More and more we are hearing about food allergies and food sensitivities. Because they are such common conditions, it is important to understand the difference between the two and what the health issues are which surround them.
The difference between food sensitivities and food allergies
Though on the surface food sensitivities and food allergies may seem like the same thing (they can even cause some of the same symptoms), they are, in fact, two different conditions.
The least common of the two is a food allergy. A food allergy will bring about a response from the immune system that can impact several different parts of your body. Food allergies can be life-threatening. Food sensitivity or food intolerance symptoms are less serious but are more common, being typically confined to the digestive tract.
The gut connection
When you have a food allergy, your body essentially treats the food as something that is threatening to your body and therefore mounts an attack against it. The reason for the attack is that particles of that food and other molecules have traveled from the intestines into the bloodstream; but they are not supposed to be there.
How did they get there? Through what is known as a leaky gut. A normal, healthy intestine has walls that are tight, allowing only small molecules such as vitamins, simple sugars and amino acids to pass through it. But when the gut becomes overly permeable, larger molecules, toxins, bacteria and bits of undigested waste pass through into the blood stream. These molecules are not supposed to be in the bloodstream at all.
The result is that this triggers a response in the body, and the large molecules are treated as foreigners, triggering an immune reaction leading to digestion problems, autoimmune diseases and additional food allergies. If your body begins producing antibodies to certain foods and food groups, then those foods will be treated as pathogenic by your body.
What are the causes and symptoms of leaky gut?
There are many causes of leaky gut. These include:
The solutionThe good news is that if you think you have leaky gut, there are several action steps you can take to begin healing. The key is to remove anything that may be contributing to your condition, while at the same time feed your body what it needs to begin repairing the damage.
Try the following suggestions to start on the road to healing and health:
Fusion Foodie Friday - Fig, Goat Cheese and Bacon Appetizer
Here's a great recipe to bring to your next holiday party. Fresh fruit, nitrate-free bacon crumbles and high-quality goat cheese crumbles make a tasty appetizer that is gluten-free and caveman-friendly!
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Holiday Survival Guide: How to Get Through the Holidays With No Regrets
Let’s face it: it is hard to stick to a healthy eating and exercise plan during the holidays. Everywhere we turn there are tempting foods and drinks—from treats at office parties to our own traditional family favorites. When you add in a busy schedule filled with shopping and get-togethers that make it tough to squeeze in exercise, you have a recipe for disaster as far as our scales are concerned.
The good news is that you really can get through the holidays without gaining weight. It will take some effort, but you will thank yourself a thousand times when January 1st rolls around and you have no regrets!
Your Goal: MaintenanceIn order to greet the New Year without tipping the scale, it is wise to try to maintain your weight during the next few weeks instead of trying to lose. Remember: you want to enjoy the holidays, not be miserable from deprivation. This means that you will allow yourself occasional treats and splurges and keep the scale where it is rather than trying to actually decrease your weight.
There are several ways to accomplish this:
You can survive the holidays with no added weight gain. Remember these tips and keep a vision of what you want to feel like on January 1 in mind. It’s going to be a great holiday season!
Fusion Foodie Friday - Chickpea Slaw
If you love coleslaw, then this salad recipe will quickly become your new favorite. While most coleslaw recipes contain a heavy, creamy dressing this one is made with guilt-free Greek yogurt. We’ve also added in some chickpeas for the boost of protein and fiber.
Make an effort to lighten up more of your favorite recipes by employing techniques like swapping out heavy cream for Greek yogurt or swapping refined sugar for coconut palm sugar or stevia. It’s small dietary changes like that over the long haul that will ultimately make the biggest impact on your health and fitness. Enjoy!
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Nutritional Analysis: One serving equals: 214 calories, 3g fat, 107mg sodium, 29g carbohydrate, 10g fiber, and 12g protein
I hope that you get a chance to give this recipe a try this week. Remember that I’m only a call or email away to assist you in all things fitness. And if you are not yet one of my prized clients then call or email me now to set up your first workout – I’d love to help you achieve your best body ever!
Upgrade Your Warm-up
You might be tempted to skip the warm up when you work out. After all, you only have so much time to exercise—“Let’s just get on with it already! I’m in a hurry!”
But warming up is a critical component of your fitness routine, and skipping it could have unpleasant and even dangerous results—such as muscle strain, muscle injury and pain.
Oh yeah, and a proper warm-up will actually IMPROVE your workout performance!
The Warm-up: Basics
A warm up is a short workout period at the beginning of your exercise session. It is generally low intensity and prepares your body for the upcoming exertion.
The purpose of a traditional warm up is to slightly increase your heart rate. This raises your core body temperature and increases the blood flow to your muscles. Cold muscles and other connective tissues do not stretch very easily. A warm up session literally warms them up and relaxes them, making them more supple and ready to work.
Without a warm up, you will be more susceptible to sprained muscles, cramps and injury. Ultimately, these effects could keep you from exercising for an extended period of time as you recover, which is not conducive to the healthy lifestyle you desire.
It takes about three minutes for your body to realize that it needs to move more blood to your muscles, so the ideal warm up time is between five and ten minutes.
There is no set prescription for what your warm up should consist of. You can choose a set of preparatory exercises (such as squats, lunges, toe touches, etc.,) or you can do a light intensity version of your upcoming workout (a brisk walk to prepare for a run, for example, or lifting light weights before increasing the load).
The Warm-Up: Advanced Strategy
Now with all that being said about a “basic” warm-up, let me share with you how I personally prepare myself, as well as every one of my personal training boot camp clients.For long-term health and fitness combined with your weight loss training efforts it’s imperative to understand that a proper warm-up is about more than just “warming up the body.” It’s a about preparing the body for an all-out training assault that’s going to boost your metabolism through the roof.
Therefore, we look at the warm-up as a Preparation Phase for the workout to come. Through research and practical experience we’ve determined that best results are typically seen when an exercise prep routine incorporates 3 key components:
Tissue QualityAlmost all chronic joint pain or overuse injuries are caused by tightness and restrictions in the muscles above and below the joint in question.In other words, it’s not about PAIN SITE… it’s about PAIN SOURCE!
Knee pain is often caused by restrictions in the tissue of your calves and front/inner/outer thighs. Back pain is often caused by restrictions in your glutes and hamstrings. Shoulder pain is often caused by restrictions in your thoracic spine (T-Spine), chest and lats.
Tissue quality describes the general health of your muscles and the interconnected web of fascia that surrounds them all. Over time, we develop scar tissue, adhesions, knots and trigger points due to high-intensity training, overuse, and/or extended periods of sitting.
The best way to address this is to self-massage sore, tight, and restricted muscle groups of the body to regenerate tissue both pre and post-workout to promote injury reduction and allow for a smoother, more productive workout.
In addition, self-massage before stretching allows for a better, more complete stretch by smoothing out the knots. You should always precede flexibility work with tissue quality for best results.
Massage is one of those counter-intuitive things whereby you are actually actively searching for pain. In fact, it’s the only time to ever do so when it comes to proper training.
The best analogy I can give you is this:
If it hurts that much when you put pressure on your muscles, just imagine how bad your joints must feel!
Corrective ExerciseWe all have unique “issues” with our body mechanics and functional movement capabilities. For some it’s a lack of flexibility, while others there may be a balance or mobility issue. Perhaps there’s an asymmetry – one side is significantly “stronger” than the other leading to muscular imbalances, postural distortions and overcompensation injuries. You can find out your individual corrective needs by going through a movement screen such as the Functional Movement Screen (FMS).
The FMS is a ranking and grading system that documents movement patterns that are key to normal function. By screening these patterns, the FMS readily identifies functional limitations and asymmetries. These are issues that can reduce the effects of functional training and physical conditioning and distort body awareness.
The FMS generates the Functional Movement Screen Score, which is used to target problems and track progress. This scoring system is directly linked to the most beneficial corrective exercises to restore mechanically sound movement patterns.
Exercise professionals monitor the FMS score to track progress and to identify those exercises that will be most effective to restore proper movement and build strength in each individual.
So, in a nutshell, the FMS is designed to
Mobility & ActivationMore than just a typical warm-up, a mobility and activation circuit truly prepares your body for a maximum performance workout.
Mobility describes the ability of a joint, or a series of joints, to move through an ideal range of motion. Though mobility relies on flexibility, it requires an additional strength, stability, and neuromuscular control component to allow for proper movement. Activation is often paired with mobility because many mobility exercises activate key, and often dormant, pillar stabilizers in your hips, core and shoulders.
More Than Just a Warm-Up…
So, as you can see, a warm-up is much more than just a warm-up when you’re training smarter for long-term health, fitness and fat loss goals. Think twice before you skip the “warm-up” in your next workout…
Fusion Foodie Friday - Toasted Lemon Quinoa Cabbage Salad
Here’s a unique new salad recipe to try, that’s far from ordinary. With cabbage, green olives, chickpeas, quinoa and a lemony dressing, this salad really satisfies! It’s fantastic as a meal all on its own, or to be served with a larger meal.
There are many elements of this salad that stand out, most particularly the green olives. With a creamy feel and smooth taste, these olives are a perfect pair with the lemony dressing. Don’t be surprised if you find yourself making this salad time and time again – and sharing with your friends and family. Enjoy!
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