Well Being

Herbal skin care

Skin care is not a topic of recent times; it has been in practice since ancient times, when herbal skin care was probably the only way to take care of skin. However, skin care has transformed in a big way. Herbal skin care routines have been replaced by synthetic/chemical-based skin care routines. The herbal skin care recipes which once used to be common place are not so popular today (and even unknown to a large population). This transformation from herbal skin care to synthetic, can probably be attributed to two things – our laziness (or just the fast pace of lives) and the commercialisation of skin care. Even herbal skin care products have been commercialised. These commercial herbal skin care products have to be mixed with preservatives in order to increase their shelf-life, hence making them less effective than the fresh ones made at home. However, it seems that things are changing fast and more people are now opting for natural and herbal skin care routines. But still, none want to make them at home and hence the commercial market of herbal skin care products is on the rise.

So what are these herbs or herbal skin care mechanisms?

Aloe vera, which is an extract from Aloe plant, is one of the best examples of herbal skin care product. Freshly extracted aloe vera is a natural hydrant that helps in soothing skin. It also helps in healing cuts and treating sun burns.

A number of herbs are known to possess cleansing properties. Dandelion, chamomile, lime flowers and rosemary herbs, are a few examples of such cleansers. Their herbal skin care properties get invoked when they are combined with other herbs like tea.

Antiseptics are another important part of Herbal skin care. Lavender, marigold, thyme and fennel are good examples of herbs that are known to possess antiseptic properties. Lavender water and rose water also form good toners.

Tea plays an important part in herbal skin care. Tea extracts are used for treatment of skin that has been damaged by UV radiation.

Oils prepared from herbal extracts present another means of herbal skin care. Tea tree oil, Lavender oil, borage oil and primrose oil are some popular oils used in herbal skin care. Some fruit oils (e.g. extracts from fruits like banana, apple and melon) find use in shower gels (as a hydrating mix)

Homeopathic treatments and aromatherapies also come under the umbrella of herbal skin care remedies.

Herbal skin care is good not only for the routine nourishing of skin but also for treatment of skin disorders like eczema and psorasis. Most herbal skin care products don’t have any side effects (the most important reason for preferring them over synthetic products) Moreover, herbal skin care products can be easily made at home, hence making them even more attractive. So, herbal skin care is the way to go. However, this does not mean that you totally discard the synthetic products. Some people go to the extent of debating with their dermatologist, if he/she suggests a synthetic product. You should accept the fact that some skin orders might need usage of clinically proven non-herbal skin care products.

Vitamin C skin care – The challenge

Vitamin C is often regarded as a wrinkle fighter or an anti-aging agent. The main objective of ‘Vitamin C skin care’, in scientific terms, is to increase the synthesis of collagen (a structural protein that is found in skin). The additional benefit of ‘Vitamin C skin care’ is related to its capability of countering free radicals which cause damage to the skin.

Vitamin C skin care, however, faces a major challenge today. This is related to the oxidation tendency of Vitamin C skin care products. On coming in contact with any oxidising agent (e.g. air), the Vitamin C in the Vitamin C skin care products, gets oxidised; thus making the Vitamin C skin care product useless (in fact counter-effective). The oxidised Vitamin C imparts a yellowish-brown colour to the Vitamin C skin care product. This is something that you need to check before buying a Vitamin C skin care product. Even after you buy a Vitamin C skin care product, you need to store it properly and keep checking that it’s still good to use (i.e. it hasn’t attained a yellowish-brown texture).

The manufacturers of Vitamin C skin care products have tried to deal with this (oxidation) problem in multiple ways (and research on Vitamin C skin care products is on the top of their list). One such method of retaining effectiveness of Vitamin C skin care products for a long term is to keep a high concentration (say 10%) of Vitamin C. However, this makes the Vitamin C skin care products even more expensive. The Vitamin C skin care products are already pretty inexpensive and making them even more expensive will throw the product manufacturers out of business. The other way is to use Vitamin C derivatives (like ascorbyl palmitate and magnesium ascorbyl phosphate). These are not only more stable but also inexpensive. Even though the derivatives based products are not as effective as the Vitamin C skin care products, their stability against oxidation is a very desirable feature that makes them very attractive. Moreover, these are known to be less irritating too.

Talking of effectiveness of Vitamin C skin care products, it’s important to mention that not everyone responds to Vitamin C treatments. So it’s not a magic potion in any way. If you don’t see a noticeable difference in your skin, it might be because of your skin not responding to Vitamin C treatment (and the Vitamin C skin care products might not be at fault, at all).

As more research goes on, one can only keep our fingers crossed and wait for a complete solution to the challenges faced by ‘Vitamin C skin care’ today.

Forgiveness: Why This Is So Important

Many people have learned to fight against negative feelings or even hide them away. You could be finding yourself to continue to walk around with a powerless dark feeling, which also drives you away from yourself. You will first have to acknowledge your own feelings and a give them a spot, so you then can move on to forgiveness.
The right order in doing this is first to forgive yourself and then the other. It helps if you are aware that everyone makes mistakes and need the chance to learn from that mistake. It also helps if you recognize from which powerlessness, restrictions, sadness or pain someone had acted when he hurt you. You can view the other as a (learning) person and thus, he or she becomes less of an ‘ enemy ‘ or ‘ offender ‘. If you can feel compassion, you can let the accusation go, from there it is only a small step towards forgiveness.

When you have forgiven yourself and the other, it offers you a new opportunity and space to make a clean start. For some people, this has meant they could finally move on after years of struggling. All of a sudden there was a new job opportunity or they finally found a new place to live and make new friends. In fact, they were able to pick up their lives and move on!

The old saying is very true, when one door closes; another one opens.

A nice extra feature: from American research it shows that forgiving people are healthier, and they feel better. For example, they are less nervous, restless and depressed. This is than truly a great start of the New Episode in Your Life.

So now is the perfect time to start to forgive yourself and the other. Not because Christmas time is coming, but because you were reading this.

Try it, It is liberating!

 

Forgiveness

Flu Home Remedies You Should Know About But Probably Don’t

With the first signs of the flu, this will mean for the largest majority of people, uncomfortable and irritating symptoms where they will be using conventional flu strategies to get rid of these symptoms. However, few people know that these very same conventional strategies will actually slow down the healing

How to make Massage oil

Essential oils need to be diluted with a carrier oil before they are massaged into the skin.
The basic recipe should be:

massage stones

massage stones

For body massage:
15 drops essential oil
60 ml carrier oil

Face / foot massage:
5 drops essential oil
30 ml carrier oil

Stick to these recipes as it is best to mix only as much as you need each time so that the vital ingredients stay fresh and uncontaminated. If you make more than you need, store any leftovers out of direct sunlight in a tightly stoppered dark glass bottle.

As to as how much oil is enough for each massage, you need to apply enough to make your hands slip but not slide. Start with a small amount of warm oil and spread it on skin with smooth, flowing, rhythmic strokes, adding more to your hands as they start to drag over skin.

The best carrier oils to give enough slip for massage are sweet almond, sunflower or safflower. These are ideal for either body or face, but if you want to treat a particular type of complexion or skin problem as you massage, use one of the carrier oils specifically for facial skin care.

When preparing your oils, first measure out the carrier than add the essential oil, drop by drop, and shake or stir to blend. In general, you should use no more than three essential oils at a time for massage as any more will only mean the individual aromas fight each other rather than blending together.

 

 

The Soothing Foot Massage

The feet take more abuse than any other part of the body.
Reward them with a gentle, soothing massage, to spread pleasure throughout your body.

 

Relaxing,Healing and Soothing Foot Massage

Relaxing Massage

3 drops of Lavender
2 drops of Geranium
30 ml Sunflower oil

 

For Aching Feet

3 drops of Eucalyptus
2 drops of Chamomile
30 ml Sunflower oil

For Excessive Sweating

5 drops of Lemongrass
30 ml Sunflower oil

For Fungal Infections

3 drops of Tea-tree
2 drops of Geranium
30 ml Sunflower oil

Relaxing with Aromatherapy and Massage

How can Yoga help you with your health problem?

There are a lot of people who are crazy about yoga. The reason why most people do yoga is that it makes them feel better, and it gets them into shape. The different poses and postures help to make your body healthy. Yoga is for most people, the best way to relax and unwind. If your aim is to keep your body in shape, this might be the best exercise for you.

Did you know that yoga is good to fight of certain illness? There have been numerous research, which proved that yoga helps you to control anxiety, reduces asthma, arthritis, blood pressure, back pain, multiple sclerosis, chronic fatigue, epilepsy, diOffice Worker Meditating at Work Reducing Stress Levelsabetes, headaches, stress and many more.

Yoga has a lot of benefits and advantages. All in a day’s work, it can reduce tension and stress. Of course after a heavy day, you will feel that your muscles have been stuck up, and you will feel wasted.

If you do yoga, your self esteem will be higher. It is important to gain more confidence inside and out so that you can face people with no worries.

Yoga is good for the body in increasing your muscle tone, strength, endurance and flexibility.
If you are too fat and conscious about your body figure, yoga can help you lower your fat and keep your body in shape. Yoga exercises can burn excess fat and give you the desired figure that you want.

If you need time to relax and forget your responsibilities, yoga will be good to improve your concentration and enhance your creativity. Yoga will help you to think in a more positive way. If you have a fresh mind, you can think of good things and apply it easily.

Your body needs to relax once in a while. Sometimes, work can leave us wasted and exhausted. During the heavy days, we may not find time to unwind because work is still on our mind. Yoga can help you create a sense of calmness and well being.

Yoga exercise helps you improve a good circulation. Your organs and veins need to be exercised for it to function properly. Yoga can help stimulate your immune system and keep diseases at bay. If you have a good immune system, you can be sure that you are free from sickness.

Some people do yoga to be enlightened. They believe that yoga will help them bring up their spirit and keep them relieved. Yoga works differently for everyone, be it spiritual, emotional, psychological, mental and physical.

People think that yoga is only for spiritual people. But that belief is wrong. Even if you are not that religious, you can still do yoga. You will see and feel the difference at the same time. Find out how it works for you.

Due to the pressure and demands of life, we become stressed out, and we forget the essence of life. We tend to lose touch with the ones we used to spend time with, even ourselves.

We find that we are, most of the time, having to deal with deadlines and the hassle of keeping up with the paste of life. This leaves us a small time to wander and have that physical awareness.

These are the few things that yoga can provide. Find time to dedicate a part of it to yourself to relax and unwind in a way only yoga can give you.Man Performing Yoga by Lake

Vitamin D and Sunshine

An essential vitamin! Protects against cancer, heart and bone diseaseSarah

Western cultures have become almost phobic about any exposure of unprotected skin to sunshine with the well-recognised association between skin cancer and exposure to sunshine. Indeed the US Environmental Protection Agency is currently advising that ultraviolet light, and therefore sunlight, is so dangerous that we should “protect ourselves against ultraviolet light whenever we can see our shadow”.

But a certain amount of sun exposure is essential for normal good health in order to produce vitamin D – and partly as a result of current recommendations, we are seeing declining levels of vitamin D and the problems that go with it.

Human beings evolved over hundreds of thousands of years in equatorial areas and were daily exposed to sunshine. Dark skins evolved to protect against sun damage. However, as hominids migrated north, those races which retained their dark skins were unable to make sufficient vitamin D in the skin and did not survive. Only those hominids with paler skins survived. Thus the further away from the Equator, the paler the skin became. Races in polar areas survived because they were able to get an alternative source of vitamin D from fish and seafood.

There is an interesting inverse correlation between sunshine exposure, vitamin D levels, and incidence of disease as one moves away from the Equator. Even correcting for other factors such as diet, there is strong evidence to show that vitamin D protects against osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, bone fractures (vitamin D strengthens the muscles thereby improving balance, movement and preventing falls), cancer, hypertension, hypercholesterolaemia, diabetes, heart disease, multiple sclerosis and vulnerability to infections. Multiple sclerosis is a particularly interesting example of a possible vitamin D deficiency disease. Indeed mice bred for susceptibility to multiple sclerosis can be completely protected against development of this disease by feeding them high doses of vitamin D.

How much

For people living in equatorial areas, blood levels of 25 (OH) D) usually exceed 100nnmol/l and often 200nnmol/l. Since we evolved in hot climates, this is probably what is physiologically desirable. However, normal ranges in laboratories are still stated at around 40 to 100nnmol/l. This almost certainly represents sub-optimal levels – it may be enough to prevent rickets and osteomalacia, but is not sufficient for optimal health.

Sunshine

For a pale skinned Caucasian, whole body sunlight exposure barely sufficient to trigger tanning (the so called minimum melanogenesis dose) is as little as 15 minutes and is equivalent to the consumption of 10,000i.u. of vitamin D. If this is compared to the US recommended dietary allowance now standing at 200i.u. (which is the amount in a teaspoon of cod liver oil), one can readily see that the best source of vitamin D is sunshine.

Dietary

It is extremely difficult to get blood levels up to an optimum level on diet alone. Furthermore, dark-skinned individuals need very much more sunshine exposure in order to achieve the same blood levels of vitamin D. As people get older their requirements also increase – however, typically they spend less time in the sunshine and are much more prone to vitamin D deficiency and the problems that go with it.

In a study in which groups of elderly people started to take calcium and vitamin D, the occurrence of fractures is reduced by a third in the first year even though bone density is not increased sufficiently to account for the fewer fractures. What is not yet common knowledge is that vitamin D improves muscle strength and balance and it is thought that this is what reduces the occurrence of falls leading to fractures.

How to get more vitamin D

It is impossible for people living in Britain to get adequate vitamin D levels through full spectrum light. To receive sufficient vit D, you need to get the equivalent of at least 15 minutes per day whole body exposure to sunshine, probably more depending on the colour of your skin, to trigger tanning, but not burning of the skin. How likely is that? So what do you need to do to optimise your vitamin D levels?

  • If you are taking my Mineral Mix at your full correct daily dose (up to max 5 g a day), then you will be getting 4000 – 5000 i.u. of vitamin D3 a day. You do not need to take any other Vitamin D supplement, but sunshine on your skin whenever you can get it will be a welcome bonus! If you are not taking the Mineral Mix, you need to add 5000 i.u. vitamin D3 to your nutritional regime.
  • Lack of sunshine in the UK is an excellent excuse to book a holiday in a sunny climate during the winter! In order to get an equivalent dose through eating fish, one would have to consume 25 teaspoonfuls of cod liver oil or its equivalent. Eskimos and Inuit Indians probably achieve this easily with their diet, but I cannot see myself persuading my teenage daughters to do this. A foreign holiday sounds much more attractive, or keep taking your 5,000 iu daily.

Vitamin D supplements

In choosing a good vitamin D supplement, one needs to know a little of the biochemistry. Vitamin D2, ergocalciferol is made from yeast and is about a quarter as potent as vitamin D3. In order for D3 to be activated it needs to be twice hydroxylated in the liver and the kidney – bear in mind that anybody with liver or kidney problems may have a requirement for the active twice hydroxylated vitamin D (calcitriol) rather than D3.

In studies where vitamin D3 is supplemented at 10,000i.u. daily there have been no cases of hypercalcaemia. 5,000i.u. daily seems a reasonable dose for the winter months, higher amounts where there is pathology such as osteoporosis.

Sunning

People will be delighted to hear that sunshine is good for them – the overwhelming majority feel much better for sitting out in the sunshine. If the skin goes red then they are having too much exposure – they need just sufficient to promote mild tanning.

People with dark skins need much more than people with fair skins, but again they can judge this from the degree to which their skin darkens with exposure to sunshine. Redness means inflammation due to skin damage and should be avoided. It’s the old story – with any substance from water to sunshine, there is potential to underdose and overdose – it’s all about getting the balance right!

Related Articles

“THE CLINICAL IMPORTANCE OF VITAMIN D (CHOLECALCIFEROL): A PARADIGM SHIFT WITH IMPLICATIONS FOR ALL HEALTHCARE PROVIDERS” by Vasquez et al. – gives the science behind vitamin D.

External links

Pathology Department at the City Hospital in Birmingham offers a “direct to the public service for serum 25-hydroxy Vitamin D based on dried blood spots”. They send a home kit with detailed instructions, which makes it a very convenient way to check the levels. All the details on the Pathology Department’s website City Assays and in the page about the test: Vitamin D test.

How to Prevent the Flu with Home Remedies

It is not always possible to protect ourselves against the influenza virus. This is because of the numerous different strains of the influenza virus. However, there are several things you can do in order to prevent a flu infection. The main thing is that you need to maintain a healthy immune system.

Follow these helpful hints to maintain a healthy immune system and reduce your chance of becoming infected with the influenza virus this season:

Wash your hands regularly

washing hands, flu prevention

By washing your hands, you will decrease the likelihood of spreading a virus to your nose or mouth. Follow these 3 best handwashing technique.

  1. Use warm water
  2. Work up a good amount of soap all the way up to your wrists for at least 10 or 15 seconds.
  3. Clean all surfaces including the back of your hands, wrists, between your fingers and the often overlooked area; the fingernails.

The whole procedure should take preferably 1 ½ minute.

Don’t be tempted to use antibacterial soaps because this will be of no help. We are dealing with a virus and not a bacteria. The only thing you are likely to achieve is spreading an antibiotic resistant bacteria. Today researchers and doctors know that taking anti biotic or using anti bacteria soaps will only increase the chance that you will develop a bacterial infection.

After washing, spray some colloidal Silver on to your hands and rub this in. Use this also if you want to, safely, clean the surfaces of  doorknobs, cutlery, telephones, mouse, keyboards etc.

The properties of colloidal silver have been known and documented for decades. By using this transdermally, the silver can help you in a safe way fighting of the invaders.

Get enough sleep

Make sure you get enough sleep. Regular rest will help keep you strong and help your immune system fight of any potential invaders. Your rest should be of high quality, and if you have trouble sleeping, then have a look at sleeping problems

Remember, the more rested you are, the quicker you will recover.

Exercise regularly

Exercise is an important factor in maintaining the health and well-being of your immune system. It helps to move the lymph system through the body, sheds unwanted pounds, removes toxins, improves Vitamin D production when done outside and improves blood circulation throughout the extremities.

Exercising helps your immune system to be more efficient in finding an illness before it has a chance to spread.

 Decrease your stress

When you have a very stressful lifestyle (which most of us have), it is very important to decrease the amount of stress. Stress wears you emotionally and physically down. Being under too much stress or too long, will have a negative impact on your immune system. Your defences will be too weak to keep any invader out. It’s like opening your home for everybody and anybody.

Learn to manage your stress by eliminating the persons or situation which cause an increase in the stress level that you feel each day. You may believe it is impossible to remove these situations from your life, but it is much more difficult to accommodate your lifestyle to the stress related illnesses in which it can result.

You can also benefit using the following stress reducing tips:

Most importantly doing something that you like or even love doing. If you don’t have a hobby, it is really important to find one. If you type in “list of hobbies” in Google, you’ll find several interesting sites. Especially from Wikipedia  They have a very good and inspirational list of all sorts of hobbies. Really worthwhile to have a look at. Even if you already have hobbies but want to start something completely different. You could also have a look at bookshops or libraries for hobby books and magazines.

Positive mindset

By keeping a positive mindset, you will find it easier to stay relaxed and at the same time have a healthy immune system with maximized defences. This will help  you minimize the risk of becoming ill and help you recover faster when you have become ill.

Get your nutrition right.

We really are what we eat, which means that our diets and the foods that we consume each day, will have a significant impact on your immune system.

Eliminate as much processed foods and sugar from your diet as possible. A teaspoon of sugar will have an immediate and negative impact on your immune system for up to six hours. It is better satisfying your taste buds with sweet organic fruit than with ice cream or chocolate.

Alkaline / Acid Balanceacid alkaline balance front cover, flu prevention

By eating more alkaline food (large amounts of fresh vegetables and fruits) and lowering the acidic foods such as meats, dairy, sugary foods, fast foods, pastas and white food products, you will be able to support your immune system much better. How to maintain the best balance is explained the book Simple Steps to Optimum Health by Roddy MacDonald.

Vitamin C

Research has found that vitamin C will help to boost the immune system and increase the number of white blood cells which are produced in the body in order to help fight the influenza virus. Vitamin C can be taken as supplements using the dosage as suggested on the bottle. The purest form of Vitamin C is ascorbic acid, but when ingested it can cause aggressive stomach and bowel activity. When taken transdermally the bowel and stomach are bypassed, and the product is fed straight into the bloodstream. Here you will find more info about Transdermal Vitamin C.

Be sure that you do not take vitamin C supplements or fruit with vitamin C in the evening because it will keep you awake.

Minerals

Because our body needs about 64 minerals to function normally and vitamins and minerals need each other, it is important to take in mineral plant-derived supplements. In How to Avoid Mineral Depletion in Your Food it is explained why we don’t have the minerals in our food anymore and therefore the need of supplements.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D is a potent antibiotic, increasing the body’s proteins production, called antimicrobial peptides. These proteins destroy the cell wands of bacteria, funghi and viruses, which includes the flu! This will decrease the length of any illness caused by viruses and bacteria.

Simply the best way to get vitamin D is from safe sun exposure. But this needs to be done on a daily basis with as much skin exposed to the sun.

Now this is not really appealing during the winter, even 5 minutes are a big challenge, let alone anything longer than that. So the next best thing is taking a vitamin D supplement. This should be vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol). If you have liver or kidney problems, make sure that you read the section “Vitamin D supplements” in Vitamin D and Sunshine from Dr. Sarah Myhill.

Omega 3 Fats

Omega 3 fats, EPA & DHA, are essential in supporting your immune system as research has shown. They help us by providing a greater resistance to common illnesses as the flu.

Detox Your Body and Stay Hydrated

Drink as much water as possible each day to help flush out toxins and waste products. This actually helps to decrease the workload on the kidneys and improves your immune system.

Drinking a Nettle herbal tea will help you cleanse your body and blood and give some extra nutrition. Make sure you still drink extra water because Nettle has a drying effect on your body.

 

Check out our special Flu Prevention Packet. This packet will help your immune system keeping the flu at bay.

Sootingh Sore Muscles Bath Salts

There is nothing better than to relax in a warm tub after a long day at work or when you have had an intensive training, and your muscles are sore. Use this bath salt to give your body and your mind a well deserved rest. Because of it’s woody scent some may find it a bit masculine, but women love this “Soothing Sore Muscles” Bath Salts as well as men do.

When you don’t have time to take a bath or don’t have one, you can use this bath salt also in a footbath.
The salt and the oils will penetrate through the skin and the magnesium in the salt will still reach the muscles.

If you have really bad muscle cramps than use the Magnesium Transdermal Spray.
Just spray this at the sore place and gently rub it in.

Ingredients:
2 cups of Epsom Salts (Magnesium Sulphate) or Himalyan Pink Salt
2 tablespoons of baking soda
5 drops of Rosewood Essential Oil
5 drops of Chamomile Essential Oil
5 drops of Cedarwood Essential Oil

A nice jar where you store the bath salt in with a tight fitting lid.

How to make the Bath Salt:
1. Mix the salt and baking soda very well in a bowl.
2. Mix the Essential Oils in a small cup. You can fill a pipet and release the mixture evenly over the salt or carefully pour the mixture evenly over the salt.
3. Mix the salt and the essentials oils very well.
4. Let sit for over an hour before placing the bath salt in a jar and sealing it.

When you want to colour your bath salt, then use yellow and red to make a light brown, or you divide the mixture in two and add the yellow to one part and the red to the other part. Let it sit for over an hour.
After an hour start filling your jar layer for layer (first red, than yellow) until the jar is full then seal it.

When using colour’s it is best to use natural colourings like onion’s for brown; marigold for yellow/gold and beetroot for red. Otherwise, use food colourings, but be careful because you can’t be sure if the ingredients will harm you when it is absorbed through the skin.

The colourings can leave stains in some tubs or footbaths.

Skin Problems

By Dr. Sarah Myhill.

The skin is the interface between the outside world and the inside world of our bodies and therefore is subject to influences from both. It is the first line of defence against invasion by micro-organisms from the outside world; partly because it represents a tough physical barrier and partly because our first line of defence against the outside world, i.e. the immune system, pain, sense of touch, heat and cold act in the skin first and warn us when we are running into trouble.

The skin reacts to adverse events with inflammation. Just seeing inflammation, therefore, does not tell us why there is inflammation, but it tells us there is some sort of noxious event either trying to get in through the skin, or get out through the skin. Thus, eczema may be an allergic reaction to foods, with the antigen coming out of the skin, or to chemicals coming out as part of a detox reaction, as in a drug reaction.

Skin is responsible for making vitamin D through the action of sunshine on the skin. We can use skin to detox using far infrared radiation or as a result of exercise. Skin is also vital for recognition of others.

Almost all skin problems will benefit from minerals and vitamins in creams. A coconut based cream will supply medium chain triglycerides which are the perfect fuel for friendly bacteria on the skin, adding ascorbic acid reduces free radical damage and magnesium stabilises mast cells to make them less irritable. This makes the skin more tolerant of allergens. Using minerals salts will hold water in the skin so hydrating it and again increasing the skin barrier to infections and allergens. Indeed there is good evidence that all these factors will slow the ageing of skin.

3 Reasons Why You Should Take Up Weight Training

AngelineBy Angeline Thiri
Many people see weight training as something reserved for bodybuilders and figure competitors. But nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, everyone who cares about their health should engage in weight training on a regular basis.

Here are three ways that weight training will benefit you.

1. Weight training can help prevent back pain.

Most people suffer from back pain at some time in their lives. In many cases, this is caused by the spine being unstable because the muscles in the back, legs and abdomen are weak. By training your core with weights, you’ll strengthen those muscles. Having strong muscles can stop back pain happening.

2. As you get older, you’ll look and feel a lot younger than your peer group.

After the age of 30, people start to lose their muscle mass year by year. To put it bluntly, they get more flabby. Weight training will help prevent this. You’ll stay firm in your older age.

Not only is this aesthetically appealing, you’ll also maintain your mobility into your very old age. That means you won’t need to depend on people to get up from your chair or get help walking. You’ll keep your independence and even be able to enjoy playing with your grandchildren.

3. Working out with weights can help prevent osteoporosis.

As people move into old age, they tend to experience rapid bone loss. This is even more common in women, especially after they’ve gone through the menopause. It can even lead to osteoporosis.

Osteoporosis is a serious health problem in which your bones are brittle and easily broken. What many people don’t realize is that weight training doesn’t only strengthen your muscles, but also your bones. That means you can prevent osteoporosis by regular weight bearing exercises combined with good nutrition.

But I don’t want to be bulky!

Contrary to popular belief, doing regular weight training doesn’t make you bulky. People who build up their bulk actually train specifically for that purpose. For regular fitness enthusiasts, especially women, it’s unlikely that they’ll become muscular like professional bodybuilders.

Also, weight training doesn’t mean you have to visit your local gym regularly. You can train at home just as easily without using barbells or gym equipment.

Weight training simply means exercising with weights. So, the weights could be dumbbells, or kettlebells, or any old heavy things lying around your house. On my home weight training site, I show people how to easily and cheaply train with weights at home.

Whether you like to exercise at home or at the gym or outdoors, now that you know its benefits you should start making weight training a regular part of your life.

At The Holistic Approach we have several professionals who have contributed to our website.
If you want to contact Angeline Thiri, please click here.

How to Choose Between Natural Skin Care Products and Synthetic Skin Care Products?

Currently people treat synthetic skin care products as being harmful to the skin. For that reason they have become very fussy about there skin and turned to a natural skin care treatment.

Having a skin disorder can mean that you sometimes have to use a synthetic skin care product because you can’t find a natural one to treat your skin disorder. Yet should we banish them? Are they really that damaging to our skin?

These questions have different answers due to the fact that we all have our own point of view. Yet it is proven to be very difficult to find a 100% natural skin care product due to the presence of synthetics preservatives. Some natural skin care products have natural preservatives yet the manufacturers of natural skin care products are not very keen on these because of the shorter shelf life and the costs are really unfavorable.

A natural skin care product can still cause an allergic reaction just as the synthetic ones, although people seem to believe that that’s not the case. They forget that the suitability of a skin care product is not based on whether it is synthetic or natural.

Follow these 3 tips so you know how to choose the best natural skin care product for you:

* The skin type. Do you have an oily, normal, sensitive skin or maybe a mixture?

* In what kind of climate you will use your product e.g. hot and humid condition would warranty the use of oil-free natural skin care products.

* How you use your skin care product. All products are useless if not used in the proper way.

If you don’t mind that your skin care product has a shorter shelf life you could always make your own natural skin care product. That way you are in complete control about the ingredients that goes in your natural skin care product. There are many recipes available on the internet and good books about making these yourself.

you will find organic fruits, vegetables, herbal- and essential oils very benefitional and popular to be used in your home made skin care products.

When you use a natural skin care product you still need to follow the other aspects of skin care because the natural skin care products are like supplements. The healthy eating habits, drinking water, regular exercise and cleanliness are still necessary to have a complete natural skin care treatment that will help you maintain a healthy, beautiful skin for a long time.

Important Facts You Need To Know About Sensitive Skin Care

Treating a sensitive skin is done by using some basic rules. Yet we need to be aware of what exactly a sensitive skin is, to fully understand the importance of sensitive skin care treatment. Having a sensitive skin means that the skin can’t endure bad environmental conditions and contact with foreign material which includes skin care products. To make sure you get the right products they are therefore labelled as sensitive skin care products. Because every person is different, the degree of sensitivity will also differ from person to person. That is also the reason why you have different sensitive skin care treatments.

Young women washing her face

As a rule all skin types will react negatively to detergents and other chemical based products. Though when the tolerance level is crossed that’s where the real damage start. This level is very low for sensitive skin types which is the cause that the skin will get damaged very easily and quickly. By keeping the potential irritants at a very low concentration or avoiding them will mean that these sensitive skin care products will help people with this skin type.

Here are some tips for sensitive skin care:

* Use sensitive skin care products only (i.e. the products that are marked for sensitive skin care). Also, check the instructions/notes on the product to see if there are specific restrictions or warnings associated with the product).

* Even within the range of sensitive skin care products, choose the one that has minimum preservatives, colourings and other additives

* Do not use toners. Most of them are alcohol based and are not recommended for sensitive skin.

* Wear protective gloves when doing laundry or other chemical based cleaning. If you are allergic to rubber, you can wear cotton gloves below the rubber ones.

* Another important tip for ‘sensitive skin care’ is to avoid excessive exposure to sun.

* Avoiding exposure to dust and other pollutants is also important for sensitive skin care. So, cover yourself adequately before going out.

* When you can’t find a sensitive skin moisturizer than use a hypoallergenic, noncomedogenic moisturizer.

* Use soap-free and alcohol free cleansers. Cleanse your face whenever you return from spending time out doors.

* Do not scrub or exfoliate too hard. It can cause redness in the face and even inflammation.

* Do not leave the make-up on for too long. Use hypoallergenic make-up removers.

Having a sensitive skin is very different from the normal skin care and is all about being careful with your skin especially using skin care products and protecting it against environments atrocities.

Personal Skin Care is a Routine

We all know the importance of ‘personal skin care’. The opinion on how-to (for personal skin care) differs from person to person. Some people believe that going to beauty parlours every other day is personal skin care. Others believe that personal skin care is just a matter of applying some cream or lotion on your skin, every now and then. Then there are people who think that personal skin care is an event that happens once a month or once a year. Still others busy themselves with ‘personal skin care’ all the time. However, personal skin care is not that complicated and neither is it that expensive (considering how beneficial it is). Personal skin care is following a routine or a procedure for attending to the needs of your skin.

Even before you start with a routine, you need to determine your skin-type (oily, dry, sensitive, normal etc) and select the personal skin care products suitable for it (you might have to experiment with a few personal skin care products). Here is a routine that should work for most people with normal skin.

The first thing on personal skin care routine is ‘Cleansing’. The three main ingredients of a cleanser are oil, water and surfactants (wetting agents). Oil and surfactants extract dirt and oil from your skin and water then flushes it out, thus making your skin clean. You might have to try a couple of cleansers before you find the one that suits you the best. However, you should always use soap-free cleansers. Also, you should use Luke warm water for cleansing (hot and cold water, both, cause damage to your skin). Take care that you don’t over-cleanse your skin and end up damaging your skin in the process.

The second thing on the personal skin care routine is exfoliation. Skin follows a natural maintenance process wherein it removes the dead cells and replaces them with new skin cells. Exfoliation is just a way to facilitate the skin in this process. Dead skin cells are not capable of responding to personal skin care products but still consume these products, hence preventing them from reaching the new skin cells. Thus removing dead skin cells is important in order to increase the effectiveness of all personal skin care products. Generally, exfoliation takes it place just after cleansing. As with any personal skin care procedure, it’s important that you understand how much exfoliation you need. Exfoliate 4-5 times per week for oily/normal skin and 1-2 times per week for dry/sensitive skin. Exfoliate a couple of times more in hot and humid weather.

Next thing on personal skin care routine is moisturizers. This is one of the most important things in personal skin care. Even people with oily skin need moisturisers. Moisturisers not only seal the moisture in your skin cells, but also attract moisture (from air) whenever needed. Use of too much moisturiser can however clog skin pores and end up harming your skin. The amount of moisturiser needed by your skin will become apparent to you within one week of you using the moisturiser. Also, applying the moisturiser is best when your skin is still damp.

The last thing on personal skin care routine is sunscreen. A lot of moisturizers (day-time creams/moisturisers) come with UV protection – so you can get double benefits from them. Such moisturisers are recommended for all days (irrespective of whether it is sunny or cloudy).

Again, experiment with various personal skin care products and also with the amount you need to apply. What gives you best results is the best personal skin care recipe for you.

The Basics about Facial skin care

All about Facial skin care

‘Facial skin care’ is more a matter of discipline than anything else. A facial skin care routine is what you need (and you need to follow the facial skin care routine with complete seriousness). So let’s check what comprises an effective facial skin care routine. Well, very simply, a facial skin care routine can follow the following 4 steps:
* Cleansing
* Toning
* Exfoliating
* Moisturising

Cleansing is the first thing in facial skin care routine. Cleansing helps in removing dust, pollutants, grease and extra oil from your skin, thereby preventing damage to your skin. Just spot your face and neck with a good cleansing lotion or cream and gently massage it into your skin using upward strokes. Use a soft face tissue or cotton wool to wipe your face in a gentle patting fashion (do not rub). Cleansing should be done at least twice a day i.e. morning (as part of complete facial skin care routine) and evening (on a standalone basis). Water soluble cleansers are the best for inclusion in your facial skin care routine.

Toning is the next in a facial skin care routine. However, this is the optional part of the facial skin care routine. Mostly, proper cleansing can compensate for toning. Toning helps remove all traces of dirt, grease and excess cleanser. Instead of making it part of your daily facial skin care routine, you can using toning occasionally i.e. when you have been exposed to particularly harsh environment/pollution.

Exfoliation is again, kind of, optional step in everyday routine for facial skin care. However, exfoliation is necessary at least once a week (or twice, depending on the skin type and the environmental conditions). Exfoliation finds its place in facial skin care routine because of the natural tendency of skin to replenish the skin cells every 3 or 4 weeks. As a facial skin care technique, exfoliation helps in removing the dead skin cells that block the pores, thus assisting the skin in the natural process. However, excessive or harsh exfoliation can cause damage to your skin; so you need to balance it out.

The next thing in facial skin care is moisturising. In fact, moisturising is the most important part of facial skin care routine. Moisturisers prevent your skin from getting dry. Dry skin is really undesirable since it cause the upper layer skin to break, leading to dead skin cells. Again, use light upward strokes to make the moisturiser more effective. Moisturisers work the best when applied on warm and damp skin. So do not try to remove all the moisture in the previous steps of facial skin care routine.

Besides the normal facial skin care routine, you should also exercise the following for facial skin care:

* Use proper make-up remover instead of just washing it away
* Pay heed to your skin type and the environment, when choosing facial skin care products.
* Before you start using a new facial skin care product, test it by applying it on a short patch of skin e.g. ear lobes.
* Never rub your skin too hard.
* Use sunscreen lotions for protection against sun.

Health Problems Earthing Therapy Can Help You With!

Earthing Therapy can you help you with several health problems and other important issues.

    Earthing, Pain and Inflammation®
    Earthing and Nighttime Urination®
    Earthing and anti-aging®
    Earthing and Wounds®
    Earthing and Sleep®
    Earthing Blood Electrodynamics and High Blood Pressure®
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    Earthing and Household EMF®
    Earthing Mobile phones and PC’s®
    Earthing and the Brain®
    Earthing and Osteoporosis®
    Earthing® and Exercise

April


In Nature we now have “The Sign of Renewal”.

First there is the promise: the vitality of nature is concentrated in seeds, roots and buds. Than the blossoming: seeds jump open and let their germs go through the often still half frozen earth. The young green is fragile and strong at the same time. There is a huge growth force behind those germs, who sometimes even by the smallest crack in the asphalt presses itself upwards.

You can’t keep the different plants apart in this first stage; they all have two round germ leaves. Just as foetuses of different animals who, in the first instance, all still look the same. But in every germ the concept is already decided of the major plant he will be. And also the power that the plant will need to grow. Everything is in “The Sign of Renewal”.

Even centuries-old trees get a hint of fresh young green. Sturdy branches are wearing delicate blossoms. Fledgling leaves shine of the ‘ baby oil ‘, other still cherish in soft ‘feathers’ like leaves. Both are appealing enough to want to touch it. Chestnut buds are even protected by a downy ‘ layer ‘.

Buds growing, eggs are cracking open, chicks and lambs see the light of life. Wear the Snowdrops still hang with the bent cup and the heart orientated to the earth, the Crocuses are already formed flowers. But then the sunny Daffodils come. They are opening entirely and give their heart free in the form of a Crown in the flower.

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March


Silence

Winter is a time of stillness. Literally speaking this means that there are hardly any leaves left where the wind can rustle through. The birds aren’t singing anymore, some have already left before the frost, others are silent. The people spend less time outside. If snow falls, the last sounds are muffled under the insulating blanket. Even the smells of nature seem frozen in the winter. There are odours, such as those of pine, but there is hardly any heat to transport those odours. Only when you fetch the pine branches inwards, into the warmth of your home, comes the smell of winter.

Figuratively speaking it’s also a time of silence. The winter is the Sunday of the seasons. Therefore this is a resting period, in which nature can collect his forces under the ground. The frost seems to reinforce that silence. For many plants the life processes are shut down. The juices aren’t flowing anymore, they cease their activities and the rotting bacterium comes to a standstill. Meanwhile the frost acts on structures. The best way to see this is when you look at water condensing to ice, or your own breath turning into flowers on the windows. Less well known is that frost is also a good force on the structure of the ground. Frozen clay soil for example, cracks open. The grove and big chunks are changed into much finer and crumblier clay. Frost makes some cabbages (like kale) more digestible and some of them can taste even sweeter. The germination of the seeds is more powerful after the frost. The seeds of many wild primula and gentian plants may not even germinate of they haven’t been frozen. Although the frost makes the nature paralyse, in the mean time it activates the hidden life processes in the seeds.

New Life
Something lurks in the hidden life processes of the secret of the winter.
Many seeds are germinated in the ground back in December. Spring showers are often associated with growth; it let the seeds sprouting and growing.
But in fact it is the autumn rains in November, in combination with the cold December days that is necessary to germinate.
When there are a couple of days of soft weather, after the cold ones, the seed of lots of trees and pioneers plants will start sprouting.
Then they will stay in that state for spring, before it will continue to grow.

However, when we don’t have the cold days first after the rain in November, then the chances are these seeds will start rotting away instead of germinating. Such a hesitant start is a phenomenon that you also encounter in the animal world. It has been discovered that animals that are fertilized in the autumn, for example a deer, create a very small beginning. This stays than in a resting state until Christmas and then it continues to grow, so the calf is born in the spring.

The fact that it hangs around until Christmas and then starts growing probably has to do with the fact that the days then again begins to lengthen. From more and more scientific studies shows how the vitality of all living organisms depend on sunlight. Around the day that we celebrate New Year’s Eve, the saps in the trees begin to stream again. In the cycle of trees, the first of January truly is the beginning of the New Year.

Digest

Nutrition provides the fuel for your body to function properly. Heat comes from the combustion of these nutrients and energy. In addition, it delivers the construction materials for the growth and maintenance of your body, such as carbohydrates, proteins, fats and vitamins. But before it can do something for your body, it must first become a part of your body. Your body takes the nutrients, breaks it completely off, then transforms this and rebuilds it, in its very own peculiar way to substances that supports and feeds your body. This digestive process proves in itself to be important. Artificial feeding through an infusion for example, is only to be accepted by the body for a short period, despite how carefully the loose nutrients are selected. It’s like with a piece of music. That is vividly by the way the loose nuts are forged together. But if you listen to the nuts from the written music separately it has little to do with music. In artificial feeding, nutrients are loosened from the natural whole and therefore there’s nothing to digest. If you skip the process of digesting and processing too long, you’ll eventually get sick. Your body must move significantly to properly digest. With every food your body must find a new way to handle this. Brussels sprouts are processed in different way than a strawberry. It is partly to this agility that you stay vital and healthy. The more vigorous the food is that you eat, the bigger the challenge to digest and so the more it promotes your own vitality. The vitality of the food depends on the way it is grown. Fruits and vegetables that gets the time to mature is therefore richer in vitamins and is more vigorous than the species who are filled up with water and chemical fertilizer in order to grow quickly. Also the operation affects the vitality. For example, there is more to digest from whole grain products than there is from white flour products.

Energy Suppliers
Whole grain cereals are very warming in winter. Wheat, oats, barley and rye let your gut work hard, so heat is released. Moreover, a large proportion of cereal products exist for carbohydrates. Your body converts this into sugars and that gives energy and warmth. It is important that they are well cooked cereals, and simmer preferably for some weeks (for example, in a hay box). The grain will then be able to open more, allowing for a better way for the valuable nutrients (in the metabolism) to be included. In white flour the vitamins, minerals and fibers, which especially in the bud, but also in the outer layers of the grain sitting there, are sift thru. To whole wheat flour the fibers are in any case added back, and organic whole wheat flour is made from the entire grain and therefore the valuable germ is still in there (it is because of the fats from the germ that they have a less long shelf life). Oats is the most warming of all grains, because he also is rich in fat. A bowl of porridge eaten before a hefty bike tour through the cold is not so crazy after all. This is also something to remember for the winter sports.

Fats for heat and energy
Fats get in the winter a shinier role. If you ever have a graving for crème soup, creamy sauces, or homemade pudding with whipped cream, or bavarois, then it will be in the winter. Roasted nuts do well as a crispy and warming detail in all sorts of dishes. And what is also eaten more in the winter are meat and bacon. That is not so crazy. Just like carbohydrates, the fats are a nutrient that gives the body so much energy and heat supply. A small amount of fat may already give a great amount of energy. Digesting fats also lasts longer than the digestion of carbohydrates or proteins and fats also slows down the stomach operation. Therefore it takes longer after a fatty meal to get hungry again. A limited fat reserve is helpful. A fat layer under the skin works in the cold time of the year as a protective layer for the underlying organs. But almost nobody needs to be afraid that he receives too little fats. Most of us eat too much fat. But don’t avoid them entirely, because many healthy vitamins such as A, D, E and K, are dissolved in fats. There are books note about healthy and less healthy fats. Generally you can say that your body can cope better with vegetable fats and non refined fats, which are easier to digest than animal or refined fats.

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Go With The Flow


You know how it goes. After winter comes spring and sunshine after rain. Yet the first buds, the first blossoms, the first strawberries, the first day at the beach, the first chestnuts and colorful autumn leaves or the first snow of the year is every time a surprise. Each season lasts long enough to totally get accustom to it. And if it’s a good summer, or a good winter then you usually are ready for the next season, with its own color, smell and character.

The seasons have a huge influence on our lives. Though in this age of urbanisation, technology, twenty-four hour economy and stress, our connection with nature is no longer so obvious anymore. That is a pity, because each season has its own quality and strength and you can make use of that. Who is alienated from nature, is also alienated from themselves; After all, you are part of it. Not only the nature around us changes with the seasons, we ourselves change as well. Your needs and capabilities vary by season and have a natural rhythm. In the spring you feel differently than in the fall. In the winter you think differently than in the summer. If you are aware of that, you can connect to that and do the things as much as possible on the right moment.

The great thing is that nature gives you exactly what you need in every season. That goes for your diet. That goes for your care. And it also applies to a psychological or mental level. For the one who understands nature can start living by the flow of the season which tells you what your best attitude is during that season. By doing so you can achieve a strong emotional en psychological level.

If you go with the season, you won’t stubbornly swim against the natural rhythm, but you let yourself be carried by it. And you can be confident that during the cycle of a year, everything is that is important will come to your attention. ‘Go with the flow ‘, is the saying. Who can succeed that, will lose no energy, but receive it.

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Exercise – if you don’t use it you lose it


Physical exercise is vital for long-term health and longevity. One important reason for exercising physically is because inability to get fit is an early warning symptom of disease. If you can’t get fit, then something is wrong. Be mindful that as we age, we lose some fitness simply because we lose cells. Mitochondria control the ageing process and they do so by apoptosis – they literally commit cell suicide when their metabolism slows down too much.

There are different types of exercise for particular issues. Many people hate exercise and therefore need to exercise in the most time- and energy-efficient way!

Exercise – the right sort –
This is the minimum that everyone should be doing! 12 minutes a week, with home-made equipment, is all that is necessary for full cardiovascular fitness and strength as determined by numbers of mitochondria.

Exercise for pleasure
Exercise releases happy neurotransmitters called endorphins; it also allows us to enjoy the outside world, socialise and function as normal human beings!

Exercise to generate heat is a good way to detoxify by mobilising toxins onto the skin which can then be washed off. If you need to detox, but hate exercise, then a sauna does just as good a job! When I do fat-biopsies on patients, I invariably find a range of pesticides and volatile organic compounds, and my view is that in a modern polluted world we should all be doing detox regimes to keep these as low as possible. Exercise is ideal, but if you are unable to exercise, then go for weekly sauna or far infra-red saunaing. Sunshine is an excellent source of FIR so long as you do not burn your skin with the ultraviolet.

Benefits of being fit
Protection against heart-disease – because it keeps the heart fit and lowers blood-pressure and slows the pulse. Athletes in top training have a resting pulse of less than 40 beats per minute and a resting blood-pressure of 80/40! If you can’t get fit, then it suggests you have a problems which needs investigating.

Protection from osteoporosis – because it keeps “working” the bones which lay down more bone to cope with this work.

Prevents depression – exercise increases levels of endorphins in the brain (the “happy hormones”). Some people actually get hooked on the buzz from intense exercise and must exercise daily to be psychologically well.

Stops obesity – Exercise – the right sort increases insulin-sensitivity and stimulates hormone-sensitive lipase which in turn mobilises fats. This is essential for many dieters who have got stuck! Exercise increases muscle bulk (only 12 mins a week!) so one’s resting energy requirements increase (i.e. you burn up more energy when you are doing nothing)
Improves balance and co-ordination – these need regular daily practice to work well. Anyone who has been confined to bed for a few days will temporarily lose their balance. Regular practice of a skill improves co-ordination and reflexes.

Improves back-pain – the backbone, along with the whole skeleton, is intrinsically unstable. What makes it work are powerful blocks of muscle and connective-tissue to hold the whole thing upright. If you become weak in any muscle-group, joints will be out of shape and cause pain and arthritis.
In some way, exercising to get fit helps the immune system – we know this because exercise protects against cancer.

More muscle makes more heat and warms you up. Heat protects against acquiring viral infections.
Ensures a good night’s sleep. Physical tiredness is a great help to sleep. Sleep is an essential for normal bodily functions!

Makes you look good – a muscled body is a shapely body

Improves mental prowess

The sort of exercise will be in next weeks update.

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Being overweight and how to go about losing it!

by Dr. Sarah Myhill
Being overweight is a major risk factor for diabetes, heart disease, cancer and degenerative conditions. It is a problem which should be tackled as actively as high blood pressure, diabetes and smoking, but because it is not politically correct to accuse somebody of being overweight, this problem is glossed over.

Causes of obesity
Obesity is a problem resulting from western lifestyles. We do not see obesity in wild animals, neither is it seen in primitive communities. There are many aspects of western lifestyles which result in obesity.

Addictive diets
The single largest problem is sugar and refined carbohydrates in the diet. These are addictive because when eaten, they have profound psychological effects; therefore we eat for psychological reasons rather than physical reasons and so do not simply stop eating when we feel physically full. Carbohydrates result in high levels of insulin, which brings blood sugar levels down by shunting sugars into fats. Many people find that despite eating relatively low calorie diets they continue to gain weight or struggle to lose it because the carbohydrate causes these high insulin levels. See Hypoglycaemia

Micronutrient deficiencies
The Western diets are micronutrient deficient.
Micronutrient deficiencies result in cravings as the body looks for those essential items. In the wild we often see animals eating soil, stripping bark off trees, chewing antlers or bones, or seeking out salty rocks to help correct this. Children will sometimes eat soil if allowed! I remember one young boy who used to chew coal. This craving is particularly noticeable in pregnancy, when micronutrient demands are high. Craving to replenish micronutrients means that we end up eating more food than is good for us. We should all be taking micronutrient supplements.

Lack of sleep
Because of western lifestyles we lose sleep. Our average requirement is for nine hours of sleep between 9.30pm and 6.30am. If we do not get sufficient sleep, that causes stress and when stressed, we are more likely to comfort eat carbohydrates. There is a well-recognised association between lack of sleep and being overweight. There is a particularly vicious cycle here because if we use carbohydrates to cope with that stress, this results in hypoglycaemia and hypoglycaemia is the commonest cause of disturbed sleep. See Sleeping Problems

Toxic stress
We live in an increasingly polluted world. Many toxins are fat-soluble and cannot be easily excreted. Therefore, in the short term the body dumps these toxins in fat and that helps protect us in the short term from toxic stress. However, the body is then loath to mobilise this fat when required because that results in an acute poisoning. See Detoxification, Detoxing – Far Infrared Sauna (FIRS).

Hypothyroidism
we are currently seeing an epidemic of hypothyroidism and there are many possible reasons for that. The thyroid gland is the accelerator pedal of our car and sets how fast the metabolism goes, i.e. how fast the body turns the food we eat into energy needed to maintain life. If thyroid hormones are low, then mitochondria go slow so that less glucose is used up for life and that saved is laid down as fat (See Hypothyroidism – diagnosis of)

Lack of exercise
Lack of exercise is a major cause of obesity in Western cultures. We are intrinsically lazy and the ready supply of petrol for our cars makes this much worse! Exercise works on many levels in the prevention of obesity. Firstly, we burn up energy when we exercise; secondly, exercise warms us up and increases our basal metabolic rate so that we burn more calories for some hours subsequently; and thirdly, exercise increases muscle mass and so again we burn more calories at rest. This explains why men are able to eat more food than women. For many exercise is boring, but doing Exercise – the right sort means 12 minutes a week is all you need. This creates a large muscle mass which means you burn more calories at rest, and depletes muscle glcogen which helps hypoglycaemica and insulin resistance. The right sort of exercise is required when one gets stuck at a weight and don’t seem able to lose more.

Allergy
Allergies to foods result in fluid retention (very often when people cut out offending foods they lose half a stone without trying). Allergies to foods also cause low-grade inflammation in the gut. When the immune system is activated, it requires a ready source of energy and to deal with this requirement fat is dumped around the gut. This explains why apple shaped people are at greater risk of heart disease than pear shaped people – fat round the gut means that there is inflammation round the gut and inflammation in the gut causes inflammation in blood vessels and therefore damage. See Stone Age Diet
Poor mitochondrial function – mitochondria represent the engine of our car. Every cell in the body has its own supply of mitochondria. Indeed, the heart is more than 50% by weight mitochondria! If the engine of our car goes slow then less energy will be consumed and therefore there will be a tendency to put on weight. As we age, mitochondria start to run more slowly and this partly explains “middle aged spread”. As we age, we need less energy, but we need more micronutrients since the biochemistry becomes less efficient as we get older. See CFS – The Central Cause: Mitochondrial Failure

Stress
When one is stressed there is a release of the stress hormones, one of which is insulin. The problem with insulin is that running high levels reduces blood sugar levels by shunting sugar into fat. As sugar is shunted into fat, so blood sugar levels fall resulting in hypoglycaemia and the unpleasant symptoms that go with that. So very often people mitigate the effects of stress by snacking on sugar or fast carbohydrate foods, the problem is that this runs high blood sugar levels, high insulin levels and therefore they tend to put on weight readily. “Middle age spread” is a symptom of chronic long-term unremitting stress. This is often accompanied by poor adrenal function as the adrenal gland also exhausts. See Adrenal Gland – the gear box of the car (DHEA and cortisol) – underactive

How to lose excess weight
Once we understand the underlying mechanisms that result in obesity, we can then tailor a regime to get well. Conventional medicine has an all too simplistic approach to weight loss, which almost invariably fails. Conventional medicine states that if you eat less calories you will lose weight. The problem with eating less calories is that the body quickly adapts to this by shutting down its rate of metabolism. This makes us cold, lethargic and depressed, which is not conducive to weight loss! Dieting is not just a case of counting calories!

In order of importance one should put the following in place:

    1. Eat a Stone Age Diet – i.e. a diet of low glycaemic index which avoids the major allergens.
    Tackle addictions so that one stops eating for psychological reasons. The obvious addiction is to sugar and refined carbohydrates, but chocolate and alcohol all carry a calorie burden. Furthermore, one addiction triggers another – alcohol upsets the blood sugar so you then need a carb snack!

    2.Take my standard package of micronutrients.

    3. Sleep well.

    4. Exercise.

    5. Try detox regimes to mobilise toxins from the fat and the body.

    6. Check thyroid function.

    7. Introduce Far Infra Red saunaing – this raises metabolic rates and helps to detoxify

    8. Address issues of stress and adrenal fatigue. There is a general assumption that one should not be allowed to feel hungry. Many people automatically reach for food as soon as they get this sensation.

    Actually, it is normal to feel hungry sometimes – it is what drove primitive man to greater effort! Indeed, the hungry rat, fed just enough to survive, outlives his well-fed brother by 50%. Under-feeding increases longevity reliably well! If all the above interventions do not result in weight loss, then one must reduce portion size and, in the short term, expect to be hungry. The body soon adjusts!

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