Ask the Experts
Fighting the Flu Naturally - Dr. Tim Searle, ND
It's still flu season. There has not been a better time than now, as we all watch the news anxiously awaiting more information on the Coronavirus, to consider natural preventions for viruses and flus.
Protection Against Viral Infection
Unlike bacterial infections, viruses are tiny bits of nucleic acids that contain information and use your body’s cells tor create more copies of themselves. The Coronavirus is an enveloped, positive-sense single-stranded RNA (ssRNA) virus belonging to the Coronaviridae family. The CoV family consists of several species and causes upper respiratory tract and gastrointestinal infections. The best way to fight these is to support your immune system, wash your hands and avoid people who are visibly sick; however, there are also some herbs and supplements that are virus-specific that you may want to consider adding to your daily routine.
- Vitamin D – you already have it in your medicine cabinet to beat the winter blahs. An article in the journal of clinic virology states that the anti-viral properties of Vitamin D may be linked to its ability to up-regulate the anti-microbial peptides LL-37 and human beta-defensin
- Vitamin C – known to support the immune system in general, vitamin C has been shown to have viral properties as it interferes with the assembly of viral RNA and DNA. In a 2012 study, in vitro experiments showed ascorbate’s ability to kill isolated influenza viruses, as well as viruses from normal human bronchial epithelial cells. Intravenous dosing has been studied (IVC) with optimal results. Vitamin C can also enhance the production of interferon, which helps prevent cells from being infected by a virus.
- Mushrooms have been shown to have powerful antiviral effects and can be used preventatively.
- Herbs such as echinacea, St. John’s Wort, Pau D’arco, garlic, and even green tea have been shown to be supportive in the treatment of viruses.
Why Women Should be Strength Training
Lose weight, exercise more and get in shape are the most common things women want for their New Year’s Resolutions. Well, the most neglected or misunderstood part of the equation for achieving these aforementioned goals is strength training. Unfortunately, there are too many training myths centered around women when it comes to strength training.
Myths like: you will get “bulky” if you strength train or you have to “lift only heavy weights” or even the dreaded you are “too old” to strength train. All wrong, wrong, wrong.
If you strength train, you will:
- Increase lean body mass
- Lose unwanted body fat
- Rev up your metabolism
- Get a toned look
- Reduce Anxiety
- Increase “Feel Good” endorphins
- Increase bone density
- Reverse the aging process
You can start with the best strength training method in the world, your own body weight! And do not even think about saying you are too old. Strength training combats weakness and frailty. Read “Importance of Strength Training For Aging” for more info on this topic.
Women are just as capable as men to strength train. If fact, if comparisons are made relative to fat-free mass, differences in strength between genders tend to disappear(1). Meaning, there is no significant difference between men and women when you actually compare muscle quality.
That being said, yes women do have some differences in body composition (in terms of absolute strength, women generally have about two-thirds the strength of men(1)), hormonal profiles and susceptibility to knee injuries in sports; but not their ability to strength train. Since physiological characteristics of muscle are the same between the sexes, there is no sensible reason for women to train differently than men.
Getting healthy is about how you look and feel. Knowing you are making your body anti-fragile and age-proofing it. Being healthy is not by what some numbers on a scale tell you. The safest and most effective way to start strength training is with your own bodyweight. To learn a ton of great bodyweight exercises, browse our Lebert Fitness website. We are experts in bodyweight strength training. Our Lebert Fitness Education programs include online courses, live workshops, and an expansive Education Team. Our courses are creative, cutting-edge and highly effective for expanding your knowledge of our products.
By: Todd Cambio, BS, BA, CSCS for Lebert Fitness1. Faigenbaum, A., Age- and Sex-Related Differences and Their Implications for Resistance Training, Essentials of Strength and Conditioning, NSCA, p. 151.
Do you have suggestions on how to prevent weight gain?
Most articles you will read are about weight loss. Here are my 9 tips to help you avoid weight gain and establish healthy habits for 2020!
Not only does it help to burn calories, but it also elevates your mood and increases your metabolism – both of which make it easier to continue losing weight. Varying levels of intensity should be done 5-6 days per week. It is important to try several different avenues of exercise until you find one(s) that you enjoy.
By consuming 8-10 servings of fruits and veggies per day, you’re giving your body all the vitamins and minerals, it needs to function at its optimal level – and they’ll make you feel full with less calories while limiting higher calorie foods. It can be tough to prepare all of your meals, but making them in advance and freezing them is a good way to ensure optimal eating and not resorting to fast foods. Try consuming a little protein every 3-4 hours to balance your blood sugar to avoid the stress of low sugar and hunger. Try to consume 0.8g/kg of body weight a day.
By eating well in the morning, we’re giving our bodies the calories they need to get going, and we have all day to burn them off – this will also help reduce the size of lunch and dinner.
By eating several small meals as opposed to 1 or 2 big ones, the food is easier to digest and we maintain a steady blood-glucose level which reduces the desire to eat large amounts.
5. Mindful Eating
By being “present” with your food, as opposed to mindlessly grabbing at it or eating in front of the TV, you will eat more slowly and become aware of fullness sooner. This also shifts your body into a parasympathetic state, which increases digestion.
Not only does it help to flush out toxins, but it also aids in the feeling of fullness. You should be aiming for 1oz of water per kg of body weight (if you’re 150lbs, that’s about 1.9L, or more than 8 cups of water at 8oz each)
7. Food Labels
If you’re buying packaged food, they all are mandated to have the labels listing the caloric content (as well as protein, carbohydrates, fat, etc.). It shouldn’t be hard to approximate what you’re consuming in a day.
8. Tracking Calories
There are several websites/apps that can do this for you – just type in “calorie counter” in a search engine and try one that works for you. Most of these sites have databases of food, so it makes it easier to keep track once you’ve set up your usual diet.
Behind fat, 1g of alcohol has the highest caloric content – so be more conscious of your alcohol consumption throughout the holidays.
by Dr. Tim Searle, ND
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