4 Ways 2 Keep Your Joints Healthy

Show us your healthy & vibrant joints in action. Tag @vibranthealth on Instagram with #vibrantjoints for a chance to win a joint health product of your choice!

1. Tipping the Scale.

Okay, it will sound a little obvious but, maintaining a healthy weight is really fundamental. Just like the frame of a house or car, your skeletal frame was designed with very real limits as to how much weight it can safely hold.  Those extra pounds put additional stress on your bones and joints, which can lead to some significant health problems.

2. Stretch 2 Your Full Range of Motion.

Most of us don’t participate in daily activities which use our full range of motion. In fact, most of us use fairly limited and repetitive movements. If they're never called upon for full mobility and extension, as you can probably guess, over time ~ this restriction becomes the norm.

All of your joints will have a tendency to get trapped in their middle range of functional movement.  When you find that you’re losing end-of-range freedom, it’s an early indicator of trouble ~ even if you don’t yet feel pain. Unless you’re sitting in class with an urgent need to get the instructors attention ~ you will seldom have a reason for taking your arm right up over your head but, making sure that it can go there, at least once a day, means that it will remain "freer and looser" and work with precision when it is called upon for motion in its inner range. So, you can see why it’s important to exercise the extremes of "non-useful" movement in every joint.

Stretch every single day. Hey! This doesn't have to be a stretching marathon ~ just a few minutes taking the pressure off of your back muscles and neck, manipulating your feet, ankles, fingers, wrists, arms or anything else that you plan on using for the rest of your life. Your lumbar spine for instance is designed to bend forward, and doing so gives the spine's discs a drink by moving fluid around them.

Each stretch can be as short as five or ten seconds. The point here is just to remind your joints and muscles that they do in fact still move (even if not very often). So, try daily moving your joints through their complete range of motion, as long as it doesn't cause you pain.

       Never stretch cold muscles.  Always do a little warm-up first. Stretch both before and after you do any type of exercise. Not stretching before physical activity will leave you more susceptible to injury. Regular stretching means that your joints don't just retain mobility ~ they'll stay healthier, more limber and show lifelong results that you may not have thought possible.

3. Do Regular Weight Bearing Exercise.

Think of it this way ~ when you regularly do weight-bearing exercise it requires that your bones rise to the challenge and grow stronger in anticipation of supporting those loads again and thicker bones will mean fewer joint problems down the road.

It’s simply not possible for you to maintain strong joints without healthy muscles to back them up. Your muscles and the connective tissues that surround joints provide stability, support and even guidance through the range of motion. What’s considered a weight bearing exercise? ~Any activity using either the weight of your body or outside weights to put stress on your bones and muscles. Consider activities like brisk walking, tennis, dancing or yoga.  This kind of exercise will also improve your balance, which means that your joints will be less likely to sustain trauma after a fall. Gaining muscle also helps you lose weight, which was our number one joint health tip.

Always get an ‘all clear’ from your doctor and seek the advice and guidance of a personal trainer to show you how to properly perform exercises that build the muscle that you need to protect your joints ~ lifting weights the wrong way is worse than not doing it at all. So don't just jump in carelessly.

4. Keep Your High Impact Exercise at a Minimum.

You know that exercise is good for keeping your bones and joints in shape, but high impact exercise can jar your joints and bones, resulting in injuries to them as well as, your cartilage and the surrounding ligaments and muscles. Your better solution is to find several low impact exercises such as resistance training, walking on a treadmill or bike riding to help keep your joints moving fluidly without risk of serious injury that can side-line you and cause problems with injured joints as years go by. Always make sure that you get 20mins of cardio exercise a few days each week, as this helps your blood supply needed oxygen throughout your body (including joints).

Show us your healthy & vibrant joints in action. Tag @vibranthealth on Instagram with #vibrantjoints for a chance to win a joint health product of your choice!

Show us your healthy & vibrant joints in action. Tag @vibranthealth on Instagram with #vibrantjoints for a chance to win a joint health product of your choice!

 

About the author: Jeanne Ricks is a Holistic Health Coach & Clinical Hypnotist who provides personal diet, wellness & nutrition coaching combined with Hypnosis to help you achieve your personal best. www.NuDay.org

Golden Milk

Golden Milk - a potent and delicious #turmeric hot drink. Made with #maximizedcurcumoids #vibrantrecipes

If you haven't heard yet, turmeric has become a buzz word within the health industry and beyond. At the Natural Products Expo West this past weekend there was a wide array of new turmeric products from fizzy drinks to capsules and powders. Some benefits of the root may include anti-inflammatory effects, an immune boost against colds and flus, an effective pain killer, a digestive aid, and so on. It's even boasted as being anti-cancer. *Shrug* I don't know about that, but I am sure it couldn't hurt either :). I am a huge fan of this "super-root." I have been taking Maximized Curcuminoids for about a year now almost daily and my once unbearable seasonal allergies are virtually non-existant. It helps with soreness between workouts for me as well as migraines. This product is a pretty sizeable tablet. so the recipe today will be great for those who can't (or would prefer not to) swallow pills.

We at Vibrant Health recognize March as Bone & Joint health month and Curcuminoids are one of the featured products during this month. What are curcuminoids? Glad you asked. They are the brilliant orange pigments from turmeric with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant atrributes. Curcuminoids were traditionally used in Ayurvedic medicine to support digestive health, live health, and skin health. We make two curcuminoid products: Cucuminoids 95+ (250 mg) and Maximized Curcuminoids (1000 mg). Both contain black pepper extract for added absorption.

If you want to learn more about curcuminoids, you're in luck. This month you can earn rewards towards discounts & even free product just by watching our Curcuminoids video.

Ok, ok, now for the delicious (and perhaps a little outside the norm) recipe you are looking for:

Ingredients:

1 cup unsweetened coconut, rice, or almond milk

1-2 Maximized Curcuminoid tablets

1 tsp coconut oil

Few shakes black pepper

Generous dash vanilla

Raw honey or maple syrup to taste

Sprinkle of Cinnamon

Directions: Our blender is actually powerful enough to grind the tablets right up. If you don't have a blender that can do this, you could use a coffee grinder or pill crusher. Blend all ingredients together until smooth. Pour mixture into saucepan and heat on low until desired heat.

NOTE: Try not to drip the mixture. If you do, be sure to wipe it up immediately as it can stain orange. (I may have dyed a few things in the office kitchen orange – but hey, orange is the new black, right?)

 

Golden Milk - a potent and delicious #turmeric hot drink. Made with #maximizedcurcumoids #vibrantrecipes

About the author: Kate Shanley is the Social Media Coordinator & Pet Health Consultant for Vibrant Health. She holds a B.S. in Animal Science and is also a board certified Holistic Health Coach, has a certificate in Plant-Based Nutrition from Cornell University, and she's a dog trainer. 

Boswellia serratta for Your Joint Health

Boswellia serratta is an important antioxidant and flexibility component of #JointVibrance. #vibranthealthblog

Boswellia serratta sounds a little like a tropical island doesn’t it?  We went vacationing on Boswellia serratta where the breezes were warm.

       Actually, it’s a tree ~ and the specially processed resins and gums of the Boswellia serratta tree are concentrated and used to create Boswellia extract. What makes it so special is the presence of four triterpene acids, especially Beta boswellic acid. 

       What’s the stuff used for and why should you care? Oh, let’s see….Boswellic acid and its derivatives only have anti-carcinogenic, anti-tumor and blood lipid lowering activities. That’s all ~ Hardly worth mentioning (sarcasm).

       And there’s more to this potent extract. It’s been used since antiquity in India to treat inflammatory conditions and joint aches which is why we included it in our Joint Vibrance formula.

       How does it work? Those triterpenoids (or boswellic acids) mentioned earlier work to actually inhibit something called arachidonic acid, which is an inflammation predecessor commonly found in meat, eggs, & dairy.

       It’s commonly used as an anti-inflammatory agent for the treatment of fibrositis, rheumatoid arthritis, juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, low back pain, myositis and osteoarthritis. A study conducted at the Government Medical College in Jammu, India, proved that nearly 60% of arthritic patients tested with the herb experienced good to excellent results in stiffness and pain. More than three-quarters of the study participants were either bedridden or incapacitated from doing normal work. They reported a lessening of morning joint stiffness, pain, and improved grip strength in as little as two to four weeks after beginning Boswellia serrata extract. A separate study of 26 patients suffering from arthritic knees, showed dramatic improvement was experienced within 4 weeks.

       You’ve heard of Osteoarthritis. It’s a frequently diagnosed chronic, progressive, skeletal, degenerative disorder, which generally affects the knee joint. In 2003, a randomized double blind placebo controlled crossover study was conducted to assess the efficacy, safety and tolerability of Boswellia serrata extract.  They used 30 patients who all were diagnosed with osteoarthritis of the knee. Of the 30 – only 15 received the active drug or placebo for eight weeks. After this first intervention, there was a complete switch in which the groups were crossed over to receive the opposite intervention for another eight weeks. Each time, those patients receiving the herb reported decrease in knee pain, increased knee flexibility and increased walking distance. The frequency of swelling in the knee joint was decreased. Their x-rays showed no discernible change.

       To date experimental and clinical usage of Boswella indicates that it has no side or harmful effects on your gastric mucosa, blood pressure, heart rate, etc. Unlike other anti-inflammatories (like NSAID’s) and anti-arthritic drugs, it does not create any gastro-intestinal ulceration. In fact, right now in India Boswella is an approved herbal medicine to use in the treatment of various musculo-skeletal disorders such as osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, soft tissue rheumatism, low back pain, myositis and fibrositis.

 Boswellia serratta is an important antioxidant and flexibility component of #JointVibrance. #vibranthealthblogIt’s yet another amazing curative plant from the Ayurvedic tradition.

About the author: Jeanne Ricks is a Holistic Health Coach & Clinical Hypnotist who provides personal diet, wellness & nutrition coaching combined with Hypnosis to help you achieve your personal best. www.NuDay.org

Bone Health without Dairy

How does digestion affect calcium levels? #vibranthealthblog

How does digestion affect calcium levels? #vibranthealthblogMooooove over Cows ~ you no longer reign supreme over the way we protect and improve bone health.  Yet our diets are still one of the best and safest ways to improve bone health!

Check these out:

Tumeric

            This Southeast Asian spice has been proven to have healing properties for a variety of conditions. Recently Dr. Janet Funk at the University of Arizona College of Medicine published a study showing that it may be an effective resource for preventing bone loss.

            From earlier studies that she’d conducted to assess the anti-arthritic effects of turmeric, Funk revealed that it not only prevented arthritis, but also prevented the development of bone cells that foster bone resorption and bone destruction around the joint in a model of rheumatoid arthritis.

"Some phytoestrogens – estrogen-like chemicals that are found in plants – have been identified for evaluation as an alternative to hormone replacement therapy for preserving bone during menopause, but a botanical dietary supplement that would preserve bone without involving estrogen-receptor pathways might be a safer alternative for patients." 
 

Polyphenols

Polyphenols are a group of antioxidant chemicals found in many fruits, vegetables and other plants (ex. berries, walnuts, olives, tea leaves and grapes). It’s been well established that free radical damage (oxidation) in your body can cause excessive bone resorption. The antioxidant-rich polyphenols reduce the rate of bone resorption caused by oxidation. Studies along these lines clearly indicate that polyphenols play a significant role in halting the progression of osteoporosis, and even preventing the onset of osteoporosis. How?

            Those free radicals decrease the rate of bone formation in your body by crippling osteoblasts (these are your bone-building cells). But if that’s not bad enough free radicals also stimulate osteoclasts, (which tear down bone). As you can see, free radicals are horrendous for your bone density. But a handful of walnuts every day are a good way to start getting rid of them!

Flavonoids

Some flavonoids are among this polyphenol plant family, that have been shown to have estrogenic effects on the body.  These naturally reduce the effects of low estrogen on bone. AND unlike hormone replacement therapy (HRT), plant-based polyphenols are natural substances which will not override your natural body processes. Why? Because they’re not synthetic substitutes for estrogen.  This means that although they do bind to estrogen receptors, they do not upset the natural hormonal balance in your body.

Apigenin

While as you can see all polyphenols will benefit your bone health, this one has been shown to be particularly potent. In a Korean study, apigenin was proven to increase the growth of osteoblasts (those bone-building cells mentioned earlier). And guess what?  It also increased the collagen content in the bone cells themselves. AND…apigenin actually stimulated the activity of alkaline phosphatase (a really important enzyme that plays a role in bone mineralization). This is huge and great news with those looking for ways to stave-off osteoporosis.  Where can you get a daily dose of apigenin?

Foods high in apigenin include:

  • Celery (especially the green celery hearts)
  • Parsley
  • Apples
  • Oranges
  • Bell Peppers
  • Herbs and spices such as coriander, licorice, marjoram, oregano, rosemary, and tarragon.
  • Beets
  • Cruciferous Vegetables (Brussels sprouts, Cauliflower, Broccoli)
  • Kohlrabi
  • Lettuces
  • Rutabagas
  • Spinach

Adding these foods to your daily diet is great way that you can start improving your bone health. We also have an excellent source of Turmeric for you in our Maximized Curcuminoids.

About the author: Jeanne Ricks is a Holistic Health Coach & Clinical Hypnotist who provides personal diet, wellness & nutrition coaching combined with Hypnosis to help you achieve your personal best. www.NuDay.org

Is Poor Digestion Affecting Your Bones?

Is poor digestion affecting your bones? #vibranthealthblog

Is poor digestion affecting your bones? #vibranthealthblog

By interfering with Calcium availability, low levels of stomach acid may lead to weaker bones, making them more prone to fractures, according to a report in the journal Nature Medicine. Use of Calcium supplements can prevent this problem, though.

       One of the most common causes of reduced stomach acid is taking heartburn medications, such as Maalox, Mylanta, Gaviscon, Protonix, Nexium, Prilosec and Prevacid.

       Dr. Michael Amling, from University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf, and colleagues used mice with various bone problems to investigate the impact of stomach acid levels on Calcium levels in the blood and on bone mass. Their results showed that a reduction in the stomach's ability to produce acid disrupted Calcium metabolism and caused thinning of the bones, also known as Osteoporosis. However, treating the mice with Calcium supplements prevented the Osteoporosis.

       The broad clinical implementation of these insights, Amling told Reuters Health, is that bone loss and fractures may be easily prevented in thousands of patients at little cost with the use of Calcium supplements.

       So let’s consider which Calcium supplement might be beneficial for you. You’ll easily find on the shelf many calcium compounds which were synthesized for health conscious consumers. Calcium citrate, calcium citrate/malate, calcium aspartate, calcium orotate and other forms (apart from carbonate) found in supplements can be excellent sources of calcium. It’s all about the absorption rate when it comes to any supplement ~ how easily and quickly it gets into your system to do its job. And some of those mentioned have absorption rates in the vicinity of 30%. At those levels, they favorably match milk and dairy products, which usually deliver around 32% of their calcium. The benefit of dairy foods is often lost as they bring with them an acidic metabolic load that can drain your body of calcium, reversing any benefit they might have had.

       However, synthesized tableted calcium supplements will never match the best food sources. Broccoli, Bok Choy, and Kale, for example, have fractional calcium absorption of 51.3%, 52.7% and 58.8% respectively. We can expect similar bioavailability from the plant, Hydrilla verticillata, the material that is Vibrant Health’s Super Natural Calcium.

Other suggestions for improving your digestion & calcium absorption naturally:

  1. Chew your food well. If you chew your food until it is in liquid form, your digestive system will not have to work as hard to break down larger chunks of food and can therefore digest your foods more efficiently. This is the best thing you can do above all else to improve your digestion.
  2. Choose unprocessed foods to improve digestion. Processed foods include junk food or anything that is cured, has sugar or has been altered or preserved in any way. These additives can cause a slowing down of digestion.
  3. Drink lots of water. Water helps remove toxins from the digestive tract and helps prevent constipation which slows down digestion.
  4. Eat foods that make you feel good and avoid foods that your body doesn't like. Duh! For instance, avoid foods that give you indigestion, make you feel dragged down or give you lots of gas. You’d be amazed at how many people can’t or won’t follow this simple suggestion!
  5. Relax for at least 30 minutes after eating meals. Your digestive organs need a large portion of your total blood volume to digest food. It cannot use that blood if you are active after a meal because the blood goes instead to your muscles.    

About the author: Jeanne Ricks is a Holistic Health Coach & Clinical Hypnotist who provides personal diet, wellness & nutrition coaching combined with Hypnosis to help you achieve your personal best. www.NuDay.org

Why Do My Joints Hurt?!?

Joint pain is all too common, but what causes it and how can we prevent it? #vibranthealthblog

Joint pain is all too common, but what causes it and how can we prevent it? #vibranthealthblog

Ah, joint pain. I think for the majority of relatively active individuals, we have all encountered this issue at least once. The million dollar question however is: what is causing it? Many a times, what we may think is causing the issue is likely not what is causing the issue and the reason for this is that often times, where we feel the pain/discomfort is not actually where the issue is located. What also tends to happen is that many people will stop exercising in an effort to allow the joints to "heal" which sometimes is a good thing but many times they are tossing the baby out with the bath water.

So, how does one deal with joint pain? First and foremost is to figure out which exercise is causing the issue and this mainly comes down to checking two important criteria: 1) if weights being used are too heavy (if you are lifting weights) and 2) your form while performing the movement of exercise. Now, let's tackle proper weights if you are weightlifting. Simple fact of the matter is that if you can't squeeze out 5 good solid reps with good form, you should really consider dropping the weight down a little. You might be wondering about things like 1RM's (1 rep max). Your 1RM is a gauge to measure your strength progression but honestly, that's not a weight you should be working out at on a regular basis, so again, 5 good reps or else you are probably going a bit too heavy which leads to breaking in form as well as too much tension on the joints. ***As a side note, working sets of around 5 reps is geared towards training your CNS (central nervous system) to adapt to the weight thus help increase strength. 6-12 reps is a good zone for a balance of hypertrophy (size) training and some strength. Higher rep ranges like 12-20 are mostly going to stimulate hypertrophy.***.

Now, with an understanding of going too heavy whilst weight training and how this is likely detrimental to your joints, let's move on to proper form. Proper form is a very important concept to follow. This not only applies to weight training but to pretty much any other exercise one may perform. Not only is proper form helpful for things like producing the most efficient power output or providing and keping a good pace, but it's crucial to prevent injury. When you use improper form, your body will recrute other muscles and place otherwise unnecessary stress on joints in order to counter balance since leverage is the foundation of any movement (unless one is an astronaut in space, it's most likely we are operating in an environment where gravity is a factor). If your form is sloppy, your are going to be very susceptible to injury. Now, bad form can be caused by several different factors which include the following:

1) Using too much weight when weightlifting.
2) A muscle imbalance such as when your biceps and triceps are far more developed than your forearms which leads to things like tendonitis of the forearms which often times will feel like the issue is in your elbows or wrists. In such a scenario, you should consider incorporating accessory excercises for the specific lagging body part in order to strengthen the lagging body part.
3) An actual injury elsewhere which then makes your body compensate for the injury during a movement by recruiting other muscles or placing otherwise unnecessary stress on some joints.

With two of the main reasons for joint pain out of the way, let us now come around to how we alleviate and help speed up recovery of joint issues which are not too severe (as with anything in regards to your personal health, always check with your physician to see just how severe your situation is so you don't accidentally exacerbate the issue into an even more serious issue). A few simple steps to follow are:

1) Ice the inflamed area.
2) Try not to use movements that cause severe discomfort to the affected area.
3) NSAIDs such as ibuprofen if and only if the pain is very acute (in which again, it would probably be a good idea to see a physician just to double check).

Those would be three easy to follow and accessible steps to help alleviate the discomfort but now the question which some of you may have been wondering about from the start, what can one take in order to keep joints healthy? First and foremost: regular exercise! If bones and/or joints are weak, it's crucial that what supports the bones and/or joints are strong and healthy; this being the surrounding muscles! As for nutritional supplementation, lucky for us, there are a few tried and true ingredients on the market that not only help rehab weak joints but are great to use on a daily basis to maintain healthy joints. The star ingredients for the support and maintenance of healthy joints would be chondroitin, glucosamine, MSM, and hyluronic acid. Glucosamine, MSM, and chondroitin work together to provide your cartilage the proper nutrients to both maintain and help build itself with hyluronic acid being a well known nutrient which assists in keeping joints lubricated. Another good ingredient is boswellia. Boswellia has a great property of acting like an NSAID which help combat inflammation (directly deals with tendon and ligament issues as something like tendonitis is essentially inflammation of the tendon). These ingredients are easily and readily available at most health supplement stores as both single ingredient items or as part of comprehensive formulas such as Joint Vibrance. Aim for around 1-1.5 gram each of glucosamine and chondroitin. Aim for around 1 gram for MSM. 100-200 mg's of hyaluronic acid. Finally, for bromelain, around 100 mg's. Another promising ingredient for bone health is a newer ingredeint called cissus. 

Hopefully this information was useful for you but again, Always check with your physician to assess the severity of your joint issues.

About the Author: Steve L. is a consumer who uses Vibrant Health products. He is active in many online health-related forums.

You can protect your bones!

How can you protect your bones? Calcium is not enough on its own. #vibranthealthblog

Okay, so everyone knows that bones are one of the most important parts of the body.  Did you know that you lose about 1% of your bone mass every year after age 30? Peak bone mass is reached by around the time you reach age 30. After that, bone remodeling continues, but you will lose more than you gain. How ?

How can you protect your bones? Calcium is not enough on its own. #vibranthealthblog

       As you mature, your body may begin to reabsorb calcium and phosphate from your bones ~ instead of keeping these minerals in your bones. Now your bones gradually weaken. When this process reaches a certain stage, it’s called osteoporosis. Did you know that your likelihood of developing osteoporosis depends on bone mass that you attained up until that magic age of 30, combined with your rate of bone loss after that age? So, the greater your peak bone mass, the less your risk of osteoporosis.

       For women, the natural drop in estrogen at the time of menopause is a major cause of bone loss. For men, the drop in testosterone as they age likewise causes bone loss.

       Smoking puts you at higher risk and drinking too much alcohol can damage your bones.

Are there causes for Bone loss in addition to Aging?  Yes, big ones!

Antibiotics

       A new study showed that antibiotics cause oxidative stress in human cells, which accelerates bone loss.

       Researchers at Harvard’s Wyss Institute published a study in October of 2013, which built on previous research and showed that antibiotics kill bacteria by triggering oxidative stress. They discovered that antibiotics trigger oxidative stress in the mitochondria that produce energy within your cells as well.

In the Harvard study, human cells were exposed to 3 antibiotic levels: ciprofloxacin, ampicillin, and kanamycin. After the first 6 hours of exposure, there was no harmful effect. But things changed after approximately 4 days. The researchers discovered something disturbing: the antibiotics had actually damaged the cells’ DNA via oxidative stress.

“Doctors should only prescribe antibiotics when they’re called for,” comments study leader Jim Collins, PhD, “and patients should only ask for antibiotics when they have a serious bacterial infection.”

Fluoride

There’s a wide range of studies which have shown that there’s more hype than help when it comes to the safety of fluoride.  In fact, many studies prove that a large percentage of the ingested fluoride accumulates in the bones, which leads to bone damage and in some cases, skeletal fluorosis.

This certainly explains the increase in hip fractures linked to water fluoridation, as shown by a review of 18 studies. And while the CDC continues to hype water fluoridation as a success in reducing tooth decay, after its review of the studies in 1993, the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) observed that:

“The weight of evidence from these experiments suggests that fluoride added to water can increase the risk of hip fracture in both elderly women and men. However, questions remain due to issues such as the lack of information on trends in hip fracture and total individual fluoride consumption.”

Noteworthy Benefits to Bone Health ~ You can protect your bones!

Calcium is the most widely known supplement to assist with strengthening your bones ~ but consider this ~ Your Bone health depends not so much on calcium intake, but rather on its metabolism and utilization. The other major players are Vitamin D, Vitamin K, boron and magnesium. 

       At Vibrant Health we created our Super Natural Calcium using a concentrate of the Hydrilla, verticillata plant. We didn’t want to rely on the typically synthesized formats of calcium like: calcium carbonate, calcium citrate, calcium malate, calcium gluconate, etc. Our plant-based formula provides calcium as it is found in nature, bound to carbohydrates, proteins and polyphenols. Calcium in this form is more compatible your digestion and metabolism.

     So if you're concerned about your bone health; in addition to reducing your use of antibiotic and fluoride; you may consider trying Super Natural Calcium.

About the author: Jeanne Ricks is a Holistic Health Coach & Clinical Hypnotist who provides personal diet, wellness & nutrition coaching combined with Hypnosis to help you achieve your personal best. www.NuDay.org

 

JV Creamsicle

Orange-Pineapple Vanilla Creamsicle using Joint Vibrance Powder. Who could ask for anything more? #vibrantrecipes

If you don't already know, Joint Vibrance version 4.0 has a natural orange-pineapple flavor. My dad is a huge fan, and the inspiration for this recipe. He is always telling me about how he mixes it with vanilla coconut milk and it tastes like a creamsicle. That mix alone is good, but I wanted to go even further. The result was more delicious than I even expected. If you're looking for a good way to drink your Joint Vibrance, you found it!

Orange-Pineapple Vanilla Creamsicle using Joint Vibrance Powder. Who could ask for anything more? #vibrantrecipes

Ingredients:

1 cup vanilla coconut milk

1 scoop Joint Vibrance

1 tbsp vanilla extract (or to taste)

1 orange

1 tbsp honey

Directions: Blend until smooth & enjoy!

About the author: Kate Shanley is the Social Media Coordinator & Pet Health Consultant for Vibrant Health. She holds a B.S. in Animal Science and is also a board certified Holistic Health Coach, has a certificate in Plant-Based Nutrition from Cornell University, and she's a dog trainer. 

The Ginger Vortex

Step out of the polar vortex and warm up with this delicious smoothie #vibrantrecipes

If you live in the Northeast like we do, you're probably pretty sick of this seemingly endless winter. The mere mention of the polar vortex sends chills down my spine, and not in a good way. One day this week the heat in our office was actually broken for the entire morning. Brrrrrr!! So when choosing our weekly recipe there seemed to be a consensus that ginger had to be involved. This smoothie was so warming everyone said it was like comfort food in a cup. 

Step out of the polar vortex and warm up with this delicious smoothie #vibrantrecipes

Ingredients:

1 large carrot

1 banana

1 chunk ginger (to taste)

2 handfuls unsalted cashews

1 cup blueberry pomegrante juice 

1 cup coconut water

1 scoop Rainbow Vibrance

Honey & cinnamon (optional – to taste)

Ice

Directions: Blend until smooth and enjoy!

Ginger is so awesome, wouldn't you agree?

Ginger is the best! #vibranthealthblog

About the author: Kate Shanley is the Social Media Coordinator & Pet Health Consultant for Vibrant Health. She holds a B.S. in Animal Science and is also a board certified Holistic Health Coach, has a certificate in Plant-Based Nutrition from Cornell University, and she's a dog trainer. 

Calcium Not Just 4 Bones – 4 Your Heart

Plant-Based Calcium for heart health #vibranthealthblog

       Back in 2012 researchers had warned that calcium supplements should be ‘taken with caution’ based on inconclusive data which suggested consumption of the supplements could double the risk of heart attack incidence. This story got picked-up by national news media and needlessly scared people. The bulk of scientific studies conducted on this mineral do not come anywhere near that kind of negative finding. To the contrary…

       In fact, a new study concluded that supplements of calcium do not increase the risk of arterial hardening ~ at all. This Harvard Medical School study led by Elizabeth Samuelson, used state-of-the-art CT scans of over 1,200 men and women.

       But, just how does calcium assist your heart health?

       First, remember that your heart is really a muscle. Calcium and magnesium function as ‘electrolytes’. This simply means that they impact the amount of water in your body ~ which then affects not only the pH balance of your blood but, also plays a role in your actual muscle function. Calcium and magnesium also play essential roles in the contraction and relaxation of your heart muscle cells.  These combinations of effects are what makes calcium and magnesium vital minerals for the regulation of your heartbeat and blood pressure.

How’s your Sar-co-plas-mic Re-ti-cu-lum?  Huh?

       It’s a machine inside all of your muscle cells. This sarcoplasmic reticulum releases calcium ions into the fluid portion of your muscle cell, which includes heart muscle cells and the cells lining your blood vessels.  This triggers the cell to contract. After that contraction, a calcium channel pump allows the calcium to move back into the sarcoplasmic reticulum to wait for the next contraction.

       AND…Because calcium impacts the actual force of heart muscle cell contractions, it can affect the blood pressure. In addition, calcium impacts the balance of fluids in and out of cells, which affects blood pressure.

The Role of Magnesium

       In the same way that your heart muscle cells rely on calcium to trigger contraction, they also rely on magnesium for relaxation. After a muscle contraction, when calcium is in the fluid portion of the cell, electrical charges which are produced by magnesium propel the calcium through the calcium channel pump and right back into the sarcoplasmic reticulum. This simple action allows your muscle cells to relax.

       It’s been shown that a magnesium deficiency can increase your risk of developing high blood pressure, taking a magnesium supplement in the form of magnesium oxide, magnesium gluconate and magnesium chloride may be helpful in preventing the onset of high blood pressure.

       A delicate balance of both calcium and magnesium is necessary to maintain a normal heartbeat, and therefore a normal blood pressure. However, The Linus Pauling Institute reports that studies using magnesium supplements to treat high blood pressure have produced conflicting results.

Foods ~ glorious foods!

       Always the best sources for nutrients. AND…you can find calcium in many greater levels in a variety of foods that are not dairy…..

A cup of steamed spinach has 245 mg.

A cup of boiled collard greens has 266 mg.

One tablespoon of Blackstrap Molasses has about 137 mg.

One cup of raw kelp has 136 mg.

Two cups of steamed broccoli have 124 mg.

One cup of sautéed chard has 102 mg.

One cup of sautéed kale has 94 mg.

Two cups of raw celery have 81 mg.

One ounce of almonds (23 nuts) has 75 mg.

One medium papaya has 73 mg.

One medium orange has 52 mg 

      Plant-Based Calcium for heart health #vibranthealthblog Knowing that food sources are the most potent means of calcium supplementation we created our Super Natural Calcium using a concentrate of Hydrilla, verticillata. This plant based formula provides calcium as it is found in nature, bound to carbohydrates, proteins and polyphenols. Calcium in this form is more compatible your digestion and metabolism.

Bon appetite!

About the author: Jeanne Ricks is a Holistic Health Coach & Clinical Hypnotist who provides personal diet, wellness & nutrition coaching combined with Hypnosis to help you achieve your personal best. www.NuDay.org