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SLEEP: Tips to Sleep Better Tonight! Part 2

sound sleep
Sleep tips – Part 2

 

8. Avoid Napping during the day:

NappingIf you have trouble sleeping at night, napping is not advised.

People often feel sleepy in the late afternoon. You may notice this especially after eating a lunch or a snack that included sugar or simple carbohydrates, like bread, pasta, crackers, and cookies.
Do not give in. Eat some protein, drink water, take a walk and “push through”.

If you must take a nap, limit it to 20-30 minutes so you can sleep at night.

9. Avoid Nicotine 3-5 hours before Bedtime:

Nicotine is a stimulant. Nicotine

Like caffeine, using tobacco products too close to bedtime will interfere with sound sleep.

Remember that if you live with a smoker, and breathe the second hand smoke, that you are taking the nicotine into your body as well.

10. Avoid Peppermint before bed:

peppermint 2Peppermint, even the scent of it, stimulates the brain.

This will make you feel more awake.

This includes your toothpaste.
Try an alternate flavor at bedtime, such as wintergreen, spearmint, tea tree and more.

 

11. Eat Your Evening Meal Several Hours before Bedtime:

Studies show that inconsistent eating habits later in the day can negatively affect sleep. when to eat

If you eat late at night, like a pizza at 10 pm, it may be a recipe for sleep disturbances.

Finish dinner several hours before bedtime and avoid foods that are hard to digest or stimulate.

If you get hungry at night, snack on foods that won’t disturb sleep. Food high in the amino acid tryptophan such as bananas, turkey, and milk products without sugar, may help.

If you have a bad night of sleep, write down what you ate for dinner or snack and you will see what disturbs your sleep.

 12. Balance Fluid Intake:

mulitple glassesDrink enough fluid at night to keep from waking up thirsty…BUT not so much and so close to bedtime that you will be awakened by the need to go to the bathroom.

Adequate hydration during the day is essential for health, but balance how much you drink later in the day so you do not disrupt your sleep.

13. Only Bedroom Activities in the Bedroom:

Reserve the bed for bedtime-only activities so the mind associates the bedroom with relaxation.

Sleep and sex…YES!

TV, computer, phone, tablet, work, paying bills…. NO!

14. Keep the Bedroom Cool:

Temperature affects sleep.Thermostat

Keep the bedroom between 60-65 degrees Fahrenheit. This is ideal.

Have adequate ventilation in the room. Open the window for fresh air to enhance sleeping comfort.

A room with extreme temperatures leads to more frequent awakenings and lighter sleep. Don’t get too hot or too cold.

Cuddling up in a nice warm bed may seem like a good start to a restful night, but an increase in body temperature can disrupt sleep. Remember that if you sleep with a partner, pets or even a pile of blankets, it may be time to lighten the load and lower your sleep temperature.

15. Keep the Noise Down:

limit noiseIf you cannot avoid and eliminate noise from barking dogs, loud neighbors, city traffic, or other people, try masking it with a fan or other white noise (a soothing repetitive sound).

Wearing ear plugs is another solution.

If you have a snoring bed partner, consider time together to relax in bed together followed by one of you sleeping in another room. You will enjoy each other much more if you get a good night’s sleep.

16. NO Light in the Bedroom:  

The bedroom should be free from any light when you go to sleep. woman sleeping with mask

Consider using blackout curtains or shades, or wearing a sleep mask.

Unless you wear a sleep mask, even the smallest light is enough to disrupt sleep. Blue wavelengths have the greatest impact on circadian rhythm. Many devices have a blue light even when they charge.

REMOVE all things that emit any light from the bedroom. This includes charging electronics, alarm clocks, computers, all of which glow in the dark.

Use battery powered alarm clocks and turn the face towards a wall so that there is no light in the room.

Why do I suggest this?

The human body needs a hormone called MELATONIN to sleep.

The pineal gland, a small gland in the brain, makes this hormone.

Melatonin helps control your sleep and wake cycles.

Normally, melatonin levels begin to rise in the mid to late evening and remain high for most of the night.

Then, it drops in the early morning hours.

LIGHT AFFECTS how much melatonin your body produces.

Melatonin is produced primarily in darkness and inhibited by light.

When it is dark, melatonin production increases and when the eyelid perceives any light,Melatonin it stops.

If your bedroom is not dark, your body will not produce melatonin at the levels you need to sleep properly.

Natural melatonin levels slowly drop with age. Some older adults make very small amounts of it or none at all.

MELATONIN SUPPLEMENTS are a great way to treat sleep problems.

This is a natural substance your body needs and produces.

Sometimes only a few days of melatonin will set the body back on the right track. Some people just need some every night an hour before bed.

It is NOT a sleeping pill? It is not a sleep initiator. MELATONIN IS A SLEEP AND BODY CLOCK REGULATOR.

I suggest a product with a purity guarantee and high quality manufacturing. I use USANA Health Sciences melatonin. See www.leoraamir.USANA.com

Melatonin is also used for:

  • Seasonal Affective Disorder
  • To help control sleep patterns
  • Jet lag
  • Sleep issues after any disruption to schedule

BOOST MELATONIN PRODUCTION AT NIGHT When You:

Turn off your television and computer.
Do not use the television or computer to fall asleep. They suppress melatonin production and stimulate the mind rather than relax it.
Try listening to music instead or practicing relaxation exercises, or meditation.
Don’t read from a backlit device at night (such as an iPad or kindle).
If you use a portable electronic device to read, use one that is not back lit.
Change Your Bright Light Bulbs
Avoid bright lights before bedtime. Use low-wattage bulbs.
Use a Low Light Flashlight to go to the Bathroom
If you wake up during the night to use the bathroom, try to keep light to a minimum so it will be easier to go back to sleep.

17. NO Pets in Your Bed:

pets not allowedSleeping pets can interfere with sleep.

Snuggle them before bedtime and then train them to sleep elsewhere.

 

18. Sleep on a Comfortable Bed and Pillows:

Invest in comfortable bedding. Your bedding impacts the quality of your sleep. bedwithpillows

Buy new pillows and beds regularly. People often keep their bedding far too long.

Remember that you spend more time in bed than in most other places. Choose to spend the money on your bedding.

ONLY SLEEP IN YOUR BED! Avoid sleeping on the couch in front of the TV.

19. Do Not Look At The Clock:

Checking the time when you are trying to fall asleep No clocks allowedor if you wake up in the middle of the night can increase stress, making it harder to fall asleep. Turn the clock’s face away from you.

20. Check the Medicine Cabinet :

Certain medications might be interfering with your sleep. Ask your pharmacist or doctor if medication could be interfering with your sleep. If so, find out if you can take it at another time of the day.

Some supplements may also keep you up, such as Vitamin B’s.

If they are, take them earlier in the day.

21. Getting Up In the Middle of the Night:

getting up in middle of nightIf you wake during the night and cannot get back to sleep within 15-20 minutes, DO NOT REMAIN in bed “trying hard” to sleep.

Get out of bed. Leave the bedroom.

Do some boring activity, read, have a light snack, do some quiet activity, or take a bath. You will generally find that you can get back to sleep in about 20 minutes.   Do NOT perform challenging or engaging activity such as housework, office work. DO NOT watch television.

I hope you have a great night’s sleep every night.

 

Please feel free to pass this on to anyone who will benefit from the suggestions.

To your Health,

Leora

SLEEP: Tips to Sleep Better Tonight!

sound sleep

The average person spends more than one third of his or her life asleep.

During sleep the body repairs itself so that when we awake our bodies are renewed and refreshed.

Adequate sleep is necessary for healthy functioning. When we don’t get enough quality sleep it can affect judgment, mood, productivity, and memory.

Most people need 7-9 hours of quality sleep per night.

Over time, sleep deprivation can contribute to weight gain, diabetes, obesity and many other health conditions.

sleep & weight gain

There is a connection between inadequate sleep and weight gain!
Getting a good night’s sleep will enable you to lose weight, especially if you have been chronically deprived.
Sleep boosts your metabolism, ignites fat burning, and decreases cravings and overall appetite. So get the best sleep possible.

**** NOTE: Factors like stress or big life changes can result in a few sleepless blue and sadnights. If you have on-going trouble falling asleep and/or staying asleep it could be a sign of another issue such as depression, sleep apnea, hormone swings and many others. Seek medical attention if after trying all the tips below you are still unable to get quality sleep.

Sleep habits are referred to as sleep hygiene. Poor sleep hygiene creates sleep problems. We stay up way too late and get up early. We interrupt our sleep with work, over stimulation from nighttime activities like television and electronic devices, use of medication and/or chemicals in our food.

Tips on How to Sleep Better Tonight:

1. Establish a Bedtime Routine:

Ease the transition from wake to sleep with a period of relaxing activities an hour or so before bed. Take a warm shower or bath, read a book or magazine that isn’t exciting, emotional, or intellectually challenging. You could practice relaxation breathing or exercises, or meditate. Avoid stressful, stimulating activities.

** Stressful activities can cause the body to secrete the stress hormone cortisol which is associated with increased alertness.

The routine lets the body know IT IS TIME TO UNWIND from the day’s stress and relax. Figure out a routine that works for you. You will train your body to know it is time to downshift and become sleepy.

**If you tend to take problems to bed, try writing them down and then putting them aside. Also, keep a pad of paper and pen at your bedside. If you think of something while lying in bed, write it down and then let it go.

2. Set a Time to go to Sleep and a Time to Get Up:

time pieceHaving fluctuating bedtimes is not good for healthy sleep.

Going to bed and waking up at the same time each day sets the body’s internal clock.

The body will get used to falling asleep at a certain time, but only if this is relatively fixed. This includes sticking to the time on the weekends.

Even if you are not working, this is an essential component of sleeping habits.

Waking at the same time every day is the best way to set your internal clock. Stick to it even if you did not sleep well the night before.

We each have our own circadian rhythm. This is your natural sleep cycle. Just set times that you follow daily, and get 8 hours of sleep.

(To discover your OPTIMAL SLEEP SCHEDULE, find a period of time (a week or two) when you are free to experiment with different sleep and wake times. Go to bed at the same time every night and allow yourself to sleep until you wake up naturally. No alarm clock! If you are sleep deprived, it make take a few weeks to fully recover. You will eventually land on the natural sleep schedule that works best for you.)

3. Avoid Alcohol 3-5 Hours before Bedtime:

Many people believe that alcohol helps them sleep. No drinking alcohol
While alcohol has an immediate sleep-inducing effect, a few hours later as the alcohol levels in your blood start to fall, there is a stimulant or wake-up effect which decreases the quality of your sleep later in the night.

4. Get proper Nutrition During the Day:

Nutrition is related to sleep.

Summer Fruit & VeggiesEating a balanced diet and supplementing with High Quality Nutritional Supplements are key to the body performing optimally.
Eat a diet high in vegetables, fruits, lean protein, complex carbohydrates and lots of water.

I suggest USANA Health Science Supplements to be sure the body gets all the micronutrients it needs. See www.leoraamir.USANA.com

5. Avoid Caffeine 3-5 Hours before Bedtime:

This includes caffeinated beverages such assay no to caffeine coffee, teas, energy drinks, and many sodas, some pain relievers, as well as chocolate.
Caffeine is a stimulant .
This becomes an even greater issue as we age.
Caffeine leaves our systems more slowly as we get older. Women are especially susceptible to having caffeine linger in the body for a long time creating trouble falling asleep along with numerous interruptions.

6. Exercise Regularly, BUT NOT right before bed:

Staying FitRegular exercise can help one fall asleep more soundly.

However, strenuous exercise within 2 hours before bedtime can decrease the ability to fall asleep and cause sleep interruptions.

7. Avoid Sugary, Spicy, or Heavy Foods 3-5 Hours before Bedtime:

Sugar, in particular, can cause a rapid heart rate and AntiSugarinterfere with the ability to fall or stay asleep.

(Women may notice increased sleep disturbance when they eat sugar in the evening. This may manifest as hot flashes, sweating or not being able to fall or stay asleep. Remember that wine and other alcohol is sugar in the body.)

Spicy and heavy food may have the same impact on everyone.

I hope you have a great night’s sleep every night.

Please feel free to pass this on to anyone who will benefit from the suggestions.

Leora

 

to be continued in Part 2.

THE 2015 DIRTY DOZEN And CLEAN FIFTEEN

The Environmental Working Group (EWG) is a non-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to protecting human health and the environment.

For more than two decades, EWG sets out to answer questions about what is safe to eat, drink, put on our skin, and so much more. Their goal is to empower you to get to know your environment and protect your health.

These are their findings regarding the safety of our fruits and vegetable pertaining to the levels of pesticides and chemicals.

THE DIRTY DOZEN:

The 2015 list of Foods with highest levels of Pesticides and should only be eaten if organic:

1. APPLES

Apples

 

 

 

 

2. PEACHES

Dirty 12 peaches

 

 

 

 

3. NECTARINES

dirty dozen nectarines

 

 

 

 

4. STRAWBERRIES

Strawberries

 

 

 

 

5. GRAPES

dirty dozen grapes

 

 

 

 

6. CELERY

Dirty dozen celery

 

 

 

 

7. SPINACH

Dirty dozen spinach

 

 

 

 

8. SWEET BELL PEPPERS

Dirty dozen sweet bell pepper

 

 

 

 

9. CUCUMBERS

dirty 12 Cucumber

 

 

 

 

10. CHERRY TOMATOES

Dirty dozen cherry tomatoes

 

 

 

 

11. SNAP PEAS-imported

Dirty Dozen snap peas imported

 

 

 

 

12. POTATOES

dirty dozen potatoes

 

 

 

 

+HOT PEPPERS

dirty dozen hot peppers

 

 

 

 

+KALE / COLLARD GREEN

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 

 

 

 

CLEAN FIFTEEN

These 15 Foods have the lowest Pesticide levels and can be eaten without buying organic produce:

1. AVOCADOES

clean 15 avocadoes

 

 

 

 

2. SWEET CORN

clean 15 sweetcorn

 

 

 

 

3. PINEAPPLES

clean 15 pineapple

 

 

 

 

4. CABBAGE

ChouPommeVert

 

 

 

 

5. SWEET PEAS frozen

clean 15 frozen sweet peas

 

 

 

 

6. ONIONS

clean 15 onions

 

 

 

 

7. ASPARAGUS

clean 15 asparagus

 

 

 

 

8. MANGOS

clean 15 mangos

 

 

 

9. PAPAYAS

Hawaiian Papayas

 

 

 

 

10. KIWI

clean 15 kiwi fruit

 

 

 

 

11. EGGPLANT

clean 15 eggplant

 

 

 

 

12. GRAPEFRUIT

clean 15 grapefruits

 

 

 

 

13. CANTALOPE

clean 15 cantalopes

 

 

 

 

14. CAULIFLOWER

clean 15 cauliflower

 

 

 

 

15. SWEET POTATOES

Clean sweet potatoes

 

 

 

 

Whenever you can, please buy fruits and vegetables that have not been Genetically Modified (GMO) and/or sprayed with pesticides.

Buying ORGANIC is the best way to protect your health.

Please share this information and help to TAKE BACK YOUR HEALTH!!!!!

To your health,

Leora

Fish Oil – What you need to know

FishoilGel-caps

Fish oil is a common term used to refer to two kinds of Omega-3 Fatty Acids: EPA and DHA.

We need these omega-3 fats in a ratio which we generally do not get in the American diet.   That is why supplementation is widely recommended.

Omega-3’s are critical for maintaining the health of your cells by providing the lipids needed. Your cells are the foundation of every part of your body, so Omega-3’s are needed for your health at the most basic level.

Science has proven that Fish Oil does not make you fat.

The Benefits of Fish Oil:

1.   Reduces overall INFLAMMATION, which is the underlying cause of diseases Heart&Memory

2.   Improves Joint Health and reduces stiffness

3. Improves blood pressure and Heart Health, as well as arterial function and blood flow, especially in middle aged adults

4.   Improves Memory and cognitive function

5.   Decreases Depression and Balances Mood

6. Increases and Helps Maintain Energy

7. Nourishes the skin – giving the youthful glow

8.    Boosts the Immune SystemGood Digestion

9. Helps Regulate Digestion and Increase Absorption of Vitamins and Minerals

 

10. Promotes Healthy Hair and Nails

11. Decreases the risk of diabetes and certain cancers including breast cancer

 NOT ALL FISH OIL SUPPPEMENTS ARE SAFE!

Do You Know This?
Many fish oil supplements contain heavy metal, PCB’s, and other contaminants found in fish from the ocean.   Some are not manufactured properly and go rancid quickly.     These can do more harm than good.

After much research, I have chosen USANA BIOMEGA

This fish oil has been thoroughly tested, evaluated and given the respected stamp of approval by ConsumerLab.com, a leading provider of independent product testing that helps consumers and healthcare professionals make safe and knowledgeable purchasing decisions.

It is produced in an FDA registered facility with all the stringent requirements of the best standards of manufacturing.

TAKING A HIGH-QUALITY FISH OIL SUPPLEMENT is simple and budget-friendly.

USANA BIOMEGA contains the two Omega-3 fats in the perfect proportion plus you get a little Vitamin D.

It won’t taste terrible because of the added lemon oil. *

You can order these supplements by clicking products on my website:   www.leoraamir.com

In addition, you can increase your intake of foods that are rich in omega-3 fatty acids which include:greens

▪   Oily fish – anchovies, herring, sardines, salmon, trout, and mackerel.
▪   Flax
▪   Hempseed
▪   Perilla oil
▪   Spirulina
▪   Walnuts
▪   Eggs
▪   Chia seeds
▪   Raddish seeds, sprouted raw
▪   Fresh basil
▪   Leafy dark green vegetables, such as spinach
▪   Dried tarragon

 Bring on the Fish Oil!!!!!

FishOilGelCaps

To your health,

Leora

If you found this helpful, please share this with your family and friends.

*If you are a rare person who “burps fish”, refrigerate your capsules or even freeze them and always consume them with food

THE HUMAN ENERGY CRISIS

There is an energy crisis in America—and I am not talking about natural resources. Stressed

Many of us are challenged to be alert, well-rested, and energetic.

We are often over-scheduled, have stressful lives, and suffer from a lack of quality sleep and poor eating habits.

This leaves us feeling drained.

Fatigue breaks us down physically and emotionally, and it wreaks havoc on the immune system.

All of these make us more susceptible to illness, depression, and even chronic conditions like heart disease.

We can take back our health!

We have the power to change our habits, boost our energy, and feel terrific.

We all know that regular exercise, stress management, and getting at least eight hours of sleep are critical for combating fatigue.

There a many things you can do.

1. Eat predominantly nutrient-dense foods Clean 15

The body converts food to energy and this requires an abundance of vitamins and minerals.

Every cell in our body can unlock its energy potential with the proper fuel from food.

If we don’t get enough nutrients from foods, we suffer from sub-optimal cellular energy metabolism, making us feel tired and sluggish.

Nutrient Dense foods are high in Antioxidants needed to protect our cells.

The best way to combat this is to choose foods that have a lot of nutrition per calorie.

These include vegetables, beans, nuts, seeds, fruits, whole grains, and lean animal proteins.

Choose power foods like these weekly:

1.   Almonds (or other nuts)
2.   Avocado
3.   Watercress or arugula, kale, collards, spinach
4.   Quinoa or other intact whole grains such as millet, amaranth, brown rice
5.   Flax seeds (grind them before adding to foods)
6.   White beans or lentils, black beans, other legumes
7.   Dates or other dried fruit – in moderation
8.   Blackberries, strawberries, raspberries, blueberries
9.   Sea vegetables (nori, dulse, hijiki, etc.)
10. Edamame (young whole soy beans)

Remember:
Refined breads, fried and fatty foods, sweets and desserts, and processed snack foods give us lots of calories with little nutrition which is why you feel so much better if you base your diet on minimally processed, whole foods.

2. Nutritional Supplementation

Even if you eat well, it is nearly impossible to get all the vitamins and minerals you need from your food.

This is due to issues with our water, air and soil, as well as the chemicals and pesticides used and the time it takes to get from the farm to the table.

It is critical to take High quality antioxidants and vitamin/mineral supplements.

Supplements are NOT created equally.

Choose one made
-With High-Quality Manufacturing from a science-based company.
– By a company that manufactures their own products in their own manufacturing facilities where they control the entire process, from raw ingredient to finished supplement.
– From a company that voluntarily has a facility that is certified to be in compliance with Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) identical to pharmaceutical GMP and meets the requirements set forth in NSF/ANSI Standard 173-2012, Dietary Supplements by NSF International, and is a registered U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Drug Establishment .

There are only a few Supplement Companies that meet these standards.

See my website for suggestions.   www.leoraamir.com

3. Focus on Omega-3somega3s

Studies show that diets high mega-3 fats improve mood, memory, and thinking, focus and energy.

Try to ingest at least one excellent source of omega-3 fats a day: fish, flax seeds, flax oil, hemp seeds, hemp oil, leafy greens (think big salad), or walnuts.

Omega-3 supplements such as fish oil can help add what you don’t receive from your healthful diet. (See my website for suggestions)

4. Make breakfast a priority

Skipping breakfast after 6-8 hours of sleep hurts us in the long run. Studies show that a good breakfast gets your metabolism going, and will help keep you alert and satisfied until lunch.

Skipping breakfast tells the body it is starving and it will conserve energy instead of revving you up.

Replace processed foods like donuts, pastries, white bagels, cereal, and waffles with healthier options including lean protein, fresh fruit, whole grains, nuts/seeds, whole grain bread with nut butter.

5. Eat snacks

Enjoying a steady supply of food energy throughout the day helps keep your blood sugar level and your energy level up.

Letting yourself get too hungry causes your blood sugar to crash, leading to feelings of sluggishness and, often, cravings for junk food.

nuts&fruitsIt is important to choose your snacks wisely.

These foods typically don’t provide the mental boost in energy that you need, and you are often left feeling even more tired than before.

Real food is the best source of real energy.

Combining complex carbs with protein and fat provides lasting energy, because the fiber, protein, and fat slow the release of sugar into the blood, helping to prevent energy dips and overeating.

Some great snack ideas include a mix of nuts and dried fruit (about one half ounce of each); a container of plain yogurt topped with 2 tablespoons of flax seeds and berries; 10 nuts (almonds, walnuts, cashews); 3 cups of air-popped popcorn tossed with 1 teaspoon of olive oil and a sprinkle of sea salt; 5 baby carrots or celery sticks and a quarter cup hummus; a half cup of berries and an ounce of walnuts; whole grain crackers or kale chips with tomato salsa, or a small apple sliced and dipped in 2 tablespoons of almond butter.

6. Drink for energy

Proper hydration is a very easy and effective way to keep your energy high.

glass of  wateThe body needs water, and lots of it, to function optimally.

You can skip the vitamin waters and energy drinks which, unless you are an endurance athlete, just add unnecessary calories and expense.

Keep a fresh and ready source of water by you at all times, and sip at least 1 cup every 2 hours. Tote a reusable bottle with you wherever you go.

Bonus: all those extra trips to the restroom help eliminate toxins.

Since alcohol is a depressant, it can contribute to low energy.

7. Use caffeine wisely or not at all

After a cup of coffee, it feels as if you are getting an energy boost. But it really isn’t true energy—it is a drug effect. say no to caffeine

You feel a short-term boost, and it will backfire when it wears off because at that point the body realizes it has no real energy source and the result is exhaustion and hunger, typically followed by overeating.

Caffeine can be used occasionally as a temporary stimulant, but overuse and reliance over the long term can be problematic.

For a gentler lift, try green tea, which provides beneficial antioxidants, as well as, the amino acid, Theanine, which helps you stay calm and focused.

Individuals taking certain medications, and those suffering from certain forms of anxiety, high blood pressure, or dependence issues should avoid caffeine completely. Ask your doctor.

Here’s to more energy!!

To your health,

Leora

 

 

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WHY DO YOU NEED TO DRINK MORE WATER?

The “Rule of Three’s” says it all:

  • You can live 3 minutes without air.
  • You can make it 3 weeks without food.
  • After 3 days, you need water or you’ll perish     H2O

Let’s talk about water.

I used to dislike water.

I wanted to drink fluids with flavor.

Juice and soda fit that description. Juice and soda are loaded with calories and spiked my blood sugar.

After I learned the health benefits of water, I made the decision to drink tons of  water.

I love to use a straw because I drink more and it is fun.

I use ice and often put it in fun containers and glasses with lemon, or float a cucumber or a piece of fruit.

Sometimes I use sparkling water with a lime.

water serieSO……………

Why do we need to drink water?

Water makes up between 50 and 70% of an adult’s total body weight.

Fluid losses occur continuously, from skin evaporation, breathing, urine, and stool, and these losses must be replaced daily for good health.

Dehydration is a major issue.  Sometimes people do not know they are dehydrated. Signs include headaches, tiredness and loss of concentration. These can be followed by constipation and, over time, kidney stones.  OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

It is suggested that a minimum daily consumption of water be 64 ounces.  In fact, one should drink 1/2 of one’s weight in water every day to remain healthy.

There are plenty of reasons to drink water.

Think of water as a nutrient your body needs which is present in liquids, plain water, and foods. All of these are essential daily to replace the large amounts of water lost each day.

When your water intake does not equal your output, you can become dehydrated. Fluid losses are accentuated in warmer climates, during strenuous exercise, in high altitudes, and in older adults, whose sense of thirst may not be as keen.

SEVEN REASONS to make sure you’re drinking enough water

1. Water Maintains the Balance of Body Fluids.

Your body is composed of about 60% water. The functions of these bodily fluids include digestion, absorption, circulation, creation of saliva, transportation of water-glassnutrients, and maintenance of body temperature.

When you’re low on fluids, the brain triggers the body’s thirst mechanism.  (Some diseases and medications can make you thirsty.)

Listen to those cues and get yourself a drink of water.

Please be aware that Alcohol interferes with the brain and kidney communication and causes excess excretion of fluids which can then lead to dehydration.

2. Water Helps Maintain Normal Bowel Function.

Adequate hydration keeps things moving along in your gastrointestinal tract and prevents constipation.

When you don’t get enough fluid, the colon pulls water from stools to maintain hydration — and the result is constipation. Water-Drinking for hydration

Adequate fluid and fiber is the perfect combination, because the fluid pumps up the fiber and keeps the bowel functioning properly.

Food with high water content usually requires more chewing, and is absorbed more slowly by the body, which helps you feel full. Water-rich foods include fruits, vegetables, broth-based soups, oatmeal, and beans.

3. Water Helps Energize Muscles.

Cells that don’t maintain their balance of fluids and electrolytes shrivel, which can result in muscle fatigue.

faucett with water glassDrinking enough fluids is important when exercising.  When muscle cells don’t have adequate fluids, they don’t work as well and performance can suffer

Follow the American College of Sports Medicine guidelines for fluid intake before and during physical activity. These guidelines recommend that people drink about 17 ounces of fluid about two hours before exercise. During exercise, they recommend that people start drinking fluids early, and drink them at regular intervals to replace fluids lost by sweating.

4. Water Helps Keep Skin Looking Good.

Your skin contains water, and functions as a protective barrier to prevent excess fluid loss.

Dehydration makes your skin look more dry and wrinkled, which can be improved with proper hydration.

5. Water Helps Your Kidneys.

Body fluids transport waste products in and out of cells.

Your kidneys do an amazing job of cleansing and ridding your body of toxins as long as your intake of fluids is adequate.

When you’re getting enough fluids, urine flows freely, is light in color and free of odor. When your body is not getting enough fluids, urine concentration, color, and odor increases because the kidneys trap extra fluid for bodily functions.

If you chronically drink too little, you may be at higher risk for kidney stones, especially in warm climates.

6. Water Can Help Control Calories.

For years, people have been drinking lots of water as a weight loss strategy. glass of  wate

While water doesn’t have any magical effect on weight loss, substituting it for higher calorie beverages can certainly help.

If you choose water (sparkling or flat) over a caloric beverage and eat a diet higher in water-rich foods that are healthier, more filling, and help you trim calorie intake, this will help in weight loss.

Additionally, being properly hydrated helps the body to rid itself of toxins which aids in weight loss.

7.  Water first thing in the morning replenishes moisture lost during the night.

The way you start your day in very important.

Adopting the practice of drinking a cup of warm water, preferably with lemon, in the morning will help to rehydrate and alkalize your body.
mulitple glassesBalancing your PH is very important for your health.

The recipe is simple – a cup of warm (not hot) water and the juice from half lemon.
If you do not want to use the lemon, at least get in the habit of drinking 8-12 ounces of water upon arising for the day.

Conclusion: Carry a bottle of water with you at all times and

have a bottle of water with youPLEASE DRINK UP!!!!! 

 

 

 

 

To your health,

Leora

www.LeoraAmir.com

 

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Leora’s Exciting Announcement!!!

MY EXCITING ANNOUNCEMENT

ANNOUNCING MY NEW WEBSITE!!!!!

I am delighted to announce the launch of my new website: LeoraAmir.com

I want to help you TAKE BACK YOUR HEALTH .

Enjoy browsing my site and feel free to share any comments with me at Leora@leoraamir.com

Please sign up to receive regular wellness information.

Share this with your friends.

Come join me in the Take Back Your Health community and let’s get healthier together.

In Good Health,

leoraamir.com
leora@leoraamir.com
607-425-1161

 

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2014 Dirty Dozen Plus and Clean 15

Summer Fruit & Veggies

What fruits and vegetables (Produce) have the most pesticides on and in them?
The Environmental Working Group (EWG) released its 2014 Dirty Dozen list.
Don’t let this list stop you from eating produce.
If the produce you eat is on this list, eating organic as often as possible is the best way to keep chemical pesticides out of your body.
To rank produce, EWG analysts use six metrics, including the total number of pesticides detected on a crop and the percent of samples tested with detectable pesticides. In the latest report, 65 percent of the samples analyzed tested positive for pesticide residues.

2014 Dirty Dozen Plus ***

Non-organic apples once again topped The EWG’s Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce report, making it the fourth year in a row the beloved fruit earned the unfavorable spot.
Kale, collard greens, and hot peppers were often contaminated with insecticides that are particularly toxic to human health, prompting their “Dirty Dozen Plus” status.
1. Apples
2. StrawberriesDirty Dozen
3. Grapes
4. Celery
5. Peaches
6. Spinach
7. Sweet Bell Peppers
8. Nectarines (Imported)
9. Cucumbers
10. Cherry Tomatoes
11. Snap Peas (Imported)
12. Potatoes
+ Hot Peppers
+ Kale/Collard Greens

2014 Clean 15***

These fruits and vegetables contained the lowest pesticide levels. (GOOD NEWS!)
1. Avocados
2. Sweet CornClean 15
3. Pineapples
4. Cabbage
5. Sweet Peas (Frozen)
6. Onions
7. Asparagus
8. Mangoes
9. Papayas
10. Kiwi
11. Eggplant
12. Grapefruit
13. Cantaloupe
14. Cauliflower
15. Sweet Potatoes

This is serious!

The American Academy of Pediatrics said children are particularly susceptible to the impacts of pesticide exposure, including an increased risk of pediatric cancers and behavioral problems, and learning impairment.
Pesticide exposure has also been linked to conditions such as
• rheumatoid arthritis
• lupus
• Parkinson’s disease
• Alzheimer’s disease
• Cancer
• among others

Please do all you can to avoid exposing yourself and your family to these harmful chemicals.

*** To come up with the “Clean 15” and “Dirty Dozen Plus” lists, EWG scientists focused on 48 popular fruits and vegetables and based their rankings on an analysis of 32,000 samples tested by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

 

To your health

Leora

 

 

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THE 13 EFFECTS OF ARTIFICIAL SWEETENERS AND DIET SODA

Diet Sodas
Using these fake sugars seems like a health-conscious choice.

It saves you the 140-plus calories you’d find in a sugary soft drink while still satisfying your urge for something sweet.

The truth is that “Artificial” sweeteners like aspartame (Equal, Nutra Sweet), saccharin (Sweet ‘N Low, Sugar Twin), sucralose (Splenda), neotame, and acesulfame potassium (Sunett, Sweet One) have been shown to carry many risks.

1. It confuses your body

Artificial sweeteners have more intense flavor than real sugar, so over time products like diet soda dull our senses to naturally sweet foods like fruit, says Dr. Brooke Alpert, author of The Sugar Detox. Even more troubling, these sugar stand-ins have been shown to have the same effect on your body as sugar. “Artificial sweeteners trigger insulin, which sends your body into fat storage mode and leads to weight gain,” Alpert says.

2. It could lead to weight gain, not weight lossbelly fat

Obesity
You read that right: Diet soda doesn’t help you lose weight after all.

3. It can Mess-Up Metabolism

According to a 2008 University of Minnesota study of almost 10,000 adults, even just one diet soda a day is linked to a 34% higher risk of metabolic syndrome, the group of symptoms including belly fat and high cholesterol that puts you at risk for heart disease. Whether that link is attributed to an ingredient in diet soda or the drinkers’ eating habits is unclear.

4. It’s associated with an increased risk of Type 2 Diabetes

Diet soda is calorie-free, but it won’t necessarily help you lose weight. Researchers from the University of Texas found that over the course of about a decade, diet soda drinkers had a 70 percent greater increase in waist circumference compared with non-drinkers. Participants who drank two or more sodas a day experienced a 500 percent greater increase. The way artificial sweeteners confuse the body may play a part, but another reason might be psychological, says Minnesota-based dietitian Cassie Bjork. When you know you’re not consuming any liquid calories, it might be easier to justify that double cheeseburger or extra slice of pizza.

Drinking one diet soda a day was associated with a 36 percent increased risk of metabolic syndrome and diabetes in a University of Minnesota study. Metabolic syndrome describes a cluster of conditions (including high blood pressure, elevated glucose levels, raised cholesterol, and large waist circumference) that put people at high risk for heart disease, stroke, and diabetes, Bjork explains.

5. It has no nutritional value

When you drink diet soda, you’re not taking in any calories—but you’re also not swallowing anything that does your body any good. The best no-calorie beverage is plain water. Water is essential for most of our bodily processes ND functions. Replacing it with diet soda is a negative thing. If it’s the fizziness you crave, try sparkling water.

6. It is linked to headaches

Early studies on aspartame and other artificial sweeteners suggest that artificial sweetener may trigger headaches in some people.

7. It’ll ruin your smile over time

According to a case study published in the journal General Dentistry, in which they compared the mouths of a cocaine-user, a methamphetamine-user, and a habitual diet-soda drinker, and found the same level of tooth erosion in each of them. The culprit here is citric acid, which weakens and destroys tooth enamel over time. The other culprit is that diet soda is very acidic with a PH of 3.2. (As a point of reference, the pH of battery acid is 1. Water is 7.) The acid is what readily dissolves enamel. Adults who drink three or more sodas a day have worse dental health, says a University of Michigan analysis of dental checkup data. Soda drinkers had far greater decay, more missing teeth, and more fillings.

8. It makes drinking alcohol more dangerous

Using diet soda as a low-calorie cocktail mixer has the dangerous effect of getting you drunk faster than sugar-sweetened beverages, according to research from Northern Kentucky University. The study revealed that participants who consumed cocktails mixed with diet drinks had a higher breath alcohol concentration than those who drank alcohol blended with sugared beverages. The researchers believe this is because our bloodstream is able to absorb artificial sweetener more quickly than sugar.

9. It’s associated with depression

A recent study presented at the American Academy of Neurology meeting found that over the course of 10 years, people who drank more than four cups or cans of diet soda a day were 30 percent more likely to develop depression.

10. It may be bad for your bones

Women over 60 are already at a greater risk for osteoporosis than men, and Tufts University researchers found that drinking soda, including diet soda, compounds the problem. They discovered that female cola drinkers had nearly 4 percent lower bone mineral density in their hips than women who didn’t drink soda.

11. It may hurt your heart

Just one diet soft drink a day could boost your risk of having a vascular event such as stroke, heart attack or vascular death, according to researchers from the University of Miami and Columbia University. Their study found that diet soda devotees were 43 percent more likely to have experienced a vascular event than those who drank non-artificial sweetened drinks.

12. It can cause KIDNEY PROBLEMS

In an 11-year-long Harvard Medical School study of more than 3,000 women, researchers found that diet cola is associated with a two-fold increased risk for kidney decline. Kidney function started declining when women drank more than two sodas a day. Even more interesting: Since kidney decline was not associated with sugar-sweetened sodas, researchers suspect that the diet sweeteners are responsible.

13. It causes Cell Damage

Diet sodas contain something many regular sodas don’t: mold inhibitors. They go by the names sodium benzoate or potassium benzoate, and they’re in nearly all diet sodas.

“These chemicals have the ability to cause severe damage to DNA in the mitochondria to the point that they totally inactivate it – they knock it out altogether,” Peter Piper, a professor of molecular biology and biotechnology at the University of Sheffield in the U.K., told a British newspaper in 1999. The preservative has also been linked to hives, asthma, and other allergic conditions, according to the Center for Science in the Public Interest.

Please reconsider using artificial sweeteners and drinking diet soda.

Before you drink that next diet soda, ask yourself, “Is it really worth it?”

 

To Your Health,

Leora

 

 

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What I Learned Going Through My Closet: 6 Mistakes Women Make As They Age

Image

I decided to go through all my clothes.

This was prompted by a black tie event we were attending in the upcoming week.  I wanted to try on my long dresses and decide which one to wear.

The first three I tried on fit just fine until it came to zipping up the very top. Some of you may remember the blog post about my breasts dropping.  Well, I guess that means clothes start to fit differently.

I was HORRIFIED!!!

Some of the dresses I love, and for which I paid good money,  would not zip!

In fact if I did not know better, I would have said the cleaner shrunk them….But… I knew that was not true.

I stood in front of the full length mirror and could not believe what I saw.

I knew I had to go through all my clothes.

I need to tell you that I have always been a clothes horse.  I have worn basically the same size most of my life.  Also, I take great care of my clothes.  As a result I have a ton of clothes.

I was faced with the truth that I have a new body (actually an older body that I am just getting to know). 

I will have to go through my clothes and give away all that do not fit or are not flattering.    Those shorter sweaters and shirts are too short.  Some dresses are too tight on my bust.  The job is huge and depressing.

I NEVER thought this would happen to me.

Even if I lose weight, my body has a new configuration.

I am in the process of accepting this and facing the reality that as I approach 62, there are other things I must do to age gracefully, beautifully, with vitality and great health.

Don’t make these Mistakes  As You Age:

          1.      Maintaining the Status Quo

You need to evaluate your hair, make-up, and clothing.  What made you look fantastic when you were younger, may not cut it as you grow older.  We all need to make some changes and be the best version of who we are today.

          2.      Comparing Yourself To Who You Were When You Were Younger

The goal is to look as good as you can, and be healthy. Don’t try to recreate the body and face you had a decade or more ago.  Love yourself right where you are!

          3.      Exercising Too Little

Exercise is critical to our overall good health.  It helps to manage weight and stave off health problems such as diabetes, heart disease, and dementia.  It generally make us feel good.   Don’t let aches and pains deter you.  It is crucial to commit to some form of exercise your whole life.

         4.     Sleeping Too Few Hours  

Gone are the days when you can stay up all night and still make it to work with a glowing complexion and a spring in your step.  I often hear a “you look tired” comment even after a good night’s sleep.  Fewer hours of sleep show up on our faces.  More importantly, lack of  sleep is linked to weight gain, higher risk of diabetes and other health problems.  Get 8 hour of sleep.

         5.     Lapse in Dental Hygiene

Look at your smile in a mirror.   Pay attention to your teeth, as bad teeth can give the appearance of being older.  Dental health is closely associated with overall health.  Gum disease has been associated with a higher risk of heart problems. Take good care of your mouth.

        6.      Eating Insufficient  Whole Foods and Failing to Take High Quality Supplements

Our bodies need the proper fuel to stay healthy, have energy, repair damage to cells, perform all the functions and keep us going.  This means that we need to eat well.  Eat Whole Foods as they are found in nature.  This includes lots of fruits, vegetables, lean meats and fish, nut, seeds, and whole grains.

We also need a good Nutritional Supplement to provide the nutrients that the food does not.  Be sure to accompany the supplements with lots and lots of water.

I am heading back to the closet to try on clothes.

I will accept my body as it changes!

Time to dress it up and go dancing.

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