Fight the Grey Seattle Weather: Load Up On Vitamin D3

The days are getting shorter. It’s dark when we get up in the morning and when we get home at night. Vitamin D3 supports bone, cardiovascular, immune, and neurological health.

Most of us in the PNW are living with a low level deficiency that gets worse throughout the winter. This weakens our immune system during the cold and flu season.

Get What You Pay For

Many brands found over the counter claim they have 1,000 or 2,000 IU per capsule, but they really don’t. There is no guarantee that what is advertised on the label is actually in the bottle. Some cheaper brands come from fish oil and can have high levels of heavy metals in them; it’s hard to know what you’re getting. I carry Thorne, Metagenics, and Vital Nutrients products because I trust them. Their Vitamin D3 is derived from lanolin instead of fish oil. I carry liquid form (easy dose for kids) and capsules.

Come pick up your winter supply for you and your family.

Gluten: What’s the fuss?

Have you noticed the sudden burst of gluten free foods on the market?  Overheard a conversation to the tune of, “Is there gluten in that?” If you aren’t already riding the gluten-free train, one can’t help but ask, “What is the fuss about? Am I gluten sensitive?”

The first question to answer is: What is gluten?  Gluten is a storage protein found in wheat that provides the elastic structure in bread and baked goods allowing them to rise or thicken (think soups and sauces).  Proteins similar to gluten are also found in rye, spelt, oats, and barley.

So, how do you know if you’re sensitive or allergic to gluten? Like all allergies, symptoms and intensity vary from person to person.  Symptoms include gas, bloating, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, constipation, skin rashes, joint pain and fatigue.  Someone with celiac disease can suffer from debilitating symptoms and over time the inflammatory response suffered damages the small intestine and causes nutrient malabsorption.

Through an elimination diet you can catalog what affect wheat has on you. A dear friend of mine cut gluten out for a month and found her painful (and painfully obvious) rosacea cleared. I cut out gluten and found my energy levels dramatically improved. Admittedly, I occasionally indulge with pizza (Double whammy if you have dairy sensitivity, but that’s another ball game.) But now, I know what the effects are.

In the spirit of “spring cleaning,” I challenge you to clean your body too! For one week eliminate gluten from your diet and log any physical or mental changes you notice. Don’t worry, you won’t starve! To jog your cooking imagination here are some great grains that are gluten free:

  • Rice and rice flours (Brown, white, wild)
  • Corn
  • Quinoa
  • Buckwheat
  • Oats (certified gluten-free is best)

E-mail us using our CONTACT FORM with any great alternatives you come up with, for help on finding gluten free recipies, or just to tell us how your gluten free week went.

Eat Colorful!

Eat Colorful!

Break away from the gray this month by challenging yourself to add splashes of color to your diet. Think about your plate as your wardrobe, would you wear the same color all day, everyday?  With that in mind, wouldn’t your insides appreciate an outfit change?

Paint your plate with greens such as endive, asparagus, and mustard greens, all packed with vitamins to boost your immune system through winter and fiber to slim your waist for summer.  Punch up sauces with colorful bell peppers, high in vitamin C, or spicy chilies.  Sprinkle berries on morning oatmeal or cereal and dip a Fuji apple in almond butter for a snack. Don’t forget bright spices like turmeric and curry powders/pastes, which offer not only a kick for your taste buds, but also have natural anti-inflammatory properties and aid in detoxification.

The 5 for 5 challenge:

For five days this month, I challenge you to eat at least 5 different vegetables every day and keep a food log.  Get inspired to find new recipes and new favorites! Okra, anyone?   E-mail us your food log at ncofbi@gmail.com, or drop it by the office at your next visit, with any delicious recipes you have discovered and be entered into a drawing at the end of March for a FREE MASSAGE with Helen!

A New Partnership With Metagenics and Meta-eHealth

I’d like to invite you to click on my new professional link with Meta-eHealth.com. Sign up to take a tour of it and give me your feedback.Its also an online store where I offer you the opportunity to buy Metagenics products in the comfort of your own home. Contact me and I’ll do my best to answer your questions and make recommendations for any health and lifestyle concerns you have.

www.drchrisgrams.meta-ehealth.com

Holiday Stress – It’s a Killer!

How to handle the stress that the holidays add to our lives:

Look what’s coming through the clinic door! Holiday stressHow to relax from holiday stress bainbridge island
Are you feeling the Holiday stress? Are you sleeping poorly, feeling short tempered, or having more headaches and pain than usual? Perhaps stress is getting the best of you.

  • Cookies, Candy: Holiday Carbs
    Too much of a good thing.
    Everything in moderation, including moderation
    What’s your “drug of choice”? Chocolate, cookies, dressing, potatoes, pie?
  • Hey Baby, Its Cold Outside
    The stress that big storms bring
    Here in the Pacific Northwest we experienced our first big storm of the season. Over 125,000 households lost electricity during the week of Thanksgiving.
  • There is No Place Like Home (and Family) For The Holidays
    We live our busy lives for weeks and months on end then suddenly we throw ourselves in the middle of our families to celebrate the holidays.
    Old Tensions/Old Dramas/Old Resentments
    They know how to push your buttons because they helped install those buttons!
    Its so hard to say goodbye, so lets fight!
  • All I Want for Christmas is . . .
    Big lists, small budgets
    Redefine your holiday traditions. Let Go of the Shame and fear of disappointing and give yourself a break!

The bottom line is be kind to yourself. The stress we put on ourselves is a killer. It is perfectly ok to cut yourself some slack. It is really hard to be perfect all the time!

Bartok the fruit bat said it best, “…Stress, its a killer, Sir”. ~Anastasia. Disney 1997

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