Promotion of wellness and aesthetic enhancements
Premier Family Medical provides information and advice to patients for choosing a nutritious diet, maintaining a healthy weight, achieving adequate exercise and keeping food safe to avoid food-borne illness. Nutrition, exercise, sunshine, fresh air and strict avoidance of all toxic chemicals in foods, personal care products and home environments will make you appear to age much more gracefully than everybody else, especially as these needs usually increase with age. The daily use of a multivitamin / multi-mineral supplement offers a practical approach to help bring micronutrient intakes in line with current recommendations. Scientific evidence in support of the health benefit of nutritional supplements has grown dramatically in recent years.
People who are physically fit, eat a healthy, balanced diet and take nutritional supplements can measure out to be 10 to 20 years younger biologically than their chronological age. We will briefly outline an ANTI-AGING PROTOCOL and the importance of a balanced, integrated NUTRITION AND DIET and give advice on proper SKIN CARE.
Clinical evidence shows the importance of proper diet and digestion on oxidative stress levels. Oxidative stress influences your health and vitality, but there are things you can do to help your body reduce its effects.
Oxidative Stress and Free Radicals. Fast-paced lifestyle, unhealthy diet, poor digestion, cigarette smoking, drugs, and constant exposure to the environment are just a few of the variables that lead to increased oxidation. This condition is known as “oxidative stress” and involves the release of free radicals. Free radicals are unpaired electrons that stray from chemical solutions and damage important cellular components such as proteins, cells, cell membranes, tissues and DNA. This damage has been associated with numerous chronic, degenerative, inflammatory and age-related diseases.
Cells may function poorly or even die if this occurs, which promotes premature aging. As you get older, several physical changes occur that effect your health. Muscle mass usually decreases, metabolism slows down, and your body is not able to repair damaged DNA efficiently as it once did. If such irreparable damage occurs, one of three things usually happens. 1) The cell might die on its own or get eliminated by the “T” cells of the immune system. 2) The cell might replicate without restriction and transform into either a benign or a malignant tumor. 3) Very often, the cell will simply not be able to perform the functions for which it was designed. All these factors act as precursors to aging.
So what happens when your cells are not functioning properly? One possibility is that the DNA of the cell is unable to produce the necessary enzymes for the body, or perhaps the enzymes that it does produce are unusable.
Modifying our lifestyle in an effort to reduce the stress on our body and cells is essential. As the cells in our body become less productive, it does make sense to supplement our diets with tools that can help.
How to Promote a Healthy Lifestyle. Consider taking daily digestive enzymes to enhance nutrient acquisition. Also, try to eat a healthy diet that is loaded with antioxidants or take antioxidant preparations as supplements to your diet. Plus, make sure you get adequate sleep every night. In addition to these good habits, personal meditation and relaxation exercises work for many. You can also find affordable classes for exercise, yoga, tai chi, qi gong, and many other techniques. Sometimes, simply taking deep breaths throughout the day is a great way to reduce stress. If you need to take a break, massage therapy has been useful for many people. Or if things are getting to be too much for you, maybe you should take a much-needed vacation or just lose yourself in a good book. Either way, try to keep things in perspective.
Always try to balance work with home and fun. Laughter really is the best medicine. Maybe you can develop a new hobby! Positive affirmations or spiritual reflections are great ways to emphasize the important things in life.
The most important step in the anti aging fight is the right nutrition and diet. Most of the foods you eat are made up of varying amounts of carbohydrate, fat or protein. Good nutrition means getting the right balance of these nutrition components, plus the required vitamins and minerals to ensure that all nutritional needs are being met, especially as these needs usually increase with age.
Great nutrition means getting a lot of the phytochemicals and antioxidants, too.
Nutrients are divided into Macronutrients (carbohydrates, protein, fats) and Micronutrients (essential in minute amounts to act as coenzymes, cofactors, regulating metabolic pathways; cannot be synthesized by humans and must come from the diet).
Carbohydrates. The foods you eat provide the energy your body needs to function. Glucose, derived from carbohydrates, is the main source of energy for the human body. Glucose is digested (oxidized) resulting in the formation of carbon dioxide, water, and ATP. If you don’t get enough carbohydrates, your body can make glucose from protein or fat — and if you get too many carbohydrates, your body is very good at storing them as glycogen or convert them to fat.
Protein. Protein in the foods you eat is broken down into individual amino acids, the building blocks that provide cells with functional proteins (enzymes, hormones, antibodies, hemoglobin) and structural proteins (connective tissue fibers, muscle proteins, nervous system). Amino acids are also used to repair the various parts of your body. Your muscles contain lots of protein, and you need to replenish that protein through your diet.
Fats. Your body also needs fats to be healthy. Membranes that contain fats surround all the cells of your body. Your brain has fatty acids, and fats are also needed to signal hormones. Fat metabolism occurs mostly in the liver and provides essential functions such as temperature regulation, protection of organs, and reserve energy. If too many fats are oxidized, the blood can become too acidic, altering body processes and further impairing digestion. Excessive fat intake is stored in adipose tissue for future use by the metabolism.
Calcium. Another raw material your body needs is calcium. Calcium has several functions, but is best known as the mineral that is stored in your bones and teeth. You need calcium from your diet to keep your bones and teeth strong.
Vitamins and Minerals. Vitamins and minerals you get from your diet are just as important as carbohydrates, protein and fats; however, you only need them in small amounts. Vitamins and minerals usually function as co-enzymes, which mean they help chemical reactions in the body happen a lot faster. For example, many of the B complex vitamins help your body burn carbohydrates for energy. Vitamin A is needed for vision, zinc is involved in many metabolic processes, and vitamin C helps keep connective tissue strong and your immune system functioning. A healthy, balanced diet will provide you with lots of vitamin and minerals. An unhealthy diet may make your body deficient in one or more of these helpers. Vitamins can be divided into fat soluble vitamins (vit. A, K, D, A) and water soluble vitamins (vit. C, B Vitamins). Important minerals are: Cr, Fe, Zn, Cu. I, Mg, B, Ca, Se.
Good nutrition provides more than energy, structural components, vitamins and minerals. There are other substances in the foods that you eat that have become better known over the last few years.
Phytochemicals. Phytochemicals are found in the colorful parts of fruits and vegetables. Although they aren’t required for body functioning, they may have a very powerful impact on your health. For example, quercetin (found in red apples) functions like an antihistamine and as an anti-inflammatory effect. Resveratrol, found in grape skins and seeds, is a powerful antioxidant.
Antioxidants. Antioxidants help protect your body from damage that comes from the sun, pollution, smoke, and poor dietary choices. They are found in the phytochemicals of fruits and vegetables, as well as some vitamins and amino acids.
REASONS FOR SUPPLEMENTATION
Countless studies link a host of diseases (including atherosclerosis, heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes) to our highly processed diet which is high in saturated fats, caffeine and refined carbohydrates.
Data provided by NHANES (National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey) suggest that most Americans do not meet the Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDA) and Adequate Intakes (AI) of vitamins and minerals. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) reports that many Americans get less than 70% of the RDA of many essential minerals and antioxidants. The USDA/HHS position is enclosed in the Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2005: “…fortified foods and dietary supplements may be useful sources of one or more nutrients that otherwise might be consumed in less than recommended amounts. However, dietary supplements, while recommended in some cases, cannot replace a healthful diet”. Most common reasons for supplementation are:
- Poor dietary choices
- Decreased nutrient density in food (fast growing crops, agricultural practices, premature harvest, etc.)
- Poor nutritional status due to stressful lifestyles
- Over-fed but undernourished (obesity)
- Documented ability to compensate genetic vulnerabilities with nutritional intervention
- Multivitamins (including minerals)
- Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Multivitamins Facts: many published studies support the use of a daily multivitamin / multimineral, which may be the single most potent preventive health measure. Americans are not consuming diets that provide sufficient vitamin and mineral intake to maintain a good nutritional status.
Antioxidants Facts: antioxidants are scavengers looking for and inactivating harmful free radicals and fight inflammation. They act as a “line of defense” against oxidative stress caused by excessive free radicals produced by the metabolism. Common antioxidants are: vit. A, C, E, Selenium (ACES). More powerful antioxidants are the proanthocyanidins, bioflavonoids found in grape seed, pine bark (pycnogenol), and red wine extracts. USDA developed a database of the proanthocyanidin content of foods, published online:http://www.nal.usda.gov/fnic/foodcomp/Data/PA/PA.pdf, which highlights the fact that oligomeric proanthocyanidins (OPC) have anti-atherogenic, anti-carcinogenic, and anti-inflammatory properties. [Reference: Concentration of Proanthocyanidins in Common Food and Estimates of Normal Consumption, Gu et al, J. Nutrition, 2004 (134)613-617].
OPC help to maintain proper circulation, improve skin elasticity, strengthen capillaries, help improve visual acuity, help maintain joint flexibility, reduce effects of stress. Pycnogenol (pine bark extract) inhibits COX enzymes (reduces inflammation).
Omega-3 Fatty Acids Facts: we need both Omega-6 (pro-inflammatory) and omega-3 (anti-inflammatory) fatty acids in our diet. The ratio should be ~ 3:1 (omega-6/omega-3), but most commonly is 30:1! Therefore, we need to decrease omega-6 (vegetable oils: linoleic, gamma-linoleic and arachidonic acids) and increase omega-3, specifically EPA and DHA. Good sources of omega-3 are: fatty fish, fortified foods, and supplements. EPA promotes healthy cholesterol levels, promotes clean blood vessels, reduces inflammation, and promotes cardiovascular health. DHA supports memory and learning, is an antioxidant, promotes nervous system functioning, is required for retinal development and function. Clinical studies have shown as much as 25-30% reduction in triglycerides levels after supplementation with fish oil (other benefits: decreased c-reactive protein, improved blood flow). Literature reports also show benefits of fish oil supplementation for individuals with: Crohn’s disease, high blood pressure and rheumatoid arthritis.
Calcium Facts: adequate consumption of calcium and vitamin D are crucial to develop optimal peak bone mass and to preserve bone mass throughout life. If dietary intake of calcium is not sufficient, your body will take it from your bones. Bone re-absorption causes osteoporosis, most common among post-menopausal women. 20 million people in the US have osteoporosis and 1.3 million suffer fractures annually. Contributing factors to poor bone health are smoking, low calcium intake, vit. D deficiency. The goal for calcium supplementation is to increase bone mass and strength. Important ingredients in a calcium supplement are:
- Calcium: 1000 mg (<50 y/o); 1200 mg (>50 y/o)
- Vitamin D3: promote re-absorption of dietary calcium and phosphorus
- Magnesium: needed for metabolism of potassium and calcium; inhibits formation of calcium oxalate stones (kidney and bladder)
- Vitamin C: needed for collagen synthesis (part of bone)
- Boron: affects vitamin D3 metabolism, needed for cartilage formation and repair
- Manganese: needed for enzymatic activity needed for bone formation. Mn levels are lower in women with osteoporosis
A healthy body illustrates healthy looking skin, demonstrating that true beauty starts from within. The skin is the first thing people notice. If it’s healthy and glowing, you look years younger. Unhealthy skin is dry, dull, discolored and losing its youthful glow, making you look years older than you are. The good news is there is a way to reduce the signs of aging without irritation, piercing injections, or daring surgical procedures.
A healthy skin is determined by our life styles, and also by what we eat and drink. Skin that is healthy can also help you make sure that your entire health is much better as well. In addition to boosting yourself confidence, healthy skin is an indicator of a healthy body. Taking proper care of your skin can do more to enhance your appearance than all the lotions and creams applied to cover up unhealthy skin, it can even help you avoid the rashes and other diseases which necessitate an expensive visit to a dermatologist.
People who use natural skin care products are less concerned with artificial beauty enhancements, as they feel that natural beauty is healthy beauty. So if you want to have a healthy skin, drink plenty of water, exercise regularly, reduce stress, sleep well and eat healthy. Stay away from sodas or drinks with caffeine, which dry the skin, use a humidifier to increase the level of moisture in the air, treat your skin right in the winter months and you will have healthy glowing skin to put on show once summer arrives.
*These Statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.