The 5 Supplements You Need This Fall!

Supplements

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Do you know the 5 supplements you need this fall?

As a busy woman with people relying on you to be there for them, you are concerned about getting sick this season.  Every year you feel that it takes so much work just to keep from coming down with a cold.  But this year you are more than concerned.  Am I right?

We are living in a prolonged state of stress in many areas of our lives right now (can we forget the year 2020?).  For you it may be causing gastrointestinal discomfort or maybe you are suffering from a slight cold now that the weather is changing.  

You need to maintain what is called “immune tolerance”.  That is you need to be able to fight pathogens and foreign invaders when they enter your body tissue instead of having an allergy or an autoimmune reaction.

I want you to feel armed with the right supplements as a foundation to your digestive and immune health.

There are 5 that you can have on hand as a foundation for helping you deal with stress that leads to sickness at this time of year.

Just remember that supplements need a good functioning digestive system in order to be properly absorbed.  If you would like some help with this please book a call to find out how I can help you.

Probiotics

Probiotics - these are the good bacteria that reside in your intestinal tract.  They are part of the 5 supplements you needs this fall. By taking a supplement or eating probiotic rich foods that are fermented, you will be helping to regulate inflammation in your digestive tract and build up your immunity.  Probiotics are only as good as long as you are taking them since they are just passing through.

Miso Soup - Photo by Ponyo Sakana from Pexels

You can include probiotic-rich foods such as

cultured vegetables, 

kefir, 

kimchi, 

miso, 

sauerkraut, 

wine (red or white), 

yogurt, full-fat, or coconut

Vitamin C

Another one of the 5 supplements you need this fall is vitamin C.  This supplement is found in a variety of forms.  One that is easy on the stomach comes in an ester-C form or as buffered calcium ascorbate with bioflavanoids for absorption.  

Since stress affects your digestive health and energy, this supplement will help to build up your adrenals and assists in the production of anti-viral glycoproteins called interferons.  Interferons interfere with the ability of a virus to replicate. 

Sweet Peppers - Photo by Nick Collins from Pexels

You can also include foods such as

citrus fruits, 

strawberries,

kiwi, 

mango,

broccoli,

cabbage, 

sweet peppers

You can see a more detailed list here.

B Complex Vitamins

This is another supplement that is good for stress management and how you react to stressful situations.  B vitamins are also needed to metabolize protein, fats and carbohydrates, energy production, and hydrochloric acid production.  It is best to take a complex so you do not get an imbalance.

whole grain bread

Whole Grain Bread - Photo by Gil Goldman from Pexels

Also, whole foods are a good source such as

whole grains, 

nuts,

eggs,

greens,

beef,

liver and

poultry.

Zinc

Since it is flu season, this is a good time to add a zinc supplement to your multi-vitamin if you are taking one.  Zinc helps with the production of stomach acid which is where bacteria is destroyed when ingested.  

Stomach acid aids in the digestion of protein that is required to make antibodies and enzymes.  Zinc helps with the survival of good bacteria needed for good immune health, digestive health, and detoxification.  

As you age, your zinc levels decrease.  The only way to know your levels is from a blood test.  Frequent infections are a sign of low zinc.

pumpkin seeds

Pumpkin Seeds - Photo by Karolina Grabowska from Pexels

Food sources of zinc you can eat include 

shellfish, 

Brazil nuts,

pecans,

pumpkin seeds and

whole grains

Also check out whfoods.com for a list of foods.

Vitamin D (in the form of D3)

In conjunction with B vitamins, vitamin D helps promote good gut bacteria which is where 70% of your immune function resides.  

FUN FACT: Vitamin D is the vitamin with more scientific articles published since 2000 than any other vitamin

Some researchers think vitamin D, due to its effects on the immune system, may also help with serious food allergies.

Vitamin D comes in liquid and tablet form.  The best way to absorb it is pairing it with a fat when eating such as egg yolks, butter or avocado.

Because vitamin D is fat-soluble, when you have more than enough, it gets stored in the liver, and isn’t flushed out in the urine like excesses of many other vitamins are.  But in climates where you lack sun half of the year, you will need to supplement.

FUN FACT: Fish liver oil contains vitamin D, but not fish oil - it’s the liver that stores vitamin D.

Since vitamin D is fat-soluble, it’s absorbed along with fat in the diet. So, people who don’t eat or absorb enough fat are at risk of lower vitamin D levels. 

Also, a healthy vitamin D status seems to go hand-in-hand with a healthy gut. For example, there is a link between sub-optimal vitamin D, gut microbiome status, gut inflammation, and diseases of the gut like IBD and colon cancer. 

For more education on this topic, read my other post called Vitamin D and Your Immune System.

mushrooms

mushrooms - Photo by Paula from Pexels

Include these foods in your diet as sources of vitamin D:

You can find the food source chart at whfoods.com.

Mushrooms: Reishi, Oyster, Cremini, Shitake,

Salmon

Tuna

Sardines

Cow’s Milk (100% grass fed) - see more info here

Eggs

I would advise you to consult with a nutritionist or naturopathic doctor before grabbing the first supplement you see on sale.  Many cheap ones include ingredients that are filled with substances which make it hard for you to break down the tablet and absorb.

I can help you prepare for the winter ahead with some of my lower priced programs to get your system in tip top shape.  Please contact me if I can be of assistance in this area and book your call here.

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The symptoms of stress! What you need to know!

Rest to Digest

Photo by Leio McLaren (@leiomclaren) on Unsplash

What are the symptoms of stress? How does it connect to the energy you have on a daily basis? So many questions. Here is what you need to know about stress and the digestion connection.

I never made the connection between stress and my inability to digest food properly. I mean who really thinks about that!?

My Experience

I remember when my children were still homeschooling and how much stress I was under with my large To-Do list! It was during that time that my health was taking a nose-dive and the food I use to be able to eat was not friendly to my body anymore.

It took me a long time to make a connection about the symptoms of stress and what was going on in my digestion.

3 Things You Need to Know About Stress!

“Fight or Flight”

I’m sure you have heard about the fight or flight response in your body. It comes from your body. It comes from a physiological response to stress by your adrenal glands.

These tiny glands sit on top of your kidneys and release adrenaline when danger is detected. Like when you want to run from a bear!

In my case where I live it may be a coyote to appear or even a skunk.

You can feel the rush as blood is redirected from your digestive system to our arms and legs so you can escape!

The “fight or flight” response causes undesirable symptoms of stress including increasing your heart rate and anxiety levels. So watch how much time you spend consuming social media content and the news! All this unused energy gets converted to fat.

Some Causes of Stress

Stress comes in many forms such as:

  • environmental toxins,
  • processed foods,
  • emotional stress
  • and physical stress.

Some stress is normal for the body in short, occasional amounts but chronic stress is what leads to digestive and energy problems.

The “fight or flight” response causes undesirable symptoms of stress includes imbalanced gut flora and anxiety levels.

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Symptoms of Stress

The lack of your body’s ability to efficiently digest, assimilate, and absorb your food is what causes gas, bloating, acid reflux, and even stomach pain.

Adrenaline lasts only a few seconds and is quickly followed by the adrenals releasing cortisol. When cortisol remains high throughout the day the manifested symptoms of stress include:

  • fatigue (especially around 3 pm)
  • sleep disturbance (from intestinal/stomach pain, gas and bloating)
  • anxiety (from an imbalance in gut flora)
  • unexplained weight gain around the middle
  • poor digestion (lack of sufficient stomach acid or poor combination of foods)
  • poor immune function from an unbalanced digestive system (resulting in frequent flues and colds)
  • brain fog (unbalanced digestive function from stress)

Just to name a few, these are all symptoms of stress. This is where I focus in my practice of holistic nutrition for women who are experiencing energy issues connected to digestive problems.

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A Digestion Support to Energize Women

So do you relate to not feeling rested in the morning?

Fatigue throughout the day, especially around 3 pm?

Stress during midlife

Your ability to adapt to stress decreases with age. Your adrenals will now have to make more cortisol and will steal from your progesterone supply in order to do so. This creates an imbalance of hormones in your body. So the symptoms of stress can be a real problem as you can see.

What do you do about the stress you experience every day? You may even feel that you will always feel tired and stressed.

This is why I created a program for my clients called the Freedom From Fatigue Solution.

In 8 weeks you can start to mitigate the effects of stress on your body by learning the systematic steps I took to get my digestive health and energy back on track.  

Is the Freedom From Fatigue Solution right for you?  Let's talk about your health goals and how I can help.  

Book Your Digestive Wellness Strategy Call!

Click the button below to be taken to my online clinic calendar.

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How to Lower Stress This Christmas

It is coming up to another busy holiday time called Christmas.  But how do you lower your stress response this Christmas season?

Thanksgiving has passed and the stores are filled with sales for the coming gift-giving season.  Can you feel the stress already?!

Its causes are absolutely everywhere. Would you agree?

When you are suffering from fatigue, you are probably wondering how to get through the next few weeks of the holidays without burning out.  After all your to-do list is getting bigger each day it seems.

Our natural “fight or flight” stress response can sometimes go a little overboard. It’s supposed to help us escape injury or death in an emergency and then return to normal after escaping the danger.   In today’s culture, our stress response is chronic and does not just happen once in a while.

The main stress hormone is called “cortisol.”  After your adrenaline kicks in, it’s released from your adrenal glands in response to stress. It’s also naturally high in the morning upon waking, and slowly declines in the  afternoon preparing  your body for sleep.

Did you know that too-high levels of cortisol are associated with belly fat, poor sleep, brain fog, high blood pressure, high blood sugar, and even lowers your immunity?  No wonder you feel tired if you are in chronic stress mode!

Do you experience any of these? Well, then read on because I have a list of foods, nutrients and lifestyle recommendations to help you lower this stress hormone naturally!

How to Lower Your Cortisol with Food and Nutrients

  1. The first enemy of cortisol balance is sugar.   So it would be wise to reduce this ingredient in our diets for better health and lower your stress response.
  1. High doses of caffeine also increase your cortisol levels. If coffee makes you feel anxious and jittery, then cut back on the amount of caffeine you ingest.  Also because fatigue is part of your health complaints, then consider cutting out caffeine and using an alternative drink instead.
  1. Also, being dehydrated increases cortisol. Make sure you’re drinking enough water every day, especially if you feel thirsty.  The body requires water for so many functions including giving you more energy.  Don’t stress yourself by being dehydrated.
  1. Eat a variety of nutrient-dense whole foods; this doesn’t just help reduce the stress hormone, it helps all aspects of your health.  These include foods that improve gut health such as probiotic rich, fermented foods such as kefir and sauerkraut along with prebiotic fiber foods found in legumes, whole grains, and some fruits and  vegetables.

Lifestyle Habits to Lower Cortisol

Lifestyle is a big factor in your stress response. 

The following habits you can adapt to reduce stress:

Mindfulness. Many studies show that reducing stressful thoughts and worry reduces cortisol.

Exercise. While intense exercise increases cortisol levels temporarily, it can reduce overall cortisol levels.  Taking a brisk walk will relieve your stress.  But be careful to not overdue it or you will be stressed from the intensity of the exercise.

Sleep.  Sleep reduces cortisol levels and also helps improve your overall health in so many ways.  It is recommended to get 7-9 hours of sleep every night and adapt a sleep routine.

Self Care.  Habits like deep breathing, going for a massage, meditation, reading a good book, and listening to relaxing music all reduce cortisol levels.

Nurture Relationships. Maintaining good relationships and spending time with people you like and who support you is so important.  Staying connected to positive people will inject you with positive energy that helps reduce stress.

Conclusion

Fatigue is linked to an increase in cortisol levels. 

Elevated cortisol levels have several negative impacts on your health. There are many proven ways to reduce levels of cortisol naturally.  In doing so, you can reduce your levels of fatigue and find more energy in your day.

In terms of foods and nutrients, have less sugar and caffeine.  Increase your intake of  water, fruit, vegetables, probiotics, and prebiotics.

Lifestyle factors are huge when it comes to cortisol. To lower yours, exercise (but not too much), get more sleep, relax, and have more fun.

In the comments below, let me know your favorite ways to bust the stress hormone cortisol!

References:

https://authoritynutrition.com/ways-to-lower-cortisol/

http://www.precisionnutrition.com/all-about-cortisol

https://authoritynutrition.com/16-ways-relieve-stress-anxiety/

https://www.thepaleomom.com/managing-stress/

http://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/understanding-the-stress-response

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Sleep Troubles? How One Nutrient May Be the Key.

What is the one nutrient you may need to improve your sleep?  Magnesium deficiency may be the key.

I use to suffer frequently with irritability, PMS, inability to fall asleep and frequent migraines. I knew that stress played a big role but it took some research and confirmation from a naturopathic doctor that magnesium deficiency was also playing a big role in my symptoms.

Are you finding sleep difficult? Not feeling your best self so you can enjoy your life and be fully present with your friends and family can make life very challenging.


The Problem with Our Food

One of the main minerals required for plant growth is magnesium. There are a total of 17 required. However, there are only three that are used in the modern fertilizers which are potassium, nitrogen and phosphorus.

Why do we suffer from a lack of this one nutrient, magnesium. For one thing it plays a huge role in our overall health. Most of us do not eat near enough foods containing magnesium and due to industrialization, the soil is not as enriched with this mineral as it once was

There is a lack of crop rotation, erosion and continuous use of chemical fertiliizers, pesticides and herbicides which have prevented the ability of the soil to restore the nutrients needed for healthy crops.

Also if you use a water softener then you would want to use other water for drinking such as spring water since the sodium content in the water softener will hinder magnesium levels in your blood when consumed.

The Role of Magnesium

The role of magnesium in our body is numerous and 800 different roles have been identified. No wonder so many health conditions are linked to its deficiency. Our cellular energy depends on enzymes but these enzymes depend on magnesium to do their job.

Here is a list of just a few conditions that magnesium plays a role in:

  • inflammation, 
  • muscle tension,
  • high blood pressure,
  • anxiety and stress,
  • blood sugar sensitivities,
  • vitamin D deficiencies,
  • adrenal fatigue,
  • fibromyalgia,
  • migraines and headaches,
  • insomnia,

The list is much larger but for you, I am sure you can relate to at least one of them.

However, I did want to zero in on sleep. Sleep is so important for energy restoration, cellular repair and detoxification. The more stressed you are, the more magnesium you use up and the harder it is to fall asleep and stay asleep. 

The reason is that magnesium plays a role in the production of melatonin which is the hormone that regulates your sleep and wake cycle. Also if you are experiencing tension in your muscles, it will be difficult to fall asleep or stay asleep. So you may want to look at the root cause which could be stress or a diet deficiency.


Here are some foods that are a good source of magnesium:

  • Swiss Chard
  • Kale
  • Collard Greens
  • Asparagus
  • Nuts
  • Whole grains

Eating your foods from an organic source will help with improved nutrient density due to better soil quality and lack of herbicidal sprays. However, if you cannot get organic, you can always take a magnesium supplement.

Also you will need to be able to break down and absorb your food properly with sufficient enzymes and stomach acid in order to absorb the magnesium through your small intestines.

So if you are using an ant acid, you need to be aware that they will hinder your ability to absorb magnesium into your body because you will not be able to efficiently dissolve it in your stomach. Stress will also hinder your body's ability to produce sufficient hydrochloric acid and enzymes for proper absorption. Any gastrointestinal inflammation will impede your ability to have sufficent magnesium for your overall health.

Supplementing with Magnesium

This is why I believe that supplementation is so important and why I always recommend this supplement as a main foundational supplement in your cupboard.

The one that has helped me with tension and improved sleep is magnesium bis-glycinate. This is magnesium bound to an amino acid called glycine to help with absorption. A study in 2016 showed that magnesium bis-glycinate absorbed better than the other forms of magnesium you may have taken called magnesium citrate or magnesium oxide.

So if you are having symptoms such as sleep disturbances, I would suggest keeping a food journal to see how many magnesium containing foods you are getting into your diet and consider supplementation.

5 Steps to Increase Your Energy



Client Support

I provide all my clients with easy access to magnesium bis-glycinate through my online dispensary and it get delivered right to your door.

You can create your own account here at: https://luanaflacco.com/products/ and scroll down to click on the Fullscript dispensary banner.

Let me know if you have any questions in the comments!

References:

Goh Norman, Magnesium, A Complete Primer, Toronto, CanPrev; 2018


Pawlick, Thomas F., The End of Food. Vancouver; Greystone Books; 2006


Yingting Cao, Shiqi Zhen, Anne W. Taylor, Sarah Appleton,... Zumin Shi (2018.09.21), Magnesium Intake and Sleep Disorder Symptoms,Findings from the Jiangsu Nutrition Study of Chinese Adults at Five-Year Follow-Up LINK: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6212970/

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Why Forest Bathing Relieves Stress

From a very young age, I always enjoyed the forest. Walking through the woods just for the sake of walking and sitting on a log to enjoy my surroundings has always been a fun thing for me to do.


Even in my pre-teen years, I found it a place where my imagination could just take off and I felt very happy there.


I had no idea that this was therapy or that it lowered my cortisol levels which is your stress hormone.


It wasn't until I learned about holistic nutrition that this forest therapy or forest bathing came up as a part of the lifestyle protocols I was to give my clients.


What happens when you just take in the surroundings of the forest?

There are ions in the forest called negative ions. These ions help to counteract all the positive ions that we pick up when we are surrounded by machinery and computers.


You may not realize how all this equipment and the power lines above your home affect your health, immune system and energy and stress levels.


One day when I was really stressed while preparing for my board exam, I went for a walk in the woods. It was so helpful that I actually cried the stress out while I was touching a tree. Can you believe that! 


I was so positively charged that I needed to be grounded to release the stress.  Let me know if you have had this experience.  


Forest bathing is not hiking. It is a whole experience in the forest using all your senses.


Just that act of slowing down and paying attention to the surroundings of nature is very calming and strengthening to your immune system.


If you have a chance to do it sometime, I highly recommend it.


Let me know if you have had this experience and what you think about forest (bathing) therapy.

Enjoy!!

Source: https://www.forestbathingcentral.com/tag/health-benefits-of-negative-ions/

 

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Calm Inflammation for more Energy

The fire within.  Photo by Cullan Smith on Unsplash

How do you calm inflammation in your body to have more energy?   Your fatigue issues can be connected to inflammation within the body.  

Being overly tired and feeling like “someone pulled the plug on you” is a sign along with other symptoms you may be having.

Scientists are measuring levels of inflammation in our bodies and finding that chronic inflammation can be detrimental to our health.

It is also linked to problems with detoxification within our gut and liver. Symptoms can lead to low immune function, causing a lack of energy and vitality along with the inability to feel well.

However, there is something you can do about it!  Anti-inflammatory foods that are rich in antioxidants are proven to be helpful in reducing inflammation in the body.

Here are some of my top anti-inflammatory food recommendations:

Berries, Grapes, and Cherries​​​​

Are the following sweet foods your favorite?

Berries, grapes, and cherries are packed with fiber, and antioxidant vitamins (e.g. vitamin C) and minerals (e.g. manganese).

Phytochemicals (phyto=plant) such as “anthocyanins” and “resveratrol” are found in these small and delicious fruits.

In fact, berries, grapes, and cherries may be the best dietary sources of these amazingly healthy compounds.

Broccoli and Peppers

Broccoli is a cruciferous vegetable that contains the naturally occurring chemical called “sulforaphane.” This anti-inflammatory compound helps neutralize harmful toxins in the Phase 2 liver detox pathway that we are exposed to in our food, water, and air.

Bell peppers, on the other hand, are one of the best sources of antioxidants vitamin C and quercetin.

Be mindful to choose red peppers over the other colors. Red peppers are fully ripe and have more anti-inflammatory properties than the other colors.

Healthy Fats

Choosing the right fats is so important for your health. The fat controversy is still alive and well. It is recommended to keep your daily intake of saturated fats below 10 percent and increase your consumption of unsaturated fats.

However, damaged or “trans fats” are very inflammatory. So it is best to consume more anti-inflammatory foods that are listed below:

fresh avocados

extra virgin olive oil,

small fish (e.g. sardines and mackerel),

and wild fish (e.g. salmon).

Omega 3 foods like chia seeds, hemp seeds, and flax seeds.

Green Tea

Green tea contains the anti-inflammatory compound called “epigallocatechin-3-gallate”, otherwise known as EGCG.

EGCG is linked to a reduced risk of heart disease, certain cancers, obesity, and Alzheimer’s. I think we can all use more of this compound, don’t you?

Drinking steeped green tea is great, but have you tried matcha green tea? It’s thought to contain even higher levels of antioxidants than regular green tea.

Turmeric

This list would not be complete without the amazing spice turmeric?

Turmeric contains the antioxidant curcumin.

This compound has been shown to reduce the pain of arthritis, as well as have anti-cancer and anti-diabetes properties.

You can easily add turmeric to your egg dishes, smoothies, soups or teas.

Dark Chocolate

I had to save the best for last! This *may* be slightly more decadent than my #1 pick of berries, grapes, and cherries.

Dark chocolate, with at least 70% cocoa is packed with anti-inflammatory antioxidants (namely “flavonols”). These reduce the risk of heart disease by keeping your arteries healthy.

They’ve even been shown to prevent “neuroinflammation” (inflammation of the brain and nerves). Reducing neuro-inflammation may help with long-term memory, and reduce the risk of dementia and stroke.

Make sure you avoid the sugary “candy bars.” You already know those aren’t going to be anti-inflammatory!

Conclusion

There are just so many delicious and nutritious anti-inflammatory foods you can choose. They range from colorful berries, vegetables, and spices, to healthy fats, and even cocoa.

Feeling sick and tired all the time can be reduced by adding these amazing foods to your weekly meal plans. I would love to talk with you about how I can help you do just that. Just click the link below and schedule a free call with me.

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Your Health is Worth It

Are you feeling tired and unable to find the energy you need to do the things you want to do?  This can be so frustrating!  I know you want to be all that you were created to be.

Does this sound like you?

  • You do not bounce out of bed like you use to and feel that you just did not get enough rest.  
  • Falling asleep seems to take forever and once you do, you may wake up one or more times before your alarm.
  • You spend your days feeling stressed with so much to do and can hardly get dinner on the table.   
  • If you could start a new hobby or work more for yourself,  that would help you feel like you were fulfilling your life’s purpose.   
  • Having more energy means you can say yes to a volunteer opportunity at your favorite community charity or church.  Giving back in your community would give you so much joy. If only you could find the energy to do so.
  • You love spending time out with your friends but sometimes you just feel too tired to do so.
  • Taking longer walks or joining an exercise class seems like a chore.  Even too much exercise makes you tired
  • Eating nutritious foods seem boring to you and you struggle to eat from scratch during the week since eating healthy makes you think you need to be a gourmet cook.  Prefab and oven ready is so much easier!
  • You experience digestive and intestinal disturbances no matter what you do to fix your diet.  


No need to suffer, click the button below to book a complimentary End Your Fatigue strategy call.   Let's get acquainted and see if we can work together.


Here are 3 things you can start doing right now:

  1. You need to shut off you screens at least 1 hour before bed.  Blue light interferes with the production of melatonin which prepares you for sleep. That means no bright lights, no TV, no stimulating activities.  

Instead read quietly or drink a calming tea like chamomile or passion flower tea.

  1. Stop eating refined sugar and processed foods.  If you take white or brown sugar out of your diet, you will start to see a big difference in your energy levels.  

Sugar is in so many things.  Added sugars are detrimental to your health in the form of processed foods and drinks containing empty calories and lacking nutrition.

Sugar contributes to a lot of fatigue issues.  When your body has too much sugar in your blood, the result is inflammation and unstable blood sugar which leads to fatigue.  Food labels to watch for contain fructose, sucrose, dextrose, glucose and high fructose corn syrup.

  1. Drink more water.  

Water helps to detox your body, metabolize nutrients and hydrate your cells.  Just drinking ½ your weight in ounces of water per day can help you to feel better.


If you want a strategy that works this time, book your free End Your Fatigue strategy call with me by clicking the button below.

You feel your best years are behind you and just want to feel well.  But what does well feel like since you have settled for feeling so tired all the time.  It seems normal.

Do you have some of these symptoms?

  • Catching a cold is the norm and when you do get sick, it seems to take a month for you to get back to yourself again.  Only then you fear getting another virus that will keep you from your goals.
  • Sore throats
  • chest colds
  • laryngitis
  • occasional fevers every year are just no fun and you think that this is normal for you at your age.


You spend at least $200 a month on supplements and you feel you have chosen the ones for you but still you have not found the solution to your problems.


If only you could find a solution!  You know your hormones are out of whack and your immune system is not the best.   Where is that magic pill?


You turn to Google searching for answers. However, you continue to be groping in the dark with quick fixes that never bring you lasting results.  It like “throwing spaghetti at the wall.”


No more groping in the dark and hoping.   Book your complimentary End Your Fatigue strategy call with me by clicking the button below.  Let's talk. No obligations. Let's get acquainted.

I sympathize with what you are going through.  After I turned 40 it seemed all downhill from there.  My body started turning on me too. I needed to learn the right way to nourish myself and eliminate the irritating foods until my body was better able to digest them.  

I needed accountability and a coach to help me find my way. I needed education about my hormones and digestive system.

If you haven’t joined my closed Facebook Support Group yet, please click Here.

I know you want to live your fullest potential.  You know you need help but fear of failure is holding you back.  

Investing in your health is what will give you the ability to move forward but you are scared of spending your hard-earned money in the wrong places and seeing very little results.

What you need is a system or a Roadmap.  If someone could give you a Roadmap to get to where you need to go, you would take it right?

You’ve been to your MD and probably a naturopath but need a better Roadmap and coaching partner.  Someone that will give you the steps to take, accountability and encouragement along the way


Take a minute to book your free End Your Fatigue strategy call with me by clicking the button below.

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3 Ways Stress Can Mess With Your Energy

Photo by Matteo Vistocco on Unsplash

Acute stress usually won’t mess with your health too much. It is your body’s natural reaction to circumstances, and can even be life-saving.  This type subsides after the cause of the stress is over which is usually short-term.

It's the chronic stress that's a problem.  It is these stress reactions that are triggered every day or many times a day that can mess with your health and cause unwanted symptoms of headaches, illness, sleepless nights and weight gain.

Stress may be temporary (acute), or long-term (chronic).

Stress (and stress hormones) can have a huge impact on your health.

Let's dive into the 3 effects of  "stress mess."

Effect #1 Immunity

It’s that time of year when the weather is changing that adds more stress to your system.  This is when you need to be careful to support your body or you could end up getting sick.

It’s bad enough when you do not have enough energy on a daily basis but to get sick on top of it makes life more challenging.

Did you notice that you get sick more often when you're stressed? Maybe you get colds, cold sores, or even the flu more frequently when you are stressed?

Well, that's because stress hormones affect the chemical messengers (cytokines) secreted by immune cells consequently, they are less able to do their jobs effectively.

Did you hear that 70% of your immune system resides in your gut?  

Effect #2 Gut Health

Stress puts a strain on your intestinal microbiome otherwise known as the ecosystem of your gut bacteria and gets it out of balance.

Stress can contribute to leaky gut, otherwise known as "intestinal permeability." These "leaks" can then allow partially digested food, bacteria or other things to be absorbed into your body.

The stress hormone cortisol can open up tiny holes by loosening the grip your digestive cells have to each other. These are called gap junctions.

Picture this: Have you ever played "red rover?" It's where a row of children hold hands while one runs at them to try to break through. Think of those hands as the junctions between cells. When they get loose, they allow things to get in that should be passing right through.  

Cortisol (produced in excess in chronic stress) is a strong player in creating the imbalance in your intestinal system which leads to these gaps in the lining being open too long!

This can lead to a host of health problems relating to your fatigue issues including painful joints, allergies and skin conditions.

Effect #3 Poor Sleep Quality

So many women I talk to are not sleeping well.  I think we have too much on our minds and list of things to do don’t you?  The amount of stress we as women have can be detrimental to our sleep.

Stress and sleep go hand-in-hand, wouldn’t you agree? It’s often difficult to sleep when you have very important (and stressful) things on your mind.

And when you don't get enough sleep, it affects your energy level, memory, ability to think, and mood.  

More and more research is showing just how important sleep is for your health.  Not enough sleep (and too much stress) aren't doing you any favors especially when you wake up feeling exhausted.

If you have read this far and are interested in getting on a call with me to discuss how to increase your energy and reach your health goals, click on the button below for a complimentary 30-minute call.  No obligations. Let's talk.

Stress Busting Tips

Reducing stressors in your life is an obvious first step to fighting fatigue and other health challenges.

Can you:

  • Put less pressure on yourself?

  • Ask for help?

  • Say "no"?

  • Delegate to someone else?

  • Finally, make that decision?

No matter how hard you try, you won’t eliminate stress altogether. So, here are a few things you can try to help reduce its effect on you:

  • Deep breathing

  • Meditation

  • Walk in nature

  • Unplug (read a book, take a bath)

  • Exercise (yoga, tai chi, etc.)

  • Connect with loved ones

Please click on the button below for a complimentary 30-minute call.  No obligations. Let's talk.

Conclusion

Stress is a huge and often underappreciated factor in our health. It can impact your physical body much more than you might realize.

Stress has been shown to increase  affect your immune system, gut health and sleep quality.

There are things you can do to both reduce the stressors and also to improve your response to it.

Be aware of what is causing your stress and eliminate one thing that is not serving you well.

You can bust through the stress with less!

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Stress and the Fatigue Connection


Stress!! Can it it lead to adrenal fatigue?  

Did you know that your fatigue issues may be connected to stress?

Does this sound like you? You are stressed and cannot sleep. You are constantly tired and crave sweets and even salty foods?  

Stress is a physical and emotional reaction to danger either real or not.  Even the day to day demands on our time cause the same stress response in our bodies as real danger.

Since your adrenal glands produce stress hormones, adrenal fatigue is a common subject matter these days.

Your adrenal glands look like walnuts that live on top of both of your kidneys. These important glands produce many hormones, including stress hormones.

But what happens when they become “overworked?”

The fight or flight response to physical danger causes an increase in the hormones adrenaline and cortisol.  This is your body's normal reaction to stress.

Stress can sometimes be positive when it helps us avoid dangerous situations like crashing into a vehicle in traffic.  Our heart rate increases and we are given the strength to respond on demand.

After a short time, the fight or flight response dissipates and your body goes back to normal.

But what would happen if you felt constant stress? Like all day, every day? This is called “chronic” stress.  

Too many women like you are living in chronic stress. Why do you think that is? Maybe there is just too much to do in a given day.

What do you think happens to your poor adrenal glands when they’re constantly working?   Have you ever felt this rush of “false energy”? This is another reason you may feel “wired but tired”. 



Do You Have Adrenal Fatigue?

When your adrenal glands start getting tired of secreting stress hormones day in and out, you can start getting other symptoms:

  • fatigue,
  • difficulty sleeping,
  • mood swings,
  • weight loss or gain,
  • joint pain,
  • sugar cravings,

And even frequent infections like colds and the flu are signs that your adrenals are probably overworked.

There are no medically accepted blood tests for adrenal fatigue. In fact, it's not recognized by most medical professionals until the point when your adrenals are so fatigued they almost stop working. At that point, the official diagnosis of "Adrenal Insufficiency" or "Addison's Disease" may apply.

However, if you do have symptoms, you should see your doctor to rule out other conditions. He or she can give you some wellness strategies that can help to reduce your stress (and symptoms).



What To Do If You Have These Symptoms?

There are many actions you can take to reduce your stress and improve your health and energy levels.

Stress reduction is key to overcoming fatigue issues. There are tons of ideas how you can reduce your stress. My favorites are:

  • scheduling your day ahead of time so you you don’t have to think about it.  I just look at my day planner and see exactly what I am to being doing and where I am to be.   
  • Practicing quiet time (even for just 20 minutes is so important.)
  • Deep breathing
  • Walking in nature, 
  • Go to bed earlier and sleep longer (7-8 hours)
  • taking a bath.
  • spend time with friends
  • Plan a fun activity


Of course, I also recommend reducing sugar and processed food intake and eating more fruits and vegetables. Better nutrition can only help your body. So make sure to prioritize this in your life.




Conclusion

Your adrenal glands produce hormones in response to stress. Adrenaline is released for only a few seconds.  After that cortisol is the main hormone released in a stress response.

After long-term daily stress, your adrenals may get tired.  It is sustained high cortisol that is the problem. Normal levels are fine since it is what wakes you up in the morning.

Adrenal fatigue is a controversial disease that doesn’t have a true diagnostic test, nor specific evidential symptoms.

The most important thing you can do is to get tested to rule out other potential conditions. You can also try stress reduction techniques like meditation, walks in nature, light exercise, more sleep, or even a calming bath.

Photo by Jared Rice on Unsplash

Recipe (Stress-reducing bath salt):
Lavender Bath Salts

Per bath

2 cups Epsom salts

10 drops lavender essential oil

As you're running your warm bath water, add ingredients to the tub. Mix until dissolved

Enjoy your stress-reducing bath!

Tip: You can add a tablespoon of dried lavender flowers.


References:

https://www.thepaleomom.com/adrenal-fatigue-pt-1/

https://www.dietvsdisease.org/adrenal-fatigue-real/

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Five Ways to Improve Your Sleep to Beat Fatigue

Photo by Alexandra Gorn on Unsplash

Would you like to know the five ways to improve your sleep?  Not getting the rest you need can make you feel “tired and wired”.  Are you feeling exhausted or “running on stress hormones” all day?

 Lack of sleep affects just about everything in your body and mind.  People who get less sleep tend to be at higher risk for so many health issues like

  • diabetes
  • heart disease
  • certain types of cancer;
  • slower metabolism,
  • weight gain,
  • hormone imbalance,
  • and inflammation. 

And don't forget the impact lack of sleep can have on moods, memory and decision-making skills.

Even if you want to exercise, lack of sleep can interfere with your energy to even start.

So what are the three main purposes of sleep?

  1. To repair and detoxify our body
  2. To improve our brain's ability to learn and remember things, also known as “synaptic plasticity”.
  3. To conserve energy so we can function in our lives and do the activities we need to do.

You may be surprised that adults need 7-9 hours of sleep every night.  I think we can all work on that one! Agreed!  But how do you even start!?


Five Ways to Improve Your Sleep

1. Establish a Regular Sleep Schedule

Get yourself into a consistent sleep schedule.  Make it a priority and you're more likely to achieve it.  This means turning off your lights 8 hours before your alarm goes off.  Every. Single. Night. I know weekends can easily throw this off but by making sleep a priority for a few weeks your body and mind will adjust and thank you for it.


2. Balance Your Blood Sugar

Balance your blood sugar throughout the day.  Eat less refined and processed foods and more whole foods (full of blood-sugar-balancing fiber).  Choose the whole apple instead of the juice.  Include protein in every meal.  Also a bit of fat at the meal in the form of olive oil, coconut oil or nuts will also help to balance your blood sugar with your meal.


3. Expose Yourself to Light

During the day get some sunshine and exercise.  If you are in the winter months with less sun, try exposing yourself to light by using something like a HappyLight which you can buy on Amazon.  These things tell your body it's daytime; time for being productive, active and alert.  By doing this during the day it will help you wind down more easily in the evening.  


4.  No Caffeine After Noon

If you drink  coffee, limit your caffeine and added sugar intake until after 12 pm.    Both caffeine and added sugar can keep your mind a bit more active than you want it to be in the evening. Try calming teas at night like chamomile or peppermint tea.


5. Dim the Lights One Hour Before Sleep

Have a relaxing bedtime routine that starts 1 hour before your “lights out” time (that is 8 - 10 hours before your alarm is set to go off).  This would include dimming your artificial lights, turning off your screen time and perhaps reading a hand-held book or having a bath.

These are not full proof if there are other underlying causes such as abdominal discomfort or adrenal fatigue that needs to be addressed.  

If you feel you need more individualized care to support you in restoring these functions, please book a call with me and we will see if we can work together.


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