While we are not exactly thinking about gardens just yet, the time will be coming soon.
But now is the time to consider these thoughts:
1. Your body is a garden. Yes, a garden! Sometimes we need a visual…
Have you ever seen a rose garden after it has been taken over by a blight? Have you ever seen healthy, lush vegetables growing and developing on the plant which gets choked out by weeds? Have you ever witnessed the effects of a garden with no rain? Of course you have witnessed these things, but now picture your body as the garden. Just as a blight causes wilted, broken leaves and dull, puny petals, leading to no life, if you acquire a fungus, for example, your skin develops painful or itchy or ugly rash or you can develop diarrhea, digestive problems or even hair loss. The weeds in our lives are things like hydrogenated fats, artificial flavors and colors, imbalance of nutrition, too much medications or inappropriate antibiotics use – to name a few. Each of these examples create severe problems of fatigue, poor stamina, hormonal and nutritional deficits, headaches, gastrointestinal disease, obesity, heart disease, stroke, and a host of other physical problems. When we try to go without adequate water intake, not only does our skin dry out causing premature wrinkling, but we cannot eliminate waste or toxins effectively, we develop constipation, our kidneys are not able to function as they were intended, we are more susceptible to urinary tract infections, and so much more.
2. You are God’s marvelous creation!
We all want to take care of ourselves, because of this miraculous gift of life. But do we? Do you? You may be thinking, “Where do I start?” “How do I maintain it?” “What if I mess up?” “Where do I go for guidance or questions?”
3. No worries!
This article discusses very eloquently the powerful effect our lifestyle choices make on our health. It gives some great tips and tools and basic information – all of which are practical and can be taken in a stepwise manner – that will help you on your way to feeling how you know you are meant to feel.
4. We are here to help, too!
You know we love our relationship with you, and we hope you also know that both Dr. Natalie and I are completely committed to you! We have been in your shoes, and we know what it is like to feel less than our best. This is why we do what we do. We are invested in your bodies and your wellness!
Dr. Brandon Mahaffy
P.S. We would love to see you in our office in Huntersville, NC. We are here for your health and wellness.
Why Diseases are Like Weed Seeds in Your Yard: How to Push Them Out, Cut Them Off, Stop Them Before They Take Root
When your yard is covered with healthy, dense, lush grass, there’s probably rarely a weed in sight. The healthy groundcover leaves no room for undesirable weeds to flourish. But, if your yard has been neglected, even a little, there may be bare spots or areas where the grass is sparse, leaving open patches for weeds to easily sprout up.
Like your yard, a “well-tended” body will be kept in top functioning form, leaving little room for chronic, degenerative diseases to settle in. But a neglected body will likely not fare so well, and may soon begin to sprout the roots of disease.
Red Alert! Are You “Seeding” Your Body for Disease?
Chronic illness is most often a direct result of poor lifestyle habits. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Mike Leavitt, chronic illness afflicts 100 million Americans… causes 7 out of 10 deaths… and consumes two-thirds of all U.S. health care costs ($2.00 out of every $3 spent on health care is for chronic illness caused most often by preventable poor lifestyle habits). His solution is all about prevention by following a simple lifestyle and engaging in physical activity.
The latest research also supports this premise. One recent study, published in the Archives of Internal Medicine, found that following just four healthy lifestyle factors — maintaining a healthy weight, exercising regularly, not smoking, and eating a healthy diet — could reduce your risk of the most common chronic diseases by 80 percent! Easier said than done? Fact remains that following those recommended lifestyle strategies reduces your risk of heart disease, cancer and diabetes significantly!
Likewise, the same healthy lifestyle factors have also been proven to cut women’s risk of premature death in half and lower men’s lifetime risk of heart failure significantly.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has even launched a Web site, www.FightChronicDisease.org, dedicated to sharing the many ways chronic diseases can be managed on a nationwide level. They report that close to half of Americans suffer from at least one chronic disease, and more than two-thirds of U.S. deaths are caused by the following five chronic diseases, many of which are preventable:
1. Heart disease
4. Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
“The vast majority of cases of chronic disease could be better prevented or managed,” they state on the site. “[But] many Americans are unaware of the extent to which chronic diseases could be better prevented or managed.”
What’s Missing from Your Healthy Lifestyle?
The four primary components of a “healthy lifestyle” include the following:
1. Eat plenty of health-promoting fresh and raw foods, and limit processed junk foods. One way to help you switch over to more fresh foods is to take advantage of the healthy and absolutely delicious recipes raw cookbooks like “Alive in 5: Raw Gourmet Meals in Five Minutes.
When prepared with locally grown organic ingredients from a source you trust, these are among some of the healthiest meals you can eat.
Most everyone also agrees that monounsaturated fats, the kind found in avocados, olive oil, and nuts, and omega-3 fats, the kind found in fish and fish A well-tended yard leaves no room for weeds to pop up. Likewise, if you carefully look after your body, you can help keep disease away. oils and flaxseeds, are exceptionally healthy and should definitely be included in your diet.
2. Get enough sleep every night. Once you are in bed, consider listening to relaxing music or white noise sounds which CDs can be helpful, like the “Sleep Easy” CD to help you shift-gears and relax into sleep.
3. Keep stress to a minimum. For times at work or home when you need help putting your mind at ease, find a peaceful moment by taking as little as a five minute break to meditate. What can help in such times are CDs you can drop into your computer like the “Pure Relaxation” CD which can calm your mind, soothe your emotions and create a state of deep relaxation in your body. These type meditations are unique in that they guide you the listener to relax in a natural, effortless way.
4. Exercise regularly. Join a local health club or less expensive find a friend to help make a daily commitment to do an exercise program you can do right from your own home. There are hundreds of programs to consider. Two CD series CDs that helps build your core are PX90 or Shea Netics from MySheaNetics.com, a mind-body workout, to create and continuously improve your exercise routine.
If you’re already following these steps, good for you! However, you should know that you still might need some extra help “re-seeding” your body for optimal health …
Like re-seeding your healthy lawn with grass seed, your gut may need to be replenished with good bacteria, or probiotics, on a regular basis.
When we are born, most of us began with a clean slate in terms of health. Unborn babies are equipped with their own friendly bacteria and after they are born breast milk helps that bacteria to grow and flourish.
However, from there many people exist largely on diets of processed and pasteurized foods, which are virtually devoid of the friendly bacteria we need to flourish.
A further assault to your body’s beneficial bacteria comes from antibiotics. These drugs not only kill the bad bacteria that may be causing your illness, but antibiotics also kill ALL bacteria, including the good kind in your digestive tract that your body needs, leaving barren territory for all sorts of trouble to take root (antibiotics leave your gut highly susceptible to bad bacteria when the good bacteria has been killed).
Because of this, many natural health experts believe it is important to take a probiotic supplement if you have recently finished a round of antibiotics, while others believe most people can benefit from taking a probiotic supplement every day.
Foods that are naturally fermented, and then eaten in their raw form without being pasteurized, can provide healthy sources of probiotics naturally. Examples of these healthy probiotic-rich foods include un-pasteurized:
• Yogurt (un-pasteurized)
• Natto (fermented soy)
However, these foods are not widely eaten in the United States, which is why it’s important to nurture your gut by “re-seeding” it with a probiotic supplement. You can also gain increased levels of good probiotics by having your yogurt and your probiotics at the same time, creating a highly active environment for increased probiotic growth.
As written in the book Digestive Wellness, probiotics lower the pH of your colon and kill disease-causing microbes. They also produce vitamins A, B and K, protect you from illness, enhance peristalsis, and make lactase for milk digestion. Probiotics also ferment dietary fiber, producing short-chained fatty acids, one of which, called butyric acid, having low levels has been associated with ulcerative colitis, colon cancer, active colitis and inflammatory bowel disease. Already, it’s been found that probiotics may:
• Enhance your immune system (70 percent of your immune system is located in your digestive system, which means that if your gut is overrun with bad bacteria, there’s a good chance your immune system will not be functioning at its best)
• Prevent infections after surgery
• Treat acute and chronic diarrhea • Relieve inflammatory bowel disease
• Treat irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
• Protect against cancer development and progression
• Prevent eczema in children
• Prevent and treat vaginal yeast infections and urinary tract infections
• Help reduce systemic allergic responses
Strains of Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium are the most commonly used probiotic bacteria in dietary supplements. There are over 35 species of Bifidobacteria and 125 species of Lactobacilli making up the majority of gut microflora found in your large bowel or colon.
In choosing a probiotic for yourself ask your practitioner for a recommendation. Seek a high quality probiotic supplement that provides clinical activities supporting systemic health and wellness through immune-system protection, allergy reduction and effective and enhanced nutrient absorption — in order to restore balance to your gastrointestinal tract.
Healthy Raw Food: Another Key to Keeping Diseases at Bay
Raw plant and animal foods (such as raw milk) are loaded with beneficial enzymes for your body. Enzymes are special proteins that act as catalysts for the chemical reactions that occur to keep your body functioning. However, enzymes begin to be destroyed at temperatures above 110-115 degrees. So if your food is cooked, pasteurized or processed, it will contain no enzymes whatsoever.
Even though your body produces some enzymes on its own, if you’ve been eating only cooked foods for a long time, your body must divert extra energy to producing more and more enzymes to break down this food.
This puts a strain on your digestive organs, including your pancreas, and some say may cause premature damage to these organs that can impact your overall health.
On the other hand, if you eat raw foods that contain their own living enzymes, you’re giving your body a break, and allowing it to digest efficiently with very little effort. This is actually one of the key benefits that raw food-ists often give to advocate a raw food diet.
The ideal way to add enzymes to your diet is simply by eating more raw foods. Be generous with consuming raw fruits and vegetables, and also consider adding other sources of raw food to your diet, such as raw milk and raw-milk cheese.
Another option if your diet consists primarily of cooked foods is to take an enzyme supplement. There are numerous enzyme supplements available on the market to help increase your levels.
Regular Maintenance is Also Important
When a weed pops up in your yard, pulling it out by the roots is the best option. This gets rid of the problem at its source, without introducing a potentially toxic agent into your lawn, such as a chemical herbicide that could harm other plants growing nearby.
Likewise, in your body it’s wise to strategically remove potentially disease-causing substances that you ingest in your food, water and air on a daily basis. By eating only organic foods, using natural cleaning products in your home, and purifying your home’s air regularly using a high-quality air treatment system you can help to minimize your exposure in the first place.
But the truth is, no matter how careful you are or how clean a life you lead, you probably have hundreds of chemicals in your body right now.
In fact, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently released its Fourth National Report on Human Exposure to Environmental Chemicals, 2009, the most comprehensive assessment to date of the exposure of the U.S. population to chemicals in the environment.
Researchers found 212 chemicals in people’s blood or urine samples, a staggering 75 of which had never been measured in the U.S. population before.
So what can you do?
There are many ways of removing toxic chemicals such as heavy metals from your body, but most of them involve expensive treatments where a doctor injects you with drugs or vitamins intravenously via a drip. Many of these drugs will also strip the good minerals from your body, something that is not recommended since it is difficult to replenish (or replete) these important substances.
A better and safer way could be to take some drops of a natural tincture a few times per day.
Like other chemicals, heavy metals can accumulate in your body from silver dental fillings, contaminated seafood and other foods, cosmetics, pollution, contaminated water, vaccines and other sources, so it would be wise to disarm this potential “time-bomb” now before it causes serious illness in the future.
Are You Ready to Make the Change?
Your health is truly your most valuable asset. Without it, your life cannot go on as you have planned. So why not make today the day you embark on a lifestyle that nourishes your body and mind, keeping your body as pristine and strong as a well-tended lawn?
With some special attention to eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly, tending to stress and getting high-quality sleep — along with avoidance of toxins wherever possible — you will be planting the seeds of health in your body, while routinely evicting any “weed” seeds of disease.
“Look to your health; and if you have it, praise God, and value it next to a good conscience; for health is the second blessing that we mortals are capable of; a blessing that money cannot buy.”
Sources ScienceDaily.com August 12, 2009
ScienceDaily.com September 19, 2008
ScienceDaily.com July 21, 2009
© 2012 Health Realizations, Inc.