How to Reduce Inflammation: 4 Ingredients Could Be the Key

4 Key Ingredients For Improving Inflammation

Inflammation is the body’s way of defending itself against disease and is a self-protective mechanism that can support the natural healing process. However, when the inflammation is chronic because of intrinsic and extrinsic factors, then this can leads to conditions where disease manifests. The good news is that there are various natural anti-inflammatories that can ease many of the chronic inflammatory conditions.

Below are a list of the key ingredients that can improve inflammation…

  • Curcumin. This is the active compound found in the Indian spice turmeric. Its curcuminoids can curcumin
    reduce pain and inflammation by inhibiting NF-kB, a protein complex that controls transcription of DNA, cytokine
    production and cell survival. It is involved in the cellular responses to stimuli such as stress, cytokines, and plays an integral role in regulating the immune system response.
  • Serrapeptase. This is a proteolytic enzyme that can dissolve and safely digest inflammation within the body. Once the inflammation is removed, it’s possible for the body’s natural self-healing mechanisms to come into play. Serrapeptase is derived from the silkworm intestine but is now manufactured within a laboratory. When serrapeptase is taken it can safely eliminate inflammation that can appear as various symptoms including redness, swelling, pain and more.
  • Ecklonia Cava Extract is a super nutrient that can help to support healthy blood flow and circulation. Studies show it may reduce blood glucose levels, while supporting blood pressure and cholesterol levels.
  • MSM (Methylsulfonylmethane) and other trace minerals can help to support healthy lungs, joints,
    tendons and connective tissues.  This is an organosulfur compound that occurs naturally in plants and can help with a variety of health problems related to and including stress, inflammation, allergies and gastrointestinal conditions.

Any of the above nutrients can help to provide inflammation relief. Curcumin and Serrapeptase are particularly powerful as they are highly researched and have been documented as helping thousands of people improve their health conditions, due to their anti-inflammatory properties. When they are taken on a daily basis, they can provide long term results. Alongside taking these nutrients it’s recommended to follow an anti-inflammatory diet, as it’s then possible to find significant relief from the painful symptoms of inflammation.

How to Reduce Anxiety – Herbs for Anxiety Reduction – Reduce Anxiety with Herbs

Herbs for Anxiety

Not looking to use Conventional Drugs to help ease Anxiety?  Try some of these herbs.

Licorice Root contains a natural hormone alternative to cortisone, which can help the body handle stressful situations, and can help to normalize blood sugar levels as well as your adrenal glands, providing you with the energy necessary to deal with the stressful situation at hand. Some claim licorice stimulates cranial and cerebrospinal fluid, thereby calming the mind.As a soothing tonic, drink it warm as in a tea.

Kava Kava, an herb from the South Pacific, is a powerful muscle relaxer and analgesic. Kava Kava is also effective at treating depression and anxiety associated with menopause. http://www.care2.com/greenliving/5-herbs-that-reduce-stress-and-anxiety.html#ixzz3zjWfhIxL

Valerian

Some herbal supplements reduce anxiety without making you sleepy (such as L-theanine), while others are sedatives. Valerian (Valeriana officinalis) is squarely in the second category. It is a sleep aid, for insomnia. It contains sedative compounds; the German government has approved it as a treatment for sleep problems.

Valerian smells kind of nasty, so most people take it as a capsule or tincture, rather than a tea. If you want to try it, take it in the evening—not before you go to work! Valerian is often combined with other sedative herbs such as hops, chamomile, and lemon balm.

Hops

Yes, it’s in beer, but you won’t get the tranquilizing benefits of the bitter herb hops (Humulus lupulus)from a brew. The sedative compound in hops is a volatile oil, so you get it in extracts and tinctures—and as aromatherapy in hops pillows.

“It’s very bitter, so you don’t see it in tea much, unless combined with chamomile or mint,” says Blumenthal. Hops is often used as a sedative, to promote sleep, often with another herb, valerian. Note: Don’t take sedative herbs if you are taking a prescription tranquilizer or sedative, and let your doctor know any supplements you are taking.

Chamomile

If you have a jittery moment, a cuppa chamomile tea might help calm you down. Some compounds in chamomile (Matricaria recutita) bind to the same brain receptors as drugs like Valium.

You can also take it as a supplement, typically standardized to contain 1.2% apigenin (an active ingredient), along with dried chamomile flowers. In one study at the University of Pennsylvania Medical Center, in Philadelphia, patients with generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) who took chamomile supplements for eight weeks had a significant decrease in anxiety symptoms compared to patients taking placebo.

Passion Flower

The University of Maryland Medical Center states that passionflower has shown in a few studies to work as well as some of the benzodiazepine medications that are usually prescribed for treating anxiety.

A four-week double-blind study, for example, compared passionflower with oxazepam. Results showed oxazepam worked more quickly, but by the end of the study period, both treatments were shown to be equally effective. Bonus—side effects like daytime drowsiness were fewer with passionflower.

A second study also showed that passionflower helped ease symptoms like anxiety, irritability, agitation, and depression in participants going through withdrawal from an opiate drug addiction.

Dosage: Try one cup of passionflower tea three times daily, 45 drops of liquid extract daily, or about 90 mg/day.

Lavendar

A 2010 multi-center, a double-blind randomized study of lavender oil compared to anti-anxiety medication lorazepam found that both were effective against generalized and persistent anxiety. Bonus — lavender had no sedative side effects.

“Since lavender oil showed no sedative effects,” researchers stated, it could be an effective and “well-tolerated alternative to benzodiazepines” to treat generalized anxiety. An earlier 2000 study found similar results.

Dosage: Try about 80 mg/day of the supplement, or use the oil as an aromatherapy solution.

Lemon Balm

Though usually found in combination with other herbs, lemon balm also has anti-anxiety powers on its own.

Research published in 2004, for instance, gave participants a single dose of lemon balm extract (300 mg or 600 mg) or a placebo, then measured their mood after one hour. The higher dose resulted in reduced stress and improved calmness and alertness. Even the lower dose helped participants do math problems more quickly.

Dosage: Use in aromatherapy, try 300-500 mg of dried lemon balm three times daily, 60 drops daily, or 1/4 to 1 teaspoon of dried lemon balm herb in hot water for a tea four times daily.

Ashwagandha

A 2012 double-blind, placebo-controlled study gave participants either placebo or a capsule containing 300 mg of high-concentration full-spectrum ashwagandha extract, twice a day. The study lasted for 60 days. Those taking the ashwagandha showed significant improvements. Even the levels of the stress hormone cortisol were substantially reduced in those taking the extract. And there were no serious side effects.

In an earlier 2000 study, ashwagandha had anxiety-relieving effects similar to those of lorazepam.

Dosage: Typical dosage is 300 mg standardized to at least one to five percent withanolides, once or twice a day.

L-Theanine

This one isn’t really a herb — it’s a water-soluble amino acid,  but it’s gotten such good research behind it, we had to include it here. It’s found mainly in green tea and black tea and is also available as a supplement.

Studies have found that it acts directly on the brain, helping to reduce stress and anxiety—without causing drowsiness.

Research from 2008, for example, found that those participants taking 50 mg of L-theanine a day had a greater increase in alpha (relaxed brain waves) activity than those who took a placebo.

An earlier 1998 study found that 200 mg a day leads to increased alpha brain waves and a relaxed, yet alert, a state of mind.

A later 2011 study found that it was also associated with reduced anxiety, and was well tolerated and safe for participants.

Dosage: A typical cup of black tea contains only about 25 mg of l-theanine and green tea only about 8 mg. While a cup of tea may be calming, if you want more potent effects, try a supplement, about 200 mg a day.

Chocolate Almond Bark Info & Recipe

Chocolate Almond Bark

Safe to say that most people enjoy chocolate. Especially at the holidays. So if there is a way to enjoy good food without the extra calories from processed packaged foods this is the way to do it. A couple of added benefits are that it has low cholesterol, low sodium, 5 ingredients or less, and it tastes great (so it’s kid friendly).  This is a simple Almond or nut bark recipe that will have you coming back for more.

Raw Honey

Raw honey that is unprocessed and unfiltered has live enzymes, vitamins and trace minerals and is considered a raw honeyWhole Food, straight from the hive. Honey provides a good source of vitamin B6, vitamin C and three times the riboflavin then maple syrup. Organic honey Is a source of natural antioxidants. Local raw honey can also help with people who struggle with allergies. 1 tablespoon only has 60 cal and 17 carbohydrate (16 sugars). Most of the sugars come from fructose with a bit of glucose and even less sucrose.

 

Keywords: Description:
antioxidants  An antioxidant is a molecule that inhibits the oxidation of other molecules. Oxidation is a chemical reaction that can produce free radicals, leading to chain reactions that may damage cells. Antioxidants such as thiols or ascorbic acid (vitamin C) terminate these chain reactions.
orac scale  The ORAC scale measures the Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity in different foods. Free radicals are produced during normal metabolism and cell function, as well as from stress and pollutants in our air, water and food. The oxidative stress caused by these free radicals is implicated in everything from the aging and wrinkling of skin to DNA damage, diabetes, cancer and heart disease.
polyphenols  Polyphenols are abundant micronutrients in our diet, and evidence for their role in the prevention of degenerative diseases such as cancer and cardiovascular diseases is emerging. The health effects of polyphenols depend on the amount consumed and on their bioavailability.
digestive enzymes  Digestive enzymes, primarily produced* in the pancreas and small intestine, break down our food into nutrients so that our bodies can absorb them.
amino acids  Amino acids are organic compounds that combine to form proteins. Amino acids and proteins are the building blocks of life.
orac chart  orac chart 

This is just a small representation of the larger ORAC chart, but you see how high Cacao Powder is on the list…very antioxidant rich.

 

If you choose to use maple syrup instead of honey, make sure you read the labels. Pure maple syrup and is sap boiled down to make syrup. For every 39 gallons of sap, it makes just 1 gallon of maple syrup. This may help you understand the price difference. Breakfast syrup’s or pancake syrup, are not made with maple at all. They are made from high fructose corn syrup and flavored with an aromatic compounds and caramelized sugar, among a few other spices. Canada produces 80% of the worlds maple syrup. The United States divides the grades into grade A and grade B. Grade A is considered premier and what’s meant for eating. Grade B is so dark that is generally used in baking or cooking. The sugars in maple syrup primarily come from sucrose. Maple syrup may be considered healthier because of its overall less sugar, more importantly Less fructose than honey. Maple syrup provides more minerals than honey such as iron, calcium, zinc, magnesium and potassium. For 1 tablespoon of maple syrup and there are about 56 calories and 13g of sugar.

Organic Cacao

organic cocoaCacao can fuel energy and mood. It is an excellent source of fiber good source of protein and iron. It is high in antioxidants and polyphenols. A half half a cup of raw organic cocoa organic cocoapowder has 110 cal, 2 g of fat 16 carbohydrates, 10 of which is dietary fiber. It contains 8 g of protein and will give you 10% of the iron you need for your daily requirements. It is considered a stimulant and should be eaten occasionally not every day.

 

 

Raw Organic Coconut Butter

coconut organic coconut butterRaw organic coconut butter is comprised of puréed, raw coconut meat, not only coconut oil. Coconut oil is up your fat, and is made up of medium fatty chain acids. MCTs (medium chain triglycerides) are absorbed in your digestive track. Because coconut oil it is 90% saturated fat it will become a solid at 75° or colder and turn into a liquid if warmer than 76°. 1 tablespoon will give you 105 cal, 11 g of fat, 4 g of carbs half of which are dietary fiber, and 2 g of protein. Coconut butter will also give you 6% of the iron you need daily.

All nuts will give you different fat content, carbohydrate content, and protein content. Of all nuts pecans are the highest on the ORAC chart (oxygen radical absorbance capacity). Soaking drying all of your nuts and seeds will lead to better digestion and absorption of vitamins and minerals.

Homemade Chocolate Almond Bark

1 cup cocoa butter (or coconut butter)
1 cup Cacao powder
1/3 cup raw honey or maple syrup
3 tsp vanilla extract

optional: chopped nuts

Gently heat all ingredients in a small sauce pan over low heat. mix until ingredients are combined and chocolate sauce is smooth.

Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
Pour chocolate sauce over parchment lined cookie sheet .
Place cookie sheet in freezer.
Freeze for 2-3 hours or until completely hard

For more tips and tricks, stay tuned to Healthy With Jodi.

The Most Powerful Natural Antioxidants

Are you tired of getting sick?  Antioxidants could be the answer…antioxidants

 

Antioxidants have been around since the beginning of time. We often hear about them on commercials, or talk shows. Most people don’t realize that the food that we eat or don’t eat will make the difference in our overall health. The benefits of antioxidants can be found in plant based diets, fruits and vegetables, nuts, and antioxidant vitamins.  Many antioxidant rich foods are called super foods.  This article is a great way to understand what foods will arm your body with the defenses that it needs to fight off sickness and infection. We will dive into the health benefits of the top 10 antioxidant rich foods. You should definitely add these to your diet.

 

Keywords: Description:
antioxidants  A substance that reduces damage due to oxygen, such as that caused by free radicals. Well-known antioxidants include enzymes and other substances, such as vitamin C, vitamin E, and beta carotene, which are capable of counteracting the damaging effects of oxidation. Antioxidants are also commonly added to food products such as vegetable oils and prepared foods to prevent or delay their deterioration from the action of air. Antioxidants may possibly reduce the risks of cancer. Antioxidants clearly slow the progression of age-related macular degeneration.
oxidative stress  reflects an imbalance between the systemic manifestation of reactive oxygen species and a biological system’s ability to readily detoxify the reactive intermediates or to repair the resulting damage. Disturbances in the normal redox state of cells can cause toxic effects through the production of peroxides and free radicals that damage all components of the cell, including proteins, lipids, and DNA.
free radical formation  Free radicals are atoms or groups of atoms with an odd (unpaired) number of electrons and can be formed when oxygen interacts with certain molecules. Once formed these highly reactive radicals can start a chain reaction, like dominoes. Their chief danger comes from the damage they can do when they react with important cellular components such as DNA, or the cell membrane. Cells may function poorly or die if this occurs. To prevent free radical damage the body has a defense system of antioxidants.
oxygen radical absorbance capacity ORAC stands for Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity. It’s a lab test that attempts to quantify the “total antioxidant capacity” (TAC) of a food by placing a sample of the food in a test tube, along with certain molecules that generate free radical activity and certain other molecules that are vulnerable to oxidation . After a while, they measure how well the sample protected the vulnerable molecules from oxidation by the free radicals. The less free radical damage there is, the higher the antioxidant capacity of the test substance. There are actually a handful of different tests designed to measure total antioxidant capacity in this way, but the ORAC is probably the best known and most popular

 

inflammation Inflammation and Antioxidants,

 

 

Apple Cider Vinegar

apple cider vinegar

  • lowers cholesterol
  • boost energy
  • reduces cramping and lactic acid
  • helps bad breath
  • controls blood sugar
  • supports heart health
  • whitens teeth

garlic with parsley leaves

Garlic

  • boost immune system function/fights infection
  • aids in cancer prevention
  • fights inflammation
  • promotes total body detoxification

Ginger

  • acts as an antidote for nauseaginger root
  • reduces inflammation – arthritis – headaches
  • stimulates circulation
  • inhibits rhinovirus – a cause of the common cold
  • fights salmonella
  • reduces gas and intestinal pain

horseradish

Horseradish Root

  • fights cancer
  • detoxifies the liver
  • relieves sinus pressure
  • treats urinary tract infections
  • reduces bloating
  • aids in muscle soreness

Oniononion

  • decrease risk of obesity, diabetes, and heart disease
  • promotes healthy hair and complexion
  • great source of vitamin C
  • reduce risk of colorectal and other intestinal cancers
  • improve mood and help with depression

habanero peppers

Habanero Peppers

  • reduce risk of diabetes and obesity
  • great cancer fighter
  • reduces cholesterol and heart disease
  • lowers inflammation

Oregano Oiloregano oil

  • treats foot or nail fungus
  • kills parasites or infection
  • minimizes sinus infection and cold symptoms
  • great for cleaning when mixed with lemon and vinegar

tumeric

Tumeric

  • helps with chronic inflammation
  • reduces symptoms of Rheumatoid arthritis
  • improves mood and aids in depression
  • lowers blood glucose levels
  • inhibits cancer cell growth
  • has anti-aging properties

Echinacea (herb)echinacea

  • reduces acid reflux
  • decreases migrane symptoms
  • aid in genital herpes outbreaks
  • helps cure strep throat
  • reduces urinary tract infections
  • cures yeast infections

raw honey

Raw Honey

  • cancer fighting properties
  • aids in nausea and upset stomach
  • natural cough suppressant
  • assists in blood sugar regulation
  • heals ulcers
  • good cholesterol regulator

 

It is not hard to see the benefits of these powerful antioxidants.  If you work them into your diet your will surely see and feel the difference.  In addition to these awesome foods, a green drink will work wonders for your overall health and well being.  If you enjoyed this article, then I assume that you like to know what is in your food and why it is good for you.  This book is the best book I have ever found for understanding the ‘whys’ about food.  If you have any questions about fitness or nutrition, email Jodi at jodi@healthywithjodi.com .

New to the Gym? No Problem. Check out this STARTER GUIDE – You Can Do It

Lots of people have “gym anxiety”.  You know that feeling that you get when you want to go to the gym, but don’t know what to do, or where to start.  Muscle and Fitness has the answers.

What to do at the Gym

Link to Muscle and Fitness Starter Guide

 

Keywords: Description:
workout routine  There is no definite way to define this, but Muscle and Fitness has put some great routines together.
weight loss Weight loss has many paths.  Here are some great plans to achieve your weight loss goals.
strength training  is a type of physical exercise specializing in the use of resistance to induce muscular contraction which builds the strength, anaerobic endurance, size, skeletal muscles
fat loss  Fun facts about fat loss

 

 

Digital Detox- A detox without Food!

Turn it OFF

digital detox

The digital detox is nothing more than taking a break from your devices. While on vacation, we are constantly connected over social media, email, and by using our devices to find the best restaurant on Yelp or the best route on maps. “Some of the changes I’ve noticed in clients after they’ve taken a digital detox are that they are more balanced and calmer in their lives due to periodically stopping the continual digital exposure throughout their day.”Try to have at least one hour before bedtime where there is no digital stimulation so you can unwind. Don’t let digital devices stay on at night next to you unless it’s mandatory.

And although others take a more hardcore approach with week-long ‘summer camps’ or designated holidays, pledging to take just one day offline while you travel means you can reap the benefits of a detox, without sacrificing the joy of staying connected to your family and friends or taking the perfect Instagram or Snapchat shot.

Some suggest that the discipline in these smaller detoxes can be hugely beneficial to your mental state, and you can implement them on a smaller scale in your everyday routine.

This video points out the daily grind, and why we could all use a break.

This concept can be difficult at first, the benefits are real. Many detoxers find a real world connectedness that enriches and enhances our lives in a way no Wi-Fi connection can.

These short-term benefits are just part of the story. Mentally, even a short break from electronics can have long-term benefits that can make you happier and more successful in every aspect of your life.

Today, in a world where the average user logs almost 2 hours per day on social media alone, this idea is somewhat terrifying.  Dr. Yvonne Thomas, a psychologist and therapist based in Los Angeles, puts it simply: “You can be so preoccupied with your digital devices that it’s all too easy to inadvertently sacrifice time, relationships, sleep, focus, productivity and balance in your life. Many people are not even aware of the toll their extensive usage of digital devices costs them until they have suffered a loss or upset because of this.”.

digital detox

Could this cure-all of the tech world provide more benefits to the humans using the tech than the devices themselves? Digital detox devotees think so, and they’ve started a movement that seems to grow louder and larger with every tech announcement or app update.

Not convinced? Try it for one week.

How to detox without losing your job or social life.

There’s no one-size-fits-all approach to detoxing. Randi Zuckerberg, founder and CEO of Zuckerberg Media, believes in a ‘digital sabbath’, while Google chairman Eric Schmidt believes in scheduled ‘on’ and ‘off’ times, and commits to gadget-free meals.

digital detox

When traveling and taking a vacation, every notification you receive– emails, instant messages, text messages, social media notifications– takes a moment to acknowledge, another to process and another (or a few depending on how soon that deadline really is) to forget. Suddenly the notification, even if you neglected to react or respond to it, is a significant distraction from what should be a chance to explore another culture and enjoy some time away from the screen. Multiply this by the 50+ notifications many of us will receive in a day, and you can start to get a sense of what you’re losing to your device.

Dr. Thomas has seen first-hand how deep the benefits can be. “Some of the changes I’ve noticed in clients after they’ve taken a digital detox are that they are more balanced and calmer in their lives due to periodically stopping the continual digital exposure throughout their day.

“Try to have at least one hour before bedtime where there is no digital stimulation so you can unwind. During this digital-free time period, try to connect with yourself through meditation, reflection or awareness. Don’t let digital devices stay on at night next to you unless it’s mandatory.