The Alcohol Controversy: Is Drinking Good For You?

 When hormones become unbalanced, decease they can negatively affect our health, online put us at risk for cancer and heart disease, price and destroy our mood and productivity. No matter what your age, consuming the right foods is a natural and effective way to keep order in the endocrine system. 

To accomplish this, your daily meals should include:

  • Less fat and more fiber. It takes a lot of energy to digest fat. The less energy you spend on digestion, the more efficient your body becomes with its other metabolic responsibilities — like brain function, hormone production and energy level maintenance.
  • Fresh fruits and vegetables. They help with the excretion of toxins. When the body makes new hormones, it needs to purge the expired ones, and fiber helps do that properly. Eat at least five portions each day, and pay particular attention to leafy vegetables such as kale, spinach and baby salad greens. It’s no secret that foods like these, rich in calcium and vitamin D, can increase bone strength and improve your overall skeletal health. But new evidence shows they also help calm jangled, hormonally harassed nerves.
  • Complex carbohydrates. Whole grains are high in fiber and B vitamins, which are important for hormonal balance. In a study conducted at the University of Tennessee Health Sciences Center, researchers reported that women with premenstrual syndrome (PMS) who ate a meal high in carbohydrates (but avoided sugar and white flour) were happier and more relaxed within one hour. Women in another group who ate a high-protein meal felt angry, sad, and more agitated. Within three hours, the carbohydrate group’s blood sugar returned to normal levels, and they needed to eat again.

Based on this study, women who suffer from PMS should eat smaller, more frequent meals that include carbohydrates. The 3/500 Rule (snacks or meals of 500 calories or less every three hours) defines hormone health.

*Foods rich in essential fatty acids (think Omega 3). They have an anti-inflammatory effect on the body and reduce abnormal clotting, which helps prevent endometriosis and fibroids. Eat oily fish (tuna, salmon, sardines, mackerel, and herring) three times per week, along with nuts and seeds (walnuts, flax, sunflower, pumpkin). Bonus: Omega 3 fatty acids are also good for the brain and can elevate your mood.

*Soy. It contains phytoestrogens, a mild estrogen-like compound that fits into the body’s estrogen receptors and blocks potentially negative effects — including cancer — of more powerful estrogens. They also reduce hot flashes, vaginal dryness, and other symptoms associated with menopause. The isoflavones in soy promote calcium absorption and decrease susceptibility to bone breakdown and loss. Furthermore, when estrogen is declining or fluctuating, isoflavones help regulate that unpredictable hormone, alleviating many menopausal and PMS symptoms. (Confused about soy? If you missed it, please check our previous article: The Soy Controversy)

*Beans. According to nutritionist Susan Krause, MS, RD, the isoflavones in beans may stabilize symptoms of PMS, perimenopause, or menopause, and possibly help prevent tumor formation related to breast cancer. Although soybeans have among the highest levels of isoflavones, other sources include favas, lentils, and chickpeas. And if pregnancy is in your plans, beans can give you a steady supply of folic acid — essential for normal development of the fetus.

*Filtered water. Lots of it. Stay on a hydration schedule. Because your brain is about 80 percent water, this will improve your mood and attitude, and conquer your hormone headaches.

Notice we didn’t recommend milk? The cow pumping out all of that calcium is not drinking milk or taking calcium pills. It’s eating grass! Leafy green vegetables are the most absorbable form of calcium for cowsand humans, and assist with the placement of calcium into the bone structure.

If your diet does include meat and dairy products, eat low-fat and organic versions. These come from animals that were not fed hormones, growth-enhancing antibiotics, or grain raised with synthetic pesticides (which may disrupt hormones as well). Hormones love fat, so they’re virtually swimming in whole milk. If you’re worried about keeping your endocrine system in order, don’t add to the mess by eating foods overflowing with additional hormones.

Other foods to avoid during menopause:

*Excess sugar. It can stimulate cravings and suppress the body’s ability to utilize the calcium and phosphorus needed to build bone.

*Excess fat and cholesterol. For reasons mentioned above; also, as estrogen levels plummet, cholesterol can rise.

*Alcohol. It can exacerbate the symptoms of menopause. If you are at risk for breast cancer, don’t drink at all.

*Caffeine. Research shows that PMS intensifies with the consumption of caffeine-containing beverages. In one study, women who abstained from caffeine during the PMS phase of each month resolved their symptoms completely.

*Refined and spicy foods. Along with sugar, alcohol, and caffeine, these may trigger hot flashes, mood swings, vaginal discomfort, and other negative hormonal symptoms. Maintain a food and mood diary to help you determine which ones impact you most.
 When hormones become unbalanced, they can negatively affect our health, put us at risk for cancer and heart disease, and destroy our mood and productivity. No matter what your age, consuming the right foods is a natural and effective way to keep order in the endocrine system. 

To accomplish this, your daily meals should include:

  • Less fat and more fiber. It takes a lot of energy to digest fat. The less energy you spend on digestion, the more efficient your body becomes with its other metabolic responsibilities — like brain function, hormone production and energy level maintenance.
  • Fresh fruits and vegetables. They help with the excretion of toxins. When the body makes new hormones, it needs to purge the expired ones, and fiber helps do that properly. Eat at least five portions each day, and pay particular attention to leafy vegetables such as kale, spinach and baby salad greens. It’s no secret that foods like these, rich in calcium and vitamin D, can increase bone strength and improve your overall skeletal health. But new evidence shows they also help calm jangled, hormonally harassed nerves.
  • Complex carbohydrates. Whole grains are high in fiber and B vitamins, which are important for hormonal balance. In a study conducted at the University of Tennessee Health Sciences Center, researchers reported that women with premenstrual syndrome (PMS) who ate a meal high in carbohydrates (but avoided sugar and white flour) were happier and more relaxed within one hour. Women in another group who ate a high-protein meal felt angry, sad, and more agitated. Within three hours, the carbohydrate group’s blood sugar returned to normal levels, and they needed to eat again.

Based on this study, women who suffer from PMS should eat smaller, more frequent meals that include carbohydrates. The 3/500 Rule (snacks or meals of 500 calories or less every three hours) defines hormone health.

*Foods rich in essential fatty acids (think Omega 3). They have an anti-inflammatory effect on the body and reduce abnormal clotting, which helps prevent endometriosis and fibroids. Eat oily fish (tuna, salmon, sardines, mackerel, and herring) three times per week, along with nuts and seeds (walnuts, flax, sunflower, pumpkin). Bonus: Omega 3 fatty acids are also good for the brain and can elevate your mood.

*Soy. It contains phytoestrogens, a mild estrogen-like compound that fits into the body’s estrogen receptors and blocks potentially negative effects — including cancer — of more powerful estrogens. They also reduce hot flashes, vaginal dryness, and other symptoms associated with menopause. The isoflavones in soy promote calcium absorption and decrease susceptibility to bone breakdown and loss. Furthermore, when estrogen is declining or fluctuating, isoflavones help regulate that unpredictable hormone, alleviating many menopausal and PMS symptoms. (Confused about soy? If you missed it, please check our previous article: The Soy Controversy)

*Beans. According to nutritionist Susan Krause, MS, RD, the isoflavones in beans may stabilize symptoms of PMS, perimenopause, or menopause, and possibly help prevent tumor formation related to breast cancer. Although soybeans have among the highest levels of isoflavones, other sources include favas, lentils, and chickpeas. And if pregnancy is in your plans, beans can give you a steady supply of folic acid — essential for normal development of the fetus.

*Filtered water. Lots of it. Stay on a hydration schedule. Because your brain is about 80 percent water, this will improve your mood and attitude, and conquer your hormone headaches.

Notice we didn’t recommend milk? The cow pumping out all of that calcium is not drinking milk or taking calcium pills. It’s eating grass! Leafy green vegetables are the most absorbable form of calcium for cowsand humans, and assist with the placement of calcium into the bone structure.

If your diet does include meat and dairy products, eat low-fat and organic versions. These come from animals that were not fed hormones, growth-enhancing antibiotics, or grain raised with synthetic pesticides (which may disrupt hormones as well). Hormones love fat, so they’re virtually swimming in whole milk. If you’re worried about keeping your endocrine system in order, don’t add to the mess by eating foods overflowing with additional hormones.

Other foods to avoid during menopause:

*Excess sugar. It can stimulate cravings and suppress the body’s ability to utilize the calcium and phosphorus needed to build bone.

*Excess fat and cholesterol. For reasons mentioned above; also, as estrogen levels plummet, cholesterol can rise.

*Alcohol. It can exacerbate the symptoms of menopause. If you are at risk for breast cancer, don’t drink at all.

*Caffeine. Research shows that PMS intensifies with the consumption of caffeine-containing beverages. In one study, women who abstained from caffeine during the PMS phase of each month resolved their symptoms completely.

*Refined and spicy foods. Along with sugar, alcohol, and caffeine, these may trigger hot flashes, mood swings, vaginal discomfort, and other negative hormonal symptoms. Maintain a food and mood diary to help you determine which ones impact you most.
Vow to Be in Shape!!!!!! No matter how many “days out” you are from the big day there is a solution for you. Remember it is not just about looking good in your wedding dress but you want to make sure your are feeling good for both the week of festivities and your honeymoon.

It goes without saying that there may be a little stress involved with both the planning and the execution of one of the most important days of you life. Stress causes us to sometimes make poor nutrition choices causing extra pounds to come on and secondly the added hormone shifts from stress causes us to accumulate and store fat at a higher rate. Not a good combo. Your Isagenix Wedding Slim Down can take the stress out of looking awesome the “day of”.

Isagenix Shake Days and Cleanse Days boost weight loss by reducing caloric in- take while providing optimal nutrition and detoxification. Only the highest-quality macro- and micronutrients, botanicals and supporting ingredients are used.

Cleanse Days: The Jump-Start to Wedding Weight Loss and Added Energy

  • STIMULATES FATBURNING
  • TRIGGERS DETOXIFICATION
  • REDUCES OXIDATIVE STRESS AND INFLAMMATION

Shake Days: The Secret to Getting and Staying Lean for Wedding Day

  • STIMULATES FATBURNING
  • PROMOTES YOUTHFUL CELLS
  • MAXIMIZES HOW AMAZING YOU LOOK IN YOUR DRESS

9 Day and 30 Day programs include:

ISALEAN® SHAKE — A delicious, creamy, nutritionally complete meal replacement that takes your health and performance to new levels.

CLEANSE for LIfE® — A complete nutritional body cleanse that aids the body’s natural ability to remove impurities that you’re exposed to on a daily basis.

ISAGENIIX SNACKS — Our high quality whey protein and energy-boosting snacks are the perfect balance of taste and nutrition that give you lasting energy.

NATURAL ACCELERATOR — Carefully selected thermogenic ingredients naturally enhance the body’s fat-burning ability and give you energy without the shaky feeling you get from stimulants.

9 Day Cleanse and Fat Burning System

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A 2008 university study showed a statistically significant weight loss of 7 pounds (3.2 kg) during the first 9 days of the Isagenix Cleansing and Fat Burning System.
 When hormones become unbalanced, they can negatively affect our health, put us at risk for cancer and heart disease, and destroy our mood and productivity. No matter what your age, consuming the right foods is a natural and effective way to keep order in the endocrine system. 

To accomplish this, your daily meals should include:

  • Less fat and more fiber. It takes a lot of energy to digest fat. The less energy you spend on digestion, the more efficient your body becomes with its other metabolic responsibilities — like brain function, hormone production and energy level maintenance.
  • Fresh fruits and vegetables. They help with the excretion of toxins. When the body makes new hormones, it needs to purge the expired ones, and fiber helps do that properly. Eat at least five portions each day, and pay particular attention to leafy vegetables such as kale, spinach and baby salad greens. It’s no secret that foods like these, rich in calcium and vitamin D, can increase bone strength and improve your overall skeletal health. But new evidence shows they also help calm jangled, hormonally harassed nerves.
  • Complex carbohydrates. Whole grains are high in fiber and B vitamins, which are important for hormonal balance. In a study conducted at the University of Tennessee Health Sciences Center, researchers reported that women with premenstrual syndrome (PMS) who ate a meal high in carbohydrates (but avoided sugar and white flour) were happier and more relaxed within one hour. Women in another group who ate a high-protein meal felt angry, sad, and more agitated. Within three hours, the carbohydrate group’s blood sugar returned to normal levels, and they needed to eat again.

Based on this study, women who suffer from PMS should eat smaller, more frequent meals that include carbohydrates. The 3/500 Rule (snacks or meals of 500 calories or less every three hours) defines hormone health.

*Foods rich in essential fatty acids (think Omega 3). They have an anti-inflammatory effect on the body and reduce abnormal clotting, which helps prevent endometriosis and fibroids. Eat oily fish (tuna, salmon, sardines, mackerel, and herring) three times per week, along with nuts and seeds (walnuts, flax, sunflower, pumpkin). Bonus: Omega 3 fatty acids are also good for the brain and can elevate your mood.

*Soy. It contains phytoestrogens, a mild estrogen-like compound that fits into the body’s estrogen receptors and blocks potentially negative effects — including cancer — of more powerful estrogens. They also reduce hot flashes, vaginal dryness, and other symptoms associated with menopause. The isoflavones in soy promote calcium absorption and decrease susceptibility to bone breakdown and loss. Furthermore, when estrogen is declining or fluctuating, isoflavones help regulate that unpredictable hormone, alleviating many menopausal and PMS symptoms. (Confused about soy? If you missed it, please check our previous article: The Soy Controversy)

*Beans. According to nutritionist Susan Krause, MS, RD, the isoflavones in beans may stabilize symptoms of PMS, perimenopause, or menopause, and possibly help prevent tumor formation related to breast cancer. Although soybeans have among the highest levels of isoflavones, other sources include favas, lentils, and chickpeas. And if pregnancy is in your plans, beans can give you a steady supply of folic acid — essential for normal development of the fetus.

*Filtered water. Lots of it. Stay on a hydration schedule. Because your brain is about 80 percent water, this will improve your mood and attitude, and conquer your hormone headaches.

Notice we didn’t recommend milk? The cow pumping out all of that calcium is not drinking milk or taking calcium pills. It’s eating grass! Leafy green vegetables are the most absorbable form of calcium for cowsand humans, and assist with the placement of calcium into the bone structure.

If your diet does include meat and dairy products, eat low-fat and organic versions. These come from animals that were not fed hormones, growth-enhancing antibiotics, or grain raised with synthetic pesticides (which may disrupt hormones as well). Hormones love fat, so they’re virtually swimming in whole milk. If you’re worried about keeping your endocrine system in order, don’t add to the mess by eating foods overflowing with additional hormones.

Other foods to avoid during menopause:

*Excess sugar. It can stimulate cravings and suppress the body’s ability to utilize the calcium and phosphorus needed to build bone.

*Excess fat and cholesterol. For reasons mentioned above; also, as estrogen levels plummet, cholesterol can rise.

*Alcohol. It can exacerbate the symptoms of menopause. If you are at risk for breast cancer, don’t drink at all.

*Caffeine. Research shows that PMS intensifies with the consumption of caffeine-containing beverages. In one study, women who abstained from caffeine during the PMS phase of each month resolved their symptoms completely.

*Refined and spicy foods. Along with sugar, alcohol, and caffeine, these may trigger hot flashes, mood swings, vaginal discomfort, and other negative hormonal symptoms. Maintain a food and mood diary to help you determine which ones impact you most.
 When hormones become unbalanced, they can negatively affect our health, put us at risk for cancer and heart disease, and destroy our mood and productivity. No matter what your age, consuming the right foods is a natural and effective way to keep order in the endocrine system. 

To accomplish this, your daily meals should include:

  • Less fat and more fiber. It takes a lot of energy to digest fat. The less energy you spend on digestion, the more efficient your body becomes with its other metabolic responsibilities — like brain function, hormone production and energy level maintenance.
  • Fresh fruits and vegetables. They help with the excretion of toxins. When the body makes new hormones, it needs to purge the expired ones, and fiber helps do that properly. Eat at least five portions each day, and pay particular attention to leafy vegetables such as kale, spinach and baby salad greens. It’s no secret that foods like these, rich in calcium and vitamin D, can increase bone strength and improve your overall skeletal health. But new evidence shows they also help calm jangled, hormonally harassed nerves.
  • Complex carbohydrates. Whole grains are high in fiber and B vitamins, which are important for hormonal balance. In a study conducted at the University of Tennessee Health Sciences Center, researchers reported that women with premenstrual syndrome (PMS) who ate a meal high in carbohydrates (but avoided sugar and white flour) were happier and more relaxed within one hour. Women in another group who ate a high-protein meal felt angry, sad, and more agitated. Within three hours, the carbohydrate group’s blood sugar returned to normal levels, and they needed to eat again.

Based on this study, women who suffer from PMS should eat smaller, more frequent meals that include carbohydrates. The 3/500 Rule (snacks or meals of 500 calories or less every three hours) defines hormone health.

*Foods rich in essential fatty acids (think Omega 3). They have an anti-inflammatory effect on the body and reduce abnormal clotting, which helps prevent endometriosis and fibroids. Eat oily fish (tuna, salmon, sardines, mackerel, and herring) three times per week, along with nuts and seeds (walnuts, flax, sunflower, pumpkin). Bonus: Omega 3 fatty acids are also good for the brain and can elevate your mood.

*Soy. It contains phytoestrogens, a mild estrogen-like compound that fits into the body’s estrogen receptors and blocks potentially negative effects — including cancer — of more powerful estrogens. They also reduce hot flashes, vaginal dryness, and other symptoms associated with menopause. The isoflavones in soy promote calcium absorption and decrease susceptibility to bone breakdown and loss. Furthermore, when estrogen is declining or fluctuating, isoflavones help regulate that unpredictable hormone, alleviating many menopausal and PMS symptoms. (Confused about soy? If you missed it, please check our previous article: The Soy Controversy)

*Beans. According to nutritionist Susan Krause, MS, RD, the isoflavones in beans may stabilize symptoms of PMS, perimenopause, or menopause, and possibly help prevent tumor formation related to breast cancer. Although soybeans have among the highest levels of isoflavones, other sources include favas, lentils, and chickpeas. And if pregnancy is in your plans, beans can give you a steady supply of folic acid — essential for normal development of the fetus.

*Filtered water. Lots of it. Stay on a hydration schedule. Because your brain is about 80 percent water, this will improve your mood and attitude, and conquer your hormone headaches.

Notice we didn’t recommend milk? The cow pumping out all of that calcium is not drinking milk or taking calcium pills. It’s eating grass! Leafy green vegetables are the most absorbable form of calcium for cowsand humans, and assist with the placement of calcium into the bone structure.

If your diet does include meat and dairy products, eat low-fat and organic versions. These come from animals that were not fed hormones, growth-enhancing antibiotics, or grain raised with synthetic pesticides (which may disrupt hormones as well). Hormones love fat, so they’re virtually swimming in whole milk. If you’re worried about keeping your endocrine system in order, don’t add to the mess by eating foods overflowing with additional hormones.

Other foods to avoid during menopause:

*Excess sugar. It can stimulate cravings and suppress the body’s ability to utilize the calcium and phosphorus needed to build bone.

*Excess fat and cholesterol. For reasons mentioned above; also, as estrogen levels plummet, cholesterol can rise.

*Alcohol. It can exacerbate the symptoms of menopause. If you are at risk for breast cancer, don’t drink at all.

*Caffeine. Research shows that PMS intensifies with the consumption of caffeine-containing beverages. In one study, women who abstained from caffeine during the PMS phase of each month resolved their symptoms completely.

*Refined and spicy foods. Along with sugar, alcohol, and caffeine, these may trigger hot flashes, mood swings, vaginal discomfort, and other negative hormonal symptoms. Maintain a food and mood diary to help you determine which ones impact you most.
 When hormones become unbalanced, they can negatively affect our health, put us at risk for cancer and heart disease, and destroy our mood and productivity. No matter what your age, consuming the right foods is a natural and effective way to keep order in the endocrine system. 

To accomplish this, your daily meals should include:

  • Less fat and more fiber. It takes a lot of energy to digest fat. The less energy you spend on digestion, the more efficient your body becomes with its other metabolic responsibilities — like brain function, hormone production and energy level maintenance.
  • Fresh fruits and vegetables. They help with the excretion of toxins. When the body makes new hormones, it needs to purge the expired ones, and fiber helps do that properly. Eat at least five portions each day, and pay particular attention to leafy vegetables such as kale, spinach and baby salad greens. It’s no secret that foods like these, rich in calcium and vitamin D, can increase bone strength and improve your overall skeletal health. But new evidence shows they also help calm jangled, hormonally harassed nerves.
  • Complex carbohydrates. Whole grains are high in fiber and B vitamins, which are important for hormonal balance. In a study conducted at the University of Tennessee Health Sciences Center, researchers reported that women with premenstrual syndrome (PMS) who ate a meal high in carbohydrates (but avoided sugar and white flour) were happier and more relaxed within one hour. Women in another group who ate a high-protein meal felt angry, sad, and more agitated. Within three hours, the carbohydrate group’s blood sugar returned to normal levels, and they needed to eat again.

Based on this study, women who suffer from PMS should eat smaller, more frequent meals that include carbohydrates. The 3/500 Rule (snacks or meals of 500 calories or less every three hours) defines hormone health.

*Foods rich in essential fatty acids (think Omega 3). They have an anti-inflammatory effect on the body and reduce abnormal clotting, which helps prevent endometriosis and fibroids. Eat oily fish (tuna, salmon, sardines, mackerel, and herring) three times per week, along with nuts and seeds (walnuts, flax, sunflower, pumpkin). Bonus: Omega 3 fatty acids are also good for the brain and can elevate your mood.

*Soy. It contains phytoestrogens, a mild estrogen-like compound that fits into the body’s estrogen receptors and blocks potentially negative effects — including cancer — of more powerful estrogens. They also reduce hot flashes, vaginal dryness, and other symptoms associated with menopause. The isoflavones in soy promote calcium absorption and decrease susceptibility to bone breakdown and loss. Furthermore, when estrogen is declining or fluctuating, isoflavones help regulate that unpredictable hormone, alleviating many menopausal and PMS symptoms. (Confused about soy? If you missed it, please check our previous article: The Soy Controversy)

*Beans. According to nutritionist Susan Krause, MS, RD, the isoflavones in beans may stabilize symptoms of PMS, perimenopause, or menopause, and possibly help prevent tumor formation related to breast cancer. Although soybeans have among the highest levels of isoflavones, other sources include favas, lentils, and chickpeas. And if pregnancy is in your plans, beans can give you a steady supply of folic acid — essential for normal development of the fetus.

*Filtered water. Lots of it. Stay on a hydration schedule. Because your brain is about 80 percent water, this will improve your mood and attitude, and conquer your hormone headaches.

Notice we didn’t recommend milk? The cow pumping out all of that calcium is not drinking milk or taking calcium pills. It’s eating grass! Leafy green vegetables are the most absorbable form of calcium for cowsand humans, and assist with the placement of calcium into the bone structure.

If your diet does include meat and dairy products, eat low-fat and organic versions. These come from animals that were not fed hormones, growth-enhancing antibiotics, or grain raised with synthetic pesticides (which may disrupt hormones as well). Hormones love fat, so they’re virtually swimming in whole milk. If you’re worried about keeping your endocrine system in order, don’t add to the mess by eating foods overflowing with additional hormones.

Other foods to avoid during menopause:

*Excess sugar. It can stimulate cravings and suppress the body’s ability to utilize the calcium and phosphorus needed to build bone.

*Excess fat and cholesterol. For reasons mentioned above; also, as estrogen levels plummet, cholesterol can rise.

*Alcohol. It can exacerbate the symptoms of menopause. If you are at risk for breast cancer, don’t drink at all.

*Caffeine. Research shows that PMS intensifies with the consumption of caffeine-containing beverages. In one study, women who abstained from caffeine during the PMS phase of each month resolved their symptoms completely.

*Refined and spicy foods. Along with sugar, alcohol, and caffeine, these may trigger hot flashes, mood swings, vaginal discomfort, and other negative hormonal symptoms. Maintain a food and mood diary to help you determine which ones impact you most.
 When hormones become unbalanced, they can negatively affect our health, put us at risk for cancer and heart disease, and destroy our mood and productivity. No matter what your age, consuming the right foods is a natural and effective way to keep order in the endocrine system. 

To accomplish this, your daily meals should include:

  • Less fat and more fiber. It takes a lot of energy to digest fat. The less energy you spend on digestion, the more efficient your body becomes with its other metabolic responsibilities — like brain function, hormone production and energy level maintenance.
  • Fresh fruits and vegetables. They help with the excretion of toxins. When the body makes new hormones, it needs to purge the expired ones, and fiber helps do that properly. Eat at least five portions each day, and pay particular attention to leafy vegetables such as kale, spinach and baby salad greens. It’s no secret that foods like these, rich in calcium and vitamin D, can increase bone strength and improve your overall skeletal health. But new evidence shows they also help calm jangled, hormonally harassed nerves.
  • Complex carbohydrates. Whole grains are high in fiber and B vitamins, which are important for hormonal balance. In a study conducted at the University of Tennessee Health Sciences Center, researchers reported that women with premenstrual syndrome (PMS) who ate a meal high in carbohydrates (but avoided sugar and white flour) were happier and more relaxed within one hour. Women in another group who ate a high-protein meal felt angry, sad, and more agitated. Within three hours, the carbohydrate group’s blood sugar returned to normal levels, and they needed to eat again.

Based on this study, women who suffer from PMS should eat smaller, more frequent meals that include carbohydrates. The 3/500 Rule (snacks or meals of 500 calories or less every three hours) defines hormone health.

*Foods rich in essential fatty acids (think Omega 3). They have an anti-inflammatory effect on the body and reduce abnormal clotting, which helps prevent endometriosis and fibroids. Eat oily fish (tuna, salmon, sardines, mackerel, and herring) three times per week, along with nuts and seeds (walnuts, flax, sunflower, pumpkin). Bonus: Omega 3 fatty acids are also good for the brain and can elevate your mood.

*Soy. It contains phytoestrogens, a mild estrogen-like compound that fits into the body’s estrogen receptors and blocks potentially negative effects — including cancer — of more powerful estrogens. They also reduce hot flashes, vaginal dryness, and other symptoms associated with menopause. The isoflavones in soy promote calcium absorption and decrease susceptibility to bone breakdown and loss. Furthermore, when estrogen is declining or fluctuating, isoflavones help regulate that unpredictable hormone, alleviating many menopausal and PMS symptoms. (Confused about soy? If you missed it, please check our previous article: The Soy Controversy)

*Beans. According to nutritionist Susan Krause, MS, RD, the isoflavones in beans may stabilize symptoms of PMS, perimenopause, or menopause, and possibly help prevent tumor formation related to breast cancer. Although soybeans have among the highest levels of isoflavones, other sources include favas, lentils, and chickpeas. And if pregnancy is in your plans, beans can give you a steady supply of folic acid — essential for normal development of the fetus.

*Filtered water. Lots of it. Stay on a hydration schedule. Because your brain is about 80 percent water, this will improve your mood and attitude, and conquer your hormone headaches.

Notice we didn’t recommend milk? The cow pumping out all of that calcium is not drinking milk or taking calcium pills. It’s eating grass! Leafy green vegetables are the most absorbable form of calcium for cowsand humans, and assist with the placement of calcium into the bone structure.

If your diet does include meat and dairy products, eat low-fat and organic versions. These come from animals that were not fed hormones, growth-enhancing antibiotics, or grain raised with synthetic pesticides (which may disrupt hormones as well). Hormones love fat, so they’re virtually swimming in whole milk. If you’re worried about keeping your endocrine system in order, don’t add to the mess by eating foods overflowing with additional hormones.

Other foods to avoid during menopause:

*Excess sugar. It can stimulate cravings and suppress the body’s ability to utilize the calcium and phosphorus needed to build bone.

*Excess fat and cholesterol. For reasons mentioned above; also, as estrogen levels plummet, cholesterol can rise.

*Alcohol. It can exacerbate the symptoms of menopause. If you are at risk for breast cancer, don’t drink at all.

*Caffeine. Research shows that PMS intensifies with the consumption of caffeine-containing beverages. In one study, women who abstained from caffeine during the PMS phase of each month resolved their symptoms completely.

*Refined and spicy foods. Along with sugar, alcohol, and caffeine, these may trigger hot flashes, mood swings, vaginal discomfort, and other negative hormonal symptoms. Maintain a food and mood diary to help you determine which ones impact you most.
 When hormones become unbalanced, they can negatively affect our health, put us at risk for cancer and heart disease, and destroy our mood and productivity. No matter what your age, consuming the right foods is a natural and effective way to keep order in the endocrine system. 

To accomplish this, your daily meals should include:

  • Less fat and more fiber. It takes a lot of energy to digest fat. The less energy you spend on digestion, the more efficient your body becomes with its other metabolic responsibilities — like brain function, hormone production and energy level maintenance.
  • Fresh fruits and vegetables. They help with the excretion of toxins. When the body makes new hormones, it needs to purge the expired ones, and fiber helps do that properly. Eat at least five portions each day, and pay particular attention to leafy vegetables such as kale, spinach and baby salad greens. It’s no secret that foods like these, rich in calcium and vitamin D, can increase bone strength and improve your overall skeletal health. But new evidence shows they also help calm jangled, hormonally harassed nerves.
  • Complex carbohydrates. Whole grains are high in fiber and B vitamins, which are important for hormonal balance. In a study conducted at the University of Tennessee Health Sciences Center, researchers reported that women with premenstrual syndrome (PMS) who ate a meal high in carbohydrates (but avoided sugar and white flour) were happier and more relaxed within one hour. Women in another group who ate a high-protein meal felt angry, sad, and more agitated. Within three hours, the carbohydrate group’s blood sugar returned to normal levels, and they needed to eat again.

Based on this study, women who suffer from PMS should eat smaller, more frequent meals that include carbohydrates. The 3/500 Rule (snacks or meals of 500 calories or less every three hours) defines hormone health.

*Foods rich in essential fatty acids (think Omega 3). They have an anti-inflammatory effect on the body and reduce abnormal clotting, which helps prevent endometriosis and fibroids. Eat oily fish (tuna, salmon, sardines, mackerel, and herring) three times per week, along with nuts and seeds (walnuts, flax, sunflower, pumpkin). Bonus: Omega 3 fatty acids are also good for the brain and can elevate your mood.

*Soy. It contains phytoestrogens, a mild estrogen-like compound that fits into the body’s estrogen receptors and blocks potentially negative effects — including cancer — of more powerful estrogens. They also reduce hot flashes, vaginal dryness, and other symptoms associated with menopause. The isoflavones in soy promote calcium absorption and decrease susceptibility to bone breakdown and loss. Furthermore, when estrogen is declining or fluctuating, isoflavones help regulate that unpredictable hormone, alleviating many menopausal and PMS symptoms. (Confused about soy? If you missed it, please check our previous article: The Soy Controversy)

*Beans. According to nutritionist Susan Krause, MS, RD, the isoflavones in beans may stabilize symptoms of PMS, perimenopause, or menopause, and possibly help prevent tumor formation related to breast cancer. Although soybeans have among the highest levels of isoflavones, other sources include favas, lentils, and chickpeas. And if pregnancy is in your plans, beans can give you a steady supply of folic acid — essential for normal development of the fetus.

*Filtered water. Lots of it. Stay on a hydration schedule. Because your brain is about 80 percent water, this will improve your mood and attitude, and conquer your hormone headaches.

Notice we didn’t recommend milk? The cow pumping out all of that calcium is not drinking milk or taking calcium pills. It’s eating grass! Leafy green vegetables are the most absorbable form of calcium for cowsand humans, and assist with the placement of calcium into the bone structure.

If your diet does include meat and dairy products, eat low-fat and organic versions. These come from animals that were not fed hormones, growth-enhancing antibiotics, or grain raised with synthetic pesticides (which may disrupt hormones as well). Hormones love fat, so they’re virtually swimming in whole milk. If you’re worried about keeping your endocrine system in order, don’t add to the mess by eating foods overflowing with additional hormones.

Other foods to avoid during menopause:

*Excess sugar. It can stimulate cravings and suppress the body’s ability to utilize the calcium and phosphorus needed to build bone.

*Excess fat and cholesterol. For reasons mentioned above; also, as estrogen levels plummet, cholesterol can rise.

*Alcohol. It can exacerbate the symptoms of menopause. If you are at risk for breast cancer, don’t drink at all.

*Caffeine. Research shows that PMS intensifies with the consumption of caffeine-containing beverages. In one study, women who abstained from caffeine during the PMS phase of each month resolved their symptoms completely.

*Refined and spicy foods. Along with sugar, alcohol, and caffeine, these may trigger hot flashes, mood swings, vaginal discomfort, and other negative hormonal symptoms. Maintain a food and mood diary to help you determine which ones impact you most.
 When hormones become unbalanced, they can negatively affect our health, put us at risk for cancer and heart disease, and destroy our mood and productivity. No matter what your age, consuming the right foods is a natural and effective way to keep order in the endocrine system. 

To accomplish this, your daily meals should include:

  • Less fat and more fiber. It takes a lot of energy to digest fat. The less energy you spend on digestion, the more efficient your body becomes with its other metabolic responsibilities — like brain function, hormone production and energy level maintenance.
  • Fresh fruits and vegetables. They help with the excretion of toxins. When the body makes new hormones, it needs to purge the expired ones, and fiber helps do that properly. Eat at least five portions each day, and pay particular attention to leafy vegetables such as kale, spinach and baby salad greens. It’s no secret that foods like these, rich in calcium and vitamin D, can increase bone strength and improve your overall skeletal health. But new evidence shows they also help calm jangled, hormonally harassed nerves.
  • Complex carbohydrates. Whole grains are high in fiber and B vitamins, which are important for hormonal balance. In a study conducted at the University of Tennessee Health Sciences Center, researchers reported that women with premenstrual syndrome (PMS) who ate a meal high in carbohydrates (but avoided sugar and white flour) were happier and more relaxed within one hour. Women in another group who ate a high-protein meal felt angry, sad, and more agitated. Within three hours, the carbohydrate group’s blood sugar returned to normal levels, and they needed to eat again.

Based on this study, women who suffer from PMS should eat smaller, more frequent meals that include carbohydrates. The 3/500 Rule (snacks or meals of 500 calories or less every three hours) defines hormone health.

*Foods rich in essential fatty acids (think Omega 3). They have an anti-inflammatory effect on the body and reduce abnormal clotting, which helps prevent endometriosis and fibroids. Eat oily fish (tuna, salmon, sardines, mackerel, and herring) three times per week, along with nuts and seeds (walnuts, flax, sunflower, pumpkin). Bonus: Omega 3 fatty acids are also good for the brain and can elevate your mood.

*Soy. It contains phytoestrogens, a mild estrogen-like compound that fits into the body’s estrogen receptors and blocks potentially negative effects — including cancer — of more powerful estrogens. They also reduce hot flashes, vaginal dryness, and other symptoms associated with menopause. The isoflavones in soy promote calcium absorption and decrease susceptibility to bone breakdown and loss. Furthermore, when estrogen is declining or fluctuating, isoflavones help regulate that unpredictable hormone, alleviating many menopausal and PMS symptoms. (Confused about soy? If you missed it, please check our previous article: The Soy Controversy)

*Beans. According to nutritionist Susan Krause, MS, RD, the isoflavones in beans may stabilize symptoms of PMS, perimenopause, or menopause, and possibly help prevent tumor formation related to breast cancer. Although soybeans have among the highest levels of isoflavones, other sources include favas, lentils, and chickpeas. And if pregnancy is in your plans, beans can give you a steady supply of folic acid — essential for normal development of the fetus.

*Filtered water. Lots of it. Stay on a hydration schedule. Because your brain is about 80 percent water, this will improve your mood and attitude, and conquer your hormone headaches.

Notice we didn’t recommend milk? The cow pumping out all of that calcium is not drinking milk or taking calcium pills. It’s eating grass! Leafy green vegetables are the most absorbable form of calcium for cowsand humans, and assist with the placement of calcium into the bone structure.

If your diet does include meat and dairy products, eat low-fat and organic versions. These come from animals that were not fed hormones, growth-enhancing antibiotics, or grain raised with synthetic pesticides (which may disrupt hormones as well). Hormones love fat, so they’re virtually swimming in whole milk. If you’re worried about keeping your endocrine system in order, don’t add to the mess by eating foods overflowing with additional hormones.

Other foods to avoid during menopause:

*Excess sugar. It can stimulate cravings and suppress the body’s ability to utilize the calcium and phosphorus needed to build bone.

*Excess fat and cholesterol. For reasons mentioned above; also, as estrogen levels plummet, cholesterol can rise.

*Alcohol. It can exacerbate the symptoms of menopause. If you are at risk for breast cancer, don’t drink at all.

*Caffeine. Research shows that PMS intensifies with the consumption of caffeine-containing beverages. In one study, women who abstained from caffeine during the PMS phase of each month resolved their symptoms completely.

*Refined and spicy foods. Along with sugar, alcohol, and caffeine, these may trigger hot flashes, mood swings, vaginal discomfort, and other negative hormonal symptoms. Maintain a food and mood diary to help you determine which ones impact you most.
Understanding the effects of drinking alcohol on health and longevity is an old topic that constantly earns fresh attention, usually amid new studies that reveal both healthful and harmful effects from enjoying a few beverages.

So what is the healthiest code of conduct related to alcohol?

There is no universal “one size fits all” answer, but there’s enough information to help you make the right choice for yourself. Essentially, it depends on your age, gender, genetic risk for heart disease or cancer, medications you take, addiction tendencies and social support system. The simple message is that while moderate alcohol consumption carries certain health benefits, it would be unwise to ignore the associated risks — including an increased proclivity for cancer. This is especially true for women.

Reasons for some people to avoid alcohol remain blatantly obvious. It is a major source of addiction. Consuming more than seven drinks per week elevates the risk of alcohol use problems in both men and women. It also can lead to other destructive behavior, family violence and an increased number of falls in older adults. Pairing it with pregnancy, some medications or driving can be hazardous and should be avoided.

But you already know that. So if you want to drink responsibly, what constitutes moderation and how can it enhance your health?

Moderation, as defined by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, is no more than one drink per day for women and no more than two drinks per day for men. A drink is 12 ounces of beer, 5 ounces of wine, or 1.5 ounces of 80-proof spirits. It’s important to note that studies claiming positive health benefits from “moderate drinking” included people who adhered to this definition. (It’s a long way from getting hammered!)

We asked longevity guru Dan Buettner for his thoughts on the topic. “Go ahead, have a drink,” said Buettner, author of “Blue Zones,” which examines all factors that contribute to long and healthy living. “In Sardinia, red wine is consumed every day; in Okinawa, it’s a glass of sake with friends. A daily drink can lower the incidence of heart disease and reduce both cholesterol levels and the effects of chronic inflammation. Red wine is rich in antioxidants and polyphenols, which may help ward off arteriosclerosis. But the secret is moderation: Drink a glass or two a day at most; more will negate the benefits.”

recent Time Magazine report found that people who drank alcohol moderately lived longer than those who abstained entirely, supporting Buettner’s position. The actual study also said these finding were not experimental, but that other important factors deserved consideration.

In addition to increasing longevity, men 40 and older and women 50 and above can enjoy other health benefits from moderate alcohol consumption. Several recent studies point out that it reduces the risk of heart disease and may protect against dementia and Type 2 Diabetes. In many reviews, beer and spirits contained the same benefits as red wine.

However, there’s one detail that clouds the good news. Despite this positive effect on potential heart disease, alcohol can boost blood pressure in people diagnosed with hypertension. In these cases, abstaining from alcohol is one proactive step that could save your heart, according to the Cleveland Clinic.

2010-10-01-images2.jpegThere’s more. While heart disease and longevity usually become factors later in life, cancer can strike in the prime years. And the research in this arena is not encouraging.

“We can confidently say that even moderate alcohol consumption is associated with a modestly higher risk for breast and colorectal cancer,” noted Susan Gapstur, Ph.D., of the American Cancer Society.

Cancer epidemiologist and researcher Naomi Allen of the University of Oxford, told WebMD that “there were no minimum levels of alcohol consumption that could be considered without risk.”

Some of the earliest research connecting alcohol and breast cancer came from the 90,000 Nurses’ Health Study, which began in 1980. By 1987, an article in The New England Journal of Medicine concluded that women who consumed three to nine drinks each week increased their risk of getting breast cancer by 30 percent. The more they drank, the greater the threat.

Subsequent research arrived at similar conclusions, with slightly different details. In 1998, Harvard scientists published a paper in the Journal of the American Medical Association pooling the results of six worldwide studies that included more than 320,000 women. The paper determined that one drink a day led to a 10 percent increase in breast cancer risk. Two to five drinks a day escalated that number to 40 percent.

Researchers following the ongoing Million Women Study in the United Kingdom reported that women who drank alcohol increased their risk of cancers of the breast, liver, rectum, mouth, throat and esophagus. The study subjects consumed an average of one serving of alcohol each day. Again, the more they drank, the worse the peril. And for those who want to believe wine is always a safe choice, the analysis found that exclusive wine drinkers suffered the same risk for developing cancer as those who drank beer, spirits or a combination of alcoholic beverages.

In the end, the healthiest approach to drinking depends on your individual circumstances — and your ability to keep your consumption at a modest level. So here’s a toast to good health! And remember, please don’t drink and drive.

“Hormone Healthy Food Choices” by Jay Williams PhD

RESEARCH FINDINGS Over the last three decades, more about science has been advancing our understanding of stress and how it impacts our bodies and brains. From baboon troops on the plains of Africa, to neuroscience labs at Stanford University, scientists are revealing just how lethal stress can be. Research reveals that the impact of stress can be found deep within us, shrinking our brains, adding fat to our bellies, even unraveling our chromosomes. Stress is something measurable and dangerous! Stress is linked to the six leading causes of death – heart disease, cancer, lung ailments, accidents, cirrhosis of the liver, and suicide. Forty-three percent of all adults suffer adverse health effects from stress and two-thirds of all office visits to family physicians are due to stress-related symptoms

TLC 8: Destress with Mind-Body Innercise

De-stress and halt aging with mind/body meditation or yoga. You won’t miss the calming benefit of alcohol once you learn how to de-stress naturally, using the relaxation response, meditation and deep breathing, yoga, or biofeedback. You won’t head straight for the refrigerator to stuff your face (and emotions). You will look and feel younger, healthier, and happier when you learn to de-stress. Confronted with life’s stress, your body produces adrenaline. The release of adrenaline is like sending a thousand messages to various key parts of the body at once, resulting in a racing heart, increased blood pressure, out-of-balance hormones, and a system on red alert. The problem with high levels of stress is that this can weaken the body, reducing the number of T-cells—the killer cells in our immune system that help to ward off diseases. This effect happens immediately and can last for days. Ongoing stress can also result in unresolved muscle tension, increased blood pressure, rapid heartbeat, and general arousal—as we cannot get out of “passing gear” (as opposed to normal or low gear).

Eventually the tension, arousal, and tightness seem normal, and we find ourselves more vulnerable to illness and poor self-care habits. Chronic tension can lead to weight gain, skin problems, knotted muscles, lower mobility, degenerative joint and spine problems, and sheer exhaustion.

Meditation and deep breathing induce the relaxation response, which can slow down your heart rate, reduce blood pressure, calm the feelings of anxiety that you experience during chronic stress, bring your hormones into balance, and much more. Although it’s an involuntary action, breathing measures and alters your psychological state, making a stressful moment accelerate or diminish in intensity. Meditation and deep breathing affect appetite, aging, emotions, hormones, sleep, and overall health every 24 hours. In the 24 Hour Turnaround, TLC 8, you learn how to change a highly charged moment into a period of calm (I call it “relaxation on demand”), as you call upon these mind/body exercises at will and protect your body from the ravages of increased stress hormones today and every other day.

Get Started Today! Relax on demand to reduce stress.

Heart Rate Bio-Feedback: The “Quick Fix” for stress relief. Neuroscientists agree that the most effective way to counteract stressful situations is to learn how to respond immediately—stop stress in its tracks! It’s much more difficult and time-consuming to reverse tension than to deal with it and put it to rest. This is exactly the reason why I recommend Heart Rate (HR) Biofeedback: it works spontaneously and produces a 24-hour result. HR Biofeedback is a therapeutic practice that uses your heart rate monitor to give you instant feedback during your stress reduction training. HR Biofeedback teaches you how to “relax on demand.” If the thought of figuring out how to reduce stress tends to stress you out because it sounds time consuming to learn to meditate or practice yoga, get out your heart rate monitor, and I will teach you a proven technique in five minutes. If you haven’t gotten a heart rate monitor for your H.E.A.R.T workouts, you now have TWO good reasons to order one today.

Learning HR Biofeedback takes seven days, but the first session can produce a 24-hour result. The first day takes 5 minutes; the last day takes only one minute. The learning curve is zero, the cost is nothing, and everyone in your household or office will benefit.

Days 1, 2, and 3 At Home

  1. Choose a time when you know you will not be interrupted, and turn off the phone. Put on your monitor and observe your heart rate. Lie down on the floor with something under your neck (a pillow or towel) to relax the neck area and put your spine in a neutral position. You might want a pillow under your knees as well, especially if you have back problems.
  2. Rest the watch of your monitor where you can look at it occasionally. I like to rest my hands on my chest with the watch in one hand.
  3. Continue by relaxing all the muscles in your face–around your eyes, your jaw, and your forehead. Make sure your teeth are not touching. Take the deepest breath you have ever taken and exhale. On that exhale relax every muscle in your body.
  4. Continue to breath deeply and slowly. Check to see if you can feel your shoulders, back, hips, and legs on floor. They should feel heavy.
  5. Observe your heart rate. As you begin to relax, your heart rate will go down. Repeat steps 3 and 4. Every time you look at your heart rate, it should be lower. If you get anxious or the number goes up, start over. End the session after five minutes regardless of the outcome.

Days 4 and 5 At Home

  1. Choose a time when you know you will not be interrupted, and turn off the phone. Put on your monitor, and observe your heart rate. Sit in a chair with your feet flat on the floor.
  2. Rest your hands on your lap with your shoulders relaxed. Hold your monitor watch where you can see it.
  3. Start by relaxing all the muscles in your face–around your eyes, your jaw, and your forehead. Make sure your teeth are not touching. Take the deepest breath you have ever taken and exhale. On that exhale relax every muscle in your body.
  4. Continue to breathe deeply and slowly; scan your body and relax all your muscles.
  5. Observe your heart rate. Repeat steps 3 and 4. Every time you look at your heart rate, it should be lower. If you get anxious or the number goes up, start over. End the session after three minutes.

Days 6 and 7 At Work or a Stressful Time of Day

  1. Choose a time when you know you will not be interrupted, and turn off the phone. If you’re not in an office or at home, go to a quiet place or your car. Put on your monitor, and observe your heart rate. Rest your arms on your desk or your lap with your monitor watch in front of you. Your arms need to feel heavy in order to relax your neck.
  2. You should now be able to do your relaxation exercise in one minute with your heart rate dropping after the first few exhales.
  3. Practice your biofeedback any time of the day that you feel stress coming on. Eventually you will get so good at “relaxing on demand” that you will not need to put your monitor on.

Yoga: Mind, Body and Mood Medicine. Yoga is holistic, integrating the body, breath, and the mind. Some people use it for stretching purposes only, while others prefer the more aerobic yoga positions to get a good cardiovascular and stretching workout. Many use yoga for stress reduction. It has been eighty years since health professionals in both India and the West started investigating the therapeutic life change potential of yoga. Thousands of research studies have shown that with the practice of yoga you can learn to control your heart rate, brain wave patterns, blood pressure, respiratory function, metabolic rate, skin resistance, body temperature, and many other bodily functions.

There are many styles and methods of yoga to choose from. If you have never done yoga, you are considered to be a beginner (Level 1). Start at the beginning. Learn how to do each pose correctly. Take several classes from different teachers and find a style that you like. Some are geared towards strength and stamina; others toward relaxation.

I do not recommend learning yoga from a book, although there are some good books for people who already have yoga experience. There are also many good tapes and CD’s available. I realize that there are only so many hours in the day, and yoga can be time consuming to learn and practice. Start with a 10-minute routine in the morning or evening hours. Stay tuned for our Yoga Stretches for the Office being produced soon.

“Only the person who is relaxed can create, and to that mind ideas flow like lightning.” Cicero
science has been advancing our understanding of stress and how it impacts our bodies and brains. From baboon troops on the plains of Africa, to neuroscience labs at Stanford University, scientists are revealing just how lethal stress can be. Research reveals that the impact of stress can be found deep within us, shrinking our brains, adding fat to our bellies, even unraveling our chromosomes. Stress is something measurable and dangerous! Stress is linked to the six leading causes of death – heart disease, cancer, lung ailments, accidents, cirrhosis of the liver, and suicide. Forty-three percent of all adults suffer adverse health effects from stress and two-thirds of all office visits to family physicians are due to stress-related symptoms

TLC 8: Destress with Mind-Body Innercise

De-stress and halt aging with mind/body meditation or yoga. You won’t miss the calming benefit of alcohol once you learn how to de-stress naturally, using the relaxation response, meditation and deep breathing, yoga, or biofeedback. You won’t head straight for the refrigerator to stuff your face (and emotions). You will look and feel younger, healthier, and happier when you learn to de-stress. Confronted with life’s stress, your body produces adrenaline. The release of adrenaline is like sending a thousand messages to various key parts of the body at once, resulting in a racing heart, increased blood pressure, out-of-balance hormones, and a system on red alert. The problem with high levels of stress is that this can weaken the body, reducing the number of T-cells—the killer cells in our immune system that help to ward off diseases. This effect happens immediately and can last for days. Ongoing stress can also result in unresolved muscle tension, increased blood pressure, rapid heartbeat, and general arousal—as we cannot get out of “passing gear” (as opposed to normal or low gear).

Eventually the tension, arousal, and tightness seem normal, and we find ourselves more vulnerable to illness and poor self-care habits. Chronic tension can lead to weight gain, skin problems, knotted muscles, lower mobility, degenerative joint and spine problems, and sheer exhaustion.

Meditation and deep breathing induce the relaxation response, which can slow down your heart rate, reduce blood pressure, calm the feelings of anxiety that you experience during chronic stress, bring your hormones into balance, and much more. Although it’s an involuntary action, breathing measures and alters your psychological state, making a stressful moment accelerate or diminish in intensity. Meditation and deep breathing affect appetite, aging, emotions, hormones, sleep, and overall health every 24 hours. In the 24 Hour Turnaround, TLC 8, you learn how to change a highly charged moment into a period of calm (I call it “relaxation on demand”), as you call upon these mind/body exercises at will and protect your body from the ravages of increased stress hormones today and every other day.

Get Started Today! Relax on demand to reduce stress.

Heart Rate Bio-Feedback: The “Quick Fix” for stress relief. Neuroscientists agree that the most effective way to counteract stressful situations is to learn how to respond immediately—stop stress in its tracks! It’s much more difficult and time-consuming to reverse tension than to deal with it and put it to rest. This is exactly the reason why I recommend Heart Rate (HR) Biofeedback: it works spontaneously and produces a 24-hour result. HR Biofeedback is a therapeutic practice that uses your heart rate monitor to give you instant feedback during your stress reduction training. HR Biofeedback teaches you how to “relax on demand.” If the thought of figuring out how to reduce stress tends to stress you out because it sounds time consuming to learn to meditate or practice yoga, get out your heart rate monitor, and I will teach you a proven technique in five minutes. If you haven’t gotten a heart rate monitor for your H.E.A.R.T workouts, you now have TWO good reasons to order one today.

Learning HR Biofeedback takes seven days, but the first session can produce a 24-hour result. The first day takes 5 minutes; the last day takes only one minute. The learning curve is zero, the cost is nothing, and everyone in your household or office will benefit.

Days 1, 2, and 3 At Home

  1. Choose a time when you know you will not be interrupted, and turn off the phone. Put on your monitor and observe your heart rate. Lie down on the floor with something under your neck (a pillow or towel) to relax the neck area and put your spine in a neutral position. You might want a pillow under your knees as well, especially if you have back problems.
  2. Rest the watch of your monitor where you can look at it occasionally. I like to rest my hands on my chest with the watch in one hand.
  3. Continue by relaxing all the muscles in your face–around your eyes, your jaw, and your forehead. Make sure your teeth are not touching. Take the deepest breath you have ever taken and exhale. On that exhale relax every muscle in your body.
  4. Continue to breath deeply and slowly. Check to see if you can feel your shoulders, back, hips, and legs on floor. They should feel heavy.
  5. Observe your heart rate. As you begin to relax, your heart rate will go down. Repeat steps 3 and 4. Every time you look at your heart rate, it should be lower. If you get anxious or the number goes up, start over. End the session after five minutes regardless of the outcome.

Days 4 and 5 At Home

  1. Choose a time when you know you will not be interrupted, and turn off the phone. Put on your monitor, and observe your heart rate. Sit in a chair with your feet flat on the floor.
  2. Rest your hands on your lap with your shoulders relaxed. Hold your monitor watch where you can see it.
  3. Start by relaxing all the muscles in your face–around your eyes, your jaw, and your forehead. Make sure your teeth are not touching. Take the deepest breath you have ever taken and exhale. On that exhale relax every muscle in your body.
  4. Continue to breathe deeply and slowly; scan your body and relax all your muscles.
  5. Observe your heart rate. Repeat steps 3 and 4. Every time you look at your heart rate, it should be lower. If you get anxious or the number goes up, start over. End the session after three minutes.

Days 6 and 7 At Work or a Stressful Time of Day

  1. Choose a time when you know you will not be interrupted, and turn off the phone. If you’re not in an office or at home, go to a quiet place or your car. Put on your monitor, and observe your heart rate. Rest your arms on your desk or your lap with your monitor watch in front of you. Your arms need to feel heavy in order to relax your neck.
  2. You should now be able to do your relaxation exercise in one minute with your heart rate dropping after the first few exhales.
  3. Practice your biofeedback any time of the day that you feel stress coming on. Eventually you will get so good at “relaxing on demand” that you will not need to put your monitor on.

Yoga: Mind, Body and Mood Medicine. Yoga is holistic, integrating the body, breath, and the mind. Some people use it for stretching purposes only, while others prefer the more aerobic yoga positions to get a good cardiovascular and stretching workout. Many use yoga for stress reduction. It has been eighty years since health professionals in both India and the West started investigating the therapeutic life change potential of yoga. Thousands of research studies have shown that with the practice of yoga you can learn to control your heart rate, brain wave patterns, blood pressure, respiratory function, metabolic rate, skin resistance, body temperature, and many other bodily functions.

There are many styles and methods of yoga to choose from. If you have never done yoga, you are considered to be a beginner (Level 1). Start at the beginning. Learn how to do each pose correctly. Take several classes from different teachers and find a style that you like. Some are geared towards strength and stamina; others toward relaxation.

I do not recommend learning yoga from a book, although there are some good books for people who already have yoga experience. There are also many good tapes and CD’s available. I realize that there are only so many hours in the day, and yoga can be time consuming to learn and practice. Start with a 10-minute routine in the morning or evening hours. Stay tuned for our Yoga Stretches for the Office being produced soon.

“Only the person who is relaxed can create, and to that mind ideas flow like lightning.” Cicero
RESEARCH FINDINGS Over the last three decades, science has been advancing our understanding of stress and how it impacts our bodies and brains. From baboon troops on the plains of Africa, to neuroscience labs at Stanford University, scientists are revealing just how lethal stress can be. Research reveals that the impact of stress can be found deep within us, shrinking our brains, adding fat to our bellies, even unraveling our chromosomes. Stress is something measurable and dangerous! Stress is linked to the six leading causes of death – heart disease, cancer, lung ailments, accidents, cirrhosis of the liver, and suicide. Forty-three percent of all adults suffer adverse health effects from stress and two-thirds of all office visits to family physicians are due to stress-related symptoms

TLC 8: Destress with Mind-Body Innercise

De-stress and halt aging with mind/body meditation or yoga. You won’t miss the calming benefit of alcohol once you learn how to de-stress naturally, using the relaxation response, meditation and deep breathing, yoga, or biofeedback. You won’t head straight for the refrigerator to stuff your face (and emotions). You will look and feel younger, healthier, and happier when you learn to de-stress. Confronted with life’s stress, your body produces adrenaline. The release of adrenaline is like sending a thousand messages to various key parts of the body at once, resulting in a racing heart, increased blood pressure, out-of-balance hormones, and a system on red alert. The problem with high levels of stress is that this can weaken the body, reducing the number of T-cells—the killer cells in our immune system that help to ward off diseases. This effect happens immediately and can last for days. Ongoing stress can also result in unresolved muscle tension, increased blood pressure, rapid heartbeat, and general arousal—as we cannot get out of “passing gear” (as opposed to normal or low gear).

Eventually the tension, arousal, and tightness seem normal, and we find ourselves more vulnerable to illness and poor self-care habits. Chronic tension can lead to weight gain, skin problems, knotted muscles, lower mobility, degenerative joint and spine problems, and sheer exhaustion.

Meditation and deep breathing induce the relaxation response, which can slow down your heart rate, reduce blood pressure, calm the feelings of anxiety that you experience during chronic stress, bring your hormones into balance, and much more. Although it’s an involuntary action, breathing measures and alters your psychological state, making a stressful moment accelerate or diminish in intensity. Meditation and deep breathing affect appetite, aging, emotions, hormones, sleep, and overall health every 24 hours. In the 24 Hour Turnaround, TLC 8, you learn how to change a highly charged moment into a period of calm (I call it “relaxation on demand”), as you call upon these mind/body exercises at will and protect your body from the ravages of increased stress hormones today and every other day.

Get Started Today! Relax on demand to reduce stress.

Heart Rate Bio-Feedback: The “Quick Fix” for stress relief. Neuroscientists agree that the most effective way to counteract stressful situations is to learn how to respond immediately—stop stress in its tracks! It’s much more difficult and time-consuming to reverse tension than to deal with it and put it to rest. This is exactly the reason why I recommend Heart Rate (HR) Biofeedback: it works spontaneously and produces a 24-hour result. HR Biofeedback is a therapeutic practice that uses your heart rate monitor to give you instant feedback during your stress reduction training. HR Biofeedback teaches you how to “relax on demand.” If the thought of figuring out how to reduce stress tends to stress you out because it sounds time consuming to learn to meditate or practice yoga, get out your heart rate monitor, and I will teach you a proven technique in five minutes. If you haven’t gotten a heart rate monitor for your H.E.A.R.T workouts, you now have TWO good reasons to order one today.

Learning HR Biofeedback takes seven days, but the first session can produce a 24-hour result. The first day takes 5 minutes; the last day takes only one minute. The learning curve is zero, the cost is nothing, and everyone in your household or office will benefit.

Days 1, 2, and 3 At Home

  1. Choose a time when you know you will not be interrupted, and turn off the phone. Put on your monitor and observe your heart rate. Lie down on the floor with something under your neck (a pillow or towel) to relax the neck area and put your spine in a neutral position. You might want a pillow under your knees as well, especially if you have back problems.
  2. Rest the watch of your monitor where you can look at it occasionally. I like to rest my hands on my chest with the watch in one hand.
  3. Continue by relaxing all the muscles in your face–around your eyes, your jaw, and your forehead. Make sure your teeth are not touching. Take the deepest breath you have ever taken and exhale. On that exhale relax every muscle in your body.
  4. Continue to breath deeply and slowly. Check to see if you can feel your shoulders, back, hips, and legs on floor. They should feel heavy.
  5. Observe your heart rate. As you begin to relax, your heart rate will go down. Repeat steps 3 and 4. Every time you look at your heart rate, it should be lower. If you get anxious or the number goes up, start over. End the session after five minutes regardless of the outcome.

Days 4 and 5 At Home

  1. Choose a time when you know you will not be interrupted, and turn off the phone. Put on your monitor, and observe your heart rate. Sit in a chair with your feet flat on the floor.
  2. Rest your hands on your lap with your shoulders relaxed. Hold your monitor watch where you can see it.
  3. Start by relaxing all the muscles in your face–around your eyes, your jaw, and your forehead. Make sure your teeth are not touching. Take the deepest breath you have ever taken and exhale. On that exhale relax every muscle in your body.
  4. Continue to breathe deeply and slowly; scan your body and relax all your muscles.
  5. Observe your heart rate. Repeat steps 3 and 4. Every time you look at your heart rate, it should be lower. If you get anxious or the number goes up, start over. End the session after three minutes.

Days 6 and 7 At Work or a Stressful Time of Day

  1. Choose a time when you know you will not be interrupted, and turn off the phone. If you’re not in an office or at home, go to a quiet place or your car. Put on your monitor, and observe your heart rate. Rest your arms on your desk or your lap with your monitor watch in front of you. Your arms need to feel heavy in order to relax your neck.
  2. You should now be able to do your relaxation exercise in one minute with your heart rate dropping after the first few exhales.
  3. Practice your biofeedback any time of the day that you feel stress coming on. Eventually you will get so good at “relaxing on demand” that you will not need to put your monitor on.

Yoga: Mind, Body and Mood Medicine. Yoga is holistic, integrating the body, breath, and the mind. Some people use it for stretching purposes only, while others prefer the more aerobic yoga positions to get a good cardiovascular and stretching workout. Many use yoga for stress reduction. It has been eighty years since health professionals in both India and the West started investigating the therapeutic life change potential of yoga. Thousands of research studies have shown that with the practice of yoga you can learn to control your heart rate, brain wave patterns, blood pressure, respiratory function, metabolic rate, skin resistance, body temperature, and many other bodily functions.

There are many styles and methods of yoga to choose from. If you have never done yoga, you are considered to be a beginner (Level 1). Start at the beginning. Learn how to do each pose correctly. Take several classes from different teachers and find a style that you like. Some are geared towards strength and stamina; others toward relaxation.

I do not recommend learning yoga from a book, although there are some good books for people who already have yoga experience. There are also many good tapes and CD’s available. I realize that there are only so many hours in the day, and yoga can be time consuming to learn and practice. Start with a 10-minute routine in the morning or evening hours. Stay tuned for our Yoga Stretches for the Office being produced soon.

“Only the person who is relaxed can create, and to that mind ideas flow like lightning.” Cicero
 When hormones become unbalanced, they can negatively affect our health, put us at risk for cancer and heart disease, and destroy our mood and productivity. No matter what your age, consuming the right foods is a natural and effective way to keep order in the endocrine system. 

To accomplish this, your daily meals should include:

  • Less fat and more fiber. It takes a lot of energy to digest fat. The less energy you spend on digestion, the more efficient your body becomes with its other metabolic responsibilities — like brain function, hormone production and energy level maintenance.
  • Fresh fruits and vegetables. They help with the excretion of toxins. When the body makes new hormones, it needs to purge the expired ones, and fiber helps do that properly. Eat at least five portions each day, and pay particular attention to leafy vegetables such as kale, spinach and baby salad greens. It’s no secret that foods like these, rich in calcium and vitamin D, can increase bone strength and improve your overall skeletal health. But new evidence shows they also help calm jangled, hormonally harassed nerves.
  • Complex carbohydrates. Whole grains are high in fiber and B vitamins, which are important for hormonal balance. In a study conducted at the University of Tennessee Health Sciences Center, researchers reported that women with premenstrual syndrome (PMS) who ate a meal high in carbohydrates (but avoided sugar and white flour) were happier and more relaxed within one hour. Women in another group who ate a high-protein meal felt angry, sad, and more agitated. Within three hours, the carbohydrate group’s blood sugar returned to normal levels, and they needed to eat again.

Based on this study, women who suffer from PMS should eat smaller, more frequent meals that include carbohydrates. The 3/500 Rule (snacks or meals of 500 calories or less every three hours) defines hormone health.

*Foods rich in essential fatty acids (think Omega 3). They have an anti-inflammatory effect on the body and reduce abnormal clotting, which helps prevent endometriosis and fibroids. Eat oily fish (tuna, salmon, sardines, mackerel, and herring) three times per week, along with nuts and seeds (walnuts, flax, sunflower, pumpkin). Bonus: Omega 3 fatty acids are also good for the brain and can elevate your mood.

*Soy. It contains phytoestrogens, a mild estrogen-like compound that fits into the body’s estrogen receptors and blocks potentially negative effects — including cancer — of more powerful estrogens. They also reduce hot flashes, vaginal dryness, and other symptoms associated with menopause. The isoflavones in soy promote calcium absorption and decrease susceptibility to bone breakdown and loss. Furthermore, when estrogen is declining or fluctuating, isoflavones help regulate that unpredictable hormone, alleviating many menopausal and PMS symptoms. (Confused about soy? If you missed it, please check our previous article: The Soy Controversy)

*Beans. According to nutritionist Susan Krause, MS, RD, the isoflavones in beans may stabilize symptoms of PMS, perimenopause, or menopause, and possibly help prevent tumor formation related to breast cancer. Although soybeans have among the highest levels of isoflavones, other sources include favas, lentils, and chickpeas. And if pregnancy is in your plans, beans can give you a steady supply of folic acid — essential for normal development of the fetus.

*Filtered water. Lots of it. Stay on a hydration schedule. Because your brain is about 80 percent water, this will improve your mood and attitude, and conquer your hormone headaches.

Notice we didn’t recommend milk? The cow pumping out all of that calcium is not drinking milk or taking calcium pills. It’s eating grass! Leafy green vegetables are the most absorbable form of calcium for cowsand humans, and assist with the placement of calcium into the bone structure.

If your diet does include meat and dairy products, eat low-fat and organic versions. These come from animals that were not fed hormones, growth-enhancing antibiotics, or grain raised with synthetic pesticides (which may disrupt hormones as well). Hormones love fat, so they’re virtually swimming in whole milk. If you’re worried about keeping your endocrine system in order, don’t add to the mess by eating foods overflowing with additional hormones.

Other foods to avoid during menopause:

*Excess sugar. It can stimulate cravings and suppress the body’s ability to utilize the calcium and phosphorus needed to build bone.

*Excess fat and cholesterol. For reasons mentioned above; also, as estrogen levels plummet, cholesterol can rise.

*Alcohol. It can exacerbate the symptoms of menopause. If you are at risk for breast cancer, don’t drink at all.

*Caffeine. Research shows that PMS intensifies with the consumption of caffeine-containing beverages. In one study, women who abstained from caffeine during the PMS phase of each month resolved their symptoms completely.

*Refined and spicy foods. Along with sugar, alcohol, and caffeine, these may trigger hot flashes, mood swings, vaginal discomfort, and other negative hormonal symptoms. Maintain a food and mood diary to help you determine which ones impact you most.