We've been focused on health, or the lack of health, for many months. Another concern is the level of overwhelm, which can be influenced by food.

Can Food Influence Your Level of Overwhelm?

We’ve been focused on health, or the lack of health, for many months. There’s another issue we all deal with that can be countered with proactive habits — overwhelm. Have you ever considered that food can influence your level of overwhelm?

We’ve all experienced a range of feelings – fear, anxiety, overwhelm, anger – in recent months. For the overwhelm that comes with daily life, there are many resources. In Traditional Chinese Medicine, the kidneys are the body’s central source of yin and yang.

When our kidneys aren’t functioning optimally, other health problems, including overwhelm or anxiety, can arise. The world we live in today takes a significant toll on our kidneys, whether we know it or not. These issues can be small enough to go undiagnosed by doctors but can have a substantial impact on he rest of our bodies.

Your Adrenals & Kidneys

Factors such as stress, poor sleep quality, alcohol, and environmental toxins can be extremely taxing on the kidneys. Chinese Medicine views the adrenal glands and the kidneys as the same organ. The adrenals are two glands located on top of your kidneys. They are responsible for the production and regulation of essential hormones, including those involved in the stress response. When the adrenal glands become overworked, through too much stress, lack of sleep, or other factors, they are unable to function normally. This can lead to numerous symptoms, including insomnia, digestive problems, weak immune function, and especially anxiety.

Thus, by supporting the kidneys through specific foods nourish the function of the adrenal glands, you can ease some of these symptoms. Eating foods like tangerines, plums, grapes, grains such as amaranth, rye, oats, and barley, celery, asparagus, cabbage, and black beans nourish your kidneys.

Are Your Kidneys Balanced In Yin & Yang?

Further following Chinese Medicine, it is beneficial to know whether your kidneys are deficient in the yin or yang. The yin is responsible for cooling and hydrating the body. If they are yin deficient, you might experience symptoms such as insomnia, night sweats, dry skin, eyes, and mouth, and brittle hair. Chlorella is exceptionally beneficial for increasing the kidneys’ yin and is best taken on an empty stomach.

Spirulina, another type of algae, also works well. It would be best if you also were eating carrots, grapefruit, celery, cucumber, blueberries, kidney beans, and watermelon. These are considered ‘cooling’ foods that will help increase your yin.

Yang, on the other hand, is related to stimulating and warming your body. If your kidneys are deficient in yang, you might experience diarrhea, lower back pain, fatigue, and feeling cold, often seeming worse in the morning. If you are experiencing these, eat “warming” foods such as cinnamon, ginger, cloves, walnuts, quinoa, and black beans. Avoid iced drinks and raw foods and limit your fruit intake as these are all considered ‘cooling’ foods that will contribute to your yin-yang imbalance.

Aside from foods to help stimulate balanced kidney function, meditation can help in combating daily overwhelm.  Is this is new for you, apps such as Headspace or Calm can help you fit meditation into your schedule in just a few minutes per day. Prioritizing time to clear your mind can transform your entire day.

Trying “cooling” or “warming” foods? I’d love to hear about your experience and what you notice.

Are you one of the 60 million Americans who experience acid reflux? I'm guessing that your primary concern is to extinguish the pain.

Extinguish the Pain!

Are you one of the 60 million Americans who experience acid reflux? It used to be primarily an issue for those over 50, but it now is seen in every race, gender and adult age group. No matter the demographics, I’m guessing that your primary concern is to extinguish the pain.

Why does it hurt so much? That would be the digestive juices from your stomach getting into your esophagus, which lacks the mucosal lining that protects your stomach. Without that lining, juices that pop up through the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) damage the tissue in your esophagus. Read more

Are You Waking Refreshed or Groggy?

What changes have you noticed about your health in these past months of sheltering in? Many are finding themselves more relaxed about it as time passes. And how about your sleep – are you waking refreshed or groggy? Do you fight to make yourself get out of bed in the morning?

Cortisol and melatonin are key players in our sleep patterns. Cortisol rises to wake you and its levels are changing throughout the day. Your cortisol levels normally peak in late morning and then falling through the rest of the day. As cortisol falls in the evening, melatonin rises to prepare your body for sleep. Read more

Maintaining a healthy diet during a crisis is vital for supporting your immune system. Eating nutrient-dense foods is the foundation.

Eating Nutrient-Dense Food?

How has your life changed in the last weeks since we have been pressed to shelter at home? Have board games or puzzles provided a renewed source of entertainment? Are you cooking more meals yourself and eating nutrient-dense food?

During COVID-19 and beyond, eating a healthful diet is more important than ever. When you anticipate a battle, you want to be sure your army is up for the fight. That would be your immune system. Michael Pollan has said that cooking and preparing our food is more than half the battle when it comes to eating well. Read more

Lifesaving Benefits … At A Price

I have spoken to very few people who have not taken an antibiotic at some time in their life. Prescribed for bacterial infections and sometimes parasites, antibiotics can be a lifesaver – but using antibiotics can be harmful.

The human gut is populated with trillions of microbes – estimated to be ten times the number of human cells that make up our bodies. These microbes support our immune system and affect our weight, our moods, our vulnerability to allergies and asthma, and our risk of autoimmune disease. They are symbiotic partners in creating wellness in our bodies. Read more

What’s the Condition of Your Battleground?

The battle against COVID-19 rages on. Most of us now know someone who has tested positive for the virus or, sadly, has passed away. We continue to practice social distancing and stay in our homes, though it pains us to be apart from family and friends.

Have you found your perspective changing with regard to the virus? In the early days we scoured the internet for tips on fighting this unseen enemy. You may have increased your Vitamin C, and begun a regular practice of disinfecting your home. Read more

We like certainty. When things feel uncertain, it is normal to feel stressed. Part of protecting your health is being mindful - what are you thinking?

What Are You Thinking?

We like certainty. We are hard-wired to want to know what is happening and notice threats, and when things feel uncertain, it is normal to feel stressed. And while this reaction is there to protect us, it can cause havoc when there is a sense of uncertainty and conflicting information around us. What are you thinking?

Are you feeling some anxiety? Right now, many of us are worried about COVID-19. We may feel helpless about what will happen and uncomfortable with our apparent loss of control, and this uncertainty can remind us of times when we didn’t feel safe and the future was uncertain. Read more

Rather than get caught up in fear from all the reports of pandemic, you can be proactive and arm yourself for Coronavirus

Arm Yourself For Coronavirus

You cannot view any news media without coming across the latest development with the Coronavirus strain. It’s even being touted in political campaigns. What thoughts do these reports prompt? Disbelief? Concern? Fear?

How do you respond to the reports? Are you feeling that it couldn’t possibly be true, or letting your imagination run rampant and barring the door? Read more

If you supplement your nutrient intake to fill gaps, you may wonder how and when it is best to take them for greatest benefit.

Timing For Supplements ….

Are you one of the growing numbers of Americans who are recognizing the need to supplement your nutrient intake? Have you explored how to take them for best effect?

I do meet people that believe supplements are unnecessary. These have often accepted the media reports that vitamins don’t work, or questioning whether the FDA has approved them. I won’t take the time in this newsletter to fully refute these positions. Suffice it to say, the media was reporting on studies that were done using synthetic vitamins. The body doesn’t recognize or use synthetic vitamins well. Bioavailable forms are absorbed and provide benefits. Read more

And aspirin a day is dangerous

An Aspirin A Day Is Dangerous

Are you one of the millions of Americans whose doctor has advised to take a baby aspirin daily in an effort to protect from heart attack or stroke? If you don’t take it yourself, I know you know someone who does. But, do you (or they) know this is no longer recommended in light of recent studies? In fact, an aspirin a day is dangerous. Read more