The information from today’s post was taken from Habit Catalyst, a new platform that I am using to help my clients eat healthier. I hesitate to use this phrase, but Habit Catalyst has been a game changer for my clients! If you are interested in learning more about how you can overhaul your diet without ever actually going on a diet, send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and we can set up a time to chat about how we can work together to help you reach your goals.
Now for today’s post brought to you by the good folks from Habit Catalyst.
Today marks the first day of your new habit, Supplement Support. Supplements are used for a very specific purpose and are used to supplement an already healthy diet.
A couple supplements can help a person at any stage of his or her journey.
In order to make this initial recommendation, a few assumptions are being made:
- You do not consume high quality, no-contaminant fish or marine life on a weekly basis.
- Your gut isn’t working properly due to years of a poor diet, high-stress lifestyle, antibiotic use or any combination of the three.
This brings us to your habit.
The recommended supplements are:
What We Recommend
A high-quality omega 3 supplement, typically called fish oil.
Follow the dosing on the bottle. Typically 3-9 grams per day of fish oil.
Every day, with food
If you have any of the following issues, speak with your health care provider before supplementing with fish oil.
- A fish/seafood allergy;
- You are taking anticoagulant or “blood thinner” medication (such as Warfarin);
- You have scheduled surgery;
- You have a bleeding disorder.
What We Recommend
There are a lot of different probiotics on the market today, so don’t try and complicate things. Choose one and go with it and then as you learn more you can upgrade if necessary.
Choose a brand with a wide spectrum of bacterial types – such as different strains of Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus species. Look for a brand with high colony forming units (CFU) which indicates how many live microbes the supplement contains.
Follow the directions on the label.
Again, follow the instructions the label. Some probiotics are best taken with food while others are best taken first thing in the morning.
If you have any questions or concerns ask coach or your health care provider.
All About Fish Oil
Hopefully, you stopped at the store or ordered your fish oil and probiotics and they are on their way. If not, get to it.
Today, we are going to talk about why fish oil is so important. The “why” isn’t always important to everyone but it will provide you with a deeper understanding and make sure that fish oil is right for you.
Why fish oil?
Fish oil is rich in two omega 3 fatty acids called DHA and EPA. These are “essential” fatty acids, which means our body cannot manufacture them and we must ingest them through our diet. Omega 3 fatty acids fall in the fat category of polyunsaturated fats.
Foods rich in DHA and EPA are found primarily in fatty fish (salmon, anchovies, mackerel, sardines), krill (those little things whales eat) and algae (yes, the green stuff that grows on the bottom).
Most people today consume very little of these foods and since these fatty acids are essential to the function of our body, it’s important that we supplement. Also, the pollution in our ocean, things like mercury and PCB’s, is starting to show up in our fish supply. The cool thing with supplementation is that manufacturers can purify the fish oil, ensuring it is free of any contaminants. This way, we get all the good without the bad.
What do they do?
Omega 3’s do a whole host of really cool things in our body.
- They may help reduce our risk of things like diabetes, heart disease and cancer.
- They may help support bone health, especially in women who are entering menopausal years.
- They may help to support mood and proper serotonin levels.
- They may help to reduce the inflammation in our body. You know, that creaky feeling in your joints.
- They may help our cells and brain function better and, probably most important to you, they help make us leaner.
Tips and Tricks
- If you have a hard time swallowing pills, find krill oil which has much smaller pills. You can also get fish oil in a liquid form.
- If you struggle with fish burps, try refrigerating or even freezing your capsules. This will allow them to get further into your digestive system before breaking down, preventing the burps.
All About Probiotics
What are Probiotics?
A good way to think about probiotics is as our beneficial belly bugs. Probiotics are live microorganisms similar to those found in our gut. Our gut is filled with bacteria, both “good” and “bad.” The science types like to call the bacteria in our gut, gut flora.
Research is starting to mount linking the health and diversity of our gut flora and our overall health.
What Does the Gut Flora Do in the Body?
Gut flora is very important in the health of our gut.
- It helps us fight off infections;
- It helps synthesize vitamins;
- Is very important to our overall metabolism;
- Comprises a vast majority of our immune system.
Our gut is one of the defenses between the outside world and the inside of our body. If its not working properly, our body isn’t going to work properly. As a result of our modern lifestyle, our guts are not too happy.
Scientists are also starting to learn there are differences in gut flora between people who are lean and those who are obese. They are finding that people who are obese have disrupted gut flora, which could be causing them to absorb more calories from the food they eat, among other things.
If this kind of thing interests you, here is great article from Medical Daily by Dr. Gerry Mullin, a gastroenterologist and nutritionist, at The John Hopkins University.
What Destroys Our Gut Bacteria?
Unfortunately, our modern lifestyle is not doing our beneficial belly bugs any favors. Things that decrease the amount of good bacteria and let bad bacteria take a stronger hold are things like:
- Antibiotic use and other medications;
- Diets high in refined carbohydrates, sugar and processed foods;
- Chronic stress;
- Chronic infections.
Any of that stuff look familiar?
What can we do about it?
The really cool thing about our body is its resilience. One can put the body through a lot of turmoil before it breaks down. This is the reason most disease happens later in life. The body has a breaking point, but as the old saying goes, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” The body, given the right environment, also has a tremendous ability to heal itself.
The first step is starting to restore your gut flora is limiting the factors listed above.
The second step is starting to repopulate and support the gut flora with a high-quality probiotic and eating more fermented foods. This will ensure that your gut is getting what it needs to be healthy.
If you haven’t yet picked up a high-quality probiotic, do so as soon as you can. If you already have one, make sure you are consistently taking it.”
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