As more and more of us shop at Whole Food Markets and have become aware of the importance of eating clean and organic foods we are naturally moving toward foods that have the potential to make us incredibly healthy! Super foods are not new, as a matter of fact; they all go back to ancient times. We are just rediscovering what our ancestors knew instinctively.
Super foods are natural food sources with highly concentrated, complex supply of high quality nutrients with the least negative properties. The magazines are pushing them as diet aids, the truth is they are not always low in calories, but, for the number of calories present, they are always high in nutrients. They are an excellent addition to any healthy diet
Super foods should not be the only part of your diet. A really healthy diet would include a combination of live, raw plant foods, super herbs and super foods. Super foods can help nourish the brain, muscles, bones, organs, immune system and hair, skin and nails. They also correct imbalance in the diet. The ultimate goal would be to be able to quit taking vitamin and mineral supplements and actually get these nutrients from your foods.
Super foods include:
Camu Camu Berry
Adaptogen: A plant based substance with combined therapeutic actions in the human body. An adaptogen strengthens and invigorates the system while helping the body to deal more easily with stress of differing origin by supporting the adrenal glands. Adaptogens are believed to reinforce the non-specific power of resistance of the body against physical, chemical or biological noxious agents. They must also have a normalizing influence and may not be harmful or alter the bodies’ normal functions.
Antioxidants: A substance that reduces damage due to oxygen. Think rust or an apple turning brown.
HGH: Human Growth Hormone, Growth hormone is produced by the pituitary gland to fuel childhood growth and help maintain tissues and organs throughout life. Our growth hormone slows as we age.
Polysaccharides: A carbohydrate whose molecules consist of a number of sugar molecules bonded together that fortify the immune system.
Sesquiterpenoids: A class of Terpenes that have anti-inflammatory properties. They increase production of HGH by stimulating the pituitary and penal glands.
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Karen Davis is a health coach, life coach, Reiki II practitioner, a Hormone Cure coach, aromatherapist, and a detox & longevity specialist. Karen graduated from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition in New York City, The Life Coach Institute, and the Aromahead Institute. She is also certified by the American Association of Drugless Practitioners and has studied the Hormone Cure with Dr. Sara Gottfried. Her approach to health focuses not only on the foods you put into your mouth but also incorporates the elements of body, mind and spirit. She has a thriving health & life coaching practice.
To find out more about her programs visit http://www.HolisticWellnessForWomen.com
Detox it vital in this toxic world. For so many years, I focused simply on digestion because I do believe that good digestion leads to a healthy life. But then one day I realized that in order to have good digestion, you must be detoxing properly. The light went off in my head. Detox for a better digestion because good digestion leads to less inflammation, and less inflammation leads to less disease in this world. Let me say it again: decrease the inflammation and prevent disease.
Hippocrates said it best, “All disease begins in the gut.”
So, if this is true and disease begins in the gut, aka – your digestive system, then having a healthy & strong digestion is key. But let me share one secret: when the body is toxic, your digestive system is weak. So even if you eat “clean” and only buy organic and hormone-free foods, you are still breathing toxicity in this world.
We live, eat, and breathe toxicity everyday. Look around your home and think of the paint on the walls, the rugs, the pesticides sprayed on your green grass, the exterminator to get rid of the bugs, and even if you are chemical-free in your home, is your makeup chemical-free?
Even if you are totally chemical-free and using make up that is aluminum-free plus other non-toxic chemicals, we are still living and that means eating, breathing, and sleeping in a toxic environment.
Unless you feel that are ready to live in a bubble or a hyperbaric chamber, then it is time to wake up to what I call “daily detox”. Now detox is not a curse word or anything to be scared about; instead, it is exciting to think about your body & cells actually functioning. I do not tell people detox has to be living on juices, water only, smoothies, or just salad or soup. Detox is about lessening the toxic load in your body. As I say, “Taking out the trash.”
See, when we are toxic our body cannot perform its job. The body cannot metabolize properly, detox properly, absorb nutrients and minerals, or stay hydrated. It is a vicious cycle. See detox is necessary to be healthy, happy, & free of disease. We all have some low level inflammation because, again, we breathe but, even more, so we stress in this busy world.
So, every time we stress, we create acid in our body, and our body is forced to pull mineral to buffer the acid waste, and then our liver, lymph, and kidneys begin to work hard to filter out the toxic load but what happens when the body is tired and clogged.
When your digestive system is not working and cannot break down these foods, it cannot focus on getting RID of TOXINS, and that means you cannot get rid of bloat and fat and skin breakouts and all that jazz that keeps you tired.
TOXINS => INFLAMMATION => WEAK DIGESTION =>
- Difficult weight management
- Low energy
- Low sex drive
- Bad skin
Get where I am going with all of this?
By detoxing, YOU will improve digestion and therefore free your body of inflammation and toxins.
The foundation of this detox is NOT to ever feel deprived or starved. The goal is to help YOU do what I have learned to do in my own life: learn how to EAT CLEAN and learn what foods are IRRITATING your body.
Eating clean is a way of life, not a diet.
So, we begin to eat whole foods that promote detox in a safe and natural way. No, you do not have to only drink juices, or soups, or smoothies, or go on a grapefruit-eating-only diet; instead, you need to eat foods that are not irritating your digestive system and clogging it up.
Is this making sense?
So here are my tips for staying healthy & detoxing naturally:
- Upon waking, drink warm or room water with lemon and 1 tsp raw apple cider vinegar (if tolerated) and add a dash of cinnamon or cayenne.
- Start your day by being positive. Find a daily affirmation that gets you fired up. I love Louise Hay, Geneen Roth, Gabrielle Bernstein, and Marianne Williamson.
- Try getting quiet without yourself, even just for one minute, and say, “I release what does not serve me.” Hold your heart as you say this out loud and scream it if you want. Own that power.
- Drink fresh, green juices or make your own green juice with 1 tbsp chlorophyll and lemon and lime and water.
- Aim for one meal that is super easy on your digestion per day. Try a smoothie, green juice, or soup to give that digestion a rest.
- Get moving & shaking. Yes, exercise is one of the best ways to detox your body.
- Drink plenty of water & add lemon, lime, or grapefruit to flush the toxicity.
- Skin brushing is my favorite way to support the liver and get rid of those toxins
- Tongue Brushing.
- BE Happy & grateful for life.
Be Well & Inspired,
Karen ~ Your Wellness Warrior ❤
Do you feel like your food is just sitting in your stomach for hours after you eat? Or is the opposite happening, and you are running to the bathroom before you have even finished your meal? You are not alone, and there are things you can do improve the situation. Here are ten steps to take now to get things moving properly through your gut:
- Food Combining – When foods are combined properly, they do not sit in your stomach and rot. That rotting food feeds the bad bacteria and yeast that everyone has residing in their digestive tract. To combine food, you eat protein with vegetables or grains with vegetables, never proteins & grains together. Also, fruits should be eaten alone on an empty stomach.
- Fermented Foods – These are naturally fermented foods such as kefir, sauerkraut, pickles, etc., that, when eaten, will feed the good bacteria in your gut and balance your inner ecology.
- Enzymes and Probiotics – I suggest that everyone take digestive enzymes and probiotics to help with the digestion of their food and build up their immunity.
- Water – We all know we need to drink plenty of water. A little known Ayurvedic trick is to drink a glass of water 15 minutes before your meal. This will get your digestive juices flowing and your food will get digested better.
- 80/20 Rule – This rule is to eat until you are 80% full. That leaves 20% of the room left in your stomach for your digestion to work. No one likes that uncomfortable full feeling and your tummy will thank you if you stop just before you are full.
- Eat Loads of Fiber – Your body needs fiber to carry out toxins, excess hormones, and junk. Eating lots of water-soluble fiber, found in veggies, will ensure that you get plenty of fiber. Just don’t forget step #4! Drink lots of water, too, so that you don’t end up with bulky stool.
- Short Fasting Period – Don’t worry, I am not suggesting that you don’t eat for a day. What I am suggesting is that you take some time between meals. Give your system about 3 or 4 hours to let the food get assimilated. When your gut is constantly bombarded by food all day long, it gets confused and doesn’t work properly. Give it some time to work on that last meal before you head to the kitchen for a snack.
- Cut Sugar and White Carbohydrates – These foods will feed the bad guys in your gut. Avoid them for less gas and bloating – and you don’t want the insulin spike that comes with them either.
- Gluten – A large percentage of Americans are gluten intolerant and do not know it. Try going without and see if your digestion works any better.
- Bone Broth – The #1 most soothing and healing drink that you could ever ingest. Homemade bone broth contains all of the nutrients you need to heal your gut if it is leaky and also provides the minerals you need for strong bones. It’s a win-win, must-consume food!
If you incorporate some or all of the tips, you will ease in to better digestion and the tummy troubles will disappear. 🙂
Be well & Inspired!
Your Wellness Warrior
When you realize that your digestion is much less than optimal and you feel terrible, it is time to do something about it. I got to that point and started noticing that I had symptoms like gassiness, bloating, constipation, and sharp cramp-like pains that started happening a lot. I knew I needed a reliable way to find out WHY this was happening and, more importantly, WHAT was causing my discomfort. That’s when I found out about the Elimination Diet.
The Elimination Diet is an approach to figuring out which foods you are sensitive to so that you can eat mindfully and keep your digestive symptoms at bay. The gut is where the majority of your immune system is and is considered the “second brain” in your body, so it is important to keep it healthy and keep things running smoothly. In the elimination diet, you start by eliminating common culprits of digestive upset and common food allergens. You dial down your daily meals and snacks so that you are only eating real, nourishing foods that will not hurt your gut. In fact, you can begin to heal your gut with a proper elimination diet. The categories of food to eliminate are:
- Grains – The foundation of the Food Pyramid for decades, it has now been discovered that many people have a hard time digesting grains, including corn.
- Processed Foods – There are many toxic chemicals (like MSG, artificial colors, and flavorings) and other undesirable ingredients (like GMOs, trans fats, and HFCS) in processed food that can impede digestion and even cause disease.
- High Glycemic Foods – Large amounts of starches and added sugars can feed a bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) and other gut dysbiosis problems.
- Gluten and Fructans – Found in many grains, gluten has been found to be one of the causes of leaky gut syndrome and autoimmune diseases. Fructans are found in FODMAPS (short-chain carbohydrates) and can also feed those bad bugs in your gut.
- Unrefined Oils – These can cause inflammation throughout your body.
- Feedlot Meats and Dairy – Meats and dairy from the conventional food system are full of hormones, antibiotics, and even poisons such as arsenic.
- Eggs, Peanuts, and Shellfish – All are common food allergens.
- Gut Irritants – Caffeine and alcohol can wreak havoc on your gut. Avoid these while you are healing.
There is a 3/3 guideline for adding foods back into your diet:
“Do not conclude a food causes symptoms, unless symptoms occur within 3 days of eating the food and occur consistently on 3 separate occasions after eating it.”*
You will know, as you begin to add foods back in, what works and what doesn’t. I suggest starting slow; give the diet a few weeks to work, and start adding foods back in one at a time. If a food causes symptoms on 3 different occasions, you will know that you are sensitive to that food and to avoid it for a while and try again later. Eventually you will come up with a plan that your body will love. Everyone is different and finding your own unique way of eating to feel good will change your life.
*Heizer, W D., Southern, S, McGovern, S. The Role of Diet in Symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome in Adults: A Narrative Review. JADA 2009; 109: 1204-1214
Not quite feeling confident enough to go it alone? Join us as we do an elimination diet together! Click here to find out more http://www.lifeoficoaching.com/11-day-detoxcleanse.html
Be well & Inspired!
Your Wellness Warrior
I suffered from constipation the first forty years of my life, not knowing I was constipated.
Thankfully, I have been educated on HOW to build daily bowel movements into my daily routine. Now, it’s just part of my morning, and if I DON’T have one in the morning, my body just feels “off”!
Here are three simple tips that I learned:
WATER, WATER, WATER
Did you know that up to 75% of Americans are dehydrated? The problem is much more prevalent than most of us realize. Water is needed to help the food pass through the small and large intestine, along with the colon and rectum, as it can take up to 24 hours for food to pass from the mouth to the anus. In the intestine alone, one gallon of fluids is absorbed daily to help with digestion. In the colon alone, 5 to 10 pounds of fecal matter can be stored because of dehydration caused by lack of water.
Moving your body every day is key to daily bowel movements. What is the best kind of exercise to do? The one you will get done on a daily basis! You don’t have to do a ‘killer’ workout every day for it to be considered exercise; just get up and MOVE. Outside is ideal, but just get it done! Getting 20 to 30 minutes of continuous movement will help move your bowels. Exercise is even more important during long periods of sitting, such as commutes, trips, sedentary desk jobs, and screen time. Write it into your daily schedule and your daily bowel movement will follow closely behind!
LOTS OF FRESH FRUITS AND VEGGIES
Changing your diet to incorporate 50% to 75% fresh fruits and veggies will radically change your daily elimination habits, as they add fiber to your diet. When planning meals, plan your veggies and fruits first, and then add the carbs and protein. For instance, at lunch, fill your plate with a beautiful, BIG salad as the “mattress” for the rest of your meal. Experiment with a new veggie or fruit frequently. Eat seasonally and experience the most nutrition for your body. Look for local farmers’ markets to buy the fresh and local produce. And, of course, organic is best if it is an option.
Incorporate these three tips into your daily routine and your body will be a well-oiled machine in no time! Oh yes, and speaking of oil, one more tip: 1 to 2 tablespoons of coconut oil right off the spoon will lube your system like a well-tuned motor! You will be feeling lighter, more energetic, and less bloated in no time at all!
Be well & Inpsired,
Your Wellness Warrior