The Frightening Affect of Cell Phones on Kids

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It’s no surprise that most people in the developed world have a cell phone or some type of device and that number keeps growing. It’s no wonder that these devices are having harmful affects on kids. Experts suggest that tablets and smartphones can have an impact on children’s social and emotional development. A study done in 2016 involving 1240 parents found that 50% of teens felt addicted to their smartphone.  59% of parents believe that their kids were addicted to their devices. 77% of parents feel their kids get distracted and lose attention.  72% of teens feel they need to respond to texts/social media immediately.  78% of teens check their devices at least hourly.

Physical Changes

When someone is looking down at their phone, their spine angle is equivalent to that of an 8-year-old child sitting on their neck which is fairly significant considering that people spend an average of 4.7 hours a day looking at their phone.  This combined with the length of time spent in front of computers has led to increase in the prevalence of myopia or near-sightedness in North America.  In the 1970’s about ¼ of the population had myopia whereas today nearly half of the population does.  In some parts of Asia, 80-90% of the population has myopia.

Addiction

Cell phone addictions are similar to drug addictions in that they do influence the size and shape of the brain, particularly in the area of the brain called the grey matter.  The insular and the temporal cortex, which is involved with emotion, speech, hearing, sight, memory, and self control are affected. When playing games, one achieves small goals causing their brain to be rewarded with small bursts of dopamine and winning more games is rewarded with more content.  This novelty also gives bursts of dopamine and together creates what is known as a compulsion loop which happens to be the same loop responsible for the behaviours associated with nicotine and cocaine.  Our brains are hardwired to make us novelty seeking.  This is why apps on our phones are designed to constantly provide us with new content making them hard to put down.  As a result, 93% of young people aged 18 – 29 reports using their phone as a tool to avoid boredom as opposed to other activities like reading a book or engaging with people around them.  This has created a new term called no mobile phobia – the fear or anxiety of being without your phone.

Changes in the Brain

We also see a change in brain patterns.  Alpha rhythms are commonly associated with wakeful relaxation, like when your mind wanders off.  Whereas gamma waves are associated with conscious attentiveness.  Experiments have shown that when a cell phone is transmitting, like during a phone call, the power of the alpha waves is significantly boosted, meaning phone transmissions can change the way our brain functions.

Sleep Disruption

Cell phones can also disrupt your sleep.  A lot of people experience insomnia and fatigue because of cell phone use.  Blue light from these devices affects melatonin levels which will affect sleep.  Blue light will also affect the circadian rhythm and therefore negatively affect your sleep.  This lack of sleep has been linked to diabetes, cancer, and obesity.

EMF Radiation

EMF radiation affects the brain and heart mainly, but it affects other areas of the body as well.  It can even affect fertility.  The problem, at this time, is that there is not a lot of safety testing.

How can we reduce the effects of EMF?

  1. Avoid contact with your brain. Try not to hold the phone up to your head.  You can use anti-radiation air tube headphones with a microphone and also use the speaker phone as much as possible.
  2. Don’t use your phone 2-3 hours before bed.
  3. Get EMF protection case to limit the amount of EMF exposure.

Check out this in depth list of preventative measures https://familyhealthadvocacy.com/emf-radiation/

7 Super Easy Ways to Reverse Aging Skin

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How do we reverse winkles as we age?  Bringing your skin from rough and/or wrinkly to more youthful skin is controlled by something called GAG – glycosaminoglycans. This is a chemical in your body that keeps the skin and collagen electrically hydrated.  It helps repair proteins and collagen in your skin and helps you make healthy, vibrant collagen and skin. If you don’t have GAG, your skin will sag and droop. Believe it or not, it’s not sunlight over the years that just makes your skin wrinkle. In fact, the sunlight will give you vitamin D and protect the skin. But it really is a deficiency in GAG as we age. GAG is also responsible for the discs in your spine to be really healthy and hydrated. So, if you’re shrinking as you’re getting older then we know you don’t have enough GAG. But you can’t just take this as a supplement and see the change because what controls this hydrating, anti-wrinkle chemical is IGF-1 – (insulin like growth factor-one). It’s a hormone made by the liver that is controlled by growth hormone which also is the anti-aging hormone. So, this is an extension of growth hormone. Some people actually take growth hormone as a supplement to get youthful but there’s some side effects to that, so we want figure out how to naturally trigger this IGF-1. Let’s take a look at seven ways to do it.

Reduce Insulin

IGF-1 works inversely with insulin. So, if insulin is high IGF-1 will be low.  Healthy young individuals need 100 times more concentrated IGF than insulin. So, if you have insulin resistance for example, or diabetes you’re going to have higher insulin and IGF-1 will go down. This is really important to help you reduce insulin problems and even diabetes. So, you want to reduce insulin. The way we do that is to change the diet. This means cutting out the carbs, try intermittent fasting and avoiding the hidden things that trigger insulin like MSG (monosodium glutamate)

Enhance Sleep

You need to fix the reason why you can’t sleep because sleeping will increase IGF-1. Even if you have to take a nap. Also, lowering cortisol-the stress hormone, that actually prevents you from sleeping. Increased stress will decrease your sleep and age you.

HIITS

High intensity interval training will also increase IGF-1. You want to do full body exercises and involve as many muscles as possible whether you’re doing a spin bike, burpees, pushups. Whatever exercise it is, you want to do very short bursts followed by a rest phase.  Every other day or every third day is plenty and make sure you don’t overtrain. This type of training will also increase growth hormone.

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Moderate amount of protein

A moderate amount of protein will be enough to improve the quality of your skin. Too much will stimulate insulin so generally 3 to 6 oz is a good amount to take per meal. You also want to make sure it’s a high-quality protein, not soy protein isolate. You need high-quality, grass-fed protein, if you can get it or least organic.

Enhance the liver

There is a lot of factors for a healthy liver and it’s important because the liver makes IGF-1.  Some basics are avoiding alcohol because it will make you age.  Eat organic as much as possible and make sure to eat a lot of vegetables.  Some supplements to support the liver are milk thistle and dandelion root.

Intermittent fasting

You can follow this link to understand more about intermittent fasting.  But the end result is that when you’re not eating, you’re stimulating growth hormone and IGF-1.  Unfortunately, the older we get the harder we have to work at this because over time the liver becomes more unhealthy.

Fat Soluble Vitamins

Vitamin A, vitamin D and vitamin K2 are all important for healthy skin because they enhance IGF-1.  The best sources of fat-soluble vitamins are egg yolks from pasture raised organic eggs. You can also try cod liver oil and grass-fed butter.

The Devastating Impact of Lack of Sleep

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What can happen if you have poor sleep for 14 days?  What actually happens overtime if you’re sleep deprived might shock you because every single cell in your body is connected to an internal clock that controls your circadian rhythms.

Symptoms of Poor Sleep

  • Tiredness – The most obvious symptom is you’re going to be tired which will lead to chronic fatigue.
  • No energy to carry out your daily tasks.
  • Cognitive function will suffer. This means that your memory is not going to be that great, you’re going to lose creativity, imagination, focus and concentration. You may notice brain fog and your mood will suffer.
  • Anxiety, depression, or irritability may show up and you’re going to have more overall stress.
  • The heart is greatly influenced by your sleep. The risk for having a heart attack and stroke goes up. The heart must constantly pump 24/7. It doesn’t have a chance to rest unless when you’re sleeping. But when you’re going through the day and you’re exercising or going through stress that is more strain on the heart.  So, at the very least it needs a good night’s rest to recoup and recover.
  • Hormones and the endocrine system are greatly influenced by your sleep cycles. Testosterone and libido are negatively affected by poor sleep. Infertility is another issue if you have poor sleep.
  • Inflammation increases with lack of sleep. You might have more pain.
  • Blood sugars rise because cortisol increases when you’re not sleeping. The stress hormone glucocorticoid increases so your body starts making more sugar even when you’re not eating. This is going to lead to more weight gain. Most of the fat that is burned is at night when you are sleeping. So, if you’re not sleeping, you’re not going to lose weight and you could potentially gain weight.
  • Immune system is highly influenced by the quality of sleep. People that don’t sleep are more susceptible to getting infections because they have a weakened immune system.

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How to Improve Sleep

  • Increase oxygen when you sleep. There are several plants that produce a lot of oxygen that can help you sleep and give you more oxygen.  One is called Pothos which is also called Devil’s Ivy and the other is Peace Lily. Keep these in your room and they’ll produce more oxygen for you. People also tend to sleep better with the window open.
  • Lighting is important when you’re sleeping. You want no light when you are sleeping and unfortunately, we have lights 24/7. If you live in the city, you have even more lights.  You also want to avoid blue light.  This is the kind of light that comes from cell phones, computers, tablets and even some of the lighting in your house. The reason why blue light is bad for sleep is because it inhibits melatonin. Red light or infrared light increases melatonin. So, if you are using incandescent lights in your house that’s very good because they will give off a lot of infrared.  Even a fireplace, candles and campfires will give off infrared light which are all really good for building up melatonin which can then help you sleep at night.  What’s interesting about melatonin is that it doesn’t necessarily cause sleepiness, but it is involved in the circadian rhythms, and you need enough of it to be able to get into a proper sleep cycle.
  • Getting enough sleep. We need about 7-8 hours of sleep in order to recuperate, regenerate and heal.
  • Temperature of the room is very important as well. You want your room to be on the cooler side between 64- and 68-degrees Fahrenheit because your body tends to sleep better when it’s cooler versus when the room is hot.
  • No liquids before bed. Try to get most of your water around dinner time and not past that so you can avoid getting up in the middle of the night. If you are getting up in the middle of the night to urninate, then fixing your insulin resistance will resolve this issue.
  • If you have pain and inflammation that keeps you up at night the solution for that is usually vitamin D3. You want to take about 10,000 international units before bed and that should usually resolve that issue. Vitamin D in general for most people before bed will help them sleep.
  • Reduce noise as much as possible. If you can wear ear plugs that will help.

 

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  • If you’re thinking too much or trying to resolve problems instead of sleeping, then taking vitamin B1 helps to turn that off and that can help you drift off into a better sleep. Another helpful tip is to write things down. Jot down a short list of tasks you want to accomplish the next day.  A short list won’t overwhelm you but will allow you to achieve the tasks on your list.
  • Cramps in your feet is usually caused by a magnesium deficiency. It could also be a potassium deficiency. If you get cramps, chances are you need to look at what you are eating or not eating.
  • If you have a higher pulse rate that is going to affect your sleep greatly and that usually is a potassium deficiency. So, you need to consume foods high in potassium which are usually vegetables, in larger quantities. You could also take a potassium supplement. Another cause of high pulse rate is your pH is too acidic.
  • Stress is an obvious disrupter of sleep. There are many things you can do for stress and of course exercise is at the top of the list. But physical work is a little bit better than exercise because it doesn’t give you a chance to focus in on problems that are on your mind. When you’re working on something your mind can focus on the task at hand. Ashwagandha is a good supplement as is lemon balm tea and vitamin B1 which you can get in the form of nutritional yeast.
  • Kiefer before bed. It has a combination of not just good bacteria but friendly yeast as well. This is going to help your gut and you will also make more neurotransmitters like L tryptophan and serotonin. Serotonin turns into melatonin which we already know is important for sleep.
  • Melatonin – one good way to get melatonin naturally is to be out in the sun. The sun’s rays give out various wavelengths, infrared is one of them, and that increases melatonin. Just getting outside, without direct sun exposure is enough. You can actually wear a hat, sunglasses and clothes that cover most of your skin because infrared can still penetrate clothing.
  • Avoid stimulants like caffeine, tea or even chocolate later in the day.

Meet the Incredible, Unsung Heros of Hair Loss Remedies

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Losing your hair is a devastating experience so trying natural remedies first before trying medication is best because there are side effects to medications. So, we’re going to take a look at 12 simple and powerful remedies for hair loss that will help you regrow your hair. By the way, a bonus is that they don’t cost that much money.

Shower Water

Your hair is exposed to a lot of chemicals on a regular basis. The water you take a shower with exposes your hair to fluoride.  Fluoride creates significant hair loss as well as acne under skin. Fluoride that is supposed to be good for our teeth actually destroys your hair. So, the first piece of advice is to get a simple showerhead that filters out fluoride.  Another note of interest is that fluoride also blocks your thyroid, and it can very easily lead to hair loss among other health issues.

Shampoos That Cause Hair Loss

Sulfates in most shampoos destroy protein in your hair which is made-up of 91% protein.  If you are exposing your hair to sulfate shampoos daily, you’re creating all sorts of problems. So, you really want to make sure you get a sulfate free shampoo.

DHT Blockers

Let’s first look at the mechanism of how most hair loss medications work. They basically block an enzyme to inhibit DHT which is a powerful form of testosterone.  DHT tends to burn out the hair follicles. Testosterone turns into DHT, a very powerful form of testosterone, through this little enzyme. So, these drugs inhibit that enzyme called 5 alpha reductase.  People that have too much DHT get this condition called androgenetic alopecia which is pattern hair loss both in males and females. So now the question is are there natural things that can inhibit this enzyme because of course the drugs have side effects? The answer is yes.

  • Onion juice is natural inhibitor of that enzyme. You would dilute it in water in a 50/50 ratio and lather it into your scalp and let it set for 15 minutes and then you would wash your hair.
  • Green tea diluted by 50% can also be massaged into your scalp for about 15 minutes then washed out with shampoo.
  • Rosemary oil in one study showed that it is comparable to Rogaine as far as the effectiveness for preventing hair loss. Rosemary oil can be massaged into the scalp and left in overnight. Then washed out in the morning. Rosemary oil is a potent inhibitor of 5A reductase.

Other Causes of Hair Loss

  • Zinc deficiency, which is very common, can cause hair loss. But the best food source for zinc is oysters. It is also in red meat, seafood and eggs.  But red meat and oysters have the most zinc.
  • Apple cider vinegar diluted in water is a good scalp cleanser. The pores of the scalp can get filled with sebum which is an oil that could be preventing the follicles from growing properly. Also, apple cider vinegar gives a really nice shine to your hair. It is also acidic so it can help re-establish the pH of your scalp which can actually support the friendly microbes of the microbiome in your scalp. You don’t want to create an environment where the outside of your skin is so sterile because you have millions of microorganisms living on the outside your skin helping you. When you sterilize or clean your skin too much you can end up with all sorts of problems including hair loss. This is why you want to minimize the amount of chemicals that you expose your skin to.
  • Ketogenic diet can cause hair loss. This usually means that you’re not consuming enough protein. So, making sure you’re taking in enough protein is important.
  • Trace minerals are important, especially if you are doing intermittent fasting or fasting, with a ketogenic diet. We are very deficient in trace minerals. These are minerals needed in very small amounts, but they are very essential. So, either consume food high in trace minerals like sea kelp, shellfish or fish from the ocean.  Sea salt is a good source or just taking a plant based trace mineral product will add more trace minerals to give the hair what it needs.
  • Other key vitamins that are needed in larger amounts when you’re on the keto diet plan are the B vitamins. There are a lot of links between a B vitamin deficiency and hair loss. Nutritional yeast is a really good source for B vitamins just make sure that when you get nutritional yeast that is not fortified with synthetic vitamins.
  • Cruciferous vegetables – if you have too much estrogen this can cause hair loss. This is why women, when they go through their menstrual cycle, tend to lose hair. This is caused by an excess amount of estrogen. One of the natural ways to help regulate estrogen is to start consuming cruciferous vegetables. Another great way to regulate estrogen would be to take sea kelp because you get more iodine and iodine also regulates estrogen. If you are menopausal and you start losing your hair that usually is because of high levels of cortisol related to stress.
  • Selenium supports a hypothyroid condition. If you have a slow thyroid sometimes you lose hair and one of the key minerals for the thyroid to help convert T4 to T3 is selenium. The best food for selenium is Brazil nuts, seafood, seaweed or sea kelp. If you consume sea kelp you also get the iodine that’s also good for your thyroid. One thing to note about that, you can have a hypothyroid condition from other reasons that are not related to selenium. For example, you could have high estrogen. Too much estrogen inhibits thyroid function.  You could have a fatty liver or liver damage that can stop your T4 from converting to T3.  Gut damage from antibiotics or from eating the wrong foods, especially gluten, is damaging to the thyroid.  If you have Hashimoto’s which is usually 90% of all hypothyroid cases, you definitely need to avoid gluten.
  • Increase your vitamin D. You want to get more sleep, to start exercising and to reduce stress.
  • Stress is a huge precursor to hair loss.  In fact, a lot of people, if asked, when did you lose your hair? The answer usually is after an emotional, stressful event because you’re spiking cortisol and cortisol is very damaging to proteins. If this is your situation there are a couple of remedies. Start taking more vitamin D. In fact, you just need to be in the sun more.  If it’s winter, it’s going to be more difficult but more Vitamin D can greatly help your hair and lower your stress.  Vitamin D3 can act like the natural cortisol hormone but without the side effects. It does very similar things as an anti-inflammatory. So, to reduce stress you want to increase your vitamin D and or expose yourself to sun. Start doing daily walks and you want to start exercising to reduce stress.
  • A lot of hair formulas add silica because silica gives the hair its strength. Most spring water has silica. You can even buy silica-rich water which is really good for the hair.  Actually, you will probably notice that your skin, your hair and your nails will all just start growing and become very strong.
  • Ketogenic diet and fasting – if you are female and you have polycystic ovarian syndrome one big side effect is hair loss because you have the spike of androgens and that’s coming from insulin. So just by understanding that simple relationship and lowering the amount of insulin you can help lower androgens and help prevent hair loss. How does that happen? You can start going on a low carb diet that’s called the ketogenic diet. And you can try fasting.
  • Biotin helps proteins in your body especially hair, it will help regrow your hair and prevent hair loss. Biotin is a key B vitamin for the manufacturing of these proteins that gives the hair its structure.  Biotin is made by bacteria, so your own gut makes this vitamin. So many people after they lose the gut microbiome start losing their hair because they don’t have the microbes to make biotin anymore. The food that is loaded with biotin and can help increase your own through your gut bacteria is sauerkraut. It has 100 times more probiotics then in most probiotic supplements and the good bacterium in sauerkraut survives the acid in your stomach.  Also, it gives you massive amounts of vitamin C which is also needed to help grow proteins specifically collagen and keratin.

Here’s What Happens to You When You Cut Out Sugar!

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We’ve all heard that sugar is bad for you but do we know why?  Let’s take a look at what cutting out sugar  would to to our bodies and by understanding this we can learn how to live healthier lives.

Lose Your Appetite for Sugar

Every time you consume sugar it triggers a hormone that pushes your blood sugars down causing a low blood sugar state, essentially hypoglycemia to some degree. This will cause you to crave sugar so by cutting out sugar you get rid of the craving for sugar.

Less Hunger

Sugar keeps you hungry all the time so when you give it up you decrease hunger because you stabilize your blood sugars. Without sugar your cells can be actually fed.  This is because sugar is toxic to the body, and it will start rejecting it.  This is called insulin resistance, when the body is blocking insulin because that controls sugar. What your body is really trying to do is limit amount of sugar inside the cells.  So, the body doesn’t consider sugar a good thing, it’s a bad thing and when you give up sugar it could reverse this process. Without sugar you can now absorb proper amounts of fuel, absorb nutrients much better, and absorb minerals and vitamins.

Less Fatigue

When you consume sugar, you will notice that you feel tired especially after eating a meal. This has to do with blood sugar levels.  Cutting sugar out of your diet allows blood sugar levels to stabilize which means your brain and body are getting the fuel and nutrients it needs for energy.

Loss of Excessive Water and Fat

For the first week off of sugar you’re going to get rid of a lot of water and some fat. But after that you will start to lose both fat and water.  You would be surprised how much fluid you can retain.  Some people within one week can lose about 13 pounds of fluid they are holding which is not healthy for the heart. You will notice fat loss especially on the midsection.  Your waist is one of the best indicators of too much sugar. If you reduce the sugar, the waistline shrinks.

Enhanced Mood

Cutting out sugar will lead you to be a lot calmer, less stressed and you’re going to be in a better mood which is also good for the people around you. Also, your cognitive function will improve because you’re going to feel more focused. You may better concentration and more attention to focus on your projects.

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Improved Skin

Less sugar means better skin.  It is going to look much better, have less acne and more glow. The skin is a reflection of what happens when you consume sugar.  With high sugar levels your insulin goes up and so do the androgen hormones.  In females, high androgen levels will create acne. In a male body the increase insulin will lower testosterone so you’re going to have other problems that are associated with low testosterone.

Less Stiffness

When you cut out sugar you will notice less inflammation and less pain. What happens is that you are converting your fuel source from sugar to fat, and it takes three days of cutting down the carbohydrates and sugar to do so. You may have a worsening of the symptoms for three days but for most people three days is manageable.  But if you take some B vitamins from nutritional yeast and some potassium you probably won’t have any symptoms. At the cellular level your building new enzymes to run your body off fat fuel. Your cells are literally changing over to a different fuel source. You’ll also have decreased inflammation in your arteries which will prevent a clot or plaquing and help reduce the risk of a stroke and a heart attack. Also, you’ll start growing brain cells because your body is running off a different source of fuel called ketones and ketones support the growth of nerve cells.

Healthier Liver

Some of this fat that’s been accumulating in your liver will start to shed and you can use that as fuel. So, you’re initiating a cleansing of the liver. As a side note, if you have a large belly, chances are you have a fatty liver.

Better Kidney Function

If we take a look at a diabetic, the kidneys are the target for the disease. When you actually cut down the amount of sugar and carbs you can improve to their function greatly.

https://www.nature.com/articles/482027a

3 Simple Ingredients To Eliminate Tartar

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What is Tartar

Tartar is dental plaque that is made up of biofilms.  Biofilms are a combination of an outer calcium shell and inside this shell are bacteria.  This is one of bacteria’s survival mechanisms by hiding underneath this calcium shell so that they go undetected from your immune system as well as from antibiotics. In fact, 95% of bacteria in nature live in biofilms.  For example, if you were to take a rock from a stream you would notice a slimy, slippery film on it, that is a biofilm. Biofilms are all over the place and it’s a survival mechanism that’s been going on a very long time.  Anytime you have water, as in saliva, you’re going to have biofilms and if there’s an overabundance, you’re going to get bad breath, issues with inflammation, and receding gums.  Many people get to a point where it’s too much they might have to have a tooth extracted.

How to Prevent and Manage Tartar

Let’s take a look at what to do to prevent it or manage it better.  Something interesting to note is xylitol, the sugar alcohol as in the xylitol gum and xylitol sweeteners, has anti-biofilm properties.  It helps suppress adhesions to your teeth.  So, if you’re going to chew gum make sure it’s xylitol.

There are also natural substances that are anti-biofilm. These are natural herbs like rosemary, clove, thyme, oregano oil, garlic, curcumin which is in turmeric, cinnamon and another compound called NAC. All of these can help reduce biofilms.  However, another simple remedy has just three ingredients. One of these ingredients is baking soda. Baking soda is sodium bicarbonate.  One thing about biofilms, especially the ones that overgrow on your teeth as tartar, is that they can start producing too many acids and the pH will drop to around 3.5 to 5.5. To compensate for the acidity the body starts leeching calcium out of your bones in a process called decalcification. So, it’s very important to make sure the pH in your mouth does not get that acidic. You want neutral or maybe slightly acid but not too much.  The main culprit that produces too much acid is sugar. If you’re consuming too much sugar or you are diabetic, you’re basically feeding the exact food that these bacteria as well as the yeast, especially candida, love. Bacteria and yeast produce the by-product called lactic acid which then causes the pH to decrease. Now the environment starts to become ideal for extracting calcium from teeth which causes cavities. And remember that throughout this process the microbes are using the calcium for housing.  So, using baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) is a great way to increase the pH to make things a little bit more alkaline to help buffer that pH and to not allow calcium to be leached out of the teeth. Also baking soda can help to breakdown these biofilms.  Another very interesting fact about sodium bicarbonate- baking soda, is that it is what your saliva naturally makes to buffer these acids.  So, you’re just using something that your body is already making and therefore has virtually no side effects.

Anti-tartar Recipe

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  • Use ¼ a teaspoon of baking soda.
  • Add ¼ teaspoon hydrogen peroxide. Make sure you get 3% hydrogen peroxide, and you can get it from any drugstore. This is a good compound to help inhibit biofilms from developing as well as killing off bacteria, and yeast like candida. Also, your body makes hydrogen peroxide, and it is a major compound that your body uses to kill microbes. So, you’re adding what your body naturally produces but in higher quantities.
  • Mix with half a cup of water and then use your toothbrush to brush your teeth after you brush your teeth with toothpaste. What this will do is help prevent the biofilms from continuing to come back and your teeth will be nice and smooth.

One last interesting thing to note, there is some interesting research that seems to show a positive correlation between vitamin K2 and inhibiting dental plaque. Some people who actually start taking vitamin K2 that normally comes with vitamin D3, start to notice that the inside of their teeth become smoother. It’s another thing to try but in general vitamin K2 is all about transporting calcium into the bone and out of the soft tissues.

Slow Metabolism? Let’s Kick It Into High Gear!

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There are a variety of reasons why your metabolism is slow but we’ve rounded up the most common reasons some of which you may already know about but there are some that you have probably not taken into consideration and might help you or someone you know on their journey to weight loss and better health.

Age Slows Metabolism

As we age there is a decrease in growth hormone. But there are things that you can do to increase this hormone. One of the most powerful things is fasting and when fast you have the potential to increase growth hormone by 2000%. The second most powerful thing that can increase growth hormone is exercise. But it has to be intense, as in short bursts of high intensity with lots of rest like high intensity interval training.

Menopause

If you’re female and you’re over age 50, the body goes through changes and the ovaries go into retirement. The adrenal glands act as a backup and what happens is you get a spike in cortisol. Many women going through menopause experience many negative effects because of this elevated level of cortisol. So, it’s very important to take care of the adrenals right before you go through menopause and also during and after.

History of Pregnancies

Going through a pregnancy not only creates a lot of trauma on a female body but it raises estrogen and estrogen causes the production of fat. If you want to help regulate estrogen, you want to consume things like cruciferous vegetables. You also want to avoid things that increase estrogen like dairy, flax seeds, and soy because they can increase estrogen.

History of Dieting

If you have a history of dieting it is harder to lose weight down the road because there is an adaptation by the body to slow down metabolism. So, dieting incorrectly, especially when you’re cutting calories and you’re keeping your carbs high is not beneficial.  Keeping your calories filled with nutrients and just eating less frequently such as in intermittent fasting, not cutting calories is the best approach. A low-fat diet is not beneficial because you need that fat to support the endocrine system.

History of High Carb Diets

High carb diets generate insulin resistance which will result in a high level of insulin.  A high insulin level will completely block your ability to lose weight.

Chronic stress

Chronic stress is equivalent to consuming sugar because it turns things in your body to glucose.

 

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Hypothyroidism

90% of hypothyroidism is Hashimoto’s disease which is more closely related to the immune system.  It’s not really a thyroid problem its an immune system issue usually caused by some issues in the gut.  So, if you have Hashimoto’s, you should definitely be on a probiotic, selenium which is a powerful antioxidant and vitamin D to decrease inflammation. The other versions of hypothyroidism involve having a problem with too much estrogen because as you increase estrogen the thyroid shuts down. Also 80% of the thyroid hormone T4 gets converted to T3 the active form through the liver with the help of bile. So, if you don’t have a gallbladder or if you have a fatty liver where you’re not making enough bile you need to start taking bile salts that will help you convert T4 to T3.

Fatty liver

We just mentioned that the liver helps convert T4 to T3, but a fatty liver can definitely slow down the ability to lose weight.  If the liver is fatty, you’re not going to have the ability to regulate certain levels of cortisol, estrogen, insulin and growth hormones.  Choline is recommended as well as doing a healthy keto plan and doing fasting because this can reverse fatty liver.

Obesity

One of the problems with obesity is that the more fat you have the more estrogen you’re going to make and as mentioned before, estrogen can make it difficult to lose weight.  So, overtime as you lose more fat it will be easier to lose weight because you don’t have that estrogen that’s countering your ability to lose weight. One thing to remember is that here are three hormones- cortisol estrogen and insulin that could block the seven fat burning hormones.

Snacking

Frequent eating is the biggest killer to your metabolism because every time you eat you stimulate insulin.

Regular consumption of alcohol

When you consume a little wine here in there unfortunately that wine not only has carbohydrates, but it can really block the liver’s ability to help you tap into burning fat and developing ketones. So, let’s say you have a glass of wine tonight, you won’t burn fat for 48 hours.  If you drink more wine, it could go up to 72 hours. If you’re doing this every other day or every third day, it could be the reason why you’re not losing weight.

Early childhood infections

This relates to people who said they were always overweight. If you ask them “what about when you’re two years old?” they might say “I was skinny”.  Then the question is “at what age did you start gaining weight?”  Many times, the answer includes after an early childhood infection such as a sinus infection, asthma or some type of problem that involves taking a drug- antibiotics, inhalers or some type of medication that somehow influenced your metabolism. So, it’s interesting to note that an alteration in metabolism very early on has some connections with early weight gain.

Medications

A lot of people are on medications, and this is not a suggestion to go off medications but perhaps you want to have a discussion with your doctor to come up with a solution so the dependency on medication lessened.  Prednisone, steroids, anti-anxiety, anti-depressive medication and antibiotics all will increase weight and can slow your metabolism down.

The Connection Between Apple Cider Vinegar and Weight Loss

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Apple cider vinegar has many benefits but first, let’s dispel a myth that apple cider vinegar contains a lot of nutrients because it really doesn’t but what it does have is something even more important. In fact, the real benefits of apple cider vinegar works for so many conditions has to do with this one thing it has called acetic acid. The reason it works is because as we age our bodies become alkaline.   Now this might go against what you have heard.  When we talk about pH, we really have to understand that every part of your body has a different pH.  So, if someone says you are too acidic, what pH are they talking about – the urine, the saliva? The real true indicator of pH for a body should be in the blood but it is very difficult to test that because as soon as you take the blood out the body it oxidizes, and it can change the pH right away.  So, to determine pH we must go by symptoms and so if you ever wanted to really know just search all the conditions of acidosis (too acidic) and all the conditions of alkalosis (to alkaline) and you will be able to see which ones you have.  So, what we are looking at is the blood pH and most people have a blood pH which is excessively alkaline.

Benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar

If you can change your pH just slightly it can result in great effects because pH is so important in transporting minerals and allowing enzymes to work to stimulate the thyroid and increase metabolism. The pH of acetic acid is very acidic at 2.5. It is almost like stomach acid pH so it’s really good for the stomach. People use apple cider vinegar for heartburn and acid reflex indigestion because these are conditions where your stomach is too alkaline and the valve at the top of the stomach does not close. And, as you age especially over the age of 50,60 and 70 your pH in your stomach starts to go higher and higher so it becomes more alkaline. Therefore, you need more acid as you age to be able to digest protein and absorb minerals. When your pH is too alkaline you cannot absorb calcium or minerals so what happens, especially with calcium, is that it starts building up in the soft tissues throughout the body. When calcium builds up in soft tissue it results in calcification. What this looks like as you age is stiff joints or arthritis, bursitis, calcification on the eyes that is cataracts, on the nerves, kidney stones, gallstones, and the teeth as tartar. All these issues could come from a pH problem. Alkalinity could also be caused by too much stress because high stress increases cortisol and cortisol makes your body too alkaline.

Another benefit of apple cider vinegar is for the immune system. Most people will take vitamin C for a cold or for virus infection. But it is not the vitamin C necessarily that is creating positive effect what is creating the positive effect is the ascorbic acid in the vitamin C complex.  What most people will see on the store shelves is a not truly a vitamin C complex but instead ascorbic acid and corn starch. You would be much better off taking apple cider vinegar to help your immune system if you get a cold, fever, or viral infection.

A concoction you can try is two teaspoons of ACV, one teaspoon of real lemon juice in water before each meal and along with the many other benefits it may help with weight loss because it stimulates the thyroid. Another recommendation is to make sure you are taking the fat sample vitamins to transport that calcium out like vitamin D and K2.

When not to take ACV

Three main conditions that where you want to avoid adding vinegar to your diet:

  • Ulcers– because you are putting acid into your stomach on an open wound that is going to make things a lot worse. But a good remedy for ulcers is zinc carnosine, you take 50 milligrams three times a day. Try this dosage for a month and then you can reduce it with a blend of all the trace minerals because anytime you take one trace mineral without all the trace minerals you can throw things out of balance. Another thing to help ulcers would be to take chlorophyll mixed with water on an empty stomach.
  • Gastritis– this is a situation where the stomach is inflamed, and you are getting a sour regurgitation of acid that comes up through the esophagus. So, if the stomach is inflamed and you add more acid, it is going to make it worse.  A good remedy for this condition is DGL licorice and probiotics unless you have SIBO (small intestinal bacterial overgrowth. It also would not hurt to take zinc for this condition as well in addition to that marshmallow root.
  • Zollinger Ellison Syndrome- this is a condition in which there is a tumor which is usually in around the pancreas or could be in small intestine that is causing an increased production of gastric acid.

9 Amazing Reasons Why You Need Nutritional Yeast

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Nutritional yeast is a natural source of vitamin B1.  But be aware that when you buy nutritional yeast they will usually fortify it with synthetic vitamins which are sourced from things like coal tar acetate, ammonia, and hydrochloric acid.  But synthetic B1 is not the same as a natural B1. Synthetics are a lot cheaper and natural B1 is a lot more expensive because you have to use more raw material from some natural sources to get a very tiny amount of the vitamin. But it’s totally worth it because the effects that the B vitamins, specifically B1, has on the body are important and widespread especially nowadays as  it relates to stress.

Benefits of Nutritional Yeast

Nutritional Powerhouses

Yeast are vitamin producing machines, they make B vitamins and amino acids. In fact, nutritional yeast is a complete protein. It has all of the essential amino acids and has quite a few trace minerals too like selenium for the conversion from T4 to T3. It also has zinc and copper which is very important in your immune system and in building testosterone. It has chromium which is really good for blood sugars. It is loaded with phosphorus which makes up something called ATP – adenosine triphosphate which is the energy currency of your body. It will give you more energy. It also has beta glucan; you may have heard that when people are talking about oatmeal or consuming Cheerios because these grains are so-called heart healthy. Beta glucan is a type of fiber that can help lower your cholesterol. But what about all the carbohydrates in cereals that’s going to raise insulin and create other issues. Beta glucan can also help with the immune system.

Energy

B1 is the most important water-soluble vitamin, vitamin D is the most important fat-soluble vitamin. B1 is needed in all of your cells in the energy factory of your cells called the mitochondria. When you take oxygen, fuel, and a spark plug you get energy. The spark plug in our body is thiamine (B1), without the spark plug (B1) you cannot generate energy. If you give the body too much fuel, as in a high carb diet, you’re going to flood the “engine”.  So in our bodies if we have too much glucose, as in too many carbohydrates, the requirement for B1 rises dramatically higher and if you’re not consuming B1 you’re going feel tired all the time and that’s called chronic fatigue syndrome. So, one of the big benefits of nutritional yeast is it gives you energy. It’s great for athletes to maintain endurance.

Stress, Anxiety, Panic Attacks

There are other benefits of nutritional yeast but first we need to explain part of the brain called the limbic system. It has different structures in it that do different things related to homeostasis which is the body’s ability to adapt to the environment to maintain a constant state of function internally.  And also, you have the autonomic nervous system that’s working with this system. So, we have both the flight or fight mechanism (sympathetic nervous system), and we have the rest and digest (parasympathetic nervous system).  Sympathetic and parasympathetic – one system is trying to speed everything up and adapt to stress the other system is trying to calm things down to help you digest and help you sleep at night.  Of all the structures in the brain, the limbic system, is the part that needs a tremendous amount of oxygen because there’s a lot of oxidation going on. So, the need for B1 is really high and so that part of the brain is very susceptible to a vitamin B1 deficiency. In one part of that system called the amygdala gives you the emotion of fear. It’s a survival mechanism and so if you are deficient in B1 you’re going to find that you have different states of fear like anxiety, nervousness, and panic.   If you’re sleeping at night and you have nightmares it could mean you’re deficient in Vitamin B1.  Panic attacks could be caused by a severe B1 deficiency.  So taking nutritional yeast can greatly help anxiety and stress and make you feel very calm. It helps to decrease irritability and the sensation of feeling aggravated. If you have a low tolerance to stress, then you may benefit from nutritional yeast. Another symptom of a B1 deficiency that can be improved with nutritional yeast is just general confusion, lack of clarity, or lack of focus.

Better Sleep

If you go to bed at night and you start thinking excessively, the thoughts just keep going and you can’t turn them off, taking nutritional yeast before bed even though it increases energy, won’t keep you up at night. In fact, it will calm down things so you can drift off into a night sleep.

Good for Hair Growth

Nutritional yeast is loaded with the trace minerals and amino acids so it’s really good for your hair. If you’re losing hair nutritional yeast could help you.

POTS (Postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome)

Nutritional yeast also can help a condition called POTS.  This is the condition where you stand up and you feel dizzy, and you might feel like you want to faint or pass out.  That is part of the autonomic nervous system’s inability to adapt to stress.  Nutritional yeast will support the autonomic nervous system’s ability to cope with physical stress.

Pulse Rate

Another really positive benefit is for your pulse rate. The autonomic nervous system controls a lot of things, but it definitely controls your pulse rate. So if you’re deficient in B1 you might find that your pulse rate goes higher and higher. You might find that you get palpitations.

Breathing

Nutritional yeast can help you with that another thing that is connected with the B1 deficiency and that is your breathing.  Let’s say your breathing is off, which it usually is during a stress event, nutritional yeast can help you with that because anything that is connected to the autonomic nervous system can be improved with vitamin B1.

Satiety

Another interesting thing that a B1 deficiency will manifest as is either excessive hunger or no appetite. A mild B1 deficiency will cause you not to be satisfied after you eat something so you’re going to want to keep eating something and you’re just not going to be satisfied. But a very severe B1 deficiency can cause you to lose your appetite.  It seems the centres in the brain that are satiety centres that help satisfy you are very vulnerable to a B1 deficiency.

How to Achieve Your Anti Aging Goals in 2023

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These days there is a million beauty products you can buy that are targeted to anti-aging.   But the secret is that how you look on the outside is a reflection of what’s going on inside and what you put into your body.  What we look like on the outside is the result of damaged proteins. So, the more damaged proteins the older you will look.

The first thing we need to look at are AGE’s – advanced glycation end products.  These are combinations of a sugar molecule with a protein molecule. So, if you take sugar and protein and heat them up, you end up with AGE’s. These are proteins that are now damaged and unavailable, and they can create a lot of problems throughout the body, but they can also make you look really old.  Another example is a combination of sugar and fat, for example, ice cream, you’re basically eating glucose, lactose, sugar with milk proteins. This a product that is loaded with these AGE’s. Another one would be BBQ ribs, a combination of protein and a high sugar sauce and you heat it. When someone consumes BBQ ribs, they might notice about an hour later that their body is sluggish, or they have a lot of sinus issues. If you drink soda, you’re consuming sugar and caramel colouring.  Not only will you have the production of AGE’s, but all the sugar in your body, with the temperature of 98.6, is going to combine with your own blood proteins for example and other proteins and create damaged protein. In fact, when you get your A1C tested, you’re measuring the accumulation of excess glucose in your bloodstream over a period of three months. So, when you get your A1C and its high, it just tells us how much glycation is going on in your red blood cells. It should be in the lower 5’s.  If it’s higher then you’re blood is exposed to a lot of sugar creating glycation and that protein now is damaged and it’s going to cause a lot of damage. French fries, another example, starch which is essentially glucose molecules stuck together and then deep fried. So, we have fat plus the starch, deep fried, it equals a tremendous amount of AGE’s.

How to Get Rid of AGE’S

A process called autophagy, is like an oven that can cook and breakdown AGE’s – damaged proteins and old proteins as in, old skin cells and it repurposes these proteins. Autophagy contains the word ‘auto’ meaning self and ‘phagy’ meaning eating. So, your body is eating its own proteins, in a way it’s repurposing or recycling old, damaged proteins and making new ones. This condition is good for old, wrinkled skin and it’s an essential anti-aging.  The best way to get into autophagy is through fasting.

More Ways to Look Youthful

Another recommendation for youthful skin  and anti-aging is to get a certain amount of sun but just make it’s a moderate amount of exposure. There’s certain types of light frequencies or wavelengths like infrared that tend to buffer the damaging effect of UV light. The benefit of infrared wavelengths can be extremely useful to looking youthful because it’s going to generate a lot of melatonin. Melatonin is not all about sleep it’s also an antioxidant which gets rid of free radical damage by all of your cells.

Our environment is just filled with chemicals, poisons, drugs, etc that cause us to age faster. It’s just really hard to avoid that but thankfully we have our liver that can dismantle these poisons. It can detoxify heavy metals, pesticides, insecticides, pollution, chemicals in your in the water, chemicals in the food. The liver is part of phase one phase two detoxification. Your liver has certain enzymes that can be boosted with certain foods to help get rid of poisons. So, an important part of looking youthful is having a healthy liver. If your liver is cirrhotic, fatty, or inflamed you’re going to look older.  There are foods you can eat to strengthen your liver. Cruciferous vegetables have certain phytonutrients that can boost your natural enzymes to help phase one phase two detoxification. Vegetables have antioxidants that help act as a scavenger or a sponge to clean up free radical damage that’s occurring due to inflammation, chemicals, heavy metals etc.  So, as you add more cruciferous vegetables like kale, broccoli, brussel sprouts, you are going to create a healthy liver. Also, it’s important to remember that a youthful look has to be created continually.

You also need bile to help eliminate these toxins. It’s very important for that youthful look not just in the elimination of toxic waste but also in the extraction of fat-soluble vitamins A, E and D and Omega-3 fatty acids which you need for anti-aging.  All these fat-soluble compounds are what you need to make the skin look youthful and are dependent on bile. So, if you do not have enough bile because of various reasons for example, a fatty liver or you’re on a low-fat diet, or you have gallstones and you have to remove your gallbladder.  Bile deficiency will cause you to end up with a deficiency of the fat-soluble vitamins and omega-3 fatty acids, all the things that you really need to look youthful. Therefore a combination of enough bile and consuming enough fat to get these fat-soluble vitamins are really necessary to have that youthful look.

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What Kind of Foods to Eat?

  •  Salmon is amazing for omega-3 fatty acids, which are essential as anti-inflammatories and counter all the Omega six fatty acids that are also in our diet like the corn oil, canola soy oil, cotton seed oil.
  •  Egg yolks have a lot of good vitamin A. Choline in egg yolks is great for a fatty liver and helps regulate cholesterol as does the Lecithin in the yolks. Also, you need foods high in cholesterol to build healthy membranes in your cells, to build healthy sex hormones that make your skin look youthful like testosterone and estrogen. Butter (grass-fed) can give you a lot of vitamin A.
  • The best source of Vitamin E is sunflower seeds but it’s also in the leafy greens, nuts and vegetables.
  • Another good oil would be cod liver oil because it has vitamin D, A, and omega-3 fatty acids.
  • Beef liver and other organ meats are loaded with these fat-soluble vitamins.
  • Extra virgin olive oil, avocado oil is good for your skin.  In other words, you don’t want to go low fat.

We talked earlier about antioxidants in foods, but your own body has antioxidant networks which increase when you exercise, and when you fast. So, fasting helps you with about every aspect of looking youthful.

Your microbiome – your microbes in your gut help make fat fatty acids called short chain fatty acids which are very important in controlling blood sugars, and in getting rid of insulin.  They also make B vitamins that help your immune system and decrease inflammation. On top of that they make secondary bile which is also very important in the extraction of the fat-soluble vitamins. So having a really good microbiome is so essential in that youthful look. The best foods for establishing this microbiome is fermented vegetables like sauerkraut, pickles and other fermented vegetables. They are very important because they give you the prebiotics and probiotics at the same time.

Things to Change

Consuming a high carb diet is probably the fastest way to look older because sugar is like rust, it oxidizes everywhere in your body including your skin.  And every time you consume glucose you also at the same time block vitamin C, an enormously powerful antioxidant. You’re also depleting other antioxidants from your body when you consume sugar like vitamin B1.

Stress puts your body into two situations. First, your body is now tapping into glucose as fuel and it’s turning things into glucose.  So even though you may be off carbs, your body is still consuming carbs. Secondly, it is creating a catabolic or breakdown affect of proteins. Minimizing stress has many positive affects on the mind and body, including your skin.