A Dummy’s Guide To Finding the Best Fish Oil Pills

Dietary supplements are more popular now than ever before, and there is no denying the fact that omega-3 fish oil supplements are among the most popular of them all. Do they really deserve their position near the top of the list?

Omega-3 Supplements and the FDA

One thing which we can not overlook is the fact that omega-3 supplementation has been officially endorsed by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The FDA is notoriously picky about what they do or do not endorse, but they have issued a public health notice stating that the use of fish oil supplements can reduce the risk of a person developing coronary heart disease. In fact, the FDA's News Release concern omega-3 supplementation was published way back in 2004 already.

This official FDA approval has clearly helped to fuel the current popularity of fish oil supplements, but many people will also have been affected by the long list of other reported health benefits.

Choosing the Best Fish Oil Gels

One quick and easy way to stock up on fish oil supplements would be to shop online at some of the very popular sites where you can literally find anything you are looking for. However, shopping for supplements on sites like those is not always a very good idea unless you are only concerned about prices.

Anyone can order supplements in bulk and then sell them under their own individual brand names. A lot of these supplements could be very poor quality, and if the truth be known, the people who rebrand and resell probably have no real idea concerning what ingredients have been added. Not too long ago we heard about some manufacturers in China adding melamine to baby formula. I do not know how you feel about it, but I personally would not feel comfortable taking supplements that have been manufactured by such manufacturers for example.

Let us assume that there are 150 sellers out there who all get their supplies from the same manufacturer. If this manufacturer is making very high quality supplements, then there will be at least 150 sellers selling high quality supplements. But, what if the manufacturer is turning out poor quality, or even even contaminated supplements? If that is the case then you have 150 sellers selling supplements that you really do not want to be taking.

The problem with the above scenario is the fact that those 150 sellers do not really know what quality their supplements are. In fact, they probably are not even interested. I just can not help wondering how you can order a batch of supplements; have them packaged and branded, and then sell them for less than you would expect to pay at a local supermarket? I mean, how is it even possible for them to make any profit?

My gut instinct tells me that those samples of supplements must surely contain the cheapest fish oil money can buy. If you are serious about getting the best fish oil pills or gels, then my advice would be to get them from a company that manufactures their own supplements.

Not All Fish Oil Is Equal

Fish oil can be obtained from any species of fish, but not all fish oil is equal. Oil from some types of fish has an abundance of omega-3 fatty acids, while the oil from some other species may not contain much at all. So, once you have found a potential supplier, your next step will be to determine what sort of fish oil is being used for making their supplies. Ideally, the oil in your supplements should come from one or more of the following types of fish:

* Salmon (wild caught)
* Tuna
* Mackerel
* Sardines
* Herring

The Origin of the Oil

Okay, so you've found a supplier who sees to fit the bill and you know they only use oil which has been harvested from Tuna for example, but now you need to find out where those tuna are being caught. I mean, you would not want oil from fish that have been taken off the coast of Japan, near the site of the recent nuclear power station disaster.

I'm not going to point fingers, but the coastal waters surrounding some countries have dangerously high levels of pollution. Again, I'm not going to point fingers and I'm not going to make recommendations, but I do really believe that this is something you need to take into consideration as well before you go ahead and order your fish oil supplements.

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Black Garlic: Health Benefits


Although not as famous as white garlic, black garlic is slowly taking over the market especially as an alternative natural herbal medicine field. Introduced into the market by Koreans, this type of garlic is mainly prepared through a fermentation process lasting at least one month. The fermentation process is done under controlled humidity and heat, with the end product being a garlic which is blackened as a result of the fermentation process. Herbalists and natural medicine practitioners spread this new invention (invented less than 5 years ago) as the new way to go in herbal medicine.

Black Garlic Health Benefits

1. Cholesterol and cancer protection benefits

This breed of garlic is a rich source of S-allyl cysteine, a natural compound that helps lower blood cholesterol so preventing most of the major cardiovascular conditions. Although this compound is also found in fresh garlic, the fermentation process tends to amplify its presence thus increasing its concentrations after the one month of controlled fermentation. This compound is also a derivative an amino acid, cysteine, which also helps reduce cancer risk by a certain percentage.

2. Infection Protection

Naturally, white garlic contains antibiotic, antifungal and antimicrobial active ingredient, allicin whereas it's counter contains all these plus S-allyl cysteine, a compound that boosts allicin absorption and metabolism in the body. By boosting allicin absorption and metabolism, the body benefits greatly from improved immunity and ability to fight infections.

3. Improved immunity

Although white fresh garlic contains plentiful antioxidants, black garlic contains twice as much. Antioxidants help protect body cells from disease-causing microorganisms, slow down the aging process, and boosts skin health. It is through the improved immunity levels that the body can fight and protect itself from most health conditions. The fermentation process, however, amplifies the antioxidants potential since providing improved cell protection from free radical damage and chronic diseases. Some of the diseases that can be contained by using black garlic include cardiovascular infections, rheumatoid arthritis, respiratory conditions, Dementia, and Alzheimer's among other chronic conditions.

Other benefits

Black garlic is significantly more palatable and easier for most people to eat. This is because it does not contain or produce the strong flavor or pungent odor from white fresh garlic. This means it is healthier to have it as compared to white garlic. It is for this reasons more and more people are switching to the blackened garlic, as it does not pose any olfactory effects when consumed in large quantities.

Although black garlic has more health benefits than white garlic, this does not mean you should quit using white garlic. White garlic is naturally healthy and does have many health benefits to the human body, only that black garlic has surpassed it. You should always consider using black garlic whenever possible, especially in salad dressing, with other veggies or when preparing chicken, turkey or red meat. This should help build a healthy body.

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Taking Too Many Supplements?

Today, many households have their own small dispensary of supplements available in the kitchen for self-care and health. If you're one of them, look around in your cupboard where you store the bottles. Are there more than 10-15 different products that you use daily? If so, it may be time to explore whether you really need to take all the supplements and which ones make the most sense for your health. Even though supplements are used for natural health, you can still get too much of a good thing.

Natural health products are best used as a bridge in wellness and self-care. In other words, they help you get from how you're feeling now to how you'd like to feel in your body. They can help aid digestion, clear up skin breakouts, promote quality sleep, and relieve high stress. However, when we overly rely on these products, we can miss the whole point of taking care of ourselves first and using the supplements as simply a tool or a bridge towards better health. The supplement is not everything, nor is it a magic solution.

Another point to consider is that we can only process so much, and we may be overworking our bodies with too many supplements. The capsules, tablets, and powders all need to be broken down and metabolized by the digestive system and liver. The mind also has to remember to take all the 10 to 20 supplements we may be requiring ourselves to take, and this checklist can even lead to stress (thereby counteracting some of the health benefits of the products).

Whether you've self-prescribed supplements or are taking ones recommended by one or more health providers, you can put them all out on the table and potentially simplify your routine to around 5 supplements or less. Decide which products will pack the most punch for your overall health and the organ systems that need the most support. Remember that your health will look different at different times depending on what you're going through. Supplement routines will change along with your life circumstances and how you're feeling.

Not sure which supplements are working, or the effect each one has on you? Try the following tips to help you choose what to keep and what to discontinue:

  • Take a 1-2 week break from supplements that you're unsure about, especially if you do not remember because you started them in the first place. Do you feel different afterward?
  • If your healthcare provider recommended the supplement (s), ask him or her which products are still relevant for your treatment. They may be able to re-evaluate what you're taking.
  • Anything expired? If a product label lists an expired date, it's a great time to consider whether you still need to be taking it, and if so order a fresh batch.
  • If you have two or more supplements that serve the same purpose, often you can narrow down to one product with that function. For example, rather than taking two adaptogen (stress relief) formulas, choose one that resonates the best with your health.
  • If you have a bottle of overly large pills that you hate taking, a yucky tasting tincture or tea, or a product that involves 3 or more pills in one sitting, what a great time to reexamine whether you really need that.

Once you have around 5 products or less that you focus on for your health, see how you feel on the new routine. And with the time freed up from not having to remember 10-20 different supplements, you can take care of your health in other non-pill ways. Rest. Stretch. Take a nice moment to do nothing! Go for a walk or enjoy your favorite exercise. Listen to music, catch up on your water intake, enjoy a bath. Your body will enjoy the focused supplement routine as well as the opportunity to try new things for your health.

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Why Taking a Multivitamin May Save Your Life!

Why Taking a Multivitamin May Actually Save Your Life!

I am asked this question every single day: “Why should I take vitamins?” It is such a valid and important question. I like to say vitamins, or lack there of, can be life and death, and people look at me like I am from Mars. I totally get it, I feel the exact same way when people share with me about areas I am not an expert in. But sometimes what you do not know could actually hinder your life, shorten it and even be fatal to it. I lost my own father to cancer, so this hits close to home for me. As I know if does for a lot of Americans who have lost loved ones much too soon.

Here are a couple of 2015 studies:

2015 Study: Journal of the American College of Nutrition: 40 percent of adults are deficient in vitamin A, C, D, E, calcium and magnesium. These findings suggest many people may not even have the nutrient levels they need to stave off disease – let alone thrive and live in optimal health. As I see it, everyone needs a multivitamin for disease prevention, and all of this new research agreements.

January 2015 edition of the Journal Postgraduate Medicine: Suggestions that 68,000 cancers per year, for men alone, would be preceded with daily multivitamin use. In the study, multivitamins lowered cancer risk by 27 percent among men with a history of cancer and by 8 percent among men with no history of the disease. This new study used a randomized, controlled trial design- a method that is considered to be the “gold standard” for proof in medical science.

Here are some other facts about Americans deficiencies in vitamins and minerals:

• Over 75% – 3 out of 4 Americans do not meet the RDI – Recommended Daily Allowance for overall nutrition in their diet.

• NIH (National Institute of Health). People with optimum vitamin D levels can expect better health across the board – longer life, reduction in death rates from all causes, fewer diseases, stronger bones and muscles, fewer and less severe infections, less depression, pain and inflammation. But yet over 75% of us teens and adults in the US are deficient. Yes teens are deficient too.

The Most prominent nutrients most Americans are missing in their diets: Magnesium, Calcium, Vitamin A, Zinc, Vitamin C, Vitamin B-12, Vitamin D, Potassium, Vitamin K, Vitamin E & Choline.

After reading the above, an important question has to be: Just how do Vitamins actually work? Vitamins work through consistent long-term use, just like we do not get overweight from one meal, it takes time to for vitamins to get your body to a complete balance. Vitamins, taken properly over time will greatly help you age stronger and healthier. Once your body is in complete balance your body's regenerating process can do amazing things!

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Supplementation of Protein

Do you have a solid workout routine down, eating well, getting enough rest, but not seeing the results you want to see? While it's true that balancing the fundamentals of bodybuilding (diet, training, and rest) can help you achieve results, you also need to know how to supplement your body.

Through your workout you're breaking down muscle fibers and your body is losing precious fluids. You're also depleting your body of energy. In order to really maximize your physique, you need to supplement your body with everything it needs in order to really crush those workouts and get the results you want. Protein is an essential supplement you may want to add to your daily diet. If you could afford one supplement in the world, please make sure it's protein!

During your workout, your body will break those muscle fibers down, and protein post-workout helps refuel your muscles and allows your body to build that muscle back up. Increased protein will help increase lean muscle mass and it's especially important immediately after your workout. You may think to yourself that you do not need protein because you get a fair amount through your diet. While you may get enough through your diet, there is an added benefit to having protein as a supplement.

Protein powder is very convenient and easy to drink. Drinking a protein shake immediately immediately after your workout can have huge benefits. It's a quick and easy way to drive protein right to your muscles when they need it most. Protein powders usually contain other key vitamins and nutrients that your body can really benefit from right after a workout. You may be able to get protein other ways after your workout, but the faster you can get the protein in your system after your workout, the better it is.

Even if you were to go home immediately after the gym and cook chicken, it'll take time to cook up before you can eat it. That's precious time wasted. Even if you pre-cook it and have that chicken ready to go when you get home, it will never be as quick as you can drink a shake immediately after the gym. If you want to play devil's advocate and say you can bring your chicken or other protein to the gym to eat right then then be it, but protein powder is a major convenience. Supplement your body correctly with what it needs most immediately after your workout. Your body will thank you.

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Magnesium Deficiency – A Silent Foe

Calcium deficiencies have been noted regularly by specialists and dietitians a like. Dairy Producers have used this as a marketing tool for their product. Especially at the sunset of menopause, the need seems to be much greater. But is our society really calcium deficient? Or does the problem go deeper than that?

In my natural health practice, I find more and more people are requiring an often forgotten-about element – magnesium.

What is the importance of magnesium you ask? It is only a mineral that is utilized by almost every area of ​​the body. Common estimates of magnesium deficiency in the population are from 68 percent to over 80 percent depending on the source of information.

Most people do not realize they are deficient in magnesium. Often the symptoms are so minute that they are dismissed as nothing. But if left unchecked, the results could be disastrous. Unfortunately, normal blood tests are not always helpful. They only measure a small portion of the actual body magnesium content – that content that is found in the blood. It does not take into account all the magnesium in the other tissues, organs, bones and muscle.

Magnesium has many roles but some of the most important ones include heart muscle and kidney activity. And it actually aids with the absorption of Calcium. Therefore without magnesium, increasing calcium intake is of no good to us.

Common symptoms of deficiency can include muscle spasms, weakness, restless legs right up to abnormal rhythms in the heart, seizures and more. Current recommendations for magnesium uptake range from 300 to 400 milligrams (mg) however, for many, this amount just wards off complete deficiency of the mineral. Many require upwards of 700 milligrams and more to keep them from complete nutritional deficiency of the mineral.

Why are we so deficient? There are probably a number of contributions. First of all, our diets are not giving us an adequate source. Most of the western diet consistants of chemically made, non-nutritional, commercially prepared foods that lack the required nutritional factors for a healthy living. On top of that, many of our commercially prepared foods resort to using Genetically modified versions.

What is the problem with genetically modified food? The research is still not completely in however, when you mess with an organism of any kind, you are never sure what type of monster organism you will get in return. You also do not know how the food will reconfigure its fruit or seed that you consume.

But the greater risk to the Magnesium threat is what genetically modified are made for. Most of them on the market are designed to withstand massive amounts of glyphosates , the chemical name for a well-known herbicide on the market today known as round-up.

Glyphosates were initially patented as a chelating agent for boilers. When the chemical formation was purchased by a notorious herbicide company, they were re-patented for the herbicide intent.

Glyphosates bind or chelate all the important minerals so causing a lack of transference of these nutrients into the plant. It essentially binds Magnesium and other minerals before absorption through the roots and therefore innovations the uptake of those nutrients into the plant. When they say that we have an actual decrease in nutrients in today's food, this is just one of the contributing factors for this reason.

Unfortunately diet alone will not bring those magnesium levels up. Most are required to have a supplement of some sort. It is thought that magnesium citrate is the best form of supplementing. I have found that this is not always the case.

Yes, magnesium citrate does absorb much faster than most other supplements, however, for some people this form is not ideal. It is recommended that you consult your naturopath or holistic nutritionist to find out what form is the best for you. Too much absorption too fast can lead to diarrhea.

Over the counter vitamins may not be what you are needing. They are usually manufactured with fillers that either slow or impair the absorption of vitamins and minerals. I once heard a story about a leading over the counter brand of vitamins that were found – name still intact on the pill – floating regularly in sewage tanks in a large city. Now, if these are being passed through us and are flushed down the toilet daily, how much of these over the counter, non-natural vitamins are actually getting into our system for our body's use? This is one of the reason's that we recommend a natural version of the vitamin or mineral.

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Wellbeing and Wellness Need the Best Multivitamin? Do You Even Need It?

Indeed, would you say you are getting 9 servings a day of products of the soil?

Obviously you require a multivitamins. It is the basic, modest approach to make sure you're getting great nourishment – paying little respect to what you eat! What's more, here, you can get the best cost on what I accept is the BEST vitamin.

The best vitamins are upheld by the most recent wholesome research, and join the fundamental vitamins (in the right extents) with numerous important follow minerals, phyto (supplements from plants, for example, products of the soil) and cancer prevention agents. Critically, the best multivitamins are substantially absorbable – dissimilar to those shabby pills at the drugstore. While you may pay more for “the best,” a year's supply of first rate will cost you not as much as a tenth of what one day in the doctor's facility may cost. You can not buy great well being, obviously, although your body's organic chemistry can absolutely advantage by having all the right building pieces close by for repair and support. Purchasing a logically adjusted it can spare you several dollars over purchasing vitamins and every one of the supplements on an individually promise.

It is my conviction that we do not get every one of the 45 supplements in adequate depths from our maintenance, paying little heed to how well we think we eat, or what nature of nourishment we purchase. Minerals, for instance, will be in the sustantance we eat just on the off chance that they are in the dirt in which they are developed. With today's concentrated horticulture, this is very far-fetched. Furthermore, sustenance's are reproducible for qualities other than their nutritive substance. Organic products are reproduced for their sugar content. Tomatoes are developed for their impervious to wounding, not for flavor or their level of cell reinforcements. Is it any miracle our eating regimens are inadequate in fundamental supplements?

A multivitamin bought to be the spot where you get the vast majority of the vitamins and minerals you require. Let the producer do the mass purchasing and offer it to you in a voluntary, financially savvy bundle. For instance, selenium, a follow metal, has been appeared to lessen most growth rates up to 50 for every penny. Most over-the-counter multivitamins need selenium. It can be obtained independently, however why not purchase it in your vitamin? It is considerably less costly that way. Another follow component, chromium, has been appeared to build the number and effectiveness of insulin receptors. This is critical for diabetics, as well as for every one of you.

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How to Use Ginseng Extract and Become Happier

People have long searched for a holistic panacea that enhances our quality of life. Ginseng extract is considered to be such a panacea. Addressing a range of medical conditions, an extract of ginseng served as a tea is definitely helping us become happier.

Promote Heart Health

Ginseng may be useful in treating diseases of the heart. Some 40 ginsenoside constituents of ginseng have been identified to have beneficial effects on heart function. Through a wide variety of mechanisms including reducing platelet adhesion, antioxidation, modifying vasomotor function and improving lipid profiles, strong scientific evidence is emerging of these effects. Ginseng extract taken as a tea is calming, reduces hypertension and helps us become happier.

Reduce Blood Sugar Levels

Ginseng extract is also helpful in normalizing blood sugar levels in people with Type 2 Diabetes. Controlling blood sugar levels was demonstrated in a study that took place in the United Kingdom. The use of Ginseng proved positive in the study as blood sugar levels in 30 participants dropped to normal levels without adverse side effects.

Ginseng Extract and a Healthy Mind

Ginseng has a wide range of positive effects on mental function. Improved cognition and better memory, enhanced ability to recall with greater ease, as well as stronger focus during activities that demand a high degree of mental attention are some of the reasons people are seeing ginseng extract as a mental panacea. Studies have also taken place exhibiting participants to experience improved reaction times, better abstract thinking and general happiness during tasks.

Enhance Athletic Ability

Ginseng is well known for its ability to adapt itself to a body's individual needs. Some studies into the effects of ginseng extract show an increase in energy when given to people suffering fatigue. Other effects beneficial to sports men and women are as a general tonic and to improve reflexes, capacity for effort and endurance. There's also a noticeable improvement in general wellbeing during convalescence.

Improve Sexual Health

Ginseng extract has the ability to improve sexual function, mainly in men, thereby making people happier in sexual activities. Scientific study supports findings of improved ability, desire and overall satisfaction. Improving libido and performance, ginseng addresses issues of sexual function, potency, virility and self confidence.

Happier All Round

Having an amazing effect on our body as a whole, and with an inherent ability to satisfy an individual's particular health shortcomings, the benefits of a daily dose of Ginseng Extract in the form of a tea are manifold. There have been studies showing benefits to our immune system if taken during bouts of flu and in other studies, ginseng use was shown to lower the risk of cancer.

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How To Know Which Protein Powder Is Right For You

If you're trying to identify the top rated protein powders, it's hard to get a clear answer, as everyone has a different opinion. It is not easy to compare two or more products, when they have been created for different purposes, like protein powders. How much extra protein you actually need must be considered when looking for the right product that can help you reach your goals for fitness and health. Also, in case you're interested, you should definitely have a look at the Shakeology meal replacement shake highly recommended.

Eggs are thought to be one of the most-perfect foods by many nutritionists. They have all of the essential amino acids, are low in fat and are very high in protein. There is a reason why you see some athletes put raw eggs in a blender with other ingredients and then drink it, and also having lots of eggs in their diet. Eggs give you lots of protein, but if you do not like eggs, use egg protein powder and the results will be the same. Although eggs are an animal product, they are not a dairy product, so they're appropriate for anyone who may be lactose intolerant. When you are looking for something to eat between meals to give you a lift, egg protein would be better than either whey protein or casein, because its absorption time is between the other two.

Taking protein powder to replace a meal is the choice of many people. These are protein shakes that you make with water, milk or juice along with a protein supplement. There are a variety of purposes for taking products for replacing your meals, but the main ones are improving performance or losing weight. You should keep in mind that the body has many nutritional requirements aside from protein, so it's not a good idea to rely entirely on supplements for your nourishment. Even if you are on a low carb diet, you still need a certain number of carbohydrates. Anytime you substitute a regular meal by using something like whey protein powders, then you need to also take a variety of minerals and vitamins.

Cutting down on eating beef is something people are doing, so as an alternative, you might want to consider beef protein. You might be interested in trying beef protein powder, but there are some things you should know before you do. If you are looking for protein powders, and are allergic to dairy products, a good high quality animal protein to take instead of either whey or casein, it is not the most efficient way to get protein, because beef has a low rating on the Biological Value scale, so even whey protein is better. If you're considering beef protein powder, you should also consider the source of the beef, as factory farm beef contains many impurities and additives. When you do not have all of the information, things such as different protein powders may not make sense, but it will with further research. Once you find a protein powder that works for losing weight, you will find that to build muscles, you will need another kind. Depending on whether you can tolerate milk products, will determine if you can use whey products or need to find alternatives in hemp, soy, or rice proteins.

For those who need to gain muscle, bodybuilding or lost weight may consider consumption of whey protein powder to help your goal.

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Turmeric, My Favorite Anti-Inflammatory Spice That Gave My Dog Some Life

How Turmeric Helped My Dog

One of the interesting things as a physician is that although my patients look to me for advice, guidance, and knowledge, within my own family I am just Dad and with that comes a disbelief in my professional acumen. Well, the time I remember that changing the most in my kids' and wife's eyes was the day I helped our 12 year old Lab named Darma.

She was a sweet family dog ​​who helped raise our kids but now was riddled with arthritis so that even a walk down the street was difficult for her. I had just come back from my week in Arizona for my fellowship in Integrative Medicine and had learned about the anti-inflammatory properties of turmeric, so I thought why not see if it will help Darma. I bought some organic turmeric spice, and combined it with some omega 3 rich oil and black pepper and mixed it with her usual food. The first time I served it to her, she looked up from her bowl in suspicion, but as with most labs, she never walked away from food so it went down without a problem. This became our daily routine for which I was mock in the house for practicing “voodoo” on the dog. But guess what? In about 2 weeks, she was significantly better.

Almost like from the movie Cocoon she had a little spring to her step and now and she could walk 1-2 miles as opposed to 1 block. Finally my knowledge and training means something in the Lane family and we started adding turmeric to everything!

Health Benefits of Turmeric

So why did this help Darma and what is all the fuss about turmeric? As it turns out, turmeric is one of the most potent anti-inflammatory compounds known on earth. It is one of the main spices in curry and mustard and is widely used in Indian cuisine. In fact, some people have theorized that the lowerivalence of Alzheimer's in India may be related to their increased turmeric consumption.

The active compound in turmeric is curcumin and based on studies in vitro and on animals it appears to be anti-inflammatory, anti-neoplastic, and an anti-oxidant. Since so many of our medical diseases are linked to inflammation, it is not a surprise that curcumin has been included in a wide number of clinical trials. There have been positive results in studies on inflammatory bowel disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and colon cancer prevention, but a recent study on diabetes prevention has specifically interested me (Chuengsamarn S, et al .. Curcumin extract for prevention of type 2 diabetes. ; Nov 2012.).

In a major medical center in Thailand they controlled 237 subjects with pre-diabetes in a 12-month, randomized, double-blind, placebo controlled cohort trial to compare the effects of a 3 placebo pills vs. 3 curcumin extract pills taken twice daily. After 9 months of the trial, no participants taking the curcumin developed diabetes, but 16.4% of the control group taking the place did go on to become diabetic. Although larger studies need to be done, I still thought this was an amazing preliminary result with potentially large health ramifications for our country that is struggling with a diabetes epidemic.

Possible Contraindications to Taking Turmeric

As with anything, there are possible side effects but overall turmeric is very well tolerated even at high doses. Those with gall stones or bile duct obstruction should avoid turmeric as it has been shown to contract the gall bladder and it is not recommended in supplement form for those with gastric ulcers or who are pregnant. Also, if you are taking any blood thinners you must discuss taking turmeric with your health care provider so safety for you can be determined and monitored appropriately.

How to Take Turmeric

Now, you may wonder why I put black pepper and oil with the turmeric in Darma's food. Many people do not realize that turmeric (curcumin) will not be significantly absorbed from your intestine without some type of fat (ie why the omega 3 oil was used) and piperine which comes from black pepper. In fact, in some studies piperine enhanced absorption by as much as a 1000%!

If you are using the turmeric for intestinal purposes then take it on an empty stomach with no black pepper (or piperine free supplement) so that its anti-inflammatory effects occur in the intestinal lining and not in the blood stream.

Since I am a big believer in using food to help strengthen your body's natural healing potential do not be shy about incorporating the turmeric spice into your cooking. It does add a yellow color to your foods but it has minimal taste and you can feel good about the health benefits it is adding to your meal. People always ask me how much black pepper to add to the food. The honest answer is that I am not sure there is a scientifically tested amount, so I always just add the pepper to taste so I enjoy the food. Hopefully, like my loyal canine friend Darma, you too will notice a little spring in your step in no time.

Chuengsamarn, S; Rattanamongkolgul, S; Luechapudiporn, R; Phisalaphong, C; Jirawatnotai, S; Curcumin Extract for Prevention of Type 2 Diabetes. Diabetes Care . November 2012 vol. 35 no.11 2121-2127

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Top Vitamin E Foods and Studies on Vitamin E Benefits

Vitamin E is a health-giving, disease preventing vitamin that is found in many foods such as almonds, leafy greens, sunflower seeds, eggs, sweet potatoes, avocados, olive oil and rice bran oil. Studies are showing that vitamin E benefits include strengthening the heart, assisting in preventing eye disease, boosting immune function and enhancing muscle health.

The top three antioxidant vitamins are Vitamin E, C and A. An “antioxidant” is a nutrient that counteracts and neutralizes the harmful effects of oxygen in the body. These “oxidative” effects contribute to aging and disease and are caused by an unhealthful diet, air pollution, smoking, drinking, and also by the normal processes of digestion and metabolism.

Vitamin E is a key player in the fight for a healthy heart. A study from the New England Journal of Medicine found that men who consumed higher amounts of vitamin E had a lower risk of heart disease. This benefit occurred with 60 to 100 international units (IU) per day, although the amount often used for disease prevention is 400 IU daily.

The health of the red blood cells is vital as they carry oxygen from the lungs to the rest of the body. In a study from the journal “Nutrition Research”, the breakdown of red blood cells was decreased by 38% in adults that took 300 milligrams of vitamin E daily for four months. Levels of vitamin E in the blood increased significantly and cellular oxygen stress was lowered by 47%.

The University of Hong Kong did a study on how vitamin E benefits immunity, which showed that there was a specific requirement for vitamin E in immune cells. The vitamin was demonstrated to strengthen immunization and help immune cells to flourish. Another aspect of vitamin E is that it has the potential for preventing or delaying prostate cancer in men, according to the book “Vitamin E: New Research”.

It is not surprising that Vitamin E is vital to the health of the muscles and improvements the ability to exercise, because the heart is essentially muscle tissue and vitamin E is known to strengthen it. In a study from the Medical College of Georgia, it was found that exercise causes muscle cells to burn a lot more oxygen than usual, causing “oxidative” stress in muscles. Their finding was that vitamin E is essential to rapid muscle cell membrane repair and it can also help prevent muscle-wasting diseases.

Vitamin E foods such as nuts, leafy greens, sunflower seeds, eggs, sweet potatoes, avocados, olive oil and rice bran oil are great ways to get more of it and vitamin E supplements are also beneficial to overall health.

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The Secret of Ashwagandha for Good Health

Ashwagandha has been classified as an adaptogen in Phytotherapy, the science of curing or keeping the body healthy through the use of plants. Adaptogens are a very specific type of plant. They help the body to fight the effects of stress and anxiety, very common in the age of information, when we are required to keep track of loads of data and facts in our daily lives.

How do they work? Let's explain what stress is first. Our body is always aware of what happens around us. If it perceives any threat, real or imaginary, it reacts by producing some chemical reactions that will give us the ability to meet that threat: our adrenaline production rises, so our senses are sharper, ready to leap into action. However, when we are under this state for long periods of time, it can become harmful, difficult to deal with and, in the end, it will generate the opposite effect that it was supposed to, because we will feel tired, unfocused, unable to cope with everyday tasks, and we may fall sick.

Adaptogens help the body to deal with cortisol, the so-called stress hormone produced by the adrenal glands. The excess production of this hormone is what delivers all the harmful symptoms of stress. The adaptogen has the ability to lower the production of cortisol and keep it at the optimum level.

As an adaptogen, Ashwagandha is one of the most important. You will find the powder of the root of the plant as a nutritional supplement in Ayurvedic medicine. Researchers say that this plant gives the best results in lower cortisol and balancing thyroid hormones. These are key points in overlapping adrenal fatigue and chronic fatigue, the most common diseases that have a strong relationship to stress. If you are asking yourself whether feeling tired all the time and having low energy levels is normal, the answer is no. The effects of everyday pressure on you can sicken you and it is a key element in preventing that from happening.

Cortisol has been called the “aging hormone” as well, because one of its “strategies” for keeping you going at the strenuous rhythm of contemporary life is maintaining your energy at high levels at any cost, and aging is one of the results of that process. That's the reason why people who live with high levels of stress frequently look older than they are. Ashwagandha restrains the process of aging thanks to its content of powerful natural anti-oxidants, like vitamin C, E and beta-carotene. If that was not reason enough to start taking it, one of the very desirable side effects of this reaction is that it enhances your mood, it is very good at combating mild depression and helps you to go through life with a lighter, more positive attitude .

Gentlemen, there is an extra feature of Ashwagandha of particular interest for you. Research has found that the root of this plant advances sexual performance and restores the lost sexual drive in males older than 40. It is not difficult to understand why: stress is responsible for many of the sexual dysfunctions experienced by men, because the blood stream plays a major role in performance. If stress compromises the blood pressure balance, it will interfere with sex drive. And Ashwagandha balances it. Can you see the link?

Adaptogens are among the many marvels of nature, and Ashwagandha is one of the most powerful of them. Give it a chance to change your life.

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Why Are Health Supplements Important?

In this hectic lifestyle, it has become necessary that we take care of our health. A balanced diet is the key to a healthy lifestyle. A balanced diet consist of a required amount of carbohydrates, fats, proteins, fiber, vitamins and minerals. A lack of any of these gives rise to many diseases. A healthy diet must include the right dose of essential vitamins and minerals. There are 13 essential vitamins required by the body.

These are:

  1. Vitamin A
  2. Vitamin B1 (Thiamine)
  3. Riboflavin
  4. Vitamin B6
  5. Folic Acid (Folacin)
  6. Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin)
  7. Niacin
  8. Vitamin C
  9. Vitamin D
  10. Vitamin K
  11. Vitamin E
  12. Biotin
  13. Pantothenic Acid

Other Supplements Required By The Body

The body also needs the following minerals, namely, iron, magnesium, chromium, phosphorus, calcium, copper, selenium, fluoride, iodine and zinc. These vitamins and minerals are generally found in the different types of foods that we consume like green vegetables, fruits, cereals, fiber, dairy products, nuts and pulses. Research has shown that a lack of vitamins can give rise to many diseases. Lack of vitamin A results in night blindness, anemia, beriberi is caused by vitamin B deficiency, lack of vitamin C gives rise to scurvy, vitamin D deficiency causes rickets, lack of vitamin E gives rise to neurological problems and vitamin K deficiency results in uncontrolled bleeding. Therefore, it becomes essential for us that we take vitamins on a regular basis. Taking some of the best health supplements is the best idea.

Benefits Of Supplements

Vitamins and other best nutritional supplements have several benefits. These can be enumerated as follows:

  • Vitamin A is good for eyesight, skin, growth and repair of the body. It minimises cholesterol levels, prevails heart disease and promotes the formation of bones.
  • Vitamin B is important for the nervous system, blood circulation, digestive system, promotes healthy skin, hair and nails.
  • Vitamin C is a very powerful antioxidant and an anti-stress vitamin. It Promotes wound healing and is beneficial for the immune system.
  • Vitamin D is needed for the development of strong bones and healthy metabolism.
  • Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant and is essential for healthy skin, hair and nails. It prevails blood clotting and improves the circulation of blood.
  • Vitamin K is important for the prevention of internal bleeding, proper development of bones and osteoporosis.

Due to our fast paced lifestyle, it is becoming difficult for us to maintain a healthy diet. Here, the need for nutritional supplements ! These are simply different vitamins sold in the form of capsules, tablets, food tonics, gel capsules, powders. They can be administratively administered with food, either before or after meal. The dosage of these health supplements depends on the advice given by the doctor or the dietician. It is advisable that these should only be taken on the advice of the doctor.

The best nutritional supplements can be considered to be those which actually fulfill the body's needs. The effects of these supplements can be seen after a couple of weeks. Care must be taken that these nutritional supplements are taken on a regular basis as advised by the doctor.

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Synthetic Vitamins and Isolated Nutrients

Some articles wait till the end to give your “juice” but here we go, right from the get go: Your Keys to a Good Nutritional Supplement selection are: 1. It is as close as possible to its natural form. 2. The utmost care has been taken in all phases of its production, from growing, timing of harvesting, to manufacturing, testing for potency and quality control. 3. It works! I always try to select from companies that have a long track record of providing high quality products that produce good clinical results.

Americans are now spending more than $ 17 billion a year on supplements for health and wellness. But the rates of some forms of chronic disease have not changed, while the rates of others have actually increased. There are a number of reasons for these poor statistics and many things remain a mystery.

I'm not saying there are no helpful supplements out there, but doctors and new research studies are saying just that. That vitamins are causing more harm than good. I happen to know of a whole food nutritional supplement that defies these odds and actually has the clinical research to back it. In this article, as a lay person and former professional athlete, I will discuss some things you should consider if you want to take some supplements. Specifically, I will address the differences between whole foods versus synthetic or isolated nutritional supplements.

Most people who are used to reading up on health are familiar with the idea that whole foods are better for you than refined foods. This is a given, although there are numerous viewpoints on what kind of foods we should or should not be eating, as well as the ideal ratio of these foods. Although everyone sees to agree on one thing: No matter which foods we choose and in what ratios we eat them, whole foods are better for you than refined foods. Right?

Here is a brief train of thought, sort of like an A + B = C. Please read the next few lines and see if you can relate with my confusion? So, there I am sitting in a consultation with a nutritionist, who waxes- on and on about the value of whole foods and speaks down about refined foods, having been robbed of all the nutrients that are naturally healthy for you; But then … they go on to prescribe a shopping bag full of isolated, refined vitamins for you to take! (You name it: Vitamin A, B, B12, C, or maybe even Vitamin D- (which in the body is actually a naturally occurring hormone). .. I do not get this, do you? On one hand they are saying to not eat man made foods, but here swallow man made vitamins. grubbing marketers? This fact has never really been argued. Everyone agrees raw honey is better for you than white sugar or that brown rice is better for you than white rice.

In a brief article by Daniel H. Chong, ND, I found him asserting that; “Just like refined foods, these refined vitamins have been robbed of all of the extra accessory nutrients that they naturally come with as well. long periods of time. They can also act more like drugs in your body, forcing them down one pathway or another. At the very least, they will not help you as much as high quality food and food-based supplements. ”

Let's talk about the concept of whole food supplements . Maybe to better draw out our point we will create an analogy from the automotive industry. An automobile is a wonderfully designed complex machine that needs all of its parts to be present and intact, in place and in order to function properly. Wheels are certainly an important part of the whole, not only 4 of them but a spare has proved to help one out in pitch. So, now imagine a smart scientist, who comes by and removes your 4 tires and isolates them in a parking lot. He then changes his closures into a 50 dollar suit and 5 dollar tie and attempts to sell the next person that walks by those tires as a whole car. We know this will now work. Isolated tries are not the whole. Additionally, you can not put sport car tires on to a 4X4 and have vehicle operate correctly. Intelligently, we could never isolate tires from the rest of the car, call them a car or expect them to function like a car. They need the engine, body and everything else. How could this ever be done then … “Marketing”!

On the other hand, from isolating nutrients , there are whole food supplements which are what their name suggests: Supplements made from concentrated whole foods. The vitamins found within these supplements are not isolated. They have their synergistic buddies with them called phytonutrients. They are highly complex structures that combine a variety of enzymes, coenzymes, antioxidants, trace elements, activators and many other unknown or undiscovered factors all working together synergistically, to enable this whole food supplement to do its job in your body. Scientist now know nutrients from within these whole food supplements can not be taken apart or isolated from the whole, and then be expected to do the same job in the body as the whole supplement was designed to do.

The same analogy applies to the vitamin C (ascorbic acid) or vitamin E (delta tocopherol) you can find on most health food store shelves. They are parts of an intric complex array of nature that serves a purpose when part of the whole, but when isolated, they act more like drugs and become dysfunctional parts that your body has to now take up essential energy to convert to use or expel as toxins. Isolated vitamins can not do the job of the entire supplement by themselves.

With similar logic in place, one can analyze what a typical multivitamin truly is. The automobile equivalent of creating a multivitamin would be going to a junk yard, finding all of the separate parts you would need to make up an entire automobile, throwing them together in a heap (and capsule in terms of the multivitamin) and expecting that heap to drive like a car! How then did multivitamins become so popular? “Marketing”

Our bodies are a miracle of nature. While on the other hand, isolated nutrients or synthetic nutrients, are not natural. Think about it, have you even been walking though the forest and found a multivitamin bush or Vitamin C tree? In fact, taking these isolated nutrients, especially at the ultra-high doses found in formulas today may cause toxicity, disease or lower one's immune system. How is this so? Many research studies are now showing that the body treats these isolated and synthetic nutrients like xenobiotics or (foreign substances). On the correct side of this argument lies whole food supplements or plant-based supplements which are never treated like “xenobiotics” by your body.

For an isolated nutrient to work properly in the body, it needs all the other parts that are naturally present in the food too. If the parts are not all there from the start, they are taken from the body's stored supply. This is why isolated nutrients often work for a little while, then seem to stop working. Once your body's store of the extra nutrients is used up, the isolated nutrient you're taking does not work as well anymore. Worse yet, a deficiency in these extra nutrients can be created in your body.

The various components of whole food supplements work together in a synergistic manner. Synergy means that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Nutritionist Judith DeCava puts it best: “Separating the group of compounds (in a vitamin complex) converts it from a physiological, biochemical, active micronutrient into a disabled, debilitated chemical of little or no value to living cells.

The potency of a supplement has much more to do with synergy of the naturally occurring phytonutrients than with actual nutrient levels. Vitamin makers typically try to stuff as much as possible in a pill, telling us that the more we take, the better it is for us. This is simply not the case. As you now know, it is not necessarily the amount of a nutrient you ingest that is important, but its purity, form and how much is it's bioavailability that counts the most. Bioavailability means your body can recognize and easily utilize the supplement. I strongly recommend plant-based supplements be your first choice.

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To Whey Or Not To Whey? That Is The Question

Maximum health benefits are what everyone is looking for in their supplements. And in the arena of competitive body building or body sculpting you hear the words WHEY PROTEIN are spoken of with reverence. But even for the gym rat or average Joe looking to optimize their health goals whey proteins are often a foundational component of their supplement term. Agreed? But are all whey proteins the same? The truth is that many of the brands (and even many of the natural brands in health food stores) are using an inferior source of whey protein which has resolved in giving this nutritional supplement a bad wrap.

Who here likes yogurts? OK, it's not that important but for example … have you ever noticed the liquid on top of natural yogurts when you open them. That is whey protein in its original form. Why are you paying so much money for protein powers when all it is, is this liquid whey that has gone through a drying process to remove all the water to turn it into powder? Good question and I suggest that some of the more expensive ones are the least beneficial. A Consumer Reports' test showed that 3 of the 15 protein drinks tested contained risky levels of arsenic, cadmium, and lead. All these factors render them inferior from a health perspective.

Let's take a moment for a very important tangent and just give you the “juice” on selecting your whey protein, or should I say “Complete +” protein shakes. 1. It's all about the source, and if the source is contaminated, so will the end powder. So start with grass fed farms. This means all-natural, pasture-fed cows 'whey, NOT pesticide-treated, grain-fed cows' whey. Pasture-fed cows produce whey that: A. is nutritionally superior to grain fed. B. Contains an impressive amino acid and immuno-supporting nutrient profile. C. Is rich in healthy fats – linoleic acid and CLA (conjugated linoleic acid)

OK, are you still with us? Here is the second tip! 2. Non GMO, choose whey made without GMOs. Next is RAW: which is typically also considered cold-processed. This is a critical component to consider when selecting your whey, because heat processed whey: A. Makes the whey acidic and nutritionally deficient. B. Damages the immuno-supporting micronutrients. C. Makes the whey inadequate for consumption. D. And I have even read that it has been found to be carcinogenic by some studies; where as cold processed whey protects the nutrients in their natural state. 3. Your whey should be of the nature of a concentration not an isolate. An isolated proteins are stripped away from their nutritional cofactors or phytonutrients. This creates some serious problems: A. All isolates are exposed to acid processing. B. Your body can not assimilate proteins in isolated form. Here, no bioavailability. C. Due to being over processed, isolates turn out to be deficient in key amino acids and other nutritional enzymes. Bonus tip of the year would be to avoid whey containing any heavy metals. A Consumer Reports' evaluation shown some leading brands of protein powders exceeded United States Pharmacopoeia's (USP) recommended safety limits for certain heavy metals. You want to avoid these products at all costs because any high concentration of heavy metals taken over time could lead to serious health consequences.

Commonly, whey protein is derived from milk during the making of cheese, through a natural fermentation process. But later, we will introduce you to the concept of plant based protein powder . But for now, let's talk about the raw processing difference, because it applies to both! When whey protein is low-temperature-processed (raw or cold-processed) it retains many of its fragile immune factors and nutrients leaving it loaded with the ideal blend of easily-absorbed amino acids, anti-inflammatory immune factors and metabolism-boosting peptides , along with potent antioxidants and alkaline minerals. This raw whey protein concentrate has been found to have a variety of health benefits: A. Helps to maintain your blood sugar after a meal by helping your insulin to work more effectively. Studies show that lowering your blood sugar after meals may be more beneficial for your health then that of lowering through fasting. Promoting proper insulin secretion is imperative to obtaining optimal health. B. Helps to promote your assimilation of proteins, fats, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals needed for your over all wellbeing. C. Boosts your immune system and it contains immunoglobulins. Immunoglobulins, also known as antibodies, are glycoprotein molecules produced by plasma cells (white blood cells). They act as a critical part of the immune response by specifically recognizing and binding to particular antigens, such as bacteria or viruses and targeting in their destruction. D. Helps to preserve lean body tissue as it delivers bioavailability amino acids and cysteine. Finally, these cold processed whey proteins will help maintain blood pressure levels that are already within normal ranges.

On the other hand “most commercial whey powders are high-heat-treated, acid-flushed, and stripped of vital nutrients, creating an imbalanced, acidic” whey isolates “that's frequently contaminated with synthetic additives, chemical detergents, and heavy metals. No wonder that many of these whey products are hard to digest and have to cover up their acidic aftertaste with unhealthy sweeteners and artificial flavors, “says Dr Joseph Mercola. So, what's a person to do, I feel lost and I do not want to waste my time reading hundreds of articles nor supplement labels to try and sift through all this mud. Here in lies the secret from a well-respected Dr. “Check the PDCAAS of your protein powder. It is the internationally accepted standard for protein quality. A perfect score is 1.0. Only Juice score is 1.0. quality protein a human can consume. ” Dr. Rick Dubois, MD there's one study in particular I¡¯ll mention here: a study of 59 healthy law school students was conducted at The University of Florida and published in The Journal of Nutrition in October 2006. Researchers tested students' blood after 7 weeks of taking this plant based protein powder, and they found a 30% increase in circulating gamma delta-T cells, an important indicator of immune function. They also reported a 40% reduction in DNA strand breaks. (DNA is the basic genetic “building block” of our bodies.) Both of these findings are indications of how adding good whole food nutrition works at a cellular level to make us healthy. The added good nutrition in this case came from plant based protein powder.

After reading to this point I am sure your common sense agreements that it is important to use a brand that is free from pesticides and is made from plants which has not been heat treated nor fortified with hormones and antibiotics. Right?

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