Health Benefits of Intermittent Fasting

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Intermittent fasting has become very popular recently, and it is simply when you eat for a certain  period of time during the day and fast for the of remaining time of the day. The most common way of practicing this is the 16:8 ration, which is eating for 8 hours and fasting for 16 hours. However, there are many other ways and variations to practice intermittent fasting. It is up to you to choose the time period that is most convenient to fast and to eat. Although intermittent fasting is often thought of as a way to lose weight, it isn’t always the case. Intermittent fasting is an eating habit, and a common misconception is that if you fast you can eat whatever you want during your eating window. Like any other eating pattern, you should opt for healthy eating habits. The following are a few other health benefits of intermittent fasting:

  1. Reduces inflammation. Fasting causes autophagy, which is when the body gets rid of damaged or old cells, helping the body cleanse it self, thus reducing inflammation. Intermittent fasting also causes your body to use up all of its sugar stores, and then forcing it to turn to fat as fuel. When fat is used as fuel, it creates ketones which block part of the immune system responsible for regulating inflammatory disorders.
  2. Insulin levels drop. This makes it easier for your body to burn fat
  3. Creates brain cells. Studies have shown that fasting stimulates and increases the rate of neurogenesis in the brain, which is the development and growth of new cell/nerve tissue. This may increase brain performance, focus, mood, and memory.
  4. Gives you energy. Intermittent fasting increases the creation of new mitochondria. Since mitochondria are the powerhouse of the cells in your body that take the food you consume and turn it into energy, the creation of new ones will boost your energy.

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The Importance of Gut Health

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illustration-fruits-vegetables-grains_0What is considered as “The Gut?”

It is typically considered your digestive tract – which includes a muscular tube that starts at your mouth and ends at your anus.  The food and drink journey is about 30 feet long and works with other parts of your digestive system to break down food and drink down into smaller molecules of nutrients. The blood absorbs these and carries them throughout the body for cells to use for energy, growth, and repair.

Why your Gut is Important

The gut is referred to as the “second brain” a lot because of its many important functions in the body. It is responsible for the immune system, digestive system, how well your body absorbs minerals/vitamins, capacity to remove toxins from your body, and well-being of your mental health.

Many are surprised to find out gut health can affect mood, and mental health.  Hence it is important to maintain a healthy gut.

The Enteric Nervous System (ENS) is what lines the gastrointestinal tracts, and this is important because the ENS is not only responsible for the immune system, but also for communicating with the brain regarding the body’s gut. There are certain types of bacteria that are helpful for your gut and types that are harmful, and when there is an imbalance of these, it damages the mucosal layer in your gut. In turn this leaves you susceptible for the food you consume to enter your bloodstream, thus triggering your immune system, and causing food sensitivity, inflammation, and other symptoms. The ENS also sends messages to your Central Nervous System (CNS), which can affect mood, memory and cognitive function. Lastly, most of the body’s serotonin is cultivated by a certain bacteria in the gut, which can also affect your mood.

Ways to Heal your Gut

There are a few things you can do to heal your gut naturally. First you need to figure out what is damaging your gut, like food sensitivity, too much consumption of processed fatty foods, or if you’ve taken antibiotics recently as these are damaging to the gut. You should also make sure you are getting enough prebiotics and probiotics. Probiotics are helpful bacteria for your gut and prebiotics induce the growth of these helpful bacteria. Good sources of probiotics are kombucha, sauerkraut, yogurt and kefir. Prebiotics can be found in bananas, onion, garlics, jicama, and oats. If you believe you have a leaky gut, or any other type of gut issue speak to a physician first.


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How to Protect your Skin this Summer

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sun raysWhen you think of summer, one of the first things that may pop into your head is tanning. Sure, it is good to go outside to get some vitamin D from the sun, but it is important that you take the precautions necessary to protect your skin by wearing sunscreen. Studies show that only about 30% of American women and 14% of American men wear sunscreen, which are incredibly low numbers. Many cases of cancer could have been prevented by simply wearing sunscreen before going outside. The following are some tips you should follow to make sure your skin is protected this summer:

  1. A very common misconception is that just because it is cloudy outside, you don’t need to wear sunscreen. Up to 80% of the sun’s UV rays can pass through clouds, which is why people sometimes get sunburned on cloudy days.
  2. Wear sunscreen under your makeup. There are foundations and powders that contain SPF(sun protection factor), but you would need about 10 times the normal amount of foundation/powder to get the right protection from the sun. You should opt for a moisturizer with broad spectrum sunscreen with an SPF rating of at least 15, and apply foundation over it.
  3. If you are planning to go in the water, be sure to wear water resistant SPF
  4. Reapply sunscreen every 2 hours or 1 hour if you are in water or sweating
  5. Limit your time directly under the sun under sand or water. These surfaces reflect the damaging rays from the sun, which increases the likelihood of you getting sunburned
  6. Don’t spend too much time under the sun between 10:00 am and 4:00 pm because the sun’s rays are most intense during these times

Take Control of Your Health – www.HealthOneLabs.com


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How to Prepare for Spring Allergies

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As spring is soon approaching, so are the spring allergies. If you suffer from allergies you may want to take some preventative steps, so that instead of having to suffer through the symptoms of your allergies you can actually enjoy the spring season. The following are some ways you can prepare for allergies:

  1. You should see an allergist before your allergies actually start.Typically, the best time to go before the pollen peaks and is visible on the trees is in February. The allergist may start you on antihistamines that  were successful in previous years.
  2. Pollen is the most known culprit for spring allergies, but mold can actually worsen your allergy symptoms. Be sure to check your basement, kitchen and bathrooms for mold. Mold can be removed from hard surfaces with water and detergent.
  3. Keep your doors and windows closed. As beautiful spring can be, keeping your windows and doors open to let the breeze in will also bring the pollen into your house.
  4. If possible, try to not go outside when the pollen count is at its highest, which is around 5 am and 10 am.
  5. You may want to consider nasal irrigation. Studies have shown that using nasal irrigation twice a day for 3 to 6 weeks help wash the spring allergens out of your sinuses.

For more information, visit this website that answers some FAQ.

 


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Benefits of Aromatherapy

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Aromatherapy is becoming more widely known and used throughout the US, but what is it? Aromatherapy is when you inhale different volatile plants, also referred to as essential oils, to help with many different health conditions. Remember that use of all natural and synthetic substances should be discussed with your physician to ensure there are no negative consequences or drug interactions.

Different essential oils have different health benefits, the following are some essential oils and their health benefits:

  1. Increases energy levels: Cardamon, cinnamon, black pepper, tea tree, jasmine and sage are some essential oils that can help with your energy levels. Most people often lean on stimulants like coffee, energy pills, or cigarettes for a quick pick me up, but these essential oils can help without the damaging side effects on the body. These essential oils increase circulation, and stimulate the mind and body which in turn helps to boost your energy.
  2. Accelerates healing: Rosehip, calendula, lavender, and everlasting are all essential oils that help speed up healing processes in your body. The increased blood flow and oxygen to the wounds is what helps to speed the healing up. These essential oils have anti-microbial properties that protects the body during the healing process. It can also help relieve and reduce severity of skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis.
  3. Helps reduce headaches: Eucalyptus, sandalwood, rosemary, and peppermint are some essential oils known to help with headaches/migraines. These oils can be a great replacement for pharmaceuticals like Ibuprofen. They will not only eliminate your headache, but also help with stress and anxiety.
  4. Managing sleeping habits: Essential oils like lavender, chamomile, rose and jasmine have sedative properties that regulate your sleep. Lack of sleep inhibits you from performing your best on daily activities which could reduce your productiveness throughout the day. Instead of taking hypnotic or soporific drugs to help you sleep, you may want to give essential oil a try. They help realign your circadian rhythm creating a balanced sleeping schedule and has you waking up feeling more energized and refreshed.
  5. Stress relieving: One of the most known uses of essential oils is that helps reduce stress. Some essential oils for this are bergamot, lavender, lemon, and peppermint. These oils are very soothing and even help with anxiety.
  6. Boosts immune system: Oils like lemon, peppermint, cinnamon, and oregano can help boost your immune system. They have antibacterial, antifungal, and antimicrobial properties.

Additional source for essential oils and cancer


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Food Allergies vs Food Intolerance

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food allergies

Food allergies and food intolerance are often used interchangeably because they can have some of the same signs, but they are two very different things. When you are allergic to a food, your immune system reacts and affects many organs in the body. Sometimes allergic reactions can be severe and even life threatening. Food intolerance reactions are usually less severe and often only cause digestion problems. If you are allergic to something you cannot consume the food at all, whereas one can ingest foods if you have an intolerance although it will cause discomfort at some level.  Food intolerance can be due to many different things like sensitivity to food additives, irritable bowel syndrome, celiac disease, or the lack of enzymes required to fully digest food. If you have a reaction after eating a certain food, you should consult a physician so that they can determine if you have a food allergy or are intolerant to that specific food.

 


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Omega 3 Guide

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Omega 3 fatty acids are polyunsaturated fatty acids and are among the most essential nutrients. Omega 3 fats are necessary for your health in general. There are 3 types of Omega 3 fats:  eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and alpha-linoleic acid (ALA). You can get EPA and DHA from fish and krill, among other marine animals, and ALA from plants such as chia, hemp, and flax seeds. ALA is turns into DHA and EPA at a low ratio, which means that even if you consume large amounts of ALA, your body will only be able to convert it to small amount of DHA and EPA. This is why it’s recommended you get your Omega 3 fats from animals, like fish. Omega 3 fats have so many benefits like reducing risk of heart disease, reducing and normalizing triglyceride levels, increasing cerebral circulation, and maintaining dopamine levels high in the brain. It is also important that you have a balance of Omega 6 and Omega 3 fats in your body. The recommended ratio is 1:1, but the average ratio is 20:1-50:1. An excess of Omega 6 encourages production of inflammation in your body, so it is important you consume enough Omega 3 fats. Now that you know all of the benefits of Omega 3, you may be wondering where you get it, and a few sources for Omega 3 fats are fish, fish oil, krill oil, and cod liver oil. If you are looking to check your Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acid levels, you can order these for $99.95 at https://www.healthonelabs.com/tests_offer/buytest/254/.


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Cholesterol-HDL Explained

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High-Density Lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol is often referred to as the “good” cholesterol because it essentially removes the harmful cholesterol (LDL) from where it shouldn’t be, thus reducing risk of heart disease. This is why it is very important to not have low levels of this “good” cholesterol. Often times when people think of cholesterol, they think of it as being damaging to your body, but it is actually an essential fat that helps stabilize the cells in your body.

cholesterol imageAs mentioned before, HDL removes LDL from places it shouldn’t be and takes it to the liver, so that it can be reprocessed. It also helps to maintain the inner walls of blood vessels, which in turn helps prevent heart attacks. The ideal level of HDL is 60 mg/dL or higher, and is considered protective against heart disease. Less than 40 mg/dL is considered being at high risk for heart disease. There are a few lifestyle changes may consider if you are trying to increase your HDL levels, such as eating a healthy diet which means avoiding saturated and trans fat, carbohydrates (especially sugar), and eating more foods high in fiber. You can also increase HDL levels by losing fat, especially around your waist, and doing regular exercise (about 30 minutes per day). If you would like to check your cholesterol levels you can order it at https://www.healthonelabs.com/tests_offer/buytest/37/ for $39.95.  Please consult with your physician if you have any questions about your cholesterol and other lab results.

 


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Stomach Flu vs Food Poisoning

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PDL-stomach-flu-vs-the-fluOften times when people have stomach pain, they either wonder if it’s a stomach bug or if it was something they ate. Sometimes people even use stomach flu and food poisoning interchangeably, as if they were the same thing. These two things are very different, which means a different course of treatment is required for them. The stomach flu/virus is a viral infection that attacks the digestive system, and is very contagious. Some symptoms of the stomach flu are nausea/vomiting, diarrhea, stomach cramps, dizziness, fever and loss of appetite. The treatment is simply to get some rest, stay hydrated, avoid solid food for a few hours, and take OTC drugs until you start to feel better. The virus typically lasts 24-48 hours, and it is suggested you consult your doctor if you still don’t feel better after 2 days or if your symptoms worsen. Food poisoning is caused by bacteria, parasites, or viruses on food you digested. The bacteria can create poisonous substances that inflame the intestine. Symptoms usually happen about 6 hours after consuming the food, or in some cases it could take several days. Most people usually experience vomiting, nausea, fever, diarrhea, and/or stomach pain. You will be able to tell if you have food poisoning if someone else who consumed a particular food is also sick, or if you’ve eaten unrefrigerated foods. Symptoms can last anywhere from a few hours to days, but for the most part people start to feel relief in a day. If you believe you have food poisoning, it is very important to remain hydrated.


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What are the Healthiest and Tastiest Coffee?

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When most people think of coffee, they think of a quick pick me up for the day. What most people don’t know is that it’s rich in antioxidants known as polyphenols.  One very important one in coffee is chlorogenic acid (CGA). CGA helps to stop oxidation and reduce inflammation in the body. Some coffee beans have higher amounts of CGAs and are usually grown at high elevation and near the equator. A few places that grow coffee beans with higher quantity of CGAs is Ethiopia, Brazil, Kenya, and Columbia. The following are a some coffees with the highest content of CGAs at the grocery store: Dunkin Donuts Original Blend and McCafe Premium Roast Decaf/Medium Roast. Artisanal hand-roasted coffees also have high amounts of CGAs, almost 50% more.

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Brand is not the only discriminator to consider.  The type of roast you buy is also important. Light and medium roasts tend to preserve CGAs better because the beans are not roasted at higher temperatures as those coffees labeled “dark roast.”  You should also opt for a fresh ground coffee, because pre grounded coffee usually loses CGAs. Studies have shown that 3 to 5 cups of coffee daily is the desired amount for better health. Remember you can always drink high-polyphenol decaf coffees which can offset some of caffeine’s side affects of irritability, sleep inhibition or increased heart rate.

Take Control of your Health at www.HealthOneLabs.com

 


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