Is Your Foundation Strong Enough to Weather the Storm?

No, I’m not talking about Sandy (means more if your from NJ and NY).  I am, however, talking about the internal and external influences that could disrupt your balance and your health.

We now know that your physical (internal) foundation is responsible for your health and well being (mental and physical).  If you’re looking to improve your health, both mentally and physically then ask yourself these questions.

*How healthy is your digestive tract?  Are your bowel movements regular (at least once a day), formed, brown, and pain free?  Are most of your foods cooked or raw/steamed?

        *How healthy is your diet?  Are you eating multiple servings and multiple colors of vegetables and fruits daily?  Are you eating enough protein?  Have you chosen organic?

        *How complete is your nutrition?  Are you getting the nutrients that are needed to feed your bones, your immune system, your brain, your heart, oh did I mention, your hormonal system?

        *How healthy is your environment?  Are you in a peaceful place?  Are there other influences in your home, workplace, family that are serving you or are they stressing you out?

The first and most important step in the healing process is awareness.  If you are aware of the influences, be it positive or negative, you are on your way to finding the answers to what you need to heal your body.

Let’s take a look at what is involved in the foundational success of your vitality, clarity, wellness, and ultimate well being.

#1 – Digestive HealthYour digestive tract is the number one line of defense in your immune system.  You must feed the digestive tract with plenty of organic vegetables (multiple colors), fruits, fiber, minerals, grass fed beef and poultry, clean fish, and chocolate (just kidding).

You must have regular bowel movements!  They should be at least once a day and well formed.  No residue.  You should not have to wipe yourself several times to exit the bathroom.

More Digestive Stuff – You must absorb your nutrients to support your body and it’s functions.  Is your gut able to absorb the nutrients supplied or are you having a problem with assimilation?  How do you know?  Well…

     Are antacids a must to get through the day?   

     Do you have gas – is it smelly?  

     Do you crave dessert?  

     Are you hungry all the time?  

     Are you nauseous?  

     Cramps? 

     Do you have skin disorders?

     Allergies?

     Headaches?

     Weight gain?

#2 – Blood Sugar Management – If you have sweet and carb cravings you have problems with the management of your blood sugar.  The majority of the time it is due to high carbohydrate intake.  If you have cravings for carbs it has probably already become a viscous cycle.  NOT NORMAL.  You should not be craving carbohydrates!!!  It is common today because of the standard american diet (SAD) but it is not normal.

Think of your metabolism like a campfire.

The logs are the proteins and fats, the kindling is complex carbohydrates, the paper is simple carbs and sugars and stimulants like alcohol and caffeine are the gasoline that is thrown on the fire.   

When you do not have enough protein, healthy fats and complex carbohydrates (logs and kindling) to provide slow burning and steady fuel, the body will call for a quick fix that will stimulate the fire in order to provide energy.

Simple carbs, sugars, and stimulants (paper and gasoline) will spark your metabolism and will provide temporary fuel until it runs out, and it runs out quickly.  The longer you provide your metabolism with the quick fix the harder it is to get to the real fuel (protein and fats).  And a vicious cycle is in place.

The continuous addition of paper and gasoline is detrimental to your health not only for today but for tomorrow. It is the #1 cause of diabetes today.

LOWER-CARB MEDITERRANEAN-TYPE DIET

(The stressed-out person’s diet)

The following will help balance blood sugar and hormone levels, help with Adrenal Fatigue, prevent ups and downs in energy and mood, and promote weight loss. It is also an extremely heart-healthy diet plan.

HOW TO EAT

  1. Eat every two hours. This relieves the stress handling glands from the job of maintaining normal blood sugar levels between meals (via epinephrine and cortisol).
  2. Do not eat carbohydrates alone; always add protein to your meals and snacks. It is especially important not to eat a carbohydrate-only breakfast.
  3. Avoid stimulants—caffeine, sugar, alcohol, etc. Stimulants work by provoking the stress handling glands into releasing epinephrine and cortisol to raise blood sugar and release energy.
  4. Avoid dead, devitalized and junk food. These foods cannot re-build a healthy body. They are also anti-nutrients—they rob any remaining nutrient stores from your body.
  5. Avoid trans-fats and rancid fats. Cell membranes, nerve tissue, and steroid hormones (vitality hormones) all require healthy fats. Unhealthy fats interfere with these functions and structures.
  6. Eat real, whole, fresh food. Minimize fruits and fruit juices. Most people will do well on a Mediterranean-type diet, combining some carbohydrates, protein and fat at each meal.
  7. Salt your food liberally with sea salt. Stress handling glands need plenty of salt for normal function. Research has proven that eating salt does not cause high blood pressure or heart disease. Only people with organ damage, like kidney disease, need to be concerned with keeping a low salt diet. In fact, low salt diets contribute to adrenal fatigue.
  8. Sea salt can be obtained from a health food store. It looks and tastes like “regular” salt, but contains the trace minerals that have been refined out of “regular” salt. For a good source of “Real Salt” visit www.realsalt.com or call 800-FOR-SALT (800-367-7258)
  9. Drink plenty of water (filtered, or a reliable source of spring water, NOT tap water).

What to Eat

  1. Eat foods rich in Omega 3 fatty acids such as fatty cold water (not farm grown) fish,including salmon, tuna, trout, herring and mackerel. Eat walnuts, flaxseeds and green leafy vegetables. Or, if you prefer, take an Omega 3 supplement such as Tuna Omega-3 Oil (2 perles 2x/day).
  2. Use monounsaturated oils, especially virgin or extra virgin olive oil as your primary oil/fat source. Note: Canola oil, although a monounsaturate, is a highly refined, genetically- engineered oil with none of the benefits of olive oil. 
  3. Eat seven or more servings of vegetables and fruits every day. Fruits are minimized during the first few months. Vegetables & fruits should be fresh or frozen (not canned). Vegetables can be slightly cooked, steamed, or eaten raw.
  4. Eat natural sources of good protein, (not man-made deli meats), and preferably organic grass fed meats (raised without estrogenic hormones and antibiotics).
  1. Eat more vegetable protein including peas, beans, lentils, and nuts.
  2. Eat only organic whole grains (non-commercial). No refined carbohydrates (like white flour, white rice, white pasta, white sugar)
  3. The best breads are found in the frozen section of the health food store. Look for organic sprouted grain breads (sprouted grains have a higher protein and lower carbohydrate content than regular flour). These must be kept refrigerated.
  4. Minimize oils that are high in Omega 6 fatty acids, including corn, safflower, sunflower, soybean, and cottonseed oils.
  5. Reduce or eliminate intake of trans-fatty acids (all hydrogenated oils), which are prevalent in margarine, vegetable shortening, and almost all commercially prepared packaged foods.

10.   Make complex carbohydrates (such as breads, pasta, and grains) your smallest food group.

The Mediterranean-Type Diet, also known as the Crete Diet and Omega Diet, was compared to the Standard American Heart Association Diet in the Lyon Diet Heart Study in 1994.

“Compared to those on the AHA diet, patients on the Mediterranean-Type Diet had an unprecedented 76% lower risk of dying from cardiovascular disease or suffering heart failure, heart attack, or stroke! Remarkably, the new diet had proven more effective at saving lives than any other heart diet, drugs, lifestyle program, or any combination of these elements.” {See The Omega Diet: The Lifesaving Nutritional Program Based on the Diet of the Island of Crete, by Simopoulos, Artemis, P., M.D., and Jo Robinson, Harper Collins Publishers, Inc., 1999. p9

For ideas of what to eat that can be applied to the above directions:

  • Why Can’t I Lose Weight Cookbook by Lorrie Medford, C.N., LDN Publishing 2001
  • Nourishing Traditions: The Cookbook That Challenges Politically Correct Nutrition and the Diet Dictocrats by Sally Fallon and Mary Enig, PhD, NewTrends Publishing, Inc. 2001

#3 – Hormone Metabolism/Elimination – How well are your hormones being metabolized and eliminated is key to hormonal balance.

If your liver and gall bladder are sluggish you will not be able to process the hormones that need to be converted or excreted.  Estrogen dominance stagnates the bile and impairs hormone excretion.  Creating higher levels of estrogen dominance.

The Standard Process Purification Program provides a gentle detoxification to the organs of elimination and unclog the liver.

#4 – Stress Modification – Constant stress stimulates and ultimately weakens  the adrenal glands.

The purpose of your adrenal glands is to help your body cope with stress and survival.  They are known as your stress handling glands for that very reason.  The adrenal glands were designed to respond to stress  by secreting minute and precise amounts of steroid hormones.

A prolonged stress response will deplete your adrenals, causing a decrease in the output of adrenal hormones, particularly cortisol.  Your body will compensate for this state by stealing from the body building, energy producing DHEA hormone creating an overall imbalance to the steroid hormone family and creating catabolism (breakdown) aka accelerated aging.

Your adrenal are also the backup system for hormonal output when we go into menopause.  If your glands are fatigued they are not able to supply your body with progesterone, testosterone, DHEA and more.  Creating a very difficult time during peri-menopause to post-menopause.

How is your foundation?  What is one thing that you can do today to start your journey to better health and a longer, happier, fulfilled life?

A healthy body = A healthy mind.  When your digestive tract is healthy (not relying on the purple pill) your blood sugar and hormones are balanced,  and your stress levels are managed.  Your body can better fight incoming invaders, changes in weather and unexpected trauma, protecting you from the storm.

If you have questions in regards to this article or resources mentioned here please call me at 732-991-2065 for help.  Please feel free to post comments and/or questions for discussion.

Discover how you can change the direction of your health and your life. 

Apply for your complimentary discovery session to see if I can help you change the direction of your health and your life.

http://www.managingmenopausenaturally.com/strategy-session

 

About Dr. Brenda Sahlin

Dr. Brenda Sahlin, D.C, Clinical Herbalist / Whole Food Nutritionist Making 50 the new 35!
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