Incorporating Herbs And Spices Into Your Family Dinners

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A few years back, I, too, was among those who hated to eat food that had a smell of spice or herb into it. I just thought that it was destroying the natural flavor of my diet. But when a friend introduced me to this wonderful blend of scents and flavors from the spices that she was incorporating into the food she prepares for her family, I began to love everything about them. And that was when I was determined to make it a habit of teaching my husband and children about the many benefits of herbs and spices to our minds and bodies.

I started opening this up to them by telling them about a certain study that I read. It said that consuming foods that are rich in spices and herbs decreases the tendency of the body to respond to foods that are high in fat content. In that particular study, the experimental group that ate food with a few tablespoons of herbs and spices – including oregano, turmeric, rosemary, black pepper, paprika, and garlic powder – has at least a 30% of reduction in fat content levels in their blood compared to those who had the same meals without the herbs and spices. It also revealed a 13%-increase in their antioxidant levels in their blood, which showed a tremendously positive effect considering the relatively small addition to the meals.

While I was telling them this, I, myself, was amazed by the information I was reading out loud. My husband was almost convinced right then and there that we should try doing this in our meals. I further read to them that herbs and spices are what they often call antioxidant powerhouses. Would you believe me when I say that just a teaspoon of cinnamon powder can equal the number of antioxidants that are found in one-half cup of blueberries? Or that a tablespoon of oregano contains the same number of antioxidants as a cup of sweet potatoes? That is astounding, considering that you only need to mix it into your daily meals and don’t have much trouble in doing so! Plus, they add taste, aroma, and color to every dish that you make for your family.

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From then on, I did just that. I add a dash of white pepper to our morning eggs or a teaspoon of cinnamon to the kids’ cereals. I add them to just about anything that I cook. Here are some of the herbs and spices and some ways that you can use them for.

Allspice. Allspice can be bought ground or whole, although you will often find it in stores packed ground. Like cinnamon and nutmeg, it can be mixed with sweet or savory meals. It can do wonders when you mix it with a beef recipe, like stew or steak. And mind you, it is also great with fruit puddings, just as I did when I made apple muffins. This spice is quite strong compared to the others, so you might want to start with a dash first, and then get a taste of what you’re cooking so you’ll know how much more you’ll need.

Basil. I so loooove basil! I use it in almost all my pasta recipes, and my kids have learned to love its taste and smell as well. I usually use the dried basil, as it is a lot cheaper than the fresh ones. I’m now trying to grow them in my garden with the hopes that I will be the green thumb that I’ve always dreamed of and so I can use as much basil as I want. I’ll know for sure in the weeks to come. Anyway, basil is great with cheeses and tomatoes. It is a popular ingredient that is used in pesto, which is a staple in Asian and Mediterranean recipes. My family loves it when I add a lot of basil in my baked pork ribs, especially when it’s basted with extra (and extra) butter.

Cardamom. This herb has a strong spicy yet sweet flavor. It’s very aromatic, and those who love it, including me, agree that simply smelling cardamom feels like eating a bowl of your familiar comfort food. Unfortunately, my children don’t like it as much as I do, so I limit my use of it, as it can come really strong when it’s mixed with the simplest kinds of food. Cardamom is an Indian staple and is used in curries, baked goods, and even in tea. An Indian friend of mine prepared kheer for me. It is an Indian rice pudding, and it was the most delicious rice pudding I’ve ever tasted.

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Peppers. Red, black, and white pepper, I believe, are something that our family cannot live without. They are in almost everything that we eat – from meals to snacks and even down to the shakes and teas that we have. Peppers are the most commonly used spices in the world because they are full of flavor and add fragrance and beauty to every recipe. My pork, chicken, beef, and fish recipes are all loaded with black peppercorns that not only increase our appetite but also boost our immune system. Our soups are not complete without a few dashes of white pepper to add a kick to the flavors. They are just among the things that I must have in the kitchen.

How about you? Do you love herbs and spices? Do you have a great herb and spice story? Why don’t you share it with us?


Multivitamins To Prevent Coronavirus

There have been concerns about staying healthy with so many people choosing to stay home during this Coronavirus crisis. Individuals are now moving less because there is not much physical activity available at home compared to daily school and work routines. Some do not go to the gym, and may not be keeping up with healthy habits due to stress and anxiety. With all these pandemic factors, how can supplements help individuals? Let us try and understand how multivitamins work.

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Vitamins And Its Function

What people want to do right now is to keep their health intact. It is essential to give it all the nutrients it needs to optimally boost the function of the immune system. With that, it is essential to start eating a wide variety of produce instead of processed ones because they have nutrients and minerals and abundant carbohydrates that help balance the immune system. But what about multivitamins?

Multivitamins or supplement is a tricky thing to address sometimes. Vitamins are compounds people need to ingest to promote overall health. It is the body’s defender and builder that properly make use of nutrients for energy and brain development. Some, like many of them, the best vitamin is vitamin C. It helps in building collagen that helps promote healthy teeth and bones. It also helps in fighting infectious diseases.

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Are Multivitamins Good For You?

Most of the time, it is entirely an individual’s choice to take it or not because many things need considerations. These include a person’s medical problems and its history. And even the medical prescriptions one is already taking can entirely play a role. However, in general, if a person believes he needs to take some multivitamins or want to try something for their health without even consulting a medical expert, that is okay.

A multivitamin once a day is not going to cause harm nor put someone’s life in danger. Multivitamins, however, are not regulated by the government. Therefore, an individual should require additional information on what types or brands to take in particular. And if a person is not sure about what to choose, that is the time they might want to consult with a physician.

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There are tons of multivitamins to choose from to help boost the body’s immune system. The reason to take multivitamins is to prevent vitamin deficiencies. However, taking supplements when the body doesn’t entirely need it can somehow cause a significant problem. That is because multivitamins contain more than the recommended dietary allowance (RDA). There is only a maximum amount of nutrients that the body can take. Therefore, taking too many supplements can damage the immune systems estimated nutrient requirements, making it weak instead of becoming healthy.

Again, since there are different types of multivitamins that contain more than the required RDA, it doesn’t guarantee a health upgrade. Individuals regularly taking supplements might be digesting and absorbing it all. Thus, it leads to the problem of the body taking megadoses of vitamins, which eventually causes internal toxicity and other health complications.

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So even though the body needs multivitamins to survive, taking it frequently doesn’t guarantee the best results. Therefore, there is no need to overload the body because it is generally well-stocked with enough nutrients from the food we eat. It is essential to note that supplements may boost the immune system, but it doesn’t replace the nutrients one can get from eating a healthy and balanced diet. In some unfortunate instances, it can even be harmful when an individual overdo it. Therefore, the key to keeping one’s health is not only dependent on supplements alone.


Importance Of Taking Supplements In This Pandemic Situation

Aside from disinfection and social distancing, one of the best measures you have to do is secure your health. You need to be physically, emotionally, and mentally fit to have a chance to stand the test of the COVID-19 virus. Let’s say you get all the right amount of sleep and allow yourself to get hydrated. Do you think that’s enough? Of course, not. Even if you feed your body fruits and vegetables every meal and exercise regularly, it is not enough. No matter how healthy you think your lifestyle is, there is no assurance that you get all the vitamins and nutrients you need every day. That is why it is essential to take supplements, especially now that there’s the necessity of requiring you to be healthy.

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Why Should You Take Nutritional Supplements?

To Fill Nutritional Gap – With all the things that keep you busy every day, you do not get a chance to complete a healthy routine. And no matter how much you try and fit everything in your plan, poor appetite can have a massive effect. Supplements intend to bridge the nutritional gap since your food consumption needs are changing continuously. Taking a prescribed amount will help you maintain a proper balance of vitamins and minerals. Food supplementation enhances your daily dose of nutritional density and allows you to get all the benefits you should from your dietary needs.

To Avoid Harmful Chemicals – Coronavirus is a deadly disease that weakens the immune system. So imagine if your body contains a lot of harmful chemicals in it. Yes, it allows the virus to penetrate deeply within each cell because the immune system is incapable of protecting itself from the damage. But with supplements, you can have a chance to fight those harmful radicals. It contains antioxidants that increase the immune system’s need for extra vitamins and minerals.

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To Deal With Poor Eating Habits – Disclaimer: Nutritional supplements are not health medicines that fight diseases. However, these can help prevent the damage of an individual’s poor eating habits are causing to the body. With all the excessive and erratic eating of unhealthy food, supplements contribute an internal change in the extraction of nutrients from what people are supposed to eat. No, supplementation cannot substitute a poor and unhealthy diet. However, it can help in eliminating unwanted substances in the body to process better digestion.

To Support Nutrient-Needs For Exercising – We all know that exercising is one of the best ways to keep our systems healthy. However, working out requires a lot of energy. And as you exercise, the body is taking too much of it. No, replenishing it with water is not enough because it only supplies they need for dehydration. To fuel up your energy levels, you need to get a proper amount of vitamins and minerals to take care of the ones you lose during an intense workout. Honestly, there are lots of exercise supplements that you can choose depending on your preference. Just do not forget to take the right amount.

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To Prevent Health Issues – The primary reason why you should take supplements is to avoid unnecessary health issues. You might not notice it, but the more you age, the lesser absorption you get from the food you eat. That is because the digestive enzymes that break down food in the body decline over time. Meaning, your body will soon reach its limit in nutrient absorption. Therefore, you can only expect it to gather not-so-enough nutrients to keep you going. In some unfortunate situations, you might also suffer nutritional deficiencies due to medications. Though taking supplements will not stop the digestive depletion, at least it can restore the imbalance of vitamin and mineral distribution.


Why Is Breastfeeding Important For Moms And Babies?

Undoubtedly, breastfeeding contributes a significant amount of nutrition to babies, and this was the focus of the 2018 Breastfeeding Conference. Despite this, statistics show that there is only 30% of women in the United States who do this. Understandably, there are a few who are unable to breastfeed. However, some choose not to. 

To show these mothers what they’re missing out, listed below are the benefits of breastfeeding to both moms and babies. 

Provides Optimal Nutrition For Babies

Believe it or not, breast milk contains everything that a baby’s body requires in his or her first six months. This fact is most evident in the early days after birth, where the breasts supply a yellowish and thick fluid known as colostrum. Colostrum is considered the ideal first milk since it is low in sugar, high in protein, and loaded with various beneficial compounds. It also helps in the development of the newborn’s immature digestive tract. 

Protection From Eczema And Allergies

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If you have a family history of allergies and eczema, then it is best if you breastfeed. Soy milk formals and the proteins from cow’s milk might only trigger an allergic reaction to your baby. 

Reduces Your Disease Risk

Statistics show that breastfeeding is another tool to lower the risk of getting cancer and other diseases. Studies revealed there is a link between the total time a mother spends breastfeeding and the reduced risk of acquiring ovarian and breast cancer. Also, those who do this act for more than 12 months lower their chances of getting the said diseases by 28%. 

Contributes To A Vaccine’s Effectivity

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Several pieces of research exhibited that milk from breastfeeding makes vaccines more effective. It is because breastfed newborns have a more robust antibody response to vaccines as compared to those formula-fed babies. 

Saves Both Time And Money

As a mother, you always aim to save time and money, especially after giving birth. Remember, you won’t have to spend money on formula milk to fill in the amount your baby drinks daily. You also get to conserve your time since you won’t have to prepare the formulated milk, sterilize the bottles, and wash the used ones.


Advantages Of Giving Probiotics To Your Pregnant Wife

Pregnancy is a gift that every married couple out there is fortunate to experience. Why it means that you created a precious little being that you’ll be able to love more than anyone in the world! Not to mention, your baby has as much of a chance as anyone to become a famed doctor, a music mogul, or even the President of the United States in their later years.

 

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As easy as it is to muse about your unborn child’s future, though, you cannot forget your duty to look after your wife’s well-being. You helped to create your offspring, no doubt, but she will carry the baby for nine months, not you. Hence, it will be sweet of you to ensure that your better half takes all the supplements necessary to strengthen both her body and the baby.

Nonetheless, from those complementary drugs that your spouse should have in the medicine cabinet, probiotics may be among the essential products.

 

Live Active Culture Can Improve Digestive Health

Probiotics are generally known for doing great things to a person’s digestive tract. More than anyone, a pregnant woman needs that kind of help because of the increase of progesterone in her system can mess up with her gastrointestinal health. Thus, she may experience constipation, infected diarrhea, inflammatory bowel disease, et cetera.

 

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What the supplement will do is carry live active culture down to the user’s gut. From there, they can propagate and get rid of harmful organisms that might have inhabited it.

 

Good Bacteria May Lower Risks Of Preeclampsia

Preeclampsia is a severe health condition that puts both the mother and the unborn child’s lives in danger. It usually occurs when blood does not circulate well through the uterus, the woman has excessive weight, or hypertension is a preexisting illness. Once it strikes, the expectant mom may feel a terrible headache, abdominal pain, nausea, and alarmingly fast weight gain.

The thing is, there are investigations which state that milk-based probiotics can reduce a pregnant lady’s chances of getting preeclampsia. Doing so on a weekly or everyday basis may lower the risk by 25% or 39%, respectively. Those numbers are far from being negligible; that’s why giving good bacteria to your wife may be worth a shot.

 

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Probiotics Make Breastmilk Healthier

Continuous consumption of live active culture even during the final days of pregnancy allows the probiotics to mix with the mother’s breastmilk. That is something you ought to be grateful for since the child will be able to consume the benefits of good bacteria without taking supplements.

In fact, a study regarding the matter reveals that probiotics may protect a baby from eczema or atopic dermatitis. It is asignificant advancement because seeing your infant child deal with the itchiness that the disease brings is purely heartbreaking. With this possibility, though, you may try to help your son or daughter deflect the problem.

 

One more thing to take note of is that probiotics do not merely come in pills. If your wife cannot stomach that during the first trimester, you may give her yogurt, kefir, or any fermented vegetable she may like. Then, you may switch to capsules once the morning sickness goes away so that the mommy-to-be gets a better dose of good bacteria before your offspring arrives.

 


How To Give The Best Supplements To Your Loved Ones

 

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Being a mother and a wife is perhaps the most fulfilling role any woman can ever want. Each member of your family gives you a reason to not give up on life. Even when the kids grow up and move out, you know that your husband will still be there to keep you happy and balanced.

Alternatively, having those titles also means that you have to deal with all their wants and won’t. The typical examples of the latter include “I won’t take that supplement” and “I won’t swallow this pill.” You’re lucky if only the children act like that towards drugs that are good for them; sometimes an adult such as your husband may despise them as well.

Thus, how can you give the best supplements to your loved ones without hearing another complaint about it?

 

Figure Out The Vitamins And Minerals Your Family Members Should Get

Although you all live under the same roof, your diet and lifestyle may be different from each other. That is precisely true when you and your spouse have separate careers, and the children are either busy with extracurricular stuff or old enough to prepare their meals. For this reason, the additional nutrients you have to provide vary per person.

To know what those vitamins and minerals must be, the entire family can ask for a blood test. The result of that can give you an idea of what nutrients every member of your brood has to go easy with or build up.

 

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See What Forms Of Supplements Work For Them

The size of capsules, tablets, or caplets usually intimidate children and adults alike, so you might try dissolving a pill in water before giving it to them. However, that trick isn’t flawless since those caps are often – but not always – dissolvable with the hydrochloric acid that your stomach produces. In response, your loved ones may not even want to open their mouths if they can still see the product.

It will help you to remember at this point that medicine does not only come in such forms. Manufacturers are perhaps aware of people’s hesitance to swallow tablets and capsules; that’s why supplements are currently available in gummy, chewable, and liquid forms too. They mostly taste better than conventional products; hence, your loved ones may accept them without another word of protest.

 

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Consult A Doctor Before Administering Any Supplement

Assuming you are not a healthcare specialist, you cannot trust a particular brand off of face value or price range. There are supplements in pretty packaging, after all, that may not be effective even though you paid hundreds of dollars for it. You might encounter products with exotic ingredients as well that might work against a family member’s medication. It remains smart, nonetheless, to call a trusted physician regarding the complementary drugs you have in mind.

When your loved ones carry a preconceived idea of how awful supplements taste like or work in general, it is possible for them to cringe even before seeing them. Despite that, the benefits they come with are too many to take for granted. Hence, you should never give up until your entire family consumes the additional nutrient sources that they need.

Good luck!


The (Bad) Relationship Between Supplements And Blood Pressure That You Shouldn’t Ignore

Pharmaceutical companies across the globe have one goal when it comes to creating dietary supplements: to provide the nutrients that consumers may not get from their diet. If you rarely eat citruses, you can take vitamin C. In case your job reverses your days and nights, the pills containing iron may help you prevent anemia. Simply put, there is an organic ingredient to match every problem you possibly have health-wise.

 

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One thing you should avoid, however, is taking complementary drugs that can trigger hypertension. As known in the medical world, the blood pressure rises when you pop the wrong kind of pill, thus forcing your heart to function hard. A daily dose of that will undoubtedly be detrimental to your well-being, so you must understand the (bad) relationship of BP with specific supplements.

 

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  1. Black Licorice

The candied version of black licorice is a favorite treat for many people who have a sweet tooth, that’s for sure, but you cannot ingest its natural form every day when you are prone to having high blood pressure. A 2014 study from the University of Tampere, Finland revealed that doing so for two weeks straight causes the heart to beat faster than it should.

The primary suspect here is the organic sweetener – glycyrrhizin – coming from the licorice root. This compound can put a dent in your internal supply of potassium. Hence, the blood-pumping organ has no choice but to change its rhythm.

 

  1. St. John’s Wort

Another supplement that is not worth your money if dealing with hypertension is St. John’s Wort.

Yes, it may save you from needing a mental health professional’s help to eliminate depression due to the drug’s mood-enhancing ability. You inadvertently lower your chances of getting addicted to antidepressants as well, which is incredible. However, one significant problem with St. John’s Wort is that it metabolizes whatever medication is in your system at top speed.

That is one of the side effects that you should not encounter when you want to regulate your blood pressure. The medicine has to take as much time as it needs to dissolve and enter your bloodstream. In case the supplement hastens its pace, your cells may not digest the prescribed medication properly, and the condition will remain.

 

  1. Echinacea

Echinacea used to serve as a natural decongestant for Native Americans, and new manufacturers are now marketing it in various forms for the same reason. Some say that it is sufficient for treating cold; others merely appreciate the fact that it originated from the earth. Nevertheless, its aftereffects may not be beneficial for folks who also experience hypertensive episodes.

For one, it builds up the immune system – your body’s first line of defense against foreign substances. That is all right when you are only getting rid of viruses. If you take prescriptions for high blood pressure, though, your system will most likely fight the drugs and prevent them from working.

Apart from that, it can worsen the effects of coffee and make your blood pressure spike quickly.

 

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In the end, the most stress-free way to know if your supplement of choice has a good relationship with your current condition is to call your doctor about it beforehand. The excuse that you do not have a pre-existing knowledge regarding the matter is no longer acceptable because even the drug manufacturers indicate the risks of taking their products in every bottle. So you have to exhibit your sense of responsibility by solely ingesting the complementary pills that will not raise your blood pressure at a disorienting level.


Can Supplements Improve Your Sexual Relationship?

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Any marriage counselor on the planet can tell you just how crucial it is for couples to have an active sex life. It can make a relationship survive whatever challenge life throws at it since you and your partner get to connect at an intimate level. Thus, one may wonder, “Why do couples end up not having sex for years?”

A few possibilities can arise from that. One, either individual already found someone else. Two, love and attraction died between the partners. Three, one of you is a closet king or queen in actuality.

If none of those ideas still hit close to home, then maybe the problem comes down to you or your better half’s sex drive (or lack thereof).

Now, it is the point where people usually interject with talks about alternative medicine to solve the matter. After all, products such as Viagra, snake blood, spider’s venom, and other supplements are available for everyone who wishes to improve their sexual relationship. You may even purchase them online if you are too shy to ask your local pharmacy whether they have the items in stock.

Before questioning their efficacy, though, answer the following queries by yourself first.

 

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Do I Need This Kind Of Help?

The men who typically require using libido supplements are the ones who find it challenging to maintain an erection due to age or health condition. Stress may also prevent your sex drive from revving up, so the complementary drug may be essential.

However, in case you are in your mid-20s or 30s, and the doctor says you are as fit as a bull, you may merely have to spice things up in the bedroom. Experiment with toys, positions, or even locations to find out how you can become a better lover. It will not hurt to consider love as well as another factor that may make your sexual life more exciting without any supplement.

 

Am I Okay With Taking A Drug That The FDA Does Not Approve?

The Food and Drug Administration of the United States is very meticulous regarding giving their seal of approval to medicines created by pharmaceutical companies. A quick explanation of how they function is that they screen everything, from the clinical trials to the minuscule traces of ingredients in the drug to ensure that it will not cause potential harm to consumers.

The thing is, many supplements do not receive that green light from the FDA, including the types that boost libido. They either need to conduct further studies, or there’s a chemical component that seems sketchy to the authorities. The boxes will tell you whether the drugs passed the government’s qualifications or not, nevertheless, so you should be able to say in advance if you are cool with taking a supplement that has no certification from the Food and Drug Administration.

 

Can I Wait For The Drug To Work?

Once again, it is vital to remember that there may be no consistent record of effectivity related to the supplements. It may or may not work, yet you will never know until you try them. Hence, you will be leaping faith once you decide to go on with the idea.

Furthermore, if the supplementary medicine does work, you must understand that it is not a magic pill that will enhance your sexual drive overnight and last for years on end. The effect may appear after days, weeks, or months of taking the drug. Assuming you are in no rush or you believe in the dietary supplement, you may go for it anytime.

 

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The Verdict

We suggest you be very careful when you consider walking on this path. Although plenty of supplements boast about having organic compounds, the manufacturers will not honestly tell you the pros and cons that come with every ingredient – won’t they? If you must take a pill to increase your libido, you have to read extensively about a specific product before buying it to avoid probable health repercussions later.

Good luck!


Supplements That Brides Should Take During Marriage Preparations

 

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Hearing the man of your dreams ask for your hand in front of all your loved ones is undoubtedly one of the best things a woman can ever experience. Many can go on countless dates for as long as they want, but not everyone is as fortunate as you when you are to meet a guy who wishes to exchange eternal vows with you. Hence, it is quite understandable in case you like to speed up the marriage preparations.

However, alas, once the engagement bliss fades away, you’ll soon realize that fixing a wedding event within three months or less can be physically and mentally grueling. Apart from dealing with coordinators and caterers who may stress you out at first, you might apportion more of your time and energy to the planning process. Rather than getting enough beauty rest, therefore, your hair may fall out, acne may break out, your nails may become brittle, et cetera.

The pressure that comes with the marriage preparations is almost inevitable, so you should counter its adverse effects on your body with supplements. The question is, what extras does a bride-to-be need before the ceremony takes place?

 

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B Vitamins

It is vital to take vitamins B1 to B12 since the pre-wedding activities can drain your energy. Every compound within that spectrum can regulate anemia, fatigue, weak immune system, and other disorders that might develop when you’re preparing for the big day.

Collagen

The construction of collagen within the body slows down as you age. Stress and unhealthy food choices, however, may speed it up. That is why instead of looking young during your wedding day, you might require heavy makeup to cover the dark circles and fine lines that developed on your face.

You can remedy the problem by adding collagen powder in almost everything. Add it in your coffee, oatmeal, or yogurt, for instance, and it will not alter the taste of those products.

Omega-3

Fish oil is another essential supplement that your body requires yet cannot produce naturally. You need omega-3 more than omega-6 fatty acids because the latter is not as good for the heart as the former. Besides, some studies even say that the first-mentioned can help you combat anxiety, lack of sleep, dry or flaky skin, and acne, which are a few of the conditions that bother anyone preparing for marriage.

Magnesium

What happens when you experience sleep deprivation? Not only will it throw your hormones out of the loop, but it can also increase your stress level and blemish count.

The supplement you need to get shut-eye regularly is magnesium. This mineral is present in leafy vegetables, of course, so you may argue that you have to eat those. However, it’s difficult to measure how much magnesium your food has; hence, it may be better to complement your diet with pills.

Probiotics

In case you don’t have a fantastic metabolism, you can take probiotic supplements. These products contain thousands of live active bacteria that can overpower the harmful microorganisms that most likely inhabit your gut. For that reason, you will have a higher chance of getting rid of acne, blemishes, mood swings, and dullness, among others.

 

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Although the supplements mentioned above are readily available in online and offline health stores, you still have to exercise and eat healthily. The compounds can only do so much for your body; if you don’t help them, they won’t be able to help you thoroughly.

Nonetheless, best wishes to you!


5 Health Supplements for Mental Health

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Studies have shown that taking the proper supplements can help protect our brain against mental decline.  Below are some of the most sought-after supplements that cover a wide variety of needs for a healthy brain.

  1.  Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Omega 3 fatty acids are essential fatty acids.  It means that it is needed for our health but our body can’t make them. Also, “Some studies suggest that Omega-3s may be helpful in the treatment of depression as they seem to have a mood-stabilizing effect.” says Staci Lee Schnell, MS, CS, LMFT. That being said, we have to get it from the food we eat. Omega -3 fatty acids help build brain cell membranes and promote new brain cell formation. It also reduces brain inflammation. Senior adults make this part of their daily supplement as this improves one’s mood and memory, plus it gives protection against brain disorders ranging from depression to dementia.  Omega-3 fatty acids can be found in fish such as tuna, salmon, and halibut; kinds of seafood like algae and krill; some nuts and grains like flaxseed and flaxseed oil, walnuts, chia seeds; vegetables like beans and spinach.

  1. Probiotics

Probiotics are live microorganisms that provide health benefits, especially to the digestive system. Probiotics are good bacteria. They are naturally produced by our bodies and can also be found in the food that we eat and supplements in the form of capsules and liquid drinks. Our digestive system carries a balanced level of good and bad bacteria. Sometimes, the balance gets

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disrupted because of the antibiotics we take when we are sick, or the stress that we encounter every day.  Probiotics help restore the balance.  Our gut bacteria are responsible for producing various neurotransmitters, including the “happy molecule” serotonin. The good bacteria strains Lactobacilli and Bifidobacteria act as antioxidants that protect our brain cells from radical damage.  Imbalanced gut flora can cause a number of brain-related conditions including anxiety, ADHD, autism,  carb cravings, depression, memory loss, concentration problems, chronic inflammation, and more. So, better keep that gut balanced all the time. “Eat a healthful diet, that is low in fat, high in fiber, and rich in vitamins and minerals. Specific dietary factors that may be beneficial in depression are the B-complex vitamins (found in whole grains) and omega-3 fatty acids (found in cold-water fish, fish oil, and flax seeds).” says ADAA member Stephanie Kriesberg, PsyD.

Fermented products like yogurt and kefir are a good source of probiotics. Fermented soy foods like tamari, miso tempeh; and traditional pickled vegetables of all kinds are also major sources of probiotics.

  1. S-Adenosyl Methionine (SAMe)

S-Adenosylmethionine (SAMe) is a naturally-produced compound that is within the body tissues. SAMe takes care of the cell membranes and it is part of the immune system’s function. It helps in the production and the release of brain hormones such as serotonin, melatonin, and dopamine. It is best paired with vitamin B12 and vitamin B9. Deficiency in either vitamin B12 or vitamin b9 reduces levels of SAMe in your body. Studies show that SAMe can be of assistance to those with depression issues. There are man-made SAMe supplements that can be taken by mouth and by IV.

  1. GABA

Gamma-Amino Butyric acid (GABA) is an amino acid that serves as a neurotransmitter in the central nervous system. GABA inhibits nerve impulse transmission in the brain resulting to calm nervous activity. This amino acid is produced from glutamate in the brain cells and serves as a neurotransmitter inhibitor.  While glutamate acts as an excitatory neurotransmitter and tells nearby cells to release nerve impulses, GABA does the opposite—it tells the adjacent cells not to send or “fire” impulses. Seizures and anxiety disorders such as panic attacks and other conditions including headaches, Parkinson’s Syndrome, addiction and cognitive impairment are all related to low GABA activity. GABA is sold as a supplement and promoted for these neurotransmitter effects as a natural tranquilizer.

Source: health.harvard.edu
  1. Vitamin B12

According to Christina L. Gmyr, LMHC, NCC “Certain foods are linked to mental health issues such as increased symptoms of depression and decreased self-esteem.” That is why our body requires B12 as this plays an important role in the development of the human brain, blood cells, and the nervous system. Many studies have also been conducted in recent years for Vitamin B12 as an aid to fight brain shrinkage in the elderly. Maintaining the proper level of this vitamin helps keep our brain healthy as it fights off depression and other memory problems. Vitamin B12 can be found mostly in animal foods like eggs, poultry, meat, dairy, pork, clams, and liver.