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

 

Sneak Peek at Great Nutritional Products Just Around the Corner!

Two popular Nikken nutritional products that have sold out and been eagerly anticipated are Kenzen Super Ciaga and Kenzen Vital Balance® Meal Replacement Mix. The good news is they’re coming back very soon. Here’s a sneak peek on the multiple improvements Nikken made to both super foods!

Kenzen Super Ciaga™ Powder has all the goodness of the juice but with only 10 calories per serving. This superfruit antioxidant mix is naturally sweetened with organic monkfruit, which is unusually sweet and has no calories. Since there is no added processed sugar, Super Ciaga has gone from 100 calories in the juice version to only 10 calories per serving with the new powder! The powder is easily mixed with PiMag® water and you can add in Kenzen Jade GreenZymes® for added nutrient-density. You can even add it to the new Kenzen Vital Balance to create a berry-flavored shake! The powder allows you to travel on airplanes with it and you don’t have to refrigerate it after opening!

This advanced Super Ciaga formula is made with a select group of superfruits chosen for their nutrient-density and immune-boosting characteristics. Highly concentrated, it has an exceptional ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity) value of 5,000, increased from 3,500 in the juice. Incorporated into a daily regimen, Super Ciaga helps support healthy cellular functions, a healthy immune system, healthy heart and blood vessels, natural energy levels and overall well-being.*

Certified organic, Kenzen Vital Balance® Meal Replacement Mix (vanilla) is designed to help burn fat, help manage weight, build muscle, boost metabolism, promote healthy brain function and eliminate toxins in the body.* Our new formula contains pre- and probiotics to assist in digestive and immune system activity for people of all ages.* This formula contains 2.4 CFU (colony forming units) probiotics per serving.

Naturally-sourced protein from organic pea, organic rice and organic chlorella help promote the formation of lean muscle mass without the high levels of saturated fat and calories associated with animal protein.* This high quality plant-based protein is perfect for vegetarians and vegans who otherwise may find it difficult to source protein—on the other hand, it’s a great way for carnivores to increase plant intake and decrease protein from animal sources.

Organic Medium-chain Triglycerides (MCTs) sourced exclusively from coconut milk serve as “brain food” to support cognitive sharpness and to assist in burning fat, boosting metabolism and regulating the appetite.* BioFolate™ is added as an essential helper to produce neurotransmitters. It’s truly food for action and food for thought. Sweetened with zero-calorie organic monkfruit and organic stevia, there’s nothing artificial in this formula, making KVB exceptional in the marketplace and in our industry.

This is just a peek at the many improvements on two already stellar nutritional supplements! They’re coming very soon and you’ll see they’re worth the wait! They’ll help you take Active Wellness to the next level!

 

* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

Why Iron is so Important to Gut Health

April is recognized as IBS awareness month. IBS stands for Irritable Bowel Syndrome and is a fairly common disease that afflicts between 10 and 15% of the general population in the United States. IBS affects the digestive system and generally causes stomach cramps, bloating, diarrhea, constipation or any combination of symptoms. It’s particularly annoying because the cause may remain unknown and the condition can linger for weeks, months or years.

Evidence is building with researchers that sufferers of IBS may have unhealthy microbiomes—this means their good gut flora (good bacteria) is lacking. When the balance of the gut flora is disturbed, unpleasant gastrointestinal symptoms arise. There are new clues that an ongoing disturbance in gut flora could contribute to the onset of IBS.1

Suffering from both anemia and IBS is relatively common and there is a logical reason behind it.2 Anemia is a common blood disorder where there is a shortage of red blood cells. Anemic people are usually fatigued, because red blood cells are the ones that carry oxygen. There are many types of anemia, but the most common type is due to low iron or low vitamin B12 levels in the blood.

Iron is stored in the body in a protein called ferritin; therefore, monitoring ferritin levels can help prevent iron deficiency. Also, it’s important to know why you have low iron or B12 levels. Oftentimes, it’s because you don’t absorb them well. People with IBS and related digestive problems often have a problem absorbing nutrients since both diarrhea and constipation cause malabsorption.3

Since iron supplements can exacerbate IBS symptoms with increased bloating, constipation and sometimes diarrhea4, natural foods that are high in iron may prove easier on the digestive tract. Plant sources of iron include dark leafy greens, potatoes, tomatoes, lentils, soybeans and nuts. Animal sources of iron include beef, chicken liver and egg yolks. Pescatarian options include tuna, mackerel, clams and oysters.

There is a limited amount of time to absorb iron from food—it’s primarily absorbed in the third of the small intestine known as the duodenum. As food transits past the duodenum, there is still an opportunity for iron absorption but less so.5 Given the short amount of time iron from food can be absorbed, helping its chances of absorption are important. That is precisely where Kenzen Lactoferrin® 2.0 comes in!

Kenzen Lactoferrin 2.0 is not an iron supplement. As noted by nutritionists and researchers, elemental iron is not only hard to absorb but may actually make IBS symptoms worse. The Lactoferrin 2.0 solution is to help the body to better utilize and balance the iron in the body.* This is accomplished with the special delivery system that Lactoferrin 2.0 provides. Lactoferrin is in fact a protein that binds and transports iron, that is, using the iron that’s already in the body rather than adding external sources of iron.Screen Shot 2020-04-15 at 9.52.57 AM

Consumers of Kenzen Lactoferrin 2.0 are diehard fans for life. Whether you have stomach issues or not, properly absorbing and utilizing the iron in your body is bound to accelerate Active Wellness.

* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

 

1 https://www.verywellhealth.com/gut-bacteria-and-ibs-1945285

2, 3 https://ibstreatmentcenter.com/2013/02/how-ibs-can-cause-iron-deficiency-and-anemia-3.html

4, 5 https://irritablebowelsyndrome.net/living/iron-deficiency-anemia/

 

How Clean is Your Drinking Water?

If your water looks, smells, and tastes just fine — is it? And if you purchase any of the multitude of branded bottled waters, do you know whether they’re prefiltered? Our human senses, unfortunately, can’t always detect microbial and organic contaminants.

Even as you diligently practice Active Wellness, you might go years before realizing a problem exists. Many folks never become suspicious until people in the community start to get sick. Water near agricultural areas may contain harmful organic material from pesticide or fertilizer applications. Chemicals from pesticides and fertilizers in water may increase the risk of life-threatening diseases and/or the impairment of the body’s many complex functions. Similar problems can result from exposure to water near industrial plants.

According to the U.S. EPA, there are two groups of water contaminants: acute and chronic. Acute effects occur within hours or days of exposure to a contaminant, while chronic effects occur over many years, depending on the level of exposure and the number of contaminants.1

The U.S. EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) has set standards for more than 80 contaminants that may occur in drinking water and pose a risk to human health. Heavy metals make up many of these as do bacteria, viruses and specifically, chlorine and chloramine, commonly used in municipal water systems to disinfect but cumulatively have negative effects of their own. Chloramine, or chloramination, is a treatment method employed by public water systems. More than one in five Americans uses drinking water treated with chloramines. 2

Acute contaminants typically do not have permanent effects, as most people’s bodies can fight off microbial contaminants the way they fight off germs. However, when high enough levels occur, they can make people ill, and depending on your state of health, can even be endangering to overall health.

On the other hand, drinking water contaminants that can have chronic effects include chemicals (such as disinfection byproducts, solvents and pesticides), radionuclides (such as radium), and minerals (such as arsenic). Examples of these chronic effects include cancer, liver or kidney problems, or reproductive difficulties.3

Extended through the end of this month, you can purchase a PiMag Waterfall® at a 20% discount. This outstanding multiple filtration system does not require a plug or batteries—simply replace the filter every three to six months, depending on usage. In addition to reducing particulates, the PiMag Waterfall exceeds ANSI/NSF standards for the removal of chloramine, chlorine, cysts and lead while reducing bacteria by more than 99.99%.

 

1, 3 https://www.wqa.org/learn-about-water/common-contaminants

2 https://www.wqa.org/learn-about-water/common-contaminants/chloramine

Drinking Water Helps Boost Your Immunity

March 22, 2020 is World Water Day. It’s an annual United Nations observance day that highlights the importance of fresh water and its sustainable management and promotes awareness about everything related to water. Whether you participate in celebratory local events, educational seminars or simply incorporate filtered, not bottled, water usage into your Active Wellness regimen, you can spread the word to help save Planet Earth.

Currently, the number one topic covered by global news media seems to be the pandemic. Schools and businesses are shutting down, events are being canceled and people are self-quarantining. This creates a new level of mental and physical discomfort that promotes a feeling of helplessness. But there are basic things we can do daily to help maintain our wellness. Things, such as washing our hands frequently, observing social distancing and leaving your dwelling only when necessary.

Water plays such an important role in helping to maintain a healthy body. Your immune system is the first defense against germs, bacteria and free radicals. How can you keep that immune system operating at optimal levels? Water helps carry oxygen throughout the body to organs, tissues, and blood cells. Since blood is composed of more than 90% water, water feeds those carrier blood cells.1 Keep your immunity up by drinking plenty of water to help stave off infection. Staying hydrated helps your body naturally eliminate toxins that may cause illness.2

Lymphocytes are white blood cells located in the lymph nodes in the immune system. Their job is to detect foreign antigens and produce the antibodies to destroy the waste material, which keeps the immune function intact. Drinking water works like a waterfall that helps the body’s digestive system work efficiently to process nutrients while ridding it of waste. In other words, drinking plenty of water helps boost the immune system by preventing the buildup of toxins in the kidneys and the liver.  Add Kenzen® Lactoferrin 2.0, Kenzen® Cleanse & Detox and Kenzen® Immunity for even more support!

All cells and organs need water to function properly. So, drink lots of water and this year, celebrate World Water Day in your own way. Don’t join the panicked crowds lining up to buy single-use bottled water. Simply make sure you and everyone you care about have at least one PiMag Waterfall® at home to filter your tap water. When on-the-go, make sure you have portable eco-friendly PiMag® Sport Bottles to filter out bacteria and other pathogens wherever you fill up—from water fountains and taps. Drink to your health and to reduced plastic waste for Planet Earth!

Most importantly, remember to change your water filters regularly to insure optimal performance from your Waterfall and Sport Bottle!

1https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/290814

2https://www.fishertitus.org/health/boost-your-immune-system

 

 

Probiotics Help You Eat Right

Probiotics are in the news now more than ever. From the Greek pro, meaning promoting, and biotics, meaning life, these life-promoting compounds are gaining in usage for good reason. Fermented foods have been shown to be probiotic-rich and may help balance the microbiome and support the immune system!

Our bodies naturally have good or helpful bacteria as well as bad or harmful bacteria. Maintaining the correct balance between these bacteria is necessary for optimal health. This is where probiotics come in. The wrong bacteria in the wrong place can cause problems but the right bacteria in the right place can have benefits. Probiotics are live microorganisms that may be able to help prevent and treat some illnesses.1

Age, genetics and diet may influence the composition of the bacteria in the body. When the bacteria in our bodies are not in balance, we are in “dysbiosis” and may experience certain illnesses linked to the digestive system. Probiotics help shift the balance in favor of good bacteria for healthy digestion. When the digestive tract is healthy, it filters out and eliminates things that can damage it, such as harmful bacteria, toxins, chemicals and other waste products.2

The other way that probiotics help overall health is how they affect the immune system. Since the immune system protects against germs, dysfunction can cause allergic reactions, autoimmune disorders and infections.3 Just like the digestive system, the immune system functions optimally when in balance, and probiotics have been shown to be of benefit.

As we age, changes take place in the gut. These include shifts in the composition of the intestinal microbiota where there is an increase in harmful bacteria and a decrease in good bacteria. The amount of time it takes for food to be processed and leave the digestive system increases as metabolism slows down with age. These changes may result in increased putrefaction in the colon and a greater susceptibility to disease and infection.4

Taking probiotics through natural foods and beverages such as yogurt, sauerkraut, kimchi and kombucha can easily be part of an Active Wellness diet.kim-deachul-NOAzwcMzZJA-unsplash Dietary and nutritional supplements such as Kenzen Lactoferrin® 2.0, Kenzen® Cleanse & Detox and Kenzen Vital Balance® contain prebiotics and/or probiotics—they not only help boost the immune and digestive systems, but they also promote healthy minds!  Incorporating them into a daily regimen truly is a no-brainer!

 

 

1, 2, 3 https://www.medicinenet.com/probiotics/article.htm

4 https://www.functionalfoodscenter.net/