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Potassium and Celiac Disease Well…I’m back. I know I haven’t been around all summer…sorry…I decided to take the summer off and spend time with my kids and get some stuff done!! But…now I have tons of things that I want...

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Keep Cancer-Free By Eating A Nutritious Diet Most people watch their diets to lose weight and get in better shape.  The health benefits of eating a nutritious diet don’t stop at losing weight however.  A healthy diet can even significantly decrease...

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Egg Recall 380 Million eggs are being recalled….unbelievable! Federal officials are saying that this is the largest outbreak of salmonella in years! Really?? I wonder why that is? Let’s see…could it have...

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Calcium supplements cause heart attacks? Well…most of you know that I tell everyone that I want them to get their vitamins and minerals from their food intake.  I would rather see you eat a salad full of vitamins and minerals, rather than...

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What will you do to feel good…have energy…lose... Ever notice that people will pretty much do anything to make money? Or even get whatever it is they are craving for in the middle of the night? If you are craving ice cream and the shops are closed…you...

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Potassium and Celiac Disease

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Category : Disease, Health, healthy eating

bananaWell…I’m back. I know I haven’t been around all summer…sorry…I decided to take the summer off and spend time with my kids and get some stuff done!! But…now I have tons of things that I want to talk about…first being potassium. I know I have written about making sure that you are receiving the correct vitamins and minerals and to make sure that you keep up on annually. I don’t think that I have touched on potassium though. I don’t know why…I have had potassium issues for a couple of years now…guess I never thought about writing about it…until now. I was hospitalized about a week ago…one of the things that was causing my symptoms…low potassium! Hence…the reason for this article.

So, let’s start with the symptoms of low potassium…

  • cramping – arm, legs or any muscles (can cause inability to move muscles, if severe enough)
  • nausea or vomiting
  • heart palpitations
  • constipation
  • thirsty all the time
  • low blood pressure
  • depression

There are more symptoms, but these are the main ones. Now, the muscles need potassium to contract and the heart needs potassium to regulate blood pressure and beat properly. So, if your potassium is low, it can throw all of your muscles off…quickly! And with all of your organs being “muscles”…that can cause big issues. I know I have discussed before that with having celiac disease, you can have problems absorbing the vitamins and minerals from your foods. And if you are newly diagnosed, then you will be malnourished and depleted of all vitamins and minerals. So…again…make sure you get your vitamins and minerals checked regularly! Now…what can you eat that will give you potassium?

  • Dried herbs
  • avocados
  • paprika and red chili powder
  • dark chocolate
  • dried apricots and prunes
  • pistachios
  • salmon and halibut
  • dates
  • raisins and figs
  • bananas, nectarines and peaches
  • spinach
  • sweet potatoes (with skin)

So…if you have any of these symptoms or your not feeling great and can’t figure it out..get your potassium checked!

One more thing…if you have digested gluten and have a lot of diarrhea…eat high potassium foods…because diarrhea causes you to lose potassium…quickly!

I know this article was written mostly for people with celiac disease…but it goes for everyone!  Most people do not get enough potassium in their diet.  So everyone should keep a check on this and if you are sick, whether with the flu or anything else and have diarrhea or are vomiting…make sure to get the potassium back into your system!!

If you have celiac disease and need more information please check out Celiac Health Management.

Good luck and stay happy and healthy!!!

Keep Cancer-Free By Eating A Nutritious Diet

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Category : Disease, Health, healthy eating

th_pink_cancer_ribbonMost people watch their diets to lose weight and get in better shape.  The health benefits of eating a nutritious diet don’t stop at losing weight however.  A healthy diet can even significantly decrease your chances of being diagnosed with cancer and other terminal illnesses. Even in cancers like breast cancer, which is primarily caused by a mutation of the BHRCA, and mesothelioma, which is caused so predominately by asbestos exposure that mesothelioma lawsuits have put most asbestos companies out of business, a healthy diet has been shown to have a strong correlation between people who develop cancer and those who don’t.

It’s been proven that a diet that is rich in fruits and vegetables can help lower the risks of both cancer diagnosis and cancer recurrence because fruits and vegetables, especially green, orange, and yellow fruits and vegetables, are loaded with antioxidants that work to repair damaged cells.  Even more amazing is a study at Cornell University where compounds from apple peels called triterpenoids were proven to cause breast cancer cells to die.

It’s also best to limit how much red meat you eat because a diet high in animal fat has been shown to increase the risk for several types of cancer, including colon cancer. Studies show that those fats may contain carcinogens called heterocyclic amines, and estimate that having high amounts of red meat in your diet can increase your risk for cancer by 17 to 19 percent.  You can replace the proteins and fibers found in meats by eating leaner meats like poultry and fish and fiber-rich vegetables and whole grains.

Nearly everyone’s aware of how important it is to eat healthy, but few realize the long-term effects that unhealthy eating habits can have.  A balanced, nutritious diet high in fruits and vegetables and low in red meats and dairy can help you keep your body cancer-free.

By guest author : Tim Elliot

Egg Recall

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Category : Disease, Health, healthy eating

42-15654274380 Million eggs are being recalled….unbelievable! Federal officials are saying that this is the largest outbreak of salmonella in years! Really?? I wonder why that is? Let’s see…could it have something to do with the way they are treating the animals? Feeding them things that they aren’t really supposed to be eating? Producing too many of the animals and then keeping way too many of them in horrible conditions? You know…years ago…we didn’t have these salmonella outbreaks. Yes, you would have your occasional outbreak…but have you noticed they are getting worse and closer and closer together? Animals are suppose to be fed from the land, that is how they were fed originally…now we are stuffing them full of antibiotics, unnatural foods and vitamins, and then wondering why the animals are having problems?
I have included a documentary that I think everyone should see. It shows why the animals are having issues and how all these animals are treated. If you get a chance, pick it up or watch it on Netflix or however you watch your movies.
Now…back to the recall…the eggs were produced by Wright County Egg, of Galt, Iowa. This facility has been under investigation of government regulators for environmental violations, unsafe working conditions, and the harassment of workers, according to the New York Times.
The recall affects eggs sold under the following brands: Lucerne, Albertson, Mountain Dairy, Ralph’s, Boomsma’s, Sunshine, Hillandale, Trafficanda, Farm Fresh, Shoreland, Lund, Dutch Farms, and Kemps. The plant numbers affected are P-1026, P-1413, and P-1946. The dates (recorded in the “Julian format”) range from 136 to 225, according to a statement by the Egg Safety Center.
According to the CDC… A person infected with the Salmonella Enteritidis bacterium usually has fever, abdominal cramps, and diarrhea beginning 12 to 72 hours after consuming a contaminated food or beverage. The illness usually lasts 4 to 7 days, and most persons recover without antibiotic treatment. However, the diarrhea can be severe, and the person may be ill enough to require hospitalization.
To reduce your risk of salmonella, the CDC says the following:
• Keep eggs refrigerated at ≤ 45° F (≤7° C) at all times.
• Discard cracked or dirty eggs.
• Wash hands, cooking utensils, and food preparation surfaces with soap and water after contact with raw eggs.
• Eggs should be cooked until both the white and the yolk are firm and eaten promptly after cooking.
• Do not keep eggs warm or at room temperature for more than 2 hours.
• Refrigerate unused or leftover egg-containing foods promptly.
• Avoid eating raw eggs.
• Avoid restaurant dishes made with raw or undercooked, unpasteurized eggs. Restaurants should use pasteurized eggs in any recipe (such as Hollandaise sauce or Caesar salad dressing) that calls for raw eggs.
• Consumption of raw or undercooked eggs should be avoided, especially by young children, elderly persons, and persons with weakened immune systems or debilitating illness.

Calcium supplements cause heart attacks?

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Category : Health, healthy eating

MC900441751Well…most of you know that I tell everyone that I want them to get their vitamins and minerals from their food intake.  I would rather see you eat a salad full of vitamins and minerals, rather than scarf down 20 supplements.  I have always felt that supplements were made for people who were very low in that specific vitamin. You use it to bring yourself back up to normal and then stop and then keep it normal by eating the correct foods.

Well, it looks as though I may have been going in the right direction.  They have just released a study showing that calcium supplements raise your risk of heart attack by 30%.  30%!!  That is huge!

Past studies have shown that calcium supplements really don’t have a big impact on bone fractures.  So, they really are a waste of time, unless you are very low in calcium.  But for those of you who just take it, just because…I suggest you stop and start eating more leafy greens and dairy instead.

I have included a list of foods high in calcium for you to start adding to your diet.

Non-fat Milk 1 cup, 300 mg calcium

Reduced fat Milk 1 cup, 300 mg calcium

Nonfat Yogurt 1 cup, 490 mg calcium

Swiss cheese 1 oz., 270 mg calcium

Mozzarella, part skim 1 oz., 210 mg calcium

American Cheese 1 oz., 140 mg calcium

Cottage Cheese 1 cup, 160 mg calcium

Parmesan cheese,grated 2 T, 140 mg calcium

Pudding, prepared 1/2 cup, 150 mg

Frozen yogurt 1 cup, 200 mg

Ice Cream, light 1/2 cup, 200 mg

Black Beans 1 cup, 120 mg calcium

Navy Beans 1 cup, 130 mg calcium

Fortified Cereal 1 cup, 300 mg calcium

Soybeans, cooked 1 cup, 180 mg calcium

Spinach, cooked 1/2 cup, 130 mg calcium

Bok Choy 1/2 cup, 80 mg calcium

Kale, cooked 1/2 cup, 90 mg calcium

Corn Tortilla 1, 6 inch, 50 mg calcium

Greens, mustard 1/2 cup, 100 mg calcium

Fortified Orange Juice 1 cup, 300 mg calcium

Canned Salmon w/bones 3 oz, 180 mg

Fortified Cereal 1 cup, 300 mg

Waffle, fortified 1, 150 mg

Soy milk, fortified 1 cup, 400 mg

Greens, mustard 1/2 cup, 100 mg

Tofu 1 cup, 40 mg

Almonds 2 oz., 150 mg

Oysters 3 oz., 80 mg

You should have between 1000 and 1500 mg of calcium a day from your foods.

I have included links for larger lists of high calcium foods.


What will you do to feel good…have energy…lose weight….live longer?

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Category : Health, healthy eating

Ever notice that people will pretty much do anything to make money? Or even get whatever it is they are craving for in the middle of the night? If you are craving ice cream and the shops are closed…you will go to a gas station to get that ice cream…right? People will stress out their entire body for their job…to make that extra dollar. I have seen people put their entire lives on hold just for their career. I have a question…would you do the same for your health?

Most people would have to answer no…if they were going to be honest. Because those people who are stressing out about their job or career…are definitely not healthy! I am not going to get on a whole thing about being zen and all that stuff…I will mention one thing about it though before I continue…just remember that, if you have children, they are watching you stress out about the job and they see how much time you spend with the career, rather than with them…and they will be exactly the same as you when they get older…remember the song “Cat’s in the Cradle”, by Harry Chapin??? If not…listen to it! I have included the link at the bottom.
Now…back to your health…if we put even half of the amount of “energy” into eating properly…do know how many more people would be at a healthy weight, feel better, have more energy and live longer? TONS! THOUSANDS! Maybe even MILLIONS! We always have great excuses to eat the candy bar or the fast food or why we don’t eat our vegetables…sometimes we even have to think really hard for an excuse…how about if we turn that around and come up with excuses to eat healthy? Find an excuse NOT to fast food or the candy bar. We have tons of excuses to not exercise…can we turn that around to finding excuses TO exercise?

You know, people come to me for answers. They think that because I’m a nutritionist I am going to wave my wand and they will be thin and have energy…poof! I hate to tell you this…but it doesn’t work that way. I can tell you what you should be doing, I can point you in the right direction…but if you aren’t going to do the work…nothing is going to change. I heard a good one the other day…”the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting a different outcome.” Think about that and then tell me…how many of you are “insane” when it comes to weight loss or getting healthy?

Cat’s in the Cradle

Dr. Gundry’s Diet Evolution…good or bad?

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Category : Health, healthy eating

Dr. GundryWell, a friend of mine gave me a copy of this book and asked me read it and give him my thoughts…my thoughts are pretty simple….best diet book I have ever read.  Now to be honest, when I first received the book, my first thought was “another diet book…another fad diet”.  I am not a fan of “diets”, I think everyone knows that.  I am a fan of eating healthy and changing your lifestyle.  Most “diets” tell you what to do for the first few weeks and then never tell you what to do the rest of your life, and the diet isn’t something that anyone can stay on long term, because it’s either not good for you or you start craving other foods. So, needless to say…I do not like “diets” or these “fad diets”.

This book is totally different.  I know it’s called “Diet Evolution”, but it’s more about how to get healthy and stay healthy.  What Dr. Gundry explains in this book is exactly how I lost my 80 lbs.  I never read a book about it though, I just did it. I wish this book was there for me to read though…it would have made things a lot simpler for me!  He explains the reasons behind his theories and also tells you that it’s ok if you cheat one day or if you don’t like a certain vegetable or whatever the case may be and explains how to get around that little hurdle.  One thing I loved about the book is that he gives you a list of the foods that you can and can’t eat and lets you decide how to make your own meal plan.  He does give you example meal plans for those of you who want someone to tell you what to eat.  But for most people, they just can’t stick to what someone else tells you to eat.  For example, I hate cottage cheese…I can’t tell you how much I hate cottage cheese.  Well, ever notice when you go on these “diets” they always have cottage cheese in their menus?  So, I wouldn’t do the diet because I figured, if I didn’t have the cottage cheese it wasn’t going to work.  Dr. Gundry tells you that you don’t have to have cottage cheese; you can pick and choose what you want, as long as it’s on the list of items that you can eat.

Dr. Gundry also gives you tons of recipes!  I love recipes!!  I can never have too many recipes!!  I haven’t tried many of them yet, but they look great.

Now, for those of you who not like vegetables…one…you need to start trying different vegetables.  There are more vegetables out there than you realize…try them…you might actually like them.  Two…he talks a lot about vegetables…but don’t freak out!  You can pick and choose the ones that YOU like.

Dr. Gundry also talks about supplements and which ones to take and how much.  I cannot stress this enough…DO NOT start taking supplements until you talk to your nutritionist or medical doctor.  Not all supplements can be taken with medication that you are taking.  So please be careful.  I do agree with the supplements that he talks about, but not everyone should take them until they get off of the prescription medication that they are on.

So…my summary…I think everyone should read the book…whether you need to lose weight or not.  It’s not just for people who need to lose weight.  It’s about being healthy and living longer.  I have included a link to his website as well as a link to his book.

I wish you all happy healthy day!!

Dr. Gundry’s website

Child Obesity….whose fault is it?

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Category : Health, healthy eating

Child obesity…is it the child’s fault?  The parent’s fault?  Society’s fault? Well, if you ask me…it’s the adult’s fault.  All adults…the parents, the guardians and society.  But mainly…the fault lies on the parents and/or guardians.

Child obesity has more than tripled in the past 30 years. Obesity among children ages 6 – 11 has increased from 6.5% in 1980 to 19.6% in 2008.  Obesity in ages 12-19 has increased from 5% to 18.1%.  How ridiculous is that?? How can people turn their backs on numbers like that?  I hear constantly about people not understanding why childhood diabetes has increased…cancer has increased…heart disease has increased…and so on and so on.  Uuuummm….let’s look at these numbers people!  The medical community keeps telling everyone that if you eat healthy, keep your weight at a reasonable number and make sure you eat your vegetables and fruits, the odds of these horrible diseases decline.

So, let’s go back to pre 1980, when the child obesity rates were lower…what did we (as kids) do?  WE PLAYED OUTSIDE!  We ran around outside, remember your parent’s telling you to be in the house before the street light came on?  We went swimming, we rode our bikes everywhere!  We played cards with our family at night and on weekends; we didn’t sit in front of a television and play video games.  Our parents didn’t stick a Disney movie in the DVD player and plop us on the sofa.  What happened?  I know technology killed it….but guess whose fault it is that we allow our kids to sit in front of the television or Wii all day?  Guess whose fault it is that we allow our kids to eat Burger King and McDonald’s instead of a home cooked meal, because we’re too tired to cook?  It’s ours…the parents!  I realize that times have changed since pre 1980.  To have a decent life and to be able to afford all these gadgets, you have to have 2 incomes, and most of the time those jobs are more than 40 hours a week.  I understand that…but I also understand that our parents didn’t have it all that easy either….remember the “gas shortage”, the economy dropped back then too…their stressors were the same as ours now…but they always found time to go see the family on the weekend, play cards or board games at night and the kids always went outside and played with their friends until the sun went down…they always made us each our vegetables…no matter how much we whined about it…we weren’t allowed to drink all this soda, energy drinks and high sugar drinks…we drank good ‘ole water!

So…what am I trying to say?  If you want your kids to live a happy healthy and longer life…get them out of the house…make them eat their veggies and fruit…stop all the soda and high sugar drinks…start cooking meals again and last but definitely not least…spend time with them…play a game instead of sitting them in front of the Playstation.

I have listed some websites to help you and your kids learn about nutrition and how you can help your kids lose the weight and get healthy.  If you need help with ideas or have questions…you can always contact me.  Child obesity is my number one goal…if we can control childhood obesity…we can control these horrible diseases as they become adults!






Is your sunscreen helping or hurting you?

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Category : Health

j0448092Most people believe that sunscreen is supposed to block out the sun and UV rays, so you won’t get cancer.  WRONG! In fact, this is what the FDA says: “FDA is not aware of data demonstrating that sunscreen use alone helps prevent skin cancer”.  The International Agency for Research on cancer agrees with this and they actually tell you that hats, clothing, shade etc should be used as a primary barrier to the UV rays.  Some research has actually found that people who use a lot of sunscreen have a higher chance of skin cancer.  They are not sure why this is, they are speculating that people trust the sunscreen and therefore stay in the sun longer.

Did you know that there is no difference between SPF 80 and SPF 50?  FDA has issued a statement telling people that there is no difference between the two.  Another reason for being careful with the sunscreen is that sunscreen inhibits your body from making Vitamin D.  We get our vitamin D from sunrays, so wearing sun block all the time; will lower our vitamin D…which we really need!  The AMA (American Medical Assoc.) says that we should have 10 minutes of direct sunlight several times a week to keep our vitamin D levels up.

Another FDA study has found that 41% of sunscreens add vitamin A or retinyl palmitate to their ingredients.  When this is applied to the skin, in sunlight, it actually speeds up the process of lesions and tumors.  They put Vitamin A in their formulas because it’s an antioxidant, which slows the aging process…but this is if you take it internally….NOT ON THE SKIN!

The best choices today are mineral sunscreens.  They are stable in sunlight and they do not penetrate the skin.  For those of you who don’t like mineral sunscreens, please try to get one that has avobenzone (3 percent for the best UVA protection) and without oxybenzone or 4-MBC.  Researchers have found that oxybenzone or 4-MBC penetrate the skin and can have toxicity problems, especially with children.

OK…so what sunscreens should you use??  Here is a list from the EWC (environmental Working Group)

Good Sunscreens

Here is a link so you can find your sunscreen and see if it’s good or bad

Is your sunscreen good?

So, here is a quick rundown:

Don’t buy these:

  • Oxybenzone
  • Vitamin A (retinyl palmitate)
  • Added insect repellent ( you should buy it separate and add it before your sunscreen)
  • Sprays and Powders (your ingest the small particles in through your nose or mouth and can be toxic
  • SPF above 50+

You should get these:

  • Zinc
  • Titanium dioxide
  • Avobenzone or Mexoryl SX
  • Cream
  • Broad-spectrum protection
  • Water-resistant for beach, pool & exercise
  • SPF 30+ for beach & pool

Just remember that the best way to not get skin cancer is to wear clothing, hats and shade and best of all…stay out of the sun!

I hope you all have a fun and safe and healthy summer!!

Do you have a cortisol imbalance? Do you have adrenal fatigue?

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Category : Disease

Answer is…probably yes!  Most people do…with the stress that people have today, just with work, family, education, money…you name it!  We all have more stress in our lives today than people did 50 years ago.

What is cortisol and adrenal fatigue?  Well, I am going to try and make this as simple as possible for you.  Your adrenal glands are your “stress glands”.  They sit on top of your kidneys.  Whenever you stress about something, your adrenal glands kick in and start kicking out cortisol and other hormones.  This is what they are suppose to do, so that when you come across a stressor, where you need to run and hide or fight, whatever it may be, your adrenals kick in and give you the energy etc. to do that.  Problem is…if you are thinking about something that is a stressor, your adrenals kick out this cortisol even if we are at work or school or watching television.  So, we aren’t using the energy…we are just sitting there.  It seems that with today’s stressors…our adrenal glands are always working and never getting any time to rest.

Cortisol helps regulate your blood pressure, heart, immune system, blood sugar, central nervous system and many other things.  So, as you can see, if your cortisol is high or low…it’s going to set off a whole bunch of problems in your system.

Some symptoms of high cortisol are:

• Depression
• Memory issues
• Anxiety
• Fatigue
• Stomach ulcers
• High blood pressure
• Increased levels of cholesterol
• Weight gain/loss
Read more: http://www.testcountry.org/signs-and-symptoms-of-cortisol-hormonal-imbalance.htm#ixzz0oaMDvv1P

Some symptoms of low cortisol are:

Stress intolerance
• Chronic Fatigue
• Cold intolerance
• Inflammation
• Fatigue
• Weight gain due to lack of proper blood sugar levels
• Aches and pains
• Fibromyalgia
• Prolonged illnesses
• Common colds
Read more: http://www.testcountry.org/signs-and-symptoms-of-cortisol-hormonal-imbalance.htm#ixzz0oaMKSheZ

These are just a few; please see the above reference for more signs and symptoms.

OK!  So what do you do about it??

Here are some lifestyle changes to help you get your adrenal glands back to health:

  • Take some time for yourself every day, even if it’s only 15 minutes
  • Reduce stress as much as possible, get rid of the stressors that really aren’t important
  • Find something fun to do, even if it’s relaxing in front of the television, riding a bike, going for a walk…something that makes you smile
  • Get 8-9 hours of sleep EVERY night, go to bed before 11pm and/or stay in bed until 9am
  • Exercise – non competitive – walk, jog, yoga, stretching…anything you can enjoy
  • Maintain balanced blood sugar
    • Eat breakfast every morning
    • Eat atleast 3 meals a day
    • Eat protein at every meal
    • Eat veggies at every meal
    • Less simple carbs
    • No caffeine
    • No alcohol
    • Drink ½ of your body weight in ounces of water a day (ex. If you weigh 150 lbs, you would drink 75 oz. in water a day)

I know these things look hard to do…but there comes a time when you need to make a decision about your health and just do it!  After you start doing these things on a regular basis, within a couple of weeks, they will become second nature.  The only thing about rebuilding your adrenals is that it doesn’t happen overnight.  It can take months to a year for you to really feel better and your adrenals to be healthy again.  Some people feel a difference within the first couple of weeks, but don’t get discouraged if you don’t!

Some herbs that you can take for adrenal stress:

  • Panax Ginseng – This is mostly for men and not for anyone that is seriously low in cortisol
  • Eleutherococcus – You can take this if you have high or low cortisol.  This helps with anti-stress, endurance and strength, brain function and immunity.  This is good for athletes.
  • Ashwaghanda – This is calming and relieves muscle pain, for people with fibromyalgia or chromic pain.
  • Holy Basil – You can take this if you have high or low cortisol.  This helps normalize cortisol and blood sugar and enhance memory and brain function.
  • Licourice – This is for people with low cortisol and GI problems.  It enhances immune systems and helps heal stomach and intestinal problems.  This can increase your blood pressure, so do not take if you have high blood pressure
  • Rhodiola Rosea – This helps with depression, anxiety, energy, physical performance and anti-fatigue.

Vitamins for adrenal fatigue?

You should always take your vitamins, but if you have adrenal stress, then I suggest you make sure you take a vitamin B complex with a minimum of 50 mg in B5; 1,000 – 3,000 mg a day of vitamin C; and magnesium.

Please make sure you talk to your doctor or nutritionist before taking any herbs or vitamin supplements, as everyone’s health status is different.

Are there tests for cortisol? Yes there are.  You can take a saliva test or blood test to find out your cortisol levels.  I suggest that you take the saliva test that tests your cortisol 4 times a day, as your cortisol changes during the day.  Your levels should be highest in the morning and then drop very quickly around noon and then even out for the rest of the day until night time.  You can ask your doctor for the test or you can order the tests from me.  If you would like to order any saliva tests or you have any questions, please contact me “about me”

I wish you all the best of luck and a happy health life!!

Nutrition and cancer….does it matter?

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Category : Disease

Well, actually yes!  The following is an article from Mesothelioma.com.  If you have any questions about nutrition and cancer, please contact them or me and we will be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Proper Nutrition Essential in Comprehensive Cancer Care
By Jack P. Bleeker

Proper nutrition is important for all individuals, but can be critically important for those who are battling cancer. For this reason, proper nutritional regimens are now being included in comprehensive cancer treatment plans and are a staple of integrative oncology. While proper nutrition cannot, in and of itself, cure cancers, it can provide strength and health to a patient who will need it as they battle their disease. It is not only symptoms of aggressive cancers like mesothelioma, but also their treatment with methods like chemotherapy that will demand proper nutrition.

Malnutrition can be extremely harmful to a cancer treatment regimen, and must be kept in mind when considering each individual patient’s treatment roadmap. Cachexia and anorexia are common causes of malnutrition in cancer patients. Nearly all patients who develop extensive disease will battle anorexia, with common symptoms being weight loss and loss of appetite. Cachexia is a debilitating wasting syndrome causing weakness and loss of weight and is particularly common in those battling cancers of the lung (such as pleural mesothelioma), pancreas, and gastrointestinal tract. Cachexia is similar to starvation in healthy individuals, but cancer patient’s bodies are unable to make the adjustments to slow down the use of nutrients.

Proper eating habits for those battling cancer and undergoing cancer treatment can help fight the breakdown of muscle strength, enhance tissue reconstruction, and stave off infection in those with compromised immune health. Those who are able to maintain their health through nutrition and exercise will typically be eligible to receive more aggressive dosages of chemotherapy and radiation treatments. Each individual patient’s treatment plan will require the advice of cancer specialists and physicians who are able to make an assessment of the patient’s overall health. Dr. David Sugarbaker of the Brigham and Womens Hospital and Dana Farber Cancer Institute in Boston, MA will work closely with each of his patients battling thoracic cancers, including malignant mesothelioma, and develop an individual mesothelioma treatment guide, including recommendations on proper cancer nutrition.

While malignant mesothelioma is far from the only cancer that demands proper nutrition in patients, it is particularly important given the current lack of a mesothelioma cure in those patients battling aggressive later-stage disease. That being said, all cancer patients will benefit from the strength and overall health that proper and sound recommendations doctors and nutritional specialists can provide them with. Cancer patients as well as family members and caregivers seeking further information about proper nutrition in cancer care should seek the advice of these individuals and apply them to a patient’s particular circumstances and needs.


National Cancer Institute. Overview: Nutrition in Cancer Care 2005
Dana Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard University. Nutritional Resources Overview . Boston, MA 2009

Information courtesy of Mesothelioma.com