When Should I Take My Supplements?

If you are like me -- you are just starting to realize why it is important to add supplements to your diet.  Even if we are eating a clean, healthy and unprocessed diet;  the mineral content of the soil Read more

Natural Tips for Avoiding Colds

This cold and flu season is still upon us and unfortunately, many patients are still being plagued by these nasty viral symptoms.  Here are a few tips to try if you feel like you are coming down with something. Of Read more

More Homemade Salad Dressings

Blackberry Balsamic Vinaigrette 2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar 1/4 cup avocado oil or extra virgin olive oil 1 tsp local honey 1/3 cup blackberries   Process all the ingredients together in a blender and then season with ground pepper and sea salt The beauty of this recipe Read more

Healthy Mayo and Ranch Dressing

This stuff is a must -- If you read labels these days you will be hard pressed to find a mayonnaise or salad dressing that doesn't contain some type of vegetable oil.  Even the commercial mayos that advertise to Read more

Cauliflower Crust Pizza

So I got a little wicked crazy this weekend and decided to splurge on some pizza.  We do gluten-free carry out around here sometimes, but my future son-in-law inspired me to make my own cauliflower pizza crust. He made Read more

Pumpkin Chai Smoothie

Here's a throwback post that is certainly appropriate for this October weekend.  This smoothie matches the season and will be a great way to start the lovely fall day. Thanks to Smoothie Queen Amy for this great recipe I can't wait Read more

Gluten Free Zucchini Bread

Gluten-Free Zucchini Bread So I have been struggling with gluten-free baking because honestly -- I've never been good at baking!!  Then when I try to modify recipes using flours I'm not familiar with, it just makes  a perfect storm of Read more

Magnesium-the unloved mineral

Do you remember watching Wild Kingdom as a kid?  Did you happen to notice that the animals attacking their prey would immediately eat the organ meats.  I never really thought about why until I listened to Morley Robbins explain the Read more

heart disease

Vitamin K 101

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Recently, I have been recommending a Vitamin K2 supplement to those of you with risk of osteopenia (bone thinning) or osteoporosis (bone loss).  I thought I would share a few of the basics on why I think this supplement is essential.

Vit K basics:

In nature, Vitamin K comes in two forms.  Vitamin K1 is found in free leafy vegetables

Vitamin K2 is found in organ meats, egg yolks and dairy products.

Vitamin K is essential in manufacturing blood clotting proteins.  In addition, it plays a vital role in keeping calcium in the bones instead of in the arteries.

The majority of research has been done on Vitamin K1 and its role in clotting ( all you coumadin/warfarin users are well aware of this).  Clinical trials show that Vitamin K2 is an important inducer of osteoblasts ( the bone building cells)  Recent studies show that Vitamin K2 may be as effective as prescription drugs in reducing the incidence of bone fracture in post menopausal women.

The nitty-gritty:

1.  Calcium is essential for good health.  However, Vitamin K2 is an important regulator of calcium and can prevent aberrant calcium metabolism in the body leading to cardiovascular disease.

2.  Insufficient Vitamin K2 leads to decreased bone mineral density which causes osteoporosis and cane actually increase the risk of heart disease.

3.  Studies in Japan show that Vitamin K2 in can substantially improve osteoporosis when given in prescription form or in the dish NATTO which is rich in K2

4.  Even small amounts of K2 helps fight heart disease by keeping calcium out of the arteries and preventing plaque.

 

Optimal amounts of Vitamin K2 are still under investigation but it seems that roughly  180-200 micrograms may be helpful.  It is estimated that 80% of Americans do not get enough K2 in their diet which is similar to the deficiency of Vitamin D we are now seeing here in America

 

Foods Containing Vitamin K2

Fermented foods such as natto or veggies fermented with a starter culture of K2  –Note miso and tempeh are not high in K2

Grass-fed organic animal products

Goose liver pate

Certain cheeses such as Brie and Gouda (75mcg/ounce)

3d rendered illustration of the human heart

Posted on by Angela in Body, Diet, Nutrition, Whole Food 2 Comments

Pass the Salt

90% of Americans age 2 and older eat too much salt!  In fact, the average American eats around 3436mg daily!!!  This is amazing considering that less than 1500mg daily is required for prevention of high blood pressure.  In a nutshell, here is what high sodium intake does to the body.

1.  Extra sodium alters the sodium/potassium balance that is necessary for the kidneys to remove extra fluid from the body.  The extra fluid increases blood pressure and strains the blood vessels supplying blood to the kidney

2.  The higher blood pressure puts a strain on the arteries causing the tissue to become thicker and stronger which then even elevates the pressure more.  If left untreated, the arteries can burst or become clogged allowing for decreased nutrients and oxygen flow to organs

3.  High blood pressure ultimately damages the arteries to the heart and brain which can eventually lead to a heart attack or stroke.

 

Salt/Sodium Labeling Woes

Sodium free—-this means there is less than 5mg per serving—-

Very low sodium—this means 35mg or less per serving

Low sodium—means 140mg or less per serving

Reduced sodium—means it is reduced by 25% per serving

Light sodium—is reduced by 50%

 

Here are some little tips to reducing your sodium intake:

Rinse canned foods (vegetables, beans, tuna etc)

Take the salt shaker off the table

When eating out, ask the waiter to hold the salt

Read the food labels!!!!

Shoot for less than 3000mg daily

Posted on by Angela in Body, Diet, disease, Nutrition, vegan, Weight Loss, Whole Food Leave a comment

Fish Burps!

Dear Dee—

The good thing is that your cholesterol profile isn’t actually that bad.   The fact that your HDL is high is wonderful.  That represents your “good” cholesterol and it will actually give you a negative risk factor for heart disease if it hits the number 65!  Most people need to have an LDL below 130.  You are on the right track and if you keep exercising –that HDL will continue to shoot up.  Fish oil 1000mg three times a day will help bring your triglycerides down.  Put the tabs in the freezer so they will not thaw until they hit your small intestine.  Most people stop the supplements complaining of “fish burps.”

 

Dee writes:

My work had a free health screening today. With a finger-prick blood sample and a ten minute wait, they were able to give me some test results and recommendations. This is exciting because it will be a great baseline for future comparison. As I’ve mentioned, I’m 49 and 50 pounds overweight. That calculates to a BMI (body mass index) of 29.3, right on the borderline of overweight and obese. Blood pressure is just slightly high at 122/84 and triglycerides are high at 225. Glucose is good – 107. And the ratio of good/bad cholesterol is good even though my HDL (good) and LDL (bad) levels are a bit off. HDL should be below 40 and mine is 56, LDL should be below 100 and mine is 123. Here is the great part: everything I need to do to change these numbers for the better are (drumroll) eat right and exercise. That’s the magic formula that everyone wants to take in single-dose pill form for instant results. Can you imagine if it was that easy? What’s that saying about anything worth having is worth working for? I’d take a cheap, black market, shortcut to health if I could. But I can’t. Logging off to go walk on the beach for two miles. Anyone who is joining me, keep up the good work and send me a comment so we can support each other.

 

 

 

Posted on by Angela in Diet, Guest Blog, Humor, Nutrition, Weight Loss 1 Comment