Wednesday, 22 November 2017


If you're wondering why there seems to have been an influx of health and wellness products emphasising their antioxidising properties in the past few years, you're probably not alone.

And though it may seem like a clever marketing ploy to get you in a panic, oxidation in your body has dangerous effects and enriching your diet with foods and supplements to aid your body's antioxidising efforts is important.
Related: Antioxidants
The bad guys at the root of it all are free radicals that are the result of natural biochemical reactions but which can also be generated by drinking alcohol, smoking, eating fried foods, and exposure to air pollutants and pesticides.

Although free radicals are naturally occurring in our bodies, they can cause major damage because when they latch onto healthy cells, they compromise their normal functions through the process of oxidation.

And because free radical reactions (oxidation) in our bodies can lead to the deterioration of healthy cells that in turn lead to degenerative diseases including various cancers, it's important to decrease your exposure to free-radical-generating substances as well as increase your body's chances of fighting their harmful effects with, you guessed it, antioxidants!

It's important to note, though, that your body needs a balance of free radicals and antioxidants to function, so you can't and shouldn't eat with the aim of completely ridding your body of the former.

Monday, 20 November 2017


We’re all under stress, whether at home or at work or due to illness. So who wouldn’t like to find something that could boost resistance to the adverse effects of stress? 

A wide variety of herbal compounds are touted for their ability to help the body respond to or recover from physical or psychological stress, as well as for bolstering immunity and general well-being. One group of them is called adaptogens, a term coined in the early 1960s by Israel Brekhman, a Russian scientist.

The concept of adaptogens was based in part on a theory of stress called the “general adaptation syndrome,” proposed by an Austrian endocrinologist, Hans Selye. This basically holds that stress causes the body to go through three stages—preparing for fight or flight, adapting to the stress, and then exhaustion if the stress is long-lasting. Adaptogens are supposed to be a kind of general restorative tonic that counters the effects of stress, normalizes bodily functions, and helps the body heal itself.

Though not accepted by mainstream Western medicine, the concept that adaptogenic herbs can boost strength and vitality is integral to traditional Eastern medicine. As such, these herbs are often promoted as virtual cure-alls—“magic” or “miracle” remedies for everything from boosting mental attention and physical endurance to preventing a host of diseases. (Dr. Oz, in his typical pie-in-the-sky manner, titled one of them a “miracle pill for anti-aging.”) Even one supplement industry group, while praising adaptogens as “powerhouses,” warns that the marketing claims for adaptogens often are exaggerated, misrepresent the research, or are “pure fantasy.”

As with most herbs, there are few well-designed human studies on adaptogens. Moreover, the studies, many of them done in China or India, often use mixtures of herbs, so it’s impossible to know what is having an effect, if there is one.

One key problem is the variability of the herbs. Different species or varieties have different compounds and biological properties, and different parts of the plant (roots, leaves, stems) also contain varying chemicals. How the herbs are processed affects their biological activity as well. Moreover, it’s hard to study the many vague claims. How, for instance, do you measure increased “well-being” or “vitality”? Plus, it’s hard to know what you’re really getting in the bottles, since there is little meaningful regulation of dietary supplements.

That said, here are seven of the most popular adaptogens. Their potential adverse effects are grouped together at the end.

Saturday, 18 November 2017



Check out this video with some great antioxidant containing foods to boost your health.

Thursday, 16 November 2017


You know that taking certain supplements can help to combat aches and pains caused by arthritis and other conditions, but did you know that some foods have painkilling and anti-inflammatory properties?
Here are eight foods you might want to put on your plate if you suffer from chronic pain...


A spice commonly used in Indian cooking, turmeric contains the chemical curcumin, which has anti-inflammatory properties and can help ease the pain of osteoarthritis and regulate the body's immune response, reducing the inflammation associated with rheumatoid arthritis.

Extra-virgin olive oil

You already know the benefits of the Mediterranean diet. As well as helping you to live longer, it seems that enjoying a diet high in olive oil could help to manage your pain.

Extra-virgin olive oil contains a natural phenolic compound called oleocanthal, which prevents the production of pro-inflammatory COX-1 and COX-2 enzymes. This reduces inflammation and eases pain, much in the same way that ibuprofen works. Extra-virgin olive oil from Tuscany is said to have the highest oleocanthal levels.


Pomegranates might not be something you think to eat every day, but you might want to give them a go if you suffer with chronic pain. The seeds of the fruit contain anthocyanin antioxidants, which reduce inflammation, and ellagitannin antioxidants, which studies show are effective at treating pain. 

Friday, 10 November 2017


You’ve heard us tout the benefits of omega-3 fatty acids for years, from their ability to boost your brainpower to their knack for protecting your ticker. But what exactly are these fats, and what’s their big lifesaving secret? Consider this your quick guide to omega-3s:  

What Are They?

Here’s a quick science primer: Omega-3 fatty acids and their cousins, omega-6s and omega-9s, are polyunsaturated fats. Two polyunsaturated fats—linoleic, an omega-6, and alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), an omega-3—are considered essential. “Our bodies can’t make polyunsaturated fatty acids,” says Stephen Smith, Ph.D, a professor of meat science at Texas A&M University. “We must have those in the diet for growth and normal health.” 
Two important omega-3s found in fish—eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA)—are considered conditionally essential. The hitch: Your body can make them, but sometimes you don’t make enough.

Wednesday, 8 November 2017


Can Reducing Inflammation Protect You From Getting Sick?

Much is still unknown, but physicians and researchers do believe it’s preventable and reversible. 
“People who are less inflamed over a long period of time have far less incidence of illness,” says Dr. Dillard.
You can assess your own situation with a quick blood test that measures a liver chemical, C-reactive protein (CRP), which rises in response to inflammation.

This test, available for as little as $35, can help assess your risk of heart attack, especially if you’re younger than 60 and have a family history of heart disease.
Your doctor will explain your results, but CRP levels between 1 and 3 milligrams per liter of blood signal chronic, low-grade inflammation with an intermediate risk of heart disease. Levels above 3 milligrams indicate a high risk.

If your CRP level is above normal, your doctor might suggest that you start taking statins, such as atorvastatin (Lipitor), says Dr. Libby. 

Monday, 6 November 2017


Scan the obits and you’ll see the usual suspects listed as causes of death—heart disease, cancer, stroke, and complications from diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease. 

What you won’t read about is chronic inflammation, a deep-body immune response that medical researchers are beginning to recognize as the underlying reason we develop these deadly conditions.
“Most major diseases seem to have a chronic inflammatory component,” says integrative medicine expert James Dillard, M.D.
“Evidence shows that arthritis, certain allergies, and asthma are increasing at alarming rates,” says Ski Chilton, Ph.D., a professor of physiology and pharmacology at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center and the author of Inflammation Nation
The dramatic upswing in these milder conditions suggests that chronic inflammation is also on the rise and that it will increasingly fuel serious diseases as well.
While the medical establishment is still trying to better understand chronic inflammation, a growing body of research is casting light on the poorly understood process and pointing us toward ways to fight it.

What the Heck Is Inflammation?

Chances are you’re already familiar with acute inflammation. This is the redness, heat, and swelling of a gum infection or a hammer-meets-thumb injury. 
These reactions are triggered by the flood of white blood cells summoned by your body to surround and protect the wound. 

Acute inflammation also occurs internally when you get an infection, such as pneumonia. In that event, those same white blood cells take aim at the bacteria in your tissues and bloodstream.
In both cases, the heat and swelling of acute inflammation are all part of your body’s battle against the invaders that cause infection—they help speed the healing process.

Thursday, 2 November 2017



Check out these foods to help keep your heart healthy. 
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