Amino acids are extremely important, not just to athletes and bodybuilders, but to every person because it is imperative to the synthesis of proteins and the overall functioning of the body. In a nutshell, there are 20 total amino acids and 10 of them are classified as “essential,” (not naturally made by the human body and must be obtained from foods eaten). When diets lack these essential amino acids, the body will begin to break down existing protein, (muscle tissue). Why must people get them through food? Unlike fat, amino acids cannot be stored in the body for later use. So you only use what you eat on a daily basis. Our tissues, cells, stomach enzymes and brain all get nourishment and protection from amino acids, so it is crucial we eat them everyday.
We have all heard and probably repeated the middle of the road saying, “Moderation is key” to ourselves and others when it comes to eating bad, eating well, engaging in risky behavior or even using habits that seem healthy. But can diving into cyclical habits of the far extreme (or just too much for one’s body to handle) always yield a positive reaction, when what we are doing seems at first good for us and healthy?
I am a huge supporter and advocate of eating seasonally, eating organic, and eating locally. This type of eating lifestyle and dietary consciousness is not only about what is good for our bodies; it is about what is symbiotically beneficial to the environment as well. Eating seasonally appropriate foods gives our bodies optimum nutrition and energy. It cools and heats our bodies according to our changing environment and helps us detox and cleanse our body organs so we are lighter, more resilient and stronger than last season. Want to have more spring in your step and save money on foods that are plentiful and less expensive?
Purslane, or Portulaca oleracea, is a plant that is eaten in Asia, Europe, Mexico and the Middle East. In the US, it’s classified as a weed, which may explain why it’s relatively unknown. Purslane is great for the skin, urinary and digestive systems, boosting the immune system and has a perfect combination between antioxidants, omega 3 fatty acids, potassium, calcium, magnesium and carotene.
Eat these foods every week to boost up the fat burning potential of the body (increase immunity power and digestive wellness, too). Try to limit or cut out processed foods and high “bad” and trans fat foods that are deep fried and processed with damaging oils. Examples of both include: white pastas, packaged snacks, crackers (raw and sprouted are fine), cereals, high sugar or artificial sugar ANYTHING that does not come from mother nature (like fruit) and foods that spike and drop insulin without any other added benefits. There is a very very long and involved list of food additives and common foods that do the opposite of burning fat, but I want this article to highlight all the foods we should be focusing on.
Whether you are of Irish decent or not, it seems like everyone around the United States is celebrating the nation’s day of green. Most people know of St. Patrick’s day as a day to wear green clothes, joke with the kids about Leprechaun, start yet another excuse to down some green beer and eat some hearty Irish foods. Though this mid-march practice seems like the farthest tradition away from a spring detox, there ARE some healthy options when having your jolly O’ time. Below are some of the healthiest Irish food and drink options on this day of (bar) hoppin’ and (arm) pinchin’.
With the thousands of over the counter miracle-in-a-bottle pill bottles we face at the grocery stores and conventional markets (not to mention tens of thousands more prescription drugs that promise to alleviate symptoms of daily and chronic ailments), how do you know which chemical concoction is the best and most reliable? Remember that every drug (over the counter, generic or name brand) does not carryout in the body and deliver results-whether good or bad-without side effects. In Oriental, Ayurvedic and Eastern Asian medicines, most healing and chronic infection prevention can be found in our modern kitchen cabinet. Make sure you are well versed in the following herbs and spices, for they may just be the ingredient to stave away disease and booster health to optimum levels!
When you are expecting, everything you eat and drink directly impacts your child’s health. Because pregnancy affects your immune system, you and your unborn baby are more susceptible to the bacteria, viruses, and parasites that cause foodborne illness Everyday foods and beverages, even environmental factors, take on new meaning, as some may present a danger to your developing baby. Even if you don’t feel sick, some “bugs” like Listeria and Toxoplasma can infect your baby and cause serious health problems. Your baby is also sensitive to toxins from the food that you eat, such as mercury in certain kinds of fish.
Natural whole foods, and as lightly processed foods as possible, such as whole grains, lean meats, such as fresh wild fish cage free chicken or eggs, seasonal fruits, fresh colorful vegetables and sea vegetables, legumes, and low-fat dairy should form the basis of your pregnancy diet. Be especially aware of items that you may want to avoid when you are expecting.
aph-ro-di-si-ac : noun; 1. An agent (as a food or drug) that arouses or is held to arouse sexual desire; 2. Something that excites. (Merriam Webster Dictionary, 2010)
An aphrodisiac is a substance that increases sexual desire. The name comes from Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of sexuality and love. Throughout history, many foods, drinks, and behaviors have had a reputation for making sex more attainable and/or pleasurable. Some people believe that aphrodisiac foods, such as bananas, oranges or oysters, gain their powers and reputation through their resemblance to sexual body parts. The same factor explains the trade in the phallic-looking horn of the rhinoceros. The magic of alcohol, especially champagnes and wines can best be attributed to their ability to lower one’s inhibitions. Other animal-based aphrodisiacs gain their reputation from the apparent virility or aggressiveness of the animal source, such as tiger penis. And then there are other foods, such as chocolate, that just make us feel good. In some cases it can be attributed to certain chemicals they release in our bodies, as chocolate has been proven to do. In others, it is that they excite many of our senses through a combination of taste, texture and appearance, and marketed to the masses on romantic holidays such as Valentine’s Day.
Need more energy in the morning and throughout the day? Do you find your coffee habit is growing but your energy is only fading? Well, if a crisp organic apple doesn’t do the trick, try this Incan superfood that has been used in the indigenous Andean societies as a source of whole body health nourishment, energy supplement and healing agent: the Maca root.Need more energy in the morning and throughout the day? Do you find your coffee habit is growing but your energy is only fading? Well, if a crisp organic apple doesn’t do the trick, try this Incan superfood that has been used in the indigenous Andean societies as a source of whole body health nourishment, energy supplement and healing agent: the Maca root.