Category Archives for Health & Wellness

5 Natural Remedies for PMS Relief and PMS Anxiety

 

By Theresa Harding (Updated 6/10/19)

If you’re searching for natural remedies for PMS relief and PMS anxiety to help you get through your monthly periods, keep reading.  I will share with you some remedies that have helped me. 

Learning how to manage PMS (Premenstrual Syndrome) Emotions is not something many women want to ever have to address in their lifetime.  It is, however, an issue that should not be ignored.  During my teen years, I would hear other girls complaining about their PMS symptoms. 

It sounded more like they complained about their experience month after month, so I started attributing all women’s similar complaints to some form of PMS anger.  PMS is one of the most common forms of hormonal imbalance for women of childbearing age, resulting in both psychological and physical period symptoms.


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The average woman experiences 450 periods in her lifetime.  That’s triple the number of our ancestors, and they lived much shorter lives and were most of the time pregnant and nursing more than today. 

Since more than 75 percent of women today deal with PMS symptoms during menstruation, it’s clear that a lot of women are experiencing the uncomfortable side effects of this natural biological process.  In fact, 30 to 40 percent of women reporting PMS symptoms say PMS impairs their daily activities, leaving many of them looking for natural remedies for PMS and cramps.

PMS symptoms may start a week or two before your period and may be mild to severe.  If you have dysmenorrhea then you experience painful menstruation, typically involving abdominal cramps (one of the most unpleasant period symptoms).

Hormone balance is the primary factor that will determine the PMS symptoms that someone experiences.

Some Causes of PMS Symptoms

Every woman faces PMS in her life. During the early days of the menstrual cycle, and especially just before 2-3 days of her menses, she faces mood swings, becomes irritated at times and feel anxious too. Due to all such symptoms, her daily lifestyle becomes disruptive.

Women, you can manage your PMS symptoms without sacrificing your routine. But How?

Some Causes of PMS Anxiety

Studies have shown that before a woman’s period, a stress hormone known as cortisol tends to increase. In many ways, anxiety is a form of long-term stress, and stress is known to make anxiety symptoms worse.  So, before your period, when cortisol levels shoot up, anxiety symptoms would be expected to shoot up with them.

It’s likely that women suffering from this type of PMS anxiety have lower levels of anxiety throughout the month that are simply exacerbated by cortisol, rather than PMS causing anxiety itself.

Similarly, any chronic stress is believed to make PMS symptoms worse. Since anxiety and stress sensations are a part of PMS symptoms if you’re suffering from severe stress before your PMS symptoms occur, that stress will increase your PMS symptoms, which in turn will increase your stress symptoms and so on.

Hormones play a direct role in the way your body produces and responds to the neurotransmitters that control stress and anxiety, so it’s likely that when these hormones have lost their balance, anxiety, and stress are the result.

Ways to Manage PMS Anxiety 

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1. Exercise

Exercise is a crucial part of healthy living and an important part of dealing with anxiety caused by PMS. Several studies have linked aerobic workouts with controlling anxiety symptoms.

It can reduce the stress level of your life so eventually reduces the PMS symptoms.  Make sure you exercise daily at least for 30 minutes; this way you will not only get rid of emotional and physical PMS symptoms but you will stay fit too.   

Choose any workout routine that can move you and is fun.  If not proper exercise, go for a 20-minute walk.  One activity involves simply letting out all your emotions on paper, since bottling them up can be harmful to your ability to fight anxiety.

2. Herbal Remedies

Herbal remedies can take time in showing the results but then the results will be everlasting. Some are:

3. Dietary Changes 

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It’s important to eat foods that will help you with the PMS symptoms if you want to get alleviate the discomfort.   Dietary changes include adding Calcium, Vitamin E, Magnesium and Tryptophan into your diet, and possibly abstaining from caffeine.

Heavy salt intake can cause more bloating, caffeine can excite your anxiety or irritability, alcohol may increase your depression symptoms, and excess of sugar can upset your blood sugar and temper.

Increase the intake of fruits and green vegetables one week prior to your periods. Moreover, it is not just about what to eat; what matters is what to eat and how to eat. Eat at regular intervals of time to avoid increasing blood sugar level!

Women who experience PMS symptoms typically are not getting enough calcium, B vitamins (especially B6),  vitamins K,  and vitamin E, among other nutrients from their diets.  For instance, magnesium deficiency also plays a role. 

When you don’t consume an ample daily supply of these essential nutrients, your body demands urgent attention by intensifying your PMS symptoms.  We must not overlook our vitamin D intake, which most Americans are deficient in. 

I first learned about the effectiveness of vitamin D for PMS from Dr. Mercola and immediately started making it a part of my diet;  Not only for myself,  but for my family too!  The more you are informed, the more you can make effective changes to your health.

Best Foods to Obtain Vital Nutrients and Decrease PMS symptoms:

Plant Foods

Studies have shown that women with plant-based diets high in vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, and herbs have fewer symptoms of PMS.  These foods include avocados, green leafy vegetables, which possess a diuretic effect and are also a great source of calcium and magnesium, as well as vitamin Kwhich helps get rid of period cramps.

Eating a half or full avocado daily can naturally balance hormones because of its nutritional profile is rich in healthy fat, fiber, magnesium, potassium and vitamin B6. An avocado sliced up in a salad full of dark, leafy greens plus feta cheese is the ultimate PMS food combo because it provides a potent dose of PMS symptom-fighting nutrients in one healthy meal.

Calcium-Rich Foods

So far, calcium is among the most science-backed nutrients when it comes to effective dietary treatments for PMS.   Some good choices include raw milk, cooked kale, broccoli, sardines, and yogurt. The benefits of consuming kefir can also help reduce menstrual cramps and related symptoms.

High-Fiber Foods

PMS can cause GI problems, which is why we should get at least 30 grams of fiber daily. Fiber also helps to maintain proper hormone balance by binding to estrogen and carrying it out of the body. When you’re looking at the best PMS foods, eating foods rich in fiber should be considered.

Flaxseed products can help promote healthy estrogen metabolism, which is a key component of managing PMS symptoms.  Along with that is Wheat Germ, which is rich in E and B vitamins.  Other vitamin E-rich foods include almonds, sunflower seeds, and spinach.

Wild-Caught Fish

You probably wouldn’t think that this one could be a natural remedy for PMS relief and PMS anxiety, but it can help.  Diet is an important factor in managing your health and how you feel.  Your emotions are effected by what you eat. 

We eat Salmon at least twice a week.  So I can truly vouch for this suggestion because Salmon has many health benefits.  Once I learned that the Omega-3 rich foods helped with PMS symptoms, I didn’t waste time with this one!

Plus my kids love Salmon, so I quickly taught them how to cook it without my assistance.  (Kudos there)!  Foods high in omega-3 Fats like wild-caught salmon, sardines, and anchovies help reduce pain and inflammation that make PMS symptoms worse.

4. Essential Oils- The Best Essential Oils for PMS

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In my experience, I’ve found the best essential oils that really gave me relief in my lower back and my abdomen.   I simply mixed these oils with my favorite carrier oil-Almond Oil and massaged the mix over my aching lower back and abdomen and found relief this way.  It actually helped!

These oils have some amazing medicinal properties in them.  They’re a staple in my home.  Whenever my kids get sick, the first thing they say to me is, “Mom, I need an essential oil for this or that.”  It makes me happy that they know the value of the oils and their benefits.

One essential oil is Clary Sage e.o.  it naturally balances hormones, which can help reduce symptoms.  I like to mix Chamomile, lavender, and Cypress essential oils with a carrier oil (like almond oil) and then rub on the lower abdomen. 

 Cypress e.o. improves circulation and can help you get rid of cramps.  I also like to apply a warm compress to my abdomen for 2 to 5 minutes.  To reduce tension, stress, and cramping, you can mix ylang-ylang e.o.  along with lavender e.o. in a carrier oil like almond oil and apply to the back of the neck and lower abdomen.

5.Plan Ahead

I learned that if you prepare for your period every month, you can avoid suffering from any undue pains before they conquer your body and turn you into the beast no one wants to see in you.

I prepare ahead by taking Evening Primrose Oil 7 days before my period is expected to start.  This method gets the herbs circulating in my body and really helps me to avoid the irritating emotional roller coaster mood-changing effects.  It really works! 

I learned this technique from a gynecologist when I was suffering from PMS pains consistently one year.  That year was so irritating to me that I decided to go talk with my OBGYN to discuss what I could do to stop the madness.  It was driving me insane.

Not having anything on-hand to remedy your pain can make it difficult for you to get through this change every month.  Don’t dread this time of the month, instead, check your stock and make sure you have what you need to bring you comfort. 

I like to take inventory of my supplies after my period ends each month.  This way, I’m not scrambling to find something when the discomfort appears unexpectedly.   You always want to be prepared to apply these remedies.  

I don’t know if this is what everyone else does, but if you haven’t tried this technique, give it a try and see how effective it can be for you.  Follow-through is crucial though, so if you want the pain relief, stay committed to these remedies and each month, you will notice your PMS symptoms lessen.

Conclusion- Chart Your Symptoms

At last, I would highly recommend charting your symptoms.  Although PMS is actual, you should first chart your symptoms to be sure that you are actually experiencing PMS and not another situation like depression. 

Charting my symptoms has worked because, in my experience, I have compared one month to another to see what remedy was most effective and which one gave me no results.  Then I made adjustments along the way. 

I hope you find relief in using these natural remedies for PMS relief and PM anxiety so you can get through each month pain-free.  Just remember, everyone may get relief from different remedies, but I listed the most effective one’s I’ve tried.  Don’t try everything at once either. 

Start by trying one supplement and a tea and see how you feel.  Then the next month, try a different remedy if you don’t find relief from the first remedy.  Just be patient and understand that results won’t happen overnight.  Lifestyle and diet make a difference too.

As with all things, don’t try any new supplements or diet programs before speaking with your doctor first.

What natural remedies do you use to get through PMS symptoms?  Are they effective?

https://www.womenshealth.gov/menstrual-cycle/premenstrual-syndrome#b

https://www.womenshealthnetwork.com/pms-and-menstruation/pms-symptoms.aspx

https://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2012/03/14/can-vitamin-d3-ease-menstrual-cramps.aspx

https://www.womenshealthnetwork.com/pms-and-menstruation/pms-symptoms.aspx

https://nutritionfacts.org/2014/04/17/treating-menstrual-pain-with-diet/

Diet is important when it comes to managing the symptoms of PMS.  Choosing nutrient-dense foods and eliminating nutrient-deficient foods will help you long-term to promote better health.  That’s why I create a Free Diet Makeover course because I want to make it easy for you to take the first step in your health journey. 

This is what I did to help my family eliminate the health challenges we were faced with years ago.  The foods you eat will keep you healthy or keep you sick.  Click below to start your free course.

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9 Benefits of Drinking Water You Must Know!

 

By Theresa Harding            Updated June 13, 2019.                

When I began my research on the benefits of drinking water and how drinking enough water can influence our health, it amazed me to learn the many ways in which water and the human body work together to solve many of our health challenges.

In fact, when I increased my water consumption, the dehydration symptoms I experienced disappeared almost instantly!  I had lower back pains without ever injuring my back, so I couldn’t understand where the pain came from!

I learned later that the back pain was one of the dehydration symptoms.  Then I continued my research because I love to research many topics when I need answers.

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This post contains affiliate links, which means I may receive a commission, at no cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link.

My Learning Experience About Drinking Water

In my search to find answers, I read the book “You’re Not Sick, You’re Thirsty“, by Dr. F. Batmanghelidj I couldn’t believe what I was reading from this doctor!

I thought that any health problems we experience only comes from heredity or just by chance.  Little did I know that long-term dehydration is one of the main reasons for some of our common diseases.

If you want to learn what those 7 Top Reasons are, then keep reading.

Did you know that the effects of chronic dehydration can wreak havoc on your health?  Water and dehydration are two topics that are often ignored when it comes to our health. 

It is important to understand the effects of water and the human body and how your health could be majorly influenced when your body suffers from dehydration continually over time.

I learned more than I expected about the importance of water and the human body and not ignoring my body’s cries for water.  My experience with the unnecessary ailments in my body was due to my consistent lack of drinking water.

Keep reading below, because you too will be amazed at the benefits you’re missing if your body is experiencing the effects of chronic dehydration.

I do hope that after reading this article on water and dehydration, you will change the way you look at the most needed substance available to us on this earth today. Water!  We need to understand and embrace the benefits of water.

How Your Body Uses Water

The human body can survive for five weeks without food, but only five days without water! This elixir of life is involved in every aspect of body function, from digestion to excretion.

Water also helps maintain normal body temperature and aid in the absorption of vital nutrients.

Without water, we experience chronic mild to moderate dehydration. Dehydration is the root cause of several health conditions, including faulty digestion, fatigue, and inability to lose weight, achy joints, and dry skin.

In his book, “You’re Not Sick, You’re Thirsty, Dr. F. Batmanghelidj explains more in-depth the list of diseases that can stem from the continued dehydration.  He says “It’s no miracle, just common sense backed by my years of research and investigation on why water works the way that it does to keep us healthy and pain-free”.

If you want to learn more before reading his book, visit his website

Some Dehydration Symptoms

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Dehydration Symptoms

Here is a list of dehydration symptoms that will help you in recognizing the symptoms you might be misdiagnosing for something more serious you’re your health.  Aside from the common symptoms like intense thirst or sweating too much, here are some of the mild and severe dehydration symptoms:

Dry, sticky mouth

Extreme thirst

Sleepiness or tiredness

Irritability and confusion

Dry skin

Sunken eyes

A headache

Dry skin that doesn’t bounce back when you pinch it

Constipation

Low blood pressure

Dizziness or light-headedness

Rapid heartbeat

Few or no tears when crying

Rapid breathing

Minimal urine

No tears when crying

Sunken soft spot (fontanel) on their head

Few or no tears when they cry

Dry mouth

Few wet diapers

Drowsiness

Fast breathing

The Effects of Dehydration

The effects of chronic dehydration may affect your organs and lead to kidney stones, cholesterol problems, constipation, and liver, joint, and muscle damage.  One way to tell if you are in need of more water in your body is to look at the color of your urine. 

If it’s a dark yellow to almost orange in color, (and you’re not taking any medications or vitamin supplements that would make it this color), then you might need to increase your water intake.  Your urine should be a pale yellow or lighter in color if your water intake is adequate.

Another way to check for dehydration is to pinch the back of your hand.  If your skin bounces back you may be well dehydrated.  If your skin slowly returns in place, you may be dehydrated.

Whether it is mild, moderate, or severe dehydration, the lost liquids in your body must be immediately replaced. If you start to develop severe diarrhea with or without vomiting, fever, moderate diarrhea for 24 hours, bloody stool, or you can’t drink any liquids, you must get professional treatment as soon as possible.

Water plays a good role in getting rid of your ailment.   The major roles water plays in your health are listed below.

1. How Drinking Water Aids in Weight Loss

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Adequate Water May Aid in Weight Loss

 

There are many benefits of water including drinking water before meals which may reduce your appetite by decreasing calorie intake which leads to weight loss.  Several other studies have monitored overweight people who drank 1-1.5 liters (34–50 oz) of water daily for a few weeks.

They found a significant reduction in weight, body mass index (BMI), waist circumference and body fat.

This is because water can increase satiety and boost your metabolic rate. In two studies, drinking half a liter of water was proven to increase metabolism by 24-30% for up to 1.5 hours.

The timing is also important.  It was found that drinking water half an hour before meal times was the most effective. It could make you feel full so that you, in turn, consume fewer calories.

In one study, it was found that dieters who drank half a liter of water before meals lost as much as 44% more weight, over a period of 12 weeks.  Now that’s progress at its best!

Cutting out sugary drinks and juice eliminates about 400 calories a day from the average American diet. That allows you to either eat more healthy food or eliminates a lot of calories if you are trying to shed pounds.

 2. How Drinking Water Aids in Fatigue

Water is the primary source of energy in the body and it generates electrical and magnetic energy in every cell of the body. We can think of our cells as little hydro-electric plants, which will not produce adequate energy without water. 

Fatigue is one of the first signs of dehydration. Research has shown that you could actually experience mild dehydration by losing just 1-2 percent of your body weight as water.  That is enough to impair your thinking!

I can say for sure that this was my experience in the past.  My work would get me so engaged that when I finished my glass of water and needed more, I would ignore my thirst just to keep working.  Dehydration was causing me to lose concentration and become fatigued.

Since I was thirsty, I also experienced irritation, but didn’t want to stop working.  Don’t do this to yourself!  It’s not a healthy practice.  Plus, the water would give me a boost in energy so it helped to make me more productive in my workflow.

The more dehydrated your body becomes, it redirects blood to the working muscles and away from the skin, impairing your body’s ability to diffuse heat. The increase in internal heat can then result in muscle cramps, light-headedness, and fatigue.   

This is exactly what I experienced too.  If you lose as little as 3 percent or more of your body weight from dehydration, you could actually experience a 10 percent drop in your performance level.

3. How Drinking Water Helps Fight Infection

Water improves the efficiency of the immune system and helps to combat infections and mutant cells (such as cancer cells). When the body is dehydrated, the body becomes much more acidic, an environment that is conducive to all types of infections.  Adding water to the mix can dilute the effects of the acidity.

According to Dr. F. Batmanghelidj, drinking water may also help prevent heart disease and stroke.  On average, our blood is over 80 percent water.  Daily water intake is essential for circulation and helps prevent clogging of arteries in the heart and brain.

4. How Drinking Water Helps Prevent Depression

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Drinking Adequate Water Helps Prevent Depression

 

Water naturally helps the body replenish its supply of the neurotransmitter serotonin. Dehydration can also decrease the level of energy generation in the brain.

When we experience dehydration can start to feel lethargic, grumpy, and get headaches.

Researchers now believe that even mild dehydration can have an effect on your mood. Two studies from the Human Performance Laboratory at the University of Connecticut proved that if you become dehydrated in as little as only 1.5 percent loss if normal water volume in your body, this can alter your energy level, mood, and your ability to think clearly, as mentioned above.

Did you know that when your body is deprived of water or dehydrated, it immediately reacts by taking water from essential organs and other parts of the body such as the brain, bones, and muscles?  True, but quite genius for your body!  It’s always in survival mode, trying to find ways to sustain itself.

It’s how God designed us, as survivors.  Your brain will begin to slow down on creating and dispensing energy, your mood, anxiety or depression are a result of this process.  

Alcohol, of course, can cause depression in many people, and once again this is closely linked to dehydration. For those who drink alcohol, consider increasing your water consumption. 

You need more water to flush out alcohol from your body.   If you drink on a regular basis without allowing their bodies to flush out toxins, you may experience moodiness and anxiety.  This then leads to depression over a period of time.

5. How Drinking Water Helps Regulate Sleep 

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Drinking Adequate Water Helps Regulate Sleep

 

Water is needed for the production of all hormones made by the brain, including melatonin, a critical factor in sleep regulation. Water also helps to restore normal sleep rhythms.

Many are aware of the effect dehydration may have while awake.  Did you know it can also pose a negative effect on your sleeping hours too?  To explain, chronic dehydration reduces the number of essential amino acids needed by your body to produce a natural chemical called melatonin.

Melatonin is created in the pineal glands and its creation is linked to a natural circadian rhythm which is a normal sleeping and waking schedule. Dehydration can block your body’s production of melatonin in a powerful way.

This process can make it challenging to both drifting off to sleep and sleeping deeply.  In summary, drinking an adequate amount of water literally affects the quality of every hour of your day.  Unbelievable!

6. How Drinking Water Helps Eliminate Addictions

Water can help to help restore balance in the body, provide better nutrient utilization and help to eliminate addictions to alcohol, caffeine, and some drugs.  Unfortunately, the drinks that contain caffeine like, soda pop, for example, are loaded with artificial sweeteners like Aspartame, High Fructose Corn Syrup, and Sucralose.  These drinks can cause you to feel constantly thirsty. 

When I used to drink soda pop regularly, I remember always feeling thirsty and I would keep drinking more pop, thinking that I was quenching my thirst.  I wasn’t turning to the water which was what my body was asking for.

 I thought I needed more of the sweet drink and that’s what I was drinking.  So I know first-hand that those artificial drinks can cause addictions to sugar and even food!  

7. Drinking Water May Aid In Preventing Attention Deficit Disorder

As noted by additude.com “Your brain is 80 percent water. Anything that dehydrates it, such as too much caffeine or alcohol, impairs your cognition and judgment. Drink plenty of water every day.”

Water provides more energy to the brain to help provide greater focus, attention, and memory needed for the learning process. A well-hydrated body is more likely going to provide the brain with the ability to stay engaged on a single topic.

8. Drinking Water for Clear Skin Results

Now, of course, it would seem obvious that water may help hydrate your skin and minimize lines and wrinkles.  However, drinking a bunch of water today doesn’t mean your skin will look better for years to come. “Although clinically, when skin is hydrated, it looks plumper, and the signs of aging are minimized, explains Rachel Nazarian, M.D., a board-certified dermatologist at the Schweiger Dermatology Group in New York City.

Since water helps with the elimination of waste from your body, not drinking enough water may cause waste to sit in your elimination channels clogging up your system, which can cause constipation and congestion in your intestines.

When your system is eliminating waste properly, your body functions are not slowed down.  A sluggish elimination slows down healing and can cause a dull, dry appearance on your skin.  Don’t we all want plump, glowing skin?  Heck yeah!  Then hydrate!

9. Drinking Water and Joint Pain

Since approximately 60% of joint cartilage is made from water,  It’s important to remain hydrated when you are suffering from joint damage.  If not, your production of synovial fluid will be reduced and you could possibly increase your risk of friction pain and cartilage deterioration.

I’m not saying that simply drinking more fluids will eliminate all your symptoms, but it will almost certainly help to improve the health of your joints.  It may even work to lessen some of the pain you are feeling.

Even some of the medicines prescribed by doctors can inhibit water from reaching the joints or, like aspirin, can even confuse your ability to perceive thirst.

That’s why it’s critical that we continue to drink water as it can stimulate our production of synovial fluid, reduce inflammation around the joint and encourage the growth of new cells in the cartilage tissues.  Water can also alleviate other unpleasant rheumatoid symptoms such as constipation or dizziness.

The Infographic below shows you 9 benefits you experience from water consumption. 

%Health and Wellness Tips%Terry Talks

Recommendations for Drinking Water

Finally, the importance of water in the human body should be a major priority in your life.  If you are under commitment to a healthy lifestyle, make drinking enough natural water a habit in your life.

Drinking water and dehydration should not be ignored.  It won’t take long for you to feel the benefits.

Have you experienced dehydration, but after increasing your water intake you noticed a change in how you felt?

If you want to increase your water intake and reap the benefits of better health, I have a “Water Drinking Challenge” to help you get started, so you can learn fun, effortless ways to increase your water intake!  Click Here if you’re ready to experience better health and hydration.

Sources and References

www.watercure.com

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/7-health-benefits-of-water#section7

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18787524

https://psychcentral.com/lib/top-10-daily-habits-to-keep-depression-away/

https://www.hopetocope.com/the-link-between-dehydration-and-depression/

https://www.mountainvalleyspring.com/ how-hydration-can-effect-your-sleep

https://www.emedicinehealth.com/dehydration_in_adults/article_em.htm#dehydration_pictures

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/dehydration/symptoms-causes/syc-20354086

/https://www.avogel.co.uk/health/muscles-joints/joint-pain/the-benefits-of-drinking-water-for-joint-pain/

/https://www.womenshealthmag.com/health/a19900889/drinking-water-for-better-skin/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18787524

 

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Top 6 Self-Care Tips for Men’s Health and Wellness

By Theresa Harding  (updated 7/21/19)        

Self-care is always a form of care considered for women, but it’s often over-looked when it comes to men.  In this article, I share with you my top 6 self-care tips for men’s health and wellness.   I believe it’s important that we don’t eliminate our men from this factor since many men are the head of their family and need to be in optimal shape to remain in their position long-term and in good health.  

This post contains affiliate links which means I will receive a small commission at no charge to you, when you click them to purchase.

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According to health.harvard.edu, The average man pays less attention to his health than the average woman.  Compared to women, men are more likely to

  • drink alcohol and use tobacco
  • make risky choices
  • not see a doctor for regular checkups

Here is what abcnews.go.com learned when they asked physicians the definition of “health”: “We asked a dozen physicians to define exactly what it means to be in “excellent health,” and they gave us the checklist that you need to complete before boasting about your super fitness.

If you can check off at least eight of these 12 qualities, then you’re more than a good guy — you’re a physical specimen possessing rare genetic gifts. We may have you stuffed for posterity.”

As some studies have reported, the average life expectancy for women in the US is 80.1, while for the American men this number is 73.4.  Globally speaking, the numbers are also surprisingly lower when it comes to men. With some health-awareness and a decent lifestyle, you can surely beat the numbers.

Becoming more informed about your health and learning some simple and effective ways to live a healthy lifestyle can be a game-changer for you and help you maintain your health.  Here are some tips for you as a man to promote self-care: 

1. Get your Daily Vitamins and Minerals

A healthy Diet for Men

I’ve always believed in taking multi-vitamins daily to help meet the daily requirements and prevent mineral deficiencies.  The only problem was that I thought multi-vitamins could substitute for my lack of eating healthy food.   

Vitamins and minerals should not be a substitute for your lack of eating quality, whole food.  Your vitamins and minerals should come from food first, with the multi-vitamins added to supplement your diet only if necessary. 

Our soil today is not as rich in nutrients as it was when our ancestors farmed, so this causes our fruits and vegetables to be mineral deficient.  Today, it would take for you to eat as much nutrient dense foods as you can to prevent vitamin and mineral deficiencies, which most of us don’t do consistently.   

If you don’t feel healthy in your body, or you feel like your body is deficient in the required daily vitamins and minerals, you may need to consider supplementing with quality, whole food vitamin and mineral supplements.  To best know, you could get a thorough checkup with your doctor, and have a Blood Panel test done for your vitamin and mineral levels.

This is one of the best ways to find out where you might be deficient.  Then you could take it from there.  Not getting enough of certain nutrients can negatively impact your health and even result in chronic diseases.  Here are the necessary vitamins and minerals men need.

Men aged 19–70 Need the Following Vitamins and Minerals:

  • Vitamin A: Necessary for skin, eye and immune health.
  • Vitamin C: Essential for your immune system and collagen production.
  • B vitamins: Involved in energy metabolism and red blood cell production.
  • Calcium, magnesium, vitamin D, vitamin K and zinc: Vital for bone health.
  • Vitamin E and selenium: Help protect your cells from damage.

These may all be found in your daily multi-vitamin, so you won’t need to take them separately.  In choosing which multivitamin is right for you, consider factors like allergies, specific health concerns, how many pills a day you are willing to swallow, your age, and your budget. 

For instance, if you’re 35 years old, you may need to consider multi-vitamins for 35+ men.  This is what I did for my husband.  While it’s possible to meet your nutrient needs through a well-balanced diet, many fall short of the recommended amounts.

A 12-month study found that supplementing with around 3,000 IU of vitamin D3 per day increased testosterone levels by around 25%.  In the elderly, vitamin D and calcium also optimized testosterone levels, which led to a reduced risk of falling.  To boost testosterone and reap the other benefits of vitamin D, try to get regular exposure to sunlight or take around 3,000 IU of a vitamin D3 supplement daily.

In one study, zinc and vitamin B supplements increased sperm quality by 74%. Zinc also boosts testosterone in athletes and those who are deficient in zinc.

In healthy men, ashwagandha increased levels by 15%.  Another study found it lowered cortisol by around 25%, which may also aid testosterone.

One study in infertile humans found that ginger can boost testosterone levels by 17% and increase levels of other key sex hormones.

Amino Acids that Support Testosterone

D-Aspartic acid- a natural amino acid that can boost low testosterone levels.  Research suggests that the primary way it works is by increasing follicle-stimulating hormone and luteinizing hormone.

Leucine Studies show that leucine enhanced testosterone 20 percent within five weeks.  

BCAA- A study from the NCBI shows that “endurance exercise along with modest supplementation of BCAAs, but not an overdose, may have some synergic effect on sperm function and testosterone production.”

Common Mineral Deficiencies in Men

Studies show that 77 percent of men don’t take in enough magnesium, that many of us are deficient in vitamin D, and that the vitamin B12 in our diets may be undermined by a common heartburn medication.   We haven’t even mentioned our problems with potassium and iodine.

2. Choose Natural Workout Supplements 

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Choose Natural Workout Supplements

The best workout supplements for men are not many.  There are many supplements on the market that men buy and really can get some benefits from food.  When it comes to working out, men focus on building muscle and want to add supplements to help with muscle-building and recovery. 

To help with muscle recovery and maintenance, here are the few supplements I found best for men.  There’s a lot of research and science behind the following supplements, as most supplements many men take don’t really add value to their life. 

There’s nothing that compares to getting proper sleep and nutrition and that should be your first focus before considering supplements.  So, here they are:

Top Bodybuilding Supplements for Men 

Creatine You can increase your body’s creatine stores by obtaining it from natural sources. Grass-fed beef and other meats are abundant in creatine, with a pound of grass-fed beef delivering 5 grams of creatine.

Grass fed chicken and turkey breast, lamb, venison and ostrich also contain creatine, albeit in lesser amounts.

Whey proteinThis low-lactose option is a complete protein containing the nine essential amino acids and is popular among athletes, bodybuilders and fitness models, as well as people looking to improve physical performance at the gym.

Organic grass fed whey protein comes from the milk of pasture-raised cows that were able to roam on pasture and consume a natural diet of grass, instead of being confined in concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs).

Organic whey protein is different from other varieties because of its production process which doesn’t involve the addition of additives or chemicals.  Instead, they use 100% natural ingredients.  

As a result, you are able to get pure and healthy whey protein powder, which sets it apart from conventional whey protein powders which have had cheap ingredients as soy added, (in the form of soy lecithin).

Bone Broth– If you have not experienced bone broth for pain and inflammation, you are missing out on the ultimate goodness!  I started using it when I experienced knee pains when I’d do squats during my fitness routine.  I learned about it from Dr. Mercola and I’ve used it ever since. 

Some benefits you can experience from drinking bone broth are, support when you have pain in your joints from your workout routine, relaxation, it’s loaded with glucosamine and chondroitin for pain, amino acids, and a host of many other  benefits. 

You can now purchase bone broth online in a powder form.  Even better is you can make it yourself, but because it’s a slow simmer for 12 to 36 hours, some people prefer to purchase it.  I’ve tried the powder ones, and I also make it myself by simmering the caracass bones from my leftover roasted chickens.  I also purchase the beef fones and make the beef bone broth.

A great book you can read all about the many benefits of bone broth is, “

3. Maintain Healthy Testosterone Levels with Food

How to Boost Testosterone Naturally  with Food

The best way to eat the foods below is to be creative and add one or two of the foods in your daily meal planning.  Add them to smoothies, as snacks, and in your meals.  This is not a full list, but this may help you get started in your collection.

Ginger– According to the findings of a 2012 study, taking a daily ginger supplement for 3 months increased testosterone levels by 17.7 percent in a group of 75 adult male participants with fertility issues. The authors suggested that ginger may also improve sperm health in other ways.

Oysters– Males with severe zinc deficiency may develop hypogonadism, in which the body does not produce enough testosterone. They may also experience impotence or delayed sexual maturation.

Pomegranate– Also, results of a study from 2012 indicate that pomegranate may boost testosterone levels in men and women.

Leafy Green Vegetables- Vegetables such as spinach, Swiss chard, and kale are rich in magnesium, a mineral that may increase the body’s level of testosterone.

Extra-Virgin Olive Oil- Extra-virgin olive oil may also improve male reproductive health.  A small study of the oil indicates that the oil may boost serum testosterone levels in a healthy male adult.

Ginger– A 2012 study found that taking a daily ginger supplement for 3 months increased testosterone levels by 17.7 percent in a group of 75 adult male participants with fertility issues. The authors suggested that ginger may also improve sperm health in other ways.

Oysters– Males with severe zinc deficiency are prone to develop hypogonadism,  which inhibits the body’s ability to produce adequate testosterone.   They could also experience delayed sexual maturation or impotence according to an article in  Medical News Today.

Pomegranate– There’s also a 2012 study that suggests that pomegranate may boost testosterone levels in men and women.    During the study, sixty healthy participants drank pure pomegranate juice for 14 days, and researchers tested the levels of testosterone in their saliva three times a day.

Leafy Green Vegetables- Vegetables like spinach, Swiss chard, and kale are rich in magnesium, a mineral that may increase your body’s level of testosterone.

Extra-Virgin Olive Oil- Male reproductive health may also be improved adding Extra-virgin olive oil to your diet.  Results of a small-scale study indicate that the oil may boost serum testosterone levels in healthy adult men.  Participants also experienced an increase in luteinizing hormone, which stimulates cells in the testes to produce testosterone.

What Happens When a Man’s Testosterone Level is Low?

Testosterone is a hormone found in humans. Men’s testosterone levels are much higher than women.  Men begin increasing testosterone during puberty, but then it starts to decrease after age 30 at a rate of 1% each year.  This is a result of the aging process,  also known as Andropause or male menopause.

Each year after age 30, men’s level of testosterone drops at a 1% rate each year.  This is a result of the aging process. Also know as Andropause or male menopause.

Testosterone in men is responsible for:

  • sex drive
  • sperm production
  • muscle mass/strength
  • fat distribution
  • bone density
  • red blood cell production

As the testosterone decreases, so can the libido. This is one of the biggest concerns of many men.  What man wants to lose their sexual desire and performance?

Men’s Physical Changes from Low Testosterone

Decreases in testosterone can lead to physical changes including the following:

  • increased body fat
  • decreased strength/mass of muscles
  • Reduced bone mass
  • Hair loss
  • swelling/tenderness in the breast tissue
  • hot flashes
  • increased fatigue
  • effects on cholesterol metabolism
  • Reduction in testicle size
  • Loss of sleep
  • Mood swings and irritability

Even if you don’t have sleep apnea, low testosterone can still contribute to a decrease in the hours of sleep. Researchers aren’t yet sure why this happens.

Emotional Changes 

There is a connection between low testosterone and mental health.  Testosterone is a hormone that affects emotional regulation.  Low testosterone is more than just decreased sexual health, it’s also connected to your mental health and how well your brain works.  It’s been linked to mood swings, depression, and mood swings.

Some men experience feelings of sadness or depression and may notice their memory and concentration may be affected.  Unfortunately, along with this comes your lowered self-confidence and motivation as before.

There are conventional ways of raising your testosterone levels such as testosterone therapy, but if you want the natural way without the health risks, read below to learn some natural ways that I share with you.

Are Testosterone Boosters Safe?

You will also find testosterone boosters on the market that people have tried, but many of them are not reliable.  They’ve been found to only give very low amounts of increase in testosterone, like 20% to 50% if that!

A 2018 Study on testosterone boosters concluded that in the administration of testosterone booster products, although obtained from trusted sources, may still present some health risks.

There are still further studies with large sample size and for a long period that need to be done to confirm the current findings.  While everyone is different, you may risk your health if you consider taking testosterone boosters, even if it is from a trusted source.

With patience, you can save your money and instead focus on the lifestyle changes as a natural way to keep your testosterone levels in check.

Although you can be tested for your testosterone levels, you should also consider how you feel and the changes going on in your body because the tests may not always be solely reliable.

4. Eliminate Foods that Lower Testosterone

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Foods that Lower Testosterone

Foods that Deplete Testosterone

So, now that we know what foods to eat that support your testosterone, you don’t want to continue eating foods that keep your levels depleted, right?  Take note of the following foods.

  1. Soy and soy-based products– Soy is a legume that contains a high amount of what’s called phytoestrogenic isoflavones.  This legume mimics estrogen activity in your body.

Soy also contains a bad fatty-acid ratio which is another reason why men should avoid them.  There is still research to be done since the cause is unknown why it decreases testosterone.

2. Vegetable Oils– some small studies have shown that canola, soybean, corn and cottonseed oil, contain an abundance of polyunsaturated fatty acids.  These oils have been linked to lowered testosterone levels.  These oils are used in processed and fast foods, so it’s important to cut back on such foods.

3. Licorice Root– In recent years, several studies have found that licorice may also influence hormone levels,potentially leading to a decline in testosterone over time.  The decrease has affected not only men but women too. 

Nuts and Testosterone-Watch Those Nuts!

4. Nuts– Most nuts contain a mix of omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids. You want to stick to the ones with a higher concentration of omega-3s and less omega-6s.  Omega-6 fats increase testosterone-lowering SHBG (sex hormone binding globulin, omega 3s lower it.

Nuts are known to have high amounts of protein and some have omega 3s, which may possibly reduce your natural production of testosterone.

Don’t get me wrong, not all nuts are bad for you, but some of the more popular kinds – like almonds and walnuts – are known to increase SHBG levels, which stands for sex hormone-binding globulin.

Peanuts– Peanuts are a poor choice because a serving contains 32 percent daily allowance of omega-6 fatty acid and no omega-3.

Walnuts– containing a 4:1 ratio with 10.6 grams of omega-6 fats and just 2.5 grams of omegas-3s.

Almonds and pistachios contain similar unhealthy ratios known to increase SHBG levels.

Macadamia nuts– Contain high levels of healthy monounsaturated fats.

Brazil nuts- These are high in testosterone-boosting micronutrients such as zinc, selenium, boron, and magnesium.  Its ratio level is just slightly higher in omega-6s than omega-3s, but this can be overlooked considering it’s full of other nutrients essential for Testosterone production.

Horse Chestnuts- This nut contains escin. This compound has been shown to improve blood flow to the testicles. This helps deliver the nutrients required for making testosterone.

5. Mint- Studies show that the menthol in spearmint and peppermint may cause a significant drop in Testosterone levels.

6. Flax Seeds-This one was a shock to learn.  Some research shows that it may cause a decrease in testosterone levels.  This is because flaxseed is high in lignans, which are plant compounds that bind to testosterone and force it to be excreted from your bodyWhat’s more, flaxseed is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which may be linked to a decrease in testosterone as wellMore large-scale studies are needed to further evaluate the effects of flaxseed on testosterone levels.

7. Bread, Pastries, and Desserts- The Journal Nutrients has concluded in a study that consuming high amounts of desserts, bread, and pastries may cause a drop in testosterone levels in men.  They also found that consuming lots of dairy, fast-food and a low amount of dark green vegetables also affects healthy testosterone levels.  

Other Ways Testosterone is Lost

Canned or plastic-packaged foods- These foods are known to produce estrogen mimmickers, also known as Zenoestrogen, which are commonly found in the lining of canned foods, plastic, the lining of microwave popcorn, cosmetics, pesticides, dry cleaning products, furniture, dairy products, and many others.

For example, this may happen when people consume chemicals, such as bisphenol A BPA or bisphenol S, from water in plastic bottles or reheated food in plastic containers.

Results of a study from 2013 suggest that men who work in environments with high levels of BPA have reduced levels of free testosterone and androstenedione, a hormone that can convert into testosterone or estrogen.

Those with BPA in their urine also had lower levels of testosterone and thyroid stimulating hormone. When levels of this hormone are low, it can indicate hypothyroidism, a condition that can reduce testosterone in some men.

Luckily, this list isn’t very long, but it can make a big difference if one of your favorite foods is included in the list.  If you’ve been frequently eating any of the above foods, fret not, just make alternate choices.  Soon, you’ll find a new favorite!

Alcohol Consumption– Research shows that men have a greater tendency toward binge drinking than women do and, as a result, a much greater risk of drinking-related problems.

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), binge drinking typically means having four to five drinks in a two-hour span, a practice that is almost certain to bring your blood alcohol level to the legal limit of .08.  It is noted that men have a habit of doing this much more frequently than women.

 Drinking too much alcohol can seriously affect your health over the years.  Besides increasing the risk of diabetes and heart disease, it can be dangerous for fertility. So now we get into men’s sexual health when it comes to learning the ways alcohol consumption can affect the body. 

It can reduce testosterone levels, influence sperm mobility and, eventually, cause impotence. And you don’t want to disappoint your lady, right men? Among other notable problems alcohol can cause cirrhosis, several types of cancer and mental issues, it’s important to drink Responsibly!

5. Recognize Signs of Depression 

According to the World Health Organization (WHO),  more than 300 million people suffer from depression, a number that has risen by 18 percent from 2005 to 2015.  In addition, nearly half of these people don’t get treatment.  This is largely due to the stigma surrounding mental illnesses, as noted in Men’s Health magazine.  

More than 5 million men in the U.S. experience depression each year.  According to Josh Klapow, Ph.D., a clinical psychologist with the University of Alabama at Birmingham’s School of Public Health, men are more likely than women to report fatigue and other physical symptoms of depression as their chief complaints.

Contrary to the popular misconception, depression is not a female problem only, but not many men will ask for help. That can lead to profound consequences for your mental and physical health, as depression can trigger a number of other conditions.

If you are fatigued for no apparent reason, if you have troubles sleeping, if your weight oscillates heavily, if you experience headaches, irritability or inexplicable anger, don’t be ashamed to see a therapist. It’s for your own good and getting back your fun personality full of energy!

6. Some Tips to Stay Healthy

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  • Prevention is the key to solving numerous health problems before they get too serious. Be sure to schedule annual appointments with your doctor and do a complete physical exam.  I’m the scheduler for all doctor appointments in my family, so I make sure to schedule my husband’s doctor appointment too.
  • Meanwhile, don’t hesitate to see your doctor more often if you feel any unusual symptoms or notice some changes in your health. A rash or any skin change, changes in your stress levels, insomnia, changes in urination or stool as well as any other symptom is equally worthy of your attention.
  • Listen to your body and read the signals it sends you.  Yeah, sometimes they are confusing, but our bodies are trying the best they can. How about helping them?
  • Stick to a healthy sleeping schedule, balanced diet, and a high-quality exercise routine, and don’t forget to wave at your doctor occasionally.  Being in charge of your health primarily means being responsible.

Here is a good read by David D. Burns, MDfor someone suffering from symptoms of depression.  If you know someone who needs further help with depression, refer them to this self-help book.  I’ve found self-help books to be very effective in my own life experiences.  Hopefully, this book can help someone.

  • According to everydayhealth.com, Prostate cancer is the number 1 cancer risk for men.    About 160 of every 100,000 men were diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2007 (the most recent year for which statistics are available), and just over 29,000 men died from it, according to the CDC.
  • It is important for you to have regular checkups with your doctor and have your prostate checked if you’re over 40.  It is the leading type of cancer among the US men, with more than 160,000 new diagnoses yearly. The key to beating cancer is an early diagnosis, while it still hasn’t started progressing in further stages. 
  • Having trouble with urination, be it blood in the urine or simply painful urination is a red alert for scheduling an appointment with your urologist.  These two conditions are among the leading causes of death both in men and women. Both are preventable through a balanced diet and exercise, and a healthy lifestyle.
  • Make sure to be physically active at least three times a week.  Reduce your sugar intake to 30 grams a day.  This is particularly important if you are older than 55 years old.  You’ve got to have a big heart but let’s make it healthy as well if you want to be a healthy male in the family!

By following the steps above, you can ensure that you can live a fulfilling and healthy lifestyle.

What Self-Care Steps Do You Take to Ensure Your Well-Being?  Please share some of your favorite self-care tips that are working for you.

Sources & References

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/why-is-life-expectancy-lo/https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/150086.php

https://www.google.rs/search?q=preventing+heart+disease+and+diabetes&oq=preventing+heart+disease+and+dia&aqs=chrome.0.0j69i57j0l4.9859j0j7&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

https://www.drinkaware.co.uk/alcohol-facts/health-effects-of-alcohol/alcohol-and-gender/alcohol-and-men/

http://www.health.com/health/gallery/0,,20521449,00.html

https://www.everydayhealth.com/mens-health/most-common-cancers-in-men.aspx

https://www.health.harvard.edu/topics/mens-health

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5870326/

https://www.healthline.com/health/side-effects-of-low-testosterone

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/322647.php

https://www.everydayhealth.com/hs/low-testosterone-guide/low-testosterone-boost-emotional-health/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11525593

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/323759.php

 

A healthy diet is one key component that can affect the state of our mind.  We must nourish our mind by eating nutrient-dense foods daily.  If you need to improve your current diet from a nutrient deficient one to a nutrient dense one, I have a free Diet Makeover course that teaches you step-by-step how to do this.  This is what I did to change the health of my family and I know it will help you too.  Click below to get started.

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5 Natural Ways to Improve Your Emotional Health

By Theresa Harding

If you struggle with managing your emotions, keep reading to learn 5 natural ways to improve your emotional health.   So many times, we experience setbacks in our life and emotional well-being, and we feel defeated when the solution is not readily available. 

We get so caught up in our emotions that we can’t use wisdom to improve our emotional health.  There are times when plain old common sense to judge what is best for us and when to seek emotional help is all that it takes. 

While some might think it’s best to load up on antidepressants or some other form of medication to “help us through” the challenge, others seek alternative solutions.  I’m going to share with you 5 ways.


This post contains affiliate links which means I may receive a small commission at no cost to you if you click a link to make a purchase.

The emotional well-being of a person regarding thoughts or how they behave or feel contributes to the emotional health of a person.  Listed below are the 5 natural ways to boost emotional health.

1. Maintaining Healthy Sex Hormones

The drive for sex can be improved through natural means.  Sex drive is the desire or urges to engage in sexual activities. There comes a time when a person does not have the desire for sex.  Exercise is a proven natural way of boosting sex drive in that it helps in the flow of blood which is important in boosting sex hormones like testosterone and endorphins.

There are many reasons that your sex hormones can become out of balance.  Whether it be from childbirth, a poor diet, stress, lack of sleep, or medication, it’s easy to become out of balance with your sex hormones.

If you believe any of the points in the list above are affecting your hormones, just know that there is help available.  Those points should each be addressed individually to get back in balance.  In fact, an article written by the Wellness Mama gives some great tips to help you address your sex hormones.

2. Stress Management and Aromatherapy

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Stress Management & Aromatherapy

Stress is a state of mind which is disturbing and might develop into depression if not properly managed. In the field of aromatherapy, essential oils have been found to be very effective in stress management and helping to improve your emotional health.  These include lavender essential oil which has been proved to improve moods as well as decreasing anxiety.

Citrus essential oils have also been found to work well on depression, as these oils help with boosting your mood.  This can give you an experience of positive mental health as you focus on the citrusy scents to help revive your mood and begin to feel better and happier.  I love these citrus essential oils when added to a diffuser

It helps to uplift my mood in the morning when I’m taking that quiet time to think about my day and just meditate.  If you’ve never used a diffuser, you’re in for a real treat!  Diffusers release the medicinal properties of essential oils to help you get great healing results from minor ailments like migraine headaches, congestion, and some aches and pains, to name a few. 

Give them a try!  Even my teens use them topically.  Just remember, all essential oils cannot be ingested,  so you have to make sure that the ones linked above are not for ingesting, but you can try others that can be ingested, like Young Living Oils.  They usually have to be purchased through a Vendor, but they are also sold on Amazon by some Vendors too.

3. Avoid Seasonal Disorders

Seasonal affective disorders (SAD) are associated with daytime heavy sleeping, isolation, being depressed in certain seasons as well as cravings for certain foods like carbohydrates. There are natural ways to control this disorder. 

For example, to help improve your emotional health, follow the right diet by reducing your intake of carbs and instead, increase your intake of foods with tryptophan. This is an amino acid which is highly available in seafood, broccoli, and poultry.  Its importance is that it is changed to serotonin which is a mood booster.

4. Avoid the Development of Depression

Depression is a critical condition which can develop into hypertension if not managed correctly. This condition develops through stages and among the stages is mild depression.  To improve your emotional health, natural remedies like having enough sleep have helped in managing mild depression.

You can learn more ways of avoiding depression as mentioned in an article by Dr. Axe in detail.  This may help you learn of holistic ways to heal from depression if you suffer from depression.

It is also better to focus on positive mental health as you find many positive ways to manage symptoms of depression when you feel down. Exercise is also important in that it promotes the production of certain hormones which boost mood.  I can say in my own personal experience, going through a season of severely losing sleep over a work project. 

I remember feeling very sleep early in the morning after waking up from about 3 hours of sleep.  This happened for about 3 months until I dozed off while driving my kids home from school one afternoon.  Luckily I didn’t run into anything, but that moment scared me straight! 

Once I realized that I needed to make more time for sleep and less time for the other things that prevented me from sleeping properly, I made some adjustments to my sleep schedule.   After making adjustments to my sleep schedule, the depressed feelings faded away.  Omega 3 fatty acids  were my solution in helping me with balancing my mood health.  

5. Avoid Emotional Eating Habits

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Emotional Health

Emotional eating happens when one eats too much because they are undergoing chronic stress. This behavior is an unhealthy way of handling stress and managing your emotional well-being. A natural way of handling it is through guided meditation.

This is a great form of positive mental health when finding a better way to improve your mental health.  It is done by summoning all your thoughts on one thing as this is seen as an exercise to the brain and ends up relieving stress in the process.  For me, I avoid food when I feel any emotional stress. 

I once lost 5 pounds in one week from emotional stress.  As we always hear, “stress can kill you” if you don’t get it under control.  One supplement I started taking to help me manage stress was, magnesiumThis was effective in helping me relax before bed too.

A good habit to start is to keep a food diary. This can help you document what you are consuming so that you can look back on the list and see what you’ve eaten when you felt a certain way.  Sometimes, the wrong foods can contribute to your bad emotions.  You might think the foods you eat when you feel sadly emotional will make you feel better, but in truth, you will only feel worse! 

One tip from an article written by the Mayo Clinic is to document everything you eat each day, how much you eat when you eat, how you’re feeling when you eat and how hungry you are.  Over time, you may find a pattern that leads to your food consumption and the mood you’re in each time.  This may really hone in and help you find ways to avoid this happening.

SUMMARY

Everyone will experience some level of emotional stress at some point in their life, whether it be from the death of a loved one, the stress of a job, or the stress of parenthood.  emotional stress is inevitable.  How it handled effectively is what can make all the difference in the world.  You can either take a natural approach to heal from it or the conventional approach, through medication or drugs.

Of course, the safest way is the holistic approach since the side effects are minimal.  Always speak with a health care practitioner before changing your diet or trying new supplements.

The success of your health is always contingent upon which approach you take to reach your healing.  It can be done, just be patient. 

How do you manage emotional stress?  Is it effective?

References and Resources

Dolgin, E. (2018). Tracking down the optimum dose of exercise. Stroke, 13, 57.

Hoeger, W. W., Hoeger, S. A., Hoeger, C. I., & Fawson, A. L. (2018). 

Lifetime of Physical Fitness and Wellness. Cengage Learning.

Pattyn, N., Van Puyvelde, M., Fernandez-Tellez, H., Roelands, B., & Mairesse, O. (2018).

From the midnight sun to the longest night: Sleep in Antarctica. Sleep medicine reviews, 37, 159-172.

https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/weight-loss/in-depth/weight-loss/art-20047342

 

Sometimes your diet can influence how you feel and affect your emotional health.  If you want to improve your emotional health and eliminate toxic foods from your diet, I have a free Diet Makeover course that I used to help me improve the health of my family.  Click below to download.

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How the 5 Love Languages Can Improve Relationships

 

By Theresa Harding

In my own personal experience of marriage, I did not always approach difficult situations with understanding and love.  I was young with less understanding at times.  If I’d known about these 5 love languages from day one of our relationship, I would’ve saved us from many challenges in our marriage!   I never knew there was a better way to nurture relationships.  I first learned about the love languages some years ago from a Christian radio show I was listening to.  I was appalled to learn about the 5 Love Languages!  It’s always nice to learn new and better ways to improve relationships, which can make them healthy for life.

A lot has been said about love and how to improve a relationship.  Songs have been sung, emotional poems have been drafted.  Yet this intriguing emotion remains as complex as it gets.  When Gary Chapman wrote aboutthe 5 Love Languages”, I am not sure he comprehended the kind of help and understanding he brought into relationships. This is because misunderstanding brought about by the inability to understand your partner’s language of love can cripple a healthy relationship as soon as the “sparks” die out. So, how can you apply the love languages to improve and make your relationship solid?

Identify- Words of Affirmation

You can’t implement what you don’t know. Therefore, if you want to learn how to improve a relationship, it is paramount that you first identify your love language and then secondly identify your partner’s love language.  First on the list of love languages is “Words of affirmation”.  Affirmations, verbal compliments, and encouragement are valued by the people who embody this love language. Statements such as “I love you”, “I adore you”, “You are handsome” accompanied by body language and facial expressions that denote the same, will have them smiling ear to ear, fully reassured of your love. Assuring your partner every so often can be magical, particularly during the turbulent times of the relationship.

Quality Time

Quality time” is the other love language. Quality time involves spending one-on-one time with your partner. This time should be devoid of interruptions. Doing things together or simply engaging in deep conversation or silly jokes will have people who value quality time beaming with satisfaction.  Actions that will make a healthy relationship.

Acts of Service

The third love language is “Acts of service”. You are the type of person whose love language is acts of service if you feel a deeper kind of appreciation and connection when your partner runs errands for you or does a chore that leaves you with a lighter load of work.

Other people value touch. These people understand love in terms of “Physical touch”. Cuddling, kissing, hugging, a caring touch on the arm or shoulder and sexual intercourse touch their souls. Without these, these individuals will not feel loved adequately.

Gifts

The fifth love language is “Gifts”. A thoughtful gift will warm the hearts of those who exemplify this love language.  In addition to receiving, they also love to give gifts. The gifts can be expensive or not. What matters is the thought behind the gift. So a cute note will go a long way, and rest assured, will make a healthy relationship.

Understand

After you have identified your love language, you need to boost your understanding and love of your partner.  It can be a little bit difficult if you value physical touch, to understand why someone would need acts of service to feel loved. This calls for understanding and to appreciate that every human is different. Therefore do not be afraid to ask what your partner values.

Apply It

The next course of action is to use your partner’s love language to improve your relationship with better understanding and love.  If they value quality time, be sure to create time, go out and do fun things together. This will create a bond not easily broken, as well as create a healthy relationship.  Gift him/her often and watch him/her glow with appreciation and love.

Summary

To summarize, it is important to learn how to improve a relationship if you want lasting relationships with your friend and loved ones.  Identify your love language and that of your partner, understand his/her love language and “do” their love language then sit back and watch your relationship soar higher in understanding and love every day.

My experience in applying these 5 love languages have helped me understand my husband and improve our understanding of each other better.  This has helped us avoid complaining to each other (something we did in the past), about what we’re not getting or giving in the relationship.  I invite you to give them a try if you want to make a healthy relationship lifelong!

Have you used the 5 love languages in your relationship, and has it improved?

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Toxins that Negatively Affect Your Heart Health

 

 

By Theresa Harding          This post contains affiliate links.

I always thought of toxins as something that only came from the environment and from a science lab.  I never knew toxins could be unhealthy for your heart either.

So that you are not ignorant of the dangers of toxins the way I was, I would like to inform you of the dangerous effects toxins can have on your heart health and where they come from.  They are not very far from you, as they are in many products you use daily.  Omega 3 fatty acids are great for cardiovascular health and are taken by others as a heart supplement.

A toxic substance is a substance that can be poisonous or cause health effects. People are generally concerned about chemicals like polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and dioxin which can be found at some hazardous waste sites.

Products that we use daily, such as household cleaners, prescription, and over-the-counter drugs, gasoline, alcohol, pesticides, fuel oil, and cosmetics, can also be toxic. Any chemical can be toxic or harmful under certain conditions.

Insecticides and Pesticides

Although the damage is sometimes reversible if caught in time, a serious brush with a heart toxin can also be fatal.
Here are toxins you should know about, in order to avoid them or limit your exposure:

They are a major contributor to Parkinson’s disease. Researchers have found that organic fruits and vegetables are much, much lower in pesticide residue, as well as substantially higher in natural antioxidants compared to non-organic produce.

Prescription drugs

They deplete the body of nutrients and energy. For example, statins deplete coenzyme Q10 and diuretics deplete precious potassium and magnesium. So, if you need to take medications you want to consider natural vitamins for heart health and vitamins for energy to supplement accordingly.

Alcohol

Liver destruction is but one of many possible consequences of heavy drinking. Excess alcohol causes nutritional deficiencies and oxidative damage. It breaks down into aldehyde, a substance that damages cell membranes and causes premature aging. 

Supplementing with natural vitamins such as a liver cleanse to remove the toxic buildup from your liver is one way to remove toxic buildup. Simply eliminating unhealthy processed foods and drinks from your diet for a period of time can also help remove the toxic waste from your body.  Doing this will give you more energy that you would also get if you took vitamins for energy.

High-fructose corn syrup

This sweetener is added to thousands of processed food items and is particularly prominent in soft drinks. It promotes inflammation, obesity, and liver dysfunction.  Along with liver dysfunction comes the lack of energy and the need for a healthier sweetener replacement like raw honey.  You could also maybe consider vitamins for energy to help with the effects of liver dysfunction like low energy.

Indoor and outdoor pollution

Air pollution can be harmful to heart health. Proficient use of an air purifier, at least in rooms where you spend the most time, helps to reduce dust and other particulate matter. Be aware of sensitivities to outdoor chemicals, pollen, and mold.

Mold

It grows in dark, damp places and can cause severe allergic reactions.

Cigarettes

Each puff carries a toxic payload of chemicals and carcinogens, things like nicotine (used as a natural pesticide for hundreds of years), carbon monoxide, ammonia, arsenic, cadmium, lead, and formaldehyde, just to name a few of the 600 ingredients. So to detoxify your body, you want to stop smoking.

One study showed that some levels of vitamin C are depleted with cigarette smoking, so subjects were given vitamin C by mouth increased the amount of vitamin C in their bloodstreams and improved blood flow.  So cigarette smokers can consider natural vitamins like vitamin C to supplement their possible loss of vitamin C if they find that they are deficient in this very important antioxidant.

Soft drinks

These drinks contain too much sugar or artificial sweeteners that cause inflammation, plus phosphoric acid that leaches calcium out of bones.

Trans fats

These unnatural fats have been removed from many foods, but you still need to be on the lookout for them. Because Tran’s fats promote inflammation and oxidative stress in the body, avoid consuming or cooking with, anything containing fats that are hydrogenated in order to detoxify your body.

Chlorine

Although this chemical is used to disinfect most public water supplies, it reacts with naturally occurring elements in water to form toxins called trihalomethanes. These have been linked to asthma, cancer, and heart disease.

Perfumes, Cosmetics, and Aluminum-Containing Deodorants

Perfumes and cosmetics contain all kinds of chemicals that are absorbed into the body. Use essential oils instead of perfumes, and make sure your cosmetics are made with natural and organic ingredients. The aluminum in deodorants may cause inflammation in the armpits and may contribute to breast cancer.

Processed Meats

They contain nitrites, which, in addition to being preservatives, are toxic to the GI tract and contribute to the formation of cancer. To detoxify your body, avoid these nitrite laden meats.

Heavy metals

Lead from dust, dirt, old house paints, batteries, new toys, and even water flowing through lead-lined pipes can increase the risk of a number of health issues. The nervous systems of young children and the unborn are most vulnerable. Cadmium is another toxic metal, and exposure can contribute to hypertension, among other things.

Radon

 This odorless, invisible gas seeps from the ground into houses through cracks in foundations, and it poses a real health danger. Radon toxicity is the second-leading cause of lung cancer after smoking.

What is your favorite food or supplement of choice for better heart health?

 

Sources

https://www.everydayhealth.com/atrial-fibrillation/living-with/hidden-heart-toxins-how-to-avoid/

https://www.nccn.org/patients/resources/life_with_cancer/managing_symptoms/cardiac_toxicity.aspx

https://ephtracking.cdc.gov/showHeartExpRisk.action

https://www.rd.com/health/wellness/chemicals-clog-arteries/

https://www.health.ny.gov/environmental/chemicals/toxic_substances.htm

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