“Health A to Z” – Z

The Letter Z.

Zeaxanthin

An antioxidant (a carotenoid), which along with lutein defends cells from the attack by damaging free radicals. Both are important in protecting against the development of age-related macular degeneration and cataracts. Fortunately both carotenoids are abundantly available in many food sources like eggs, kale, spinach, turnip greens, collard greens, romaine lettuce, broccoli, zucchini, corn, garden peas and Brussels sprouts. To maximize the availability of the carotenoids in the foods listed above, the foods should be eaten raw or steamed lightly.

Zinc

Zinc is one of the most important trace elements needed by your cells. It has a role in boosting our immune systems, aids in protein synthesis, cell reproduction and wound healing, and plays a major part in fertility and conception.
The importance of zinc can not be over-emphasized.  While zinc is naturally present in various foods and it food sources such as meat, poultry, dairy products, beans, whole grains and nuts are rich in zinc, the body can only absorb about 30% of the zinc that we take in. Because of this, and the fact we eat many processed foods zinc deficiencies are possible.


“Health A to Z” – Y

The Letter Y.

Yogurt

A source of calcium for your bones, vitamins riboflavin and B12, protein and potassium. A essential aid to improving digestive health (make sure the natural yogurt you but says “active yogurt cultures”).  Your digestive tract has many kinds of beneficial bacteria (called probiotics). Eating yogurt with live cultures helps the delicate balance between the good bacteria we need and bad bacteria which can cause digestive upsets.

Youthfulness

Overall we have an aging population and most of want to maintain our youth and quality of life as long as possible. Hydration, nutrition, skin care, not smoking, reducing sugar and fat intake, taking care to reduce exposure to toxins, getting enough sunlight to boost Vitamin D but not too much (avoiding overexposure to the sun, sunburn), avoiding too much alcohol and any kind of drugs will all help you to maintain your youth.

What to eat to help maintain your youth?  See the chart below.

Healthy diet


“Health A to Z” – X

The Letter X.  Surprisingly, easier to write about than “U”.

X-Rays

x-raysThe X-Ray was recently voted as the number one scientific invention. Obviously the ability to look inside a living body without cutting is an achievement not to be understated.  However, it is still radiation exposure.  Remember that the technician wears protective clothing and operates the machine from behind a shield and wears an exposure indicator.  Of course, their exposure is much more likely (and on a daily basis). Still, I think it’s sensible to limit your exposure as much as possible.

Xanthins

Yellow foodsLatin for Yellow – xanthins are powerful nutrients which protect the immune system. Eat yellow foods like, bananas, yellow peppers, yellow tomatoes, squash, grapefruit, lentils, lemons, melons, pineapples, yellow apples, mangos, pears etc.


“Health A to Z” – W

The Letter W.

Water

Hexagon Water filter


My favorite beverage. This wasn’t always so!  When I was offered tap water as a kid I didn’t enjoy it much, later as an adult I tried all types of bottled water and mineral water – I wasn’t keen on those either! So what changed my mind – it’s simple really – a Hexagon water filter.  Easy to fit to any existing tap and it does a wonderful job in filtering tap water to provide a constant supply of very inexpensive, great tasting, energized water.

Weight Loss

Something a lot of people want to achieve. I hope these people find useful information on this blog which may assist them in their quest.

Wheatgrass

Wheatgrass, from the family of cereal grasses, is a wholesome food with alkaline characteristics to correct and adjust acid-alkaline imbalance and maintain an alkaline state required by cells for optimum health.

Whole Foods

Real unprocessed foods. Not necessarily organic, just natural unaltered foods.

Alternatively, you can think about whole foods as being complete foods, like spirulina.


“Health A to Z” – V

The Letter V.

Vitamins

Vitamins are vital compounds essential to our well-being. Vitamins enhance cellular function and deficiency causes diseases like scurvy, beriberi, rickets, night blindness.  Check out Wikipedia for more information.

The best way to obtain vitamins is from our food, as this is as nature intended and the vitamins come along with the necessary co-factors to ensure synergistic balance and effects.

Vitality

A zest for life. Physical and mental vigor. An excitement for life. Nourish your body and your mind by eating the right foods and hydrating your body.


“Health A to Z” – U

The Letter U.  The hardest letter to find something to write about!!  All I could come up with is:-

Ubiquinone – Also known as Co-Q 10

Food Sources – Oily Fish (esp. mackerel, salmon and sardines) beef, peanuts and spinach. Most often used for: Cardiac insufficiency (it strengthens the heart muscle itself), high blood pressure, tissue oxygenation, increases energy production within the cell, counteracts histamines so is good for allergies, asthma and in respiratory disease, also used as an anti-aging nutrient.

Practitioners have also used Co-Q 10 for schizophrenia, Alzheimer’s, obesity, candidiasis, multiple sclerosis, stomach ulcers, angina, infertility, periodontal disease, reducing the side effects of chemotherapy and in diabetes.

Unblock, Unclog

Clogged ArteryWhat you definitely want to do to help you heart. I heard someone say that we are made up of a lot of tubes. When you think about it, it really is true, our blood vessels, digestive system, nervous system etc – all tubes.


(Sea) Urchin

Sea UrchinSea Urchin Roe is a rich source of vitamins A, B1, B2, D, E, and zinc. The combination of all these nutrition contents also warms the body and promotes good blood circulation. Very high in protein and zero carbohydrate content.


“Health A to Z” – T

The Letter T.

Thirst

ThirstyIf you’re thirsty it means you are already dehydrated. Drink plenty of water each day to ensure your cells are properly hydrated and to ensure your body has sufficient water to help cleanse it of the toxins you are inevitably exposed to each day.

Turmeric

TurmericAn intensely yellow colored spice derived from the roots of  the Curcuma longa plant. Traditionally used in Chinese and Indian cooking. Contains a potent anti-oxidant, curcumin, which has been shown to have anti-inflammatory effects.

Toxins

Chemicals in modern lifeThe Harvard School of Health says there are 80,000 or so chemicals in modern life, making it impossible to avoid coming into contact with them. Toxins are in our food, in the air we breathe, in the water we drink, in mother’s milk. – everywhere. While this may be daunting you can take some precautions in your daily life to minimize your exposure.


“Health A to Z” – S

The Letter S.

Salmon

When choosing salmon select those which have been wild caught. Salmon is salmon an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin D, and selenium. It is also a very good source of protein, niacin and vitamin B12 and a good source of phosphorus, magnesium and vitamin B6.

Salt

Salt is essential to life. Select a natural salt (like hand harvested French Salt) which contains trace minerals and

Salt Harvesting by Hand
Salt Harvesting by Hand

no aluminium silicate – an anti-caking agent found in regular salt. (Aluminium has been linked to increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease.).  Natural salt should be unbleached, unrefined and not laced with harmful chemical additives. Salt is vital to the interplay of fluids in and out of our cells. Salt regulates the water content in our cells where the water cleanses and allows toxins to be extracted.

Avoiding processed foods will assist in avoiding hidden salt intake.

Selenium

A essential mineral which we require in trace amounts. Selenium supplements are rarely required, however some people have other conditions which prevent them from absorbing selenium, or people may live in areas where soils are selenium depleted. Observational studies indicate that death from cancer, including lung, colorectal, and prostate cancers, is lower among people with higher blood levels or intake of selenium. In addition, the incidence of nonmelanoma skin cancer is significantly higher in areas of the United States with low soil selenium content .

Research suggests that selenium affects cancer risk in two ways. As an anti-oxidant, selenium can help protect the body from damaging effects of free radicals. Selenium may also prevent or slow tumor growth. Certain breakdown products of selenium are believed to prevent tumor growth by enhancing immune cell activity and suppressing development of blood vessels to the tumor.

Superfoods

I call foods which are nutrient dense and low in calories superfoods. For example:-

Acai Berry

Avocado

Chlorella

Goji berry

Mangosteen

Maqui Berry

Noni

Pomegranate

Salmon

Spirulina

Stabilized Rice Bran

Wheatgrass

Feel free to add you own superfood choices as comments


“Health A to Z” – R

The Letter R.

Raspberry

Delicious and delicate fruit consisting of multiple globules aggregated into Raspberryberries. An important seasonal food for Ancient hunter gathers, who no doubt helped spread the plants. A natural source of the phytonutrient ellegic acid. Contains other phytonutrients and flavonoids, vitamin C, riboflavin, folate, niacin, as well as manganese, magnesium, potassium and copper. Consume quickly after purchase as they are highly perishable.

Resveratrol

Resveratrol is not a drug. It’s a natural product! Plants make this molecule as a defense mechanism to protect them from attack by fungi, insects and other organisms, and it’s now been proven to be good at protecting us from the diseases/symptoms of aging.  Resveratrol is thought to be what helps the French keep healthy despite their high fat diet.
Micronized Resveratrol




“Health A to Z” – Q

The Letter Q.

Quality of Life

What we all like to maintain as long as possible. Longevity is one thing but quality of life simply makes life worth living. Living well, disease and pain free should always be your goal. Protect your body as you travel through life, avoid the pitfalls as much as possible, nurture it with nutrition and pure water.

Quantum Energy

We are energy, Life is energy, each of our cells is like a mini-battery pumping out 70-90 millivolts of energy (when healthy). We are surrounded by energy, like scalar energy. Quantum Mechanical models describe subatomic particles such as Excitons, Plasmons, and Solitons that can store and carry biological information along macromolecules in response to low level scalar energy.


“Health A to Z” – P

The Letter P

Phytochemicals

The active health-protecting compounds that are found as components of plants.

Currently, the terms “phytochemical” and “phytonutrient” are being used interchangeably to describe those plant compounds which are thought to have health-protecting qualities.

The antioxidant, immune boosting and other health promoting properties of active compounds in plants are being investigated. Phytonutrients or phytochemicals that are being studied presently include (and are not limited to) terpenes, carotenoids, limonoids, and phytosterols.

Pomegranate

Pomegranates contain tons of nutrition… and best of all, it’s low in calories. In just one pomegranate fruit there is around 100 calories. But that’s only the beginning of the nutrition pomegranate provides:

  • a great source of potassiumpomegranate
  • more antioxidants compared to other juices and even wine!
  • vitamin B and Vitamin C
  • great source of fiber
  • helps prevent heart disease
  • keeps your immune system in top notch conditions
  • prevents buildup of material in your arteries

Pomegranates are a superfood!

Prebiotics & Probiotics

Prebiotics and probiotics can restore the balance of bacteria in your digestive tract. Probiotics are beneficial bacteria that can be found in various foods. When you eat probiotics, you will add these healthy bacteria to your intestinal tract. Common strains include Lactobacillis and Bifidobacterium families of bacteria. Prebiotics are non-digestible foods that make their way through our digestive system and help good bacteria grow and flourish. Prebiotics keep beneficial bacteria healthy.

“Health – A to Z ” – O

The Letter O.

Oats

High in soluble fiber (beta-glucan) which helps lower cholesterol. Diabetics also benefit from eating oats  due to their low GI value. Fiber also helps clean your digestive system and prevents constipation. Oats also contain phytonutrients, minerals and vitamins.

Obesity

There are lots of numbers, BMI, fat cell counts and weight measurements which aim to scientifically define obesity. I’m sure they’re quite valid, but don’t really mean much to the average person. So make your own definition. Say, when your tummy bulges or thighs rub together, or when you need to buy new clothes every season because last year’s don’t fit anymore. Or if your current weight is making you unhappy. Whatever it is for you, if you’re overweight you probably don’t need anyone else to tell you.

Omega-3

Omega-3 fatty acids are found in oily fish like salmon (wild caught is best), flaxseed, walnuts, shrimp, scallops, cauliflower, cabbage, soybeans, tofu, kale, broccoli and brussels sprouts. Foods high in omega-3 can:- salmon

  • Reduce inflammation throughout your body
  • Maintain the fluidity of your cell membranes
  • lower the amount of lipids (fats such as cholesterol and triglycerides) circulating in the bloodstream
  • decrease platelet aggregation, preventing excessive blood clotting
  • inhibit thickening of the arteries
  • increase the activity of another chemical derived from endothelial cells (endothelium-derived nitric oxide), which causes arteries to relax and dilate
  • reduce the inflammatory response associated with atherosclerosis
  • reduce the risk of becoming obese and improve the body’s ability to respond to insulin by stimulating the secretion of leptin, a hormone that helps regulate food intake, body weight and metabolism
  • help prevent cancer cell growth.

Organic foods

While some people don’t believe orgainically grown foods are more nutritious and healthier (fewer toxins) than regular commercially grown foods I choose to believe that, logically, organically grown food is better. Find out more here.


“Health – A to Z ” – N

The Letter N.

Nuts

A convenient healthy snack food. Just keep the portion  size in mind – snack size is a small palmful. –  Nuts have good fats (monounsaturated fats), which help lower “bad” cholesterol and may raise “good” cholesterol when substituted for saturated fats in the diet. Several major studies have found that eating nuts significantly reduces the risk of coronary heart disease – by 25–50% in both men and women. One of these studies, the Nurses’ Health Study, also found that regularly eating nuts and peanut butter reduces the chance of developing type 2 diabetes by 21–27%.

Mixed Nuts

Nutrition

What we hope to get from eating, nourishment for all the cells in our bodies. Decrease processed foods in your diet, decrease the amount of saturated fats and sugar, increase natural fresh foods, increase the quantity of raw food you consume. These steps will increase the nutritional value of your diet.


“Health – A to Z” – M

The Letter M.

Macadamia Nuts

A delicious, crunchy, native Australian nut with the world’s hardest nutshell which provide a wide range of beneficial compounds. A high energy food, full of protein and fiber and loaded with other important nutrients that, combine to benefit your health.

Macadamia Nut Nutrition Summary

  • Antioxidants
  • Fiber
  • Phytochemicals
  • Protein
  • Minerals
  • Monounsaturated fats
  • Vitamins

Macadamia Nut

Maqui Berries

A small dark purple berry native to South America. The maqui berry has the highest antioxidant rating  (ORAC) of any fruit.

Maqui ORACMemory

What we’d all like to retain as long as possible. With aging populations conditions like Alzheimer’s and dementia are increasing in frequency and affect whole families. Abnormal accumulations of filaments of protein (plaque) in the brain destroys the nerve pathways resulting in loss of mental function.  While the exact cause of these conditions may still be subject to scientific research  there are some thing you can do to protect your family, bearing in mind there are cases with definite genetic links.

Avoid aluminum in – cookware, utensils, lining of containers, lids of bottles, deodorants.

Avoid any heavy metals – like mercury and lead

Avoid environmental toxins

Avoid toxic drugs (whether prescribed or not)

Avoid artificial sweeteners

Ensure proper hydration with pure, filtered water – make sure it filters fluoride OUT.

Ensure proper nutrition with foods rich in Vitamin B (12), Vitamin E, Choline (from lecithin), Vitamin C and Folic acid. Specific foods which are linked to improving age-related memory loss are blueberries, flax seed, soy products and wild yams. The spice turmeric appears to be beneficial in reducing inflammation and plaque.

Minerals

There are macrominerials – those we need in significant quantities (milligrams – mg) and trace minerals – those we need in smaller quantities (micrograms – mcg).

Calcium, chloride, phosphorus, potassium, magnesium, sodium sulpfur, and zinc are macrominerals.

Boron, chromium, cobalt, copper, germanium, iodine, Iron, manganese, molybdenum, selenium, vanadium are required in trace amounts.


“Health – A to Z” – L

The Letter L.

Lecithin

Required by every cell in your body. It is necessary for for optimal brain, nerve and cell functions – you can grow new brain cells. It’s inexpensive. It’s easy to consume. It’s an anti-aging nutrient for your skin.It’s natural. It protects your heart and cardiovascular system. It’s essential for healthy liver function. It helps you absorb and assimilate nutrients. Lecithin granules are best obtained from Non genetically modified soy. The granules are easily consumed when added to other foods, like juices, dressings, cereals.

Lemon

A tasty inexpensive way to detoxify. Lemon juice is a potent detoxifier and has been used to help reduce kidney stones and gall stones.  It is a good general blood and body purifier.

Lemons

Lycopene

The natural red antioxidant phyto-nutrient found in fruit and vegetables, like tomatoes, watermelon, papaya, carrots etc. Unlike many nutrients, it becomes more bioavailable in cooked foods. Serving in oil-rich dishes (such as spaghetti sauce or pizza) greatly increases assimilation from the digestive tract into the bloodstream. Lycopene is fat-soluble, so the oil is said to help absorption. Lycopene is anecdotally thought to be beneficial for many health issues.


Health – A to Z” – K

The Letter K.

Kale

A dark green leafy vegetable with high nutritional vale and low in calories. Kale is an excellent source of nutrients, including vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin B6 and manganese. It is also a very good source of dietary fiber, calcium, copper, vitamin B6, and potassium. Kale is also well known for its carotenoids, especially lutein and zeaxanthin.

Sulforaphane, a potent glucosinolate phytonutrient found in kale and other Brassica vegetables, boosts your body’s detoxification enzymes. Sulforaphane, which is created when cruciferous vegetables such as kale are chopped or chewed, triggers  enzyme production in the liver, which detoxify cancer-causing chemicals, inhibits chemically-induced breast cancers in animal studies, induces colon cancer cells to destroy themselves. This combination of vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients makes kale a superfoods superstar!

Kale

Kiwi Fruit

Definitely a superfood fruit. An excellent source of Vitamin C (more than oranges). A good source of Vitamin E, magnesium, potassium and copper, plus phytonutrients like lutein. Also has both soluble and insoluble fiber. A couple kiwi fruits a day will provide many beneficial effects, like reducing blood triglycerides and protecting your heart.

Kiwi Fruit


“Health – A to Z” – J

The Letter J.

Juice

A convenient, time effective way to consume your required quota of fruit and vegetables each day. Making your own fresh juices ensures the vitamins and antioxidants are not destroyed by processing methods. TIP – Make sure your juicer leaves some of the fiber!

Juniper Berries

A traditional medicinal food used by varied cultures, like the American Indians and Greeks. Juniper berries contain essential oils, flavonoids, glycosides, tannins and vitamin C. They have cleansing properties useful in removing acidic waste from the body.

Juniper Berries


“Health A to Z” – I

The Letter I.

Immune System

A complex interactive automatic  system which collectively protect the body from bacterial, parasitic, fungal, viral infections and from the growth of tumor cells.

Inflammation

A sign of your body reacting to a stressful influences from poor diet, lifestyle choices, allergies and your environment. Chronic inflammation is a modern epidemic causing  illness and disease.  Some inflammation is good, for example, a fever, responding to eradicate a virus.


“Health A to Z” – H

The Letter H.

Holistic Health

Wellness is more than just your body. Holistic health involves your body, mind and spirit. We are complicated beings with many interconnected aspects.  Enjoy a balanced life.  I’m sure there are lots of different definitions – see if this one suits you.

Mind – Your mental, emotional thoughts.

Soul – Your spiritual life and beliefs

Body – Your physical being – nutritional health, fitness

Life – Your career and family, how you interact with society

Holistic Health

Heart

Both your emotional heart and physical heart. Nurture both of them.


“Health – A to Z” – G

“Health – A to Z” –  The Letter G

Garlic

Low in calories, high in health benefits. Garlic has anti-Inflammatory, antibacterial and antiviral properties.

GI

Glycemic Index describes this difference by ranking carbohydrates according to their effect on our blood glucose levels. Choosing low GI carbs – the ones that produce only small fluctuations in our blood glucose and insulin levels – is the secret to long-term health reducing your risk of heart disease and diabetes and is the key to sustainable weight loss.

Grapes

Contain beneficial compounds called flavonoids, which are phytonutrients that give the vibrant purple color to grapes, grape juice and red wine; the stronger the color, the higher the concentration of flavonoids. Flavonoid compounds include quercitin, as well as a second flavonoid-type compound called resveratrol. Both compounds appear to decrease the risk of heart disease by reducing platelet clumping and harmful blood clots and protecting LDL cholesterol from the free radical damage that initiates LDL’s artery-damaging actions. Grapes and products made from grapes, such as wine and grape juice, may protect the French from their high-fat diets. Diets high in saturated fats like butter and lard, and lifestyle habits like smoking are risk factors for heart disease. Yet, French people with these habits have a lower risk of heart attack than Americans do. One clue that may help explain this “French paradox” is their frequent consumption of grapes and red wines.

Green Tea

Has multiple health benefits. Contains antioxidant polyphenols, notably a catechin called epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG). Green tea is known to assist in weight loss, be an anti cancer food, to help regulate blood sugar and reduce bad cholesterol. The other day a doctor on “The View” was talking about how drinking a few cups of green tea each day reduces the risk of breast cancer.