Secrets of Aging Wisely

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“There has been an explosion of science in the field of aging. And I think the public doesn’t realize how far aging research has come. We have a lot of ideas about the mechanisms of aging, and tons and tons of pathways that can be optimized, tweaked, or activated to possibly extend lifespan. I think the public is probably about 30 years behind our thinking about aging. It’s as if we thought about cancer in the way we did in 1960.”  

Stuart Kim, Stanford University aging researcher

Are You Old and Wise, or Just Old?

Our culture tends to view aging as pathology. We fear it as though it is a dreaded disease. Most people believe that as we age we will become forgetful, incontinent, weak, fatigued, and senile. This leaves us afraid or depressed, both of which can further aggravate the downward spiral. Recently however, many doctors, researchers, and pro-active older people have begun to counter the prevailing wisdom about aging. Elders are speaking with knowledge and authority about their experience, and scientific research is redefining aging as a process. Our modern understanding of aging does not demand the end of health, pleasure, exercise, or mental engagement. Scientific inquiry has come a long way in support of ways to maximize vitality in our “golden years”.  We do not need to emulate our youth or negate our maturity. Instead we can learn the lessons from the science of physiology that enable us to take care of our bodies from the inside out.   It is possible to live a vital, honest expression of ourselves that honors the miles we have traveled.

The Physiology of Aging

Primitive people living in preindustrial cultures, whether in modern times or historical, show remarkable longevity and freedom from many of the chronic conditions that plague us today.   Weston A. Price, the esteemed dentist and nutritionist who studied indigenous people, found that tooth decay, cardiovascular disease, and obesity were virtually non-existent in these groups. He theorized that the vitamin rich, nutrient dense, non-processed foods that formed the basis of these diets held keys to the vital health experienced by those cultures. Today science is examining many of these same concepts and is able to analyze and define necessary foods and nutrients for a revitalized approach to health and aging. Today our wisdom is anchored in research and science.

Intelligent and Informed Aging

This cultural change in beliefs about aging can have tangible effects in how we experience life and what we feel our bodies are capable of. After all, it is pretty stressful to accept the definition of aging as decline. No one really wants to be “over the hill”! There are many common sense lifestyle factors that one can change as well as nutritional strategies for taking charge of one’s health as the years progress. Risk factors you can change include:

  • Poor Nutrition Habits
  • Smoking
  • Inactivity
  • Elevated Blood Pressure
  • High Cholesterol
  • Obesity and being Overweight
  • Excessive Alcohol
  • Stress

Listen to Your Gut

Eat the foods that make you feel good for the long haul rather that for instant gratification. If you eat lots of empty calories or sugary snacks, chances are your energy will drop, you’ll feel emotionally drained, and your tummy might actually hurt. These are signals directly from your gut!  Our physiologies were designed to thrive on nutrient dense foods such as vegetables, fruits, pasture raised meats and eggs, and whole grains. Proteins and fats should be eaten together to maximize absorption. As we age, our systems produce fewer digestive enzymes. Adopt good gut hygiene by supplementing with digestive enzymes to assist with nutrient absorption and decrease inflammation and oxidation from undigested food. In addition, aging guts tend to lose one of the key probiotic species necessary for optimal colon function. The colon (or large intestine) is the site of most of the bacterial and fungal population that keeps metabolism running smoothly. Without Bifidobacterium, immune and nervous system functioning may be compromised. Bifidobacterium is therefore an essential ingredient in a senior probiotic. Look for Bifido species in Mercola Complete and Catie’s Proflora probiotics. Many of today’s most difficult diseases are the result of inflammation which begins when toxins make the gut lining become permeable. This is often referred to as “Leaky Gut”.  Restore is a revolutionary new supplement for the gut which strengthens and repairs the membranes in the intestines bringing the all the body’s systems back into a healthy homeostasis.

The mouth and teeth are the entry to the digestive system but are often overlooked when thinking about supplementation. Take zinc to help aging taste buds restore their sense of taste and pleasure. CoQ10 in the converted form of ubiquinol helps prevent tooth loss at the same time that it ramps up your immune system and your brain. Finally, consider giving the body a full 12 hours of overnight fasting to allow it to move all the remaining food through the intestines. If it is not bogged down with digestion it can move the probiotics further into the colon where they do their most good.

Bone Up

Bones are constantly being replenished although the process can slow as we get up in years. In order for bone synthesis to keep up with bone loss there are several critical factors. First, exercise that engages the muscles against the bone keeps the bones strong. Secondly, one must get enough vitamin D, which tends to be harder to absorb with age. The best source of Vitamin D may be sunlight, but whole food supplements such as cod liver oil ensure that the bones and immune system are getting what they need, even when the sun isn’t shining. Catie’s Raw Vegetable Calcium provides the third necessary ingredient in bone and tooth health. Calcium is particularly tricky to absorb in isolation making it all the more important that Catie’s is a raw, whole food calcium. It happens to be a good source of vitamin D as well. Vitamin K2 supports the metabolism of many other nutrients and is needed for calcium to be directed to the bones. K2 also contributes to heart health and is useful in preventing calcified arteries. Lastly, magnesium assures adequate strength and density of bones and teeth. It is necessary for many biochemical reactions in the body including absorption and utilization of calcium. Take Catie’s Whole Food Magnesium or combine your calcium and magnesium in a balanced 1:1 ratio with Natural Vitality CalMag.

Power Up Your Brain

A 12 hour overnight fast is not only good for the gut. It also benefits the brain. There is a strong connection between the intestines (or gut) and the brain to the point where stress can affect bowel movements and gut integrity.  Conversely, stomach problems can result in depression, anxiety, and other emotional problems. A 12 hour overnight fast enables the brain to do repair work and eliminate unhealthy cells. The process is called apoptosis, and it happens most effectively when digestion is complete. Allowing apoptosis to occur regularly has the direct effect of clear thinking the next day and preventing cognitive decline for the long-term.

There are three powerful anti-aging supplements for the brain. One of them, CoQ10, reduced into its more bio-available form of ubiquinol, was also mentioned as a supplement for the gut. This is no accident. Ubiquinol is critical for the production of aerobic energy throughout the body. Many age related diseases are results of cellular dysfunction and oxidation both of which may be prevented by ubiquinol’s strong antioxidant action. This includes mental processes such as alertness and clarity of thought, which can be enhanced with ubiquinol. The second top anti-aging supplement is resveratrol. Resveratrol can improve blood supply to the brain, decrease the chance of blood clots or aneurysms, and support cellular energy. Resveratrol is not found naturally in the body, but can be found in grapes and Japanese knotweed. Supplementing with a quality brand of resveratrol such as Perfect Resgrape or Biotivia Transmax can provide what some researchers have referred to as the “Fountain of Youth”,  especially in regard to brain protective properties. The third highly beneficial anti-aging antioxidant is Acai. The Acai berry from Brazil is harvested sustainably from the Amazon palm tree locally known as “the Tree of Life”. Recognized for its ability to reduce stress, improve mood, and support memory into the senior years, Acai provides the omega fatty acids necessary for brain and cardiovascular health. It is a good source of fiber while being low in fructose thereby supporting digestive health as well.

A Blueprint for Aging

There are no ends to the lengths that people may go in order to look and appear younger. An entire market of products has built up around the demand for ways to combat the effects of aging whether it is beauty creams offering youthful skin, plastic surgery to mold and sculpt the aging body, or sexual enhancement pills offering hours of frisky action. By contrast, some promote the idea of aging gracefully. This seems to connote a degree of passive acceptance as we try to convince ourselves that we are now esteemed elders and can afford to look the part. Both of these perspectives seem to involve the belief that degeneration and loss of function is inevitable. Fortunately there is a third option for aging strategically. We can look to the experts in the fields of physiology, aging, and supplementation and decide what makes the most sense for us. What is applicable? What can be incorporated that could have critical life enhancing effects? We can design our own blueprint using the best that science has to offer.  Perhaps this is the truest way to wise and graceful aging.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Science-Backed Tips to Rev Up Your Metabolism and Lose Weight In the New Year

metabolism_boostersBy Ali Wetherbee

As we say goodbye to 2014 and look forward to the coming year, chances are that one of your New Year’s resolutions is to lose weight. It’s the number one resolution Americans make. But, if you’re like many of us, it’s likely that you have already been eating a clean, healthy diet, trying to cut calories, and even exercising consistently, but still can’t seem to get those stubborn pounds to budge. What’s going on? Why does the fat continue to accumulate in all your trouble areas? What can you do in 2015 to improve your chances of weight loss success? Recent articles from Time magazine and Dr. Mercola highlighted an array of tips for boosting your metabolism. Read on to find out what you can do to make 2015 the year you actually keep your New Year’s resolution.

Trick #1: Rule out inflammation

Chronic, low-level inflammation is often the culprit behind weight gain. A subtle food allergy or sensitivity may leave your body resistant to insulin and leptin, causing pounds to pile on and leaving you at risk for more severe health issues. Offending foods may include:

  • Highly processed foods and junk food; shop the perimeter of the store to avoid these
  • Food additives such as MSG, high fructose corn syrup, and hydrogenated oils
  • Sugars — particularly fructose, commonly found in fruits, veggies, and honey
  • GMOs, prevalent in corn, soy, milk, sugar, zucchini and yellow squash, papaya, canola, and aspartame
  • Grains: especially refined grains like white bread & white rice, but whole grains are also a possible offender
  • Gluten, found in most baked goods, breads, crackers, cereals, pastas, and packaged foods
  • Nuts, as these contain inflammatory histamines and tyramines
  • Dairy, which some people cannot properly digest and which is often full of antibiotics and hormones
  • Alcohol: too much can cause irritation, inflammation, and damage to the intestinal lining

Try keeping a food diary to see if there is any connection between what you are eating and any physical symptoms. Or, eliminate all potential suspects for 4-6 weeks (or until you feel well), then add foods back in slowly, one at a time, and notice any immediate or delayed reactions. Consider adding an anti-inflammatory whole food supplement to your regime to calm the inflammatory response and help your body heal. Options include Mercola Curcumin Advanced, made from inflammation-fighting raw turmeric, and Green Pasture Fermented Cod Liver Oil or Walkabout Emu Oil, which both contain anti-inflammatory fatty acids.

Trick #2: Drink more water

A study presented to the American Chemical Society found that over the course of three months, those who drank two glasses of water before each meal lost five pounds more, on average, than those who didn’t. What a simple, inexpensive way to boost your weight loss! Aim to drink half of your body weight in ounces; for example, if you weigh 200 pounds, your goal would be to drink 100 ounces of water a day. Staying hydrated throughout the day keeps your metabolism in gear and leaves you feeling more energized. Some people find that pre-filling a large container of water each morning helps them meet their hydration goals. There are also apps available to help you track water intake right from your phone.

Trick #3: Incorporate whey protein into your diet

According to Paul Arciero, professor of Health and Exercise Sciences at Skidmore College, “Whey protein increases calorie burn and fat utilization, helps the body maintain muscle, and triggers the brain to feel full.” While all proteins are thermogenic, meaning they cause the body to produce heat and burn more calories, studies — including one in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition — have found that whey is more thermogenic than other proteins such as soy or casein. Consuming a healthy protein within two hours of exercising ensures the greatest muscle repair and growth. Choose a high quality whey protein without added sugars or fillers, such as Dr. Tony’s Lite’N-Up Vanilla Whey Protein or Pure Whey Protein Plus Double Dutch Chocolate. Add a scoop to your daily smoothie, or whip up a batch of energy balls to snack on throughout the day.

Trick #4: Move more

Whether it’s skipping the elevator to take the stairs or tapping your foot at your desk, every little bit counts! In fact, research has found that simply fidgeting — things like shifting in your chair, bouncing your leg, or pacing, which researchers call “NEAT” (non-exercise activity thermogenesis) — can burn an extra 350 calories a day, which could lead to an additional pound of weight loss every ten days. Find ways to work more movement into your day. This is particularly important if you work a desk job. Sitting for hours on end can counteract your daily workouts and leave you more susceptible to weight gain as well as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and other serious and chronic illnesses. The average American office worker sits for 13-15 hours a day, which is 10 hours more than those who work in farming communities and live more active lifestyles. There are lots of options for those whose livelihoods depend on desk work: adapt your desk to allow you to stand while working, get a treadmill desk or an under-desk bike, or sit on a yoga ball. If these aren’t options, get up and move for 5-10 minutes of every hour. Walk over to your co-worker’s cubicle instead of calling or messaging him, take a short break every hour to stretch or run a flight of stairs, or use your lunch break to take a long walk. These little bursts of activity will put you on the road to better health and a faster metabolism.


Continue with Part 2 to learn more easy tips to optimize fat burn!

Beat the Winter Blues

Natural_mood_enhancerBy Ali Wetherbee

As the days get colder and darker, 25 million people across the country suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) and up to 20% of Americans are dragged down by a milder form of seasonal depression. Depressed mood is not the only symptom of the winter blues; many may not notice any change in mood but instead will experience low energy, fatigue, trouble waking in the morning, insomnia, increased appetite, carbohydrate cravings, and weight gain. Other mood changes include irritability, anxiety, panic attacks, a lack of interest in usual activities, and withdrawal from family and friends. You may experience just a couple of these issues or many; make sure to see your doctor to be sure another medical condition is not causing your symptoms. If your doctor gives the OK for you to treat your winter blues naturally, here are some things you can try.

Omega-3s

Omega-3 supplementation, ideally from fish oil, is one of the most important things you can do to counteract seasonal depression, because these essential fatty acids increase production of serotonin. Studies on various populations throughout the world find that in countries where little or no fish is consumed, depression rates are up to 50 times greater than countries with high fish consumption. Multiple studies have found that low PUFA (polyunsaturated fatty acid) levels are associated with more severe depression. A Norwegian study with over 21,000 participants found that regular cod liver oil supplementation led to 30% fewer depressive symptoms, with longer periods of supplementation correlating with the lowest levels of depression. Green Pasture Fermented Cod Liver Oil is an excellent source of omega-3s/PUFAs and is one of the highest quality fish oil supplements on the market. It is available in several flavors and either liquid or capsule form. If you are already taking fish oil, now is the time to increase your daily dose. While fish and fish oil are generally considered the ideal sources of omega-3s, vegetarians and vegans may experience some of the omega-3 benefits from walnuts and flax seed oil.

Vitamin D

The other essential component in combatting SAD is ensuring that you are getting adequate vitamin D. Called “the sunlight vitamin” by many, vitamin D supplementation is particularly crucial for those who get little direct sunlight exposure. People with depression often have low vitamin D levels, which makes sense since this vitamin is necessary for serotonin and dopamine production. A review of research published in Nutrients found that in the studies without flaws, vitamin D supplementation of 800IU or more, when substantial enough to demonstrate a change in vitamin levels, was about as effective as antidepressant medication at managing depression. There is also some speculation that low vitamin D levels signal our bodies to go into winter metabolic mode, leading to weight gain over the coldest months. While the Recommended Daily Allowance of Vitamin D is only 400IU for adults, many experts are now recommending much larger doses, up to 4000 or 5000IU a day or more, for optimal health and wellbeing. Vitamin Code Raw D3 contains 5000IU of raw, whole food D3, along with probiotics and enzymes to optimize absorption.

Exercise

Since exercise boosts serotonin levels and levels of other feel-good hormones, working out daily can go a long way in easing the blues. If you don’t enjoy running and biking outside in the cold, you can join a gym, invest in a treadmill or elliptical, or find home workouts online or on your phone. Just half an hour a day, or an hour three times a week, has been shown to be just as effective as taking an antidepressant, alleviating depression in 60-70% of study participants. If it’s been a while since you’ve last exercised, or you’re having trouble getting going due to lack of motivation, start out with just 10 jumping jacks in the morning, and slowly work up to a full workout. Check out our Pinterest board for workout ideas and routines. Find something you love, because you’ll be more likely to stick to it if you enjoy doing it.

Reset Your Body Clock

Swap your light bulbs for full-spectrum lights, and get plenty of time outdoors or by a window. Sunlight on a bright sunny day can be 100 times brighter than even the brightest indoor lighting. Morning light is crucial to keeping your body clock on track, so try to get outside for a short walk when you start your day. Light therapy boxes are available too, if you aren’t able to spend time outdoors. Always get your daily light exposure during daytime hours, because at night it can interfere with melatonin production. Also, melatonin levels decline as we age, sometimes preventing the deep, restorative sleep that we need to feel our best. Some people with the winter blues find that a small dose of melatonin not only helps them sleep better and regulates the internal body clock, but also improves mood and other depressive symptoms. Try Melatonin Sleep Support Spray by Mercola, and consider experimenting with the timing of your dose, as some SAD studies have found benefit to afternoon, and even morning, melatonin supplementation.

Herbal Antidepressants

Several herbs and natural formulas can help with depression, whether seasonal or chronic. A supplement known as 5-HTP, or 5-hydroxytryptophan, can help raise serotonin levels as it is a precursor to serotonin synthesis. Use this supplement with caution, as it may interact with prescription antidepressants, and take it only for a short period of time. SAM-e, a chemical naturally found in the body, is also available as a supplement, and can reduce symptoms of depression. An herb called St. John’s Wort seems to work similarly to an SSRI by keeping serotonin circulating through the brain, and many studies have found it to be as effective as prescription antidepressants. None of these three supplements should be taken alongside a prescription antidepressant without a doctor’s supervision, as this could lead to life-threatening serotonin syndrome. Consult your doctor before trying these supplements if you suffer from bipolar disorder.

Diet & Vitamins

Despite the intense carb cravings you may be experiencing, it is best to avoid sugar, starches, and simple carbohydrates such as white bread or pasta, as they will cause highs and lows as well as lead to weight gain. Also avoid or limit caffeine, which can suppress serotonin levels. Instead, focus on bright, colorful fruits and veggies, whole grains, fish, nuts, and seeds.

Make sure you are getting enough vitamins and minerals. Calcium and magnesium are required not only for serotonin production, but also for absorption and utilization of vitamin D. Magnesium has a relaxing effect on nerves and muscles. Dr. Frank Lipman, who combines Eastern and Western medicine in his practice, says, “Insufficient levels of magnesium can compound SAD symptoms by inhibiting the conversion of tryptophan to 5-HTP, which can decrease the production of mood-stabilizing serotonin and melatonin. To boost magnesium levels in winter, I recommend taking 400-600mg at bedtime.” Try Catie’s Whole Food Magnesium along with Catie’s Raw Vegetable Calcium, or if you prefer an all-in-one supplement, opt for Garden of Life Raw Calcium, which contains 80% of the daily value of calcium as well as 100% of magnesium, along with other trace minerals, or Natural Vitality Balanced CalMag, which contains the ideal ratio of calcium to magnesium.

A B-Complex supplement is also helpful. Research is finding that high B vitamin intake is associated with less depression. B-12 supplementation often improves energy, and B-6, which is particularly supportive during periods of stress, aids in the production of serotonin, melatonin, and dopamine. Garden of Life Vitamin Code Raw B-Complex provides these essential vitamins as well as inositol, a vitamin-like substance that has been shown to improve depression by augmenting serotonin activity in the brain. Catie’s Whole Food B-Complex is another great option.

What else can you do?

Go for a massage — studies have found it to increase serotonin. It doesn’t seem to matter if the massage is done by a professional, a partner, or a friend. Any physical contact with another human may be beneficial, so if you can’t get a massage, at least get (or give) more hugs, and spend more time cuddling with your partner or children. Another simple way to boost serotonin levels is to reminisce about happy moments. “Think happy thoughts,” such as remembering in vivid detail your wedding day, a fun outing with a relative, a party with a friend, or a ride on the carousel when you were a child. Remembering negative events has the opposite effect and decreases serotonin, so try to avoid listening to bad news stories or rehashing difficult life situations. Consider coming up with a happy memory list to use as a starting point for those moments when you find yourself reminiscing about sad events.

Get Help

If these supplements and lifestyle changes are not helping, or if you are experiencing more severe depression, suicidal thoughts, or other serious problems, consult a doctor or therapist immediately. Don’t attempt to fight it off on your own — help is available. Natural options are great as a first resort or for milder winter blues, but some people may require professional treatment. If you are in crisis, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 immediately.

Coconut Oil for Pets

Coconut_oil_hookworm_remedy (1)By Ali Wetherbee

Coconut oil is becoming well-known as a superfood with its antibacterial, antiviral, and anti-fungal properties. It’s not just useful for humans, though — coconut oil is a perfect addition to your pet’s diet, and can reduce his susceptibility to viruses, infections, and parasites. Full of beneficial medium-chain triglycerides (MCT), lauric acid, and healthy saturates fats, coconut oil offers your pet numerous advantages:

  • Reduces or eliminates parasites such as Giardia
  • Prevents and alleviates yeast infections, including Candida
  • Cuts cancer risk
  • Heals skin problems
  • Keeps coat and skin healthier
  • Improves digestion
  • Enhances nutrient absorption
  • Maintains healthy weight and boosts metabolism
  • Normalizes insulin levels and thyroid function
  • Prevents diabetes
  • Treats skin inflammation, wounds, rashes, and infections
  • Neutralizes pet odors and bad breath
  • Boosts the immune system
  • Eliminates fleas
  • Reduces hairballs
  • Increases energy
  • Improves problems with joints or ligaments, including arthritis

Dosage

The recommended daily dose is 1 teaspoon per 10 pounds of pet weight, or 1 tablespoon for every 30 pounds. Start slowly, with as little as 1/4 teaspoon, and gradually work up to the full recommended dose. Some pets will have flu-like symptoms — fatigue, discomfort, or diarrhea — if they consume too much coconut oil too quickly. This is often a detox reaction, since coconut oil destroys all the bacteria, parasites, yeasts, fungi, and other microorganisms in your pet’s system, but increasing the dose slowly should minimize or eliminate this reaction. You can also divide the dose — half with breakfast, the rest with dinner. If your dog or cat seems uncomfortable or has any adverse effects, reduce the dosage to allow his body to get used to the oil, and slowly work back up to the target amount.

How to Give Your Pet Coconut Oil

Coconut oil should be consumed with food. Both cats and dogs will often happily lick up a spoonful of the oil before meals. You can also mix it directly into their food or add it to your recipe if you cook your own pet food. One trick is to put a bit of coconut oil on your cat’s paw artbefore meals; she will lick it off.

Coconut oil can also be used externally for wounds, rashes, infections, dry skin or coat, and flea prevention. Rub a generous amount into your pet’s skin and coat. Wrap the affected area with a towel for a few minutes to allow it to absorb into the skin before being licked off.

Organic Coconut Oil from Peaceful Planet

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Peaceful Planet offers two great organic coconut oils: Perfect Coconut Oil and Green Pasture Blue Breeze Coconut Oil.

Your pet can also get multiple healthy oils in one simple supplement. Green Pasture Blue Ice Infused Coconut Oil includes not only coconut oil, but also Fermented Cod Liver Oil, High Vitamin Butter Oil, and Skate Liver Oil.

Learn All About the Weston A. Price Foundation and the Benefits of a Traditional Diet at the Weston A. Price Foundation Conference in Massachusetts This Weekend

By Ali Wetherbee

Weston_Price_DietThe Weston A. Price Wise Traditions Regional Conference will take place in Southbridge, Massachusetts this weekend, September 20-21, and Peaceful Planet will be there! This is an amazing opportunity to learn more about traditional diets and holistic health and hear from speakers such as Sally Fallon Morell, author of Nourishing Traditions. For more details, including registration information, the full schedule, and a list of speakers and presentations, visit the WAPF website here.

In honor of the conference, Peaceful Planet is offering 10% OFF all of our Dr. Weston A. Price products. This includes:

…and more! Just enter coupon code: WAPCSpecial at checkout to receive your discount.

Back-to-School Essentials from Peaceful Planet

backToSchool

Whether you’re putting your kindergartner on the bus for the first time or watching your teenager drive off to high school, send them off on the right foot with these healthy, planet-friendly products!

LUNCH PRODUCTS

Litter-Free Lunches

Litter Free Lunch

This is a complete lunch kit aimed at eliminating lunch box waste. No more wasteful ziploc baggies, aluminum foil, expensive juice boxes, or individually-wrapped packaged foods! The New Wave Enviro Litter-Free Lunch Kit comes with four reusable, dishwasher and microwave safe, BPA-free plastic containers, plus a BPA-free plastic water bottle. It all fits neatly into the insulated, machine washable lunch bag, which comes in your choice of three fun, gender-neutral designs appropriate for toddlers right on up to teens and adults. Need some lunch-packing inspiration? Head on over to our School Lunch Ideas board on Pinterest for creative, healthy, wholesome ideas and recipes!

Divided Stainless Steel Containers

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These New Wave Enviro Stainless Steel Divided Containers are a great alternative to chemical-laden plastics or breakable glass. The containers are dishwasher safe and come with covers in your choice of pink, blue, or yellow. Stainless steel is toxin-free, non-leaching, and BPA-free. Pack crackers and cheese on one side, sliced fruit on the other; veggies in one compartment and dip right beside. Prefer a non-divided container, but still want the stainless steel? Check out these Stainless Steel Containers, also by New Wave Enviro. Either container can be tossed into a bag or backpack, and two or three will fit perfectly in our Bamboo Lunch Bag.

Flip ‘N Sip Water Bottle

Stainless -Steel-Flip-N-Sip-Designer-Water-Bottles

Flip ‘N Sip Designer Water Bottles are made from BPA-free stainless steel and are easy to handle for even very young children. Kids will love to choose from the four designs! These water bottles are easy to clean, dishwasher safe (cap on top rack only, spout closed), and the flip-top spout means no spills. Looking for something a little different? We have a whole selection of BPA-free water bottles in both glass and stainless steel.

SUPPLEMENTS

Garden of Life Children’s Multivitamin

A multivitamin is a simple way to cover nutritional gaps for kids who tend to be picky, too rushed to eat well, or simply not a fan of veggies. Multivitamins can also provide a consistent source of nutrients for children who are erratic in their eating habits. Garden of Life Children’s Multivitamin is a whole food supplement, which is less refined. Whole food vitamins are not isolated or stripped of the beneficial, synergistic compounds that naturally occur in foods; they are closer to their natural form. They are more bioavailable and better utilized by the body, and are free of chemicals and synthetics. Garden of Life Children’s Whole Food Multivitamin is a tasty chewable gummy and contains no artificial colors, flavors, or allergens.

Vaxa Attend Strategy Pac

VXStrategyPk_MED

Whether your child is just a bit fidgety and distractible or has full-blown ADHD, the Vaxa Attend Strategy Pac can help. These all-natural, gentle homeopathic formulas are designed to improve focus, attention, memory, and concentration. Attend supports cognitive functioning, reduces nervousness and hyperactivity, and keeps the brain balanced and focused. Extress improves relaxation, sleep, and mood swings, while Memorin supports mental alertness, memory, and information processing and recall. Combined, these three products are a safe way to avoid behavioral problems, reduce frustration, and promote better learning.

Blue Ice Fermented Cod Liver Oil

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Fermented Cod Liver Oil is excellent for growing brains, because it is packed with EPA and DHA, essential fatty acids which are necessary for brain development and functioning. There is also some evidence that fish oils may be beneficial for those with ADHD (read more here). It is also an excellent source of vitamin A, which supports vision and the immune system, and vitamin D, which is good for teeth, bones, and immune functioning.

Perfect Cordyceps

PSCordyceps_MED

When it comes to immune support, Perfect Cordyceps is an excellent choice. This supplement is made from organic Cordyceps Sinensis mushrooms and may help prevent succumbing to the constant rounds of colds and flu circulating at school. What’s more, Cordyceps are an adaptogen — they help the body cope with stress and normalize mood and sleep. If your child tends to feel anxious or stressed by school, or the change in routine that heading back to school entails, Perfect Cordyceps may be the answer to helping him or her best adapt.

Melatonin Sleep Spray

Mercola Melatonin Spray

If your kids have been up late all summer long, waking up to catch the school bus may be quite the challenge! Mercola Melatonin Sleep Spray shifts the body’s internal clock back to normal with just a few simple sprays. Melatonin is a hormone, naturally produced by the body, which regulates sleep/wake cycles. This is a good supplement to have on hand all year round, when the occasional late night or vacation may significantly throw off your child’s sleep schedule.

 

2015 Back to School Sale! Get 10% OFF lunch products and supplements above with coupon code: BackToSchool

By Ali Wetherbee

Could Cod Liver Oil Be Integral to ADHD Treatment?

Cod_Liver_Oil_ADD_ADHD

Fermented Cod Liver Oil (FCLO) is often called “Food for the Brain” because of its potential benefits to the brain and nervous system. Research suggests that the omega fatty acids, particularly EPA and DHA, in FCLO may play a role in healthy brain development in babies and children, as well as in reducing neurological and mental health symptoms associated with conditions such as depression, bipolar disorder, Alzheimer’s disease, and psychosis. Medical and biochemical researcher David Horrobin said, “If you want to prevent learning disabilities in your children, feed them cod liver oil.” With the kids heading back to school in just a few short weeks, we wanted to take some time to share the research regarding ADHD and fish oil or cod liver oil supplementation. Many modern Americans are deficient in DHA and EPA, and studies have found kids with ADHD, in particular, to have lower levels of omega-3 fatty acids, and perhaps some difficulty metabolizing or utilizing available omega-3 fatty acids as well. It is possible that correcting these nutritional and biochemical deficiencies might also reduce some of the symptoms associated with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and learning disorders including dyslexia and dyspraxia.

A brief look at some of the evidence:

  • A study by L.J. Stevens et al, entitled Essential fatty acid metabolism in boys with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, found lower plasma concentrations of fatty acids in many boys with ADHD when compared to control subjects. A follow-up study noted that subjects with low omega-3 concentrations had a much greater incidence of problems in behavior, learning, health, and sleep, as well as more temper tantrums.
  • Paul Montgomery, researcher at the University of Oxford in England, proposed, “A lack of certain polyunsaturated fatty acids may contribute to dyslexia and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder.” He, along with Alexandra Richardson, published a study in a 2005 issue of Pediatrics which found substantial improvements in behavior, reading, and spelling after three months of fish oil supplementation.
  • A double-blind placebo-controlled study by Alexandra Richardson and Basant Puri found that children given a highly unsaturated fatty acid (HUFA) supplement had significantly lower scores on assessments of ADHD-related cognitive and behavioral problems after 12 weeks on the supplement, while children on the placebo experienced no improvement.
  • Research in the UK, by P. Montgomery and others, correlated lower blood DHA concentrations with worse reading skills and memory, as well as increased emotional and behavioral problems as reported by the parents. This study was published under the title, Low blood long chain omega-3 fatty acids in UK children are associated with poor cognitive performance and behavior.
  • A study by Natalie Sinn and Janet Bryan on 132 Australian children with ADHD, found that those who supplemented with polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) had significantly greater improvements in attention and behavior (particularly inattention, hyperactivity and impulsivity) over the a placebo. After 15 weeks, all participants were switched over to receive the PUFA supplement, and after 30 weeks, 40-50% of the children showed improvements in ADHD symptom scores greater than 1 standard deviation.

Are there any concerns or precautions?

Very high doses of FCLO could cause vitamin A toxicity. While some vitamin A is necessary, and has even been shown to reduce mortality, too much can be dangerous, particularly if it is a manufactured form of vitamin A. Talk with your doctor to ensure safe dosing, and look for a product as close to its natural state as possible. Some cod liver oil supplements are overly processed with high heat or chemical solvents, leaving them stripped of nutrients, and thus the final product must be fortified with synthetic vitamins A and D. Make sure your FCLO is free of mercury, lead, or other contaminants, as well as any ingredients you may be allergic or intolerant to. Many brands of FCLO contain soy in the form of soybean oil, soy lecithin, or tocopherols, and some may contain artificial colors, sweeteners, or fillers. As with any supplement, consult your doctor before use, and do not start or stop using any medications or supplements without a doctor’s supervision.

Which FCLO does Peaceful Planet recommend?

Peaceful Planet recommends Green Pasture Blue Ice Fermented Cod Liver Oil as a pure, high-quality fermented cod liver oil supplement. Green Pasture FCLO is made from wild-caught Bering Sea/Aleutian Islands fish and is unadulterated. Sustainable, traditional practices are used in the procurement and processing of Green Pasture oils. Each lot of Green Pasture Fermented Cod Liver Oil is tested for purity. While the U.S. does not set standards for contaminants in fish oils, Green Pasture FCLO meets international standards including Norwegian Medical Standards (NMS), European Pharmacopia Standards (EPS), and California Prop 65 for freshness, heavy metals (lead, mercury), and PCBs. Green Pasture is one of the only soy-free cod liver oil brands, and only pure essential oils are used for the flavored varieties.

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By Ali Wetherbee