WHAT IS METABOLIC SYNDROME? - AUGUST 2017 - VOLUME 9, ISSUE 5

 

Ramilas Health Tips

Ramila's Healing Arts Clinic

 

I hope you're continuing to enjoy a fun and relaxing summer! This month I would like to draw your attention to a disorder that was only identified less than 20 years ago. In spite of this, it affects about 40% of the population aged 60 and over. It is called metabolic syndrome. As the obesity epidemic increases, younger people, even children, are increasingly affected, as well. Read on below...

 
These newsletters will help you make better choices for better health. The choices that you make today can either have a positive or negative impact on your overall health. Begin by choosing better, it is a step toward longevity.

clinic

We now offer Physiotherapy Services and Laser Rehabilitation

Clinically proven to eliminate pain!

Volume 9, Issue 5

Ramila Padiachy

Doctor of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic

1437 Woodroffe Avenue
Ottawa ON (map)

613.829.0427
info@ramilas.com

Like us on Facebook

What is Metabolic Syndrome?

If you have metabolic syndrome, it does not simply mean that your metabolism is out of whack. Metabolic syndrome (sometimes referred to as syndrome X) is a metabolic disorder defined as a combination of 3 or more of the following health issues:

  • abdominal obesity (a large waistline, 35 inches for women, 40 inches for men; 'apple' shape)
  • high fasting blood sugar
  • high triglyceride levels (a type of fat found in the blood)
  • high blood pressure
  • low HDL ('good') cholesterol

Metabolic syndrome is not a disease. It is a group of risk factors - risk factors for some major diseases that affect a large number of people, namely heart disease, stroke and type 2 diabetesOther risk factors for metabolic syndrome include:

  • age
  • physical inactivity
  • a poor diet, e.g. processed foods, high amounts of sugar and other refined carbohydrates, trans fat, diet soft drinks
  • low-grade inflammation throughout the body
  • a fatty liver (non-alcoholic fatter liver disease or NAFLD)
  • polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) - see our March 2017 newsletter
  • gallstones
  • breathing problems during sleep, such as sleep apnea
  • heavy alcohol consumption (However, very light alcohol intake is actually associated with a reduced risk of metabolic syndrome. This means no more than 2 drinks per day for men, and 1 for women. One drink is 12oz of beer, 5oz of wine or 1.5oz of liquor.)

 

Prevention and Treatment of Metabolic Syndrome

Prevention


physical activityThe best preventive strategies for metabolic syndrome are:

  • maintain a healthy weight
  • be physically active
  • eat a healthy diet (see below for details)
  • manage stress effectively
  • don't smoke

 

Treatment


Heart-healthy lifestyle changes are typically the main treatment for metabolic syndrome.

 

In other words, do as recommended for prevention of metabolic syndrome above, and you will, to a large extent, treat it. Let's look in more detail at how you might accomplish this.

 

Maintain a healthy weight


Through eating a healthy diet and exercising, losing weight can reduce insulin resistance and blood pressure. Foods that make metabolic syndrome worse:

  • Avoid processed foods (including fast food) as much as possible; they are typically filled with additives and preservatives that are bad for your health.
  • Artificial sweeteners, including aspartame, Splenda, sucralose and saccharin may increase your risk of excessive weight gain, as well as the development of metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Avoid diet soft drinks!
  • Trans fats are found in food made with hydrogenated oils and fats, such as margarine and shortening, and in baked goods (cookies, cakes, pies, coffee creamers). They raise LDL cholesterol and triglyceride levels, which are bad for your waistline, heart health and metabolic disorders.
  • Sugar and other refined carbohydrates are major contributors to high blood sugar levels, insulin resistance, the development of metabolic syndrome, and type 2 diabetes.
  • Limit alcohol consumption; as noted above, light alcohol consumption is not a risk factor for metabolic syndrome, however, heavier consumption is.

Food that help prevent and treat metabolic syndrome:

  • Fish and other foods with omega-3 fatty acids: The omega-3 found in wild-caught, cold water fish helps to regulate heartbeat, reduce blood pressure, decrease blood clot formation, and reduce overall inflammation. This decreases the risk of heart attacks and strokes. Omega-3 foods also help to lower LDL cholesterol and triglycerides. Other foods rich in omega-3 include walnuts, flaxseeds, natto and grass-fed beef.
  • Vegetables: Dark leafy greens (e.g. kale, spinach), avocado, broccoli, cabbage, different colours of bell peppers, squash, eggplant, arugula and carrots are a few of the healthy options for increasing your daily intake of vegetables which are loaded with disease-fighting anti-inflammatory antioxidants and phytonutrients. Avocados have been clinically associated with lower risk of metabolic syndrome in the U.S.; it is believed this is because avocados benefit the gut.
  • Fruits: In moderation (because of the natural sugar), daily fruit consumption helps to ward off metabolic syndrome. In particular, pomegranate and pomegranate seeds have been shown to help ameliorate metabolic syndrome.
  • Legumes, such as kidney beans, lentils, chickpeas, black-eyed peas and lima beans are rich in fibre and protein. They help to keep blood sugar stable, and have been shown to reduce the risk of metabolic syndrome.
  • Whole grains, like oatmeal and brown rice, are high in fibre, have proven benefits for diabetes and heart health, and help keep your waistline in check.

 

Physical activity


Regular, moderate intensity physical activity, such as walking briskly, will help control your weight. At least 30 minutes per day is recommended; however, you can start more gradually if you need to and work up to that.

 

The good news is you can prevent or reduce your risk of metabolic syndrome with healthy lifestyle choices. However, if you would like help maintaining a healthy weight, or with any other aspect of metabolic syndrome, please contact me at 613.829.0427. I'll be more than happy to help you.

 

Supplements

There are some Nature's Sunshine supplements that are relevant to this newsletter. You can find information about these products and purchase them in our online store:

 

Berberine
Blood pressurex
CardioxLDL
CoQ10
Garlic, High Potency
Grapine
GreenZone
Hawthorn
Super Omega-3
Vitamin D3
Zambroza

For additional information, email info@ramilas.com or call Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic at 613.829.0427 for an appointment. Please continue letting friends and family know about this newsletter. Visit our website where you can see back issues of this newsletter, information about services and our clinic, and order products.

 

References:

 

  1. What is metabolic syndrome? webmd.com/heart/metabolic-syndrome/metabolic-syndrome-what-is-it#1 Accessed July 17, 2017.
  2. Axe J. Metabolic syndrome: proven diet & natural treatment plan. draxe.com/metabolic-syndrome/ Accessed July 17, 2017.
  3. What is metabolic syndrome? nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/ms Accessed July 17, 2017.
  4. Abdominal fat and what to do about it. Harvard Health Publications, September, 2005, updated October 9, 2015 health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/abdominal-fat-and-what-to-do-about-it Accessed July 17, 2017.

Disclaimer: The suggestions and recommendations in this newsletter are not intended to be prescriptive or diagnostic. The information is accurate and up to date to our knowledge, but we are not responsible for any errors in our sources of information.

 

When health begins, dis-ease ends.

  

 

Stay Tuned!! I am so excited that The BELLY OF THE BEAST is in the final stages of publishing.

THE TELOMERE EFFECT - JULY 2017 - VOLUME 9, ISSUE 4

 

Ramilas Health Tips

Ramila's Healing Arts Clinic

 

I hope you're enjoying a fun and relaxing summer! This is a great time of year to take a break, and generally take things a little easier and reduce our stress levels. I'd like to give you an idea of how important this, and other healthy behaviours are for slowing down the rate at which we age. Read on below...

 
These newsletters will help you make better choices for better health. The choices that you make today can either have a positive or negative impact on your overall health. Begin by choosing better. It is a step toward longevity.

clinic

Volume 9, Issue 4

Ramila Padiachy

Doctor of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic

1437 Woodroffe Avenue
Ottawa ON (map)

613.829.0427
info@ramilas.com

Like us on Facebook

What's a Telomere?

You may have heard or read about telomeres. Briefly, each chromosome (containing DNA) has a sort of cap on each end - these caps are telomeres. As cells repeatedly divide over a person's lifetime, as a general rule, the telomeres become shorter. The length of our telomeres can tell us a lot about how well we're aging.

 

In January 2017, Elizabeth Blackburn and Elissa Epel published a book, The Telomere Effect: A Revolutionary Approach to Living Younger, Healthier, Longer. This book makes Nobel Prize winning research conducted by Elizabeth Blackburn and others available beyond academia, to a more general audience.

 

The Telomere Effect

Our lifestyle choices affect our telomeres and how we age. And it's possible to measure telomere length to get some indication of how we're doing.

 

As I mentioned, the chromosomes in each of our cells contain our DNA. At the ends of each chromosome are telomeres, which have been described as being like the caps on the ends of shoelaces, that keep the shoelaces/chromosomes from unravelling.

 

Each time a cell divides, the telomeres become a little bit shorter, until they become too short to protect the chromosome. At this point the cell has aged, and cannot properly do its job any more. Having too many of these senescent cells accelerates aging. This doesn't cause any specific disease, but it is believed you'll be more likely to develop any disease you might be prone to.

 

How can we affect the rate at which we age? Blackburn was part of a team that won the Nobel Prize in Physiology in 2009 for discovering the role of an enzyme - telomerase - that can help lengthen your telomeres. Blackburn and Epel make the case that telomeres are just one pathway of aging, and that certain aspects of your lifestyle may stabilize or even increase telomere length and help slow down or prevent aging.

 

peacefulnessFactors that help protect your telomeres include:

  • a healthy diet - The Mediterranean diet is associated with longer telomeres. Adequate nutrition including antioxidants, in general, and specifically vitamin D and omega-3 fatty acids are also important.
  • being physically active - A small study found 45 minutes of moderate exercise, three times a week for six months increased telomerase activity twofold.
  • adequate, good quality sleep - A 2012 study found that sleeping fewer hours was associated with shorter telomere length in healthy men.
  • avoiding (or managing) chronic stress
  • meditation
  • mental well-being
  • social support
  • level of trust and safety in your neighbourhood

Conversely, factors that promote cellular aging and shortening of telomeres include:

  • stress hormones
  • oxidative stress
  • inflammatory stress

Note that no long term studies have been done, so we don't know what effect maintaining telomere length has on longevity. At this point we are looking at associations, not cause and effect. However, a longer 'health span' (and reduced 'disease span') is likely to be the outcome of maintaining longer telomeres.

 

Too much as bad as too little? Too little telomerase resulting in shorter telomeres can increase the risk of cancer because mutations can occur when the cells don't replicate properly. However, too much telomerase can help confer immortality onto cancer cells and increase the likelihood of cancer. Telomerase has been found to be 10 to 20 times more active in cancer cells than in normal body cells. It is believed that if this telomerase activity could be turned off, then telomeres in cancer cells would shorten (as they do in normal cells) and this would prevent the cancer cells from dividing uncontrollably in their early stages of development, or prevent relapse after the removal of a more advanced tumour. This could be a promising avenue for better cancer treatment. It is also clear that healthy lifestyle choices are better than taking telomerase as a medication - we wouldn't know if we were increasing the length of the telomeres of good cells or cancer cells.

 

Haven't I already heard these recommendations for improving my health? Yes, absolutely. However, now there is a way to document how well we're doing, by measuring the length of our telomeres. Telomere length can change in both directions - you may have longer telomeres one year, and shorter ones the next year - so Dr. Blackburn does not actually recommend getting your telomeres tested, but it's possible.

 

According to S. Jay Olshansky, PhD, of the University of Illinois, Chicago, "The only equivalent of a fountain of youth that exists is exercise and diet and avoiding harmful behaviour and risk factors like smoking and obesity. If you are doing this, you are doing as much as you can to allow your genetic potential to play out."

 

Supplements

There are some Nature's Sunshine supplements that are relevant to this newsletter.

 

You can find information about these products and purchase them in our online store:

 

Super Omega 3
Super Vitamins & Minerals
Vitamin D3
Vitamin E with Selenium
Vitamin C 1000 mg
Vitamin B Complex
Zambroza
 

 

For additional information, email info@ramilas.com or call Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic at 613.829.0427 for an appointment. Please continue letting friends and family know about this newsletter. Visit our website where you can see back issues of this newsletter, information about services and our clinic, and order products.

 

References:

 

  1. Blackburn E, Epel E. The Telomere Effect: A Revolutionary Approach to Living Younger, Healthier, Longer. New York: Grand Central Publishing, Hachette Book Group, 2017.
  2. Clopton J. What tiny telomeres may tell us about aging. WebMD Health News, April 19, 2017. webmd.com/special-reports/anti-aging-science/20170419/telomere-aging-link Accessed May 30, 2017.
  3. Rehman J. Aging: too much telomerase can be as bad as too little. July 5, 2014 blogs.scientificamerican.com/guest-blog/aging-too-much-telomerase-can-be-as-bad-as-too-little/ Accessed May 30, 2017.
  4. Greider CW, Blackburn EH. Telomeres, telomerase and Cancer [Reprint]. October 5, 2009 scientificamerican.com/article/telomeres-telomerase-and/ Accessed May 30, 2017.
  5. Facts about telomeres and telomerase. utsouthwestern.edu/labs/shay-wright/research/facts-about-telomeres-telomerase.html Accessed May 30, 2017.
  6. Corbyn Z. Elizabeth Blackburn on the telomere effect: 'It's abut keeping healthier for longer.' January 29, 2017 theguardian.com/science/2017/jan/29/telomere-effect-elizabeth-blackburn-nobel-prize-medicine-chromosomes Accessed May 30, 2017.

 

Disclaimer: The suggestions and recommendations in this newsletter are not intended to be prescriptive or diagnostic. The information is accurate and up to date to our knowledge, but we are not responsible for any errors in our sources of information.

 

When health begins, dis-ease ends.

“I had my first visit to a holistic clinic for a very bad sinus infection and I am so pleased I went to see Ramila. After 2 weeks of congestion, followed by 3 days of complete blockage and body aches, I was 90% better in 48 hours. My respiratory health was fully restored in just 4 days, with no recurrence of symptoms. I am amazed with the results and although I maintain my health through proper nutrition and exercise, it's comforting to know I can count on Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic for natural treatments. Thank you.”

— Valarie L

 

HOW TO KEEP YOUR MICROBIOME HEALTHY - JUNE 2017 - VOLUME 9, ISSUE 3

 

Ramilas Health Tips

Ramila's Healing Arts Clinic

 

Last month we mentioned the role of the microbiome in relation to Candida infections. This month, I am giving you additional information about the microbiome and its huge importance to your good health. Read on below...

 
These newsletters will help you make better choices for better health. The choices that you make today can either have a positive or negative impact on your overall health. Begin by choosing better. It is a step toward longevity.

clinic

Volume 9, Issue 3

Ramila Padiachy

Doctor of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic

1437 Woodroffe Avenue
Ottawa ON (map)

613.829.0427
info@ramilas.com

Like us on Facebook

What is the Microbiome and Why is it Important?

The microbiome is made up of microbiota, or a community of microbes or microorganisms that live on or in the body. Our human microbiome is made up of communities of bacteria, some of which protect us (symbiotic), some of which are neutral (commensal), and some of which can be harmful to us (pathogenic).

 

Bacteria and our microbiome are an integral part of who we are. In fact, you have 10 times more bacteria living in your body than cells that make up your body. To put it in perspective, there are 10 trillion cells that make up the human body and 100 trillion bacteria living in your body. The vast majority live in your gut, and weigh between three and four pounds.

 

The human microbiome develops from the time an infant is born, and a first important factor is whether the mother gives birth vaginally or has a C-section. Exposure to the birth canal exposes a baby to its mother's microbiome and, especially if combined with mother's milk, gives a baby's microbiome a good start in life. Don't despair if you were born by C-section and bottle-fed. A recent study has shown that by about age 40, the advantages of those exposed to the birth canal and who were breast-fed have largely disappeared.

 

The organisms in our microbiome carry out a variety of functions which are essential for good health, well-being and even our survival.

 

Beneficial microbes prevent disease. One of the most important functions of the microbiome is its role in relation to our immune system. The microbiome helps our bodies to determine whether something it encounters is a friend or foe. When it is functioning well, it ensures that opportunistic pathogens are kept to a minimum, and also keeps our body from attacking itself (which would result in autoimmune diseases).

 

Another extremely important function of the microbiome is the breakdown and absorption of nutrients. Without it, we would not be able to digest most of what we eat, or to extract essential nutrients we need to function.

 

The microbiome also plays an important role in depression, weight/obesity and hormone function.

 

The gut-brain connection: The central nervous system consists of the brain and the spinal cord. Scientists are calling the gut our second brain; it's the only organ with its own nervous system, called the enteric nervous system (ENS). The central nervous system and the ENS are connected by the vagus nerve, the 10th cranial nerve which runs from the brainstem to the abdomen. This is the route the gut bacteria use to transmit information to the brain. This connection helps to explain the association between the microbiome and depression.

 

What Causes Problems with the Microbiome?

Two of the most important determinants of the health of our microbiome are diet and antibiotic use.

 

Diet

 

Processed food contains many additives that are detrimental to the health of our microbiome. Sugars, other refined carbohydrates, and the many added chemicals also have a negative effect on our microbiome. Avoid foods containing glyphosate (GMO foods). It's best to eat organic, *real food*. Transit time affects the composition of gut microbiota, which reinforces the importance of diet, particularly fibre intake.

 

Antibiotics

 

We know the importance of antibiotics and would not want to be without them for a serious infection. However, research shows we are becoming resistant to antibiotics because they are overprescribed. And a single course of antibiotics can disrupt a person's microbiome for an entire year.

 

Note there are sources of antibiotic exposure that may not be obvious to everyone. For example, meat from animals given antibiotics will contain antibiotic residue. According to the FDA, up to 80% of all antibiotics sold in the US are for livestock, not humans - a scary thought! If you're eating fast food, you're definitely exposed to antibiotics.

 

How can I Keep/Make My Microbiome Healthy and What are the Benefits?

Clearly, avoiding processed foods and any antibiotics that are not absolutely essential are two ways to maintain a healthy microbiome. Also avoid sugars and refined carbohydrates as much as possible. A diet rich in fresh vegetables and fruit is beneficial.
 
Eating fermented foods is very beneficial to the microbiome. Healthy choices include kefir (fermented milk), kombucha (fermented tea), natto (fermented soy), kimchi (a traditional Korean side dish of fermented vegetables) and other fermented vegetables, such as sauerkraut.
 
A high quality probiotic can help maintain the health of your microbiome, and restore balance to your microbiota, especially when taking antibiotics or eating processed foods. It's also advisable if you are not consuming fermented foods on a daily basis.
 
In summary, keeping your microbiome healthy helps you to:
live a longer, healthier life 
normalize your weight
ward off type 2 diabetes
strengthen your immune system, control the growth of disease-causing bacteria
counteract inflammation
produce vitamins, absorb materials and eliminate toxins
control asthma and reduce your risk of allergies
improve your mood and mental health.
 

New Research

 

This is a huge topic and a new area of research. It's impossible to really do it justice in one newsletter, but I hope it helps you understand the huge importance of your microbiome and of keeping it healthy. You will be able to find additional information about the microbiome in my upcoming book, The Belly of the Beast.

 

The Belly of the Beast will be published soon! I don't know the exact date yet, but as soon as it's available, I will let you know.

 

Supplements

There are some Nature's Sunshine supplements that are relevant to this newsletter.

 

You can find information about these products and purchase them in our online store:

 

Probiotic 11
 
Bifidophilus Flora Force
 
NutriBiome Bacillus Coagulans Probiotics
 
Psyllium Hulls Combination
 

 

For additional information, email info@ramilas.com or call Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic at 613.829.0427 for an appointment. Please continue letting friends and family know about this newsletter. Visit our website where you can see back issues of this newsletter, information about services and our clinic, and order products.

 

References:

  1. Microbiome 101: understanding gut microbiota. prescript-assist.com/intestinal-health/gut-microbiome/ Accessed April 10, 2017.
  2. Padiachy R. The Belly of the Beast, 2017.
  3. Weintraub K. Findings from the gut - new insights into the human microbiome. April 29, 2016. scientificamerican.com/article/findings-from-the-gut-new-insights-into-the-human-microbiome1/ Accessed April 10, 2017.
  4. Johns Hopkins Medicine. The brain-gut connection. hopkinsmedicine.org/health/healthy_aging/healthy_body/the-brain-gut-connection Accessed January 25, 2017.
  5. Mercola J. Your microbiome may be key factor to determining your health and longevity. March 9, 2015. articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2015/03/09/gut-bacteria-microbiome.aspx Accessed April 10, 2017.
  6. The overuse of antibiotics in food animals threatens public health. Consumers Union consumersunion.org/research/the-overuse-of-antibiotics-in-food-animals-threatens-public-health/ Accessed May 24, 2017.
  7. Mercola J. The importance of microbial diversity in gut health and disease. May 15, 2014. articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2014/05/15/microbial-diversity-gut-flora.aspx Accessed February 2, 2017.

 

Disclaimer: The suggestions and recommendations in this newsletter are not intended to be prescriptive or diagnostic. The information is accurate and up to date to our knowledge, but we are not responsible for any errors in our sources of information.

 

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For my path to wellness, Ramila had suggested sensitivity clearing for my allergies, as well as herbal supplements. I also gained tremendous relief from her emotional release technique. After each treatment I felt a huge weight lifted from my shoulders. I would never have believed how your emotions could play such a pivotal role in your physical well-being.

- AJ, Ottawa

When health begins, dis-ease ends.

CANDIDA: CAUSES AND TREATMENT – MAY 2017 - VOLUME 9, ISSUE 2

 

Ramilas Health Tips

Ramila's Healing Arts Clinic

Last month, I told you about my lengthy experience with systemic candida, and how that led to my career as a doctor of natural medicine.

 

This month, I'll provide you with much more information about candida, its causes, and treatment. I'm also very excited to tell you a little more about my book, The Belly of the Beast, which is just about to be released.

 
These newsletters will help you make better choices for better health. The choices that you make today can either have a positive or negative impact on your overall health. Begin by choosing better. It is a step toward longevity.

clinic

NEW! We now offer Physiotherapy Services and Laser Rehabilitation

Clinically proven to eliminate pain!

Volume 9, Issue 2

Ramila Padiachy

Doctor of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

 

Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic

1437 Woodroffe Avenue
Ottawa ON (map)

613.829.0427
info@ramilas.com

Like us on Facebook

What is Candida?

Candida albicans (the species we're talking about) is one of many organisms that live in our gastrointestinal tracts. It is a type of fungus or yeast. Virtually everyone has Candida, and the ratio of Candida to good bacteria is normally 1 yeast to 1 million good bacteria. In this form and this ratio, it does no harm.

 

However, with poor nutrition due to a diet high in refined carbohydrates (white flour, sugar, rice), packaged and processed foods, and very few or no fruits and vegetables, Candida literally overtakes your body. Other factors that enable it to take over include the use of antibiotics, some other prescription drugs (e.g. steroids), stress, and a compromised immune system.

 

Candida can attach itself firmly to the gastrointestinal tract and compete for nutrients, eventually robbing the body's cells of vital nutrients. It can penetrate the mucus lining of the digestive tract and create holes; this is known as leaky gut syndrome. This enables undigested food particles, toxins, yeast and bacteria to enter the bloodstream and begins the whole spectrum of symptoms that comprise systemic Candida, and make your whole body feel sick.

 

Common issues include weight gain, inflammation and food sensitivities. These can be problems even when you're eating a healthy diet. The Candida is triggering an immune response (70% of your immune system is in the gut). This, in turn, is causing inflammation and swelling.

 

What causes Candida?

There is really no single cause of Candida. If your system is already weakened, other causative agents will further weaken it. There are psychological and mental factors (e.g. stress), external factors (e.g. toxins), and factors, such as poor diet and antibiotics (that kill off good bacteria), that can contribute to the overgrowth of Candida.

 

Poor diet is a major reason so many people struggle with Candida. We are consuming more sugar than ever. Sugar is yeast's best friend and our worst enemy if we're struggling with an overgrowth of yeast. In addition, sugar causes inflammation in the body, and suppresses the immune system.

 

Basically, a systemic Candida infection is caused by an imbalance in our gut of 'good' bacteria versus Candida. We tend to think of bacteria as something that makes us sick, but we have trillions of bacteria in our gut and elsewhere in and on our body, which are very beneficial to our wellbeing. This community of microorganisms collectively is known as the microbiome. In fact, we have 10 times more bacteria living in our body than cells that make up our body.

 

Candida and biofilms

 

When it becomes systemic, Candida forms a protective shield around itself called a biofilm. Many different bacteria and fungi do this. The biofilm makes Candida overgrowth difficult to treat with medications, and also makes it difficult for the body to fight it. Candida's biofilm in particular is comprised of 32% glucose. This tells us that not only does Candida need sugar to grow and reproduce, but also to protect itself from our immune system.

 

There is no magic pill to eliminate the biofilm, and the longer it's in the body, the more resistant it becomes. Therefore, anti-fungal treatments alone do not work. This is why it's so important to starve the Candida of sugars at the same time.

 

How is Candida treated?

Very simply, to treat Candida, it is necessary to both kill it and starve it. To starve it, completely avoid any sugar and yeast in your diet; do not be discouraged, this is only necessary for a fairly short period of time. There are a number of supplements that help to kill it.

 

I have developed a protocol that is very effective in eliminating symptoms of the Candida infection quickly, and with some additional time, killing off the overgrowth of Candida. In fact, the whole protocol takes 3 months, but clients typically see a major improvement in just 2 weeks.

 

In my book, you'll find questionnaires to help determine if your symptoms are consistent with systemic Candida, which are too lengthy to include here. However, I think you can get a pretty good idea from last month's newsletter of the sorts of symptoms which indicate Candida could be the problem.

 

I provide a detailed list of foods to avoid. Obviously it's essential to avoid anything with sugar or yeast in it. Dairy products must also be avoided. Many beverages are on the 'no-no' list, including coffee, teas (including herbal teas), alcoholic (fermented) beverages of all kinds, and, of course, any drinks with sugar (even naturally occurring sugar). Other foods to be avoided include processed foods, processed meats, potatoes (except for sweet potatoes), corn, all dried fruit, and anything with vinegar (i.e. most salad dressings). The list is more comprehensive than this, but this gives you an idea of what's involved.

 

The supplements I prescribe include, but are not limited to, the list in the supplements section of this newsletter. It's impossible to provide precise instructions for supplements, since there may be some variation of what works from one individual to the next. Also, different brands of supplements can vary widely in strength and purity.

 

After the first two weeks on the program, some foods can be gradually reintroduced into the diet, provided they do not contain sugar, dairy, yeast or vinegar. Reading labels carefully is very important! The total program is three months in length.

 

The book: The Belly of the Beast

The Belly of the BeastThe Belly of the Beast will teach you how to:

  • have abundant energy
  • eliminate digestive problems like bloating, constipation and diarrhea
  • lose weight without counting calories and measuring portion sizes
  • heal your skin from eczema, psoriasis, etc.
  • lower your liver enzymes
  • lower your cholesterol
  • recognize food sensitivities
  • eliminate inflammation in the body
  • get your child back into the correct growth percentile, especially when diagnosed with the inability to thrive
  • uncover the emotions that affect the core of your being

With my book, I'm offering a free recipe book, I'm sure you'll enjoy the recipes, whether or not you need the Candida diet.

 

If you're interested in purchasing The Belly of the Beast, stay tuned; it's in the final stages of the printing process.

 

Supplements

Caprylic Acid CombinationThere are some Nature's Sunshine supplements that are relevant to this newsletter.

 

You can find information about these products and purchase them in our online store:

  • Caprylic Acid Combination
  • Garlic, High Potency
  • Pau d'Arco
  • Probiotic 11
  • Psyllium Hulls Combination

For additional information, email info@ramilas.com or call Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic at 613.829.0427 for an appointment. Please continue letting friends and family know about this newsletter. Visit our website where you can see back issues of this newsletter, information about services and our clinic, and order products.

 

References:

  1. Padiachy R. The Belly of the Beast. 2017.

Disclaimer: The suggestions and recommendations in this newsletter are not intended to be prescriptive or diagnostic. The information is accurate and up to date to our knowledge, but we are not responsible for any errors in our sources of information.

 

When health begins, dis-ease ends.

CANDIDA: BEING ILL WITHOUT A DIAGNOSIS - APRIL 2017 - VOLUME 9, ISSUE 1

 

Ramilas Health Tips

Ramila's Healing Arts Clinic

 

The topic this month is particularly meaningful to me, about a condition that plagued me for many years. It actually led me to the career I have today - for which I am extremely grateful. The topic is systemic Candida (Candida albicans), otherwise known as a yeast infection.

 

While I'm going to tell you about my experience with systemic Candida, it is not 'just' a women's problem; it can and does occur in men, too.

 

This month, I'll tell you about my personal experience with systemic Candida, and next month, I'll give you more information about Candida, its causes and treatment.

 
These newsletters will help you make better choices for better health. The choices that you make today can either have a positive or negative impact on your overall health. Begin by choosing better. It is a step toward longevity.

clinic

Volume 9, Issue 1

Candida: Being Ill Without a Diagnosis

Ramila Padiachy

Doctor of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic

1437 Woodroffe Avenue
Ottawa ON (map)

613.829.0427
info@ramilas.com

Like us on Facebook

NEW! We now offer Chiropractic Services.

The Frustrations of Being Ill Without a Diagnosis

Imagine having vaginitis - swelling, redness, burning and itching - and nothing you do helps in any way. And as if that isn't enough, you also have a bladder infection (cystitis) which causes you to feel as if you urgently have to urinate every few minutes, but there are only a few drops of urine, and the pain is excruciating.

 

Add to this constant canker sores in your mouth that make swallowing even a sip of water extremely painful. Plus you have bowel movements only every 3 to 5 days, and the doctor says that's normal for you. Imagine the toxins accumulating in your system! Think of your sewer system blocking up and nothing moving for a few days.

 

Your menstrual cycle is every 3 to 4 months. Your immune system is compromised, so you catch every virus going around. You feel terrible, but you look perfectly normal, so it's hard to convince anyone you're really sick.

 

All your blood tests have come back with normal results, as has the abdominal ultrasound. Allergy tests have revealed nothing. Nevertheless, in spite of what doctors are and aren't telling you, you just don't feel normal, healthy or well.

 

Your doctor tells you they don't know what's causing either of these conditions, but the only treatment available is antibiotics.

 

This is a brief account of what it's like when a yeast infection goes systemic.

 

woman not feeling well

 

I struggled with these health problems for 15 years. During all that time, no doctor ever asked me about my diet, which was really unhealthy. I ate 2 chocolate bars every day; I drank soda, ate cookies, sweets and potato chips; I was addicted to sugar. My diet lacked fibre, hence the complaints about constipation.

 

I've been a vegetarian for 39 years, so you would think I ate a healthy diet, but that was not the case. I went from doctor to doctor, looking for answers to these health problems, but all they would say was they really didn't know what causes yeast infections in women... but here's an antibiotic that will help.

 

Fortunately, when we immigrated to Canada from South Africa, I needed to rethink my career path. (I studied chemistry in South Africa and had a career in the food and chemical industry. I later owned and managed two businesses with my husband, Megs.) I knew I wanted to help people and work with people, but I didn't know where to start. Megs suggested I consider studying reflexology. He had helped me using reflexology, working on my feet to relieve the chronic back pain I had.

 

As luck would have it, I was able to start a course right away, and this led me to take every course in complementary medicine I could find. Each course brought me closer and closer to the answers to all of my health problems.

 

One day in class, the teacher described every symptom I was experiencing. I honestly thought he must be psychic! Of course, that wasn't the case and he was simply describing all the symptoms of systemic Candida. I was ecstatic that finally someone understood my symptoms and knew the root cause of them.

 

With this knowledge, I was able to treat myself successfully with a yeast-free diet plus herbs and vitamins. Within 6 weeks, almost all my symptoms were gone. I learned that the real problem was in my gut; the Candida there affected my entire body. Following the right treatment protocol, I have been symptom-free ever since.

 

I was so impressed with the results that I continued my education and received a Doctorate in Naturopathy from the University of Westbrook in New Mexico, USA, and, later, one in Acupuncture. I am a member of the American Naturopathic Medical Association, and I practice as a Doctor of Natural Medicine DNM®. I am also a certified Iridologist, certified Reflexologist, and Wholistic Allergist.

 

Over the years, I have worked with thousands of people with Candida of all ages, and they have literally gotten their lives back. The results are apparent in just 2 weeks, although it takes somewhat longer to fully deal with Candida.

 

We opened Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic in 1992 and, since then, I have been committed to helping others improve their health and live a better quality of life.

 

My program is so simple - and clients have achieved such great results - that they kept telling me to write a book about it because they want to share it with their friends. In fact, I have done just that - my book, called The Belly of the Beast - How to Calm Your Gut and Reclaim Your Health, will be published very soon.

 

Next month, I will provide much more information about Candida infections: what Candida is, what causes it, and my strategy for treating it. Stay tuned!

 

For additional information, email info@ramilas.com or call Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic at 613.829.0427 for an appointment. Please continue letting friends and family know about this newsletter. Visit our website where you can see back issues of this newsletter, information about services and our clinic, and order products.

 

References:

  1. Can men get yeast infections?  What every man must know. candidaspecialists.com/can-men-get-yeast-infections/ Accessed March 13, 2017.

Disclaimer: The suggestions and recommendations in this newsletter are not intended to be prescriptive or diagnostic. The information is accurate and up to date to our knowledge, but we are not responsible for any errors in our sources of information.

 

"Within a few short days, my discomfort was gone. I simply could not believe it!" -MF

When health begins, dis-ease ends.

 

WHAT IS POLYCYSTIC OVARY SYNDROME? - MARCH 2017 - VOLUME 8, ISSUE 12

 

Ramilas Health Tips

Ramila's Healing Arts Clinic

 

The topic this month is polycystic ovary syndrome or polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS). It is the most common cause of infertility and affects many premenopausal women. However, it can be successfully managed with lifestyle changes and certain supplements.

 
These newsletters will help you make better choices for better health. The choices that you make today can either have a positive or negative impact on your overall health. Begin by choosing better. It is a step toward longevity.

clinic

Volume 8, Issue 12

Ramila Padiachy

Doctorate of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic

1437 Woodroffe Avenue
Ottawa ON (map)

613.829.0427
info@ramilas.com

 

Like us on Facebook

What is Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)?

PCOS is a common endocrine system disorder, involving a hormonal imbalance, among women of childbearing age. In the U.S. it is estimated 5-10% of women in this age group are affected. However, it is also estimated that less than half are properly diagnosed. Canada is probably not much different in this respect. The exact cause of PCOS is unknown, although it tends to run in families, suggesting a genetic component.

 

mother and daughterNormally the ovaries produce a small amount of male sex hormones - androgens - but with PCOS, they produce too many androgens in relation to female hormones, causing an imbalance.

 

Symptoms include:

  • Irregular periods. This is the most common indication. Menstrual cycles may be longer than 35 days, with fewer than 8 cycles per year; or they may be more frequent than usual, e.g. 21 days or less; there may be either heavy or scant bleeding. Some women stop having periods.
  • Trouble conceiving or infertility
  • Weight gain and difficulty losing weight
  • Insulin resistance, which may be more a cause of PCOS than an effect, since elevated insulin levels act to raise androgen levels. Hyperinsulinemia (elevated insulin levels) is seen in 50 to 70% of cases of PCOS. While it is more common in women who are obese, it can also occur in women who are a normal weight.
  • Acne on the face, chest and upper back
  • Hirsutism (excessive hair growth, including places women don't usually grow hair, e.g. face, abdomen, back).
  • Male pattern baldness, thinning hair
  • Fatigue
  • Changes in mood
  • Low sex drive

Not all symptoms are necessarily present, and the severity may vary over time and from one woman to another. Most women with PCOS develop symptoms from adolescence to their 30s.

 

The term 'polycystic' means that a woman's ovaries have multiple small cysts. However, some women who have multiple small ovarian cysts have no symptoms of PCOS, and some women who are diagnosed with PCOS don't show any evidence of ovarian cysts on ultrasound.

 

Complications: Treating PCOS promptly can prevent a number of serious health risks (especially important if obesity is a factor). These include:

  • Type 2 diabetes
  • High blood pressure
  • Cholesterol and lipid abnormalities, such as elevated triglycerides or low high-density lipoprotein (HDL), the 'good' cholesterol
  • Metabolic syndrome, a cluster of signs and symptoms that indicate an increased risk of cardiovascular disease
  • Sleep apnea
  • Depression and anxiety
  • Gestational diabetes or pregnancy-induced high blood pressure
  • Endometrial cancer (cancer of the uterus)

 

Natural solutions for PCOS symptoms

A healthy diet and regular exercise are very important ways to control PCOS symptoms. Both are obviously also related to the issue of obesity which occurs in many women with PCOS.

 

1. Eat a nutrient-dense diet.

 

vegetablesFocus on nourishment as the goal. Include foods that are anti-inflammatory, such as:

  • vegetables
  • fruits
  • grass-fed/pasture-raised meat
  • wild fish (e.g. salmon)
  • nuts and seeds (chia, flax hemp, almonds, walnuts)
  • unrefined oils/fats (coconut oil, olive oil and avocado)

Avoid:

  • too much alcohol or caffeine
  • most sources of sugar and sweeteners, plus refined carbohydrates such as white bread, white rice, pasta not made from whole grains
  • packaged and processed foods (almost always full of artificial ingredients, preservatives, sugars, sodium
  • hydrogenated and refined vegetable oils (soybean, canola, safflower, sunflower and corn) which are highly inflammatory
  • common sensitivities, such as dairy products and gluten

 

2. Get appropriate, regular exercise.

 

Exercise helps lower blood sugar levels. Moderate exercise is best. Walking is one great way to exercise - it can be done every day (either outdoors or inside), and all you need is a good pair of walking shoes. Yoga is an excellent choice. Another option is high intensity interval training - intense exercise for short periods of time. Focus on getting enough activity to help with insulin sensitivity and burning excess fat.

 

3. Reduce stress (physical and psychological).

 

Stress can have a major impact on the endocrine system and hormone production. There are many ways to combat stress, and different choices work for different people.

  • Meditation is really effective, and it doesn't mean hours of trying to emulate a Tibetan monk! There are many prerecorded meditations and smartphone apps available to suit different tastes.
  • Yoga (see section 2)
  • Journalling
  • Taking time for yourself, pampering yourself
  • Chatting with a friend you trust
  • Spending time in nature (perhaps when the weather is a little warmer)

 

4. Get enough sleep.

 

Sleep deprivation can have the same adverse hormonal health effects as a poor diet and too little physical activity. Unfortunately, research shows that sleep disturbances are twice as common in women with PCOS as those without sleep. I recommend that you do your best to get between 7 and 9 hours of good quality sleep per night.


Some tips to improve your sleep:

  • No TV in the bedroom
  • Don't use your computer, tablet or smartphone within 2 hours of going to bed
  • Be sure your bedroom is quiet, dark and cool
  • Don't exercise late in the evening
  • Eat at least 2 hours before bedtime
  • Avoid alcohol and caffeine in the evening

 

Experiment with these tips to see what works best for you. If you suspect you might have PCOS, please book an appointment with me. I have extensive experience in successfully treating PCOS.

 

Supplements

Super Omega 3There are some Nature's Sunshine supplements relevant to this newsletter. You can find information about these products and purchase them in our online store:

 

  • Berberine
  • GTF Chromium
  • Flax Seed Oil
  • Psyllium Hulls Combination
  • Super Omega-3
  • Wild Yam & Chaste Tree

 

References:

  1. Axe J. No. 1 cause of infertility? Polycystic ovarian syndrome. draxe.com/polycystic-ovarian-syndrome/ Accessed March 7, 2017.
  2. Mayo Clinic Staff. Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/pcos/basics/definition/con-20028841 Accessed March 7, 2017.
  3. Polycystic ovary syndrome. womenshealth.gov/publications/our-publications/fact-sheet/polycystic-ovary-syndrome.html Accessed March 7, 2017.
  4. Wahlgren K. 7 things you need to know about polycystic ovary syndrome. prevention.com/health/7-things-you-need-to-know-about-polycystic-ovary-syndrome Accessed March 7, 2017.
  5. Dunaif A. Insulin resistance and the polycystic ovary syndrome: Mechanism and implications for pathogenisis. Endocrine Reviews 1997;18(6):774-800.

Disclaimer: The suggestions and recommendations in this newsletter are not intended to be prescriptive or diagnostic. The information is accurate and up to date to our knowledge, but we are not responsible for any errors in our sources of information.

Ramila created a nutritional plan for me. She also taught me how to balance out my nutritional needs, and what kinds of food eat and to avoid. I started seeing major differences in my body and overall health in just 3 weeks. I had more energy, my headaches were fewer to none and my feet and joints didn’t hurt as much. I stuck to the heath plan and went from a size 15 to now a size 9. I have lost 40 lbs.

- RG

When health begins, dis-ease ends.

 

TIPS FOR A HEALTHY PROSTATE - FEBRUARY 2017 - VOLUME 8, ISSUE 11

 

Ramilas Health Tips

Ramila's Healing Arts Clinic

 

This month, we are taking a look at prostate health - it's not only men's issue, but it's also important to their spouses/partners/families, as well. Many men are not sure what they can do to improve the health of their prostate. We'll look at three common problems, and also at what can be done to reduce the likelihood of these problems.

 
These newsletters will help you make better choices for better health. The choices that you make today can either have a positive or negative impact on your overall health. Begin by choosing better. It is a step toward longevity.

clinic

Volume 8, Issue 11

Ramila Padiachy

Doctorate of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic

1437 Woodroffe Avenue
Ottawa ON (map)

613.829.0427
info@ramilas.com

 

Like us on Facebook

Prostate Health

The prostate is a small gland that is part of the male reproductive system and is normally about the size of a chestnut or walnut. It's located below the bladder, in front of the rectum, and it surrounds part of the urethra (the tube that empties the bladder).

 

The prostate produces a fluid that makes up part of the semen which carries sperm from the testicles during ejaculation. The prostate also metabolizes the hormone testosterone into a biologically active form called dihydrotestosterone (DHT). DHT is an androgen hormone that plays a role in puberty and helps men develop their adult male characteristics.

Common prostate health problems

Benign prostatic hyperplasia (or hypertrophy) (BPH) occurs when the prostate gland becomes inflamed or enlarged as men get older. This causes the prostate to compress the urethra, making it difficult to urinate. This can lead to a bladder infection or bladder stones.

 

The development of BPH is age-related in nearly all men and starts at around 40 years of age. According to studies from all around the world, it seems that about 10% of men in their 30s, 20% of men in their 40s, 50% to 60% of men in their 60s, and 80% to 90% of men in their 70s and 80s show some signs of BPH. Many men with BPH never see a doctor for this and never need any treatment. It's when BPH is associated with other symptoms that men usually seek treatment. The most common issue is lower urinary tract symptoms, such as pain when urinating and a need to urinate frequently.

 

Prostatitis is inflammation or infection of the prostate gland that often results in swelling and pain. It may also lead to problems urinating, sexual dysfunction and general health issues, such as feeling tired and depressed. Unlike most other prostate problems, prostatitis occurs more often in young and middle-aged men. Treatment usually includes antibiotics. Please note that it's important to take probiotics if you take antibiotics to maintain healthy levels of 'good' bacteria (see Supplements).

 

It is a significant health problem with prevalence rates of 11% to 16%. In the United States, there are more than 2 million consultations per year for prostatitis. It is the most common reason men under the age of 50 consult a urologist, and it results in more physician visits than BPH or prostate cancer in the U.S.

 

Prostate cancer is a leading cause of cancer in men in the United States and Canada. In Canada, 1 in 8 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in their lifetime. This was estimated to be 21,600 cases in 2016, with an estimated 4,000 deaths. The death rate has been declining by just over 3% per year from 2003 to 2012 in Canada. The risk of developing prostate cancer increases with age, rising sharply after age 55 and peaking at age 70-74, after which it declines slightly. Family history of prostate cancer (father, brother) is another risk factor.

Tips for a healthy prostate

Fortunately, there are a number of preventive measures to improve prostate health, including diet and lifestyle changes.

  1. Dietary changes
    • Get at least 5 servings of fruit and vegetables every day.
    • Include produce high in lycopene, a powerful antioxidant, such as red peppers and tomatoes. Lycopene makes fruit and vegetables red and has been proven to be a cancer-fighting agent.
    • Cruciferous vegetables, such as broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, bok choy and kale are good anti-cancer foods.
    • Choose whole grain bread and pasta over bread and pasta made with white (refined) flour.
    • Be more selective with your choice of protein. Avoid processed meats, e.g. sandwich meat, hot dogs, bacon. Limit the amount of red meat you eat, including beef, pork and lamb.
    • Instead, eat more fish with high levels of omega-3 acids. Wild caught fish in general, and salmon, in particular, is a great choice.
    • Beans, poultry and eggs are also healthy options for protein.
    • Limit your alcohol and sugar intake.
    • Green tea is the best beverage for anti-aging because it contains the highest level of antioxidants. It helps promote detoxification (to remove symptoms of prostatitis) and prostate health.
    • Pumpkin seeds and pumpkin seed oil are good for prostate health because of their high carotenoid content and liposoluble vitamins. Pumpkin seeds contain zinc, which acts as a diuretic to help empty the bladder, and they reduce inflammation.
    • Avoid high consumption of dairy products, which have been linked to a higher risk of prostate cancer. This has been attributed to higher calcium intake.
       
  2. Other lifestyle changes
    • Physical activity - A majority of studies have reported a reduced risk of prostate cancer in men who were most active. Physical activity also reduces the risk of BPH. It is believed that it's the ability of exercise to modulate hormone levels, prevent obesity, enhance immune function and reduce oxidative stress that explains the protective effects of physical activity.
    • Maintain a healthy weight. Men who are obese may have an increased risk of prostate cancer. If you would like help with losing weight, please contact me for an appointment.
    • Do not smoke.
       
  3. Supplements can play an important role in increasing prostate health (see below).

Supplements

There are some Nature's Sunshine supplements that are relevant to this newsletter. You can find information about these products and purchase them in our online store:

 

Bifidofilus Flora ForceFor prostate health:

  • Vitamin D
  • Zinc
  • Saw Palmetto
  • Saw Palmetto Concentrate
  • Super Omega-3
  • Zambroza

Probiotics:

  • NutriBiome Bacillus Coagulans Probiotics
  • Probiotic 11
  • Bifidofilus Flora Force

For additional information, email info@ramilas.com or call Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic at 613.829.0427 for an appointment. Please continue letting friends and family know about this newsletter. Visit our website where you can see back issues of this newsletter, information about services and our clinic, and order products.

 

References:

 

  1. Axe J. How to maintain proper prostate health. draxe.com/prostate-health/ Accessed February 16, 2017.
  2. What is the prostate? What's normal? webmd.com/men/prostate-enlargement-bph/what-is-the-prostate#1 Accessed February 16, 2017.
  3. Roehrborn CG. Benign prostatic hyperplasia: an overview. Rev Urol 2005;7(suppl 9):S3-S14.
  4. Statistics. Prostate Cancer Canada. prostatecancer.ca/Prostate-Cancer/About-Prostate-Cancer/Statistics Accessed February 17, 2017.
  5. wikiHow to Improve Prostate Health. wikihow.com/Improve-Prostate-Health Accessed February 16, 2017.
  6. 10 diet & exercise tips for prostate health. health.harvard.edu/healthbeat/10-diet-and-exercise-tips-for-prostate-health Accessed February 16, 2017.

Disclaimer: The suggestions and recommendations in this newsletter are not intended to be prescriptive or diagnostic. The information is accurate and up to date to our knowledge, but we are not responsible for any errors in our sources of information.

“I had my first visit to a holistic clinic for a very bad sinus infection and I am so pleased I went to see Ramila. After 2 weeks of congestion, followed by 3 days of complete blockage and body aches, I was 90% better in 48 hours. My respiratory health was fully restored in just 4 days, with no recurrence of symptoms. I am amazed with the results and although maintain my health through proper nutrition and exercise, its comforting to know I can count on Ramilas |Healing arts clinic for natural treatments. Thank you.”

- Valarie L

When health begins, dis-ease ends.

 

HOW CAN RESVERATROL IMPROVE OUR HEALTH? - JANUARY 2017 - VOLUME 8, ISSUE 10

 

Ramilas Health Tips

Ramila's Healing Arts Clinic

 

Happy New Year! I hope you had an enjoyable, safe and healthy holiday, and that you're making great progress with your new year's resolutions!

 

February is just around the corner and, of course, Valentine's Day, which is very much related to heart health. In recent years, there has been a lot of publicity concerning the heart health effects of resveratrol, a compound found mainly in grapes and red wine, as well as in raspberries, plums, grape tomatoes, acai berries, pomegranates, cocoa and peanuts. I thought it would be interesting to look at the available evidence that resveratrol is heart-healthy.

 
These newsletters will help you make better choices for better health. The choices that you make today can either have a positive or negative impact on your overall health. Begin by choosing better. It is a step toward longevity.

clinic

Volume 8, Issue 10

Ramila Padiachy

Doctorate of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic

1437 Woodroffe Avenue
Ottawa ON (map)

613.829.0427
info@ramilas.com

 

Like us on Facebook

How Can Resveratrol Improve Our Health?

What is resveratrol? It is a polyphenol, which is a type of antioxidant, found in grape skins (but not in grape seeds), and particularly in red grape skins (as well as other foods listed above in the introduction).

 

Can resveratrol benefit your cardiovascular health?


There has been interest in resveratrol's role in heart health ever since a meta-analysis found a significant risk reduction associated with drinking 1-2 glasses of wine daily.

 

Researchers believe that chronic inflammation may be at the root of heart disease. Inflammation can cause blood clotting; the clots can then block the blood flow to your heart leading to heart disease and possibly a heart attack. Resveratrol is believed to reduce inflammation, leading to increased heart health. Resveratrol may also help to lower LDL ("bad" cholesterol). Note that it might interact with blood thinners like Coumadin, as well as medications like aspirin and ibuprofen, and increase the chance of bleeding.

 

It is believed that resveratrol enables the walls of blood vessels to relax; this tends to be impaired in people with chronic heart disease, and resveratrol may reverse or reduce this impairment.

 

Since type 2 diabetes is closely related to cardiovascular health, it's worth mentioning that resveratrol appears to help reduce insulin resistance, a precursor to type 2 diabetes.

 

Thus it appears that resveratrol is effective at protecting the heart and blood flow, and may be an insulin sensitizer.

 

There is interest in the effect of resveratrol on exercise, and, of course, fitness is related to heart health. A comprehensive review of the literature concluded it is clear resveratrol has positive effects on muscle function and antioxidant activity, as well as carbohydrate metabolism and bone metabolism. Therefore, it is definitely correlated with exercise; it will be interesting to follow further research on this topic.

 

Resveratrol appears to increase the activity of mitochondria, which produce energy within cells; this could potentially extend the cells' lives. This may explain resveratrol's popularity as an anti-aging compound. It also appears to stimulate cellular proteins known as sirtuins; this is believed to promote longer cell life.

One Powerful Juice: ZAMBROZA

Nature’s Sunshine's Zambroza is a combination of 14 of the most healthful fruits and extracts gathered from around the world. Zambroza’s ingredients are rich in bioflavonoids, polyphenols and antioxidants. Zambroza has been independently tested by New Brunswick Laboratories to deliver a high ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity) value. Among Zambroza’s key ingredients is mangosteen, which contains the greatest known supply of highly-researched, polyphenolic compounds called xanthones. Other ingredients of note are acai berry, pomegranate, wolfberry (goji berry), raspberry, grape skin and seed extract, sea buckthorn and many more. You can purchase Zambroza at our online store.

 

Research shows these ingredients may support:

  • ZambrozaAnti-aging
  • Heart health
  • Memory and motor skills
  • Diabetes
  • Colds, flu and sore throat
  • Normalization of menstruation
  • Normal blood pressure
  • Eyesight
  • Improved immune system
  • Fatigue
  • Skin problems
  • Urinary tract concerns
  • Pain relief

What's the relevance of resveratrol to Valentine's Day?

We all know that chocolate is an important feature of Valentine's Day.

 

You've probably also heard that chocolate contains beneficial flavonols. However, you might not know that resveratrol is one of them, and that chocolate (cocoa) contains significant levels of resveratrol (although not quite as much as red wine).

 

So, chocolate, particularly dark chocolate, is a tasty alternative (or addition) to red wine as a source of resveratrol. Enjoy!

Supplements

There are some Nature's Sunshine supplements that are relevant to this newsletter. You can find information about these products and purchase them in our online store:

  • Zambroza
  • Arginine Plus with Mixed Berry
  • CHOLESTER REG II
  • SUPER TRIO

For additional information, email info@ramilas.com or call Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic at 613.829.0427 for an appointment. Please continue letting friends and family know about this newsletter. Visit our website where you can see back issues of this newsletter, information about services and our clinic, and order products.

 

References:

Disclaimer: The suggestions and recommendations in this newsletter are not intended to be prescriptive or diagnostic. The information is accurate and up to date to our knowledge, but we are not responsible for any errors in our sources of information.

“Ramila’s promise that I would be well has proven true. With all my heart, I thank her and Megs for their dedication to their healing arts and to their clients, and for their knowledge and loving service."

- Jennifer B.

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When health begins, dis-ease ends.

 

WHY DON'T NEW YEAR'S RESOLUTIONS WORK? - DECEMBER 2016 - VOLUME 8, ISSUE 9

 

Ramilas Health Tips

Ramila's Healing Arts Clinic

 

I hope you're enjoying the holiday season! Since the New Year is almost here, it’s a good idea to look at some strategies for making New Year's resolutions actually work this time around. We know all too well that the majority of resolutions don't last very far into the new year. The question is, how can we change this? Fortunately, there are many ways we can change the way we think about resolutions and how we approach them.
 
I hope you find this helpful! Best wishes for a happy, healthy New Year, and good luck with your resolutions!
 
These newsletters will help you make better choices for better health. The choices that you make today can either have a positive or negative impact on your overall health. Begin by choosing better. It is a step toward longevity.

clinic

Volume 8, Issue 9

Ramila Padiachy

Doctorate of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic

1437 Woodroffe Avenue
Ottawa ON (map)

613.829.0427
info@ramilas.com

 

Like us on Facebook

Why Don't New Year's Resolutions Work?

failureFirst, it's important to understand why so many New Year's resolutions don't work. Here are some key reasons:

  • Your expectations were unrealistic. It's great to challenge yourself, and also good to further your personal development. However, if you take on too much, you will most likely end up being overwhelmed and feeling like a failure because you're not meeting all your goals. The next thing you know, you give up entirely.
  • You didn't clearly define your goals. You say you're going to get in shape, but what does that mean? Do you plan to lose weight? How much? Do you plan to run 5 km nonstop? Fit into size (pick a size) jeans? You need to be specific about what getting into shape means to you.
  • You are guilty of "all or nothing" thinking. You give up completely when everything doesn't go exactly according to plan. For example, you have French fries with dinner, then decide since you've blown your diet, you might as well have dessert. Then you decide you might as well continue to indulge for the entire weekend, and start over again next week.
  • You can't find time to do what you've resolved to do, for example attend exercise class 4 times a week, declutter your closet, or become more involved in your community organization.
  • You don't keep track of your progress, so you feel as if you're not getting anywhere with achieving your resolutions, and understandably you get discouraged.

 

How to succeed with your New Year's resolutions this time

  • Set short-term goals for long-term results. You may have an ambitious goal, but if you "chunk it down" into smaller, manageable chunks, and tackle them individually, you will be much more likely to succeed with the larger goal.
  • Clearly define your goals. Set goals that are S.M.A.R.T. - specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-bound. For example, don't say, "I'm going to lose 10 pounds." Instead, say, "By April 30, 2017 at 5pm I will weigh 135 pounds."
  • It's better to do something than nothing. If you can't find an hour to spend at the gym, exercise for 30 minutes or even just 20 minutes. The shorter time will still move you toward your goal.
    • So you ate the French fries and dessert for dinner. Tomorrow morning, get back on track right away and minimize the damage. You'll start moving toward your goal again, and even better, you won't continue to move away from it. Any effort toward your goal is better than none.
  • Schedule your goal. Make your resolution a priority and actually write it into your schedule. Schedule time for getting fit. Schedule time to declutter your closet. You are much more likely to do what you schedule.
  • Keep track of your progress. Measure the changes you make and write them down. Don't expect your progress to be totally consistent, but know that if you hit a plateau, for example, with losing weight, that may point to a need to adjust your efforts, not to give up! Be patient.
  • Celebrate little victories. Be sure that the rewards you choose don't work against your goal. For example, if you've lost some weight, don't reward yourself with food, instead, perhaps treat yourself to a bubble bath or a good movie.
  • Make your resolution about the journey, not the outcome. Instead of deciding to lose 10 pounds, resolutions about getting enough physical activity on a regular basis and eating a healthy diet may be more beneficial. That way you will develop a healthier life style; the number on the scales is less important than that.
  • Resolve to do something you love. Not all resolutions have to be to do something you dread. Instead, make at least one resolution to do something you really love and want to do, such as read a fun novel or watch a good movie (or both) every month.
  • Start with just one goal. Even if you have many resolutions you would like to accomplish this year, your chances of success will be much higher if you focus on just one goal to start with. You can add another goal each time you're ready.

If weight loss combined with a healthier lifestyle are your goals, I would be very glad to help you. Please contact our office at 613.829.0427 for an appointment.

 

References:

  1. Flaxington BD. 5 reasons why New Year's resolutions fail... and 5 steps to successfully fulfilling them. Psychology Today, psychologytoday.com/blog/understand-other-people/201512/5-reasons-why-new-year-s-resolutions-fail, December 29, 2015.
  2. Kruse K. A psychologist's secrets to making New Year's resolutions stick. Forbes, forbes.com/sites/kevinkruse/2016/01/03/making-new-years-resolutions-stick/#562f8a621807 Accessed December 5, 2016
  3. Canfield J. The Success Principles. New York: Harper Collins Publishers, 2007.
  4. Pavini J. 10 tricks to help you actually keep your New Year's resolutions. Huffington Post. huffingtonpost.com/jeanette-pavini/10-tricks-to-help-you-actually-keep-your-new-years-resolutions_b_4550549.html, updated March 8, 2014.
  5. Gaskill L. 11 easy ways to keep your New Year's resolutions. Forbes. forbes.com/sites/houzz/2015/01/01/11-easy-ways-to-keep-your-new-years-resolutions/#117e37586dc3, January 1, 2015.

 

Disclaimer: The suggestions and recommendations in this newsletter are not intended to be prescriptive or diagnostic. The information is accurate and up to date to our knowledge, but we are not responsible for any errors in our sources of information.

"In 4 months I was 37lbs lighter and 3 sizes smaller. I feel great, I am not hungry, I am getting lots of compliments, and I am much happier. I still have some extra pounds to get rid off, but I am not giving up!"

- Inessa

When health begins, dis-ease ends.

WHY VITAMIN D IS IMPORTANT TO YOUR HEALTH - NOVEMBER 2016 - VOLUME 8, ISSUE 8

 

 

Ramilas Health Tips

Ramila's Healing Arts Clinic

 

The news about vitamin D keeps getting better and better. Since the Canadian climate does not provide enough vitamin D from sunlight during the late fall and winter months, supplementation is particularly important, and also inexpensive. I'm sure you know vitamin D is extremely important to your health, but you may not be aware of some of its benefits. We reviewed some of them in our October 2013 and October 2010 newsletters, but there are some important updates. Note that we are using 'vitamin D' to mean D3 (and not D2). Read on below...
 
These newsletters will help you make better choices for better health. The choices that you make today can either have a positive or negative impact on your overall health. Begin by choosing better. It is a step toward longevity.

Volume 8, Issue 8

Ramila Padiachy

Doctorate of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic

1437 Woodroffe Avenue
Ottawa ON (map)

613.829.0427
info@ramilas.com

Why Vitamin D is Important to Your Health

The Vitamin D Council summarizes the benefits of vitamin D as follows:
"Vitamin D is important for good overall health and strong and healthy bones. It's also an important factor in making sure your muscles, heart, lungs and brain work well and that your body can fight infection."

 

sunshineUnlike other vitamins, vitamin D does not depend on the foods you eat, but on your exposure to the sunshine (or vitamin D supplements). Exposure to the sun enables the body to make its vitamin D. The body then turns vitamin D into a hormone, known as 'activated vitamin D' or calcitriol. Vitamin D has an important role in managing calcium in your blood; it enables calcium to be properly absorbed. It also helps cells all over the body to communicate properly.

 

To briefly review the benefits of vitamin D that we've already discussed in the October 2013 newsletter, vitamin D

  • lowers the risk of several types of cancer
  • improves lung function
  • helps build strong bones and teeth
  • contributes to good cardiovascular health
  • helps our immune system
  • combats aging
  • protects against multiple sclerosis
  • helps reduce insulin resistance in type 2 diabetes
  • reduces the risk of Parkinson's disease
  • helps prevent disability and limitations in activities of daily living

This is already a very impressive list, but new research is adding to this all the time. The following is just a partial account of some of the most recent knowledge of the benefits of vitamin D.

 

While the evidence is preliminary, there is increasing research examining a link between vitamin D and Alzheimer's Disease.

  • There are receptors for vitamin D in many parts of the brain. This means vitamin D is acting in some way on the brain and influencing how a person thinks, learns and acts. It has been found that, in people with Alzheimer's disease, there are fewer receptors in the hippocampus which is involved in forming memories, or in other words, a greater number of vitamin D receptors indicates better memory.
  • Of course, prevention of Alzheimer's disease is extremely important. So far, researchers can't say for sure that getting enough vitamin D will prevent Alzheimer's disease, but since low levels of vitamin D are associated with poorer cognitive performance, this seems to hold promise.

Vitamin D may help reduce pain.

  • A meta-analysis of 19 randomized clinical trials and 3,436 participants is the first to quantify the effect of vitamin D supplementation on pain. Sixteen of the 19 RCTs included in the analysis were hospital-based; the remaining 3 were community-based.
  • A significantly greater mean decrease in pain score was observed with vitamin D supplementation compared with placebo in people with chronic pain.
  • This suggests that vitamin D could have a role in the management of chronic pain. Further study is needed to confirm these findings.

Vitamin D may reduce the risk of colorectal cancer, which is one of the most common forms of cancer. Research tells us that:

  • People with low levels of vitamin D in their body are more likely to develop colorectal cancer.
  • Regions, where people are exposed to the lowest amount of sunlight, have higher rates of colorectal cancer than people in sunny places.
  • Studies have found a dose-response relationship, where for each increase in vitamin D level in the body, there is a decrease in colorectal cancer risk.
  • High levels of vitamin D in the body may improve survival from colorectal cancer.
  • Most studies of vitamin D and colorectal cancer have been observational, which means that researchers can't be sure whether vitamin D causes the observed reduction in risk, or whether it's due to some other factor.
  • Again, more study is needed to clarify the strength of this association.

Influenza and Vitamin D:

  • People who get influenza are more likely to have low levels of vitamin D.
  • Vitamin D can help reduce inflammation caused by the influenza virus and increase the number of antimicrobial proteins that fight against viruses.
  • Influenza infections increase during the winter, which is when vitamin D levels are known to decrease in the population.
  • Some studies have shown that taking vitamin D supplements can reduce the chances of getting influenza; however, others have not shown this.
  • Having high levels of vitamin D may help decrease recovery time from an influenza infection.

 

What level of vitamin D supplementation is appropriate?

There is no single answer to this question. It depends on how much sun you get, your skin colour (darker skin absorbs less), your age (adults need more than children or infants), your weight (the more you weigh, the more vitamin D your body can handle), and whether it's winter, summer or somewhere in between. Supplementation is necessary during the winter months in Canada! Check this reference for more detail.

 

While different organizations define various levels of vitamin D supplementation as appropriate, it seems more than 10,000 IU (International Units) of vitamin D per day is excessive.

 

How much sun do I need?


It takes very little summer sun exposure, particularly if you're fair skinned, to get enough vitamin D from the sun - about half the time it takes for your skin to turn pink and begin to burn. This could be only 15 minutes for a very fair skinned person, or a couple of hours or more for a dark skinned person. This guideline will lead to the body producing from 10,000 to 25,000 IU. Note: higher amounts are not a problem when vitamin D is generated by the sun, as opposed to obtained from supplements.

 

I hope vitamin D helps you have a healthy winter season!

 

Supplements

vitamin D3There are some Nature's Sunshine supplements that are relevant to this newsletter.

 

You can find information about these products and purchase them in our online store:

  • Super Vitamins & Minerals
  • Vitamin D3
  • Liquid Vitamin D (available from our office only)

For additional information, please email info@ramilas.com or call Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic at 613.829.0427 for an appointment. Please continue letting friends and family know about this newsletter. Visit our website where you can see back issues of this newsletter, information about services, products, and our clinic, and order products.

 

References:

  1. What is vitamin D? The Vitamin D Council. vitamindcouncil.org/about-vitamin-d/what-is-vitamin-d/ Accessed October 24, 2016.
  2. Alzheimer's Disease. The Vitamin D Council. vitamindcouncil.org/health-conditions/alzheimers-disease/ Updated November 30, 2015.
  3. Balion C, Griffith LE, Strifler L, et al. Vitamin D, cognition, and dementia. Neurology 2012;79:1397-1405.
  4. Can vitamin D-crease pain? examine.com/nutrition/can-vitamin-d-crease-pain Accessed November 10, 2016.
  5. Wu Z, Malihi Z, Stewart AW et al. Effect of vitamin D supplementation on pain: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Pain Physician 2016;19:425-427.
  6. Colorectal cancer. The Vitamin D Council. vitamindcouncil.org/health-conditions/colorectal-cancer/ Last updated January 2014.
  7. Influenza. The Vitamin D Council. vitamindcouncil.org/health-conditions/influenza/ Updated December 2015.
  8. How do I get the vitamin D my body needs? The Vitamin D Council. vitamindcouncil.org/about-vitamin-d/how-do-i-get-the-vitamin-d-my-body-needs/ Accessed November 14, 2016.

Disclaimer: The suggestions and recommendations in this newsletter are not intended to be prescriptive or diagnostic. The information is accurate and up to date to our knowledge, but we are not responsible for any errors in our sources of information.

"Will I ever be able to dance at my niece’s wedding?" I asked myself. My feet are cramping and I cannot stand to wear shoes. I happened to have an appointment with Ramila and Megs on the day before the wedding. It seems I had been sensitive to magnesium all along. One desensitization treatment and voila! I was able to dance the evening away!

- Johanne, Ottawa

When health begins, dis-ease ends.

HOW CAN YOU BOOST YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM? - OCTOBER 2016 - VOLUME 8 ISSUE 7

 

 

Ramilas Health Tips

Ramila's Healing Arts Clinic

 

With Hallowe'en just around the corner, it's a good idea to look at the effects of extra sugar that our children - and many adults - are likely to consume. I'm not thinking so much about the effects of sugar on dental health (although that is a valid concern) as on our immune system. I'm not concerned with the sugar in fruit, but with the simple sugars found in candy, soft drinks, cakes and so on. Read on below...
 
These newsletters will help you make better choices for better health. The choices that you make today can either have a positive or negative impact on your overall health. Begin by choosing better. It is a step toward longevity.

clinic

Volume 8, Issue 7

How Can You Boost Your Immune System?

Ramila Padiachy

Doctorate of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic

1437 Woodroffe Avenue
Ottawa ON (map)

613.829.0427
info@ramilas.com

Like us on Facebook

The effects of excess sugar on the immune system

It has been shown that excess sugar depresses immunity. This is important to keep in mind since Hallowe'en is followed soon after by the holiday season - and all of this occurs early in the 'flu season.

 

How much sugar is too much?

 

Studies have shown that drinking a sugar solution containing about 100gm of sugar (or 24 teaspoons) can suppress the body's immune responses. This is the amount of sugar contained in just two and a half average 12 ounce soft drinks. Simple sugars, including table sugar, glucose, fructose, and honey, caused a 40% drop in the ability of white blood cells to engulf bacteria or kill germs. In contrast, drinking a complex carbohydrate solution (i.e. starch) did not have this effect on white blood cells.

 

It's not just Hallowe'en and the holiday season that should concern us; there are many other situations where sugar is excessively consumed. For example, teens and college students tend to drink too many soft drinks containing caffeine and sugar when they study for exams and during stressful times. Stress also suppresses immunity, so it's not surprising that students (and others) often get sick at a time when they most need to be well.

 

How long is the immune system depressed after consuming too much sugar?

 

The immune suppression begins less than 30 minutes after ingestion, is most noticeable 2 hours after ingestion, and was still noticeable 5 hours after ingestion. 

There are many, many other ways in which sugar harms our health, including (but not limited to):

  • Sugar contributes to obesity.
  • Sugar contributes to type 2 diabetes.
  • Sugar consumption can result in increased behavioural problems in people with ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder).
  • Sugar causes inflammation which, in turn, causes many major diseases, such as heart disease, cancer, and dementia.
  • Sugar causes premature aging.
  • Sugar can adversely affect eyesight.

How can you boost your immune system?

There are many things we can do to boost our immune system, including:

  • Get enough, good quality sleep.
  • Regular, moderate exercise, like a daily 30 minute walk, can help your immune system fight infection.
  • Eat a healthy diet without too much sugar. Eat more fruits and vegetables, and ensure adequate intake of nutrients, such as vitamin C, vitamin E, beta carotene, zinc. Eat a variety of brightly coloured fruits and vegetables, including berries, citrus fruits, kiwi, apples, red grapes, kale, onions, spinach, sweet potatoes, and carrots. Garlic, selenium, and omega-3 fatty acids are also beneficial to the immune system.
  • Choose unprocessed, whole foods, such as fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, beans, lentils, and good quality cuts of meat, chicken, and fish. Avoid chemicals, preservatives, trans fats, MSG, and dyes. Less-processed foods, and fewer ingredients in prepared products will generally mean you're eating healthier food.
  • Choose spice. Some spices and foods contain substances called mucolytics, which help reduce congestion in your sinuses and breathing passages. Examples are cayenne pepper, crushed red pepper, garlic, radish and hot mustard.
  • Choose healthy drinks, such as filtered water with fresh lemon/lime juice, or fresh vegetable/fruit juice. Many herb teas are filled with antioxidants that promote health.
  • Choose to eat less. Overeating and high calorie intake are linked to depressed immune response. Weight management is important since being more than 20 pounds overweight has been shown to suppress overall immune function.
  • Manage stress well. Learn to meditate. Slow down. Connect with other people. Work out to blow off steam.
  • Strong relationships are good for you. Studies have shown that people who feel connected to friends, either a small or larger group, have stronger immunity than those who feel alone.
  • Maintain your sense of humour. Laughing is good for you! It curbs levels of stress hormones and helps the body to fight infection.

Supplements for Maintaining a Healthy Immune System

ZambrozaThere are some Nature's Sunshine supplements that are very helpful for maintaining a healthy immune system.

 

You can find information about these products and purchase them in our online store:

  • Vitamin C (1000 or 500 mg)
  • Vitamin E with Selenium
  • Super Omega-3
  • Zinc & Vitamin C lozenges
  • Garlic, High Potency
  • Super Vitamins & Minerals
  • Silverguard Mouthwash (colloidal silver)
  • Zambroza
 

For additional information, please email info@ramilas.com or call Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic at 613.829.0427 for an appointment. Please continue letting friends and family know about this newsletter. Visit our website where you can see back issues of this newsletter, information about services, products, and our clinic, and order products.

 

References:

  1. Sears A. Harmful effects of excess sugar. askdrsears.com/topics/feeding-eating/family-nutrition/sugar/harmful-effects-excess-sugar  Accessed October 13, 2016.
  2. Appleton N. Counting the many ways sugar harms your health. articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2005/05/04/sugar-dangers-part-two.aspx May 4, 2005.
  3. Sears A. Food that boost your immune system. askdrsears.com/topics/feeding-eating/family-nutrition/foods-to-boost-immunity/foods-that-boost-your-immune-system  Accessed October 13, 2016.
  4. 6 immune system busters and boosters. www.webmd.com/cold-and-flu/10-immune-system-busters-boosters?page=1  Accessed October 13, 2016.
  5. 5 choices for food to help your immune system. appliedhealth.com/5-choices-for-food-to-help-your-immune-system/  Accessed October 19, 2016.

Disclaimer: The suggestions and recommendations in this newsletter are not intended to be prescriptive or diagnostic. The information is accurate and up to date to our knowledge, but we are not responsible for any errors in our sources of information.

Within a few minutes of my first visit I knew I was in good hands with Ramila, as she had the uncanny ability to understand my problem and therefore get to the root of my illness.
- A.J., Ottawa

When health begins, dis-ease ends.

ALL ABOUT PROBIOTICS - SEPTEMBER 2016 - VOLUME 8 ISSUE 6

 

 

Ramilas Health Tips

Ramila's Healing Arts Clinic

 

There's been quite a lot of recent news about the importance of digestive health in relation to other seemingly unrelated aspects of health, such as emotional health and cognitive function. I thought it would be helpful to look at the role of probiotics and how they affect our overall health.
 
These newsletters will help you make better choices for better health. The choices that you make today can either have a positive or negative impact on your overall health. Begin by choosing better. It is a step toward longevity.

clinic

Volume 8, Issue 6

Ramila Padiachy

Doctorate of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic

1437 Woodroffe Avenue
Ottawa ON (map)

613.829.0427
info@ramilas.com

Like us on Facebook

What are Probiotics?

Probiotics are live bacteria and yeasts that are good for your health, especially your digestive system. The word probiotics comes from pro biota, which means "for life". Although people tend to think of bacteria and other microorganisms as harmful "germs", many microorganisms help our bodies function properly. For example, bacteria that are normally present in our intestines help digest food, destroy disease-causing microorganisms (e.g., E. coli, some yeasts, other unfriendly microbes), and produce vitamins. Many of the microorganisms in probiotic products are the same as or similar to microorganisms that naturally live in our bodies.
 
What is in probiotics? The most common are bacteria that belong to groups called Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium. These are broad groups that include many types of bacteria. Lactobacillus may be the most common probiotic, and is found in yogurt and other fermented foods. Bifidobacterium can also be found in some dairy products.
 
What are prebiotics and synbiotics? Prebiotics are dietary substances that favour the growth of beneficial bacteria over harmful ones. Synbiotics are products that combine probiotics and prebiotics.

Do you need probiotics?

stomach troublesThe health of the intestinal tract is largely dependent on maintaining a healthy balance of friendly microorganisms, or friendly flora. Several factors can kill these friendly microbes which can cause us to develop chronic yeast overgrowth, compromising both bowel health and general immune resistance.
 
Probiotic supplements replace friendly microbes. Standard recommendations for taking probiotics include:
  • after taking any antibiotics
  • when travelling, to help protect the body against infections from drinking water and food
  • for anyone suffering from yeast or fungal infections, or for people with chronic sinus problems, weak immunity, or other chronic infections
  • if you are exposed to chlorinated or fluoridated water, especially in a hot shower, which is worse than drinking it
  • if you use antibacterial soap
  • if you eat conventionally-raised meats and other animal products, since such animals are routinely fed low-dose antibiotics, plus genetically engineered grains which have also been implicated in the destruction of gut flora
  • if you consume processed foods (excessive sugars, plus otherwise "dead" nutrients feed pathogenic (bad) bacteria)
  • if you're exposed to agricultural chemicals

How to help your gut flora

In addition to avoiding as many of the harmful factors as possible, eat fermented foods (traditionally made, unpasteurized) such as kefir, various pickles, lassi (an Indian yogurt drink), and natto (fermented soy). If you don't eat fermented foods regularly, take a good quality probiotic.
 
Gut bacteria affect brain functioning and mental health
 
We all know that our mental state can affect our digestive system. For example, stress and other emotions can contribute to gastrointestinal symptoms such as butterflies in our stomachs. However, recent research has linked the health of gut flora to brain functioning and mental health - this means the gut-brain connection is a two-way street.
 
We tend to think the brain is in charge. However, you may have also heard of "the second brain" in the gut. There are two nervous systems: the central nervous system and the enteric nervous system. They are connected by the vagus nerve, the tenth cranial nerve that runs from the brain stem down to the abdomen. This is the route the gut bacteria use to transmit information to the brain.  
 
Just as you have neurons in your brain, you also have neurons in your gut, including neurons that produce neurotransmitters like serotonin, which is also found in your brain. It is reported that the greatest concentration of serotonin (related to mood control, depression, and aggression) is found in your intestines, not your brain. This may be one reason why antidepressants, which raise serotonin levels in your brain are often ineffective in treating depression, whereas proper dietary changes often help.
 
Emotional shifts experienced by people with irritable bowel syndrome, as well as other bowel problems, such as diarrhea and constipation, may be triggered by the enteric nervous system, rather than the other way around. Historically, it was believed that anxiety and depression contributed to these bowel problems but now researchers are see that the connection may also be the other way around.
 
Digestive system activity may also affect cognition - thinking skills and memory.  When the composition of the microorganisms in the gut is not ideal, it can promote inflammation which, in turn, can result in cognitive decline. In fact, inflammation is linked with many major diseases (cardiovascular disease and cancer, as well as dementia) which underscores the importance of a well-balanced digestive system.
 
It's hard to do justice to such a large topic in a short newsletter. For more comprehensive information about the extent to which we share our bodies with microbial species, I recommend this article published in the New York Times. I hope you are convinced of the huge importance of keeping your gut healthy, both through good nutrition and well-balanced probiotics.

Supplements for Maintaining a Healthy Gut

Bifidophilus Flora Force

There are some Nature's Sunshine supplements that are very helpful for maintaining a healthy gut.

 

You can find information about these products and purchase them in our online store:

  • Bifidophilus Flora Force
  • NutriBiome Bacillus Coagulans Probiotics
  • Probiotic 11

For additional information, please email info@ramilas.com or call Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic at 613.829.0427 for an appointment. Please continue letting friends and family know about this newsletter. Visit our website where you can see back issues of this newsletter, information about services, products, and our clinic, and order products.

 

References:

  1. DiLonardo MJ. What are probiotics? WebMD Feature webmd.com/digestive-disorders/features/what-are-probiotics  Accessed September 19, 2016.
  2. Probiotics. National Center for Complementary Health, NIH. nccih.nih.gov/health/probiotics/introduction.htm  Accessed September 19, 2016.
  3. Horne S. Do you need probiotics? Tree of Light Publishing (treelite.com). Obtained through Nature's Sunshine Products.
  4. Mercola J. Mental health may depend on the health of your gut flora. articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2015/11/12/mental-health-gut-flora.aspx  November 12, 2015.
  5. Mercola J. Your gut bacteria affects your brain function, the study confirms. articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2013/06/20/gut-brain-connection.aspx  June 20, 2013.
  6. The brain-gut connection. hopkinsmedicine.org/health/healthy_aging/healthy_body/the-brain-gut-connection  Accessed September 19, 2016.
  7. Caracciolo B, Xu W. Collins S, Fratiglioni L. Cognitive decline, dietary factors and gut-brain interactions. Mechanisms of Ageing and Development 2014;136-137:59-69.
  8. Pollan M. Some of my best friends are germs. New York Times, May 15, 2013, nytimes.com/2013/05/19/magazine/say-hello-to-the-100-trillion-bacteria-that-make-up-your-microbiome.html
 

Disclaimer: The suggestions and recommendations in this newsletter are not intended to be prescriptive or diagnostic. The information is accurate and up to date to our knowledge, but we are not responsible for any errors in our sources of information.

When health begins, dis-ease ends.

Thanks again to you and Ramila for the treatment. The pain in my arms and shoulders is completely gone and I had pizza yesterday for the first time since I went off dairy last September. WOW!
- Garry F, Toronto

UNDERSTANDING ADHD - AUGUST 2016 - VOLUME 8 ISSUE 5

 

 

Ramilas Health Tips

Ramila's Healing Arts Clinic

 

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) gets a lot of attention in the news these days, and it seems to be getting more and more common. I thought it would be a good idea to take a look at ADHD and assess at least a little bit of the information about it. While ADHD can exist in people of any age, it most commonly starts in childhood, which is the focus of this newsletter.
 
These newsletters will help you make better choices for better health. The choices that you make today can either have a positive or negative impact on your overall health. Begin by choosing better. It is a step toward longevity.

clinic

Volume 8, Issue 5

Ramila Padiachy

Doctorate of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic

1437 Woodroffe Avenue
Ottawa ON (map)

613.829.0427
info@ramilas.com

Like us on Facebook

Understanding ADHD

ADHD is believed to affect 5-10% of children - estimates vary depending on the criteria used for diagnosis. While a greater percentage of children are currently treated for ADHD than in the past, this is likely due to greater awareness of the condition and increasing treatment options.
 
Signs and symptoms of ADHD
 
Some difficulty in focusing and paying attention is normal but, in children with ADHD, these symptoms are severe enough to cause difficulty at home, at school, and with friends. Symptoms include difficulty staying focused and paying attention, difficulty controlling behaviour, and hyperactivity (over-activity). These symptoms make it difficult for a child to succeed in school, get along with other children or adults, and finish tasks.
 
Diagnosis is complex, and there is no single test for ADHD. A medical exam is necessary to rule out other problems with similar symptoms. A checklist may be used for rating ADHD symptoms and taking a history of the child. Click here for an example of a downloadable pdf checklist.
 
What causes ADHD?
 
There are a lot of theories regarding the cause(s) of ADHD but the fact is, the causes are not known with any degree of precision.
 
It has been reported that in identical twins, there is a 72-83% probability that both will have ADHD. But in non-identical, same-sex twins the probability is 21-45%. This makes it clear that ADHD is not solely a genetic condition but very likely a combination of genetic and environmental factors.
 
Environmental factors that have been associated with ADHD include:
  • the mother's smoking during pregnancy
  • significant head injuries (in a small percentage of cases)
  • exposure to lead at a young age
  • exposure to insecticides
  • low birth weight

 

How can symptoms be alleviated?

While prescription medications for ADHD benefit some people, they do not have the same effect on everyone, and there is always the possibility of adverse effects, especially with long term use. I would suggest a cautious approach to using them, and offer a number of other possibilities that may help either in combination with, or instead of, prescription medications.
 
Research shows that behaviour therapy is an important part of treatment of ADHD. Children with ADHD often show behaviours that can be very disruptive to others. Behaviour therapy can help reduce these behaviours, and involves both the parents and the child.
  • In parent training in behaviour therapy, parents learn new skills to teach and guide their children to manage their behaviour. This has been shown to strengthen the relationship between the parent and child, and to decrease the child's negative or problem behaviours.
  • In behaviour therapy with children, a therapist works with the child to learn new behaviours to replace those that don't work or cause problems. The therapist may also help the child learn to express feelings in ways that do not create problems for the child or other people.
 
Exercise has been described as an 'ADHD medication’. A study published in 2014 found that a 12-week exercise program improved math and reading test scores in all kids but especially in those with signs of ADHD. This would be because executive functioning is impaired in ADHD, and is related to performance in math and reading, but exercise improves it. Another study found that just 26 minutes of daily physical activity for 8 weeks significantly allayed ADHD symptoms in grade-school children.
 
Diet may affect the severity of ADHD symptoms, and it's important to eliminate food sensitivities, as well as to eat healthy food.
  • Food sensitivities are often an important factor in ADHD. In particular, children are often sensitive to sugar and dairy products, and also crave them. If you know anyone who could benefit from identifying and correcting their food sensitivities (with or without ADHD), please contact me for an appointment at 613.829.0427.
  • Food dyes and additives affect many people with ADHD. It can help to eliminate or at least reduce consumption of food dyes and additives (i.e. processed foods). Again, we can test (in a non-invasive way) to find out exactly what a person's sensitivities are - please call for an appointment and eliminate the guess work.
  • Levels of omega-3 tend to be low in people with ADHD, and supplementation may be helpful.
  • Vitamin supplementation can be beneficial, and may have greater benefits for malnourished people.
  • Mineral deficiencies have been demonstrated in studies of hair and blood of people with ADHD; namely, low magnesium, zinc and iron.
  • Studies have also revealed toxic mineral burden in people with ADHD, notably of manganese, cadmium and aluminum.

 

What is one to do?

A diet that emphasizes fruits and vegetables, whole grains, healthy fats, and good sources of protein is sure to benefit those with ADHD, as well as everybody else. Avoid trans fats, added sugars, refined carbohydrates and processed foods. A healthy diet may reduce symptoms of ADHD by reducing exposure to artificial colours and additives. It will certainly improve overall health and nutrition. Exercise is a very important part of treatment of ADHD, and behaviour therapy training for both children and parents can make a major difference to the quality of life of both.

 

Supplements for Success

Passion FlowerThere are some Nature's Sunshine supplements that clients find very helpful for alleviating symptoms of ADHD.

 

You can find information about these products and purchase them in our online store:

  • Passion flower
  • Omega-3
  • Focus ATN

For additional information, please email info@ramilas.com or call Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic at 613.829.0427 for an appointment. Please continue letting friends and family know about this newsletter. Visit our website where you can see back issues of this newsletter, information about services, products and our clinic, and order products.

 

References:

  1. Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Attention_deficit_hyperactivity_disorder Accessed August 8, 2016.
  2. Causes of ADHD. medlineplus.gov/magazine/issues/spring14/articles/spring14pg15-16.html Accessed August 11, 2016. 
  3. Facts about ADHD. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention cdc.gov/ncbddd/adhd/facts.html Accessed  August 8, 2016. 
  4. What causes ADHD? netdoctor.co.uk/conditions/adhd/a5225/what-causes-adhd/ Updated January 23, 2014.
  5. Causes of ADHD: What we know today. healthychildren.org/English/health-issues/conditions/adhd/Pages/Causes-of-ADHD.aspx Updated November 21, 2015. 
  6. Hamblin J. Exercise is ADHD medication. The Atlantic. theatlantic.com/health/archive/2014/09/exercise-seems-to-be-beneficial-to-children/380844/ Accessed August 9, 2016. 
  7. Mercola J. Exercise can be an ADHD medication. fitness.mercola.com/sites/fitness/archive/2014/10/17/exercise-adhd-medication.aspx October 17, 2014. 
  8. Dye JM. Nutritional and dietary treatments for ADHD. healing-arts.org/children/ADHD/nutritional.htm#return Accessed August 11, 2016. 
  9. Diet and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Harvard Mental Health Letter. health.harvard.edu/newsletter_article/Diet-and-attention-deficit-hyperactivity-disorder Accessed  August 9, 2016.
 

Disclaimer: The suggestions and recommendations in this newsletter are not intended to be prescriptive or diagnostic. The information is accurate and up to date to our knowledge, but we are not responsible for any errors in our sources of information.

 

Amazing... I’m feel better already!! I’ve been experiencing adrenal exhaustion, not being able to sleep and daily headache from dehydration, so now am taking some herbal supplements, a tonic and vitamins to get my groove back!! After 3 days I’m already sleeping better and headaches are just about gone.
- Tracey S, Ottawa

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When health begins, dis-ease ends.

SIMPLE, HEALTHY, DELICIOUS SUMMER TREATS – JULY 2016 – VOLUME 8 ISSUE 4

 

 

Ramilas Health Tips

Ramila's Healing Arts Clinic

 

With all the fresh fruits and vegetables coming into the market at this time of year, I want to focus on some simple, healthy summer treats this month. While I've designed them with kids in mind, I'm sure you'll agree that adults will enjoy them just as much. This newsletter is based largely on a recent interview I did with CTV Morning Live.


These newsletters will help you make better choices for better health. The choices that you make today can either have a positive or negative impact on your overall health. Begin by choosing better. It is a step toward longevity.

clinic

Volume 8, Issue 4

Ramila Padiachy

Doctorate of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic

1437 Woodroffe Avenue
Ottawa ON (map)

613.829.0427
info@ramilas.com

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Simple, Healthy, Delicious Summer Treats - Enjoy!

My main feature is popsicles - four different kinds. The first (see recipes below) features 3 colourful layers, with no food dyes - the bottom layer (you actually add the layers in the opposite order when you're making this) of mangos, then strawberries, and kiwi on top. All fruits are blended and added individually after freezing the previous layer for 15-30 minutes. As well as using a standard popsicle shape, these can also be made in the shape of a cup cake.  
 
There are also recipes (below) for creamsicles, yogurt popsicles and blueberry freezies.
 
In addition, I've provided you with recipes for two types of ice cream, suggestions for fruit skewers and a chocolate pudding that makes an excellent dip for the fruit skewers. The pudding contains avocado, so it is rich in protein, and no one would suspect it was there. This pudding is the only one with a little sweetener added - maple syrup - and none of the other recipes contain any added sugar or other sweetener.
 

Avoid Sugars, Dyes and Other Food Additives

This topic is huge and here we can only scratch the surface, however, here are some basic tips.
 
What is a food additive? Food additives are substances added to food to preserve flavour or enhance its taste and appearance. Sugars and dyes are probably the most common types of additive.
 
Why you should avoid added sugars:
  • Added sugar contains no essential nutrients and is bad for your teeth.
  • Added sugar, and especially HFCS (high fructose corn syrup), is high in fructose which can overload your liver. If you eat too much fructose (and especially if you are sedentary and eat a lot of processed foods), the liver will convert it into fat.
  • Overloading the liver with fructose can cause non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). People with NAFLD consume 2 to 3 times as much fructose as the average person.
  • Sugar can cause insulin resistance, which is a stepping stone toward metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes.
  • Sugar is a leading cause of obesity in both children and adults. In turn, obesity increases the risk of cardiovascular disease and several types of cancer, and other diseases and disabilities.
  • It's not the fat in your diet, it's the sugar, or more specifically the fructose, that raises your cholesterol (small, dense LDL and oxidized LDL), and triglyceride levels which can lead to heart disease.
The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends restricting added sugars to 5% of our dietary intake.  For the average person, this would be about 6 teaspoons (30 ml) of sugar per day - that's less than the amount in one can of sugar sweetened soft drink. While WHO concedes that 5% might be unrealistic for many people, they emphasize that the dietary intake of sugar definitely should not exceed 10%.
 
Food dyes
 
Food dyes are one of the most widely used and dangerous additives. There are many different food dyes with different risks, however the main points can be summarized:
  • Several food dyes increase the risk of different types of cancer in laboratory animals.
  • Some dyes are known carcinogens; for others, more research is needed but why take the risk?
  • The other major area of concern is hyperactivity and other behavioural effects, particularly in children.
  • Dyes are also linked to sensitivities and to asthma, among others.
Detailed information is available in the CSPI's (Center for Science in the Public Interest) Food Dyes: A Rainbow of Risks (pdf).
 
There are many other additives, but this covers a major proportion of most peoples' exposure. In general, food additives are best avoided.
 
I hope you enjoy the recipes below, and that you're having a great summer!
 

Recipes

POPSICLES
 
1. Fruit Pops
  • blend kiwi and pour into popsicle mould 1/3 way up, freeze for 15 to 30 minutes
  • blend strawberries and fill 1/3 way up freeze again
  • blend mango and fill final 1/3 of mould
  • freeze and enjoy
2. Creamsicles
  • mix 1 scoop TNT formula (available at our clinic) in 60ml of water and 60 ml of pure mango juice
  • pour into popsicle mould
  • freeze and enjoy
3.  Frozen yogurt pops
  • mix 2 scoops of the TNT formula with 60 ml of coconut milk and 60 ml of Greek yogurt, shake to combine
  • pour into popsicle mould
  • freeze and enjoy
4. Blueberry freezies
  • pour coconut water into mould and drop in a few blueberries
  • freeze and enjoy
 
ICE CREAMS
 
Choco-banana ice cream
  • 2 frozen bananas 
  • 1 cup coconut milk 
  • 2 tsp coconut oil 
  • 2 tsp vanilla 
  • 2 tbsp raw cocoa powder 
Optional: 1/2 cup of Greek yogurt
Blend together, freeze and enjoy.
 
Piña Colada ice cream
  • 2 cups frozen pineapple
  • 1 cup coconut milk 
  • 4 tbsp shredded coconut 
Optional: 1 scoop protein powder (Nature's Harvest works well and is available at our clinic)
Blend together, freeze and enjoy.
 
PUDDING
 
Chocolate avocado pudding
  • 1 medium avocado
  • 1/2 cup almond or coconut milk 
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup 
  • 1 tbsp raw cocoa powder 
  • pinch of salt
  • pinch of cinnamon 

Blend together, chill and enjoy.
 
FRUIT SKEWERS
  • fruit of your choice cut into equal sized pieces to fit on bamboo skewers evenly 
  • the chocolate avocado pudding makes a great dip for these

Supplements for Success

Nature's Harvest

There are a couple of Nature's Sunshine products that you can use in these recipes. You can find information about these products and purchase them in our online store:

  • TNT
  • Nature's Harvest
 

For additional information, please email info@ramilas.com or call Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic at 613.829.0427 for an appointment. Please continue letting friends and family know about this newsletter. Visit our website where you can see back issues of this newsletter, information about services, products and our clinic, and order products.

 

References:

  1. Food additive. Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Food_additive Accessed July 5, 2016.
  2. Gunnars K. 10 disturbing reasons why sugar is bad for you. authoritynutrition.com/10-disturbing-reasons-why-sugar-is-bad/ September 2013. Accessed July 4, 2016.
  3. Branswell H. Eating sugar causes massive health problems, says WHO. The Canadian Press. huffingtonpost.ca/2014/03/05/eating-sugar_n_4903790.html Accessed July 4, 2016.
  4. Mercola J. Are you or your family eating toxic food dyes? February 24, 2011. articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2011/02/24/are-you-or-your-family-eating-toxic-food-dyes.aspx Accessed July 4, 2016. 
  5. Kobylewski S, Jacobson ME. Food Dyes: A Rainbow of Risks. Washington, DC: Center for Science in the Public Interest, 2010. cspinet.org/new/pdf/food-dyes-rainbow-of-risks.pdf
 

Disclaimer: The suggestions and recommendations in this newsletter are not intended to be prescriptive or diagnostic. The information is accurate and up to date to our knowledge, but we are not responsible for any errors in our sources of information.

 

After several years of searching for relief, a friend has recommended I see Ramila. I suffered from debilitating environmental and food allergies, and such fatigue that walking up a flight of stairs was difficult. Within a few minutes of my first visit I knew I was in good hands with Ramila, as she had the uncanny ability to understand my problem and therefore get to the root of my illness.
 
For my path to wellness, Ramila had suggested sensitivity clearing for my allergies, as well as herbal supplements. I also gained tremendous relief from her emotional release technique. After each treatment I felt a huge weight lifted from my shoulders, I would never have believed how your emotions could play such a pivotal role in your physical well-being. Today I am happy to report health, wellness and serenity that I never thought possible.
 
- A.J., Ottawa, ON

When health begins, dis-ease ends.

Healthy Summer Treats

Why buy processed, sugar filled treats for your kids when you can have fun in the kitchen together making homemade healthy versions. 

Here are the recipes for the treats Ramila talked about today June 27, 2016 on Ottawa CTV Morning Live

Healthy Summer Treat Recipes

- all homemade, without preservatives, or food colourings.

 

POPSICLES

1. FRUIT POPS
- blend kiwi and pour into popsicle mould 1/3 way up, freeze for 30mins, 
- then blend strawberries and fill 1/3 way up freeze again, 
- then blend mango and fill final 1/3 of mould. Freeze and enjoy

2. CREAMSICLE
- mix 1 scoop TNT formula (available at our clinic) in 60ml of water and 60 ml of pure mango juice. 
- pour into popsicle mould, freeze and enjoy

3.  FROZEN YOGURT POP
- mix 2 scoop of the TNT formula, with 60 ml of coconut milk and 60 ml of yogurt, shake to combine
- pour into popsicle mould, freeze and enjoy

4. BLUEBERRY FREEZY
- pour coconut water into mould and drop in a few blueberries, freeze and enjoy  

ICE CREAMS

1. CHOCO-BANANA ICE CREAM
- 2 frozen bananas
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 2 tsp coconut oil
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 2 tbsp raw cocoa powder
Optional: 1/2 cup of greek yogurt

Blend together, freeze and enjoy

2. PINA COLADA ICE CREAM
- 2 cups frozen pineapple
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 4 tbsp shredded coconut
Optional: 1 scoop protein powder

PUDDING

1. CHOCOLATE AVOCADO PUDDING
- 1 medium avocado
- 1/2 cup almond or coconut milk
- 1 tbsp maple syrup
- 1 tbsp raw cocoa powder
- pinch of salt
- pinch of cinnamon
- blend together, chill and enjoy 

FRUIT SKEWERS

- fruit of choice to make skewers, cut into equal sized pieces to fit on bamboo skewers evenly
- can use the chocolate avocado pudding as a dip for these