3 of the Most Common Mineral Deficiences

These mineral deficiencies are extremely common and affect people all over the world. Keep reading to know which ones you should look out for, if you are at risk and the consequences of having these deficiencies!

1. Iron Deficiency – Iron deficiency  is mainly caused by people not getting enough iron from their foods. Iron deficiency often causes anemia due to blood loss. Anemia is when hemoglobin carries oxygen through your body. If you do not have enough iron, your body makes fewer and smaller red blood cells . Then your body has less hemoglobin, and you cannot get enough oxygen. Factors that contribute to a higher risk of iron deficiency is sex (females menstruate and lose blood every month) and people who are on a vegan diet (no meats are allowed). Foods that contain high sources of iron include red meats and spinach.

2. Iodine Deficiency – Iodine deficiency is caused by people not consuming enough iodine in their diet. This can affect your thyroid gland since iodine is needed for the production of thyroid  hormones in our bodies. This deficiency is extremely common as iodine cannot be produced by our bodies. Foods that contain high amounts of iodine are seaweed and fish. If hypothyroidism occurs where the body does not produce enough thyroid, thyroid supplements are usually provided to suffice the loss of thyroid.

3. Calcium Deficiency – Calcium deficiency is caused by people not getting enough calcium from their foods. This can affect their bone growth and density. People who have calcium deficiencies are more prone to getting osteoporosis which softens the bones. People who are at risk for osteoporosis are women, people who have smaller body frames, people who are underweight and people who drink caffeine/alcohol. Sources that contain lots of calcium are dairy products and bony fish. If needed, calcium supplements can be used to treat calcium deficiencies.

4 of the Popular Diets of Today!

1. Paleolithic Diet – A paleolithic or “paleo” diet is a diet based on how our ancestors ate as cavemen, this diet includes veggies, fruits, nuts, meat and etc. This diet excludes grains, dairy products, sugar, legumes, salt, and processed foods. This diet also focuses on lean meat and a greater protein intake. This diet was invented because people believed that our bodies were not made genetically to consume certain foods such as grains and milk and that is why people are allergic to gluten and lactose. Although, people who adopt this diet tend to lose a large portion of their daily dietary fibre.

2. Raw Diet – A raw diet is a diet where you can only eat raw, uncooked foods such as fruits, raw veggies, nuts, and seeds. Most of the foods eaten are organic. People adapt this diet because they believe that since cooking food destroys nutrients and enzymes, that you are not getting all of the benefits of nutrients and enzymes in the food if you were eating raw food. Although, since eating animal products such as meat and eggs are not recommended since you may get foodborne illnesses, you may need to take certain supplements to compensate for the loss of certain nutrients and minerals.

3. Vegetarianism – Even though there are many types of vegetarian diets, the most common one which is the Ovo-Lacto vegetarian diet. An Ovo-Lacto vegetarian diet excludes animal products such as meat and fish but can include dairy and eggs. Many people who adopt this diet do not initially do it to be healthy but rather to prevent the killing and abusive practices of animal cruelty on farms.

4. Veganism – A vegan diet is essentially a vegetarian diet except it also excludes all animal products such as eggs, milk, cheese and even honey! Just like vegetarians, people who adopt this diet do not initially do it to be healthy but rather to prevent the killing and abusive practices of animal cruelty on farms. But also they believe that using any animal products also affects the animals as for example, having milk from cows is bad as most cows are treated poorly and abused. It is a much more ethical diet and lifestyle. Many vegans also do not take part in purchasing products which have animal products in it, such as leather products or real fur products.

Meditation – The Gateway to Your Mind, Body, and Spirit.

Meditation has been around for centuries, it’s no wonder that millions of people have adapted this into their lifestyle! Even though it seems that when you are meditating, you are doing nothing, you are actually in a state of deep peace and training your mind yourself. Meditation has several benefits to your health and mental health.

You may be wondering, well how do you meditate? First, you need to find a quiet and calming place for you to sit comfortably. Second, you should have good posture with your spine straight, shoulders back and legs crossed or you can lay down, and your arms and hands relaxed. You can even stand up if you want to (but this is only recommended for people who have already started to meditate). Second, you need to close your eyes and naturally breath; don’t force yourself to control your breathing. Third, you need to focus on your breath and how your lungs move with every breath, try not to break your focus (if you do break your focus, focus back on your breaths). For beginners, it is recommended for them to start meditating for about 2-3 minutes and after a while, you can start meditating for longer periods of time. With practice, you will have greater concentration and have a deep calm inner peace within yourself.

Meditation can help concentration, reduce stress, slow aging and makes you more self-aware. Meditation also used to clear your mind, help depression and anxiety. Since your pace of breathing and heart rate slows when you meditate, it has seemed to also have help with high blood pressure. Meditation is also thought to help with issues you are having in life, with regular meditation, you may find solutions to your problems or confront your fears and phobias. With every meditation period, you may be able to understand a deeper part of yourself every time and also feel calm and peaceful. Meditation opens up many pathways, to your mind, your body, spirit and into your life.

 

Losing Weight and Dieting; Not the Answer

Weight does not equal health. Society has shaped this stigma around how stepping onto a scale some how says if you are healthy or not. People have an assumption that weight is some how tied to health. In some ways this is true, but this is for health issues such as anorexia nervosa and obesity (which has been showed to be caused by mental health issues). People believe that losing weight is the reason why people go on diets and exercise. However, people should exercise and eat healthy to BE happy and healthy, not to lose weight. People who do regularly exercise and eat healthy tend to GAIN weight instead of lose weight because they gain muscle mass while losing a percentage of body fat. This is because muscles weigh more than body fat, so even if you do weigh yourself, it does not have a direct correlation of the mass of body fat you have or how healthy you are.

People who go on diets and calorie restrict themselves aren’t thinking in the right perspective. They strive to fit in with society’s standards as they become more and more obsessed with body image and counting calories, when they should really not care. Instead, think about caring about your body. It is more important to eat healthy but also you don’t have to restrict yourself. Don’t think about cheat days, think about how you can eat whatever you want at anytime, just in moderation! And if you slip up and eat a little unhealthy one day, don’t worry and over exercise the next day just to make up for the day before. We are all human, and it’s okay to mess up. Remember, the body achieves what the mind believes, so be active, eat healthy and feel happy! Love yourself & your body~

 

 

 

 

Nutrition Facts; Broken Down

Ever wonder how to read the nutrition facts of food items you are eating? Well here is how to understand them and learn from them! Nutrition facts are used to compare food items and to also understand how many nutrients are in them. Image result for nutrition label

Serving Size – The serving size makes it easier to compare it to similar products and to also understand how many servings you are consuming of the product.

Calories – Calories is the unit of energy that it takes for one gram of water to heat up. You should not calorie-count (restricting calories by counting every calorie you consume per day) but keep in mind which products that have higher levels of calories and low levels of nutrition. For example, junk food such as cookies, aren’t good as they are high in calories and don’t provide as much nutrition. Some labels also tell you how many calories are from the fat content of the product.

Fat, Cholesterol, and Sodium – You should try and avoid products which are high in fat, cholesterol, and sodium as too much may be harmful to your health and body especially if you continue to consume them regularly.

Carbohydrates, Fibre, Sugars, and Protein – Carbohydrates and protein all provide our bodies with calories. Carbohydrates contain 4 calories per gram (fibre and sugars are carbohydrates which are included too), protein contains 4 calories per gram, and fat contains 9 calories per gram. Eating foods with lots of fibre will aid digestion and keep you full.

Vitamins and Minerals – Try to get the daily value of all the vitamins and minerals required for the day. Remember that daily value is based on a 2,000 calorie diet so the percentage of nutrients may be lower or higher depending on your calorie needs.

 

How to Feel More Awake in the Morning (No Caffeine Required!)

Always feel sluggish and feeling like you were never going to get out of bed? Ever wonder how people could even get up in the morning without a cup of coffee or tea? Yeah, that was me before until I found out a few secrets! So, here are 5 tips and tricks to help kick-start your day!

1. Sleep enough, but not too many hours! – This is obvious enough, sleeping enough hours will reduce your fatigue in the morning. However, sleeping too many hours will result in you feeling sluggish and tired in the morning because you overslept.

2. Sleep earlier and around the same time – Sleeping earlier and also around the same time will make your body and mind adjusted to your own sleeping schedule. You will pass out in no time instead of rolling around in bed trying to get your beauty sleep!

3. No Alarms!! – People who don’t wake up naturally tend to be woken up by an alarm clock. However, this usually wakes the body at an irregular time where your body is in deep sleep. There are many apps on the app store for your mobile devices that help you wake up at a proper time. Sleep Time : Sleep Cycle Smart Alarm Clock is one of these apps which tracks your sleeping patterns and wakes you up at a proper time to ensure you don’t wake up cranky. Set the time you need to wake up by, and it will wake you up in between that time or 30 minutes before it. This is because the deep sleep stage only lasts about 20 minutes and it will wake you up when you move indicating your body is in the light sleep stage. Every night before you go to sleep, turn on airplane mode, go on the app, turn it upside down and lay it on your bed. Let the app do all the work and you can even play relaxing music before you go to sleep!

4. Drink a glass of cold water, wash your face and stretch! – Drinking a glass of cold water right when you wake up will help boost your metabolism for the day and make you feel much more awake. The same goes with splashing your face with cool water in the morning when you wash your face! You will feel more awake instantly. Stretching will increase blood circulation and snap you out of that bedtime mood!

5. Don’t consume caffeine before you sleep or exercise heavily – Drinking coffee in between 4 hours before you sleep will leave you struggling to fall asleep and will leave you feeling tired in the morning. Instead, drink some water or other beverages. Exercising heavily will also do the same as when it comes time to sleep, your body is already slowing down. Increasing your heart rate and making your body active will make you feel awake when you try to sleep.