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How To Boost Your Immune System With Probiotics

by January 24, 2020

If you ever wonder how to keep your immune system strong, the answer may surprise you.

Since about 75% of your immune system lies in your gastrointestinal tract, you’ll succumb to illness last, if you focus on your gut first!

I’ll cover exactly what this means and guide you on the single easiest and most effective way to nourish your immune system.

Probiotics Protect & Boost Your Immune System

Beneficial bacteria that you can get from food or a supplement are known as probiotics. They mix right in with the naturally occurring bacteria that are already in your gut.  

Even when you’re in tip top health, your body is home to a mix of good and bad bacteria.  The goal is for good bacteria to outnumber the bad. When harmful bacteria dominate, one of the first things to suffer is your immune system.

Probiotics line your digestive tract and create a barrier against pathogens (harmful bacteria). By regularly consuming probiotics, you build up your army of friendly bacteria and have a better chance of fighting infection and inflammation that triggers disease. 

Probiotics also keep your immune system strong by helping you absorb nutrients from your food.  When your body gets the nutrition it needs, you’re less likely to get sick!

But wait, the benefits of probiotics go even deeper….

Probiotics Boost Your Immune System on a Cellular Level

When your body is provided with a continuous flow of probiotics, your health can skyrocket. Probiotics encourage wellness and ward off impending infections and viruses by:

  1. Stimulating natural antibodies (proteins that attack toxins that make you sick)
  2. Enhancing the activity of natural killer cells (a kind of immune cell)
  3. Boosting T lymphocytes (another important type of immune cell)

Science Reveals that Probiotics Benefit ALL Ages!

There’s no doubt that probiotics protect your health – and the scientific evidence is growing.

The main reason why elderly folks have a higher risk of illness is due to the natural decline of immune cells with age. One study concluded that after just three weeks of probiotics, natural killer cell activity increased in the elderly.

Children certainly benefit from probiotics too. Scientists studied the effect of probiotics on infants who had rotavirus, a contagious condition in which the stomach and intestines become really inflamed. Compared to the group of babies who did not take any probiotics, the probiotic group had reduced symptoms of vomiting, diarrhea and fever duration.

You can read the full study here.

The benefits of probiotics in children’s health were further examined in a 2014 study published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

It was observed that children (aged 3 to 5) who were given vitamin C along with the probiotic strains, lactobacillus and bifidobacterium, showed a 33 percent reduction in upper respiratory infections. This resulted in a 30% reduction in missed school days.

Wow, this is knowledge every parent should know!

Other trials involving both children and adults measured the intensity and duration of respiratory infections of those who supplemented probiotics compared to a placebo.

The conclusions were strikingly similar and consistent. The data showed that probiotic supplementation:

  • Decreased the intensity and duration of respiratory infections by 30 percent. 
  • Resulted in less doctor visits
  • Reduced the use of:
    • OTC/RX medications
    • Antibiotics
    • Nasal spray
    • Painkillers

You Just Can’t go Wrong With Probiotics!

Since probiotics have such a positive impact on gut health, they have the ability to influence other conditions, including:

  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Eczema
  • Dental problems
  • Mental health disorders (via the gut brain connection)
  • Blood pressure/cholesterol imbalances (probiotics can reduce heart disease risk!)

Getting More Probiotics is Easy

I highly recommend that you regularly eat foods that naturally contain probiotics.

Probiotic rich foods typically contain a low variety of bacteria strains. This means that they are great at helping maintain an already healthy gut, but are really not enough to get the good bacteria dominating.

So, if you have poor gut health, or if your immune system needs a big boost, taking a probiotic supplement is your best bet.

To wrap up, here are the highlights on how probiotics support your health:

  1. Overall reduced inflammation (and therefore disease)
  2. Promote natural antibodies
  3. Boost immune cells
  4. Reduced viral symptoms
  5. Improved skin, heart, dental and mental health.

Remember, probiotics are appropriate and beneficial for all ages!

Including a probiotic supplement in your daily routine is one of the easiest ways to help your body function properly. Of course, it’s not the only way – there are other nutrients and actions that will help you dodge the funk or get back on your feet quick. Check out my other immune boosting tips here.

Choosing a probiotic doesn’t have to be overwhelming. I’ve got you covered here in my video that tells you exactly what to look for on the label.

Now that you know the secret to a strong immune system, share this information so those around you stay healthy too!


Boost Your Immune System Today!

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Red Palm Oil & Its Incredible Brain Boosting Powers

by January 20, 2020

Today I’d like to highlight an incredibly powerful health food – red palm oil!

It’s been used for centuries to support everything from skin to heart health, but here I’ll focus specifically on how it can supercharge your brain and slow the effects of aging.

I don’t doubt you’ll want to make this a pantry staple, but before you do, it’s really important you purchase the right kind. Keep reading as I explain how it can help you and what you should know!

Red Palm Oil Benefits Can Significantly Slow Aging

The biggest benefit red palm oil provides comes from its rich antioxidant vitamin E content. It contains the highest level of tocotrienols and tocopherols found in nature.

Toco what? These are just terms for the different forms of vitamin E. Simply translated – red palm oil has age fighting superpowers.

The complete vitamin E family is made up of 4 tocotrienols and 4 tocopherols:

Tocotrienols
  1. D – Alpha Tocotrienol
  2. D – Beta Tocotrienol
  3. D – Gamma Tocotrienol
  4. D – Delta Tocotrienol
Tocopherols
  1. D – Alpha Tocopherol
  2. D – Beta Tocopherol
  3. D – Gamma Tocopherol
  4. D – Delta Tocopherol

If you’re not a chemistry buff, don’t worry! The takeaway here is that red palm oil works to fight the processes that destroy and age your body.

Red Palm oil Benefits Your Brain

Let’s first review how antioxidants work. 

Free radicals are reactive compounds that can build up in your body and cause severe health problems and rapid aging. This build up is called oxidative stress and it drives cellular damage and rapid aging. 

You want lots of antioxidants in your body to help fight these free radicals! Antioxidants lower your risk for disease and lessen the effects of aging.

Did you know that the leading cause of oxidative stress is a poor diet lacking in antioxidants?

Your brain in particular, is very susceptible to oxidative stress. This is because it requires more oxygen than other organs, yet it has a lower antioxidant capacity. Your brain is involved in so many metabolic processes and it needs a lot of support!

Prevention is always better (and easier) than a cure! Protecting your brain now will help preserve its function later in life.

Given the crucial role that antioxidants play in brain health, it makes sense how red palm oil fits in here.  Those tocotrienols it’s packed with have unique brain boosting benefits. In fact, tocotrienols actually have up to 60 times stronger antioxidant activity than tocopherols. 

Compared to any other plant-based oil, red palm oil has the has the highest level of this vitamin E form.   

Tip:  Most vitamin E supplements don’t contain any tocotrienols. If using a vitamin E supplement, look for one that contains all eight vitamin E forms (4 tocotrienols and 4 tocopherols). It should look like the label of my Full Spectrum Vitamin E formula.

Red Palm Oil Boosts Your Vitamin A Levels

Red palm oil is also an excellent source of beta carotene. This is the red-orange plant pigment that gives fruits and vegetables their vibrant color (think apricots, carrots, and sweet potatoes).  Beta carotene is converted to the active form of vitamin A.

For this reason, red palm oil is a great supplement to enhance vitamin A benefits.

Your body needs vitamin A to:

    • Fight free radicals and reduce oxidative stress – especially in your brain
    • Learn and memorize
    • Fight cognitive decline

The metabolism of vitamin A produces potent signaling molecules in the brain that can speed the recovery of stroke victims.

Backed by Science – Red Palm Oil’s Health Boosting Compounds

Science confirms that brain disorders like stroke and dementia are linked to the presence of white matter lesions in the brain. Unfortunately, most people don’t realize they have these lesions until it’s too late. You should also know that the risk of a stroke more than doubles each decade after the age of 55!

Research has identified a strong link between increased tocotrienols and better brain health.  

Here are some human and animal study highlights:

    1. Tocotrienols can block the growth of white matter lesions and shrink them in size post stroke. 
    1. A high blood level of tocotrienols is significantly associated with a reduced risk of cognitive disorders, such as Alzheimer’s in the elderly. 
    2. Brain function in mice improved with tocotrienol supplementation.

Overall, research tells us that that tocotrienols support and promote brain health, and red palm oil is packed with them!

If you’re interested in learning more about these studies, you can read them here:

Clinical investigation of the protective effects of palm vitamin E tocotrienols on brain white matter.

A Review on the Relationship between Tocotrienol and Alzheimer Disease

Tocotrienol-Rich Fraction of Palm Oil Improves Behavioral Impairments and Regulates Metabolic Pathways in AβPP/PS1 Mice

Guidelines for Using Red Palm Oil

Extracted from the fruit of oil palm trees grown in tropical forests, red palm oil (in its natural state) has a rich dark red color, buttery texture, and carrot-like taste.

If you want to reap its benefits, you must use the unrefined and cold pressed form.

The kind used in large scale food production and prepackaged foods is processed palm oil – avoid consuming this type! When it’s processed, it becomes oxidized and not only loses all the health benefits, but it can actually cause health problems.

Since it has a high smoke point, red palm oil is great for cooking too!

Look for this special red oil (unrefined and cold pressed only) in health food stores and choose an organic version whenever possible.

Knowing what foods can boost your health is just as important as knowing which ones to avoid. 

Check out the 5 most destructive foods for your brain here.

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Nightshade Vegetables: Harmful or Healthful?

by January 14, 2020

Vegetables are extremely important for your health, but they’re not all created equal…

One category of vegetables, known as nightshades, are controversial because they can cause symptoms and health problems. 

Some people can tolerate certain nightshade vegetables in moderation, while others need to avoid these same ones completely because of how their body functions.

If you’re new to this topic, I’ll spell this all out and tell you exactly what you should know.

What are Nightshade Vegetables?

Over 2,000 types of plants fall into the nightshade category. Most of these are so poisonous they’re inedible and have never been a part of our food supply.

However, the ones you can eat tend to cause low-level toxicity in humans, and if eaten in excess, have an accumulative effect similar to how poison acts on the body. As you can imagine, this is not good for your health.

The Most Commonly Eaten Nightshade Vegetables

It’s very likely you’re eating nightshades on a regular basis without even realizing it.

The most common ones include:

    • Tomato
    • Potato
    • Bell, sweet and hot peppers
    • Paprika & cayenne pepper
    • Eggplant
    • Okra 
    • Tomatillos
    • Chewing tobacco 

There are also some that are less common, but you should still be aware of. These include gooseberries, sorrel, ground cherries, and goji berries.

Warning Signs That Nightshades may be a Problem for you!

If your diet includes nightshades, you may want to consider how they could be affecting you, or worsening existing conditions. They could be problematic if you’re experiencing:

    • Digestive issues (heartburn, bloating, irritable bowel)
    • Skin problems (eczema, hives, rashes)
    • Joint pain
    • Unexplained fatigue
    • Leaky gut syndrome (intestinal permeability)
    • Autoimmune disorder(s)

How do Nightshades Cause so Much Trouble?

It’s just a vegetable, right? Well yes, but what sets nightshades apart from other plants we eat are the compounds they contain – lectins, saponins, and capsaicin.

Let’s look at how each of these compounds can affect the way you feel and function. 

Lectins

These are proteins found in all plants – and even some animals.  Only some lectins are harmful to your health – like the ones found in nightshades, as well as, grains, beans and legumes.

Harmful lectins bind to your healthy cells and make them dysfunctional. They damage your gut by literally tearing holes in the cells that protect the lining. 

Tomatoes are perhaps the most dangerous member of the nightshade family! This is because the lectins in them are superstars at destroying the gut lining. Research has shown just how powerful of a toxin they are. One study showed how caterpillars, when faced with a tomato plant as their only food source, resorted to eating each other! 

Of course, as humans we know better not to eat each other (phew!), but in all seriousness, you may want to evaluate tomato’s presence in your diet. 

Saponins

Just like lectins, this natural plant compound serves as a defense mechanism for plants.

Their bitterness helps ward off predators, but in humans they can cause gut damage, intestinal permeability and trigger an immune response in your body. 

Glycoalkaloids are a type of saponin found in nightshades and the one in tomatoes is known as alpha-tomatine. It is so good at exaggerating an immune response that it’s actually used in vaccines to rev up the immune system against the virus that the recipient is being inoculated for. 

This is precisely why you may want to think twice before eating tomatoes too often.

Peppers, potatoes, and un-ripened tomatoes are all high in saponins and have these glycoalkaloids that can be disruptive. 

The one in potatoes, called alpha-solanine, is known to irritate the gut and impair the nervous system. It has even been linked to birth defects like spina bifida.

Now, most people have been eating potatoes their entire lifetime and are surviving right?  After all, french fries are an iconic American food! The point here is that potatoes aren’t healthy to begin with, and when you factor in those harmful nightshade compounds, you’re just much better off with other vegetable choices.

Capsaicin

This is the substance that gives peppers their heat. It’s true it can have health benefits, but it’s also detrimental to your gut and a big irritant to the skin, eyes and mucous membranes.       

Healthy Nightshade Vegetable Substitutes

You can crowd out nightshades in your diet with these alternatives:

    • Sweet potato or yam
    • Cauliflower
    • Celery
    • Broccoli
    • Radish
    • Black/white pepper (not red)
    • Low sugar fruits:
      • Berries
      • Apples
      • Melon
      • Citrus

The Nightshade Conclusion

Nightshades may be fine for most people to consume in moderation, but be aware of intolerance signs which would be any type of inflammatory response like digestive issues, joint pain, or skin problems.

If you already have an autoimmune disease or leaky gut, I’d suggest you eliminate nightshades entirely. They are just adding fuel to the fire!

Even if you don’t have the symptoms I discussed earlier, it’s a good idea to cut down on consuming nightshades. If you do eat them, you can reduce their lectin content to some degree by peeling and deseeding them (especially tomatoes) and then pressure cooking them.

Well, I hope this information has been helpful and has cleared up any confusion.  Remember, symptoms are your body’s way of alerting you to a problem. Since your diet is often the root cause of health conditions, a good place to begin your detective work is with examining what you eat.

Learn more about the link between your gut condition and overall health here.

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How to Slow Down or Prevent Macular Degeneration

by January 10, 2020

macular-degeneration

Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of vision loss in people over the age of 60. It’s so common that one out of fourteen people experience it to some degree!

Let’s go over how to avoid this problem – because it’s never too early or too late to protect your eyes!

Just What is Macular Degeneration?

When macular degeneration occurs, it’s because the nerves and cells of part of the eye (the retina) are damaged. That damage makes vision blurry and distorted. Usually this kind of vision loss is associated with aging.

Age Isn’t the Only Factor

The risks of developing macular degeneration get even higher for anyone who is overweight, has diabetes, has high blood pressure, who smokes, or who simply eats a poor diet.

Obesity and inactivity also cause the disease to advance more rapidly. On top of that, if you’re regularly exposed to cigarette smoke, your risk of developing AMD doubles!

Nutrition is the First Line of Defense

To protect your eyes from macular degeneration, it’s vital that you eat a healthy diet low in sugar (or without it altogether) and rich in vitamins, minerals, healthy fats, and antioxidants. These are proven ways to reduce inflammation and the effects of cellular oxidation (damage caused by free radicals) that wreak havoc on your eyes.

Here are some specific areas to focus on:

    • Veggies

You should eat lots of colorful vegetables because they contain loads of antioxidants and the carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin. These nutrients are critical for preventing macular degeneration because they form a pigment in your macula, in the back part of each of your eyes. That pigment protects your retinal cells, which are the cells in your eye that allow you to see.

So you really need to eat plenty of leafy greens, peppers, carrots, squash, sweet potato. When it comes to helpful fruits, choose berries and citrus.

    • Flavonoids

A flavonoid called anthocyanin can inhibit macular degeneration (and other diseases). You’ll find anthocyanin in blueberries, raspberries, and cherries. Being low in sugar, these fruits are great to include in your diet!

The bilberry plant also contains powerful flavonoids that support eye function. Bilberry supplements have been shown to relieve eye conditions like macular degeneration by improving blood flow.

    • Healthy Fats

Omega-3 fatty acids found in cold water fish can reduce the progression of macular degeneration and even reduce your risk of developing it. Ideally, you should eat a meal of fatty fish at least twice per week and take a high quality fish oil supplement as part of your daily routine.

    • Seafood

One of the most potent antioxidants and free radical scavengers is called astaxanthin. It’s what gives lobster, crab, and shrimp their reddish color. Getting rid of free radicals helps prevent or slow down macular degeneration, as well as diabetic retinopathy which causes blindness in some people with diabetes.

Astaxanthin helps to relieve eye fatigue and eye strain. Some higher quality multivitamins contain it.

Bonus Tips…

While outdoors, never look directly at the sun; the UV rays can cause great damage. Wear sunglasses and a hat when outside or driving for long periods of time.

When you’re indoors, make sure you take breaks from watching TV – and from using a computer or device. That will reduce eye strain, which reduces your overall risk for macular degeneration.

Blue light glasses are a great idea. As I mentioned, the high intensity blue light from the sun, computer screens and phones can be damaging to your eyes. Blue light glasses block the damaging blue light wavelength, preventing it from getting at your retina. Even better, these glasses are very inexpensive – like they’ll probably cost less than what you typically spend on lunch. In fact, I keep one pair at my computer workstation and another next to my bed, as I typically look at my phone before going to sleep.

Want more info on protecting your eyes from blue light exposure? Read: Protect Your Eyes From Harmful Blue Light Exposure – From The Inside Out

What I’ve listed here are really the most effective ways to prevent macular degeneration – or to slow its onset and reduce its severity. So, please make an investment now in your general health and the health of your eyes. You won’t regret it!

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Today’s health is the culmination of all the decisions, actions and experiences of your past. Now that you know this, create a better future.


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The Most Damaging Lectins to Avoid

by January 8, 2020

Lectins are naturally occurring proteins found in most plants. Whether you know it or not, you’re definitely consuming them. So, what’s the problem, isn’t protein good for you?

Not necessarily! Some lectins are harmful to your health because they stimulate inflammation and damage your gut. On the other hand, not all lectins are bad for you. They also vary in their potency and how they act on your body. 

There’s the good, the bad and how they work…it’s no surprise there’s been confusion on this topic, so let’s clear it up!

What’s the Problem With Lectin Foods?

Although lectins can be found in all parts of a plant, the highest concentration is in the seed. This protein acts as a low-level toxin when consumed. This is nature’s clever way of discouraging predators (including us humans) and helping the plant survive.

The most dangerous lectins are a common hidden source of health problems and weight gain. I refer to them as “hidden” because they’re found in plants that are seemingly healthy for you.

They are particularly dangerous if you already have an inflammatory or autoimmune condition.

Yikes! Just when you thought you were winning by eating more vegetables, now you have to look out for lectins. Like I mentioned earlier, only certain lectins are harmful so let’s go over those first.

The Most Dangerous Lectins to Avoid

1. Gluten and wheat germ agglutinin (WGA)

These are the kings of harmful lectins!

Both gluten and WGA are found in wheat, barley, rye and other grains.

Making the switch to gluten free grains is a step in the right direction, but it doesn’t guarantee less lectins. This is because gluten free grains like corn, rice, quinoa and buckwheat are saturated with lectins too. 

Gluten’s sticky texture makes it a useful component in so many products. The obvious high gluten foods include pasta, bread, and baked goods. It’s also used to make soups, sauces, and even cosmetics!

To avoid gluten, you’ll need to read labels diligently and look for its aliases.

2. Corn

This grain is so high in lectins that I crown it the queen.

Consider how livestock are fed corn to “fatten them up.” Corn and other lectins can create the same effect on humans by mimicking insulin, the hormone that promotes fat storage. You definitely don’t want anything in your body that mimics insulin!

The solution here is to avoid dairy or choose pasture raised meat and eggs instead of grain fed. If you don’t see the product labeled “grass-fed” or “pasture raised,” then assume it’s grain fed.

For better health, I recommend avoiding gluten (and corn) entirely, and here’s more on why! Keep in mind, grains were not part of our ancestor’s diet. They’re a product of modern agriculture and not a necessary component to a healthy diet.

3. Beans and Legumes

These are lectin bombs!

They include:

    • Peas
    • Green beans
    • Lentils
    • Soy
    • Peanuts and Cashews (actually legumes and not nuts!)

4. Nightshade vegetables

Certain vegetables known as nightshades are loaded with lectins too.

These include:

    • Tomatoes
    • White potato
    • Eggplant
    • Peppers
    • Chili based spices (like paprika)

Although tomatoes (and its sauce) are full of the powerful antioxidant lycopene, I recommend eating them sparingly because of their lectin content.

TIP: The skin peels and seeds of nightshades are most concentrated with lectins. Avoid eating this part of the vegetable whenever possible.

5. Dairy

If you want to consume dairy, choose raw (unpasteurized) from organic pasture raised animals. The pasteurization process destroys compounds that neutralize lectins.

Healthy Low-Lectin Plants you Should be Eating

Now that you know about the top 5 lectin containing foods, let’s go over what plants are safe. Thank goodness there’s plenty of low lectin healthy options!

This is my list of the most nutrient dense ones:

Strategies to Minimize Your Lectin Exposure

Eliminating harmful lectins from you diet is the best way to limit your exposure. If you’re going to eat high lectin foods, certain preparation methods can help neutralize these lectins. These techniques won’t completely zero them, but they will help to some degree.

I suggest always peeling and deseeding fruits and vegetables, especially nightshades. Soaking grains and legumes overnight before cooking them will also help reduce lectins.

For beans, potatoes and tomatoes, I advise using a pressure cooker. This cooking tool won’t work for grains though, those must be soaked.

Fermenting vegetables and fruits are a good way to reduce lectins too. You’ll also get the added bonus of the probiotics that come from the fermentation process.

Final Thoughts on Consuming Lectins

Eating small amounts of high lectin foods will probably not cause you a lot of harm. However, if you’re eating these foods in excess, you may really want to consider making some dietary changes. Remember, gluten is the king of lectins and it hides everywhere!

Excess lectins can cause extensive damage to your gut, and the condition of your gut sets the stage for how the rest of your body functions.


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Selenium Benefits: A Trace Mineral You DON’T Want To Lack

by December 31, 2019

If there’s one trace mineral you don’t want to deprive your body of, it’s selenium! Having sufficient amounts can mean the difference between health and disease, and even influence how long you live!

As one of the ten essential trace minerals, it’s vital to your health, but you only need it in small amounts. It’s important to know that your body can’t make it, so it must come from your diet or a supplement.

 Let’s explore exactly what selenium does for you and how to get enough of it.

Selenium’s Greatest Benefit: Antioxidant Power!

Selenium is best known for its role as an antioxidant. Here’s a quick review on what antioxidants do in your body…

Even though oxygen is essential to our survival, taking it in creates a reaction with other molecules known as “oxidization.” This reaction is a problem because it changes molecular structure and creates oxidants, or free radicals.

When too many free radicals are produced in your body, they damage your tissues and cells, increase disease risk, and speed up aging! Antioxidants are like soldiers in an army against free radicals. 

Yes, you read that right – just the act of breathing in oxygen creates harmful health effects if you don’t arm yourself with enough antioxidants. But don’t hold your breath, you’ve got selenium to help you out!

How Selenium Benefits Your Health & Reduces Signs of Aging

An antioxidant like selenium protects your body from free radical damage.

It specifically does this by:

    1. Being present in all of your tissues
    2. Producing selenoproteins – enzymes that destroys free radicals
    3. Preventing oxidation of fatty tissue – this translates to better skin elasticity, muscle mass/tone, and a stronger heart (your most important muscle)!

You can read more about how selenium benefits your skin here: Best Nutrients for Glowing & Youthful Skin

Science Confirms: Selenium Helps Fight Cancer

As early as 1969, research has shown a link between selenium deficiency and cancer.

Through various animal experiments, scientists have concluded that selenium is protective against cancer. These studies showed that tumor cells grew in the absence of selenium, and shrunk with sufficient amounts. WOW!

Certain foods are naturally high in selenium, and like other minerals, it’s also found in soil.

The amount of selenium in food varies around the world depending upon where food is grown. It’s been discovered that in parts of the world where soil is rich in selenium, cancer risk is reduced!

Selenium Has Even More Benefits

In addition to its amazing anti-aging and anti-cancer properties, selenium keeps you healthy in other ways by:

    • Fighting viruses before they can take over. Selenium’s ability to slow viral replication and boost immunity are so apparent that scientists who study HIV report that selenium supplementation is a valid way to assist primary treatment.
    • Regulating hormone production in your thyroid. These hormones are essential for proper sleep, energy, appetite, weight, digestion, muscle control, brain and bone health.
    • Reducing inflammation
    • Aiding fertility
    • Helping asthma
    • Reducing risk for heart disease

Note: Autoimmune thyroid disorders like Hashimoto’s and Grave’s disease are often linked to a selenium deficiency.

Spotting a Selenium Deficiency

You may be deficient in selenium if you don’t eat enough selenium rich foods and/or your food is grown in selenium depleted soil.

Common deficiency signs include:

    1. Frequent illness
    2. Infertility
    3. Hair loss
    4. Fatigue
    5. Muscle weakness

…and since selenium is SO good at neutralizing free radicals, having an increased risk for cancer is also a red flag.

Creating a Selenium Rich Diet

Foods rich in selenium include brazil nuts, pasture raised eggs, organ meat, sunflower seeds, and certain seafood like tuna, salmon, herring and rockfish.

Note: Tuna tends to have high levels of mercury, so I recommend avoiding or restricting its consumption. Mercury exposure can harm your brain, heart, lungs, kidneys, and immune system.

Selenium is so important, I’ve included it in BodyManual’s Multivitamin and Mineral

Before I wrap up, here’s a tip: Selenium and vitamin E (another powerful antioxidant) enhance the effects of one another.  Taking these two nutrients together will optimize your health, so you bet I’ve added vitamin E to my multivitamin formula too!


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