Posts tagged: Anti-aging

Romaine Lettuce Rules!

Notable Personality Factors:

Within the leafy green kingdom, romaine lettuce rules!  Its disease-fighting, anti-aging, energy-enhancing, and immune-boosting qualities make it a nutritional standout for keeping you vital, youthful, healthy, happy, and well!

In addition to helping prevent unnecessary aging and illness, the great romaine has a centuries-old reputation as a healer and has been revered throughout ancient cultures and civilizations for its medicinal properties.  Romaine lettuce originated in the Mediterranean, and at various times Greek, Roman, and French physicians prescribed it for a variety of ailments.  Interestingly enough, one of the staunchest supporters of romaine lettuce was Caesar, the Roman emperor, who credited the leafy green vegetable for his recovery from several ailments and even erected a statue in its honor.

It’s important to note that romaine lettuce’s higher concentration of nutrients gives it a therapeutic edge over other forms of lettuce.  In general, the darker the leaf, the greater the nutritional value.  That’s why bitter greens such as spinach and arugula also make a powerful dietary impact, whereas milder forms of lettuce, such as butter-head or iceberg, are less nutritious.

Therapeutic & Healing Values:***

Due to its high concentration of vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients, antioxidants, and chlorophyll, romaine lettuce is a nutritional staple for healing and the prevention of disease.  Its unique combination of life-giving nutrients helps activate the body’s ability to:

  • Self-defend—and protect us from disease;
  • Self-repair—and counteract the forces of stress, aging, and illness; and
  • Self-revitalize—and keep us vital, energetic, and full of life

So what are the nutrients that make romaine lettuce so special?

  • It’s a vitamin A and vitamin C powerhouse, which boost the immune system, help support cardio-vascular health, and protect against all kinds of cancer, including cancer of the colon, rectum and intestines.
  • It’s rich in immune enhancing and free-radical combating carotenoids—such as beta-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin.
  • It’s high in fiber, and is a central aid in waste elimination and protecting the body from nutritional toxins and pollutants.
  • It’s highly alkaline, which makes it a liver friendly food and helps purify and cleanse vital organs and bodily fluids.
  • It’s rich in folate, an important b-vitamin for synthesizing and repairing DNA and lowering risk for many diseases such as breast cancer

Meanwhile, romaine lettuce also bolsters the blood, helps prevents anemia, increases your resistance to the common cold and flu, and helps fight off infections.

Nutrient Value:

In addition to the vitamins and antioxidants mentioned above, romaine lettuce is also a good source of minerals—such as iron, potassium, molybdenum, manganese, and calcium—omega-3 fatty acids, and several B vitamins (B-1, B-2, B-6).

Selection and Care:

Romaine lettuce should be crisp, leafy, and firm.  It stands up straight.  Examine the head for wilted leaves, rotting, or discolored edges, all of which are signs of spoilage.  The average-sized head of lettuce yields four large salad servings.  Wash lettuce well by removing and rinsing one leaf at at time with cool water, and store unused portions in the refrigerator.

Optimal Use and Combining:

To maximize the nutritional and therapeutic value of romaine lettuce, it’s best to eat it fresh and raw. Romaine makes a great base for any green salad.  It mixes well with other lettuces and with yellow, orange, red, purple, and green veggies for a crunchy, tasty, salad.  By emphasizing romaine lettuce in at least one vegetable salad a day, you’ll be able to enjoy all of the health benefits that this staple vegetable has to offer.

***This article is not intended to treat or diagnose any type of health condition or disease. Any nutritional considerations for any health complication should be discussed with your physician or healthcare provider.

Change Your Stress, Change Your Life!

Did you realize that with a simple change in the way you look at stress, you can change your life?

In this 3-minute clinic we talk about a universal principle that applies to all of us:  “When you change the way you look at things, what you look at changes!”

Is it possible to use the stress in your life as a stepping stone to getting stronger—physically, mentally, emotionally, or spiritually?  Is it possible to look at stress, not as debilitating force that takes the fun out of your life, but as an opportunity for personal growth and healing?  Is there room for personal or professional breakthroughs in all of the ups and downs you may face in your day-to-day life?  Usually there is!  Check out this video to learn more!

“Welcome to the three-minute clinic on Wellness Planning, where we go over strategies that empower you to stay well and be well for the rest of your life. Today’s subject is stress reduction and how to reduce stress–specifically, the way your attitude relates to stress. But let’s back up a little bit, let’s talk about stress. Now remember, being well means vitality, happiness, fulfillment–in other words, keeping it light is part of being well! Well the opposite of keeping it light is being heavy; and that’s what stress is. See stress is burdensome, it’s overload, it’s when you lack harmony with yourself and your environment; and it’s everywhere. To me, the state of the union is one of stress. As a matter of fact, the other day I had a youngster in my office, a nine year old–we we’re talking about her allergies and I said “how do you feel?”, and she said she’s stressed. A nine year old telling me about stress means we live in a stressful society. So let’s face it, okay? Stress is a way of life in our society today, but it’s not healthy. Here’s what you need to know, this is very important–prolonged stress, unresolved accumulated stress, long-term stress leads to illness–and that’s why it’s so important. Because we’re into Preventive Medicine here, we want to see people be well, we want to see people thrive, and we want you to be able to reduce your stress levels so you can stay well. So let’s face it, the opposite of keeping it light is being heavy, and that’s what stress is! Now what do we want to do about it? A lot! We want to do a lot about it! Why? Because stress can hurt your immune system, stress can cause you aging, stress can cause damage to your organs, stress can make you ill–so hey, we don’t want to have accumulated stress, we want to keep it light. Now one of the keys in keeping it light is your attitude. We have a saying in our clinic–change your attitude, change your life. Well let me extend it to this–change your attitude, change your stress level! That’s right, an attitudinal shift will create an attitudinal healing and give you a whole different approach to stress. Now here’s the secret, see your life’s stresses–whether they be at work, or home, or financial–see your life’s stresses as an opportunity for growth. See them as a gift to help you improve your life and improve the quality of your life. When you look at something as stressful, it’s going to make you more uptight. We have an old saying in the clinic–when you change the way you look at something, what you look at changes. When you see stress as an opportunity, when you see stress as a gift, when you see stress as a vehicle to improve the quality of your life as opposed to a burden–you can make significant changes in getting stronger. Now remember health is about strength, health is about personal growth, health is about your ability to face adversity and conquer adversity. So that’s what it’s about! So start with the little stresses, find attitudinal ways to look at them as opportunities to grow, and little stresses will enable you to–when you handle them–to handle bigger stresses. The tip for today is this–don’t get stressed out by your stress! Learn how to change your attitude and see stress as an opportunity for growth. Make appropriate adjustments in your lifestyle–it will reduce your stress and protect your health–and that’s the tip for today.”

Orange: The King of Citrus

Sometimes it’s easy to overlook the role that nutrition plays in our day-to-day lives.  It impacts the way we feel, the way we look, our energy, and our mood–and that’s just the begining!  Our nutrition can help prevent disease, initiate a healing process, combat stress, and more!

Do you know what makes the mighty orange a particularly important part of a smart nutritional program?  Let’s take a closer look.

Notable Personality Factors:

Oranges have long been the icon of the citrus fruits. For this reason, I like to think of the orange as the “King of Citrus.”  Oranges promote alertness and confidence, increase energy levels, invigorate, and are good for circulation. That’s why they are so great to start off a day with.  They brighten spirits, boost mental attitude, and bring hope. Fresh squeezed orange juice in the morning is truly an eye-opener.

Therapeutic and Healing Powers:***

The flavonoids and bioflavonoids in oranges, combined with their high vitamin C content, make the fruit a strong ally of the immune system. These phytonutrients and antioxidants play an important role in fighting off degenerative disease, slowing the aging process, and maintaining the immune system’s infinite potential to self-govern, self-rejuvenate, and self-repair.

Oranges’ assortment of phytonutrients and enzymes are also of particular benefit to the prevention of upper respiratory infections. What I’ve learned over the years is that oranges have a detergent action, loosening mucus in the upper respiratory passages (the exact opposite effect of mucus-forming milk and dairy). When your upper respiratory system is backed up with mucus, it can create an environment for bacteria and viruses to spread.  That’s why oranges are an essential nutritional tool in the treatment and prevention of bronchitis, sinusitis, tonsillitis, and sore throat. I regularly prescribe this citrus to combat common bacterial infections as well as viral infections such as the cold and flu. A glass of fresh squeezed o.j. goes a long way in helping to treat and prevent such nasty bugs.

It’s also important to point out that oranges are good for the arteries. They keep cholesterol low, prevent plaque buildup in the blood vessels, and are beneficial to blood pressure.

Nutrient Value:

As mentioned above, the vitamin C, bioflavonoid, and phytonutrient content of this fruit make it a standout. The orange is also endowed with respectable levels of folic acid, vitamin B1, and carotenoids. Finally, its important to note that its pectin content has cholesterol-lowering value.

Selection and Care:

The orange originated in southern China and Southeast Asia, and has become the leading fruit crop in the United States. I prefer thin-skinned California Valencia oranges for juicing, because they’re sweeter and less sharp than other varieties. For eating, use thicker-skinned navels and Florida oranges. Tangerines and tangelos have similar personality traits to their sister citrus.

Select oranges that are heavy for their size. Avoid spongy, soft, puffy, or indented oranges. Surface scars and mottling are not important, so don’t fret over these superficial flaws.

Optimal Use and Combining:

Oranges are best used for juice or cut into segments as part of a fruit salad. They combine well with other citrus fruits, such as grapefruit or pineapple. Bananas and papayas also match up. But avoid mixing oranges with melons and other alkaline fruits. Citrus and melon are a poor food combo. And although oranges agree with strawberries in smoothies or fruit salads, they don’t get along as well with apples, grapes, and other sub-acid fruits. For a gratifyingly crunchy snack, mix oranges with nuts, especially almonds, or with high-protein granola.

Finally, as with all fruits, oranges have the highest therapeutic and nutritional value when they are fresh and whole.  In other words, fresh squeezed orange juice is far superior to orange juice from concentrate, which has been overly processed and devitalized of much of its phytonutrient content.  Similarly, fresh, living, raw oranges are going to deliver far superior health benefits than oranges from a can.

***This article is not intended to treat or diagnose any type of health condition or disease. Any nutritional considerations for any health complication should be discussed with your physician or healthcare provider.

A Secret to Long-term Health & Happiness: Do You Have Purpose?

When it comes to being well and staying well, it’s easy to overlook the importance of Vitamin P—having Purpose!  Purposeful living is conducive to physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual wellbeing.  Alternatively, a perceived lack of purpose leads to restlessness, anxiety, soul suffocation, mental strain, and emotional tension that can undermine your immune system and invite aging and disease.

Do you have enough vitamin P in your life?  In this 3 minute clinic we talk about the importance of following your cause and purposeful living as one of the keys to securing your long-term health and happiness.

“Welcome to the 3-minute clinic on Wellness Planning 101 where we talk about the strategies and themes that empower you to stay well, and keep well, and be well for the rest of your life. Now we’ve talked a little bit about the forces of self-care versus self-wear, let me review: self-care versus self-wear, let’s go with self-care. The habits of self-care keep you healthy, the habits of self-wear wear you down—that’s what it means by self-wear. Now we’ve talked a little bit about the importance of biological and food nutrition, we’ve talked about physical nutrition and exercise, we’ve talked about mental nutrition all being parts of self-care, we’ve talked about emotional nutrition—today I want to talk about spiritual nutrition. When you look at someone’s nutrition and look you at the whole picture, it’s not just what you eat. It’s how you think, your mental nutrition; it’s how you feel, your emotional nutrition; how you take care of your body with exercise, your physical nutrition; and it’s also your spiritual nutrition, how you deal with your soul. You know, that’s a very broad subject and it’s very vague for many people, but let me simplify it for you. When I talk about spiritual nutrition, I’m talking about your purpose in life, your cause, your mission, your message. You see, when you wake up in the morning and you have purpose, when you wake up in the morning and you have focus, when you wake up in the morning and you have conviction, when you wake up in the morning and you have things you’re looking forward to—that’s soulful, that’s spiritual nutrition! When you believe in yourself, when you stand up for yourself, when you follow through in what you believe in, that’s spiritual nutrition—that’s following your cause. Everybody has a cause. I’ve often asked people their purpose in life, they say “I’m not sure,” they don’t know—no, everybody has a purpose. It’s something you have to discover, think back to what turns you on, what excites you, where you want to make a difference, what do you look forward to. See, when you wake up in the morning and you have things to look forward to, going into work and making a difference at work, in your love life and your family life—making a difference in the people’s lives in your life. Okay, making a difference, enriching others, contributing to a cause, you see, that’s purpose! So when you have purpose, when you have soulful purpose it feeds your soul—that’s what I mean by spiritual nutrition. So my tip for today is this—there are so many different directions people can go in, figure out what turns you on, figure out what excites you, figure out what means something to you. Take a cause—for me, wellness is one of my causes. Now you can have more than one cause, but whatever your cause is—get involved in it, get invested in it, take time with it, spend time with it, interact with it, and look forward to it! When you build a library of spiritual nutrition, emotional nutrition by being happy, mental nutrition by thinking positively, physical nutrition by staying fit, biochemical nutrition with the right foods—you see, what you’re doing, your framing yourself to become an empowered, whole, well being. Powerful, balanced, energetic people stay well. People that are not powerful, that are not energetic, that are not balanced don’t stay well. The name of the game is to stay well. To be rich in life means to be rich in health, to be rich in wellness, to stay well the rest of your life. To be well, to stay well—that’s the key. The forces of self-care need spiritual nutrition. So get involved with your purpose, figure out your cause, go to my “ten rule” book; I have a quiz in there on how to determine your purpose in life. But get into a cause, get into a mission, get into something that means something to you and follow through—that will turn on your soul! Stand up for yourself, believe in yourself—that will feed your spiritual nutrition!”

How to be Healthy & Happy: Do You Own the Habits of Happiness?

The one unifying principle among all folks from all walks of life, all ages, all cultures, and all around the globe is we all want to be happy.  What’s interesting is this innate drive to be happy has a huge influence on our health.  In other words, happy people are healthy people!  Do you have the habits of happiness working for you in your life or do you have the habits of restlessness, anxiety, nervousness, and depression wearing away at your mental, emotional, and physical wellbeing?

In this 3-minute clinic we talk about the importance of emotional nutrition in maintaining your long-term wellbeing and what you can start doing today to develop the habits of happiness.

“Welcome to the three-minute clinic on Wellness Planning—Wellness Planning 101— where we go over strategies and themes that will empower you to stay well, be well and live a life of wellness. Now we’ve talked a little bit this week about the forces of self-care versus the forces of self-wear—in other words, what it really comes down to is positive living habits versus negative living habits or, the habits of self-care versus the habits of self-wear. So today I want to talk about the habits of happiness; your emotional living habits. You know, I don’t think that people realize how important being happy is in terms of your wellness. As a matter of fact, of all the things in life—good nutrition, exercise, happiness, I mean it’s got to be at the top of the list. So the habits of happiness are very important. I’m very concerned these days; that for those of you that study health care and medicine might know this fact—last year, 116 million prescriptions were written for anti-depressants. Now that’s a little shaky when you think about the fact that we’re trying to get people to take care of themselves and be happy. So what does depression do to people—it’s self-wear. In other words, when you have the habits of happiness versus the habits of depression, the habits of happiness invite youthfulness, the habits of happiness invite freedom, the habits of happiness invite wellness, whereas the habits of depression invite aging and disease. So it’s very important for you to understand that emotional nutrition is an important component of self-care. We talked about physical nutrition and exercise, we talked about bio-chemical nutrition of food, and today we’re talking about emotional nutrition and the importance of happiness. So the habits of nutrition are very important. Really, happiness is a very individualized thing, and what it comes down to is a lot of self-exploration, a lot of self-discovery. And bottom line, I remember writing my original book, The Del Mar Diet and people would ask, “what is that book about?” It’s very simple, find out in life what turns you on, find out in life what really floats your ship, find out in life what really excites you, what gives you a thrill, and then go after it! That’s what being happy is about. Being happy is about being involved, being interactive, about being involved with a cause, with a purpose, doing things for others and making a difference. So the key for today is that, when you look at the forces for self-care, a person that’s powerful, well adjusted and happy is going to have anti-aging forces going for them. On the opposite extreme, those that are not having the habits of happiness and are unhappy, or have chronic depression or long-term habits of self-defeating emotional patterns—these things work against your health and your lifestyle. So let’s pick out one tip; how do you stay happy, how do you sustain your happiness? Well we mentioned one thing, getting involved in things that really turn you on. Another thing is be flexible; learn the rhythm of one step back, two steps forward. In other words, it’s called emotional rebounding. If things don’t go your way, find a way to make things work. Have perseverance, have cause, have steadfastness—stick with things. In other words one step back, two steps forward. And the way you do that is by seeing things as opportunities. If things are making you unhappy, if things are stressing you—ask yourself what will it take to make you happy, what will it take to reduce your stress, and use the force, the energy, the intensity of your emptiness or your disappointment or your sadness, use that energy to propel you forward! Two steps forward! One step back, two steps forward. But keep in mind, emotional nutrition, physical nutrition, mental nutrition, spiritual nutrition and biological nutrition are the keys to self-care. Self-care versus self-wear—when you get involved with self-care you can stay young and vital, prevent the forces of aging, and prevent disease. That’s your tip for today: emotional nutrition empowers you to be well.”