Everything You Need To Know About Garcinia Cambogia

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Garcinia Combogia Image Design 1 - Everything You Need To Know About Garcinia Cambogia

One of the most popular weight loss supplements at the moment is Garcinia Cambogia. Garcinia Cambogia is obtained from a fruit called Garcinia gummi-gutta, also known as Malabar Tamarind. In weight loss, one of the most important active ingredients is hydroxycitric acid (HCA), which is found in excess quantities in the peels of this fruit.

In this article, we will take a look at Garcinia Cambogia, and provide more insight into its use for weight loss, and how it can help you.

What is Garcinia Cambogia?

What is Garcinia Cambogia - Everything You Need To Know About Garcinia Cambogia

Garcinia gummi-gutta is a small fruit, greenish or yellow in color, and shaped like a pumpkin. It’s a sour fruit so it’s usually used in the kitchen for sour flavoring. Weight loss supplements that contain Garcinia Cambogia are derived from peels of this fruit, which as mentioned earlier, contain excess amounts of HCA.

Generally, weight loss supplements that contain Garcinia Cambogia have between 20% and 60% HCA. According to the latest studies, however, for the best weight loss benefits, you should go for supplements that contain at least 50% HCA.

How Garcinia Cambogia Works?

How Garcinia Cambogia Works - Everything You Need To Know About Garcinia Cambogia

Many studies have shown that HCA helps in weight loss by burning fat and lowers your appetite. This is done by blocking the action of the citrate lyase enzyme. This is the enzyme responsible for generating fat in the body. HCA also increases the level of serotonin in the brain, which inhibits your hunger pangs.

While all this is possible, the true weight loss results from Garcinia Cambogia are not exactly commendable. According to a review in the Journal of Obesity, those who took Garcinia Cambogia in a study shed around 2 pounds more than those who didn’t What the researchers could not account for, however, was whether the loss was as a result of the supplement or not. In that study, there was a possibility that the weight loss might have happened as a result of exercise routines that the participants engaged in, or the low-calorie diets they were put on. As a result, more studies into HCA are required to prove that it can help not just in weight loss, but also in keeping the weight off.

High Cholesterol and Type 2 Diabetes

High Cholesterol and Type 2 Diabetes - Everything You Need To Know About Garcinia Cambogia

Garcinia Cambogia helps the body absorb glucose better. The body needs this to produce energy. A study that involved mice revealed that those who received Garcinia Cambogia had a lower level of blood insulin than those who didn’t. It’s for this reason that people who have diabetes have expressed interest in Garcinia Cambogia.

For people taking medicine that controls blood sugar levels, using Garcinia Cambogia might not be advisable because the level of glucose in your body could become very low. There are studies that suggest the use of Garcinia Cambogia in improving the level of good cholesterol (HDL) in the body, by reducing the level of bad cholesterol (LDL). However, in case you’re already taking prescription medication for cholesterol, you shouldn’t use Garcinia Cambogia.

How Does Garcinia Cambogia Help with Weight Loss?

How Does Garcinia Cambogia Help with Weight Loss - Everything You Need To Know About Garcinia Cambogia

Garcinia Cambogia helps you lose weight in two ways:

  • May Reduce Appetite. According to recent studies in lab rats, those that took Garcinia Cambogia supplements ate less than those who didn’t. The same has been experienced by different studies on individuals which goes to suggest that Garcinia Cambogia can help suppress the appetite, giving the illusion of satiety.

It’s not yet clear how Garcinia Cambogia brings about this effect on the appetite but based on controlled laboratory studies, Garcinia Cambogia increases the presence of serotonin in the brain. Serotonin naturally suppresses the appetite. Therefore, increasing the amount of serotonin in the blood level is expected to have a similar effect on the appetite.

While this might be the case, these results are not conclusive yet. There are studies that have revealed no change in the appetite of people who took a placebo and those who take Garcinia Cambogia supplements. Therefore, there’s a possibility that the effect of Garcinia Cambogia in reducing appetite might be linked to other factors unique to individuals.

  • Blocks Fat Production. Studies conducted in the recent past have proven that Garcinia Cambogia can help with fat loss, but only low amounts of fat. The effectiveness of Garcinia Cambogia, however, is not consistent or strongly convincing, according to these studies.

Case in point, a recent study suggests that HCA operates in the body by preventing the action of the adenosine triphosphate citrate lyase enzyme, responsible for the formation of fat cells. However, other studies indicate that this might only yield no more than two pounds in weight loss.

These findings have been explicitly mentioned and were published in a 2011 release of the Journal of Obesity. For individuals who want to lose weight, a comparison between those who took Garcinia Cambogia and those who didn’t reveal a very small difference. Besides, it’s not convincingly possible to attribute the 2 pounds of weight loss to Garcinia Cambogia.

12 different trial studies were carried out using Garcinia Cambogia, and statistically, there wasn’t much difference in those who used Garcinia Cambogia supplements compared to those who used a placebo. In fact, some of the studies revealed that those who used supplements with HCA experienced gastrointestinal adverse events more often than those who were on the placebo.

Over the years, there have been mixed results from studies into the use of Garcinia Cambogia for weight loss. One such study revealed a considerable loss in fat mass in the HCA study group than the placebo control group. Two other studies revealed a reduction in subcutaneous fat, visceral fat and total fat in the HCA study group than in the placebo control group. At the same time, two other studies revealed no considerable difference between the HCA group and the placebo group.

Based on these studies, therefore, researchers believe that there’s a very small chance of seeing results when using Garcinia Cambogia for weight loss. In fact, there’s no certain clinical relevance to its continued use. The recommendation is more studies should be carried out in the near future. In case you plan to lose weight and intend to use Garcinia Cambogia, you might not get the results you are after.

  • Lowers Cholesterol. Garcinia Cambogia is thought to help the body reduce the level of triglycerides and increase the level of good cholesterol. While Garcinia Cambogia helps increase the level of HDL, it’s not advisable for people who are currently on any medication that might affect the level of cholesterol in the body. That being said, however, the effects are not so strong or reliable either.

According to relevant studies, Garcinia Cambogia doesn’t have a significant impact on the level of triglycerides in the body or glucose. However, there’s a noticeably small effect on reducing the level of cholesterol in the body. Considering the fact that there are several other ways of keeping your cholesterol levels in check naturally, you could be better off trying those, including exercise and watching your diet.

  • Stabilizes Blood Sugar Levels. What about the effect of Garcinia Cambogia on the blood sugar levels? There’s some evidence pointing to the fact that Garcinia Cambogia can control the level of blood sugar. It improves the rate of glucose uptake, which essentially increases your energy levels.

Based on this, Garcinia Cambogia will eventually prevent the action of the pancreatic alpha-amylase enzymes, which eventually help with weight loss. This affects glucosidase and alters the synthesis of fatty acids, which eventually affect carbohydrate metabolism.

This process makes it easier for the body to respond to insulin, even though researchers warn that it might also increase the risk of low blood sugar in some cases. If you have a history of unstable blood sugar levels, you are diabetic or pre-diabetic, or if you are using medicine that affects the level of insulin in your body, you should avoid Garcinia Cambogia because it might make your blood sugar levels drop to dangerous levels. For this reason, it’s advisable that you consult with your doctor before you start using Garcinia Cambogia.

  • Potential Side Effects. Generally, most people don’t experience adverse side effects when taking Garcinia Cambogia. However, there have been cases of patients being hospitalized with liver failure, and in dire need of liver transplant.

In an article published by the Mayo Clinic Transplantation Center, millions of Americans use herbal supplements regularly, either as pills or other forms. However, most of them are not aware of the full effect that these have on their bodies. A lot of the drugs touted for weight loss have potential risks that affect the liver, as a result of hepatotoxicity.

Garcinia Cambogia is a substance that can be easily abused, especially since it has not been properly regulated. There are manufacturers who recommend multiple doses a day for extended periods of time, which might not be good for your body in the long run.

Other than damage to the liver, the following are some of the side effects that you may experience when taking Garcinia Cambogia:

  • Skin Rashes
  • Fatigue
  • Headaches or migraines
  • Bad breath
  • Dry mouth
  • Weakness
  • Low immune function
  • Diarrhea
  • Loss of appetite
  • Nausea

While looking at the side effects, it’s also important to address some of the potential drug interactions.  Considering the effects above, you should steer clear of Garcinia Cambogia if you are in any of the following situations:

  • You are pregnant or breastfeeding
  • Suffer from kidney or liver damage
  • Are using diabetic medication
  • Are asthmatic or take medicine for your allergies
  • Are anemic
  • Take medicine for pain relief
  • You suffer depression or anxiety
  • Use blood thinners
  • Use drugs that lower your cholesterol level

How to Maximize the Benefits

How to Maximize the Benefits - Everything You Need To Know About Garcinia Cambogia

Before deciding to use Garcinia Cambogia either for weight loss or for some of the other benefits, the following are some important facts you need to know about dosage recommendations, especially for any product that has HCA:

  • Garcinia Cambogia studies have often been conducted against a variety of doses, most of which involve between 1 and 2.8 grams administered daily. Normal dosage should be between 250mg and 1000mg a day.
  • The duration of the studies also varies, with some lasting only two weeks, and others going for up to three months.
  • The ideal HCA dose is still a matter of opinion. This is because a high dose of HCA might not always translate to similar bioavailability upon consumption.
  • There’s a convincing connection between weight loss and the HCA dose, which means that you might have better results with a higher dose.
  • Garcinia Cambogia is one of the most commonly used supplements in studies that try to find the benefits of using HCA. Other than this, however, another popular source of HCA is Hibiscus Sabdariffa.
  • Since most of the studies on average last 8 weeks, experts believe that this is a very short time to convincingly investigate the impact of HCA on your body.

In order to be safe, when you’re shopping for supplements, steer clear of supplements or formulas that contain Garcinia Cambogia, but don’t report on some of the other ingredients that are used in their formulation, or those that don’t report the exact level of HCA contained.

In order to keep the costs manageable, most manufacturers who make proprietary formulas only use a portion of the active ingredient. That’s why you need to be very careful with the labels. Choose products that state “Pure Garcinia Cambogia and Hydroxycitric Acid Extract” on their labels.

If you go for blends, you must also be careful about the label instructions. Don’t buy anything that has an ingredient listed without a mention of the quantity of that ingredient, because you wouldn’t know exactly what quantity you are ingesting.

Garcinia Cambogia Extract Diet Pills

Garcinia Cambogia Extract Diet Pills - Everything You Need To Know About Garcinia Cambogia

For people who are looking for the fastest way to lose weight, you might have come across Garcinia Cambogia diet pills. You must avoid these at all costs. Garcinia Cambogia diet pills have often been adversely mentioned in the media, linked to severe side effects, and in some cases, fatalities.

In 2017, the FDA warned against using the supplement Fruta Planta Life which contains Garcinia Cambogia extracts. This is because one of the other ingredients in this supplement is Sibutramine (Meridia). This is an appetite suppressant that was banned in 2010.

Why was it banned?

Sibutramine was banned because it increased the risk of strokes, heart attacks, and could cause seizures and jaundice.

What is the Garcinia Cambogia extract, and what are the weight loss benefits?

This is a tropical fruit that’s popularly known as Tamarind in Indonesia. It’s a delicious fruit and has a number of health benefits. It’s rich in iron, phosphorus, riboflavin, thiamine, calcium, and niacin.

The peels of this fruit contain the hydroxycitric acid (HCA). According to researchers, HCA helps the body by suppressing your appetite. It also prevents the body from stashing food away in the form of fats.

A study in 2015 revealed that Garcinia Cambogia might help with weight loss through appetite suppression. However, this is not as definitive as most people might think. There are several Garcinia Cambogia extract diet pills in the market, including popular brands that have in the recent past failed lab and quantity tests to prove this. Other than that, according to Sue Decotiis, M.D, who is an expert at weight loss, we are yet to see large scale studies and trials that compare other supplements to Garcinia Cambogia or placebos. In fact, there might probably not be any objective information on Garcinia.

To make things worse, the FDA hasn’t reviewed or regulated the safety and effectiveness of Garcinia Cambogia extract diet pills given that they are not drugs, but supplements. The FDA only intervenes in situations where the use of such products has resulted in several cases of hospitalization. Because of this reason, the amount of Garcinia Cambogia extract that’s included in the pills released to the market is under the sole discretion of the manufacturers, together with any other ingredient that they might include in the product, such as Sibutramine.

In 2017, the FDA intercepted some mail shipments, and upon testing, found Sibutramine in the supplements. They warned against the use of these products, given that Sibutramine is known to increase the blood pressure and heart rate. In fact, when used with other medicines, the effects can be fatal.

In 2010, Abbott Laboratories was mandated by the FDA to remove Meridia (Sibutramine) from the market. This was after clinical tests revealed that this drug could induce strokes and heart attacks.

Other than this, there are lots of other reasons why you need to avoid using Garcinia Cambogia extract pills. In a 2015 study, the extracts were heavily connected to liver damage, brain fog, and diarrhea. The cause of these problems hasn’t been convincingly linked to Garcinia Cambogia in any study so far though.

When taken in high doses, a food and chemical toxicology study in 2005 revealed that Garcinia Cambogia can cause testicular toxicity and testicular atrophy in mice. This is enough information to make you rethink about using the product.

To make matters worse, there are shady individuals who would do anything to promote harmful products online. In 2013, the Women’s Health brand was illegally used in a scam where their name was used to promote harmful Garcinia Cambogia extract pills.

To be on the safe side, when choosing your diet supplements online, you need to be very careful about what you buy and you should do a lot of research. In fact, forget about all the fads out there, and instead, choose natural ways to lose fat, without using pills.

The History of Garcinia Cambogia

The History of Garcinia Cambogia - Everything You Need To Know About Garcinia Cambogia

Garcinia Cambogia is one of the most popular fruits in Southeast Asia. Depending on the region, there are several names for it, including Gambooge, Assam fruit, Malabar Tamarind, Garcinia Gummi-Gutta, and Kudam Puli (Pot Tamarind). However, it’s commonly referred to as Garcinia Cambogia.

There are several types of the Garcinia fruit that grow in the sub-tropics. It’s mainly found in forested lands in Southeast Asia like in India, the coast of Kerala, Central and Western Africa etc. It has a thin skin, though the vertical lobes are very prominent. It grows in different sizes and can become as big as a large grapefruit or as tiny as a small orange.

Garcinia Cambogia is also available in different colors, ranging from a reddish pumpkin color to a yellow-green color.

Over the years, Garcinia Cambogia has been used in many ways. If you love Indian cuisine, you will find it being used in chutneys and curries. It’s also popular among healers for its herbal and medicinal values. There are claims that it helps treat parasites and worms.

Other than preservation and meal preparation, Garcinia Cambogia features in traditional medicine as a mild natural laxative. When taken in excess amounts, Garcinia Cambogia, like any other fruit, can help with constipation.

A random study was conducted in 1998 into the effects of HCA as an active ingredient in Garcinia Cambogia in 135 people, in an attempt to reveal the anti-obesity properties. According to the researchers, HCA, when administered in high doses, can suppress the accumulation of fats in the epididymis. Later on in 2012, Garcinia Cambogia was endorsed by Dr. Oz.

Is Garcinia Cambogia Approved by the FDA?

Is Garcinia Cambogia Approved by the FDA - Everything You Need To Know About Garcinia Cambogia

Usually, people lack access to the right information when shopping for items online. As a result, they end up buying the wrong products. Before you place an order or ask for information about anything, it’s always recommended to do your own research first. Find out as much as you can about the product, and more importantly, the company behind it.

Read through as many websites as possible to find out about the certifications and any approvals necessary before you commit to a purchase. When searching for information on Garcinia Cambogia, you will never see or should never see an FDA approval.

The reason for this is because the FDA doesn’t approve healthcare laboratories, facilities or manufacturers. They don’t inspect the manufacturer premises to ensure that they adhere to strict manufacturing codes of conduct or ethics.

That being said, however, the establishments involved in the production, packaging, and labeling of products within the US must be registered by the FDA. What this means is that the FDA doesn’t approve Garcinia Cambogia, but it can be made in the US in a laboratory that’s registered by the FDA. You must also try to find out as much information about the company, to make sure they have certifications like the Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) stamp.

Any company of credible reputation must have a link on their website that shows their position with the FDA.

Avoid These Foods When Taking Garcinia Cambogia

Avoid These Foods When Taking Garcinia Cambogia - Everything You Need To Know About Garcinia Cambogia

It’s no secret that Garcinia Cambogia is one of the most sought-after supplements in the weight loss industry. It prevents the formation of fat in the body and suppresses your appetite, which helps you avoid overeating.

HCA is the active ingredient in Garcinia Cambogia that’s of utmost importance. It’s the ingredient that’s responsible for shedding off excess fat from the body and losing weight. HCA, as an appetite suppressant, tricks the body into feeling you are satisfied, even when you have eaten very little food. Therefore, you won’t have urges to overeat.

When using this supplement, you can lose close to 10 pounds in a matter of weeks. There are people who have noticed good results when using the extracts, and all this without having to follow a diet or exercise.

One of the best things about using this supplement is that there are no side effects that you need to worry about, given that the ingredients are 100% natural, safe and highly effective. The supplement doesn’t contain any filler substances, so you can look forward to easily losing weight. That being said, it’s also important that you know the types of foods that you will need to avoid when using Garcinia Cambogia.

In order to get the best results when using Garcinia Cambogia supplements for weight loss, you must also pay attention to your diet. Proper diet control is mandatory if you want to achieve your weight loss results better and faster.

However, before you do this, you must also research and know the kind of foods that you need to stay away from when using Garcinia Cambogia. This will help you enhance the efficiency of the supplement. Naturally, fiber-rich foods are good for the body since they help with digestion, prevent diseases and enhance your wellbeing. However, you should avoid them when using Garcinia Cambogia.

Why Should You Avoid Them?

Why ou Should You Avoid Them  - Everything You Need To Know About Garcinia Cambogia

The action of dietary fiber in the diet will prevent the absorption of HCA in the body. Since HCA is important in weight loss, the dietary fiber will essentially impede the weight loss process. If you cannot stop eating these foods, you still need to monitor the intake so that you can still have some good results in your attempts to lose weight.

By carefully monitoring your consumption of some of these foods, you should be able to enjoy proper absorption of HCA into the body. While doing this, you also need to monitor your calorie intake so you need to keep away from fatty foods or sugary foods. Foods like chocolate, sweets, spreads, dips, potato chips and sauces generally increase your weight by increasing the accumulation of fat in the body.

Apart from these, you also need to stay away from gummy and hard candy because they are starch-based items. As a result, they negatively affect the efficiency of Garcinia Cambogia, and this is why you need to avoid them completely.

Like any other weight loss supplement or regime out there, for you to enjoy the ultimate weight loss benefits when using Garcinia Cambogia, you must support your efforts with a properly balanced diet. This will speed up the weight loss process. You must drink a lot of water too, of course.

However, there are some other parameters that you must consider when choosing the food you will remove from your list and the ones you will be consuming. Think about things like your lifestyle, your level of activity, age and so forth, because this will help you determine the appropriate amount of weight you will shed off when taking Garcinia Cambogia.

By removing high-calorie foods and snacks from your diet, you should be able to maximize the effects of Garcinia Cambogia in weight loss. This will enable you to burn fat faster and reduce weight in the process so you can get in a perfect weight and shape for your body.

You need to restrict the number of calories you are eating so you have less fat accumulating in the body. Your diet should also be focused on burning carbs to increase your energy levels, and help you get the best results.

In order to get the best results when using Garcinia Cambogia, you need to keep some of these foods out of your diet:

  • Reduce the Intake of High Fiber Foods. Vegetables and fruits are quality sources of natural fibers, which help in digestion and enhancing your wellbeing. However, according to recent studies, consuming too much fiber and low-calorie foods will prevent the action of HCA in the body. For this reason, you need to rethink your diet so that you don’t consume high fiber foods on a daily basis, like papaya, plantain, pineapple, bananas, apples, and oranges.
  • Consume a Diet with Calorie Restrictions. It’s important that you keep an eye on your daily calorie intake when you’re taking Garcinia Cambogia. Some of the foods you should have in your diet include potatoes, confectioneries, rice, pasta, bread or any flour baking. High-calorie foods you should limit or avoid altogether include high-fat cakes, fried food, chips, and chocolate. If you can avoid dairy products, do it. If not, you should stick to low-fat milk.
  • Consume Foods Rich in Carbohydrates. Carbohydrates are important in weight loss, especially when the body doesn’t turn them into fat. HCA prevents the body’s ability to convert fats into carbs. Because of this reason, you should consider adding a lot of carbs to your diet. Some of the foods you should look into include barley, wheat, rice, oats, and millet, especially when you are supplementing with Garcinia Cambogia.

In case you have been thinking about your health in general, and plan to lose weight naturally without straining or having to worry about side effects, you should consider using Garcinia Cambogia. This is a natural, powerful herb that will not just help you with weight loss but will also help you live a clean, rejuvenated and productive life.

Conclusion

Most of the studies available currently have differing views on the effectiveness of Garcinia Cambogia regarding weight loss. There are studies that have shown that Garcinia Cambogia can help you achieve weight loss without using any supplement. However, this is still subject to confirmation. One area where Garcinia Cambogia does stand out is the positive impact it has on blood fats.

Everything You Need to Know About Caffeine

1a0de7c23ab244bcbb387db12bfd4da5 2000x1200 - Everything You Need to Know About Caffeine

Caffeine Image Design 1 - Everything You Need to Know About Caffeine

There are all types of reports and opinions about caffeine. Some tell you that it’s entirely bad for you and should be banned, while others have found positives about the stimulant. There are times that you will want to cut it out or at least cut-down, and the truths about damage and effects will depend on your medical health.

We all likely consume caffeine in some way. While it’s most commonly associated with tea and coffee, it’s found in other drinks and food. You may unknowingly consume it if you don’t think about your food or drink choices fully. Did you know the average American will consume 2-3 cups of coffee a day, which is about 280mg of caffeine? In one year, 12,000 tons of caffeine is consumed, with 54% of that coming from coffee. Another 43% comes from tea, and the final 3% is from food and other products.

Before you start changing your coffee or tea intake, you’ll need to make sure you know absolutely everything possible about the stimulant. We’re delving into the full truth about caffeine, looking at everything you need to know about it. You may be surprised by the end.

What Exactly Is Caffeine?

What Exactly Is Caffeine - Everything You Need to Know About Caffeine

Caffeine is a chemical called 1,3,7-trimethylxanthine. Remember that saying that if you can’t pronounce something because of its scientific name being bad for you? Well, that’s not quite the case, but there are chances that you couldn’t pronounce that without really thinking about it and you likely didn’t know what it is.

It’s a completely natural chemical, found in tea leaves, coffee beans, yerba mate, guarana and kola nuts. A study has shown that 90% of Americans consume some caffeine on a daily basis, even those who cut out coffee. It’s only when you follow a strict caffeine-free diet that you’re able to cut it out entirely.

While it’s considered a drug because it’s a stimulant, it’s a chemical. You can extract it through pressure cooking the leaves and beans to turn it into a powdered drug form, but for the most part, you’re getting a natural chemical. However, it is highly addictive, which is where the true idea of it being a drug comes from.

While coffee and tea are the most popular ways to get caffeine, you can also find it in chocolate, energy drinks, soda, some snack bars, and even ice cream.

How Does Caffeine Work?

Caffeine increases dopamine levels and suppresses the adenosine receptors. This can lead to feeling happier and not as sleepy—the stimulant part of the drug. It can also help to leave you feeling more relaxed, improve your clarity in mind and even helps to improve the memory. However, these benefits are all temporary.

When the caffeine wears off, the body can go into what is called a caffeine crash. You feel more tired than you did before it and you can go into a slump.

There are some who link it to cocaine and heroin, because of the downsides associated with caffeine. After all, the effects are very similar, but on a much milder scale compared to the illegal, hard drugs.

What Are the Downsides of Consuming Caffeine?

What Are the Downsides of Consuming Caffeine - Everything You Need to Know About Caffeine

It’s worth getting the downsides out of the way first. Some are extremely serious, but there are others that are just a little more annoying. The severity of the downsides will depend on the amount of caffeine you take in daily.

Those who consume too much caffeine can suffer from insomnia. This is linked to the adenosine receptor blocking since the caffeine is used to help prevent you feeling drowsy. The chemical can also lead to your brain becoming overactive, which then leads to lack of sleep. You can’t switch off, and it can lead to mental health problems like depression.

Many people who drink a lot of coffee and tea or consume large amounts of caffeine can also find they struggle with the bowel movements. The caffeine speeds up the metabolism and digestive functions, but not in a healthy way. It’s possible to push through the waste and cause diarrhea. It’s also a diuretic, which makes you need to urinate a lot, which can also prevent you from sleeping well.

While your metabolism is boosted, so is your heart rate. Many of those who consume large amounts of caffeine experience shaking and a higher heart rate. This can be extremely dangerous, especially for those who suffer from health problems.

Some studies show that drinking too much caffeine can raise your risk of some other health problems. One study has shown a potential rise in the risk of dementia. This is possibly linked to the effect on the brain and the cognitive functions. Too much caffeine can leave your cognitive functions impaired, and you can also suffer issues when you come down from your caffeine high.

There is also the higher risk of inflammation within the body. Many people who drink a lot of coffee have stressful jobs. The stress and the caffeine linked together to create an imbalance in the hormones, and that can set off the immune system’s inflammatory process.

Are There Any Positives?

With all that in mind, you can wonder whether there’s any point in consuming caffeine. Well, there are some major health benefits, if you consume caffeine in a small amount and you follow your doctor’s orders.

Let’s start with your mental health benefits. In a small amount, caffeine can help you feel more awake and alert. You’ll find that a lot of students who cram for exams drink a lot of caffeine and writers tend to enjoy a lot of coffee. This isn’t because it’s a stereotype and they feel the need to fit in, but because of the mental clarity and alertness, they gain when using it for their work.

Athletes can also benefit highly from sensible use of caffeine. The chemical helps to boost energy levels and metabolism, making it easier to make the training easier. Caffeine has also shown benefits to burn fatter and reduce glucose, helping to maintain a healthy weight and improve performance. However, because of the benefits being viewed as a potential advantage in the competition, the Olympics Committee has banned caffeine products.

There are studies that show caffeine can be helpful for weight loss. In fact, a lot of diet pills will include caffeine. The stimulant boosts the metabolism and fat burning, helping you to burn more calories in the space of the day. Coffee and tea are also zero calorie drinks, without the sugar and milk. You can keep your water intake up without sacrificing the calories. However, you will still need to follow a healthy diet to take advantage of all the benefits.

Is There a Risk of Addiction?

Is There a Risk of Addiction - Everything You Need to Know About Caffeine

Caffeine addiction is a real thing. While it may not be an illegal drug, it is possible for people to become hooked on the benefits and the brain craves more of it. It’s also possible for caffeine to kill someone if given too much in a short space of time.

However, someone would need about 100 cups of coffee in the space of four hours to get to the point of death. The real danger is if you take a lot of caffeine pills. In 2007, one man took 30 No-Doz pills, which have caffeine, and died from an overdose.

It only takes 30-45 minutes for all the caffeine in a product to be absorbed. The effects will last for around three hours. The withdrawals from the caffeine can start within 12-24 hours of the last dose of the stimulant and last for 2-9 days, depending on the severity of the addiction. These withdrawal symptoms are all very similar to other addictions, including irritability, depression, extreme tiredness, headaches, and a decrease in energy levels.

Decaffeinated Doesn’t Mean Caffeine Free

If you want something that is completely void of caffeine, you will need to make sure you drink products labeled “Caffeine Free.” Decaffeinated doesn’t mean that it doesn’t have any caffeine in it at all. In the U.S. a product needs to be less than 2.5% caffeine to be classed as being decaffeinated.

However, by drinking decaffeinated, you will be able to consume more. The taste usually isn’t changed, especially when it comes to coffee. In tea, there can be a slightly different taste, which can put some people off.

Green tea isn’t caffeine free. The leaves still have some caffeine in them, but the amount is usually much lower than coffee and black tea. If you want completely caffeine free tea, then you’ll need to opt for herbal or rooibos tea.

How Much Caffeine is Considered Safe?

How Much Caffeine is Considered Safe - Everything You Need to Know About Caffeine

The exact amount of caffeine that is safe will depend on your health status. Some people have a higher sensitivity to caffeine than others. Those with a history of heart attacks, high blood pressure, or those who are pregnant should reduce their caffeine levels considerably compared to the average American. Those who have depression, anxiety, and sleeping issues will also find their doctor recommends reducing the amount of caffeine they consume.

Your doctor will discuss your risk if you have certain health conditions. If you take some medication for high blood pressure or diabetes, you may also be recommended to keep your caffeine intake to a minimum.

Caffeine isn’t essential for a healthy diet, but it can provide the benefits mentioned above. There’s no need to consume more than 300-400mg of caffeine a day to get the benefits. This is about 3-4 cups of coffee, which is plenty to get you through the day. Tea has less caffeine, so you may be able to double your intake, but it will depend on the type of tea and your sensitivity to the caffeine.

Energy drinks are often touted as being much higher in caffeine than coffee. This isn’t completely true. Eight ounces of an energy drink will have the same amount of caffeine as eight ounces of coffee. However, the can of energy drink is likely to be larger than a cup of coffee, so you end up taking in more during one sitting.

Caffeinated beverages will add to your water intake for the day. Contrary to popular belief, caffeinated beverages don’t cause dehydration. However, you still want to focus more of your water intake on plain water. This is far healthier in the long term.

Can You Have Caffeine While Pregnant

As mentioned, pregnant women need to reduce their caffeine intake. There’s no need to cut it out completely, but you will want to weigh up the risks and make your own decision. If you can switch to decaffeinated options that will be better for you.

Food safety experts in both the EU and the U.S. have confirmed that some caffeine is safe for pregnant women and breastfeeding moms. You want to limit yourself to just 200mg per day, which is about two cups of coffee in the home (in the coffee shops, the caffeine will be higher) or about four cups of black tea.

Studies show that caffeine in this low amount is unlikely to increase the risk of preterm delivery, miscarriage, low birth weight babies, and congenital disabilities. However, in large amounts, the complications listed above will become a risk. Your doctor will let you know if there are other reasons not to take in caffeinated beverages.

Do You Have to Swear Off Coffee?

The best thing you can do is talk to your doctor. Studies show that caffeine can offer benefits, but it can also be bad for you. If you have a health problem or are pregnant, your doctor will run through the amount of coffee is safe for you or whether you should cut out all caffeine. Otherwise, it’s safe to drink in moderation. You don’t need more than 400mg per day as a healthy adult. Any more than that and you run the risk of the side effects mentioned above.

Everything You Need to Know about Asian Cuisine

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Asian Cuisine Image Design 1 - Everything You Need to Know about Asian Cuisine

Asian cuisine has been with us for a long time now but its popularity these days have increased dramatically. Throughout the world’s capitals, Asian restaurants have sprouted like mushrooms, from the lowly street food vendors to the most expensive eateries. Perhaps it’s because of the Orient’s exotic flavors and spices that people have been drawn to patronize its delicacies.

The demand for Asian spices started hundreds of years ago, where Europeans made routes, traveling east by land and sea just to avail themselves of this precious cargo. The western world was never the same again, at least with their taste buds. But one of the secrets of Asian cooking is, to the surprise of everybody, its simplicity.

Most dishes are simple and easy to make. A bowl of rice, for instance, taken with stir-fried vegetables would make for an easy-to-make, nutritious, and tasty dish. The greens are always crunchy, low-fat and very healthy. Other items like soup, bread, and rice will always make one feel full for a longer time. Let’s look at what the gastronomical world of Asian cuisine has to offer.

Most Well-known Asian Cuisines

Most well known Asian cuisines - Everything You Need to Know about Asian Cuisine

Being the biggest continent, Asia indeed has a lot to offer. From its people, their culture, traditions, and the food. Asia is comprised of various regions, each having its own culture and distinct cuisine. Here are the most popular countries and their cuisines:

Chinese Cuisine

Almost all cities in the world have their version of Chinatown. And the food in their restaurants is really to die for. People fall in line for their soups, noodles, rice, and various kinds of meat dishes. China is further subdivided into regions, and each has its special cuisines. Cantonese, Hunan, and Szechwan don’t only refer to the people but their special cuisine as well.

Japanese Cuisine

For those who relish Japanese food, their cuisine is healthy, delicious, and always aesthetically-presented. Food to the Japanese is part of their culture, and when one partakes of their meal, he gets an insight into their lifestyle and culture.

Traditional Japanese cuisine is simple and delicious. Ingredients used are seasonal and produced locally. One would expect rice and seafood to be served all year round since Japan is a rice producer and its shores abound with fish, shellfish, and seaweed.

Thai Cuisine

If one wants to rave about an experience with spicy foods, then Thailand is the land to visit. Just enter a Thai restaurant and be overwhelmed by the aroma of spices that could drive the senses mad. Dishes usually are prepared with an assortment of vegetables and spices. Balancing these ingredients is the key to Thai cooking. Thais also serve a lot of side dishes that will balance the richness of some dishes.

Indian Cuisine

When we talk about Indian food, we always associate it with curry. Other Asian countries took a cue from India about being “spicy” and rightly so because Indian food is spicy, rich, and varied. India has its regions and each with their spicy cuisine. We can broadly classify the cuisine into Northern and Southern, each with its own individual use of herbs, spices and cooking style.

Even the utensils used by these Asian countries are different and unique. What they may have in common are the herbs and spices used. But for most Asian countries, eating with the hands is a prominent tradition as its denizens want to feel their food. Experiencing genuine Asian cuisine will be an exotic and exhilarating experience.

Popular Asian Dishes

Asia is a melting pot of cultures, traditions, influences and of course, foods. The continent is so vast it makes choosing the best cuisine a daunting task.  But many Asian foods have stood out and have become popular almost everywhere. The Americas love them, so do Europeans. Often, it becomes difficult to pinpoint the dish’s origin because Asian countries use the same spicy ingredients. Nevertheless, these popular foods are delicious, hot and healthy.

Chicken Curry

Chicken curry - Everything You Need to Know about Asian Cuisine

Scan over an Asian menu, and you will surely find this dish in the listing. But curry powder isn’t just one variety, there are several, and each country has its blend. Try eating the dish in restaurants in different Asian countries as the dish may taste different for each country.

Dim Sum

Dim sum - Everything You Need to Know about Asian Cuisine

Originally from China, dim sum are bite-sized morsels that can be  served as appetizers. Derived from Cantonese, Dim Sum means “a little token.” It’s popular in all Southeast Asian countries. These small surprises are usually served hot in tiny steamer baskets or small plates. Although the servings are small, one can order a lot of varieties.

Fish Balls

Fish balls - Everything You Need to Know about Asian Cuisine

This is usually bought as a street food which is relished as a snack. It’s maybe the Asian version of the American hot dog. The balls are made from pulverized fish meat, eaten on a stick or served as toppings for soup. You can get them at Asian stalls or through street vendors. The fish balls can be served fried, cooked or steamed.

Fried Rice

Fried rice - Everything You Need to Know about Asian Cuisine

This is the most popular staple food in Asia. Almost all households include this in their meals. Mainly, it’s cooked plainly with coconut milk and saffron added. Meat or vegetables complement the rice for a complete meal. To make fried rice, just throw all the ingredients into the wok containing some cooking oil. Some meat, vegetables, spices, eggs then the rice. It could be a meal or a side dish.

Hainanese Chicken Rice

Hainanese chicken rice - Everything You Need to Know about Asian Cuisine

This dish is simple, very straight-forward, and very easy to make. It’s popular in Malaysia, Thailand, Singapore, and China. It’s made up of plain boiled chicken, served with white rice, and can be accompanied with condiments like cucumbers, eggs or lettuce or a bowl of clear chicken soup. It’s a dish that can stand on its own, without the spices. This signature dish is being claimed by more than one country as its place of origin.

Laksa

Laksa - Everything You Need to Know about Asian Cuisine

This is a very spicy noodle soup being claimed by Singapore as its inventor. More likely though, its origin could either be Malaysia or China.  Its popularity has become worldwide, from Asia to Australia, and beyond. The soup’s consistency can either be watery or thick with as less liquid as possible. Most eaters prefer the latter.

Satay

Satay - Everything You Need to Know about Asian Cuisine

For being the undisputed King or Queen of Asian foods, satay cannot even decide on a single name. Some people call it sate or satay or satay or sati or whatever. This dish is basically made from small portions of meat on a stick roasted over charcoal or an open fire.

Spring Rolls

Spring rolls - Everything You Need to Know about Asian Cuisine

Each of the Asian countries has their version of a spring roll. But ask a seasoned traveler and he would point out that the best ones are those made in Vietnam. Maybe if one has the time, he can try the many Asian versions of this delicacy. The spring roll is usually fried pastries that are filled with meat or vegetables. But that will depend upon the country. As mentioned, each one has its spring roll version.

Sushi

Sushi - Everything You Need to Know about Asian Cuisine

There is no need for any introduction to this delicacy which has gained immense popularity internationally. It’s a “high-class food” eaten in classy restaurants. But these days, one can buy prepared sushi in supermarkets. Sushi is more than just some raw fish laid over a bed of rice. Especially in Japan, creating and rolling sushi is considered by many as a science and a work of art. Ingredients used are raw fish, a special kind of rice, seaweed, and soy sauce with wasabi paste,

Tom Yum

Tom yum - Everything You Need to Know about Asian Cuisine

 

This is a watery fragrant soup that has its origins in Thailand but is now popular in many Asian countries. When served, it can be an appetizer; the main dish is eaten with or without rice. But the soups unique spicy-sour taste has been relished by many. For the sour ingredients, the soup uses some heavily smashed lemongrass, tamarind, and lime.

What Should You Pair with Asian Cuisine?

What should you pair with Asian cuisine - Everything You Need to Know about Asian Cuisine

Is it red wine or white wine? What goes best with Asian food? Do we decide on the most traditional culinary rule of thumb where red is for meat and white are for fish? Maybe it can still be the most reliable rule. With Asian cooking, why not try local wines for local foods? People from the East are used to it, and perhaps they are right. As the saying goes, “what grows together, goes together.”

But choosing the right wine could pose a dilemma. How can one pair wine with foods that come from a country with no experience in wine production? How does one do the pairing with food ingredients that aren’t known in wine producing countries? With Asian cuisine, choosing the right wine could be a problem. But the absence of an Asian “wine culture” is not the issue. It’s more on pairing the flavors of the wine and the food themselves.

The ingredients used in Asian cuisine choose the right beverage challenging. Imagine these: fermented sauces, spices, and herbs, sweet and sour yin-yangs. All these combined can produce palate histrionics that can send the flavor of any wine run for cover.

Remember that Asian food isn’t just one dish. On the contrary, it’s a multitude of dishes. There isn’t a single wine that would go with all these varieties. But the good news is that most Asian foods go best with beer, except sushi and sashimi which tend to be delicate.

The choice of wine is determined by the main ingredient of the food being served. For instance, a grilled chicken breast is white meat and therefore, the right choice is white wine. Various cooking techniques can also influence the wine of choice. Pouched, steamed or raw dishes may work well with one wine but will not with those are deeply fried or very fatty foods.

For Thai food, a cold, crisp and hoppy beer is your best friend. The flavor of wine gets lost with the heat of Thai Cuisine.  For the Japanese, sushi, and sashimi, go white, light and crisp beer.  Chinese and Korean foods are the most wine-friendly. The flavor combinations are mildly spicy as compared to the volcanic Thai recipes.

Choosing the right wine for Asian cuisine could be an exciting experiment. Exploring new ingredients and techniques in food preparations in Asian cuisine may or may not tickle the taste buds but washing the results down with a good glass of “grape juice” should make the experiment worthwhile.

Common Misconceptions About Asian Cuisine

Common misconceptions about Asian cuisine - Everything You Need to Know about Asian Cuisine

We have stereotyped our conceptions of Asian food because that’s the way we ordered it and delivered to our doorstep. Steamed rice, noodles, stir-fried veggies, and maybe a side of dumplings plus that predictable fortune cookie. These are what we have in mind when we “go Chinese” tonight. But Asian food isn’t just rice, stir-fried veggies, noodles, and soy sauce. It’s much, much more than that. Here are the most common mistaken beliefs about Asian foods that should to the least, be remedied.

It’s Not All About Stir-Fry and Soy Sauce

There are no better-varied cuisines in the entire world than those we have in Asia. Each country has their cuisine and are as different as they are as many. Japan have their own flavors, Korea their techniques, Indonesia their spices. You will find all these and more, not just to tickle the palate but to experience the culture as well.

The whole continent is brimming with spices and concepts to incorporate them into food. Far from anything, Asian cuisine is not just soy sauce, rice, dim sum, and stir-fry. Asian cuisines offer healthy steamed dishes, barbecues with an Asian twist, a variety of noodle soups from different regions and steaks, served ala Asian.

Rice and Noodles Aren’t the Only Foods

Again, Asians are stereotyped, making the whole world think that Asians only eat noodles and rice. That’s a downer and should be remedied. True, Asians eat a lot of rice and noodles. After all, these are their staple foods. But certainly, they aren’t limited to these.

Rice and noodles are almost always components of every meal. That is where Asians draw their carbohydrates from. Other components could include steamed eggs, barbecued pork, veggies, deep-fried fish, and so much more, all with special spices.

In some Asian countries, rice or noodles can even be omitted in the meal. This most certainly demonstrates that Asians aren’t all about rice and noodles. Consider these dishes: Malaysia’s satay, Japan’s sashimi, Korea’s pajeon, and the Middle East’s kebabs.

Asian Foods Are Not Limited to Just Chinese, Japanese or Korean

This is truly a misconception. Asian foods are not limited to these three countries. There are more countries that can offer as much, if not better varieties of Asian foods. Even India and the Middle East are still considered part of Asia, and yet they are disregarded on the issue. The Southeast Asian countries are now coming on their own, and their cuisines are getting raves. They have their unique cuisines to offer, and it is about time they are recognized.

 

 

Everything You Need to Know About the Slow-Carb Diet

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Slow Carb Image Design 1 - Everything You Need to Know About the Slow-Carb Diet

You’ve likely heard of the low-carb diet, but what about the Slow-Carb Diet? The two are relatively similar. Both diets involve more focus on lean meats and fiber-filled foods. The differences are in the types of meals you’ll eat throughout the week. For some, the Slow-Carb Diet can seem boring, but it really depends on the focus you put on your meals and your life.

Before jumping into this diet, it’s important to understand as much as possible about it. You’ll also need to determine what you want out of your eating plan, as well as discussing your dieting options with your doctor.

Here’s everything you need to know about the Slow-Carb Diet. Not only will I go through all it entails, but also give you some ideas for meals throughout the week to make the most of the lifestyle choice.

What Is the Slow-Carb Diet?

The Slow-Carb Diet is a registered trademark. It was based on The 4-Hour Body by Tim Ferriss, who details his steps to get a lean and healthy diet.

Not only is the diet good for helping you lose weight, but you’ll also improve your overall health. The diet helps to avoid the foods that encourage the storage of fat. Your metabolism gets a boost, so you start burning more calories throughout the day. You’ll burn more fat and use energy more effectively throughout the day.

The great thing about the diet is that there’s a day known as the “cheat day.” Once a week, you get to binge on “cheat” foods that will help make your diet more realistic and make it possible to lose more fat.

Yes, it is a successful diet. However, you will need to put the effort in. This is also one of those diets that you’ll want to stick to as much as possible for the long term, or at least make some changes to follow the diet for the long term. It requires some major changes to your diet, especially if you eat a lot of potatoes, pasta, bread, and sugars.

One way that people have found success is by finding support. You’ll want a friend or family member to join you with the diet. Whether they track their progress and have the same goals is up to the two of you. Sometimes just having someone to hold you accountable is important.

The Slow-Carb Diet is also not just about the food you eat. There is an exercise program involved. This is a necessary step if you want a lean and fully-metabolized body.

Slow-Carb Diet Approved Foods

Of course, when it comes to any diet, one of the first things anyone wants to know is the allowed and banned foods. Just how much will you change your lifestyle and your diet?

The basic rules are:

Avoid all white foods. These include potatoes, pasta, bread, and other refined products. You want to cut out as many simple carbs as possible. You’ll also want to cut out cheese and rice. While they may be viewed as healthy options in some cultures, they’re not good for your metabolism overall.

You can eat beans, vegetables, and lean meat. Fruit is banned due to the natural sugars. Yes, even natural sugars need to be avoided for this diet. The only fruits that are allowed are avocados and tomatoes, but they need to be eaten in moderation.

Stick to the same meals each day. This is the part that many people find hard. You need to eat the same things for breakfast and lunch throughout the week. The only meal you can really change is your dinner, but even that should be focused on the same food groups and ingredients each day.

There is a cheat day. This is when you can eat anything that you have banned, making it much easier to stick to such a restrictive and somewhat boring diet for six days of the week.

Avoid drinking your calories. It’s very easy to consume extra calories through the drinks you consume throughout the day. Water is the best thing to drink, although you can have a little tea or coffee. You can also have 1-2 glasses of red wine throughout the week. Red wine is the best option out of all alcohol for all the antioxidants, but that needs to be in moderation.

Choose when you want to take your cheat days. You should have one cheat day a week and this needs to be on the same day each week. Tim Ferriss recommends Saturdays, but this is due to social calendars. If your social day is a Sunday or a Friday, you can opt for one of these days instead.

Try not to switch your cheat days. Every now and then shouldn’t be a problem, but constantly switching your cheat day will get your body out of sync for the sake of the diet.

Eat as much as you like of the approved foods: When it comes to the approved foods, you can eat as many of them as you like. These foods will all be high in protein and fiber, but low in fats. The list includes:

  • Egg whites (yolks in moderation)
  • Chicken thigh/breast
  • Grass-fed (preferable) beed
  • Fish
  • Pork
  • Black, red, soy, and pinto beans
  • Lentils
  • Mixed vegetables (including frozen)
  • Spinach
  • Asparagus
  • Broccoli
  • Green Beans
  • Peas
  • Sauerkraut and kimchee

Nuts are good for reducing your hunger levels, but they can be high in fat. Even healthy fats need to be consumed in moderation. Other vegetables should also be eaten in moderation throughout the week. The benefit of the ingredients above is that they’re extremely low in calories while keeping you feeling full for longer.

Listen to your body when you do consume them. Your mind may tell you that you can eat the foods since they’re approved for the diet, but your body isn’t necessarily going to need them. It’s still possible to consume extra calories than you really need.

Make sure you drink anything with zero calories. Avoid too many diet sodas. While they may be zero calories, they can disrupt your hormones. You only need one drink a day. You can drink caffeine but drink in moderation. The best option really is water. You can flavor your water with your vegetables or with some lemon slices

Managing the Diet When Eating Out and Travelling

Many people find socializing the hardest when following the Slow-Carb Diet. You need to find a strategy to work with you so you don’t get tired of the diet or have to skip extra days. The aim is to stick with the diet as much as possible.

When eating out, the best thing to do is look for the typical diet-friendly dishes. Burrito salad bowls are excellent options. You can also have other salads without the croutons and cheese and dressings. Beef burgers are perfectly fine, but you’ll need to skip the fries and the burger buns. Opt for vegetables and bean side dishes instead.

If you want curries, you can usually find some suitable options. You’ll want to skip the rice side dishes. You can usually ask for the dishes to come without the rice and even ask for vegetables on the side instead.

As you get used to the diet and the foods that are allowed, you’ll find restaurants close by that are best for your diet plan. From there, you can arrange for trips to these restaurants on your diet days. On your cheat days, you have the opportunity to eat out anywhere you want.

When it comes to eating out, many people opt for sticking to just once a week. They opt for the restaurant visits on their cheat days so they don’t have to worry about what they’re going to eat.

If you’re traveling, you can plan ahead. Opt for boxing up some tuna pouches, bean salads or even just some protein powder made up with some fruits. You can also enjoy nut butter. If you need to buy while you’re out, look for the tuna in pouches and cans that you can eat on the go. Not only will you stick to the diet, but you will also have easier portion sizes to control.

Make sure your cupboards are stocked up for the days that you’re in a rush. Have plenty of cans of tuna, stock up on eggs, and don’t forget about protein powders and tins of beans. You’ll be surprised at how easy these quick ingredients are to turn into full meals.

It’s also worth having a few go-to dishes when it comes to managing the Slow-Carb Diet.

Tips to Avoid Going Hungry

You should never feel hungry when on the Slow-Carb Diet. There’s absolutely no need to feel that way since you can eat as much as you want of the approved foods. Never cut the calories. This isn’t a calorie-focused diet at all, which makes it much easier to stick to for the long term.

The focus should be on eating until you’re full. If you’re still hungry, there’s nothing wrong with getting a second helping. Do give yourself a few minutes to see if you’re still hungry or the message hasn’t reached your brain yet, but don’t be afraid to eat if you’re still feeling the hunger.

Your body uses calories from proteins and fibers differently to the way it uses the calories from the carbs. While the carbs (including starchy ones) can encourage the metabolism to store some of the fat, the other nutrients encourage your metabolism to take all available calories. You’ll use more calories from the stored fat, rather than the metabolism slowing down.

It is important to get the right foods though. Protein is essential. This will help to build the muscle, as well as encouraging the body to burn more calories throughout the day. You’ll want to get at least 30g of protein for your breakfast and then 20g at each other meal during the day. The protein will help you feel full quickly, managing the calorie intake without you even thinking about it.

You’ll also want to control the speed that you eat. Many people end up eating quickly, often because they’re in a rush at work or because they’re distracted. Don’t watch TV while you eat. Encourage conversation at the dinner table, meaning you have to take longer between bites and chew your dishes. You’ll give your body time to tell your brain when you’re full, helping to manage your portion sizes naturally.

If you’re full, don’t force yourself to finish a meal. Remember you’re only eating until you’re full! When there are certain foods you overindulge in, reduce the amount you stock up on in the house. This will help to get rid of the temptation.

Don’t Exercise Just to Lose Weight

You need to add more exercise to the Slow-Carb Diet, but it’s not all about exercising to lose weight. You’d need to run three miles every day to be able to burn off your meals. The aim is to improve your flexibility and movement. It’s all about giving your body the activity it needs to remain healthy and supple.

This often means just getting a few extra steps into your day. Instead of parking as close to the grocery store door as possible, park at the far end of the parking lot. You can take the stairs instead of the elevator at work. It’s also possible to walk to the store instead of taking the car for a five-minute drive. At work, you can walk to the printer every time you print something off, instead of stocking up all your printing for the one trip.

Desk exercises are good if you have a desk job. Every hour, you can do 5-10 minutes of desk exercise.

You’ll Need Minimal Supplements

If you get a varied diet throughout the day, you shouldn’t need a lot of supplements. You’ll get the majority of the vegetables and protein you eat. However, there are some you’ll need to add in. You’ll reduce the amount of calcium, potassium, and magnesium because of the fruits and other white foods you’re cutting out. One of the foods you’re cutting out is milk, including many alternatives.

Tim Ferriss suggests that you get supplements for the nutrients you’re likely missing. If you’re eating avocados in moderation, you should get enough potassium, but the other two can be tricky.

Talk to your doctor if you’re worried about not getting enough nutrients. Your doctor will suggest the ones you’re likely missing and help suggest diet-friendly supplements to support your health.

Managing Your Cheat Days

Just because you get to eat the banned foods on the cheat days, doesn’t mean you should go crazy. You’ll need to help limit some of the damage and keep your body healthy. This means managing the amount of the cheat foods you do consume.

Start by opting for a Slow-Carb breakfast. Try sticking to the same meal you would usually have to support your digestive system. You can always add a bit of fruit if you would like to add a few banned foods but protect your overall health.

Before getting into your cheat foods, give yourself 30-60 minutes before your breakfast. As you get used to the diet, you’ll find limiting the cheat foods to between lunch and dinner is possible and helps you get your fill.

You can also limit the damage by making yourself feel fuller. Drink more water throughout the day. You’ll fill your stomach and help your body get rid of more of the toxins you put in through your urine. Grapefruit juice can also be a good option on your cheat day. While sugary, it can actually help to lower the insulin spike you experience during the day!

Stick to just one cheat day a week. Many people will start a Friday night and cheat all the way through the weekend. You only need a 24 hour cheat period to make the diet work.

The Slow-Carb Diet is one of those restrictive diets that offers fun days in the week. You can still have a life and manage the maintenance period once you’ve lost weight. This is one of the best diets and there are plenty of people following it on a daily basis throughout the year.

Everything You Need to Know About the Health Benefits of Bitter Melon

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Bitter Melon Image Design 1 - Everything You Need to Know About the Health Benefits of Bitter Melon

Not a lot of people know the term “karela” or “Momordica charantia.” These are unfamiliar terms, but they mean the same thing. They are other names for bitter melon, otherwise known as bitter squash or bitter gourd in English. Anyone who has ever tasted bitter melon would understand why it’s named as such. This vegetable is light or dark green and has a rough exterior. The shade of green depends on the region where the bitter vegetable is grown.

Although it isn’t very popular because of its bitter taste, the bitter melon is healthy. It’s rich in essential vitamins as well as beneficial antioxidants. The bitter melon can be consumed in different ways. People pickle it, drink its juice, and even use it in different recipes. No matter how it’s consumed, the bitter melon would be very beneficial to the body.

Nutrition facts

Bitter melon goes by different names all over the world. Some common ones are a bitter gourd, karela, balsam, and bitter apple. This vegetable belongs to the Cucurbitaceae family of plants. Nowadays, this is grown in 2 different varieties, and it’s very popular because of its medicinal and health benefits.

All over the world, there are more than a dozen different species of the bitter melon plant. And they all differ from each other. They differ in texture, taste, size, appearance, and even in their beneficial properties. However, the most common type of bitter melon has a small, round appearance with a distinct and highly tart taste.

Even though the fruit is still immature, it can sometimes be eaten as a vegetable. It’s usually added to different recipes especially in Asia. People consume the bitter melon raw and cooked. It can also be used to make a potent extract which contains a lot of antiviral, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory compounds.

According to studies, there are at least 32 active chemicals found in the bitter melon plant. It has also been found out that the signature flavor comes from a type of alkaloid momordicine. This compound is produced by the plant’s leaves and fruit. While still in its immature form, the bitter melon contains a lot of essential nutrients such as phosphorus, iron, and vitamins A and C.

One of the major attributes of bitter melon is that it contains antioxidants and phytonutrients which are biologically active. It also contains chemical compounds such as saponins, phenolic acids, alkaloids, glycosides, triterpenes, fixed oils, and peptides which are insulin-like. Finally, it also contains certain types of steroids and anti-inflammatory proteins.

Research done on bitter melon have identified distinct flavonoid and phenolic compounds in bitter melon which are responsible for a lot of its anti-cancer and anti-diabetic benefits. These compounds include epicatechin, tannic acid, gentisic acid, gallic acid, chlorogenic acid, caffeic acid, p-coumaric, and catechin.

These compounds have a lot of benefits to the health. These include regulating appetite, balancing hormones, reducing inflammation, preventing the growth of tumors, preventing obesity, and so much more. Here are the other common health benefits of bitter melon.

Constipation Cure

Image 1 20 - Everything You Need to Know About the Health Benefits of Bitter Melon

Bitter melon contains a lot of fiber. Because of this, it helps ease the process of digestion. The properties in bitter melon help digest the food and throw out waste from the body. That’s why it’s considered as a great cure for constipation. When a person consumes bitter melon, it helps cure indigestion too, aside from constipation.

Diabetes protection

Another health benefit of bitter melon is it helps protect people from diabetes. In fact, drinking bitter melon juice may help people who suffer from type 2 diabetes. For years, this has been part of ancient Indian and Chinese medicine. But only recent studies have proven that it’s more than folklore. In part, type 2 diabetes is because of the cells’ inability to absorb sugar in the blood. And this is because the cells have developed a resistance to insulin.

In the body, the absorption of sugar occurs when the protein, kinase, is activated. Bitter melon helps actives the kinases in the cells. Because of this, the cells can absorb sugar better, therefore keeping diabetes under control.

Also, bitter melon contains special compounds like insulin which help lower the body’s blood sugar levels. Studies have shown that the vegetable reduces blood sugar levels by heightening the metabolism of glucose.

Hair benefits

Here’s a surprising benefit of bitter melon – it’s also good for the hair! It’s a great remedy for the hair, and people use it to treat hair problems and enhance longevity. Here are some hair benefits of bitter melon:

  • Some people use bitter melon juice to give their hair a natural shine.
  • It can also be used to treat dandruff which is a common problem for a lot of people. Using this vegetable on the hair for at least a month will show significant improvements in the condition.
  • Another condition it can help is split Use some raw juice from the vegetable on split ends and comb the hair gently.
  • A person suffering from scalp dryness and itchiness can also benefit from bitter melon. But this time, it’s more effective to rub a piece of the vegetable on the scalp in a circular movement to ease the dryness and itchiness.
  • Bitter melon can also be used to help reduce hair loss naturally.
  • People with rough and tangled hair can also use bitter melon to their advantage. Simple soak the hair in the juice for about 15 minutes and rinse with water.
  • The juice of the vegetable can also be used to treat the premature graying of a person’s hair.
  • Finally, it can also be used to treat oily hair. Aside from reducing the amount of oily food in the diet, application of bitter melon juice can lessen excess oils in the scalp and hair.

Kidney stone

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Anyone who has ever suffered from kidney stones knows that it’s a very painful medical condition. Fortunately, bitter melon can help rid the body of kidney stones naturally. The vegetable has components which help break down kidney stones. It also helps lower the amount of acid in the body which contributes to the production of kidney stones.

Liver booster

Bitter melon is an excellent liver booster. It aids in digestive processes, enhances the function of the gallbladder, and even reduces the body’s fluid retention. People who drink bitter melon juice can avoid hepatitis, constipation, and even cirrhosis of the liver. It would be especially beneficial if a person drinks a glass of the vegetable juice at least once in a day.

Bitter melon juice can help detoxify the liver. It contains hepatic qualities which help the liver filter the impurities in the body. Because of this, the liver can effectively rid the body of toxins and impurities which may have negative effects on the health.

Lower cholesterol levels

The healthy vegetable can also help lower cholesterol levels in the body. When this happens, it may significantly reduce the risk of stroke, heart attack, and heart diseases. The great thing about bitter melon is that it’s a completely natural remedy to help prevent dangerous health risks.

Skin benefits

Aside from the hair, bitter melon is also extremely beneficial for the skin. It can be used to treat blood disorders, fungal diseases, and other conditions which may affect a person’s skin. Bitter melon also has anti-aging properties which appeal to a lot of people.

The appearance of a person’s skin is hugely dependent on what he eats. Because of this, people who want to have healthy skin must always eat healthy food. Bitter melon naturally purifies the blood, and so it manifests some of its good effects on the skin. Here are some benefits one can enjoy from consuming bitter melon:

  • It can help prevent skin problems from occurring. This will help keep the skin glowing and blemish-free. Because of the blood-purifying properties, it can also help prevent acne.
  • Bitter melon can also be used to treat skin infections and diseases. These include psoriasis, eczema, and other fungal infections.
  • The vegetable also contains vitamin C, which is a potent antioxidant. It, therefore, helps fight and eliminate free-radicals which are harmful to the body. It also helps prevent wrinkles from appearing, hence, slowing the aging process down.

Weight loss

As we’ve discussed, bitter melon contains antioxidants, and these are very useful when it comes to flushing out toxins from the body. The antioxidant components also help improve metabolism and the digestive system. Therefore, it can also help promote weight loss.

Two important factors which help in weight loss are the filling components as well as calorie control. The filling component of bitter melon is water, which is a great hunger suppressant. While the calorie control component comes from the fact that it’s a low-calorie vegetable. So, anyone who’s looking for a filling type of food that promotes weight loss can start consuming bitter melon. And since there are many ways to eat this vegetable, there are a lot of options!

Boosts immune system

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Another helpful benefit of bitter melon is it helps boost the immune system. By far, this is one of the most important benefits of the vegetable. When the body’s immune system is strong, it will help protect the body from different illnesses. Even if the person catches a cold, if his immune system is strong, he’ll be able to overcome the illness a lot faster.

Research has shown that bitter melon contains antiviral and antibacterial agents. These agents can lower the risk of developing different kinds of infections and viruses, even HIV. In fact, in recent studies, the extract of bitter melon has been successfully utilized against ulcers.

Also, other studies have identified that bitter melon also has anthelmintic agents. This is a type of anti-parasitic compound which can help eliminate parasitic worms and other parasites found within the body. Such agents work by killing the parasites internally without damaging the host’s body. Therefore, a healthy immune system is crucial.

Since bitter melon aids in boosting the immune system, people who are susceptible to illnesses, diseases, and infections should consider consuming it. As a bonus, bitter melon is also an excellent remedy for indigestion and acid reflux.

Increase protection against cancer

According to studies, bitter melon juice contains elements which can eliminate pancreatic cancer cells. And tumor growth was also significantly reduced. And the best part is, that drinking the juice would cause no harmful side effects. By contrast, traditional treatments like chemotherapy and radiation have detrimental effects on a person’s body. They leave the person feeling tired, nauseous, and weak. And they also cause hair loss in people who get the treatments.

Aside from pancreatic cancer, some research has also shown that bitter melon can help prevent other types of cancer. These include melanoma, skin tumors, lymphoid leukemia, breast cancer, lymphoma, and others. The research also established that the vegetable is very effective because of its anti-tumor, anti-mutagen, and anti-cancer characteristics. Right now, though, more research is needed as the results are inconsistent. However, whenever tests are done, the results are always promising.

The extract of bitter melon promotes detoxification, increases metal chelating, inhibits the production of free radicals, and prevents the peroxidation of lipids. It helps hinder the elements and processes which contribute to tumor growth and mutation of cells. That’s why a lot of people believe that bitter melon is extremely healthy and should be studied more to discover the clinical applications it can be used for in the future.

Enhances eye health

Finally, bitter melon can also enhance a person’s eye health. The vegetable contains a lot of vitamin A. It contains enough of the vitamin to give you about a third of your daily recommended intake of vitamin A. Several studies have shown that there is a positive correlation between eye health and vitamin A.

Specifically, if a person consumes the appropriate amount of vitamin A, it can help slow down macular degeneration. Thus, it will reduce the likelihood of developing vision problems as one age. Bitter melon can also help improve a person’s night vision. Vitamin A is also essential for the optimal function of the cornea as well as the conjunctival membranes. So, the more bitter melon a person eats, the healthier his eyes may become!

Selection, storage, and preparation of bitter melon

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In different markets and grocery stores, fresh pods of bitter melon are readily available all year round. When a person buys bitter melon, he should look for ones which have a fresh, dark-green appearance. They shouldn’t have any blemishes or cuts on the surface either. It’s better to select the young and tender fruit-pods. The immature bitter melons have the least bitter taste. This is because the astringent level of the pods increases as they mature.

When it comes to storing bitter melon, the best way to do it is to place the vegetable in a zip pouch or an airtight container. Then place it in the refrigerator’s vegetable compartment. Doing this would keep the bitter melon fresh for up to 7 days.

When preparing bitter melon, wash it thoroughly first. One can use the fresh pods and the leaves of the vegetable for cooking. To lessen the bitter flavor, people usually marinate the vegetable in water with a bit of salt then drying it under the sunlight. Then one can start using the vegetable in different recipes. It’s versatile, healthy, and easy to prepare so why not start cooking?

 

Everything You Need to Know About Magnesium Supplements

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You know about the mineral magnesium, but possibly overlook the benefits of it. Most of us suffer from a deficiency in the mineral because we forget about it when it comes to food. It can be difficult to get enough through food alone, which means reaching for magnesium supplements is a consideration by many.

Before you reach for the supplements, make sure you know all you can about them. Getting magnesium naturally is the best way of getting the nutrient in your body. Here’s a look at everything you need to know about magnesium supplements.

Why Are So Many People Deficient in Magnesium?

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Did you know around 80% of adults have a magnesium deficiency? The severity of the deficiency ranges from mind to serious. Those with deficiencies in magnesium can have deficiencies in other nutrients, including vitamins B1 and K and potassium.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, some minerals can prevent the absorption of magnesium into the body. Calcium can cause the body to act negatively. This is especially a problem if you take too much calcium daily.

Women with a magnesium deficiency can also have worse PMS symptoms or be more likely to suffer from pre-eclampsia and eclampsia. There is also more risk of weakened immune systems, osteoporosis, mood swings, liver and kidney damage, high blood pressure, and many other health problems.

But why is a magnesium deficiency so bad?

One of the biggest issues is a chance in the lifestyle. More of us reach for processed foods, rather than healthier and organic alternatives. We eat food that is full of empty calories, instead of focusing on a balanced diet that is full of magnesium-high foods. There are various reasons for this, with cost often stated as one of the main reasons. Processed foods tend to be cheaper because they are made in larger amounts to keep up with demand.

Soil depletion is also a problem. The foods that used to be high in the mineral no longer have as much, as the soil doesn’t have it. The use of antibiotics can also lead to low magnesium levels. The body can’t absorb as much from the food that we eat.

And our bodies get rid of magnesium daily. It’s excreted through the urine and its used for normal bodily functions, including hormone production and heart rate control. So, if you don’t replenish it daily, you can end up losing more than you gain.

With all this in mind, opting for magnesium supplements can help you increase the amount you get. The supplements have a controlled amount of the nutrient, making sure you get enough daily. It doesn’t solve the absorption rate problem, but you put more in your diet to increase the chances of absorbing the amount that you need.

How Much Magnesium Does Your Body Need?

Remember that your body will get some magnesium from food. It is possible to take too much of a nutrient, leading to other health problems. Before you even think about using magnesium supplements, make sure you know just how much you need daily.

Children under a year old will usually get enough magnesium through the breast milk or formula. After the first year, you will likely move onto solid food. It’s worth considering child supplements when moving off formula or breast milk, as there is a chance that children won’t get as much as they need. Talk to your doctor or health visitor about the types of supplements that are best for children.

When it comes to the adult years, women need 360mg of magnesium a day in their teenage years and then 310mg between 19 and 30. The amount increases to 320mg after 31 years of age.

Pregnant women will need to get between 350mg and 360mg per day to support the development of the baby. When breastfeeding, get between 310mg and 320mg regardless of age. The baby will take the nutrients from you.

Make Sure You Get Other Important Nutrients

It’s not just about getting enough magnesium. Even if you get 320mg per day, there’s a chance that your body doesn’t absorb all the mineral. This is linked to the other vitamins and minerals that you get. If you don’t get enough vitamin K, your body can find it hard to absorb enough magnesium. High levels of calcium or not enough vitamin D can also lead to problems absorbing magnesium.

If you are going to take supplements, make sure you get enough of other nutrients. Multivitamins are usually advised because you’ll get a mixture of all the nutrients your body needs. It’s also worth focusing on a healthy diet, rather than opting for supplements for everything.

There’s nothing wrong with topping up with supplements, but don’t rely on just the supplements to get your daily amount. This could lead to other health problems.

The Different Types of Supplements for Magnesium

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There are natural and synthetic supplements available in stores. You can also get magnesium through some over-the-counter medications like laxatives and antacids. It’s important to look at anything you eat or take daily to keep the amount gained within the healthy ranges.

The various types of supplements will absorb differently within the body. Those that are dissolved in liquids tend to absorb much easier within the gut. Most of the hard work has already been carried out. Studies also show that magnesium in chloride, chelate, or citrate forms are also easier to absorb than those with sulfate or oxide forms.

Magnesium chelate is one of the most preferred and easier to find. It’s found in most of foods naturally, too, which makes it the most powerful. When bound with amino acids, the muscles get more of the nutrient and it can be used to replenish energy stores better.

When you get it through laxatives, you will usually get magnesium citrate. This is when it’s combined with citric acid, whether natural or synthetic. It is safe for the body to digest and can help to relieve constipation and other digestive problems. Not all this form is found in laxatives. It can also be found naturally in citric fruits. When eaten in large amounts, they can create the laxative effect.

You can apply magnesium to the skin through chloride oil. Magnesium oil is also something added to food, especially for professional athletes or given as a supplement for those with some digestive disorders. It can help to dull pain in the muscles, reduce skin irritations, and improve the normal absorption of the mineral.

If you need something that is highly absorbable, magnesium glycinate is something to consider. It’s one that isn’t linked to laxatives, which helps to avoid wasted magnesium through the stools. Doctors will often consider this form when dealing with patients with severe magnesium deficiencies. However, you will likely not be kept on the form for too long, if your doctor believes it’s safer to move onto other forms.

Magnesium threonate is also considered for those with severe deficiencies since it is also easily absorbed. The downside is that this isn’t a form easily available. More studies and research are also needed to make sure it’s safe for all and for any downsides noted.

You can also get magnesium in numerous natural forms. Epsom salts are considered for many, as the magnesium can be absorbed directly through the skin and treat skin conditions. The salts aren’t the type of salts we consider in the way of drying out the skin. They’re mineral salts, packed with various other health benefits.

Yes, It Is Possible to Overdose

Taking too many magnesium supplements is possible. The amounts for a healthy female have already been mentioned. Taking too many supplements can lead to diarrhea in most people. Magnesium helps to keep the bowel movements in order by softening the stools. It’s possible to soften the stools too much.

There are also risks for those with heart and kidney problems. In fact, if you do have either of these problems, you should speak to your doctor before considering magnesium supplements. The nutrient affects the kidneys directly and taken too much can lower blood pressure considerably and disrupt the level of electrolytes in the body.

If you currently take drugs to help manage diabetes, blood thinners, and diuretics, you will want to consider against magnesium supplements for now. Talk to your doctor about mixing the medications together, as magnesium supplements can affect the way your other medications work.

Take Your Supplements with Food

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Some people experience discomfort when taking magnesium supplements without food. It’s best to get a balance whenever taking any type of supplement. When taken with food, the digestive system is working naturally to break down all the nutrients in the food, so it’s easier to absorb all the magnesium from the supplements.

Taking with food will also make it easier to take the mineral with other nutrients. It’s easier to increase your vitamins D and K intake naturally. Watch out for taking magnesium with calcium. Too much calcium can lead to absorption problems.

You’ll also want to make sure you take with water. As mentioned, dissolving the nutrient can help to improve the absorption rate within the body. This is because the nutrient has already started to break down. Anything in liquid form is easier for the body to absorb. Drinking with some sea salt mixed with the water is even better. Sea salt naturally has magnesium, improving the amount of the mineral that you get into the body.

You may want to time taking your supplements properly, too. While you want to take them with food, opt for them with the last meal of the day. Magnesium can improve the chances of sleeping, as a magnesium deficiency is linked to insomnia and restless leg syndrome. You can find you relax better with the supplements at the end of the night, improving your overall hormonal balance and sleep benefits.

If you still struggle with sleep when taking the supplements, make sure you talk to your doctor. This could be a sign of another health problem.

There’s Still More Research Needed

While research has proven positive in many aspects of taking the supplement, it’s not conclusive yet. There is inefficient research in how magnesium supplements can help some parts of the health. More research is also needed into the downsides of taking the supplements, especially the prolonged use effects.

Before you start taking magnesium supplements, make sure you talk to your doctor. This is regardless of another health problem or not. Your doctor will need to know about all the supplements and medications you take. This will help with a diagnosis in the future and help them know symptoms and signs to look out for. You can also discuss the individual types of supplements to make sure you get the best options for your overall health.

Your doctor will also be able to check for a magnesium deficiency. This can be tested through the blood to determine if it’s really magnesium you need. There are many minerals that cause similar side effects and symptoms.

The best way to get magnesium is naturally, but some of the natural sources are failing. Soil, antibacterial use, and financial restraints are making it hard to get the right levels of the nutrient into your body. If you have increased the natural forms of magnesium and are still struggling with a deficiency, consider the use of supplements.

Do You Need Magnesium Supplements?

Now it’s time to look at your diet and lifestyle. Could a magnesium deficiency be your problem? Do you need to start taking magnesium supplements? Don’t instantly jump to the idea of medication. There are natural forms and your doctor will also help offer advice. If you do decide to take magnesium supplements, use the above guide to get the right type to improve your health and the absorption rate within your body.

Everything You Need to Know About the Karela Juice Trend (Plus Benefits)

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Karela Juice Trend Image Design 1 - Everything You Need to Know About the Karela Juice Trend (Plus Benefits)

Have you heard about the current Karela juice trend? It’s currently sweeping the nation as the best way to get all your nutrients and lose weight. People swear by it as a power juicer.

Think you want to try it out for yourself? It could be beneficial, but you want to make sure you have all the information you could possibly need. With our guide, you’ll not just learn about all the benefits but also the best way to use karela juice in your diet. You’ll also learn about some of the dangers of having too much of the juice on a regular basis.

Are you ready to learn everything you need to know about the karela juice trend?

What Exactly Is Karela Juice?

Karela is a fruit, also known as momordica charantia. It’s extremely bitter, which is why it’s also sometimes referred to as bitter melon or bitter gourd. You may also hear it called bitter cucumber and carilla fruit. All the names are about the same type of fruit, so try not to get confused! To help avoid any confusion throughout this piece, we’ll keep calling it karela.

You’ll find the bitter fruit in Indian, the Caribbean, and parts of Africa. It’s been used in Eastern medicines for centuries, due to its multiple healing properties. Many cultures still opt for it as a medical item, especially when the fruit is unripe.

This is something that you’ll find in most of the Eastern cuisine. It can help to add flavor to curries, soups, stir-fries, and much more. When combined with other vegetables, the bitterness can be masked, which is why it’s so popular with the spices and herbs. However, eaten raw the bitterness can be too much and leaves a nasty taste in the mouth for many. Therefore, it hasn’t quite reached the Western world.

Karela juice is made just like any other fruit juice. The juice of the fruit is extracted, with the pulp left behind. It’s not that surprising that karela juice has become a trend, considering there are many experts that recommend juicing for energy boosts, weight loss, and more. Like other fruits, karela can be added with other ingredients to help lessen the bitterness, but it is more popular on its own.

Eating or drinking raw karela juice is the best way to get all the nutrients. Even boiling can lead to the destruction of some of the nutrients. It’s best to play it safe.

Health Benefits of Karela Juice

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If it’s so bitter, why are so many people opting for this juice? Well, the simple answer is the health benefits. Eastern medicine isn’t the only type that can benefit from it.

However, it’s worth pointing out that while patients have noticed these health benefits, studies haven’t proven them just yet. There is still research needed and there are some downsides to consider before you start stocking up on the fruit.

Here’s a look at the health benefits of drinking karela juice.

Treat and prevent Type II diabetes. One of the main reasons people drink karela juice is because of the abilities to treat and prevent Type II diabetes. This is a condition where the body doesn’t react to insulin properly, leading to high or low blood sugar levels. Having incorrect glucose levels could leave you with many health problems.

Studies have considered the claims that karela juice can help treat and prevent Type II diabetes. After all, a fruit juice is full of natural sugars, right? Scientists have found that there are compounds that can help activate the AMPK enzyme. This is a protein that you can naturally active through exercise, but you can do it throughout the day with karela juice, too.

The research is still in early stages. If you are taking medication to activate the AMPK then you will still want to take them. Adding a natural treatment can help further activate them and reverse your diabetes.

Reduce the risk of cancer. Another powerful benefit is the protection against cancer. When cancer spreads through the body, cells grow and form abnormally throughout. They take over and it can be hard to kill off all damaged cells. Doctors still know little about the formation of the cancerous cells, although there are toxins and chemicals blamed.

Karela juice can help prevent the formation of some cancer cells. This is especially beneficial for pancreatic cancer, which is still one of the most dangerous types of cancers around.

Scientists are doing studies into the effects, but again they’re still in the early stages. The good news is the early stages are proving beneficial.

Treating HIV and AIDS. Some studies have shown that the karela juice may help to treat HIV and prevent the formation of AIDS. HIV remains as one of the most dangerous viruses if you don’t get it under control. Medication to help prevent the development of the disease is available. There’s currently nothing to reverse it and get rid of it entirely.

Studies show that karela has a phytonutrient compound that could help to fight the HIV infection. So far, the lab tests look good, but the studies still have a long way to go before becoming a definite replacement for pharmaceutical medication.

The drugs can offer numerous side effects, so there are patients waiting for trial karela juice. It is something that could work alongside your current medication.

Protect against liver damage. Liver damage will affect your whole health. The liver is needed to get rid of toxins in the body, so if it doesn’t work properly all your organs are affected by toxins. Karela juice shows positive effects in protecting the liver from damage through the antioxidants. It’s these antioxidants that help to prevent the cancers mentioned above.

The studies are currently carried out in lab rats. Human studies are still to take place, but since there are minimal risks to adding karela juice to your diet it could be worth trying.

Treating psoriasis. There are many people around the world struggling with psoriasis, a skin condition that makes the skin look red and scaly. It’s annoying, painful, and unsightly. You just want rid of it as soon as possible. But there are very few skin products that can help, as usually something interacts with the skin and causes more problems.

Karela juice appears to be one of the best options. It inhibits the guanylate cyclise enzyme, which is partial to blame for the development of psoriasis in the body. Again, studies still need to be carried out, but you can just drink a glass of the juice a day and get all the vitamins into your diet. You can also use karela juice as a base for skin creams to apply directly.

The juice has also been used to treat skin abscesses and wounds in the past. So far doctors haven’t been able to prove these claims.

Improve stomach complaints. Feel nauseous or unwell? Karela juice can help. Many Indian remedies for stomach upsets have included karela juice. Sometimes the whole fruit has also been used. The juice has been considered good for treating constipation and indigestion and helping to get rid of stomach aches and flatulence.

However, it’s important to note that karela is an emetic. This means that it can cause vomiting. While you wouldn’t usually want to do this, in cases of poisoning it can be beneficial.

There are side effects of diarrhea and some stomach pain, so it’s not going to be the best option for stomach issues!

Get rid of kidney stones. Your liver isn’t the only organ that gets help. Your kidneys can too. Karela can be used to treat kidney stones, although studies are still underway to test these claims. The juice can help to cleanse the body and keep the kidneys functioning.

There’s also the hydration benefits. You get fluid in some sort of way, which can help to improve your bladder and urination health.

Claims of a Weight Loss Cure

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There are some claims that karela juice is the perfect weight loss cure. It’s supposed to increase your metabolism, helping to get over metabolic syndrome and burn more calories throughout the day. However, there are currently no studies to support this.

It’s worth pointing out that the body doesn’t always recognize calories in the form of liquid. That is, the body doesn’t recognize the calories as food. While the calories are there, the body will still tell you that you’re hungry after drinking juice. This can lead to an overconsumption of calories throughout the day and lead to weight gain.

Finding Karela Juice in Your Local Town

Because of its bitterness, the fruit tends not to be sold in normal grocery stores. There isn’t enough of an uptake like there is with many other Eastern fruits. Unless you have a specialist section, you will likely need to visit your local Indian or Asian markets for the fruit. You can then juice it in the way you would with any fruit.

You may also find karela juice in your local Indian or Asian stores. Look out for juice that has no additives and preservatives. You want it as pure as possible for all the health benefits.

It is also possible to get the juice in supplement form. This isn’t as good for the health, but it can help you get rid of the bitter taste of the fruit.

When you opt for the fruit to juice yourself, you want to find the unripe options. These offer the best health benefits. If the fruit isn’t grown locally, it can be difficult to get exactly what you want. Look out for green skin with minimal yellow. The skin turns yellow as it ripens. Think of it as a banana that goes from green to yellow as it ripens! The karela should also feel firms and have a crisp, watery texture when cutting; almost like a cucumber!

The Side Effects of Karela Juice

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While there are health benefits, there are also noted side effects of using karela juice. This is especially if you have more than one glass of karela juice a day.

Some studies show that the juice lowers the blood sugar levels. While this should be good for helping to treat Type II diabetes, if your blood sugars are at normal levels, you could end up suffering from levels that are too low. This is called hypoglycemia and is just as dangerous as hyperglycemia. It can also cause hypoglycemia in diabetes patients, especially those who take medications. If you are going to try adding it to your diet, let your doctor know so they can make sure your medication is the right dosage.

Doctors don’t advise karela juice for pregnant women. It can lead to some uterine contractions and bleeding. There are risks of hemorrhaging, early labor, and other complications for both you and your baby. Your doctor will offer alternatives if you are worried about any of the conditions karela juice can help to treat or prevent.

Your doctor will be interested in hearing about any herbal remedies you are trying. They don’t want to shoot your attempts to improve your health down but want to make sure you really do benefit from them. There is still very little known about all the benefits and side effects of karela juice, which can make it dangerous. Before you try any herbal remedy, you should discuss with your doctor.

Should You Try the Karela Juice Trend?

There are certainly many benefits to karela juice. This is something that could help to reduce your risk of Type II diabetes and cancer. You could even protect against kidney stones and liver disease, and treat HIV if you have it. However, it’s not the perfect cure. There are dangers to including it in your diet, especially if you are currently pregnant. The best thing to do is discuss the fruit with your doctor to determine the best way to look after your health.

Everything You Need to Know About Chromium Supplement

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There are so many minerals that our bodies need. We are left confused over what we need to take, how we can get them, and the amount we need daily. If you have never heard of chromium, do not fear. You are not the only one.

One of the only times you will hear about it is if you have been diagnosed with a deficiency. You may have also heard about it if you have had a history of digestive problems. Your doctor may have mentioned the mineral in passing as one of those that you may need to get more of.

Chromium supplements may be required. Before you start taking them, here’s a look at everything you need to know about them to help you determine if they are right for you. You also find out more about how chromium helps your health and supports your bodily functions.

Chromium for the Digestive Health

Chromium is needed for a healthy digestive system. Only a small amount is needed, and there are high chances that you get enough through your diet, especially if you have spices, whole grains, and cheese. In fact, you can get enough from plenty of fruits and vegetables daily.

In some parts of the world, especially in the Western World, even the drinking water includes chromium. Also, if you cook with stainless steel materials, you will naturally get the mineral into your diet easily. There are high chances that you will never need to take chromium supplements because of all the sources that you get it from.

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However, some people will be at risk of developing a chromium deficiency. Your digestive system may not be able to absorb it effectively, leaving you with some health problems. Those most at risk include the elderly and people with diabetes. Certain diets may also lead to a deficiency since you can overlook the foods with it. This is when you may need to take chromium supplements to help support you.

However, how exactly does chromium work in your body? It is needed to help transport your blood sugar into your bloodstream and your cells. The blood sugar can then be used as energy and help to turn the other nutrients in your body into energy, especially proteins and fats. The mineral helps to prevent the blood sugar levels from increasing and requiring as much insulin to tackle it.

Because of the effect, it is possible that chromium can help those with type II diabetes manage their illness. It is possible to control your blood sugar levels, reducing the amount you suffer and could help to reverse the need for more medications. Before you start skipping your insulin medications, you will need to talk to your doctor. More studies are required to see just how chromium can help.

Some studies show that the nutrient can help with fat burning and muscle building. This is linked to the ability to turn more proteins, fats, and carbs into energy. It is possible to burn through more calories and get the nutrients where they need to be. Your body can use up the carbs more effectively. Since there is not as much blood sugar to cause a problem, the metabolism is not as likely to store calories unnecessarily.

It is not just the digestive health that benefits from more chromium. Studies have shown that glaucoma is more prevalent in those with low levels of the mineral. There are currently no studies that show chromium can help prevent the development of glaucoma when you have it or reverse the condition, but you can lower your risk of the onset of the condition.

At the same time, studies show that the mineral can help prevent some bone loss. Chromium helps to slow down calcium loss from the body, which is something that occurs as we age. Calcium loss happens mostly during and after menopause, due to the hormonal changes. A lack of the mineral can lead to brittle bones and the onset of osteoporosis, so it is worth finding a way to prevent it.

When Should You Consider a Chromium Supplement?

If you can get the mineral through your natural diet, is there any reason you should consider a supplement? Well, like with other nutrients, there are times that our bodies cannot absorb everything. There are certain types of people who will find supplements will help to overcome some of their health problems.

As mentioned, those with diabetes may gain some help through the addition of the supplement. This is especially the case if you have a high blood sugar problem.

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The mineral helps to manage and reduce the glucose levels in your blood. If you have diabetes, you will know that your glucose levels affect your health. The higher your glucose, the more insulin your body needs. This can cause major health problems, especially since your body is not able to gain benefits from lower amounts of insulin.

By reducing your blood sugar levels, your body does not need to produce as much insulin. You find another way to tackle the sugars, helping to improve your insulin receptor activity.

Studies have shown that chromium can help to improve your insulin receptor, meaning that less insulin tackles the larger amounts of blood sugar. Some diabetes patients have reversed their condition and no longer need to take medications. You will want to discuss this possibility with your doctor.

Other studies have shown positive results in women with a hormonal imbalance. Your hormonal balance will affect so many elements of your health. Women with the polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) have seen the best results, but there is hope for women with other hormonal issues.

PCOS can affect your glycaemic control, which is linked to diabetes. In fact, women with PCOS are more likely to suffer from diabetes since the metabolism does not work properly and it is harder to get rid of the blood sugar levels and convert all nutrients to energy. With chromium, you improve the ability to convert food and calories into energy and naturally lower the blood sugar levels.

So far, studies are showing positive results. More studies are needed for a full consider how chromium can help.

While studies have not considered other hormonal imbalances, there is hope that chromium can help. This could help to manage some conditions caused by hormonal imbalances, including the struggle to absorb some nutrients.

Improving your mood could also be gained using chromium supplements. This is not just for those in a bad mood now and then, but for those with mood disorders including atypical depression and dysthymic disorder.

Theories into how the mood is helped involve the way chromium helps the cells. They become more sensitive to the amount of insulin in the body, making it easier for nutrients like tryptophan to pass around the body. Tryptophan helps to improve the amount of serotonin in the body. It is that nutrient that helps give you the warm, satisfied, tired feeling after eating plenty of turkey at Thanksgiving or Christmas!

Your body has more of the building blocks to release the happy chemicals from the brain. This makes it easier to overcome depression and other mood disorders since the right amount of serotonin is released. It is the low levels of serotonin that lead to low moods.

Chromium Safety

The big question many have, especially when they hear of a mineral for the first time, is whether it is safe to take. Chromium is a natural mineral that you will find in your food. It will help improve your bodily functions and health, and will not harm you.

However, this is only when you take the mineral in safe doses. If you take many supplements, you do put yourself at the risk of chromium overdoses. Like with anything, it is possible to get too much of a good thing.

Excessive chromium levels have led to low blood sugar levels in patients. Your body takes all the blood sugars to use for converting other minerals into energy. You are not left with enough for your short-term reserves, leading to problems with fatigue, dizziness, and nausea. If left to continue, you can have problems with hypoglycemia, which is just as dangerous as high blood sugar levels.

You may also experience stomach problems. Your digestive system is working overtime and can cause a variety of issues, including nausea and cramping. You may also experience some bloating and gas.

Some chromium supplements can make your allergies worse. There is also a case that you are allergic to the ingredients used in the supplements. You may find that getting chromium through natural methods is best.

More serious side effects of too much chromium include kidney and liver failure. You may experience an irregular heart rhythm, problems with your nerves, and other serious health conditions. The good news is many of these severe side effects are rare.

You do not just suffer from chromium problems from supplements. It is possible to get too much of the mineral due to your job since the mineral is gained through some metals. Some studies show excessive amounts can lead to some cancers and kidney damage. Skin conditions like inflammation and eczema are possible.

Taking Chromium Supplements with Other Medications

Before you start taking chromium supplements, you should discuss them with your doctor. This is especially important if you take other medications. Certain medications can affect the ability to absorb the mineral, while some medications are left ineffective because of the mineral.

For example, antacids can lead to the chromium not being absorbed into the body. This is due to the way the antacids affect the stomach acid and the breaking down of food to pass through the digestive system.

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Pregnant and breastfeeding women will also need to discuss taking the supplement. It is possible that the chromium will pass to the baby and studies are not sure how this mineral will affect the growth of a fetus or baby. This is the case with all types of dietary supplements.

The dietary supplements are not monitored by the Food and Drug Administration. While this does not mean they are dangerous, it does mean there are limited recommendations. A doctor’s care is always best to seek. In some cases, the chromium (and other dietary) supplements can interact with medications and conditions, making your health worse rather than better.

More research is needed into chromium supplements and how they interact with medications and health problems. Your doctor may want to keep a closer eye on your health if you do decide to take the supplements. If side effects are noted early on, your doctor will be able to make an educated decision over what to do next.

Getting a Safe Amount of Chromium

Now that you know the importance of the nutrient and getting the right levels, it is time to look at just how much you need. The body can work with very little, especially compared to other nutrients. However, the studies mentioned above did use larger amounts, with up to 1,000mcg per day to show the positive results.

Most females need 20-25mcg per day, depending on age. Those who are pregnant will need 30mcg, and those lactating will need to increase their intake to 45mcg.

You can get most of your daily requirement through your food and method of cooking. However, you may need more if you have a medical condition. This is when taking supplements is worth considering. Your doctor may recommend supplements if you struggle to get enough in your diet.

If you are going to take supplements to help a medical condition mentioned above, discuss with your doctor first. This will help to avoid any potential health problems.

Chromium Supplements Can Be Useful

In short, it could be worth your time taking chromium supplements. There are certainly plenty of studies that show benefits. However, there are also serious side effects to protect yourself again. The best thing you can do is make sure you get enough through your diet and discuss the option of supplements with your doctor.

Everything You Need To Know About Fiber Supplements

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Fiber Supplements Image Design 1 - Everything You Need To Know About Fiber SupplementsYou know that fiber is an important nutrient for the body. There are high chances that you have seen how weak your digestive system can become without it. Fiber helps to keep the whole digestive system working effectively. It ensures waste is removed, stools are comfortable to pass, and nutrients are absorbed into the body.

If you feel like you are not getting enough fiber in your diet or there’s an issue with allergies and sensitivities that make it hard to get fiber, you may look towards supplements. They can help increase the amount you get daily quickly and effectively.

However, they are certainly not a one size fits all option for getting more fiber. Here’s everything you need to know about fiber supplements to make sure they are safe for you.

There are No Proof Supplements Harmful

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You may hear many people telling you that supplements are not good for you. When you can get a nutrient naturally through your diet, why would you want to take something that’s human made? Many people view supplements as harmful ways to upset your hormonal balance. People view supplements in the way that they view pharmaceutical remedies for illnesses.

Well, don’t worry too much about taking the supplements. There is no evidence that the supplements are harmful to your health. In fact, the studies have shown the exact opposite.

Fiber is so good for your body that many doctors recommend that you take supplements to improve your health. Fiber helps to keep your bowel function normal.

Sure, it is better to get fiber from your food. You will also get a range of other nutrients through your food. When your digestive system is working efficiently, you will gain far more from the ingredients since you will be able to absorb more of the extra nutrients. Supplements do not offer other minerals, vitamins, and macronutrients as real food does.

However, that does not mean you should skip the supplements. Just because you eat foods with natural fiber,it does not mean you are going to see health benefits. Your body needs to be able to absorb it all. You need to get enough fiber through your food, and this is something that many people fail in.

Supplement Your Natural Meals with Man Made Fiber

The trick to gain everything is by using supplements the way they were designed. They are not to replace your natural fiber intake, but to supplement it. The clue is the name, right?

When you supplement your meals with the human made fiber, you will increase the amount of fiber that you get into your diet. You still get the vitamins and other nutrients from your food, but you get more fiber than you would have gained naturally. There is more of a chance of supporting your whole digestive health to take in all the other nutrients that you are getting.

It is worth looking at the amount of fiber you get naturally. You can then determine how much you are missing from your recommended daily allowance. This will help you find a way of using fiber supplements to contribute to your daily intake, so you are not stressing about the amount that you gain.

Fiber Supplements Do Have Some Side Effects

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While there is no proof that the supplements are harmful, not all the studies have only shown positive results. There are some side effects that you need to be aware of. This is especially the case if you take medications. If you suffer from certain health problems, you will need to talk to your doctor before you start taking the supplements as they could interact with your medications.

Fiber supplements can make it harder for your body to absorb some medications. This is common in those who take aspirin or carbamazepine medications. If you need these for a medical problem, you will want to make sure your doctor is aware of changing the amount you take in a day and find other ways to manage your medical conditions.

If you have insulin for diabetes, you will want to discuss fiber supplements with your doctor. The fiber can help to reduce your blood sugar levels, which could have a positive effect if you suffer from high blood sugar. You may find that you can reduce the number of medications you take for your health problem. However, this can make the fiber supplements a little dangerous if you naturally have low blood sugar levels. Your doctor may need to adjust your medication up to make sure your blood sugar levels remain healthy.

Other side effects are not as dangerous. Most people notice a little gas and bloating at first. This is because the body is getting more fiber than it has had in the past. It takes some time for the digestive system to get used to this and use it effectively. If you continue to take the supplements, you should find that the discomfort comes to an end after a few weeks.

You can minimize some bloating and gas issues using water. Make sure you take your fiber supplements with water and drink plenty of it throughout the day. The water will work with the fiber to keep your digestive system working effectively.

There Are Different Types of Supplements

While you likely initially think of pills that you swallow whole, there are many different types of fiber supplements. If you have mentioned taking them to your doctor, they will likely want to know which type you are considering. Make sure you go in with all your options that sound best for you to help your doctor determine if they are right for you.

Synthetic fiber is one of the most common. You can get powders that you add to your water, capsules that you take like painkillers or chewable forms that are more like candies. These supplements offer a “functional fiber” that will help to get to work on your digestive system immediately. While most of these forms are synthetically made, you can get some natural sources.

Natural extracts are popular options for those looking to avoid issues with their health. You just need to know the form of natural supplement you start to take. Lignin is one of the most popular as it is easy to extract. It is a compound that is naturally made of plant cells.

However, you can also opt for cellulose, pectin, or gum. These are sugars found in different sources. Cellulose is from the plant cells, pectin is from berries and fruits, and gum is from seeds.

Another option is psyllium. This is from Plantago plant husks and has shown excellent benefits against bad cholesterol levels in the diet. By lowering the bad cholesterol, it is possible to protect the heart and whole cardiovascular system. Studies have only shown this form of natural and unnatural fiber is beneficial for lowering bad cholesterol levels.

Taking a Right Amount of Fiber

Make sure you get the right amount of fiber in your diet. Adding too many supplements into your diet can be dangerous. Your body is not used to the amount that you get, and you can end up with many uncomfortable side effects. It is not just about the bloating and gas. Some people have more cramping, as their digestive system tries to handle everything.

Thisis not just a side effect of supplements. Increasing your natural fiber intake through your food can lead to the same side effects.

Doctors recommend that you increase the amount of fiber you get slowly. Allow your body a chance to adjust and then add a little more fiber. Listen to the way your body feels, especially when combine natural and supplemental fiber into your diet.

Experts suggest that you get around 14g of fiber for every 1000 calories that you eat. Women only need around 25g of fiberdaily for a healthy digestive system. When you get older, you can decrease the amount to approximately 21g. Taking a little extra is not going to do much harm, but you will want to avoid overdosing on this nutrient.

You do not need more than 50g of fiber in your diet daily. Studies have shown that any more than this can negatively affect the way your body absorbs all the nutrients that you give. You want to improve the natural absorption of other nutrients, not make it harder!

Too much can also lead to another discomfort in the gut. You can make the stools too lose or cause more cramping, as your digestive system struggles to manage the amount you are giving it.

The side effects are why it is so important to talk to your doctor before taking supplements. This is even the case if you are healthy. You want to make sure you do not cause other health problems by taking too much fiber daily.

Always make sure you take the fiber with water. You want to remain hydrated throughout the day. The fiber will absorb more water, which will leave your body without it in areas that it needs it. The best thing you can do is add extra water, especially in the beginning. Give your body a helping hand that you can for a healthier lifestyle.

Get Plenty of Other Nutrients

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You cannot just focus on the fiber in your diet. It is essential that you look at all the other nutrients, both macro, and micronutrients.

A high protein diet is essential for a high fiber diet. The two nutrients work together to avoid loose stools and ineffective digestive systems. They both break down slowly but help to absorb more nutrients into the whole body. The protein will help to keep your muscles building, while the fiber helps with digestive complaints and other health problems.

At the same time, you will need to think about vitamins and minerals. Remember that the fiber supplements will not include these. While you can take other supplements, it is best to get as many nutrients through their natural forms. Think about the food you eat daily to help improve your overall health.

Don’t Worry About Initial Weight Gain

You have likely heard that fiber can help you with weight loss. The nutrient takes longer to break down, so you feel fuller sooner than you would with some other nutrients. The nutrient also takes longer to break down over time, so you do not feel as hungry throughout the day. You can eat less throughout the day, helping to create a calorie deficit.

However, you will not initially see a weight loss because of the nutrient. Your body needs to adjust to the amount of fiber you are now adding in. You can find that you gain a little weight at first, as your body handles the digesting of the nutrient and you change the way and amount you eat throughout the day.

Bloating can make you feel heavier than you are. You can find that clothes do not fit well, despite the scales telling you that you have not gained any weight. This is your body adjusting slowly and managing the new levels.

Don’t worry too much about the initial weight gain. You will often find that after a few days the weight comes off and you do not feel as bloated as you once did.

You can minimize the feeling of bloating and weight gain. Start by increasing your fiber amounts slowly. This will give your body time to adjust. Drinking more water can also help, as your body can push the fiber through quickly and effectively.

Will You Add Fiber Supplements to Your Diet?

Fiber supplements are a popular way to add more of the nutrient to your diet. They are not necessary, but they can be useful. Make sure you follow the recommendations for fiber that you get and look at both natural and synthetic options.

There are no studies that show long-term health problems, but this will depend on your current health. Talk to your doctor before adding any supplements to your diet to protect your overall health.

Everything You Need To Know About The Gaps Diet

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Gaps Diet Image Design 1 - Everything You Need To Know About The Gaps DietWith all the different diets available right now, the best thing anyone can do is learn about the diets and find out which one to follow. The GAPS diet is a derivative of the SCD or Specific Carbohydrate Diet. This diet is primarily focused on avoiding foods which are hard to digest. Such foods may cause damage to the body’s gut flora. People on the GAPS diet will then have to replace these foods with nutrient-dense options. This will give the lining of their intestines a chance to strengthen and recover.

GAPS stands forGut and Psychology Syndrome and its protocol was created by Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride. The protocol is a short-term diet along with healthy lifestyle changes which are meant to heal a person. She used this protocol to treat her son who has autism. This diet is meant to treat 3 underlying causes of common diseases. These are nutrient deficiencies, imbalances in the gut flora, and leaky gut.

Simply put, this diet consists of the following:

  • Avoiding complex carbohydrates because they nourish pathogenic bacteria.
  • Focus on fermented foods and probiotic supplements to restore the body’s gut flora.
  • Focus on traditional foods which are nutrient-dense to heal nutrient deficiencies.
  • Reintroduction of a specific series of foods.
  • Healthy lifestyle changes including detoxification and other steps to boost the immune system.

A Brief History

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Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride was the one who designed the GAPS diet. She created it in Russia after she received her post-graduate degree. Back then, she was a neurosurgeon and a neurologist. When the doctor moved to the UK, she then received her degree in Human Nutrition. She wrote a book about the diet and now had a second edition.

In her book, she says that people need to understand the role and importance of the gut in a person’s overall health. Since the ancient times, people believed that many diseases start in the gut. Primarily, she created this diet to cure autism, which her son has. She claims that the diet can cure the disorder because its cause is an unhealthy environment of the gut.

According to Dr. Natasha, children develop gut flora which is abnormal from the very start of their lives. Because of this, their digestive systems aren’t good sources of nourishment. Instead, they become a major source of toxins. She further explains that when these microbes and toxins from the digestive system go into the bloodstream. When that happens, they also go into the child’s brain, which causes autism and many other diseases.

Because of her desire to cure her child, she researched the best foods to support a healthy gut flora and applied them to a diet, the GAPS diet. Although there may be changes in the diet in the future, it’s still becoming quite popular. This is because a lot of people who have tried it say that they’ve seen the benefits and results of the diet.

Who Should Follow the GAPS Diet?

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The GAPS diet isn’t for everyone. However, it may be the factor which turns a person’s health around. Anyone who has been experiencing issues with their gut should start thinking about following this diet. This diet is also ideal for certain people who are experiencing various illnesses and diseases. Here are other diseases people may have which should make them start thinking about following the GAPS diet:

Anemia. People may not know it, but anemia starts in the gut. If a person has severe anemia and the body isn’t responding to medicines or iron supplements, it may be a sign of pathogenic bacteria overgrowth. These bacteria protect themselves by using iron build biofilms.

When there’s an imbalance of the gut flora, such bacteria and other pathogens create structures in the gut where they start living. In these biofilms, they conceal themselves from the immune system, so they can multiply and flourish. The GAPS diet addresses overgrowth of pathogenic bacteria, which may cure a person’s anemia.

Arthritis. This disease also results from an imbalance of gut flora and a leaky gut. When a person has either of these conditions, toxic components from the digestive tract go into the bloodstream. When this happens, they tend to stick to collagen muscles which are found in the joints. Because of this, the body’s immune system sees the collagen as toxic,so the immune system responds by attacking it.

Therefore, the GAPS diet may help in reversing one’s arthritis. The body will get better at managing inflammation by cleansing the toxins. It may also seal leaky gut, which will further promote the healing process.

Autism or a learning disability in children. Such disorders all begin with the gut-brain axis. This happens to be the communication between the bacteria and nerve cells in the gut and the person’s brain. This connection is very complex, and scientists are just starting to learn about it.

The factors which the GAPS diet targets help in the treatment and healing of autism or other learning disabilities. Another reason why the GAPS diet is beneficial is that when a person has leaky gut, the toxins may start reaching the brain. This may be the reason why the disorders aren’t improving.

Autoimmune disease. Usually, all kinds of autoimmune diseases start in the gut. Usually, it begins with a leaky gut. The bodies of people with leaky gut can’t detoxify properly. Because of this, the toxins spread through the body which triggers an immune response. Then the antibodies start attacking the body’s healthy tissues.

When a person follows the GAPS diet, he won’t be consuming foods which promote a leaky gut. Along with this, it also floods the body with foods which help rebuild healthy tissues. So, the leaky gut may seal up, and the body will be able to recover.

Chronic candida overgrowth. Although there is such a diet called the Candida diet, it doesn’t deal with the cause of the fungal overgrowth. Because again, the main reason for this is a leaky gut. The Candida diet starves the fungus but doesn’t treat the cause.

Since the GAPS diet deals with the cause, it’s a much better way to treat the fungal infection. The person will be eating foods which will promote the healing of the leaky gut, therefore fixing the cause.

Depression or a form of mental illness. Studies have shown that such illnesses aren’t head problems, they’re digestive problems. The GAPS diet also addresses depression, anxiety, schizophrenia, OCD, and bipolar disorder. A lot of people with these conditions have claimed that they achieved incredible results because of this diet.

The GAPS diet addresses neurotransmitter deficiencies. This is done by enhancing digestion of proteins and balancing the gut flora. It also works with hormonal imbalances and leaky gut. Such things help in treating these illnesses, therefore improving them.

Eczema. Until now, no one knows what causes eczema exactly. However, a lot of holistic practitioners believe that the main underlying cause is again, a leaky gut. It might even be caused by intolerances to certain foods.

It’s a fact that a lot of people who followed the GAPS diet were able to reverse the effects of eczema. Some of them have even said that they noticed results just a few days after beginning the diet. No matter what the case of your eczema is, you’ll benefit from such a diet.

Hay fever and allergies. Many people are unaware of the fact that the origin of seasonal allergies in the gut. For the body to regulate histamine, the gut flora needs to be in the right balance. Gut pathogens produce histamine. It’s an essential kind of neurotransmitter in the body.

But when these microbes keep growing because there isn’t enough good gut flora, there’s an overproduction of histamine. This causes the body’s functions to react to the histamine in negative ways. Remember, the GAPS diet helps bring back balance to the gut flora. This means that it deals with the cause of too many histamines.

Highly susceptible to colds. The human body has a lot of bacteria in the gut. Aside from this, most of the immune system resides there too. This means that when there’s something out of balance in the gut, a person may start experiencing different diseases, especially the common ones like colds.

So, people who want to lessen the risk of getting colds should consider going on the GAPS diet. It will give the body’s immune system a boost while keeping the gut well-balanced.

People who have taken (or are taking) oral contraceptives. Studies have shown that oral contraceptives cause irreparable damage to the otherwise healthy gut flora. And the dangerous part about this is that when a woman conceives and gets pregnant, she may pass on her imbalanced gut health to her child. Then the child will pass it on to her child. That’s why it’s important to keep the gut flora healthy, especially for women. Aside from this, pills for birth control also cause different nutrient deficiencies as well as hormonal imbalances.

Fortunately, there’s a way to restore the balance of gut flora, and that’s to follow the GAPS diet. So, it’s highly beneficial for women who are taken or who have tried taking oral contraceptives in the past.

Stages of the GAPS Diet

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The GAPS diet has different or phases. Just like most diets, the very first stage is usually the hardest, and it’s also the one which puts most people off. People who can’t keep up with a specific diet from the beginning won’t be able to maintain it until the end.

The Introduction Diet. Just as previously mentioned, this part of the diet may be off-putting to a lot of people. This is mainly because it involves intense modifications in a person’s regular diet. This stage comes with its sub-stages.

  • First, the person may only consume a very strict diet, water at room temperature, and probiotic supplements.
  • Second, the person may add new foods to the diet. These include raw egg yolks (organic), fermented fish and homemade yogurt. The person may also consume some types of soups, casseroles, and stews.
  • Third, the person may add even more foods to his diet. Such foods are squash pancakes and avocados.

As the diet progresses, the person may be able to add more and more foods at each stage. These foods are mainly vegetables, some meats, and fermented foods. Any foods which are baked must be avoided. In this diet, some people may remove fruit, nuts, and honey altogether. However, if a person’s body has a severe reaction to the diet, he may go back to the earlier stages of this phase.

Supplementing the diet. Since this diet is very restricted, it means that a person may pass up some foods which are rich in nutrients. So, people following this diet will benefit a lot from taking some select supplements. The most recommended ones include:

  • Digestive enzymes
  • Essential fatty acids
  • Mineral supplements
  • Probiotics
  • Vitamin supplements

Detoxifying the body. Aside from following the diet, a person may need to start detoxifying his body. This means that one needs to ensure that the body is free of chemicals. Some people drink fresh juices made from fruits, vegetables, and herbs to help activate and regulate the bile flow in the liver.

A coffee enema is also a popular choice, but it’s not recommended. This involves injecting coffee into a person’s anus. This cleanses the large intestines as well as the rectum. However, a lot of medical authorities and experts see this as very dangerous.

There are many ways to cleanse and detoxify the body. But a lot of people agree that the best way to do it is naturally. No matter what method a person chooses, he must first research how to do the detoxification as well as the side effects of doing it.

Tips for following the GAPS Diet

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Before anyone starts thinking about following the GAPS diet, a person needs to do enough research. Each stage involves rules so one must be aware of all of them. It’s also important to look at the sources of the foods one will need for the diet instead. Go through different supermarkets in the area to find out where to buy the required food items. Here are some helpful tips for following this diet:

  • At each meal, be sure to combine vegetables (prepared in different ways) with fish and meats to balance the pH levels. Body pH levels which are too alkaline or too acidic aren’t ideal for the gut.
  • Avoid eating fruits (aside from avocado) with meals so as not to disturb the body’s digestion of the meats.
  • As much as possible, find food options which are organic and chemical-free.
  • Each meal must also contain a lot of natural fats. Animal fats are highly beneficial.
  • Also at each meal, consume a cup of meat stock or bone broth. This may help in the digestion of the meats and fats.
  • Focus on different fermented foods. If not used to such foods, introduce them to the body gradually. Also, try to observe how the body reacts to them.
  • Avoid canned and processed foods. These also include refined carbohydrates and foods which contain preservatives, chemicals, and artificial ingredients.