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Lifestyle

Supporting Vegetarian Athletes for Improved Performance

Athletes have special needs when it comes to fuelling for optimized performance.  Nutrition requirements are continuously shifting depending on the desired activity as well personal goals such as weight loss or improvements to lean muscle mass. There are a growing number of vegetarian athletes at the amateur and professional levels which raises discussions on whether or not an athlete is put at a disadvantage when choosing to eliminate some or a majority of animal derived foods.  While there are several types of different vegetarian diets, including but not limited to lacto-, ovo- and macro-, we are going to discuss the

The Wonders of Watermelon

Watermelon is a plant species in the family Cucurbitaceae, a vine-like flowering plant which was originally domesticated in West Africa and grows wild in South Africa to this day. The first recorded watermelon harvest occurred roughly 5000 years ago in Egypt and is depicted in Egyptian hieroglyphics. A highly cultivated fruit worldwide, watermelon has more than 1000 varieties. Often thought of as the iconic summer fruit, the cold, sweet texture of a watermelon on a hot day is a fantastic way to keep cool. Since it is loaded with electrolytes and is 92% water1, it helps to keep you hydrated

Tips for Self-care for the Busy Mom

When thinking about self-care as a mom it’s easy to fall into the trap of “mom guilt.” We tend to feel bad about taking time for ourselves when we could be doing something for our kids or our home. But as we’ve all heard, it’s more detrimental to our mental (and physical) health to neglect our own needs. When moms put themselves on the back burner for too long resentment can build and/or we can burn out. Sometimes we know what to do when we do get “free time.” As I write this my own little one is upstairs taking

Stress, Cortisol and Immunity

In today’s unpredictable environment of world-wide pandemics, health concerns and economic uncertainty, it is easy to succumb to the negative effects of stress on the body. We are being exposed to a greater variety of stressors daily. We may think that one type of stress is better or worse than another, but in reality, the body interprets and responds to all stress in the same manner: cortisol release. You may have heard cortisol described as the “stress hormone.” When the body experiences stress, cortisol and catecholamines are released from the adrenal cortex which activate the “fight-or-flight” mechanism. This mechanism prepares

Fit for fibre; the role fibre plays in maintaining gut health

Dietary fibre plays an important role in maintaining gut health and function. Fibre is useful in helping feel full after meals, ensuring our bowel movements are regular as well as stimulating the growth of healthy bacteria to allow the gut microbiome to thrive. It is important that fibre, both soluble and insoluble, is included in everyday consumption to ensure optimal gut health (1). These fibres are found in a variety of different foods as well as prebiotic and full fibre supplements that can be used in times of bowel irregularity or for general health and maintenance. Fibre for healthy bowel

Foundational Nutrition for Optimal Health

As any good builder can attest, creating a strong foundation is imperative. Likewise, in health, we want to ensure that we are providing each bodily system with the key structures for proper physiology. See the thing is our bodies are very good at knowing what to do in the right circumstances. So, when we talk about health optimization, we are really talking about creating those “right” circumstances. Of course, we all have different needs depending on our dietary habits, current health status, environment, and genetic predispositions. That being said there are some universal principles we all need to take stock

Supporting your Liver and Detox Pathways with Nutrients and Diet

Introduction to Elimination The human body has a number of intricate systems and pathways that need to function effectively to absorb and utilize nutrients while simultaneously removing toxins and wastes. This process is done by every cell and tissue continuously as the body produces energy from nutrients but is also exposed to harmful compounds daily. The importance of efficient elimination is paramount because cells and enzymes cannot function when there is excess waste and toxin build-up. If the amount of toxins surpasses the ability of the body to remove it changes that promote disease start to occur. This is when

Cortisol Conscious Workouts

When you think of cortisol, what are the first thoughts that come to mind? Cortisol, more commonly known as the stress hormone, is essential in our day-to-day lives and one of the most necessary hormones, providing us with the required energy. While working out and physical exercise are for many people the best ways to combat stress and rejuvenate the mind and body, for others, exercise can potentially do more harm than good and deplete them of their energy. Strenuous and daily exercise is undoubtedly beneficial, but it can also do a number on our hormones. Just What is Cortisol?

The Male Immune Response System

As a male, have you ever wondered about your immune response system? Or is it not something that ever really crosses your mind? Let’s take a look at what exactly the male immune response system is, what does it mean to males, as well as point out some differences between females and males and sex hormones, ways to strengthen the immune system and why you should keep an eye on your immune system. Healthy Lifestyle One of your first lines of defence is to lead a healthy lifestyle filled with whole foods, fruits and vegetables, exercising (light or vigorous), regular

How Hormones Impact Metabolism and Aging

When we think about hormones and aging, many of us focus on estrogen, progesterone and testosterone, and the changes that occur as we move into middle age. However, these are just three of many hormones metabolized by our bodies; hormones which also change as we age. Hormones are natural chemicals produced in one location, released into the bloodstream, and used by other target organs and systems.  In fact, aging is comprised of a whole variety of “symptoms”, functional signs and body composition changes that occur over time. Let’s review a few of them to determine what happens to our metabolism

Support a Healthy Liver, Not a Fatty Liver

We’re all looking for ways to optimize our health, keeping us happy and moving. What we don’t want, however, is a fatty liver. Keeping our livers healthy and functioning properly is paramount, as this powerhouse organ, our body’s second-largest organ, is one that works 24 hours a day. Our livers are responsible for over 500 biological functions such as detoxification, energy storage and creation, and processing nutrients, processes all we put into our body, helps fight infections, cleanses our blood, and converts carbohydrates, proteins and fats into the energy we need on a daily basis. Speaking of fats, there are

Five Integral Supplements for Optimal Men’s Health

Supplements are a natural way for people to boost their overall health and immune system, from protein powder (whey, vegan, casein) to vitamin D, supplementation helps us restore our bodies. For men, supplementing is an important way to stay on top of their health. While there are thousands of supplements on the market, having a diet high in whole foods, vitamins and nutrients is perhaps the best way to look after your health. Food provides vitamins in the most natural and biologically available form. Many people do not achieve the recommended amount of nutrients they need from food, which can

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