Health By Nature…Where Clean Meets Green!


Preventive Measures Increase as Healthcare Costs Increase
July 29, 2009, 2:37 pm
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Despite recent economic woes, sales of vitamins and nutritional supplements have increased.  For many people, a trip to the doctor or filling a prescription is too costly.  So, consumers are turning to preventive measures to keep themselves healthy.  It has been said that for every $1 spent on supplements, one is saving approximately $28 in healthcare costs down the road–no small change, for sure!

Not too long ago, the Washington Post reported on dietician Danielle Omar, who was attempting to create a diet that met the government guidelines for daily nutritional standards, without the aid of a daily multivitamin.  When all was said and done, Omar concluded that supplementation is wise.

For one thing, our food supply is not as nutritionally dense as it was several decades ago.  In an era of convenience, people turn to more prepared  items and processed foods.  Even our fruits & vegetables contain less nutrients than before, due in part to a decrease in soil quality and agricultural practices.  The best insurance to getting adequate nutrients and minerals is a balanced diet partnered with a quality food-based multi.

Not All Multis Are Equal!

If you take vitamins, have you ever given much thought to what goes in to them, or  how they are manufactured?

There are 3 types of vitamins.  The first are test tube or synthetic vitamins, typically found in the drug store aisle.  These are man-made, contain inorganic substances, have no enzymes, and may even contain stimulants or cause side effects. (Doesn’t sound like something I want to put in my body!)

The second category are formed with isolates or extracts, often found in a health food store.  Though weak, these contain some enzymes.  However, they may also use chemical or heat extraction methods, which degrade the quality of the nutrients.  They do contain organic substances, though generally low quality raw materials.  They often still contain harsh binders and fillers.  Labeling can be misleading: these types of supplements need only contain 10% of natural ingredients to be classified as containing *natural ingredients*!

The third category is the most beneficial, because the nutrients are in a natural or unaltered state. They present a strong enzymatic action, and are produced via a low heat and low pressure process.  The organic substances used are of the highest quality raw materials, and because they are as close to nature as possible, they feed and improve cell health.

The previous 2 categories of vitamins are classified by the USFDA as *drugs*; whole food supplements are classified as *food*.  Now which type do you think the body better processes:  synthetic nutrients created in a laboratory, or whole food nutrients?  The answer should be obvious!

Many brands of multis will also skimp on the more *expensive* vitamins, like the B vitamins biotin and folic acid.  In fact, when I looked at the majority of multi labels in the drug store, all but one contained 10% of the DV for biotin, which is a catalyst for energy production!

In 2002, the American Medical Association revised its position on multivitamins.  Previously they maintained that having a balanced healthy diet was enough to consume adequate daily nutrients and minerals.  They now state that regardless of age, health concerns or activity, everyone should take a multivitamin.

In addition to that multi, there are times when additional supplementation may be necessary.  We are often deficient in one area or another.  For a free self-assessment to determine where to start supplementing, send an email to HealthByNature@Shaklee.net with *wellness profile* in the subject field.

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Many Benefits of Vitamin D

It’s common knowledge that vitamin D is good for your bones.  But did you know all the other health benefits this vitamin has to offer?

As we age, we lose muscle strength which can lead to risk of falls which result in bone fractures; studies show that supplementing with vitamin D helps maintain both muscle strength and balance, lessening these risks.  Vitamin D also aids in the absorption of calcium. Our Osteo supplement provides 100% of the daily value for both calcium and vitamin D, as well as 100% of the daily value of magnesium, to help incorporate calcium into bones and strengthen them.

Vitamin D can also help alleviate chronic pain; muscle pain and weakness can often be attributed to a vitamin D deficiency.

Studies also suggest that vitamin D may protect against cancer by helping regulate cellular growth.  It is believed to strenghthen the immune system and reduce inflammation, offering protection from type-1 diabetes, MS and rheumatoid arthritis.  In one particular study, researchers discovered a 40% lower risk of MS in women who supplemented with at least 400 IU of vitamin D daily.

Low vitamin D levels have also been associated with cardiovascular health, increasing the risk of congestive heart failure.

While the body naturally produces vitamin D through natural light exposure, most people still need a supplement to reach recommended levels. We are the #1 natural nutrition company in the U.S., so you can be confident that our products are safe and pure–never synthetic or artificial.



Coenzyme Q10

Coenzyme Q10–or CoQ-10,  is a compound that is naturally produced in the body. Its potent antioxidant properties aid in cell regeneration and protects them against damage that could lead to heart disease, premature aging, and even cancer.

CoQ-10 is rich in foods like sardines, mackerel, spinach, peanuts & sesame.  It helps counteract external factors such as harful UV light and pollution, which can destroy coenzymes and other antioxidants.  Your antioxidant levels drop significantly after age 30, and CoQ-10 is the first to decline, which in turn slows down your cells’ ability to repair themselves.

CoQ-10 also affects your skin.  It helps repair free radical damage, prevent damage from the sun, and limit the destruction of collagen, helping keep skin’s firmness.

Most CoQ-10 supplements are poorly absorbed by the body and therefore offer little, if any, benefits.  Our CoQ-10 supplement uses patented technology to provide enhanced absorption using only natural ingredients–nothing synthetic or artificial.  It also contains resveratrol, believed to be the most beneficial antioxidant. For more info on this and other quality natural supplements, visit the Health By Nature website.



The Glaring Facts about Eyesight

The leading cause of blindness is age-related macular degeneration.  The glare from computer screens, sunlight, and intense headlight beams all take their toll on even the healthiest eyes, and can contribute to macular degeneration.  Carotenoids, found in brightly-colored fruits and veggies, can help combat vision problems.

In a recent study investigating the carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin, scientists found that supplementing with these carotenoids over a 6-month span significantly increases macular pigment optical density in healthy adults with normal eyesight.

The Women’s Health Study finds that when you add in vitamin E to these carotenoids, it decreases the chance of developing cataracts.  In addition to eating plenty of fruits & veggies (including a variety of leafy greens), our Carotenoid supplement provides maximum potency of 6 of the most beneficial carotenoids, and like all our supplements, do not contain synthetic material.  You’d have to eat 285 servings of pink grapefruit to get the same lutein & zeaxanthin content in one serving of our supplement!

Additionally recommended supplements are the Vitamin E complex or Vitamin E tablet, both with 400 IU of E.



Alfalfa: The Father of All Foods

Nicknamed the “father of all foods”, alfalfa has been used as herbal medicine for over 1,500 years.  A highly nutritive plant, its approximately 20 foot deep root system has the capacity to absorb minerals from deep within the soil.

In food form, alfalfa sprouts can be added to salads or sandwiches.  Alfalfa also comes in supplement form, and people who supplement with alfalfa do so for a wide variety of health benefits.  Alfalfa’s high manganese content has been shown to slighly lower blood sugar levels. To manage cholesterol levels, alfalfa can be beneficial because its fibers stick to cholesterol, preventing it from remaining in blood or collecting in blood vessels.  It has been known to strengthen one’s immunity.  Those suffering from asthma, allergies, or other respiratory conditions have found their symptoms improve or even clear up entirely through a regimen involving alfalfa, a natural anti-histimine.  It can be a mild diuretic; alfalfa may relieve swelling and water retention, and aid in eliminating urinary tract infections.  Because it mimics estrogen, some find it useful for menopausal symptoms.

Alfalfa has an impressive resume of nutritional content. It contains calcium, phosphorous, iron, magnesium, chlorophyll, bioflavonoids, trace minerals and vitamins.  Its leaves and stems are a good source of protein, vitamins and minerals as well.

Alfalfa also detoxifies.  It balances and cleanses the blood, alkalizes and detoxifies the body. It can also relieve gout, a painful foot ailment from excess toxins.

Just about anyone can benefit from the use of an alfalfa supplement.  Visit the Health By Nature store for ordering information.



Who Should Supplement?

The short answer: everyone.

Years ago, the AMA’s position on multivitamin supplements was that a healthy diet would be enough to gain all the necessary vitamins and minerals.  In 2002, that recommendation was reversed.  Finally recognizing the health benefits from a good, quality supplement, the AMA now states that everyone, regardless of age or health status, should take a daily multivitamin.  It’s been determined that even with the most ideal diet, we are not necessarily going to receive ALL the needed nutrients from our food.  Our food itself has been experiencing a decline in nutritional value as well, due to farming techniques and environmental causes.

Be aware that not all supplements are created equal.  Supplements are not regulated with stringent standards the way prescription drugs are.  Many cheaper, drugstore supplements are not going to be effective due to potency, formulation, coating, and other factors.  Our supplements undergo rigorous testing for purity, potency, and efficacy.  Many hold multiple patents, and patented coatings that guarantee nutrients get delivered where they are supposed to, when they are supposed to.  If a coating is dissolved too soon via stomach acid, the supplement may be rendered ineffective, which is the problem with many low quality supplements on the market.

Doctors and nurses are supplementing themselves, understanding that supplements play an important role in maintaining and improving health.  In a recent study, 72% of physicians and 89% of nurses reported taking supplements.  So why do only 68% of the rest of us do so?

Supplements from Shaklee,  #1 natural nutrition company in the U.S. are 100% guaranteed, so there is no risk to try them.  A Landmark Study conducted last year concluded that people who used multiple Shaklee supplements over a long period of time had markedly better health overall than both people who either used:

• no supplements or

• another brand of multivitamin/multimineral supplement

as measured by higher blood levels of key nutrients and more optimal levels of key health biomarkers.

To see the study in its entirety, go to http://www.nutritionj.com/content/6/1/30

To order supplements, visit www.shaklee.net/healthbynature

 



Vitamin B: Why Is It So Necessary?

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Vitamin B plays an incredibly important role in the functioning of the human body.  There are 8 water-soluble vitamins identified as B’s, which work synergistically, meaning they are much more useful when combined than alone.  Vitamin B is rapidly depleted in our systems and needs to be constantly replaced; it also does not store well in the body.  For that reason, a quality and complete B Complex supplement is beneficial for just about anyone.

Because our levels of vitamin B get used up quickly, lack of it often results in fatigue, stress, or lack of energy.  B Complex boosts metabolism, strengthens the immune system, assists in maintaining a healthy nervous system, and encourages cell growth as well as healthy skin and muscles.  Although they work together, they have different functions which work in tandem with each other.

Vitamin B1 is also known as thiamine.  It can help improve mood, and is also good for heart health and the metabolism of carbohydrates.

Vitamin B2 goes by the name of riboflavin.  It can protect against cancer, and can prevent migraines and cataracts.

Vitamin B3 is called niacin.  Its role is to aid in the release of energy from nutrients.  It plays a role in lowering cholesterol, easing depression, and relieving arthritis.

Vitamin B5, known as panthothenic acid, is found to some degree in almost every food.  It can promote a healthy nervous system and aids in metabolism.  People who can benefit from this vitamin are those suffering from alleries, chronic fatigue and migraines.

Vitamin B6 is referred to as pyridoxene.  It aids in red blood cell production, and can alleviate symptoms of asthma and PMS.

Vitamin B7 is biotin.  It assists in the release of energy from carbohydrates.  It is also essential for hair and nail health.

Vitamin B9 is called folic acid.  This is a very important vitamin for pregnant women, as it helps in the normal development of the fetus.  Folic acid facilitates the formation of hemoglobin and is often used to treat anemia.

Vitamin B12 is essential for a healthy nervous system and assists in red blood cell formation.  It is only present in animal sources such as meat, fish, milk and eggs, and therefore supplementation is strongly recommended among vegetarians.

Choosing a supplement goes far beyond looking at the front of the label.  The ingredient list can reveal harmful preservatives and fillers.  Beware of toxic solvents that have the prefixes propyl-, ethyl-, or methyl-.  Also avoid supplements that use aluminum as a base.

It’s also crucial to examine the percentage of the RDA present in a supplement.  Many poor-quality supplements will load up on the cheaper B vitamins, like thiamine & riboflavin .  We do not need much of these vitamins, and besides, they are often present in the foods we eat already.  A good quality B Complex will have a high content of the more expensive Bs like B3, B5 and B12.

Learning about the role your supplements will help you understand why you should be taking them, and will empower you to be proactive in your health.  Optimal wellness should be a priority for each and every one of us, to live a long and prosperous life.