Health Tips - Issue 7

  1. Did you know that drinking one glass of water 30 minutes before eating will prepare your digestive system for food and will minimize your hunger? This healthy practice can also help you have more energy throughout the day.

  2. If you feel a cold coming on, you can often stop it in its tracks by taking a combination of vitamins A and C, along with garlic capsules. Take vitamin A once daily at a dose of between 50,000 to 100,000 IU, and vitamin C in powdered form in 3-4 times a day (1500-2000 mg for each does), along with one garlic capsule each time you take vitamin C. As a precaution, do this for 3-5 days to ensure your cold does not return.

  3. We all know that exercise is good for us. To maintain your health, you should aim to exercise for 45-60 minutes at least 3-4 days a week. To enhance the health benefits you get from exercising, follow your workouts by supplementing with fish oil capsules, a rich source of healthy omega-3 essential fatty acids (EFAs). Recent research shows that combining exercise with fish oil supplements improves cholesterol levels and blood vessel function, and can also improve your ability to shed body fat.

  4. Did you know that the spiritual practice of giving a prayer of thanksgiving before you eat also has health benefits? It's true. Pausing to "say Grace" before you eat helps to "quiet" your body and mind, which in turn helps to optimize digestion.

  5. Food allergies and sensitivities are among the most common chronic, yet undiagnosed, health problems today. If you think you might be allergic or sensitive to some of the foods you enjoy eating, here is an easy test that you can perform at home to find out. A few minutes before you eat, when you are relaxed and sitting down, take your pulse with your fingers, counting the number of pulses that occur over 60 seconds. Then eat a bite of food to which you think you might be allergic or sensitive. Then take your pulse 20 minutes later. If your second pulse reading exceeds your first reading by ten points or more, most likely you are allergic or sensitive to that food. For more accurate results, perform pulse test with the same food on consecutive days.

  6. Did you know that most Americans eat no more than 20 types of food, and often eat the same foods on a nearly daily basis? Because of this, they are depriving themselves of the wide range of vitamins, minerals, enzymes and other essential nutrients that your body needs to stay healthy. If you fall into this category, make it a point to expand your food palette by eating a greater variety of foods. For best results, choose organically grown and raised foods, avoiding the junk and processed foods that are all too prevalent in the standard American diet.

  7. Did you know that laughing is good for your health? It's true. Research has shown that a joyful laugh boosts immunity and reduces stress, as well as improving the flow of life-giving oxygen to your body's cells, tissues, and organs. To enhance your health, make it a habit to laugh and find the humor in life's situations on a daily basis.

  8. You know you have to breathe, but did you know that it matters how you do it? Most of us tend to breathe too shallowly, which reduces oxygen intake. And when we when we're tense or stressed, we sometimes even forget to breathe altogether. Get in the habit of breathing deeply for a few minutes three to five times each day. Inhaling deeply for a few minutes can counteract stress and reduce stored tension - and also increases your energy.

  9. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the indoor air we breathe can be as much as 100 times more polluted than outdoor air. Since the vast majority of us spend most of our days inside, it's important that we ensure the quality of the indoor air we breathe. One of the easiest ways that you can do so is by placing plants throughout your home and work environments. Not only do plants supply more oxygen to the air, they also make it moister and filter out carbon monoxide and potentially harmful organic chemicals.

  10. Did you know that unexpressed and inappropriately expressed anger are health risks according to a number of research studies? If you find yourself unable to appropriately express your anger, consider working with a counselor who can help you. Not only will you start to feel better psychologically, you will also start to improve your physical health.

  11. Is your bedroom conducive to healthy, restful sleep? It isn't if it does not receive adequate amounts of fresh air or contains electric clocks, televisions and other electrical appliances placed in close proximity to your bed. To help improve sleep, go to bed with your bedroom window open and be sure that fresh air circulates through your bedroom during the day. Also be sure to place all electrical appliances ten feet or more away from your bed. (Ideally, you should consider unplugging them during sleep hours.) Finally, sleep in a darkened environment, which triggers your brain to produce an adequate supply of "sleep hormones."

  12. Do you suffer from high blood pressure? If so, you might want to consider a visit to a chiropractor. Recent research has found that elevated blood pressure levels can be caused by misalignments of the spinal vertebrae, especially the Atlas vertebra that is located at the top of the spine, at the base of the skull. Correcting a misaligned spine can improve blood pressure readings. Regular chiropractic treatment can also help to prevent high blood pressure from occurring in the first place.

  13. If you are trying to lose weight, here's an easy way to increase your metabolism. Start your day with an egg breakfast. Prepare the eggs anyway you like them. Then add cayenne or other forms of red pepper, all of which contain capsaicin. Capsaicin offers a number of weight-loss benefits, including increasing your metabolism and decreasing your desire for food later in the day. In addition, eggs are rich in protein, and protein foods eaten in the morning have been shown to produce longer lasting feelings of fullness during the day, compared to carbohydrate foods.

  14. Here's a health tip that you may find surprising: Coffee is good for you! That's right, although coffee is often demonized by health experts, in actuality coffee is rich in antioxidant nutrients which have been shown to protect against free-radical damage, one of the most significant triggers of premature aging and a host of serious illnesses. In addition, coffee helps your body produce more norepinephrine, a hormone that is helpful for burning calories and improving metabolism. So, while excessive coffee drinking can be bad for you, drinking one to two cups of coffee a day can be good for your health. Just avoid the cream and sugar! (If you don't enjoy the taste of coffee, you can get many of the same health benefits by drinking green tea.)

  15. Surely you know that chronic stress is bad for you. But did you also know that it can make you fat? It's true. When you are under stress, your body copes by increasing its production of the hormone cortisol. Increased cortisol levels trigger a structure in the body known as the omentum, which is located near your stomach, to store fat. People who are chronically stressed typically begin to develop a wider waist due to the added fat that the omentum stores. To avoid this health risk, make it a habit to daily engage in activities that help you reduce stress, such as laughter, deep breathing, taking a leisurely walk, or participating in fun-filled activities.

  16. What's the most important organ in your body? While most people would answer that it's the brain or heart, it might very well be your liver. Your liver is responsible for performing over 1500 functions each any every day, all of which are vital to you health. Today, however, because of poor diet, environmental toxins, and various other factors, the vast majority of Americans have sluggish livers. To give your liver a boost, try this: Every morning, 20 minutes before breakfast, add one teaspoon of extra virgin olive oil to 4 ounces of fresh-squeezed lemon juice. Mix thoroughly and drink it down. This simple measure is recommended by many natural healers as a way to stimulate liver function.

  17. We've all heard the recommendation Add a bit of spice to your life. Adding spices to your meals is also a good idea. Not only do spices add flavor to foods, they also help to protect against harmful microorganisms such as bacteria and fungi that can contaminate foods and lead to food poisoning. In addition, many spices offer a variety of health benefits. Cayenne pepper, for example, helps to improve circulation and can increase metabolism, while turmeric, the main ingredient in curry, has been shown to have anti-cancer properties. So the next time you spice up your life, be sure that you also spice up your meals.

  18. If you take nutritional supplements, in most cases you can increase their effectiveness by taking them with meals. Doing so helps your body to better metabolize them so that the nutrients can more effectively go to work after they're consumed. Note, however, that this is not true for all nutritional supplements, so be sure to read the labels of the supplements you use. You can also seek the advice of a nutritionally-oriented physician.

  19. If you supplement with fat-soluble nutrients such as vitamin A and E, beta-carotene, and/or essential fatty acids, you can enhance their effectiveness by taking them with the meal of the day that has the highest fat content.

  20. Did you know that the calorie-burning benefits of aerobic exercise can be significantly increased by performing such exercises in the morning before you eat breakfast? It's true. Morning aerobic exercise before eating can burn as much as 100 or more additional calories per day compared to aerobic exercise performed at any other point of the day. The reason for this is because morning aerobic exercise also helps to increase your body's metabolism.

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