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About Ketosis

Metabolism and ketosis

by Michael R.Eades, M.D.


Since posting the piece on ketone bodies and their causing breathalyzer problems I’ve had enough comments and emails to make me realize that there are probably many people unsure of what ketones really are, where they come from and why. Let’s take a look at the goals and priorities of our metabolic system to see what happens. Fear not, I’m going to try to keep the biochemistry to a minimum.

The primary goal of our metabolic system is to provide fuels in the amounts needed at the times needed to keep us alive and functioning. As long as we’ve got plenty of food, the metabolic systems busies itself with allocating it to the right places and storing what’s left over. In a society such as ours, there is usually too much food so the metabolic system has to deal with it in amounts and configurations that it wasn’t really designed to handle, leading to all kinds of problems. But that’s a story for another day.

If you read any medical school biochemistry textbook, you’ll find a section devoted to what happens metabolically during starvation. If you read these sections with a knowing eye, you’ll realize that everything discussed as happening during starvation happens during carbohydrate restriction as well. There have been a few papers published recently showing the same thing: the metabolism of carb restriction = the metabolism of starvation. I would maintain, however, based on my study of the Paleolithic diet, that starvation and carb restriction are simply the polar ends of a continuum, and that carb restriction was the norm for most of our existence as upright walking beings on this planet, making the metabolism of what biochemistry textbook authors call starvation the ‘normal’ metabolism.

So, bearing in mind that carb restriction and starvation are opposite ends of the same stick and that what applies to one applies to the other, let’s look at how it all works. I’ll explain it from a starvation perspective, but all the mechanisms work the same for a carb-restricted diet.

During starvation the primary goal of the metabolic system is to provide enough glucose to the brain and other tissues (the red blood cells, certain kidney cells, and others) that absolutely require glucose to function. Which makes sense if you think about it. You’re a Paleolithic man or woman, you’re starving, you’ve got to find food, you need a brain, red blood cells, etc. to do it. You’ve got to be alert, quick on your feet, and not focused on how hungry you are.

If you’re not eating or if you’re on a low-carbohydrate diet, where does this glucose come from?
If you’re starving, glucose comes mainly from one place, and that is from the body’s protein reservoir: muscle. A little can come from stored fat, but not from the fatty acids themselves. Although glucose can be converted to fat, the reaction can’t go the other way. Fat is stored as a triglyceride, which is three fatty acids hooked on to a glycerol molecule. The glycerol molecule is a three-carbon structure that, when freed from the attached fatty acids, can combine with another glycerol molecule to make glucose. Thus a starving person can get a little glucose from the fat that is released from the fat cells, but not nearly enough. The lion’s share has to come from muscle that breaks down into amino acids, several of which can be converted by the liver into glucose. (There are a few other minor sources of glucose conversion: the Cori cycle, for example, but these are not major sources, so we’ll leave them for another, more technical, discussion.)

But the breakdown of muscle creates another problem, namely, that (in Paleolithic times and before) survival was dependent upon our being able to hunt down other animals and/or forage for plant foods. It makes it tough to do this if a lot of muscle is being converted into glucose and your muscle mass is dwindling.
The metabolic system is then presented with two problems: 1) getting glucose for the glucose-dependent tissues; and 2) maintaining as much muscle mass as possible to allow hunting and foraging to continue.

Early on, the metabolic system doesn’t know that the starvation is going to go on for a day or for a week or two weeks. At first it plunders the muscle to get its sugar. And remember from a past post that a normal blood sugar represents only about a teaspoon of sugar dissolved in the entire blood volume, so keeping the blood sugar normal for a day or so doesn’t require a whole lot of muscular sacrifice. If we figure that an average person requires about 200 grams of sugar per day to meet all the needs of the glucose-dependent tissues, we’re looking at maybe a third of a pound of muscle per day, which isn’t all that big a deal over the first day. But we wouldn’t want it to continue at that rate. If we could reduce that amount and allow our muscle mass to last as long as possible, it would be a big help.
The metabolic system could solve its problem by a coming up with a way to reduce the glucose-dependent tissues’ need for glucose so that the protein could be spared as long as possible.
Ketones to the rescue.

The liver requires energy to convert the protein to glucose. The energy comes from fat. As the liver breaks down the fat to release its energy to power gluconeogenesis, the conversion of protein to sugar, it produces ketones as a byproduct. And what a byproduct they are. Ketones are basically water soluble (meaning they dissolve in blood) fats that are a source of energy for many tissues including the muscles, brain and heart. In fact, ketones act as a stand in for sugar in the brain. Although ketones can’t totally replace all the sugar required by the brain, they can replace a pretty good chunk of it. By reducing the body’s need for sugar, less protein is required, allowing the muscle mass (the protein reservoir) to last a lot longer before it is depleted. And ketones are the preferred fuel for the heart, making that organ operate at about 28 percent greater efficiency.

Fat is the perfect fuel. Part of it provides energy to the liver so that the liver can convert protein to glucose. The unusable part of the fat then converts to ketones, which reduce the need for glucose and spare the muscle in the process.

If, instead of starving, you’re following a low-carb diet, it gets even better. The protein you eat is converted to glucose instead of the protein in your muscles. If you keep the carbs low enough so that the liver still has to make some sugar, then you will be in fat-burning mode while maintaining your muscle mass, the best of all worlds. How low is low enough? Well, when the ketosis process is humming along nicely and the brain and other tissues have converted to ketones for fuel, the requirement for glucose drops to about 120-130 gm per day. If you keep your carbs below that at, say, 60 grams per day, you’re liver will have to produce at least 60-70 grams of glucose to make up the deficit, so you will generate ketones that entire time.

So, on a low-carb diet you can feast and starve all at the same time. Is it any wonder it’s so effective for weight loss?




Wall Walks-5 Reps
Wall Lunges-20 Reps
Plank Wall Touches-15 Reps
Wall Strength March-20 Reps


By Michelle Phan

You will need;

Green Tea,Vitamin E and distilled water.

Paleo This Sums It Up on Why I Mostly Follow It

By: Jason Thurlkill

One day I’m going to get run-over by all the guys wearing Vibram FiveFingers at my gym. I first noticed the minimalist shoes about a year ago. What started with a few footwear pioneers is mainstream workout wear. Paleo-Primal living is following the same trajectory: Once a whisper, now it’s a tribal roar.
More people hear the noise. In 2011, ranked Mark Sisson and Robb Wolf in the top 40 Most Influential People in Health and Fitness. At the time of this post, The Paleo Solution ranked in the Top 150, while The Primal Blueprint cracked the Top 500. Several Paleo cookbooks (Make it Paleo, Well Fed) also ranked high in niche categories. This past spring hundreds attended the first-ever Paleo f(x) conference in Austin. The upcoming Ancestral Health Symposium is sold out. Even political commentator Andrew Sullivan is on board.  What’s fueling all this interest?

People want to reconnect with nature. Part of the Paleo-Primal appeal is its back-to-basics approach to eating, playing, resting, and moving. Numerous studies indicate that we’re living like atoms: We socialize less, make fewer phone calls, and spend too much time online. Much of American life—our food, pop culture, and means of communication—seems pre-packaged, manufactured, even unnatural. By emphasizing unprocessed food, full-body movement, and socialization, a Paleo-Primal outlook grounds anxious, alienated folks who want more authenticity and less artifice.

People want to take control of their lives. I’ve noticed many Paleo-Primal enthusiasts are libertarians. That makes sense. After all, while there are many things we can’t control, one thing we can is what we eat. Amid economic and geopolitical uncertainty, people are searching for anchors. The Paleo-Primal method offers practical solutions and take-charge individualism.

Fewer people trust elite or conventional wisdom. As National Journal recently reported, Americans have lost faith in many institutions. It’s not surprising some health-conscious people are bucking experts who dole out status quo advice like eating less fat and more whole grains.
A large segment of the population doesn’t trust authority figures right now. In this respect, the environment has a sixties’ counter-culture feel. Instead of peace-ins and communes, consumers demand pastured animal products and wild-caught fish. The fact many health experts criticize the Paleo-Primal diet only motivates more people to check it out.

It makes intuitive sense. A diet rich in complete proteins, vegetables, and healthy fats simply sounds like something humans were designed to eat. Tofu “burgers” and Doritos Locos Tacos? Not so much.
Results. It’s hard to look at someone like Tara Grant, who shed lots of weight and health problems, and not think a Paleo-Primal lifestyle suits some people very well. Not everyone will end up looking like a mop-topped Mark Sisson, but most Paleo-Primal folks I meet look fit. When I see “before and after” photos of people on other popular diets, they often look “skinny fat”. When I see Paleo-Primal eaters lose weight, they look lean and mean.
It’s clear some consumers are looking for a different, vibrant mode of living. Adhering to Paleo-Primal living isn’t without challenges, but for many it can satisfy their hunger.

Jason Thurlkill reported for The Hotline and a New York Observer publication. Previously, he worked for a Washington D.C. political and communications consultancy. His writing has appeared in, Chicago Tribune,, New Geography, and other publications. As a speaker support team member at Paleo f(x), he worked with a number of best-selling authors and presenters

101 Ways to Use Thieves Essential Oil

101 Uses for Thieves Oil

Do you know where YOUR Thieves is?WolfberryPhotos 005

Thieves essential oil blend Young Living's proprietary Thieves essential oil blend is a powerful combination of clove, cinnamon bark, rosemary, lemon, and Eucalyptus radiata essential oils. Proven effective against airborne bacteria, Thieves is the perfect oil to diffuse in your home, car, and office.

 101 Uses for Thieves Oil (Compiled by one or more Young Living distributors. Whoever they are, thank you!)

1. Dilute with V-6 Enhanced Vegetable Oil Complex and apply to cuts or open wounds to prevent infection and promote healing.
2. Mix with a tablespoon of water, gargle and swallow for a sore throat.
3. Apply undiluted directly to the skin of your upper chest and throat for bronchitis.
4. Place a drop on your thumb and apply to the roof of your mouth for a headache.
5. Put 10-12 drops in a size OO capsule undiluted and swallow daily for longevity.
6. For acne, take internally and apply to the skin diluted with Young Living’s V-6 carrier oil.
7. Put directly on the soles of your feet to protect you from colds and flu.
8. Breathe in the vapors when you have lung congestion.
9. Use to clean pet cages, creating a healthier environment for them.
10. Add to your dishwasher for cleaner dishes.
11. Add to your laundry cycle for cleaner clothes.
12. Add to your mop water for cleaner floors.
13. Mix with water to make a spray to repel insects on your flowers and plants.
14. Use to dissolve the gummy adhesive on price labels.
15. Apply to bee and wasp stings to neutralize the toxin and relieve the pain.
16. Apply to gums to prevent and treat gum disease.
17. Apply orally to maintain healthy teeth and reduce cavities.
18. Apply to gums and teeth for pain relief from toothaches.
19. Diffuse in homes or business to solve mold problems.
20. Add to orange juice and drink to reduce phlegm and congestion.
21. Apply to broken bones or joints for pain relief and to hasten healing.
22. Put a drop in your cup of tea for flavor and to maintain health.
23. Put on the tip of your tongue to help you stop smoking.
24. Put on cold sores and canker sores to make them disappear.
25. For warts, apply topically, inhale and ingest in capsules to make them disappear.
26. Rub on sore joints to relieve arthritis pain.
27. Drink a few drops in water or juice every three hours to stop a cold.
28. Place a drop on the tongue and a drop in a glass of water every day for herpes.
29. Rub on the bottoms of children’s feet for protection before school every day.
30. Diffuse in the house as your children come home from school every day to kill airborne bacteria.
31. Mix 50:50 with V6 vegetable oil and rub on daily for relief of shingles.
32. Apply a drop on wound of a cat or dog to enhance healing.
33. Diffuse in the home or office to stimulate a cheerful mood.
34. Diffuse in the office to increase concentration and work efficiency.
35. Diffuse in your place of business to ward off germs.
36. Diffuse in the classroom to reduce student sickness and absenteeism.
37. Put a few drops in your carpet steamer/cleaner to disinfect carpet.
38. Mix a few drops with honey or agave in a teaspoon for cough relief.
39. Breathe and apply for sinus headaches.
40. Put a drop on a pimple to make it shrink and disappear.
41. For laryngitis put a drop under your tongue to restore your voice.
42. Inhale for relief of allergy symptoms.
43. Take a capsule full every day for relief of Lyme disease symptoms.
44. Carry a bottle on every flight to protect you from germs on the plane.
45. Drop in the heat/AC vents of a hotel to rid it of airborne germs.
46. Mix with baking soda to clean bathtubs.
47. Apply undiluted to the toes and feet to combat fungus.
48. Apply to poison ivy rashes (may need to be diluted with vegetable oil) to relieve the itch.
49. Drop Thieves Oil Blend on a cloth to remove permanent marker stains.
50. Sanitize pierced earrings by cleaning with Thieves Oil Blend.
51. Rub on the big toe before retiring to help with proper vision.
52. Applying Thieves Oil Blend, diluted 1 drop oil to 5 drops V-6 Mixing Oil, may be helpful in soothing pinkeye
and other eye inflammations. (Do not get in the eye.)
53. Apply 1 drop of Thieves Oil Blend onto toothbrush to sanitize.

Special Antibiotic Formula: In a OO capsule combine 10-12 drops of ThievesEssential Oil Blend with 6-8 drops of Oregano, and 2 drops of Frankincense.WolfberryPhotos 006 

Thieves Household Cleaner Proportion Guide
One capful of Thieves Cleaner = 1 tsp. Best if used with purified water (do not use water that contains chlorine).
The GOAL is a Chemical Free Environment
A. All purpose Thieves Cleaner in a spray bottle: 1 capful Thieves Cleaner to 1 qt water
B. Light Degreasing: 1 capful Thieves Cleaner to 3 cups of water
C. Medium Degreasing: 1 capful Thieves Cleaner to 2 cups water
D. Heavy Degreasing: 1 capful Thieves Cleaner to 1 cup water
E. Window and glass cleaner: 1 capful Thieves Cleaner to 5 quarts water or 1/4 teaspoon to a quart of water for spray bottles
F. Hand cleaner: capful Thieves Cleaner to 1/2 cup water
G. Dishwasher: 1 capful Thieves Cleaner
H. Pot and Pans: 1 capful of Thieves Cleaner to 3 cups water
I. Floors: 1 capful Thieves Cleaner to 6 cups water
J. Walls: 1 capful Thieves Cleaner to a little less than 2 cups water
K. Fabrics: 1 capful Thieves Cleaner to 2 cups water
L. Laundry: Depending on size of washer, use 1 to 2 capfuls of Thieves Cleaner
M. Carpet: 1 capful Thieves Cleaner to 6 + cups water

54. Use for bathrooms and toilets to sanitize and freshen.
55. Use to cut grease on kitchen counters and stovetops.
56. Use to mop floors to clean and disinfect.
57. Apply to hands to remove stubborn, sticky substances like tree sap.
58. Use to wash fruits and vegetables from the supermarket.
59. Add to the water in your vacuum cleaner/steamer to cleanse the air and disinfect the carpet.
60. Spray along ant trails in the house to keep them out.
61. Use to wipe chairs and furniture in school classrooms to cut down on student sickness.
62. Scrub old floors to remove old varnish and prepare for refinishing.
63. Clean upholstery.
64. Clean the upholstery and dashboard of your car.
65. Soak off burnt food in pots and skillets.
66. Wipe or soak garbage cans to get them clean, sanitary and smelling fresh.
67. For tough stains, pour it on as a pre-wash stain remover.
68. Use undiluted to clean and kill mold on walls and floors or degrease oven.

MOLD SOLUTIONWolfberryPhotos 006
Diffuse the Thieves Oil Blend continuously for 24 hours in the room
containing mold. Determining the length of diffusion time is directly
related to the severity of mold. Clean visible mold with Thieves Household Cleaner.
a) Diffuse Thieves essential oil
b) Eliminate leaks and moisture.
c) Clean thoroughly using Thieves Household Cleaner

69. Take with the first sniffle and signs of a cold or sore throat to ward it off.
70. Take prior to singing performances to keep the voice strong and to hit the high notes.
71. Use to hasten the healing when a cold or flu has been contracted.
72. Suck on one as you enter an airplane to protect you from germs onboard.

73. Rinse daily for clean breath and to keep teeth and gums healthy.
74. Gargle (and swallow) before a singing engagement to clear mucus.
74-a. Put 1/2 to 1 teaspoon in water pic.

75. Use as a healthy alternative to soap and water to sanitize hands.
76. Rub on hands to make them soft, fresh and smooth.
77. Apply to face to clear acne.

78. Rub on stains as a pre-wash stain remover.
79. Use as a deodorant or antibacterial hand soap.
Single 3-Pack

80. Spray on doorknobs in public restrooms to kill germs.
81. Spray in the throat to restore a lost voice.
82. Spray hands before and after shaking hands with a lot of people.
83. Spray in restrooms on airplanes to reduce airborne bacteria.
84. Spray on vegetables and fruits when washing them.
85. Carry for protection in countries with cholera, malaria or dysentery.
86. Use as an air freshener for cooking odors or other unwanted smells.
87. Take to the gym and spray all the equipment you use.
88. Take to the supermarket and use to disinfect shopping cart handles.
89. Use in the classroom for desks, tables and other items handled by children.
90. Spray in your mouth and throat at first onset of cold or bronchitis.
91. Spray on shower stalls and bathroom walls to kill and remove mold.

92. Brush every day to prevent cavities and gum disease.
93. Use when teeth have been damaged or broken to help them heal.
94. Use to prevent or heal gum disease.
95. Apply as an underarm deodorant.

96. Wipe doorknobs and other things touched by the public.
97. Wipe dirty piano keys to clean and disinfect.
98. Use to clean children’s hands when traveling.
99. Use on the steering wheel and gearshift of your vehicle.
100. Use on public telephones to remove germs.
101. Use on public computer keyboards and mice.


Neem - What Is It?

Neem is a cornerstone of Ayurvedic medicine having been used for thousands of years in India and South Asia to treat a wide range of ailments.
This fast-growing evergreen tree thrives in tropical regions. Its leaves, seeds, and bark all contain healing compounds.
Why Use It?
Neem oil is high in antioxidants and essential fatty acids. In personal care products, it quickly penetrates the skin to soothe dry, itchy, or flaking areas. Herbal extracts have been shown to prevent and help heal ulcers, boost the immune system, and improve joint health. The leaves also appear effective in treating digestive disorders. And a gel made from neem leaves proved more effective than a medicinal mouthwash in reducing plaque buildup on teeth and treating gingivitis.

Proven Acne Fighter
Neem oil is ideal for acne-prone skin. It reduces irritation and inflammation, and helps remove bacteria that may cause outbreaks.

Good to Know

Neem is considered safe for most healthy people, but it is not recommended for infants or elderly adults.

Spicey Chicken Soup

Caldo De Pollo

Caldo De Pollo

 I also roasted a chicken and the next day came up with this delicious and blog worthy soup.  The rain is back  and having a warm and subtly spicy chicken soup for leftovers has been comforting and yummy!  If you do not have a chicken carcass to boil down, I would sub 4-6 cups of already cooked shredded chicken and 10 cups of chicken broth.

Caldo De Pollo
1 chicken carcass (place in a large soup pot and add enough water to cover, bring to a boil and simmer for 2 hours or until all the meat has fallen off the bone. Pick out the bones and discard.  Add another 4-6 cups of water to bring back to a soup-like consistency)
5 carrots, diced
1 red onion, diced
1 14.5oz can diced tomatoes
1 cup Salsa Verde (I like the Trader Joe’s brand)
1/2 tablespoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon cumin
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Sea salt and black pepper to taste

After you have removed all the bones from the soup pot, add 4-6 more cups of water if needed back to the pot to bring to a soup like consistency.  Add all remaining ingredients, mix well and simmer for another 30-45 minutes.  Taste and add more seasoning if desired.  If you like it spicier kick up the cayenne pepper and cumin!!  Top with diced avocado and cilantro!

Creamy Chicken Tomato Soup

Another Budget Friendly Paleo Meal by Erika: “Creamy” Chicken Tomato Crockpot Soup

“Creamy” Chicken Tomato Soup

4 frozen skinless boneless chicken breast
Garlic salt to taste
2 tablespoons Italian Seasoning
1 tablespoon dried basil
1 clove garlic
1 14 oz. can of coconut milk (full fat)
1 14 oz. can diced tomatoes and juice
1 cup of chicken broth (I used homemade chicken broth but you can use store bought)
Sea Salt and pepper to taste
Put all the above ingredients into the crock-pot, cook for 9 hours on low. After 9 hours take two forks and shred the chicken, set the crock-pot on warm till ready to serve (making sure to taste it before serving to make sure there is enough salt and pepper)

Served: 6 (with left over’s for lunch the next day)
Total cost: 17.48 (this is the price if you had to go buy all the ingredients; chicken, chicken broth, spices, coconut milk and diced tomatoes.. if you are buying spices at Safeway they always have a buy two get one free deal going on if you buy their brand)
Total cost per person: 2.91

5 Great Tips

5 Tips To Heal Yourself & Feel Good Right Now

We all deal with stress. And no matter what we do, stress is going to happen. Body-wrecking anxiety though, is something that's not acceptable. Once I dug deep and discovered what  triggered my own stress and subsequent anxiety, I learned how to eliminate it or, at the least, dramatically reduce it.
For me pharmaceutical remedies are not an option. I choose instead to go the alternative, natural way to balance out my system. Here are some of the holistic remedies that worked for me:

1. Seriously, Just Take A Deep Breath. 

Has anyone told you to “ take a deep breath” and you want to smack them? I know, it can seem like this suggestion utterly trivializes what you are feeling, but this is actually the quickest, surest way to release the anxiety pressure valve. 

The trick though, is about breathing "good." Stress bearing down on you causes rapid, shallow breathing - this is some of that good ‘ol ‘fight or flight' response reactionary stuff. True deep breathing, or abdominal breathing, automatically engages the body’s innate relaxation response. This calms us, gives us a moment to pause, stop the reactive thinking, and reduces some of that intense tension that stress brings on. Good breathing immediately improve our mood and even helps to repair our immune systems. 

Important note; rapid, shallow breathing increases carbon dioxide in our blood and this reduces oxygen to our brains. This unhealthy increase in CO2 will make us feel extra tired, even depressed. Chronic increase in CO2 and we will get the anxiety and panic attacks and for some, nasty, debilitating phobias start to creep in... all you have to do is literally stop and breathe deeply. This can be very nourishing for your nervous system.
2. The Vitamins Have It Covered. 

There are some pretty fabulous vitamins and key nutrients that can strengthen your body and mind. When I needed to heal and come back from exhaustion I had to address the core issues emotionally and spiritually, but I also turned to vitamins and minerals. Naturopaths recommend for stress and anxiety;
  • Vitamin C -- 1000 to 3000 mg daily
  • Vitamin D -- 400 I.U (800 if you are dramatically depleted) daily
  • Vitamin B6 -- 100 - 300 mg daily
  • Vitamin B12 -- 500 - 2000 mcg daily
  • Pantothenic Acid (B5) -- 500 - 1000 mg daily for one to two weeks, reduce to 250/ 500 daily
  • Magnesium 500-750 mg daily
  • Folic Acid 400 mg daily
  • Milk Thistle 525 mg daily for one week for liver cleanse
  • Blood Builders (great digestible iron compound found in better health food stores)
You should obviously always consult with your doctor or nutritionist before starting any supplement program; not all things work for all people and not all amounts are what you will need. There is a wonderful book, Adrenal Fatigue: The 21st Century Stress Syndrome by Dr. James L. Wilson that I definitely recommend.
3. Develop A Social Support System. 

A “social support system” by the way, does not refer to your social media posts and tweets! This vital system is best made up of friends and family that you can see in person or at least speak to on the phone and through personal emails. These people should be supportive, positive, objective and give you a genuine sense of belonging and emotional security. Your supportive friends don't have feel pressured to solve all your problems. They are just people that can join you for a walk, for dinner, or even for a yoga class. Securing for yourself a trusted support system will help you stay grounded and can just help to get your mind off your stressors.

4. Exercise - You Just Gotta’ Have Some. 

Whether your workout of choice is a good run, a scenic hike, Pilates or yoga, exercise of any kind gets those endorphins flowing into your brain. It balances out your sympathetic with the parasympathetic in your nervous system. The endorphins are our bodies "feel-good chemicals;” they help us deal with all types of pain.... and any feel-good, natural chemical that can do that is well, very, very good.
5. Find Your Purpose. 

Life can be overwhelming. Sometimes it can feel as if all we spend our time on is figuring out how to pay our bills, take care of the kids, keep our jobs, and not come unglued. When the work piles up or when our finances feel stretched, each of us benefits greatly from something that gives us a sense of meaning, purpose, and significance.

Staying sane, and calm, and in control in a world of so much daily hysteria can be a challenge. But if you fuel yourself with good food, good company, balance it out with a few helpful vitamins, and find a workout that works for you, you may discover your purpose is YOU -- and that good life waiting for you is purposeful enough and can be truly stress-free!

When You Should Eat Fruit

The Major Rule for Eating Fruit

There's no doubt that eating fruit is important to our overall health and wellbeing. Fruit is healthy for you, we all know that, but, it's good to know that eating it should follow some general guidelines to fully benefit our health. It's just not as simple as putting it into our mouths whenever we feel like it. Learn about the proper ways to eat fruit and your whole body will thank you with less digestive problems and tons more energy.

Incorporating fruit into our diet, the proper way, gives our digestive system more powerful benefits through vitamin intake and improved digestion. Looking at the nutrition of fruit, most fruits are a great source of fiber, potassium, vitamin C and folate and so much more. Their nutrients help guard against disease, lower rates of heart disease, stroke and high blood pressure. However, eating fruit carelessly without any nutritional knowledge could bring on more problems to our health than benefits. Here is the major rule about eating fruit:

Fruit should be eaten alone or with other fruit on an empty stomach.

This is because when fruit is eaten, the digestive process works very quickly and our body uses different enzymes to digest the fruit. The simple sugars contained in fruit need time to be completely absorbed by your body. When fruits are eaten alone, your stomach can more easily process all of the nutrients, fibre and the simple sugars contained in the fruit. This is the optimal 'proper way' to benefit from the fruit you eat. If you eat fruit close to a meal, especially right after a larger meal and combine with other foods, it's held in the stomach too long along with other foods and will rot and ferment in the gut. If you experience indigestion, heartburn, burping and and other digestive discomforts and you blame on the meal - it could be the combination of the food, the fermentation with fruit that causes your upset stomach. If left uncontrolled it could lead to other health problems that stem from the digestive tract.

Applying this rule is very simple. We eat approximately 3 large meals a day, so space out your fruit servings in between. If this means you need to glance at the clock occasionally and calculate when you could eat the apple you brought along with you - than you do that. And aim to have it about 1 hour before a meal, or 2 hours after your meal. For heavier meals, like pasta or burgers etc, you need to let that food digest for even longer before you add fruit with all its acid into your stomach, about 3-4 hours. If you've just had a mixed green salad for lunch, same rules apply but for a much shorter time, about 1.5 hours.

The best time to eat a bounty of fruit is either first thing in the morning on an empty stomach, or as a mid-morning snack (which I prefer) - in between breakfast and lunch. It's a good idea, to just eat more fruit at one time, whether it's fruit salad, an apple or a fruit smoothie. (3-4 servings of fruit is a proper daily requirement, that's 2 1/2 - 2 cups of fruit). If you feel very hungry after your fruit servings, pay attention to what you've had for breakfast and maybe your meal planning needs to be adjusted. You should be able to wait it out about 1-2 hours with success. That will ensure all the fruit is processed and gone into your body to do what it's supposed to do.

Definitely avoid eating fruit close to bedtime as there's plenty of sugar in fruit to spike up your energy and keep you up when you need your sleep.

Smoothie lovers! It is fine to consume nut milk or coconut milk with fruit, but in small amounts and not every time. Therefore, nut butters, nut milk, or non-dairy yogourt (such as soy) will not strain the digestive system too much. And adding a single serving of a low-glycemic fruit, such as an apple to your green smoothie will be fine and will not create a lot of problems for you as long as you keep the fruit serving to a minimum and it too is consumed apart from a larger meal. However, ideally it is best to stick with eating raw fruit alone - or leave alone!

Dried fruit holds the same recommendations. Keep in mind it's also too sweet and too addictive. Limiting portions of the dried fruit you eat is essential - think of a date as a special occasion ;)

If you do eat fruit on an empty stomach, you will gain the proper nutrients that fruit - nature's perfect gift - will offer to your health and wellbeing. You will avoid most digestive problems, feel energized, promote weight loss and you'll look and feel fantastic because your body will be fully absorbing all the vitamins, fiber and healthy carbohydrates that it needs to function in good health.

Chocolate Cashew Butter

chocolate cashew butter3

Prep time: 2 mins
Cook time: 5 mins
Total time: 7 mins
Serves: 4+
  • 2 cups dry roasted cashews
  • 1/4 cup melted coconut oil (you can use walnut, almond, etc.)
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons raw honey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  1. Add your roasted cashews to your food processor and turn on. Let the food processor do it’s magic.
  2. When the cashews are become thicker and almost ball up into a ball of happiness, add your oil directly to your cashews while the food processor is still running.
  3. Once your get a runnier nut butter, turn food processor off, then add your cocoa powder, honey, vanilla, and salt.
  4. Turn back on to let everything incorporate.
  5. Add more oil if you want a more runny nut butter.
  6. Consume with anything. Apples. Carrots, On a burger. Serious. I just eat it by the spoonful. I’m classy.

Red Eyes;Age


Ask An Expert: Why Do Our Eyes Get Red as We Age?

Ask An Expert: Why Do Our Eyes Get Red as We Age?

by Anna K. Fryxell, Social Media Associate

As you get older, you may start to notice that your eyes aren’t as clear and white as they were when you were younger. According to a 2011 study published by Ethology, volunteers thought that people with red eyes seemed sadder, less healthy and less attractive than those with whiter eyes. That’s why we decided to find out why this happens.

What it really comes down to is that we make less water components for our tears as we age. “Our tears are made up of three layers: mucin, water and oil,” says Santa Monica, CA, oculoplastic surgeon, Cynthia Boxrud, MD. “The bottom layer is called the mucin layer and is made from the goblet cells in our conjunctiva. The middle layer is a water component made mostly from the lacrimal glands. This water component decreases as we age causing dryness and redness."

Many people especially experience redness after eyelid surgery because the eyes are more open. This causes tear film to evaporate quicker resulting in dryness and redness. Lasik surgery can also cause the same effect. That’s why it’s important for your doctor to measure the amount of tears you produce before performing any of these procedures.

And just like sun exposure can prematurely age our skin, it is also a big reason why our eyes become red. Dr. Boxrud says to always wear sunglasses when outside because they work like sunscreen for your eyes.



3 ROUNDS THE MOST 4                                        LETS GET IT WARRIORS!

Renegade Rows-10 Reps
Overhead Lunges-10 Reps
Squat Jump Burpees-10 Reps
Crab Touches-10 Reps
Sumo Deadlift Pull- 10 Reps

Healthy Tips

Tips I learned from my healthiness journey

05-04-12 Person chopping carrot

Tips I learned from my healthiness journey

People ask me often how I lost weight and while I very much remember being in that position where I just want someone to tell me how to lose weight, the only thing I can say is that I made it my own. I am unique. I am not a one-size-fits-all. I am not a diet or program and cannot expect any one else’s diet or program to work on me. What works for them won’t necessarily work for me. Losing weight for me meant figuring out what I needed. It meant figuring out how I worked and how to fit a healthy lifestyle into that.
Along the way, I found few things that worked for me.

Cut & freeze veggies: I struggle with veggies. I’m not a fan of canned veggies and cringe when fresh produce goes bad before I eat it. There’s a little discount grocery store around the corner from my house and they always have red and yellow peppers on sale for half the cost of buying them at a chain grocery store. Every couple of months, I swing by the discount grocery store and purchase five red and five yellow peppers. At home, I cut them into slices and lay them out onto a cookie sheet. I freeze them flat for a couple hours (to prevent them freezing to each other) and once frozen, toss them into a large freezer-safe container. As I’m cooking, I can just grab a handful or two and throw them into my morning scrambled eggs or pasta dinner. The same can be done for broccoli, asparagus, cucumbers and carrots.

Lukewarm water: I’m not a person of extremes. I don’t like my milk ice-cold and I detest coffee so hot it’s steaming. When I first fought to get my water intake in, I’d fill my water bottle up with water from the cooler (or grab a bottle from the fridge.) I’d fight to drink the water and cringe with each gulp. After a few months, it dawned on me that I drank the water faster after it had been sitting out.  Now, when I fill my water bottle up, I fill it ¾ full of cold water and ¼ with hot water to get it to the perfect lukewarm temperature. I’ve found drinking water is so much easier now that I’ve found my perfect temperature.

Identify trigger foods: This one takes some work, and a lot of reflection. Identifying trigger foods helps so that when you are faced with the temptation, you know how you’ll react. I don’t ever deny myself foods, however I do limit purchases of foods I know trigger me. For example, I know buying a box of cereal is bad news for me because I never eat just one serving (I fill my bowl ALL THE WAY UP) and I tend to go back for more within minutes. I choose not to buy cereal and when I do feel like cereal, I eat it from the individual serving containers. I’ve also found on days when I eat a bagel for breakfast, I tend to crave more food all day long. While I love bagels, I’ve decided instead of eating bagels for breakfast, it’s better I eat something more balanced like toast with peanut butter. To identify trigger foods, journal your eating for a couple weeks and then review what you ate. Look for common meals and how you reacted later in the day.

Develop routines: I tend to be a person of routine, naturally but creating a routine helps healthiness because you aren’t leaving things to chance. If you know you have to work out Monday, Wednesday and Friday, it’s harder to skip because it’s become a part of your routine. Developing a routine helps so healthy choices become a habit and are actually easier to do, because they’re a regular part of your routine.

Consider not setting your alarm: OK, this may not work for everyone but on days when I know I’m going to have a tough time getting out of bed, I phone a friend who wakes up early to hit the gym. I prefer to go to the gym in the morning, so on days after I stayed up too late, I get a friend to call me at 5:15 in the morning instead of setting my alarm. Knowing I have to wake up and answer the phone mentally and physically wakes me up enough to get  out of bed.
As you fight on your healthiness journey, look for ways to make it easy. Don’t let being healthy be hard. If eating veggies is such a difficult task for you, how can you make it easier? How can you break it down? If you aren’t good at drinking water, what can you do to help yourself? It sounds simple but making healthiness work for you is essential to your journey.

Lime Grilled Chicken

Cooking Steps

From our friend George at!
Combine all the above ingredients except your chicken in a bowl and mix well
Place your chicken breasts in a shallow dish and pour your marinade over the top and cover. Place in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours but up to 48 hours

When ready to cook, pull your chicken out of the fridge and let it come to room temperature
Place chicken breasts on a plate and pour your marinade into a sauce pan
Heat your marinade on the stove and bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer for 10 minutes until it thickens up so you can baste the chicken while cooking
Preheat your grill on medium heat and then go cook your chicken breasts, should be about 10 minutes per side
While your chicken is cooking keep basting them with your marinade reduction
Your chicken is done when it reaches an internal temperature of 165 Degrees


  • 2 Boneless Chicken Breasts
  • Juice of 4 limes
  • 2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 2 Tbsp Chili Powder
  • 1 Tsp Dried Oregano
  • 1 Tsp Ground Cumin
  • 1 Tsp Dried Sage
  • Salt and Pepper to Taste

BB Creams Have Changed My Exercise Life

dori Marathon

How BB cream changed my exercise life

The problem: I always use an SPF moisturizer when I run, but I am extremely self conscious about my skin. When I have to meet up with people after a run or get on the subway or stop into a store, I pray I don’t run into anyone I know. I keep my head down when speaking to anyone. I worry that my friends will say, behind my back, “Wow, Dori really has bad skin.”

The treatment: None. I’ve spent years at dermatologists trying different medications and combinations of medications. Not only did they not work, but because of my severely dry skin (unusual with chronic acne), all the medications made my skin unbearably dry and painful. Now, I just try to use products that don’t make it any worse.

The solution: Because I won’t work out with makeup on (it clogs pores and is gross to sweat off), I was at a loss for years – until now. I happen to work at a skincare company called Hydroxatone and we recently came out with the product that changed my exercise life: Hydroxatone Anti-Aging BB Cream.

Tell me more: Well, since you asked! BB cream (which stands for beauty balm, blemish balm and even beblesh balm – explanation here) is an all-in-one multitasking product. Depending on what brand you get, it can hydrate, conceal, protect from the sun’s harmful rays and brighten your skin. My company’s version also reduces the look of aging. And it does all of this in just one step, so you’re not using multiple products. That’s really important to me because I am lazy and forgetful. I wear the Anti-Aging BB Cream when I work out and I also wear it on regular days — it gives me a flawless complexion and I don’t need foundation with it!

You can’t be serious. Do you have proof? Why yes, I do! I happened to record a Before & After BB cream - Part 1 to show how the BB cream perfected my skin and this is Before & After BB cream – Part 2,  to show how well the BB cream held up while running and sweating for 6.2 miles. The lighting’s not great, but my acne is much worse than it appears and I also have under eye circles and dry skin. The video was inspired by this photo I snapped of myself in an apartment building hallway after the last race I ran wearing the BB

I agree with her completely...I workout everyday sometimes well all the time 2x daily..BB cream has been a lifesaver because now I dont have to wear full makeup..I am guilty when I do go to the gym..I wear Garniers  BB cream and I love it...My next review and buy will be Hydroxatones..I love their skin creams so I am sure I will love the BB cream!  -Tiffany

Paleo Stuffed Peppers


  • 4 Bell peppers, 500 Grams of ground beef, Half of a courgette diced in cubes,
  • 4 Eggs, Fresh coriander, Fresh Thyme, 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
  • 1/4 cup sunflower seeds, 2 onions, a few cloves of garlic,
  • Some real sea salt and pepper


Cooking Steps

Cut the tops off you bell peppers and clean them out. cut the tops of the peppers in little cubes.
Put the following ingredients in to a blender…
Two onions, garlic clove, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, the fresh coriander and thyme.
Melt some paleo approved oil, ghee or grass fed butter in a frying pan.
Cook your blended mixture… Add your Ground meat.. cook as desired..add some pepper and real see salt .. Add your veggies… Cook all this goodness!
When done, fill your bell pepper with all that goodness. Leave some room at the top for the eggs.
Crack your eggs onto the top
Preheat an oven to 180 degrees Celsius / 350 degrees Fahrenheit

Good luck putting them into grill oven without spilling the eggs :)
Cook them for around 20 minutes, the eggs should be cooked and firm all the way through.
You can Eat them Hot, or Cold… Enjoy!

Diet Face

Don't Suffer From Diet Face

Don't Suffer From Diet Face

by NewBeauty Editors

If you are a yo-yo dieter or constantly following the latest get-slim-quick fad, you might be able to finally fit into your desired dress size, but you might also be sacrificing the health of your skin along the way. The truth is, in an effort to shed pounds fast, you wreak havoc on your skin. However, with knowledge on nutrition dos and don'ts, you can eat the right, healthful foods to keep your waistline in check and your skin looking supple and young.

You see, when faced with a lack of nutrients, the body goes into survival mode, diverting energy from the skin and sending it to the internal organs. Not only is this terrible news for your health, it's bad news for your skin as it becomes dehydrated, loses color and your natural cell turnover becomes sluggish. Symptoms that make you look tired and old.

Not to mention, when rapid weight loss results in a significant reduction of subcutaneous fat directly beneath the skin, it becomes thin and fragile. A study published in the Journal of Investigative Dermatology showed that sever caloric restriction for just five days suppressed lipid production in the sebaceous glands as well. While the change was reversed upon returning to a normal diet, starving your skin of nutrients is still dangerous.

You need daily vitamins, such as C, E and A as well as your Bs to keep your cellular metabolism going and your skin in good shape. Your body also needs fat to maintain the skin and hair; "good" fats can be found in avocados, walnuts and salmon. If you have no idea where to begin, schedule a consultation with a registered dietician to devise a nutritional program that is tailored to your weight loss goals. Also, look for skin care products that contain green and white teas. You may also want to try an exfoliating agent containing alphahydroxy acid to prevent your skin from getting dry and sallow.

For a powerful protector, try Dr. Brandt Time Arrest Crème de LUXE ($200). It's a quick-to-absorb cream that combines the age-reversing power of peptides grapes stem cells and natural elements to protect the skin and prevent dryness. 

I also think for less expensive is Mark's Calm and Composed 16 dollars and Estee Lauders Daywear 45 dollars..Or any that have great antioxidants and peptides in them.Oh, yeah Oil of Olay fragrance free Regenerist is great for the peptides.20 something dollars.

DIY Fake Lashes

This fun DIY project is to show you how many options you have with false lashes and the degrees of drama that come with each. You don’t have to buy accent or individual lashes when you can just make your own by cutting them however you wish.

TOOLS: Ardell Demi Wispies False Lashes (those are my favorites but you can use any style), Small Scissors, DUO Lash Glue (I prefer the clear/white shade so it dries clear)

HOMEMADE INDIVIDUALS: Cut them in between any groupings (some groupings have more hairs than others). I used three on my assistant Carissa but you can use as many/few as you like. Notice how with individuals you can flare them outwards more for a winged effect. **TIP: let the glue get “tacky” for 2 minutes so you can literally just stick them on the lashline and they won’t turn or slide.

HALF (ACCENT) STRIP: Cut the strip in half and use either end (I prefer the end that would have been on the inside corner even though you’ll place it on the outside corner). Trace the glue along the band, wait two minutes, place it directly on your lash line then squeeze the false lashes together with your own lashes using your index finger + thumb. Notice how the lashes “sit up” more when they are bound together as opposed to when they are by themselves.

FULL STRIP: Again, let the glue get tacky for two full minutes then place directly on lashline.  Notice how the lashes sit up even more and appear longer when they are all attached on a long strip. **TIP: if the strip is longer than your lashline, hold it next to it for sizing then trim off the excess length. I also went in and trimmed around a few of them to make a few “wispies” longer than the rest.
The possibilities are endless. For some red carpets, I use a full lash strip then add an accent half strip on top of it on the outside corners for extra drama. Have fun!

Easy Blender Salsa

In a food processor or blender, I combine a can of diced tomatoes, a can of Rotel which is seasoned diced tomatoes with green chilies, 1/2 of a small onion, 1/2 of a jalapeno, lime juice, garlic, cilantro, honey and a few spices. Pulse for 30 seconds and that’s it. I’ve been known to throw in half a cucumber and a carrot before too. This is the kind of salsa that you can’t really screw up. You can follow the recipe below as a guideline and do as you like to make it your own.
It’s the perfect apres nosh after a long day of skiing or snowboarding and the perfect beverage to wash this down is an icy cold beer. Absolute heaven if you ask me.
With the Super Bowl just around the corner, this would be a great easy appetizer to watch the big game. Make sure you’ve got something to serve at half time because this won’t last through the first quarter.

Easy Blender Salsa


  • 1- 14 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1- 10 oz can orginal Rotel
  • 1/2 small onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled and smashed
  • 1/2-1 jalapeno, seeded or not (depends on how spicy you like it)
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • small to medium size handful of cilantro, washed
  • juice of 1 lime


Put all the ingredients in the base of a food processor or good blender and pulse to combine for 30 seconds or so until all the ingredients are finely chopped and salsa is desired consistency. Taste for seasoning and adjust to taste. Serve with chips or over tacos.

6 Beauty Recipes

6 Green Beauty Recipes Straight From Your Kitchen

A few years ago I had the realization that I was taking brilliant care of my inner body with an all organic diet, avoiding gluten, dairy and sugar, as well as keeping up my commitment to daily exercise and meditation. But then it dawned on me that I was putting nothing but chemicals onto my body. I was always searching for the latest and greatest in anti-aging skincare, not fully realizing the true damage that I was inflicting on myself.
As we know, our skin is our largest organ and absorbs everything we put on it directly into our bloodstreams…so in order to nourish and support this amazing organ, I set out to give my bathroom a green overhaul. And in the process came up with a few home recipes that I am finding work really well, if not better than the chemical laden stuff of my past. 
Here are a few of my favorites right now:
1. Cleanser: Almonds, Walnuts, Goat milk Powder, Raw Cacao

I combine a few tablespoons of each and grind them in a coffee grinder so they are really fine. Together they create a wonderful exfoliator and cleanser.  I just add some organic rosewater, apply, scrub, and rinse.  I keep a small glass container by the sink and remake this weekly.
2. Toner: White/Green Tea & Organic Rosewater

After steeping the teas, I let them cool.  I then combine them with the rosewater in a small mister bottle.  They create a perfect anti-inflammatory toner, which calms the skin, while providing it with a boost of antioxidants.  You can also use this throughout the day to refresh your skin.  Each batch usually lasts 7-10 days.
3. Mask: Manuka Honey

I slather a nice thick layer of this powerful antibacterial honey on my face, neck, and chest once a week and leave it on for about 15 minutes.  You will look lit from within after and it leaves your skin super soft.
4. Brown Spot Combater:  Lemon Juice

I bring half a lemon up to my bathroom to keep in a glass container for a few days.  Nightly I apply the lemon juice with a Q-tip to any pesky brown/sun spots.  It can sting a bit, but is a wonderful chemical free way to lighten them up.
5. Body Exfoliating Scrub: Coffee, Organic Brown Sugar, Virgin Coconut Oil, Honey

I simply combine 1 cup of each in a bowl that I keep in the shower.
I’ll sometimes add some Epsom Salts and aromatherapy oil/s of my choice.
Use this to exfoliate your entire body once a week, starting with your feet and working your way up.  It ends up being a really effective lymph massage as well.
**Note: this scrub is a bit too harsh for your face.
6. Moisturizer: Virgin Coconut Oil

I apply this while my skin is still wet from the bath or shower, and then reapply in places that need extra moisture like elbows and legs.

10 Inflammatory Foods to Avoid

Inflammatory Foods to Avoid Like the PlagueTop 10 Inflammatory Foods to Avoid Like the Plague

Stay clear of these inflammation-causing foods to instantly upgrade your health!
According to the statistics from the World Health Organization, about 12.9 million people worldwide died from some form of cardiovascular disease in 2004. And each year, the World Cancer Research Fund estimated that some eight million people died from cancer. Heart disease and cancer, the deadly manifestation of chronic inflammation, are expected to remain as the leading causes of death in developed countries for many years to come.
But study after study shows that the risk of heart disease and cancer are modifiable by our lifestyle choices which include the food we choose to eat each day. With every bite that we take, we’re either balancing the pro- and anti-inflammatory compounds in the body, or tipping the scale to one end.
To shift the balance to your favor, other than incorporating more natural anti-inflammatory foods in your diet, it’s also equally important to avoid or cut down on foods which are known to promote inflammation. Here, we look at the top ten foods which set the stage for inflammatory diseases:

1. Sugars

  • Refined SugarPro-inflammatory Agent: Excessive sugar intake causes tooth decay and has been linked to increased risks of obesity, inflammation and chronic diseases such as metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes. Recently, it has also finally been proven that sugar, as well as dairy, are the causes of acne.
    Find them in: Sugar-sweetened beverages like soft drinks, fruit drinks and punches are one of the major sources of dietary sugars that many have overlooked. Do you know that drinking a can of Coke is as good as sucking ten sugar cubes? Other obvious sugar-loaded foods to avoid or at least limit include pastries, desserts, candies and snacks. And when you’re looking out for sugar in the ingredients list, note that sugar has many names: corn syrup, dextrose, fructose, golden syrup, maltose, sorghum syrup and sucrose are some of the creative names used.
    Inflammation-dousing Substitute: Got a sweet tooth? Opt for natural sweeteners like stevia, honey, or blackstrap molasses to flavor your beverages and foods modestly. Natural sugars found in fresh or dried fruits and fruit preserves with no added sugar are also great choices. Not only do they give you the sweetness you crave for, fruits also supply you with vitamins, antioxidants and fibers that you won’t find in sugary foods and drinks. Dates, figs, persimmons, kiwis, tangerines and various types of berries are but some of the natural healthy snacks you can sink your teeth into.

2. Common Cooking Oils

  • Common Cooking OilsPro-inflammatory Agent: Common vegetable cooking oils used in many homes and restaurants have very high omega-6 fatty acids and dismally low omega-3 fats. A diet consisting of highly imbalanced omega-6 to omega-3 ratio promotes inflammation and breeds inflammatory diseases like heart disease and cancer.
    Find them in: Polyunsaturated vegetable oils such as grape seed, cottonseed, safflower, corn and sunflower oils. These industrial vegetable oils are also commonly used to prepare most processed foods and takeaways.
    Inflammation-dousing Substitute: Replace your omega-6-saturated cooking oils with macadamia oil, extra virgin olive oil, or other edible oils with a saner omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids ratio. Macadamia oil, for instance, has an almost one to one ratio of omega-6:3 fats, and it’s also rich in oleic acid, a heart-healthy monounsaturated fatty acid.

3. Trans Fats

  • Trans FatsPro-inflammatory Agent: Trans fatty acids are notorious for their double whammy effect: they increase the levels of ‘bad’ cholesterol, while lowering levels of the ‘good’ cholesterol. But that’s not all they can do. They have also been found to promote inflammation, obesity and resistance to insulin, laying the ground for degenerative illnesses to take place.
    Find them in: Deep fried foods, fast foods, commercial baked goods and those prepared with partially hydrogenated oil, margarine and vegetable shortening. Note that items that list 0g trans fats on the label may still contain some amount of this toxic fats. This is because in the US, the government allows items containing less than 0.5g of trans fats to be declared as trans-fat free. Commercially prepared peanut butter is one good example. Your best bet is to read the ingredients list and make sure partially hydrogenated oil or vegetable shortening is not used.
    Inflammation-dousing Substitute: Look for alternative products that contain no trans fats, or don’t have partially hydrogenated oil or vegetable shortening in the ingredients list. When in doubt, assume that all commercially prepared foods contain trans fats unless stated otherwise.

4. Dairy Products

  • Dairy ProductsPro-inflammatory Agent: As much as 60% of the world’s population can’t digest milk. In fact, researchers think that being able to digest milk beyond infancy is abnormal, rather than the other way round. Milk is also a common allergen that can trigger inflammatory responses, such as stomach distress, constipation, diarrhea, skin rashes, acne, hives and breathing difficulties, in susceptible people.
    Find them in: Milk and dairy products are as pervasive as foods containing partially hydrogenated oil or omega-3-deficient vegetable oil. Apart from obvious milk products like butter and cheese, foods with hidden dairy content include breads, cookies, crackers, cakes, cream sauces and boxed cereals. Scanning the ingredients list is still the safest way to suss out milk.
    Inflammation-dousing Substitute: Kefir and unsweetened yogurt are acceptable in moderation for those who are not allergic to milk. They are easier on the stomach as the lactose and proteins in the milk have been broken down by beneficial bacteria and/or yeasts.

5. Feedlot-Raised Meat

  • Feedlot-Raised MeatPro-inflammatory Agent: Commercially produced meats are feed with grains like soy beans and corns, a diet that’s high in inflammatory omega-6 fatty acids but low in anti-inflammatory omega-3 fats. Due to the small and tight living environment, these animals also gain excess fat and end up with high saturated fats. Worse, to make them grow faster and prevent them from getting sick, they are also injected with hormones and fed with antibiotics. The result is one piece of meat which you and I shouldn’t be eating.
    Find them in: Unless otherwise stated, most, if not all, beef, pork and poultry you can find in the supermarkets and restaurants come from feedlot farms.
    Inflammation-dousing Substitute: Organic, free-range animals that fed on their natural diet like grasses instead of grains and hormones contain more omega-3 fats. Having more room to roam freely, they are also leaner and contain less saturated fats.

6. Red Meat & Processed Meat

  • Red Meat and Processed MeatPro-inflammatory Agent: Researchers at the University of California San Diego School of Medicine found that red meat contains a molecule that humans don’t naturally produce called Neu5Gc. After ingesting this compound, the body develops anti-Neu5Gc antibodies – an immune response that may trigger chronic inflammatory response. And low-grade simmering inflammation that won’t go away has been linked to cancer and heart disease.
    The link between processed meat consumption and cancer is even stronger. In the 2007 report by the World Cancer Research Fund and the American Institute for Cancer Research, processed meat has been stated as a convincing cause of cancers of the colon and rectum, and possibly esophagus and lung cancer too. Processed meat includes animal product that has been smoked, cured, salted or chemically preserved.
    Find them in: Common red meats are beef, lamb and pork, while processed meat include hams, sausages and salami.
    Inflammation-dousing Substitute: You don’t need to avoid red meat totally, though the same thing can’t be said for processed meat. No amount of processed meat is safe. Replace the bulk of your red meat with organic vegetables, poultry and fish, and relegate red meat to a weekly treat. When you do eat red meat, remember to choose lean cuts and preferably, that of grass-fed animals. To reduce the formation heat-generated food contaminants, it’s also advisable not to overcook your meat and use moist heat cooking like stewing and boiling more often than high-temperature dry heat methods such as grilling and frying.

7. Alcohol

  • AlcoholPro-inflammatory Agent: Regular high consumption of alcohol has been known to cause irritation and inflammation of the esophagus, larynx (voice box) and liver. Over time, the chronic inflammation promotes tumor to grow and gives rise to cancer at the sites of repeated irritation.
    Find them in: Beers, ciders, liquors, liqueurs, and wines.
    Inflammation-dousing Substitute: A refreshing and thirst-quenching glass of pure, filtered water, anyone? :) How about a cup of anti-aging and anti-inflammatory jasmine green tea? If you find the idea of swapping ethanol for water or tea implausible, at least limit your consumption to no more than one drink a day.

8. Refined Grains

  • Refined GrainsPro-inflammatory Agent: A lot of the grains we eat nowadays are refined. They are devoid of fiber and vitamin B compared to unpolished and unrefined grains that still have the bran, germ and the aleurone layer intact. This makes refined grains as good as refined sugars, which are practically empty calories. And like refined sugars, refined grains have a higher glycemic index than unprocessed grains and when they are consistently consumed, can hasten the onset of degenerative diseases like cancer and coronary disease.
    Find them in: Refined grains and products made out of them are almost everywhere. The common ones are: white rice, white flour, white bread, noodles, pasta, biscuits and pastries. To make things worse, many products with refined grains undergo further processing to enhance their taste and look, and are often loaded with excess sugar, salt, artificial flavors and/or partially hydrogenated oil in the process. A prime example is boxed cereals which contain substantial amounts of added sugar and flavorings.
    Inflammation-dousing Substitute: Go for minimally processed grains if you are not gluten intolerant or allergic to grains. If you’re an avid bread or pastry maker, invest in a grain mill to produce your own flour. It will be much fresher than the stale one found in stores. When buying cereals or other products made from grains, don’t take the words on the packaging for granted. Just because the box says whole grains, it doesn’t mean the grains inside are 100% intact. The problem is due to a lack of an internationally accepted definition for the word ‘whole grain’. When in doubt, if it doesn’t look close to its natural state, don’t buy.

9. Artificial Food Additives

  • Artificial Food AdditivesPro-inflammatory Agent: Some artificial food additives like aspartame and monosodium glutamate (MSG) reportedly trigger inflammatory responses, especially in people who are already suffering from inflammatory conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis.
    Find them in: Only packaged foods contain artificial food additives. If you need to buy them, read the labels carefully and weigh your risks. If you order Chinese takeaways, make sure you’ve the option to ask for no MSG. Otherwise, look elsewhere.
    Inflammation-dousing Substitute: Besides limiting the consumption of processed foods, use anti-inflammatory herbs, spices or natural sweeteners to add flavor to your dishes instead of relying on food additives.

10. <Fill in the blank>

  • Allergic FoodPro-inflammatory Agent: Why is this blank? Because it is meant for you to fill in with the food that you’re sensitive to. Many people are sensitive to certain food but are totally unaware about it. Unlike food allergy in which symptoms usually come fast and fiery, symptoms caused by food intolerance take a longer time to manifest. And when they do appear, they are often brushed off as common minor ailments such as tiredness and headaches. But repeated, long-term exposure to food that irritates can cause inflammation and lead to chronic diseases.
    Find them in: Common food allergens are gluten, milk, nuts, eggs and nightshade vegetables. Contrary to common belief, it is possible to develop an allergy to the foods that you eat often.
    Inflammation-dousing Substitute: If you suspect that a particular food may be responsible for your food intolerant response, try avoiding it completely for about two weeks and monitor your reaction. At the end of the abstinence period, re-introduce the food back into your diet. If you’re in fact incompatible with it, you should be able to notice the difference in how you feel easily.
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