Kinection Holistic Health

Change Your Mind. Change Your Body.

immune system

Following The Herd

Amberleigh CarterComment

Did you know that U.S. cattle farmers used to feed cows coconut oil to get them fat quickly, but it had the direct opposite effect? The cows became extremely lean, toned, and healthy. This is because coconut oil actually burns fat as fuel, instead of storing it for later.

Coconut oil also helps to regulate blood sugar, improve skin complexion, & boost the immune system, as this oil contains many anti-viral & anti-microbial properties. Who knew that eating fat can get you thin?

(Side Note: Today, cattle are given corn/vegetable oils to get them fat and weak so that their meat is much more tender and palatable for consumers. Yet these are the very oils that we are told are "heart healthy" in America, and we are fatter and weaker than ever....just some food for thought.)

"Thank You"- Your Sinuses

Amberleigh CarterComment

For all of you suffering with allergies this time of year, have some warm tea with some lemon juice, a teaspoon of coconut oil, and a dash of cayenne or red pepper (a little goes a long way). This concoction is a natural anti-inflammatory, anti-viral, and anti-bacterial boost to help out the immune system.

As well, rub some coconut oil and red pepper on the bottoms of your feet, throw on old socks, and get in bed. In the morning, your sinus cavities should thank you! As always, these ingredients should be organic.

Enjoy!

Tip of the Day: Spring Into Health

Amberleigh CarterComment

Spring allergies got you down?

Try drinking Yogi Bedtime tea with organic lemon juice, 1/4 teaspoon each of coconut oil and honey, and add a dash of cayenne pepper.

This concoction is a natural anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, and anti-viral immune booster! Feel better!

Photo Credit: Heather Grimm

PMS is not a birth control deficiency. Period.

Amberleigh CarterComment

I don’t usually partake in reading “health” magazines, since the information in there is typically laughable, but I came across the cover of one particular magazine that caught my eye with what was spelled out on the cover:

“BURN FAT ALL DAY: Surprising ways to boost your metabolism”. 

Needless to say, it spiked my interest as to what they could possibly say…nothing of which I am an advocate, I was assured in my head.  Feeling as if I was spying on my opponent, I opened up “Women’s Health”, their September 2014 issue.

I started aimlessly flipping from back to front and came across something much more intriguing than burning fat.  The article was entitled, “Hellish Period?  Not Anymore”, which displayed women’s “mysterious, wackier woes”, or their personal experiences surrounding their menstrual cycle:

“My knees ache like I’m developing arthritis.”-Reanna L.;

“I get a severe throat infection every month!”-Ainey J.;

“I always crave steak, even though I’ve been a vegetarian for two years.”-Monica R.;

“Hot flashes and heart palpitations.”-Pamela M.;

“I get really cold—for two weeks I just freeze.”-Marie L.;

“My toes cramp up every time.”-Heather B.;

“I get random bruises!”-Christine L.;

“I feel as if I could sleep for a week.”-Trisha L.;

“I have insatiable cravings. I want to eat everything in sight.”-Melissa B.;

and on goes the list. 

I’m sure if you are a female reading this, you may be able to relate. 

The thoughts running through my head?  It sounds like these women have symptoms of fibromyalgia, hypothyroidism, and anemia, but what’s screaming out to me even more is the fact that these women are malnourished and hypo-metabolic (have a slow and/or damaged metabolism).

My next thought flashing in my head: So what is this pop-culture, health bible going to suggest? 

Here is one genius solution “Women’s Health” provides women everywhere:

          “CAN YOU OUTTHINK PMS? Imagine if some symptoms were all in your head.” 

Oh. No. They. DIDN’T.  I was enraged.  It was an instant reminder of why I do not read mainstream magazines.  Their suggestions were even worse than I had imagined.

They continued to explain: “Controversial new research has found that there’s little scientific evidence behind some PMS symptoms.  Rather, America’s ‘period hysteria’ culture could be to blame, making women anticipate a meltdown in the days before their flow begins.  ‘The idea that hormonal fluctuations lead to negative moods for all women is a socially constructed one,’ says Gillian Einstein, Ph.D., a neuroscientist at the University of Toronto.  In other words, a self-fulfilling prophecy.”

If I didn’t have PMS symptoms before, I did at this moment.  Not knowing how to cope with my murderous thoughts, I uncontrollably busted out with hysteric laughter, and then the depression set in….what has our society come to?  All of the women reading this nonsense are going to be told once again by our culture that we are crazy. 

Hormonal fluctuations leading to mood swings for women is merely a socially constructed idea?  How amazing would it be for it to simply be a figment of our imaginations?  That would be the easy way out, and PMS would be magically eradicated if women could just mentally accept the fact that what we think and how we feel isn’t real.  

I felt the shame of women all over the country reading this….and then I realized: I do not need a research study or an “expert” with the last name Einstein to tell me whether or not my body’s experiences are real according to scientific evidence.  What IS real, however, is that PMS is not solely an American thing known as, ‘period hysteria’.  It’s the female body’s natural reaction to being nutrient and mineral-deficient, and it can happen to women from all parts of the world.  

Needless to say, like an onlooker at the scene of an accident, I couldn’t look away.  I was captivated by the ignorance of the entire article.  The nonsense continued....

Problem: “The bloating is horrible; it’s like this massive pressure.”-Laura H.

“Women’s Health” Explanation: “Some 73 percent of women reported unpleasant gut symptoms before and during their periods.  Surprisingly, no one knows exactly what triggers this monthly spike in water retention, but it’s known that salt and alcohol can make it worse….”    

FACT: Someone who understands physiology knows what triggers this monthly spike in water retention.  Just because you may not understand it, does not mean that NO ONE understands this “phenomenon”. 

Here’s what the article SHOULD have said, from a PHYSIOLOGICAL standpoint:

Dear women,

The body can bloat when you are not fueling your body efficiently with quality food.  Since your body will find some way to compensate and get the energy it needs to survive if you are not feeding it properly, it can cause a bloating reaction, and here’s one reason why.  Typically, if your body does not have food coming in, it will ask your liver to release stored sugar (glycogen) in order to keep up with your energy demands throughout the day.  Your energy demands go up during this time of the month when your body is preparing to shed tissue. Therefore, you should be eating and resting more to cope with this stress.  If you're not eating and resting adequately, your body will react.

With a less than optimal amount of food intake, the liver is essentially asked to go into survival mode, so your body starts eating itself (causing muscle tissue loss and fat tissue gain).  This stresses the body, making it difficult to produce energy the proper way.  The most efficient way for the body to produce energy is if the body is fed well.  Carbon Dioxide (CO2, like what’s in carbonated drinks) is supposed to be produced, along with water, and ATP (energy).  If the body does not have fuel because of food deprivation, lactic acid is produced instead of carbon dioxide, and the oxygen from water molecules in the body are soaked up by your tissues to get the oxygen that it needs.  This is edema, commonly known as bloating and swelling.  If there is a lack of oxygen, your cells will swell with water in order to breathe.   

Boom.  Yes, hormones play a role in this, but for brevity purposes, we'll stick with the basics.

The article carried on:

Problem: “I have cramps that feel like I’m giving birth to the spawn of Satan.”-Millarie K.

“Women’s Health” Solution: “There’s a reason it feels like you’re in labor—your uterine muscles are contracting….Using a heating pad for 10 to 15 minutes can help dilute uterine blood vessels….If OTC anti-inflammatory painkillers aren’t helping and you’ve exhausted all natural options—including yoga and acupuncture—see an ob-gyn….The first line of treatment is typically the Pill or another hormonal contraceptive, which can reduce your overall amount of uterine tissue.”

FACT: A heating pad, Advil, yoga sessions, and some therapeutic needles are not what I would call anyone having “exhausted all natural options”.  Furthermore, the Pill or another hormonal contraceptive is setting your body up for catastrophe and is a less-than-stellar suggestion.  If you have painful menstrual cramps, it’s not because you have a birth control pill deficiency.  You have a compromised immune system and a mineral and nutrient deficiency from a lack of eating properly.  Skipping meals and eating processed 100 calorie packs, salads, veggie burgers, and slim fast does not equate to adequate nutrition.  Your body is in desperate need of magnesium to alleviate painful cramps, but it also needs other nutrients and minerals for magnesium to work its magic.

More “Women’s Health” Solutions:  “While you’re at it, stick with snacks that include some calcium; for unknown reasons, the mineral can reduce a handful of PMS symptoms.”-Toby Smithson, R.D.N., of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. 

Ummmm, you’re a Registered Dietitian, a person who is supposed to be an expert in understanding the fundamentals of how food chemistry works inside the human body, and you have no idea how calcium can help alleviate symptoms of PMS??  The intelligence level of the "experts" we are supposed to trust today is quickly diminishing.  This concept is the equivalent of nutrition 101.

FACT: Calcium happens to be the most abundant and important mineral in the human body.  99% of the calcium in our bodies resides in our bones, and the rest is in other tissues and the blood.  The 1% that is found in the blood is critical for life. When a diet is low in calcium and/or magnesium, the body’s soft tissues and organs steal the calcium that it needs from the bones.  This leads to osteoporosis and the calcification (hardening) of organs and soft tissues, like arteries. 

The excess of calcium in the cell tissue causes swelling (bloating), alkalinity (lower immune system), and the cells convert glycogen (sugar) into lactic acid (slowing down the metabolism, causing you to feel tired and sluggish).  It also causes a loss in potassium and magnesium, two vital minerals in helping alleviate cramps and balancing hormones and electrolyte levels.  This can, furthermore, lead to headaches, acne, changes in appetite, hormonal and libido swings, and other PMS problems.  Also, in order to maximize the absorption of calcium and the body’s ability to use calcium efficiently, the following are needed:

            -Adequate Vitamin A, C, and D

            -Adequate magnesium

-Adequate protein and fat consumption [tip: listen to your food cravings, like steak (grass-fed and organic is preferable) and chocolate (organic and dark—Enjoy Life brand—is optimal)]

            -Adequate HCl (stomach acid)

So no, it’s not in your head.  It’s physiology.  Which also happens to be backed by research.

The truth? 

These vitamins and minerals that you’re lacking should be coming from your food. 

That’s right. 

Ladies:  You have to eat and eat well—dump the processed garbage and the hormone pills.  They aren’t helping. 

Periods are not supposed to be painful.  Actually, they are supposed to be pretty seamless.  You shouldn’t have to shudder at the thought of your cycle, feeling like it’s biblical karmic backlash for tempting Adam in the Garden of Eden. 

You are a goddess; it’s time to start eating like one. 

For more information on how to combat PMS, feel free to contact me.

The Right Kind of Honey

Amberleigh CarterComment

There is a big difference between conventional honey and raw honey.  

Raw honey is best to buy locally (if possible) because the local bee pollen contained in the honey actually boosts your immune system and protects you against particular allergens specific to your local environment. 

Make sure to check your ingredients label because you could just be consuming GMO, high fructose corn syrup, with no nutrient content. 

Furthermore, floral honey, rather than buckwheat, corn, etc., is also a better option due to the greater chance of crops containing pesticides, genetically-modified organisms (GMOs), and other harmful substances, unlike flowers (organic also helps to protect against harmful pesticides).

So next time you're choosing your honey, go for the gold: organic, raw, local, and floral.

Fall Into Health

Amberleigh Carter1 Comment

In honor of the first day of fall, here are 5 tips to remember to boost the immune system and lessen the stress response during this seasonal change:

1. Expose yourself to the sun for at least 15 minutes/day (darkness is a stressor on the body).

2. Stay active (tip: going on a walk outside for 15 minutes will also expose you to the sunlight that you need and boost your mood).

3. Rest, not just at night, but throughout the day. Take a break for a few minutes, at least 3x/day, to calm the mind and the body, and just breathe.

4. Eat root vegetables (carrots, potatoes, beets, squash, pumpkin, etc.). These are grown underground, so they have their own powerful immune systems to fight off microbes and other bacteria. (Note: like any other carbohydrate, these must be eaten in conjunction with a protein and a fat to lessen stress on the body).

5. Start your morning off with room temperature lemon water.  You can squeeze an organic lemon in one, 8-ounce glass of quality water (up to 1 tablespoon of lemon juice), and drink it on an empty stomach.  This will make your HCl, or stomach acid, better able to kill off bacteria.  Feel free to also add in ginger root, cayenne pepper, and/or coconut oil for an added boost.

6. Have fun. Do something every day that makes YOU happy. Too often we do for others, and not enough for ourselves (shout-out to the moms out there, especially).  Never underestimate the healing power of enjoyment in life.

As always, what helps resist sickness and disease the most is whole mind, body, spirit wellness: to eat well, move well, rest well, play well, think well, and act well.  For help in any of these areas, don't hesitate to ask me :)

Count Ingredients, Not Calories

Amberleigh CarterComment

Pay attention to the quality of your food, rather than the number of calories it provides you.

If the body does not recognize an ingredient, it could lead to a decrease in energy production, an inefficient metabolism, and more stress on the body.

The continued consumption of fake ingredients can lead to the following:

  • Anxiety and panic attacks
  • Irritability
  • Headaches/migraines
  • Muscle and joint pain
  • Slow reflexes and speech
  • Hair loss
  • Lower immune system
  • Impaired hearing
  • Muscle weakness,
  • Cold hands and feet
  • Psychological depression
  • Cognitive difficulties
  • Dry skin
  • Menstrual problems
  • Constipation,
  • Hormonal fluctuations
  • and so on.

If you are suffering with any "ailment", it could be your body telling you something.  Maybe all you need is a change in diet.  Organic, real ingredients are what your body is trying to beg you for, not deprivation through less caloric intake.

Listen to your body, and feed it the nutrients it craves through real food.

a + b = High Cholesterol

Amberleigh CarterComment

Allow me to shed some fat on the current situation:

In the 1940s, the oil and seed industry was collapsing and needed a new market for their products, besides the use for producing paints and plastics.  The only other biological effect of unsaturated fat/vegetable oil, next to sterility, dementia, and lowering the immune system, was its influence on lowering blood cholesterol.  In a "research study", cholesterol was found to dissolve in the presence of unsaturated vegetable oils.  This opened the door to campaign that since cholesterol is found in the walls of blood vessels, and cholesterol levels contribute to heart disease, then unsaturated fats lower your risk for heart disease.  It was taken one step further in proclaiming that saturated fat is the culprit in causing elevated cholesterol levels that increase your risk for heart disease. 
 

However, to this day, there has never been a study that demonstrates high blood cholesterol, from the consumption of saturated fats, causes heart disease.  But there are studies that show the stressful effects of polyunsaturated fats (PUFAs) on the body, and stress levels are a main contributor to heart disease. 

According to Diana Schwarzbein, MD, "When you do not eat cholesterol, your body sees this deprivation as a time of "crisis" or "famine".  During this "famine", insulin activates an enzyme in your liver called HMG Co-A Reductase that begins to overproduce cholesterol from the carbohydrates you eat."

As you can see, there are many factors that go into the cause of heart disease...vegetable oil being one of them.  Eating the right quality of foods, in the right quantities, at the right time of the day, can exponentially improve your health.  Deprivation is not the answer, nor is a chemical alternative.

My suggestion is to truly understand your body's physiology, and not put your trust in a lab chemist claiming that a+b=high cholesterol.