Archive for November, 2011

November 24, 2011

Have a Healthy Thanksgiving: 5 Tips to Avoid Overindulging

During Thanksgiving, it’s easy to go overboard with the calories and consumption. Temptations of gooey pecan pie and dense sweet potatoes topped with crackly marshmallows make it seem impossible to be disciplined.

But eating healthfully on Thanksgiving doesn’t mean you have to forgo all your favorite foods, said Jennifer K. Nelson, a registered dietitian and director of clinical dietetics at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn.

“If you’ve got your eating under control for the majority of the time, go ahead and have a piece of pie — just don’t lose control entirely,” Nelson told MyHealthNewsDaily. “Keep your willpower and your wits about you.”

Here are five ways experts recommend you can avoid overdoing it on one of the greatest food days of the year – while still leaving room for dessert.

1. Stick to healthy portions.

Just one plate of Thanksgiving food is all you get, Nelson said. Fill up half your plate with vegetables, fruit and a whole wheat roll, a quarter of it with mashed potatoes or sweet potatoes, and a quarter of  it with turkey or ham. And, the more colorful your plate, the better – so get lots of leafy greens, carrots, bell peppers and beets in your veggie spread, Nelson said.

“If you fill up on those lower caloric density and higher nutrition things, you’re going to feel full, but not bloated and tired, because it’s a lighter fare,” she said.

It’s a holiday, so indulge a bit if your diet allows it. But if you’re going to eat dessert, make sure you allot for the calories elsewhere – don’t go back for that second helping of marshmallow sweet potatoes, and instead opt for the cranberry salad, said American Dietetic Association spokeswoman Dee Sandquist.

If you’re going for the pie, pick fruit or pumpkin pies because they tend to have fewer calories than chocolate or pecan pies, Sandquist said.

Try also to stick to single servings of the more unhealthy foods, she said. Aim to have a half-cup of mashed potatoes — about the size of a regular-sized cupcake wrapped — and a 3-ounce serving of turkey – about the size of a checkbook.

2. Eat before you indulge.

Don’t starve yourself during the early part of Thanksgiving Day, with the idea that you’re just “saving room” for all the food, or that this will make it okay for you to overeat later. It’s a recipe for overeating, Sandquist said.

If you’re going to a Thanksgiving lunch, be sure you eat breakfast before. If you’re going to a dinner, be sure you eat lunch or have a snack in the afternoon.

“You definitely want to have your normal meals because otherwise, whenever we get over-hungry, we overeat,” she said.

3. Substitute healthy ingredients for unhealthy ones.

There are plenty of ways to make Thanksgiving fare healthier. For mashed potatoes, Nelson suggested mixing in chicken broth, herbs or roasted garlic to perk up the flavor instead of adding in butter.

For green bean casserole, swap out fried onions with toasted almonds for a less-oily alternative, and instead of having cranberry sauce, opt instead to make a cranberry salad, Sandquist said. And for dips, use Greek yogurt instead of sour cream — the consistency is similar, but yogurt has less fat and more protein, she said.

Another easy way to cut fat out of your meal is to avoid eating the skin on the turkey. Dark meat has a little more fat than white meat, but limiting your helpings of unhealthy sides or dessert will have a much bigger impact than just eating white meat instead of dark, Sandquist said.

If you’re baking homemade pie, opt for whole wheat pie crusts and substitute low-fat or skim milk for evaporated milk, she said.

4. Drink lots of water and take a walk after eating.

Many times when people think they are hungry, they are actually just thirsty, Sandquist said. By drinking lots of water throughout the day, you’ll lower the risk of overeating.

It’s also a good idea to take a walk after eating to get your metabolism going instead of laying on the couch, she said.

5. Avoid snacking throughout the day.

Abide by the “out of sight, out of mind” mantra, Sandquist said: Once you’ve filled your plate with food, cover up the food and put it away.

“It’ll help you avoid mindless munching,” she said. When you snack throughout the day, it’s easy to lose track of how much you’ve eaten.

Re-posted from MyHealthyNewsDaily.com

November 10, 2011

Are You Deficient In Vitamin B12?

Did you know…

A B12 deficiency can mimic Alzheimer’s Disease, Multiple Sclerosis, early Parkinson’s Disease, Diabetic Neuropathy, or Chronic Fatigue Syndrome?  It can make both men and women infertile or cause developmental disabilities in children. Other times it can lay in wait, building its victim’s risk of deadly diseases, ranging from heart attacks and strokes to cancer.

B12 deficiency is considered an “old people’s disease” by doctors but, if you’re over 40, you’re at an elevated risk for B12 deficiency. If you’re over 60, you have up to a 40% chance of having low B12 levels. It can strike at every age and from every walk of life: babies, children, young men and women, middle-aged people and senior citizens.

Low levels of B12 can cause a range of symptoms including:

  • Fatigue
  • shortness of breath
  • diarrhea
  • nervousness
  • numbness
  • tingling sensation in the fingers and toes
  • chronic back and leg pain
  • speech loss
  • severe developmental delay in children
  • severe depression
  • and many more.

The good news is, if you develop this deficiency, it’s easy to spot, easy to treat, and easy to cure-but only if your doctor diagnoses you before it’s too late. Unfortunately, that frequently does not happen. B12 deficiency is not a new or “fad” disease. It is listed in the textbooks of any first year med student. It’s not a rare disease, either. So, how can something as simple as a vitamin deficiency, that can cause so much suffering go so unnoticed? One explanation is that doctors receive surprisingly little or outdated training in the diagnosis or prevention of B12 deficiency. In general, doctors are trained to recognize only the blood abnormalities associated with the deficiency, not the neurological abnormalities, including the “pins and needles” sensation in the hands and feet, memory loss, depression, personality changes, dizziness, loss of balance or even dementia.

These nervous system symptoms often precede classic blood abnormalities by many years. By that time, the damage is already done and may not be able to be undone.

Are You Getting the B12 You Need?

Of the thirteen vitamins your body needs to perform thousands of chemical reactions that keep you alive and functioning, one of those is B12. It acts, in many ways, much like the other dozen vitamins. But in other important ways, B12 is different. And the things that make it different also make it harder for millions of people to get enough of it.

B12 is produced in the gut of animals. It is also the only vitamin you cannot get from plants or sunlight. To obtain B12 from your diet, you need to eat meat, poultry, fish, eggs, dairy products or foods fortified with B12. If you don’t eat these foods and are a vegetarian or vegan, it is extremely important to supplement with B12.

Sometimes even a diet high in B12 and supplements are still not enough for many people.

While many people eat a diet rich in vitamin B12, their bodies are just not able to absorb and use it. To get from your mouth to your blood stream, B12 must follow a very complex metabolism pathway. Any kink in the pathway can lead to low B12 levels. The most famous “kink” in the pathway is pernicious anemia, a hereditary disorder that once subjected its sufferers to physical and mental deterioration and eventually a terrible death.

Anemia is caused from a failure of the body to produce intrinsic factor, a protein, normally produced in the stomach, that is necessary for vitamin B12 absorption. This makes the B12 consumed in the diet useless.

Other causes of B12 malabsorption include:

  • Gastritis
  • Crohn’s Disease
  • Gastric Bypass surgery
  • Celiac’s Disease
  • overgrowth of yeast in the gut
  • antacid users
  • alcohol use
  • GERD and ulcer drugs
  • stomach acid blockers
  • diabetes meds
  • anti-seizure meds
  • chemo drugs
  • tetracycline, an antibiotic. (Long-term use of antibiotics can lower the levels of most of the B vitamins in your body.)

One trick to helping your body absorb B12 is to make sure you have a healthy gut! Be sure to consume probiotic rich foods everyday and supplement with a great quality, high- potency probiotic.

One To Try:  35 Billion Probiotic is Baum’s best selling probiotic. High quality & high potency at a great price!

Did You Know…

Taking any one of the B vitamins for a long period of time can result in an imbalance of other important B vitamins. For this reason, you may want to take a B complex vitamin, which includes all the B vitamins. Taking folic acid at high doses can hide a vitamin B12 deficiency, so these vitamins are often taken together. Talk to your doctor before taking more than 800 mcg of folic acid.
Baums carries B12 and B Complex vitamins in all  different forms and strengths. The holidays are coming up fast!  B vitamins also promote energy and help you cope with STRESS…..

*These statements have not been evaluated by the food and drug administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
November 3, 2011

Let Me Break it Down for You….

Digestion is the key to your health. No ifs, ands or buts about it. The way your body processes the foods that you eat, plays a major role in how you feel, how you look, and how much the people around you can tolerate. It’s not fun when you get gassy and bloated after you eat.  Belching may bring relief but how can you do that if you’re around other people who don’t know your quirky digestive system?  What can you do?  Staying at home everyday isn’t really an option, being a social outcast isn’t really an option either…

Let me introduce a gut’s best friend… ENZYMES!

If you eat a diet of only fresh, raw foods, you are getting all of the enzymes you need from those foods.  Most of us, however, eat mostly cooked or processed foods which contain little to NO enzymes.  Heating food while cooking destroys the naturally occurring enzymes and when food is processed by a manufacturer, enzymes are either destroyed or removed. This allows them to sit on a store shelf for long periods of time without spoiling.

This leaves our digestive system in distress. Our bodies can only do so much with the highly-processed, chemical laden foods we use to nourish our bodies. That’s why supplementing with enzymes is so very important!

Digestive enzymes specifically, are little miracle workers that start working right away when saliva is mixed with the food that you’re chewing. Amylase is the enzyme that breaks down carbohydrates. When you chew carbs, they becomes sweeter as you chew because the mechanical action of your teeth and amylase in the saliva are breaking the carbohydrates down to their component sugars.

Next, the food goes to the stomach where it stays about 60 minutes or more as it is further digested by the stomach acid and pepsin. Pepsin is a protease enzyme released into the stomach. If you take plant enzymes, most are quite stable in the stomach environment and go right to work. Plant enzymes can be working on food for at least an hour before the food proceeds to the small intestine where it is absorbed.

Once the food enters the small intestine, plant enzymes continue to work. At this point, any pancreatic or animal enzymes kick in. . Some enzymes are released by the small intestine lining as well.
Anything that disrupts the small intestine may also disrupt the production and release of these enzymes. If you have a leaky gut, inflammation, yeast, or something else which hampers the small intestine, then you are likely to also have trouble digesting the foods these enzymes work on.

Animal versus Plant Enzymes

Plant enzymes are much more stable over a wider pH and temperature range. The stomach is very acidic whereas the small intestine is more alkaline. This is why plant enzymes can work effectively in the stomach, whereas animal-derived or pancreatic enzymes cannot. Most pancreatic enzymes need to be coated to survive stomach acid.

Stop The Bloating and Indigestion Fast!

Baums has worked closely with a top-of-the-line manufacturer of enzymes and has come out with our very own proprietary enzyme formulas. The 1st is called Ultra Veggie Enzymes which is a plant based enzyme formula. You take one capsule right before you eat and it starts breaking down hard to digest foods that can cause problems.

Superzymes is a second enzyme formula we had put together for us.  Superzymes contains the animal/pancreatic enzymes that help with the breakdown of proteins and fats and are taken after meals.

People who no longer have a gall bladder deal with difficulty digesting most fats and proteins. When the digestive process is disrupted due to the lack of bile that the gall bladder used to secret to emulsify fat, Superzymes can supply what is missing & help get digestion back on track.

We’ve had some great feedback on these products already and feel strongly about the benefits they offer! Pick some up before the holiday eating season begins!  Why be bloated, lethargic and miserable if you don’t have to?

*These statements have not been evaluated by the food and drug administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.