Active Aging is Part of Active Wellness

The beauty industry has inundated the marketplace with a slew of “anti-aging” products. But “anti” means against and is also more than skin deep. A more positive approach to aging is with grace, discipline and common sense.

In the United States, baby boomers (those born between 1946 and 1964) are reshaping the population. The number of Americans aged 65 and older is projected to more than double from 46 million today to more than 98 million by 2060. That translates to nearly 24 percent of the population, a substantial increase from 15 percent today. 1

One of the key approaches to address the aging revolution is known as “active aging,” crystalized by the World Health Organization in 2002 by three pillars: participation, health, and security. The active aging policy has financial and economic aspects and affects both men and women as older adults are working longer. 2 As more people live to be centenarians, counteracting the onset of age-related degeneration becomes increasingly important.

Here are 10 head-to-toe tips for Active Wellness and active aging:

  1. Keep challenging your brain. Learn a new language, sport or anything out of your comfort zone. Do puzzles and crosswords.
  2. Play and listen to music. Branch out and try a different instrument if you already play one and listen to something new.
  3. Did you know leafy greens also deliver lutein and zeaxanthin, antioxidants that help the retina’s ability to break down harmful compounds from stressors such as sunlight, junk food and smoke? 3 Incorporate them into your daily diet together with carrots and other colorful fruits and vegetables.
  4. Use sunscreen on your face and all exposed areas of the body to protect from UV rays.
  5. Cut back on sugar. It contributes to wrinkles and dehydrated skin, as well as causing inflammation and pain. 4
  6. Hug people who welcome it. A University of North Caroline study found that those who got more frequent hugs had lower blood pressure and healthier resting heart rates compared to those who weren’t hugged often. Scientifically speaking, hugs trigger the release of feel-good hormones like oxytocin, while lowering stress hormones like cortisol. 5
  7. Muscles become less pliable after age 40, so performing a stretching routine daily helps the body remain flexible and more able to prevent injuries and even rebuild atrophied cells. 6 A supple spine is key to being limber, so include forward and backward bends.
  8. Sleep well. Not only does it help keep you alert, but it also affects your skin. One study showed that women who reported sleeping well were found to have fewer fine lines and more even pigmentation and skin elasticity compared with those who reported sleeping poorly.7
  9. Stand up straight. Aging often causes posture to suffer in the form of breathing problems, joint pain and walking difficulties. Research from the Mayo Clinic shows that proper body alignment can help prevent excess strain on joints, muscles and spine, and can also boost mood. 8
  10. Soak your feet regularly in warm water and Epsom salts. Sore feet lead to inflammation and pain. Comfortable feet help you stand tall, walk and exercise consistently. 

    Kenko Sleep Products, NikkenWellness nutritional supplements  and True Elements® Marine Organic Skin Care help take care of your Active Wellness needs every day.

     

    1 https://www.prb.org/aging-unitedstates-fact-sheet/

    2 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28368781

    3, 4, 5, 7 Taylor, Marygrace, Your Total Body Anti-Aging Plan, Spry Living, March 2017.

    6, 8 https://bestlifeonline.com/anti-aging-tips-for-men/

     

Are You Getting Enough Protein in Your Diet?

Eating an adequate amount of protein is critical for Active Wellness. Proteins are the main building blocks of the body—they’re used to form muscles, tendons, organs and skin. The body also uses protein to help repair tissues when recovering from injuries and intense exertion.

When it comes to the right amount of protein for you, many factors come into play. Although the DRI (dietary reference intake) calculated by most official nutrition organizations is based on body weight alone (.8 grams of protein per kilogram or .36 grams per pound)1, individual and gender requirements may vary widely. Your activity level, state of health, age, and body mass are all important considerations. Even the goals you want to achieve for your body matter, for example, if you are intent on increasing muscle mass.

The Institute of Medicine offers a way to break down protein needs based on activity level. Sedentary people would multiply their weight in pounds by .4 and active people by .6.2 Competitive athletes would increase protein intake by multiplying their weight in pounds by .75 and a light body-builder by .85.3

As the body ages, metabolism and the absorption of key nutrients slows down. This puts those 65 and older at risk of developing sarcopenia, which is the loss of muscle mass, strength and function. The essential amino acids in protein are key nutrients for muscle health, but older adults are less responsive to low doses of amino acid intake compared to younger people. A 2016 study from researchers at the departments of Food Science and Geriatrics at the University of Arkansas found that this lack of responsiveness can be overcome with higher levels of protein consumption. The study says that protein levels in the range of 30 to 35 percent of total caloric intake may prove beneficial.4

Another interesting variance was shown in an eight-week study with two groups of women who completed a strength training plan of two upper body training days and two lower body training days per week. One group ate a high protein diet and another, a lower protein diet. Results showed that the women on the higher protein diet gained significantly more lean body mass with an average of 4.6 pounds compared to an average of 1.5 pounds for the lower protein group. 5

The surprise finding in the study was that even though the women on the higher protein diet consumed about 423 more calories from protein than those on the lower protein diet, they did not gain body fat. Instead, they lost an average of 2.4 pounds of fat mass vs. 1.7 pounds fat mass lost by the women with lower protein intake. The women in the higher-protein group also gained just over two pounds but when body composition was measured, they gained more muscle and lost more fat than the lower protein group.6

According to Tara Dellolacono Thies, a registered dietitian, most women need between 50 and 60 grams of protein a day, more than the 46 grams calculated by the DRI. She explains that vegetarians can get plenty of protein without eating meat and dairy by consuming green peas, tofu, nuts, chickpeas, soybeans, broccoli, quinoa, chia seeds and cocoa powder.7

Even higher amounts of protein are recommended by Nancy Rodriguez, a registered dietitian and professor of nutritional science at the University of Connecticut. She attended a “Protein Summit” with 60 nutrition scientists and published a paper in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition where she noted that “taking in up to twice the RDA of protein is a safe and good range to aim for. The potential benefits of higher protein intake, these researchers argue, include preserving muscle strength despite aging and maintaining a lean, fat-burning physique. Some studies described in the summit reports suggest that protein is more effective if you space it out over the day’s meals and snacks, rather than loading up at dinner.” 8

As with any health and nutrition change, it is important to talk to your doctor about your protein needs and intake as you age. Additionally, protein should be paired with resistance exercise to help prevent muscle loss, medical experts say.9

Having a hard time meeting your daily protein requirements? Kenzen Vital Balance® contains 20 grams of vegan protein per serving. It’s certified kosher and organic and naturally sweetened with monk fruit.

1 https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/how-much-protein-per-day

2, 3, 7 https://www.health.com/health/article/0,,20410520,00.html

4, 9 https://www.aarp.org/health/healthy-living/info-2018/protein-needs-fd.html

5, 6 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29405780

8 https://academic.oup.com/ajcn/article/101/6/1317S/4564491

Are You at Risk for Type 2 Diabetes?

According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), diabetes affects about 30.3 million Americans or about 9.4% of the U.S. population, and nearly one in four living with diabetes don’t know they have it.1 Additional statistics show that another 84 million Americans have prediabetes, a condition in which blood glucose levels are higher than normal, but not high enough to be diagnosed as diabetes.2 Since nine out of 10 adults with prediabetes don’t know they have it,3 they may not take precautions.

How do you know if you’re at risk? Just as with most diseases, if you have a family history of diabetes, you have a greater chance of developing type 2 diabetes. Other risk factors include being older than 45, being overweight or leading a sedentary lifestyle.4

Since diabetes can cause other health problems, such as heart disease, stroke, impaired sight and foot issues, taking adequate preventative measures is prudent. Delaying diabetes by even a few years may benefit your health.5 The NIDDK even has an annual Diabetes Alert Day to inform the public how diabetes can be prevented or delayed—tomorrow, March 26, 2019 is this year’s special day.

According to the Diabetes Prevention Research Group, there are some things you can do to lower your risk, which coincide with practicing Active Wellness:

  • If you are overweight, losing weight and keeping it off may help prevent or delay diabetes. The rule-of-thumb is to lose 5 to 7 percent of your starting weight. For example, if you weigh 200 pounds, your goal would be to lose about 10 to 14 pounds. About 12% of diabetics are normal weight or thin—their insulin resistance may be caused by genetic factors, fat around their organs (known as visceral fat) or high cortisol levels resulting from stress.6
  • Exercise regularly. Get at least 30 minutes of physical activity five days a week. If you have not been active, talk with your health care professional about which activities are best. Start slowly to build up to your goal. For example, if you can only walk for five minutes at a time, you can start by taking mini-walks several times a day.
  • Eat healthy foods most of the time.Choose foods that are nutrient-dense and have a low glycemic load.7 You don’t have to memorize a list of foods if you stick largely to a Mediterranean diet with lots of green vegetables, beans, nuts and seeds, and low-sugar fruits like berries, kiwi, oranges, and melon. Eating in a healthy way not only helps heavier diabetics lose weight, but it also helps normal-weight diabetics control their blood sugar levels.
  • Drink water instead of sweetened beverages. Many people eat well but are not aware that drinking so-called healthy juices or energy boosters often results in unnecessary intakes of sugar.
  • Stay away from refined and processed foods as much as possible. Replace “white” foods such as rice, pasta, bread and cereals with whole grains that are high in fiber. The worst foods are those with added sugar, fried foods, foods with trans fat and processed meats. 8

Whether you need help maintaining or losing weight, Kenzen Vital Balance® Meal Replacement Mix contains no added sugar, has MCTs for your brain and organic pea protein that even vegans can enjoy. Take advantage of the current promotion where you receive three Chocolate KVB for the price of two.

To help break the coffee and tea with sugar and cream habit, Kenzen Ten4® Energy Drink Mix is the perfect pick-me-up. It’s made with organic matcha green tea and New Zealand kiwi, and naturally sweetened with stevia extract and organic brown rice solids.

Spring Packs with 20% discount are available through the end of this month!

1, 2, 3 https://www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/communication-programs/ndep/partner-community-organization-information/diabetes-alert-day

4, 5 https://www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/diabetes/overview/preventing-type-2-diabetes

6 https://www.geisinger.org/health-and-wellness/wellness-articles/2018/03/05/21/59/yes-thin-people-can-get-type-2-diabetes

7 https://foodrevolution.org/blog/how-to-eat-to-prevent-diabetes/

8 https://www.helpguide.org/articles/diets/the-diabetes-diet.htm/

Start Active Wellness Early in Life for Heart’s Sake

Many of the conditions and behaviors that put people at risk for heart disease are appearing at younger ages. Choosing to be sedentary during downtime and eating unhealthy fast food are common pitfalls.

Children who are overweight or have a family history of heart disease or of high cholesterol, high blood pressure and type 1 or type 2 diabetes run the highest risk of having heart issues.1 Genetic predisposition aside, anyone can develop heart disease, so as parents, it’s our responsibility to role model an Active Wellness lifestyle. Telling a child or teenager to eat vegetables and exercise regularly is ineffective if we personally don’t follow through with those behaviors.

By starting heart-healthy habits from childhood, kids can reduce the chance they will ever need to worry about cardiovascular disease. In terms of exercise, the American Heart Association recommends that children:

  • Three to five years old should be physically active and have plenty of opportunities to move throughout the day.2
  • Six to 17 years old should get at least 60 minutes per day of moderate- to vigorous-intensity physical activity, mostly aerobic.3
  • Include vigorous-intensity activity on at least three days per week.4
  • Include muscle- and bone-strengthening (weight-bearing) activities on at least three days per week.5

Here are 10 tips for helping children develop heart-healthy habits:

  • Personally exercise more and find ways to be active as a family. Only one out of five adults meets the physical activity guidelines of getting 150 minutes a week of moderate-intensity activity..6
  • Physical activity should be fun for children and adolescents. Encourage kids to try new activities in order to discover the ones they like and will pursue into adulthood. You may have a budding gymnast or yogini in the family!
  • In general, reduce time in front of the TV. Look into video games that incorporate movement, such as dance, indoor cycling or virtual sports (golf, tennis, etc.).
  • Give your kids active toys and games. Try bikes, skateboards, roller skates, scooters, jump ropes, balls and trampolines.
  • Take advantage of community facilities near you: pools, recreation centers, bike paths and parks.
  • Prepare simple meals together. Even children can help wash, chop and peel vegetables to assemble a salad. And because they helped make it, they’re more likely to eat it.
  • Experiment with spices to help cut down on salt. High sodium diets are often the cause of high blood pressure. Since we are creatures of habit, children who eat natural foods cooked with very little salt have fewer salt cravings as they grow up. Don’t assume children won’t eat beneficial flavor enhancers such as garlic, onions, mustard and vinegar.
  • Serve fruit for dessert. There’s plenty of natural sugar in fruit. Many Asian and Mediterranean diets rely on fruit for dessert. Children who grow up without eating sugary desserts tend to have this good habit carry over into adulthood.
  • Never smoke in front of your children. More than 37 million U.S. adults are current smokers, and thousands of young people start smoking each day. If you are a smoker, quitting will send a big message to your children never to start. Smoking damages the blood vessels and can cause heart disease.7
  • Do not serve sodas. Kenzen Super Ciaga® (link to shopping cart) is a superior soda replacement when added to seltzer or PiMag® water.

Even if you didn’t inherit heart-healthy habits, start now. Nikken has nutritional supplements that may help you with Active Wellness for the rest of your life. Kenzen® Omega Green + DHA (link to shopping cart) helps provide vegan omega 3, 6 and 9 fatty acids while Kenzen® Bergisterol  helps support cardiovascular health and cholesterol levels within the normal range.

* 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, 5, 7 https://www.cdc.gov/features/heartmonth/index.html

2, 3, 4. 6 https://www.heart.org/en/healthy-living/fitness/fitness-basics/aha-recs-for-physical-activity-in-adults

Do You Eat Plant-Based Protein to Help Sustain Planet Earth?

How many of you eat veggie burgers? Have you discovered the versatility of tofu? Are you trying to eat a “plantcentric” diet? Are you aware of your carbon footprint?

Food’s carbon footprint, or foodprint, is the greenhouse gas emissions produced by growing, rearing, farming, processing, transporting, storing, cooking and disposing of the food you eat. Transport, housing and food have the three largest carbon footprints. Food produces about eight tons of emissions per households or about 17% of the total. Worldwide, new reports suggest that livestock agriculture produces around half of all man-made emissions.1

Meat, cheese and eggs have the highest carbon footprint. Fruit, vegetables, beans and nuts have much lower carbon footprints. If you move towards a mainly vegetarian diet, you can have a large impact on your personal carbon footprint.2 It can help reduce pollution, preserve the environment and slow global warming. Many of these changes may also save you money, improve your health and even keep you fit!

Consumer knowledge about carbon footprints, sustainable products and maintaining an Active Wellness lifestyle has contributed to the explosive growth of the market for plant-based protein. With carbohydrates and fats, there is ongoing debate about their pros and cons. With protein, the general perception is that not only is it necessary for maintaining health but it can also improve overall well-being. This generally held belief adds to the growing popularity of plant-based proteins.

From children to seniors, the entire range of ages is joining body builders in recognizing the importance of eating enough protein but many do not want to eat meat. According to “The Protein Report: Meat Alternatives” that was published in January 2017, roughly 66 percent of U.S. consumers believe meat alternatives are healthier than meat.3 And it’s the younger generation that is leading the way: according to the February 2016 report entitled “Food Formulation and Ingredient Trends: Plant Proteins” from Packaged Facts, millennials are the top age group cutting down on meat consumption, primarily due to social consciousness about health, the environment and animal welfare.4

Plant-based proteins find their way into beverages as well as food in the form of snacks, nutritional supplements and meat replacements. Protein powders that used to be consumed largely by athletes have now made their way into the mainstream diet. Pea protein is found in 80% of plant protein powders because it has been found to deliver high marks both in taste and nutrition. 5

Since 2013, Kenzen® Vital Balance Meal Replacement Mix has been a trendsetter with its formula of high-protein, plant-based organic pea powder. Easily made into a shake or smoothie when combined with PiMag® water, plant-based milk or dairy milk, KVB in more recent years has taken quality to an even higher level by producing an improved version sweetened with zero-calorie monkfruit, KVB also helps planet Earth by using organic ingredients. Organic farming methods have a much lower impact on the environment than conventional methods, because it requires natural methods for soil fertilization, weed prevention and pest control. Organic ingredients cannot be genetically-modified or irradiated, processes which are not proven to be safe for the food chain.

From now through March 31,2019, take advantage of our special on chocolate Kenzen Vital Balance® at 33% discount—Get 3 for the price of 2! Chocolate KVB is formulated and manufactured in the USA.

 

 

1, 2  http://www.greeneatz.com/foods-carbon-footprint.html

3, 4, 5 https://www.naturalproductsinsider.com/functional-foodsbeverages/plant-based-protein-market-deep-dive

New Year Healthier You

As we begin 2019, making a commitment to improve overall health is crucial to an Active Wellness lifestyle. For each of us, that commitment is personal; however, the rule of thumb is to eat healthy foods and move our bodies more often. Resolutions need to be do-able and realistic in order for us to stick them. Here are 10 practical ways to help make 2019 a healthier year.

  1. Eat more citrus. An article in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition1 found that people who eat foods high in vitamin C are more successful at staving off the effects of premature aging of the skin.
  2. Eat more vegetables. They contain lots of fiber, vitamins and minerals and low in calories. They’re the key to maintaining health and a comfortable weight.
  3. Cut down on sugar intake and don’t use artificial sweeteners.
  4. Expand your palate. Just because something sounds distasteful doesn’t mean it actually is. Things like kale, bitter melon and pomegranate may be acquired tastes but if you like them, you’re adding to your arsenal of healthy foods—all of which helps in weight management.
  5. Learn to cook. It is not only healthier because you can choose exactly which ingredients to use but also helps save money. One Reddit user cut his food budget from $900 to $150 a month by cooking more and ordering food delivery less.2
  6. Vow to exercise daily, as consistency is key. To challenge yourself, each week increase the intensity of whatever you choose to do a little bit.
  7. Spend less screen time (cell phones, tablets, TV, etc.) and more time making actual contact with living beings. For example, have tea time with friends, take an exercise class, walk the dog, etc.
  8. Wear shoes that are supportive and comfortable. When feet are uncomfortable, the whole body suffers. Feet carry us where we need to go, so be kind to them and we have a better chance that they’ll work throughout our lives.
  9. Be helpful. Whether we volunteer our time or donate to worthy causes, helping others is a win-win. We end up with a better self-image, which in turn creates an overall sense of well-being.
  10. Take the stairs wherever you can. That doesn’t mean climbing a high-rise, but three or four stories is a good way to add to a short walk in a building. During inclement weather, consciously using the stairs is a great way to do a mini-workout.

To help you achieve your healthy eating resolution, we’re offering a special on chocolate Kenzen Vital Balance® from Monday, January 7 through Sunday, March 31, 2019: 33% discount—Get 3 for the price of 2! (Excludes Autoship orders.)

1 https://www.goodhousekeeping.com/health/wellness/advice/g985/achievable-new-year-resolutions/?slide=29

2 https://www.marketwatch.com/story/4-new-years-resolutions-that-will-save-you-money-in-2019-2019-01-01

Basic Health Trends for 2019

Some notable health trends for 2019 are carried over from 2018 as more people take on the Active Wellness lifestyle. Here’s a look at what’s coming up for 2019 and amazingly, how Nikken products continue to be trendsetters throughout the years.

  • Medicinal mushrooms and herbs are finding their way into everyday food and drinks. Adaptogenic herbs can now be found in coffee bars and tea shops.1

Adaptogens are found in Kenzen® Cleanse & Detox, Kenzen® Clarity, Kenzen Lactoferrin™ 2.0 and Kenzen® Immunity, which is formulated with 14 different species of mushrooms!

  • More gadgets are popping up to help us recover from strenuous activities. According to CEO Martin Tobias of Upgrade Labs, “Modern recovery technologies use stronger signals like vibration, infrared light, targeted compression, intense cold, intense heat, powerful detoxification, and advanced nutrition to speed recovery and development.”2

Virtually every Nikken nutritional supplement targets not only health maintenance but helps the body recover from daily stresses. In addition, the KenkoTouch®, the MagCreator, CM Complex Cream and the KenkoGround™ specifically help overcome muscle fatigue.

  • Last year, sales of plant-based meat grew to 23% and is forecast to continue expanding in 2019. Plant-based dairy was 13% of all milk sales in 2018 and also expected to grow in 2019.
  • Plant–based fish and seafood, which reported sales increase of 72% from 2017 to 2018, is predicted to really expand in a big way.5 New companies are entering the market as it heats up. Managing Partner T.K. Pillan of PowerPlant Ventures says, “If awareness of the negative impacts of ocean fishing and contaminants spread quickly, plant-based fish could follow the plant-based meat market in its recent accelerated growth.” 3

Adds Eric Schnell, co-founder of Good Catch, a company that focuses on plant-based fish for vegans and those with fish allergies, “There are 300 marine animals that are fished around the world for consumption and only 30 land animals, so the opportunity to disrupt the marine category is 10 times bigger than chicken, beef and pork.”4

A prime example of using renewable plant sources rather than depleting marine supplies is Kenzen® Omega Green + DHA with omegas 3, 6 and 9 derived from flaxseed oil, red algae and cranberry seed oil.

  • As awareness of the importance of sleep for overall health grows, people are tracking their sleep patterns to find ways to improve the quality of their resting hours. According to virtually every sleep expert, it’s important to maintain a consistent sleep-wake schedule. That translates to waking up and going to bed at the same time, as much as possible, and not deviating too much on weekends or days off from work. At Nikken, we believe the Kenko Sleep System can help poor sleepers achieve their best rest!
  • Digestive health is set to become a significant trend in 2019. The Kroger Company in Cincinnati put out information stating that “medical studies show that a healthy gut is the foundation of overall wellness, and more than ever before, consumers are seeking foods that support self-care and healthy immune systems.” 5

Kenzen Lactoferrin™ 2.0 and Kenzen® Digestion Complex 4-20 support optimal digestion*, nutrient absorption*, the proliferation of good gut bacteria* and overall health.

  • As we continue to live in a world where instant gratification is so desired, fast food is not going away. The good news is that there is a growing trend toward healthy eating in the form of meal replacement shakes, salads to go and nutrient-dense take-out food. According to Mintel, a market research firm that forecasts data for thousands of consumer goods markets worldwide, “On-the-go consumers are shopping for grab and go breakfasts, quick snacks and dinner time solutions. Consumers are expecting high-quality food and beverage options that fit into their fast-paced, time-crunched lifestyles without having to sacrifice health goals or flavor.”6

Look no further than Kenzen Vital Balance® Meal Replacement Mix, which can be a meal or a snack, depending on your needs. It’s convenient and versatile, suitable for vegans and contains MCTs for your brain! It is an instant meal that supports the GI tract with an enzyme blend combined with probiotics.

*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.prnewswire.com/news-releases/2019-health-trends-forecast-300759858.html

2, 3, 4, https://www.mindbodygreen.com/articles/wellness-trends-2019

5 https://www.foodbusinessnews.net/articles/12959-digestive-health-a-top-trend-heading-into-2019

6 https://www.foodnavigator-usa.com/Article/2018/11/30/Mintel-s-top-food-trends-for-2019-From-healthy-aging-to-convenient-food-hacks#