BERBERINE FOR YOUR HEART - FEBRUARY 2019 - VOLUME 10, ISSUE 11

Ramila's Health Tips
 

Volume 10, Issue 11

February 2019

Berberine for Your Heart

February is generally noted for Valentine's Day and matters of the heart - including heart health. This month, I'd like to focus on a supplement that has many heart/cardiovascular health benefits, as well as a substantial number of other beneficial effects - berberine. 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 as it is a step towards longevity.

Ramila Padiachy

Doctor of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramila
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berberine

Berberine

What is berberine? Berberine is a yellowish alkaloid found in several plants, including European barberry, goldenseal, Chinese goldthread, Oregon grape, phellodendron (cork tree) and tree turmeric.  

Berberine has long been a part of traditional Chinese and Ayurvedic medicine, but the western world is just beginning to be aware of it.

Type 2 diabetes

You may have heard of it as a remedy for type 2 diabetes; in fact Nature's Sunshine describes its berberine as follows: 

"Berberine IR naturally supports healthy blood glucose levels by up-regulating enzymes that trigger blood glucose metabolism. Utilizing a time-honoured ingredient found in both Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and Ayurvedic medicine, Berberine IR works to support blood sugar balance and glucose metabolism through a unique cellular action. Berberine, a constituent of certain plants, helps activate a key enzyme that supports blood glucose metabolism, turning your cells from “idle” to “on” and helping them to use glucose efficiently." 

One study compared taking 500 mg of berberine 2 to 3 times daily for 3 months with taking the common diabetes drug metformin. Berberine was able to control blood sugar and lipid metabolism as effectively as metformin, with the researchers describing it as a "potential oral hypoglycemic agent with beneficial effects on lipid metabolism."

Other health effects of berberine

There is an increasing amount of research showing that berberine can do much more than help to regulate blood glucose levels. These additional benefits include (but are not limited to):

Helps with healthy weight management

In addition to a healthy diet and regular exercise, berberine can help you maintain a healthy weight. It helps to activate adenosine monophosphate-activate kinase (AMPK), also known as the body's "metabolic master switch". AMPK is responsible for kick-starting your metabolism and encouraging your body to burn the calories it takes in, rather than storing them as fat.

Supports heart health

Maintaining healthy blood sugar levels and losing weight will help to improve your cardiovascular health, but berberine has even more heart health benefits. It promotes healthy blood pressure by encouraging the natural release of nitric oxide, enabling blood flow. (See our February 2013 newsletter for additional information about nitric oxide.)

Berberine has also been shown to reduce serum cholesterol levels, including LDL cholesterol, as well as triglyceride levels in patients with type 2 diabetes. It may also help to increase levels of HDL (high density lipoprotein), the 'good' cholesterol.

Treats SIBO (small intestine bacterial overgrowth)

People who suffer from SIBO symptoms have excessive bacteria in their small intestines. Conventional treatment of SIBO is limited to antibiotics, with a variable response rate. Berberine, together with digestive enzymes, is helpful in reducing bacterial overgrowth. Berberine exerts selective antimicrobial action against a wide range of disease causing organisms linked to SIBO, yet exerts no action against health-promoting species.

Increases immune health

Berberine may help improve immune function by maintaining healthy gut flora, providing antioxidant properties and activating white blood cells, which are responsible for inhibiting infections. The majority of your immune system (about 70 percent) is in your gut, so it makes sense that berberine's ability to minimize the bad bacteria while promoting beneficial strains would help your immune system.

Helps control non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD)

Research suggests that berberine may be a useful supplement for people with NAFLD, because it helps decrease fat buildup in the liver and regulate hepatic lipid metabolism.

Possible additional benefits of berberine - more study needed:

  • May help ease depression and anxiety.
  • May promote optimal joint health.
  • May assist in improving memory, spatial learning and overall cognitive functioning, as well as with neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease.
  • May help to maintain healthy lung function

Some authors have compared berberine to curcumin for its effectiveness in so many different aspects of our health. I encourage you to keep it in mind!

 

References

  1. Price A. Berberine: the plant alkaloid that helps treat diabetes & digestive problems. draxe.com/berberine/ August 2, 2018, Accessed January 14, 2019.
  2. Berberine and its many benefits. enzymedica.com/blogs/naturaldigestivehealth/berberine-and-its-many-benefits February 24, 2018. Accessed January 14, 2019.
  3. Mercola J. Berberine helps boost your mitochondrial and metabolic health. articles.mercola.com/vitamins-supplements/berberine.aspx Accessed January 14, 2019.
  4. Nature's Sunshine website naturessunshine.com/ca/product/berberine-ir-90-caps/1398/ Accessed January 31, 2019.
  5. Yin J, Xing H, Ye J. Efficacy of berberine in patients with type 2 diabetes. Metabolism 2008;57(5):712-717.
  6. Zhang Y, Li X, Zou D et al. Treatment of type 2 diabetes and dyslipidemia with the natural plant alkaloid berberine. J Clin Endocrinol Metab 2008;93:2559-2565.
  7. Murray M. What is SIBO? And what can help? enzymedica.com/blogs/naturaldigestivehealth/what-is-sibo-and-what-can-help July 24, 2018. Accessed January 14, 2019.
  8. Jiang WH, Li SH, Li XH. Therapeutic potential of berberine against neurodegenerative diseases. Sci China Life Sci 2015;58(6):564-569.

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.

Supplements

There are some Nature's Sunshine supplements that would help you to maximize your health. You can find information about these products and purchase them in our online store:

  • Berberine
  • Grapine
  • Zambroza
Berberine IR

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. Also, on our website, please see back issues of this newsletter, information about services, products and our clinic, and order products.

The Belly of the Beast

AVAILABLE NOW

thebellyofthebeast.ca

1437 Woodroffe Avenue

Ottawa ON (map)

Facebook info@ramilas.comWebsite

SETTING GOALS - JANUARY 2019 - VOLUME 10, ISSUE 10

Ramila's Health Tips
 

Volume 10, Issue 10

January 2019

Setting Goals

Happy New Year! I hope you had a really enjoyable, safe, healthy holiday. The New Year is already underway, but I thought it would still be helpful to discuss approaches to setting goals for 2019.  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 as it is a step towards longevity.

Ramila Padiachy

Doctor of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramila
 

Goal setting strategies

New Year's resolutions get a certain amount of bad press these days, complete with statistics on how few people ever keep their resolutions. This has led to advice to set goals rather than make resolutions. Here are a few tips on goal setting from a few well-known - and successful - goal setters:

Richard Branson, billionaire and founder of the Virgin Group advises writing your goals down. He claims the simple act of writing them down will help you stick to them. He says he has always made lists of things he wants to achieve because it helps him make sense of his ideas and track his progress. It doesn't matter if you use pen and paper or your cell phone to jot down your ideas. Branson also says it's a good idea to set both short-term and long-term goals so you can feel a sense of accomplishment along the way.

According to Tony Robbins, business and life coach, those who stick to their resolutions have clarity of purpose and a plan. Your WHY is extremely important - those who stick to their resolutions have an understanding of why they're doing what they're doing. There has to be a larger motivating drive underpinning the goal. Once you understand what that is, the next step is to create a strategy and identify tools that will help you accomplish your goal. Simply put, you need a plan. Robbins says no matter how many mistakes you make or how slow you progress, you are still way ahead of everyone who isn't trying.

Vishen Lakhiani, founder and CEO of Mindvalley, a leading personal development company, has distinguished between 'means goals' and 'end goals':

Means goals don't stand alone, but are usually stepping-stones to something else. There is usually a 'so' in them. For example, get good grades so you can get into a good university, so you can get a good job, so you can make lots of money, so you afford a nice house, car and so on. Means goals are often about doing things you 'should' do, or are expected to do by your family, community, and so on. Vishen gives the examples of thinking you should get a university degree to have a fulfilling job, or that you should get married to have love in your life. It's quite different to restate this as wanting to be in a loving relationship, and to have consistent opportunities to learn and grow.

End goals are described as being about following your heart. Time flies when you're pursuing them. You may work hard toward these goals, but you feel it's worth it. When you're working on an end goal, it doesn't feel like 'work'. Working on an end goal recharges you, it doesn't drain you. End goals are often feelings, for example to feel happy. Vishen has found that end goals fall into three different buckets. The first is experience. We're here to experience all the world has to offer - not money, not objects, but experiences. The second is growth. Growth makes life an endless journey of discovery. The third is contribution. It is what we give back based on our experience and growth. Goals based on these three areas can be lifelong goals, or, for the New Year, you could think in terms of a one year time period.

Other alternatives to New Year's resolutions

  • Create a bucket list of things you want to experience or accomplish this year.
  • Come up with a list of twelve 30-day challenges, and complete one for each month. This would consist of setting a small goal that can be completed in 30 days, as well as the specific action you will take to accomplish the goal.
  • Give yourself a yearly challenge.
  • Create a list of things to look forward to.
  • Reboot an area of your life. Pick one area of your life that you're not happy with and decide how you're going to improve it.

I hope you are able to set goals that you truly want to achieve, not that you feel you should achieve. Wishing you every success in achieving your goals and a happy, healthy 2019!

 

References

  1. Mejia Z. Billionaire Richard Branson: here's the secret to sticking to your New Year's resolutions. cnbc.com/2018/01/03/branson-shares-the-secret-to-sticking-to-your-new-years-resolutions.html January 3, 2018. Accessed December 5, 2018.
  2. Clifford C. Tony Robbins: This is the difference between people who stick to their New Year's resolutions and those who don't. cnbc.com/2018/01/02/tony-robbins-how-to-stick-to-your-new-years-resolutions.html January 2, 2018. Accessed December 5, 2018.
  3. Lakhiani V. The Code of the Extraordinary Mind. New York: Rodale Wellness, 2016.
  4. Fabrega M. 10 alternatives to New Year's resolutions. daringtolivefully.com/new-years-resolutions-alternatives Accessed December 5, 2018.

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.

Supplements

There are some Nature's Sunshine supplements that would help you to maximize your health. You can find information about these products and purchase them in our online store:

  • Super Vitamins and Minerals
  • Vitamin D
  • Omega-3
  • Zambroza
Vitamin D3

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. Also, on our website, please see back issues of this newsletter, information about services, products and our clinic, and order products.

The Belly of the Beast

AVAILABLE NOW

thebellyofthebeast.ca

1437 Woodroffe Avenue

Ottawa ON (map)

Facebook info@ramilas.comWebsite

HOLIDAY RECIPES - DECEMBER 2018 - VOLUME 10, ISSUE 9

Ramila's Health Tips
 

Volume 10, Issue 9

December 2018

Holiday Recipes

With the holidays just around the corner, there is always so much food! It's impossible to avoid treats, especially the ones that are only available at this time of year. But I thought you might appreciate some healthy recipes that you could intersperse with the richer foods you are bound to find beckoning to you.

I wish you a happy, healthy holiday season! I hope these recipes are helpful to you during the holidays - and all year long. 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 as it is a step towards longevity.

Ramila Padiachy

Doctor of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramila
 

A Few Suggestions for Lighter Holiday Meals

These recipes come from my book, Candida Friendly Vegan Cook Book - Calming Foods for the Body, Mind and Soul. It is available with the purchase of my book, The Belly of the Beast - How to Calm Your Gut and Reclaim Your Health. I hope you enjoy them.

Salads

Refreshing Salad

  • 2 English cucumbers diced
  • 10 cherry tomatoes cut in halves
  • 1 medium red onion chopped
  • 1 ripe avocado pitted and cubed
  • Handful of cilantro chopped
  • (or handful of chopped basil)

Toss all the ingredients into a medium serving bowl. Add olive oil and lemon juice dressing* and toss.

*Olive Oil and Lemon Juice Dressing

  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • juice of one large lemon or lime
  • 1 clove garlic finely chopped
  • Himalayan salt and black pepper to taste

Combine all the ingredients in a jar and shake well. To vary the dressing, you can add: mint, chili powder, dry, ground coriander, ground cumin, dry mustard, basil, thyme, oregano or chives, any other herbs of your choice.

Quinoa Tabouli

  • 2 cups cooked quinoa
  • 1 cup chopped curly parsley
  • 1/2 large or one small red onion finely chopped
  • 1 tomato chopped
  • juice from 1 lemon
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper

Toss all ingredients in a medium serving bowl. You can add 1/2 cup black beans or chickpeas if you like. You can also add 1/2 avocado cubed. Cover and refrigerate before serving.

Main Meals

Three-Bean Chili

  • 1 cup cooked black beans
  • 1 cup cooked kidney beans
  • 1 cup cooked chickpeas (You may also use canned beans, drain and rinse thoroughly.)
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic finely chopped
  • 1 - 28 oz. can organic diced tomatoes or fresh tomatoes
  • 2 large carrots peeled and cubed
  • 2 sticks celery cubed
  • 2 cups kale or any greens of your choice
  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • Himalayan salt to taste

In a large saucepan heat coconut oil; add onions and sauté over medium heat until onions are transparent. Add garlic, spices and herbs and cook for 1 minute. Add carrots and celery and sauté for another 3 minutes. Add tomatoes and beans.

Zucchini Pasta with Avocado-Pepita Pesto

  • 5 small zucchini squash, or 2 large, spiralized
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 clove crushed garlic
  • 1 small avocado
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
  • 1 cup fresh basil
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 - 3 tablespoons water
  • salt and pepper to taste

Place avocado, pumpkin seeds, basil, lemon juice in food processor (or vitamix). Pulse. Gradually add olive oil and water and continue to blend until smooth. Add salt and pepper to taste. Add coconut oil to medium size pan; add garlic and simmer for 1 minute. Add zucchini noodles and increase the heat to medium high and cook. Toss using pasta tongs, until the noodles are al dente, about 3-5 minutes. (If you have a larger quantity you may cook it a little longer 5 - 7 minutes, or cook in 2 batches.) Don't overcook the noodles, keep the crunch. Toss zucchini noodles with some of the pesto, you can add more or less to your liking.

Desserts

Chia Pudding

  • 3 tablespoons chia
  • 1 cup coconut or almond milk
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla
  • Stevia or xylitol to taste
  • 2 teaspoons shredded coconut

Whisk together all ingredients in a medium sized bowl. Cover and let stand until it thickens in about 2 hours.

Avocado Pudding

  • 1 avocado
  • few drops of vanilla
  • 1 cup of coconut or almond milk
  • Stevia or xylitol to taste

Cut avocado in half; remove and discard pit. Scoop avocado flesh from the skins. In a small blender, blend above ingredients; then add 1 teaspoon crushed slivered almond to the mixture. Layer chia pudding and avocado pudding in parfait glasses. Garnish with shredded coconut and slivered almonds. Cover with saran wrap and chill before serving. Note: you can add another layer with chopped berries.

Sweet Potato

  • peel and cube 1 large sweet potato
  • 2 sticks of cinnamon
  • 3 whole cardamom
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon shredded coconut

Heat coconut oil in a saucepan, add cinnamon sticks and cardamom, let it simmer for 2 minutes. Add the cubed sweet potato and stir; cover the saucepan with lid and cook on low heat until sweet potato is well-cooked. Serve warm and garnish with shredded coconut.

Avocado Truffles

  • 1 whole ripe avocado
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa or carob powder
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 2 tablespoons almond butter
  • pinch of salt
  • Stevia or xylitol to taste

Cut avocado in half, remove and discard pit. Scoop avocado flesh from the skins. Place all ingredients in a small food processor. Process until well-mixed. Place in a bowl and refrigerate until fairly firm. Scoop into balls using a small cookie scoop and roll into ball. Roll the balls in shredded coconut or cocoa powder. Freeze until you are ready to serve. Note: If you are following the Candida protocol, please note that stevia or xylitol may be added to the desserts in phase 2 of the protocol, but not in phase 1.

References

  1. Padiachy R. Candida Friendly Vegan Cook Book - Calming Foods for the Body, Mind and Soul.PFD available with The Belly of the Beast (see below), 2017.
  2. Padiachy R, The Belly of the Beast - How to Calm Your Gut and Reclaim Your Health. Stouffville: Black Card Books, 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.

Supplements

There are some Nature's Sunshine supplements that would help you to maximize your health. You can find information about these products and purchase them in our online store:

  • Berberine IR
  • Carbo Grabbers
  • Vitamin C 1000 mg
  • Vitamin C 500 mg
  • Vitamin D3
  • Zambroza
  • Zerenity
  • Zinc 25 mg
  • Zinc & Vitamin C Lozenges
Vitamin D3
The Belly of the Beast

AVAILABLE NOW

thebellyofthebeast.ca

1437 Woodroffe Avenue

Ottawa ON (map)

Facebook info@ramilas.comWebsite

ESSENTIAL SUPPLEMENTS - NOVEMBER 2018 - VOLUME 10, ISSUE 8

 

Volume 10, Issue 8

November 2018

Essential Supplements

As the days get shorter, it's time to think about how we're going to stay healthy during the winter. Of course, the first priority is a healthy lifestyle: good nutrition, regular exercise, stress levels under control, and enough good quality sleep. However, even when we do all the right things, there are a number of reasons we may still benefit from taking a few well-chosen supplements (please see our newsletter of April-2015). 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 as it is a step towards longevity.

Ramila Padiachy

Doctor of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramila
 

Which Essential Supplements?

Taking supplements is no substitute for a healthy diet. However, doing all we can to eat healthy, whole foods may still not be enough to get all the nutrients we need. Here I suggest a few supplements that I consider to be extremely important to our health, that we're unlikely to get in adequate amounts from other sources.

Vitamin D3

...especially when the sun is weaker during late fall and winter, is an extremely important supplement. As you are probably aware, unlike most vitamins, vitamin D does not come from foods, but exposure to the sun enables the body to make its own vitamin D. Vitamin D affects many aspects of our health, including maintaining a strong immune system. People with low levels of vitamin D are more likely to get the flu. Vitamin D is also important for protection against many other diseases, as well as healthy bones and teeth. Vitamin D improves lung function, contributes to good cardiovascular health, mental functioning, and combats aging. Note: for good absorption, you need to combine vitamin D with calcium, magnesium and vitamin K2. Also, it is fat soluble, so should be taken with meals. (For more detail, please see our newsletter of November-2016.)

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Curcumin

...provides many beneficial effects; for example, it is an effective anti-inflammatory, a natural analgesic, and is clinically proven to be an effective antidepressant. It may also promote brain health, according to a study that has shown it may be effective against Parkinson's disease. In addition, curcumin may help maintain normal heart function.

Curcumin is known for its effectiveness in cancer treatment and prevention. In particular, it has been shown to be effective in treating colorectal cancers, both as an adjuvant to chemotherapy and on its own. Clinical trials are underway using curcumin to treat several other types of cancer.

Omega 3s

...are anti-inflammatory, help lower triglycerides and blood pressure, and may be good for the brain (memory) and the heart. The typical North American diet is high in processed, refined vegetable oils that are high in omega 6 which is inflammatory. Omega 3 supplements help to offset this inflammation. The ability of omega 3 to reduce inflammation may help reduce the risk of arthritis. It can reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes and of several forms of cancer, including breast cancer. Omega 3 is effective in reducing ADHD symptoms in children. It also reduces muscle soreness.

Magnesium

...is a supplement that is often overlooked, but extremely important. It is involved in over 300 biochemical reactions and most people do not get the ideal amount. Among other things, it opens up the arteries, lowers blood pressure, regulates blood sugar, and helps reduce muscle cramps. It boosts the immune system and fights inflammation. It also acts as a laxative, so beware of taking too much!

Probiotics

...are important for maintaining a healthy gut or balanced microbiome - the collection of good bacteria and yeasts that inhabit your digestive system (see our newsletter September-2016). About 80% of our immune system is located in our gut, and up to 95% of serotonin (the neurotransmitter that regulates mood) is produced in our gut. It's clear that a healthy gut is important! Taking a daily probiotic can help balance your microbiome, which improves digestion, promotes a normal bowel pattern and general good health.

A high-quality multivitamin

...will help you cover the basics and include things you might not think of taking separately, such as selenium and folic acid, as well as other B vitamins. Nature's Sunshine offers the extremely high-quality Super Vitamins and Minerals, which I highly recommend.

I hope these essential supplements keep you healthy not just this winter, but all year long!

 

References

  1. Why vitamin D is important to your health. Newsletter, November 2016, volume 8 issue 8
  2. Mercola J. The many potential health benefits of curcumin. articles.mercola.com/vitamins-supplements/curcumin.aspx Accessed October 29, 2018.
  3. Fadus MC, Lau C, Bikhchandani J, Lynch HT. Curcumin: an age-old anti-inflammatory and anti-neoplastic agent. Journal of Traditional and Complementary Medicine 2017;7:339-346.
  4. Rice J. Create a capsule cabinet of essential supplements. March 1, 2017. amazingwellnessmag.com/features/essential-supplements Accessed October 23, 2018.
  5. Myers A. 4 essential supplements everyone should take. amymyersmd.com/2018/09/4-essential-supplements/ Accessed October 23, 2018.
  6. Summary of fish oil. examine.com/supplements/fish-oil/ Accessed October 31, 2018

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.

Supplements

There are some Nature's Sunshine supplements that would help you to maximize your health especially during the rest of fall and winter. You can find information about these products and purchase them in our online store:

  • Magnesium
  • Magnesium Complex
  • Probiotic 11
  • Super Omega 3
  • Super Vitamins & Minerals
  • Turmeric Curcumin
  • Vitamin D3
Milk Thistle
The Belly of the Beast

AVAILABLE NOW

thebellyofthebeast.ca

1437 Woodroffe Avenue

Ottawa ON (map)

HEALTHY COMFORT FOODS - OCTOBER 2018 - VOLUME 10, ISSUE 7

 

Volume 10, Issue 7

October 2018

Healthy Comfort Foods

With the cooler weather, comfort foods look really attractive. Feeling stressed, sad or simply being tired can also make us want to turn to comfort foods. But are they healthy? A lot of our favourite comfort foods can be healthy with just a few subtle tweaks that won't reduce our enjoyment of them. 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 as it is a step towards longevity.

Ramila Padiachy

Doctor of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramila
 

Healthy Comfort Food Suggestions

The comfort foods that we enjoy so much in cooler weather tend to be heavy, high in fat and/or refined carbs, and sometimes they involve processed food. But they can be modified without losing flavour or reducing our satisfaction with them.

First, most fats aren't bad for us as we've been led to believe, certainly if consumed in moderation. The only fat to avoid totally is trans fat. Some vegetable oils have drawbacks, e.g. canola oil and soybean oil may be genetically modified and contain glyphosate. Many vegetable oils also contain high levels of omega-6 fatty acids. We need some omega-6, it's an essential fatty acid, meaning that the body does not produce it, and needs to obtain it from food. However, omega-6 causes inflammation, so we need to limit the amount we consume in relation to omega-3 to not more than a ratio of 2:1. Extra virgin olive oil and avocado oil are excellent choices. While you can still find a lot of negative 'information' about butter, there is an increasing amount of research demonstrating that it is healthy, preferably from grass-fed, organic sources.

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Here are some healthy comfort food suggestions:


  • Grilled cheese tops the lists of many people. You can make it healthier by using organic whole grain bread, and you can even add roasted veggies.
  • Macaroni and cheese is another favourite. You can use organic whole wheat or brown rice macaroni. Also, avoid processed cheese in powder form and use real cheddar (as strong or mild as you like). Another suggestion is to add puréed butternut squash, pumpkin or cauliflower to your cheese sauce.
  • Pasta - for any pasta dish, you can use organic whole grain or brown rice pasta to create a healthier comfort meal. For lasagna, eggplant slices can also be used as a substitute for pasta.
  • Meatloaf can be made with ground turkey rather than beef (or a combination of the two) to decrease calories and fat. It can also include veggies so you use less meat, e.g. chopped mushrooms, celery and bell peppers. Substituting oatmeal for breadcrumbs increases the healthiness of meatloaf, as well.
  • Beef stew can be low-carb if you substitute turnips for potatoes - the texture is similar.
  • French fries can be baked with seasoning. For an even healthier snack, you can bake sweet potato fries.
  • Fried chicken can be baked to give you the same crunchy on the outside, juicy on the inside combination without the use of a deep fryer.
  • Mashed potatoes can be creamy if you use olive oil and broth rather than cream and butter. You can add cauliflower to further reduce calories and increase healthiness.
  • Homemade chicken soup actually is healthy and gives you the option of avoiding the excessive salt of store-bought versions. You can increase its healthiness by adding garlic to help prevent colds, as well as adding other healthy vegetables, such as sweet potatoes instead of noodles. 
  • Chocolate is healthy; it contains antioxidants. Stick to dark chocolate that's at least 70% cocoa for maximum benefits - milk chocolate is sweeter and contains much less cocoa.
  • Brownies can be healthy. You can find recipes on the web for various healthy versions of brownies, e.g. flour-free, low or no sugar, zucchini brownies - there is no end of variations that claim to be just as chocolaty and delicious as any less healthy version.
  • Are you craving ice cream? Coconut milk ice cream or almond milk ice cream are healthy substitutes.

As you can see, we're trying to avoid or reduce sugars and other refined carbohydrates, and in some cases, reduce the calories from fat, so you can apply these general principles to any other comfort food that appeals to you.

If all else fails and nothing but the 'real' comfort food will do, don't feel guilty for an occasional lapse. Tomorrow is another day!

 

References


  1. Link R. 11 best healthy fats for your body. draxe.com/healthy-fats/ July 25, 2018. Accessed September 26, 2018.
  2. Steinhilber B. Why we crave comfort foods - and how to make them healthier. nbcnews.com/better/health/why-we-crave-comfort-foods-how-make-them-healthier-ncna840016 January 24, 2018. Accessed September 25, 2018.
  3. Fischer K. 10 tips for healthy comfort foods. eatthis.com/healthy-comfort-foods/ September 16, 2016. Accessed September 16, 2018.
  4. Healthy comfort food recipes. eatingwell.com/recipes/19699/cooking-methods-styles/comfort/ Accessed September 16, 2018. 
  5. Glassman K. 5 comfort foods that are actually really good for you. today.com/health/5-comfort-foods-are-actually-really-good-you-t119907 December 11, 2017. Accessed September 25, 2018.

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.

Supplements

There are some Nature's Sunshine supplements that would help you to maximize your health now that summer is over. You can find information about these products and purchase them in our online store:

  • Colostrum
  • Super Vitamins & Minerals
  • Vitamin D3
  • Zambroza
Milk Thistle

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. Also, on our website, please see back issues of this newsletter, information about services, products and our clinic, and order products.

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 health plan and went from a size 15 to now a size 9. I have lost 40 lbs. -RG

The Belly of the Beast

AVAILABLE NOW

thebellyofthebeast.ca

1437 Woodroffe Avenue

Ottawa ON (map)

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KEEPING YOUR BRAIN HEALTHY - SEPTEMBER 2018 - VOLUME 10, ISSUE 6

 

Volume 10, Issue 6

September 2018

Keeping Your Brain Healthy

You've likely heard that the Canadian population (and the populations of many other countries) has been aging for some time now and will continue to age over the next few decades. It's generally nice to know we're living longer, as long as we can stay healthy. An extremely important aspect of our health is brain health. Probably the biggest fear these days is of losing our cognitive functioning as we grow older. The good news is that it's never too early or too late to improve our brain 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 as it is a step towards longevity.

Ramila Padiachy

Doctor of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramila
 

How to Keep Your Brain Healthy

It's only fairly recently that the neuroplasticity of the brain has been understood - see our newsletter of October 2015. The brain is able to reorganize pathways, create new connections and even build new neurons throughout its entire lifetime. It is not at all the fixed structure it was believed to be until recently.

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There are many things we can do to help keep our brains healthy:

Get mental stimulation. Research has shown that using your brain stimulates new connections between nerve cells and may help the brain generate new cells, and building up a functional reserve that provides a hedge against future cell loss. Any mentally stimulating activity should help, e.g. read, take courses, try word puzzles or math problems. Activities that require manual dexterity, as well as mental efforts, such as drawing, painting, or crafts are very helpful.

Get physical exercise. Regular exercise increases the number of tiny blood vessels that bring oxygen-rich blood to the region of the brain responsible for thought. Exercise results in the development of new nerve cells and increases the connections between brain cells (synapses). Exercise also lowers blood pressure, improves cholesterol levels, helps blood sugar balance and reduces mental stress, all of which can help your brain as well as your heart.

Get quality sleep. The brain does not shut off when we're asleep. Much of the work going on while you sleep involves consolidating the learning that took place during the day. If you do not sleep properly, you not only lose the benefit of your learning experiences, but you will also not learn as well the following day. Adults need between seven and nine hours of sleep each night to benefit fully and perform at their cognitive peak. See our June 2018 newsletter on sleep.

Improve your diet. Good nutrition can help your mind as well as your body. For example, people who eat a Mediterranean style diet that emphasizes fruits, vegetables, fish, nuts, unsaturated oils (olive oil), and plant sources of protein are less likely to develop cognitive impairment and dementia. Brain-healthy foods include:

  • Blueberries help to protect the brain from oxidative stress, and may reduce the effects of age-related cognitive decline. Studies have also shown that diets rich in blueberries significantly improved both the learning capacity and motor skills of aging rats, making them mentally equivalent to much younger rats.
  • Wild salmon, and other fish, such as herring and sardines, are rich in omega-3 essential fatty acids, which are necessary for brain function. Omega-3s also contain anti-inflammatory substances.
  • Nuts and seeds are good sources of vitamin E, which protects against cognitive decline as we get older. 
  • Avocados are almost as good as blueberries in promoting brain health. The monounsaturated fat in avocados contributes to healthy blood flow which results in a healthy brain.
  • Whole grains, such as oatmeal, whole-grain bread, and brown rice can reduce the risk of heart disease; the improved blood flow benefits the brain. Note: If you're gluten sensitive, avoid wheat and other grains containing gluten.
  • Freshly brewed tea contains a modest amount of caffeine which, when used judiciously, can boost brain power by enhancing memory, focus and mood. Tea also has powerful antioxidants, which promote healthy blood flow. Bottled or powdered teas are not recommended (the tea must be freshly brewed), but tea bags are fine.
  • Dark chocolate contains powerful antioxidants, and includes natural stimulants (including caffeine) which enhance focus, concentration and stimulate the production of endorphins, which helps improve mood. One half to one ounce a day is all you need; more is not better!

Avoid tobacco in all its forms.

Protect your head. Moderate to severe head injuries, even without diagnosed concussions, increase the risk of cognitive impairment.

Build social networks. Strong social ties have been associated with a lower risk of dementia, as well as lower blood pressure and longer life expectancy.

Meditate. Research shows that meditation improves concentration and memory. Studies have also tracked the growth in important areas of the brain associated with intelligent thinking over time as study participants practiced meditation. Meditation helps calm the mind.

Manage stress well. Avoid long-term chronic stress (meditation, physical activity and strong social ties are helpful). Stress deliberately prevents good learning. The stress response prioritizes immediate information and actually shortens attention span.

Don't abuse alcohol. Excessive drinking impairs cognitive function.

 

References

  1. 12 ways to keep your brain young. June 2006; updated January 16, 2018. health.harvard.edu/mind-and-mood/12-ways-to-keep-your-brain-young, accessed July 24, 2018.
  2. Roche B. 10 ways to improve your brain health. July 17, 2014. psychologytoday.com/us/blog/iq-boot-camp/201407/10-ways-improve-your-brain-health, Accessed July 24, 2018.
  3. Sorgen C. Eat smart for a healthier brain. webmd.com/diet/features/eat-smart-healthier-brain#1 Accessed August 30, 2018.

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.

Supplements

There are some Nature's Sunshine supplements that would help you to maximize your brain health. You can find information about these products and purchase them in our online store:

  • Blood Pressurex
  • CoQ10
  • Ginkgo & Hawthorn
  • Grapine
  • Super Omega 3
  • Vitamin D3
Milk Thistle

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. Also, on our website, please see back issues of this newsletter, information about services, products and our clinic, and order products.

“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! Thank you much Ramila and Megs.

-Johanne, Ottawa

The Belly of the Beast

AVAILABLE NOW

thebellyofthebeast.ca

1437 Woodroffe Avenue

Ottawa ON (map)

Facebook info@ramilas.comWebsite

HEALTHY ALTERNATIVES TO SOFT DRINKS - AUGUST 2018 - VOLUME 10, ISSUE 5

 

Volume 10, Issue 5

August 2018

Healthy Alternatives to Soft Drinks

I hope you're enjoying a safe, healthy summer! One thing we tend to do more of in summer that isn't so healthy is drink soft drinks. Numerous studies have shown the negative health effects of drinking soft drinks on your waistline and your teeth. However, there are far more health risks than many of us may realize.

Of course, it's very important to stay well-hydrated, especially in the hot weather, and there are healthy cold and hot drinks we'll also discuss. 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 as it is a step towards longevity.

Ramila Padiachy

Doctor of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramila
 

The many reasons drinking soft drinks is bad for your health

  • Soft drinks contain high amounts of sugar. A 20 ounce can of (regular) Coca-Cola has the equivalent of 17 teaspoons of sugar and 240 calories - empty calories with no nutritional value. It would take the average adult over one hour of walking to burn off the 240 calories.
  • The high levels of sugar in soft drinks place a lot of stress on your pancreas, potentially leaving it unable to keep up with the body's need for insulin. Drinking one or two sugary drinks per day increases your risk of type 2 diabetes by 25%.
  • Similarly, drinking one or more soft drinks per day may increase your risk of developing metabolic syndrome and heart disease. In the Framingham study of over 9,000 participants, those who consumed one or more soft drinks per day over a four year period had a 48% increased risk of metabolic syndrome compared to those consuming less than one soft drink daily.
  • Drinking soft drinks changes your metabolism. In one study, participants drank 140 grams of sugar every day for four weeks (less than two 20 ounce cans of Coke). Their metabolism changed during that time making it more difficult for them to burn fat and lose weight.
  • Daily soft drinks and other sugar sweetened drinks are linked to non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). In one study, 2,634 individuals completed a CT scan to measure the amount of fat in their liver. There was a higher prevalence of NAFLD among people who reported drinking more than one sugar-sweetened drink per day compared to people who said they drank no sugar-sweetened beverages.
  • Soft drinks increase the risk of obesity in children. Each additional soft drink or other sugary drink consumed per day increases the likelihood of a child becoming obese.
  • Diet soft drinks contain artificial sweeteners. Opting for diet soft drinks may lower your calorie intake, but artificial sweeteners are linked to many illnesses including cancer.
  • Diet soft drinks do not help you lose weight. A University of Texas Health Science Center study found that the more diet soft drinks a person drank, the greater their risk of becoming overweight.
  • Diet soft drinks are linked with an increased risk of stroke, heart attack and dementia, as well as metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes.
  • The many soft drinks that contain caffeine dehydrate - they are diuretics. When the body's cells are dehydrated, they have difficulty absorbing nutrients, and it is also more difficult for the body to eliminate waste.
  • The caramel colouring in colas is linked to cancer. The brown colouring is made by reacting sugars with ammonia and sulphites under high pressure and temperatures, not from caramelized sugar. These chemical reactions result in the formation of 2-methylimidazole (2-MI) and 4-methylimidazole (4-MI), which, in government-conducted studies, caused lung, liver and thyroid cancer and leukemia in laboratory mice and rats.
  • Soft drink cans are lined with BPA (bis-phenol A), which has been linked to a wide range of health problems from heart disease to obesity to reproductive problems.
  • The acid in soft drinks wears away dental enamel. Drinking soft drinks regularly causes plaque to build up on the teeth and can lead to cavities and gum disease.
  • Soft drinks deplete your mineral levels. Soft drinks that contain phosphoric acid remove much-needed calcium from your bones. A study of several thousand men and women at Tufts University found that women who drank three or more cola-based soft drinks per day had almost 4% lower bone mineral density in their hips; the researchers controlled for their calcium and vitamin D intake.
  • Soft drinks have been linked to asthma. A study done in South Australia of almost 17,000 participants aged 16 years and older, showed high levels of soda consumption were positively associated with asthma and COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease).
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Healthy alternatives to soft drinks

  1. Water. Many people live in a state of chronic, low-level dehydration that can affect every part of their health including cognitive performance and mental health. If you're a soft drink addict and find it difficult to switch to water, try sparkling water. If you prefer drinking flavoured beverages, try infusing drinking water with a slice of lemon, lime, orange or other fresh fruit, or combinations of fresh fruit. To infuse water, you can try an infusion bottle, or simply make up a pitcher of water plus your choice of fruit (thinly sliced) and chill it in the refrigerator for four hours or overnight for a refreshing treat.
  2. Green tea is one of the best beverages for cancer prevention, and also improves artery function, thereby reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease. Note that adding milk (either cow's milk or soy milk) has been found to dramatically reduce the availability of the antioxidants in tea. Adding lemon, on the other hand, increases levels of antioxidants.
  3. Hibiscus tea was found to be the highest in antioxidants, in a study of 283 beverages. Hibiscus tea can be quite tart. Watermelon and lime can be added to create an interesting flavour combination.
  4. Water with apple cider vinegar has been used as a folk remedy for many ailments. There are many health benefits of consuming vinegar with a meal, including a reduction in the spike in blood sugar, insulin and triglycerides. It also increases the feeling of being full after a meal. Vinegar has also been found to reduce body weight and body fat mass in a recent Japanese study.
  5. White tea is the least processed (followed by green, then oolong, then black). White tea has a light, delicate flavour. Plain white tea doesn't have as high a level of antioxidants as green tea, but when combined with lemon, the level of antioxidants increased to a much higher level than green tea with lemon.

I hope you enjoy these healthy alternatives to soft drinks as well as Nature's Sunshine products recommended below

 

References


  1. McFarland E. 21 ways drinking soda is bad for your health. Food and Health July 25, 2016, foodrevolution.org/blog/category/blog/food-and-health/ Accessed July 4, 2018.
  2. Ten reasons to avoid soda (& how to kick the habit). Updated April 19, 2018, wellnessmama.com/379/avoid-soda/ Accessed July 17, 2018.
  3. Calderone J. The mounting evidence against diet sodas. May 24, 2017, consumerreports.org/soda/mounting-evidence-against-diet-sodas/ Accessed July 17, 2018.
  4. Mercola J. Give up soda. January 10, 2018, articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2018/01/10/drinking-soda-health-risks.aspx Accessed July 17, 2018.
  5. The 5 healthiest beverages you should be drinking now. foodrevolution.org/blog/healthiest-beverages/ Accessed July 4, 2018.

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.

Supplements

There are some Nature's Sunshine supplements that would give you healthy substitutes for soft drinks. You can find information about these products and purchase them in our online store:

  • Chlorophyll, Liquid (mix with water)
  • Solstic Energy (one per day is a healthy alternative to popular energy drinks)
  • Solstic Nutrition (a delicious multi-vitamin/mineral supplement drink mix; take one per day)
Milk Thistle

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. Also, on our website, please see back issues of this newsletter, information about services, products and our clinic, and order products.

Ramila created a nutritional plan for me. She also taught me how to balance out my nutritional needs and what kinds of foods 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 health plan and went from a size 15 to now a size 9. I have lost 40 lbs.

-RG

The Belly of the Beast

AVAILABLE NOW

thebellyofthebeast.ca

1437 Woodroffe Avenue

Ottawa ON (map)

Facebook info@ramilas.comWebsite

THE 2018 DIRTY DOZEN AND CLEAN FIFTEEN - JULY 2018 - VOLUME 10, ISSUE 4

 

Volume 10, Issue 4

July 2018

The 2018 Dirty Dozen and Clean Fifteen

This is a wonderful time of year for enjoying fresh vegetables and fruits! Many people are not aware that pesticide residues are common on conventionally grown produce, even after it is carefully washed or peeled. I really don't want to spoil your enjoyment, but I thought it would be helpful to let you know about the fruits and vegetables on this year's 'Dirty Dozen' list which is produced by the U.S. Environmental Working Group. On a more positive note, the 'Clean Fifteen' list shows produce with the least exposure to pesticides.

I'm not suggesting that you necessarily stop eating produce on the Dirty Dozen list, but you definitely want to consider buying organic versions of these fruits and vegetables or buying them from farms whose practices regarding pesticide use you are familiar with. You might also wish to eat more of the Clean Fifteen.

While I realize the situation in Canada may not be identical to the U.S., usually we're quite similar, so I think we can use this information to guide us in our choices. 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 as it is a step towards longevity.

Ramila Padiachy

Doctor of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramila
 

The 2018 Dirty Dozen

The Environmental Working Group (EWG), a nonprofit and nonpartisan group, has been ranking fresh produce based on their levels of pesticide contamination (number of pesticides and amount of each pesticide) since 2004. They produce the Shopper's Guide to Pesticides in Produce™, which is intended to be a resource for consumers who are unable to buy organic produce. The EWG does its own independent analysis of the U.S. Department of Agriculture's pesticide testing.

The 2018 Dirty Dozen (in descending order of levels of pesticides):

  1. Strawberries
  2. Spinach
  3. Nectarines
  4. Apples
  5. Grapes
  6. Peaches
  7. Cherries
  8. Pears
  9. Tomatoes
  10. Celery
  11. Potatoes
  12. Sweet bell peppers
  13. Hot peppers

Made that a baker's dozen - this year's list includes a 13th item, hot peppers. The EWG found that hot peppers tend to be contaminated with dangerous insecticides, so they suggest buying organic hot peppers, or at least cook conventionally grown hot peppers to help reduce insecticide levels.

The EWG says that rinsing produce under running tap water is a good way to reduce pesticide levels before consumption; however, research at the University of Massachusetts shows that soaking produce in a baking soda and water solution may do an even better job.

Key findings of the 2018 Dirty Dozen report:

  • The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) tests found 230 different pesticides and pesticide breakdown products on thousands of produce samples analyzed.
  • The EWG analyzed USDA pesticide residue data and found that almost 70% of non-organic produce sampled tested positive for pesticide contamination.
  • More than 98% of samples of strawberries, spinach, peaches, nectarines, cherries and apples tested positive for residue of at least one pesticide.
  • Spinach samples had, on average, 1.8 times as much pesticide residue by weight than any other crop.

How risky is eating produce with higher levels of pesticides?

There is no easy answer to this question. There have been studies linking poorer pregnancy outcomes, as well as infertility in both men and women to pesticide exposure. There is also evidence that children with higher exposure to specific types of pesticides are at higher risk of being diagnosed with ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder).  

It's important to note that 'organic' does not mean that no pesticides were used, but that the pesticides used were derived from natural substances, not synthetic ones. While natural substances sound healthier, it depends on how much of a substance you're ingesting. As the saying goes, "The poison isn't in the substance, but in the dose."

Several experts claim that the real risk is in not eating enough produce, rather than pesticide exposure. The Environmental Working Group agrees, saying, "The health benefits of a diet rich in fruits and vegetables outweigh the risks of pesticide exposure. Eating conventionally grown produce is far better than skipping fruits and vegetables."

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The 2018 Clean Fifteen

  1. Avocados
  2. Sweet corn*
  3. Pineapples
  4. Cabbage
  5. Onions
  6. Frozen sweet peas
  7. Papayas*
  8. Asparagus
  9. Mangoes
  10. Eggplant
  11. Honeydew melon
  12. Kiwi
  13. Cantaloupe
  14. Cauliflower
  15. Broccoli

The Clean Fifteen list includes produce that is least likely to be contaminated by pesticides.

  • Less than 1% of avocado and sweet corn samples tested positive for any detectable pesticides; they were the cleanest of all produce tested.
  • More than 80% of pineapples, papayas asparagus, onions and cabbages had no pesticide residues.
  • None of the produce on the Clean Fifteen list tested positive for more than four pesticides.

*Note: Papayas and sweet corn in the U.S. (and sweet corn grown in Canada) is GMO unless organic, so it's best to choose organic for those.

A diet rich in produce is most important

I agree that it's most important to eat plenty of fruits and vegetables for optimum health and that exposure to pesticides, for most people, is a secondary concern. If you have access to organic produce, so much the better, but many nutritionists and other experts agree that eating enough produce is extremely important.

 

References

  1. 2018 dirty dozen and clean fifteen lists rank produce items by pesticide level. Food Safety Magazine, April 10, 2018, foodsafetymagazine.com/news/2018-dirty-dozen-and-clean-fifteen-lists-rank-produce-items-by-pesticide-level/ Accessed May 31, 2018.
  2. Lunder S. EWG's shopper's guide to pesticides in produce™. April 10, 2018,  ewg.org/foodnews/summary.php Accessed May 31, 2018. 
  3. Axe J. Dirty dozen list: are you eating the most pesticide-laden produce? draxe.com/dirty-dozen/ Accessed May 31, 2018.
  4. Cassetty S. What a nutritionist wants you to know about pesticides and produce. April 14, 2018, nbcnews.com/better/health/produce-side-pesticides-what-nutritionist-wants-you-know-about-ewg-ncna864156 Accessed July 3, 2018.

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.

Supplements

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

  • CurcuminBP
  • Dandelion
  • Milk Thistle
  • LIV-A
  • LIV-C
  • BP
  • K
  • Potas
  • Parsley
  • Ginger
Milk Thistle

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. Also, on our website, please see back issues of this newsletter, information about services, products and our clinic, and order products.

Our family is so grateful for curing us from many environmental and food sensitivities we were living with since birth. It is our new-found freedom not to have food restrictions, especially at social gatherings. We also appreciate Ramilas determination to finding relief to my son's ongoing eczema breakouts. It made a huge difference to this 15 year old boy's self-esteem.

-Lise & Family Ottawa

The Belly of the Beast

AVAILABLE NOW

thebellyofthebeast.ca

1437 Woodroffe Avenue

Ottawa ON (map)

Facebook info@ramilas.comWebsite

THE IMPORTANCE OF SLEEP TO OUR HEALTH - JUNE 2018 - VOLUME 10, ISSUE 3

 

Volume 10, Issue 3

June 2018

The Importance of Sleep to Our Health

I hope you're enjoying the warmer weather and longer days. It's not the time of year that most of us are thinking about getting enough sleep; we just want to enjoy the summer. However, it's really important to remember that getting enough good quality sleep is just as important to our physical and mental health during the summer as at any other time of year.  

We know a lot more about how sleep (or lack of) affects us, thanks to a recently published book, Why We Sleep: Unlocking the Power of Sleep and Dreams by Matthew Walker, PhD, founder and director of the University of California Berkeley's Center for Human Sleep Science. 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 as it is a step towards longevity.

Ramila Padiachy

Doctor of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramila
 

The Importance of Sleep

According to Dr. Walker, two-thirds of all adults living in developed nations fail to obtain the recommended seven to eight hours of sleep per night. The consequences are major. Routinely sleeping less than seven hours per night...

  • demolishes your immune system, more than doubling your risk of cancer
  • contributes to the development of Alzheimer's disease
  • disrupts blood sugar levels to the extent that you would be classified as pre-diabetic
  • increases the likelihood of coronary arteries becoming blocked and brittle, which can lead to cardiovascular disease, stroke and congestive heart failure
  • contributes to all major psychiatric conditions, including depression and anxiety
  • increases your desire to eat more, even when you're full, leading to weight gain

When you add all this up, you can clearly see that if you sleep too little, your life span will be shorter. Not only that, but the quality of your life will not be as good.  

The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared sleep loss epidemic throughout industrialized nations. Walker attributes society's apathy toward sleep to be at least partly due to the failure of science to explain why we need it.

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Why Do We Need Sleep?

We need sleep for a large, complex number of reasons. All major organs within the body, and processes within the brain, are optimally enhanced by sleep, and impaired when we don't get enough.

  • Within the brain, sleep enhances our ability to learn, memorize, and make logical decisions and choices.  
  • Sleep is also crucial for our psychological health; it re-calibrates our emotional brain circuits, so we can navigate the next day's social and psychological challenges effectively.  
  • Dreaming provides numerous benefits, including a 'consoling neurochemical bath' that mollifies painful memories, and a virtual reality space where the brain melds past and present knowledge, inspiring creativity.
  • In the body, sleep restores the immune system, warding off all types of sickness, including helping to fight malignancy and prevent infection.  
  • Sleep repairs the body's metabolic state by fine-tuning the balance of insulin and circulating glucose. 
  • Sleep also regulates our appetite, helping us to make healthy choices in selecting our food, rather than giving in to cravings.  
  • Sleep helps to maintain a healthy microbiome (see our newsletter of June 2017).  
  • Adequate sleep is essential for our cardiovascular fitness, lowering blood pressure and keeping our hearts in good condition.

Of course, a balanced diet and exercise are vitally important, as well, but now sleep is seen as the most important component of the three, without which, the benefits of the other two cannot be enjoyed. In short, sleep is the single most effective thing we can do to reset our brain and body health each day.

Why Don't We Sleep Enough?

There are many reasons that many of us don't sleep enough. There are several sleep disorders, of which insomnia is the most common. Walker has identified key factors that have changed how much and how well we sleep:

  • Constant electric light and LED light delays the release of melatonin so you can't fall asleep quickly when you turn the lights off. Even a dim light will reduce melatonin levels. Blue LED lights have twice the harmful impact of the old incandescent bulbs, even when their lux intensities are matched. LED-powered laptop screens, smartphones and tablets also have a real impact on melatonin release and ability to get to sleep.
  • We keep our bedrooms too warm. Decreasing room temperature at night to 65°F or 18.5°C is ideal for sleep, assuming standard bedding and clothing. This may not be feasible in the summer, but you can adjust your bedding and clothing accordingly. 
  • Caffeine, alcohol and sleeping pills interfere with sleep quality and sleep time. 
  • Some people view lack of sleep as a badge of honour - a sign of drive, ambition and achievement. Even worse, good sleep is viewed by some as a sign of sloth. Nothing could be farther from the truth.

Tips for Healthy Sleep

  1. Stick to a sleep schedule. Go to bed and wake up at the same time each day.
  2. Try to exercise for at least 30 minutes most days, but not later than 2 to 3 hours before your bedtime.
  3. Avoid caffeine, alcohol and nicotine.
  4. Avoid large meals and beverages late at night. A large meal can cause indigestion, and a lot of fluids at night can have you running to the bathroom during the night.
  5. Some medications can disrupt sleep. If you're having trouble sleeping, check with your health care provider to see if anything you're taking could be contributing to insomnia and if they can be taken at other times of day.
  6. Don't take naps after 3 pm. Late afternoon naps can make it harder to fall asleep at night.
  7. Relax and unwind before bed by reading or listening to music.
  8. Take a hot bath or shower before bed so your core temperature will drop - and a bath will help you relax as well.  
  9. Keep your bedroom dark, cool, comfortable and free of gadgets (including a TV, cell phone, and computer). Don't watch the clock. Have a comfortable mattress and pillow.
  10. Try to spend at least 30 minutes each day in natural sunlight.
  11. Don't lie awake in bed. If you are still awake after more than 20 minutes, or if you're anxious or worried, get up and do some relaxing activity until you feel sleepy.
  12. There are many reasons not to take sleeping pills; however, there are natural supplements that can help you sleep without the disadvantages of sleeping pills - see below.
 

References

  1. Walker M. Why We Sleep: Unlocking the Power of Sleep and Dreams. New York: Scribner, 2017.
  2. Mercola J. Why sleeping less than seven hours a night is a recipe for ill health and a shortened life span. May 12, 2018. articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2018/05/12/sleep-deprivation-shortened-life-span.aspx Accessed May 13, 2018.
  3. Tips for getting a good night's sleep. NIH Medline Plus Summer 2012 Issue:7(2), page 20 medlineplus.gov/magazine/issues/summer12/articles/summer12pg20.html Accessed May 29, 2018.

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.

Supplements

There is a Nature's Sunshine supplement relevant to this newsletter. You can find information about this product and purchase it in our online store:

  • Zerenity
  • Passion Flower
  • RE-X
  • Melatonin Extra
  • Calcium-Magnesium
  • Vitamin D3
  • Magnesium Complex
  • Cal-Mag Plus
Zerenity

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. Also, on our website, please see back issues of this newsletter, information about services, products and our clinic, and order products.

Dr. Ramila is a kind person who fielded numerous neurotic questions and helped me to better understand how and why the body functions the way it does. She provided me with an easy to implement lifestyle change to ensure I don’t have to fight with yeast again, as opposed to the ‘band-aid’ approach that Western medicine offered. Dr. Ramila’s compassion is evident in her voice – seeing her in person would have been nice, but is certainly not necessary to complete the treatment.

-Elise, Montreal, QC

The Belly of the Beast

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1437 Woodroffe Avenue

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WHY DECLUTTERING IS GOOD FOR YOUR HEALTH - MAY 2018 - VOLUME 10, ISSUE 2

 

Volume 10, Issue 2

May 2018

Why Decluttering is Good for Your Health

Last month we talked about clearing clutter from the body, specifically cleansing the liver and kidneys. This month, to continue with spring cleaning, I'd like to focus not just on cleaning, but on decluttering our homes. It's easy to turn a blind eye to the clutter we live with, but it feels so good to remove it - you'll feel so much lighter! 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 as it is a step toward longevity.

Ramila Padiachy

Doctor of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramila
 

What is Clutter?

Clutter has been defined as anything you're keeping around your house that doesn't add value to your life. How do you decide what is clutter? Ask yourself a few questions:  

Does it work? If it doesn't work, either get rid of it or get it fixed right away.

When did you last use it? Advice varies, but most people say get rid of anything you haven't used in the past 6 months (some say 12 months). Depending on the item and your circumstances, you may find that a more generous time allowance is more appropriate.

Do you love it? If not, and you haven't used it in the past 6 months (or so), it's probably time to get rid of it. Don't keep things out of guilt, for example because great aunt Mary gave it to you, but you really don't like it.

Does it add value to your life? If not, get rid of it!

declutter

Why is Clutter a Problem?

For many people, clutter can be a drain on their energy; this may be because they waste huge amounts of time looking for things they can't find. Clutter can be bad for our health because we tend to feel as if our life is out of control when we surround ourselves with too many things. Messy homes and work spaces can leave us feeling anxious and overwhelmed. Clutter is rarely recognized as a source of stress, but clearing it definitely lowers stress levels.

What are the benefits of decluttering? Decluttering reduces stress by providing a sense of control and accomplishment. It can even be enjoyable! You'll have more space, and you'll be able to find things easily.

Why Should I Declutter?

There's a great deal of advice available for how to declutter, much of it conflicting. I'm going to present a few options, and leave it up to you to decide what works best for you.

Many people suggest decluttering by location, e.g. room by room, or even specific spaces within a room. However, Marie Kondo, best-selling author of The Life-changing Magic of Tidying Up, considers this to be a mistake. She recommends sorting by category, not by location. This is because people often store the same type of item in more than one place. This means we repeat the same work in different locations, and may not remember we already have kept what we need of the particular category of stuff. It's up to you to decide how you prefer to proceed.

According to Marie Kondo, tidying must start with discarding. You may need to divide the discarded stuff into garbage, recycling, donating or giving to a friend, and sort it accordingly. Basically, there are only two possible decisions: what to discard and where to store the stuff you're keeping

Some decluttering tips:

Organize first; buy second. Do not buy a ton of storage pieces and supplies before you go through your home. Discard first, then see what storage you really need; buy just a few bins to start.

Don't bite off more than you can chew. Don't plan to spend an entire day to organize your whole house. It's much better to spend a few hours - 2 or 3 - on one project or space. This way, you won't reach the point where you can't make one more decision, and give up in frustration.

Complete each task completely. Once you've decided where something is going to go, take it there. Don't let it sit - take the bags and boxes to the trash or recycling immediately. Similarly, take anything to be donated where it needs to go as soon as you have a car load of it.

Be prepared to maintain your decluttered space. You need to expect to do regular upkeep to prevent clutter from piling up again.

Don't be a perfectionist. The goal is to create a space that works well for your needs, not to look like an ad for a magazine. It's a space that's used by humans, not a staged home for non-existent residents.

Additional strategies:

Give away one item each day. Or give away one item on the first day, two on the second day, three on the third day, and so on, for 30 days.

Fill one trash bag. Or one bag to donate to a charity.

Designate a spot for incoming papers. This avoids having piles of paper in various locations.

Schedule a decluttering weekend. You may not finish everything but you'll make great progress. Note: take breaks so you don't end up on overwhelm.

Spend a few minutes visualizing the room. Take a moment to think about how you want it to look. Then figure out what's essential and get rid of the rest. 

Create a "maybe" box. There may be some stuff you don't use but can't bear to get rid of. Put it in the "maybe" box and look at it again in six months. Usually, it will be easier to get rid of those things, given that you haven't needed them for six months.

Take everything out of a drawer. Then sort it into three piles: 1. Stuff that really should go in the drawer; 2. stuff that belongs elsewhere; 3. stuff to get rid of. Clean the drawer, then put the stuff back that should go there neatly. Deal with the other piles right away!

Have a conversation with your family/ significant other/ roommate. An uncluttered home is the result of a shared philosophy of simplicity of everyone living in the house. Explain that you really want an uncluttered house, and that you need their help - do this in an encouraging, persuasive way, don't nag.

Enjoy your new uncluttered look. Take the time to admire the improvements you've made, and then nip clutter in the bud when it starts to form again.

I hope you find this helpful! I know it's hard to get started with decluttering, but it feels great once it's done. It's helpful to realize that acquiring more and more stuff isn't the answer - it doesn't make us happier, and when it creates clutter, it actually has a negative effect on us.

 

References

  1. The ridiculously thorough guide to decluttering your home. budgetdumpster.com/resources/how-to-declutter-your-home.php  Accessed April 6, 2018.
  2. The best decluttering advice we've heard. huffingtonpost.com/entry/the-best-decluttering-advice-weve-heard_us_5a0c8906e4b0b17ffce1ffb8  Accessed April 6, 2018.
  3. Bourg Carter S. Why mess causes stress: 8 reasons, 8 remedies. psychologytoday.com/us/blog/high-octane-women/201203/why-mess-causes-stress-8-reasons-8-remedies Accessed April 25, 2018.
  4. Kondo M. The life-changing magic of tidying up: the Japanese art of decluttering and organizing. Berkeley: Ten Speed Press, 2014.
  5. Morris C. Pro organizer tips: what NOT to do when decluttering your home. apartmenttherapy.com/pro-organizer-tips-what-not-to-do-when-decluttering-your-home-168836  Accessed April 6, 2018.
  6. Becker J. 10 creative ways to declutter your home. becomingminimalist.com/creative-ways-to-declutter/  Accessed April 6, 2018.
  7. 18 five-minute decluttering tips to start conquering your mess. zenhabits.net/18-five-minute-decluttering-tips-to-start-conquering-your-mess/  April 3, 2008. Accessed April 6, 2018.

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.

 

Supplements

There is a Nature's Sunshine supplement relevant to this newsletter. You can find information about this product and purchase it in our online store:

  • Zerenity
Zerenity

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. Also, on our website, please see back issues of this newsletter, information about services, products and our clinic, and order products.

"If you are suffering, want to finally be free of emotional baggage, grief, depression or anything causing you pain. Be kind to yourself and take the next step and contact Ramilas healing arts Clinic." — I.S., Ottawa

The Belly of the Beast

AVAILABLE NOW

thebellyofthebeast.ca

1437 Woodroffe Avenue

Ottawa ON (map)

Facebook info@ramilas.comWebsite

SPRING LIVER AND KIDNEY CLEANSES - APRIL 2018 - VOLUME 10, ISSUE 1

 

Volume 10, Issue 1

April 2018

Spring Liver and Kidney Cleanses

[twittertweet] [lnkdinshare]

I hope you're enjoying the early signs of spring! It's time again for spring cleaning, and of course, that includes ourselves, not just where we live. This month I want to focus on cleansing the liver and kidneys. 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 as it is a step toward longevity.

Ramila Padiachy

Doctor of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramila
 

Liver and Kidney Cleanses

There are many, many different ways to go about a liver or kidney cleanse. This newsletter can only give you some general suggestions. If you are interested in more detail, please make an appointment to see me.

Prevention of liver and kidney disease

First, it makes sense to look at prevention of ill health of your liver and kidneys:

  1. The health of your liver and kidneys is very much dependent on maintaining a normal weight. The obesity epidemic along with metabolic syndrome (see our newsletter of August 2017) and type 2 diabetes are major risk factors for nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). So by maintaining a normal weight and avoiding both metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes, you've already done a lot to keep your liver happy. If you are concerned about losing weight, please contact our office at 613.829.0427 for a consultation; we offer a really effective weight loss program.
  2. Another important preventive measure is exercise. Physical activity almost every day is recommended. Brisk walking or something equivalent is good.
  3. Drinking plenty of water is essential, particularly to keep your kidneys healthy. The amount you should drink per day: your weight in pounds divided by 2 equals the number of ounces you should drink to a maximum of 100oz.
  4. You also need to eat a healthy diet.
  5. Don't smoke.
  6. Limit alcohol intake.
  7. Get enough good quality sleep.
good morning

Liver

Functions of the liver

The liver is a very busy and important organ. Some of its essential functions include:

  • processing nutrients absorbed by the intestines so they are more efficiently absorbed
  • regulating blood composition to balance protein, fat and sugar
  • destroying old red blood cells
  • producing essential chemicals to help blood clot properly
  • breaking down and metabolizing alcohol and medications
  • producing essential proteins and cholesterol
  • removing toxins from the bloodstream
  • storing minerals, iron and vitamin A

Cleanse your liver

With our constant exposure to toxins in our environment, not to mention processed foods, the liver could use some help! To help your liver cleanse itself, it's important to:

Remove toxic foods from your diet. This means processed foods (and all the additives they contain), sugars and other refined carbohydrates, and trans fats (hydrogenated oils).

Drink raw vegetable juice. Vegetables ideal for a liver cleanse include cabbage, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts. You can add other vegetables you like for a more appealing taste, such as carrots, cucumber, beets and greens. You can also add fresh herbs such as parsley, mint, ginger and others to make the juices more enjoyable.


Load up on potassium-rich foods. They help to lower systolic blood pressure, lower cholesterol and support a healthy cardiovascular system, in addition to helping to cleanse your liver.




  • Sweet potatoes are actually even richer in potassium than bananas. One medium sweet potato has only 131 calories, yet is rich in vitamins B6, C, D, magnesium and iron. Even though it is naturally sweet, the sugars are released slowly into the bloodstream through the liver, without causing a spike in blood sugar.
  • Tomato sauces contain concentrated potassium compared to fresh tomatoes.
  • Beet greens and spinach are rich in antioxidants, and can be added to your fresh juice recipe, added to salads, or lightly sautéed. Beets also naturally cleanse the gallbladder and improve bile flow.
  • Beans, especially white beans, kidney beans and Lima beans are all rich in potassium, protein and fibre.
  • Bananas help with digestion and help to release toxins and heavy metals from the body, in addition to being rich in potassium.

Take milk thistle, dandelion and turmeric/curcumin. (See the links to Nature's Sunshine products below.)

  • Milk thistle helps to eliminate the buildup of heavy metals, prescription medications, environmental pollutants and alcohol in the liver. The active ingredient, silymarin, helps to strengthen the cell walls in the liver and supports regeneration.
  • Dandelion is not just a weed, it is packed with vitamins and minerals. Dandelion root has a natural diuretic effect, allowing your liver to more quickly eliminate toxins. It also helps strengthen the immune system, balance blood sugar levels, relieve heartburn, and soothe digestive upset.
  • Turmeric or curcumin supports a healthy liver, aids in digestion, helps to restore a healthy blood sugar balance, and is an effective antidepressant.
 

Kidneys

Function of the kidneys

The kidneys also play a major role in detoxifying your body; they clear waste, balance body fluids, form urine and help maintain the body's pH, and regulate blood pressure. They process the blood to sift out waste products and extra water - these become urine.

Cleanse your kidneys

Helpful supplements include Nature's Sunshine products K, Potas, Parsley, GreenZone (spirulina and chlorella), in addition to Dandelion, CurcuminBP, and Ginger.

Recommended herbs include stinging nettle, burdock, ginger and turmeric.

High-antioxidant fruit: Cranberries are especially good because they also prevent UTIs (urinary tract infections). Black cherries and blueberries are also excellent.

Beets stimulate the production of NO (nitric oxide) which increases circulation and naturally cleanses the blood, as well as supports kidney function.

Seaweed contains spirulina and chlorella which have been shown to detox heavy metals from the body. You can also obtain these from Nature's Sunshine's GreenZone.

Lemon juice (freshly squeezed) in water is recommended first thing in the morning. It helps with digestion and detoxification. It also helps to prevent kidney stones.

Spinach is high in B vitamins and certain antioxidants that help cleanse the entire body, especially the kidneys.


I hope this helps you with your personal 'spring cleaning'. Stay tuned - next month, we'll look at the benefits of decluttering your home.

 

References

  1. Definition & facts of NAFLD & NASH. niddk.nih.gov/health-information/liver-disease/nafld-nash/definition-facts November 2016.  Accessed March 29, 2018.
  2. Mayo Clinic Staff. Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/nonalcoholic-fatty-liver-disease/symptoms-causes/syc-20354567 March 7, 2018. Accessed March 29, 2018. 
  3. Axe J. Detox your liver: try my 6-step liver cleanse. draxe.com/liver-cleanse/ Accessed March 28, 2018.
  4. Hills J. Kidney cleanse: the best foods an herbs for kidney health. healthyandnaturalworld.com/best-foods-and-herbs-to-cleanse-your-kidneys/ Accessed March 28, 2018.
  5. Axe J. How to do a kidney cleanse to boost energy & heal your adrenals. draxe.com/kidney-cleanse/ Accessed March 28, 2018.

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.

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:

  • K
  • CurcuminBP
  • Dandelion
  • Milk Thistle
  • LIV-A
  • LIV-C
  • BP
  • Potas
  • Parsley
  • Ginger
  • GreenZone
milk thistle

"In May 2005, I contracted a viral throat infection which persisted for several weeks and made swallowing difficult. A medical test confirmed that the infection was not bacterial and no treatment was prescribed. During this time, Ramila detected a virus in my body through sensitivity testing and cleared it from my body a week after detecting it. My throat infection began to diminish within a few hours of the virus being clearing and it disappeared the next day."

-Philip, Ottawa

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. Also, on our website, please see back issues of this newsletter, information about services, products and our clinic, and order products.

The Belly of the Beast

AVAILABLE NOW

thebellyofthebeast.ca

1437 Woodroffe Avenue

Ottawa ON (map)

Facebook info@ramilas.comWebsite

LOW INTENSITY LASER THERAPY TREATS PAIN – MARCH 2018 - VOLUME 9, ISSUE 11

 
 

Volume 9, Issue 11

Low Intensity Laser Therapy Treats Pain

I'm very excited to tell you about a new service we introduced at the Clinic a few months ago - low intensity laser therapy, or LILT for short. LILT is a really safe and effective way to treat many different types of pain and inflammation. In addition, it enhances the body's immune system response and facilitates natural healing. Treatments are non-invasive, and the benefits are long-lasting. 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 as it is a step toward longevity.

Ramila Padiachy

Doctor of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramila
 

What's the history of low intensity laser therapy (LILT)?


Research on the effectiveness of LILT (in both animals and humans) dates back to the 1960s and 1970s, with a lot of activity from the '80s onward. So it's been used for well over 40 years. While researchers commonly conclude that more research is needed, there is still consensus that LILT is an effective therapy. In a meta-analysis of the use of LILT in tissue repair and pain control, it was concluded that "laser phototherapy is a highly effective therapeutic armamentarium for tissue repair and pain relief."

How does LILT work?


LILT is a form of laser medicine that uses low level (low power) lasers or light emitting diodes to alter cellular function and stimulate healing. The laser often referred to as a 'cold laser', is a hand-held device which can be about the size of a flashlight.  


Laser therapy is non-invasive and pain-free. It uses red and infrared light to target inflamed, injured and diseased tissues. Photons of light stimulate ATP (adenosine triphosphate) production which accelerates the healing process. (ATP is able to store and transport chemical energy within cells.) Patients recover from musculoskeletal and peripheral nerve injuries with less scar tissue, accelerated cell regeneration, and improved function.


LILT results in the following:


  • Angiogenesis and neovascularization: An increase in oxygenated blood to the injured tissue accelerates tissue healing.
  • Collagen production: Proper alignment and remodelling of collagen reduces internal scar formation and enhances tissue elasticity.
  • Muscle regeneration is increased and muscle atrophy is reduced: Repair of damaged muscle fibres and activation of myogenic satellite cells leads to regeneration of muscle tissue.
  • Inflammation and edema are reduced: An increase in inflammatory mediators, such as macrophages, neutrophils and lymphocytes, accelerates and resolves the inflammatory process.
  • Nerve regeneration is increased: Proliferation of growth factors promotes neuronal sprouting and myelin formation for optimal nerve recovery.
  • Cartilage production is increased: Increase in chondrocyte and collagen production allows for improved cartilage deposition and joint function.
  • Bone formation is increased: Proliferation of osteocytes and remodelling of bone extracellular matrix results in accelerated bone repair.
 

What does laser therapy treat?


Laser therapy safely and effectively treats musculoskeletal conditions, arthritis and sports injuries as well as a number of general health conditions:


Soft tissue and sports injuries

  • Ligament and tendon tears
  • Muscle sprains
  • Tendonitis
  • Contusions

Repetitive stress injuries

  • Carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Rotator cuff injury
  • Tennis elbow

Arthritic conditions

  • Degenerative osteoarthritis
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Vertebral radiculopathy, sciatica
  • Spinal problems

General health problems

  • Headaches including migraines
  • Herniated discs
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Temporo-mandibular joint (TMJ) syndrome
  • Reflex sympathetic dystrophy
  • Postherpetic neuralgia

Tissue repair and wound healing

  • Soft tissue lesions (trauma)
  • Dermal ulcers
  • Venous stasis
  • Compression

Treatments


The number and length of treatments will vary according to the condition being treated and its severity, as well as individuals' variation in their reaction to LILT. There is also variation in the speed with which pain and inflammation are reduced and eliminated but, in most cases, there is noticeable improvement within a few treatments. In fact, most people start seeing positive results after the first treatment.


Laser therapy is a promising option for treating many conditions involving pain and inflammation, especially for people who prefer to avoid medications or surgery. It is also often used when other treatments, such as medications, surgery and physiotherapy, have failed to relieve pain.

 

References

  1. Enwemeka CS, Parker JC, Dowdy DS et al. The efficacy of low-power lasers in tissue repair and pain control: a meta-analysis study. Photomedicine and Laser Surgery 2004;22(4):323-329.
  2. Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic Low Intensity Laser therapy. Pamphlet available from Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic on request.
  3. Low Intensity Laser Therapy (LILT). Healthworks Chiropractic & Wellness Centre healthworkscentre.com/services/low-intensity-laser-therapy Accessed December 7, 2017.
  4. ATP molecule. https://www.worldofmolecules.com/life/atp.htm Accessed March 1, 2018.
  5. Schnee AK. Cold laser therapy pain management treatment. spine-health.com/treatment/pain-management/cold-laser-therapy-pain-management-treatment Updated February 13, 2009. Accessed December 7, 2017. 
  6. Laser therapy - conditions treated with LILT. GrassRoots National Health & Wellness. grassrootsnaturalhealth.ca/PDF/Laser-Therapy-Conditions-Treated.pdf Accessed March 1, 2018.

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.

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:

  • Aloe Vera Gel
  • CurcuminBP
  • Eight
  • EverFlex Analgesic Cream
  • Glucosamine
  • MSM
Passion Flower

“I was struggling with chronic headaches, joint pain and lack of energy. I knew my weight was also a factor. A friend recommended I see Ramila. In July of 2015 I finally made the best decision of my life. Ramila created a nutritional plan for me. She also taught me how to balance out my nutritional needs and what kinds of food to 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. I feel amazing; I have my self confidence back. And now my daughter, seeing my results, has started the same meal plan and she’s already down 10lbs. Thank you, Ramila. I couldn’t put a price on the knowledge you have given me.”

— RG

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. Also, on our website, please see back issues of this newsletter, information about services, products and our clinic, and order products.

The Belly of the Beast

AVAILABLE NOW

thebellyofthebeast.ca

1437 Woodroffe Avenue

Ottawa ON (map)

Facebook info@ramilas.comWebsite

WAYS TO KEEP YOUR HEART HEALTHY - FEBRUARY 2018 - VOLUME 9, ISSUE 10

 
 

Volume 9, Issue 10

Ways to Keep Your Heart Healthy

I hope you had a really happy Valentine's day! We've looked at different aspects of heart health in a few February newsletters. However, there are still some aspects of heart health we have not touched on before. 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 as it is a step toward longevity.

Ramila Padiachy

Doctor of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramila
 

A brief review of ways to keep your heart healthy


Maintain a healthy lifestyle:

  • Eat a healthy diet, eat 'real food' - avoid added sugars, other refined carbohydrates, trans fats, processed foods.  
  • Antioxidants are heart-healthy.
  • Dark chocolate is cardioprotective; note the emphasis on dark, and enjoy in moderation.
  • Be physically active.
  • Maintain a healthy weight.
  • Get adequate, good quality sleep.
  • Laugh - be sure to focus on things you enjoy and laugh every day.
  • Don't smoke.
  • If you drink alcohol, be sure to drink moderately (no more than one or two drinks per day).
  • Practice gratitude - it's linked to better health, including heart health.
  • Avoid inflammation, including practicing good dental hygiene (plus a healthy diet, good stress management, physical activity and enough sleep).

Additional ways to promote heart health


In our October 2017 newsletter, we discussed stress management techniques in relation to reducing inflammation caused by mental stress. These techniques are also relevant to reducing our risk of heart disease (which can be the result of inflammation).


In addition to a healthy lifestyle, we looked at counselling, such as cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), as an effective way to reduce stress. We also looked at relaxation techniques including:

  1. deep breathing exercises
  2. progressive muscle relaxation, often combined with deep breathing
  3. meditation - the goal is to quiet your mind; you can start by simply observing your thoughts
  4. listening to music - soothing music can decrease blood pressure, heart rate and anxiety levels

You can find more information on relaxation techniques in my book, thebellyofthebeast.ca

Mindfulness

Mindfulness has been receiving attention recently as having an important connection to a healthy heart.


Mindfulness has been defined as the ability to attend non-judgmentally to one's own physical and mental processes; or paying attention to what you're doing in the present moment. "Dispositional mindfulness" is a person's awareness and attention to what they are thinking and feeling in the present moment.


In the New England Family Study of 382 participants, those with higher mindfulness scores had an 83% greater prevalence of good cardiovascular health. Those with lower mindfulness scores had difficulty with 4 of 7 cardiovascular indicators; namely body mass index, physical activity, fasting glucose and cigarette smoking.


What is a possible mechanism for these associations? It has been suggested that people who are more mindful have a greater awareness of their behavioural routines, and the factors driving the behaviour. Because they pay greater attention to their behaviours, they have improved abilities to initiate or prevent the particular behaviour itself.


The authors caution this is a preliminary, cross-sectional analysis, and that further longitudinal studies could evaluate whether mindfulness-based interventions consistently improve cardiovascular risk factors and outcomes.


Looking at this issue further in a review article, the authors found "promising but still inconclusive" evidence of associations of mindfulness with cardiovascular health and CVD (cardiovascular disease) risk factors, specifically smoking, blood pressure, diabetes, physical activity, obesity and diet. Customized mindfulness interventions could eventually be developed as the mechanisms affecting the results are more clearly understood. This is consistent with the findings of the New England Family Study and will be an interesting topic to follow as more research is conducted.

Pet ownership

Another way to promote heart health may be to own a pet - but I would caution you this is only a good idea if you're committed to taking care of a pet, and loving the pet you would choose. Studies suggest that owning a pet may help improve your heart and lung function, as well as lower your risk of dying from heart disease.


A recent study also suggests that owning a dog may result in less heart disease and longer life. The 12-year study followed 3.4 million Swedish adults aged 40 to 80. The researchers found that dog owners had a lower risk of death due to heart disease, and the benefit was especially evident in people who (otherwise) lived alone, compared to single people who didn't own dogs. Dogs may ease stress, loneliness and depression, and inspire people to be more active and socially connected - all factors that seem to promote heart health. However, there could be other reasons for the findings; perhaps healthier people, or those who are making the kinds of lifestyle changes that reduce heart risk, are more likely to have a dog than people in poorer health.

The American Heart Association published a scientific statement on pet ownership and cardiovascular risk, and concluded that pet ownership, particularly dog ownership, may have some causal role in reducing CVD risk. However, it cautions that pet adoption, rescue or purchase should not be done for the primary purpose of reducing CVD risk.

I hope you find these tips helpful - here's to a heart-healthy 2018!

 

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.

Supplements

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

  • Arginine Plus Mixed Berry
  • Blood Pressurex
  • Capsicum
  • CoQ10
  • Flax Seed Oil
  • Ginkgo & Hawthorn
  • Ginkgo Biloba Extract
  • Grapine
  • Green Tea Extract
  • Hawthorn
  • HS-C
  • I-X
  • Lecithin
  • MC
  • Oregon Grape Extract
  • Pantothenic Acid
  • Red Clover
  • Super Omega 3
  • Vitamin D3
  • Vitamin E with Selenium
  • Zambroza
Passion Flower

“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

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. Also, on our website, please see back issues of this newsletter, information about services, products and our clinic, and order products.

The Belly of the Beast

AVAILABLE NOW

thebellyofthebeast.ca

1437 Woodroffe Avenue

Ottawa ON (map)

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THE IMPORTANCE OF GOOD GUT HEALTH - DECEMBER 2017 - VOLUME 9, ISSUE 9

 
 

Volume 9, Issue 9

The Importance of Good Gut Health

I hope you're enjoying a happy, healthy holiday season and enjoying the delicious food that's so abundant at this time of year! I'm not about to tell you not to eat your favourite foods; only to avoid foods you are sensitive to, or that you can't digest. But I thought you might appreciate a few tips to keep your gut healthy. 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 as it is a step toward longevity.

Best wishes for a relaxed, healthy and happy holiday season!

Ramila Padiachy

Doctor of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramila

The Belly Of The Beast is now available at thebellyofthebeast.ca

Download the free recipe book, as well, for some healthy new recipes to try over the holidays.

The Importance of Good Gut Health


We recently looked at the importance of a healthy gut (see our newsletter of June 2017 on the microbiome), but I thought it would be helpful to summarize a few key points here.

  • Good gut health is essential to maintain a strong immune system. Beneficial microbes help prevent disease.
  • The microbes in the gut (microbiome) are responsible for the breakdown and absorption of nutrients.
  • The gut is known as our second brain. It has its own nervous system, the enteric nervous system which is connected to the central nervous system by the vagus nerve. Thus the gut can transmit information to the brain. For example, it can affect our mood, weight, and hormone levels depending on its health and what we eat.

Maintain a Healthy Gut During the Holiday Season


Even at this time of year, a healthy gut is really very important. Hippocrates is frequently quoted as saying, "All disease begins in the gut." More than 2000 years ago, he understood this and, generally speaking, we're just beginning to appreciate how right he was. Here are a few tips that can make all the difference to how you feel over the holidays.

  • Take a good quality probiotic daily to keep your microbiome healthy. The gut is home to about 100 trillion microorganisms, most of which are friendly or neutral. Your daily probiotic helps maintain the right balance, and keep you healthy.
  • Eat fermented foods. Some good examples include sauerkraut, other fermented vegetables, yogurt, kefir (fermented milk), natto (fermented soy) and kombucha (fermented tea).
  • Feed the good bacteria in your gut by eating foods containing prebiotics, such as foods containing inulin, e.g. bananas, asparagus, and garlic. Any fruit or vegetable will boost your fibre consumption and support the good bacteria in your gut.
  • Take digestive enzymes, ideally daily, but especially if you are planning on eating a large meal.
  • Be sure you eat plenty of high fibre foods, and possibly also take a fibre supplement, such as psyllium.
  • Be sure to stay well hydrated - drink lots of water. The formula: divide your weight in pounds by 2 - that is the number of ounces of water you should drink per day, to a maximum of 100 ounces. This is a good guide, but it also depends on the weather, how much you sweat, how much exercise you get and how much liquid you ingest from foods, e.g. fruits and vegetables.
  • Slow down! Don't hurry when you eat or drink. Chew your food well. Your digestive system will thank you. Plus you will be less likely to overeat because your stomach will be able to signal your brain that you're full.
  • Choose your indulgences wisely. Pick items that are only available at this time of year; don't waste calories on food you can have any time.  
  • Keep healthy snacks at the office, so you're not tempted by all the treats others bring. Snack on fibre, so you feel fuller.
  • Bring a favourite dish to the party. This way you can easily avoid any food sensitivities, and anything you know will upset your digestion.
  • Lower your stress levels by:
  • consistently getting enough good quality sleep;
  • meditating (see our November 2017 newsletter);
  • getting enough exercise to help keep you clear headed. Also, physical activity is associated with greater gut microbial diversity, i.e. a healthier gut.
  • Schedule some "me" time. Big family or other gatherings can be challenging. So plan time to do whatever relaxes you - take a walk, read a good book, just spend a little time recharging.


Here's to starting 2018 with a healthy gut! I hope you find this helpful, and I wish you all the best in the New Year!

 

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.