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Stop Weight Gain By Avoiding These 5 Foods

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1. Processed/Fast Food Burgers, fries, milk shakes, snack foods, and candy are a dieter’s worst enemy. They are quick and convenient to grab, but they are loaded with sugar, bad fats, and harmful chemicals. Think of these foods as empty calories, giving you lots of calories with nothing in return. Refined grains also belong in this category. They lack nutritional value because their outer fiber-rich layer is stripped away during the refinement process. Examples include white bread/bagels, donuts, most cookies and even white rice and pasta. Refined grains are high in the glycemic index, which means that they break down quickly into sugar, giving you a temporary rush with is followed by a drop in your blood sugar and accompanying hunger and cravings. If you are craving a treat, and want to stop weight gain, have an oatmeal cookie, a piece of dark chocolate or some fresh or dried fruit. 2. Bad Fats Limit your intake of saturated and trans fats. Saturated fats are found in animal products such as meat and butter and consuming high amounts of these foods is not only hard on your waistline but also your heart because they can raise cholesterol. If you like beef, choose lean cuts and trim the fat. Butter is okay in moderation (a teaspoon or so a day). Trans fats are often found in snack foods (as hydrogenated oils) and some margarine spreads. They have been getting a lot of attention for their adverse effects on health and as a result many manufacturers are eliminating them. Be aware that many fat-free products on the market, such as fat-free sour cream or yogurt use sugar or starch to replace the fat, and don’t stop weight gain since they provide just as many calories as the original product. 3. Soft Drinks Liquid calories can add up fast. Consider this: the average can of sugar-sweetened soda or fruit punch provides about 150 calories, almost all of them from sugar, usually high- fructose corn syrup. That’s the equivalent of 10 teaspoons of table sugar. Consuming one of these soft drinks every day, and not cutting back on calories elsewhere, could result in a weight gain of 15 pounds in a year. Just think of how many calories are in the super-sized containers offered by many fast food and convenience chains. Some studies have found that people tend to eat more calories on days when they drink a lot of sugar-sweetened drinks, and that soda drinkers tend to be heavier than people who don’t drink soft drinks. It is thought that the body does not easily recognize calories derived from beverages, so people end up eating more. Diet soft drinks are not a good alternative. Some research suggests they can increase appetite, promote belly fat storage, and the artificial sweeteners they contain may pose serious health dangers. For all these reasons, soft drinks, whether regular or...

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The Missing Link: Stress and Weight

The Missing Link:  Stress and Weight

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Who has not experienced 24/7 STRESS?  As busy women most of us do regularly, however, we were never meant to experience CHRONIC STRESS!  We are supposed to have small amounts which are both beneficial and necessary, followed by a return to a state of relaxation.  Hmmm, what is that you ask? Stress releases the hormone CORTISOL responsible for many important functions in our body: Glucose metabolism Blood pressure regulation Insulin release to maintain level blood sugars Inflammation response When we have too much cortisol in our body for too long (that would be for most of us!)  it adversely affects many important functions.  The missing link for many women and problems with weight loss is stress and cortisol! Here’s why: Too much cortisol causes Decreased thyroid function Sugar imbalances Increased abdominal fat Decreased immune system function (this is another very significant finding that stress=sickness) I see women in my practice who complain that they exist on “carrots and celery”, yet do not lose any body fat at all, ever.  While a low calorie, deprivation diet is very unhealthy (e.g. lowers metabolism and deprives the body of needed nutrients) when I ask about their stress levels inevitability one of the missing pieces becomes clear. The reason for stress and weight gain? Cortisol is often the culprit! So, what can we do to reduce our constant stress and therefore reduce our cortisol levels? Here are some useful tips – both nutritional and lifestyle: Walk daily – for exercise AND very therapeutic.  I personally have conversations with myself Yoga – studies do show it definitely works to reduce stress and weight and has numerous other health benefits Breathe deeply, often!  Simple, yet extraordinarily effective and feel effects immediately! Sex – YES, sex reduces stress in many ways, not the least is that in women it releases our “feel good and loving” hormone, Oxytocin.  Try it and see for yourself! Use femMed natural supplements formulated specifically for women.  In particular, I recommend Weight Management, Hormonal Balance and Menopause Relief to help reduce stress and cortisol. Exercise moderately 5-6 times a week.  Even 30 minutes makes an enormous difference. 200 mcg Chromium may help reduce sugar cravings Carbs are not ALL bad – try eliminating all white carbs and do add in brown rice, sweet potato, whole and ancient grains, oatmeal and lots of brightly coloured vegetables.  Why?  Helps raise your feel good neurotransmitter – SEROTONIN.  Amino acids also do this, naturally. Empower yourself with supportive personal development seminars and weekends As women, our health must come first – without it we cannot assist our families, colleagues, friends and most of all, ourselves!  Please commit to adding in just 3 of the stress reducers for the next 30 days and let us know how you feel.  Fight stress and weight gain. YOU are worth it! In health, Camille Stress is one of the main...

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Is there any way to regulate my thyroid without medication if I have hypothyroidism?

Is there any way to regulate my thyroid without medication if I have hypothyroidism?

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 It depends on your individual situation and the severity of your hypothyroidism. The majority of people with hypothyroidism have Hashimoto’s disease, which is an autoimmune condition that causes destruction of the thyroid gland over time. As this destruction progresses, the thyroid gland becomes less and less able to produce enough hormones to meet metabolic needs. This is reflected in an increase in thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH). The thyroid gland produces two hormones, triiodothyronine (T3) and thyroixine (T4).  It is important to know that many people with borderline hypothyroidism are symptomatic but have blood tests may show thyroid hormone levels (T3 and T4) that are slightly low or even within the normal range, or just a slightly elevated TSH. Common symptoms of hypothyroidism include fatigue, weight gain, dry hair/skin, brittle nails, easy bruising, cold intolerance, constipation, low libido, headache, joint aching, and slow heart rate. If you have mild or borderline hypothyroidism, which is quite common, then taking supplements that help support the body’s production of thyroid hormone may be helpful. Guggul is a supplement that increases production of thyroid hormone (T3). Many nutrients are required to produce thyroid hormone such as vitamins C, E, A and the B-vitamins. Selenium is reu=qurid for the conversion of T4 to T3. Ashwaganda is an herbal product that also helps boost thyroid function. For many people with moderate to severe hypothyroidism thyroid hormone medication is often required. There are several different types of thyroid medications such as the synthetic forms of thyroid hormone (Synthroid and Eltroxin), which provide the body with T4. There is also Cytomel, which provides the body with active T3 however it needs to be taken three times daily. Lastly there is natural thyroid hormone, which can be made at a compounding pharmacy. Sherry Torkos Sherry Torkos is a pharmacist, author, certified fitness instructor, and health enthusiast who enjoys sharing her passion with others. Sherry graduated with honors from the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and Science in 1992. Since that time she has been practicing holistic pharmacy in the Niagara area. Her philosophy of practice is to integrate conventional and complementary therapies to optimize health and prevent disease. Sherry has won several national pharmacy awards for providing excellence in patient care. As a leading health expert, Sherry has delivered hundreds of lectures to medical professionals and the public. She is frequently interviewed on radio and TV talk shows throughout North America and abroad. Sherry has authored fourteen books & booklets, including The Glycemic Index Made Simple and Breaking the Age Barrier. Her most recent book, The Canadian Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine has become a national best-seller. For more information, visit:...

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An Anti-Aging Alphabet

An Anti-Aging Alphabet

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The aging process is the cumulative effect of oxidative damage and deterioration affecting our cells, tissues and organs. The following “ABC’s of Anti-Aging” lists the top 5 strategies that attempt to halt or reverse this process and extend life. A- Anti Aging Vitamins for Women Anti-oxidants protect from “free radical damage”. Proponents of the “free radical theory of aging” endorse the use of anti-oxidant supplements such as vitamin C, coenzyme Q10,  and N-acetylcysteine to extend life expectancy. Anti-oxidant minerals like selenium and zinc have been shown to reduce cancer, improve immune function, enhance wound healing, and protect the body from premature aging. Another important micronutrient is Vitamin D3; a fat-soluble vitamin that is produced in the skin after exposure to UVB light. Vitamin D3 deficiency has been linked with increased risk of death and premature aging, as well as increased risk of breast and colorectal cancer and heart disease. Because it is not reliably available from food and because the use of sunblock prevents over 99% of its absorption, vitamin D3 should be taken as a supplement in pill or drop form. B- Bioidentical Hormone Therapy Bioidentical hormones are chemically identical to those produced by the body. They may be pharmaceutical or compounded agents taken orally or absorbed through skin or mucosal surfaces (i.e. of the mouth or vagina). Hormonal deficiencies in aging women may adversely affect wellbeing, vitality and virility. After menopause, symptomatic women with an intact uterus may be treated with a combination of low dose estrogens (such as estradiol taken alone or in combination with estriol) and a progestin (such as progesterone). Androgen replacement in carefully selected post-menopausal women may be used to increase womens sex drive and low energy. C- Cosmetic Considerations The average woman uses 9 personal care products daily exposing her to 168 chemicals each and every day. We absorb, inhale and ingest many of these chemicals into our bodies. There are links between chemical exposure and reproductive health and fertility issues and breast cancer risk. According to the Environmental Working Group, a non-profit organization, that specializes in providing useful resources (like Skin Deep and the Shoppers’ Guide to Pesticides in Produce) to consumers, 9 out of 10 ingredients used in personal care products have not been evaluated for safety. At http://www.cosmeticsdatabase.com , the Environmental Working Group has a searchable database it calls “Skin Deep.” Type in the name of a product to find the ingredients on that product’s label plus an assessment of the health risks of those ingredients. D- Diet A low calorie diet that reduces energy intake by up to 25% less than the average Western diet has been shown to lower blood sugar, blood pressure and mortality.  While caloric restriction offers much promise in countering the aging process, it is not without its risks. This diet is not recommended for individuals who are less than 21 years of age...

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