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Gut health, weight loss and hormonal balance part 2

Basic Gut Health Protocol

  • Reduce Inflammation-causing agents / toxins
  • Balance the good bacteria in the gut
  • Increase Digestive "Fire"

FIRST STEP: REDUCE INFLAMMATION

  1. Reduce wheat, dairy, soy, corn, refined sugar. Also, conventionally grown meat.
  2. Reduce inflammatory substances: alcohol, antibiotics, birth control pills, synthetic drugs. These damage the gut flora, leading to a weakened gut lining and leaky gut.
  3. Drink Bone Broth: Heals and seals the gut, helps to fix leaky gut. Check out these instructions of making your own bone broth. It isn't difficult.
  4. Increase Gelatin or collagen: helps to heal the gut lining and improve the muscus layer. Adding collagen (as a powder) to your smoothie is easy. Check out this recipe.
  5. Introduce L-Glutamine: Heals the gut lining. Feeds the lining in the gut. FYI - Can be over stimulating to brain cells.
  6. Consume Turmeric: reduces inflammation, though needs fact and black pepper to be fully absorbed. Such as coconut oil.
  7. Introduce zinc carnosine and quercetin supplements (amino acid and antioxidant that helps to produce organs). Zinc carosine helps to heal cells.

SECOND STEP: BALANCE THE GOOD BACTERIA

  1. Eat fermented foods: improve the health of the gut flora. Note, if you are sensitive to histamines (allergies) then skip this step as fermented foods generally have a lot of histamines causes allergy type reactions.
  2. Take probiotic capsules: 10 to 50 billion CFUs per day taken with food. Start smaller, with 10 billion CFUs a day to avoid bloating, skin rashes, gas, other common side affects.
  3. Take digestive enzymes: easiest and most beneficial step to start. Juice Plus has digestive enzymes in them already. Take before.
  4. Chew food thoroughly: chewing starts digestive enzymes. Plus it will slow you down enough to eat less, meaning that you body has the time to tell you that you are no longer hungry, hormonal signals.
  5. Add fiber to their diet. 35 - 45 grams each day. Again, start slowing to avoid constipation, gas and bloating. 12 - 24 hours is the correct transit time. ;)
  6. Consume resistant starch (pre-biotic): selectively stimulates the good bacteria. Lentils, chick peas, potatoes that have been cooked and cooled. Like from the crock pot.

THRID STEP: Light Digestive Fires (stomach acid)

  • Reflux, burping, etc are signs that you need to change up the digestive "fires" or change the stomach acids
  • Lemon Juice: hottish water
  • Apple Cider Vinegar (15-30 before meals, or after meals to fix reflux) . Liquid apple cider vinegar can be harmful for the teeth. Pill supplementation is available and beneficial.
  • Digestive Bitters: Increases the digestive "juices"
    • Dandelion
    • Fennel
    • Ginger
    • Beet Root (good for cardio vascular
    • Goldenseal root
    • Milk Thistle (healthy for the liver as well)
    • Peppermint
    • Wormwood
    • Yellow Dock
  • HCL or hydrochloric acid
    • More advanced step and is recommended that you work with a functional medicine practitioner.
    • Read more here
    • DO NOT take with any anti-inflammatory medicines. Greatly increases the risk of bleeding or ulcer.

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Gut Health and Weight Loss and Hormonal Impact Part 1

WE ARE ONLY AS HEALTHY AS THE FOOD WE CAN DIGEST

This means that if the gut isn't functioning well (optimally) then it really doesn't matter how good the food is that we eat. We will have deficiencies. This is why GUT Health is a major corner stone for optimal health.

  • Endocrine system: depends on essential nutrients (healthy hormones) in order to function properly.
  • Immune system: highly dependent on the gut for proper functioning.
  • Nervous System: again, highly dependent on the gut for proper functioning. In fact, there are more nerve cells in the gut than in the brain

Gut-Brain Axis

  • Motility, secretion, nutrient delivery, microbial balance
  • Neurotransmitters, stress, anxiety, mood, behavior

HPA Axis

  • Hypothalamus: gland in the brain which produces CRH
  • Anterior Pituitary: gland in the brain which produces ACTH
  • Adrenal Cortex: Endocrine gland (on the kidneys) which produces cortisol

So "at the end of the day" in relation to the gut, cortisol affects:

  • How the colon moves
  • What it absorbs
  • How much and what kind of mucus it produces
  • The microbiome and can slow down the entire system to enable the body to be able to deal with stress and what not

This stress response helps the human being to survive in a life threatening situation. The habitual stress response, say due to a relationship issue or unhappy job, can greatly impact gut health and overall health negatively.

Interesting side note: the stress response, as shown above, impacts gut health. The opposite is true. You can develop leaking gut which in term allows gut flora can affect the HPA axis in a negative way. Additionally, bad bacteria and fungus can affect all of the functions mentioned above. This becomes a vicious (aka VICIOUS) circle. Downward spiral. Perfect storm.

The Gut and Nervous System are INTIMATELY connected.

Insulin and Blood Sugar Management: a healthy GI track helps the blood sugar management system. An unhealthy GI tract can increase insulin insensitive. For the endurance athlete specifically, this can negatively impact burning fat for fuel. So sugar cravings go up and belly fact sticks around or becomes more prevalent.

Estrogen: Your gut flora can influence your levels of estrogen. Estrobolome, a gut bacteria, produces or breaks down estrogen. The liver breaks down estrogen (or deactivates) and sends it into the GI tract to "get rid of". Unfriendly gut bacteria can reactivate inactive this estrogen. This can impact estrogen/progesterone balance. (Or affect testosterone levels). Also, the stomach produces estrogen-like molecules. Which increases appetite. It is so interesting in that when someone consumes BPA, which produces an estrogen like molecule, even in the presence of food, the appetite increases. So please avoid plastic produces that have BPA.

Progesterone / Testosterone: Hormonal balance is affected by Lipopolysaccharides (LPS) which is a toxin produced by unfriendly gut bacteria. LPS has more of an impact when LEAKY gut is present, as LPS crosses the gut barrier and can affect ovaries and decrease progesterone production. Which affects the ever important balance of estrogen to progesterone. LPS may also play a role in PCOS by increasing insulin and testosterone levels. Additionally, LSP has been shown to negatively impact the immune system and be a contributing factor to many autoimmune disorders.

Thyroid Gland: LPS may also affect Hashimoto's thyroiditis. Again, this goes back to the research on how unfriendly bacteria impact the immune system and the cascade affect of that. You can think of it like, the LPS causes the body's immune system to attack itself.

Uterus / Endometriosis: Endometrial lesions (uterine cells growing elsewhere) interfere with the gut's ability to keep waste products moving, contributing to SIBO and microbiome imbalance. It does this in that these lesions are sticky and cause parts of the bowel to stick together, to the abdominal wall or other organs.

Continue to Part 2 for the Basic Gut Health Protocol

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Critical Supplements for Good Health

Juice Plus

  • Fruit and veg pill: plethra of plant nutrients
  • Improves all aspects of health: immune function, gut health, lower inflammation, prevent cancer, etc etc
  • Helps the body absorb and utilize all other supplements/food

Magnesium

  • Electrolytes
  • Sleep
  • Hormone

D3

  • Regulates Ca and phosphorus in the blood
  • Enhances Sensitivity to insulin
  • Blood pressure, lowers plaque build up

B-Complex

  • B1: Nutrients into energy
  • B2: Food into energy, antioxidant
  • B3: Cellular signals, DNA production, metabolism
  • B5: Food into energy
  • B9: Cell growth, amino acid metabolism
  • B12: Neurologic function, DNA production, red blood cell development
  • ALL SORTS OF THINGS

Air Bourne

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Highly Beneficial Supplements and quick facts on blood sugar management, hormonal health and weight loss

TOPIC:  Blood sugar management to positively impact hormonal health

(refer to xxx TDB to understand how blood sugar management and hormonal health go hand in hand) Specific facts that help with blood sugar management and hormonal health Body is designed to deal with a small amount of sugar.  Where we get into trouble is the amount and the key of "sugar" we consume.     [box] The average American adult consumes 22 teaspoons of sugar a day and the average child consumes 32 teaspoons a day! [/box] When your body becomes "overwhelmed" in relation to managing blood sugar, then its ability to handle even small amounts of sugar is decreased.  This is where hormonal health is negatively impacted.  This will be covered in more detail here ... tdb.

INFLAMMATION

INSULIN RESISTENCE

These words become very important and will be addressed in part 2 and 3. Research shows that the paleo and Mediterranean "diets" (or ways of eating) really help to reverse the effects of insulin resistance and inflammation from sugar consumption.  Protein, fat and specifically omega 3 fatty acids help the body to manage blood sugar and repair the very sensitive system.
  • Gluten (very commonly) causes intestinal inflammation which compromises blood sugar management or insulin sensitivities
  • Artificial sweeteners interfere with blood sugar management as they compromise the livers ability to deal with sugar.  This causes "fatty liver".  Diet soda DOES NOT help with weight loss.

Supplements for Blood Sugar Management

This is an awesome list of supplements as everyone can benefit from taking these supplements.  The work in a foundation kind of way and the causes of negative side affects when these supplements are taken with the correct knowledge in mind are nil.
  • Magnesium:  First step.  Foundation supplement and should be continued long term (forever).  400 mg of magnesium glycinate.
    • People low in magnesium are at a significantly higher risk to have metabolic syndrome.  Research is showing that approximately 90% of people are low in magnesium.  Magnesium helps with sugar cravings.  Refer to www.bonniekissinger.com/magnesium for further information on the who/what/when/why/how.
  • Berberine:  Blood sugar management
    • Plant compound showing benefits in blood sugar management and treating insulin sensitivity.  Works to decrease the amount of inflammation produced by fatty tissue.  The plant compound helps to treat and prevent insulin resistance.   It was first used in Chinese medicine and Ayurveda.  The recommended dose is 500mg three times a day.  Caution when already taking diabetic medicine and antibiotics.
  • Chromium:  Blood sugar management
    • This nutrient helps with weight loss and insulin sensitivity.  It also improves post meal blood sugar levels.  The daily recommended amount is 20 - 25 micrograms a day but studies are showing for women  1000 micrograms a day split up through out the day is beneficial.
  • Fiber (or inulin):  Improve insulin sensitivity
    • Fermentable carb  or plant fiber that helps to nourish the cells of the digestive tract.  Sources are Jerusalem artichoke and Chickeryroot.  Start with 3 grams a day and build up to 5 with a max of 10.  Be cautious of bloating as folks that already have gut inflammation can experience worsening symptoms.  In this case folks need to address gut inflammation first.
  • Curcumin:  First step.  Foundation supplement as it is a potent anti-inflammatory compound.
    • Curcumin works to decrease inflammation in the muscle cells that cause insulin resistance.  It is metabolized in the body very quickly.  Because of this, companies combine it with other things.  Some of this isn't want you want.  The recommendation is to look for curcumin combined with black pepper (piperine), taking 500 to 1000mg a day in divided doses.
  • Vitamin D: First step IF LOW.  Foundation supplement and blood sugar management
    • Control stress at the cellular level.  Vitamin D also helps to treat depression.  You really want to get your levels as taking too much vitamin D can become toxic. If testing shows that your levels are below 50 nanograms per mililiter you can take 5000 IU daily.  Or 50,000 IU weekly.  Retesting in 60 to 90 days is advised.
  • Cinnamon:  BIG TIME Blood sugar management aide
    • It's biggest benefit is that it acts like insulin and makes the insulin receptors more responsive.  Big plus for people with insulin resistance!  It helps the receptors absorb the energy into the muscles.  It is a very strong anti-oxidant as well, helping to  decrease inflammation in the fat cells which helps to improve insulin resistance.  The recommended dose is 3 grams of cinnamon per day.
 

Blood Sugar Testing

This is a great way to learn this system and become familiar with the very critical aspect of living and for the athletes, fueling and being healthy.  This doesn'thave to be complicated or intense.  It has become very affordable at this time and easy to understand with a bit of education.  Refer to www.bonniekissinger.com/bloodsugartesting (TDB) to learn how to add this to your bag of tools.  Don't let this overwhelm you.  This is very basic and easy to do, just like taking your blood pressure.  You don't need to have "MD" behind your name to benefit from this.  You will earn which foods are good for you and how you are doing with this every important element of how the body works.  

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Marinated chicken, salad and raspberry vinaigrette

Chicken: 4 chicken breasts 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar 1/2 cup chicken broth 1 clove garlic, minced 1 tsp. Italian seasoning 1. Mix the vinegar, broth, garlic and Italian seasoning together. 2. Marinate the chicken at least one hour in the fridge. 3. Discard the marinade, bake the chicken in a 400° oven for 30 minutes, or until done.   The salad was baby spring mix with feta, cranberries and apples   For the dressing: 1 cup raspberries[amd-zlrecipe-recipe:26] 2 Tbsp honey 4 Tbsp raspberry wine vinegar 1 tsp ginger 1/2 tsp ground mustard 1/4 tsp salt 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil 1. Smash raspberries with a fork. 2. Whisk vinegar, ginger, mustard and salt. Add the olive oil (I used a shaker jar) 3. Add the raspberries and honey.

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Eating well and mindfully when BUSY

Here are some strategies to employ when you are traveling, during the holidays or otherwise super BUSY! VIDEO BELOW!!

  • Fill up first: A smoothie, a large salad, a hearty soup all good ways to curb hunger and sugar cravings
    • -This is a duh, but knowing science behind it might help. Empty stomach>ghrelin>appetite stimulated>as stomach fills up, ghrelin drops>appetite wanes.
    • -Also food in stomach>nerves that monitor pressure in your stomach>also send signals to brain that you are full
    • Easier to decline foods and/or choose healthier foods when hunger isn’t knocking
  • Pack healthy snacks and alternatives:  Kind Bars, Lara Bars, nuts, dried fruit, protein snack packs at the gas station
  • Be sure to fill up with nutrient dense foods
    • smoothie, soup or salad
    • We’ve gone over the importance of these foods a lot, but just a quick reminder, if you don’t have enough nutrients in your bloodstream: glucose, fats, amino acids, vitamins, minerals, etc. then your body will still want to eat. Why eating something like crackers beforehand isn’t a great idea (protein, fats, carbs
  • Make a commitment to yourself to continue food tracking, even while at the event/holiday/busy.  Even notes on a piece of paper will do the trick.
  • Write a post it note about your goal and stick it up somewhere you can see it.
DURING AN EVENT OR HOLIDAY OUTING
  • PRACTICE MINDFULNESS
    • Wait for all the food to be on table before choosing- make your choices all at once and you will eat about 14 percent less
    • If at the party/meal, start by loading your plate with the good stuff, round 1 nutrient dense, fiber filled food
    • When ordering … make healthy choices when you can
    • Sit and eat, instead of standing. Distance yourself from the grazing table (Laura story)
  • Put fork down between bites
  • Chew Thoroughly
      • -this has scientific merit.
      • -It gives the hormones cholecystokinin and leptin a chance to start working. CKK is released by the small intestine and pancreas, makes eating more seem less appealing
      • -leptin, secreted by your fat cells, helps balance out ghrelin
    • Really think about/savor your meal. Where did it come from, how did it get here? Farmers, shipping, grocery store, preparation, etC
    • If potluck type, be sure your dish is the main one you plan on eating, so make it count :)
  • Use smaller plates if available
MORE IDEAS
  • Leave visual evidence of what you’ve consumed, (empty plates and wine glasses/beer bottles make it less tempting to have more), well for some people
  • If food still on plate, cover with a napkin - not tempted to nibble at it even after you’re full
  • Alternate cocktails with a 1:1 water ratio
  • Food pushers- three bites. The first bite is the best, the last bite is the grand finale, and everything in between is more or less the same. In 3 bites you get the full experience
  • Be picky with your indulgences- don’t waste calories on something you can have at anytime, if you’re going to indulge, pick something that is special and unique to the season
WORK DAY
  • Ride the wave
  • Accept the treat. No need to eat it right away, take it home
  • Keep healthy snacks at work (that you like)  with you (car, purse, whatever)
  • Keep goodies out of view
GOOD GENERAL PRACTICE
  • Get enough sleep (keep hormones ghrelin and leptin regulated)
  • Eat breakfast (keep glucose levels balanced with a macro-balanced meal)
  • Walk after a meal (helps clear glucose out of bloodstream)
  • Keep up on your supplements and routines as much as possible
 

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Healthy Fats for Excellent Health and Better Running

Let's start off this conversation with some facts:

  • There are two types of nutrients.  Macronutrients and Micronutrients
  • Macronutrients are fats, protein and carbs
  • Regarding macronutrients, they are all needed in correct proportions to each other.  The optimal proportions for the individual are unique.
  • Fat free diets are being shown to be unhealthy.  For example, it is being shown in medical studies that low fat diets can contribute to hormonal imbalances.
  • Hormones are made from FAT and cholesterol
Let's shift to facts about fats specifically:
  • There are two types of fat
    • saturated
    • unsaturated
  • Saturated fats: Butter and coconut (solid at room temperature)
  • Unsaturated fats come in two forms
    • Monounsaturated (avocado and olive oil)
    • Polyunsaturated (flax seed, walnuts, salmon)
All fats are made up of FATTY ACIDS, that come in different lengths.  The body uses these three kinds of fatty acids differently.  All are needed.  These are the basic building blocks of body fat and all of the body's hormones.
  • Short chain
    • Enter the blood stream directly from the GI track
    • Take care of IMMEDIATE short term energy needs.   Such as supporting the "stress response" or training in zone 4.
    • Produced in the GI track by breaking down fiber (humans and animals)
    • When cows eat grass ("grass fed cows") they produce more short chain fatty acids, thus are a better source of short chain fats for human consumption.  This is why beet fan butter from "grass fed cows" is a healthier choice.
    • This is the preferred food for the colon and brain.
    • Important for healing leaky gut
    • A form of short chain fatty acids has been shown to DECREASE insulin resistance in the brain, which maybe help to positively impact Alzheimer's
  • Medium chain
    • Enter the blood stream directly from the GI track
    • Take care of IMMEDIATE short term energy needs.  Such as supporting the "stress response" or training in zone 4.
  • Long chain
    • Get packaged up and stored for later use.  They are not as accessible and utilize more energy in order to produce energy from them.
    • Essential fatty acids.  The body can produce a lot of fatty acids it needs from carbs, fiber and protein, however the essential fatty acids the body must get from nutrition.
      • The consumption of Omega-6 to omega-3 should be about 4:1.  However is the average diet it is about 20:1.
      • Neither of these are good or bad.  It is the ratio that is important.
      • Omega-3 (alpha-linolenic acid)
        • Hormonal impact:  Fatty fish, reduce PMS
      • Omega-6 (linoleic acid)
        • Hormonal impact:  Relieve depression and headaches

The best SOURES of DIETARY FAT:

  • Wild-caught fish

  • Pasture-raised eggs

  • Grass-fed beef

  • Extra virgin olive oil

  • Cold-pressed, unrefined coconut oil

  • Organic avocados

  • Raw, soaked nuts and seed

  • Grass-fed butter

  • Full fat cheese and yogurt

  Saturated Fats The conversation that saturated fats are needed might be new to you, as it is still very common to hear that saturated fats are bad.  However, science is showing that fats are needed to support how the body is designed to work and supports hormonal health.  For example, grass-fed beef is a very good source of micro and macro nutrients.  Grass-fed beef has a high concentration of short chain fatty acids which the body loves, has more micronutrients as the cow is eating "real food that is nutrient dense" and much higher levels of conjugated linoleic acid.  For example on the micro-nutrients, grass-fed beef has higher amounts of glutathione, which is a powerful antioxidant.
  • CLA is a fatty acid found in grass-fed beef that has been shown to decrease the risk of cancer, decreasing body fat, improving insulin resistance and lowering inflammation.  Studies are showing that even a small amount of CLA can reduce tumors in the body, including in the breast, colon, lungs, skin and stomach.  WHOOP WHOOP.
The point to take away, red meat isn't BAD for you.  And saturated fats aren't BAD for you.  In the end, inflammation is what is making us sick.  If we make cleaner food choices, inflammation goes down.  Grass-fed beef is one. And we DO NEED saturated fats.  That is how the body works. Additionally, following a low fat diet makes it hard to digest and absorb fat soluble vitamins such as A, D, E and K.  This can lead to deficiencies which can then lead to a host of health issues, such as hormonal imbalance issues like infertility (men and women).  Saturated fats are important for the immune system and metabolism as well. Two types of FAT to watch out for:
  • Rancid Fat.  Highly processed oils.  Canola, soy, sunflower.
  • Trans fat.  High Heat.  Commercial baked foods, and fried foods
Rancid fats are hard to digest and increase inflammation.  (think your guts are on fire on the inside, so ALL ABSORPTION of ALL your food gets disrupted).  These oils are low in micronutrients and have BHA and BHT added to them to increase shelf life. Trans fat are huge with disrupting sex hormones, disrupts with fertility (male and female) and dramatically increases inflammation.   Helpful Sources: 1. http://journal.frontiersin.org/article/10.3389/fmicb.2016.00185/full 2. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0304394016300775 3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3770499/ 4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12777162 5. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/6091462 6. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/20613355_Low-fat_high- fiber_diet_and_serum_estrone_sulfate_in_premenopausal_women 7. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/1616815 8. https://nutritionj.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1475-2891-9-10 9. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16475675 10. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4462476/ 11. https://hms.harvard.edu/news/trans-fats-may-raise-risk-infertility-2-9-07 12. http://journals.lww.com/greenjournal/Abstract/2007/11000/Diet_and_Lifestyle_in_the_Preventio n_of_ Ovulatory.17.aspx 13. http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/85/1/231.full.pdf+html

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