Friday, April 27, 2012

Quick and Easy Tips to Prevent Acid Reflux and Heart Burn

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If you've ever experienced burning in the chest and throat, belching, nausea after eating, difficulty swallowing, hoarseness, coughing, hiccups, or pain with lying down, bending, and stooping – particularly after a large meal, there's a good chance you are suffering from a very common health problem. Acid reflux, also known as gastroesophageal reflux disease or GERD, the condition affects approximately 1/3 of the people in the United States. That's a scarily significant portion of the population, and costs for evaluation and treatment of GERD are more than $10 billion per year!

What Causes GERD?

GERD is a little more than occasional heartburn. People with occasional heartburn experience it less than once a week, while GERD affects people two times a week or more. In some cases, GERD may even cause significant discomfort every day, leading people suffering from the condition to try just about every type of medication they can.
So what causes GERD? Food passes through your digestive system via the lower esophageal sphincter (LES), which sits at the bottom of your esophagus just before your stomach. This passage is supposed to be one-way only. Unfortunately, a number of things can cause the LES to not close properly, or to open at inappropriate times, allowing stomach acid to flow upwards through the LES, carrying stomach acids into the esophagus and mouth. While many people experience occasional bouts of heartburn, when this begins to occur regularly, doctors diagnose GERD.

What factors contribute to GERD?
  • Eating large meals
  • Eating foods that irritate the stomach
  • Constipation or poor elimination
  • Excess belly fat
  • Excess intake of acidic foods
  • A high fat diet

Natural Ways to Eliminate Acid Reflux

While the common response to GERD is to reach for an antacid or the latest anti-GERD miracle medicine such as Zantac or Prilosec, this only treats the symptoms and does not eliminate the cause. In some cases, even medications aren't enough to fully eliminate symptoms. In others, you are forced to take more and more medicine in order to get the same level of relief. And even if you have relieved the symptoms through medicine, have you eliminated the cause? Of course not!
Fortunately, you can control the symptoms of GERD naturally, and even help your body heal so you never need to reach for that roll of Tums again! By making lifestyle changes that support good health, you can start feeling relief without medicine.
  1. The Glowing Green Smoothie: I really do believe the GGS is a miracle in a glass. Starting your day with one can do so many positive things for your health. Here's how it helps with GERD. Since one of the leading causes of GERD is constipation (straining to eliminate hardened stool can widen the LES over time, allowing acids to back up through the esophagus), all of the beneficial fiber from a daily GGS will help bulk up your stool and eliminate constipation. Another reason the GGS is so powerful in your fight against GERD and acid reflux is that you are starting your day with a powerfully alkaline drink that can neutralize any acids in your system and help maintain your body's pH levels.
  2. Eat a plant-based diet: Plants are full of wonderful nutrients, fibers, and active enzymes. Additionally, plants are alkaline, which can help create an internal environment that inhibits acids from building up. Plants are easy to digest, so your stomach doesn't need to work nearly as hard or produce nearly as much acid as it would with other foods.
  3. Avoid or minimize all animal products: On the other hand, animal products (including dairy, meat, fish, eggs, and poultry) are very difficult to digest. They require tremendous effort (and acid release) on the part of your stomach. Likewise, animal products create an acidic environment in which conditions like acid reflux thrive.
  4. Minimize acid-forming beverages: Coffee, soda, and energy drinks all create tons of acid in your body – and your stomach. They can also irritate your stomach lining. Carbonation may also contribute to GERD symptoms. Switch to herbal tea, pure water, or a water with a squeeze of lemon.
  5. Avoid gluten grains: Wheat, rye, barley, and some processed oats all contain gluten, which is a protein that is very hard for the digestive system to process. Instead, switch to healthy, non-GMO grains like millet and quinoa. These not only add beneficial fiber to your diet, but the are much easier on digestion.
  6. Minimize fats: While your body needs some fat to survive, minimizing your intake of super fatty foods like fried foods and animal products can make a big difference in GERD.
  7. If you are overweight, lose weight: Belly fat can contribute to GERD, so losing weight can ease the pressure on the LES.
  8. Stop eating before you are stuffed: Eat your meals slowly, chewing fully, and stop when you start to feel full – not when you feel so full you can't move. Huge meals overextend the stomach, which can cause – you guessed it – acid reflux.
  9. Eliminate foods that may irritate your stomach: Certain foods can really be irritating to the stomach, including things like onions and peppers. If you notice a certain food irritates your stomach, cut it out.
  10. Wait an hour after eating: Before you lie down or get all excited about bending, stooping, and other actions, wait an hour after a meal. This helps keep the acid right where it belongs – in your stomach. If you allow gravity to aid stomach acid by bending or lying and you have a weakened or widened LES, it's going to wind up in your esophagus and mouth.
  11. Sleep with your upper body in an elevated position. If acid reflux gets you at night, defy gravity by lying in bed with your upper body raised to keep acids where they belong.
  12. Avoid antacids: While these chalky pills temporarily relieve symptoms of acid reflux, they also cause the stomach to produce more acid to overcome the alkalinity they create. This creates a downward spiral where you take more antacids to combat the increased acid, and your stomach produces more acid to combat the increased number of antacids. Before long, you'll be going through a Costco-sized Tums in just a few days. Nobody wants to live that way!
  13. Stop smoking.


Natural Acid Reflux Treatment

I can see you saying, "But I have acid reflux right now. These things will take time. How can I relieve my symptoms now?"
Here are a few suggestions.
  1. Have some licorice root tea. This tea soothes and can coat the lining of your esophagus. If you have high blood pressure, talk to your doctor before trying licorice root, which can elevate blood pressure.
  2. Chew a fresh basil leaf. This Ayurvedic remedy can sooth your digestive tract.
  3. Suck on a slippery elm lozenge. Available at the health food store, these lozenges will protect your digestive tract and relive coughing or pain.
  4. Take digestive enzymes. This can help encourage digestion to occur more quickly.
  5. Try some organic raw honey. This will neutralize the pH in your stomach, reducing acids that can come back up.
  6. Have some chamomile tea. Chamomile can soothe and neutralize stomach acids.

*Please note that the above is a repost from Kimberly Snyder's blog on April 19th, 2012
Kimberly Snyder is a nutritionist and author of three books, which appeared on the New York Times Best Seller list.
Click on the below links to find out more about these books and/or make a purchase:
Beauty Detox Solution: Eat Your Way to Radiant Skin, Renewed Energy and the Body You've Always Wanted
The Beauty Detox Foods: Discover the Top 50 Beauty Foods That Will Transform Your Body and Reveal a More Beautiful You
The Beauty Detox Power: Nourish Your Mind and Body for Weight Loss and Discover True Joy

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

The Top 5 Beauty Detox & Cleansing Secrets

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On going cleansing is one of the most important ways to reach our highest goals of health and beauty, reverse aging and lose weight.

Cleansing is how our body rids itself of waste, toxins and the sludge that is trapped inside and is constantly accumulating.  When we are not cleansing properly, we can drive the toxins deeper into our body, where they continue to weaken us, steal our beauty energy, make us look old and tired, and eventually cause disease.

We cannot rebuild, heal or maintain our weight easily without cleansing.  Cleansing rebalances us and cleans out the sludge and mucus in our bodies so we can adequately absorb nutrients.  If you change your diet but don't properly cleanse on an ongoing basis, you will not get the results you desire, no matter how strictly you adhere to the program.

Beauty Detox Secret #1: PROBIOTICS
Probiotics help preserve a healthy digestive environment and play a critical role in our immune system.
Probiotics can also help restore our internal balance and will increase our overall health.

Poorly digested food ferments and putrifies in the digestive tract, stimulating the growth of unfriendly bacterua and the creation of their toxic, acidic by-products and waste, which then become absorbed into the blood and deposited in tissues all around the body, especially soft-tissue areas, such as the joints.  Toxins in the blood also negatively affect our skin and our physical appearance.
Digestive enzymes are therefore a critical aid to us.  They can be taken daily and right before meals and should be ingested before any meal that contains cooked food.  They give our bodies an extra boost of lipase, amylase and protease to help efficiently digest fats, starches and proteins.

Beauty Detox Secret #3: PROBIOTIC & ENZYME SALAD
Probiotic & Enzyme Salad is composed of raw, cultured vegetables that have been chopped and left in airtight glass containers at room temperature for several days.  This allows the beneficial lactobacilli and enzymes already naturally present in the vegetables to flourish, creating food that is extremely rich in probiotics (friendly bacteria), enzymes and minerals. It is really raw sauerkraut.
Consuming 1/2 to 1 cup with dinner at least five nights a week would be ideal.

This powerful cleanser combines magnesium oxide compounds that have been ozonated and stabilized to release monatomic, or nascent, oxygen over twelve hours or more throughout the entire digestive system.
Unlike synthetic laxatives, or even harsh natural herbs with laxative properties, like senna, good-quality magnesium-oxygen supplements are non-habit-forming and promote the strength of all the organs' functions, making them safe for regular use.

Our colon is the sewer system of the body and encases a large amount of aging sludge.  When our colon becomes overloaded, toxicity builds in the rest of our digestive tract, including our liver, kidneys, etc.  When we clean the colon, we start a chain reaction of cleansing in other organs throughout the whole body.
Gravity-centered colonics also work with gravity and your body's energy to release waste, so you'll actually strengthen peristalsis and your body's natural bowel movements, not weaken them.

BUY HERE: The Beauty Detox Solution: Eat Your Way to Radiant Skin, Renewed Energy and the Body You've Always Wanted

Thursday, April 19, 2012

DIET & DETOX UPDATE - April 2012

So, it's been about two months since I started this whole diet & detox kick and I must say that I have been doing pretty well.  I am proud of myself!
Last month, I brought a blender, which helped me to kick it up another notch with fruit and vegetable smoothies on a regular basis.  The benefit of these smoothies, which I think I mentioned in an earlier post, is that it allows you to have several servings of fruit and vegetables in a single cup. 
Anyways, here is the daily routine I follow to date.  I am entering times as a guideline, but it all depends on when I wake up and what I have to do/go that day.
5:00am                 Drink hot water with ¼ lemon
8:00am                 Drink 1 cup of water with daily vitamins and supplements (includes One-A-Day, Fish Oil, Iron and Probiotic)
8:30am                 Drink a cup of my Glowing Green Smoothie or eat some fruit (if smoothie isn't available)
9:30am                 Eat breakfast (After drinking the smoothie or eating fruit, I wait at least ½ hour and eat only if/when I am hungry)
10:30am               Drink a cup of water or tea or other nutritious drink, followed by a small nutritious snack if I'm hungry (anytime between 10:30am-12:00pm)
12:00pm               Eat lunch (Salad or other raw veggies, followed by the remaining portions of my meal)              
2:00pm                 Drink a cup of water or tea or other nutritious drink, followed by a small nutritious snack if I'm hungry (anytime between 2:00pm-7:00pm)
7:00pm                 Dinner (Salad or other raw veggies, followed by the remaining portions of my meal)
9:00pm                 Drink a cup of water or tea or other nutritious drink, followed by a small nutritious snack if I'm hungry
Some of the rules I follow are:
·         Do not drink during your meals.  Drink at least ½ hour before and/or 1 hour after your meal.
·         Listen to your body and only eat when hungry.
·         Begin each meal with a fruit or raw vegetable.
·         To help the flow of digestion eat from light to heavy (raw fruit à raw greens/vegetables à cooked greens/vegetables à starch à meat à desserts/other).
·         Cut artificial sweeteners and sodas from your diet (or decrease them dramatically).
·         Do not eat at least 2 hours before going to bed.
I am still working to perfect and improve on these.  In addition, I'm trying to discipline myself to work out at least 4 days a week.  I'm going away to a resort with my job in June and travelling to the beautiful island of Sal, Cape Verde in September.  I've got quite a bit of work to do!!!!! 

When to cut the financial cord on your kids


When to cut the financial cord on your kids

  • Start kids on their financial independence early by having them save for items they want.
  • One poll found 40 percent of adults 18 to 39 either live with their parents or have done so recently.
  • Get teenagers on the right track with a part-time job and by having them pay part of the bills.
You or someone you know probably has an adult child living at home, according the latest "60 Minutes" and Vanity Fair poll. More than half, 54 percent, of today's parents say there's no set time when kids should stop living at home -- not when they graduate from college, get a full-time job or even when they get married. More and more college-age and post-college-age children are taking advantage of this and living at home.

How old is too old?

Forty percent of American adults ages 18 to 39 either live at home or have done so recently, according to one poll for the National Endowment for Financial Education. That's alarming, as the findings exclude students and include "kids" up to the age of 39. The same survey found that these adult children are having a financial impact on their parents, too. Of surveyed parents with adult children living at home, 26 percent have taken on debt to support their kids, and 7 percent have delayed retirement.
This begs the question for the 46 percent of parents who think kids should live their own lives at some point: When should you cut the financial cord?

Start early

Children should begin earning for themselves at an early age by contributing to household chores and taking on extra tasks to earn cash, says family finance expert Ellie Kay. Make sure children understand their responsibilities, and contributions will increase as they get older.
"If you set a precedent that you will just hand over cash every time kids ask, the problem can exacerbate as adult financial responsibilities and mistakes take over," she says.
David Bakke, a personal finance reporter, says his parents gave him the rule that if he wanted to buy something, he had to earn the money to pay for it. Today, he says it's "one of the best things my parents did for me."
This system also applied to Andrew Schrage, one of Bakke's reporting colleagues. Schrage's parents made him save up for a car as a teen. "Although, they did sell me one of their old cars at a significantly reduced rate and (paid) for my auto insurance into my late teens," he says.
Kay agrees that if a teen wants to drive, he or she should pay for his or her own car. She also thinks teens should be required to pay for a portion of their auto insurance, so they appreciate what it costs.

The entitlement generation

Entitlement is especially prevalent in kids today who did not earn their own way in and have no idea what items cost, Kay says.
"As parents, we owe our children food, clothing, health care and shelter, not fun with friends, designer clothing, cellphones with data plans, a car or a party-school college experience," Kay says. "If kids want those things, they need to earn it for themselves. Otherwise, they feel entitled instead of appreciative."
She emphasizes that when kids work for things, they value them more. And this includes a college education.
Students who choose to work a moderate amount toward their college expenses often do better academically, according to the nonprofit College Board. Two-thirds of full-time undergraduate college students receive some type of financial aid. About 61 percent of that aid is in the form of grants, scholarships, federal work-study, tax credits and deductions that do not have to be repaid. The remaining 39 percent of financial aid dollars are in the form of loans.

Start cutting the cord on college financing early. Kay says to let teenagers know a portion of their time must be spent earning money for college, whether it be from a higher GPA or excelling in extracurricular activities. Kay says researching local, affordable schools; applying for state scholarships, grants and work-study programs; or joining the military are all ways to reduce college costs and earn money for college tuition and living expenses.
She adds that raising adults who take responsibility is the goal because that time period between ages 18 and 22 is when you should be cutting the cord on most financial responsibilities.

Credit concerns

"Giving teenagers access to your credit card sounds counterintuitive, but avoiding the topic is a horribly misguided approach to teaching kids how to use credit and achieve a good credit score," says John Ulzheimer, president of consumer education at "You have to assume they will use a credit card, so teach them how to use it sooner rather than later. Adding your older teen to your credit card account is the equivalent of driver's ed and a learner's permit when it comes to credit usage," he says.
Ulzheimer and Kay agree on never co-signing for loans or credit cards for your kids, no matter what age. "If you co-sign, they control the card or loan but you have equal debt liability if an account defaults. It puts your own debt-to-income ratio and credit score at risk," says Ulzheimer.
Kay says, "The baby boomer trend is to bail out their adult kids repeatedly, which deteriorates parents' own wealth and retirement."

When to cut the cord

A "boomerang kid" is an adult child who returns to live at home again later in life."When a boomerang fails to launch or refuses to leave home, you've got to cut that cord," says Kay. "Make it as uncomfortable as possible for that adult child to live at home. Instead of feathering the nest, add a few pine cones to make leaving the nest seem more attractive -- and then they will fly."
When to start cutting the financial cord:
  • Start cutting the financial cord early. If your young child wants designer duds or a fancy gaming system, have him or her earn it by doing chores around the house and saving money from birthdays and events.
  • By age 16, expect your kid to work for you with chores or at a part-time job. He or she can use this money to pay for a cellphone bill, a portion of car insurance and gas on your car, and as savings for his or her own car if he or she is driving.
  • If kids are living at home at age 18 and older and are not in school, they should be paying rent -- barring a tragedy or extenuating circumstances. Try to make the situation temporary by increasing the rent every three months or so they're still living at home. A written, well-planned exit strategy is your best friend when it comes to a grown child asking to live at home.

When to stay connected a little while longer:

  • If a college student wants his own credit card, keep him as an authorized user on your card while teaching him sound credit principles until he is 21. New credit card rules make it difficult for those younger than 21 to get their own credit cards without their own income or assets.
  • If your adult child needs help with health insurance, keep him or her on your plan as long as it's financially feasible for you. President Barack Obama's Health Care Reform/Affordable Care Act allows children to remain covered under a parent's health insurance until age 26.

Posted:March 2, 2012