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ABOUT ALKALIZING THE BODY
*Alkaline diet (also known as the alkaline ash diet, alkaline acid diet, acid ash diet, and acid alkaline diet) describes a group of loosely related diets based on the misconception that different types of food can have an effect on the pH balance of the body. It originated from the acid ash hypothesis, which primarily related to osteoporosis research. Proponents of the diet believe that certain foods can affect the acidity (pH) of the body and that the change in pH can therefore be used to treat or prevent disease. Credible laboratories have done extensive research on this subject and have proven the theory to be false, not supporting the claimed mechanism of this diet. Due to conclusive evidence, it is not recommended by dietitians or other health professionals.
*These diets have been promoted by alternative medicine practitioners, who propose that such diets treat or prevent cancer, heart disease, low energy levels, and other illnesses. Human blood is maintained between pH 7.35 and 7.45 by acid–base homeostasis mechanisms. Levels above 7.45 are referred to as alkalosis and levels below 7.35 as acidosis. Both are potentially serious. The idea that these diets can materially affect blood pH for the purpose of treating a range of diseases is not supported by scientific research and makes incorrect assumptions about how alkaline diets function that are contrary to human physiology.
*While diets avoiding meat, poultry, cheese, and grains can be used in order to make the urine more alkaline (higher pH), difficulties in effectively predicting the effects of these diets have led to medications, rather than diet modification, as the preferred method of changing urine pH. The "acid-ash" hypothesis was once considered a risk factor for osteoporosis, though the current weight of scientific evidence does not support this hypothesis. *Wikipedia.
Antioxidants are nutrients found in natural whole foods, which can prevent or slow the oxidative damage to the body as a result of (for example) ill-health, poor diet, stress, UV rays, pollution or exercise. When our cells use oxygen, they naturally produce unstable molecules called free radicals. These harmful molecules can cause damage in the body, resulting in ageing and potentially illness. Antioxidants act as "free radical scavengers" and can therefore help to prevent and even repair damage done by free radicals.
*Antioxidants are compounds that inhibit oxidation. Oxidation is a chemical reaction that can produce free radicals, thereby leading to chain reactions that may damage the cells of organisms. Antioxidants such as thiols or ascorbic acid (vitamin C) terminate these chain reactions. To balance the oxidative stress, plants and animals maintain complex systems of overlapping antioxidants, such as glutathione and enzymes (e.g., catalase and superoxide dismutase), produced internally, or the dietary antioxidants vitamin C and vitamin E.
*The term "antioxidant" is mostly used for two entirely different groups of substances: industrial chemicals that are added to products to prevent oxidation, and naturally occurring compounds that are present in foods and tissue. The former, industrial antioxidants, have diverse uses: acting as preservatives in food and cosmetics, and being oxidation-inhibitors in fuels.
*Antioxidant dietary supplements have not been shown to improve health in humans, or to be effective at preventing disease. Supplements of beta-carotene, vitamin A, and vitamin E have no positive effect on mortality rate or cancer risk. Additionally, supplementation with selenium or vitamin E does not reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. *Wikipedia
ABOUT BONE & JOINT HEALTH
The structural system of the body, comprising bones, membranes, connective tissues, muscles and skin, provides an essential framework which offers form, while simultaneously enabling mobility and providing protection. Although bones generally stop growing in length during mid-teens for girls and at around the age of 20 for boys, they never really stop the growing process. This is because they are constantly rebuilding themselves. Maintaining healthy bones and joints is therefore vitally important for anyone wishing to lead a full and active life, particularly in later years.
*The human skeletal system is a complex organ in constant equilibrium with the rest of the body. In addition to support and structure of the body, bone is the major reservoir for many minerals and compounds essential for maintaining a healthy pH balance. The deterioration of the body with age renders the elderly particularly susceptible to and affected by poor bone health. Illnesses like osteoporosis, characterized by weakening of the bone's structural matrix, increases the risk of hip-fractures and other life-changing secondary symptoms. In 2010, over 258,000 people aged 65 and older were admitted to the hospital for hip fractures. Incidence of hip fractures is expected to rise by 12% in America, with a projected 289,000 admissions in the year 2030. Other sources estimate up to 1.5 million Americans will have an osteoporotic-related fracture each year. The cost of treating these people is also enormous, in 1991 Medicare spent an estimated $2.9 billion for treatment and out-patient care of hip fractures, this number can only be expected to rise.
*A joint or articulation (or articular surface) is the connection made between bones in the body which link the skeletal system into a functional whole. They are constructed to allow for different degrees and types of movement. Some joints, such as the knee, elbow, and shoulder, are self-lubricating, almost frictionless, and are able to withstand compression and maintain heavy loads while still executing smooth and precise movements. Other joints such as sutures between the bones of the skull permit very little movement (only during birth) in order to protect the brain and the sense organs. The connection between a tooth and the jawbone is also called a joint, and is described as a fibrous joint known as a gomphosis. Joints are classified both structurally and functionally. *Wikipedia.
ABOUT COLON CLEANSING
Nutritional medicine places much emphasis on the state of the colon in terms of overall health and well-being. Its main role in digestion is to extract water from the waste material travelling through it - a fully-functioning, healthy colon will absorb water and will have efficient peristalsis throughout its length, performing a bowel movement two or three times per day (depending on the number of meals eaten). Ideally, it should perform the vital function of eliminating harmful wastes and toxins promptly. If stored too long in the system, such wastes and toxins can give rise to diverse problems throughout the body. Due to a wide range of factors - particularly poor diet - there is is now a high prevalence of digestive disorders. As such, incomplete digestion of foods, with fermentation and putrefaction, are relatively common. It is essential to remove deposits and debris from the colon at regular intervals, even for those with good digestion. However, this becomes even more important where there is a back-up in the digestive system and, in particular, where sticky and even hardened deposits are in the 'pockets' along the walls of the bowel.
*Colon cleansing, also known as colon therapy, or colon hydrotherapy, or a colonic, or colonic irrigation encompasses a number of alternative medical therapies claimed to remove unspecified toxins from the colon and intestinal tract by removing supposed accumulations of feces. Colon cleansing in this context should not be confused with an enema which introduces fluid into the colon, often under mainstream medical supervision, for a limited number of purposes including severe constipation and medical imaging.
*Some forms of colon hydrotherapy use tubes to inject water, sometimes mixed with herbs or with other liquids, into the colon via the rectum using special equipment. Oral cleaning regimes use dietary fiber, herbs, dietary supplements, or laxatives. People who practice colon cleansing believe in "auto-intoxication", that accumulations of putrefied feces line the walls of the large intestine and that these accumulations harbor parasites or pathogenic gut flora, causing nonspecific symptoms and general ill-health.
*This "auto-intoxication" hypothesis is based on medical beliefs of the Ancient Egyptians and Greeks and was discredited in the early 20th century. Nonetheless, during the 2000s Internet marketing and infomercials of oral supplements supposedly for colon cleansing increased. *Wikipedia.
ABOUT HEALTHY DIET FOODS
Slimmers tend to have a high failure rate. This is usually because they either take the wrong approach (opting for a "quick fix"), are too ambitious too early on (i.e. cutting out everything they enjoy at once) or because they don't understand the particular weight loss program, which can often be overly complex. But losing weight needn't be complicated. Slimmers need to forget about "diets" which starve them of nutrients and instead focus on a holistic weight loss regime that covers all aspects of their life, including everything from a well-balanced diet and a regular exercise regime, to healthy digestion, a strong immune system and good hydration - which is where you come in! A natural approach to weight loss, along with a commitment to lifestyle change, should have you shedding pounds in no time and keeping off for the long-term. Plus, with the help of our specialist diet foods, you won't be losing weight at the expense of your general health and well-being; on the contrary, you will be heading towards optimum nutrition!
ABOUT THE DIGESTIVE SYSTEM
Natural health practitioners tend to place a lot of emphasis on the digestive tract. This is understandable when you think that it is the system in the body which controls nutrient intake, as well as the elimination of toxins which would be harmful to us if allowed to remain. The health of our liver, lymphatic system and immune system are also greatly affected by the state of the digestive system. If the digestive system is not working efficiently, it can lead to a number of health conditions, including leaky gut syndrome, malabsorption of nutrients, food sensitivities, fermentation, putrefaction, a high toxic load, increased bacterial activity, overgrowth of pathogens, dysbiosis and more.
*The human digestive system consists of the gastrointestinal tract plus the accessory organs of digestion (the tongue, salivary glands, pancreas, liver, and gallbladder). Digestion involves the breakdown of food into smaller and smaller components, until they can be absorbed and assimilated into the body. The process of digestion has three stages. The first stage is the cephalic phase of digestion which begins with gastric secretions in response to the sight and smell of food. This stage includes the mechanical breakdown of food by chewing, and the chemical breakdown by digestive enzymes, that takes place in the mouth.
*Saliva contains digestive enzymes called amylase, and lingual lipase, secreted by the salivary glands and serous glands on the tongue. The enzymes start to break down the food in the mouth. Chewing, in which the food is mixed with saliva, begins the mechanical process of digestion. This produces a bolus which can be swallowed down the esophagus to enter the stomach. In the stomach the gastric phase of digestion takes place. The food is further broken down by mixing with gastric acid until it passes into the duodenum, in the third intestinal phase of digestion, where it is mixed with a number of enzymes produced by the pancreas. Digestion is helped by the chewing of food carried out by the muscles of mastication, the tongue, and the teeth, and also by the contractions of peristalsis, and segmentation. Gastric acid, and the production of mucus in the stomach, are essential for the continuation of digestion.
*Peristalsis is the rhythmic contraction of muscles that begins in the esophagus and continues along the wall of the stomach and the rest of the gastrointestinal tract. This initially results in the production of chyme which when fully broken down in the small intestine is absorbed as chyle into the lymphatic system. Most of the digestion of food takes place in the small intestine. Water and some minerals are reabsorbed back into the blood in the colon of the large intestine. The waste products of digestion (feces) are defecated from the anus via the rectum. *Wikipedia.
Food in this day and age is so processed and interfered with, that it is now difficult to ensure optimum nutrient intake through diet alone. While organic food is a far healthier option, and more likely to provide more of what the body needs to stay fuelled and healthy, it still suffers from many of the same issues (such as poor soil quality, long-distance transportation and therefore depletion of nutrients). As a result, many people in the UK, across Europe and worldwide are now turning to natural, nutrient-dense health products to supplement their diet, as they become increasingly health-conscious. However, there is no point in taking supplements that contain substances that are not recognised by the body, or are actually harmful to the body. Unfortunately, many manufacturers of vitamins, minerals and other dietary supplements use artificial additives, preservatives, colourings, flavourings, excipients, fillers, binders, disintegrants, dilutents and synthetic man-made nutrients in their products - particularly when they are in tablet form. In fact, very often, the active ingredients comprise as little as 15% of the entire tablet! The cheaper the products, the more of these undesirable ingredients are likely to be contained within them. In contrast, so-called "food form" or "food state" supplements are those that have been sympathetically processed to remain as close as possible to the original natural whole food ingredients that make them up. This means that the nutrients are more bio-available and the body is more readily able to absorb and use them.
ABOUT HEART HEALTH
The heart is an incredible vital organ and its well-being is one of our biggest health assets. It pumps the equivalent of 2,000 gallons of blood through its chambers each day, which carries nutrients and oxygen to every cell in the body this way. Simultaneously, blood picks up carbon dioxide and other waste materials produced by the cells and carries them away for elimination. It is essential that proper care is taken of the circulatory system, so that it does not become clogged or restricted in its natural flow. Being overweight, lack of exercise, poor diet and smoking are just some of many potential factors, which can place this system (and the heart more particularly) under strain. According to the British Heart Foundation, collectively heart and circulatory diseases cause more than a quarter of all deaths in the UK, accounting for more than 161,000 deaths each year.
*The heart is a muscular organ in most animals, which pumps blood through the blood vessels of the circulatory system. The pumped blood carries oxygen and nutrients to the body, while carrying metabolic waste such as carbon dioxide to the lungs. In humans, the heart is approximately the size of a closed fist and is located between the lungs, in the middle compartment of the chest.
*In humans, other mammals, and birds, the heart is divided into four chambers: upper left and right atria and lower left and right ventricles.Commonly the right atrium and ventricle are referred together as the right heart and their left counterparts as the left heart. Fish, in contrast, have two chambers, an atrium and a ventricle, while reptiles have three chambers. In a healthy heart blood flows one way through the heart due to heart valves, which prevent backflow. The heart is enclosed in a protective sac, the pericardium, which also contains a small amount of fluid. The wall of the heart is made up of three layers: epicardium, myocardium, and endocardium.
*The heart pumps blood with a rhythm determined by a group of pacemaking cells in the sinoatrial node. These generate a current that causes contraction of the heart, traveling through the atrioventricular node and along the conduction system of the heart. The heart receives blood low in oxygen from the systemic circulation, which enters the right atrium from the superior and inferior venae cavae and passes to the right ventricle. From here it is pumped into the pulmonary circulation, through the lungs where it receives oxygen and gives off carbon dioxide. Oxygenated blood then returns to the left atrium, passes through the left ventricle and is pumped out through the aorta to the systemic circulation−where the oxygen is used and metabolized to carbon dioxide. The heart beats at a resting rate close to 72 beats per minute. Exercise temporarily increases the rate, but lowers resting heart rate in the long term, and is good for heart health.
*Cardiovascular diseases (CVD) are the most common cause of death globally as of 2008, accounting for 30% of deaths. Of these more than three quarters are a result of coronary artery disease and stroke. Risk factors include: smoking, being overweight, little exercise, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and poorly controlled diabetes, among others. Cardiovascular diseases frequently do not have symptoms or may cause chest pain or shortness of breath. Diagnosis of heart disease is often done by the taking of a medical history, listening to the heart-sounds with a stethoscope, ECG, and ultrasound. Specialists who focus on diseases of the heart are called cardiologists, although many specialties of medicine may be involved in treatment. *Wikipedia
ABOUT HEALTH FOODS
So-called "health foods" are no longer the preserve of health fanatics - ensuring a reliable daily supply of vitamins, minerals and other vital nutrients is a concern (or at least should be) for every person living in the modern age. As long ago as 1992, the 'Earth Summit Report' revealed a potential loss of 72% of the mineral content in the soils of Europe in the last 100 years alone, as a result of modern-day intensive farming practices. These depleted soils then yield crops that are tasteless and have poor nutritional content. And this doesn't take into account the wide scale interference with our food chain in terms of synthetic chemical inputs after harvesting! The result - unfortunately, we can no longer rely on diet alone to fulfill our bodies' nutritional requirements. This is even the case where we believe we are eating a healthy, well-balanced diet.
ABOUT THE IMMUNE SYSTEM
*The immune system is a host defense system comprising many biological structures and processes within an organism that protects against disease. To function properly, an immune system must detect a wide variety of agents, known as pathogens, from viruses to parasitic worms, and distinguish them from the organism's own healthy tissue. In many species, there are two major subsystems of the immune system: the innate immune system and the adaptive immune system. Both subsystems use humoral immunity and cell-mediated immunity to perform their functions. In humans, the blood–brain barrier, blood–cerebrospinal fluid barrier, and similar fluid–brain barriers separate the peripheral immune system from the neuroimmune system, which protects the brain.
*Pathogens can rapidly evolve and adapt, and thereby avoid detection and neutralization by the immune system; however, multiple defense mechanisms have also evolved to recognize and neutralize pathogens. Even simple unicellular organisms such as bacteria possess a rudimentary immune system in the form of enzymes that protect against bacteriophage infections. Other basic immune mechanisms evolved in ancient eukaryotes and remain in their modern descendants, such as plants and invertebrates. These mechanisms include phagocytosis, antimicrobial peptides called defensins, and the complement system. Jawed vertebrates, including humans, have even more sophisticated defense mechanisms, including the ability to adapt over time to recognize specific pathogens more efficiently. Adaptive (or acquired) immunity creates immunological memory after an initial response to a specific pathogen, leading to an enhanced response to subsequent encounters with that same pathogen. This process of acquired immunity is the basis of vaccination.
*Disorders of the immune system can result in autoimmune diseases, inflammatory diseases and cancer. Immunodeficiency occurs when the immune system is less active than normal, resulting in recurring and life-threatening infections. In humans, immunodeficiency can either be the result of a genetic disease such as severe combined immunodeficiency, acquired conditions such as HIV/AIDS, or the use of immunosuppressive medication. In contrast, autoimmunity results from a hyperactive immune system attacking normal tissues as if they were foreign organisms. Common autoimmune diseases include Hashimoto's thyroiditis, rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes mellitus type 1, and systemic lupus erythematosus. Immunology covers the study of all aspects of the immune system. *Wikipedia.
*A health shake is a blended drink intended to be healthful for one to consume and some are commercially marketed for that purpose. They are often consumed by sportspeople as part of a fitness diet or as a meal replacement (e.g. an instant breakfast). Health shakes may include a wide range of ingredients, including powdered nutrients, superfoods, bee pollen, peanut butter, coconut oil, bean powder, clover sprouts, etc.
*Bodybuilders sometimes drink a protein shake to help build and recover muscles. While some health shakes have more calories than a plate of pancakes or a cheese omelet, these extra calories are accompanied by nutrients and both may be required by athletes in training. Smoothies—particularly green smoothies—are arguably a type of health shake, except stereotypical health shakes often contain some processed ingredients rather than just raw fruit and vegetables. *Wikipedia.
Working out is not enough when it comes to maximising the results of training efforts; whether the individual is looking to increase muscle mass, tone up, increase pump, improve performance or build stamina, what they put into their body is just as important as their training programme. Similarly, everything from digestive health and toxic load, to immunity and skeletal health can affect performance. It is therefore always advisable to look at the body as a whole, when seeking to improve sporting performance and achieve other health and fitness goals. The key is to give the body the fuel that it needs for best results!
*Muscle is a soft tissue found in most animals. Muscle cells contain protein filaments of actin and myosin that slide past one another, producing a contraction that changes both the length and the shape of the cell. Muscles function to produce force and motion. They are primarily responsible for maintaining and changing posture, locomotion, as well as movement of internal organs, such as the contraction of the heart and the movement of food through the digestive system via peristalsis.
*Muscle tissues are derived from the mesodermal layer of embryonic germ cells in a process known as myogenesis. There are three types of muscle, skeletal or striated, cardiac, and smooth. Muscle action can be classified as being either voluntary or involuntary. Cardiac and smooth muscles contract without conscious thought and are termed involuntary, whereas the skeletal muscles contract upon command. Skeletal muscles in turn can be divided into fast and slow twitch fibers.
*Muscles are predominantly powered by the oxidation of fats and carbohydrates, but anaerobic chemical reactions are also used, particularly by fast twitch fibers. These chemical reactions produce adenosine triphosphate (ATP) molecules that are used to power the movement of the myosin heads.
*The term muscle is derived from the Latin musculus meaning "little mouse" perhaps because of the shape of certain muscles or because contracting muscles look like mice moving under the skin. *Wikipedia.
ABOUT OMEGA OILS & EFA's
Essential fatty acids, more commonly referred to as Omega 3 and Omega 6 oils, are healthy fats that the body cannot synthesize itself and therefore must be obtained through high quality dietary sources on a daily basis. These and other beneficial oils (such as Omega 9), support a wide range of processes in the body, including the cardiovascular, reproductive, immune and nervous systems. They are also involved in cognitive functions, metabolism and hormone production. The human body needs these oils (and particularly EFAs), to assist in the manufacture and repair of cell membranes, enabling the cells to obtain optimum nutrition and expel harmful waste products. They are also essential for ensuring healthy organ activity, along with assisting the elimination of toxins. Their incredibly wide application makes them an essential nutrient for anyone wishing to achieve optimum nutrition, strong immunity, general health and well-being.
*The term "essential fatty acid" refers to fatty acids required for biological processes but does not include the fats that only act as fuel. Essential fatty acids should not be confused with essential oils, which are "essential" in the sense of being a concentrated essence.
*Only two fatty acids are known to be essential for humans: alpha-linolenic acid (an omega-3 fatty acid) and linoleic acid (an omega-6 fatty acid). Some other fatty acids are sometimes classified as "conditionally essential", meaning that they can become essential under some developmental or disease conditions; examples include docosahexaenoic acid (an omega-3 fatty acid) and gamma-linolenic acid (an omega-6 fatty acid).
*Unlike omega-3 fatty acids and omega-6 fatty acid, omega−9 fatty acids are not classed as essential fatty acids (EFA). This is both because they can be created by the human body from unsaturated fat, and are therefore not essential in the diet, and because the lack of an omega−6 double bond keeps them from participating in the reactions that form the eicosanoids.
*Omega-9 fatty acids (ω−9 fatty acids or n−9 fatty acids) are a family of unsaturated fatty acids which have in common a final carbon–carbon double bond in the omega−9 position; that is, the ninth bond from the methyl end of the fatty acid.
- Oleic acid (18:1, n−9), which is a main component of olive oil, macadamia oil and other monounsaturated fats
- Erucic acid (22:1, n−9), which is found in rapeseed, wallflower seed, and mustard seed. Rapeseed with high erucic acid content is grown for commercial use in paintings and coatings as a drying oil. Canola oil comes from a cultivar of the rapeseed plant that has been bred, or in some cases genetically modified, to contain very little erucic acid.
*Under severe conditions of EFA deprivation, mammals will elongate and desaturate oleic acid to make mead acid, (20:3, n−9). This has been documented to a lesser extent in one study following vegetarians and semi-vegetarians who followed diets without substantial sources of EFA.
ABOUT ORGANIC LIVING
Many aspects of modern living have an adverse effect on health and, particularly, toxic load. Many people eat too many processed foods, while an increasing amount of produce is imported from long distances and then stored for long periods. What's more, the average Western diet tends to be high in sugar, salt and unhealthy fats and, as such, the level of obesity continues to rise. Even those who try to live a healthy lifestyle and eat a well-balanced diet are now often let down by the so-called "good food" that they are eating, because it lacks valuable nutrients as a result of modern-day intensive farming methods and manufacturing processes. The result - a large proportion of the food chain is contaminated with synthetic chemicals (in the form of colourings, additives, preservatives, herbicides, pesticides etc), highly toxic recycled heavy metals and other pollutants, anti-nutrients and they also tend to be nutrient-poor. With this ever-increasing exposure to toxins, many people are seeking ways to minimise their daily intake of harmful chemicals, whilst at the same time supporting their bodies' cleanse and detox processes through an alkalising diet and appropriate nutrient intake. Organic living is an ideal solution that is growing rapidly in popularity. Certified organic foods are produced without the use of toxic chemicals, pesticides and other synthetic compounds and so their natural goodness is maintained and their nutritional value is not diminished or contaminated. What's more, there is mounting evidence to suggest that organic foods typically contain a higher level of vitamins, minerals, phyto-nutrients and enzymes (and even taste better) than their intensively-farmed counterparts, grown using non-organic methods.
*Organic farming is an agricultural system which originated early in the 20th century in reaction to rapidly changing farming practices. Certified organic agriculture accounts for 70 million hectares globally, with over half of that total in Australia. Organic farming continues to be developed by various organizations today. It is defined by the use of fertilizers of organic origin such as compost manure, green manure, and bone meal and places emphasis on techniques such as crop rotation and companion planting. Biological pest control, mixed cropping and the fostering of insect predators are encouraged. Organic standards are designed to allow the use of naturally occurring substances while prohibiting or strictly limiting synthetic substances. For instance, naturally occurring pesticides such as pyrethrin and rotenone are permitted, while synthetic fertilizers and pesticides are generally prohibited. Synthetic substances that are allowed include, for example, copper sulfate, elemental sulfur and Ivermectin. Genetically modified organisms, nanomaterials, human sewage sludge, plant growth regulators, hormones, and antibiotic use in livestock husbandry are prohibited. Reasons for advocation of organic farming include advantages in sustainability, openness, self-sufficiency, autonomy/independence, health, food security, and food safety. *Wikipedia
Inside the human body, there are 20 times as many bacteria as living cells and they have a critical role to play in maintaining good health. Having the right kind of bacteria, in sufficient numbers, is vital for everything from healthy digestion to keeping the immune system strong (and consequently for fighting infections). In contrast, the wrong type of bacteria (i.e. the harmful or pathogenic kind) can either cause infection directly or produce toxic substances that contribute to inflammation and illness if allowed to flourish, particularly in the digestive tract. "Friendly bacteria" (comprising principally 2 families called Lactobacillus and Bifidobacteria) act to keep the "bad guys" in check, by competing with them for space and food. The key to good health is therefore to maintain the delicate balance between good and bad bacteria, which can so easily be disrupted by factors including illness, antibiotics, stress, age, travel, pregnancy, poor diet, food allergies and others. The overgrowth of harmful gut flora - a common phenomena - is referred to as dysbiosis. Just some of the proven benefits of probiotics include: improved digestion enhanced vitamin production healthy cholesterol levels balanced hormones stronger immunity increased resistance to infections relief from the symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) relief from the symptoms of thrush.
*Probiotics are live microorganisms promoted with claims that they provide health benefits when consumed, generally by improving or restoring the gut flora. Probiotics are considered generally safe to consume, but may cause bacteria-host interactions and unwanted side effects in rare cases. There is little evidence that probiotics bring the health benefits claimed for them.
*The original theory, similar to the modern concept, but not the term, is generally attributed to Nobel laureate Élie Metchnikoff, who postulated that yoghurt-consuming Bulgarian peasants lived longer.
*A growing probiotics market has led to the need for stricter requirements for scientific substantiation of putative benefits conferred by microorganisms claimed to be probiotic. Although numerous claimed benefits are marketed towards using consumer probiotic products, such as reducing gastrointestinal discomfort, improving immune health, relieving constipation, or avoiding the common cold, such claims are not supported by scientific evidence, and are prohibited as deceptive advertising in the United States by the Federal Trade Commission. As of 2019, numerous applications for approval of health claims by European manufacturers of probiotic dietary supplements have been rejected by the European Food Safety Authority for insufficient evidence of beneficial mechanism or efficacy. *Wikipedia.
In the journal Nature Nutrition (in the August edition of 1998) Aaron Moss stated that, "Humans have many options when it comes to fueling their bodies, but the benefits of some options are so nutritious that they might be labeled as superfoods". He was therefore one of the first recorded people to use this phrase. Since that time, the term "superfood" has been widely adopted for marketing purposes. However, when used correctly, it describes those natural whole foods with a particularly high nutrient-to-calorie ratio, and which are therefore believed to be beneficial for health. Such nutritious foods tend to be unusually rich in nutrients such as antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and powerful phyto-chemicals (such as bioflavonoids, carotenoids and chlorophyll), which support overall health and vitality. A number of superfood lists have been compiled in recent years, often featuring exotic specimens from the Amazon rainforest and the like and therefore receiving much media attention. However, many superfoods comprise more common foods, whose nutritional value has been long recognised. Examples of so-called superfoods include berries, nuts and seeds in general, dark green vegetables (such as kale, collard greens, Swiss chard, Brussels sprouts and broccoli), citrus fruits, Omega-rich fatty fish, highly-pigmented fruit and vegetables (such as beetroot and grapes), certain wild mushrooms, many legumes (peanuts, lentils, beans and raw cocoa) and whole grains.
*Superfood is a marketing term for food assumed to confer health benefits resulting from an exceptional nutrient density. The term is not commonly used by experts, dietitians and nutrition scientists, many of whom dispute that particular foods have the health benefits claimed by their advocates. Even without scientific evidence of exceptional nutrient content, many new, exotic, and foreign fruits or ancient grains are marketed under the term – or superfruit or supergrain respectively – after being introduced or re-introduced to Western markets. *Wikipedia.
Protein is an essential macro-nutrient - one of three main chemical compounds consumed by humans in the largest quantities and which provide bulk energy (the two other macro-nutrients being fat and carbohydrates). Protein is required by the human body for a wide range of critical physiological functions. In other words, it is not just for athletes and bodybuilders - no one can function without it! This is because proteins are a component of each and every cell, tissue and organ in the body and they are constantly being broken down and replaced. Once ingested, food protein is broken down into amino acids (the building blocks of protein) and later used to replenish the body's own protein stores. There are 22 different amino acids required by the body in order to function properly and there are over 10,000 different kinds of protein in the body. Protein is involved in almost every biological process in one way or another and is used, for example, to: build and repair muscles and ligaments (whether as part of normal growth or following exercise or injury) provide the body with energy maintain organs balance blood sugar levels grow skin, hair, nails and bones produce haemoglobin in blood digest food make antibodies and support the immune system transfer messages between neurotransmitters in the brain make hormones, such as insulin and metabolism-regulators and the list goes on. Protein has an incredibly wide application in the body and can be used for anything from providing a physical structure to assisting in a biological process. This is why it is essential for all individuals to incorporate adequate levels of high quality, protein-rich foods into their daily diet. In particular, they are popular with athletes, slimmers, those on restricted diets, those recuperating from illness and the health-conscious alike. For example, the range includes products that are: suitable for vegetarians and vegans high in complete, balanced and natural plant proteins dairy-free, lactose-free, gluten-free, wheat-free, yeast-free, sugar-free and additive-free organic GMO-free rich in a broad spectrum of nutrients high in fibre naturally low in fat made from multiple superfood, superfruit and herbal ingredients good for the digestive system and body detox. As well as providing a reliable and convenient daily source of high-quality, lean and concentrated protein, our protein powders also offer support for overall health and vitality through the inclusion of multiple ingredients in a single blend. For example, superfoods, superfruits and herbs, which supply phyto-nutrients, antioxidants and other essential nutrients. These unique shakes beat standard, single-ingredient products hands down.
*Proteins are large biomolecules, or macromolecules, consisting of one or more long chains of amino acid residues. Proteins perform a vast array of functions within organisms, including catalysing metabolic reactions, DNA replication, responding to stimuli, providing structure to cells, and organisms, and transporting molecules from one location to another. Proteins differ from one another primarily in their sequence of amino acids, which is dictated by the nucleotide sequence of their genes, and which usually results in protein folding into a specific 3D structure that determines its activity.
*A linear chain of amino acid residues is called a polypeptide. A protein contains at least one long polypeptide. Short polypeptides, containing less than 20–30 residues, are rarely considered to be proteins and are commonly called peptides, or sometimes oligopeptides. The individual amino acid residues are bonded together by peptide bonds and adjacent amino acid residues. The sequence of amino acid residues in a protein is defined by the sequence of a gene, which is encoded in the genetic code. In general, the genetic code specifies 20 standard amino acids; but in certain organisms the genetic code can include selenocysteine and—in certain archaea—pyrrolysine. Shortly after or even during synthesis, the residues in a protein are often chemically modified by post-translational modification, which alters the physical and chemical properties, folding, stability, activity, and ultimately, the function of the proteins. Some proteins have non-peptide groups attached, which can be called prosthetic groups or cofactors. Proteins can also work together to achieve a particular function, and they often associate to form stable protein complexes.
*Once formed, proteins only exist for a certain period and are then degraded and recycled by the cell's machinery through the process of protein turnover. A protein's lifespan is measured in terms of its half-life and covers a wide range. They can exist for minutes or years with an average lifespan of 1–2 days in mammalian cells. Abnormal or misfolded proteins are degraded more rapidly either due to being targeted for destruction or due to being unstable.
*Like other biological macromolecules such as polysaccharides and nucleic acids, proteins are essential parts of organisms and participate in virtually every process within cells. Many proteins are enzymes that catalyse biochemical reactions and are vital to metabolism. Proteins also have structural or mechanical functions, such as actin and myosin in muscle and the proteins in the cytoskeleton, which form a system of scaffolding that maintains cell shape. Other proteins are important in cell signaling, immune responses, cell adhesion, and the cell cycle. In animals, proteins are needed in the diet to provide the essential amino acids that cannot be synthesized. Digestion breaks the proteins down for use in the metabolism.
*Proteins may be purified from other cellular components using a variety of techniques such as ultracentrifugation, precipitation, electrophoresis, and chromatography; the advent of genetic engineering has made possible a number of methods to facilitate purification. Methods commonly used to study protein structure and function include immunohistochemistry, site-directed mutagenesis, X-ray crystallography, nuclear magnetic resonance and mass spectrometry. *Wikipedia.
ABOUT VEGETARIAN & VEGAN DIETS
Vegetarianism is the practice of following a plant-based diet, with the exclusion of meat. Veganism is essentially a more extreme version of vegetarianism, which involves complete abstention from the use of all animal products (including dairy, eggs and honey, as well as the by-products of animal slaughter - like animal-derived rennet and gelatin). A vegetarian or vegan diet and lifestyle might be adopted by an individual for a number of reasons, including ethical, environmental and nutritional considerations. For example, meat and dairy products are highly acid-forming and hard to digest. For the most part, vegetarians and vegans tend to place special emphasis on respect for sentient life. This is often linked to religious beliefs and/or the concept of animal rights. Other common motivations include health, political, cultural, aesthetic and economic.
*Vegetarianism is the practice of abstaining from the consumption of meat (red meat, poultry, seafood, and the flesh of any other animal), and may also include abstention from by-products of animal slaughter.
*Vegetarianism may be adopted for various reasons. Many people object to eating meat out of respect for sentient life. Such ethical motivations have been codified under various religious beliefs, as well as animal rights advocacy. Other motivations for vegetarianism are health-related, political, environmental, cultural, aesthetic, economic, or personal preference. There are variations of the diet as well: an ovo-lacto vegetarian diet includes both eggs and dairy products, an ovo-vegetarian diet includes eggs but not dairy products, and a lacto-vegetarian diet includes dairy products but not eggs. A vegan diet excludes all animal products, including eggs and dairy. Avoidance of animal products may require dietary supplements to prevent deficiencies such as vitamin B12 deficiency, which leads to pernicious anemia. Psychologically, preference for vegetarian foods can be impacted by one's own socio-economic status and evolutionary factors.
*Packaged and processed foods, such as cakes, cookies, candies, chocolate, yogurt, and marshmallows, often contain unfamiliar animal ingredients, and so may be a special concern for vegetarians due to the likelihood of such additives. Feelings among vegetarians may vary concerning these ingredients. Some vegetarians scrutinize product labels for animal-derived ingredients while others do not object to consuming cheese made with animal-derived rennet or are unaware of its presence.
*Semi-vegetarian diets consist largely of vegetarian foods but may include fish or poultry, or sometimes other meats, on an infrequent basis. Those with diets containing fish or poultry may define meat only as mammalian flesh and may identify with vegetarianism. A pescetarian diet has been described as "fish but no other meat". *Wikipedia.
ABOUT WOMEN'S HEALTH
Whatever our age, we all need to take care of our bodies to get the most out of life. Women have certain additional stresses and strains to contend with, including the physical impact that accompanies pregnancy, menstruation, menopause, hormonal imbalance and other aspects particular to their physiology. What's more, women's bodies can react differently to certain factors and stimuli, such as stress and old age. All of these considerations are pertinent when caring for women's health.
*Women's health refers to the health of women, which differs from that of men in many unique ways. Women's health is an example of population health, where health is defined by the World Health Organization as "a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity". Often treated as simply women's reproductive health, many groups argue for a broader definition pertaining to the overall health of women, better expressed as "The health of women". These differences are further exacerbated in developing countries where women, whose health includes both their risks and experiences, are further disadvantaged.
*Although women in industrialised countries have narrowed the gender gap in life expectancy and now live longer than men, in many areas of health they experience earlier and more severe disease with poorer outcomes. Gender remains an important social determinant of health, since women's health is influenced not just by their biology but also by conditions such as poverty, employment, and family responsibilities. Women have long been disadvantaged in many respects such as social and economic power which restricts their access to the necessities of life including health care, and the greater the level of disadvantage, such as in developing countries, the greater adverse impact on health.
*Women's reproductive and sexual health has a distinct difference compared to men's health. Even in developed countries pregnancy and childbirth are associated with substantial risks to women with maternal mortality accounting for more than a quarter of a million deaths per year, with large gaps between the developing and developed countries. Comorbidity from other non reproductive disease such as cardiovascular disease contribute to both the mortality and morbidity of pregnancy, including preeclampsia. Sexually transmitted infections have serious consequences for women and infants, with mother-to-child transmission leading to outcomes such as stillbirths and neonatal deaths, and pelvic inflammatory disease leading to infertility. In addition infertility from many other causes, birth control, unplanned pregnancy, unconsensual sexual activity and the struggle for access to abortion create other burdens for women.
*While the rates of the leading causes of death, cardiovascular disease, cancer and lung disease, are similar in women and men, women have different experiences. Lung cancer has overtaken all other types of cancer as the leading cause of cancer death in women, followed by breast cancer, colorectal, ovarian, uterine and cervical cancers. While smoking is the major cause of lung cancer, amongst nonsmoking women the risk of developing cancer is three times greater than amongst nonsmoking men. Despite this, breast cancer remains the commonest cancer in women in developed countries, and is one of the more important chronic diseases of women, while cervical cancer remains one of the commonest cancers in developing countries, associated with human papilloma virus (HPV), an important sexually transmitted disease. HPV vaccine together with screening offers the promise of controlling these diseases. Other important health issues for women include cardiovascular disease, depression, dementia, osteoporosis and anemia. A major impediment to advancing women's health has been their under-representation in research studies, an inequity being addressed in the United States and other western nations by the establishment of centers of excellence in women's health research and large scale clinical trials such as the Women's Health Initiative. *Wikipedia.
ABOUT HEALTHY WEIGHT LOSS
Slimmers tend to have a high failure rate. This is usually because they either take the wrong approach to weight loss (opting for a "quick fix"), are too ambitious too early on (i.e. cutting out everything they enjoy at once), or simply because they don't understand the particular weight loss programme, which can often be overly complex. But losing weight needn't be complicated - slimmers need to forget about "diets" which starve them of nutrients, and instead focus on a holistic weight loss regime that covers all aspects of their life, including everything from a well-balanced diet and a regular exercise programme, to healthy digestion, a strong immune system and good hydration - which is where you come in! A natural approach to weight loss, along with a commitment to reversing ingrained bad habits and behaviours, should have your customers shedding pounds in no time and keeping them off for the long-term. Plus, with the help of our specialist weight management supplements, they won't be losing weight at the expense of their general health and well-being; on the contrary, they will be heading towards optimum nutrition!
*Weight management is the phrase used to describe both the techniques and underlying physiological processes that contribute to a person's ability to attain and maintain a certain weight. Most weight management techniques encompass long-term lifestyle strategies that promote healthy eating and daily physical activity. Moreover, weight management involves developing meaningful ways to track weight over time and to identify ideal body weights for different individuals.
*Due to the rising obesity rates in many parts of the world, proper weight management strategies most often focus on achieving healthy weights through slow but steady weight loss, followed by maintenance of an ideal body weight over time.
*Rising obesity rates are a major concern around the world, especially in North America. About 60% of Americans and Canadians are either overweight or obese. Understanding the basic science of weight management and some of the strategies for attaining and maintaining a healthy weight is very important to a person's overall health because obesity is a risk factor for many chronic diseases, like Type 2 diabetes, hypertension and cardiovascular disease. *Wikipedia.
In a recent 'Earth Summit Report' it was revealed that a potential loss of 72% of the mineral content in the soils of Europe had occurred in the last 100 years alone, as a result of modern-day intensive farming practices. These depleted soils then yield crops that are tasteless and have poor nutritional content.
Unfortunately, we can no longer rely on diet alone to fulfill our bodies' nutritional requirements. This is even the case where we believe we are eating a healthy, well-balanced diet.
We all need supplements of some kind.
Stay well & safe!
Farm Land Mineral Depletion
Depletion of Soils
1992 Earth Summit statistics indicate that the mineral content of the world's farm and range soil has decreased dramatically.
In June of 1992, an Earth Summit Report was issued in RIO that documented the decline in numbers of various rare and endangered species, enlarging holes in the ozone layer, disappearance of tropical rain forests and indigenous peoples - yet the most important and immediate crisis factor the human race was glossed over and relegated to the rear pages of the voluminous report - the decline of nutritional minerals in farm and range soils by continent over the last hundred years. The results of the Earth Summit report on the decline of mineral values in our farm and range soils show that North America (United States, Canada and Mexico) is far more affected than all other continents.
Percentage of Mineral Depletion From Soil During The Past 100 Years, by Continent:
North America - 85%
South America - 76%
Asia - 76%
Africa - 74%
Europe - 72%
Australia - 55%
The settling of the Americas by Europeans introduced dry land farming that relied on rain and snow as water sources for agriculture - land was free for the taking all one had to do was clear the forests or plow the prairies. Unfortunately, without the annual flooding and supply of silt supplied in the great flood plains of the hydraulic societies and smaller river bottoms the land "played out" in five to ten years forcing the small farm family to pack up and move west to new still "virgin" or untilled soils.
The first signs that the soil was "played out" did not appear as obvious changes in the crops, but rather in the humans and livestock relying on the land as a food source. The newborn infants, calves, lambs and pigs were underweight, weak and died, the women, cows, ewes and sows became infertile, pneumonia and flu killed people and animals of all ages during the winter, adult humans and animals died of new unheard of diseases many years before their expected time for death. To escape these terrible places of death and despair people unceremoniously packed up and left.
Those who could not or would not leave their exhausted homesteads finally observed declines in production, followed by outright crop failure, erosion and dust bowl formation. This scenario occurred over and over on small individual farms of America finally culminating in a total ecological collapse that produced the great dust bowls of Oklahoma, Texas, Nebraska, Iowa and Kansas in the 1930's.
The problem of the soil "playing out" was not a mystery but an accepted part of the process of life and death in dry land farming plains communities. There were numerous ways in which to slow the process including the biblical method of letting the land rest every seventh year, the application of animal manure to replace used up organic matter, green manure (plant debris or ground cover crops grown to specifically protect against wind erosion, hold moisture and add nitrogen to the soil), composting plant and animal wastes to add to the humus of the soil and the application of guano (large quantities of nitrogen rich droppings from shore birds) and lastly the commercial fertilizers. These procedures and applications only slowed or delayed the process of crop failure while initially keeping tonnage and bushel production up.
While nearly all farmers understand the necessity to maintain the optimal level of organic material and humus in their fields to sustain tonnage production, very few realize the slow insidious leaching and depletion of the life giving minerals (mining) from their land - after all we pay them for tons and bushels, not for an analysis of minimal levels of various minerals in each carrot, potato, broccoli, or bushel of wheat or rice! This belief is summed up in a statement by a professor of soils from Iowa State College of Agriculture Henry Cantwell Wallace (George Washington Carver's favorite teacher and editor of the Wallace's Farmer ),
"Nations endure only as long as their topsoil."
The statement should relay the message that
"Nations endure only as long as nutritional minerals are available in their top soils!"