We get a lot of information from commercials, TV and our friends, and it can be easy to start believing certain myths surrounding common bugs like the flu. Although getting the flu is a natural occurrence, especially during flu season, many still don't know how to prevent or treat this potentially serious malady. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the flu affects 5 to 20 percent of Americans annually. In order to boost your immune system health, it's helpful to find the truth among all of the misconceptions.
Myth #1: If you catch a cold, your immune system is weak.
Although your immune system is what helps to ward off things like the cough and flu, getting sick doesn't necessarily mean that your immune system health isn't up to par. Dr. Erica Brownfield, an associate professor of medicine at Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta, said that even if you have a healthy immune system, you can still catch a cold or the flu. It simply means that your immune system was unsuccessful at fighting off the virus.
Myth #2: You can't get the flu twice in the same season.
Although we wish this were true, it's a misconception. There are many different types of influenza that may be circulating, according to Dr. Carolyn Bridges, associate director for science in the influenza division of the CDC. Just because you're protected from one strain doesn't mean your body is safe against other forms of the flu.
Myth #3: If I get a flu shot, I'll get the flu.
Many neglect to get a flu shot because of the fear that they may get the flu. However, this is not necessarily the case. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stated that the influenza viruses contained in a flu shot are inactivated so that you're not prone to infection. The vaccine is even tested to make sure that it is safe. Mild reactions have been reported from the flu shot, such as soreness, redness and swelling.
Myth #4: If you show no signs or symptoms of a cold, you're not contagious.
Just because you're not showing symptoms of being sick doesn't mean that you can't spread illness to others. According to ABC News, there's an incubation period of a few days during which you may not show any signs of being sick. However, you are the most contagious when symptoms begin to arrive. Younger individuals may be contagious for longer periods of time than healthy adults.
Myth #5: The only way to protect yourself from the flu is with a flu shot.
Although a flu shot is a great way to ward off the flu, it's not the only method you can use to protect yourself. Harvard Health suggested avoiding contact with those people who have the flu, washing your hands on a regular basis and taking anti-viral medication.
Myth #6: Chicken soup will aid in the recovery process
Although hot liquids like chicken soup may taste good and help to soothe the throat, Harvard Health explained that it does not contain any specific qualities that may help to ward off the flu.
We all know that cardio exercise and strength training can help to tone muscles and help get you in shape. But when there are deadlines that need to be met, work demands and household chores to be done, working out seems to fall further and further down the list of things to do. The easy fix for this is to try transforming those chores into a fitness routine. After all, you have to clean, so you might as well kill two birds with one stone! According to Vitality Fitness, an 150-pound person can burn approximately 190 calories per hour by completing general household chores. Here are a few ideas to get you and your home in tip-top shape.
Toning your legs…
If there are clothes or toys lying on the floor that need to be picked up, look at this as an opportunity to get those legs ready for beach season. Vitality Fitness suggested completing squats to pick up items on the floor. Just be sure to keep your back straight and bend at the knees instead of hinging at the waist.
Toning your arms…
Instead of lifting dumbbells, try washing the windows! Move your arm in a circular motion and continually change directions to tone your arm and shoulder. Just be sure to switch arms ever so often so both of your extremities get a great workout. I bet window washing now sounds a bit more appealing.
Toned arms can also come from washing and putting away dishes. As you suds up your dishes, try standing on one leg or raising up on your tiptoes for a quick calf exercise. When putting away dry dishes, if you have an especially heavy pot, plate or bowl, Vitality Fitness recommended doing a few bicep curls with each item. Just be careful not to drop it!
Grab a refreshment
Take a quick break from chores by fixing yourself a shake packed with the protein you need to tone your body. Naturade Total Soy All-Natural Original Powder comes in various flavors like Bavarian chocolate and French vanilla to satisfy your taste buds and deliver 13 grams of protein as well as vitamins, minerals and fiber without all of the added calories. Total Soy protein meal replacement may also keep your heart healthy and lower cholesterol. According to the Food and Drug Administration, 25 grams of soy protein per day may increase heart health.
Toning your abs…
When you're sweeping, raking or vacuuming, activate your abdominal muscles as you extend the tool out as far as possible. As you bring your rake or vacuum back in, you'll be toning your ab muscles as you clean. Discovery Health suggested putting a spin on your laundry routine, literally. Stand about 10 to 15 feet away from the washing machine and spin your hips as you toss the dirty laundry into the washer. This works especially well for wet laundry that is a bet heavier. This is a great activity for your abdominals, lower back and hip muscles. Who knew laundry could be such a great workout?
In the midst of cough and flu season, you don't want to be caught empty handed. Colds are sometimes inevitable, but when they do come, you'll want to be prepared in helping your child to get over routine illness fast. One of the best ways to do this is with Naturade Children's Expec, an herbal expectorant for children, which can help your child feel better and put your life back on schedule.
This expectorant contains an ingredient called guaifenesin to help support your child's recovery. According to Mayo Clinic, this is used to help clear mucus or phlegm from the chest when one is experiencing congestion from a cough, cold or flu. This ingredient essentially works to thin the mucus and provide relief. It also may help to control a cough, helping your child to sleep at night, rather than stay up coughing. Naturade Children's Expectorant is uniquely formulated for young children and has been shown to advance their recovery. With a child-friendly natural cherry flavor, this alcohol-free product may provide soothing relief they can actually notice. Included are soothing herbs like cocillana bark, peppermint and rose hips to promote a comfortable recovery process.
Other ways to improve your child's immune health
You may also speed up your child's recovery process by making sure he or she is washing the hands frequently with warm water and soap. This is especially important for children with siblings, as germs can spread quickly. Hand washing may stop germs in their tracks and prevent them from spreading further. Getting them in the habit of good hand washing habits may prevent them from routine illness down the line.
You can also help to boost kids' immune system health by sending them to bed early. According to What to Expect, children's immune systems need a good amount of rest in order to grow stronger. Getting a quality amount of sleep can increase your child's production of interleukin-1, a protein that prevents unwanted material from getting into the body through the skin.
Making the decision to get in shape is a step in the right direction for your health. If you're looking to gain muscle and tone your body, regular exercise and weight training may be your answer. While exercise and strength training may work, there are other ways to support healthy muscle growth, such as whey protein powders.
What is protein?
According to Greatist, protein is a macronutrient found in a wide array of foods such as meats, dairy products, nuts and beans. Protein is made up of amino acids, which pose as building blocks of lean body tissue. One of the most popular forms of protein on the market today, according to Greatist, is why protein, which is a by-product of turning milk into cheese.
What are the benefits of protein powders?
One of the best ways to get whey protein is through a powder such as Naturade 100% Whey. This protein powder has several health benefits and is packed with essential amino acids that your body needs and comes in a variety of tasty flavors. These amino acids have been said to support athletic performance and recovery, and even may boost your immune health. Cysteine and methionine may enhance immune function through an increase of antioxidant activity and protection from cell-damaging free radicals.
Whey protein has also been studied to help aid in muscle growth. According to a study from Baylor University in Waco, Texas, over a 10-week period, one group of men took part in resistance training and were given whey protein while the others were only given a placebo. Those individuals who upped their whey protein intake had shown greater increases in fat-free mass and muscle strength.
Studies also show that whey protein could potentially help reduce hunger. In this study, Australian researchers had overweight men consume four different drinks. Those who drank the beverages containing whey had significantly reduced levels of ghrelin, which is a hormone that alerts your brain that you're hungry.
How can I use them?
Shakes and smoothies are a great way to consume whey protein. Simply stir in two scoops of powder with milk, soy milk or juice. You could also opt to enhance the flavor and texture of your shake with crushed ice and fruit. However, protein powders can be used for more than post-workout shakes. They can also be used in cooking to add protein to sauces, soups, stews, casseroles, cereals, pancakes and muffins! It's easy to up your protein intake when you have a protein powder like Naturade 100% Whey.
According to Time Magazine, with each foot strike a runner takes, the knee withstands a force equal to eight times his or her body weight. This means a 150-pound person would be experiencing an impact of about 1,200 pounds with each step. It's normal for the knee to go through natural wear and tear. Keeping your knees healthy, however, is easy with the help of a joint supplement as well as a few other key components.
Benefits of a joint supplement
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Other ways to keep your knees healthy
Keeping up your exercise regimen is actually one of the best ways to promote healthy joints. By torching calories and keeping physically fit, you're avoiding weight gain – therefore, putting less stress on your joints. According to Time Magazine, decreased joint mobility is caused mainly by genes and risk factors like unhealthy body weight rather than the natural wear and tear of joints from physical activity.
It's also important to maintain proper form while you're running. Poor form can often lead to potential injury. Spark People stated that by understanding running basics like proper breathing, posture and form, you can help your performance to be more effective and decrease your risk of injury.
You'll want to be sure that when you're running, you're wearing a proper running shoe that is going to offer support for the duration of your workout. Fitness Magazine recommended that you find a shoe that has not only support, but cushion as well so that each strike of the foot is a comfortable and natural one.
Flexibility is just as important as running itself. You'll want to keep full range of motion in your extremities to prevent injury while exercising. Fit Sugar suggested especially working to stretch your hamstrings, calves and quads, as these areas can get tight for runners.
Finally, strength training is a great way to keep your knees healthy. By keeping your legs strong, you'll be protecting against any future knee injuries. Active recommended various strength training exercises such as leg lifts, wall sits, bridges and calf raises to maintain healthy knees.
If you have children, you’re well aware of the fact that they can get sick at the drop of a hat. Adults tend to be more immune to routine illness because their bodies have learned to recognize and immediately attack those viruses. Children, however, are more susceptible to picking up the occasional bug. This is why caring for your child’s immune system is vital to keeping them happy and healthy. Here are a few ways to boost your child’s immune health:
Colostrum is nature’s first food provided at birth by female mammals. Colostrum contains the perfect combination of immunoglobulin, growth factors, antibodies, vitamins, minerals, enzymes and amino acids to protect the body and promote healthy immune system function at birth. Luckily, getting your child to take colostrum is simple with Symbiotics Colostrum Chewables. Available in a variety of delicious flavors like orange creme, root beer, cherry and pineapple, your child won’t know the difference between this immune booster and a piece of candy. Studies have shown that the immune factors and antibodies naturally contained in colostrum may help to promote a balanced immune system.
Give them fruits and veggies
One of the best ways to protect both you and your child from developing infection is to serve up plenty of fruits and vegetables. These superfoods contain vitamins and minerals that boost the immune system and prevent unwanted organisms from entering the body. If you can’t get your kids to get their daily dose of fruits and veggies, try whipping them up a smoothie filled with yummy foods like carrots, apples, spinach and strawberries. You can also add Symbiotics Colostrum Powder to the smoothie to enhance it’s immune boosting properties. All they’re going to taste is the deliciousness.
Research has shown that exercise may be just as beneficial in promoting a healthy immune system for kids as it is for adults. Ranjit Chandra, a pediatric immunologist at the Memorial University of Newfoundland, said that exercise increases the number of natural killer cells in both children and adults. Try setting a good example for your children and make an effort to exercise as a family. This could include going for a walk, swimming or playing catch.
Keep your home clean
Keeping your home clean doesn’t just mean making it look clean. In order to defend your kid’s immune system, About Kid’s Health suggested dusting and vacuuming weekly, washing your child’s linens and pajamas at least once a week, washing all dishes in hot water and washing all surfaces that could potentially be touched by your child.
Cravings. They're all around us. In the morning, we have to choose between a chocolate donut and bran cereal. And during those late nights, that craving for sugar returns to sabotage our healthy diet. However, these sugar cravings don't have to have an appearance in your daily life. In fact, these may be able to be halted altogether. According to a study published in the August issue of Journal of the American Dietetic Association, vegetable protein is inversely associated with being overweight.
What is pea protein?
Pea protein is a natural plant-based protein that comes from yellow peas known as split peas. These peas are packed with protein, are hypoallergenic and highly soluble, and are therefore easy to digest. What this protein does, according to studies, is help to curb your cravings for sugary snacks. Essentially, it triggers a hormone that tells your body it's full. In other words, it may work to turn off those cravings. Dr. Oz challenged three women to try this pea protein powder. Each of them had cravings for calorie packed snacks like ice cream, cupcakes and French fries. By including the pea protein powder in their daily routine, they were able to shed hundreds of calories from their regular diets. In fact, each person on average cut out about 300 calories.
How can I get pea protein?
Pea protein is easy to fit into your diet with Naturade Pea Protein. This powder gives you all the benefits pea protein has to offer in a delicious vanilla or chocolate shake. It's equipped with nine essential amino acids, which serve as the building blocks of proteins and support our bones, muscles and connective tissues. This powder is perfect for those who struggle to fit protein into their diet. Enjoying this beneficial powder is simple. For a tasty morning shake that may curb your cravings, mix two scoops with some milk, ice and your favorite fresh fruits.
Other ways to curb cravings
Along with pea protein powder, there are a few other tricks that may work to stop those sugary fridge raids that end up costing you hundreds of calories. If you're one that constantly craves chocolate, Health magazine suggested collecting all of your candy wrappers in a jar instead of throwing them away. This will give you a reality check as to exactly how many sweets you're consuming per day.
If you do give in every once in a while - which is totally normal - forgive yourself and move on. Don't assume you've already thrown your healthy diet out the window and continue to binge eat. Women's Health said that one meal doesn't define your diet. So don't let it!
It's also a good idea to restock the shelves in your kitchen. When you're on the go in the morning, one of the easiest things to grab is a sugary donut or a calorie-packed pastry. If you don't have these items within reach, you won't have the option to eat them for breakfast. Women's Health recommended tossing the junk food and filling it instead with things like almonds, cheese, fruits and veggies, tuna, chicken and salmon.
It's a known fact that poor heart health is the number one cause of death in the U.S. due to things like unhealthy diet, sedentary culture and weight gain. However, there are ways to help reverse the effects of damage to the heart and steps you can take to become healthier. Many find making extreme lifestyle changes to be a difficult place to begin. Instead, try starting out with small steps that will get you on the right track to a healthier heart.
Take a daily walk
If you've gotten out of the habit of exercising because of your hectic schedule, get back into the swing of things by simply taking a walk around the block. As this becomes easier, try pumping up your workout a bit more by walking longer distances or even running for short periods of time. You could even opt to add some weights into the mix to tone your arms and legs for an effective workout. The more cardiovascular strength you acquire, the better off your heart will be.
The more plaque that builds up in the heart, the higher your cholesterol will be. You may be able to control these levels by starting your morning off with a healthy meal replacement shake. They are super delicious, easy to make, fill you up and even work to lower your cholesterol. Try a Total Soy meal replacement, which contains health-healthy soy and delicious flavors. The Food & Drug Administration declared that soy protein may reduce the risk of heart disease. This may also reduce cholesterol and promote weight loss – plus, it's packed with vitamins, protein and fiber. You can opt for delicious flavors like chocolate, strawberry and vanilla!
The vitamin D in soy protein has been shown in studies to be beneficial to the heart. According to Prevention magazine, up to 53 percent of people do not get enough of this vitamin in their diet or through direct sunlight. Meal replacement shakes provide an easy and tasty way to fit this nutrient into a balanced diet.
Get some shut eye
One of the best habits you can get into is getting enough sleep at night. However, this is often easier said than done. But when you see how it's benefiting your heart, you may work a little harder to get to bed earlier.
"Lack of sleep can alter your metabolism, making you prone to weight gain, diabetes, and heart disease," explained health expert Dr. Arthur Agatston, creator of the South Beach Diet.
Get on a schedule in which you head to bed at a normal hour every night, allowing you to get a proper amount of sleep. Avoid eating big meals before bed, as this can make it difficult for your body to wind down and get into sleep mode.
Cut out sugary beverages
If your go-to drink is soda or sugary juice, you may be consuming more calories than you realize. But don't worry, you don't have to completely remove these items from your diet. According to Harvard Health Publications, even cutting out just one single sugary soda or latte can save you on average 100 calories per day. This adds up to about a 10 pound weight loss in a year.
At some point in your life, you’ve probably become well aware of how difficult it is to get a good night’s sleep when there are deadlines, work, relationships and other priorities to think about. Tossing and turning, unfortunately, only seems to make things worse. According to Brown University, experts estimate that about 100 million Americans maintain serious sleep debt. Although anxiety and stress may be part of our everyday lives, sleepless nights don’t have to be. Thankfully, there are steps you can take that will improve your sleep and even help you get to sleep faster. Here are a few tricks to try:
Take your vitamins
One of the best ways to get a restful night’s sleep is to take your vitamins! Studies have shown that a range of B-vitamins, calcium, magnesium and melatonin may work to calm your nerves and induce sleep. And other studies have shown that these vitamins will help to boost immune system health! SlumberAid is a natural supplement containing these vitamins to give you a better night’s sleep. Aside from being found in supplements, these vitamins are naturally found in a host of healthy foods.
B-vitamins can be found in a variety of foods ranging from egg yolks, peanuts, fish and poultry to whole grain cereals and leafy green vegetables. As for calcium, don’t forget to drink your orange juice. Magnesium levels are high in rice, dried herbs and cocoa powder. This means you can snack on a bit of dark chocolate before bed! However, be careful to not eat too much before bed, as this can make you uncomfortable, making catching z’s even more difficult.
Have a consistent bedtime
Get on a schedule that allows you to go to bed (and wake up) at the same time every day. According to Brown University, staying on a consistent sleep pattern can help you get more shut eye. If you go to sleep at 1 a.m. Monday night and then wish to catch up on some sleep Tuesday night at about 10 p.m., you may find you’re having trouble sleeping because your body’s sleep-wake rhythm has been disturbed.
Part of having a consistent bedtime is creating a routine around your sleep patterns. This could mean winding down before bed by reading a book, watching TV or looking over your schedule for the next day. Either way, relaxing a bit before bed might be able to help you get into the proper mindset for sleep.
Manage your stress
This is definitely easier said than done. However, studies have shown that taking a milk peptide supplement like Symbiotics TryptoZen may actually bring you to a more relaxed state of being, helping you to fall and stay asleep. If common relaxation methods like yoga, reading or meditating do the trick, this may be helpful to add to your bedtime routine.
Take shorter naps
If you’re exhausted during the day because of a poor night’s sleep, you’re going to want to take a nap. But the trick is to keep your naps nice and short, as difficult as that may seem. Brown University said that your naps shouldn’t exceed 30 minutes. You only need 15-20 minutes to increase alertness, productivity and creativity.
In an attempt to help people lose excess weight once and for all, the Dr. Oz Show was all about getting the most common weight loss questions answered in Dr. Oz’s “Your Toughest Weight Loss Questions” segment of the show. Dr. Oz invited Dr. Adrienne Youdim of Cedars-Sinal Weight Loss Center, Registered Dietitian Leslie Bonci, and Dr. Evelyn Minaya to the show to help answer questions.
The Blood Type Diet
The first topic was whether or not there was anything to the Blood Type Diet. Dr. Oz explained that type “O” blood is the most common and the oldest blood type. He said the thought is that since it’s the oldest blood type, people with type “O” blood should eat the oldest foods which mainly consist of protein including poultry, lean meat and fish. Although Dr. Oz didn’t mention them, there were also greens on the sample plates along with the protein. Since we had no agriculture and no grains to eat in early history, grains should be very limited in the diet.
Dr. Adrienne Youdim of Cedars-Sinal Weight Loss Center said there is no evidence that your blood type affects your compatibility with foods or your ability to lose weight. She said while there is nothing actually wrong with the diet, she considered it too restrictive.
Dr. Oz went on the explain that Type A blood type was an agrarian blood type, meaning that one would need to eat a diet consisting of mainly soy protein, grains and organic vegetables.
He said people with Type B blood were descended from Nomadic peoples and would need to eat a diet of low-fat dairy and to avoid wheat and lentils. Leslie Bonci said that with the availability of foods we now have, she believes that people have to find something they can stick with. Dr. Oz said that it might make sense that our ancestors diets are better for us, but we can’t prove it. He suggested eating lean protein, lots of vegetables, whole grain and low-fat dairy to take one naturally in the right direction for weight loss.
How to stop emotional eating?
The second question was how to stop emotional eating. Ms. Bonci suggested we still eat what comforts us but to think about the quantity we intake for damage control. She also said to pick one type of food, whether it be salty, spicy or crunchy and only eating it when we feel the need for emotional eating.
How many calories do you need to eat in a day to lose weight?
This was the third question. Dr. Oz said it is a question he hears all the time. Dr. Youdim said it essentially depends on your metabolism, height and weight. She said for women that generally means a calorie intake of 1200 or possibly up to 1600 calories a day.
Dr. Oz said that www.doctoroz.com has a calorie calculator as part of the “Move it and Lose It” one can use to calculate how many calories they should be eating while trying to diet.
How can one lose fat without losing muscle?
This was the fourth question. Dr. Youdim said the often fad diets have you lose weight quite quickly, but you are also at a risk of losing muscle mass. She said when you lose lean mass, your metabolism actually drops, so you lose weight less quickly. She recommended exercise and strength training to keep from losing muscle mass. She also recommended 70-80 grams of protein intake per day. Ms. Bonci said that protein needs to be a part of every single plate and not just eaten all at one meal.
How to control problem snacking?
The fifth question was how to control problem snacking. Ms. Bonci suggested making a snack a mini-meal, where you have more than one thing on the plate that would require a utensil as it would help slow you down. She said it will help one feel fuller and do less of the mindless munching. Dr. Oz said he loved the idea and to get rid of the snacks and just eat a small meal.
Why do we crave sugar so much?
Why do we crave sugar so much was the sixth quesiton. Ms. Bonci said we crave sugar because it gives up pleasure, but most of the time we don’t think about the amount we are eating. Dr. Oz suggested what works for him which is having a few pieces of a candy treat and then drinking a glass of water to wash the sugary taste from your mouth. He believes the taste just makes you want to eat more.
Why is it so hard to lose weight after menopause?
The seventh question concerned why it’s so hard to lose weight after menopause. Dr. Youdim said that this is a common problem and women often need to boost their exercise levels and decrease the amount or types of food they eat after menopause. Ms. Bonci suggested using an 8″ plate and having foods that involve more chewing, with the largest portion being vegetables, a smaller portion of lean protein and the smallest portion being whole grains. She said one need to have protein in the morning and with every meal each day. Dr. Oz mentioned that breakfast needs to be eaten within the first hour of waking in the morning.
How to lose belly fat?
Dr. Oz said the tenth question, how to lose belly fat was the biggest one of all. Dr. Minaya said it is normal to develop a fat pack during pregnancy and that there is all the time in the world to lose it. She said the emotional part of being a new mother can also increase fat around the stomach, buttocks and thighs due to an increase in cortisol. She said that an increase in stress causes an increase in weight throughout your life.
Dr. Oz explained that organ fat or visceral fat that forms around the organs causes high blood pressure, diabetes and osteoporosis. Dr. Youdim said a good rule of thumb to help reduce belly fat is 30 minutes of exercise 5 times per week and lowering caloric intake.
Dr. Oz demonstrated 2 simple exercise that he said can help and even be done during commercials. Getting on his hands and knees on the floor, he called them the cat and dog poses. For the cat pose, he said to lift your stomach up and suck your belly button towards your spine while holding your head down, and then to hold the pose for a breath of 4, then relax and raise your head back up for a count of 4. He said if it was too easy, to do it with your knees raised slightly off the floor.
The dog pose was the same, except for adding a wag to the tail. The tail wag consisted of raising one foot while leaving your foot on the ground, and turning your head toward your foot and then repeating it with the other foot and turning your head to look at the other side. He said to do that for 30 seconds on each side. Dr. Oz said to do the cat and dog exercises together for a nice little workout in 2-3 minute increments.
The eleventh question was about what foods contribute to belly fat and what foods reduce belly fat. Ms. Bonci said the first thing one needs to do is think about the beverages they drink as a source of calories. She also said there are a lot of calories and alcohol and that it makes you hungry. She also said eating sugar makes you want to eat more.
She said to have plenty of colors on the plate and add more fiber to the diet, have lean meats and low-fat dairy and to even add beans. She also said to add good fats, but not a whole bag of almonds, just a few at a time.
Dr. Oz said to avoid packaged foods, partially hydrogenated oils and enriched flour. To reduce belly fat, he said to eat more avocados, whole grains and to drink green tea as they help burn fat. Dr. Oz said if you don’t like them the way they are to spice them up so you will. He said if you don’t like it, you won’t eat it.