking low testosterone levels with a higher risk of mortality as well.

A study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism found that older men with low testosterone may die sooner than other men their age who have normal testosterone levels.

Researchers evaluated 794 men between 50 and 91 years old who were followed for an average of 11.6 years. Those with the lowest testosterone levels at the beginning of the study were 40% more likely to die over the course of the study than the men with higher T-levels.

Another study was carried out by researchers at the VA Puget Sound Health Care System and the University of Washington at Seattle. This study evaluated 858 males over the age of 40 who were grouped according to their testosterone levels and followed for an average period of 4.3 years.

Men in the low testosterone group had an 88% increased risk of death compared to the group who had normal testosterone levels... even after variables such as age and other illnesses were factored in.

Another study worth mentioning was published in the online journal, Heart. Researchers in this study evaluated 930 men, each diagnosed with coronary artery heart disease.

They were followed for 7 years, during which time the research team took tissue samples from the participants to evaluate both bioavailable testosterone as well as total testosterone.

A total of one in four of the men was found to have low testosterone levels... and 42 % of these men died, or one out of every 5 participants.

Conversely, among those with normal hormone levels, approximately 12% died, which was equivalent to one out of every eight men who participated in the study.

A similar study was led by Dr. Giovanni Corona of the University of Florence in Italy. In this study, researchers evaluated the testosterone levels of 1,687 men who were seeking treatment of erectile dysfunction. There was an average follow up period of 4.3 years.

During that time, 137 of the men had had a heart attack or other major heart problem. 15 of the men died. Dr. Giovanni’s team found that those who had lower levels of testosterone were the most likely to die of heart problems.

The research is a wake-up call for men over the age of 50. Other studies are confirming these findings that having low testosterone not only impacts your every day health, including your heart health, it may shorten your life as well.

On the other hand, having higher levels of testosterone can be protective to the heart, and can lower your risk of other health problems like obesity and blood sugar issues.

Make a point of taking T-Boost, an-all natural supplement that promotes healthy testosterone levels.

Designed to turn on your body’s natural hormone production, T-Boost helps keep your heart healthy and the grim reaper at bay. As it’s been said, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure!

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NSAIDs Linked to Increased Risk of Heart Attack in New Study

We've alerted you to this in previous issues, but in light of new research it should be said again...

Think twice before you reach for that over-the-counter pain pill.

In a study presented at the Annual Congress of the European League Against Rheumatism, researchers found that those taking ibuprofen and other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) had an increased risk of heart attack.

NSAIDs are typically used to relieve pain and to reduce signs of inflammation, such as fever, swelling and redness. They are also prescribed for the treatment of patients with rheumatoid arthritis.

Here is what is particularly troubling about the research. Data from the study point to an immediate mortality risk in patients who suffered a heart attack -- even after taking NSAIDs for less than one week.

The results from the study also showed that NSAIDs, which include ibuprofen (Advil) and diclofenac (Voltaren) are "equally hazardous" in terms of heart attack risk as the drug Vioxx. You may recall that Vioxx was pulled from the market because of safety concerns over heart attack and stroke risks.(1) People suffering from arthritis often take NSAIDs for relief from pain, without realizing these drugs can actually kill you. Alternatively, some doctors say that aspirin is a safer choice because it tends to have fewer side effects. That being said, aspirin can cause stomach bleeding.

As a matter of precaution, neither aspirin nor other NSAIDs should be taken in high doses on a daily basis for pain relief.

NSAIDs Are Not Good Medicine

Until now, while the side effect dangers of NSAIDs have been clearly documented, little has been known about treatment duration and the associated cardiovascular risks.

Dr Carl Orr, Department of Medicine, Royal College of Surgeons, Dublin, Ireland commented about the data saying, "These data demonstrate an immediate increase in the risk of death and MI (myocardial infarction), challenging the safety of even short term use. The introduction of physician guidelines to assist safe prescribing of this class of drug is vital, and the only way to keep patient safety at the forefront of disease management."(2)

In other words, doctors need to have guidelines in place to insure they don't place your health or life at risk if they prescribe NSAID-type drugs.

This study found that for every 1,000 individuals with a moderate risk of heart disease who were prescribed to a one year, high-dose treatment of diclofenac or ibuprofen, about three would experience an avoidable heart attack of which one would be fatal.

What's more, all NSAIDs were found to 1) double the risk of heart failure and 2) increase the risk of serious upper gastrointestinal complications such as bleeding ulcers by 2-4 times.(3)

Dr. Chauncy Crandall, who heads up the cardiac transplant program at the Palm Beach Cardiovascular Clinic in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, says that "people with arthritis and other chronic pain conditions should use non-drug methods for relief whenever possible, taking drugs only when absolutely necessary." (ibid, 1)

That's where Isoprex comes in. Isoprex helps relieve joint pain without any side effects. It is an all natural supplement that contains powerful ingredients scientifically proven to help relieve joint pain... without any side effects.

The ingredients in Isoprex have all been shown to be safe – and many of them work as well or better than dangerous over-the-counter and prescription pain pills. Keep a bottle in your medicine cabinet at all times.

References (1) (2) (3)

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Stress Could be Causing Your Digestive Ills

Think about the language you sometime use... and you'll see the connection between stress and digestive health. For example, have you ever had to make a "gut-wrenching" decision? Perhaps you've "choked" under pressure at some time in your life?

The relationship between your emotional and digestive functioning is important to understand.

Digestion is controlled by hundreds of millions of nerves that communicate within the central nervous system. When you're stressed out, the "fight or flight" response is activated and a cascade of biochemical reactions takes place.

For example, your central nervous system shuts down blood flow, which can affect the contractions of your digestive muscles, and decrease the secretion of enzymes needed for digestion. Stress can also cause your gastrointestinal system to get inflamed and make you susceptible to infection.

"Stress can affect every part of the digestive system," says Kenneth Koch, MD, medical director of the Digestive Health Center at Wake Forrest University Baptist Medical Center in Winston-Salem, N.C.

Koch goes on to explain that "Stress can cause your esophagus to go into spasms. It can increase the acid in your stomach causing indigestion. Stress can cause your colon to react in a way that gives you diarrhea or constipation."(1)

Reducing stress can go a long way towards improving your digestive health. In addition to moderate exercise, other stress reducers include relaxation therapies like yoga and meditation, and seeking the help of a mental health professional when needed.

One study found that people with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) found significant relief from pain, bloating and diarrhea from a therapy called Relaxation Response, developed at the Harvard Medical School.(2)

In another recent study, 70% of people with IBS saw improvement in their symptoms after 12 weeks of cognitive behavioral therapy.(3)

Probiotics Reduces Stress-Induced Intestinal Problems

In a third study, researchers at the University of Michigan found that while stress does not cause IBS, it does induce intestinal inflammation that can lead to chronic belly pain, loss of appetite and diarrhea.

According to findings published in Gastroenterology, stress suppresses an important component called an "inflammasome" which is needed to maintain normal gut microbiota. However, probiotics reversed the effect in animal models.

Probiotics are live bacteria cultures that help grow the "good" bacteria that live in your gut and keep pathogens in check, aid digestion and promote healthy immune function. University of Michigan researchers were able to identify the way stress significantly altered the composition of gut bacteria.

According to senior study author John Y. Kao, M.D., "The effect of stress could be protected with probiotics which reversed the inhibition of the inflammasome. This study reveals an important mechanism for explaining why treating IBS patients with probiotics makes sense."

At the end of the day, a certain amount of stress in life is unavoidable. If you are having symptoms of stress that are interfering with digestion, talk to your doctor. You may have a digestive problem that needs treatment. In addition, take a probiotic supplement like Prosentials every day. According to The World Health Organization, consuming probiotics on a daily basis helps strengthen the body’s natural defenses by providing friendly bacteria for the intestinal tract.(5)

What makes Prosentials unique is that it contains 6 potent probiotic strains to replenish your good bacteria, plus the fungal-fighting S. boulardii probiotic yeast. It works to neutralize and kill the toxins that can cause all sorts of digestive issues. Take it every day for optimal digestive health.


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How to Reduce Cholesterol Naturally

Strong circulation depends on a number of factors including a healthy heart, strong vein walls, and ideal levels of both good (HDL) and bad (LDL) cholesterol.

When cholesterol levels are at their ideal balance, blood flows freely throughout veins and arteries carrying oxygen and nutrients to the brain and other vital organs. If your cholesterol is high, lowering those levels is a critical part of improving your circulation as well as your overall health. Taking a more natural approach to lowering your cholesterol levels has a number of advantages. These include lowering the cost of medication, a decrease in unnecessary visits to the doctor’s office, and an increase in your overall health and well-being.

One of the best and easiest ways to start the process of reducing dangerously high levels of cholesterol is to get plenty of exercise.

Not surprisingly, regular physical activity has been shown to have an effect on the cholesterol levels in the body. Exercise, especially regular aerobic exercise can also be a great way to help burn calories, and maintain the body and weight that is right for you.

While researchers aren't exactly sure how exercise lowers cholesterol, they are beginning to have a clearer idea. What is known is that a healthy body weight and a healthy fat to muscle ratio for the body help to keep one’s cholesterol levels in a safe range.

What's more, when you're overweight, you tend to have a higher amount of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) in your blood. This type of lipoprotein has been linked to heart disease.

If you are just starting a regular exercise regimen, it's important to start slowly. Be sure to check in with your doctor to evaluate your current cardiovascular health. You might require blood tests or a treadmill test to see how your heart reacts when you exercise.

Beyond the benefits of lowering your cholesterol, there are other positives that come with exercising regularly. These include keeping your bones strong, improving your mood and circulation, and reducing your risk of cancer, diabetes, stroke, and obesity.

Eat More Heart-Healthy Foods

A heart-healthy diet is another great way to help reduce cholesterol naturally. While it can be challenging to change years of accumulated eating habits, the effort is worth it.

To begin, choose healthier fats. Saturated fats, the kind found in red meat and dairy products, raise your total cholesterol and the low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, also known as the "bad" cholesterol. As an alternative, choose leaner cuts of meat, low-fat dairy products and monounsaturated fats, which are found in olive, peanut and canola oils.

The next thing is to eliminate trans fats, which are found in fried foods and commercial baked products like cookies, crackers and cakes. One way to tell if a food contains trans fat is if it contains partially hydrogenated oil. Even though these foods may taste good, they're not good for your heart.

In addition, put away refined flour products as well and choose whole grain foods. Various nutrients found in whole grains promote heart health. Look for whole-grain breads and whole-wheat pasta. Choose brown rice instead of white rice or try quinoa, a high fiber, protein rich whole grain.

Don't forget to eat lots of fruits and vegetables, which are rich in dietary fiber and help lower cholesterol. Include a mixture of colors and consider including things like vegetable casseroles, soups and stir-fried dishes on the menu.

Other foods to include are those rich in omega-3 fatty acids such as salmon, walnuts and almonds. Omega 3s have been shown to reduce the "bad" cholesterol and reduce inflammation in the body.

Lastly, take a supplement high in bioflavonoids like Oraescin for optimal heart health. Taking Oraescin gives your arteries, capillaries, veins and heart great circulatory support.

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Are You At Risk for Shingles?

If you had chickenpox as a child or a young teen, you may think you're done with it. But without realizing it, you could be at risk for getting the disease known as "shingles".

In simple terms, the virus that caused your chickenpox can remain dormant in your nervous system. When your immune system is healthy and strong, it usually keeps the virus at bay. Aging and stress factors, however, can weaken your immune defenses and reactivate the virus, resulting in shingles.

Unfortunately, many people are either completely unaware of the disease, know very little about it and/or aren't aware of the risk factors.

A recent national survey by the American Pain Foundation found that over half of the respondents were not sure of the risk factors for shingles. Many of the respondents did not know about the relationship between chickenpox and shingles either.

While anyone who has had chickenpox can potentially develop shingles, 50% of the cases are among people over the age of 60. Stephen Tyring M.D., professor of medicine at the University of Texas Health Science Center in Houston, noted that the risk of shingles increases with age.

"With each decade, a person's immunity weakens, so that by 60 years of age, the likelihood of shingles significantly increases," says Tyring. "In fact, one out of two people who live to the age of 85 will have had shingles." (1)

In addition, if you have a family history of shingles, you may be more susceptible to developing the disease. In a report published in the journal Archives of Dermatology, Tyring and his research team identified family history as one reason why some people might be more susceptible to shingles. (2)

According to Tyring, "Your risk is double that of someone who has had no relatives with the virus. The estimate, however, is most valid for first degree relatives such as a mother, father or sibling."

How to Minimize Shingles Pain

The onset of shingles isn't always noticeable. You may experience a tingling sensation, itchiness or varying degrees of burning and pain. During the initial days of symptoms, blisters will burst and a rash will form, usually on one side of the body or face. The rash will typically heal in two to four weeks. In some cases, there might be longer-term nerve pain which can persist for months or even years after the initial rash has healed. The older you get, the more at risk you are for long-term nerve pain, which can be quite severe.

Although there is no known cure for shingles, there are ways you can relieve the symptoms.

For the rash, keep your skin as dry and clean as possible, which helps reduce the risk of bacterial infection. You may want to wear loose-fitting clothes to minimize any rubbing against the skin from clothes that are too tight.

To help boost your immunity to the virus that causes shingles, consider taking up Tai Chi, which is a traditional Chinese form of exercise. A study published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society found that Tai Chi may help older adults avoid getting shingles.(3)

Depending on the severity of the pain, an all-natural solution like Isoprex may provide relief. Isoprex not only helps relieve pain, it works safely and gently to stop dangerous inflammation in its tracks as well... without the side-effects or worries of over-the-counter and prescription pain medications.


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Important Flu Alert! How to Avoid Getting the Flu This Year

The cold and flu season typically runs from October through April often seeing its peak in February. The following information can help you get through these months without getting sick.

The scary statistics

• Up to 20% of the US gets the flu each year*
• As many as 23,000 people die each year from flu and pneumonia related illnesses each year in the US*
• 90% of deaths caused by flu and pneumonia related illnesses in the US are people over the age of 65*
• Worldwide, there are 3-5 million severe cases each year and 250,000-500,000 deaths caused by influenza* What is the difference between a bad cold and the flu?

Cold symptoms may include coughing, sneezing, runny nose and congestion. Influenza symptoms include cough, sore throat, fever/chills, fatigue, stuffy nose, body aches and headache. The flu lasts longer, is much more debilitating and could have serious affects to ongoing health than a cold.

Who is most susceptible?

While everyone is at risk of catching a cold or flu, the most susceptible are people with asthma, diabetes, heart disease and those who have had a stroke; people who have cancer, HIV or AIDS; pregnant women; adults age 65 and older; children younger than 5, but especially those younger than 2 years old.

8 ways to avoid the flu

1. Wash your hands after meeting people, using the bathroom and touching door knobs.
2. Also, wash your hands after touching elevator buttons; door knobs (especially the ones that lead in and out of restrooms); escalator railings; plane, train and bus seats; pens at work, the bank or grocery store; exercise machines at the gym.
3. Meditate to reduce stress levels and inflammation
4. Exercise regularly
5. Stay 6-10 feet away from people who are sick
6. Get at least 7 hours sleep each night
7. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth
8. Drink plenty of fluids even if you are not sick

What to do if you get sick:

• Drink plenty of fluids
• Wash your hands often
• Gargle, irrigate sinuses

Most importantly, stay home and rest. You can spread germs on any day before feeling sick and 5-7 days after.

How can you fight the flu?

The best ways to fight the flu is to strengthen your immunity by eating plenty of healthy foods such as: fresh fruits and fresh vegetables, especially brightly colored ones like red bell peppers, carrots, sweet potatoes, beets and dark leafy greens.

Also, almonds, salmon and mushrooms are good as well as herbs and spices like garlic, oregano, and ginger. Eat some dark chocolate and take a vitamin C supplement.

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5 Surprising Foods to Boost Your Brain

We’ve all heard that fish is brain food, especially the kind that is rich with omega-3s. Blueberries and spinach also have notable brain-boosting abilities. However, these aren’t the only foods which can help keep your brain strong and free of disease.

Red Wine
Certain compounds found in grape seeds may help prevent Alzheimer’s disease. A study in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease found that in mice, these compounds helped prevent the formation of proteins linked to the development of Alzheimer’s. Those same grape seed compounds are found in red wine, so wine may help protect the brain when consumed in moderation. If drinking wine does not appeal to you, a high quality resveratrol supplement like Revatrol may provide the same results.

Fully caffeinated coffee may also help protect against Alzheimer’s. A study done at the University of South Florida fed caffeine to mice specifically bred to develop Alzheimer’s disease as they aged; some mice received caffeinated coffee, some received decaf, and others were given plain caffeine. The mice who received regular coffee showed higher levels of a hormone called granulocyte colony stimulating factor, which reduces Alzheimer’s symptoms by increasing neuron production and connection. For humans, the useful dose would translate to about four cups of coffee spread throughout the day.

Citrus Fruit
While the vitamin C in citrus may or may not be useful in preventing colds, it seems that citrus fruit may help to prevent strokes. Flavones, found in oranges and grapefruit, seem to act as anti-inflammatories and improve the function of blood vessels. A study in Stroke reported that people who ate two or more servings of citrus each day over a period of 14 years had a 10% lower risk of a stroke than people who ate less. Be wary of choosing juice instead of whole fruit; many juices contain added sugar and the flavonoids are found in the pulp of the fruit.

Onions are full of antioxidants which may help prevent brain damage if a person has a stroke; the antioxidants can work to block the formation of oxygen compounds which damage the barrier between blood and brain. A study published in Nutrition reported feeding some mice an onion supplement. When researchers induced stroke in all the mice, the control group showed significantly higher brain damage than did the onion-fed group.

Eggs are rich in choline, a nutrient which is required to produce acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter which is linked to brain health and memory. A study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition looked at nearly 1400 adults and found that those who consumed the most choline performed best on memory tests. The subjects with high choline intake were also less likely to have signs of potential dementia such as blood vessel disease in the brain.

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Oxidative Stress and Free Radicals: The Silent Killers

It is generally well known that emotional and mental stress is not good for your health. Family and work challenges, financial stress and other life challenges can take a serious toll.

But there is another type of stress that is just as much a silent killer, and it's one that is relatively unknown. It's called oxidative stress.

It's somewhat of a paradox. We can't live without oxygen and yet it is also inherently dangerous to our existence. Left unchecked, oxidative stress can lead to all kinds of health problems including hardening of your arteries, stiffening of your joints, wrinkling of your skin and age spots, to name a few.

It can get worse, much worse, as oxidative stress is becoming increasingly recognized as a major contributing factor to over 200 diseases, including Alzheimer’s disease, cancer, cardiovascular disease, depression, diabetes, fibromyalgia, multiple sclerosis, and rheumatoid arthritis.

Think about what happens when you peel an apple and leave it out in the open for a half hour or so. It gets exposed to oxygen and turns brown. The same thing happens over time to the sheet metal on your car or the piping in your home... and the same process is happening inside your body.

In simple terms, oxygen is essential for life. Your body generates energy by combining oxygen with the food you eat. This internal combustion activity has a by-product, however, which is the creation of damaging and potentially life-threatening free radicals.

Free radicals are unstable molecules that damage your cells and over time, create disease in your body and accelerate the aging process.

If your body is unable to stop the spiraling free radical chain reaction (one molecule steals an electron from another molecule, which causes that imbalanced molecule to steal an electron from another molecule, causing that newly imbalanced molecule to steal an electron, etc.) oxidative stress results.

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Stopping Dangerous Free Radicals in Their Tracks

Oxidative stress has the potential to overpower your body's protective systems and cause chronic degenerative diseases, some of which are mentioned above.

It becomes a vicious cycle. Oxidative stress damages cellular proteins, membranes and genes and leads to systemic inflammation. When the damaged proteins, fats, cells, and DNA structures are not properly repaired, they can create further problems in cell function. At the worse end of the spectrum, that could be cancer.

Some free radicals are created internally and some you ingest from air pollution, food additives, cigarette smoke, and high-fat diets. It's difficult in this day and age to not be exposed to them.

Now when your body is healthy, it produces antioxidant enzymes such as SOD, catalase, and glutathione as a defense against the toxic effects of free radicals. As you grow older, however, the production of these antioxidants decreases. Consequently, your body ends up fighting a losing battle.

To fight aging and protect your cells and your health, you’ve got to neutralize as many free radicals as possible. One of the best ways to do this is by taking a supplement like Oraescin.

Bioflavonoids and antioxidants have been shown in studies to combat and suppress the generation of free radicals which cause oxidative stress and which promote inflammation. Oraescin is a breakthrough formula, used in Europe for decades, that works to strengthen vein walls and circulation by stopping dangerous free radicals in their tracks. It helps prevent oxidative stress and the damage it can cause.

Sex and Middle Age... Are You Still Having Fun?

If you think turning 45 has to mean the end of having fun in the bedroom, you'll be happy to learn of a new survey conducted by Zogby International on sex after age 45.

Sex can still be fun when you hit your middle age, but it may take a little more work.

Nearly 3,000 people age 45 and older were interviewed nationwide about changes in their sex lives. Perhaps this may come as a surprise -- researchers found that Americans over 45 are often unaware of what happens to their own sexuality as they age.

"In this country with the kind of media saturation we have and where sex is certainly no longer a taboo, it is surprising that people are not more aware of the potential for changes in their sexuality as they age”, says Michelle Van Gilder, director of international marketing for Zogby.

That said, nearly three out of five survey participants consider themselves sexy and desirable, despite a cultural obsession with youth. The survey was conducted with sex therapist Dr. Ruth Westheimer, best known as Dr. Ruth.

The numbers are revealing, as 73% of men and women said that after turning 45, they noticed changes in their sexual desire. Over two-thirds say they began experiencing differences in sexual functioning about the same time. About 50% say they were surprised by the changes in their sex lives and over a third were caught off guard by the changes.

Ignorance Is Not Bliss

According to Dr. Ruth, such ignorance is a hindrance to sexual bliss.

She went on to suggest that the need for sexual education is not limited to teens. Older men and women need information about what happens to their libido and bodies as they age.

"Somehow with all the talk, with all the television, the message is not going through as much as we need," Dr. Ruth says. "They believe they are always going to be 25, they believe the change of life doesn’t apply to them."

What's more, when properly educated and prepared for the changes in sexual functioning which occur over time, middle-aged folks "can learn to have sex in the morning, to not drink too much the day before, all kinds of things," she says.

Here are some of the interesting results from the survey...

-- 65% of men experienced noticeable loss of ability to have erections -- 45% of men took a drug for erectile dysfunction -- 34% of women reported that vaginal dryness lessened sexual satisfaction

On the positive side of things...

-- Survey participants said that less bed hopping meant less worrying about STDs -- 75% commented that they've discussed libido changes with their partner -- Over 50% of women say not worrying about birth control has had a positive effect on their sex lives

To help deal with unexpected changes in your libido, take a Resveratrol supplement every day. Resveratrol supports strong blood vessels by strengthening their walls. It also keeps damaged, stretched or stiff blood vessels from leaking. This all helps regulate blood flow and pressure, so that oxygen-carrying blood is delivered to your tissues and organs—including your penis.

That’s where Revatrol with its 100mg of erection-boosting Resveratrol comes in. It works to increase Nitric Oxide (NO) and the enzyme known as cGMP, which causes the tissues in the penis to relax so NO-rich blood can flow in and get you hard. Just one caplet a day gives your body the Resveratrol it needs to keep you ready for sex at a moment’s notice.

It’s the one supplement that won’t let you or your partner down.

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Are You At Risk of Getting Migraines?

If you've ever had a migraine headache, then you know how debilitating they can be. Migraine sufferers typically experience a diminished quality of life along with impaired physical, social and occupational functioning. The pain can be severe.

The statistics may startle you. Migraine afflicts an estimated 10% of the world's population. In the United States, The Institute of Medicine recently reported that nearly 40 million Americans suffer from migraines. (1)

At a recent meeting of the American Pain Society (APS), David Dodick, M.D. and professor of neurology at the Mayo Clinic in Phoenix, noted that migraines have a genetic and biological basis.

"Today we know that migraine is a largely inherited disorder characterized by physiological changes in the brain, and, if attacks occur with high frequency, structural alterations in the brain," Dodick said. (1)

So... are you at risk for getting migraine headaches? It may not be a twist of fate if you are experiencing them right now. There could be something else going on that is a contributing factor.

Some of the triggers can be managed, such as stress, lifestyle choices including smoking and drinking, and high blood pressure. But equally important are the factors you have no control over that can predispose you to the condition.

Having one of more of the predetermined risk factors for migraine headaches doesn't mean you will inevitably develop migraines. However, being aware of the risks will help you arm yourself with the knowledge that you need to prevent and treat migraines should they occur.

Migraine Risk Factors You Need to Know:

The risk factors you have little control over include the following:

Family history — If your parents had migraines, your risk may be increased by up to 75%. If possible, it can be helpful to talk to them about their experience, so you can set into place a plan for prevention. Your family history of migraines will also make the diagnostic process simpler.

Gender — If you are female, you are at greater risk to develop migraines. During childhood, boys and girls have the same chance of developing migraine headaches. However, once hormones take center stage, the risks to a female jump significantly. In fact, adult women are three times more likely than men to get migraines. (2)

Hormonal changes — If you are a woman who gets migraines, hormones may be the culprit. During the menstrual cycle each month, hormone fluctuations can cause migraines. Any stress that causes hormones to spike can cause a migraine to occur if a person is susceptible.

Ethnicity — North American Caucasians appear to have a higher risk of developing migraines than either African Americans or Asian Americans. Migraines are less common in Europe or South America and much less common in Africa or Asia. Studies haven't connected this with any conditions in the environment, food supply, or medical knowledge, only genetics.(3)

If you have one or more of these risk factors, talk to your doctor about possible preventative measures. Discuss all your options to keep migraines from becoming a part of your life. In fact, according to Dr. Dodick, "Some studies have shown that migraine attacks can be cut in half or more with preventive treatments."

In addition, keep a bottle of Isoprex on hand. Isoprex is an all natural pain relief formula that can help minimize headache pains... without the side effects or dangers of NSAIDs.


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Five Ways to a Healthy Gut

1. Increase Fiber Intake

Dietary fiber plays an important role in the health of our digestive tract. Besides lowering cholesterol, fiber also feeds the healthy bacteria and helps them to flourish. The best sources of dietary fiber are actually whole grains such as whole wheat, brown rice, and whole oats, along with beans, peas, lentils, nuts, and seeds, then fruits and vegetables. Shockingly, most people get only half of the daily recommended 20 to 35 grams fiber. But be careful to increase your fiber intake gradually, otherwise you’ll most likely experience some unpleasant and painful gas and bloating. Be sure to get plenty of fluids at the same time you eat fiber-rich foods in order to soften the fiber during transit. A hearty bowl of oatmeal and a cup of tea should move things along nicely.

2. Load up on Whole Fruits and Vegetables

Eating a variety of whole fruits and vegetables as opposed to fruit or veggie juice is a great way to get more fiber. Fruits like pears, blueberries, raspberries and apples all contain a minimum of 4 grams of fiber per serving. Vegetables such as red bell peppers, leafy greens, broccoli and sweet potatoes also have a hefty dose of fiber. The pulp of the fruit and veggies are what help scrub your digestive tract and allows better absorption of nutrients and antioxidants.

3. Try Yogurt for Lactose Intolerance

Research suggests that many people who are not able to properly digest lactose, the type of sugar in milk, can tolerate yogurt with live active cultures. Yogurt is relatively high in lactose, but the bacterial cultures used to make it produce some lactase, the enzyme needed to digest the sugar. Great news for those who are lactose-intolerant and looking for good sources of calcium!

4. Read Labels for Hidden (Lactose-Containing) Ingredients

Milk and foods made from milk are the only natural sources of lactose. But many prepared foods, including bread and other baked goods, processed breakfast cereals, instant potatoes and soups, margarine, lunch meats, salad dressing, candy, protein bars and powdered meal-replacement supplements contain milk derivatives. So be sure to read labels carefully if you are lactose intolerant.

5. Good Bacteria for Your Gut?

Probiotics are “friendly” bacteria found in the gut that help us digest foods and fight harmful bacteria. They also include live, active cultures used to ferment foods, such as yogurt. To get the potential benefits offered by probiotics, mix a cut-up banana into a cup of low-fat vanilla yogurt—with a “Live & Active Cultures” seal on it—for a midday snack or turn it into breakfast and add some granola. Try different kinds of yogurt to see which one works best for you. Mix fresh or frozen berries, peaches and banana with yogurt and a couple teaspoons of ground flax seeds for a delicious breakfast on the go or snack. For optimal levels of the good stuff, look for a high quality probiotic supplement that contains several different strains of yeasts and bacteria.

Prosentials: Suffering with nasty digestive problems? This probiotic formula can make a difference.

The Link Between Sleep and Heart Health

Forty million Americans suffer from sleep problems, and 29% report averaging less than six hours of sleep a night. 70 million say they suffer from insomnia, while loss of productivity resulting from sleep issues costs U.S. employers $18 million per year.

New research shows that not getting enough sleep may have more serious consequences than missing a day or two of work.

In a study reported in the Journal of the American Medical Association, researchers at the University of Chicago found that too little sleep can promote calcium and plaque buildup in the heart arteries. This buildup can ultimately cause heart attacks and strokes.

The research team documented for the first time the exact risk of not getting enough sleep, finding that one hour less on average each night can increase coronary calcium by 16%.

The study was comprised of a group of 495 men and women aged 35 to 47. The results of the study showed that 27% of those getting less than five hours of sleep each night showed plaque in their heart vessels. Of those sleeping five to seven hours a night, 11% had plaque while only 6% of subjects sleeping more than seven hours each night had evidence of plaque buildup.

Dr. Tracy Stevens, spokesperson for the American Heart Association and a cardiologist at Saint Luke's Mid-America Heart Institute goes further and states that "We have enough evidence from this study and others to show that it is important to include sleep in any discussion of heart disease."

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11 Year Study Finds that Insomniacs Are at Higher Risk for Heart Attacks

Insomnia can wreak havoc on your life. Chronic insomnia can last for months or years. Most people with chronic insomnia spend several nights a week struggling to fall asleep or stay asleep.

The results of a large-scale study investigating the connection between heart health and insomnia reinforce the findings of the University of Chicago team. Scientists at the Norwegian Institute of Science and Technology surveyed 52,610 men and women and follow up with the participants over a period of 11 years.

The results of the study were adjusted for several health and lifestyle factors, including age, sex, education, physical fitness, smoking, alcohol consumption and high blood pressure. What the researchers found was revealing:

• Study participants who had difficulty falling asleep had a 45% greater risk of heart attack compared to those who didn't have problems falling asleep.

• Participants having trouble staying asleep throughout the night had a 30% greater risk of heart attack than those participants able to sleep through the night.

• Those who woke feeling tired had a 27% higher risk of heart attack than people who woke feeling refreshed.

If you're having sleep problems, consider keeping a journal. By keeping regular track of bedtimes and wake times, as well as how you feel in the morning when you wake up, can give you a clear picture of how you're really sleeping. Check with your doctor is problems persist.

These and other studies are making it clear getting enough sleep could save your heart. Taking a supplement like Oraescin is another preventative step you can take to promote the overall health of your circulatory system.

Ways to Add Years to Your Life

We've been told that the only sure things are death and taxes. But just as creative accountants have helped many men triumph over their 1040s, we can help you outrun the reaper. Maybe it's a game you can't ultimately win. But by following these tips, you can send it into overtime.

Drink 5 8-Ounce Glasses of Water a Day Scientists at Loma Linda University found that men who drank this amount of H2O were 54 percent less likely to suffer a fatal heart attack than those who drank two glasses or less daily.

Take a Laugh Break Watching 15 minutes of funny video can improve bloodflow to your heart by 50 percent, report researchers at the University of Maryland. "This may reduce blood-clot formation, cholesterol deposition, and inflammation," says study author Michael Miller, M.D.

Don't Go to Work Sick Over a 3-year period, men who clocked in despite feeling under the weather had double the heart-attack risk of guys who stayed in bed, according to a U.K. study.

Put Out the Fire in Your Chest Untreated heartburn can lead to a heart attack, according to a study in the International Journal of Cardiology. Scientists discovered that as acid levels in the esophagus rise, the incidence of blocked bloodflow to the heart also rises by 20 percent. A natural remedy: Analyze your diet. Don't make a habit of drinking wine, juice, or carbonated beverages, all of which are highly acidic and may trigger heartburn, say South Carolina researchers.

Indulge Your Chocolate Craving In a 15-year study, Dutch scientists determined that men who ate just 4 grams of cocoa a day had half the risk of dying from heart disease than those who ate less. That's the equivalent of two 25-calorie Hershey's Kisses – an amount that can fit into any diet – even better, go for dark chocolate.

Say No to Froot Loops In a review of 53 studies, Australian researchers found that regularly eating cereal made from refined grains raises insulin and C-reactive protein, and lowers good cholesterol – all factors that boost your odds of developing heart disease. A better choice for your morning bowl: Post Shredded Wheat cereal, which is made from 100 percent whole grains and contains no sugar.

Take a Magnesium Supplement Over an 18-year period, French researchers determined that men with the highest blood levels of magnesium are 40 percent less likely to die of any cause than those with the lowest levels. Magnesium can make multivitamins too bulky, so add a 250 milligram (mg) pill to your daily regimen.

Burn 1,100 Calories a Week Duke University scientists discovered that this amount of exercise prevents the accumulation of visceral adipose tissue – the dangerous belly fat that causes arterial inflammation and hypertension. Falling short? Join a league: A recent British Medical Journal study reported that people who exercised in groups boosted their average calorie burn by 500 a week.

Take a Daily Multivitamin Researchers at the University of California at Berkeley discovered that this helps prevent the DNA damage that causes cancer.

Hit the Weights University of Michigan scientists found that men who completed three total-body weight workouts a week for 2 months lowered their diastolic blood pressure (the bottom number) by an average of eight points. That's enough to reduce the risk of stroke by 40 percent and heart attack by 15 percent.

Set a 3-Drink Limit Harvard researchers determined that downing more than three drinks in a 24-hour period increases your risk of atrial fibrillation, a condition that may boost your odds of a stroke fivefold during that time. An important note: When the average man pours himself a glass of wine, it's typically twice the size of a standard drink (4 ounces), report researchers at Duke University.

Plop an Alka-Seltzer If you think you're having a heart attack. It contains 325 milligrams of aspirin, the same as a regular aspirin, and begins fighting blood clots almost 3 minutes faster than a pill, according to a study in Thrombosis Research.

Call a Ride Walk-in patients wait almost twice as long in the E.R. as those who arrive by ambulance, according to a University of New Mexico study.

Treat a Killer Bee Sting You may not know if you're allergic to the venom of a bee, wasp, or hornet until you've already been stung. But if you start to experience the symptoms of a life-threatening reaction – hives, wheezing, abdominal cramping – you can save yourself in 3 steps: Step 1: Call 911. Step 2: Take a Benadryl. Step 3: Lie on your back and elevate your legs while you wait for help, says Steven Kernerman, D.O., an allergist at the Spokane Allergy and Asthma Clinic. An allergic reaction can constrict your blood vessels, and this three-step strategy counteracts that by improving blood flow to your heart.

Eat Produce at Every Meal If you consume more than five servings of fruits and vegetables per day, you have a 26 percent lower risk of stroke than people who eat fewer than three servings, according to a recent U.K. study.

Monitor Your Blood Sugar Johns Hopkins University researchers recently determined that people with the highest blood-sugar levels have twice the risk of heart disease as those with the lowest. A warning sign: fasting blood sugar that's greater than 100 mg per deciliter.

Think Positive Purdue scientists discovered that constant worrying shortens your life span by 16 years.

The Link Between High Blood Pressure and a Healthy Sex Life

High blood pressure is dangerous and affects many of your daily activities. One of the problems with high blood pressure is that if you have it, you may not feel it. As a result, the absence of symptoms makes it a silent killer, one that can be easy to ignore.

According to the Harvard Heart Letter, high blood pressure can also affect your sex life. It can alter circulation in your body and damage the inner lining of arteries causing them to lose their elasticity making them less able to handle the blood flow to the penis.

Ironically, if you’re taking blood pressure medicine, you have to be careful about taking drugs for erection problems. The combination of the two can lead to a significant and potentially life-threatening drop in blood pressure.

According to WebMD, some types of blood pressure drugs can actually cause erectile dysfunction. Because of this, some men find it difficult to stay on their medication. In fact, it’s estimated that 70% of men who experience side effects from taking high blood pressure medicine (such as problems with erections) stop taking it.

Getting an erection is a highly orchestrated dance between nerves, hormones, blood vessels and psychological factors. Some blood pressure medicines interfere with the production of testosterone, affecting this dance and reducing your sex drive.

Your ability to ejaculate can also be affected if you are taking high blood pressure drugs. When you have an orgasm, the bladder neck closes which allows the semen to flow out of through the penis. Some of the medicines can interfere with this mechanism and make it difficult to ejaculate.

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Resveratrol For Better Sex

The good news is that researchers at the UC Davis Med School found that Resveratrol reduces blood pressure. And the higher study participant’s LDL level, the greater drop they experienced. So what is it about resveratrol that makes it so special?

To begin, the skin and the seeds of red wine grapes are also the richest known source of oligomeric proanthocyanadins, or OPCs for short.

OPCs are powerful compounds that fight free radicals. They are crucial for supporting healthy circulation, and perform a variety of roles throughout the body that are essential to optimal health.

For example, OPCs act as gentle cardiovascular cleansing agents that keep your heart and arteries clean and healthy.They improve blood flow in your brain and body, and promote normal blood pressure and cholesterol levels.

Essentially, resveratrol is a vasodilator—which means it opens up your arteries and capillaries to rush more blood and oxygen to your organs. Taking resveratrol gives your arteries, capillaries, veins and heart great circulatory support—without the headache or dizziness often associated with prescription drugs.

Resveratrol supports strong blood vessels by strengthen-ing their walls. It also keeps damaged, stretched or stiff blood vessels from leaking. This all helps regulate blood flow and pressure, so that oxygen- carrying blood is delivered to your tissues and organs—including your penis.

While you should always consult with your doctor about your high blood pressure concerns, an effective way to get your OPCs is by taking a resveratrol supplement such as Revatrol. Revatrol contains the highest amount of OPCs of any resveratrol supplement on the market – an astonishing 95%.

Take Care of Your Heart!

It goes without saying that as your heart goes, so goes your health. The statistics are sobering. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 600,000 people die of heart disease in the U.S. per year, making it the leading cause of death for both men and women. What’s more, 935,000 Americans have a heart attack each year as well. For 610,000 of these people, it’s their first heart attack, while the others have already had one.

In addition, heart failure, which limits the heart’s ability to pump blood and oxygen throughout the body, affects 5,700,000 people in the US. To avoid becoming another statistic, common sense dictates that you practice healthy heart habits now.

To being, exercise regularly. A regular workout is not only beneficial for your heart; it can also do wonders for your waistline. Take more walks, go for a bike ride or enjoy a few laps in the pool. If need be, check with your doctor before beginning an exercise routine.

Next up is your diet. Eat a healthy assortment of vegetables and fruits to get the vitamins and minerals your body needs. Avoid foods drowned in heavy fats. Add fish or lean chicken for a low-fat meal.

Also, make sure you’re getting a good night’s sleep, which is vital to good heart health. Researchers are finding a correlation between lack of sleep and developing certain heart conditions. If you’re having problems sleeping, see your doctor. Don’t lose sleep over not sleeping!

Lastly, reduce your stress. Numerous studies have linked chronic stress to increased risk of heart problems. When you are under stress, you’re often not as careful about what you eat, you may not exercise, etc. Consider taking up yoga, meditation or other relaxation techniques as part of your heart health regimen.

A Healthy Heart Depends On Good Circulation.

There’s No Way Around It! You see, virtually every aspect of your health depends on good circulation. Besides your heart, that includes organs like your brain, lungs, eyes, and skin along with metabolic functions like blood pressure, energy levels, sex drive, and blood sugar.

Faltering circulation is the last thing you want. After all, age is already taking its natural toll on your body. Depriving your organs of life-giving blood only makes matters worse. The fundamentals of circulation are simple. Arteries carry oxygen-rich blood throughout your body, and veins return the oxygen-depleted blood back to the heart.

Only 40% of your blood is in your arteries at any given moment. A full 60% of your blood is in your veins. So when your veins begin to weaken, it’s no surprise that you’ll see and feel the effects.

Please Don’t Ignore the Signs of Weakening Circulation

Poor circulation is no laughing matter. What begins as a mild annoyance can progress into life-changing problems like a slow-motion train wreck. The swelling and heaviness take their toll on your mobility. The simplest tasks can become difficult, like getting in and out of a car or going to the bathroom. Just shopping for groceries becomes a test of your strength and stamina.

The rest of your body pays the price, too.

Mental fog rolls in. Your organs and tissues get robbed of life-giving oxygen and nutrition, and you feel sluggish, fatigued, and weak. And certainly, you can never overlook the risk of potentially devastating blood clots.

If you’re looking forward to a long, healthy, and independent life, you want healthy circulation that’s firing on all cylinders. That’s where Oraescin comes in. It’s truly the lifeline for your entire body, from head to toe.

Important Stroke Information for Women

About 700,000 people suffer a stroke each year in the United States, with stroke being the third leading cause of deaths. Remarkably, studies show that up to 80 percent of strokes can be prevented.

What's important is that you learn how to recognize and respond to the signs and symptoms of a stroke. Along with this, it's important that you learn how to manage your risk of getting a stroke as well.

To begin, women should consider drinking something other than soda pop. Researchers at Osaka University in Japan found that women who drink just one soft drink each day dramatically raised their risk of suffering a deadly stroke by 83%. (1)

The Japanese researchers tracked the eating habits of nearly 40,000 men and women between the ages of 40 and 59 for a period of 18 years. This included how many soft drinks they consumed. During the course of the study, almost 2,000 of the participants suffered a stroke.

When the study period ended, the soda consumption of those who had strokes was compared with those who didn't have a stroke. The results were startling.

In particular, researchers found that the women drinking soda every day were at a much higher risk of suffering what's called an "ischemic" stroke. This type of stroke occurs when a weakened blood vessel bursts and causes hemorrhaging inside the brain.

What's more, it didn't matter if the participants were drinking regular or diet sodas, as the risk was equally high. As the Japanese researchers noted, "Soft drink intake was positively associated with risk of ischemic stroke for women".

Raise that Glass of Wine in a Toast to Stroke Prevention

On the other side of the coin, another study has found that drinking a glass of wine every day may help reduce the risk of stroke in women.

Published in the journal Stroke, a decades-long study of 84,000 women found that women who had a glass of wine every day were at less risk to suffer a stroke than women who abstained from drinking.

Specifically, the women who drank about a half glass of wine per day were 17 percent less likely to have a stroke, while those who drink a full glass per day reduced their risk of stroke by 21 percent. (2)

Researchers noted that the risk of stroke did not lessen further when the women drank more than a glass of wine per day. The lead researcher on the study, Dr. Monik Jimenez, commented although drinking wine can help reduce the risk of stroke, moderation is always advised.

"Higher intake can lead to high blood pressure and atrial fibrillation which are both risk factors for stoke," said Dr. Jimenez. "Our findings really stress moderation for women who do drink."

Another study published in the same journal, Stroke, found that a diet that includes oranges and grapefruits may also reduce the risk of stroke in women.(3) The study, which followed 69,622 women for 14 years, found that the women who ate the most citrus fruit had a 19 percent lower risk of having an ischemic stroke than women who ate the least.

To help strengthen your body's defense against heart problems, take Revatrol daily. In addition to containing 100mg of Trans-Resveratrol, which is a potent form of Red Wine extract, Revatrol gives your body all the heart, artery, cholesterol and cellular benefits of 50 bottles of red wine.





Foods That Can Lower Testosterone Levels

A study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism suggests that 25% of men over the age of 30 have low testosterone levels, and that one out of every 20 men have clinical symptoms linked to such a deficiency.

The numbers are rising as well. The same study predicts that by the year 2025, there may be as many as 6.5 million American men between the age of 30 and 79 diagnosed with low testosterone, up 38% from year 2000 estimates.(1)

Low testosterone can put a real damper on your life, leading to depression, fatigue, reduced sex drive and much more.

However, what you may not realize is that the food you're eating can be a contributing factor to your "low T". The following two nutrients when consumed excessively, have been found to contribute to low testosterone.

Fiber — Fiber helps keeps your bowels healthy, regulates blood glucose levels, allows you to get maximum nutrition from the foods you eat and much more.

However, two different studies published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism and the Journal of Steroid Biochemistry have both linked a low fat/high fiber diet with reduced testosterone levels. (2) (3) Keeping your fiber consumption under control can help keep your testosterone levels from decreasing.

Isoflavones — Isoflavones are a group of health-boosting phytonutrients found predominantly in soybeans and soy-based products. They act as antioxidants in your body, boost your blood, help protect against cancer and more.

Nonetheless, a study published in Nutrition and Cancer found that eating isoflavones can also lower your testosterone levels. (4) To help keep your testosterone levels from decreasing, it's best to consume isoflavones in moderation.

Eat Less of These Foods

Fruits, vegetables and whole grain products all contain high levels of fiber, while soy-based products are rich in isoflavones. However, the four foods listed below contain extremely high levels of these potentially testosterone-lowering nutrients:

Bran Flakes — Bran flakes are a nutritious breakfast cereal. However, if you’re trying to reduce your fiber intake, they’re not the best choice, with a 30g serving packing 5g of fiber.

Navy Beans — Navy beans are a top quality protein source and go great with salads and hot meals alike. However, they also pack 19g of fiber per cup, so if you want to keep your testosterone levels high, you'll want to limit your consumption of them.

Soy Beans — Soy beans contain over 25% of the RDA for 13 different health boosting nutrients. However, a single cup of these nutritious beans also packs 10g of fiber and 240mg of isoflavones. Consequently, if you want to maintain healthy testosterone levels, consider limiting the amount of soy products you eat.

Whole Wheat Bread — Generally speaking whole wheat bread is better for you than most other types of bread on the market. However, due to its fiber content (3g of fiber per slice), it’s something you may want to skip if you’re trying to boost your testosterone levels.

If you’re eating large amounts of the foods listed above, and you have low testosterone, they could be a contributing factor. Consider cutting back on these foods while you work on normalizing your testosterone levels.

Also, don't forget to take T-Boost every day as well. The clinically tested ingredients in T-Boost have been carefully chosen to help improve testosterone levels, keep your sex-drive alive, promote strong muscles and bones, and keep your heart and body healthy. Don't let your supply run out.


Order Today -- T-Boost: Experts Recommend Testosterone for Better Sex, Health, and Vitality

When Good Medicine Goes Bad... The Dark Side of Antibiotics

Antibiotics were hailed as “miracle drugs” when they first burst onto the scene in 1942 with the introduction of penicillin. Doctors were finally able to subdue life-threatening infections with a single magic bullet.

It was a blessing—or so we thought.

For a long time, the medical mainstream did its best to ignore the frightening fact that the microbes were fighting back. Today, antibiotic resistance is headline news. The rise of “super bugs” like MRSA, that can be deadly no matter what antibiotics we throw at them, is practically common knowledge.

In addition, there is another side effect of antibiotics that may ultimately prove more deadly than the rise of the "super bugs" and it's this -- antibiotics don’t discriminate.

Instead, they kill all bacteria in their path. Not just the pathogenic germs that cause illness but also the nonpathogenic “good” bacteria in your gut that are absolutely critical to health.

Today’s wide-spectrum antibiotics like the penicillins, tetracyclines, sulfonamides and aminoglycosides are the biological equivalent of a drive-by shooting. Everything takes a bullet, not just the targeted germs. The collateral damage to your intestinal ecology can be significant and long-lasting.

Even if you took antibiotics years ago, your digestive system could still be comprised. And when the good bacteria are wiped out, it opens the door for toxic fungi Candida and toxic bacteria Clostridia difficile to take over.

Bouts of diarrhea and damage to the colon can result... as well as problems like yeast infections, colds and other immune problems, skin problems, mood swings and more.

Overuse of Antibiotics Kills the Good Bacteria Essential for Your Digestive and Immune Health

To your detriment, doctors have ignored this kill-off for decades. In fact, up to 25% of people taking antibiotics experience the immediate side-effect of diarrhea.(1) But that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

Here are some additional facts that highlight the risk...

• People who take a lot of antibiotics have much higher incidences of colds and flu.(2) This happens because the kill-off of good bacteria leads to a significantly weaker immune system.

• Microflora kill-off by antibiotics is directly tied to the epidemic rise in Clostridium difficile infections that strike 3 million people and kill up to 20,000 victims every year.(3) Even a single course of antibiotics can leave you vulnerable.

• Large-scale studies reveal an alarming correlation between antibiotics intake and increased cancer risk due to the destruction of the microflora that are critical to immune health.

For decades, doctors have willfully ignored the damage done by antibiotics to the beneficial bacteria in the gut. In their eagerness to root out the bad guys, they’ve overlooked the fact that the good guys are being killed too.

In other words, they’ve been bombing the village to protect the people... but the village of your intestines is virtually destroyed in the process.

Until the medical establishment publicly acknowledges the threat that antibiotics pose and act accordingly, you're on your own. And that means taking steps to support your microflora with every healthy means available.

According to The World Health Organization, consuming probiotics on a daily basis helps strengthen the body’s natural defenses by providing friendly bacteria for the intestinal tract.(4)

The solution is to take a probiotic supplement like Prosentials. It is designed to help balance and protect your gut from the damaging effects of antibiotics.

(1) Ibid., Linder.

(2) Margolis, DJ. Antibiotics, acne, and upper respiratory tract infections. LDI Issue Brief. 2006 Feb;11(4):1-4.

(3) Parker-Pope, T. Stomach Bug Crystallizes an Antibiotic Threat. The New York Times. April 14, 2009.


Prosentials: Suffering with nasty digestive problems? This probiotic formula can make a difference.

7 Foods for Healthy Aging and Longevity

Can you add years to your life by making smarter food choices? Yes! There are many variables involved in how long you live, but by following a healthy lifestyle, staying active and eating a nutrient-packed diet, you can help slow the aging process and perhaps even stave off age-related diseases, including osteoporosis, diabetes and heart disease.

Start right now by including more of these 7 antioxidant-rich foods in your diet. Here’s to your good health!

1. Olive Oil

Four decades ago, researchers concluded that the monounsaturated fats in olive oil were largely responsible for the low rates of heart disease and cancer on the Greek island of Crete. Now we know that olive oil also contains polyphenols, powerful antioxidants that may help prevent age-related diseases.

2. Yogurt

While the age-defying powers of yogurt never have been proven directly, yogurt is rich in calcium, which helps protect against osteoporosis and contains “good bacteria” that help maintain gut health and diminish the incidence of age-related intestinal illness.

3. Fish

Fish such as tuna, salmon and mackerel is an abundant source of omega-3 fats, which help prevent cholesterol buildup in arteries and protect against abnormal heart rhythms.

4. Chocolate

Cocoa is unusually rich in flavanols that help preserve the healthy function of blood vessels. Maintaining youthful blood vessels lowers risk of high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, kidney disease and dementia. Enjoy a serving of dark chocolate containing 60% cacao or more each day.

5. Nuts

Nuts are rich sources of unsaturated fats, so they offer benefits similar to those associated with olive oil. They’re also concentrated sources of vitamins, minerals and other phytochemicals, including antioxidants.

6. Wine

Drinking alcohol in moderation protects against heart disease, diabetes and age-related memory loss. Any kind of alcoholic beverage seems to provide such benefits, but red wine has been the focus of much of the research. Red wine contains resveratrol, a compound that likely contributes to its benefits—and, according to animal studies, may activate genes that slow cellular aging.

7. Blueberries

In a landmark study published in 1999, researchers at Tufts University’s Jean Mayer Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging fed rats blueberry extract for a period of time that in “rat lives” is equivalent to 10 human years. These rats outperformed other rats fed regular chow on tests of balance and coordination when they reached old age. Compounds in blueberries (and other berries) mitigate inflammation and oxidative damage, which are associated with age-related deficits in memory and motor function.

New Hope for Osteoarthritis Sufferers

Osteoarthritis (OA) is a painful and debilitating joint disease that affects 27 million Americans.

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), one in two Americans will get some form of OA in their lifetime. In addition, it's estimated that 1 out of every 2 will get symptomatic knee OA in their lifetime as well.(1)

What's more, it's estimated that your risk of getting knee OA increases to 57% if you have had a past knee injury. In addition, your risk goes up to 66% if you suffer from obesity.

Medically speaking, OA is a joint disease that mostly affects the cartilage, which is the soft tissue that surrounds the bones in your joints. When you have OA, the cartilage breaks down and wears away, allowing the bones to rub directly against each other.

It's this rubbing that causes you pain and causes the joint to swell, resulting in a loss of motion and mobility. Bone spurs may grow on the edges of the bones, and bits of bone or cartilage can break off and float around inside the joint space. As you might imagine, this can be quite painful.

The CDC goes on to report that many people fail to be proactive because they believe arthritis is something that happens as you age... and that you have to learn to live with the aches and pains.(2)

The good news is that unless you have a family history of arthritis, such as one or both of your parents having OA, you don't have to needlessly suffer. And perhaps most importantly, you can take steps to prevent OA from developing in the first place.

Could a Cure For Osteoarthritis Be On the Way?

A new study, reported in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, suggests that researchers may be closing in on a way to eliminate the pain associated with OA.

The study was conducted at Rush University Medical Center in collaboration with researchers at Northwestern University, both in Illinois. What makes this particular study so important is that researchers focused on the "pain pathway" rather than the "cartilage breakdown pathway". Using a surgical mouse model, the medical researchers were able to track the development of both pain behaviors and the molecular events taking place in the nerves. Then, they correlated the data over an extended period of time.

In the assessment of the data, they looked at changes in the nerve ganglia that carry pain signals to the brain. They were able to identify the mechanism that is central to the development of OA pain.

To confirm their findings, the researchers blocked the mechanism in the mice at nine weeks after surgery. They found that this reversed the decrease in the movement-provoked pain behavior observed in the mice that didn't have the mechanism blocked.(3)

The belief is that the research could have major implications for future treatment of OA, especially for those in whom the condition has become extremely debilitating. However, it's too early to tell if this research will lead to a permanent cure to OA.

With that said, and depending on the severity of your pain, an all-natural solution like Isoprex can provide immediate joint pain relief. It works safely and gently to stop dangerous pain-causing inflammation in its tracks... without any side-effects.



(2) ibid.


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What Do Resveratrol and Tomatoes Have In Common?

Stroke-related news for both men and women that can potentially save your life...

Below are some noteworthy facts from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention's website.(1)

• Stroke kills nearly 130,000 Americans each year.
• More than 795,000 people in the United States have a stroke every year.
• About 87% of all strokes are ischemic, which result when blood supply to the brain is cut off.
• Stroke is a leading cause of serious long-term disability.

It's also important to know the risk factors. Topping the list are high blood pressure, high LDL cholesterol, and smoking. 49% of Americans have at least one of these three risk factors.

In addition, there are several other medical conditions and lifestyle choices that can put you at a higher risk for stroke including diabetes, obesity, poor diet, lack of physical activity and excessive alcohol use.

OK... now that you're armed with some facts, let's look at some recent research that may help you reduce your risk of getting a stroke.

"I'll Take Another Helping of Spaghetti, Please!"

Next time you're at an Italian restaurant, consider ordering the spaghetti. That's because a recent study published in the journal Neurology found that eating tomatoes, in particular cooked tomatoes, may help reduce your risk of stroke.

Researchers from the University of Eastern Finland in Kuopio tested the level of lycopene in the blood of more than 1,000 Finnish men aged 46 to 65, starting in 1991. The men were followed on average for more than a decade to record the number who had strokes.

The study found that those with the highest levels of lycopene in their blood were 55% less likely to have a stroke than their counterparts who had the lowest amounts.(2)

The author of the study, Jouni Karppi, suggests that lycopene helps protect the brain by soaking up free radicals that can damage cells. "A diet containing tomatoes... a few times a week would be good for our health" Karppi goes on to say.

While the research is not 100% conclusive, it's one more reason to eat more fruits and vegetables, including tomatoes, as part of your regular diet.

Resveratrol May Help Shield the Brain From Stroke Damage

A study published in the journal Experimental Neurology reports how resveratrol may help shield the brain from stroke damage.

Researchers suggest that resveratrol increases levels of heme oxygenase, an enzyme already known to shield nerve cells in the brain from damage. When the stroke hits, the brain is ready to protect itself because of elevated enzyme levels.

Resveratrol appears to jump-start the protective enzymatic system that is present within the cells.

"Our study adds to evidence that resveratrol can potentially build brain resistance to ischemic stroke," says lead author Sylvain Doré, Ph.D., an associate professor of anesthesiology and critical care medicine at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.(3)

Taking a resveratrol supplement like Revatrol... as well as adding more tomatoes to your diet... are simple steps you can take to help reduce your risk of stroke and potentially limit the damage a stroke might cause.

Combined with the additional antioxidants Alpha Lipoic Acid, Acetyl-L-Carnitine and Quercetine, Revatrol is designed to give your body what it needs for optimal health.



(2) ttp://


Revatrol: A Unique 100mg Resveratrol, 95% OPCs, plus Key Antioxidants

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Are You Getting Enough ZZZs?

Researchers Find Link Between Sleep and Testosterone Levels

Sleep disorders affect millions of senior citizens. Lack of sleep can make the treatment of age-related health issues such as arthritis and heart disease more difficult.

In a study presented at the American Academy of Neurology Annual Meeting, researchers from the Mayo Clinic found that sleep problems among the elderly are prevalent.

The researchers worked with 892 elderly participants, age 70-89, and found that 59% had a sleep disorder other than insomnia. 32% of the participants had sleep-related leg cramps.(1)

What's more, a National Sleep Foundation (NSF) survey found that poor sleep among the elderly often goes unnoticed by the medical community. Of the 67% who reported frequent sleep problems, only one in eight said their sleep problems were diagnosed.(2)

"In spite of the emerging science linking sleep and health, only a small fraction of the many reported sleep complaints of older adults are actually diagnosed and treated," says NSF President, James K. Walsh, PhD.

Two recent studies are finding that lack of sleep and poor quality sleep is linked to low testosterone as well, reinforcing the importance of getting a good night's sleep.

In the first of the two studies, researcher Zoran Sekerovic, a graduate student from the University of Montreal, looked at whether sleep quality and low testosterone in men over 50 are linked. His findings were presented at the annual conference of the Association Francophone Pour le Savoir (ACFAS).(3)

Specifically, Sekerovic discovered a link between testosterone levels in men over 50 and the quality of their deep sleep, considered Phases III and IV of the sleep cycle. This is important, because as Sekerovic says, "Deep sleep is when the recuperation of body and mind is optimal."

To put this in perspective, deep sleep represents 10 to 20 percent of total sleep in young men, whereas by age 50, it decreases to five to seven percent. It can disappear completely for men over 60.

Sekerovic suggests decreasing testosterone levels are what impact sleep, and not the other way around.

The Sleep-Testosterone Connection Begins Early

The second study, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), found that lack of sleep significantly lowers a younger man's testosterone levels. (4) So much so that skipping sleep reduces a young man's testosterone levels by the same amount as aging 10 to 15 years.

Ten young men, with an average age of 24 years old, were chosen for the study. They had to pass a variety of tests to screen for endocrine or psychiatric disorders and sleep problems in advance.

During the study, each of the participants spent three nights in the lab sleeping for up to ten hours, followed by eight nights sleeping less than five hours. Researchers could tell after just a single week that sleep loss was linked to lower testosterone levels.

"As research progresses, low sleep duration and poor sleep quality are increasingly recognized as endocrine disruptors," said Eve Van Cauter, PhD and director of the study.

It's clear that getting sufficient sleep is vital to maintaining healthy testosterone levels, whether you're young or old. Shoot for 7-8 hours of sleep each night and stay away from eating late at night or drinking too much caffeine.

Also, remember to take T-Boost every day. It supports your body in making more of its natural supply of testosterone, lifting your energy so that you have more drive... no matter what your age.





Order Today -- T-Boost: Experts Recommend Testosterone for Better Sex, Health, and Vitality

Finding Relief from TMJ Pain

According to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR), TMJ disorders are the second most common pain-causing musculoskeletal conditions after chronic low back pain.(1)

Temporomandibular joint disorders, commonly known as TMJ disorders or just TMJ, refer to a number of health conditions that involve the joints around your jaw and the related areas around the joint.

These include the joint cartilage, muscles of the jaw, face and neck, nearby ligaments and nerves, along with your teeth. You can feel these joints move when you place your fingers in front of your ears while you open and close your mouth.

TMJ disorders affect millions of Americans, with estimates that as many as 1/3 of all adults report having one or more of the symptoms.(2)

While the cause of TMJ is not entirely clear, injury to the jaw or temoromandibular joint as well as trauma to the muscles of the head or neck can trigger TMJ. TMJ can also arise from grinding or clenching of the teeth, which puts pressure on the jaw joints.

Poor posture can contribute to TMJ symptoms as well. For example, if you work at a computer, or if you're on the telephone a lot, holding your head forward or in an awkward angle strains the muscles of the face and neck. Other causative factors may include stress or anxiety, poor diet, and lack of sleep.

For example, if you suffer from chronic stress, your facial and jaw muscles can tighten up. When this happens, you may start grinding your teeth, which then affects the jaw joints. Sometimes TMJ can result if you habitually chew gum or bite your nails.

How to Recognize TMJ Symptoms and Manage the Pain

The severe pain and discomfort associated with TMJ can be temporary, or it can last for many years. For many people, the symptoms don't last long and may go away little or no treatment. Some of the common symptoms of TMJ disorders include:

• Pain or tenderness in the face, jaw joint area, neck and shoulders
• Pain or tenderness around the ear when you chew or open your mouth wide
• Clicking or popping sounds when opening or closing the mouth
• Difficulty chewing or a sudden uncomfortable bite
• Swelling on one or both sides of your face

Toothaches, headaches, neck aches, dizziness, earaches, hearing problems, upper shoulder pain, and ringing in the ears (tinnitis) may also be symptomatic of TMJ.(3)

To minimize TMJ pain, rest your jaw and make a conscious effort to not open your mouth too wide when yawning or laughing. Avoid any harmful chewing or nail-biting habits you may have. Eating soft foods like yogurt, soup, mashed or pureed vegetables and fruit can also provide some relief.

Sleeping with or wearing a mouth or bite guard can prevent you from grinding your teeth at night and reduce pain. Stress management techniques like yoga, deep breathing and meditation can also help, as can getting massage for the neck, shoulders, face and head.

Lastly, for pain relief, choose Isoprex. Isoprex helps relieve joint pain without any side effects. It is an all natural supplement that contains powerful ingredients scientifically proven to help relieve neck aches and sore muscles.

The ingredients in Isoprex have all been shown to be safe – and many of them work as well or better than dangerous over-the-counter and prescription pain pills. Keep a bottle in your medicine cabinet at all times.




Deal of the Day -- Isoprex: A pain-halting formula that works naturally

10 super foods to help improve blood circulation

The following foods are thought to help healthy circulation


Oranges and other citrus fruits high vitamin C are natural blood thinners and are said to strengthen capillary walls and prevent plaque build-up which leads to poor circulation.

Dark Chocolate

Cocoa contains flavonoids which is naturally found in plants and fruits and has been well linked to improving blood circulation. A study published in the Circulation Journal showed that dark chocolate rich in natural flavonoids improved blood circulation when compared with white chocolate with no flavonoids.

Cayenne pepper

Cayenne is available as a fresh pepper or dried spice and has been associated with increasing metabolic rate and strengthening arteries and blood vessels. Cayenne pepper is best eaten raw in salads or juiced.

Sunflower seeds

Sunflower seeds are rich in vitamin E which is shown to help keep blood clots from forming. They are great at helping improve circulation. Likewise so are foods such as olives, nuts and pumpkin seeds.

Root Ginger

Ginger is known for helping nausea and digestion problems as well as increasing blood circulation. Ginger can be eaten raw or added to foods or why not try ginger tea.


Garlic has many uses and one of them is it cleanses the blood and helps prevent plaque build-up. Other foods in the bulb group such as radishes, onions and leeks are also good at stimulating blood flow.

Ginkgo Biloba

One of the world's oldest surviving tree species, Ginkgo biloba dilates blood vessels and in doing so increases blood flow. It is also thought to increase blood flow to the brain.

Goji Berries

Goji berries can be found in natural health stores and look similar to raisins. They are high in fiber to help boost the immune system as well as increasing blood circulation.


Watermelons are rich in lycopene which is a natural antioxidant linked to improving circulation. Lycopene is a natural pigment which gives certain foods their reddish color. Tomatoes, pink grapefruit and apricots also contain lycopene.

Salmon and avocados

Both salmon and avocados contain heart-healthy omega 3 fatty acids which research has shown to support the cardiovascular system and increase blood circulation.

Top 10 Reasons to Have Sex Tonight

When you're in the mood, it's a sure bet that the last thing on your mind is boosting your immune system or maintaining a healthy weight. Yet good sex offers those health benefits and more.

That's a surprise to many people, says Joy Davidson, PhD, a New York psychologist and sex therapist. "Of course, sex is everywhere in the media," she says. "But the idea that we are vital, sexual creatures is still looked at in some cases with disgust or in other cases a bit of embarrassment. So to really take a look at how our sexuality adds to our life and enhances our life and our health, both physical and psychological, is eye-opening for many people." Sex does a body good in a number of ways, according to Davidson and other experts. The benefits aren't just anecdotal or hearsay -- each of these 10 health benefits of sex is backed by scientific scrutiny.

Among the benefits of healthy loving in a relationship:

1. Sex Relieves Stress

A big health benefit of sex is lower blood pressure and overall stress reduction, according to researchers from Scotland who reported their findings in the journal Biological Psychology. They studied 24 women and 22 men who kept records of their sexual activity. Then the researchers subjected them to stressful situations -- such as speaking in public and doing verbal arithmetic -- and noted their blood pressure response to stress.

Those who had intercourse had better responses to stress than those who engaged in other sexual behaviors or abstained.

Another study published in the same journal found that frequent intercourse was associated with lower diastolic blood pressure in cohabiting participants. Yet other research found a link between partner hugs and lower blood pressure in women.

2. Sex Boosts Immunity

Good sexual health may mean better physical health. Having sex once or twice a week has been linked with higher levels of an antibody called immunoglobulin A or IgA, which can protect you from getting colds and other infections. Scientists at Wilkes University in Wilkes-Barre, PA, took samples of saliva, which contain IgA, from 112 college students who reported the frequency of sex they had.

Those in the "frequent" group -- once or twice a week -- had higher levels of IgA than those in the other three groups -- who reported being abstinent, having sex less than once a week, or having it very often, three or more times weekly.

3. Sex Burns Calories

Thirty minutes of sex burns 85 calories or more. It may not sound like much, but it adds up: 42 half-hour sessions will burn 3,570 calories, more than enough to lose a pound. Doubling up, you could drop that pound in 21 hour-long sessions. "Sex is a great mode of exercise," says Patti Britton, PhD, a Los Angeles sexologist and president of the American Association of Sexuality Educators and Therapists. It takes work, from both a physical and psychological perspective, to do it well, she says.

4. Sex Improves Cardiovascular Health

While some older folks may worry that the efforts expended during sex could cause a stroke, that's not so, according to researchers from England. In a study published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, scientists found frequency of sex was not associated with stroke in the 914 men they followed for 20 years.

And the heart health benefits of sex don't end there. The researchers also found that having sex twice or more a week reduced the risk of fatal heart attack by half for the men, compared with those who had sex less than once a month.

5. Sex Boosts Self-Esteem

Boosting self-esteem was one of 237 reasons people have sex, collected by University of Texas researchers and published in the Archives of Sexual Behavior.

That finding makes sense to Gina Ogden, PhD, a sex therapist and marriage and family therapist in Cambridge, Mass., although she finds that those who already have self-esteem say they sometimes have sex to feel even better. "One of the reasons people say they have sex is to feel good about themselves," she tells WebMD. "Great sex begins with self-esteem, and it raises it. If the sex is loving, connected, and what you want, it raises it."

6. Sex Improves Intimacy

Having sex and orgasms increases levels of the hormone oxytocin, the so-called love hormone, which helps us bond and build trust. Researchers from the University of Pittsburgh and the University of North Carolina evaluated 59 premenopausal women before and after warm contact with their husbands and partners ending with hugs. Tey found that the more contact, the higher the oxytocin levels.

"Oxytocin allows us to feel the urge to nurture and to bond," Britton says. Higher oxytocin has also been linked with a feeling of generosity. So if you're feeling suddenly more generous toward your partner than usual, credit the love hormone.

7. Sex Reduces Pain

As the hormone oxytocin surges, endorphins increase, and pain declines. So if your headache, arthritis pain, or PMS symptoms seem to improve after sex, you can thank those higher oxytocin levels.

In a study published in the Bulletin of Experimental Biology and Medicine, 48 volunteers who inhaled oxytocin vapor and then had their fingers pricked lowered their pain threshold by more than half.

8. Sex Reduces Prostate Cancer Risk

Frequent ejaculations, especially in 20-something men, may reduce the risk of prostate cancer later in life, Australian researchers reported in the British Journal of Urology International. When they followed men diagnosed with prostate cancer and those without, they found no association of prostate cancer with the number of sexual partners as the men reached their 30s, 40s, and 50s. But they found men who had five or more ejaculations weekly while in their 20s reduced their risk of getting prostate cancer later by a third.

Another study, reported in the Journal of the American Medical Association, found that frequent ejaculations, 21 or more a month, were linked to lower prostate cancer risk in older men, as well, compared with less frequent ejaculations of four to seven monthly.

9. Sex Strengthens Pelvic Floor Muscles

For women, doing a few pelvic floor muscle exercises known as Kegels during sex offers a couple of benefits. You will enjoy more pleasure, and you'll also strengthen the area and help to minimize the risk of incontinence later in life. To do a basic Kegel exercise, tighten the muscles of your pelvic floor, as if you're trying to stop the flow of urine. Count to three, then release.

10. Sex Helps You Sleep Better

The oxytocin released during orgasm also promotes sleep, according to research. And getting enough sleep has been linked with a host of other good things, such as maintaining a healthy weight and blood pressure. Something to think about, especially if you've been wondering why your guy can be active one minute and snoring the next.

Could This Be The Hidden Cause of Your Gut Misery?

Without you realizing it, there could be a hidden danger lurking in the folds of your digestive tract.

To begin, the friendly bacteria that live in your digestive tract play a very important role in your body's health. For example, these bacteria are involved in the process of breaking down the food you eat, and help strengthen the function of your immune system.

Poor dietary choices, however, can reduce the amount of friendly bacteria in your gut as can the use of antibiotics. Stress can also interfere with "good" bacteria living in your GI tract.

In addition, the aging process typically has an adverse effect, as people over the age of 60 have 1,000 times fewer good bacteria than younger adults. (1)

Now, in addition to the colonies of good bacteria inhabiting your insides, there's another "critter" found deep in the lining of your intestinal tract -- a yeast entity known as Candida.

Under normal circumstances, Candida is kept under control by the armies of friendly bacteria that inhabit the same inner real estate.

However, when your good bacteria is depleted by aging, stress, poor diet or wiped out entirely by antibiotics, you are vulnerable to an overgrowth of Candida and bacterial toxins.

The rapidly spreading Candida cells spread their venomous toxin throughout your entire body. The resulting toxic fungal invasion can have serious consequences to your health.

Defeat Candida Overgrowth And Restore Digestive Balance

Prosentials: Suffering with nasty digestive problems? This probiotic formula can make a difference.

An overgrowth of Candida can make your life miserable. To give you an idea of what goes on, Candida creates and releases over 70 different toxins like ethanol and acetaldehyde into your bloodstream.

Researchers believe that once these get into your bloodstream, they are responsible for bowel difficulties that include diarrhea, constipation and gas, as well as itchy skin, rashes and chronic fatigue. (2)

Over time, Candida converts into its fungal form, and begins to lodge more stubbornly in the intestinal wall and other mucosal linings.

This then can create a more porous intestinal tract, known as "Leaky Gut Syndrome", which keeps the pathway open for toxic bacteria to affect your whole body.

The scary part is that you may not even know Candida is running wild in your body... as the symptoms often develop slowly. It can take months or years before problems show up. (3)

The bottom line is that Candida is a ruthless and dangerous enemy. Under optimal conditions, one tiny Candida cell can produce multiple millions of offspring in a just 24 hours... and 24 hours later, each of those multiple millions of NEW Candida cells are producing multiple millions more!

That kind of toxic overload is often too much for the body to handle... especially if your good bacteria are in short supply.

The solution is to take a probiotic supplement like Prosentials every day. According to The World Health Organization, consuming probiotics on a daily basis helps strengthen the body’s natural defenses by providing friendly bacteria for the intestinal tract. (4)

What makes Prosentials unique is that it was developed to be your best line of defense against Candida.

It contains 6 potent probiotic strains to replenish your good bacteria, PLUS the fungal-fighting S. boulardii probiotic yeast. It’s the only formula that works to neutralize and kill the bacterial and fungi toxins that can make your life a living hell. Take it every day for optimal digestive health.


(2) Cotran RS, Kumar V, Collins T. Pathologic Basis of Disease, 6th ed.. WB Saunders, Phil., 1999

(3) Roosen J, et al. Comparison of premortem clinical diagnoses in critically ill patients and subsequent autopsy findings. Mayo Clin Proc 2000 75:562-567.

(4) ibid #1

Slim down with Grapefruit Juice? Berkeley Study Adds Weight to Idea

If you’re planning on hitting up your favorite restaurant for a pepperoni pizza or cheeseburger and fries, you may want to swap your chocolate malt for grapefruit juice instead.

New research from UC Berkeley showed that mice who consumed sweetened grapefruit juice while consuming a diet high in fat may gain less weight than those who opted for sweetened water. The juice guzzling mice also had better metabolic health measures, insulin sensitivity and blood sugar levels.

Studies also found that the weight loss or gain was not affected by grapefruit juice when the mice were put on a low-fat diet. However, it did affect their sensitivity to insulin.

While the studies sound favorable when it comes to shedding pounds, it does come with several warnings. The California Grapefruit Growers Cooperative paid for the study. However, the researchers from Berkeley began the study with a lot of skepticism when it came to the power of this delectable citrus fruit.

They were so blown away by the end results of the study that they re-checked the sensors and calibrations to ensure that they were accurate.

The study was in the smaller range with only six mice being used to test their consumption of liquid, diet and nutrients. While the research may have shown the powerful results of grapefruit juice in mice, it doesn’t mean that it will prove just as beneficial to humans. However, the positive findings may show why grapefruits are typically featured in many of today’s fad diets.

The bitter flavors in grapefruit juice come from naringin. This powerful flavonoid is not a particular favorite of mice. The cause for the weight loss in previous studies that used both mice and grapefruit juice may have stemmed from the fact that the mice’s appetites were suppressed because of their disdain for the taste of grapefruit.

The Berkeley studies hoped to resolve this issues by sweetening the juice with saccharin first. They also gave the mice in the alternate group sugar water sweetened with saccharin and glucose. The number of calories was also the same as the juice that was sweetened.

Mice given grapefruit juice drank and ate similar amounts. However, after eating a diet higher in fat for approximately 100 days, the mice who consumed grapefruit juice had a weight reduction by as much as 18.5 percent than the rodents with the sweetened water. Their weight loss also became apparent after 15 days and significant enough by the time 78 days rolled around.

At the end of the 100 day study, the grapefruit juice laden mice were in much better metabolically than those who drank the sugar water. They also had less sensitivity to insulin, low fasting blood sugar numbers and a reduced level of liver triglycerides.

A follow-up experiment also allowed the mice to increase their girth before the grapefruit juice study was introduced. At the end of the 55 days, there was a noticeable weight reduction in the mice who consumed grapefruit juice as opposed to the ones who stuck to water. Their metabolic functioning was also much better.

The researchers then compared the effects of grapefruit flavonoid enriched naringin, grapefruit juice and diabetes pharmaceutical metformin. While all three of the treatments were found to reduce the blood sugar levels in mice, the grapefruit juice drinkers weighed less by as much as 14 percent after 100 days.

How grapefruit juice promotes weight loss isn’t exactly clear at this time. However, researchers did find that the juice drinking mice did express a particular protein that was crucial in regulating their metabolism. Grapefruit juice can also affect the way the body metabolizes specific pharmaceutical drugs in regards to allergies, cholesterol, anxiety and blood pressure. The problem is so serious that scientists are looking into a hybrid species of grapefruit that would be safe to consume with certain medications.

Scientists Have Discovered an on/off Switch for Aging Cells

A recent discovery found in a molecular switch could help control how quick a person ages and whether they'll develop cancer.

It’s the job of our cells to consistently divide, so they can rejuvenate our skin, liver, lungs and other organs. Unfortunately, they can’t do this forever, and our tissues and organs are left to suffer and degrade over time.

Telomeres are the DNA caps that settle at the end of the chromosomes. Every time the cell is able to divide, the telomeres continue to get shorter until they are so small that they are unable to properly divide.

Researchers have found a switch to stop the beat down of the telomere. Telomerase is an enzyme that helps to rebuild the telomere and allows them to indefinitely divide. However, finding out why some of the telomerase responds to cells in some and not others is still difficult to ascertain.

The Salk Institute or Biological Studies have realized that the on/off switch in the telomerase may be found in a cell, but when it comes to slowing down the aging process, it won’t work if the switch is turned off.

Studies in the past have shown that once the telomerase has been collected, it should be accessible when needed. However, findings have proven that the telomerase have an off switch instead.

This is a significantly major breakthrough because scientists can now determine how to manage the off switch and slow the aging process down. It could also help in finding treatments for many of today’s age related illnesses and diseases. The ways the telomerase uncontrollably divide could also prove insightful when it comes to studying cancer cells.

Researchers discovered the on/off switch while incorporating a new technique using yeast. They were then allowed to monitor how the cells grew and methods that they used to divide.

Every time the cells are allowed to separate, a genome is replicated. While the cell is waiting for its duplication, the telemorase is in a sit and wait mode waiting for the process to come to fruition.

However, once the assembly was completed, the dismantling of the telemorase took place, and it was switched to the off position.

The off switch is what has given researchers new hope when it comes to cancer and cell growth and ensuring that the cells divide for longer periods of time.

The recent research done with the help of yeast may not seem very telling at the moment, but the experiments have certainly provided a foundation for future discoveries when it comes to human beings.

Further studies will be able to help researchers understand more about how the switch works, and it’s relation to both the aging process and cancer. Once they figure this out, they can use their findings to help people live a longer and healthier life.

A Common Virus is Eating Your Gut: Bacteria

Prosentials: Suffering with nasty digestive problems? This probiotic formula can make a difference.

The time a person is most human is before birth. After you’re born, the environment’s microbes surround your body and outnumber them by as much as 10 to one.

Because some microbes offer protection and others may make a person sick, scientists have been instrumental in exploring the correlation they have when it comes to a person’s health and wellness.

Instead of growing the species and deciphering their DNA sequence in order to make genomes, researchers obtain samples from a particular location such as the belly. Metagenome is collected material that is found when the DNA is chopped and read.

Through this inexpensive process, metagenome data can be generated in significant amounts through the nose, skin, mouth and both the gastrointestinal and urogenital regions of an adult. It can also be used to discover unfamiliar microbes such as a bacteriophage virus known as crAssphage.

crAssphage is a bacteria eating virus that can infect and ravage the gut. While it has been known to behave both in bad and good respects, it spends most of the time in a creative and harmonious companionable home that allows an individual to digest the foods they eat. However, it can also wreak havoc by causing complicated issues such as obesity, cancer and diabetes.


Discovered by Dr. Bas Dutilh, the genome was reconstructed from DNA fragments. When it came to programming, the initial name was touted solely as the new virus. However, Dr. Dutilh wanted the chance to endorse his computer tool as a method of terminology and ended up naming it crAssphage (cross Assembly).

Because the metagenome has DNA fragments that make up the populace of microbes, reconstructing the genome was a difficult challenge to accomplish. Some may even compare this to pieces in a puzzle that are combined together from hundreds of different designs. In order to put it all together the various species are uses as a method of guidance. However, how do you even complete the process if you aren’t sure that it actually exists?

Based on the fragmented DNA, the computer tool is able to piece the genomes together and match them to the metagenome. To make this easier to understand, say you would find a puzzle piece with thats distinct shape is the same from other boxes. Unfortunately, box A would contain 10 copies, and the other container houses 100. Using is crAss computer software, Dutilh worked with other researchers at San Diego State University. Here they took 12 individuals and analyzed the faecal metagenomes to reveal the distinct DNA fragments. Based on one of the stool samples, their crAssphage diagnosis was confirmed.

It was then the responsibility of the researchers to look through the public databases. Approximately 70 percent of the virus was detected from areas that include South Korea, United States and Europe. With over three-quarters of crAssphage occurring throughout the world, there could be trillions of viruses taking over your belly at this moment.

Since crAssphage is too tiny to be witnessed through a microscope, it’s difficult to ascertain as much information as researchers would like. The researchers have evidence that shows how crAssphage is infected with Bacteroides. In addition to controlling the amount of bacteria that exists in a healthy belly, crAssphage might be used as a way to fight disease in the future. crAssphage could also deliver vitamins and drugs to a person therapeutically.

In summation, research in regards to metagenome has primarily centered on bacteria. Because DNA advances faster than it’s able to detect, viruses have been overlooked. However, crAssphage has shown the important role viruses can take in the microbial community.

Prosentials: Suffering with nasty digestive problems? This probiotic formula can make a difference.

Foods That Fight Off an Afternoon Slump

We’ve all experienced that tired feeling after an afternoon lunch. Being unable to focus, a decline in energy levels and wishing you could curl up under your desk with a blanket for a quick nap are just a few cozy thoughts that may be running rampant through your mind. However, important deadlines and group meetings are more vital to your busy day than the slow close of your eyelids.

To placate your sagging energy and raging food cravings, you may rely on the hallway vending machine. While the sodium-laden treats and refined sugars in the snacks may give you that added burst, you’re sure to fall back into a fit of slumber within the hour.

Fortunately, you no longer have to suffer through the afternoon snooze fest. The following four foods will help you stay focused and alert, so you can conquer the remainder of your workday.

Dark Chocolate

Chocolate is often viewed as a decadent treat better left untouched. However, this aromatic and delicious indulgence can help you fight afternoon fatigue. While it does contain miniscule amounts of caffeine, phenylethylamine is the primary power source behind the feel good compounds being released to the brain. Just the smell of this intoxicating snack is enough to make you stay alert.

Green Tea

Most individuals reach for a cup of Joe as an afternoon wake-up-call. However, the nutrients in green tea can pack quite the punch. The caffeine in the tea and amino acid theanine can work to improve a person’s creativity, reaction time and ability to multi-task. The theanine’s in green tea interact specifically with the neurotransmitters in the body’s brain, so you’re feeling alert and calm, instead of jittery and nervous.

Greek Yogurt

In addition to afternoon fatigue, the body has been known to signal certain cravings. To quell the dangerous urges of doughnuts and birthday cake calling your name from the break room, you may want to try reaching for a container of Greek yogurt. The protein in the yogurt curbs the cravings by controlling your blood sugar levels. Try to aim for at least 20 to 23 grams of protein per snack.


Nuts were shunned in the past because they were high in fat. However, this recharging snack can keep you feeling fuller longer and aid in your weight-loss. The fat, protein and fiber in this delicious treat will easily control your blood sugar levels by keeping your body focused and energized. Almonds can also reduce your risk of heart attack by as much as 50 percent.

10 Tips for Better Digestive Health

[Image 1]There are a number of factors that affect your digestive system such as your lifestyle, stress, and the foods that you choose to eat. Getting the required amount of fiber, drinking plenty of water and exercising can all aid in developing better digestive health. Your body works by breaking down the foods you consume into nutrients and if you fail to be kind to your digestive health, you could run into complications later on.

The following are ten important tips that will help boost and maintain your digestive system.

1. Consume a diet high in fiber. According to the latest studies, a diet that is rich in fiber, whole-grains, fruits, vegetables and legumes, can make great strides in the way that you digest your foods. Fiber laden foods provide regularity by keeping things moving throughout your digestive system. This makes you less susceptible to constipation, bloating and fatigue. It can also aid in preventing digestive ailments such as hemorrhoids, irritable bowel syndrome and diverticulosis. A smooth running digestive tract can also aid those who are trying to shed pounds by helping you to maintain a normal weight range.

2. Insoluble and soluble fiber. Both forms of fiber can aid in your digestive tract. Insoluble fiber is difficult to be digested by the human body and can add solidness to your stools. Forms of insoluble fiber can include vegetables, whole-grains and wheat bran. Soluble fiber attracts water in and discourages your stools from becoming watery. You can get soluble fiber from items such as legumes, seeds, oat bran and nuts.

3. Reduce your consumption of fatty foods. Fatty foods can slow down your digestive system and contribute to constipation. However, getting rid of all that fat is not necessary, as pairing high fibered foods with some that are fatty can bring digestive relief to many individuals.

4. Lean meats a good source of protein. Fatty cuts of meats can irritate your bowel and lead to gas and bloating. Lean protein is necessary to any diet and can be found in food source items such as skinless chicken breasts, pork loin, turkey breast and other lean cuts of meats.

5. The importance of probiotics. Probiotics are a necessary part of any healthy diet, and they can keep your digestive system on target with the amount of healthy bacteria. By combating foods that are not good for you, they can contribute to proper nutrient absorption, aid in breaking down lactose and give your immune system a boost. They may even aid those who suffer from irritable bowel syndrome. Probiotics can be found in healthy products such as kefir and low-fat yogurt.

Prosentials: Suffering with nasty digestive problems? This probiotic formula can make a difference.

6. Follow a healthy schedule. Following a regular eating schedule can keep your digestive system running right. Plan to eat around the same time every day and include a healthy balance of snacks and regular meals.

7. Drink plenty of water. Water is refreshing and can help the body stay hydrated. It can also contribute to a healthy digestive system by helping to dissolve fats and soluble fiber. This can contribute to keeping the body running regularly and alleviate bloat and discomfort.

8. Ditch the bad habits. Alcohol, smoking and excessive caffeine usage are all bad habits that can hinder your digestive system from running right. It can also lead to other health issues such as heartburn and stomach ulcers.

9. Regular exercise. Exercising on a regular basis can keep the foods that you eat moving throughout your digestive tract. It can also reduce your chances of experiencing constipation and help you maintain a normal weight.

10. Dealing with stress. Stress and anxiety can lead to a dysfunctional digestive system. Stress reducing activities such as yoga and meditation can be helpful and should be practiced regularly. The foods you eat and a well-maintained digestive tract can go hand-in-hand. By following the above ten tips, you’re sure to enjoy comfort and regularity.

12 Foods That Control Your Appetite

When it comes to losing weight, portion control and curtailing the amount of food you eat is important in order to see the best results. However, it can come at the price of hunger pangs and falling off the diet bandwagon in just a matter of weeks.

Without raiding the refrigerator and eating additional calories, there are ways you can calm your ravenous stomach. As a matter of fact, there are specific foods that will send a signal to your brain that you’re done eating.

In order to tune out the tempting voice of the pint of ice cream that keeps calling out your name in the freezer, you’ll want to concentrate on the following satisfying and healthy foods.

Dairy Whey

Whey protein is one of the heartiest and most satisfying of milk products. Individuals who drank this important protein-enriched beverage were found to reduce their calorie intact dramatically then those who consumed a carb-loaded beverage.


Avocados are just as filling and incorporating them into your lunch is easy to do. Whether you fill one half with diced broiled chicken breast and vegetables or top them on your favorite salad, you won’t be tempted to visit the nearest vending machine.


Lentils, beans and chickpeas are nutrient and protein-rich foods that can pack a lot of B vitamins, iron and antioxidants. Because they are also high in fiber, they are great at appetite control. When consuming super foods such as these, a recent study found that individuals were found to be at least 30 percent more satisfied after the conclusion of the meal.


An apple one half hour before meal time can keep your cravings at bay. Consuming an apple shortly before you eat can leave you feeling full longer. The water and fiber in the apple helps prevent hunger pangs, so you eat less during meals.


Fermented foods such as sauerkraut, pickles and kimchi are known as short-chain fatty acid (SCFAs) foods. In a recent study, researchers found that the correlation between the brain and stomach were often strengthened after consumption. In addition to relieving hunger pangs, the SCFAs were also known to host probiotics and aid in digestion. Probiotics have also been thought to aid in weight loss and reduce appetite.


A latest Penn State study concluded that broth-based soups are great at curbing your appetite when consumed right before the entrée. Since they take up a lot of space in your stomach, you can reduce your caloric intake by as much as 20 percent and with a lower number of calories.

Chili powder

The capsaicin responsible for giving chili’s their fired up kick can also rev up your metabolism. Research also pointed out that the same compounds when added to a meal can also keep your appetite from getting out of control. Simply adding ¼ tsp to your meal can increase your level of fullness and lessen the desire to snack later on in the evening.


A healthy dose of eggs in the morning can help your body feel more satisfied and full. Researchers indicate that the power of not wanting to snack comes from the protein. A breakfast made up of 39 grams from eggs and sausage can help lessen the desire to snack in between breakfast and lunch. When consuming this high-protein breakfast, dieters were also found to consume a lower number of calories by the end of the day.

Dark chocolate

If you have a craving for something sweet and decadent, dark chocolate holds the key to your weight loss goals. Researchers found that in addition to protecting the heart, brain and lowering blood pressure, this delectable snack can prove more satisfying than its milk chocolate counterpart. As a matter of fact, participants in the study who consumed dark chocolate were shown to eat as much as 17 percent fewer amount of calories during meal time.


While cold cereal can be good for you, a warm bowl of oatmeal can keep your tummy feeling fuller longer. Participants in a recent study were given either cereal or oatmeal to eat. The group who consumed oatmeal was found to be satisfied longer than those who didn’t. Since oatmeal is high in protein and fiber, this nutritious bowl of gooeyness can also aid in heart problem and hydration.


While an essential nutrient to aid in your health and wellness, nuts are another feel good and filling food. Based on a study found in the British Journal, overweight women who paired orange juice, 3 tablespoons of peanut butter and Cream of Wheat had the capacity to feel fuller longer by as much as 12 hours. Nuts are a natural appetite suppressant because they are high in protein, fiber and unsaturated fat. This powerful food booster can regulate blood sugar and slow down digestion when mixed together with carbs such as brown rice and oatmeal.


Running low on water can trick your body into thinking it’s ravenous. Because hunger symptoms are the same to feeling of dehydration, a reduction in cognitive development, crankiness and low energy can often ensue. The next time you get the afternoon munchies, reach for a tall glass of water instead. You’ll be amazed at how fast your hunger pangs dissipate.

5 foods with brain benefits you may not know about

[Image 1]We've all heard that fish is brain food, especially the kind that is rich with omega-3s. Blueberries and spinach also have notable brain-boosting abilities. However, these aren't the only foods which can help keep your brain strong and free of disease.

Red Wine

Certain compounds found in grape seeds may help prevent Alzheimer’s disease. A study in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease found that in mice, these compounds helped prevent the formation of proteins linked to the development of Alzheimer’s. Those same grape seed compounds are found in red wine, so wine may help protect the brain when consumed in moderation.


Fully caffeinated coffee may also help protect against Alzheimer’s. A study done at the University of South Florida fed caffeine to mice specifically bred to develop Alzheimer’s disease as they aged; some mice received caffeinated coffee, some received decaf, and others were given plain caffeine. The mice who received regular coffee showed higher levels of a hormone called granulocyte colony stimulating factor, which reduces Alzheimer’s symptoms by increasing neuron production and connection. For humans, the useful dose would translate to about four cups of coffee spread throughout the day.

Citrus Fruit

While the vitamin C in citrus may or may not be useful in preventing colds, it seems that citrus fruit may help to prevent strokes. Flavones, found in oranges and grapefruit, seem to act as anti-inflammatories and improve the function of blood vessels. A study in Stroke reported that people who ate two or more servings of citrus each day over a period of 14 years had a 10% lower risk of stroke than people who ate less. Be wary of choosing juice instead of whole fruit; many juices contain added sugar.


Onions are full of antioxidants which may help prevent brain damage if a person has a stroke; the antioxidants can work to block the formation of oxygen compounds which damage the barrier between blood and brain. A study published in Nutrition reported feeding some mice an onion supplement. When researchers induced stroke in all the mice, the control group showed significantly higher brain damage than did the onion-fed group.


Eggs are rich in choline, a nutrient which is required to produce acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter which is linked to brain health and memory. A study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition looked at nearly 1400 adults and found that those who consumed the most choline performed best on memory tests. The subjects with high choline intake were also less likely to have signs of potential dementia such as blood vessel disease in the brain.

The Best Herbal and Nutritional Supplements that Help You Lose Weight

There’s no need to rehash recent pharmaceutical diet drug disasters. Let’s face it; most herbal and nutritional supplements are a lot safer for your system. Your doctor may disagree, but now there are definitive studies on the efficacy of certain herbal and nutritional supplements in weight loss.

ASHWAGANDHA is a plant from the tomato family. It contains withanolides which fight stress by lowering cortisol levels. This hormone is secreted when you are under stress and has been found to stimulate fat production in your belly area. Ashwagandha is classified as an “adaptogen”. These substances fight the physiological effects of stress in your body.

GREEN TEA EXTRACT has a bioflavonoid called EGCG, which triggers your metabolism to burn more calories. In scientific terms, it increases “thermogenesis”. You can sip your fat away if you drink enough green tea or go easy on your kidneys and purchase a caffeine free extract.

PROBIOTICS will keep your intestinal flora blooming and your digestive system healthy while you are dieting and detoxing.

Prosentials: Suffering with nasty digestive problems? This probiotic formula can make a difference.

FIBER. Try to introduce more fiber into your diet. Eat whole grains, fruits, vegetables and beans. They reduces hunger pangs and help you to cut down on how much you eat.

MILK THISTLE EXTRACT. The active ingredient in this plant is called Silymarin and it prevents toxins from damaging your liver. Your liver is your blood filter and it can’t afford to get bogged down with a toxic overload. Remember, fat cells are your body’s toxic waste dumps. When they shrink during dieting they release toxins back into your bloodstream, and your liver has extra work to do. Silymarin comes to the rescue and supplies the liver with antioxidants which protect liver cells.

N-ACETYL CYSTEINE is an amino acid supplement which been shown to boost immune response. It is also a powerful liver detoxifier. NAC is taken with at least three times as much vitamin C.

B VITAMINS. Stress hormones like cortisol hijack B vitamins from our body and use them to boost stress responses.

7 Myths (and Outright Lies) About Male Hormones

1. Outright Lie: DHEA is a dangerous “anabolic steroid drug.”

In 2007, a campaign of lies about DHEA was spread in the halls of Congress. Printed material distributed by lobbyists for Big Pharma claimed that DHEA was a dangerous “anabolic steroid drug” and a law was introduced that would make DHEA available by prescription only. Fortunately, due to the activism of many Americans for freedom to take dietary supplements, the law failed to pass.[i]

The claims were scientifically false and intentional lies. According to the conservative Council for Responsible Nutrition, “The proposition that DHEA is any way comparable to illegal anabolic steroids is invalid and unfounded.”

They continued: “DHEA is not an anabolic steroid, its use is not associated with the anabolic and side effects that accompany anabolic steroid abuse, and the potential for DHEA abuse by athletes is remote.” [ii]

The question is, why is Big Pharma so threatened by DHEA that it would go to all this trouble and expense to try to outlaw it? No one really knows. But could it be that taking DHEA helps men stay so young, healthy, sexy and yes, even better looking that it threatens the profits of the “sickness industry?”

The TRUTH is that DHEA is not a dangerous steroid and can help many men stay active and virile as they age.

2. Outright Lie: A natural DHEA pill doesn’t work to boost male hormone levels in the body.

You may have seen headlines that “dietary supplements don’t work.” It’s a flat out lie about DHEA.

A study of DHEA conducted by 23 leading researchers at the most prestigious hospitals and research centers in France revealed that levels of DHEA-S and other male hormones skyrocketed in older and younger men taking 50 mg a day of DHEA compared to men taking a placebo “sugar pill.” (DHEA-S is the sulfated form of DHEA and is chemically similar.)[iii]

DHEA-S and Other Male Sex Hormones Skyrocket in Men Taking 50 mg a Day of DHEA for 6 Months

Scientists say, “Youthful Levels of Hormones RESTORED!”

Men under 70 – DHEA-S More than triples

(All measurements nmol/L.)

DHEA supplement group — Levels went from 2.90 to 10.4 – Sky rocket!

Placebo group — Levels went from 2.65 to 1.81 – Dropped like a rock.

Men over 70 – DHEA-S Increases more than 4 times

DHEA supplement group – Levels went from 2.44 to 10.3— Moon shot!

Placebo group — 2.14 to 1.44 – Dropped off a cliff.

Other male hormones also increased. ADG, a hormone that turns into testosterone, more than doubled. The placebo groups stayed about the same.

A 2004 Italian study found that taking 25 mg a day of DHEA significantly increased levels of DHEA, DHEAS, total and free testosterone, adrostenedione plus other hormones.[iv]

The TRUTH is that taking a supplement of DHEA is an economical and safe way to boost testosterone and other male sex hormones.

3. Outright Lie: Viagra and other Pharma erectile drugs are the only solution to erectile problems.

Doctors have been told by Big Pharma that their expensive drugs are the only solution to erectile failure. It’s simply not true.

According to one of the world’s leading researchers on testosterone, Dr. A.A.Yassim, restoring normal levels of testosterone is the key to solving erectile failure.

Viagra does not increase testosterone.[v]

Dr. Yassim is one of the researchers who discovered what happens to the penis if testosterone levels get too low. It’s not pretty.

Low testosterone CRUSHES your penis.

Normal levels of testosterone hold the cells, tissues and fibers of your penis together so you can keep an erection and have a healthy sex life.

Low testosterone causes the cells, tissue and nerves to disintegrate leading to floppiness and membranes that fail to hold blood in place in the penis. Low testosterone literally crushes the cells and nerves.[vi]

In a study of lab animals (rats), penile membranes of rats with normal testosterone were “very rich, arranged regularly, and undulate.” These rats had normal erections.

Rats with no testosterone had thin and stiff fibers and tissues and no erections. [vii]

The TRUTH is that the health of men’s penises requires testosterone – and Viagra won’t help that.

4. Myth: Boosting testosterone raises your risk of prostate cancer.


Fortunately, leading medical journals like The New England Journal of Medicine and European Urology, among others, have destroyed this myth.

The NEJM reviewed 72 published studies and found no compelling evidence that replacing testosterone increases prostate cancer.[viii]

European Urology stated that there is no scientific basis to the commonly held belief that testosterone stimulates prostate cancer.[ix]

Many doctors, however, are still not up to date on the latest medical literature. The fact is, boosting testosterone is essential for many men’s health.

Testosterone improves:[x]

  • Sexual penetration
  • Erections
  • Sexual desire
  • More muscle and less fat
  • Stronger bone density
  • Physical strength
  • Mood
  • Energy
  • Longevity

Low levels of testosterone are associated with[xi]

  • Heart disease
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Insulin resistance
  • Obesity – especially belly fat

The doctors who promoted this myth were wrong – dead wrong. Men need healthy levels of testosterone to stay strong, vital, healthy and sexually active.

5. Myth: Taking DHEA won’t help your sex life.

Wanna bet? DHEA is the precursor to testosterone and what happens when you raise testosterone in men with low testosterone?

You get an increase in[xii]

  • Number of successful intercourses
  • Sexual thoughts
  • Sexual motivation
  • Scores of erectile function
  • Overall sexual satisfaction.

Taking a supplement of DHEA is associated with higher levels of energy, well-being, enhanced libido and erectile function. The average dose is 50 mg a day.[xiii]

Now, who wants to take that bet? Anyone? Anyone?

6. Myth: Hormones like DHEA have nothing to do with losing weight and reducing belly fat. The only thing that works is to eat less and exercise more.

One of the cruelest myths for many Americans is that all they have to do to lose weight is eat less and exercise more. Weight loss experts now know that is not accurate. Balanced, healthy hormones are the key to successful weight loss – especially to getting rid of dangerous and ugly belly fat – and keeping it off.

A study in the prestigious Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) revealed that older men and women who took 50 mg a day of DHEA[xiv]

  • Reduced belly fat by 13 square cm compared to placebo group who lost only 3 square cm
  • Reduced “regular” fat under the skin by 13 square cm compared to placebo group who gained 3 square cm of fat

Increasing DHEA is crucial for successful weight loss.

7. Myth: There’s no such thing as an “anti-aging supplement.” Taking DHEA won’t help you look better, feel better and live longer.

I’ll take this bet, too. In fact, I’ll double down on this one! Okay, let’s take these one at a time.

DHEA Helps Men Look Younger

Everyone knows that when you look younger, you feel younger. And one of the keys to looking younger is your skin. If your skin is dull, wrinkled, splotchy and dry you just look older.

The French research study mentioned above found that taking 50 mg of DHEA a day[xv]

  • Increased hydration and normal oil production of skin. When skin is moist with enough natural oil, it plumps up and you don’t look like a dried, wrinkled prune. Plus, DHEA improved skin roughness. Nice smooth skin is a sign of youthfulness.
  • Decreased “age spots” on the face and trended to a rejuvenation of skin color.
  • Improved the skin texture on the back of the hands. Skin on the hand got thicker. The thinning of the skin caused by age was reduced by 18% at six months. The placebo group saw the skin on the back of their hands significantly “withering away” at six months.

The researchers concluded that taking 50 mg of DHEA a day resulted in improvement of the skin which can help men look younger and feel younger.

Plus, the JAMA study above revealed that 50 mg of DHEA daily helped older men lose weight, especially belly fat. Taking DHEA helps you get slimmer and more attractive.

[i]Faloon W. Congress seeks to ban DHEA. Life Extension Magazine. June 2007.


[ii] Shao A. DHEA: The Basic Facts: Backgrounder. Council for Responsible Nutrition.


[iii] Baulieu E, et al. Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), DHEA sulfate, and aging: contribution of the DHEAge Study to a sociobiomedical issue. PNAS. 200 Apr 11;97(8):4279-84.


[iv] Genazzani AR, et al. Long-term low-dose DHEA replacement therapy in aging males with partial androgen deficiency. Aging Male. 2004 Jun;7(2):133-43.


[v] Yassin AA, Saad F. Testosterone and erectile dysfunction. J Androl. 2008 Nov-Dec;29(6):593-604.


[vi] Yassin AA, Saad F. Testosterone and erectile dysfunction. J Androl. 2008 Nov-Dec;29(6):593-604.


[vii] Shen ZJ, et al. Effect of androgen deprivation on penile ultrastructure. Asian J Androl. 2003; 5(1): 33-36.


[viii] Morgentaler A, et al. N Engl J Med. 2004. Jan 29


[ix] European Urology, April 8, 2009.


[x] Yassin AA, Saad F. Testosterone and erectile dysfunction. J Androl. 2008 Nov-Dec;29(6):593-604.


[xi] Traish AM, et al. The dark side of testosterone deficiency: type 2 diabetes and insulin resistance. J Andrology. 2008 Sep 4.


[xii] Isidori AM, et al. Effect of testosterone on sexual function in men: results of meta-analysis. Clin Endocrinol. (Oxf). 2005;63:239-243.


[xiii] Buhner S. The natural testosterone plan. Healing Arts Press. Rochester, VT. 2007.


[xiv] Villareal DT, et al. Effect of DHEA on abdominal fat and insulin action in elderly women and men: a randomized controlled trial. JAMA. 2004 Nov 10;292(18):2243-8.


[xv] Baulieu E, et al. Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), DHEA sulfate, and aging: contribution of the DHEAge Study to a sociobiomedical issue. PNAS. 200 Apr 11;97(8):4279-84.

Order Today -- T-Boost: Experts Recommend Testosterone for Better Sex, Health, and Vitality

7 Nutrients That Help Increase Muscle Tone

When it comes to achieving an awe-inspiring body, calories aren’t the only factor to be taken into consideration. With a mixture of eating the right foods and exercising, you’ll be able to achieve your goal of slimming down and building strong muscles.

Your muscles actually break down and cause microtears in the tissues fibers every time you perform exercises such as curls and presses. When your body is at rest, it’s then able to strengthen and rebuild muscles. However, in order for it to repair properly, it needs the right amount of fuel to get the job done. Essential nutrients, vitamins and minerals can allow you to get the recommended daily dosage that will help you to look good and feel great.

Vitamin C

A little color added to your plate at every meal can help create better tone and definition in your arms. Fortunately, a healthy dose of vitamin C can be found in a variety of fruits and vegetables. The health of your blood vessels is dependent on your vitamin C consumption. This essential nutrient can also contribute to the way your muscles work and recover after a workout. After your body receives the necessary 75 mg. daily requirements, you’ll be able to store the material properly in order to build strong bones and muscles. You can find the recommended allotment by consuming a cup of strawberries, medium orange or half a red pepper.

Fish Oil

Omega-3 fatty acids are a crucial nutrient that will help decrease inflammation and help a body recover faster after a workout. Known to increase the flow of blood to the muscles and lessen the breakdown of muscle protein, consuming fish oil on a regular basis can even help prevent diabetes by improving an individual’s sensitivity to insulin.

The American Heart Association has guidelines in place that recommends consuming two servings of fish on a weekly basis. This could include anything from lake trout and herring to salmon and albacore tuna. If you can’t stomach the taste of fish or you’re a vegan or vegetarian, you can get your recommended 1,000 to 3,000 milligram supplement in chia seeds, walnuts, flax seeds or algae-based products.


If you’re looking to maintain strong bones and healthy muscles, you’ll find calcium to be an essential nutrient. With every weight you lift, this important mineral gives your body the nutrients that it needs to contract and grow.

To get your allotted 1,200 mg. per day, you’ll want to try to consume foods such as green veggies, yogurt, cheese, milk and cottage cheese. You’ll also find fortified dairy-free products and supplements for those who are lactose intolerant. If you’re shooting for a pill, look for one with vitamin D. You should also select supplements that contain 500 to 600 mg. of calcium.


The deficiency of magnesium is a rare occurrence in the U.S. However, when it comes to not getting enough of this essential mineral, it is women who are actually lacking. Since your body needs this important nutrient in order to build muscles and ensure that you’re heart keeps ticking properly, you’ll want to get at least 310 to 320 mg. per day. In addition to regulating your heart, magnesium can also relive muscle soreness and cramps associated with PMS and weight lifting. Foods high in magnesium can include whole-grains, spinach, legumes and nuts. You can also soak it up by drawing yourself a relaxing Epsom salt bath.

B Vitamins

From B1, B2 and B3 to B6 and B12, this gang of supplements can pack a powerful punch. Essential in maintaining overall good health. Because of the way they metabolize protein, provide energy and help the body maintain optimum nerve health, you’ll find the vitamins to be especially important when you’re trying to tone muscles and gain strength.

Adequate amounts of vitamin B can be sought through a daily diet when you consume foods that include whole-grains, lean meats, eggs, nuts, legumes, fortified cereals and leafy greens. Unfortunately, B12 can only be found through animal sources. If you’re a vegan or vegetarian, you’ll want to consider fortified food sources or taking a supplement to obtain the required 2.4 daily micrograms.

Vitamin D

It seems that everyone is singing the praises of this powerful sunshine vitamin today. From mood inducing powers and a strong immune system to muscle building properties, and the growth and development of your bones and teeth, you’ll find that vitamin D is an essential vitamin that you can’t do without.

While you can get adequate vitamin D through daily exposure to the sun, you have skin cancer to contend with. Mushrooms, eggs, fortified dairy products, oysters and cod liver oil can help you achieve your recommended 4,000 to 6,000 (IU) of vitamin D. You can also take a supplement. A simple blood test taken by your primary care physician can help you determine if you’re vitamin D deficient.

Vitamin E

Reaching for a handful of almonds after a workout can provide a wealth of nutrients that includes healthy fats, fiber, protein and vitamin E. This important antioxidant can be beneficial in your muscle recovery after you exercise. However, maintaining the right recommended dosage is important because anything over 300 mg. can cause weakness, nausea and stomach cramping

12 Foods That Help You Fall (and Stay) Asleep!

According to the National Sleep Foundation, close to 60 percent of individuals across the United States say they have a problem sleeping every night. While it can be frustrating tossing and turning, you’ll find that a sleepless night can also cause certain health issues and weight gain, especially in the abdomen. Failing to get enough sleep is a unique form of stress that causes the body to respond with a chronic one. However, an overlooked approach to sleep restoration is through a healthy diet. The following foods will contribute to a restful evening of sleep and allow you to remain that way throughout the entire night.

1. Salmon

If you’re anticipating a good night’s sleep, you can begin with a sleep-inducing evening meal. Salmon is an excellent form of omega-3 fatty acids, and it’s crucial in lessening the stress hormones that can be keeping you from getting a good night’s sleep. If you’re not a fan of salmon, you’ll find other varieties of fish such as halibut to be just as beneficial.

2. Tart Cherry Juice

Before you’re hit with a bout of insomnia, you may want to think about having a drink. While alcohol can disrupt your normal sleep patterns, a glass of tart cherry juice can reduce your symptoms of insomnia significantly. This natural source of melatonin makes the ideal bedtime companion when you mix it with almond or soy milk, ice and mix it in the blender. If you can’t find tart cherry juice at your local retail establishment, you can exchange the juice for dried or fresh cherries.

3. Bananas

Finding it difficult to get to sleep? You may want to try eating a banana. In addition to be full of potassium and helping to calm restless legs, bananas can help combat nasty leg cramps that can plague restless sleepers. Studies published in the Journal of Neuroscience in 2007, a correlation has been shown between getting enough potassium and obtaining the highest level of restful sleep. This amazing yellow fruit is also chalk full of magnesium to aid in promoting circulation, digestion and helping the muscles and nerves to relax. To get your recommended dose of magnesium and potassium, you can peel and place the banana in a favorite smoothie recipe or cut it up and serve over cereal.

4. Sweet Potatoes

Sweet potatoes are a delicious, healthy and inexpensive staple to keep in your pantry. Known as a good source of potassium, sweet potatoes can aid in digestion, circulation and help promote relaxation. In addition to baking, you can make homemade sweet potato fries by cutting them into slices, laying them on a cookie sheet and drizzling with a little olive oil. Other excellent sources of potassium include white potatoes, papaya or lima beans.

5. Kale

Biochemists sing the praises of this cruciferous vegetable for its sleep inducing properties. Known for being high in both calcium and potassium, kale can contribute to a peaceful night of sleep. Whether you include it in your evening meal or munch on it as a pre-bedtime snack, this leafy green is great for a good night’s rest. If you aren’t a fan of kale, never fear. Green veggies such as spinach and Swiss chard contain a healthy dose of potassium and host the same benefits as kale.

6. Almonds

A handful of almonds before you hit the sheets can help promote a restful night’s sleep. Because they contain proteins that help stabilize your blood sugar levels while you rest, you’re able to switch from a stage of alertness to drowsiness. If your tastes lean toward something more substantial, you can spread a tablespoon of almond butter on a piece of whole-grain toast for a night of good slumber.

7. Chickpeas

Also referred to as garbanzo beans, chickpeas are instrumental in relieving stress and elevating your mood because of its high levels of vitamin B-6. Adding chick peas to an evening meal can help promote a better night’s sleep. You can best utilize this healthy melatonin producer by placing them on top of a salad. You can also make it into a hummus spread and dip crudité such as red peppers, carrots, celery and cucumber spears.

8. Eggs

Eggs aren’t just for breakfast anymore. High in protein and used to keep your blood sugar levels stable, eggs can also help you catch enough Zzzs at night. Whether you hard boil a few eggs ahead of time and store them in the refrigerator or scramble them with a little cheese, this protein enriched gem can make an easy evening snack. If you’re not a big fan of eggs, you can find protein in other places such as lean meat or cottage cheese mixed with fresh fruit.

9. Milk

Movies, T.V. shows and advertisements have sung the praises of milk when it comes to getting some sleep. While some individuals swear that a glass of milk contains enough melatonin to lull a body to sleep, the lack of evidence has caused some experts to back off on these statements. If you’re looking to fall asleep at a faster rate, soy products have been shown to place an individual into a deeper sense of slumber.

10. Herbal or Decaffeinated Green Tea

While you may be used to combating bouts of tiredness throughout your busy day with a cup of coffee, you want to put down your cup of java in favor of decaf tea in the afternoon. Because green tea contains sleep inducing ingredients such as theanin, you’re sure to feel the relaxing effects into the evening hours. In addition to being able to lessen the amount of time it takes to get to sleep, decaf tea can also increase the number of hours you stay asleep. Combine the warm mug with a comfy chair or bed, and you have perfect recipe for a good night’s sleep.

11. Cereal

Low-sugar cereals that are rich in whole-grains can set the stage for a slumber-filled night. Tryptophan isn’t just for Thanksgiving and turkeys. A carb-rich bowl of cereal can also have sleep inducing effects on the brain. In addition to cereal and milk, other carb-protein mates can include cheese and crackers or peanut butter and toast.

12. Oatmeal

While a delicious bowl of warmed oatmeal before bed can be a satisfying way to end your day, you’ll find this soothing snack to aid in helping you get to sleep faster. Because it contains nutritional resources such as potassium, calcium and magnesium, you’re sure to conquer any late-night jitters with this super food. However, topping your bowl of oatmeal with too much sugar can be counter-productive. Blueberries, raspberries, walnuts, almonds and cinnamon make better alternative toppers.

7 Times When Food is the Answer

While stuffing your face with food can bring momentary satiation, you’ll find it can fill you with remorse later on. However, noshing on fortifying foods can lead to greater satisfaction with every bite you take.

If You’re Going Through a Funk?: Reach for a Sweet Potato.

When you feel the urge to snack, try to resist the temptation to reach for unhealthy snacks such as candy or chips. A baked sweet potato is a nutritious alternative to junk food and a great source of carbohydrates. The surge of serotonin experienced when you consume an orange potato can boost your mood with this natural feel-good chemical. Because sweet potatoes are also loaded with fiber, the carbs will enter into your system gradually. This keeps your energy stabilized instead of crashing like you would experience after binging on peanut butter cups.

You Find it Difficult to Sleep?: Snack on Hummus

Hummus is a delicious and nutritious Middle Eastern snack that will help you sleep soundly. Chickpeas contain an important amino acid called tryptophan. This melatonin-like substance will naturally increase your sleep inducing hormones, making it easy to fall asleep at night.

Achy Muscles: Drink a Glass of Tart Cherry Juice

If you pushed yourself to extreme levels at the gym, and you want to ensure that you’re able to work out tomorrow, ditch your protein shake for a glass of tart cherry juice. The anti-inflammatory anti-oxidants in tart cherries can help an individual recover quicker after a workout. The anthocyanins can also reduce muscle soreness before and after you exercise.

Feeling Lethargic and Sluggish?: Try Adding a Glass of Coconut Water

Limited energy and feelings of tiredness indicate a lack of water consumption. Without this important nutrient, your muscles and brain won’t be able to function properly. Instead of turning to your typical cup of Java, you can switch to a glass of coconut water instead. This nutritious pick-me-up is chalk full of electrolytes, calcium, potassium and magnesium to keep your fluids flowing throughout your body.

Stomach Rebellion?: Make Time for Peppermint Tea

A heavy meal or unsettled tummy can leave you feeling bloated and doubled over in pain. However, drinking a cup of peppermint tea can relieve the discomfort and pain associated with stomach issues such as indigestion or IBS.

Pounding Migraine?: Consume Spinach

When a pounding headache or migraine appears, most people seek relief by popping a pill. However, spinach contains riboflavin, magnesium and other essential nutrients that can combat the pain and discomfort associated with a migraine. Most ERs and hospitals use a magnesium supplement to alleviate the pain, but greenery such as spinach is definitely worth a try.

Low Blood Sugar?: Get Out the Dried Apricots

If you’re looking to increase the levels of blood sugar in your system, you should consume something sweet. However, this shouldn’t send you scurrying for the nearest bowl of sugar. Apricots are a healthy and natural sweet source of sugar and a much better option for the body. Since they are also high in both fructose and glucose, dried apricots can also immediately spike your blood sugar levels. However, you don’t want to raise your blood sugar levels too high, so try to stick to three to five pieces.

10 Tips for Everlasting Energy

The following proven tips will help jump start your day and allow you to feel energized!

Get an Early Start

Individuals who get an early start by leaving the comforts of their bed by 7 a.m. will have a greater attention span throughout the day. An added bonus is that most of those early birds also experienced a happier and healthier outlook on life. Waking up early provides a person with the chance to sleep more sound at night as opposed to their night owl counterparts. Since society is on a nine-to-five schedule, early risers will find their internal alarm clocks to be more in sync.

You can engage a few tricks if getting out of bed early is not your thing. To snap yourself out of a night of slumber, you can try putting your alarm clock at the farthest part of your room. Your body will find it difficult to go back to bed once you’ve gotten up. You can also start your morning with a quick shower, brisk run or by drinking a refreshing glass of water.

Speed Up Your Metabolism with Sex

Getting frisky in the morning with sex can help release pent up tension. It can also speed up your metabolism and start your day off with an energized punch. Physical interaction in the early morning hours stimulates the body’s production of cortisol. For people who have obtained a good night’s sleep, higher levels of cortisol can contribute to their overall well-being and heightened energy levels. A great bout of sex can also increase a person’s endorphins. This will leave you with a skip in your step as you head off to work.

Replace Your Morning Cup of Java with Water

While a tall latte can sharpen your mental alertness, too much of a good thing can have the opposite effect. Drinking a cup of Joe can give you a much needed burst of energy. However, your body could experience quite the crash later in the day. Instead of becoming dependent on your morning java run, you can replace your mug of coffee with cold glasses of water. You can also be kind to the environment by ditching your plastic versions in favor of a stylish water bottle. Try to replenish your water a minimum of three to five times throughout the day.

If your body is still craving that cup of java to get you going, you can try to postpone your mug of coffee to later in the morning. Since most cortisol levels begin their decline between the hours of 9:00 and 11:30 a.m., the stimulant in coffee will be most effective.

Add a Meal to Your Day

The body requires food throughout the day and going for long periods of time in between can cause a reduction in energy. Low blood sugar caused by a lack of food can also make it difficult to focus. Replacing your morning and afternoon snack breaks with an extra meal can keep you fully functioning. They should also be spaced approximately four hours apart. Depending on your activity level, your meals should be between 400 and 600 calories.

To get the most out of your meals, try combining complex carbohydrates, lean protein and healthy fat. Menus options could include mixed greens, grilled chicken and an oil and vinegar based salad dressing and whole-grain toast with peanut butter and sliced banana.

Get Down with a Healthy Dosage of Vitamin D

Individuals who fail to consume the required amount of vitamin D can experience bone and muscle weakness, chronic fatigue and mental impairment. While the recommended daily intake is 600 IUs, most women average their daily intake around 276 IUs. The vitamin D deficiencies are most common in the winter months when the exposure to the sun’s light is more limited.

Fatty fish, fortified orange juice and non-fat milk are excellent sources, but you may need an additional daily supplement, especially when the sun is at its most limited levels. If you’re struggling with fatigue, you can also have your physician test your levels during your annual check-up.

Make a Commitment to Exercise

If you’re looking to recharge your batteries, a good workout is just what the doctor ordered. Unfortunately, convincing your body that it’s in need of exercise can be a difficult process. Strong motivators such as reminding yourself of how good you’ll feel afterward can help jumpstart your workout.

To lessen the levels of fatigue and improve your performance during your workout sessions, try scheduling your activity the same time each day. While any exercise and movement is great for your health and wellness, people who exercised early in the morning had the most effective boosts of energy after its completion.

Shake Up Your Routine

Whether you’re changing your route into work or you want to try a different workout, exposing your body to new experiences can increase your feel-good hormones. While you don’t have to make drastic changes such as scouring mountain tops or changing careers, you can open your normal routine up to new experiences.

Get Moving

Simple things around your home such as your comfy bed, chair and car can be stealing your energy levels. People who sit for long periods of time may find themselves more physically and mentally drained. It also raises your chances for illnesses and diseases, even if you get sufficient exercise each day.

You can prevent being chained to your desk by scheduling five minute bursts that allow your heart rate to get pumping and elevated. A simple run up and down the stairs, walk around the office building or session of group office jumping jacks can pump your blood. In addition to helping you stay more alert and focused, the brief bursts of activity could also contribute to weight loss.

Add Some Melody and Base

Music that is upbeat can be more inspiring than a good workout. The body is hardwired to subliminally tailor the body’s rhythm to rival what we are exposed to. If you find yourself tired and nodding off, you can select a song on your headphones that gets you moving.

If you’re at the gym, try selecting something with 140 beats per minute to get your body pumped and energized. If your gym mates don’t mind, you can even sing or hum along to the tunes. Individuals who incorporated music into their exercise routine also found it to be easier to do.

Steer Clear of Negative “Nancy’s”

Whether it’s the co-worker who seeks drama or the gym buddy who wants constant advice on their latest conquests, you need to avoid people who try to bring you down with their own problems. Listening to someone else’s hardships takes time. It can also be exhaustive to be the problem-solver.

While you don’t want to cut these people out of your life completely, you need to set some boundaries. Give them 10 minutes of your time to tell a condensed version of their story. Be brief and to the point in your response and move on. This allows you to help them out and retain your positive mental outlook on life.

5 Super Food Alternatives

If you’re looking to change up your food habits, you’ll find the following options an exciting alternative.

While super foods such as blueberries, quinoa, and garlic generate a lot of nutritional buzz, you’ll find that they’re not the only items that can prevent disease and improve your health and wellness. There are a number of foods equally loaded with nutrition that a person overlooks in favor of the originals.

Super Food: Quinoa
What it Does: The best whole-grain for losing weight
The Sleeper: Oatmeal

When you’re looking for a super grain, you don’t want to overlook the nutritional capabilities of oats. While quinoa has a total of eight grams of protein versus the six in oats, it doesn’t contain a unique ingredient like its counterpart. Beta glucan is a particular fiber that raises the body’s appetite controlling hormone called PYY. Oats can keep you feeling fuller longer and comes in at only 166 calories. That makes it a more weight conscious selection over the 220 in quinoa.

Super Food: Garlic
What it Does: Fights cancer
The Sleeper: Onions

Both garlic and onions come from the same vegetable family and are chalk full of organosulfur compounds. Onions also contain cancer fighting agents that can stall the growth of tumors. However, purple onions are loaded with a powerful disease fighting hue called anthocyanins and are more nutritious than both white and yellow onions.

Super Food: Blueberries
What it Does: Combats cardiovascular disease by protecting the heart
The Sleeper: Bananas

Bananas contain essential minerals and nutrients that can help combat cardiovascular disease. While blueberries are rich in nutrients, you’ll find that bananas contain over three times the potassium and magnesium. This can help regulate blood pressure and keep the heart in good physical condition.

Super Food: Almonds
What it Does: Some say they are the healthiest of nuts
The Sleeper: Peanuts

Some say almonds are the favorite nut at present. However, peanuts are just as delicious and nutritious. Similar in fiber and calories, you’ll find the peanut to be above average when it comes to protein. Peanuts are also a winner in antioxidants, as they contain just as many as the average berry.

Super Food: Black beans
What it Does: An excellent source of protein for vegetarians
The Sleeper: Peas

Black beans and split peas are both a great source of protein, complex carbs and fiber. While black beans offer 45 percent of a day’s worth of iron, split peas are just as nutritious and come in around 32 percent.

11 Surprising Facts About Your Heart

Straight from the Heart

One of the hardest working muscles in the human body is your heart. The heart beating capabilities of this extraordinary muscle are powerful with it being able to beat approximately 3 billion times throughout an individual’s lifetime. With every beat of your heart, it can also pump out close to two ounces of blood. Over the average day, this can equate to a minimum of 2,500 gallons of the red stuff.

Sedentary Lifestyle Could Equate to Trouble

For health conscious individuals who want to stay heart healthy, you may want to reduce the amount of time in front of the T.V. You may also want to do a little more walking than driving. A study of nearly 30,000 individuals across 52 countries showed that the group of people who owned a T.V. and automobile had a greater risk of a heart attack by as much as 27 percent over individuals without. However, the studies also cautioned that it was the lack of exercise that caused the increase risk of a heart attack and not the actual machines.

The Benefits of a Mediterranean Diet

A slimmed down Mario Batali isn’t the only one who has benefited from the Mediterranean diet. Research suggests that individuals with heart disease who follow this particular eating regimen can prevent a second heart attack from occurring. Mediterranean eating consists of consuming fruits, vegetables, fish, high-fiber grain, beans, monounsaturated fats and omega-3 fatty acids. Dieters are also asked to limit eating sweets and cheese.

Pollution is Just as Toxic for the Heart

Studies have shown the negative effects of pollution on a person’s lungs. Scientists are also finding the toxic air that you breathe can also be responsible for harming your heart. When the toxic air is inhaled, the harmful molecules can cause both your heart and lungs to become contaminated. Individuals who have been exposed to polluted air can also be at a higher risk for arrhythmias.

A Broken Heart

The despair and overwhelming feelings of depression and anger caused by grief can take a toll on a person. The sadness and shock of losing a loved one can also leave feelings of anguish and bring on a sudden heart attack. A recent study of more than 2,000 heart attack survivors indicated that the risk of a heart attack was greater after the death of a loved one than after any other time. As the grief subsided, so did the risk of a heart attack.

Your Heart as the Focal Point

When the Pledge of Allegiance is usually recited, you’ll notice that most individuals place their hands over the left side of their bodies. While the heart may feel like it’s favoring the left side, your heart is actually centered toward the middle of the chest. However, a heart defect called dextrocardia has the heart being placed on the opposite side.

A Cup of Java to Reduce Risks

Coffee with caffeine can cause the heart to beat faster. However, a surprising study found that individuals who drank coffee were less likely to be hospitalized or concerned about heart arrhythmia. While caffeine can often cause the heart to beat faster, studies have shown that consuming more than four cups of coffee daily were fund to lessen a person’s risk by as much as 18 percent. Individuals who drank between one to three cups per day found their risk to be at 7 percent. However, physicians are not likely to prescribe coffee as a way to protect the heart.

It’s the Size of an Apple

The heart is the size of an average apple and can weigh between seven and 15 ounces. This can equate to being a littler bigger than your fist.

It Never Stops Ticking

Your heart begins ticking approximately 22 days after you’ve been conceived. By the time it ends, the average heart can end up beating as much as 3.5 billion times according to research.

Men versus Women

Both male and female hearts experience the same rate of beat before conception. However, a male heart can beat approximately 70, while women can experience around 78 beats.

Does Sneezing Stop the Heart?

The age old saying says that sneezing can trigger the heart to stop. However, heart aficionados find that saying to be simply just a myth.

Top 10 Anti-aging Tips

You’ll have to learn some important anti-aging secrets that are centered round the body, mind and spirit mantra, if you plan on living an active and healthy life well past your 80s. Interdependent activities such as stimulating the mind to lighten the mood and exercising the body to obtain a sharper mind shows how the aspects of a healthy life are dependent on the other.

Heredity plays an important in a person’s health and wellness. However, you don’t have to be a slave to your family tree. While certain conditions may be passed down from generation to generation, you can plan for these obstacles and bypass them with proper education. You can even retool your life’s perspective and mood to reduce the stress and anxiety in your life. This can keep your mental capabilities sharp and enhance your cognitive abilities.

With a little education and an interactive approach, you can play a key role in the quality and longevity of your life. The following are 10 techniques that will help you retain your youth and good health as you age.

10: Mental Stimulation for the Brain

Living a long and vivacious life takes a sharp and positive mind. Mental stimulation is just as important for the brain in ridding it of disease and sluggishness, as it is for the remainder of the body. A recent study found that women who were highly educated had a reduced number of instances in Alzheimer’s disease. Autopsy result analysis also concluded that women who had interests away from work to challenge their minds had lower instances of the disease.

The brain requires mental stimulation in order to keep the neurological pathways flowing. Simple practices that can help include reading, learning a new language or hobby, puzzles and taking classes at the local community college. Following the old adage of use it or lose can prove beneficial when it comes to retaining your mental capabilities.

9: Consume a Healthy Diet

Consuming a healthy diet should consist of a healthy dose of fruits, vegetables, lean protein, whole-grains, minerals and other healthy nutrients. You should also consume over five glasses of water per day.

Your daily calorie consumption from fat should also be under 35 percent, with approximately one-fifth from olive oil, canola oil or 1 percent milk. Protein and carbohydrates are equally important and can include oatmeal, wild rice and whole-wheat breads.

8: Spirituality

Individuals who are spiritual or followed some sort of religion in their life had a more positive effect on their physical health. It can also help lessen the amount of pain and suffering in their life. Whether the spirituality comes from prayer, meditation or learning to forgive and forget, you can achieve a happier life with some form of a greater power.

7: Exercise

Depression, stress and compulsive disorders were shown to improve with Kundalini Yoga Meditation. Researchers have further investigated this theory between the body, mind and spirit and found it powerful in eliciting positive change, especially during the latter years of life.

Regular cardiovascular exercise is imperative for those interested in slowing down the aging process. Current studies have shown how important exercise can be in combating the loss of muscle tone, stamina, bone density and balance that often increases as a person ages.

If you’re ready to give it a go, the American Heart Association advices utilizing a cardio and strength training regimen a minimum of three times a week. After you get in the habit of your fitness routine, it can be a great addition to a healthy lifestyle.

6: Load Up on Anti-oxidants

According to the Dr. Jeffrey Blumberg of Tufts University, free radicals can add to the onset of the aging process. However, consuming a high number of antioxidants can neutralize the free radicals that are damaging your system.

You can start with the consumption of a healthy diet and supplements. Colorful vegetables such as squash, kale, tomatoes, spinach and carrots contain carotenoids. Blueberries, blackberries and raspberries are also nutritious and can contain important flavonoids. Because the foods contain important antioxidants, they are considered a super food source.

5: Choose a Healthy Supplement

There are only so many hours in a day to consume healthy foods such as a spinach salads, fish and quinoa. Fortunately, supplements can help pick up the slack when you’re not able to eat right.

Daily supplements can help the body absorb healthy nutrients when you’re eating habits aren’t at their best. Classic supplements can include important antioxidants of vitamin C, vitamin E and a mixed carotenoid. Consuming the essential antioxidants daily is similar to driving while wearing a seatbelt. While the protective gear is in place to save your life, it doesn’t give you the license to maneuver your vehicle recklessly.

4: A Good Night’s Rest

The expression I’ll sleep when I die is commonly heard among people who think that sleep isn’t important. However, a lack of a good night’s rest can actually contribute to a shorter life span. Insufficient rest of less than six hours nightly can increase your chances of a heart attack or stroke. The lack of sleep can also deteriorate your mind significantly.

Not enough rest can also increase your volatile emotions and make you more prone to bouts of anger. Viral infections and illnesses are also more common for individuals with poor sleep habits. To ensure your health, wellness and longevity, you want to shoot for a minimum of eight hours of sleep every night.

3: Wrinkle Reducer

It can be difficult being vigilant about staying out of the sun throughout a life span and fine lines, age spots and wrinkles are bound to emerge as you age.

A wrinkle reducing cream with retinol in it can reduce the appearance of fine lines. Tretinoin and retinal topical creams can increase the skins production of collagen by exfoliating the skin. They also come in various concentrations and are dependent on the individual’s tolerant level.

2: Raise Your Hormone Levels

It’s typical to experience the loss of libido, energy and stamina in both men and women as you age. They are also symptoms of a reduction in hormone levels. Hormone replacement therapy can combat the symptoms through the various anti-aging prescriptions on the market today.

1: Human Growth Hormone Therapy (HGH)

Human growth hormone therapy is a controversial method for individuals who are willing to dole out an exorbitant amount of money per month. However, the treatment can preserve a personal’s vitality and wellness with a simple injection. Several of the benefits include reduced body fat, increase in sexual performance, muscle tone, firm skin and elevated mood and positivity. While the FDA hasn’t approved it as routine anti-aging therapy, you can start your own wellness regimen by adopting a clean and healthy lifestyle.

The 14 Best Things You Can Do for Your Body


Hard working individuals can often be sleep deprived. Unfortunately, your sleep patterns can contribute to your health and wellness. The effort and time that you put into eating a healthy diet and exercising will be ineffective if you’re not getting the required seven to eight hours of sleep each night, especially if you try to play a game of catch up on the weekends. Researcher’s findings suggest that a lack of sleep can play havoc with the brain’s ability to flush out harmful toxins. It can also impair the way the brain functions properly.


Thought to be a passing trend, meditation is a popular method of exercise that packs a serious health punch. While the om-ing party is optional, you’ll find that taking a minimum of 10 to 20 minutes to relax, focus and unwind on a regular basis can help improve a person’s mental capabilities and longevity. Studies have also shown that meditation can help individuals obtain a better night’s sleep, improve the body’s immune system, strengthen cardiovascular function and reduce stress. Because you’re disconnected from the problems associated with everyday life, you’ll find that you can retain a more positive and happy attitude through meditation.

Refresh with Warm Water and Lemon

It’s important to start your day off right with a nutritious breakfast, as it can set the tone for the remainder of your day. Try to select something rich in protein and fiber, as it will keep you satisfied and less prone to snacking. However, starting your day with a glass of warm water and lemon can help detoxify the body and stimulate your intestinal track. It can even give you that caffeine-free energy boost needed to get you through a busy day.

Floss Those Pearly Whites

In addition to brushing your teeth, you’ll find that regular flossing can improve your health and wellness. Gums that are ignored can get infected and cause bacteria to build up. It can then enter the body’s bloodstream and cause inflammation and infection. Try to floss after each meal or at least once a day to get rid of food and particles littering the mouth’s atmosphere.

Consume More Tea

Water aside, consuming green tea on a regular basis has a host of benefits that include boosting your metabolism, improve mental capabilities, lower blood pressure, reduce bad breath and strengthening the body’s immune system. Research also shows that the consumption of green tea can also provide anti-inflammatory agents to aid the body.

The Popularity of Probiotics

Probiotics have been the hottest topic in recent commercials and magazine articles. In order to maintain overall good health, the answer may lie within your digestive system. In order to keep your digestive system smooth and regular, you’ll want to consume a probiotic product every day. In addition to regularity, probiotics can also boost your mood and strengthen your immune system.

Warm-up Before Exercise

Individuals who started their routine with static stretching before exercising had reduced strength as opposed to people who followed a proper warm-up routine. The latest studies has shown that people who began their exercise regimen with a muscle warming routine that included high skips and lunges enhanced their performance and enjoyed an injury-free workout.

Stay Fit with HIIT

Studies from Liverpool John Moores University suggested that high intensity interval training (HIIT) can garner similar benefits that you would normally get from endurance training. However, you’ll spend about half the time or less at the gym to gain the same outcome. While any type of sweat-induced workout is crucial to your health and wellness, HIIT can improve your level of fitness and combat diseases that include diabetes, heart ailments and hypertension.

Steer Clear of BPAs

Bisphenol A is a chemical that is used in producing many of today’s common household items such as cans of food and water bottles. Over the years, the effects of BPA have commanded a bit of controversy. Based on the latest findings, being exposed to BPA can cause serious harm with issues such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes and reproductive problems. However, the FDA has evidence to support both sides of the debate. You can steer clear of BPAs by purchasing products in glass bottles and avoiding recycle codes that state 3 or 7 on the bottom.

Implement a Proper Skincare Regimen

Since your skin is one of the biggest organs, you need to take proper care of it. This means that you should begin your day by liberally applying sunscreen after you’ve cleansed your skin. You should also carefully choose your skin care products and avoid chemicals and other harmful toxins. You can read labels carefully and avoid products that contain Sodium Lauryl Sulfate and Sodium Laureth Sulfate. These items are harmful and could strip your skin and hair of special nutrients needed to retain moisture. They could also prove toxic when mixed with other skincare ingredients.

Limit UV Rays

Slathering your body in sunscreen is especially important in preventing sun damage. However, you can go a step further and protect your eyes with the right sunglasses. The UV protection that sunglasses provide can keep your eyes healthy and protect them from cataracts, sunburn and skin cancer. UV-400 and 99-100 percent do the best at providing the proper eye protection.

Go Green

Antioxidant-rich leafy green vegetables should be added to your menu at every meal. They are chalk full of nutrients and can help prevent cancer, control weight management and keep the body regular. You can also supplement with a green powder such as spirulina if you’re pressed for time. This greenish-blue form of algae is high in protein, B vitamins, iron, omega-3 fatty acids, beta-carotene and zinc.

Enjoy the Benefits of Fiber

Fiber is the main component to eating a healthy diet, and it comes in all shapes and sizes. In addition to keeping your body regular, fiber can aid in weight loss and contribute to your longevity. It has also been shown to moderate the body’s inflammation, reduce blood pressure, lower bad levels of cholesterol and reduce your risk of diabetes.

Make Love

While you may not have to be told to have more sex, you’ll find that research is in your favor about regular time spent underneath sheets. Regular sex has a variety of benefits that can enhance your sleep habits, make you feel and look more youthful, boost your immunity, improve your cardiovascular health and protect against cancers. Research has also shown that you can live longer too, so go ahead and get busy!

Can Staying Positive Extend Your Life?

The latest study in Lancet medical journal has strengthened the belief that a positive outlook can keep cancer at bay and give new hope to staying alive. Six dozen patients who were recovering from breast cancer were the basis for the study. The individuals who showed a fighting spirit and reacted to their situation positively had a better survival rate and reduced signs of residual cancer than the people who experienced feelings of despair and hopelessness. Additional studies seem to back this evidence up, allowing the optimal benefits to get admitted into the medical doctrine.

On the pessimistic side, multiple studies have also found the evidence to be lacking. Neither positive nor negative emotions were shown to impact the outcome and prognosis of those suffering from a serious illness. While there will always be new claims to the power of positivity, experts believe that the earlier results were based on the importance of a person’s living conditions, health, and their happiness.

While the data may be lacking, the powerful belief may be doing widespread damage. Patients battling cancer may try to act happy and upbeat when they’re actually feeling down and distraught, especially if their disease progresses. It could also keep them from getting treatment or solace during their time of need. Positive thinking could even complicate future research since it can be difficult to tell if a patient is suppressing their actual feelings or truly retaining a conquering spirit.

Why Women’s Immune Systems Are Stronger Than Men’s

The age old stereotype of women overreacting has been long touted. However, there could be a smidge of truth to it when you’re talking about their immune system.
A new study has found that the immune system in women is significantly stronger than a man’s when it comes to their reaction to the flu vaccine. Women of various age groups had a higher antibody production rate and a raise in the inflammatory cytokine count than their male counterparts.

Male Versus Female Immune System

The gender gap related to immune reactions has been commonly known. However, the mechanics behind the reasoning has remained a mystery among scientists. The latest study has shined new light on the findings identifying various genes regaled by testosterone. They may also deem them as a major component to the response mechanism. The greater the testosterone levels of the individual involved, you’ll find the immune reaction to the vaccine to be lower.

In general terms, the immune system response of a woman is stronger than those of a man. While this can mean good news because they’re less susceptible to viral, bacterial, fungal and other various types of infections than men, their immune systems are more suspect to overreact.

An over stimulated immune system can go after healthy tissue as seen in autoimmune illnesses that include lupus. It can also pose life threatening complications in post-infection issues where an abundance of immune cells have compromised the way the body functions normally.

It’s All in the Genes

The current study examined the way the immune system responded to seasonal vaccinations in both men and women between the ages of 20 to 89. Based on the blood tests, they were able to ascertain and isolate the genes at the center of fat metabolism. Regulated by testosterone, the researchers found that the male genes showing higher hormone levels had tested lower for the antibody response.

The latest findings centered on genes, the sex chromosome location and how the response to vaccinations is affected by the immune system. The current research has also paved the path for testosterones important role, the treatment of immunological overreactions, and the reasoning behind the raised rate of autoimmune diseases in women.

Depression May Accelerate the Aging Process of our Cells, Study Finds

Depression may have harmful effects on more than just the mind per the latest findings. Physical conditions linked to depression typically include heart disease, cancer and type 2 diabetes. However, new research has shown that it may accelerate the way a person ages at a cellular level.

A recent study published in Molecular Psychiatry showcased the way investigators from the Netherlands utilized protective caps from the chromosome and how the ends are shortened when the cells are divided. This impact determined the effects of depression on the aging process. The telomeres length has always been used as a marker to determine the age of the cell, with animals and humans being shown to have the shorter versions.

The study divided over 2,000 adult participants into groups of three. They consisted of individuals who previous were diagnosed with a depressive disorder, people currently struggling with the illness and those who never experienced any form of depression. After controlling factors such as alcohol, consumption, smoking, nutrition and weight were considered, the people with a history of depression were found to house shorter telomeres than others in the group. The stronger the depression; the shorter the length in telomeres.

When compared with depressed participants to those healthy, you’ll find the individuals with depression to be at 5,460 bp compared to the healthier people in the group who were at 5,540 bp. The telomeres can also shorten by as much as 14 and 20 bp per the latest findings. Depression can play a significant role on the wear and tear of the human body and result in an accelerated rate of biological aging.

This study merely found a correlation between depression, and the length of the telomere and future studies will be needed to determine the exact relationship. While depression might be an important trigger for cellular damage by shortening the telomeres, it hasn’t been proven to shorten a person’s life span. More research will be needed to determine clinical relevance.

How Sleep Clears the Brain of Toxins

The latest studies have found that the brain gets rid of toxic materials through its cells after a good night’s rest. They also concluded that there is a biological purpose to sleeping and that waste disposal may be at the center of its restorative properties.

There could also be a significant connection for treating and comprehending certain diseases that include Alzheimer’s. The study also indicated the various functional states of the brain during the stages of sleeping and while awake.

The therapeutic nature of when you sleep is the outcome of activity clearance based on the neural movement that gathers during the waking up period.

Published in the journal of Science, the findings indicate the highest level of activity occurs during sleep, when the brain goes through its own method of cleansing. During the restful hours of slumber, the toxins that would typically build up and cause neurological complications such as Alzheimer’s disease instead clear away. It was also concluded the reduction of the size of the brain cells during sleep and how it allows waste to be effectively removed.

By pumping cerebral spinal fluid to the tissue of the brain and releasing the toxins into the liver and blood circulation system, you’ll realize the how the brain’s glymphatic waste disposal system runs.

It was also being speculated in regards to the compatibility between the cleaning process and brain functions that must be performed during wakefulness.

The brain has a certain amount of energy at its disposal, and it must make the selection between the two various states. Similar to a social gathering, you can either choose to entertain your guests or clean up after them. However, you can’t do both tasks at the same time.

5 Things Super Successful People Do Before 8 A.M.

Love it or hate it, morning time is inevitable, and taking advantage of the early bird hours before you head to work can hold the key to a healthy, happy and successful lifestyle. This common trait is found in some of the most influential early risers around the globe such as CEOs, government officials and world leaders who were known to get up before the crack of dawn. While most individuals think that they are at their best in the evening, a recent study concluded that people were more productive and energetic in the morning. The health benefits for morning revelers were also significant. The following are five productive activities successful individuals find to do before 8 a.m.

1. Exercise and Fitness

Exercising and keeping fit in the morning can pave the way for a successful and energized day ahead. Whether you work out at the gym, schedule a yoga session, bike ride, walk or run, a morning fitness routine can bring you a sense of accomplishment that carries over throughout your busy day. Tackling a mountain of paperwork is easier to do after starting your day with a couple of sets of push-ups. If the thought of a 5 a.m. wake-up call shocks your senses, try setting your alarm 15 minutes earlier and stretch or do a couple of reps of sit-ups. This can still prep you for your day ahead.

2. Implement a Plan

You can maximize your day’s potential by implementing a plan ahead of time. The morning is the ideal time to put things in motion and map out a schedule of your day’s events. In addition to it being peaceful and quiet, you’ll be more alert to schedule and prioritize the tasks that need to be dealt with. Make time for mental health breaks, especially after a grueling set of meetings. A walk around the block or brief meditation can be beneficial to managing your stress and relaxation. You should also set time aside to pack nutritious snacks for the following day.

3. Make Time for Breakfast

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day and rushing out the door with a cup of coffee and an empty stomach won’t keep you satisfied all morning. Instead of relying on the vending machines or food trucks, you need to fuel your body with healthy food, especially if you’ve just worked out. Breakfast can keep you satisfied and in top physical shape to take on the challenges at work. Sitting down to an early morning meal with the family can promote bonding and lift your spirits before you start your day.

4. Meditation and Visualization

So much importance is placed on a person’s physical health now-a-days. However, mental health is equally important and can alleviate stress and mental exhaustion. Positive visualization and meditation can be beneficial in the early morning hours, when it’s most quiet. Focusing on your goals and accomplishments can improve your outlook for the day ahead.

5. Schedule Your Least Favorite Task for Early in the Day

Everyone has at least one dreaded task on their schedule that looms over them throughout their day or week. After much procrastination and nagging, you may finally set your mind to accomplishing it. To save yourself stress and aggravation, you should schedule a time to deal with the unpleasantness early on. In addition to getting it out of the way in the begining part of the day, you’ll find that you have more energy and a sharper mind to contend with the annoyance in the early morning hours. This can then leave you in a more jovial mood to enjoy the rest of your work day.

Could A Daily Dose Of Red Wine Reduce One's Risk Of Depression?

Individuals over the age of 55 were the subjects of a new study and found that those who consumed an average glass of wine per day were found to be less clinically depressed than people who either drank more alcohol or those who didn’t drink any. This poses a direct contrast to earlier findings that concluded a correlation between alcohol and an increased risk of depression. Before you head to your favorite local restaurant for happy hour, you need to understand the risks involved and reasons behind the latest study.

Approximately 5,000 men and women of Spanish decent were followed, between the ages of 55 and 80 for approximately seven years. They were asked a series of questions periodically about their habits and lifestyle by way of questionnaire and physician visits. At the very start of the study, there were no reports of any of the individuals suffering from depression. By the culmination of the seven year period, it was found that over 443 people had shown signs of depression.

As it turned out, alcohol consumed in low to moderate levels were found to have a reduced risk of depression. For those who consumed between two and seven glasses of wine during the course of the week, they experienced the greatest benefit with only a third of the risk of depression. While it wasn’t dramatically reduced as the low to moderate groupings, moderate drinkers were proven to have a lower risk of depression. Lifestyle factors such as marital status, smoking, diet, exercise and age can influence the risk of depression, but the results held true.

If there is a connection, the effects of antioxidants in wine such as resveratrol could have a lot to do with it and provide protection similar to the way it does for those with heart disease. Many believe that heart disease and depression share similar mechanisms related to inflammation. The antioxidants in wine could prove helpful in repairing brain damage where the depression has occurred.

Previous studies concluded that hippocampal complex can play a key role in major bouts of depression. When the neuroprotection is applied, it can prevent individuals who consume alcohol on a regular basis from showing signs of depression.

Social factors have nothing to with the content of wine, but they have been shown to affect depression. Individuals who indulge in a glass or two of wine may be doing so with friends or family members. People who enjoy a social setting surrounded by friends and loved ones can significantly reduce their risks of depression, and the studies could be influenced by this.

Another factor to keep in mind is the effects of alcohol and depression on each other. Hereditary, genes and environment are predisposed issues to both and could play a significant role in this equation. This could increase the chances of an individual experiencing the use of alcohol and depression.

Because of the above reasons, the findings should be taken with a grain of salt. The people involved in the study were taken from a restricted populace in the Spanish Mediterranean where nobody over the age of 55 had been showing signs of depression.

Looking for a single answer in this study is naïve and other variables need to be taken into consideration when looking for conclusions. Other factors come into play when determining the correlation of alcohol and depression such as the person’s health, mental wellness, type of alcohol and quantity. Moderation holds the key to happiness and enjoying an occasional glass of red wine for individuals who find it pleasing to the palate might benefit brain and heart health. However, for those who don’t have a fondness for the taste, you probably don’t want to pick up the habit because it carries a significant amount of risks.

The Secret to Staying Motivated

Stop focusing on losing weight! You’ll find the following five reasons more of a motivator to get moving.

Managing a hectic schedule can be a challenge and tasks with immediate payoffs can often fall to the wayside. Included in that checklist is exercise. Working out typically competes with other tasks that need to get done throughout your busy day. In order for it to make the top of the list, it has to offer something beneficial. A recent study focused on woman who kept track of instant results after exercising. Many found that they had more energy and felt an overall sense of happiness. They also worked out 34 percent more during the course of the year than individuals who made their appearance and weight-loss goals their primary focus. Since it can take months to see any actual physical changes, you’ll find that exercise can feel like just another obligation.

Focusing on the following five instant health benefits will help you retool your motivation and reap the benefits of exercise.

REWARD 1: Encourage Productivity and Brainpower

Skipping your workout to get ahead at work may feel like a wise decision, but you may reap more benefits out of a quick class at the gym. Research has indicated that 20 minutes of exercise can increase brain functioning and allow you to plan, coordinate and schedule. This ramped up focus can last up to an hour, so you need to plan your exercise when it can benefit you most during the day.

REWARD 2: Connect on a Healthy Level

Social communication can have a significant effect on your health and aid in preventing high blood pressure, mental illness, alcoholism, suicide and illnesses or diseases. Finding shared activities such as a Zumba class at the gym or running with a group can keep you on task and benefit your mind and spirit. People who make exercise a part of their daily lives were perceived as more outgoing, personable, kind and attractive to others than individuals who don’t work out.

REWARD 3: Healthy and Hydrated Skin

Facials can be a pricey affair. However, you’ll find that exercise and sweating to be an inexpensive way to score healthy looking skin. Getting your heart rate to rise will increase your blood flow and circulation to the skins surface. After the body uses some of the sweat droplets to cool its system, the rest will be absorbed back into the skin to give it a hydrated and healthy glow.

REWARD 4: Great Sex

A good workout can make your love making sessions more stimulating. A published study found that women who exercised 20 minutes before watching an erotic movie experienced increased genital arousal by as much as 150 percent. Working out stimulates the sympathetic nervous system and increases the blood flow and lubrication to the vaginal tissue. The rise in sexual arousal can last up to 30 minutes, so you may want to plan your workout at home.

REWARD 5: A Good Night’s Sleep

People who exercised moderately at least 30 minutes a day each week found that they were able to go to sleep faster each night. They also experienced less drowsiness during the daytime hours. A good workout can reduce stress and anxiety and aids individuals in getting a more peaceful rest each night. It doesn’t matter when you work out, as long as you get it in daily throughout the week.

10 Simple Rules for a Healthy Life

The following are tips for staying healthy, fit and happy for the rest of your life!

In order to stay healthy and keep the doctor away, you need to eat more than just an apple a day. Life is hectic and stressful for most people and bad habits such as high stress levels, limited sleep and too much alcohol can make it difficult for most people to maintain a healthy body. It can also increase your risk of cancer, stroke and heart disease.

1. Ditch the Smokes

Even if you’re an occasional smoke, your body is still at risk for heart disease and cancer. Recent studies indicate that cigarette smoking can kill one in five people across the nation each year. Smoking is a preventable cause of death and one of the worst habits you could ever have.

2. Sun-Kissed-Glow

Tanning beds and sun worshipers are more likely to develop skin cancer and deadly melanoma than those who stay out of the sun. Sun exposure can also lead to premature aging and wrinkles. Sunscreen can help prevent overexposure to the sun and keep your skin looking young, healthy and radiant.

3. Chocolate is Your Friend

Consuming foods that you actually like can be enjoyed in moderation. When the occasional treat beckons, and you must indulge, you can still stay focused and on track with a small sampling. A strict diet will only cause you to overindulge and binge.

4. What’s Your Number?

You’re doing your body a disservice if you aren’t familiar with your HDL and LDL cholesterol numbers. Your blood sugar levels and cholesterol should be checked on a regular basis and will help you make knowledgeable decisions based on your test results.

5. Get Moving

Research shows that a minimum of 30 minutes of aerobic exercise can do a body good. Whether you hit the gym for your favorite boot camp class or take a brisk walk, you'll find that exercise has a positive impact on a person’s physical and mental wellness. If you can't fit in a full thirty minutes in the morning, you can break the time up until you reach your full thirty or more.

6. What Your DNA Says About You

Your family history can tell you a host of stories about your health. Genetics play a key role in your health, and it pays to know whether your father had prostate cancer or your grandmother had diabetes. Early health screenings can help you stay on top of serious health issues, especially those that run in the family. It can also play an important role in a physician’s care and treatment when they know your detailed familial history.

7. Make Time for Tea

Green tea is chalk full of antioxidants that are needed to ward off illnesses and diseases. It can also benefit those who are looking to lose weight. The next time you hit up your favorite coffee shop for a latte, skip the foam beverage and make it a green tea.

8. Say “No” to Soda

Soda is loaded with sugar and can ruin your hard-earned efforts of watching what you eat. Diet and regular soda can also be harmful to your health. Although diet soda is the lesser of the two evils, it is better than the calorie laden regular version. You may want to try replacing your favorite cola beverage with green tea or water instead.

9. Regular Health Exams

Breast exams and pap smears should be a yearly occurrence for women of all age groups. In between exams, women should also be doing their monthly self-breast exam and scheduling an annual mammogram once they’ve reached the age of 40.

10. The Colors of the Rainbow

Colorful foods are loaded with vitamins and nutrients and should take up a majority of your dinner plate. Fruits, vegetables, lean protein and legumes are packed with minerals and vitamins necessary for your body to run right. Healthy carbs are good for you when you replace them with healthy grains such as whole-wheat pasta, brown rice and quinoa.

How to lower blood pressure

High blood pressure, or hypertension, is very common. According to a new study done by Harvard, high blood pressure helps contribute to 15 percent of the deaths in the United States. Additionally, the American Heart Association has stated that 28 percent of people in America have hypertension and do not even know it. You should see your doctor if you have not had your blood pressure checked within the last two years.

There are several medications that have been approved to treat hypertension. These medications are very effective, but they can cause side effects such as insomnia, leg cramps and dizziness. The good news is that the majority of people can lower their blood pressure without using any medication. The first step in lowering your blood pressure is to bring your weight down to a healthy number. After that, here are a few suggestions:

1.) Power Walk Hypertensive patients who walked briskly were able to lower their systolic blood pressure, or top number, by 8 mmhg. They were able to lower their diastolic blood pressure, or bottom number, by 6 mmhg. If you exercise regularly, your heart will not have to pump as hard. Attempt to work out vigorously for 30 minutes a day, most days out of the week. Once you have gotten used to working out for a while, try increasing the distance and speed.

2.) Breathe Deeply Meditative and breathing practices, such as yoga, tai chi and qigong help decrease stress hormones. These hormones help increase renin, which is an enzyme in the kidney that causes the blood pressure to increase. Try inhaling and exhaling deeply for five minutes in the morning and five minutes at night.

3.) Eat Potassium-Rich Produce Linda Van Horn, who is a professor of preventative medicine at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medical, has stated that potassium-rich vegetables and fruits should be part of every blood pressure lowering regime. She recommends that everyone get between 2,000 mg and 4,000 mg of potassium per day. Dried fruits, orange juice, tomatoes, honeydew melon, bananas and potatoes are foods that are rich in potassium.

4.) Check The Sodium On The Food Labels African Americans, people with a family history of hypertension and the elderly are more likely to have high blood pressure because they may be more sodium sensitive. There is no way to tell whether a person is sodium sensitive, so everyone should watch their sodium intake. Eva Obarzanek, who is a researcher at the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute, recommends that people reduce their sodium intake to 1,500 mg per day. Eating less processed foods and putting less salt on your food are two things that you can do to reduce your sodium intake.

5.) Have Some Dark Chocolate Have a ½ ounce serving of dark chocolate every day. There was a study done that showed that 18 percent of people who ate dark chocolate every day were able to lower their blood pressure.

6.) Consume Alcohol In Moderation You can lower your blood pressure by reducing the amount of alcohol that you drink. However, there was a study performed by Boston's Brigham and Women's Hospital that showed that light drinkers may be able to lower their blood pressure more than people who do not drink at all. There have also been studies done to show that moderate alcohol consumption can reduce the risk of heart disease. Women should only consume one alcoholic drink per day, and men should consume two at the most. It is important to note that excessive alcohol consumption can be dangerous.

7.) Switch to Decaffeinated Coffee The debate about the effect that caffeine has on blood pressure has been going on for a long time. Some studies say that caffeine does not affect blood pressure, but there was a study done by Duke University Medical Center that showed that consuming 500 mg of caffeine per day can increase blood pressure by 4 mmhg. Jim Lane, who is a professor at Duke, states that caffeine can cause the blood vessels to tighten. That is why it is recommended to switch to decaffeinated coffee if you are a coffee drinker.

8.) Drink Some Tea There was a study done that showed the subjects who drank three cups of hibiscus tea every day were able to lower their systolic blood pressure by an average of seven points after six weeks. Hibiscus contains phytochemicals that can reduce blood pressure.

9.) Work Less If you work more than 41 hours a week, then you can increase your chances of developing high blood pressure by 15 percent according to a study that was done by the University of California, Irvine. Haiou Yang, who was the lead researcher in the study, stated that working overtime makes it harder for you to exercise and eat healthy. Even though it is hard, try to leave work at a decent time so that you can have time to cook a nutritious meal and go to the gym.

10.) Listen To Relaxing Music According to a study done at the University of Florence in Italy, listening to music can lower your blood pressure. The study involved 28 people who were taking high blood pressure medications. The subjects were asked to listen to Celtic, classical or Indian music for 30 minutes a day. The results of the study showed that the subjects were able to reduce their systolic blood pressure by an average of 3.4 points. After one month, the subjects were able to reduce their systolic blood pressure by 4.4 points.

11.) Get Help for Snoring Snoring is often a sign of obstructive sleep apnea. People who have sleep apnea have higher levels of aldosterone, which is a hormone that can raise blood pressure. In fact, approximately half of sleep apnea sufferers have high blood pressure. Daytime sleepiness and morning headaches are two other signs of sleep apnea. See your doctor so that you can get checked for obstructive sleep apnea.

12.) Get More Soy In Your Diet There was a study done by Circulation: Journal of The American Heart Association that showed that replacing refined carbohydrates with soy-based foods can lower your systolic blood pressure.

7 Foods That Fight Aging

1. Avocado

This green, pear shaped fruit contains monounsaturated fat, a compound found to protect cells from free radical damage. Eating avocados daily can improve mental clarity, skin texture and bone density. Boron is a mineral that is important to the absorption of calcium and can aid in preventing broken bones. Toxins are another component that contributes to the aging process. Fortunately, avocados have close to 14 grams of fiber and can help speed up the removal of the premature aging toxins. Avocados are delicious when served in their natural form and best eaten when ripe. You can incorporate this protein enriched fruit in soups by adding cucumber and fresh mint. Another great idea is to place it in a favorite wrap with baby greens and wild salmon or mix in slices of avocado with your favorite salad.

2. Turmeric

Turmeric is considered a must-have pantry staple. Known to contain important antioxidants that enhance the body, turmeric’s curcuminoid pigments can also protect brain and skin cells from free radical damage. It has also been shown to improve an individual’s focus, mental awareness and can reduce the formation of fine lines and wrinkles.

This warm, peppery spice can add depth to your favorite dish such as a coconut, almond milk and banana smoothie. After harvesting a bounty of vegetables this season, you can also sauté kale or spinach in coconut oil and turmeric.

3. Juice Your “Greens”

Give yourself a gold star if you’re a juicer. Juicing has a host of benefits, especially for those who mix their favorite greens into a healthy beverage. Because it breaks down the walls of the plant cells, you’ll find that the nutrients are absorbed quickly into your system, with little digestive effort. One eight-ounce beverage of your favorite “green” juice is equal to consuming two salads without the dressing.

You can take advantage of what each season has to offer with items such as cucumber, spearmint, fennel, kale, dandelion greens and spinach. Add apple, kiwi and lime into the mixture to prevent oxidation.

4. Arctic Char

If you’re looking for the nutrients of salmon without the harmful effects on the environment, arctic char is an excellent nutrient for you. Farmed in an eco-friendly, sustainable manner, it can contain similar amounts of omega-3 fatty acids as wild salmon. Anti-aging benefits can include reduction in wrinkles, brain clarity, improved eyesight and protection against sun damaged skin.

For optimum use, you can pan-sear the salmon and place on a bed of kale or watercress. Add a touch of citrus such as grapefruit sections or orange segments.

5. Hijiki

Hijiki should be included in your next sushi adventure. This pasta-like sea vegetable is loaded with iodine and works in tandem with the thyroid hormone to boost an individual’s metabolism level. Since it’s loaded with fiber, it can also aid in the detoxification of the liver and regulate hormone levels.

Hijki is an ideal texture for individuals who are on a gluten-restricted meal plan. Simply soak it in water, boil for approximately 10 minutes, and you have a dish that resembles pasta. It can also be added to a bowl of mixed greens and tossed with avocado, hemp seeds and tangy pumpkin seeds.

6. Hemp Seeds

No need to break out the Birkenstocks and tie-dye. The consumption of hemp seeds can be beneficial to your skins cells by promoting radiance and firmness. Hemp seeds are the only edible source of omega-6 fat which can contribute to the health and condition of your skins appearance. It’s also an excellent source of protein for those who adhere to a plant-based diet.

Heat and cooking can destroy the delicate oils in hemp seeds, so you’ll find them to be most beneficial when eaten raw. They can also be tossed in your favorite kale salad or protein-enriched mango smoothie.

7. Chlorophyll

No need to do penance for your food sins. Chlorophyll makes up the green pigment in plants and can be purchased in liquid form. Made from mulberry leaves or nettles, it can help countermand the effects of alcohol, coffee and non-organic foods.

Try making your own chlorophyll beverage by mixing chlorophyll with filtered water. You can also flavor to the drink by adding fresh mint or cucumber. A green tea smoothie mixed with chlorophyll is also nutritious and delicious.

14 Habits of Happy Men

Satisfying routines and activities to help achieve happiness and health.

A man’s happiness isn’t all about a cold beer and grilling, but it is close. Our poll took a look at a diverse group of men that included musicians, chefs, stock brokers, grand dads, lawyers and bottle washers and came up with the following list of activities and satisfying routines that help men achieve health and happiness.

A.M. Workout

Several of the men surveyed found they favored an early morning work that included playing tennis, running, walking or an indoor workout. They found that it set up the rest of their day both mentally and physically. Fitness experts have praised the many benefits of exercising in the morning and believe that it contributes to a boost in energy and a positive mood throughout the day. Most men that work out in the morning found it easier to stay with an exercise program too.

Making Room for Alone Time

Finding time to spend with family and friends is extremely important in order to achieve happiness. However, making room for alone time is also a necessity among men. It can be as simple as reading the Sunday newspaper with a cup of coffee before the family gets up or watching a favorite T.V. show alone. Some men surveyed chose to do something creative or educational while others wanted to vegetate and shut off their brain for few moments. Most chose mornings as their preferred time of day, although there were a few night owls in the group too.

Bonding with the Guys

Male camaraderie is especially important in the group of men that was polled. Bonding with the guys over hot wings and a cold beer evokes feelings of happiness and contributes to numerous health benefits. Research has shown that forming new friendships and reinforcing old ones over a game of pool or at a favorite sporting venue is good for your psychological welfare and longevity.

Date Night

It doesn’t always come up in conversation on nights out with the guys, but men can be protective about making time to spend with their significant other. Busy dads with a myriad of activities at work and home know the importance of date nights to help stay connected to their loved one. Couples committed to spending alone time together away from children and other household obligations seem to argue less and have better problem-solving skills when tensions arise at home.

Sports and Leisure

Men reap just as many benefits as children do with regular softball, hockey and baseball games. Some of the benefits include social interaction, mental sharpness and keeping on top of their physical skills. Experts on the subject note that healthy adult competition can play an important role in men’s lives and make them happier and more productive throughout their busy day.


Self-help books and seminars can provide you with the tools to effectively manage your time and organize your daily tasks. Fortunately, you don’t need someone to tell you that in order to achieve peace of mind; you need to tackle the chaos. An excellent way to organize your life starts with a calendar. Write down where you need to be and the jobs that need to get accomplished. Cross off each of the items on your list as you finish them.

Implement an Exercise Regimen

Implementing a regular exercise regimen can invoke feels of accomplishment and satisfaction in men. Some of the guys polled favored a vigorous run, weight lifting workout, an early morning swim and biking to work. A normal exercise routine can promote numerous health benefits such as improving sexual performance, combating diseases, controlling weight and mood boosting properties. The Surgeon General reported the coalition between a sedentary lifestyle and heart disease, obesity, high blood pressure, depression, anxiety and stroke.

Giving Back

Feelings of happiness also included giving back to others. Men in our survey felt that volunteering, giving to charity or doing something nice stayed with them for the entire day and made them feel better about themselves. Getting a thank you lets them know that their work was appreciated and brings fulfillment to their lives.

Decadent Fare

Dieting and watching what you eat is at the forefront of everyone’s mind, but the occasional decadent meal such as a juicy steak, comforting bowl of pasta or pancakes and syrup evoke happiness in every man. Enjoying a big meal or tasty snack in moderation is deserving of every male, especially after a brutal day at the office.

Relaxing with Family

Whether it’s enjoying a favorite T.V. show, board game or making pizza together, relaxing with the family helps keep men happy. This not only opens up the lines of communication with your children and spouse, it provides an opportunity to do something fun together. This is also beneficial to your children and gives them the tools to grow up to be responsible and confident young adults.

The Company of Family and Friends

A meal shared with family, friends and loved ones tantalizes a man’s senses and sends signals of enjoyment to the male brain. Simple pleasures such as sitting around the table conversing, sharing a glass of wine, and indulging on good food defines serenity for many in our poll.

Musical Entertainment

Musicians and novices felt that sitting down at the piano or playing the guitar relieved tension and melted away stress caused by a chaotic day. Other creative activities such as woodworking, painting and working on cars tapped into a different side of their mind and brought men fulfillment as much as playing an instrument did.

Quality Time with the Kids

One of the leading sources of happiness among fathers surveyed included time with their children. It could be because men are just overgrown kids or they enjoy feeling the strains of youth again, many found that they wanted to catch whatever moment of alone time they could with their kids. Time spent on the drive to practice, waiting for the school bus or a nighttime chat before bed was precious to each of them.

Outdoor Walk

An invigorating walk outside can reduce stress, anxiety, tiredness and depression. Not only is it a great way to stay in shape and get your heart pumping, it can also be beneficial to your mind and spirituality. Whether you walk around the neighborhood or find a scenic spot along a local nature trail, getting outside for a minimum of 30 to 45 minutes each day can be peaceful and help relieve stress. Walking is also easy on the joints and can help those suffering from arthritis.

5 Foods You Shouldn’t Eat If You Are Post 50

As we age, you’ll find your circle of friends to be ever changing, and the people who were once your best friends may no longer qualify to hold that job title. As with friends, foods can hold the same significance, and the items that cause interrupted sleep, clogged arteries and an increase in blood pressure are no longer welcome in your inner circle.

The following five foods are a mid-lifers worst nightmare and experts advise you to stay clear of them.

1. Skip the Salt

Salt could have a negative impact on your body and increase your blood pressure. The white stuff can cause your body to keep excess water, and that extra bodily fluid could contribute to a rise in your blood pressure levels. As your blood pressure soars, you’ll find that your kidneys, heart, brain and arteries have to work harder. This could pose a significant strain on these important organs. High blood pressure could also lead to a host of problems such as kidney disease, heart attacks and strokes. An increased salt intake could further your problems by wreaking havoc with some blood pressure medications that include diuretics and cause them to not work as efficiently as they should.

2. Just Say” No” (to Bacon)

Approximately one in three adults across the nation can suffer from some form of joint related problems such as arthritis and specific foods can aggravate these issues. Studies have shown that COX-2 enzymes are more active and can cause a flare up when you consume foods that are higher in omge-6 fatty acids than omega-3 fatty acids. Foods high up on that list you want to avoid include bacon, meats, egg yolks and margarine.

3. One More Glass of Wine

Wine enthusiasts can verbally site the findings that wine in moderation may hold significant benefits for the heart. However, most individuals need to revisit what the word moderation actually means. Per the National Institute of Health, having between two to seven alcoholic beverages a week is light to moderate usage. Anything heavier than that can damage your liver and heart, with heart disease leading the pack in deaths among individuals who abuse alcohol.

4. The Two Faces of Sugar

In order to lose weight, most individuals find that they need to get rid of any sugar in their diet. However, there’s another evil side to sugar. Studies have shown that consuming too many delectable sweet treats can contribute to the aging process in numerous ways. Sugar in the form of candy, cookies, cake or ice cream is converted into glucose, which has been linked to diabetes. On its own, diabetes can be extremely dangerous. However, it could lead to further health complications such as heart disease and kidney and nerve damage. Those who suffer from diabetes can also experience issues related to their mouth, skin and bones that make them feel years beyond their actual age.

5. Soda

It’s recommended that individuals limit their consumption of sugar laden beverages to aid in the prevention of diabetes. A regular 12-ounce can of soda contains approximately 150 calories and at least 10 teaspoons of sugar. Sports drinks and energy beverages can be equally sweet, so you need to read the labels before purchasing the product.

10 Tips for Better Digestive Health

There are a number of factors that affect your digestive system such as your lifestyle, stress, and the foods that you choose to eat. Getting the required amount of fiber, drinking plenty of water and exercising can all aid in developing better digestive health. Your body works by breaking down the foods you consume into nutrients and if you fail to be kind to your digestive health, you could run into complications later on.

The following are ten important tips that will help boost and maintain your digestive system.

1. Consume a diet high in fiber. According to the latest studies, a diet that is rich in fiber, whole-grains, fruits, vegetables and legumes, can make great strides in the way that you digest your foods. Fiber laden foods provide regularity by keeping things moving throughout your digestive system. This makes you less susceptible to constipation, bloating and fatigue. It can also aid in preventing digestive ailments such as hemorrhoids, irritable bowel syndrome and diverticulosis. A smooth running digestive tract can also aid those who are trying to shed pounds by helping you to maintain a normal weight range.

2. Insoluble and soluble fiber. Both forms of fiber can aid in your digestive tract. Insoluble fiber is difficult to be digested by the human body and can add solidness to your stools. Forms of insoluble fiber can include vegetables, whole-grains and wheat bran. Soluble fiber attracts water in and discourages your stools from becoming watery. You can get soluble fiber from items such as legumes, seeds, oat bran and nuts.

3. Reduce your consumption of fatty foods. Fatty foods can slow down your digestive system and contribute to constipation. However, getting rid of all that fat is not necessary, as pairing high fibered foods with some that are fatty can bring digestive relief to many individuals.

4. Lean meats a good source of protein. Fatty cuts of meats can irritate your bowel and lead to gas and bloating. Lean protein is necessary to any diet and can be found in food source items such as skinless chicken breasts, pork loin, turkey breast and other lean cuts of meats.

5. The importance of probiotics. Probiotics are a necessary part of any healthy diet, and they can keep your digestive system on target with the amount of healthy bacteria. By combating foods that are not good for you, they can contribute to proper nutrient absorption, aid in breaking down lactose and give your immune system a boost. They may even aid those who suffer from irritable bowel syndrome. Probiotics can be found in healthy products such as kefir and low-fat yogurt.

6. Follow a healthy schedule. Following a regular eating schedule can keep your digestive system running right. Plan to eat around the same time every day and include a healthy balance of snacks and regular meals.

7. Drink plenty of water. Water is refreshing and can help the body stay hydrated. It can also contribute to a healthy digestive system by helping to dissolve fats and soluble fiber. This can contribute to keeping the body running regularly and alleviate bloat and discomfort.

8. Ditch the bad habits. Alcohol, smoking and excessive caffeine usage are all bad habits that can hinder your digestive system from running right. It can also lead to other health issues such as heartburn and stomach ulcers.

9. Regular exercise. Exercising on a regular basis can keep the foods that you eat moving throughout your digestive tract. It can also reduce your chances of experiencing constipation and help you maintain a normal weight.

10. Dealing with stress. Stress and anxiety can lead to a dysfunctional digestive system. Stress reducing activities such as yoga and meditation can be helpful and should be practiced regularly. The foods you eat and a well-maintained digestive tract can go hand-in-hand. By following the above ten tips, you’re sure to enjoy comfort and regularity.

14 Foods That Fight Inflammation

Inflammation is an integral part of the immune response and without it, it’s nearly impossible for the body to heal properly. However, when it’s out of control, such as in the case of those suffering from rheumatoid arthritis, it can do significant damage to the human body. It’s also thought to play a significant role in afflictions such as obesity, cancer and heart disease.

Foods with excessive amounts of saturated fats and sugar can cause the immune system to be over active and lead many to feelings of fatigue, joint pain and blood vessel damage. Other foods may reduce inflammation and should be added to your daily meal plan.

Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Fatty fish such as salmon, tuna, sardines and mackerel contain high levels of omeg-3 fatty acids and have been show to lessen the levels of inflammation. To gain the necessary benefits, you need to consume fish at least three times a week, and it should be baked, broiled or boiled. Individuals who consumed this necessary nutrient found their risk of heart disease to be reduced by as much as 20 percent.

Not everyone is a fan of fish and fish oil supplements can lessen the levels of inflammation. However, too much of a good thing can instigate inflammation, so you want to limit your consumption to the daily recommendations for your height and weight.

Consumption of Whole Grains

Whole grains have a greater amount of fiber than refined items such as white rice, bread and pasta and can help with inflammation. A main contributor of inflammation in the blood stream is C-reactive proteins.

Unfortunately, not all products labeled “whole grains” are healthy, and you have to do diligence when shopping. Choose foods that read whole grain as the primary ingredient and no sugars.

Eat Your Leafy Greens

Today’s research has shown that vitamin E can play an important role in guarding the body from pro-inflammatory properties known as cytokines. Cruciferous vegetables and dark leafy greens have been proven to retain higher levels of vitamins and minerals than their lighter counterparts. Veggies such as kale, broccoli, collard greens and spinach are full of iron, calcium and disease fighting properties.

Antioxidant Packed Nuts

Nuts are another inflammation-fighting food that is rich in calcium, vitamin E and fiber. Almonds and walnuts have a high level of omega-3 fatty acids and are chalk full of antioxidants to aid your body in keeping illnesses and diseases at bay. Whole-grains, nuts, fish and leafy green vegetables all play an important role in the Mediterranean diet. Folks following the diet have seen a reduction in inflammation in as short a span as six weeks.


Soy is beneficial to the human body, especially in adult women. Many studies have indicated that the estrogen compounds found in many of the soy products contribute to lowering inflammation and CRP. It has also been proven to lessen the negative effects of the heart and bone health when tested on mice.

However, overly processed soy products should be avoided, as they don’t have similar benefits, especially when loaded with preservatives. Tofu, soy milk and edamame are healthier options and should be consumed regularly.

Low-fat Dairy Products

Products high in calcium can be trigger foods for inflammatory diseases because some individuals have a sensitivity and intolerance to casein. However, for those who are able to tolerate low-fat calcium products, skim milk, cheese, cottage cheese and yogurt can be beneficial and lessen inflammation and irritability in the stomach.

Bell Peppers

The more color that is added to your diet, the better it is for you. Colorful choices can include peppers, tomatoes, leafy green vegetables and orange squash. In addition to their high levels of vitamins and antioxidants, they also produce lower levels of starch. Bell peppers can be found in an assortment of colors. Chili and cayenne peppers are a hotter variety and can aid as a property found in topical creams to lessen pain and inflammation.

However, physician’s advise that some peppers can irritate individuals who are suffering from rheumatoid arthritis, so you need to listen to your body and find items that work well for you.


Tomatoes are another inflammatory fighting food because they contain lycopene. This has been proven to help individuals fight inflammation in problematic areas of the body such as the lungs. Cooked tomatoes are better than raw because they contain higher levels of lycopene. Tomato sauce, diced tomatoes and tomato juice are all beneficial and have important healing properties.


Nothing is more brilliant in color than the beet, and its fine color showcases the levels of antioxidant properties. In addition to protecting an individual from heart disease and cancer, it has also been shown to reduce inflammation.

Ginger and Turmeric

Common spices found in Asian and Indian fare have been proven to have anti-inflammatory benefits to an individual. Turmeric regulates the immune system and can aid in the body’s process of reducing inflammation. Its spice relative ginger has also numerous benefits and in addition to reducing inflammation, it can relieve symptoms of indigestion and stomach upset issues.

Garlic and Onions

Aromatic vegetables such as garlic and onions can make a pasta sauce divine. It’s also known for boosting an individual’s immune system. Research has shown that garlic has similar benefits to medical products such as ibuprofen and can shut down the roads that lead to inflammation. Onions have similar anti-inflammatory properties and important compounds.

Olive Oil

Plant based fats such as olive oil is an integral part of a healthy diet, and it’s good for reducing inflammation. The Mediterranean diet has a host of benefits that are mainly due to the use of olive oil. The primary compound found in olive oil has been found to have similar effects of painkillers when consumed.


Fruits are low in fat and calories. Because they are high in antioxidants, they can aid in fighting inflammation. The properties that give them their deep color can help individuals with arthritis, intestinal inflammation and cancer.

Tart Cherries

One of the best foods for reducing inflammation is tart cherries and research has shown this magnificent fruit can aid it by as much as 50 percent. It’s also been shown to help athletes up their performance levels and recover properly afterward.

A recommended serving is approximately 1 ½ cups of the actual fruit or drinking one cup of the tart cherry juice each day to enjoy significant benefits. Unfortunately sweet cherries were not proven to be the same, so you need to make sure that you’re consuming the tart variety to gain the most benefits.

3 New Fat-Busting Supplements for Speedy Weight Loss

When you thought there couldn’t be more to say about weight loss supplements, researchers come out with some new information. By combining plant-derived compounds and methods of experimenting to boost their effectiveness, three new supplements can be added to the weight loss list.

1. Resveratrol: Boost Your Metabolism

Resveratrol was once praised for its anti-aging powers by extending the lifespan of mice, but it has since lost some of its magic. Taken from the skin of grapes and red wine, the extract had shown potential in reducing health issues such as cardiovascular disease.

As researchers began to give up on resveratrol, they found that it had great potential to aid in weight loss. Based on a study published in the journal Cell Metabolism, men who consumed a daily dose of 150 mg experienced low blood sugar, reduced levels of blood pressure and a decrease in liver fat over a 30 day period. A study taken the previous year focused on mouse lemurs. With the use of resveratrol, the primates were able to control their body mass. Lemurs typically gain weight over the course of the winter, and they were shown to have less of an appetite and eat less when their food was supplemented with resveratrol. Because the temperature of their body and metabolic resting rates were affected, it was found to be a significant metabolism booster.

Recent published studies have proven the theory on resveratrol anti-aging effects by recognizing the pathway behind the energy production and prolonged lifespan. The company founded to test, study and market resveratrol was recently shut down. However, resveratrol is already showing up in a variety of weight loss supplements on the market.

2. White Kidney Bean Extract: Blocking Starch

White kidney bean extract rose in popularity thanks to Dr. Oz. Scientifically named Phaseolus vulgaris, it’s been praised as a fat blocker by slowing or preventing starch absorption.

Since 2007, the excitement over white kidney bean extract has been significant. Based on a study in the International Journal of Medical Science, individuals who took 445 mg per and were somewhat overweight, found that they were able to shed pounds, even while consuming a diet high in carbohydrates. The extract works by stopping alpha-amylase from breaking down the eaten carbs. Carbs that are normally broken down get absorbed in your body’s system and stored as fat.

Researchers followed 60 moderately overweight individuals for 30 days, while taking the white kidney bean extract. When taken 30 minutes before the consumption of a high carb diet, they noticed a decrease in the individual’s body measurements and BMI. A study in China found similar results, while over 90 percent noticed a weight loss over the course of two months.

3. DHEA: Regulate Hormones

DHEA is produced by the adrenals glands, and it’s found to be a natural steroid hormone. The many benefits include boosting energy levels and raising and maintaining the body’s muscle mass. As you age, you’ll notice a significant decrease in DHEA. Researchers wondered if supplementing the body with DHEA could have an effect on the way a body ages. Estrogen and testosterone play a significant role in the sexual hormones throughout the aging process and DHEA has been proven to boost the levels significantly.

While DHEA supplementation may come into play in aiding overweight men to lose weight, studies have been unable to replicate the same findings in younger individuals.

The Mayo Clinic summarizes the DHEA research by admitting that further research is needed on the subject before confirming any weight loss results. Other studies have recommended the energy boosting properties of DHEA as a cure of adrenal fatigue and lupus.

For those interested in learning the pros and cons of DHEA, you can check out the comprehensive analysis from the University of Maryland. Women should take 25 mg and men 50 mg. Because the DHEA supplement needs to be chemically synthesized, you won’t be able to enjoy the same results by consuming wild yams or soy.

Potential side effects could affect individuals who take a higher than recommended dosage and women may experience oily skin, acne and facial hair growth. Women under the age of 40 should still be producing enough DHEA naturally and should not take the supplement.

15 Surprising Heart Attack Risks

Heart attacks are more complicated than you might think. The risk is partially determined by the well-known factors of diet, activity level, and family history, but heart attack risk can be increased or decreased in some surprising ways a typical patient might not even consider. Take a look at these fifteen little-known possible contributors to heart attack and see if you may be increasing your risk without realizing it.

Calcium Supplements

A 2012 study in Heart indicated that people who take calcium supplements are at higher risk for heart attacks than people who don’t. The problem is not the calcium itself, but the supplements. “I tell patients to get calcium in their diet,” explains Dr. Malissa Wood, co-director of the Corrigan Women’s Heart Health Program at the Massachusetts General Hospital Heart Center. “Eat oily fish twice a week along with other foods that have calcium.”


Azithromycin, an antibiotic common because of its effectiveness and because it only requires five doses in one course, may be linked to increased risk of heart attack fatalities. The evidence is not yet conclusive, but patients who already have heart disease may want to discuss different antibiotics with their physicians.

Quitting Aspirin

Heart patients who want to end treatment with aspirin or other anti-inflammatories should do so gradually and under medical supervision, says Dr. Matthew Sorrentino, a University of Chicago cardiologist. The patients’ risk for heart attack is higher for at least a week after the treatment has been discontinued.

Urban Settings

Living in close proximity to high levels of traffic can actually double a person’s risk of a cardiac-related death, according to two studies. A German study found that the risk holds steady whether a person travels by car, public transit, or bicycle.


In 2001, The New England Journal of Medicine printed a study showing that people who live in low income neighborhoods are three times more likely to suffer from heart disease than people with similar income levels and lifestyles who live in more affluent areas. “It’s very true and something you can’t do much about other than change where you live or spend time in places where the air quality isn’t so toxic,” says Dr. Wood.

Relationship Problems

Valentine’s Day hearts look nothing like real hearts, but a problem in one’s love life can be a literal heartbreaker. Epidemiologists at University College London determined that relationship problems can increase heart attack risk by 34 percent.

Job Stress

Mental strain from work can increase someone’s risk of heart attack by 23 percent. A 2005 study of British government employees found that heart disease was far more likely in people who didn’t feel their opinions were valued or who felt a lack of control in decision-making processes.


The Journal of the American College of Cardiology reported in 2009 that women diagnosed with depression are twice as likely to develop heart disease as their non-depressed peers. Similarly, patients who have already had one heart attack are more likely to have another if they are depressed.

Gum Disease

Poor oral health can increase cardiac risk by up to 25 percent. Scientists believe the culprit is oral bacteria, which can slip into the bloodstream by way of inflamed gums and trigger inflammation in blood vessels.

Respiratory Infections

Influenza and other respiratory infections can increase a patient’s odds of heart attack by five times during the first three days of illness. The inflammatory response brought on by the immune system’s fight against infection can create a heart attack or a stroke. Flu vaccines are particularly important for cardiac patients because they help prevent this risk.

Prostate Cancer Treatment

A 2006 Harvard study indicated a possible link between heart attack and the hormone treatments used for prostate cancer. The research has not yet proven that the link is causal, but it should be considered, particularly in determining prostate cancer treatment for patients already at increased cardiac risk.

Kidney Disease

A Dutch study found that patients who have kidney disease or weakened kidneys are at higher risk for a heart attack. An unrelated study of 10,000 men determined that men who have chronic kidney disease are twice as likely to have cardiac trouble as are their counterparts.


Along with the many other terrible health issues it brings, diabetes can increase a person’s risk of fatal heart disease by up to four times. Fortunately, the risk is lessened greatly by the exercise and healthy diet prescribed for all diabetic patients.

Autoimmune Disorders

The leading cause of death among patients with lupus, an autoimmune disorder which causes the body to attack its own cells, is heart attack. The constant activity of the immune system leads to chronic inflammation, which increases cardiac risk. Even psoriasis, which seems like a skin issue but is actually caused by immune function, can increase heart attack risk. “In certain patients, psoriasis is a risk factor for heart attack comparable to diabetes,” points out Dr. Joel M. Gelfand, a University of Pennsylvania assistant professor of dermatology.

Low HDL (Good) Cholesterol

A study done by Indiana University found that low HDL cholesterol is actually the third highest predictor of heart attack risk, coming lower than only prior heart issues and age. “If young people have heart attacks, I can almost always tell you they have low HDL,” says Dr. Wood. However, HDL levels can be increased by weight loss and exercise.

15 Ways to Get Better Sleep Every Night

Adults are supposed to get an average of seven to eight hours of sleep each night and anything less can leave you tired and out of sorts the next day. Since getting sufficient rest can contribute to a healthy and happy life, you’ll find the following tips to be helpful when getting ready for bed.

1. Catch Some Z’s

Thanks to the developer of YeloSpa’s, the public has taken power naps to a whole new level. David Edward’s educated the populace on the advantages of taking a 20 to 40 minute nap each day. Instead of digesting caffeinated products to stay awake, your body is more satiated when taking a 40 minute or less bit of shut eye. Without the caffeine coursing throughout your veins, you won’t be jittery and may even seem more focused and alert. However, anything more than 40 minutes will leave you feeling groggy.

2. Caffeine in Moderation

No need to stop your morning coffee ritual at Starbucks as long as you know when to quit. Julie Ruelle is a BluePrint Cleanse nutritionist and advises holding off on the afternoon and evening caffeine consumption. Beverages with moderate amounts of caffeine can cause you to wake up in the middle of the night and disrupt your normal sleep patterns. Water, fresh-squeezed juices and seltzer are better alternatives. For those that need an afternoon pick-me-up, a 3 p.m. cut-off may be more of a forgiving timeframe.

3. Get Up and Go

Exercise has been shown to be beneficial in every aspect of your life, including improving your sleep patterns. Josh Holland is a personal trainer to the stars and has helped shaped celebrities such as Madonna. He believes that a high intensity workout can aid the body in how it recovers. Since recovery and sleep go in tandem, you’ll sleep like a baby after a vigorous exercise regimen. For example, working out in the morning can be a great way to start the day and boost your mood. It’s also the ultimate stress reliever and can last until you’re ready to hit the sheets. However, working out three hours before going to bed has been shown to make it more difficult to get to sleep.

4. Add Melatonin to Your Diet

Produced by your brain to help aid your sleep and wake patterns, consuming melatonin can be beneficial when added to your daily diet. Found in a variety of foods such as meat, vegetables, fish, whole-grains and fruit, you’ll find the nutrients to be sleep inducing. For those on the go, you can also purchase it in supplement form.

5. Digest a 5-HTP

If you’re looking for a natural supplement that helps with stress and sleep related disorders, you may want to pop a 5-HTP. It’s been highly touted as causing your brain to produce chemicals that affects the way your body sleeps. However, the evidence in regards to the side effects and its actual effectiveness are still inconclusive at the present.

6. Pressure Points of Acupuncture

When it comes to getting to the root of your sleep issues, acupuncture can help cure your insomnia blues. There are certain patterns and culprits behind your sleeping woes and by focusing on the various pressure points, and the right combination of Chinese herbs, you can address sleep disorders, anxiety, stress and indigestion through acupuncture.

7. Watch What You Eat

The foods you consume and how you digest them can have an effect on the way you sleep. Some nutritionists suggest eating almonds or one tablespoon of almond butter approximately two hours before bedtime. Almonds are rich in magnesium, which is a nutrient that’s beneficial to a sound sleep. The protein also helps keep your blood sugar at a normal level. For those unable to fall asleep easily, you may find your problems related to a weak digestion. Try to avoid heavy meals later in the evening and foods such as broccoli, cabbage and those with a lot of zip.

8. Get Your Zen On

The best way to relax before bedtime is to clear your mind. Yoga and meditation can benefit individuals who are having difficulty sleeping because it teaches the mind and body to get rid of stress. You’ll find numerous benefits through each of the poses and breathing exercises. Practicing yoga can be as simple as lying down and breathing for 10 minutes. In addition to being a great stress reliever, yoga teaches an individual how to calm the mind.

9. Ditch the Electronics

Electronic gadgets such as cellphones, computers, laptops, notebooks and reading devices can hinder your ability to get to sleep. In addition the bright lights emanating from the electronic screens, you may be consumed with thoughts of checking emails, playing games and doing business before bedtime. Make it a habit to turn off all electronic devices at least one hour before you hit the sheets.

10. Strive for a Healthy Relationship

Nothing can cause a disrupted night sleep more than getting into an argument with a loved one. Your bedroom should be used for passionate sex and sleeping. Strong emotions such as arguing or sadness can affect your sleep patterns. Save your serious discussions for earlier in the day and never argue before going to bed.

11. Reading

If you’re tossing and turning and can’t seem to fall asleep, you may want to open an audiobook. This allows your brain to go from alert to drowsy as the soothing voice reads the story. Reading on your own is another great option and can induce sleep quite a bit faster than counting sheep.

12. End the Day with Tea

Tea has been used to overcome insomnia since the ancient times. Herbal teas are free of caffeine and can help you relax. The best options include chamomile, lemon balm, lavender and teas infused with valerian root.

13. Soak Away Your Worries

Taking a bath at the end of the day is a great way to relax and ease away your stress and worries. Essential oils geared toward relaxation can help you sleep and keep your skin hydrated.

14. The Power of Crystals

Crystals have other powers than just an adornment to your finger. Many have healing properties and can induce peace and tranquility. Amethyst and rose quartz are favorites at balancing your emotions and relaxation.

15. The Benefits of Binaural Beats

Binaural tones have been proven to aid in relaxation and assisting in getting a good night’s rest. As they activate specific areas in your brain, the waves are produced to help individuals achieve a restful slumber.

How Much Protein Do You Need?

There’s no truth behind the statement that a body is only able to process so much protein at one time, and it’s interesting to surmise as to what happens when you exceed that number.

The topic of protein is a very misunderstood subject. Most of this stems from the way we use it in our diets to stave off a deficiency instead of its optimal amount. To make sure that you’re getting a sufficient amount of the vital amino acids, you’ll need to ingest between 50 to 60 grams of protein daily. Many nutritionists feel that to exceed that number is a waste.

Most individuals find they want to utilize protein in a way to train at peak levels, optimum performance and lose weight. In order to do this, you need to look beyond the deficiencies to see what is needed to build muscle. Protein synthesis is at the center, and the force needed to ignite the process.

Studies from the University of Texas are looking into perfecting the process and trying to determine if timing can affect your protein intake. One group of volunteers consumed a high protein meal of 90 grams at the end of the day, while another consumed 30 grams of protein throughout the day. Eating protein at every meal yielded greater success at increasing the protein synthesis.

It would seem that 30 grams of protein is the ideal amount to achieve maximum protein synthesis and any more at one sitting would do nothing to further increase things. Fortunately, protein has a number of uses and any excess can be used for other things such as energy.

Protein is a metabolic nutrient and estimates have shown that it can take twice the number of calories for your body to break down than it does with a meal high in carbohydrates.

Protein also exudes different hormonal elements than it does with carbohydrates and can create and keep a lean body. Insulin and glucagon are released when an individual consumes carbs and puts the brakes on fat release. The insulin also moves sugars in the muscle cells, resulting in low-blood sugar. As your body releases the glucagon, it takes the stored sugar from your liver and places it into your system to help maintain a normal blood sugar level. Glucagon also satiates your hunger and may stimulate your cells to release fat.

This is more than a collegiate introspection because protein is extremely effective in every day life. A diet high in protein has been shown to achieve greater weight-loss results and better body composition. However, any increase in your protein synthesis can be put to good use, and your body will find other ways to utilize it.

10 Ways to Burn Fat Faster

The following are some medically proven tips to help lose weight:

Up Your Green Tea Consumption

Green tea isn’t just for helping to fight cancer: In addition to the number of amazing cancer fighting properties found in green tea, it can also help individuals rev up their metabolism too. Those who consumed green tea extract a minimum of three times per day noticed an increase in their metabolism by as much as four percent. What this translates to is that you could burn an additional 60 calories per day, the equivalent of six pounds each year. Nutrition experts think the reasoning behind this is due the catechins in green tea, which raises the levels of norepinephrine.

Lift Some Weight

Looking for a way to burn calories quickly? Pump some iron. Exercise physiologists praise the benefits of weight training and find it can burn a pound of muscle nine times the calories of fat. People who lift weight will find their metabolic rate boosted more than a cardio workout. After a strength training workout, you’ll find an added caloric increase that can last up to two hours after your most recent squat according to a Medicine & Science published study. If you find yourself short on time, quick moves such as squats, push-ups, crunches, lunges, bench step-us, and pull-ups will give you optimum results.

Consume Enough Iron

Iron isn’t just for lifting; you need to consume it too. Individuals short on iron will notice a slower rate of metabolism since the body is limited on its oxygen cells. The RDA for adults is around 18 mg and can be found in most multivitamins. You can also get the proper daily allotment by consuming foods rich in iron such as chicken, lean red meat, soy nuts and fortified cereals. For those experiencing feelings of weakness or fatigue, your physician can perform a simple blood test for anemia during your next physical exam.

Stay Hydrated

A current German study found that those who consumed approximately two glasses of water within a specific time frame found their metabolic rate to skyrocket up to 30 percent. Per this research, increasing your water intake by close to 1.5 liters per day could burn an extra 17,000 calories per year. This could result in significant weight loss yearly of up to five pounds.

Have Your Thyroid Tested

Is your metabolism slow and sluggish? Individuals who suspect that they have a slow metabolism may be experiencing an underactive thyroid or hypothyroidism. This condition can affect nearly 25 percent of women in America and most are unaware that they even have it. The thyroid gland has the means to control the body’s metabolism and one of the first indicators that something isn’t right could be ineffective weight loss. A simple blood test can be performed by your physician and a synthetic supplement for the thyroid will be prescribed if you test positive. In order for you to experience a normal metabolism and weight loss, you’ll need to take the thyroid supplement for the remainder of your life.

Skip the Alcohol

Looking for a way to keep your favorite foods from going to your belly, hips and thighs? Alcohol can slow your metabolism down by affecting the central nervous system. Those who wash their meal down with alcohol instead of a healthy glass of water found that less fat was burned and more remained in storage throughout the body.

Ramp Up Your Workouts

Boost your workout with interval training. Incorporating burst of high intensity movements throughout your workout is a great way to raise your metabolism. Researchers found that through the interval training moves, you could burn more fat than normal aerobic exercise. If an individual typically jogs at a 10 minute per mile pace, adding a 30 second burst or running uphill for one minute can raise the intensity and calorie burn of your workout significantly.

Increase Your Dairy Intake

According to a published study in the Obesity Research Journal, women who consumed low-fat dairy at least three to four times per day lost between 60 and 70 percent more fat than those with a lower dairy intake. Some of the beneficial products included non-fat yogurt, skim milk and low-fat cheese. Calcium can trigger your body to burn extra fat faster only when you consume the actual dairy products and not fortified food items such as orange juice with calcium. To reap the maximum benefits, you want to shoot for 1,200 mg per day.

Find a New Activity

If you’ve been doing the same moves, you need to find a new sporting activity. The body adapts to the same activity and causes it to burn fewer calories as it becomes used to the movements. To take your workouts to a new level and fire up that metabolism, you may want to consider something different such as rock climbing, cross training, jogging, swimming and biking. Most studies show that changing a workout every six weeks can improve your metabolic rate and give the body a wake-up call.

Catch of the Day

High levels of leptin have contributed to a lower metabolism and obesity and those who consume fish on a regular basis experience lower levels of the hormone. Eating three or more servings of salmon, tuna or another fatty type of fish each week can be beneficial in boosting your metabolic rate, so go fish!

Three Foods to Help You Avoid Heart Disease, Stroke and Improve Brain Function

Experts have stated for many years that what is good for your heart is also good for your head. Now, both the American Stroke Association and the American Heart Association have stated that the plaque buildup in the arteries that leads to heart disease can also have a negative impact on the brain.

Philip B. Gorelick is a medical doctor and the director of the Center for Stroke Research at University of Illinois College of Medicine. He has stated that the brain and heart are linked by the arteries that supply nutrients, oxygen and blood. If plaque builds up in the arteries and causes them to harden, then the brain and heart will be deprived of blood.

Fortunately, there are a number of delicious foods that can protect your cranium and ticker.

1.) Fish

There have been studies done to confirm that eating one or two four ounce servings of rainbow trout, salmon, sardines or mackerel can reduce your risk of developing heart disease by 36 percent. There was another study done that followed 80,000 women over the course of 14 years. The study found that the women who ate fish twice a week were 51 percent less likely to have a thrombotic stroke than women who consumed fish less than once a month. Clogged arteries are the cause of a thrombotic stroke. According to Ralph Felder, a medical doctor who wrote The Bonus Years Diet, the omega 3 fatty acids in fish help reduce inflammation in the arteries. This keeps blood flowing to the brain.

2.) Have A Glass of Red Wine

Red wine has polyphenols, which have been shown to reduce blood pressure and cholesterol as well as prevent blood clot formation. Resveratrol, which is one type of polyphenol, can increase blood circulation to the brain, which can lower the risk of stroke. Even though there are a number of health benefits that can be reaped from drinking wine, you do not need to start drinking it if you do not currently consume alcoholic beverages.

3.) Increase Your Produce Consumption

A study published in the Journal Circulation showed that hypertensive patients could improve their blood circulation and lower their blood pressure by eating more fruits and vegetables. There was another study performed on people who were over the age of 65. The study showed that the subjects who ate three servings of vegetables per day performed better on cognitive tests than those who consumed few or no vegetables. Potassium, which is a nutrient found in baked potatoes, artichokes and bananas, can help prevent the walls in the arteries from thickening. This will lower blood pressure.

7 Nutrients That Help Increase Muscle Tone

If you’re looking to achieve a lean, strong body, you’re going to want to make sure your diet includes the right mix of minerals and vitamins.

Many think that curbing your caloric intake is the only thing that leads to an amazing body. However, if you’re not consuming the right amount of nutrients, you’re not going to shed weight or tone and strengthen your muscles.

When you curl or bench press, the muscles break down and cause minuscule tears in the fibers. As you rest, the body uses that time to rebuild and strengthen, but it needs the proper nutrition in order to do so. The experts recommend the following seven vitamins and minerals to see a noticeable transformation in your body from head to toe.

1. Vitamin C

Loading your plate with color can lead to toned and well-defined arms. Vitamin C can be found in a variety of fruits and vegetables and is at the center of healthy blood vessels. It’s also a building block of collagen which is a necessary material needed to build strong bones and muscles.

In order to get the proper recommended nutritional requirement each day, take 75 mg. supplement or consume a cup of strawberries, medium orange or half of a red bell pepper.

2. Fish Oil

Omega-3 fatty acids are the right component for effective weight training and increasing the blood flow to support the muscles. It’s also a faster mode of recovery and can decrease inflammation in sore and tired muscles. The fatty acids found in omega-3 fish oil hold a variety of benefits such as toning muscles and preventing diabetes.

To get the proper nutrients, the American Heart Association recommends consuming two servings of fatty fish on a weekly basis. This includes items such as mackerel, herring, salmon, albacore tuna or sardines. For those that can’t tolerate fish, you may want to try taking a daily supplement consisting of 1,000 to 3,000 mg. of DHA and EPA. Vegetarians can also enjoy the benefits of omega-3 by consuming hemp seeds, walnuts, chia seeds and algae based vitamins.

3. Calcium

Calcium is an important nutrient that builds strong and healthy bones and muscles. It goes hand in hand with weight lifting and helps the muscles contract and develop.

In order to get the proper nutritional values, you need to consume at least 1,200 a day. This can be found in dairy products, leafy green vegetables, dairy-free milk or supplements. If you go the pill route, stick to 500 to 600 mg. and space them hours apart to avoid stomach upset. It should also contain vitamin D to help your body absorb the calcium quicker.

4. Magnesium

When it comes to magnesium, most women find themselves lacking. This is an important nutrient that keeps your muscles strong, and your heart beating steady. It’s also great for muscle recovery, cramps and can alleviate PMS symptoms.

The daily recommendation is anywhere between 310 to 320 mg. For individuals that lift weights more than three days a week, you can increase your intake to 400 mg. Magnesium can also be found in foods such as whole grains, legumes, spinach and kale or using Epsom salt in your bath water.

5. B Vitamins

If you’re looking to gain muscle and strength, B vitamins play an important role and include B1 (thiamin), B2 (riboflavin), B3 (niacin), B6 (pyridoxine), B7 (biotin) and B12 (cobalamin). Each of the essential vitamins are essential to maintaining proper health from energy boosting and metabolism to breaking down fat and carbs and maintaining a health nervous system.

B vitamins can be found by consuming a basic diet of whole grains, lean meats, eggs, nuts, leafy green vegetables, legumes and fortified cereals. Since B12 can only be found in animal sources, vegetarians and vegans may want to eat fortified foods and beverages or try taking a supplement that consists of 2.4 (mcg) on a daily basis.

6. Vitamin D

It seems that everyone is touting the benefits of the “sunshine” nutrient. Some of its magical powers include mood lifting properties, strong immune system and muscle tone. In order for your muscles to contract, grow and function, your body needs sufficient vitamin D. It’s also important for bone development and strength.

Most people get adequate vitamin D through their exposure to the sun, but you could be at risk for skin cancer. Instead of risking overexposure to the sun, you could take 4,000 to 6,000 (IU) of D3 every day. Your primary physician can also draw blood to measure your levels to ensure you’re getting an adequate amount.

7. Vitamin E

The next time you reach for a snack, grab a handful of almonds. They not only are a good source of vitamin E, they provide your body with protein, healthy fats and fiber necessary after a good workout. This amazing antioxidant also helps cells to recover and develop quicker after the stress of exercise.

Doses that exceed 300 mg. daily could lead to stomach pain, nausea, weakness or even death, so keep an eye on your intake. Try to stick with the recommended daily allotment of 15 mg. and consume nuts or seeds instead of a supplement.

Three Super Foods to Boost that Libido

There’s no great mystery involved that by eating a healthy diet you’ll be in top shape. You may even find yourself performing at peak levels……in bed! With the following three super foods added to your daily diet, you may experience your heart pumping faster, blood racing to all the right extremities and an extra helping of yum.

Scallops Scallops are chalk full of zinc. Zinc is necessary in both men and women to retain a healthy sex drive, fertility, potency and good sexual health that can be enjoyed into your golden years. The mineral is necessary for sperm production and low amounts have been blamed for a decrease in testosterone levels and a reduction in semen production.

Almonds Almonds have a host of benefits such as zinc, vitamin E and selenium. All of these trace minerals benefit your sexual health and can contribute to a healthy reproductive system.

Cherries Cherries go beyond average and are considered a “super food” packed with antioxidants and melatonin necessary for promoting good sleep cycles. They are also rich in beta carotene and vitamins C, E, magnesium, iron, potassium and folate. Cherries have powerful anti-inflammatory properties that can reduce soreness and pain related to a great workout at the gym or in bed.

To achieve optimum performance and a side of zing:

Stay Physical: Staying in shape and keeping active can increase testosterone levels in men and increase self-confidence for everyone.

Little changes mean BIG results: Simple changes such as reducing stress, getting adequate sleep and eating a healthy diet loaded with zinc can reap big results.

The Key is Stamina: If both parties are physically fit and feel attractive, you’re sure to feel confident, exude sex appeal and perform better in between the sheets. Stamina is everything, so get eating!

Six Quick Skin Fixes

Simple Ways to Take Care of Your Dry Skin During The Winter

The winter is more than half over, but if you are like us, then you may have noticed that your skin is dryer during this time. Cold temperatures, hot showers and dry indoor heat are some of the many the things that can cause our skin to become dry during the winter.

Jessica Krant is an assistant clinical professor of dermatology at SUNY Downstate Medical Center and a board-certified dermatologist. She has stated that the humidity is lower when the weather is colder. Dry air removes moisture from our skin more quickly than normal. Our skin also dries out when we go inside to seek warmth. We just cannot win. We take a steamy, hot shower to get moisture, but we do not realize that the water from the shower takes water out of our skin by osmosis. Additionally, the water and heat strip natural moisturizing oils from our skin. When the shower is over, the last little bit of dampness evaporates. This causes our skin to dry out even more.

You may be wondering, “What can I do to prevent this problem?” Below are some tips from experts:

1. Use Cream Instead of Lotion

Dr. Krant has stated that people should choose a moisturizer that protects the dermis and locks in moisture. She recommends using a fragrance-free, thick cream instead of lotion. She also recommends putting it on after you take your shower.

Bobby Buka, a dermatologist who practices in New York City also recommends that people use a thick moisturizer. Dr. Buka prefers non-petroleum-based moisturizers. Ceramides are natural moisturizers that can be found in several emollients today.

2. Do Not Wear Perfume

Perfume irritates your skin, and the alcohol in it can interfere with your skin’s ability to retain moisture. That is why Buka recommends that people avoid using fragrances.

3. Reduce Your Shower Time

You might not like the idea of showering in cooler water or reducing your shower time, but your skin will benefit in the long run. Dr. Krant says that lengthy, hot showers can remove natural oils from your skin. Dr. Buka adds that you should not shower more than once a day.

4. Increase Your Water Intake

Dr. Krant advises that people drink plenty of water throughout the day. This will help replace the water that you are losing.

5. Wear Your Food

Patricia Fitzgerald, a physician and wellness editor for HuffPost Healthy living, has stated that coconut oil, olive oil and avocado oil are great for your skin when they are applied topically. She has recommended these food-grade oils to many of her patients.

6.) Get Some Omega 3 Fatty Acids

Dr. Fitzgerald recommends that people take fish oil supplements or another supplement that contains omega 3 fatty acids. Eicosapentaenoic acid, or EPA, is one of the omega 3 fatty acids components. According to Discovery Health, EPA helps regulate oil production in the skin.

12 foods with the gift of healing

Whole foods have been shown over and over again to help our bodies function more efficiently, but some can do more than just provide the body with nutrients. The twelve foods on this list actually have properties that can help the body prevent and recover from illness, from cancer to heart disease. These healing foods can also help ease traits that can lead to serious illness, like high blood pressure and high cholesterol.


The very same yellow flowering plants which give gardeners fits has actually been used as a healing herb by cultures around the world for centuries. Traditional Chinese medicine uses a concoction of dandelion mixed with other herbs to ease bronchitis and other respiratory illnesses, and the white sap from the stems and roots can be used to treat warts.

Dandelion greens are packed with nutrients; one cup of raw greens contains 112% of the RDA for vitamin A and 535% of the RDA for vitamin K. Dandelion is actually one of the best food sources for vitamin A and beta-carotene. The greens also contain copious amounts of potassium, calcium, iron, fiber, and vitamin C.

Dandelion is a natural diuretic. The increase in urine production helps flush the kidneys of toxins and excess salts which may develop into kidney stones and provides relief to patients suffering from high blood pressure, bloating, edema, and water retention. Not only that, but the potassium in the greens helps a person on any kind of diuretic to maintain a healthy level of potassium in the body. Dandelion is also used to treat liver disorders like jaundice and hepatitis.

Dandelion has digestive benefits as well. It can act as a gentle laxative by stimulating bile production, but it also has anti-diarrheal properties; like apples, dandelions help the digestive system maintain balance. The leaves and roots can both be used as a treatment for indigestion and heartburn, and the inulin fiber found in the leaves provides a healthy probiotic meal for the useful digestive bacteria in the gut. Inulin also helps balance blood sugar levels, which prevents diabetes, and increases the efficiency of calcium absorption. The vitamin C and pectin in dandelions work together to reduce cholesterol.


Kale, a relative of broccoli, is full of nutrients and anti-inflammatory and antioxidant compounds. Chinese healers have traditionally used kale as a treatment for lung congestion. In just one cup of cooked kale, you can find 89% of the RDA for vitamin C, 192% of the RDA for vitamin A, and a staggering 1,328% of the RDA for vitamin K, plus loads of iron and calcium. The bountiful vitamin K helps skeletal strength by anchoring calcium to bone. It also protects the heart and helps blood platelets clot more efficiently.

Kale contains high levels of a compound called sulforaphane, which has been shown to help protect against cancers of the colon, cervix, and breast. It provides large amounts of beta-carotene and the antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin. In fact, kale gives its eaters more antioxidants than spinach or broccoli.


Eastern medicine looks to cabbage as a treatment for colds, whooping cough, irritability, depression, constipation, and stomach ulcers, and they’re onto something; the glutamine in cabbage acts as a natural remedy for peptic ulcers. Cabbage also promotes general intestinal health, along with easing allergic reactions, reducing inflammation, and strengthening bones.

Cabbage is another leafy green full of important vitamins. One cup of cabbage can provide 50% of the RDA for vitamin C, which is actually 11% higher than oranges. That serving of cabbage can also supply 91% of the RDA for vitamin K along with abundant manganese, folate, vitamin B6, and fiber.

Like kale, cabbage contains high levels of sulforaphane antioxidants which neutralize free radicals harming DNA. Sulforaphanes also cause the body to release enzymes which nullify carcinogens trapped in the body. Cabbage and related vegetables are better at reducing cancer risk than any other fruits and vegetables, and researchers believe this dual-action attack is the reason.


For being as remarkably low-calorie as it is, watercress provides an amazing array of nutrients. Compared on a calorie-to-calorie basis, watercress supplies four times as much calcium as milk, more iron than spinach, and as much vitamin C as oranges. Like other leafy greens, it’s full of carotenoid antioxidants and vitamins A and K.

The combination of nutrients in watercress help strengthen the immune system, build healthy bones, and transport oxygen through the body more efficiently. Some compounds in watercress help to block carcinogens and protect healthy cells; there’s even evidence that watercress can help to destroy cancer cells.

Natural health proponents use watercress to treat urinary problems, jaundice, mumps, sore throat, and bad breath. Traditional Chinese medicine uses watercress to improve night vision, reduce tumors, and improve digestion.


Spinach can do quite a lot. It contains 1111% of the RDA of vitamin K, which helps calcium stick to bone. Popeye’s favorite snack is also a great source of iron, folate, magnesium, calcium, and vitamins A and C. It contains a carotenoid antioxidant which destroys prostate cancer cells and keeps them from spreading, and the large concentration of folate lowers the risk of breast, ovarian, and colorectal cancers. The vitamin C and beta-carotene reduce inflammation and work to prevent colon cancer.

Aside from all that, spinach also helps to prevent heart disease and stroke, lower blood pressure, protect against dementia and promote general brain health, and prevent eye disorders.


If you’re asked the question about which food you’d want with you if stranded on an island, beans should be one of top choices. Beans are a very complete food; they contain protein, carbohydrates, fiber, and antioxidants. Red beans, kidney beans, and pinto beans are in the top four on the USDA’s list of most antioxidant-rich foods. They also provide good amounts of vitamins B1, B2, and K as well as folate, magnesium, and potassium. Soybeans even supply omega-3 fatty acids.

Harvard researchers found that women who have two or more servings of beans per week have a 24% lower chance of developing breast cancer. Many studies have linked beans to reduced risks of breast and colon cancers, high blood pressure, heart disease, and Type 2 diabetes.

Beans have many functions in Chinese medicine; various forms have been used to treat rheumatism, alcoholism, food poisoning, diarrhea, edema, high blood pressure, kidney stones, and myriad other disorders.


Sure, they have a strong odor and flavor, but onions are also strong in antioxidants. They contain a natural antihistamine called quercetin, which reduces allergy symptoms, and large amounts of vitamin C to fight off colds and flu. Onions provide a peptide which helps prevent bone loss and sulfides which lower cholesterol and blood pressure.

Eating onions lowers the risk of prostate, esophageal, and stomach cancers as well as the risk of death from heart disease. They’re even a pain reliever; onions contain anti-inflammatories which help ease arthritis.


Chinese medicine uses carrots as a sort of all-purpose medicine; it treats night blindness, ear infections, indigestion, tumors, rheumatism, and many other ailments. Given the high number of caretenoid antioxidants delivered by carrots, this is not surprising. Studies have linked caretenoid-rich diets to lower risk of cancers of the breast, cervix, prostate, bladder, esophagus, and larynx. Some studies indicate that carrots also reduce the risk of kidney, ovarian, and lung cancers. On the other hand, people whose diets are low in carotenoids have a higher risk of chronic diseases, such as various cancers and heart disease.

One compound in carrots, alpha-carotene, may be able to prevent tumor growth. Carrots are full of vitamins A and C, fiber, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, and potassium. Nutrients provided by carrots help to maintain healthy ears and eyes, boost the immune system, protect the colon, and work against cardiovascular disease.


Broccoli combines an amazing amount of nutrition into one simple food. A cup of steamed broccoli provides about twice the RDA amounts of vitamins C and K, 50% of the RDA for vitamin A, and a strong supply of B vitamins, fiber, sulfate, folate, and iron. It also contains protein; in fact, it contains almost two times as much protein as steak.

Broccoli is full of anti-cancer nutrients called indoles, which inhibit tumor growth and help the body rid itself of carcinogens. Research has shown that broccoli can be linked to reduced risk of cancers of the prostate, lung, esophagus, stomach, breast, cervix, and skin. Other studies have found that eating broccoli can reduce the risk of heart disease by 20%.


Cherries can fight bacteria and viruses, and they also contain a multitude of antioxidants and anti-inflammatories. Anthocyanins act as natural painkillers. They also reduce the risk of colon cancer and lower uric acid in the blood, which cuts the risk of gout. The quercetin and ellagic acid found in cherries can help reduce tumors and cause cancerous cells to self-destruct.

Cherries are used to treat anemia, arthritis, and gout in Chinese medicine.


Guavas are still somewhat rare in the U.S., but they’re worth looking for. They are full of vitamin C and potassium; in fact, a serving of guava contains 60% more potassium than a serving of banana.

Guavas are also a wonderful source of lycopene, an antioxidant which fights cancer. Guavas actually contain 20% more lycopene than tomatoes.

Lycopene defends cells against free radicals which can cause cancer, clog arteries, cause joint pain, and irritate the nervous system. Lycopene has been shown to inhibit the growth of breast cancer cells and lower the risk of prostate cancer. In men who had already been diagnosed with prostate cancer, men who took lycopene supplements improved more quickly than men who did not. Some research suggests that lycopene may also work to prevent coronary artery disease.


Kiwifruit has a unique property; it actually makes itself more edible when someone cuts into it by releasing enzymes which cause the flesh to become more tender. This is a fortunate thing; kiwifruit is one of the most nutrient-rich fruits around. It supplies more potassium than bananas, more fiber than apples, and more vitamin C than oranges.

Kiwifruit is also a natural blood thinner without the stomach-irritating side effects of aspirin. It helps to lower blood pressure and cholesterol and lessen the formation of dangerous blood clots. The antioxidants in kiwifruit reduce the oxidation which damages DNA and even encourage the damaged cells to heal themselves.

Six Weird Signs You Are Stressed Out

1.) Vomiting

Dry-heaving, or retching, is one of things that can happen when you are stressed. This often indicates anxiety. Anxiety and stress can also trigger a condition called cyclic vomiting syndrome. Cyclic vomiting syndrome is a condition that occurs when a person experiences vomiting and nausea that lasts for a long time. In many cases, the vomiting and nausea occurs at the same time every day. Resting and drinking plenty of water are two ways that you can help manage dry heaves or vomiting. You should also find practical ways to reduce your stress, such as meditating or walking.

2.) Hair Loss

Stress is among the many things that can cause hair loss. Alopecia areata is one of the conditions that can trigger stress-induced hair loss. This is an autoimmune disorder where the white blood cells mistakenly attach the hair follicles. Telogen effluvium is another hair loss condition that is triggered by stress. This condition can cause a person to suddenly lose up to 70 percent of his or her hair. Telogen effluvium can cause hair loss months after a stressful event is over, which is why it can sometimes be hard to link to stress. The American Osteopathic College of Dermatology has stated that this problem usually goes away on its own.

3.) Nosebleeds

Experts are currently debating about whether stress really triggers nosebleeds. However, there have been studies done that showed some people can experience nosebleeds when they are in stressful situations. A slideshow that was done in 2001 by the British Medical Journal suggested that the blood pressure spike that occurs when you are stressed out can cause your nose to bleed. Drinking hibiscus tea can help lower your blood pressure.

4.) Memory Loss

If you find that you cannot remember what you discussed during a meeting, then it could be a sign of a shrunken hippocampus. Your short-term memory is controlled by your hippocampus. According to Jeffrey Rossman, who is the director of life management at Canyon Ranch in Lenox, Massachusetts and a psychologist, chronic stress can expose your hippocampus to high levels of cortisol. Cortisol is known as the stress hormone. The best way to get your memory back is to deal with the causes of your stress. You can write down importation information until you are able to do that.

5.) A Weakened Immune System

Weakened immunity is one of the most noticeable effects of stress. Stress causes the body to release catecholamines. These hormones assist in regulating the immune system. However, prolonged release of cathecholamines can actually interfere with their ability to regulate the immune system. Chronic stress can also cause your thymus gland to shrink. That is the gland that produces white blood cells. Additionally, stress damages your telomeres. Telomeres assist in immune cell reproduction.

6.) Excessive Sweating

You probably already know that stress can cause you to sweat more. However, there are some people who suffer from a condition that causes excessive sweating called hyperhidrosis. Meditation and yoga can help you cope with stress-relates sweating. If you think that you have hyperhidrosis, then you should consult with a doctor who specializes in this condition. Last fall, there was a study published in PLOS One that showed that stress sweat can possibly cause others around you to become stressed.

4 Ways Poor Oral Hygiene Can Make You Sick

We all know the benefits of good oral hygiene. Regular brushing and flossing prevents tartar buildup, gingivitis, and periodontal disease with its painful, bleeding gums; it’s in all the toothpaste commercials. However, even people who brush regularly may still have bacteria hiding in their mouths, and these bacteria could lead to complications far beyond the teeth and mouth. Recent studies have shown that poor oral hygiene can cause illness in other parts of the body.

Blood Sugar

People who have diabetes are more prone to infections than non-diabetics, and this includes periodontal disease. Some studies indicate that periodontal disease and diabetes actually make each other worse; gum disease may make it more difficult for the body to regulate blood sugar. These studies also show that treating periodontal disease can help to relieve diabetes symptoms.

Cardiac Health

Periodontal disease sufferers are nearly two times more likely to be diagnosed with coronary artery disease as are people with good gum health. Research has yet to determine a cause for this tendency, but some scientists believe it has to do with the higher count of oral bacteria. Bacteria can enter the bloodstream through the bleeding gums. Once there, they attach to the fatty plaques building up in the arteries, leading to inflammation and an increased risk of blood clots.

Lung Health

The Journal of Periodontology reports that gum disease can increase the chance of respiratory infections like bronchitis, pneumonia, and even chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Oral bacteria can easily be inhaled and inflame the airways and lungs.

Memory and Dementia

Poor oral health may increase a person’s chance of memory deterioration. A study of 118 nuns aged between 75 and 98 discovered that the women who had fewer teeth were more likely to have some form of dementia. Researchers theorize that oral bacteria can spread to the brain either through the bloodstream or by way of the cranial nerves which run through the jaw. Oral bacteria may contribute to the development of the neural plaques linked to Alzheimer’s disease.

How can you improve your oral hygiene and lower your health risks?

Keeping your mouth clean is the key. “Your teeth and gums should not bleed, be painful, or feel rough or sharp to your tongue,” explains registered dental hygienist Pam Atherton. “Your breath should be fresh for at least a couple of hours after brushing in the morning.” Here are some dentist-recommended techniques which can help improve oral health.

1. Don’t use too hard of a toothbrush. Brushes with hard and medium bristles can damage the teeth by scraping away the enamel over time and by hurting the tender gums. “Gum tissue can’t make a callous,” Atherton points out. The loss of enamel and gum tissue eventually exposes the root below the tooth and leads to sensitivity, pain, and possible bone loss in the jaw. Dentists and hygienists recommend toothbrushes with soft or extra soft bristles.

2. Floss before brushing. Dr. Marjorie Jeffcoat, DMD, a professor of periodontology at the University of Philadelphia School of Dental Medicine, explains that brushing after flossing helps to brush away any of the particles removed by flossing. For people who have difficulties using plain floss, Atherton recommends floss holders or floss picks.

3. Use proper brushing technique. Teeth should be brushed for a full two minutes, according to Atherton. “Make sure you brush your tongue and cheeks as well as the chewing surfaces to improve the removal of harmful bacteria in the crevices,” she says. Children can try brushing for the length of time it takes to sing “Happy Birthday” or “The Alphabet Song” twice through at normal speed for each half of their mouths. Toothbrushes should be replaced every three months.

4. Rinse with a mouthwash. People who rinse twice a day cut their risk of gum disease by 60 percent, according to Jeffcoat. The best mouthwash to use is one which has microbial protection against plaque, and the rinsing should last for about 30 seconds.

11 Foods to End Your Bad Mood

Because many people live a fast-paced lifestyle and have a very hectic schedule, they are forced to eat quick meals on the go. Today’s packaged meals are lacking in essential nutrients. They are also packed with processed chemicals. If you constantly eat the wrong types of food, then you may become lethargic, anxious and grouchy.

It is also important to note that a diet that is lacking in essential “happy” nutrients can cause us to gain weight. You are much more likely to overindulge on high-calorie foods when you are feeling stressed. This is how the never-ending unhappiness cycle goes: You eat bad foods, then you feel bad after you eat them. You feel so bad that you start eating worse, and then you feel even worse than you felt before.

Fortunately, you can shrink your belly and boost your spirits by eating brain foods. Yes, feeding your brain the right foods can boost your energy, improve your mood and keep you from reaching for the chip bag. Below are 11 foods that contain the essential nutrients that keep your brain and body healthy.

1.) Mussels
Mussels are very high in Vitamin B12, which happens to be a nutrient that many of us are lacking. Vitamin B12 helps insulate brain cells. This not only helps boost mood, but it also helps keep your brain sharp. Mussels also have small amount of selenium, zinc and iodine, which are nutrients that support thyroid health. What is another benefit that can be reaped from eating mussels? Mussels are low in fat and calories, but they contain a large amount of protein. That is why mussels are one of the healthiest seafood options that you can find.

2.) Swiss Chard
This leafy green is rich in magnesium. This nutrient helps increase energy levels. There was a 2009 study published in the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry that showed that increasing one’s intake of magnesium can help reduce depression. Swiss Chard is not the only food that is rich in magnesium. Halibut, soybeans and spinach are some of the other foods that are an excellent source of this nutrient.

3.) Blue Potatoes
Blue potatoes are hard to find in the supermarket, but you should definitely look for them the next time that you go to the farmer’s market. Anthocyanins are antioxidants that give the blue spuds their color. Anthocyanins help reduce the inflammation that can decrease one’s mood. They also help boost short-term memory. Additionally, the skin from the blue spuds are rich in iodine, which is a nutrient that keeps your thyroid healthy. Black beans, egg plants and berries are examples of other foods that are rich in anthocyanins.

4.) Grass-Fed Beef
Grass-fed animals have higher levels of conjugated linoleic acid, or CLA, in their bodies. CLA is a happy fat that blasts belly fat and reduces stress hormones. Grass-fat beef is also low in fat, but contains more omega 3 fatty acids than grain-fed beef. Want another great grass fed option? Try lamb. Lamb is packed with iron, which is a nutrient that helps keep the mood stable.

5.) Dark Chocolate
The cocoa from chocolate improves blood flow to your brain and gives you an instant boost in concentration and mood. However, snickers do not count. Cocoa is the ingredient that is good for your body. Pure dark chocolate is your best choice. You should not overdo a good thing. There is a study that was recently published in the Journal of Psychopharmacology that said that you only need to eat a few ounces of pure dark chocolate per day.

6.) Asparagus
Asparagus is one of the best plant-based sources of tryptophan. Tryptophan helps create serotonin, which is a neurotransmitter that helps regulate mood. Asparagus also contains folate. Studies have shown that 50 percent of depressed people have low folate levels. Eggs, turkey and tuna are other sources of tryptophan.

7.) Greek Yogurt
Greek yogurt has more calcium than regular yogurt or milk. Calcium helps your brain release those feel-good neurotransmitters. People who do not get adequate amounts of calcium are prone to irritability, anxiety, slow thinking, impaired memory and depression. Greek yogurt is also abundant in protein.

8.) Honey
Honey has kaempferol and quercetin, which are two compounds that keep the brain healthy, reduce inflammation and ward off depression. Additionally, honey does not raise your blood sugar as much as regular sugar does. You should add some honey to a bowl of oatmeal or a cup of tea. However, you should not overdo it. Honey contains 64 calories and 17 grams of sugar per tablespoon.

9.) Cherry Tomatoes
Tomatoes are abundant in lycopene, which is a nutrient that fights the inflammation that causes depression. It also helps protect your brain. Lycopene is in the skin of the tomato, so you should put some cherry tomatoes in your salad instead of slicing one tomato. You can also add olive oil to your tomatoes. Olive oil can help increase the body’s absorption of lycopene. You should also try organic tomatoes because they have more lycopene.

10.) Coconut
Coconut is filled with medium-chain triglycerides. Those fats improve your mood and brain health. You can put some coconut shavings in your oatmeal or yogurt. You can also put some coconut shavings in your smoothie.

11.) Eggs
Eggs are filled with B vitamins, iodine, zinc, omega 3 fatty acids. All of those nutrients help boost mood. They are also high in protein, which can give you energy and keep you feeling full longer. Furthermore, a study that was done in 2008 showed that people who ate two eggs for breakfast lost a lot more weight than people who ate a bagel for breakfast.

5 Ways Sex Leads to Better Overall Health

Most standard guides to improving your health will tell you the basics; eat more fruits and vegetables, exercise, drink plenty of water. They’re not quite as likely to tell you to have an active sex life. A recent survey taken by Healthy Women, a nonprofit organization, indicates that a majority of women have sex more because they feel obligated to do it than because they enjoy it. Unfortunately, these women are depriving themselves of the many health benefits sex provides even above and beyond the good feelings of the moment. Here are five examples out of the many health advantages sex can give.

Sex is a good workout. “You can burn anywhere from 85 to 250 calories every time you have sex,” explained Dr. Naomi Greenblatt, medical director of The Rocking Chair, a women’s wellness center in New Jersey. Different positions lead the participants to work different muscle groups. Sex has also been shown to have a cardiovascular benefit; a research study in Ireland discovered that men with active sex lives are 50 percent less likely to die of a cardiac event than their less active counterparts.

Sex can decrease stress levels. Dr. Greenblatt pointed out that sex causes the body to release endorphins, the hormones responsible for feelings of contentment and well-being. A 2002 study done at the State University of New York at Albany showed that women who have regular sex display fewer signs of depression than women who do not; furthermore, women who have regular unprotected sex showed fewer indications of depression than women who have regular protected sex. This study is consistent with other research indicating that sex is a mood-booster on its own and that the compounds in semen may also have mood lifting capabilities.

Sex can help with pain relief. According to Dr. Greenblatt, people on the verge of orgasm have five times more oxytocin in their bodies than they would ordinarily have. Oxytocin is known to relieve many sorts of pain, from arthritis to menstrual cramping.

Sex can boost your immune system. “People who have sex also tend to have higher levels of immunoglobulin A,” explains Dr. Greenblatt. Immunoglobulin A is an antibody produced by the body to protect the mucus membranes from infection by germs.

Sex can help maintain a youthful appearance. Scottish researchers designed a study which consisted of a panel of viewers looking at various women through a one-way mirror and attempting to guess the women’s ages. The women who were judged to be seven to 12 years younger than their true age turned out to be the ones who had sex most often, as many as four times per week. Dr. Greenblatt says sex can also elevate the body’s production of estrogen and vitamin D, which help keep skin and hair healthy.

Researchers do point out that the strong correlations between frequent sex and well-being do not necessarily mean that sex is the cause of good health. It may instead mean that people with better health are more interested in sexual activity. Even so, no evidence shows that sex is bad for the general population, so most people have nothing to lose by increasing the frequency of their sexual activity

Smarter Snacking

It is possible to enjoy snacks without ruining your diet or gaining weight. If you follow these tips, then you will be able to choose healthy, low-fat snacks.

Cupcakes, cookies and potato chips are some of the things that may come to mind when you think about snacks. That is one of the reasons that people try to avoid snacks completely. However, healthy, low-fat snacks can make a nice addition to any diet plan. Healthy snacks can keep you feeling full, which can prevent you from overeating during mealtime. Jennifer E. Seyler, RD, president of the Chicago Nutrition Association, has the following to say about healthy snacking, “From a dietitian’s perspective, all foods within moderation can fit in a healthy meal plan.” “The key is the serving size of each food, with the realization that the foundation of the plan is based in variety.”

Top tips to Try for Healthy Snacking

*Exercise portion control.* Some people think that it is okay to eat healthy foods in abundance. However, Seyler warns people that 1,000 calories is still 1,000 calories, regardless of whether the calories come from fruit or chips. She also cautions people that eating that many calories in a short amount of time can lead to weight gain.*

* Make wiser food choices.* Seyler says that making healthy snack choices is one of the things that people can do to avoid overindulging on food. Low-fat cheese sticks, vegetables with a small amount of ranch dressing and fruits are examples of healthy snack choices. Vegetables and fruits are rich in fiber, and they also contain water, which can help keep you feeling full longer. As a result of this, you will naturally consume fewer calories. Low-fat cheese snacks are an excellent snack choice because they have adequate amounts of fat, carbohydrates and protein, which are the three macronutrients.

* Start planning ahead.* It is very easy to say that you will eat vegetables and fruits. However, if you are not prepared when hunger hits, then you can very easily get into trouble. Sue Decotiis, who is a physician in New York, urges you to plan ahead of time. You should bring your lunch to work and have two snacks in your car. Decotis also urges that you eat a healthy snack before you to go the party. You will be less likely to spend all of your time at the hors d’oeuvres tray if you eat something before you attend an event.

*Intelligent eat low-fat snacks*- You are bound to see a lot of low-calorie and low-fat options if you take the time to peruse the snack aisles. Seyler says that low-fat, low-calorie snack options can be great options if you consume the recommended serving size. She also reiterates that the key to snacking healthy is to exercise portion control. There are 100-calorie packs available now, but many people consume more than one pack. That really defeats the whole purpose of choosing a 100 calorie pack.

* Find good replacements.*- It is very hard for some us to give up ice cream, chips and cookies because those are some of our favorite foods. That is why Decotiis recommends that you satisfy your cravings with healthy replacements. Below are some of the healthy replacements that she recommends:

*Sweet potato chips* *Walnuts or almonds* *Protein bars *Low-fat yogurt *Yogurt dip

You will be prepared for a snack attack if you have a couple of healthy choices available.

Antioxidants from 10 unexpected sources

Some foods, like tea, spinach, and blueberries, get all the praise for their antioxidant properties, but they’re not the only ones that bring a high number of antioxidants to the table. Registered dietician Alexandra Caspero, owner of, did some research and came up with 10 lesser-known healthy superfoods.

Cocoa powder

This is the part of the cacao bean which is left once the fatty cocoa butter is removed. Up to 10% of a portion of cocoa powder consists of flavonoids, which help protect against strokes and heart attacks. Cocoa powder also contains calcium and magnesium. You can add some to your diet by including a small amount in savory sauces or chili or by making a Mexican mole sauce.


The little boxes of dried grapes so common in lunchboxes may be healthier than suspected. All types of raisins contain boron, necessary for healthy bones. Dark raisins are also full of energy-boosting anthocyanins. Try including some in your oatmeal or cereal, or just eat them plain.

Kidney beans

You might know these as red beans or chili beans, but whatever you call them, they’re a wonderful addition to a healthy diet. A quarter cup of kidney beans contains over 6000 antioxidants, not to mention loads of protein and a full three grams of fiber. You can try mashing them and mixing them into ground beef or turkey for burgers or meat loaf. Bean soups and red beans and rice are also good ways to get a serving of kidney beans.


Even though it’s often overlooked, barley is full of nutrients and incredibly versatile in cooking. Barley contains fiber to help lower cholesterol, not to mention folate, manganese, and molybdenum. It can be used in place of rice in a risotto, added to soups, or sprinkled on salads for texture.


The antioxidants in this dark leafy green can help gym-goers recover from their workouts more quickly by neutralize the free radicals which can damage DNA, according to a recent study in the British Journal of Nutrition. There are only four calories in an entire cup of watercress, but it contains lutein and zexanthin, which keep the eyes healthy, as well as vitamins A, C, and K. Watercress has a light peppery flavor and can be substituted for lettuce in salads and sandwiches.


Sorghum resembles wheat berries in texture and flavor, but the grain is gluten free. It contains a balance of carbohydrates and protein which make it a reliable energy source. Sorghum is full of B-complex vitamins and helps lower cholesterol. It can be used in place of bulgur wheat in dishes like tabbouleh. The syrup can also be used as a substitute for honey.

Ginger root

Nine chemicals in ginger are known to help improve digestive health. Ginger can also ease muscles sore from exertion. It has a spicy, citrusy flavor. Ginger is common in Asian cuisine, but the flavor pairs well with many different dishes.


Coffee is the most common source of antioxidants for most Americans. Whether it’s regular or decaf, coffee contains many antioxidants, particularly chlorogenic acid, which helps neutralize bad cholesterol.


In spite of the scaremongering, eggs do not raise the risk of heart problems. In fact, eggs contain more nutrients per calorie than any other food. They also provide choline, which helps the body burn fat. As long as you don’t cook them in unhealthy fat, eggs in any form can be part of a healthy diet.

Surprising ways to keep your brain and memory sharp

Memory enhancement has become a hot topic in modern society. A quick Internet search reveals long lists of specially designed memory-enhancing games created by psychiatrists and dozens of pills and supplements the manufacturers guarantee will improve memory. Experts on talk show after talk show recommend intellectual stimulation: difficult crossword puzzles, logic puzzles, or strategy games like chess.

However, while research shows that cerebral activities do have plenty of benefits to memory and cognition, many other studies reveal that a strong social life and a sense of fun give a person’s memory definite advantages.

Humans are and have always been social animals. Even the most curmudgeonly of us generally want someone to socialize with on occasion. It has long been accepted that a satisfying social life helps a person stay emotionally healthy, but new research is showing that social activity also benefits a person’s cognitive health. A recent study done by the Harvard School of Public Health discovered that the most socially active subjects had the slowest rates of memory decline, and that’s just one study among many suggesting the same conclusion.

Increasing social interaction is not as difficult as you might think. Try joining a club that relates to your interests or finding a volunteer association. The Internet has made it a simple matter to reconnect with friends and find times to meet up. Even people who find making and keeping friends difficult can get plenty of cognitive value from having a pet, especially very social ones like dogs.

Having a good laugh conveys benefits to the memory as well. A standard emotional response will cause neurons to fire in only a specific section of the brain, but laughter actually causes many areas throughout the brain to activate. Listening to jokes and trying to figure out punch lines uses areas of the brain important to creativity and learning, much like solving puzzles.

Try increasing laughter in your life by finding fun people to spend time with, whether adults or children. Their playful attitude towards life will lighten your heart as well. Learn to laugh at yourself and take yourself less seriously. Surround yourself with fun items, such as small toys, pictures of yourself and your friends having a good time, or amusing posters. Seek out laughter whenever you can; most often the cheerful people will be more than happy to let you in on the joke.

Six Tips for People Who Hate to Exercise

If you hate exercise, then following these tips will help you get the most out of your workout.

Set Small Goals

If you set the bar too high, then you will probably end up getting frustrated. Start with small goals. For example, you can set a goal to exercise 15 or 16 days out of the month. You will feel really good about yourself if you set a goal to exercise for 15 days out of the month but end up exercising for 20.

Keep A Record of Your Workouts

Every day, write down whether you have or have not been active. You can also keep an online log. When are working out, keep a journal of what weight you used and how many reps you could do. If you have trouble staying on track, then you should get your friends or online workout buddies to hold you accountable.

Be Mindful of Willpower Drains

Listening to a speaker or making decisions can drain the willpower that you need to exercise. That is why you should schedule exercise during the times when your willpower is at its peak. Morning workouts are a great way to start the day. You will feel stronger and be in a better mood throughout the day.

Put More Emphasis on Initiative

Starting an exercise program is hard, and you may get frustrated at first. However, once you have been working out for awhile, it will become easier for you to find a couple of minutes to exercise every day. Who knows, you may even begin to enjoy it!

Forget About Failures

Do not deal on failures. You should view them as the obstacles that you must overcome in order to reach your goal. Failure is not an option.

Adapt Your Workout So That It Fits Your Lifestyle

If you are a parent, then you may want to consider coaching your child's team or going for bike rides with your family. You can go for a run with your dog if you love animals. Best friends or coworkers are great workout partners and motivators.

The 10 Most Counterintuitive Health and Beauty Tips

Sometimes the things everyone knows aren't exactly true, and that holds as well for health and beauty treatments as well as for anything else.

Chocolate is good for your skin

The National Institute of Health explains that chocolate’s reputation for causing breakouts is completely undeserved. “Chocolate and greasy foods are often blamed, but there is little evidence that foods have much effect on acne in most people.” In fact, dark chocolate contains antioxidant flavonoids which reduce inflammation of the skin and help acne heal. Keep portion size in mind; chocolate has health benefits, but it is still a fattening food.

Too much shampoo damages your hair

Too much cleaning can be a bad thing; shampoo strips the natural oils from hair, leaving it dry, brittle, and easy to break. In fact, hair health experts recommend shampooing only once every two to five days depending on your hair texture and scalp. The products which are supposed to add shine to hair don’t do much good either; most of them are silicone-based and cause a dull layer of build-up in your hair over time. The best ways to keep hair healthy and shiny are to use a deep conditioning treatment, allow time between washes, and keep the use of hot styling tools to a minimum.

Too much brushing can weaken and damage your teeth

Many people believe they need to brush their teeth after each meal and snack, but the truth is that the American Dental Association advises patients to brush only twice a day. Frequent brushing can wear away tooth enamel, making the teeth susceptible to cavities and discoloration. Brushing within a short time of having acidic foods or drinks is also a bad idea. The physical brushing can actually move the acid more deeply into your teeth, leaving the enamel at greater risk of erosion.

Bacteria in your gut help reduce the smells of flatulence

Thousands of bacterial species are living in your digestive system as you read this, and they’re absolutely supposed to be there. They actually aid your body to digest food for the most effective absorption of nutrients. One of the early signs of an imbalance in the bacterial ranks is an increase in the unpleasant odors of flatulence. The imbalance, most often caused by antibiotics or an unhealthy diet, can be corrected with a probiotic supplement or fermented foods like yogurt with active cultures.

Drinking more water reduces water retention

Water retention and bloating are actually caused by your kidneys going into a panic mode when they detect a drop in your overall fluid levels and cause your body to keep all of its current water. To keep your kidneys happy and prevent bloat, drink water during the day. The eight glasses a day rule is not hard and fast; any increase in your fluid intake will help. In fact, it doesn't even have to be water. Flavored and caffeinated beverages also count towards your total daily fluid intake.

Keeping the right kinds of food around helps you make healthy eating choices

Dr. Brian Wansink of Cornell University discovered a strong link between visual cues and choices about eating while researching his book Mindless Eating: Why We Eat More Than We Think. Each person makes over 200 decisions about eating every day, and a pleasing package or food appearance can influence a person to eat junk food or eat more than they intended. Dr. Wansink recommends that people buy healthy, convenient snacks and leave them in plain sight while hiding the treats away.

Gaining weight helps you burn fat

At least, gaining weight helps the body burn fat more effectively if the weight is lean muscle mass. Muscle is denser and weighs more than fat. More than a few women have found that after they start a weightlifting program, their weight on the scale goes up a little, even though they look more toned and their clothes are starting to fit more loosely.

Less repetitions with heavier weights increase strength

The common advice tells us that if women do weight training, they should do more reps with lighter weights than a man would use so they don’t bulk up. This is actually a very inefficient way of building strength, and women don’t develop bulky muscles without using steroids or having a terrible hormonal imbalance to start with. The small brightly-colored weights have their place for people who are just starting weight training or rehabilitating an injury, but real gains in strength come from pushing harder with heavier weights.

Unlike cardio exercise, frequent workouts are not good in weight training. Muscles should be allowed to rest between workouts so they can rebuild themselves; a good rule of thumb is to work the muscles every other day.

Adding walking to your training can improve your marathon time

Olympic runner Jeff Galloway popularized this method of training. His strategy is to walk one minute of each mile during his training runs. The rest before the body is worn out helps increase endurance and hasten recovery, which eventually shortens the marathon running time. Tim Deegan, a skeptic of Galloway’s method, tried the run-walk training and shortened his marathon time by 20 minutes.

Talking about your problems can make you unhappy

Dr. Guy Winch told Psychology Today that frequent complaining can cause someone to develop a learned helplessness which leads them to believe they can’t have any effect on their problems. “When we become convinced our actions will not have the impact we desire, we cease our efforts and become passive and helpless,” Dr. Winch explained.

On the other hand, a certain amount of venting can be helpful during times of stress. The key is to blow off the steam and be done with it, not complain continuously. Examining and being grateful for the good things in your life can also increase your happiness.

Non-alcoholic red wine may be better for men's health than regular wine

Red wine has long been touted as beneficial to cardiovascular health, but a research study from the Hospital Clinic of Barcelona has found that non-alcoholic red wine may actually have stronger effects.

The study involved 67 men who have either diabetes or at least three cardiovascular risk factors such as family history, obesity, high cholesterol, or high blood pressure. After a two week detox period, each man was asked to spend four weeks drinking prescribed amounts of either non-alcoholic red wine, regular red wine, or gin. After the four weeks were up, the men switched to a different beverage for the next four weeks, and finally finished with four weeks of the third beverage.

Researchers found that the non-alcoholic red wine lowered blood pressure significantly. The average drop was 6mmHg for systolic pressure and 2mmHg for diastolic pressure. This represents a risk reduction of up to 20% for stroke and 14% for heart disease. The study did not show significant effects from alcoholic red wine or gin.

Researcher Dr. Ramon Estruch, a senior consultant in the Hospital Clinic’s internal medicine department, believes these results are evidence that it is the antioxidant polyphenols in wine rather than the alcohol which cause the beneficial cardiovascular effects. In fact, the alcohol may lower the beneficial effects of the polyphenols.

Cardiologist Dr. Suzanne Steinbaum, director of Women and Heart Disease at New York City’s Lenox Hill Hospital, welcomes the results because the non-alcoholic wine would be a way for people who can’t or don’t want to drink alcohol to get the beneficial polyphenol effects. “It’s not so much the alcohol as it is the polyphenols in wine,” said Steinbaum, who did not participate in the study.

However, Mayo Clinic cardiologist Dr. Sharonne Hayes thinks the study’s small size and lack of a control group may mean the results are skewed. This research, she explained, generated a good hypothesis to use as a point from which to start new research, but that no conclusions should be drawn just yet. She points to the lack of a detox period between each of the four week beverage-drinking periods as a potential flaw in the research. It is well-accepted that when a person who consumes even moderate amounts of alcohol stops drinking, their blood pressure will rise. The study participants could have had higher blood pressure than they normally do at the beginning of the research, which could create misleading results regarding non-alcoholic wine’s ability to lower blood pressure.

Hayes also pointed out that many previous studies have shown that alcohol is more likely the beneficial substance than polyphenols.

The Barcelona study was published in “Circulation Research” online on September 6th.

5 foods with brain benefits you may not know about

We've all heard that fish is brain food, especially the kind that is rich with omega-3s. Blueberries and spinach also have notable brain-boosting abilities. However, these aren't the only foods which can help keep your brain strong and free of disease.

Red Wine

Certain compounds found in grape seeds may help prevent Alzheimer’s disease. A 2011 study in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease found that in mice, these compounds helped prevent the formation of proteins linked to the development of Alzheimer’s. Those same grape seed compounds are found in red wine, so wine may help protect the brain when consumed in moderation.


Fully caffeinated coffee may also help protect against Alzheimer’s. A study done at the University of South Florida fed caffeine to mice specifically bred to develop Alzheimer’s disease as they aged; some mice received caffeinated coffee, some received decaf, and others were given plain caffeine. The mice who received regular coffee showed higher levels of a hormone called granulocyte colony stimulating factor, which reduces Alzheimer’s symptoms by increasing neuron production and connection. For humans, the useful dose would translate to about four cups of coffee spread throughout the day.

Citrus Fruit

While the vitamin C in citrus may or may not be useful in preventing colds, it seems that citrus fruit may help to prevent strokes. Flavones, found in oranges and grapefruit, seem to act as anti-inflammatories and improve the function of blood vessels. A 2012 study in Stroke reported that people who ate two or more servings of citrus each day over a period of 14 years had a 10% lower risk of stroke than people who ate less. Be wary of choosing juice instead of whole fruit; many juices contain added sugar.


Onions are full of antioxidants which may help prevent brain damage if a person has a stroke; the antioxidants can work to block the formation of oxygen compounds which damage the barrier between blood and brain. A study published in Nutrition reported feeding some mice an onion supplement. When researchers induced stroke in all the mice, the control group showed significantly higher brain damage than did the onion-fed group.


Eggs are rich in choline, a nutrient which is required to produce acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter which is linked to brain health and memory. A 2011 study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition looked at nearly 1400 adults and found that those who consumed the most choline performed best on memory tests. The subjects with high choline intake were also less likely to have signs of potential dementia such as blood vessel disease in the brain.

7 Health Risks for Middle Aged Men

The most common causes of death for men of middle age and older are all the usual suspects--cancer, stroke, heart disease, Alzheimer’s, respiratory disease, injuries, and suicide. Fortunately, some minor changes to bad habits can reduce the chances of dying of one of these perils.

Sun Overexposure

Men are two times more likely than women to develop fatal skin cancer. 60% of the cases of the deadliest skin cancer, melanoma, are found in white males of age 50 and older. Unfortunately, less than half of adult men protect themselves with shade, sunscreen, or protective clothing, as opposed to 65% of adult women.

Nor are men overexposed to sun likely to have their skin tumors found and treated early; a 2001 Academy of American Dermatology study found that men middle aged and above are less likely than other demographics to see a dermatologist or examine their own skin for signs of tumors. Men over 65, however, have a higher chance of having skin tumors found by a physician, possibly because older people have more medical appointments in general.

Excess Time Sitting Down with Electronics

Psychologists have not yet worked out whether Internet addiction is a valid diagnosis, but it is true that time which could be devoted to healthy activities like social interaction, walking, and other forms of exercise is instead being spent staring at computer monitors, laptops, smartphones, televisions, and video games. Physical social isolation has been linked to an increase in the risk for depression and dementia.

A 2011 study in JAMA found that on average, Americans spend five hours watching television each day, and that doesn’t account for time spent seated at computers. Extended sitting over a long period is associated with obesity, Type 2 diabetes, and heart disease. In fact, a 2012 Australian study found that adults 45 and older who spent 11 hours or more per day seated had a 40% increase in their risk of death.


In 2009, 79% of all suicides were men. Men over age 65 commit suicide seven times more frequently than do women in the same age group. Social isolation, common in the elderly, is often a key cause.

More than 60% of people who commit suicide have major depression. Men tend to equate depression with ordinary sadness or grief, so they fail to recognize the warning signs such as fatigue, trouble concentrating or thinking clearly, agitation, and changes in sleep patterns.

The National Institute of Mental Health has found that depression can be successfully treated no matter the age of the patient.

Being Single

Many studies have shown that married men, particularly of middle age, are healthier than their unmarried peers. One theory is that marriage tends to increase a man’s overall social circle, which decreases stress and depression which can cause chronic ailments.

Unmarried men may also have less healthy habits than married men, such as poor eating and rare medical checkups.

However, men who marry after age 25 tend to have better health than those who marry at a younger age, and staying in a strained marriage actually causes poorer overall health than does singlehood.

Poor Diet

Men on the younger side of middle age are likely to eat an excess of junk food and red meat, which leads to common ailments like high cholesterol and high blood pressure. Older men may fail to prepare adequate meals for themselves and wind up suffering malnutrition.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found in 2010 that 35.5% of men are obese, compared to 27.5% in 2000.


The negative effects of smoking tend to be worse in older people. They are likely to be heavier smokers and to have smoked for longer, which means their lungs have sustained more damage. 90% of all cases of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder, the fourth leading cause of death in men, are caused by smoking, as are 80 to 90% of lung cancer cases. Men over 65 who smoke double their chances of fatal stroke.

Quitting shows immediate results, no matter the person’s age. The risks of lung disease, stroke, and cancer drop immediately, and the risk of heart disease is cut in half after only one year.

Driving Errors

Males in their 50s and 60s are twice as likely to die in car accidents as their female peers. Injuries, including car accidents, are the leading cause of death for men in the 40 to 44 age group, third most common cause in men aged 45 to 64, and eighth most common in men 65 and older.

The car accident causes tend to be avoidable, such as running red lights and stop signs, driving over the speed limit, and falling asleep at the wheel.

Lengthy sitting doubles risk of diabetes

A British meta-analysis published in the November 2012 issue of the journal Diabetologia shows strong indications that extended time spent sitting greatly increases a person’s risk of diabetes, severe heart issues, and death. Previous studies have found a link between extended television watching and poor health, but this is the first study to specifically research the connection between any extended sedentary behavior and health.

The analysts searched previous studies for terms involving health outcomes and sedentary lifestyles. They looked at data involving 794,577 participants across 18 different studies. The data was adjusted to account for differences in measurement frequency and study length and then sorted with a random effects model.

Dr. Emma G. Wilmot of the University of Leicester, one of the study’s authors, says the research showed a particularly strong link between a sedentary lifestyle and diabetes. Analysis of the data showed that people with the highest levels of sedentary activity included in the study had twice the risk of developing diabetes than did the people with the lowest levels of sedentary behavior. People in the highly sedentary group also had 2.5 times the chance of suffering a cardiovascular event, a 90% higher chance of suffering a death related to cardiovascular problems, and a 49% greater chance of death from any cause.

Deeper analysis of the data indicated that the predictive effects were significant for diabetes, but far less so for the other health issues, which suggests that the diabetes results will be the most likely to be reproduced in future studies.

The results of the research, Wilmot says, may cause some changes in the way we think about fitness. “We've traditionally been focused on making sure we meet the physical activity guidelines of 30 minutes per day, but with that approach we've overlooked what we do with the other 23 and a half hours in the day,” she explained. “If you sit for the rest of the day, that is going to have an impact on health, and that's essentially what our meta-analysis shows.”

The health dangers of extended periods of sitting were first noted in the 1950s. Researchers realized that London bus drivers, who spend most of their day in the driver’s seat, had twice the risk of suffering a heart attack as did bus conductors, who move around inside the bus frequently. Unfortunately, the implications of this finding was more or less overlooked until recent researchers started looking for connections between lifestyle and the growing number of people diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes.

Wilmot and her colleagues estimate that on average, an adult is engaged in sedentary activities for 50% to 60% of each day. Modern lifestyles contribute to an increase in time spent sitting down. In a typical day, an adult might drive to work, sit at the office computer for hours on end, drive home, and spend the evening watching television or playing video games. "People don't realize that doing just small amounts of activity—it doesn't even need to be a proper walk—are important," she says. "If you are having a chat with a friend at your desk or the phone rings, stand up and chat. Just these small changes could make a big difference."

Sitting seems to have a negative effect on our body’s ability to metabolize glucose. Earlier studies have shown that people who sit immediately after eating have glucose levels 24% higher than do people who walk slowly after they eat. “When we sit, our muscles are not used, and we quickly become more insulin resistant," explained Wilmot. She also pointed out that people who have a genetic predisposition to diabetes may wish to be even more careful about prolonged sitting. Wilmot and her colleagues are not entirely certain of the exact mechanism by which extended sitting affects glucose metabolism.

Wilmot and her colleagues are currently undertaking a study of 200 young adults at risk for diabetes in hopes of increasing their evidence.

Journalists from around the world have been calling to ask Wilmot about the results of the study, indicating that these concerns are universal.

Future diabetes prevention programs might wish to use this evidence to start promoting less sedentary lifestyles along with traditional exercise and diet, Wilmot said. The possibilities include standing desks, treadmill desks, and alarms which can alert someone if they’ve been sitting for 40 minutes straight.

Wilmot was quick to add that physical activity is still very important to health and that people should not rush to give up their exercise programs if they start spending larger portions of the day standing. “There's a wealth of data showing that physical activity is important, but if people are spending a large percentage of their time sitting, they need to start thinking about how they can reduce this," said Wilmot.

Seven Foods That Help You Lose Weight

Many people are under the misconception that food is their enemy. However, you should not get sucked into that idea. In fact, if you eat the right foods, then you will be able to reach your weight loss goals much faster than you would if you were to just cut calories. Below are seven foods that nutritionists recommend that you eat if you are trying to lose weight:


You may be thinking to yourself, "Oats are a carb, aren't they?" The answer to that question is yes and no. Oats are a type of whole grain, and they help keep you full longer. Oats are also rich in soluble fiber, which means that they can lower blood pressure and blood fat. Oats are slowly digested by the body, so they will not cause your blood sugar to rise. Rolled oats and steel-cut oats both contain about five grams of fiber per serving. A serving of instant oatmeal has about three or four grams of fiber.


Eggs have received a lot of negative attention over the years because they contain a large amount of cholesterol. However, nutritionists have stated that the cholesterol in eggs is different from the cholesterol in humans. Studies have shown that people who eat an egg in the morning along with their breakfast lose more weight than people who eat a carb-filled breakfast.

Skim Milk

Skim milk is filled with Vitamin D, calcium and low-fat protein. There have been numerous studies published in the Journal of Obesity that have shown that the combination of those nutrients can help build lean muscle and promote weight loss.


If you want to lose weight, then you should definitely consider eating one or two apples per day. Apples are an excellent source of fiber, which can help keep you feeling full. Apples are also filled with antioxidants that help prevent a condition called the metabolic syndrome. The metabolic syndrome is the combination of high cholesterol, pre-diabetes and high blood pressure. This condition is strongly correlated with excess fat around the midsection. Additionally, apples contain pectin. Pectin helps reduce the amount of fat that gets absorbed by the cells.

Red Meat

Are you surprised to see red meat on this list? Many people think that red meat is unhealthy, but a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition showed that red meat can actually help promote weight loss. Red meat is rich in protein, which helps you maintain muscle mass. However, it is important to note that you will also have to exercise to build muscle.


A study done by the USDA has shown that cinnamon can help metabolize sugar. You can lower your blood sugar level and cut your cholesterol by up to 25 percent by eating 1/4 to 2 teaspoons per day. You should add some cinnamon to your cereal, smoothies or coffee.

Almonds And Almond Butter

Nuts and nut butters are two other foods that you may not expect to see on this list. Even though almonds are very high in calories, they can still help lower your triglyceride and cholesterol levels. In fact, there was one study that was published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition that showed that eating almonds can be just as effective as statins. You should spread some almond butter on your morning toast because that will give you a nice boost of protein.

6 Types of Food to Ease Your Pain Naturally

People suffering from chronic pain have options besides rummaging around in the medicine cabinet or visiting a doctor to try to figure out which painkiller works best for them. Certain foods have the ability to diminish pain over time. Foods containing antioxidants can help reduce the damage the body goes through when food and oxygen react and create free radicals as byproducts. Some foods have the ability to reduce the inflammation causing the body’s pain response. Still other foods strengthen the immune system, which helps to prevent and reduce illness as well as to limit inflammation.

Beth Reardon, the director of nutrition at Duke Integrative Medicine, claims that dietary changes are much healthier in the long term than the extended use of painkillers. “We get in the habit of taking Advil or Aleve to treat pain symptoms, without getting at the underlying cause of pain. Over time these medications, because of their side effects, can do more harm than good,” she explained. "Changing your diet...protects your cells from damage and reduces the number of inflammatory compounds the body produces."

Anti-inflammatory foods have also been linked to weight loss, which makes the pain reduction even more effective. A recent study published in the journal Cancer Research found that losing 5% of body weight eases joint strain and reduces inflammation.

Choosing more foods from the categories below can make a real difference in a person’s pain level.

Fish and plant protein

Protein from fish and plant sources provide far more omega-3 fatty acids than typical protein sources like beef and chicken. Fish like salmon, mackerel, tuna, and herrings are a good source of the long chain omega-3s which have been linked to reductions in both rheumatoid and osteoarthritis. Protein-rich plants provide a good supply of essential short chain omega-3s. Vegetable sources of protein can include legumes, such as beans and lentils; seeds and nuts; and ancient grains like spelt and quinoa.

Salmon is by far the most omega-3 laden of fish, but fresh salmon can be pricy. Canned salmon, however, is less expensive and may even be healthier, since it uses wild-caught salmon instead of farm-raised salmon which may be contaminated with toxins.

Herbs and spices

Certain spices, including garlic, turmeric, dried tart cherry, cinnamon, ginger, rosemary, and curry, act to prevent inflammation by decreasing the body’s production of COX inhibitors and prostaglandins, a similar mechanism to the painkiller Celebrex.

Reardon particularly recommends turmeric as a pain-killing spice. Its anti-inflammatory properties have been shown to decrease rheumatoid arthritis pain.

Healthy fats

Certain oils, like olive, coconut, and grape seed, contain a high number of omega-3s, as do flaxseeds and nut butters, particularly almond butter and cashew butter. Most Americans have an unhealthy ratio of omega-3s to the unhealthy omega-6s found in processed foods and red meats. By replacing unhealthy fats with these healthy ones, the ratio can be reversed, which will help the body better regulate the hormones which produce and reduce inflammation.

Coconut oil has the added advantage of being a good food for the cells of the stomach lining, which aids in efficient digestion and keeps the immune system running well.

Fruits and Vegetables

A diet consisting primarily of unprocessed, plant-based foods creates antioxidant protection for your cell membranes and DNA. Processed, high-sugar foods are already well-known for increasing blood glucose and eventually leading to type 2 diabetes, but the extra insulin the body creates to try to deal with the extra glucose can also cause inflammation.

When looking for fruits and vegetables, it’s important to select a wide variety; good health requires a number of different nutrients from different sources to work in harmony. A good rule of thumb is to select food of different colors: green spinach, yellow squash, purple eggplant, red grapes, and so on. As a general rule, plants with more intense color have a higher number of antioxidants, but even naturally pale foods like cauliflower will provide many benefits.

Kale is one of the most beneficial vegetables around. This dark leafy green is full of fiber, nutrients, and beneficial flavonoids. It’s also easy to prepare; it can be chopped fine and included in soups or sauces, used raw in salads and pasta, or baked into crispy kale chips.


Probiotics are beneficial to the bacteria which live in the digestive system and help break down food. These good bacteria can lose population from stress, pollution, or poor nutrition. Antibiotics prescribed for illness kill the good bacteria right along with the ones causing infection, so additional probiotics can be useful once the infection has cleared. Probiotics can be found in fermented foods such as kimchee and sauerkraut and in yogurts which have live cultures; Lactobacillus acidophilus and L. bifidus should be listed on the label.

Greek yogurt contains all the probiotics of regular yogurt, but it also contains extra vitamin D and nearly twice as much protein as regular yogurt. Greek yogurt can be eaten plain, but it does have a sour taste so some people mix fruit or honey into it.

Plenty of Fluids

Plain water is an absolute necessity to the human body. The body’s organs and blood are comprised of nearly 90% water. The liver and kidneys need water to detoxify the blood of chemicals which shouldn’t be there. Even cellular processes require water. Good hydration is essential to keeping the body’s internal processes running smoothly.

Coffee, black tea, and green tea work against inflammation, and their caffeine content can help ease headache pain. Green tea contains more antioxidants than black tea or coffee. Powdered green tea, a finely ground version of the tea leaves, provides more benefit than regular green tea steeped from a tea bag. The steeped tea contains the tea’s water-soluble antioxidants, but consuming the powder provides the benefit of all antioxidants in the leaf. Green tea powder, or matcha, can be added to soups and baked goods or mixed in to beverages.

Young Blood May Contain Chemical Factors Which Can Prevent or Reduce Some Effects of Aging

It seems like a horror story hearkening back to legends of the “Blood Countess” Elizabeth Bathory, who reportedly bathed in the blood of slain maidens to keep her youthful complexion, but rumors persist that late North Korean dictator Kim Jong Il would inject himself with the blood of young people (presumably donated blood from still-living donors) to slow his aging process.

Surprisingly, scientists have found hints that Countess Bathory and Kim Jong Il may have been onto something. Researcher Saul Villeda of Stanford University presented a study done on mice to the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience in New Orleans. His results indicate that an older mouse injected with the blood of a younger mouse shows a reversal of some signs of aging. In fact, the older mice who received the treatment showed greater cognitive and memory abilities than did untreated mice of similar age.

Villeda's research involved connecting the circulatory systems of two mice by a technique known as heterochronic parabiosis, which is typically used to study immune systems. After the blood of the old mice and young mice had mixed, Villeda found that the older mice showed distinct signs of a slowdown or even a small reversal in the aging process. The brains showed an increase in stem cells, and the connections between neurons had increased by 20%. "One of the main things that changes with ageing are these connections, there are a lot less of them as we get older," Villeda explained. "If you have less connections, neurons aren't communicating, all of a sudden you have [problems] in learning and memory."

This new study, not yet published in a peer-reviewed journal, is a follow-up to a study Villeda and his colleagues published last year in Nature. The earlier study showed that young mice exposed to old blood showed brain deterioration, and old mice exposed to young blood showed an increased stem cell count. In the new study, Villeda and his team also tested the mice’s behavior.

Villeda injected small amounts of blood plasma, the liquid portion of blood, from two-month-old mice into 18-month-old mice eight times over the course of a month. The amount of plasma used was approximately 5% of a mouse’s total blood volume. Villeda then had the mice solve a water maze, an activity in which mice have to remember the location of a platform. Untreated older mice made mistakes as they attempted to solve the maze, such as swimming down blind alleys. Mice who had received the young plasma, however, often found the platform on their first try and performed similarly to mice four to six months of age.

Villeda thinks the plasma may have helped improve the older mice’s brain power by replenishing chemical factors which decrease during normal aging. "All of a sudden you have all of these plasticity and learning and memory-related genes that are coming back,” he said.

Much more research will be required before these findings can help develop an effective anti-aging treatment for humans, particularly because blood contains thousands of chemical factors and researchers were unsure of which ones helped rejuvenate the older mice. Villeda, however, believes that treatments based on factors found in youthful blood may eventually be able to help middle-aged people prevent some of the worst effects of age-related deterioration, possibly even Alzheimer's disease.

Andrew Randall, a professor of applied neurophysiology at Exeter and Bristol Universities, thinks these findings show potential for future treatments. “Temporarily plumbing teenagers' blood supplies into those of their great-grandparents does not seem a particularly feasible future therapy for cognitive decline in aging,” he said. “Instead this fascinating work suggests there may be significant benefit in working out what the 'good stuff' is in the high octane young blood, so that we can provide just those key components to the elderly."

University College London professor of regenerative medicine bioprocessing Chris Mason agrees. "Even if the finding leads only to a drug that prevents, rather than reverses the normal effects of ageing on the brain, the impact upon future generations will be substantial – potentially outweighing other wonder drugs such as penicillin."

Villeda says the results of his research have changed his opinion on how anti-aging treatments might be developed. "Do I think that giving young blood could have an effect on a human? I'm thinking more and more that it might," he said. "I did not, for sure, three years ago."

7 Myths (and Outright Lies) About Male Hormones

1. Outright Lie: DHEA is a dangerous “anabolic steroid drug.”

In 2007, a campaign of lies about DHEA was spread in the halls of Congress. Printed material distributed by lobbyists for Big Pharma claimed that DHEA was a dangerous “anabolic steroid drug” and a law was introduced that would make DHEA available by prescription only. Fortunately, due to the activism of many Americans for freedom to take dietary supplements, the law failed to pass.[i]

The claims were scientifically false and intentional lies. According to the conservative Council for Responsible Nutrition, “The proposition that DHEA is any way comparable to illegal anabolic steroids is invalid and unfounded.”

They continued: “DHEA is not an anabolic steroid, its use is not associated with the anabolic and side effects that accompany anabolic steroid abuse, and the potential for DHEA abuse by athletes is remote.” [ii]

The question is, why is Big Pharma so threatened by DHEA that it would go to all this trouble and expense to try to outlaw it? No one really knows. But could it be that taking DHEA helps men stay so young, healthy, sexy and yes, even better looking that it threatens the profits of the “sickness industry?”

The TRUTH is that DHEA is not a dangerous steroid and can help many men stay active and virile as they age. [More]

How Sex Might Affect Your Ability to Grow Muscle

Have you ever been concerned that sex may be cutting your ability to grow muscle? If so, you are not alone. This is an age old concern, and many have sacrificed their bedroom time in order to maximize their gym time. There is a connection, but it may not be what you expect. Here are some important points on sex and muscle building.

Zinc-Testosterone Relationship

Possibly the most important relationship between sex and muscle building is the affect your activities have on your zinc levels. Every time a male has an orgasm some zinc is lost in his semen. Zinc is needed for sperm growth and development but also affects testosterone levels.

Reduced testosterone will often lead to diminished muscle growth, and eventually a lower sex drive, too. Without properly resupplying zinc lost through sex and your workouts, it is possible to become deficient. To achieve libido and muscle building balance, a diet high in zinc rich foods like oysters, pecans, cashews and more may be appropriate.

Sex vs Strength

Many sports coaches warn their athletes to abstain from sex before competition. The feeling is that burning your energy in the bedroom will sap your strength on the field. This may have to do with relaxation hormones, such as oxytocin, that are released after sex. The stereotypical image of a tired and sleepy post-sex male holds some truth in this case.

Needless to say, going from the bedroom to the gym may result in a flat workout.

Testosterone and Your Libido

Aside from zinc depletion, there is a close relationship between testosterone levels and libido. More frequent sexual activity often elevates libido. Less sex will often lead to a lower libido. In turn, higher testosterone levels often raises libido as well. Maintaining high testosterone should benefit both sex and your workout, meaning an active sex life may actually lead to muscle growth if everything else is in balance.

Sexual deprivation can cause a lack of focus for many people. Excessive amounts of sex may do the same. For many, this is a non issue, but maintaining a proper balance between your sex life and gym time is essential for your quality of life.

The next time you question the impact sex has on muscle growth, consider these points. A healthy balance between sex and gym time can lead to the best of both worlds.

The New Science Behind America’s Deadliest Diseases

These days there are all sorts of different body problems, diseases and sickness’ that people and scientists have a hard time figuring out exactly what is causing them; there are just so many different factors. But what some do not realize is that heart disease, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, stroke and cancer have a lot in common. All of these, for certain, have one thing in common; scientists have found a connection from each of these to a condition called chronic inflammation. Along with this, they are also studying how a diet that is high in fatty foods, as well as having an exuberance of body weight, can also increase the risk for fatal disorders.

Chronic Inflammation is nothing out of the norm but is rather a natural response for the body; naturally responding to injury and outside irritation. Often those irritations do not go away, and this happens because of poor diets, being overweight and smoking. All of these components can then negatively affect the immune system which then increases the risk for disease. If the inflammation becomes chronic it can cause damage to the heart, brain, increase the chance of stroke and bring on diabetes. The worst part is that chronic inflammation is also linked to the development of cancer. Chronic inflammation is most common due to its relation to cardiovascular disease. Inflammation is natural, for instance, when the body has a cut, scrape or wound, and then the immune system rushes to the rescue. However, too much inflammation causes serious damage.

Research is being done to fight chronic inflammation with drugs, but a number of scientists are researching how a change from an unhealthy, high in fat diet to a healthy diet can actually lower the risk; dietary fiber and even dairy may protect from inflammation. Eating healthy and watching your weight is a good way of lowering the risk of chronic inflammation. Consuming a diet high in complex carbohydrates, fruits, vegetables, nuts, eggs, unsaturated fats and dairy in moderation is a great way to lower the risk of inflammation. Along with a healthy diet, exercise is a key component when battling inflammation. Obesity is one of the easiest ways to promote inflammation. Fat cells create molecules called cytokines, which then give the okay for inflammation to occur when there is an excess of fat cells in the body. Dr. Peter Libby, chief of the division of cardiovascular medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston and a professor at Harvard Medical School says, “We’ve learned that abdominal fat tissue is a hotbed of inflammation that pours out all kinds of inflammatory molecules.” Losing excess body weight can dramatically decrease inflammation in a short period of time.

Cancer is caused by many different abnormalities but one for sure is inflammation. Inflammation can be dealt with by keeping off excess body fat and eating a healthy diet. By living a healthy lifestyle the chance of inflammation is lowered which then eliminates at least one factor towards cancer.

Renown Health Products Ushers In New Year With Two New Products: Natural Products Company Adopts New Name to Reflect Mission, Vision

Renown Health Products ( is ushering in the new year with the release of two new products that will further solidify its national position as one of the leading developers of best-in-class, physician-developed natural products designed to provide customers with better and longer lives.

Formerly known as Renaissance Health Publishing, the company changed its name, effective Jan. 1, 2012, to Renown Health Products (RHP) which more accurately conveys the mission and definition of this innovative organization.

“Starting with our name change, we believe that 2012 will be an exciting year as we begin to introduce new products and methods of distribution,” said Dr. William S. Gruss, MD, who heads up the company’s Physician Advisory Board. Dr. Gruss is Board Certified in Internal Medicine and treats mostly patients who are over age 50 at his private practice in Boca Raton, Florida. He is a graduate of the University of Maryland Medical School and did his residency and Fellowship in cardiology at the prestigious Mt. Sinai Medical Center in Miami.

“Our new products certainly reflect this new vision and energy,” added Gruss. “After just a few weeks these products are being well received by our loyal customers and we look forward to introducing additional natural products to the market in the coming months.”

The new products being launched by Renown Health Products are:

Youthful Allure Anti-Aging Moisture Cream with Resveratrol: This powerful antioxidant and moisturizing cream, based on human clinical studies has numerous benefits:

  • Reduce fine line wrinkles by 60 percent in four weeks
  • Increase moisture in skin by four times in just two days
  • Actually bind moisture to skin making it firmer and plumper

Healthy-34 Daily Essentials for Health and Anti-Aging: This supplement contains 34 scientifically selected anti-aging ingredients that renew and revitalize with many benefits:

  • Daily energy boost with the right kind of B vitamins
  • Comfortable, clear vision
  • Extra bone strength
  • Crucial daily detox
  • Robust brain function
  • Powerful antioxidant protection
  • Clear arteries
  • Normal thyroid, sexual function, blood sugar balance

About Renown Health Products

RHP is committed to research and to developing a growing portfolio of best-in-class physician-developed natural products. RHP uses the highest quality and concentration of powerful ingredients to create products that are naturally safe and proven effective. As a socially-responsible company, RHP does not perform any animal testing in any of its research and development. RHP is proud to offer some of the best-known and most highly regarded products on the market. You may recognize some of our top products as Revatrol™, Prosentials™, Isoprex™, T-Boost™, and Priozil™.


Antioxidants are part of a healthy diet and protect you against environmental toxins

What’s an antioxidant?

Antioxidants are vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals (plant nutrients) that protect your body against cell damage by free radicals.

Why worry about free radicals?

A free radical is a molecule which is missing an electron or has one too many. Highly reactive, it circulates inside your body looking for a stable molecule to latch onto. When it finds its victim, the free radical will either cannibalize an electron or use the molecule as a waste dump for its extra one. While the original free radical stabilizes, the host molecule converts into a free radical and starts hunting for its own victim. A chain reaction is set into motion which eventually leads to the destruction of healthy cell membranes and DNA. This is called oxidative stress. If you think of how rust eats away metal, you can get a pretty good idea how free radicals work in your body!

This is where the antioxidants come in; as they circulate in your body they MOP UP these parasitical, free radicals and stop them dead in their tracks. They bind to the bad guys and neutralize them.

Our bodies generate small amounts of free radicals during metabolism. This is the process by which the cells in our body convert nutrients from food into energy. These are easily neutralized but we also get an extra load of these compounds from toxins in our environment. Now the body has trouble keeping up with the work. Our environment is chock full free radicals and they get into us through polluted air and water, household chemicals, personal care products, and foods grown in pesticide-rich farmland. Free radicals play a role in aging, cancer and cardiovascular disease. This is why it’s important to eat a diet rich in antioxidants.

Where do antioxidants come from?

The USDA has compiled a list of foods high in antioxidants. The top fruits are cranberries, blueberries and blackberries. Green tea, beans, artichokes, cinnamon, and surprisingly, Russet potatoes are getting a high rating. A food rule to selecting antioxidant rich foods is to look for bright colors. Phytochemicals are found in pigments. Blueberries were once considered the richest source of antioxidants, but now black rice bran has taken the lead.1

You can buy antioxidant supplements, but a better idea is to get them through fresh food. Your body can assimilate antioxidants more efficiently if you deliver them to your digestive system in the forms of fruits and vegetables. But if you can’t get your daily servings of five fruits and five vegetables, a supplement is the next best thing.

1. Black rice rivals pricey blueberries as source of healthful antioxidants. AS News Service Weekly PressPac: 1 Sept 2010.

Natural Weight Loss Tips

Stop investing in grapefruits and just say no to fad dieting.

No need to rehash the statistics, we simply have to start cutting down on calories. Fad diets like the famous grapefruit fast are only quick fixes. The weight drops because your caloric intake drops. But if you go back to the same way of eating, what good is having invested in the grapefruit industry? If you really want to lose weight and keep it off then use your hard, earned dollars to buy healthy food and natural dieting supplements. Use your mind to learn about lifestyle changes which will promote weight loss.

Tricking yourself into eating a healthy diet.

It’s all about breaking old behaviors and replacing them with new ones. The trick is to identify bad eating habits and then immediately replace them with healthier ones. This is called counter-conditioning: replacing one conditioned response with a new, more beneficial conditioned response. For example, if the dog is chewing on your shoes, put your shoes away and give him a bone to gnaw on. Punishing him won’t help. If you correct his behavior while he’s in the act, the habit will break more easily.

Same principle applies in cultivating healthy eating habits. Instead of beating yourself up for eating junk foods, buy a bag of baby carrots and a jar of lo-cal veggie dressing. Place them strategically on the counter underneath the cabinet where you store your chips. Now when you have the urge to snack, you have created a choice for yourself. Hopefully you go for the carrots. Prepare an arsenal of alternatives: a variety of veggies washed and cut them down to finger food size are the perfect ammunition against junk food cravings. If ice cream is your downfall, try low fat varieties or be adventurous and try ice cream made from rice.

Unplug the microwave and use it to store your oven mitts. Cooking for weight loss.

Use healthy food recipes to prepare your food. Look at ones that are based on the Mediterranean diet. Scientists have recognized it as one of the healthiest in the world. The staples are fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, nuts and seeds, legumes, seafood, yogurt, olive oil, small amounts of wine, and YES, even chocolate. Portion control is important so do like the French do: throw out your 10 inch dinner plates and replace them with 7 inch ones. The principle? Your eyes eat before your mouth does. A loaded 7 inch plate tricks you into thinking you are eating a whole lot of food.

Get a magnet and post the new dietary recommendation pyramid, which amazingly has been redesigned into the shape of a pie, and smack it onto the front of the fridge. Read it when you design your meals. Did you know that most adults should be eating 3-4 cups of fruits AND 3-4 cups of veggies a day? How about a meatless Monday? See how easy it is to satisfy your appetite with grains and vegetables.

Stop Fidgeting? Not on your life

We all do it, especially after drinking our morning coffee. We start fidgeting in our chair, tapping our toes and bouncing our knees. A new scientific study from the Mayo Institute has shown that just by doing these small movements we can burn calories and lose weight. The scientific term is “NEAT” which stands for non-exercise activity thermogenesis. Become aware of your “fidget moments” and develop them as healthy habits. Create new ways of fidgeting: if you’re standing in line at the grocery checkout try balancing on one leg and then the other. You can do this discreetly and no one will be the wiser.

CAUTION: DON’T substitute fidgeting routines for cardiovascular exercises and a balanced diet. Losing weight is about redefining your lifestyle. It’s involves changing daily routines and developing an awareness of how much to exercise and what to eat. Just walking 30 minutes a day will help you get started burning calories. Devote half of your lunch hour to walking or squeeze in a stroll in the early morning before you get caught up in the day. This is natural. This is common sense. You have to move your body around in order to burn off fat.

Chronic Stress is a Daily Dose of Lard. How stress triggers weight gain.

Your adrenal glands produce hormones to help you deal with stress. Norepinephrine helps you take control and fight stress, epinephrine gets secreted when you realize that you may have to run away and finally cortisol kicks in when you realize the situation is hopeless. Cortisol increases the metabolism of sugars and fats to give you instant energy during stress. When the stressful situation passes all of these hormones drop back to normal levels.

However, in chronic stress you become overexposed to these hormones Constant, high levels of Cortisol cause increased appetite and weight gain. Fat from stress, a.k.a.”toxic fat”, starts accumulating in the belly area and your risk of developing cardiovascular disease skyrockets!

Decrease the impact of stress in your life. Try relaxation techniques, meditation, and cognitive therapy. Make it a priority to exercise and get at least 8 hours of sleep. Studies have shown that even a short 30 minute walk or mild exercise routine will help lower cortisol levels. Avoid excessive sugar, alcohol and caffeine.

Above all, eat a healthy diet and, EAT ENOUGH. This is counter-intuitive but people who restrict calories for weight loss and dieting are prone to stress!

Drinking Water to Lose Weight. Drink six glasses a day to keep the pounds away

One of the most effective ways to lose weight is embarrassingly simple: Drink two 8 ounce glasses of water before each meal. The reason it works is not rocket science. Filling up your stomach with water makes you feel less hungry. In a recent study conducted at Virginia Tech researchers found that study subjects who drank 16 ounces of water before each meal (and who also were on a low calorie diet) lost an average of 15.5 pounds and kept it off over the course of a year!

Herbal Formulas for Weight Loss

Water helps flush out fat that has been broken down by dieting and exercising. Although you are feeling better and losing weight, there is danger lurking. As fat cells break down, they release TOXINS into your bloodstream!

It’s not news. We live on a polluted planet. Industries are pouring millions of pounds of toxic chemicals into the air, water and ground. When we go outside for fresh air we breathe in pollutants, when we eat fish we’re eating pesticides that have accumulated in their flesh. Land is not exempt from pollutants. Many of our vegetables are grown with the help of toxic chemicals and are sown in fields chock full of petrochemicals.

That’s the bad news. But it gets worse; our bodies accumulate all this garbage and stores it in our fat cells! It’s the most convenient method the body has to keep toxins from circulating around and getting transported into our vital organs. But when we diet all this safely stored poison is released into our bloodstream as the fat cells shrink! We now have a toxic load of chemicals floating around inside of us. Some of these slow down our metabolism and you may actually stop losing weight and start putting it on. That’s why it’s important to drink plenty of water while dieting; it helps to flush toxins out.

There are herbal formulas and nutritional supplements available which while help you detox while you diet. Keep an eye out for these ingredients when selecting products: N-Acetyl Cysteine, B Vitamins, Ashwaganda (an herb from India), Probiotics, Omega 3 Fish Oil, DHEA (men only), and Vitamin D3.

The Best 7 Herbal and Nutritional Supplements that Help You Lose Weight

Use this list when you order online or visit the health food store.

There’s no need to rehash recent pharmaceutical diet drug disasters. Let’s face it; most herbal and nutritional supplements are a lot safer for your system. Your doctor may disagree, but now there are definitive studies on the efficacy of certain herbal and nutritional supplements in weight loss.

ASHWAGANDHA is a plant from the tomato family. It contains withanolides which fight stress by lowering cortisol levels. This hormone is secreted when you are under stress and has been found to stimulate fat production in your belly area. Ashwagandha is classified as an “adaptogen”. These substances fight the physiological effects of stress in your body.

GREEN TEA EXTRACT has a bioflavenoid called EGCG, which triggers your metabolism to burn more calories. In scientific terms, it increases “thermogenesis”. You can sip your fat away if you drink enough green tea or go easy on your kidneys and purchase a caffeine free extract.
Try to introduce more fiber into your diet. Eat whole grains, fruits, vegetables and beans. If you want to take a supplement, try PSYLLIUM seed and/or husk. It reduces hunger pangs and helps you to cut down on how much you eat. When mixed with water it forms a soft gel and becomes an excellent bulking agent and detoxifier for your lower intestinal tract. Caution: you need to drink a lot of water when you use Psyllium, otherwise you’ll become “stopped up”.

MILK THISTLE EXTRACT. The active ingredient in this plant is called Silymarin and it prevents toxins from damaging your liver. Your liver is your blood filter and it can’t afford to get bogged down with a toxic overload. Remember, fat cells are your body’s toxic waste dumps. When they shrink during dieting they release toxins back into your bloodstream, and your liver has extra work to do. Silymarin comes to the rescue and supplies the liver with antioxidants which protect liver cells.

N-ACETYL CYSTEINE is an amino acid supplement which been shown to boost immune response. It is also a powerful liver detoxifier. NAC is taken with at least three times as much vitamin C.

PROBIOTICS will keep your intestinal flora blooming and your digestive system healthy while you are dieting and detoxing.

B VITAMINS. Stress hormones like cortisol hijack B vitamins from our body and use them to boost stress responses.

Weight gain: Don’t blame it all on eating too many calories.

Researchers are looking at overeating as a RESULT of underlying biological causes.

Often it’s merely a symptom of imbalances in your body’s biological system caused by stress, lack of sleep, medications, hormonal imbalances or actual medical conditions.

Stress: When you’re knee deep in a stressful situation, your adrenal glands kick into action. They mix up a powerful “speedball of hormones” to get you ready for the battle. First they pour a shot of adrenaline into your bloodstream and then follow it with a chaser of cortisol. Adrenaline speeds up your metabolism and gets you ready to go into the “fight or flight” mode. This is what our body is programmed to do. It was a survival technique our early ancestors developed when they were faced with danger. Adrenaline has a short half life in your body and starts to break down shortly after it’s secreted. Cortisol however likes to hang around and this is what causes trouble for us modern human beings. It slows our metabolism down and we start storing fat. Stress fat tends to accumulate in the belly area and increases our risk of cardiovascular disease! This slow down was perfect for early man because it replenished all those calories he lost from running from that saber tooth tiger!

Lack of Sleep: If you’re up tossing and turning all night wouldn’t that make you burn calories? Sounds logical but the reality is that physiological stress caused by sleeplessness creates biochemical imbalances which register as stress to your brain. The end result? Your adrenal glands go into action and you begin storing fat!

Medications: Grab the magnifying glass and read the small print on the medical information sheets you get when you pick up your prescription from the pharmacy. You’ll discover that certain pharmaceuticals will cause weight gain. It’s a bitter pill to swallow because the benefit of the medication often outweighs this unwelcome side effect.

The most common types of medications that are linked to weight gain include: steroids, antidepressants, diabetes medications, high blood pressure medications and heartburn medicine. Some of these act by increasing your appetite while others actually change the way fat is stored. Read the warnings and make a lifesaving commitment to eating well and exercising.

Hormonal Imbalance: That’s spelled M-E-N-O-P-A-U-S-E and you can look at it more positively as a “re-balancing”. It happens to all women. When our estrogen levels drop and our estrogen reserves start running out, we gain weight more easily. It’s a double edged sword: The new, menopausal weight accumulates in the spare tire area, the waist, while our hip and thigh weight mysteriously disappear! Mother Nature is keeping the score even for us. The best way to deal with this is to be consistent with exercise and watch caloric intake. Don’t starve yourself though; you may end up gaining weight from the stress it causes.

Underlying Medical Conditions: One of the most common culprits is a sluggish thyroid gland. When there is a deficiency of thyroid hormone, your metabolism slows down and you may start putting on weight. You can have a blood test done to determine if you have hypothyroidism. The good news is that there are a number of medications to control this condition and most people manage to live a normal lifestyle.

Exercise and Weight Gain Explained. Weigh in on the facts: Losing weight depends not only what you eat but also on the type of exercise you do

Here’s some interesting new research being published that will make you think twice about doing those biweekly, strenuous workouts at your local health club. Those sweaty, hour-long aerobics sessions actually make you gain weight!

Vigorous exercise actually stimulates your hunger and you end up eating more. And if you ignore those intense hunger pangs, the stress of it all may trigger weight gain. Sure you burn calories after a tough workout, but what do you do afterwards? Most people crave sugary calories. Check out the trash bins at your local health club, they are brimming with empty sports drinks and candy wrappers. Those acid green sports drinks contain a whopping 130 calories along with those innocent electrolytes.

What’s going in our heads here? You’re thinking, “I just burned a whole lot of calories doing all those reps so now I can eat and it won’t put on weight. Right?” Nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, you’re going to neutralize all that hard work with just half of that chocolate bar!

The bottom line is: longer, moderate intensity workouts can burn more fat than intense short duration exercise. Those brief intense sessions burn more carbohydrates than fat. A slow, sustained workout will trigger your hunger, but not as much as a vigorous, short set at the gym will.

Psychologists have also found that your self-control weakens after forcing yourself into an hour-long vigorous workout like a jog. You have exercised so much self control to run your body around the track that when you’re done, your ability to control your cravings is weak. Your capacity for self control is like a muscle; if you overuse it, it feels weak. Instead of using your better judgment, you cave into your cravings and order the pizza instead of what you know is better, the green salad.

Losing weight is not about getting to the gym twice week. It’s about developing a physically active lifestyle. Doctors are now urging people to increase daily activity with simple measures. Park the car further away from the store entrance, get up, walk around outside after every half hour at the computer, take long leisurely walks, or practice slow moving tai chi. Wherever you see an opportunity to move, take it! Recent studies have proven that even fidgeting burns calories.

Want to lose weight? Lay Off the Laxatives.

The Simple Truth:

You can’t trick your body into losing weight by taking laxatives; your body is smarter than you. Those two pounds you lose after taking a laxative are not fat. What you see in the bowl is mostly water. In a few days, as you rehydrate, these lost pounds reappear.

What are laxatives and where do they work?

Laxatives contain substances that flush out the contents of the large intestine and colon. There a five different types: bulking agents like psyllium fiber, stool softeners, lubricants, saline and irritants like the herb cascara sagrada that stimulate peristaltic action.

Your lower digestive system, the colon and large intestine does not digest food. It just holds the undigested remains and absorbs water from it until it’s defecated. By the time food reaches your colon and large intestines most of the calories from your last meal HAVE ALREADY BEEN ABSORBED BY THE SMALL INTESTINE and are well on their way to being incorporated into your body! Some calories are used to replenish your immediate energy needs and are burned quickly. But if you eat more than your body needs all those extra calories get stored as fat.

So using laxatives to flush fat out of your body is useless and it’s downright dangerous. Repeated use starts a nasty chain of events: dehydration and electrolyte imbalances occur which then leads to constipation, water retention and eventually permanent damage to the nerves of the large intestine.

Fat storage is a built-in survival process

Let’s face it; it’s programmed into our genes. This was how our early ancestors adapted to periods of famine. Their bodies learned to store fat in case their food sources ran out. Today we are still hard wired to create fat reserves. Studies have shown that our bodies conserve energy and store fat whenever we go without food for 4 hours or more.

Messing with fat storage, some interesting alternatives

In a nutshell, if you consume more calories than your body needs they will go into storage as fat. If you want to get rid of fat you need to metabolize or burn it out of your system. The simple ways to do this are through exercise, stress reduction, and avoiding junk food.

Modern medicine has two radical methods to remove fat or prevent it from forming in your body. Liposuction mechanically removes fat by vacuuming it out of your tissues. In gastric bypass, the surgeon staples shut most of the stomach and leaves only a small working pouch to receive food. The upper part of the small intestine, the duodenum, which absorbs most of the calories and nutrients from food, remains attached to the shut portion of the stomach, and the lower part, the jejunum which does not absorb as well, gets attached to the small, stomach pouch.

So which method would you choose? Cultivating a healthy lifestyle through exercise and wise food choices or the surgical quick fix?