Top Water Retention Fighting Foods

It’s summertime, which means it’s tank top, short shorts and swimsuit season!  If there’s one thing we are all trying to avoid during this time, it is water retention- which is why Samir Becic, author of the fitness book ReSYNC Your Life and his HFR team has put together a list of Top Foods that Fight Water Retention:

  •  Water:  It may seem counterintiutive, but when it comes to water, drink, drink, and drink some more. Drink a glass as soon as you wake up and keep sipping all day, aiming for 3 liters (100 ounces) a day. Slip in a few slices of lemon, lime, or orange as citrus is high in potassium and can relieve bloating.
  • Melons: Melons, citrus, and other potassium-rich fruits will help reduce water retention because they are high in the mineral potassium that balances sodium levels.
  • Nuts and whole grains: Tasty sources of vitamin B6, a nutrient associated with PMS relief, whole grain products and nuts are a good nosh when you’re feeling bloated. Make sure they have no added salt.
  • Watercress Watercress, an often overlooked leafy green, is a natural diuretic that is also high in potassium. The flavonoids in vegetables (and fruit) can alleviate water retention (Other bloat-fighting foods include other leafy greens, celery, tomatoes, carrots, onions, and peppers).
  • Herbs: Several herbs are natural diuretics and believed to help reduce water retention. Celery seed (do not take if you are pregnant), evening primrose oil, and dandelion root are just a few bloat-fighting options.
  • Salmon: Loaded with omega-3s, salmon is a super food that is not only food for the heart, brain, and joints, it can also fend off PMS. Other rich sources of omega-3s include tuna, mackerel, herring, and flax. Eat at least twice a week.
  • Greek Yogurt: Eating too many rich treats will cause tummy bloat. If you’ve overindulged and are feeling the effects, treat your stomach to a cup of plain, low-fat greek yogurt that contains active cultures. The active cultures aid in digestion and increase the good bacteria in the gut, the protein in greek yogurt will keep you feeling full.

 

FOODS AND THINGS TO AVOID WATER RETENTION

  •  table salt (for severe fluid retention use only potassium chloride)
  • alcohol
  • smoke
  • coffee
  • black tea
  • processed foods
  • fast foods
  • white flour foods
  • sugary foods and drinks
  • too much protein OR not enough protein
  • unhealthy fats
  • being still for long periods of time
  • crossing your legs
  • tight clothing

 

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Top 10 Healthy Foods for Your Kidneys

Kidneys tend to be an organ in our bodies that we don’t pay much attention to, even though they do so much for us. Kidneys filter 120-150 quarts a blood to produce 1-2 quarts of urine a day just to rid our bodies of wastes and extra fluids. If you aren’t giving your kidneys the care they deserve, they can give you several issues like high blood pressure, diabetes, and even heart disease. Check out our list of the top 10 foods for your kidneys, and give them the love and attention they deserve!

 

  • Water: This is easily the most important ingredient for overall health in not only your kidneys but throughout your entire body. Aim for 6-8 glasses of water a day, depending on your weight. Water flushes out toxins that can lead to kidney-related problems like infections or stones, and infect particles in your blood.
  • Cranberries or unsweetened cranberry juice: The taste of cranberry juice may be bitter to your taste buds, but it’s worth it. Cranberries are full of antioxidants, another great source of flushing out toxins in your system. They’re also great sources of vitamin C, fiber, and very low in sugar. Research shows that cranberries can prevent ulcers and bacteria from developing in the kidneys, making them the ultimate urinary tract cleaners.
  • Grapefruits: Grapefruits are another excellent source of Vitamin C, a vitamin crucial for a healthy immune system. Vitamin C also helps prevent bacteria developing in the body, and keeps it away from the kidneys. Have a grapefruit for breakfast with a bowl of oatmeal, another food full of vitamins.
  • Kale: Another food with Vitamin C, kale helps prevent inflammation and protects the immune system as well. Kale also has a large amount of iron. Those that suffer from kidney disease need lots of iron in their diet because of the deficiency the disease brings on.
  • Red bell peppers: Since red bell peppers are low in potassium, this is a great snack for those that suffer from kidney disease. Also full of Vitamins A and C, it has lots of folic acid and fiber. Eat red bell peppers raw to get all the nutrients out of them (they’re especially good mixed into a tuna or chicken salad!).
  • Apples: They weren’t kidding when they said an apple a day keeps the doctor away! Apples have been known to aid the body as a “natural cleanser”, cleaning your kidneys without causing too many trips to the bathroom. Studies have shown that apples can help prevent cancer with the help of the antioxidant quercetin.
  • Mushrooms: Mushrooms are known for the Vitamin D they contain, an important mineral that has been proven to regulate kidney function and help prevent kidney disease. If eating mushrooms aren’t your forte, try eating them in a creamy soup or saute them with veggies.
  • Cauliflower: Speaking of veggies, this is one that’s going to help aid in the cleansing of your kidneys. Cauliflower is high in Vitamin C and fiber, two nutrients that help your body fight off toxins and flush them out in your urine. Try eating your cauliflower steamed and seasoned for extra flavor while still getting all of the nutrients.
  • Blueberries: Blueberries are high in antioxidants, working double duty as an anti-inflammatory food that will help regulate the process of ridding your body of toxins. They are also a good source of Vitamin C, perfect for keeping your immune system healthy and on track.
  • Garlic: Despite the gross taste it leaves in your mouth, garlic has many health benefits. A spice that can make any food taste good, it also has great anti-inflammatory properties and has the ability to lower your cholesterol, keeping your blood flowing and kidneys working up to par.

 

 


Top 10 Best Foods for Arthritis

If you or anyone you know suffers from arthritis, you know the struggle is real. With arthritis comes great responsibility: choosing the right diet can make or break your joints (kidding…kind of!). Eating fatty foods can cause unhealthy weight gain and put pressure on your joints that will increase the pain and discomfort. Keep it simple with lots of whole grains, fruits, and veggies. To help you narrow all the choices down, HFR and Samir Becic, author of new book ReSYNC Your Life, brings you the top 10 foods and nutrients to eat to treat your arthritis and your health:

Foods Rich in Calcium: You know how your mom told you if you didn’t drink milk, your bones would break? There’s some truth to be said for that! Dairy products that are low in fat like milk and yogurt are full of calcium and vitamin D, which can help increase the strength in your bones and joints. If you happen to be lactose intolerant, try eating other vitamin D-rich foods, like leafy green vegetables.

  • Vitamin C: Vitamin C is essential to helping your deteriorating joints in the sense that it slows down the progression of osteoarthritis, something you can develop as you get older. If you want to increase vitamin C in your diet, try eating fruits like strawberries, pineapple, or kiwis.
  • Broccoli: Another food rich in vitamin C, broccoli is another good choice for your joints. Broccoli contains sulforaphane, a compound that can help prevent and slow down the progression of osteoarthritis. Also rich in calcium, broccoli in a no-brainer for your dinner salad tonight.
  • Garlic: Get the breath mints out, because you’re going to need them for this one. Garlic contains diallyl disulfide, a compound that can help alleviate arthritis. You can incorporate garlic into your foods by adding some with your chicken or pasta with a little parmesan cheese. Yum!
  • Fish: Keep the gum out for this one too, because this source of protein is going to leave your breath stinky too! Fish are full of inflammation-fighting omega-3 fatty acids, which can help reduce the inflammation in your joints and give you relief of pain. Try eating at least 3 to 4 ounces of fish twice a week to achieve these results. You can eat a tuna sandwich for lunch and salmon and potatoes for dinner, healthy and tasty!
  • Soy: Similar to fish, soy contains the anti-inflammatory benefits of omega-3 fatty acids, but doesn’t have the same fishy aftertaste. If you don’t have it in you to eat fish, try eating soybeans with your meals. Soybeans are low in fat, with lots of protein and fiber.
  • Tart cherries: If you suffer from arthritis, you can possibly find some relief with tart cherries. Tart cherries contain an ingredient called anthocyanin that gives the cherries their red color and can help reduce the pain in your achy joints. You can find tart cherry supplements at your local grocery store or can eat the actual cherries themselves from a farmer’s market.
  • Green tea: Full of polyphenols (an antioxidant that reduces inflammation), green tea is another easy go-to for healthy joints. Studies have also shown that another antioxidant in green tea that can be beneficial to your joints is epigallocatechin-3-gallate, which can cancel the molecules that come together to cause joint damage. Now you have a valid excuse for a Starbucks run!
  • Citrus: An orange a day keeps the doctor away! Fruits like oranges are rich in vitamin C, which we know is a holy grail for treating inflammation in your joints. Try eating an orange or grapefruit for breakfast to help maintain healthy joints and prevent osteoarthritis.
  • Grains: Whole grains are going to become your new best friend. In whole grains, there is a protein called CRP, which can help reduce inflammation and reduce risk of rheumatoid arthritis. Eating a breakfast like whole-grain cereal or oatmeal is a great way to get those nutrients without having to sacrifice taste or flavor.

 

 


Top 10 Mood Boosting Foods

Serotonin is a brain chemical that is known to impact your mood. Keeping levels in balance can help promote a feeling of calm, well-being, mental alertness, control and an increased ability to deal with stress.  Since diet can influence our supply of serotonin, Samir Becic and Health Fitness Revolution has made a list of top 10 Mood Boosting Foods:

  • Nuts and Seeds: researchers from the University of Barcelona found that men and women eating almonds, walnuts and Brazil nuts had higher levels of serotonin metabolites. In addition, just one ounce of mixed nuts a day may also help reduce obesity, blood pressure and blood sugar.
  • Greek yogurt: This dairy pick is packed with more calcium than you’ll find in milk or regular yogurt, and it can make you happy, too. Proper calcium levels give the “Go” command, alerting your body to release feel-good neurotransmitters.
  • Ocean-going cold water fish: such as salmon and mercury-free tuna contain omega-3 fatty acids which can help improve depression symptoms. A past study from the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine found that volunteers with higher levels of omega-3 fatty acids in their blood had fewer depression symptoms and a more positive outlook.
  • Flaxseed: another great source of omega-3 fatty acids. They also are rich in magnesium and B-vitamins, nutrients that help us combat stress.
    Spectrum Essentials Organic Ground Flaxseed, 24 Ounce from Amazon

  • Soy isoflavones: help with mood and mental function. These foods are also rich sources of vegetarian (no-cholesterol) protein which may help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease as well. Add soy foods such as tofu, tempeh, miso, and soy milk to your daily diet.
  • Avocado: rich in omega-3 fatty acids, amino acids, antioxidants, and potassium.
  • Asparagus: This vegetable is one of the top plant-based sources of tryptophan, which serves as a basis for the creation of serotonin, one of the brain’s primary mood-regulating neurotransmitters. High levels of folate also add to asparagus’ happiness-promoting profile because research has shown that up to 50 percent of people with depression suffer from low folate levels.
  • Dark chocolate: which contains an antioxidant known as resveratrol. This nutrient can help boost brain levels of endorphins and serotonin, helping to improve your mood. The recommended dose is one ounce per day (not the whole bag!)
  • DHA: is a particular form of omega-3 fatty acid that can be found in many foods. But including organic DHA-fortified eggs in the diet will also provide a good source of protein and tryptophan. A study published in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition found that when people eat eggs for breakfast, they feel more satisfied and therefore consume fewer calories throughout the day compared to a high-carbohydrate breakfast, such as a bagel.
  • Mussels: loaded with some of the highest naturally occurring levels of brain-protecting vitamin B12 on the planet. That makes it an important food source, considering that a significant portion of the U.S. population is B12 deficient.  Maintaining healthy B12 levels preserves the myelin sheath that insulates your brain cells, helping your brain stay sharp as you grow older. Mussels also contain trace nutrients that are important to balancing your mood, including zinc, iodine, and selenium, things vital to keeping your thyroid, your body’s master mood regulator, on track.

With a mood-boosting diet change, don’t forget to include exercise as well. Regular exercise can be as effective for depression treatment as antidepressant medication or psychotherapy. Just getting out for 30 minutes can have a huge impact on your outlook for the rest of the day.

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10 American Foods that Are Banned Internationally

Americans are slowly waking up to the sad fact that much of the food sold in the US is far inferior to the same foods sold in other nations. In fact, many of the foods you eat are BANNED in other countries.

There are many examples where the US federal regulatory agencies have sold out to industry at the expense of your health. About 90% of the money Americans spend on food is spent on processed foods, which is far too high a statistic.  If you want to avoid these questionable foods and other potentially harmful ingredients permitted in the US food supply, then ditching processed foods entirely is your best option.

Next, you’ll want to swap out your regular meat sources to organic, grass-fed/pasture-raised versions of beef and poultry. The same goes for dairy products and animal by-products such as eggs.  Swapping your processed-food diet for one that focuses on fresh whole foods is a necessity if you value your health.

 

Farm-Raised Salmon

    • Why it’s Banned: Wild salmon naturally gets its bright pinkish-red color from natural carotenoids in their diet. Farmed salmon, on the other hand, are raised on a wholly unnatural diet of grains (including genetically engineered varieties), plus a concoction of antibiotics and other drugs and chemicals not shown to be safe for humans.  This diet leaves the fish with unappetizing grayish flesh so to compensate, they’re fed synthetic astaxanthin made from petrochemicals, which has not been approved for human consumption and has well known toxicities- which might even cause damage to eyesight.
    • What to Buy Instead:  Avoid Atlantic salmon, often salmon labeled “Atlantic Salmon” currently comes from fish farms. The two designations you want to look for are: “Alaskan salmon,” and “sockeye salmon,” as Alaskan sockeye is not allowed to be farmed. It is important for you to know that the vast majority of all salmon sold in restaurants is farm raised.
    • Where it’s Banned:  Australia and New Zealand

 

  • Ractopamine-Tainted Meat
    • Why it’s Banned:  The beta agonist drug ractopamine (a repartitioning agent that increases protein synthesis) was recruited for livestock use when researchers found that the drug, used in asthma, made mice more muscular because it reduces the overall fat content of the meat. Ractopamine is currently used in about 45% of US pigs, 30% of ration-fed cattle, and an unknown percentage of turkeys are pumped full of this drug in the days leading up to slaughter- 20% of ractopamine makes it to store shelves.  Since 1998, more than 1,700 people have been “poisoned” from eating pigs fed the drug, and ractopamine is banned from use in food animals in no less than 160 different countries due to its harmful health effects!
    • What to Buy Instead:  Buy free-range, no antibiotic, grass fed meats.
    • Where it’s Banned:  160 countries across Europe, Russia, mainland China and Republic of China (Taiwan).  Effective February 11, 2013, Russia issued a ban on US meat imports, slated to last until the US agrees to certify that the meat is ractopamine-free. At present, the US does not even test for the presence of this drug in meats sold.

 

  • Flame Retardant Drinks
    • Why it’s Banned:  If you live in the US and drink Mountain Dew and some other citrus-flavored sodas and sports drinks, then you are also getting a dose of a synthetic chemical called brominated vegetable oil(BVO), which was originally patented by chemical companies as a flame retardant.  BVO has been shown to bioaccumulate in human tissue and breast milk, and animal studies have found it causes reproductive and behavioral problems in large doses. Bromine is a central nervous system depressant, and a common endocrine disruptor.
    • What to Buy Instead:  Stay away from sodas in general, and opt for natural options like iced tea, coconut water, and even natural juices.
    • Where it’s Banned: Europe and Japan

 

  • Many Genetically Engineered Foods
    • Why it’s Banned: Many different researches now show that animals fed genetically engineered foods, such as corn and soy, suffer a wide range of maladies, including intestinal damage, multiple-organ damage, massive tumors, birth defects, premature death, and near complete sterility by the third generation of offspring. Unfortunately, the gigantic human lab experiment is only about 10 years old, so we are likely decades away from tabulating the human casualties.
    • What to Buy Instead:  Non-GMO varieties of foods- organic.
    • Where it’s Banned:  The European Union

 

  • Processed Foods Containing Artificial Food Colors and Dyes
    • Why it’s Banned:  More than 3,000 food additives — preservatives, flavorings, colors and other ingredients — are added to US foods, including infant foods and foods targeted to young children.  There is research showing toxicity and hazardous health effects, especially with how it affects children’s behavior.
    • What to Buy Instead:  Read labels.  If you don’t know what an ingredient is, don’t eat the food.
    • Where it’s Banned: Norway and Austria. In 2009, the British government advised companies to stop using food dyes by the end of that year. The European Union also requires a warning notice on most foods containing dyes.  Interestingly, In countries where these food colors and dyes are banned, food companies like Kraft employ natural colorants instead, such as paprika extract, beetroot, and annatto. This proves that there are safer alternatives that companies CHOOSE not to use.

 

  • Arsenic-Laced Chicken
    • Why it’s Banned:  Arsenic-based drugs are approved for use in animal feed in the US because they make animals grow quicker and make the meat appear pinker (i.e. “fresher”).  The problem is, arsenic also contaminates manure where it can eventually migrate into drinking water and may also be causing heightened arsenic levels in US rice.
    • What to Buy Instead:  Free-range, grain fed, organic meat
    • Where it’s Banned:  The European Union

 

  • Bread with Potassium Bromate
    • Why it’s Banned:  You might not be aware of this, but nearly every time you eat bread in a restaurant or consume a hamburger or hotdog bun you are consuming bromide, as it is commonly used in flours. The use of potassium bromate as an additive to commercial breads and baked goods has been a huge contributor to bromide overload in Western cultures.  Studies have linked potassium bromate to kidney and nervous system damage, thyroid problems, gastrointestinal discomfort, and cancer.
    • What to Buy Instead: Check bread ingredients and avoid those with potassium bromate.
    • Where it’s Banned:  Canada, China, and the European Union

 

  • Olean and Olestra
    • Why it’s Banned:  Olestra, aka Olean, created by Procter & Gamble, is a calorie- and cholesterol-free fat substitute used in fat-free snacks like chips and French fries.  Not only did a 2011 study from Purdue University conclude rats fed potato chips made with Olean gained weight, there have been several reports of adverse intestinal reactions to the fake fat including diarrhea, cramps and leaky bowels. And because it interferes with the absorption of fat soluble vitamins such as A, D, E and K, the FDA requires these vitamins be added to any product made with Olean or olestra.
    • What to Buy Instead:  Buy as natural of foods as possible. Always read the ingredients list, if you don’t know what the ingredient is, then don’t eat it!
    • Where it’s Banned: U.K. and Canada

 

  •  Preservatives BHA and BHT
    • Why it’s Banned:  BHA (butylated hydroxyanisole) and BHT (butylated hydroxytoluene) are commonly used preservatives that can be found in breakfast cereal, nut mixes, chewing gum, butter spread, meat, dehydrated potatoes, and beer, just to name a few. BHA is known to cause cancer in rats, and may be a cancer-causing agent in humans as well.
    • What do Buy Instead:  Always read the ingredients list.
    • Where it’s Banned:  The UK doesn’t allow BHA in infant foods. BHA and BHT are also banned in parts of the European Union and Japan.

 

  • Milk and Dairy Products Laced with rBGH
    • Why it’s Banned:  Recombinant bovine growth hormone (rBGH) is the largest selling dairy animal drug in America. RBGH is a synthetic version of natural bovine somatotropin (BST), a hormone produced in cows’ pituitary glands. It’s injected into cows to increase milk production, but it is banned in at least 30 other nations because of its dangers to human health, which include an increased risk for colorectal, prostate, and breast cancer by promoting conversion of normal tissue cells into cancerous ones. Non-organic dairy farms frequently have rBGH-injected cows that suffer at least 16 different adverse health conditions, including very high rates of mastitis that contaminate milk with pus and antibiotics.
    • What to Buy Instead:  Always choose dairy products that come from hormone-free, free range, grain fed cows.
    • Where it’s Banned:  Australia, New Zealand, Israel, EU and Canada

 

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48 Hormone Balancing Foods That Give You Glowing Skin

Who doesn’t want a rocking reproductive system, balanced hormones, and glowing skin? Well certain hormone balancing foods can do just that!

We know we do, and eating certain nutrient dense foods will put anyone on this path. Whether we like it or not, hormones control our mood, digestion, energy, libido, metabolism, and how our skin looks (we linked to all of the articles we wrote on each of these subjects and not external links, so please feel free to click on the hyperlinks).

If we don’t eat foods with the nutrients we need, our body cannot produce hormones correctly or maintain hormonal balance because it doesn’t have the building blocks to do so.

Whatever you’re eating is either helping hormonal production, or causing unpredictable imbalances.

The human body needs a balance of all three macronutrients, carbohydrates, protein, and especially fat.

Fat is one of the most crucial elements for hormonal balance. For years, we’ve been told that fat-free is good, while cholesterol and saturated fat are bad. This is a dangerous lie. Healthy fat is the raw material that we need to produce and maintain properhormone function.

Here’s why: hormones are produced using certain fatty acids and cholesterol, so if we’re missing these nutrients, hormone problems arise simply because the body doesn’t have the nutrients it needs to make them. Our body needs certain fats for rebuilding cells and stabilizing hormones. This is especially important for the female reproductive system.

Here are the top tips from Health Fitness Revolution and author of the book ReSYNC Your Life Samir Becic:

How to eat for hormonal balance

Basing meals off clean protein, hormone-balancing healthy fats, antioxidant-rich vegetables, and healing herbs will help your body thrive. Choose one food from each category for an easy, hormone balancing, skin healing, meal.

1. Clean protein

  • Soaked or sprouted nuts
  • Beans
  • Seeds
  • Quinoa
  • Lentils
  • Organic pasture-raised/grass-fed chicken, turkey, beef, bison, elk, pasture-raised eggs
  • Wild caught fish

2. Hormone-balancing healthy fats

  • Coconut oil (and all coconut products for that matter). It contains lauric acid, which is incredibly healing to the skin and extremely beneficial for hormonal production. It also kills bad bacteria and viruses in the body, provides a quick source of energy, is easy to digest, and speeds up metabolism.
  • Avocados. They’re rich in healthy fat that helps our body absorb and use nutrients They are also full of fiber, potassium, magnesium vitamin E, B-vitamins, and Folic acid – all essential for maintaining hormonal balance in the body.
  • Raw butter/ghee. They provide a rich source of fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E and K2. These nutrients are key building blocks for hormonal production. Butter provides great amounts of short- and medium-chain fatty acids, which support immune function, boost metabolism and have anti-microbial properties; meaning, they fight against bad bacteria and viruses in the body.
  • Egg yolks. They’re rich in countless vitamins and minerals including: A, D, E, B2, B6, B9, iron, calcium, phosphorous, potassium and choline which all contribute to a healthy reproductive system, hormonal balance, and healthy skin. The choline and iodine in egg yolks are also crucial for making healthy thyroid hormones.
  • Nuts and seeds. Soaked nuts and seeds, olives and olive oil, fermented cod liver oil, hemp seed oil, flax-seed oil, and raw cultured dairy products.

3. Antioxidant-rich vegetables

  • Look for anything dark green: asparagus, broccoli, spinach, collard greens, cabbage, cucumbers, kale, cilantro, etc.
  • Opt for brightly colored veggies: green, red, yellow, and orange bell peppers, red cabbage, red/white onions, tomatoes, and carrots.
  • Don’t overlook starchy vegetables: sweet potatoes, spaghetti squash, yucca, beets, artichokes, butternut squash, and turnips.

4. Healing spices & herbs

  • Cinnamon
  • Turmeric
  • Cayenne
  • Cumin
  • Garlic
  • Ginger

If your body has the nutrients it needs to be in hormonal balance, it will be. You’ll experience glowing skin, stable moods, fertility, and consistent energy. Our bodies have an incredible ability to heal and be in balance, when given the nutrients they need to flourish.

 

Originally published on Mind Body Green.


The Best Foods To Fight Fatigue You Should Add To Your Diet

You lack energy, you’re tired, you’re drained. No matter how you phrase it, you need a pick me up, and you already know those artificial energy drinks are not good for your health. This is precisely why Health Fitness Revolution put together a list of the best foods to fight chronic fatigue and give your day a natural pick-me-up!

Instead of reaching for a sugary snack to help you stay awake during your morning meeting or power through an afternoon slump, try snacking on these perfectly portable, fatigue-fighting foods:

  • Water: Most Americans walk through life chronically dehydrated and fatigue is one of the first signs of dehydration. Even a small drop in your body’s water levels can hurt you. A recent study from Tufts University found that mild dehydration — a loss of just 1 to 2% of body weight as water — was enough to impair thinking.
  • Pumpkin Seeds: These are great energy boosters because of their levels of magnesium.  When researchers at the U.S. Agricultural Research Service restricted intake of the mineral among 13 women ages 47 to 75 for 4 months, they found that those with magnesium deficiencies required more oxygen uptake during physical activity, used more energy, and therefore tired more easily.
  • Greek Yogurt: because it is full of probiotics, and research suggests that an imbalance in microorganisms in the digestive tract is partially to blame for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS), Swedish researchers tested the effects of eating yogurt rich in probiotics—“good bacteria” that aids digestive health—on 15 CFS patients. After eating 2 deciliters (about 6.8 ounces) of yogurt twice daily for 4 weeks, 14 of 15 study subjects reported improvements in fatigue symptoms, physical health, or mental health.
  • Wheat Bran: High in fiber, not only can it help you fight fat, it turns out the nutrient can also help you feel more awake. Researchers at the University of Cardiff in Wales found that people who ate high-fiber wheat bran cereal suffered less emotional distress, experienced fewer cognitive difficulties, and were less fatigued than their counterparts who did not eat as much fiber. Participants had 10% more energy.
  • Whole Grains: are complex carbohydrates, which were wrote about here. The body digests and releases complex carbs slowly, keeping your blood sugar (and your mood) stable.
  • Nuts: because they are high in Omega-3 fatty acids, which researchers found particularly low levels in Chronically Fatigued patients. Omega-3s also help relieve depression symptoms, which commonly contribute to CFS.
  • Dark Chocolate: Science suggests that the polyphenols in dark chocolate increase levels of the happiness-boosting brain chemical serotonin and thus reduce feelings of fatigue. Researchers at Hull York Medical School in the United Kingdom provided 10 CFS patients with 45 g of chocolate each day for 2 months. Study subjects received either dark chocolate or white chocolate that had been dyed brown. Those eating the dark chocolate reported significantly less fatigue. Read our article about eating more dark chocolate here.
  •  Tea: is better than coffee at fighting fatigue because it contains an important fatigue-fighting ingredient: l-theanine. When paired with caffeine, the amino acid found naturally in tea improves cognition more effectively than caffeine alone, according to a study published in Biological Psychology.
  • Citrus Fruits and Peppers: are high in Vitamin C, which is more than a cold fighter—the antioxidant also helps reduce oxidative stress, the result of too many free radicals in the body, another contributor to CFS. In a small study of 44 adults published in the Journal of Orthomolecular Medicine, those who received 6 g of vitamin C every day for 2 weeks felt less fatigued. Study participants also had lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol.

Avoid the following foods:

  • Processed Foods: Fast food, canned foods high in sodium, candy, most packaged foods, boxed meals, and pre-cooked meats—typically full of unwanted chemicals, preservatives, sodium, and other compounds that can slow you down.
  • Coffee: Yes, the first sips give you a jolt, but you know the crash is coming. Cutting back on caffeine can stabilize your energy levels so you can feel better. If you must have your fix, drink black coffee. Sodas and energy drinks are chock full of sugar and other substances that your body doesn’t want.
  • Refined Carbohydrates like sugars and white flour are void of nutrition, yet they’re in so many foods we consume. Switch instead to whole wheat flowers as mentioned in our article here.

Top 10 Foods for Healthy Skin

Even though beauty products are getting increasingly high-tech, the best complexion cures still come from the most natural quarters: the aisles of your super­market. More and more, studies are finding links between certain nutrients and wrinkle reduction, radiance, and acne prevention.  We wrote an article Best Oils for your Skin, but decided to take it one step further.  Everything you eat becomes a part of not only your inner being, but the outer fabric of your body as well. The healthier the foods are that you consume, the better your skin will look.

Here are Samir Becic’s and Health Fitness Revolution‘s Top 10 Foods for Healthy Skin:

  • Dark Chocolate:  Cocoa hydrates your skin, making it firmer and more supple. We recommend 70% cocoa dark chocolate as it contains high levels of flavonols, a potent type of antioxidant. A couple of squares a day should be enough to improve luminosity. Also, if applied topically, the caffeine in chocolate may temporarily reduce skin puffiness!  To read more health benefits of dark chocolate, read our article here.
  • Berries:  Berries have a very high antioxidant content. In a study recently published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, berries weighed in with the highest “total antioxidant capacity” of any food. The benefits of these foods for healthy skin are plentiful.
  • Greek Yogurt:  It contains about twice as much protein as regular yogurt, and the protein you get from eating dairy helps skin become firmer, so it’s more resistant to lines.
  • Kidney Beans:  Are known to zap zits!  They’re high in zinc, and studies indicate a correlation between blemishes and low zinc levels.
  • Soy (beans, and milk):  Soy contains minerals and proteins that have been shown to reduce hyperpigmentation.  Drinking soy milk in your latte and eating edamame can even out skin tone.
  • Steel-cut oats:  Steel-cut oatmeal is less processed than other varieties, so it retains more vitamins. Also, it takes longer to break down in your body, which helps keep your blood sugar stable. This is important because studies found that spiked blood sugar elevates your body’s level of androgens, hormones that can contribute to wrinkles.  Oats are also great for healing the body.
  • Pomegranate:  They’re packed with polyphenol antioxidants which fight free radicals and regulate skin’s blood flow, giving it rosiness. Applied topically, they can reduce lines and moisturize.
  • Sunflower Seeds:  Eat a handful daily because they are loaded with vitamin E, which keeps your skin supple by protecting its top layers from the sun. Apply topically to heels and lips to stay moisturized.
  • Walnuts and Flax Seeds:  Walnuts contain omega-3 essential fatty acids, which can improve skin’s elasticity. The nuts are also loaded with copper, a mineral that boosts collagen production. To read more health benefits of Omega-3 fatty acids, read our article here.
  • Peppers (red, green, and yellow!): Women who eat green and yellow vegetables regularly tend to have fewer wrinkles, especially around the eyes. Also, studies found that carotenoids, the antioxidants in yellow and orange veggies, can decrease skin’s sensitivity to the sun.

 

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