Can Grounding Blast Spring Allergies?

Sniffles, sneezing, itchy eyes and throat—spring can be such a beautiful and rejuvenating time of year, but for those of us who suffer from allergies, it can put a damper on our outdoor activities! Unfortunately, allergies affect more than 50 million Americans yearly1 and can be obstacles in Active Wellness.

The most common way to fight allergies is to take antihistamines, but many of us really do not like the side effects that may occur, such as dry mouth, foggy brain and fatigue. What’s a body to do?

Reconnecting with nature by grounding has shown great promise in helping to overcome not only spring allergies but allergies in general. The reason for this is based in science.

Allergies occur when the immune system reacts to a foreign substance—such as pollen, bee venom or pet dander—or a food that doesn’t cause a reaction in most people. The immune system produces substances known as antibodies. When there are allergies, the immune system makes antibodies that identify a particular allergen as harmful, even though it isn’t. Once in contact with the allergen, the immune system’s reaction can inflame the skin, sinuses, airways or digestive system.2

Research has shown that grounding is a viable method to counter inflammation. Since the body runs through a type of electrical current, the Earth’s negative charges can create a stable internal bioelectrical environment for the normal functioning of the body’s systems. The body is naturally able to absorb the negative electrical charges from the Earth since the skin acts like a conductor.3 That’s why grounding requires skin contact with the Earth. Luckily, if we can’t breathe in the pollen-filled air outside, we can use the KenkoGround® directly on our skin while indoors.

The brain, heart and neurotransmitters all rely on electrical signals to function properly. When the electricity is off, certain aspects of health can be compromised and produce inflammation. Put simply, researchers believe that the influx of free electrons from grounding help to neutralize free radicals and reduce the acute and chronic inflammation that causes accelerated aging. Basically, the free or mobile electrons from the Earth can help relieve chronic inflammation by serving as natural antioxidants! 4

Other than grounding, some simple ways to help decrease the risk for allergy attacks include frequent hand washing, staying hydrated, keeping windows closed during high pollen seasons, vacuuming often, keeping your sinuses clear with water or a saline rinse, and helping to boost the immune system with dietary supplements such as Kenzen® Immunity, Kenzen® Omega Green +DHA and Kenzen® Cleanse & Detox.

1 https://www.westsidehn.com/are-allergies-a-sign-of-a-strong-immune-system/

2 https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/allergies/symptoms-causes/syc-20351497

3, 4 https://draxe.com/health/earthing/

2 https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/allergies/symptoms-causes/syc-20351497

3, 4 https://draxe.com/health/earthing/

Healthy Feet Propel Active Wellness

April is Foot Health Awareness Month—good foot health is essential for an active life. With 26 bones plus 33 joints, feet serve as the foundation for the rest of the body. If the feet are not mechanically sound, it can affect the knees, hips and even the lower back.

We carry approximately four to six times our body weight across the ankle joint when climbing up stairs or walking steep inclines. We need our feet to carry us an average of 115,000 miles in our lifetime; therefore, avoiding foot problems should be a priority.1

The importance of feet serves as the foundation for reflexology, which studies how one part of the body relates to another. Practitioners of reflexology rely on a “map” of the foot, where each part corresponds to another body part, notably the internal organs. Pressure applied to different parts of the foot is believed to stimulate or activate corresponding parts of the body.2

Food is a great enabler for foot health. What we eat can help avoid swelling and other discomforts of the feet. For example, eating food with diuretic properties may help prevent fluid retention.3 Incorporate watermelon, asparagus, parsley, beets, grapes, green beans, leafy greens, cucumbers, pineapples, pumpkins, onions, leeks and garlic into your diet.3

Foods to avoid (or least to partake of infrequently) include alcohol, caffeine, chocolate, dairy products, animal protein, dried shellfish, fried foods, gravies, olives, pickles, salt, soy sauce, tobacco, white flour and white sugar.4 Fortunately, what we should incorporate and what we should reduce in our diet correspond to basic healthy eating, Mediterranean style. (link to https://nikkenactivewellness.com/2017/03/14/go-mediterranean-for-good-nutrition-and-health/)

Other ways to maintain foot health include:

• Stretching the feet, ankles and lower legs every day and before exercising. This helps to keep the muscles strong and to avoid injury.

• Keeping a healthy weight. Excess weight puts pressure on the feet, leading to foot pain, stress fractures, circulatory issues and possible arthritis.

• Making sure shoes fit properly. Avoid rubbing or squeezing toes, and try to maintain a half inch space between the longest toe (usually the big toe or the second toe) and the end of the shoe.

• Replacing worn out shoes. Some of us have a favorite pair that are especially comfortable; however, if they are worn out inside or outside, they can cause foot strain.

• Keeping feet clean and dry in between the toes. This will help prevent fungus, otherwise known as athlete’s foot.

Feet are one of the more complex parts of the human anatomy, so they are prone to a wide variety of issues, such as ingrown toenails, neuropathy, bunions and more. In addition, it’s fairly common to have one foot be slightly larger than the other, so always wear shoes that favor the larger foot in fit.5 We also need to be aware that our feet may not stay the same size—as we age, they tend to flatten out, and some pregnancies may cause feet to enlarge.

Two of the Nikken flagship products are the insoles. Founder Isamu Masuda developed the magnetic insoles to simulate the therapeutic pebbles in the Japanese public hot baths. The Kenko mStrides® and Kenko mSteps® can both be cut to size to fit right into your shoes. The magnetic nodules massage the soles of the feet and act similarly to the acupressure practiced as part of reflexology. People who work while standing find Kenko insoles particularly helpful in keeping feet energized and stable.

The KenkoGround® is a Nikken product that can work in tandem with bare feet. Simply place the KenkoGround in direct contact with bare feet while seated or sleeping, and experience a reconnection with nature to help feel more relaxed, and less stressed.

1 https://www.bvhealthsystem.org/expert-health-articles/national-foot-health-awareness-month#:~:text=Did%20you%20know%20that%20April,least%20one%20foot%20problem%20annually.

2 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4624523/

3, 4 www.foot.com

https://www.voyagehealthcare.com/blog/put-your-best-foot-forward-this-national-foot-health-awareness-month

Stay Grounded Even When Secluded at Home

With social distancing, seesawing merchant closures and openings, seclusion, and various unwelcome kinds of fear—we live differently now than ever before. Some fears cause excitement and nervousness in a positive way, but fear associated with possible life-ending illness causes distress. During these troubling times, even the most positive minded individuals may succumb to bouts of irritability, depression, anxiety and resentment—none of which help on the path towards Active Wellness.

How can we avoid falling into the rabbit hole of despair during these trying times? There is no simple answer, but reconnecting with nature might help in more ways than one.

Emerging scientific research has revealed a surprisingly positive and overlooked environmental factor on health: direct physical contact with the vast supply of electrons on the surface of the Earth. Modern lifestyle separates humans from such contact. The research suggests that this disconnect may be a major contributor to physiological dysfunction and unwellness.

Reconnection with the Earth’s electrons has been found to promote intriguing physiological changes and subjective reports of well-being. Grounding refers to the discovery of benefits—including better sleep and reduced discomforts—from walking barefoot outside or sitting, working, or sleeping indoors connected to conductive systems that transfer the Earth’s electrons from the ground into the body.1

Grounding is being studied and researched for its potential benefits for countering inflammation, cardiovascular disease, muscle damage, chronic pain and mood. Researchers measured white blood cell count and pain levels before and after grounding with both grounding patches and mats. Blood work indicated that grounding helped reduce muscle damage and pain in participants.2

Some massage therapists have incorporated grounding in their practices. Evidence shows that after grounding therapy, stress, depression and fatigue were reduced among participants.3

Urban living often prohibits the natural ways to reconnect with nature. The KenkoGround® makes grounding easy to accomplish indoors. There’s nothing that compares with feeling the earth under bare feet or swimming in a lake or ocean, so we should do those activities as often as we can. Meanwhile, indoor living continues and the KenkoGround can help make a difference in how we feel overall.

1 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3265077/

2, 3 https://www.healthline.com/health/grounding

What Can We Do To Decrease Plastic Pollution?

There are many misconceptions about the plastic pollution problem, but there is no question that in its many forms, plastic is killing ocean wildlife that is vital to the ecosystem. In addition, plastic pollution is sickening land flora and fauna, including humans.

Miranda Wang and Jeanny Yao were two of the youngest scientists ever to win the Perlman science prize in 2016 for developing a bacterium that may transform plastic into CO2 and water. Although they were not the first ones to discover that bacteria can break down phthalates, they were the first to find a possible solution to a local problem by looking into their own river system in Vancouver, Canada when they were still in high school.1

The two have since won numerous other science awards and established their company, BioCellection. Years of research later, their company is still focused on taking a main type of plastic, polyethylene, and turning it into chemical building blocks for new products that don’t end up in oceans as waste. The firm takes dicarboxylic acid it generates from polyethylene and transforms it into high-performance materials, such as photopolymers or polyyrethane.2

 “It is such a waste when materials that are perfectly good to be reused or repurposed end up as pollution,” Yao says. “Not only are we turning this currently wasted carbon into new materials that are high performing, but BioCellection is also making new products that can be recycled over and over again.”3

Since 2016, a product called the SeaBin has been available for purchase around the world. Created by two Australian surfers, the SeaBin is a bucket with a pump and water filtration system that is designed to suck in any floating trash into a removable mesh bag. The bucket includes an optional oil-water separator system that will pull oil right out of the ocean, then spit out cleaner water through the other side of the pump. The SeaBin can be installed at any floating dock to suck up trash or oil floating in nearby harbors.4

Since 2017, the SeaBin Project has removed over 1,400 tons of plastic pollution from the world’s oceans with SeaBin units in 53 countries. Each unit has the capability to collect 90,000 plastic bags, 35,700 disposable cups, 16,500 plastic bottles and 166,500 plastic utensils each year.5

Removal of plastic from the ocean is only one piece of the pollution puzzle. What happens to all the plastic that is collected? Not all of tons and tons of plastic can be transformed into usable products in the way of BioCellection. Much of the plastic waste has to decompose. Just as plastic was a wonderful invention due to its durability, it’s also a nightmare when it comes to decomposition, as it can take 1,000 years!

Leave it to yet another Canadian high school student to find a way to more quickly biodegrade plastic! Daniel Burd, a student at Waterloo Collegiate Institute won the Canada-Wide Science Fair in May of 2019. He created a process of immersing ground plastic in a yeast solution that expedites microbial growth, then isolating the productive organisms. After experimentation with different strains and interbreeding them, Burd achieved a 43% degradation of plastic in only six weeks!6

What makes Burd’s discoveries so exciting is that his method of decomposing plastic is organic. Other research on decomposing plastic have mainly focused on chemical additives made by scientists to cause plastic to vaporize.7 Testing needs to continue with Burd’s discoveries to ensure that byproducts of organic decomposition are not carcinogenic, but what a great starting point!

We can’t all be scientific entrepreneurs and make breakthrough discoveries, but every single one of us can help in decreasing plastic pollution by remembering to practice the 3Rs: reuse, reduce and recycle.

Water is Life and Nikken is doing its part to help people access clean water for Active Wellness—not only for drinking, but also for bathing. For the entire month of March, we are offering four Water Packs. Each pack has two state-of-the-art PiMag® products. You get one at the regular price and the second at 50% off! You have your choice of two PiMag MicroJet® Wall Mount Shower Systems, two PiMag MicroJet® Handheld Shower Systems, two PiMag® Sport Bottles of 100% recyclable biogreen materials, or two PiMag® Waterfalls.

1 https://www.thescienceandspace.com/2019/05/the-high-pollution-in-the-oceans-is-big.html?

2 www.intellingentliving.co/amp/students-recycle-polyethylene

3 https://cen.acs.org/environment/recylcing/BioCellection-Miranda-Wang-and-Jeanny-Yao-aim-to-make-treasure-out-of-plastic-trash/98/19

4 https://mitte.co/2018/02/13/water-related-technologies-inventions-inspire-us/

5 https://seabinproject.com/discovery-australia-joins-seabin-project-to-help-clean-up-sydney-harboru-in-world-first-program/

6,7 https://www.treehugger.com/boy-discovers-microbe-that-easts-plastic-4868136

Keep Your Water and Air Clean with Filtration

Clean air and potable water are crucial for Active Wellness. Depending on where we live, clean air and potable water can be valuable commodities rather than the norm. Even where outside air is relatively breathable and water is potable out of faucets, we all run the risk of breathing indoor air that is polluted with chemical odors, dust and dander or ingesting microscopic plastics, pathogens and a wide range of bacteria from water that is considered drinkable. This is why it’s so important to use water and air filtration units.

Nikken offers high-quality HEPA air filtration with the KenkoAir Purifier®. It’s portable and exceptionally quiet. The KenkoAir Purifier® exceeds the measured efficiency of capturing up to 99.97% of 0.3 micron particles in the air. It’s Energy Star qualified, which means it’s 35% more efficient than standard models and saves a minimum of 215 kilowatt-hours per year. Unlike typical air filters, this advanced system helps generate negative-ions similar to those found in natural environments. In addition to replaceable filters, its pre-filter is re-usable to further reduce its carbon footprint.

The state-of-the-art PiMag® Waterfall and the portable eco-bottle known as the PiMag® Sport Bottle provide unparalleled water filtration and alkalization.

•The PiMag Waterfall is designed to produce water with added minerals, in a pH range of 8.5-9.5. Ionized water decreases oxidation-reduction potential. A high ORP contributes to unwanted oxidative decomposition. Ionized PiMag water from the Waterfall can help offset the oxidizing effect of many elements of the modern diet and environment. This can actually help slow down cellular destruction.

•The PiMag Sport Bottle is the only water bottle that combines three technologies: nano-fiber filtration, alkalization and declustering. The patented nano-fiber filtration technology was originally developed for NASA and dramatically increases the filter’s ability to reduce potential contaminants from drinking water, now including pathogens and micro-plastics. The patented filter with alkalizing media increases the pH from 7 to 8.5, representing a 15 to 25 fold increase in pH value, going from an acidic to an alkaline range. 

You can even benefit when you shower, if you use the PiMag MicroJet®. It uses a reduction/oxidation process to neutralize chlorine ions and injects air into the shower stream to increase the electronegative potential of the water for more effective filtration. This shower filtration system has been tested according to NSF/ANSI 177 for reduction of free chlorine.

A great way to start a new year is by committing to Active Wellness. A great way is to take advantage of the Nikken replacement filter sale!   This year, the Nikken Replacement Filter Sale is effective January 15 through February 28, 2021. Save 20% off select filter replacements, and there’s no limit to how many you can purchase.

Have You Heard of the “Have a Plant™” Movement?

The Produce for Better Health Foundation (PBH) is promoting the consumption of vegetables and fruits for health. Health means decreasing the risk of certain common but debilitating conditions, including type 2 diabetes, diverticulitis and other digestive issues, hypertension and most notably, cardiovascular disease. Have a Plant™ is PBH’s new behavioral science-based call to action.

Since nearly 90% of Americans fall below fruit and vegetable consumption recommendations1, the PBH suggests the following:

  1. Join the Have a Plant™ Movement by enjoying fruits and veggies you know and love, whether fresh, frozen, canned, dried or 100% juice.
  2. Follow PBH’s social channels to learn creative tips/tricks to incorporate more fruits and veggies into your daily diet.
  3. Take the Have a Plant™ pledge: commit to adding one or more fruit and or vegetable to your routine every day this month: try something new, and experiment. Although this is National Fruit and Veggie Awareness month as recommended by PBH, any month is a good month to make this pledge.
  4. Spread the word on the importance of consuming multiple types of fruits and veggies, since no single vegetable or fruit can supply all your nutrient needs.

The importance of eating fruits and vegetables cannot be overstated. You don’t have to be vegan or vegetarian to reap the multiple benefits of including a rainbow of plant foods into your diet. Studies show that people who eat more vegetables and fruits as part of an overall healthy diet are more likely to have a reduced risk of some chronic diseases, as mentioned above. Here’s why:

•            Vegetables are low in fat and calories and none have cholesterol.

•             Vegetables and fruits are important sources of potassium, fiber, folate (folic acid) and Vitamins A and C.

•            Diets rich in potassium may help maintain healthy levels of blood pressure.2 Sweet potatoes, white beans, tomato paste, sauce and juice, beet greens, soybeans, lima beans, spinach, lentils and kidney beans are rich in potassium.

•            Fiber helps reduce cholesterol and lower the risk of heart disease, as well as help ensure proper bowel function. High-fiber foods include peas, broccoli, figs, berries, all types of beans, artichokes, avocado and pears.

•            Folate (folic acid) helps the body form red blood cells.3 Foods rich in folate include leafy greens, asparagus, broccoli, citrus fruits, seeds and nuts, and fortified foods, such as whole grain breakfast cereals.4

•            Vitamin A keeps eyes and skin healthy and helps protect against infections. Vitamin A is found in orange and yellow vegetables and fruits as well as broccoli, spinach and most green leafy vegetables.

•             According to a study conducted by Harvard-based Nurses’ Health Study and Health Professionals, all fruits and veggies contributed to the benefit but green leafy vegetables such as lettuce, spinach, Swiss chard and mustard greens most strongly associated with a decrease risk of cardiovascular disease.5

•            Vitamin C helps heal cuts and wounds and keeps teeth and gums healthy. It also aids in iron absorption. Vitamin C is found in citrus fruits, cauliflower, green and red peppers, cruciferous vegetables, tomatoes and winter squash.

•             A randomized trial known as the Optimal Macronutrient Intake Trial for Heart Health showed fruit and vegetable rich diets lowered blood pressure even more when some of the carbohydrates were replaced with healthy unsaturated fat or protein.6

Have a Plant™ works well with an Active Wellness lifestyle and it’s never too late to add more fruits and vegetables to your diet. Remember that Kenzen® Super Ciaga is rich in antioxidant fruits, and Kenzen® Total Vegan Drink Mix can help you and your children with four of the recommended daily servings of fruits and vegetables in each scoop!

1 https://www.producebluebook.com/2019/08/27/how-to-promote-september-as-national-fruits-and-veggie-month/#

2, 3 www.choosemyplate.gov

www.m.activebeat.com

5, 6 www.hsph.harvard.edu

Drink to Your Health with Delicious Tea

Derived from the plant Camellia sinensis, true teas—black, green, oolong, dark and white—are well known for their health benefits. Throughout its nearly 5,000-year history, tea from the Camellia sinensis plant has been believed to help purify the body and preserve the mind. The earliest record of tea’s restorative power dates back to China in 2737 BC.1

Scientists have been testing these theories for decades. To date, researchers have identified and classified the bioactive compounds inherent in tea and thousands of published studies support tea’s ancient health claims. Bioactive compounds that promote health include polyphenolic compounds such as catechins, epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), L-theanine, theaflavins, tannins and flavonoids, as well as amino acids, caffeine, lignins and xanthins. Black and green teas are rich sources of phytonutrients, which are responsible for some of their health benefits.2

Tea has been shown to have both short and long-term health benefits for Active Wellness.

  • The antioxidants in true teas are thought to play a role in protecting brain cells and inhibiting oxidative damage. Tea polyphenols are reportedly bioavailable to the brain and may protect neurological function. When researchers compared non-habitual tea drinkers and routine tea drinkers, the “regulars” were found to have greater functional connectivity strength and suppressed hemispheric asymmetry in their structural network, suggesting that habitual tea drinking has a protective effect on age-related brain decline.3
  • Research suggested there is an association between daily tea consumption and the reduced risk of heart disease.4
  • Additional research suggests that the catechins or bioactive compounds in tea, in combination with caffeine, are responsible for increasing energy usage in tea drinkers. This is believed to help in weight management and research suggests tea consumers have a lower weight and waist circumference.5
  • Antibacterial properties of tea may help protect against cavities and gum disease as well as strengthen tooth enamel. Research has demonstrated that two to three cups of green tea daily may play a role in reducing the risk of gum disease.6
  • Tea may boost bone-building markers and improve muscle mass, both of which may reduce the risk of osteoporosis and fracture.7
  • Whereas high caffeine consumption is believed to be a risk factor for reduced bone mineral density, tea drinking has been linked to higher bone density.8

Matcha green tea is one of the true teas highest in catechins and therefore exceptionally beneficial to overall health. Why not take advantage of our “Three for the Price of Two” sale on Kenzen Ten4® Energy Drink Mix made with high-grade organic matcha green tea, organic brown rice solids, organic kiwi and stevia leaf extract!

1,2 Goggi, Peter. Tea: A Beverage Steeped in History and Health Benefits, Nutraceuticals World, March 2020, pages 38 and 40.

3 De Bruin EA, etal. Black tea improves attention and self-reported alertness. Appetite, 2011, 56, pages 235-240.

4 Eng Qy, etal. Molecular understanding of epigallocatechin gallate in cardiovascular and metabolic diseases. Ethnopharmacology, 2017, 210, pages 296-310.

5 Hersel R etal. The effects of catechin rich teas and caffeine on energy expenditure and fat oxidation, Obesity Review, 2011 July:12(7):e573-81.

6 Kushiyama M etal. Relationship between intake of green tea and periodontal disease. Journal Periodontol, 2009, March; 80(3):372-7

7 Sun K etal, Association between tea consumption and osteoporosis. Medicine, 2017, 96:49 (e9024)

8 Devine A, etal. Tea drinking is associated with benefits on bone density in older women, American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 2007: 86(4)1243-7.

 

Do You Know What Beta Glucans Are?

Medical experts have routinely stated that having a strong immune system is important for all people, especially for those more vulnerable to illness, that is, the elderly, chronically ill and immune-compromised. Consumers are looking for products and ingredients that help immune systems and beta glucans are one of the newest. They’re well-grounded in science with more than 1,000 published articles in the scientific literature attesting to their efficacy.1

Beta glucans are chains of glucose molecules that are naturally present and act as storage depots and structural components in bacteria, fungi, algae and cereals. Their chemical structure and composition as well as their molecular weight affect the extent to which they can stimulate and support the immune system. Beta glucans exert a prebiotic effect on the GI tract: they specifically fuel beneficial GI microbiota, enabling them to flourish and compete against pathogenic bacteria for space and food.

 While we think of the digestive tract primarily as the organ for digesting food and absorbing nutrients, it is also the body’s largest immune organ. Approximately 70% of immune cells reside in the human intestine.3 Feeding and maintaining the health of intestinal cells maintains GI tract integrity so it can act as a physical barrier to invading pathogens.

Because beta glucans are a type of soluble fiber, it can slow down the process of food moving through the intestines. By slowing down the digestive process, the body doesn’t absorb sugar as quickly and this helps stabilize blood sugar levels, an important benefit especially for diabetics. As beta glucans travel through the entire digestive tract, it can help transport cholesterol out, helping to lower levels. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved a heart-healthy label for foods that have high amounts of beta glucan, based on this evidence.4

Like many fibers, beta glucans are available in supplement form. They are also found in various types of fungi, such as maitake and reishi mushrooms. Less known ingredients such as inulin and spirulina are also sources of beta glucans. More commonly, beta glucans are found in whole grains, oats, bran, wheat and barley.

Dietary fiber is sourced from plant-based foods, another good reason to incorporate them into an Active Wellness regimen. Many Nikken nutritional supplements contain an assortment of beta glucans. Check out Kenzen® Immunity, Kenzen® Cleanse & Detox, Kenzen Lactoferrin® 2.0, Kenzen Vital Balance® Meal Replacement Mix, Kenzen® Jade GreenZymes®, Kenzen® Digestion 4-20 and Kenzen® Total Vegan Drink Mix.

 

1, 2, 3 Nutraceuticals World, April 2020, pp.24-25

4 https://www.healthline.com/health/beta-glucan-heart-healthy#TOC_TITLE_HDR_1

What Are You Worried About During the Pandemic?

The COVID-19 crisis has made consumers around the world increasingly aware of the critical role a strong immune system can play in health maintenance and disease prevention. Fears of possible additional outbreaks or returning to normal behaviors too soon have created a new need for preparedness.1 Being prepared in this sense is very much an integral aspect of Active Wellness.

According to the 2020 Harnessing the Power of Self Care report, preventive products will likely trend higher than those that target symptoms.2 In effect, this approach aligns with TCM (traditional Chinese medicine) as well as the Ayurvedic tradition. The pandemic is in effect causing people who previously relied solely on alleviating symptoms of health issues to actually taking action to help prevent their onset. This has been one of the goals of Active Wellness and certainly reflects the Healthy Body and Healthy Mind Pillars of the foundational 5 Pillars of Wellness that represent the Nikken lifestyle.

Bolstering the immune system is not a new concept; however, healthy individuals may not always pay attention to it, because the need is not obvious or immediate. During the pandemic where seemingly healthy people, even those without underlying health issues, are dying, maintaining a strong immune system that is capable of fighting the unknown, becomes a real need.

Consumers worldwide are making changes to their diets and lifestyles to help improve their immunity—61 percent in North America, 56 percent in Europe, 50 percent in Africa, 48 percent in the Asia Pacific, and 45 percent in South America.3 Here are some ways that people can help their immune systems stay strong and healthy not only during a pandemic but as a committed Active Wellness lifestyle:

  • Avoid sugar and refined carbohydrates.
  • Eat more omega-3 rich oils.
  • Eat fresh vegetables, organic whenever possible.
  • Add garlic, onions, ginger, cinnamon, and functional mushrooms into the diet.
  • Take probiotics, vitamin C and vitamin D.
  • Add animmune supplement to your daily regimen.
  • Maintain a healthy weight.  The Center for Disease Control states that those with a BMI (body mass index) of 30 or higher are at an increased risk for cardiovascular disease as well as COVID-19.4
  • Get plenty of sleep and stay hydrated throughout the day.

The pandemic has helped many of us develop better health habits: frequent handwashing, eating healthy food, exercising regularly and incorporating immune-boosting nutritional supplements into our daily regimens. The world doesn’t have a cure for COVID-19 yet, but we can be more vigilant in aligning our daily behaviors with Active Wellness.

1,2 Nutraceuticals World, May 2020, p. 44.

3 FMCG Gurus. (2020). Insights & Opportunities – Immunity – Global 2020.

4 https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/need-extra-precautions/people-with-medical-conditions.html

Prevention is Ideal for Optimal Women’s Health

National Women’s Health Week starts each year on Mother’s Day to encourage women to make health their priority—this year it is the week of May 10 through May 17. The key to maintaining health is getting the necessary care to help prevent disease, disability, and injuries. Preventive care can help detect problems early, when treatment is more effective.

Physical activity is one of the most important things women can do for optimal health. Its many benefits include lowering the risk for heart disease, the leading cause of death for women. In addition to doing at least 2.5 hours of moderate aerobic activity, women should also aim to do strengthening exercises that include all major muscle groups at least twice a week.1 Strength and balance training are also important, since one out of four older people fall each year and women fall more often than men.2

Healthy eating is important for everyone, and for women, there are specific needs. In a previous blog we covered several concerns relevant to women’s health, such as breast cancer, osteoporosis and heart disease. Here we are going to discuss one specific need crucial to women’s health: folic acid. Required for optimal health, folic acid also helps prevent major birth defects during pregnancy.3

Folic acid is a tricky supplement. It’s a synthetic form of vitamin B9. The body does not convert it into active vitamin B9 very well, so unmetabolized folic acid may build up in the bloodstream.4 Since folic acid is different from natural folate, it must be converted into an active form before your body can use it. Your genetics affect how quickly this conversion takes place, so folic acid is a hot topic in current nutrition research.5

Synthetic folic acid can disrupt the actions of natural folate as it has a greater capability to bind to folate receptors on the cells. This, in turn, could result in folic acid being preferentially transported into normal healthy cells instead of natural folate. Once inside the cell, folic acid could then compete with natural folates for other binding sites, preventing them from functioning properly and potentially causing changes in normal gene expression or cell growth rates.6

To circumvent the double-edged sword of folic acid (the body needs it but has problems processing it properly and can cause seriously negative effects) researchers have come up with a supplement known as BioFolate™. This supplement formula contains L-5-methyltetrahydrofolate (L-5-MTHF), the active form of folate that is used in the body and considered a healthier alternative to folic acid, which is essential in the production of neurotransmitters. Folate plays a key role in DNA and RNA synthesis, healthy genetic expression, red blood cell production, the metabolism of proteins, cognitive health, cardiovascular health, and more.7

BioFolate™ is an important ingredient added to the new vanilla Kenzen Vital Balance® Screen Shot 2020-04-27 at 8.26.09 AMto help make it an exceptional nutritional supplement for Active Wellness.

 

1, 2, 3 https://www.cdc.gov/features/nwhw/

4, 5 https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/folic-acid

6, 7 https://www.healthline.com/health/folate-deficiency