WEEK 6: 90-Day Healthy Weight Challenge

PSCteam2JenniferIconBy Jennifer Bement
Social Media Manager
 

We have lost over 100 lbs!!! This week we were rewarded with reaching the milestone of over 100 lbs lost. While we have set goals that are within reach individually, it really is a great feeling to reach such a milestone together.

There are four supplements aside from weight loss supplements that the entire group is taking and here’s a bit about each one and why we’re taking them:

ProOmega Lemon 1000 mg Fish Gels

 

Nordic Naturals ProOmega Lemon fish oil supplement – This fish oil supplies high potency omega-3 fatty acids that support cardiovascular health and the body’s natural anti-inflammatory response.

 
Multi-Probiotic 15 Billion (200900)Douglas Laboratories Multi-Probiotic 15 billion – Taking a probiotic is important because the gut rules the rest of the body. Once a healthy intestinal tract is in place, it provides immune system support and allows the rest of the body to function more efficiently (very important in weight loss.)
 
Digest Gold™ W/ATPro
Enzymedica Digest Gold – This potent digestive enzyme helps with the digestion of soluble and insoluble fiber along with beta-glucan and carbohydrates allowing the body to fully benefit from the nutrients in consumed food.
 
 
PhytoMulti without Iron
 
Metagenics PhytoMulti – This multivitamin is enhanced with select bioactive plant compounds and optimized with essential vitamins and minerals for multidimensional health support.
 
 

Each participant is taking the above vitamins and supplements, but the participants were also broken down into three separate groups depending on their weight loss goal, physical activity, and other factors to determine which weight loss supplement they would take. Next week we’ll share some information about those supplements and how they are performing.

Featured Brand: Allergy Research Group

AllergyReaearchGropupSusanBiconBy Susan Brown
Health & Wellness Editor
 

Since 1979,  Allergy Research Group® has been providing high quality, hypoallergenic nutritional products.  Their in-house Research and Development team formulates original and leading edge products in support of optimal health.   As a pioneer of hypoallergenic supplements, Allergy Research Group® utilizes only the purest and highest quality raw materials with the lowest allergy potential.  All products are manufactured under Good Manufacturing Practices (cGMP) standards using advanced technologies to allow for maximum nutrient delivery, absorbency and effectiveness.  Strict quality control procedures are implemented at every stage of production.  All products are tested for identity, purity and potency both in-house and by certified independent analytical laboratories.  In addition, all active and inactive ingredients are fully disclosed in labeling. 

Some of our customers’ favorites include: 

200 mg of Zen
 
200 mg of Zen – This product offers a unique and natural way to promote calmness and relaxation with a combination formula of L-theanine and GABA.  Gluten and soy free and suitable for vegetarians. 
 
 
Super Vitamin B Complex
 
Super Vitamin B Complex - This advanced and complete vitamin B complex provides substantial amounts of all eleven B vitamins, including co-enzyme forms of B2 and B6 for enhanced bioavailability.  Gluten and soy free and suitable for vegetarians.
 
 
Super D3 (Vitamin E derived from Soy)
 
Super D3 -  This natural sourced vitamin D, as cholecalciferol, is produced from sheep’s wool lanolin.  This product also contains vitamin C and soy derived vitamin E. 
 
 
 
CoQH-CF
 
CoQH-CF™ – This reduced form of coenzyme Q10, known as the antioxidant ubiquinol, supports cellular energy production and provides cell protection from oxidative stress.  Gluten and soy free. 
 
 
Multi-Vi-Min®
Multi-Vi-Min® – This hypoallergenic multivitamin and mineral formula is well tolerated by those with an intolerance toward complex nutrient formulas.  Only the purest USP grade materials are utilized.  This product does contain iron.  Gluten and soy free and suitable for vegetarians. 
 
 
BifidoBiotics with L. sporogenes (HEAT SENSITIVE PRODUCT)
 
BifidoBiotics with L. sporogenes –  This multi-probiotic is uniquely encapsulated to resist gastric juices in order to establish the delicate microflora in the large intestine.  Heat sensitive product.   Suitable for vegetarians. 
 
 
 

Cheers to Resveratrol!

Health FoodJacquieIconBy Jacquie Eubanks
BSN, RN
 

Resveratrol, found in red wine, chocolate, peanuts and certain berries, is believed to support cardiac health and potentially slow the aging process.  Resveratrol may have the capability to prevent or forestall a number of age related illnesses.  Found largely in grape seeds and skins, resveratrol has been shown to have beneficial effects on the cardiovascular system, metabolism and inflammation.  Although scientists continue to assess the benefits of resveratrol, studies do show that in addition to cardio-protective benefits, resveratrol may have many exciting health advantages.  Studies and clinical trials to determine resveratrol’s effects on cancer, diabetes, neurological diseases and aging are ongoing worldwide.   

Grapes developed resveratrol, a natural polyphenol, to help ward off pathogens such as bacteria and fungi, and to withstand drought, ultraviolet radiation or nutrient deficiencies.  In humans, polyphenols act as antioxidants, which protect cell constituents from oxidative damage, thereby limiting the risk of developing the degenerative diseases often associated with oxidative stress.  By directly scavenging free radicals, antioxidants lower the risk of developing chronic disease. 

  • Cardio-protective effects – Polyphenols are potent inhibitors of LDL cholesterol oxidation, which can lead to atherosclerosis, a chronic inflammatory disease.  Polyphenols are thought to increase HDL cholesterol and improve endothelial function.   
  • Chemopreventive effects – Many polyphenols, including red wine polyphenols, show protective effects against proliferation of  human cancer cells.  Other protective benefits include the prevention of oxidation, regulation of the immune system, induction of cell cycle arrest and anti-inflammatory activity.  
  • Anti-Aging effects – As we age, detrimental changes in cells and tissues can result in an increased risk of developing disease.  While a certain amount of oxidative stress is normal, the rate of damage increases as antioxidative and repair processes decrease.  Antioxidants have the capacity to reduce the deleterious effects of the aging process. 
  • Neuro-Protective effects – Oxidative stress is an important factor in the development of neurodegenerative disease such as Alzheimer’s.  With its ability to cross the blood brain barrier, resveratrol is beneficial in improving the adverse effects of aging on the brain and nervous system by protecting nerve cells from damage and preventing the buildup of plaque that can lead to Alzheimer’s. 
  • Autoimmunity Effects – With its powerful anti-inflammatory properties, resveratrol helps to dampen major inflammatory pathways.  Silent, low-level chronic inflammation is a known risk factor for health threatening diseases including heart disease, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis and cognitive diseases. 

The disease process is caused by a number of things including genetics, unhealthy lifestyle habits, toxins, bacteria, and nutritional deficiencies.  Conversely, longevity depends on numerous factors including exercise, diet, living a healthy lifestyle and of course, genetics.  While the many benefits of resveratrol continue to unfold, enjoying the health benefits of a nice glass of red wine with dinner some might say is priceless. 

Our favorite resveratrol supplements include: 

Resvero Active (K-76...
 
Resvero Active (K-76) by Apex EnergeticsThis product supplies a concentrated source of resveratrol in an emulsified micronized form.  Syringe included for specific serving needs. 
 
 
Resveratrol VESIsorb
 
Resveratrol VESIsorb by Pure EncapsulationsEach capsule offers 50 mg of enhanced absorption, highly pure resveratrol as trans-resveratrol ResVida®.
 
 
 
Resveratrol (200244)
 
Resveratrol (20044) by Douglas Laboratories – Each vegetarian capsule provides 200 mg of pure ResVida® trans-resveratrol. 
 
 
 
 
PolyResveratrol-SR (SB300)
 
PolyResveratrol-SR (SB300) by Thorne Research -  This product contains pure resveratrol along with synergistic plant extracts and a resveratrol metabolite for optimal utilization and enhancement of the numerous beneficial properties. 

 

 

The Impressive Health Benefits of Turmeric

TurmericJacquieIconBy Jacquie Eubanks
BSN, RN
 

Medicinal herbs that promote healing and support health have been used for thousands of years in traditional Chinese, Indian and Ayurvedic medicine.  Turmeric is freely used in Indian cuisine and is responsible for the yellow color of curries.  Research shows that elderly villagers in India, who consume turmeric daily, have some of the lowest rates of Alzheimer’s disease.  The advantages of turmeric and its chief active component, curcumin, are almost too numerous to list.  Curcumin contains curcuminoid polyphenols, which are the primary antioxidants and anti-inflammatories found in the turmeric root.  These antioxidant properties are the reason for the majority, but not all of the health benefits associated with turmeric.   

A member of the ginger family, brightly colored turmeric was first cultivated in the Himalayan region as early as 3000 B.C.  In addition to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, turmeric has a low glycemic index, which means it won’t spike your blood sugar.  It contains health benefiting essential fatty acids, healthy levels of vitamin B6, choline, niacin, riboflavin, vitamin C, and good amounts of minerals such as calcium, iron, potassium, manganese, copper, zinc and magnesium.  On the Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity (ORAC) scale, turmeric is considered the fourth most antioxidant rich herb.

Curcuminoids boost the levels of the body’s own potent antioxidants known as glutathione, superoxide dismutase and catalase, all critical to limiting oxidative stress-related damage to body organ systems.  Its anti-inflammatory properties are considered strong enough to greatly reduce or eliminate chronic inflammation and reset the anti-inflammatory behavior at the cellular level.  The many studies that have been done on turmeric generally involve using turmeric extracts that are standardized to include large amounts of curcumin. 

After reviewing 700 studies, Duke University concluded that turmeric appears to have profound effects on certain chronic debilitating diseases without adverse side effects. 

  • Arthritis – The more than 2 dozen anti-inflammatory compounds found in turmeric include Cox-2 inhibitors, which effectively and selectively block the Cox-2 enzymes that cause pain, swelling and inflammation.  Studies show that this multi-faceted herb has demonstrated positive changes in arthritic symptoms by decreasing overall pain and stiffness.    
  • Alzheimer’s disease – Curcumin has been shown to exhibit neuroprotective properties due to its antioxidant capabilities and its ability to stimulate neuron growth and repair synapses.  More than 50 studies reviewed by Duke indicate that turmeric contains natural agents, which block the formation of plaques that slowly destroy cerebral function.  Curcumin has been shown to cross the blood-brain barrier and has been found to boost Brain Derived Neurotropic Factor (BDNF), a brain hormone which increases the growth of new neurons, aiding in the fight against degenerative brain diseases. 
  • Heart Disease – Curcumin is believed to improve the lining of the blood vessels known as  endothelial function.  Endothelial dysfunction is considered a major component of heart disease, as the endothelium aids in blood pressure regulation and blood clotting.  Its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties also play a role in improved function.  An Ohio State University study found that curcumin contributed to heart health by reducing high levels of triglycerides and increasing levels of nitric oxide, which may help lower blood pressure. 
  • Anti-aging – As inflammation and oxidation are believed to play a role in the development of chronic disease, curcumin has beneficial anti-aging or longevity properties.  As one of the most important herbs for health, turmeric is one of nature’s most effective anti-inflammatories, aiding in the fight against age-related disease. 

For optimal absorption of curcumin, combine it with foods that contain healthy fats such as coconut or olive oil.  Adding some black pepper also enhances the uptake.  To get the full benefits of turmeric, consider supplementing with an extract that contains a significant amount (95%) of curcuminoids, as it difficult to get the full effects from diet alone.  As part of an overall healthy lifestyle plan that includes regular exercise, stress reduction, supplementation and an anti-inflammatory diet, adding this spice to daily meals can be a valuable addition indeed.

Turmero Active (K-75...Turmero Active (K-75) by Apex Energetics features a concentrated source of curcuminoids (95%) that provides 400 mg per serving of turmeric extract.  Black pepper fruit extract is added for enhanced absorbability.  This product is packaged with a syringe, enabling specific serving needs. 
 
Meriva-SR Curcumin Phytosome (SF775)
 
Meriva-SR Curcumin Phytosome (SF775) by Thorne Research provides a highly bioavailable curcumin/phosphatidylcholine complex in a unique patented time-release formula.  Provides 1 gram per serving (2 capsules). 
 
 
Curcumin
 
Curcumin by Pure Encapsulations provides 20 mg of turmeric standardized to contain 95% curcuminoids for broad support in maintaining a healthy inflammatory response. 
 
 
 
Curcumin Topical CreamCurcumin Topical Cream by Neurobiologix provides a curcumin extract that can be applied topically on the arch of the soles of the feet to increase systemic curcumin levels in the body.  This product may also be applied to the temples or behind the ear.  Careful application is necessary as natural curcumin pigments will stain clothing and fabric.   

 

Featured Brand: Designs For Health

Featured Brand Designs For HealthSusanBiconBy Susan Brown
Health & Wellness Editor
 

Established in 1989 with a focus on manufacturing nutrition-based wellness formulas, Designs For Health now provides a line of quality nutraceuticals available exclusively though healthcare professionals.  Relying on science-based solutions and the company’s guiding philosophy of “Science First,” Designs For Health provides research-driven, synergistic formulations that contain meaningful quantities of therapeutic ingredients in order to deliver exceptional products with proven efficacy. 

All products are manufactured in FDA inspected facilities under stringent quality control procedures that exceed industry standards for Good Manufacturing Practices (GMPs).  While only pure, superior quality raw materials are utilized, testing of all raw materials and finished products ensures all formulations are free of pesticides, heavy metals, microbes  and toxins.  In addition, these top quality, professional-grade nutritional supplements are designed to exceed industry standards for efficacy, identity, purity, strength and composition. 

Customer favorites from Designs For Health include:

Inflammatone
 
Inflammatone – This powerful formula combines the best of science and enzyme technology to provide natural support for inflammatory control as well as free radical protection.  Non-GMO formula. 
 
 
Prostate Supreme
 
Prostate Supreme – This formulation provides targeted, balanced and comprehensive nutritional support for optimal prostate and bladder health and function.  Gluten, soy, dairy free.  No artificial colors or preservatives. 
 
 
GI-Revive Powder
 
GI-Revive Powder- This convenient crystalline powder provides therapeutic levels of ingredients for comprehensive support of optimal gastrointestinal health and function.  Gluten, soy, dairy free.  No artificial colors or preservatives. 
 
 
Adrenal Complex
 
Adrenal Complex – Designed with the intention of rejuvenating overstressed adrenal glands, this glandular based complex is ideal for those under chronic stress or those with extreme adrenal burnout.  Non-GMO.  Gluten, soy, dairy free.  No artificial colors or preservatives. 
 
OsteoForce
 
OsteoForce- This unique formula delivers super absorbable bone supportive nutrients necessary to restore healthy bones.  All minerals chosen for this formula are from Albion Advanced Nutrition, a leader in chelated mineral formulation.  Non-GMO.  Gluten, soy, dairy free.  No artificial colors or preservatives. 
 
Thyroid Synergy
 
 
Thyroid Synergy – This product supplies botanical and nutritional ingredients for overall thyroid support and enhancement of thyroid hormone production.  Non-GMO.  Gluten, soy, dairy free.  No artificial colors or preservatives. 

Super Shrooms

MagicMusroomJacquieIconBy Jacquie Eubanks
BSN, RN
 

While lacking the color found in many brightly hued fruits and vegetables, mushrooms have been revered since ancient times for their powerful health promoting benefits and their unique nutritional characteristics.  Often categorized as a vegetable, mushrooms are neither plant nor animal but are actually part of their own distinctive fungi kingdom.  Mushrooms provide many of the nutritional elements of vegetables, as well as proteins and amino acids commonly found in meat, beans and grains.  Mushrooms offer immunomodulating and anti-inflammatory properties.  Research shows that mushrooms have a positive impact on blood lipids, blood glucose, immunity and weight control.  Along with powerful antioxidants and important vitamins and minerals, mushrooms contain so many good for you nutrients you may want to consider consuming them daily along with your 5-a-day vegetable servings.

  • Low in calories and sodium, mushrooms are fat-free and gluten-free and have a very low glycemic index, which helps keep blood sugar stable.    
  • Mushrooms are a great source of B vitamins including riboflavin, which helps to maintain healthy blood cells; niacin, which promotes healthy skin and aids the digestive and nervous systems; and pantothenic acid, which aids hormone production and also aids the nervous system.  Mushrooms also contain folate, biotin, and bioavailable vitamin B12, similar to the B12 found in beef liver and fish. 
  • Mushrooms are rich in the essential antioxidant selenium and in ergothioneine, a naturally occurring antioxidant. 
  • Mushrooms contain copper, which provides bone and nerve support and aids oxygen transport.  Additional minerals include phosphorus, necessary for energy metabolism, and chromium, which increases insulin effectiveness and aids blood glucose control in diabetics.
  • Mushrooms contain high levels of potassium, a mineral that helps control blood pressure and helps maintain normal fluid and mineral balance. 
  • Beta-glucans found in many mushroom species have strong immunity-boosting effects. 
  • Like humans, mushrooms generate naturally occurring vitamin D when exposed to sunlight. 
  • The truly unique proteins found in mushrooms, including lectins, are believed to have  anti-viral, anti-bacterial and anti-cancer properties. 

Health benefits of mushrooms include:

  • Heart health – Australian research has shown that mushrooms contain a type of fiber that has a statin-like effect, lowering blood cholesterol and blood glucose levels and improving lipid metabolism.  The first generations of statins, cholesterol lowering drugs, were made from fungi. The combination of potassium and low sodium helps to lower blood pressure and decrease the risk of high blood pressure. 
  • Weight control – Research from John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health showed that dietary fibers contained in mushrooms have a positive effect on weight by increasing the feeling of satiety.  The study also concluded that people who included mushrooms in their daily meals actually consumed fewer calories overall.  Their rich savory flavor, known as umami, comes primarily from natural free glutamates, which may help to control appetite. 
  • Immune support – Naturally high in antioxidant content, mushrooms help to stimulate the immune system by enhancing the natural killer T-cells’ immune response and by protecting blood cells and other cells from free radical damage.  Ergothioneine appears to function as an intra-mitochondrial antioxidant, acting as a DNA protectant and slowing down oxidation and the cell aging process. 

There are approximately 140,000 species of mushroom-forming fungi, and about 100 species are currently being studied for their health benefits, especially their anti-cancer and anti-tumor properties.  As humans, we are closely related to fungi as we share the same pathogens. As a result, fungi have developed strong antibiotics, which work well against human pathogens.  Antibiotics such as penicillin, streptomycin and tetracycline are made from fungal extracts.  Fungi have also made important contributions to western medicine as the source of immunosuppressant and antifungal medications. 

As each mushroom species has its own unique health promoting benefits, blends of synergistic organic mushrooms, such as Shiitake, Reishi, Cordyceps and Turkey Tail, are valued as Mother Nature’s little medicinal powerhouses in traditional Asian, Japanese and Tibetan medicine.  Medicinal mushrooms are an excellent adjunct to a healthy diet and lifestyle in support of vitality, immune health and overall wellness.  

Here are some products I recommend:

ImmunoKinoko AHCC
ImmunoKinoko AHCC by Quality of Life Labs – This patented extract of hybridized medicinal mushrooms is uniquely rich in alpha-glucans.  Backed by over 20 clinical studies, AHCC provides one of the world’s most researched natural immunomodulators in support of immune function. 
 
 
 M/R/S Mushroom Formula
 M/R/S Mushroom Formula by Pure Encapsulations
Provides a dynamic combination of maitake, reishi, and shiitake for promoting optimal immune system health and exceptional broad-spectrum physiological support.
 
 
 
Mycotaki
 
 Mycotaki by Metagenics - This powerful formula for enhanced health features a proprietary concentrated extract of 7 nourishing mushrooms including Turkey Tail, Reishi, Shiitake, Cordyceps and Maitake.

Lifestyle Strategies For Longevity

LifestyleStrategiesJacquieIconBy Jacquie Eubanks
BSN, RN
 

I’m betting most of us would rather live a shorter but healthier life than a longer unhealthy one.  Ideally, many would choose a longer, healthier life.  The goal of anti-aging or healthy aging strategies is to be healthier, look younger and feel lighter and more energetic.  Life spans are increasing in the U.S., thanks in part to steady improvements in healthcare and living conditions.  Age-related chronic diseases, which can negatively impact the quality of life, are also on the rise.  Longevity is related to our genetics but a lot depends on personal choices and lifestyle factors, which impact health and wellness.  Sustainable anti-aging strategies are meant to develop over time, as trying to make too many changes too quickly can turn out to be more stressful than helpful.  We all have the power to alter our daily habits to achieve major benefits that directly affect our quality of life. 

What happens to our bodies as we age?

  • The body begins to lose muscle strength and flexibility, increasing the chances of musculoskeletal fatigue and injury. 
  • The metabolic rate slows, making it more difficult to maintain a healthy weight. 
  • The motor nerves begin to deteriorate, slowing reaction time and affecting balance and eye-hand coordination.
  • Calcium loss increases over time, weakening the bones and increasing fracture risk.
  • The body’s ability to process glucose declines, increasing the risk of developing diabetes. 
  • Blood pressure steadily increases.
  • The ratio of good (HDL) to bad (LDL) cholesterol increases in favor of LDL cholesterol. 
  • The immune system’s ability to ward off disease is weakened.
  • Vision grows weaker and hearing ability declines. 
  • Mild or severe cognitive impairment may occur. 
  • As the cells’ ability to divide and multiply reach their lifetime limit, cell death results and organ function gradually declines.  
  • Mitochondria that supply energy to the cells becomes less efficient. 

Wow, sounds scary.  The good news is that Baby Boomers and Gen X-ers are redefining the concept of healthy aging with the realization that you can do a lot to delay the onset of these side effects of aging.  Disease is not inevitable, as we make our own choices about our environment, our diet and our lifestyle, which all influence our health.  Is now the time for you to take control of your own wellness?  It’s never too early or too late to begin a program of rejuvenation by paying attention to your physical, mental and social fitness.  Focus on prevention, as aging is inevitable but succumbing to age-related disease is not.  Engage in life through physical, social and productive activities. 

Small, sustainable changes can lead to measurable gains in life quality. 

  • Being socially engaged has a positive effect on overall wellness.  Studies show that social interactions, such as staying in touch with family and friends, pursuing interests and volunteering, improve quality of life both physically and mentally. 
  • Staying active within the community and participating in local events can provide significant gains in vitality and maintaining independence.
  • It’s official.  Regular exercise is a key to aging well.  People who exercise live longer, healthier lives than those who are sedentary. Exercise, even in small doses, increases muscle and bone strength and improves memory.  Strength training improves neuromuscular control, reducing the chances of injury.  Keeping exercise simple and choosing a program that can be done anywhere, such as walking or biking, is key to sustainability. 
  • Good nutrition not only improves life quality, it also improves the chances of an increased lifespan.  Avoiding added sugar and refined carbs, and adding one more fruit and vegetable to your daily meals is a good starting point. 
  • Practice stress reduction by doing anything you find relaxing, such as reading a book, listening to music, or deep breathing exercises. 
  • Maintaining a healthy weight can help protect against heart disease, diabetes and metabolic syndrome.  Belly fat is particularly harmful.  Exercise and a healthy high fiber diet helps to reduce belly fat. 
  • Keep your brain active and your mind sharp by switching up your routines or trying something new.  Learning and tackling new challenges helps to ward off cognitive decline.  Healthy aging means continually reinventing yourself, adapting to change and finding things to enjoy. 
  • Supplements that can provide healthy aging benefits include antioxidants to help protect cells and prevent oxidative damage, ubiquinol for cardiovascular health support, omega-3 fatty acids for overall health and brain function and turmeric for its anti-inflammatory properties. 

Products for healthy aging include:

Anti-Oxidant 2.0
 
Anti-Oxidant 2.0 by Vital Nutrients provides an exceptional blend of antioxidants in a highly synergistic formula.  Additionally, a proprietary blend of valuable phytonutrients adds 21,300 ORAC value per serving. 
 
 
UBQH™Ubiquinol 100 mg
 
UBQH™ Ubiquinol 100 mg by Integrative Therapeutics  provides CoQ10 in a readily absorbable, active antioxidant formula for support of cellular energy, cardiovascular health and overall wellness.
 
 
OmegAvail Marine
 
OmegAvail Marine by Designs for Health provides molecularly distilled omega-3 fish oil with guaranteed purity.  The inclusion of lipase ensures enhanced digestion and absorption.  These very pure fish oil softgels are naturally lemon flavored and are free of heavy metals, environmental pollutants and oxidative impurities.   
 
Turmero Active (K-75...
 
Turmero Active™ (K-75) by Apex Energetics provides 400 mg per serving of turmeric extract standardized  to 95% curcuminoids for immune and wellness support. 

WEEK 5: 90-Day Healthy Weight Challenge

Week5JenniferIconBy Jennifer Bement
Social Media Manager
 

We are now in week 5 of our 90-Day Healthy Weight Challenge. The team seems to be getting into a routine of doing some kind of exercise in addition to taking the supplements and eating healthier. A number of people are walking or running, while others are practicing Tai Chi or yoga, some are hitting the gym, and still others are gardening, cleaning house and even horseback riding – any way they can find to burn calories, they are.

We thought we’d profile one of the participants, so here’s a little about Suzy. Suzy had actually begun a weight loss program just prior to the start of the Challenge, so she had a bit of a head-start on the rest of the group. “I decided I wanted to lose 15 lbs and now was the perfect time to do it” she stated. She started with modifying her diet to make more healthy choices and when the Challenge kicked off, the addition of the supplements hastened the weight off. Suzy is one of the participants taking Integrative Therapeutics’ 7-KETO Lean to burn fat, not muscle. To complement the dietary changes and supplements, Suzy is also increasing her activity level by walking and hitting the gym to build muscle and burn fat. Thanks to all her hard work, Suzy has already reached her original goal and is now working toward the next one!

Overall, the team is showing some great results and over just 5 weeks have lost a total of 96 lbs!

Potassium’s Role in Health

PotassiumJacquieIconBy Jacquie Eubanks
BSN, RN
 

As the third most abundant mineral in the human body, potassium is a vital electrolyte that has many significant health benefits.  These benefits should not be overlooked if you wish to maintain your health and wellbeing.  Low consumption of fruits and vegetables and an increased intake of heavily salted processed foods have led to a decrease in potassium levels in the U.S. population.  According to the National Academies’ Food and Nutrition Board, adequate potassium intake is 4.7 grams (4,700 mg) per day.  In the U.S., men generally consume 3 grams per day and women average less than 2.5 grams.  Why is potassium important and do we need to increase our daily intake of potassium rich foods?

In addition to promoting an overall sense of wellbeing, potassium is critical for the proper functioning of the human body, supporting heart, brain, kidney and muscle tissue function.  Potassium helps to strengthen bones and aids in the maintenance of the electrochemical balance for support of nerve impulses and muscle contractions.  A potassium deficiency along with a high sodium diet can lead to diabetes, hypertension, stroke, heart disease and arthritic or rheumatic conditions.  Symptoms of fatigue, muscle weakness, abnormal heartbeat or palpitations, high blood pressure, anemia or severe headache are all associated with potassium insufficiency.    

Studies show that a high potassium diet, which could include more fruits, vegetables, potatoes, beans, fish, avocados, bananas, coconut water and leafy greens, can address low potassium levels and alleviate or provide significant relief of symptoms.  Diets that include potassium rich foods are associated with a decrease in elevated blood pressure, improved kidney function and more efficient vascular function. 

  • Potassium plays a huge role in maintaining electrical conductivity of the brain, supporting brain function.  By aiding in oxygen transport to the brain, potassium helps to stimulate neural activity, aiding cognitive function, memory and learning. 
  • Heart benefits include a more normalized heartbeat and reduced incidence of arrhythmia and heart attack.
  • Potassium aids in stroke prevention by acting as a vasodilator, helping blood flow more freely and relaxing blood vessels. 
  • Healthy potassium levels have a significant influence on lowered blood pressure, decreasing the risk of stroke in both men and women.  Too much sodium and too little potassium can result in elevated blood pressure. 
  • Potassium stimulates the kidneys to eliminate waste, which aids in maintaining healthy and balanced water and pH levels in the body.  Potassium plays a significant role in maintaining optimal fluid balance necessary for efficient cell functioning.
  • Potassium helps to enable muscle tissue growth and the utilization of metabolic energy, allowing all muscles, including the heart muscle, to function optimally. 
  • Regulated fluid levels aid the transmission of electrical charges from the brain and nervous system, supporting organ function and fast and efficient muscle contraction and relaxation. 
  • Potassium helps to keep blood sugar levels stabilized throughout the body, reducing the chances of insulin spiking and plummeting.
  • Potassium aids in hormone regulation including cortisol and adrenaline hormones, which in excess amounts can cause anxiety and chronic stress.  

While we can’t underestimate the importance of potassium’s role in health, we can also have too much of a good thing.  As excessive potassium intake can affect kidney function, supplementation is best directed by a healthcare professional.  However, a diet that includes  potassium rich foods and a lowered sodium intake can help keep your heart, brain and body active and  functioning at its best. 

Excellent choices for supplementation include:

Potassium Citrate (M240)

Potassium Citrate (M240) by Thorne Research provides 99 mg per capsule of highly absorbable potassium in support of cardiovascular, musculoskeletal, kidney and overall health.  Non-GMO formula.  Gluten, soy, dairy and wheat free. 
 
 
 
 
Potassium-99
 
Potassium-99 by Progena provides 99 mg of potassium as amino acid chelate per tablet.  Gluten, soy and wheat free formula. 
 
 
 
 
 
Potassium (citrate)
Potassium (citrate) by Pure Encapsulations provides 200 mg of potassium per vegetable capsule for support of bodily functions including nerve, nutrient metabolism, bone, muscle and cardiovascular health. 
 
 
 
Potassium Citrate
 
 
Potassium Citrate by Allergy Research Group provides pure bioavailable potassium citrate in support of optimal health.  Gluten and soy free product.  99 mg per capsule. 

 

Featured Brand: Pure Encapsulations

PureEncapsulationsLogoSusanBiconBy Susan Brown
Health & Wellness Editor
 

Recognized as a leader in science based products for health and nutrition, Pure Encapsulations is committed to providing the highest quality supplements in order to optimize long-term health.  Pure Encapsulations formulates and manufactures researched-based, clinically relevant hypo-allergenic supplements.  All professional strength products are manufactured in their own state-of-the-art plant located in Sudbury, Massachusetts.  Raw materials are sourced worldwide and are selected solely on the basis of the quality and purity provided in their most bioavailable forms.  Certified independent laboratories test all raw materials and finished products utilizing advanced techniques to ensure purity, potency and quality.

Pure Encapsulations’ hypo-allergenic supplements contain no added coatings, fillers, binders, excipients, or artificial colors, flavors or fragrance.  Full disclosure label policies ensure that all ingredients, including raw material composition, true elemental mineral weight, and primary active marker compounds of standardized herbal extracts, are truthfully shown on the label.

If you are looking for pure, clinically proven nutritional supplements, look no further than Pure Encapsulations.  These professional strength, very high quality products are available through healthcare professionals.  Pure Encapsulations recommends they be used under the guidance of a qualified healthcare practitioner.

5 StarsFive star rated customer favorites from Pure Encapsulations include: 

Vitamin D3 5,000 IU
 
 
Vitamin D3 5,000 IU provides support for bone health, calcium absorption, immune cell activity and healthy cell metabolism.
 
 
 
Magnesium (citrate)
Magnesium (citrate) provides highly bioavailable magnesium chelate to support energy production, healthy bones, muscle function, cardiovascular health, and the metabolism and utilization of essential vitamins and minerals.
 
 
B Complex Plus
 
B Complex Plus contains an exceptional combination of B vitamins in their optimal bioavailable forms to support the nervous system, hemoglobin formation, hormone synthesis, energy metabolism and the integrity of internal organs.
 
 
Nutrient 950
Nutrient 950® provides optimal nutritional support for all bodily systems.  This complete hypo-allergenic formula contains high-nutrient, bioavailable vitamins, minerals, trace elements and a high profile of antioxidants.  This formula is well tolerated by sensitive individuals.   Also available in a no iron formula.
 
Calcium (citrate)
 
 
 Calcium (citrate) provides highly absorbable calcium to support bone, cardiovascular and colon health.