Fitness and Heart Health

I am almost back to a normal routine – and being obsessed with continuing to blog is a major part of that routine.

AUTUMN Image result for beautiful pictures of autumn season

Fall, is here and the northerners are looking forward to the turning of the autumn leaves making the landscape look like a patchwork quilt: and, some of them will be coming to Florida to escape the winter cold. The holidays will be upon us in the blink of an eye. It’s a time when folks want to lose weight; to look and feel better; to make that life style change; to improve their health; and, make a last stab at fulfilling their January 2017 New Year resolutions.

Image result for free pics healthy heartTips for a Healthy Heart: A good start for making you a NEW YOU should begin with a good Fitness routine. You can exercise at home, in a gym or wherever you feel comfortable. Use the genre’ of exercise you enjoy…be it aerobics, Tai Chi, Yoga, walking, swimming, or bicycling etc. A genre’ that suits your life’s situation and age. Just keep in mind – SAFETY in whatever you do. You don’t want any broken bones, or pulled muscles, etc. An accident would interfere with you enjoying the holidays…and hospitals are no fun to be in. Simply put, exercise within your ability status. Only the Ninja Warriors go above and beyond.

We are overwhelmed with tips on what to do and what not to do when it comes to the heart. Image result for free images of hot teaI came across an interesting heart tip I would like to share. The Chinese and Japanese drink Hot tea with their meals, not Cold tea. So why use Hot water instead of Cold water to make their tea? The article I read suggested that the cold water will solidify the oily stuff you have consumed in your meal – thereby slowing down the digestion. Once this ‘sludge’ reacts with the acid, it will break down and be absorbed by the intestine faster than the solid food. It will line the intestine with fats, dangerous fats, that can lead to cancer or heart disease. Therefore, it is best to use and drink hot soup, warm tea, or warm water after a meal.Image result for free pic cold beverages

You can consume cold drinks (fruit drinks), no soda, no alcohol, teas and ice water, etc. between meals when not eating food. Maybe it is time we adopt the Chinese/Japanese drinking habits after a meal.

A serious note about heart attacks – you should know that not every heart attack symptom is going to be the left arm hurting…which we have been told by the media and doctors for many years. That theory has been changed by the doctors and media, to tell us now, that we should be aware of intense pain in the jaw line as well. You may never have the first chest pain during the course of a heart attack.  Nausea and intense sweating are also common symptoms. Did you know that 60% of people who have a heart attack while they are asleep do not wake up? Pain in the jaw can wake you from a sound sleep giving you a chance to get HELP. Call 911.

Let’s be careful and be aware. The more we know, the better chance we can survive. There are many discourses referring to the subject of the heart, heart disease, and heart attacks on the internet. Check it out for yourself.

Image result for free pics healthy heartEating healthy helps to defer heart disease – remember raw fruits, raw vegetables, fish, turkey and chicken. There are plenty of wonderful recipes using healthy fruits and vegetables. Fish, turkey and chicken can be added to any of them as a salad dish or as an entre’. Re-Check my Detox Diet Plan. Remember no red meats, no dairy, no alcohol, etc.

Again – the more we know the better chance we have to survive and live long lives.



Image result for stress images cartoonsSpeaking of STRESS….I got detoured on blogging by Hurricane Irma. It wiggled and wobbled all over the place as it headed northwest toward Florida. One minute it was going to go up the east side of the state; the next minute it was headed up the center of the state; then it was headed straight up the west side of the state….which is where I live. It turned out to be a waiting game as we watched our Weather News diligently. Who, and which part of the state, was targeted for the worst of the storm? Many prayers were being said…asking that the storm would diminish in size and wind speed. A storm coming at you at 185 miles an hour (Category 5) is nothing but pure devastation. God answered our prayers and Irma hit Florida at a lesser wind speed. By the time it reached north of Fort Myers it had become a Category 2 at 105 miles an hour. I am so thankful for prayers being answered. The damage was worse for some because of the flooding and homes that were not built to withstand such high winds. My family was blessed by God as we had very little if any destruction. I am thankful for my family as we all pulled together to face this ravaging storm, and were humbled by this experience. Taking it all in stride, the children were great little humans as they never panicked. We were safe because of the beforehand preparations made by all. We had food storage, water storage, a generator and great attitudes. I commend Florida’s State officials – to include the Governor, the Disaster Preparedness Director, the  Weather broadcasters, the Local Officials, FPL, and everyone throughout the whole state involved with giving everyone directions as to what they should do and where they should go to weather the storm. People were expected to make decisions in accordance to their location, needs and what they thought they could handle. You either listened to the advice given by the state leaders and weather reporters and preparedness disaster folks, or you didn’t. The whole state of Florida was affected – not just one little section here or one little section there. And again, we have to Thank God for blessing us all and helping us to get through this devastating experience. I had family and friends not only here where I am, but in other parts of the state…they all had favorable reports for their situations. It is not fun to be without power and/or water. It was truly a pioneer experience. You learned to appreciate the new technology we have today. When millions of people are without power – fixing the problem is not a piece of cake. It takes days, and weeks to get the systems up and working again; the power in the process of being restored by the power company – FPL, little by little; as well the trash is being removed as fast as the public and private trash removal folks can get to it. Soon, the whole state will have electricity again and we will all be able to resume life at a normal pace.

Enough of Hurricane Irma. It wreaked havoc and Stress. But what about STRESS on a daily basis? Irma’s stress would be the result of a traumatic experience.

Stress is exasperating. I consider my Dad to have been a wise man. He was a dentist by profession and a farmer at heart. His talents included the arts, painting, music, cooking and even sewing. I remember some of his favorite sayings such as: “If you do things right the first time you won’t have to do them over again.” “Why make a mountain out of a mole hill?” And to me, on a regular basis, he was always saying “Ilse, why do you always insist on going to the ‘College of Hard Knocks?” I have come to conclude that he was trying to teach me LIFE is, or should be simple and can be lived without stress. It is man who makes life chaotic or STRESSFUL.

So – what is STRESS? The Webster Collegiate Dictionary tells us “Stress is a constraining force or influence” e.g. “a force exerted when one body or body part presses on, pulls on, pushes against, or tends to compress another body or body part; a state resulting from a stressful situation; mental tensions resulting from…strain, pressure, intense effort or exertion, sound (loudness). In other words to subject ones self to physical or psychological stress, etc.

Taber’s Cyclopedic Medical Dictionary defines STRESS – in medicine, as the result produced when a structure, system or organism is acted upon by a stressor (an agent or condition capable of producing stress). It is generally believed that biological organisms require a certain amount of stress in order to maintain their well-being. However when Stress occurs in quantities that the system cannot handle – it produces pathological changes.

Image result for free pics of causes of stressThe concept of stress originally developed by Hans Selys, was to show cause rather than effect. Through linguistic error, however, he gave the term stress to effect and then later had to create the word ‘stressor’ for the cause.

If stress – generally speaking is the cause of many if not most of man’s issues, then what can be done to counteract the STRESSOR? Everyone individually, stresses out (so to speak) in their own way. What causes you to stress may be different from what causes someone else to stress.

Image result for free pics of ways to relieve stressCAUSE OF STRESS: physical or emotional change or environment that requires you to respond, e.g. minor issues, major lifestyle changes (definitely a cause of stress in the elderly population), family, work issues, anxiety, death, moving, mental or physical illness, divorce, traumatic events, fear. This is a short list of things that can cause stress.

EFFECTS OF STRESS: The question remains – is Stress the cause or the effect? My research shows it as both. As the effect – prolonged stress may develop into many things of which many can be health issues, e.g. chronic fatigue syndrome, hypothyroidism, problems with adrenal gland functioning if left untreated, heart issues, diabetes, mental problems etc.

COPING WITH STRESS: The first step to coping with stress is paying attention to the signs. These may include a daily headache, unexplained muscle pain, joint inflammation, irritability, decreased concentration, or insomnia, etc. These sound like things people face as being associated with a myriad of other diseases or health issues. So it stands to reason these issues, to include stress, are related to one another.

The question remaining is HOW DO YOU GET RID OF STRESS?

Image result for free pics of ways to relieve stressI like what the WebMD suggests: “To reduce stress, WebMD recommends engaging in activities that help the body to regain its center, such as practicing deep breathing techniques, sitting in meditation, relying on close family and friends for support and developing methods to improve appreciation for what is already present in life. Spending time being physical, finding something to laugh about and listening to uplifting music are, as well, ways to decrease stress.” (My favorite)

Exercise has been proven to alter the brain’s state of being by releasing pleasant chemicals into the bloodstream that calm the nerves. “WebMD suggests trying yoga, simple stretching, stair climbing or brisk walking as quick ways to make the body feel more at ease.”

WebMD also tells us that “Stress is often exacerbated by an habitual pattern of worrying and negative thinking.” To combat this, WebMD recommends maintaining a gratitude journal to keep track of the small cheerful things in life that might otherwise be overlooked. This helps to slowly change the mind’s focus from a pessimistic perspective to a positive outlook, eventually lessening the burden of stress that accumulates within the body. It is also helpful to sit in silence for a short period and gently turn the mind’s attention to the areas of the body that may be tense from carrying stress. Visualizing the release of this tension can help signal muscles and nerves to relax. (I have done this…and it works).

I have learned that stress compromises your nutrients (vitamins and minerals). Like all health issues, stress symptoms take a long time to generate. Good news, stress can also be reduced by using natural methods, such as natural herbal supplements, some teas and even foods. Image result for free pics of ways to relieve stressThe most effective way of reducing stress naturally, then, is to use a combination of these remedies along with the physical and mental remedies suggested above.

Image result for free pics of ways to relieve stressI like the herbs. In the FYI store we have an Herbal Formula for the Nerves that helps relieve stress and anxiety. We also carry a Heal All Tea that helps to rid one of headaches, inflammatory conditions, and etc. It is well-known that Chamomile and green tea are two of the most commonly known herbs that help people who are stressed. PaImage result for free pics of ways to relieve stressssion flower and kava teas are also said to be effective in treating anxiety and other negative feelings. I have used these teas and they do work. The herbal supplements we carry to reduce the pressure of stress are available in capsule or liquid extract form.

As mentioned before, exercise (yoga, breathing and stretching practices) can be very beneficial in treating stress because it releases the neurotransmitters called endorphins, which cause a person to experience positive emotions. These activities, along with meditation can cause changes in brain chemistry that allow a person to feel relaxed and at peace. And last, but not least, faith in God and personal prayer greatly releases stress from ones life. I heard many testimonies at church about this very method. The calm and peace of mind was felt by many who had been traumatized by Hurricane Irma.

Now we are watching Hurricane Marie and Lee – which seem to be following Irma’s path, but as of last night should turn north before they get to Florida.

Image result for free pics of ways to relieve stressMore STRESS – I pray not! Let us all work on becoming STRESS FREE!



Image result for free pictures of sciatic nerveI received an inquiry from one of my readers about the Sciatica Nerve. This blog is to give ienformation to you of what, where, and how the sciatica nerve functions. (Resources: Taber’s Cyclopedic Medical Dictionary; & The Detox Miracle Source Book by Robert Morse, N.D.)

SCIATICA….is severe pain in the leg along the course of the sciatica nerve felt and at the back of the thigh running down the inside of the leg.  The SCIATICA NERVE is “the largest nerve in the body, arising from the sacral plexus on either side, passing from the pelvis through the greater sciatic foramen, down the back of the thigh where it divides into tibial and peroneal nerves.” In laymen terms: it begins in the lower back and runs through the buttock and down the lower limb. “Lesions cause paralysis of flexion and of adduction and abduction of toes, rotation inward and adduction of foot; plantar flexion and lowering of ball of foot; anesthesia (partial or complete loss of sensation) in cutaneous distribution (external popliteal nerve); paralysis of dorsal flexion and adduction (movement in case of digits toward axial line of a limb) of foot; rotation of ball of foot outward and of raising external border of foot and of extension of toes.” It is also the longest and widest single nerve in the human body, going from the top of the leg to the foot. It is derived from the spinal nerves known as L4 to S3.

“Trauma of the sciatic nerve can result from a ruptured intervertebral disk or osteoarthrosis of lumbosacral vertebrae. Inflammation of the sciatic nerve can result from metabolic, toxic, or infectious disorders.” Continue reading “Sciatica!”