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Be Upbeat When It Comes to Heart Health

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https://www.gardavita.com/content/images/thumbs/0000217_daily-multichew-bogo-2x-bottles.jpegAll this month of February America celebrates the amazing human heart with Heart-Health Awareness Month. While heart health consistently ranks as the top health concern in the nation, new research indicates that there are more and more everyday things you can do to sway it in a more positive direction.

Yes, You Can!

The first step in any lifestyle change is having the right attitude. A study published in Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes on 600 patients found that those who took the initiative to exercise and turn their health around significantly increased their life expectancy. Another study in the American Journal of Cardiology also found that having an upbeat attitude actually protected people from heart health risks. A large part of staying positive includes reducing stress. Research published in both the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism and Archives of Internal Medicine found that stress and its associated hormones can put added pressure on your heart. So if you find yourself feeling overwhelmed, take time to unwind by engaging in relaxing activities such as reading a book, spending time with friends, or participating in physical activities.

Get Moving

Depending on various factors like age and doctor-recommended restrictions, physical activity is anything that gets you moving to burn calories. From climbing stairs to organized sports, staying active can support a healthy heart and aid circulation. At the very least, start walking; it’s fun, easy, and a sociable exercise. An article in the journal, Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis and Vascular Biology, states that walking can help normalize blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood sugar levels.

Nutrition You Can Live By

Your diet plays an important role in supporting a healthy heart. Even simple things, such as remembering to eat a healthy breakfast, can help lower cardio health risks according to one Harvard study. Certain foods, when added to your diet, aid various aspects such as cholesterol, blood pressure, and weight management. Fish such as salmon, tuna, trout, herring, and mackerel contain omega-3 fatty acids, which have been shown to help lower blood pressure and triglycerides that can help maintain healthy cholesterol levels. The American Heart Association recommends eating these types of fish at least two times a week. Kidney beans or black beans can also be good sources omega-3 fatty acids as well as niacin, folate, magnesium, calcium, and soluble fiber. Even foods like yogurt and supplements containing probiotics have been studied recently for their cholesterol-lowering effects. Besides adding more nutritious foods to your diet, it’s important to cut back on the ones that push your heart health in the wrong direction. One observational study published in BMC Medicine found that cutting back on processed meat consumption to less than 20 grams per day could lower mortality rates by 3.3%. Lowering your consumption of red meat can also lower levels of amino acids that have been linked to heart concerns.

Healthy Snacking

Snacking doesn’t need to be the bane of your diet. Healthy snacks such as almonds and walnuts also contain omega-3s as well as fiber, folate, and magnesium that can boost your nutrition. Oatmeal, whole grains, and flaxseed can provide vitamins, minerals, and nutrients like magnesium, potassium, folate, niacin, calcium, and soluble fiber. Of course, a consistently healthy diet revolves around choosing lots of fruits and vegetables on a regular basis. Avoid fried foods, and foods and drinks with added sugars.

No Ifs, Ands, or “Butts” About It

Enough can’t be said on how much quitting smoking can boost heart health. But if you or someone you know needs yet another to convince them on how much their health can improve by quitting smoking, take a look at this study presented at a meeting held by the American Heart Association: It found that people who smoked fewer than 3.2 packs of cigarettes a day for 10 years could lower their heart illness risk to the same level as nonsmokers in eight years. Even heavy smokers who quit could improve their life expectancy by 35%.

The Power to Change Is in Everyone’s Hands

Some factors such as hereditary genes may be beyond your control, but by believing that you have the power to change your health and by following through with those changes, the power of positive thinking can go a long way. If the state of your heart is weighing heavily on your mind, adopt an upbeat attitude, be more active, eat healthier, and say goodbye to bad habits. Keep your heart in mind this February—and throughout your lifetime—by taking the steps towards greater well-being today!


Omega3Q10
 
 

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How a Healthy Love Life Can Lead to a Healthier Overall Life

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How a Healthy Love Life Can Lead to a Healthier Overall LifeFinding love and a partner in life is a story as old as human society itself. While love is often unexplainable, that hasn't stopped scientists from attempting to analyze the deeper meanings behind the laws of attraction by trying to find out what makes us tick and why we choose certain partners. But whether you believe that opposites attract or that people often seek others with similar tastes, the one thing that everyone agrees on is that being in love is good for you mentally, emotionally, and physically.

It's easy for those who have never experienced “love at first sight” to dismiss it as just another fantasy, but the fact is the brain releases love-related chemicals in the brain within a split second of eyeing someone you're attracted to. These chemicals—notably dopamine and norepinephrine—trigger a euphoric feeling and may cause those sometimes hasty decisions people make when they are “in love.” Adrenaline racing through your system can also cause your heart rate to rise and make you jittery when you're around the one you love, which is why so many people equate love to a drug; albeit one with more positive benefits to you overall.

Sealed with a Kiss

Kissing can have a wide range of sociological implications. A recent study took survey answers from 900 different adult men and women who were asked about the importance of kissing in relation to both short and long-term relationships. Results showed that kissing may serve as a subconscious test in compatibility. Through the sense of taste and smell, your mind and body may be taking biological cues for compatibility, genetic fitness, and general health. The study also found that the importance of kissing changed depending on whether people were in a short- or long-term relationship. Women rated kissing as more important in long-term relationships because they viewed it as a way of sustaining affection and attachment throughout a relationship.

The Important Role of Intimacy

Besides the emotional pluses that relationships can bring, physical intimacy with your partner has a wide range of health benefits—some of which may come as a surprise. First and foremost, sexual intimacy can be a form of exercise that burns up to five calories a minute. It increases your heart rate, helps lower blood pressure, and balances testosterone and estrogen levels. One study found that men who were intimate with their partners at least twice a week had better overall heart health. It also strengthens the pelvic muscles in women and supports prostate health in men, which can promote healthy urinary function. Intimacy also helps boost testosterone levels and aids a strong libido, increasing your ability and performance. Sexual activity is also good for immune health. Researchers at Wilkes University in Pennsylvania found that people who were intimate with their partners once or twice a week had higher levels of certain antibodies to boost the immune system than those who didn't. A healthy physical relationship with your partner can also serve as a sleep aid, helping you to relax and fall asleep quicker and easier. And simply snuggling up to your partner can help relieve anxiety and stress because it releases the hormones vasopressin in men and oxytocin in women; “cuddle hormones” that enhance your affection for your partner.

Love Is a Many-Splendored Thing

Opening up your heart to another person is one of the greatest things you can do for your own emotional and physical well-being. The euphoria from being in love can help lift your mood and help you view life with “glass half full” perspective. Intimacy with your partner is crucial to bonding, helping to foster a healthier and happier relationship, which can extend to other areas of your health. Besides being good for your heart emotionally, it's actually good for your heart physically, too, as well as your immune system, muscles, hormone levels, and libido. It can help ease daily stress, and boost your mood and self-esteem, all while keeping anxiety at bay. Valentine's Day is one day out of the year that puts the spotlight on your love life, but a healthy relationship is something you should strive to maintain with your partner every day. Intimacy plays a large role in that, so remember to show the one you love how much you appreciate them because the payoffs to your emotional and physical well-being are worth it.

EnhanceMax PRODesireFem


 

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From Body to Brain to Bones, Just How Important Is Vitamin D?

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From Body to Brain to Bones, Just How Important Is Vitamin D?Vitamin D is a vital component to many areas of your health including bone density, muscle strength, immune health, brain function, and more. However, as recently as 2009 it was reported that nearly three-quarters of all teens and adults in US are vitamin D deficient. This is a critical area to address as the consequences can have far-ranging effects on your overall health.

Sun to Skin

Your body’s skin cells are able to produce vitamin D every time you step out into the sun, so it stands to reason that vitamin D should be easy to obtain. But those with darker skin and people who spend a lot on time indoors or in darker regions, may have a harder time absorbing enough sunlight to produce a proper amount of vitamin D. It is recommended to spend 15 to 30 minutes a few days a week outside in direct sunlight. However, UV rays can be harmful so health experts don’t often advise getting Vitamin D from sun exposure.

Just How Important Is Vitamin D?

Vitamin D is important right down to the core of your health. It influences everything from aiding calcium absorption for strong bones to supporting muscles and teeth. Vitamin D can also influence heart health. It has been studied for its ability to support healthy blood pressure levels, and promote healthy arteries and circulation. Recent studies have shown that it can also influence your auto-immune system’s health, aiding your body’s natural defenses. If supporting almost every aspect of your body wasn’t enough, vitamin D has also shown its merit in supporting the brain. Several studies have shown that sufficient levels of vitamin D can support brain function and cognitive health. It seems there is nothing this multipurpose vitamin can’t do, but are you getting enough?

Where Do I Get Vitamin D and How Much Do I Need?

Eating a healthy and balanced diet containing cereals and low-fat milk fortified with vitamin D can be a great way to start off your day. Many brands of orange juice also contain added vitamin D; just be wary of additives and sugar content. For dinner, if you’re looking to boost your vitamin D intake, certain fish, especially mackerel, salmon, tuna, and sardines can all provide healthy amounts of vitamin D. In addition, foods like eggs (especially the yolks), cheese, and yogurt can all help fortify your diet with the recommended amounts of vitamin D. How much you need depends on you as an individual. Age, nationality, and where you live can all factor into your recommended daily amount. While there is still some debate on how much vitamin D you should take, allowances ranging up to 4,000 IU’s a day are generally considered safe. For those who may have trouble getting enough vitamin D through their diet there are also many vitamin D supplements that can satisfy your daily needs. So be sure to stay up to date on how much you need, and continue to make the choices that give you all the nutrition you need to remain healthy each day!


Vitamin D
 

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A Little Spice Goes a Long Way: The Surprising Benefits of Three Everyday Spices

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A Little Spice Goes a Long Way: The Surprising Benefits of Three Everyday SpicesSpices have been a part of human society for thousands of years, with evidence of their use dating as far back as 2000 BC. Throughout human history different cultures have utilized them for food preparation, preservation, and religious ceremonies; and they have even been catalysts for global exploration. Some spices were such rare commodities that they were used for trading. The little, ground pepper flakes you shake onto your meal or salad were once used as currency, and nutmeg found in recipes and snacks was once so valuable that a historian has called it “the iPhone of the 1600s.” We tend to pay less attention to the details in spices these days because they’re so commonplace, but some of these simple additives can provide a pinch of support to your health. Here are some everyday spices with some surprising benefits.

Cinnamon

It may come as a surprise that cinnamon provides anything beyond an interesting flavor—both spicy and sweet—to our foods. But this brown spice has been known to help promote healthy blood flow. The chemical responsible for these benefits—cinnamaldehyde—also possesses anti-inflammatory properties. In a 2011 study it was found that the use of cinnamon in diets can also help combat the negative effects of triglycerides found in high-fat meals.

Turmeric

Turmeric, like cinnamon was also mentioned in the same 2011 study as one of the spices that helped lessen the negative effects of meals high in fat. This orange-colored spice is commonly used in Middle Eastern and Southeast Asian cuisines. It is also known for its powerful antioxidant properties, often said to help neutralize or prevent free radical damage. Studies have also shown that turmeric can be a potent ally against joint discomfort, with one researcher commenting that “Turmeric is one of the most potent natural inflammatories available. Other studies found that the main component in turmeric, curcumin, can also support healthy skin, memory, digestion, and cholesterol levels.

Ginger

Studies have shown that Chinese cultures have benefited from the use of ginger for over 2,000 years. It has been said to relieve symptoms related to upset stomachs and nausea, as well as support daily digestion. It has also been shown to be helpful in aiding colon health by acting as an anti-inflammatory in the colon. Ginger contains antioxidant-like properties as well. A study published in the Journal of Dietary Supplements states that ginger may help alleviate the instances of oxidative stress similar to vitamin E.

Make Your Spice Rack a Health Rack

Who knew these everyday spices held so much potential nutritional benefits? The best part is that they aren’t rare or expensive; they are readily available and lend themselves to a wide range of uses in meals, drinks, and desserts. It is also common to make hot teas out of these spices—try mixing cinnamon, turmeric, and ginger together to make a super-tea when you’re feeling under the weather. Some of the best sources of these ingredients can also be found in specific supplements, giving you exactly what you need in one bottle. So keep your eye on the spice isle and kick-start your health by adding some spice to your health.


Phytoplex
 

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Is It a Strain or Sprain? How to Know the Difference and Provide Proper Joint Care

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Is It a Strain or Sprain? How to Know the Difference and Provide Proper Joint CareGood overall health requires at least 20–30 minutes of exercise each day, even if it is just some light walking. The benefits of exercise are numerous and include weight management, mood support, and circulatory health, to name a few. But in order to be physically active, your body requires strong joints, ligaments, and muscles. When joint injuries occur, the proper treatment is crucial so that you can continue to support your active lifestyle.

Sprains and Strains

We all are familiar with the terms, sprains and strains, when it comes to your joints and muscles, but do you know the differences between them and how to properly care for each condition? A sprain is when you injure or damage the ligaments which connect bones to other bones. Strains happen when you injure a muscle or tendon, the fibrous tissue that connects muscle to bone.

RICE

Although there are differences between sprains and strains, the pattern of recovery for both is the same: RICE (Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation). Rest means keeping weight off the injured area for at least a day or two. Depending on the seriousness of the injury you may require more rest. Ice is important in the first 24 hours to relieve swelling and discomfort. Apply ice for 20–30 minutes and then remove it for 20–30 minutes before reapplying again if needed. It is often advised not to apply heat in the first 24 hours as it may worsen the swelling. Compression is also used to combat swelling. Wrapping the injured part in compression bandages can relieve swelling within the first 24 hours. Elevation means keeping the injured area elevated higher than your heart as gravity can help reduce swelling and pressure. If swelling persists for a lengthy period of time, consult your physician.

Proper Joint Nourishment

Your joints and muscles are constantly in motion, from when you wake up and your feet touch the floor, to daily activities and right up until you go to bed at night. When choosing a product to help soothe and nourish your joints there are certain ingredients that can be beneficial. Collagen (a building block of cartilage, ligaments, and tendons), vitamin C (which helps form collagen), and MSM (methylsulfonylmethane, a dietary sulfur that also helps form collagen) can be crucial in joint support products. There are also topical creams available containing antioxidant-rich grape seed oil and aloe vera, both of which can provide soothing and cooling relief to your joints that you can apply directly over sore areas, enabling you to comfort your joints from the outside. Physical activity is a fundamental part of achieving a good quality of life. Knowing how to properly support joints and protect yourself from injury with proper healing techniques is just as important as it allows you to continue to reap all the healthy benefits of daily physical activity and an improved quality of life.


Arthro-7® & Arthro-7® Topical Cream Package
 

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