Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Sleep - Luxury or Necessity???

Sleep… is it a luxury?  It is actually a necessity for hormone balance.  Research shows that if you do not get at least 7 hours of sleep a night, you can drastically increase your risk of diabetes, obesity, cancer, heart disease, stroke, and depression.   Without adequate sleep, you tend to eat more sugary foods & consume more caffeine just to “keep you awake.”  Thus, the excess calories and overworked adrenaline gland (which is a major contributor gland for metabolic hormones!!).
You have five stages of sleep each night.  Research has shown that the deep sleep (dreamless & slow-wave sleep) –which takes place about 4 times a night – may actually help in regulating metabolism.  The 4th stage of slow-wave sleep (can start as little as an hour after you fall asleep), is when you release higher pulses of your hormone that helps the body burn stored fat(Growth Hormone).   The older you get, the less time you spend in this stage!!!  That’s right, less fat burning hormone!
Now what happens to make us want to snack on sugary foods & caffeine when we don’t get enough sleep?  Insufficient sleep will cut the satiety hormone (Leptin) down by 20% while it increases your hunger hormone (Ghrelin) by 30%.  Now that can do some major damage!!  Plus the excess food intake can bring about insulin resistance (eventually leading to more obesity and diabetes!).
So if you want to prevent the whole domino effect from happening, … allow the fat burning hormone to be released, prevent the fat-storage hormone level from increasing, it is essential that you get at least 7 hours of sleep each night!
And if you have problems falling asleep at night, there are a few things to do:                         
1) Do NOT exercise late in the evening/night – it stimulates energy & prevents falling asleep.
2) Take Melatonin.  This is a natural hormone that your body produces to relax you and helps in falling asleep.  IF you are under stress OR your adrenaline gland is fatigued, your body might not produce adequate melatonin to help you relax.  You can purchase it over the counter at any drug store.                  
3) Take a hot bath of at least 103 degrees right before bed.  This will aid in loosening muscles and relaxes them.  Put some lavender bath salts in the water OR light a lavender candle to help you relax.  

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

The 3 Types of Vitamins--
 What Are You REALLY Taking?

The 3 Types of Important Vitamins

What Are You Really Taking?
Important vitamins are diminishing from our food.
It is becoming more important to supplement our nutrition with the right vitamins - for better overall health.
There are basically 3 types of important vitamins on the market today: Synthetic, Crystallized, and Lyophilized.
This information is from Michael Pazdon's 'Organic Research' completed at the University of New Hampshire.
Synthetic (Chemical) 'Vitamins'
Synthetic 'vitamins' are made from inorganic chemical materials (i.e. petroleum by-products).
They are sold mainly in drug stores, pharmacies, and grocery stores.
These 'vitamins' act as drugs in the body. And, they may set up toxic reactions and rob the body of stored nutrients and antibodies. Not good!
Here are some quick tests for your vitamins...
Put one of your vitamins in a glass of room temp water for 1 hour. It will slowly start to break down. If it begins to leach black, tar like material, it likely contains petroleum by-products.
Also, if your vitamins smell bad - they have chemical additives.
And...if you 'burp up' your vitamins after you take them, they are notdoing you any good. Your stomach is reacting to the additives.
Good vitamins should not ooze black material, they should not smell, they should not cause indigestion.
Crystallized (Heat Processed) Vitamins
Crystallized vitamins are commonly labeled "Organic" or "Natural."
They are sold mainly in drug and health food stores.
These vitamins are derived at least partly from an organic whole food source - by a high temperature process.
Most of the live enzymes, necessary for absorption into the body, have been destroyed.
"Organic" and "Natural" do not necessarily mean "alive."
Dr. Prazdon's example: "If we placed a grain of corn in an oven to heat, then planted it, it would not grow."
Lyophilized (Low Temperature Dehydrated) Vitamins
Lyophilized vitamins are made from whole foods - dehydrated by a cold process (similar to freeze-drying).
This method preserves the complex important vitamins, biflavinoids, and enzymes found in Nature.
Enzymes necessary for absorption into the body remain intact.
Dr. Prazdon's example: "If a grain of corn is frozen...thawed and planted it will sprout and grow."
Make sure your vitamins are Lyophilized!
If they are not - you are wasting your money and possibly robbing your body of nutrients.
One site I have found whom carries the lyophilized vitamins is the Shaklee Corporation; however, I'm still searching for all options!
Articles from &
On a personal note, I like to look at vitamins as "health insurance" so to speak.  It is used/needed on the days that I might not consume the vitamins & minerals in natural foods.   Our body craves the vitamins & minerals, and the right amount of macronutrients(depending on your lifestyle & physical activity)...  it does not crave "calories" so it is best to get the right type of vitamins when you do take them and NOT waste your money on faulty brands.     - Christie