Feeling Good, Looking Great!
To Feel Good… Start With Your Gut!
To aim for healthy and younger looking skin your gut health is extremely important for maintaining overall health and wellbeing. We all know someone with heartburn, diarrhoea, an ulcer, irritable bowel or Crohn’s disease, colitis, or even bowel cancer.
The Gut Foundation (founded by the Gastroenterological Society of Australia in 1983) advise that the key to preventing and even reversing the above noted problems is to change our views on healthy eating and lifestyle. They go on to say that this does not mean eating boring hideous or stodgy special diets. It means focusing on healthy fresh food and watching our intake of sugars and fats. The reward is good health and more energy. And you do feel better!
The CSIRO has done extensive research on gut health. They found that although we are eating more fibre, bowel cancer remains one of the highest most common cancer for men and women. This is a paradox, because nutritionists agree that fibre may help to prevent bowel cancer.
What the CSIRO uncovered in their research is that we all need to eat a wider variety of fibre from food. That is, we are doing a great job of eating roughage like wheat bran which promotes bowel regularity, but what we need to eat more of is fermentable fibres such as resistant starch, that help to support good gut bacteria.
The CSIRO’s research shows that eating resistant starch leads to positive changes in the bowel and could protect against the genetic damage that precedes bowel cancer. Resistant starch promotes gut health by feeding the ‘good bacteria’ that live in our large bowel. These bacteria are sometimes called our microbiome. Resistant starch can’t be digested by your body, but instead becomes food for your gut bacteria.
When the good bacteria in the large bowel ferment resistant starch, they make short chain fatty acids. One of these, is called butyrate (a waste product but a vital energy source for your body), supplies energy to the cells lining the large intestine (colonocytes), promoting their wellbeing.
We can feed our gut bacteria or microbiome by eating foods rich in resistant starch, e.g. lentils, peas and beans, cooked and cooled potato, cold pasta salad, firm bananas, and certain wholegrain products. Eating a diet with a variety of fibre is a great way to keep your digestive system healthy.
Foods with Moderate to High Resistant Starch Content
Food Serving Size Resistant Starch (g)
Oatmeal 1 cup, cooked 0.5g
Barley, pearl 3/4 cup, cooked 2.8g
Bürgen® Rye Bread 2 slices, 4.7g
Pasta, cold (in salad) 1 cup 1.4g
Lentils 3/4 cup, cooked 5.0g
Potato, cold (in salad) 1-2”diameter 1.0g
Navy beans 1/2 cup, cooked 3.8g
Source: Murphy M, Environ International Corporation . Birkett A. Barndt R. Preliminary estimates of resistant starch in the United States, 2006. 2 Conlon M & Bird T. Study on the Prebiotic Potential of Bürgen® Rye. 2011
The aim is to have 20g resistant starch per day for gut health which is almost four times greater than what a typical western diet provides! Also it is expected that this recommended intake may need to vary according to your age, lifestage, gender, pre-and postmenopause and race.
What About Eating Probiotics?
Eating live varieties of healthy bacteria can help to improve the balance of bacteria in the gut. For years, the yogurt industry has been talking about the good things that yogurt and fermented milk can do to your gut, with claims that it contains Lactobacillus acidophilus, L. casei or L. bifidobacteria. These 3 varieties are generally beneficial to health. However not all probiotics live up to the claims made about them!
So what can you do? This link will take you to my Product and Service Reviews Page for More Information on: Probiotics
To ensure the bacteria gets through to your bowels alive, buy fresh products well within their use-by date. The number of live bacteria decreases rapidly as the product ages, particularly if it has not been stored correctly. Even half an hour in the boot of your car on a hot day is enough to kill off some of the important bacteria needed by your gut. You can also increase the amount and quality of probiotics in the foods and beverages that you consume, which will encourage the natural probiotics in your gut flora to thrive and multiply.
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What is Superfood?
Superfoods contain essential nutrients and antioxidants (refer to my page “Top 10 Tips for Healthy and Younger Skin”), are low GI, low in calories, contain antimicrobial compounds and even appear to have preservative qualities.
Here are some of the top 10 superfoods you should consider incorporating within your daily diet:
1. Black Soybean – take longer to digest, which keeps your stomach fuller longer
2. Turmeric – an antiseptic and anti-inflammatory spice
3. Coconut Oil – boost thyroid function and blood-sugar control, aid digestion and reduce cholesterol
4. Chia Seeds – 500% more calcium than milk and has an appetite-suppressing quality, good for stress eaters!
5. Cocoa – make sure it’s dark chocolate with at least 70% cocoa to get the full benefits
6. Lingonberries – Scandinavian berries that can protect vessels and nerve tissue from inflammation
7. Eggs – are rich in protein and an energy-sustaining food that helps stave off fatigue.
8. Beet Juice – liver-protecting qualities that also helps blood flow more easily and fights anemia
9. Mustard Greens – these spicy greens are rich in vitamin K which is good for your blood and bone strength
10. Sweet Potatoes – helps keep your immune system strong, especially during cold and flu season
Some Favourite Meals Using Superfoods & Resistant Starch:
1. Potatoes with turmeric and eggs:
Boil sweet potatoes and place 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar in the water whilst boiling; boil eggs (I will normally boil 3 to 4 eggs if I’m feeding a family of 4); Cool potatoes and eggs over cold water, drain and chop up in a salad bowl. Sprinkle 1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric and 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano; add Himalayian salt to taste and extra virgin olive oil. Serve.
2. Curry of your choice using meat and/ or vegetables:
Chop up meat and/or vegetables and saute with 1 brown onion and 1 to 2 cloves garlic. I normally create my own curry paste in my Thermomix (and I also include turmeric) and then place 1 tin drained lentils into the curry sauce. I also place mustard greens into the sauce 5 minutes before ready to serve. I serve this dish over a bed of chia seeds instead of rice.
3. Oatmeal with Lingonberries and beet juice:
Cook 1/2 to 1 cup oatmeal using water. When cooked pour beet juice to your taste, over the oatmeal and throw a handful of lingonberries over the top. If lingonberries hard to find then use handful of blueberries. Yummy brekky!
So as you can see just experiment by using different combinations of the above foods to find a dish that suits your tastes and keeping your body well oiled!
“YOU CAN BE GORGEOUS AT THIRTY, CHARMING AT FORTY AND IRRESISTABLE FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE” – Coco Chanel
The quest for younger and beautiful skin has been ongoing for many centuries and in today’s age we are blessed with much knowledge and many options readily available to us. Some options are natural and others artificial. Which ever way you look at it we have many options available…we just have to choose wisely! BUT remember, it is impossible to reverse signs of ageing, it is a fact of life that we all grow old! What we are trying to do here isreduce the signs of ageing by reduscing stress, using a good skin care regime and above all thinking positively and being positive to enhance the calmness on your face and wellness to your mind and body!!
My goal is to provide you with a guide of these various options here, on my website posts and pages, to make searching that little bit easier. Remember, everyone is unique and when it comes to improving your skin you may need to consult a nutritionist (for internal health and beauty) or your doctor particularly if you are on medication.
As stated on my page ‘About Me’ skin is the largest organ in your body and plays a key role in regulating your body temperature, protecting you from diseases, fungus, bacteria and viruses. Skin also shows early signs of nutritional deficiencies and ageing, so it pays to pay attention to these signs early!
Tip No. 1: Use skin care products that are pH balanced. Your skin should have an acidic pH of approx. 5.5. Ensure you have a skin care routine by using products that are free of parabens, SLS and artificial fragrances. I have product reviews to help you with your buying decision on my Products and Service Reviews page. Don’t forget this skin care routine should be for both your face and body.
Tip No. 2: Daily exercise, aim for 3 to 4 days where you can produce sweat. Sweat flushes microbes from the surface of your skin and assists with the removal of waste products from your body.
Tip No. 3: Protect your skin from UV rays because as you age uneven skin pigmentation can occur and not to mention the need to protect yourself from the risk of skin cancer. You need proof? Look at the skin on your bottom against your skin that is exposed to the elements, a huge difference, right?
Tip No. 4: Skip sugar and choose healthier options. Sugar contributes to loss of skin elasticity and can trigger the appearance of acne and premature wrinkles. The annual sugar consumption in most Western countries is a staggering 50 kilograms per person…that equates to more than 30 teaspoons per day!!
There are more than 30 sugar types that are commonly found in processed food products and recipies, get information by researching them and then look to avoid them where you can! Some examples include, beet sugar, molasses, can sugar, honey, malt syrup, lactose (milk sugar), maple syrup……and the list goes on and on!
Tip No. 5: Look for extra assistance through supplements. But a word of caution, do seek medical advice if you are pregnant, breast feeding or on medication, as certain supplements can affect your unborn/born baby or reduce the effectiveness of your prescribed drugs. My Product and Service Reviews page will provide you with some guidance on what is recommended.
Tip No. 6: Steam your face regularly, 3 to 5 times a day, preferably at night to help your face relax and keep the pores clean, not to forget that it should also help you to get a restful night’s sleep. When I was younger I used to use a few drops of high quality essential oils, but now as I have gotten a little older I find that apple cider vinegar (which is an effective disinfectant) helps to restore the skins pH level (tip no. 1).
Just add a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar into a bowl of very warm water. Place your head over the bowl with a towel covering your head and bowl. Steam for 2 to 3 minutes then use a clean face wash, and dip it into the bowl’s water and place that face wash gently over your face and gently press for about 10 seconds, repeat.
Tip No. 7: Increase your sleep. Sleep deprivation is one of the major causes of premature ageing. Determine how much sleep you need to feel great and revtalised. On average most people need between 7 and 8 hours sleep. Try to make it a daily goal where you go to bed at a certain time (without gadgets!) to ensure you get the sleep needed to look relaxed and great!
Tip No. 8: Lighten up! Don’t obsess over every wrinkle and sag. You can fight ageing but you can’t prevent it….we will all get old at some stage! Best we all try to age with grace and style in that way you will be a class above everyone else and remain youthful.
Please, if you have any questions or want to leave your own suggestions you can leave me a comment below as I would love to hear from you!
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Until Next Time……Cheers Gina