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Choose Wellness -- Mar/08
March 09, 2008
Welcome All

The start of a new week and time for me to put pen to paper - well actually, fingers to keyboard - and bring you another Choose Wellness newsletter.

It's a beautiful day here in sunny Brisbane. In fact, it's been a great summer with very few really hot days and lots of rain which was so badly needed. This morning I've been to my regular Curves training session, and I've had my hair cut, so I'm all ready to go.

You know that I get quite passionate about the subject of nutrition, so here, after an exhaustive review of the research literature, is the final word on nutrition and health - as forwarded to me by my good friend Danielle.

  1. Japanese eat very little fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than us.
  2. Mexicans eat a lot of fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than us.
  3. Chinese drink very little red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks than us.
  4. Italians drink excessive amounts of red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks than us.
  5. Germans drink beer and eat lots of sausages and fats and suffer fewer heart attacks than us.

CONCLUSION: Eat and drink what you like. It's apparently Speaking English that kills us.

On a more serious note, here are some thoughts 'about the brain'.

It was once believed that our brain stopped growing as we got older.

New research, however, has shown that the brain cells continue to branch out and make connections throughout a person's life. Eating the right diet can help the brain make the right connections - at all ages.

Keep your brain cells, as well as all other cells, healthy by making sure you have adequate glyconutrients in your diet. One of the eight recognised essential glyconutrients is n-acetylneuraminic acid.

This nutrient, which is abundant in breast milk, is particularly important for brain development and animal studies indicate that this essential saccharide improves both memory and performance.

If you want to produce brainy children, feed them brain food. Brain development of babies and children is highly influenced by nutritional intake. Children who are fed inadequate amounts of a key nutrient will have inadequate brain growth and development resulting in a lower IQ, reduced language development, and slower fine motor development. These are the findings of an extraordinary longitudinal study conducted by a research team led by Professor Jake Najman at the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia.

The presence of adequate amounts of DHA is necessary for infant neurological development.

Omega-3 DHA 'docosahexaenoic acid' is an essential fatty acid which cannot be manufactured in our body and must be obtained daily through our diets. DHA is known to significantly alter many basic properties of cell membranes including fluidity, elasticity, permeability, and interactions with key regulatory proteins. These properties and functions in the nervous system include a modulating effect on the activity of ion channels and are believed to underlie the role of DHA in supporting electrical signaling, cellular communication, and ultimately brain functions such as memory, processing, and learning ability.

This is from a very interesting article by Barbara Minton who is a school psychologist, a published author in the area of personal finance, a breast cancer survivor using "alternative" treatments, a born existentialist, and a student of nature and all things natural. You can read her full article here.

As well as ensuring you and your children have adequate supplies of DHA, consider also vitamin supplements: Studies indicate that schoolchildren whose diets were supplemented with vitamins and minerals to ensure that they receive the standard recommended dietary allowances showed improved learning and scored higher on intelligence tests. Here are some of the vitamins which have been shown to affect behavior and learning:

  • Vitamin C is required by the brain to make neurotransmitters. In fact, the brain has a special vitamin C "pump" that draws extra vitamin C out of the blood and concentrates it in the brain.
  • Vitamin B12 is vital to maintaining healthy myelin, the tissue that covers and insulates nerve tissue.
  • Vitamin B6 deficiency causes hyper-irritability and fatigue.
  • Folic acid deficiency seems to affect neurotransmitter function, resulting in symptoms associated with depression.

While we're talking about the brain, here is a great little Rhyme by Erin Y. who was one of the winners (Grade 3 to 5) in the 'Neuroscience for Kids' Writing Contest.

The brain is the boss that runs the show
It does a lot more than just store what you know.
The cerebrum is the biggest part
It controls your speech, muscles and helps you do art.
The pituitary is as small as a pea
It determines how tall you will grow to be.
Other functions are to help you breathe, digest your food,
Circulate blood, and control your mood
Eat right, exercise, and be good to your brain
If you do, you have much to gain.

Are Glyconutrients just another fad supplement?

I am often asked "If this discovery of glyconutrients is so important, why doesn't my doctor know about it?"

This discovery is very well documented in scientific literature, but most doctors have not been trained in nutrition and so do not recognise its importance.....they will admit that they have trouble keeping up with the medical journals without worrying about the scientific ones.

To get a more complete answer to this and other questions about adding glyconutrients to your diet, check out this latest page on my website.

Did you know that the common old Gerbera Daisy can clean the air in your office or home? These plants help eliminate toxic pollutants like formaldehyde and benzene, which are found in many household products.

We are used to thinking of the indoors as a safe haven from pollution. Yet research has indicated that the indoor environment may be as much as ten times more polluted than the outdoor environment. Indoor air pollution is associated with allergies and other chronic illnesses. The EPA currently ranks indoor air pollution as one of the top five threats to public health.

People today spend as much as 90% of their lives indoors where they are bombarded with chemical emissions from building materials, glues and dyes used in furniture, carpets, household products, and personal care products. If you have a relatively new house or one that has been recently renovated, your pollution index is probably quite high. A classic NASA study found that common houseplants could improve air quality by removing pollutants. In fact, the study reported that houseplants were able to remove up to 87 percent of airborne toxins in 24 hours. Plants can remove a variety of toxic air emissions, including ammonia, formaldehyde, carbon monoxide, benzene, xylele and trichloroethylene.

Here is the full article if you'd like to read it: Create a Happy and Healthy Indoor Environment with Plants

"If you are interested in being healthy, read labels and avoid products containing high fructose corn syrup. This is a man-made sugar that enters your blood stream quickly and triggers hormonal and chemical changes that make you feel hungrier and provides no nutritional value."

Please continue to share this Choose Wellness Newsletter with your family, friends and business associates - the more the merrier!

I welcome your questions, comments or requests so please contact me if you have anything you'd like to contribute or any questions.

Until then keep well and remember

'healthy cells = healthy bodies'

Best wishes


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