By admin March 7, 2019

Women’s Month

Happy Women’s Month to all the women out there; we appreciate all of you and this blogspot is dedicated to all things women! Hair, nails, beauty, weight-loss, hormones and so much more.

We have linked the best buys directly to our website so you can simply add to cart!

Beauty:  

A good hair and skin day means more time to focus on everything else!

Lamberts Florisene, contains significant levels of amino acid, biotin and selenium which all contribute to the maintenance of normal hair.

Color of Soin is great if you want to colour your hair. Made with plant exracts, it has been formulated with ingredients that respect the essential health of your hair. Amonia and paraben free, Color of Soin also works as a hair treatment.

Coconut & Castor Oil is great for dry, damaged hair. Coconut oil should be used regularly to condition all hair types as well as to maintain healthy hair.

Applied Nutrition Liquid Collagen boosts naturally aged skin by getting rid of wrinkles and lines with its high collagen content and antioxidant blend of the right nutrients.

Avalon Organics skin care, hair care and bath and body products are created with a profound respect for the earth; where products are created to embrace a holistic lifestyle of health, wellness and sustainability. Their lovely products leave you feeling rejuvenated and fresh.

Hormonal Balancing

Agnus Castus is a great supplement for relieving pre-menstrual symptoms such as irritability, mood swings, breast tenderness, bloating and menstrual cramps.

Kyolic Candida Cleanse & Digestion helps manage yeast production by cleaning out the gastrointestinal tract. Great to use if you are prone to yeast infections.

Maintain normal Estrogen levels with Kyolic Estro Logic and optimize your urinary tract and intestinal function with Kyo-Dophilus plus Cranberry, especially good to use if you are prone to UTIs.

Sage Leaf Tablets are known to provide relief from hot flushes and excessive sweating associated with the menopause. The tables are suitable for vegetarians and vegans. Source Naturals Menopause Multiple is also great in easing the symptoms of menopause and hormonal changes.

Pre and Post Pregnancy

If you’re ready to start trying for a baby start taking Natures Plus Procreation as it supports uterine and ovarian function. It also contains reproductive-optimizing vitamin A, C and E, and contains DHA to support healthy early-stage embryonic development and uterine implantation.

Fenugreek Tablets and Neuners Nursing Tea are both great for boosting milk supply for breast-feeding mums. The tea contains aniseed, fennel, verbena, caraway and fenugreek seeds, with no added flavouring, sugar or caffeine.

StrongStart or Natures Plus Source of Life Prenatal multivitamins are ideal for women who are trying to conceive, already pregnant or breast-feeding.

Weight Loss:

If you’re keen to shed some pounds, we encourage you to do it the right way and not by depriving yourself from essential nutrients. Come in and talk to one of our nutritionists or Metabolic Balance Coach for your personalized nutrition plan based on your BMI and your target weight. You can also begin your weightloss journey with Nutrex Lipo6 Extreme Potency Hers, available instore. The formula is created specially for women and helps with metabolism, promotes energy, alertness, helps balance food intake and controls appetite.

We love seeing all our customers in our stores but we also encourage you to try out the convenience of our online shopping platform. Most of our products are available online and they get delivered straight to your door.

We wish you all a happy and healthy March!
Live Life Well!
Team Healthy U.

By Phelistars Jumba, Deputy Chief Nutritionist March 25, 2022

Women’s Health – Endometriosis Awareness

Endo warriors worldwide are sharing stories on their journey. No one journey is the same; all as different as a fingerprint. The excruciating pain, the worry, the stress, fear, and anxiety, all very real. To create awareness for us and generations to come, these stories are vital in pivoting this agenda.

But what is endometriosis? Endometriosis is a condition where the tissue similar to the lining of the uterus, grows outside of the uterus. Some of these cells may end up continuing their cycle elsewhere in the body (ovaries, fallopian tubes, tissues that hold the uterus in place, vagina, cervix, vulva, bowel, bladder, and pelvic region).

But why should I know about endometriosis?

Symptoms associated with endometriosis are normally confused or brushed off as normal period problems/PMS symptoms. Endometriosis can happen to anyone. Early diagnosis is very vital in ensuring that we keep the symptoms under control.

How can we differentiate then?

Some of the symptoms include incapacitating pain in the uterus, painful menses, chronic pain in the lower back and pelvis, pain during intercourse, intestinal pain, painful bowel movements, bleeding or spotting between periods, infertility, digestive issues like diarrhea, constipation, boating and nausea and iron deficiency anemia.

We at Healthy U are committed in this journey to help alleviate symptoms and ensure that our warriors are living their best lives regardless of the huge hurdles they cross in their journey.

Our nutritional and holistic tips that may help relieve symptoms of endometriosis include:

Vitamin E

A combination of Vitamin E and Vitamin C with bioflavonoids are powerful antioxidants that may improve dyspareunia and dysmenorrhea. Vitamin E also aids in hormonal balance. Our Food grown Vitamins are organically grown to ensure you get the right nutrients that are easily absorbable in the body. https://www.healthyu.co.ke/product/wild-nutrition-gl-vitamin-c-bioflavonoids-60s/

Vitamin K

Vitamin K helps in production of prothrombin which is an important substance for blood clotting. Women with endometriosis were found to have heavier than normal bleeding during menstruation which can lead to anemia. Vitamin K is high in green leafy vegetable sources such as spinach and broccoli.

Essential fatty acids

Essential fatty acids found in evening primrose (Gamma linoleic acids, GLA) aid in regulating hormonal and prostaglandin balance. This also has strong anti-inflammatory effects that are beneficial for PMS symptoms and improving skin health. https://www.healthyu.co.ke/product/country-life-evening-primrose-oil-60s/

Iron

Iron deficiency anemia is common endometriosis. Iron supplementation is very important in cases of anemia. Iron is only used if anemia is diagnosed. https://www.healthyu.co.ke/product/floradix-floravital-yeast-gluten-free-iron-formula-500ml/

Vitamin B complex

Stress and fatigue tend to weigh someone down especially during ovulation and menses. Vitamin Bs are essential in promoting blood cell productivity, proper hormone balance and energy uptake, relieves stress, and needed for proper adrenal function. https://www.healthyu.co.ke/product/wild-nutrition-gl-b-complex-plus-60s/

Beta 1,3 glucans

Beta glucans help to stimulate activity of macrophages which help to remove cellular debris. They can be found our oats products https://www.healthyu.co.ke/product/moma-jumbo-oat-porridge-golden-syrup-70g/

Multivitamin and Multimineral complex

To provide all nutrients required for repair and healing and maintenance including Calcium and Magnesium. Magnesium is essential for muscle relaxation and relieving of pain. https://www.healthyu.co.ke/product/trace-minerals-fast-absorbing-liquid-vit-d3-125-mcg-5000iu-tropical-cherry-16fl473ml/ or https://www.healthyu.co.ke/product/natures-secret-womens-73-nutrient-soft-gel-multi-60ct/

Diet

  • Eating a diet consisting of 50 %raw vegetables and grain products, nuts and seeds including green drinks made from dark leafy vegetables.
  • Avoiding alcohol, caffeine and refined foods and food products, junk and excessive sugar consumption.
  • Detox: To reduce oxidative stress through metabolizing estrogen in the liver and promoting the body’s organs to function optimally.

Holistic

  • Use heating pad to relieve pain, relaxes muscle and relieves pain.
  • Diffusing Lavender oil to relieve stress and promote a restful night.
  • Daily moderate exercises such as walking or stretching is beneficial in modulating hormonal imbalance. Moderate exercise also increases the body’s production of endorphins which are natural pain relievers and maintaining an ideal weight.
  • Reducing xenoestrogen (external estrogen from the environment) load through less exposure to pesticides, herbicides, cosmetics with toxic ingredients and instead use organic based cosmetics and personal care.
By admin May 28, 2021

Weight Loss after Pregnancy

It is the desire of almost every mother to shed off baby fat as soon as they deliver their bundle of joy. However to get back to the pre-pregnancy shape is not a walk-in-the-park as most people would want to imagine! It takes time and therefore patience is primary. Trying to lose the weight within a very short time would be termed as selfishness, for lack of a better term. Reason being, that bundle of joy requires love as well and breastfeeding is vital. Hence the need for more calories to meet the need. A six week break is good before the idea of embarking on losing some weight especially in terms of reducing the calorie intake.

Preconception is the first phase in which every nutritional aspect needs sorting. This begins with attaining a suitable body weight. For instance, underweight, overweight and obese women should get in shape before considering pregnancy. This helps to avoid medical complications during pregnancy and bearing children with birth defects. All this can be achieved with a proper diet like pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, walnuts and brazilian nuts. Nutritional supplements come in handy here. Get folic acid, vitamin b12, pre-natal multi-vitamins and evening primrose oil to balance hormones.

It is normal to have extra weight during and after pregnancy. One would wonder where the weight came from and the answer is simple! There is usually breast tissue, fetus, increased blood supply, fat storage and enlargement of the uterus, the placenta and amniotic fluid. Part of this is immediately lost during delivery and is usually about an average of 5kgs which is an incredible start. The remaining is gradually lost as the uterus shrinks back to around its pre-pregnancy size.

One should set a realistic goal and consult a nutritionist if possible. A goal to lose 1kg per week is reasonable. This means a deficit of between 450 and 650 calories per day from the recommended daily intake. Most mothers can shed a bulk of pregnancy weight by the sixth month, however every mother should shed the weight at their own pace.

It is primary to eat foods that are packed with the proper nutrients. Increase your fibre intake; this includes oats, muesli, cereals and whole grain bread. Reduce your sugar intake and cut down on refined foods. Take plenty of legumes for example lentils, kidney beans, black eye beans and pinto beans. Also take enough omega 3 in your diet. You can incorporate flaxseed, chia seeds and walnuts. Choose healthy satisfying meals as these help reduce cravings and lots of snacking between meals. Incorporate fruits in your daily diet. Moringa is one of the superfoods that is beneficial as a detox and for milk production and provides calcium for nursing mothers. Get enough rest whenever possible as this helps reduce stress levels.

There are many factors that can affect a weight loss program. The first is age as metabolism tends to slow down by two percent every decade after one attains 25 years. Another factor is diet. Eating more protein than carbs improves metabolism and you burn more calories. Activity level counts as the other factor because being more active in terms of physical exercise burns more calories. All these factors determine the period one will take to bounce back to their pre-pregnancy weight.

Breastfeeding by itself helps lose weight. The activity helps melt off weight by stimulating release of hormones that are responsible for shrinking the uterus and thus shedding some weight. As you start weaning, your appetite tends to decrease and so is your metabolism, therefore incorporating physical exercises to lose weight is necessary e.g. gym sessions, swimming, walking, skipping rope and yoga just to mention a few.

As soon as you start on a weight loss diet make sure you are still eating enough calories depending on your activity level which is an average of 2000 calories. Eating less calories can make your body think you’re starving which ends up slowing metabolism. This makes it challenging to lose the extra kilograms eventually.

Losing weight after breastfeeding, can be done in numerous ways since the considerations for breastmilk formation stops. One of the primary ways is by avoiding diet with a lot of calories. Several supplements can be used. This includes and not limited to apple cider vinegar, green tea and other suitable fat burners. There is also meal replacements and plant proteins, e.g. available at Healthy U, Sunwarrior, Pulsin among others.

The ultimate goal of attaining a desired body weight and shape will somewhat be achieved in due time. This means the lifestyle and diet has to change in order to maintain the desired weight, else one can lose more weight than expected. To maintain the weight, light exercises sessions should be a routine. The light exercises includes; yoga, aerobics, walking, swimming, cycling etcetera. A constant caloric intake as per the RDI is key. Remember to incorporate things like green teas, plant based milks, fruits and vegetable and whole grain flours for your baking recipes.

By Jackson Keter, a nutritionist at Healthy U (KNDI certified)

By admin September 24, 2020

The Rainbow Diet

Eating health is colourful, not complicated.

Taste the Rainbow! EAT THE RAINBOW!

The rainbow diet is probably one of the ‘more fun’ diets out there. This is a holistic approach to radiant health, and has rules that are as simple as possible:

  1. Eat whole foods
  2. Eat as many colours as possible

This means that you are simply adding more fruits and vegetables of different colours onto your plate.

This is a very simple diet and health hack, but how exactly does it benefit you?

In having different colours on your plate, you are getting different properties that are unique to that colour. In summary;

  • The natural colours found in fruits and vegetables are the result of pigmented compounds called flavonoids.
  • Each unique flavonoid provides its own anti-oxidative and immune-supporting actions. People who eat at least six servings of high-antioxidant vegetables daily have decreased oxidative damage to their cells.
  • By eating a wide variety of colourful fruits and vegetables, you are consuming a full spectrum of anti-oxidative flavonoids.
  • This is also a great and effective way to boost your immunity this cold season!

In addition to flavonoids, fruits and vegetables contain important immune-enhancing vitamins and minerals. These include zinc, vitamin E, vitamin D, sterols, and carotene’s such as vitamin A and lycopene.

Therefore, just by simple eating more colours; red, green, purple, yellow and blue, your body will be healthier too!

By admin

The Dangers of Fake Bodybuilding Products

Protein is a staple in anyone’s diet, and the quickest and easiest way to get them is through protein powders and sports supplements.

You do not need to be a fitness enthusiast or an athlete to use sports supplements. Everyone from the elderly to those who require enough protein such as vegetarians can get incredible benefits from utilizing such products.

These products can help athletes as a way to increase performance, recovery, endurance or growth, or it can be used by particular individuals to make sure that they are getting enough protein in their day.

With such a wide variety of uses, with so many different products in the market, it can sometimes get confusing. There is one simple rule , however; “MAKE SURE YOU GET AUTHENTIC”

So what exactly is an authentic sports supplement and bodybuilding product? These are products that are made from reputable companies with certifications on their products. These should not be tampered with, imitated, or altered at any point from the source.

One can also trace their product directly back to the manufacturer, to make sure that it is authentic.

Although counterfeit products may look or taste the same, it may not mean that it holds the same benefits, and may sometimes counteract your long term health goals. This is because some counterfeit products may not have the right ingredients, are lower in quality, and may even have some potentially damaging ingredients in them.

With making sure that you are purchasing authentic products, you are minimizing the risk of being exposed to products such products, and you make sure that you are getting exactly what you asked for!

At Healthy U, you know that you are getting the best products, at some of the best prices!

We are certified distributors of;

  • Optimum Nutrition
  • Muscle Tech
  • Sun Warrior
  • Evlution
  • Dymatize
  • Sci-Mx
  • Olimp
  • Garden of Life
  • Cellucor
  • Neocell
  • MusclePharm
  • Nutrex
  • Quest
  • Grenade
  • Fulfil
  • Pulsin
  • And so many more!

Be the Best! Get the Best!

By admin December 19, 2017

Stay healthy before during and After Pregnancy

Optimal nutrition before, during and after pregnancy is essential for not only the mother but her baby too.

Why?

  • Some nutrient deficiencies have been shown to contribute to congenital abnormalities and birth defects.
  • Also, gestational under nutrition contributes to increase offspring’s susceptibility to chronic conditions such as diabetes and hypertension among others in adulthood.
  • Proper nutrition makes conception easier and helps prevent possible miscarriages, promotes a healthy pregnancy and the birth of a healthy baby.
  • It can also help to lessen or avoid the common problems experienced during pregnancy.
  • The pre-conceptual plan should take at least 3 months it takes for the egg and sperm cells to fully mature.

YOUR PRE- NATAL PLAN

How can you boost fertility and provide a good foundation for a healthy pregnancy?

  • Avoid/reduce foods, drinks or substances which reduce fertility i.e.
  • Smoking – Smoking is linked to infertility in women and contributes to reduced sperm count in men
  • Alcohol – Studies have shown that women who drink less are more likely to get pregnant. Research has shown that alcohol reduces sperm count and increases abnormal sperm cells in men. In addition, it decreases the absorption of important minerals such as zinc.
  • Xenoestrogens – These are environmental oestrogen from pesticides and plastics which can cause hormonal imbalance. Consuming organic produce helps to eliminate such compounds.
  • Caffeine – Drinking a lot of caffeine especially in form of coffee may reduce fertility.
  • Do a proper detox/cleansing e.g. a whole body detox
  • By removing toxins from the vital body organs such as the liver, kidneys, blood, gastro-intestinal tract and lungs among others you can improve hormonal balance (liver), improve circulation especially to the reproductive organs and enhance proper digestion and absorption of nutrients.
  • Consume a suitable diet which provides the full spectrum of nutrients.
  • This helps to avoid common deficiencies during pregnancy s
  • Nutrients such as iron, folate and other b vitamins, vitamin A, calcium and vitamin D, zinc, omega 3s and probiotics are very important.
  • Also, supplementing quality pre-natal multi-vitamin and mineral complex can provide these nutrients in proper proportions and formulations.

YOUR PREGNANCY

Proper nutrition may help to lessen or prevent common problems associated with pregnancy such as morning sickness, constipation, heart burn, weight problems, pre-eclampsia, pre-mature labor and infections.

These important nutrients include;

  • Folic acid – Prevents neural tube defects such as spina bifida
  • Iron- helps in hemoglobin formation which transports oxygen throughout the body. During pregnancy the amount of blood in the body increases steadily hence more iron is required.
  • Omega 3 fats – Provides DHA and EPA which are essential to build a healthy brain.
  • Calcium and vitamin D – For proper development of bones and teeth. Also, it prevents the loss of bone minerals in mothers.
  • Zinc – Required for proper growth and development and for immune boosting.

It’s important to note that all nutrients are required in proper proportions to support optimal health for both the mother and the developing fetus.

The important food choices to obtain these nutrients include:

  • Organic green leafy vegetables and fruits– They are high in fiber and contain important nutrients such as vitamin C, k, iron, magnesium, manganese, and fiber among others.
  • Cultured or fermented foods e.g. yogurt and Kefir. These provide fat soluble vitamins A, D, E and K. Also, they provide probiotics which improves digestion, improves immunity and reduces the growth of pathogenic bacteria among other functions.
  • Proper protein rich foods e.g. poultry, fish, eggs, lentils, tofu – Suitable protein sources for growth and development.
  • Seeds and nuts – Provides fibre, minerals and essential fatty acids essential for normal brain development.
  • Whole foods e. whole grains, oats – low glycemic load foods which ensure sustained energy release and helps to regulate blood sugar levels.

OPTIMAL NUTRITION WHILST NURSING

How can I ensure my body has all the nutrients I need when nursing?

  • Neuner’s nursing tea and stomach calm tea – Provides nutrients such as fenugreek and fennel which helps to increase breast milk production and reduce colic respectively.
  • Colic calm – A homeopathic remedy which helps to relieve colic in babies.
  • Prenatal omega mom – Provides essential nutrients for a healthy mother and baby.
  • Probiotics – Promotes a healthy intestinal lining thus helping to improve digestion, immunity and reduce the growth of pathogenic bacteria.
  • Omegas – For proper growth and development especially the development of the brain.
  • Seeds and nuts
  • Fenugreek seeds and powder, dill seeds – Helps to increase breast milk production
  • Fennel tea – Helps to relieve colic.
  • Green foods (organic) – Provides essential nutrients for proper growth and development.
  • Peas, beans, lentils, brown rice – nutritious whole foods.
By admin February 24, 2022

Self Care

Self-Care is the first step in Self-Love.

Why is self-care important? One of the biggest reasons is to reduce burnout. This applies to all areas of life; home, work, interpersonal relationships, improving happiness and increasing energy levels. Here are some of the ways we recommend incorporating some TLC into your life:

Personal self-care: Life gets overwhelming sometimes and it’s hard to tick off all the things on your to-do list! Here are some questions to ask when checking in with yourself:

  • Are you taking time to reflect on your day? Journalling is a great way to get in touch with your thoughts and feelings and makes processing negative or stressful events much easier.
  • Are you getting at least 30 minutes of physical activity in daily? This doesn’t always have to be rigorous exercise, a walk in your local neighourhood or green space is a great place to start!
  • Are you incorporating healthy and nutritious foods or supplements into your diet? Getting a few fruits and vegetables into your day really makes a difference in fuelling energy levels and productivity.

Emotional self-care is the act of tending to your inner world and emotions. In this day and age, tending to our emotional wellbeing is more important than ever… and spoiler alert: it’s not all bubble baths and massages. Here are a few ways to take care of your emotional gardening:

  1. Take a few minutes each morning or evening to write a stream of consciousness – it doesn’t have to make sense, just write out exactly what your are thinking as the thoughts arise. You’d be surprised how telling stream of consciousness writing can be when you read it back at a later date.
  2. Take some time out in nature. Few things are better to clear your mind and fill your soul than some fresh air and the beautiful greenery Kenya has to offer.
  3. Setting boundaries. This is a tough one. Boundaries are not dependant on how people react to you; they are rather how you react to those who don’t respect them. Think of yourself as an exclusive club, you get to upgrade, downgrade or cancel the memberships, accordingly, of the people who have access to you.

Social self-care: Humans are social creatures; we are not made to be isolated. As the world begins to recalibrate, make sure you’re taking time to connect with loved ones, friends and those around you. Is there something you’ve wanted to try or a hobby you’ve neglected? Take this as your sign to pick it back up!

Physical self-care: If you’ve been looking for a sign to get your body moving, here it is! Did you know that by incorporating exercise into your daily routine, your quality of sleep, mood and memory will improve? Make sure to take care of your body; it’s the only place you have to live. Live life well.

Spiritual self-care: A spiritual self-care practice is any ritual that connects you to your true self. There is an immense power in feeling spiritual alignment; when your soul is nurtured, you’ll know.

  1. This doesn’t have to be a grand event, just taking some time in the morning or evening to sit in silence and take deep breaths, slowing down the world around you.
  2. Clear your space. Have you ever been in a cluttered room and felt yourself get overwhelmed? Clearing your physical space helps in clearing mental clutter.
  3. Unplug from technology. This one is difficult in the age of constant online communication. Take some time to put your devices on airplane mode or leave them in a separate room for designated periods of time throughout the day.

Our bodies and our minds are the only places we have to live. Make sure you are treating yours with love and care.

By admin September 20, 2021

Save your Brain

Save Your Brain with 5 Easy Steps

By Patrick Holford

Think about it. Your ability to think clearly, make good decisions, adapt to inevitable challenges and not go into confusion is probably the one function that’s going to make the biggest difference in your life right now. Then, later in life, you will have seen relatives going down the slippery slope of cognitive decline curtailing their ability to function and causing increasing suffering and leading to a diagnosis of dementia or Alzheimer’s.

Statistically one in three born this century will develop dementia, and the process of neuronal decline starts in the 50’s although is barely visible without advanced scans and experienced only as a slight slippage in memory and loss of mental acuity.

So, whatever age you are now is the time to take on board my ABCDE Action Plan for keeping your brain sharp. Here’s the essence of how it works so we have a context for looking at the evidence.

Your brain is made of neurons (brain cells) which send and receive electrical signals and glial cells which support neurons. You’ve got in the region of 80 billion of each in your brain. Then need fuel – either glucose or ketones; antioxidants to clean up their ‘oxidant’ exhaust fumes; and a healthy intelligent lipid(fat) membrane which is made of essential omega-3 fats (DHA) binding to phospholipids (mainly choline) the binding of which is done by methylation, dependent on B vitamins. Both neurons and glial cells have vitamin D receptors, the sun-made hormone that both helps control gene expression and inflammation in the brain.

A – is for antioxidants

B – is for B vitamins that are essential for healthy methylation

C – is both for choline, the main phospholipid in your brain; and low carb diets

D – is both for vitamin D and DHA, the brain critical omega-3 fat

E – is for exercise – both physical and mental exercise are linked to less dementia risk

Tick these five boxes and the odds of your memory and cognition getting worse are very small, possibly non-existent. We will go through these in order

TEST YOUR MEMORY

Given that cognitive decline starts, for many in their 50’s but without any clear symptoms, it’s good to establish your memory status with a free 15 minute Cognitive Function Test. This is offered by www.foodforthebrain.org and both gives you a score arranged across a green, orange, red scale and a free report highlighting which of the above are likely to be most important for you. It’s especially worth doing if you’re over 50.

Many people have told me they didn’t do it because ‘they’d rather not know’ but that’s unwise because, unlike other diseases such as diabetes, that are reversible, dementia and especially Alzheimer’s which accounts for 2/3rds of dementia diagnoses, is not reversible but is preventable so the sooner you know where you’re at and what to do about it the better. Especially since, in the early stages of cognitive decline people pursue this kind of strategy to regain mental acuity and memory.

Here’s the actions to take:

A for Antioxidants

The older you get the more antioxidants you need. Many ‘polyphenol’ rich foods from blueberries to broccoli are potent antioxidants. The best way to optimise these is to eat a multi-coloured diet with lots of greens, berries, beetroot, turmeric, mustard, cinnamon and other spices and herbs.

But just eating these foods, especially later in life, doesn’t give your brain full protection from oxidative damage. That is why I both recommend, and take myself, a daily AGE Antioxidant formula containing all the nutrients mentioned above. Glutathione and alpha-lipoic acid are especially important, as is vitamin C. You won’t get enough vitamin C is an all-round antioxidant formula as optimal levels of 1-2g a day is a whole pill or two in its own right so this is worth taking separately.

B for B vitamins

One of the best predictors of cognitive decline is a blood test for homocysteine. Homocysteine levels in the blood increase if your methylation ability is under par. Methylation is absolutely critical for keeping neurons healthy, building neuronal membranes. Almost a quarter (22%) of the risk for Alzheimer’s is attributed to raised homocysteine and/or lack of B vitamins, according to research at the US National Institutes of Health.

B vitamins, especially B6, folate and B12, are vital for methylation. Vitamin B2 and B3(niacin) have a lesser role to play. Zinc and TMG (tri-methyl glycine) also lower homocysteine. All these would be included in a homocysteine lowering formula. Do you need this? Not necessarily. Younger and healthy people are probably protected sufficiently with the level of B vitamins in a good ‘optimum nutrition’ multivitamin but if you’re homocysteine level is above 11 you need much higher doses. That’s why homocysteine lowering formulas contain 500mcg of B12 while a good multi would provide 10mcg which is already four times higher than the RDA of 2.5mcg.

If you are experiencing any cognitive issues or concerns or don’t score as well as you’d like on the Cognitive Function Test I strongly recommend you get your blood homocysteine level measured.

C for Choline and a Low Carb Diet

Almost two thirds of the dry weight of the brain is made out of fats. These include omega-3 fats, cholesterol and phospholipids. Phospholipids are the major player with strange sounding names all beginning with phosphatidyl…choline, serine, inositol, dimethylaminoethanol etc. They are a family and can be made from each other. The most important one is phosphatidyl choline, followed by phosphatidyl serine. They are very rich in eggs and fish. I make a point to eat six eggs a week and have three servings of fish, but I also supplement extra phospholipids in a Brain Food supplement (this also has added ‘methylation’ B vitamins).

Neurons can run on either a stable supply of glucose or ketones, which are made in the liver from fat, for example when you’re fasting or burning off body fat. Eating too many carbs disturbs blood sugar balance and that’s why dementia has been called ‘type-3 diabetes’.

Eating a low GL diet is so important. But there’s another kind of low GL diet which effectively switches out carbs for fat – often called a Low Carb High Fat (LCHF) diet. That works too. The interesting discovery is neurons actually prefer ketones to glucose as fuel if given the choice and ketones are most directly made from a type of fat called C8 oil. A study in Canada gave two tablespoons a day to people with cognitive decline and showed that, not only did their cognition improve, but that brain cells effectively came back to life, making more energy from ketones.

D for Vitamin D and DHA

One of the hottest new frontiers in the brain is the role of vitamin D, which both seems to control inflammation and also switch genes into healthy settings. The state of knowledge is such that having a low vitamin D level, e.g. below 50nmol/l, is clearly associated with increased dementia risk but does having a higher level, or supplementation, actually improve cognition?

A study in 2017 answered this question. The researchers took people with a vitamin D level below 100nmol/l, averaging about 60nmol/l which is, quite frankly, higher than you’d find in the average person in the UK. They were then given either a low dose (400iu) or a high dose (4,000iu) vitamin D supplement in this randomised placebo controlled trial.(2) The blood levels of those in the low dose vitamin D group went up to a healthy 86nmol/l while the level of those in the high dose group went up to 131nmol/l. The authors conclude: “Nonverbal (visual) memory seems to benefit from higher doses of vitamin D supplementation, particularly among those who are insufficient (<75nmol/L) at baseline, while verbal memory and other cognitive domains do not.” Verbal memory is much more subject to learning and less relevant when looking at biological effects. Multivitamins, for example, raise non-verbal IQ but not verbal IQ.

The study suggests that a) you want to have a blood level of vitamin D above 75nmol/l and that 400iu (10mcg) is not enough. The optimal intake is probably between 1,000iu(25mcg) and 4,000iu(100mcg) although I suspect 4,000iu is unnecessarily high on a long-term basis unless you are experiencing cognitive decline.

D is also for the omega-3 fat DHA which has ever-increasing evidence to be protective of declining cognition. One of the most impressive studies gave sixty five healthy 50-75 year olds 2.2g a day of omega 3 fish oils for 26 weeks.(3) Not only was there was a significant increase in executive functions but also scans revealed beneficial structural changes in white matter integrity and grey matter volume. Improvements in executive function correlated with red cell omega 3 status. While other studies have shown improvements in those with cognitive decline this study shows a beneficial effect is healthy older people.

E is for Exercise for both mind and body

The level of physical fitness, education standard and intellectual activity are three well established risk factors for cognitive decline. Fitter people have better minds. So building in daily exercise into your lifestyle is very important especially as you get older. So too is learning new things. One of the best mind protectors is learning a new language or skill. So, it is good to keep giving yourself mental challenges to keep learning and protect your brain from decay.

If you put all these factors together the chances are you’ll prevent any significant decline in cognitive abilities and take a big step towards dementia-proofing yourself. My mentors, such as the late Dr Linus Pauling and Abram Hoffer, lived well into their 90’s and were mentally as sharper as a razor right up to the last weeks of their life. I intend the same for myself and wish this for you too.

Patrick Holford, BSc, DipION, FBANT, NTCRP, is a pioneer in new approaches to health and nutrition. He is a leading spokesman on nutrition in the media, specialising in the field of mental health. He is the author of 37 books, translated into over 30 languages and selling millions of copies worldwide, including The Optimum Nutrition Bible, The Low GL-Diet Bible, Optimum Nutrition for the Mind and The 10 Secrets of 100% Healthy People, 10 Secrets of Healthy Ageing and Good Medicine.

By admin April 22, 2021

Ramadhan and Nutrition

Ramadhan is the 9th month of the Islamic calendar observed by Muslims worldwide as a month of fasting, prayer, reflection and community cohesiveness.

During this time, fasting from sunrise to sunset is obligatory for adult Muslims who are not acutely or chronically ill, travelling and elderly, breastfeeding, diabetic or experiencing their monthly flow.

For those who are fasting they need to wake up well before sunrise to eat food that has to sustain them until sunset and this means eating foods high in protein, complex carbohydrates, vegetables and maintaining proper hydration.

Diet

This is where Healthy U has your back with a variety of high protein and  high fibre meal options which will help maintain energy levels throughout the day while providing the necessary nutrients for the body.

  • Iftar (After sunset)

  • Fruits e.g. dates, prunes, raisins etc. Easy to digest thus ideal to consume when breaking the fast. In addition, they provide electrolytes and dietary fibre for a healthy blood PH and bowel function.
  • A variety of health snacks e.g. protein and energy bars, nuts, crackers, wafers etc.
  • Healthy juices (The Berry Company, Mangajo drinks) herbal teas and water to maintain healthy hydration levels and other health benefits e.g. relaxation, digestion and detox.
  • Dairy alternative drinks (almond, soya, hazelnuts and rice milk). Suitable for lactose intolerant individuals.
  • Quality whole foods (pulses, grains, flours) rich in protein, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals.
  • Superfoods (moringa, baobab, wheatgrass, spirulina). To supply essential vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients considering it might be difficult to achieve the required servings of fruits and vegetables.
  • Suhoor (Before dawn)

  • A low GL diet (high in protein, complex carbohydrates and healthy fats) would be ideal for Suhoor to supply the required nutrients slowly throughout the day.
  • Oats (jumbo, porridge). May be consumed with dairy free milk (e.g. almond, rice and coconut especially for lactose intolerant individuals) and topped off with raisins to make the dish sweeter and the additional nutritional benefits from the raisins such as dietary fibre and antioxidant.
  • High fibre mueslis and granola, for sustained energy release during the day
  • Quality whole foods (pulses, grains, flours) rich in protein, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals
  • Superfoods (moringa, baobab, wheatgrass, spirulina), to supply essential vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients considering it might be difficult to achieve the required servings of fruits and vegetables.

Tip:

During Iftar and Suhoor, make an effort to replace fried fatty and oily foods with baked products, fresh fruits salads, dates and yoghurt. These are rich in probiotics (help maintain a healthy digestive system in addition to boosting immunity through the gut.)

Weight Loss and gain

A major concern during this time is weight loss though many people view fasting as a great way to lose weight. However, this may lead to weight gain for some people since consuming large meals at opposite ends of the day (early in the day and late at night) coupled with low activity level may slow down your metabolism in an attempt to conserve energy for fuel throughout the day.

For most people, weight loss may occur during Ramadhan because the amount of food consumed changes (portion sizes) and your stomach may become smaller during the period and therefore hold less food in addition to appetite changes.

A study showed that the changes during Ramadhan were not as much and often reversible after the period unless consistent lifestyle modifications are made in an effort to maintain the weight milestone achieved during the period.

Exercise

Ideally, the best time to exercise is before the pre-dawn meal (Suhoor). Exercise will help improve your metabolism especially for those looking to lose weight during this period.

Immunity

During this period, it is important to remember that Corona virus is still lurking in the streets thus maintaining immunity should a top priority. Therefore, immunity supplements would help to bridge the gap in the diet. The essential nutrients to prioritize are; vitamin C & D, zinc and selenium.

At Healthy U, we have variety of immune boosting supplements and you are very much welcome to our nearest branch for further consultation, by our qualified nutritionists on the best supplements to help keep your immunity in tip top shape.

Insha’Allah

By Mercy Mwikali Muthami, a nutritionist at Healthy U.

By admin December 19, 2017

Quit Smoking the Healthy Way

You want to quit smoking, you know all the bad effects it can have, you keep making excuses that now is not the right time, you tried it once and found it too difficult. We are here to help you get rid of these thoughts and find the healthiest way to #LiveLifeWell and quit smoking.

Smoking can have some severe side effects. Some of these include:

  • lung disease, heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, cervical cancer, pregnancy complications
  • Females can experience early menopause, osteoporosis, cervical cancer, decreased fertility and pregnancy complications
  • Males may experience low penile blood pressure which may contribute to impotence.

Quitting can be hard due to nicotine addiction. You can also experience other withdrawal symptoms such as nervousness, irritability, headache, tremors, and disrupted sleep.

How do you get past this? Proper supplementation and diet can help to control these symptoms, getting you back to normal in no time.

Here are some of our suggestions:

Supplements;

  • Smokers cleanse kit – this is a three-part program that contains herbs, vitamins and amino acids aimed at respiratory system cleanse and support, reducing cravings and stress relieving.
  • Total lung therapy – Helps to expel mucous from deep in the respiratory system, sooth and heal the inflamed tissues as well as protecting and strengthening the system.
  • Antioxidants e.g. Coenzyme Q10, grape seed extract, N-Acetyl cysteine (NAC.) These protect the system against the oxidative stress and improve circulation and oxygenation of tissues. They also help to repair lungs and the other damaged cells.
  • A potent multivitamin and mineral complex which provides important nutrients such as Vitamin C which is depleted by smoking and Vitamin B3 which helps to lessen the cravings.

Aromatherapy;

  • Peppermint, lavender and orange essential oils – they can help to fight the urge to smoke and can reduce headaches associated with nicotine withdrawal.

Diet;

  • Consume more fruits and vegetables to get all the beneficial nutrients you need such as vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients.
  • Consume more cayenne and ginger- cayenne helps to desensitize respiratory tract cells to irritants from cigarette smoke.
  • Consume more onions and garlic as they contain nutrients that help in detoxifying harmful substances from the body and can boost the immune system.
  • Consume herbal teas that help in blood cleansing, relaxation and general well-being.
  • Consume nuts and seeds that have nutrients with nerve-calming properties.

To find out more or get the support you need, talk to one of our in-store nutritionists today and don’t forget to #LiveLifeWell