August 2013 archive

Leaky Gut Sydrome: A Common Condition that Causes Many Ailments

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What is Leaky Gut? Leaky gut syndrome is a condition we get when we consume unhealthy foods, drinks, etc. that after time, eventually permeate through the cells of our intestines and leaks into our blood stream. The cells in our intestines form very tight junctions with each other, and with time, these junctions can get separated, allowing things to slip through. Your body sees these particles as foreign invaders and begins to attack them, thereby causing food allergies and inflammation.  These invaders are free to roam our blood streams and can go to our joints, muscles, bones, and in severe cases can pass our blood-brain barrier. Ahhh!! That is creepy to think about!!! So, after developing leaky gut, when the very foods we consumed that caused this “leakage” are consumed again, we develop an allergy and other unpleasant symptoms towards them.

What causes it? Excessive alcohol consumption, sugar, GMO’s, processed foods, Candida Albicans (yeast), stress, medications, not enough physical activity, lack of fiber in diet, and pretty much anything that’s unnatural.

What I find crazy about this is that it is the underlying factor behind so many conditions and so many people have this, but don’t know it and are diagnosed with allergies, weight gain that is VERY hard to lose, chronic fatigue, eczema, indigestion, IBS, headaches, joint pain, etc. So, to find out if you have it, observe your diet and lifestyle and pay close attention to how your body reacts after you consume something. If you instantly feel fatigued, achy, depressed, get rashes, or anything that’s not ideal, you may have leaky gut.

What to do?

  • Eat clean foods like fresh fruits and vegetables. Leafy greens every day are a must!!
  • Exercise every day, even if it’s just for 10 minutes in your living room. Gotta keep things moving and circulating!
  • Drink fresh juices and lots of lemon water
  • TAKE PRO-BIOTICS. EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. These add good bacteria to your digestive tract and help fight off the bad guys
  • Stretch abdomens daily. Yoga is great for this
  • Spend 10 minutes a day taking deep breathes of fresh air

With correct diet, we can avoid so many common daily ailments and live better, healthier, happier, and more stress-free lives!!

5 Things to Put in Your Body Every Day to Optimize Health, Beauty and Weight Loss

5thingsProbiotics- probiotics are the “good bacteria” that lie in your intestinal tract that build up immunity, fight any pathogens such as yeast and bad bacteria, as well as keeping things moving. The less time your body spends fighting off pathogens, the more time it has to spend on repairing hair, skin, and the rest of our tissues to keep us beautiful and healthy. Also, these are super important if you want to keep that tummy flat. There are many brands, but my personal favorite are the Pearls.

Leafy greens – full of vitamins, minerals and fiber, these aid in detoxing and also help to keep your tummy flat by sweeping toxins out of your body. The nutrients nourish your body and help keep your skin and hair glowing and healthy. There are tons to choose from such as spinach, dandelion greens, kale, Swiss chard, etc. so mix it up and get creative with smoothies, salads and wraps!

Lemon water – lemon squeezed into warm water aids in flushing your kidneys and cleaning your liver. Aka, it helps you drop toxins and water weight which again, can make your stomach shrink while nourishing your body with over 100 enzymes, minerals, and vitamins.

Coconut water – chock full of electrolytes, coconut water is the one thing Jamaicans say goes straight to your heart. Electrolytes are vital for optimal body functions, as well as being super important for post workout sessions. Coconut water is a natural and very potent source of electrolytes, among numerous beautifying vitamins and minerals.  Also, coconut water works wonders for hangovers! Talk about a multi-purpose drink!

Cacao – cacao beans grow from a fruit tree and are known to be the most pure, natural form of chocolate. Cacao has been proven to aid in weight loss and control cravings. These can be found in powder and nibs, and are an extremely versatile ingredient in smoothies, desserts, and other healthy snacks. They have over 300 compounds and are LOADED with antioxidants and magnesium which is SUPER important for our cells to carry out optimal function. Fun fact: when you’re having chocolate cravings – your body is really asking you for magnesium. Have a stash of cacao nibs on you if you crave chocolate a lot.

These 5 super foods are a very beautiful investment to your health and beauty. You should see and feel dramatic improvements in yourself when consuming these at least 4x a week.

Eat What You Love the Healthiest Way Possible

We all know how hard it is to resist eating that scrumptious looking pasta at the dinner table or those dangerous brownies in the office kitchen. When we digest food, your body has to produce unique enzymes to break down particular substances, i.e. amylase breaks down starches, protease breaks down protein, and lipase breaks down fat.

One of the main reasons people get food babies and feel comatose after consuming too much and/or unhealthy food is because the amount of energy it takes for your body to produce these enzymes to digest these particular food materials. When you eat too much, your body goes into overdrive to produce additional enzymes which can rob you of your natural energy. SO, to optimize digestion without zapping your energy (whether you’re on a diet, cleanse, trying to eat healthier, etc.), there are some vital things I highly recommend you do during times where not-so-healthy food is consumed.

Before your meals, you should…..

  • Consume leafy greens before every meal where starch, protein, and fat are involved. Leafy greens are loaded with enzymes that can help break down food, so it is super important to eat these first so that your digestive tract already has these enzymes in it, ready to tackle those hard to break down foods about to enter. Also, leafy greens help keep our body more alkaline which is vital for optimal health. Breads, animal proteins, sugars and fats are very acidic to your body and having the greens in your system first will form an alkaline buffer against the acidic foods and will protect your tissues.The healthier your tissues, the healthier your skin, hair, nails, energy – EVERYTHING!
 
  • Raw, unpasteurized cabbage. Whether fermented or not, cabbage is packed with enzymes that also do wonders for metabolism. When fermented, they produce additional pro-biotics which are AWWESSOMMMEEE for your digestive tract. The key here is to eat it before you eat your meals. Buffet lovers – this one will be your best friend.
  • Ps. If the eating greens and cabbage before your meals isn’t making sense- think of how you’re supposed to eat bread or something filling before a night out of drinking. The same idea of coating your stomach also applies to eating – greens and cabbage must come first!
  • Digestive enzyme supplements. You can find these in health food stores and most regular stores as well. Be sure to get ones that have amylase, protease, and lipase. Take before your meal so you digest better ;)

After your meals, it is ideal to consume…

  • Peppermint tea, ginger, lemon, and/or cayenne pepper. These all to help speed up digestion and relieve food babies and comas. Cayenne pepper especially will help speed up metabolism and give you an energy kick. Even better, mix all 4 into a tea for a powerful metabolism tonic.

The most important thing to keep in mind here is that the healthier your terrain, the easier and faster your metabolism. The less energy spent on digestion, the more energy your body will use to repair your tissues for clearer skin, brighter eyes, stronger hair, improved moods and an overall healthier body!

Yoga Poses for Students and Office Workers

Whether you’re sitting in an office all day, sitting in class all day, or studying all night, sitting for long periods of time can make one very restless. Sitting for long periods of time can also slow down circulation, zap your energy, reduce the amount of oxygen delivered to your brain, slow metabolism, as well as compressing intestines and your spine. None of these sound very pretty, do they?! It’s very important to stand up every half 30-40 minutes, walk around, and stretch your body to keep it alive! This is where yoga comes to the rescue. Yoga helps release tension and anxiety, keeps energy, blood and oxygen circulating, opens energy channels, balances your body, and calms your nerves. Here are some highly recommended yoga poses that you can do throughout the day that not only help correct some of these issues, but also make you feel brand new.

Downward Dog

Perks: strengthens wrist, shoulder, and elbow joints; eases carpel tunnel syndrome, eases tension out of lower back and shoulders, stretches and tones hamstrings; delivers lots of oxygen and blood to your brain.

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Triangle Pose

Perks: strengthens legs and  knee joints; alleviates back and neck pain; opens your heart; stretches arms, neck, hips, legs, abdominal region, relieves stress; and speeds up digestion.

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Pigeon pose

Perks: strengthens glutes and quads; releases tension from hips, lower back and legs; stretches abdomen; alleviates sciatic pain; and feel really amazing

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Plow Pose

Perks: Improves circulation, stretches and strengthens neck and spine; massages and stimulates thyroid and parathyroid; calms brain and nervous system; loosens up toxins that sit on the floor of kidneys, liver, lungs, etc.; wakes you up.

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These 4 poses will make you feel amazing, revitalized, and less stressed out. Try them today!

Improve your health by spending time upside down everyday

monkeyGoing upside down every day is a natural way to instantly increase your energy and circulation. This increases flow of oxygen and blood (which carries a lot of vitamins and minerals!) to your brain and is vital for ones well-being. Most Americans, especially those with sedentary lifestyles, do not get enough fresh, oxygenated blood flow to their brains. This is NO BUENO! Whether you hang off the side of your couch, do some yoga moves (downward dog is amazing!) do flips and cartwheels, hang off monkey  bars, or do headstands and handstands, spending 10 minutes a day with your body upside down can change your health and your life! Here’s what it can do:

  • Instantly improves mental and physical energy
  • Reverses your blood flow and can help dislodge toxins that get stuck in tissues, cells, joints, the floor of your feet, etc.
  • Releases toxins that can pile up at the bottom of your organs and stimulate a detox
  • Floods your brain with vitamins
  • Gives you a nice rosy glow to your face and super kissable cheeks
  • Speeds up hair growth
  • Dramatically improves circulation throughout your entire body
  • Brings more fresh oxygen to your brain, heart, and pretty much everything in your body
  • Reduces stress and depression
  • Stimulates and can help open chakras
  • Its fun! Look at how much joy kids experience when they hang upside down on monkey bars. Theres something exhilarating about seeing the world upside down.

Yogis embrace the benefits of being upside down with lots of beneficial poses that dramatically lift your mood, consciousness, and health. If yoga isn’t your kinda thing, go monkey around and do whatever you prefer to hang upside down for 10 minutes a day and transform your health.

3 Natural Remedies for Better Brain Function

Feeling sluggish, tired, blah, brain-dead? The best way to curb these Debbie downer feelings is to flood your brain with some cognitive boosting brain nourishment!! Step away from the coffee and other stimulants, and nourish that brain! Here are some easy and healthy ways to snap out of that funk!
 
WALNUTS  Walnuts are packed with Omega 3’s which are vital for proper cognitive function and also lowers depression. They are full of antioxidants, amino acids, manganese, copper, folic acid, vitamin E, and especially argenine, an amino acid that plays a big role in cell division and protein synthesis. All of these nourish your body and blood that travels to your brain to nourish and energize.  Ever notice how walnuts look like brains? Mother Nature knows best! (there are other foods that look like the parts of the body they’re great for, but that’s for a later post)
 
SPIRULINA is one of the best green Superfoods that you could put in your body. It  is a complete protein, that is it contains all 8 essential amino acids that your body relies on through diet. This superfood is proven to boost brain health, nourishing your cells, facilitates in protein synthesis, and helps bind to and eliminate heavy metals that could be giving your brain fog and low energy. You can find these in tablets, or in powder form to add to smoothies and other recipes.
 
YOGA is AAA-MAZING for stimulating circulation and oxygen to your brain. Especially if you have a sedentary lifestyle, your brain could probably use some additional circulation. My favorite moves for a quick pick-me-up are downward dog, triangle pose, plow pose and bridge pose.

4 Things to Avoid for Clear & Glowing Skin

faceAcne just straight up sucks!! There’s nothing worse than looking like Rudolph before a hot date, or waking up to a pepperoni face! The good news is that it is fixable by eliminating and adding a few things to your diet and your skin. By the way, no amount of face wash or medications will cure the root cause of acne. Nature, on the other hand, can! 4 things that trigger acne include: 

OVER-TAXED LIVER. The condition of your liver is reflected by the condition of your skin. When you have too many toxins in your liver, it wont be able to filter them all out through your colon and will instead kick em out through your bodies largest organ, you skin. Ever notice how people who use too many prescription drugs start to get liver spots on their skin? This explains why. Avoid things like processed foods, prescriptions (unless its life sustaining), alcohol, milk, gluten, and wheat. To help cleanse it for prettier skin, I highly recommend milk thistle, lemon water, parsley and cilantro. 

DAIRY. Dairy is loaded with hormones, anti-biotics, pesticides, GMO’s, and pus. All of these will wreak havoc on your skin!! There are hundreds of studies proving direct correlations between acne and dairy consumption. Try replacing dairy with almond milk or coconut milk. Even better, make your own almond milk! Here’s a simple recipe here. http://barefeetinthekitchen.blogspot.com/2013/02/how-to-make-almond-milk.html

SOY. Soy is an estrogen mimicker and can lead to hormonal imbalances in your body. Too much estrogen is linked to acne. Steer clear of soy!!!

TOO MUCH WASHING YOUR SKIN/AND OR USE OF CREEPY FACIAL PRODUCTS. The more you wash your face, the more you dry it out causing your skin to produce extra oil to keep your skin hydrated. If your pores are clogged, the oil coming out will get backed up causing pimples and blemishes. With face wash in the mix, this can further dry out your skin. Nix them! Most are LOADED with weird and hard to pronounce chemicals. I highly recommend using sea salt for an exfoliant, and bentonite clay masks to clear your pores. Top it off with some Coconut Oil and your skin will look amazing! Most people get scared of putting coconut oil on their face but if your skin already has oil on it, it wont have to produce additional oil which will decrease your chances of clogged pores and a pepperoni face. 

For a cleaner liver, clearer pores and radiant skin, I highly recommend juicing as often as possible and sweating everyday to allow toxins to leave your body. All of these, especially when done together should give you beautiful, clear skin. :)

HOME REMEDIES FOR HEALTHY, WHITER TEETH

White teethDentist bills straight up suck! While getting cleanings 2X a year is important for cleaning, clearing plaque, inflamed gums and catching issues before they get too bad, the procedures that follow can be detrimental to your health and bank account. For natural ways to keep your teeth clean and avoiding infections, you’re gonna love these 4 home remedies.
 
Clove oil: Clove oil is fantastic for toothaches from cavities, procedures, or sensitivities. Put a few drops on a cotton ball and swab over areas with pain. Its also an anti -flamatory so it will help swelling as well as infections. Awesome!
Oil pulling: Vigorously swish coconut oil or sesame oil around in your mouth for 20 minutes, then spit out and rinse with clean water. Yeah, sounds a bit boring and gross but it’s really not that bad after the 1st minute and its benefits are amazing. Oil pulling whitens teeth and pulls pathogens, bacteria, fungus, food particles, etc. out of your gums and spaces in your teeth, reducing your chances of infections and inflammation.
Brush or rinse with sesame oil: Sesame oil has a lot of calcium and other nutrients that are great for dental health. The calcium helps to strengthen the bones in your mouth and gums, thus keeping teeth stronger and reduces chances of your teeth loosening or moving.
Baking soda: sprinkle baking soda on a wet tooth brush and brush for at least a minute. Baking soda natural whitens teeth while it readily binds to bacteria and plaque for removal, giving you a cleaner mouth.
 
All of these remedies are easy, don’t break the bank, and are amazing for your teeth and health! So if you feel an infection coming on, want whiter teeth, or just want to maintain and prevent infections happening down the road, you will love these remedies!

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