Health & Beauty - All in Your Hands

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Balance In Your Body

& Depression

Life is a series of choices, from when we are babies and all the way through to old age.  We have available to us hundreds of choices for our health and life.    When our bodies are in balance physically, mentally and spiritually, choices come easily and positively. When we get out of balance, it becomes hard to make the right choice.  Small continual good choices will lead us back to health and balance.

Although food would seem to be something our body requires on a physical level to build new cells, to give us energy, to ease hunger, our foods are most important to feed our brain and our heart so we can maintain life.  The choices we make of which foods we put in our bodies sets the basis for physical, mental and spiritual health.

Every single moment of every single day from the moment of our birth, our bodies strive for life – long, energetic, healthy, happy life.  We are beautifully designed to live and to live fully!  (Thank you God!)  We are for sure the most sophisticated “vehicle” on this planet.   Every single moment we are building bone cells, muscle cells, liver cells, pancreas cells, brain cells, skin cells and so on.  In a one-year time frame we rebuild and replace every single cell in our bodies.  The catch here is, what quality of raw materials are we putting in while we are building all these cells?

When we eat food that is not recognizable by the human body, our bodies have to do their work anyway so have to use up our reserves.  From the moment of birth we have reserves set aside in a “bank” which our body is meant to use when we are in a crisis such as when we get a cold or have the flu, in an accident when extra healing is needed, when we diet or refuse to eat, or when we choose poor quality foods. When we eat poorly continuously, we overdraw our “bank” dangerously.  These reserves are also meant for when we need to do major bone building, teeth building, brain building, etc.  When we do not have enough minerals for building our bones or teeth, our body sends us a powerful message which we call “pain.”  When our legs burn, or our backaches, or our teeth are highly sensitive and hurt us, these are all messages from our body that it does not have enough raw materials to work with.  We are so incredibly designed that we are given “pain” as a message to alert us that something is out of balance and needs to be corrected.

There are several essential raw materials and building blocks for life:

1. Water – pure and clean (not chlorinated)
2. Minerals and vitamins
3. Essential fatty acids
4. Enzymes from living plants
5. Friendly bacteria (probiotics)
6. Plant based proteins

These building blocks are needed every single day of our lives.   When any, or worse yet, all of these are missing, we get off balance and our brain will give us a strong message by slowing the entire body down and we will experience tiredness – the very first sign of imbalance or in other words, disease.

Often when we experience tiredness, we put something into our bodies to give us energy – this is the correct thing to do – but we often make the wrong choice here.  A good choice would be several of the above listed essential foods; however, we often choose caffeine from pop, coffee, chocolate or sugar. Although it perks us up quickly and temporarily, the body for rebuilding or health definitely, will not use it.  In fact, it only makes us think we have more energy, when in reality it is doing major harm to our cells and our brain.  This is when depression creeps in, another sign from our bodies that we need better choices and nutrition.

When most of the foods that are going into our mouths are “acidic” in nature, they have to be continually neutralized with minerals from our bones and muscles.  All packaged, processed, fast, and micro waved, deep fried foods are acidic.  All animal products including meats, fish, dairy (milk, cheese, yogurt) are acidic.  Only fruits and vegetables are alkaline and only alkaline foods neutralize acidity.  External sources of acidity are smoking, drugs, medications, heavy exercise, environmental toxins from shampoos, skin care products, etc. and stress which is the biggest cause of acidity and “dis-ease” in our bodies.  A balance of 70% alkaline and 30% acidic in our bodies and in our meals is ideal.

When we become deficient in minerals because of too much acidity developing in our bodies, we become agitated, nervous, “stressed out, tired, can't deal with life, or in other words, depressed.  Minerals, along with enzymes, are the essence of life in our bodies and in every single cell of our bodies.  Minerals and enzymes come from plants and that is how we are meant to get them.

What happens is a very vicious cycle:  Our bodies strive for life and health, we choose not to feed true whole foods to ourselves, our bodies weaken and do the best they can, we continue to choose poor nutrition, our bodies weaken further.  Eventually, our bodies get the message we do not value ourselves enough so they decide we must not want to live.  This is when depression really gets hold of us.

There are two main types of depression:  1) External which is caused by life circumstances such as a relationship break up, an injury, a loved pet dies, a good friend moves away, a divorce in the family.  This type of depression, although devastating at the time, generally passes, we mourn and we heal and we become stronger people.  2) Internal which is caused by what we choose to put in our mouths AND by chemical imbalances in the body which could be caused from injuries OR from what we choose to put in our mouths.

External depression can become internal if our bodies do not have the resources available to help us recover and bounce back to life.  Life is challenging and we all are faced with huge challenges from family, friends, school, work, and so on and how we deal with these challenges and recover from them is dependent entirely on how healthy we are internally.

So, what is the answer to avoid or reverse depression?

It is critical to get the basics of nutrition into our bodies.  Often we can do this through “baby steps” of making small better choices each day.

One of the most important things to do is to drink water – not chlorinated tap water which will cause further damage in the body – pure clean water, preferably filtered or distilled.  We need at least half our body weight in ounces in pure water each day.  If you weight 100 pounds you should drink 50 ounces of water per day.  Then we need more for every acidic food or body stress situation (exercise) we add.  I cannot ever stress enough how important good water is for us.

Next, we have to have very essential, Omega 3 and 6 good fats.  These can be obtained from many sources – the simplest is to take a supplement either in the form of a capsule or in the actual oil, adding it to your morning shake, drizzling it over steamed veggies, a salad or rice/pasta, or taking it by the spoon. And, a real bonus here, good oils and fats feed our skin and make our skin beautiful and healthy.  You can also obtain these good fats from avocados, ground flax seeds, raw nuts and seeds, almond or peanut butter, soy nuts, dark green veggies, deep water fish, extra virgin olive oil, flax seed oil, and other pure properly processed oils.

Let me just say something here about fats and oils.  In today's society we have become “fat free” in our search for losing weight.  Interestingly enough, the quickest way to gain weight is to eat these “fat free” foods as they are all high in sugar.  Because of the amount of “bad fats” we get from fast foods, processed foods, packaged foods, we have to give our bodies some ammunition in the form of “good fats” to deal with all these bad fats.  Omega 3 and 6 good fats are the answer.  You want to lose weight, improve your skin, be smarter!  Take your Omegas every day!!!  They also reduce cravings as your brain is fed very essential fats.

Next, is vitamins and mineralsVitamins are organic substances that are essential for life. They are found in food and derived from both animals and plants.  Vitamins are so called micronutrients, because the amounts that are required for normal functioning are minuscule, yet vitamins perform very important tasks.  Among other things, vitamins help us digest our food, fight infection, and manufacture new cells. With rare exceptions, vitamins cannot be manufactured by the body, and must be obtained from food or supplements. Vitamins help our bodies operate at peak efficiency.                                                   
       Since most people in today's hurried world don't have time to eat regular nutritious meals, it is important to supplement our diet with vitamins. It is especially important that we receive the highest quality product in a form that will be quickly and easily absorbed. 
 .   And  it is difficult to obtain the necessary vitamins and minerals from food because of mineral-deficient soils that are common throughout the world today. It only takes 10 years of intensive farming to exhaust the minerals in any tract of land. The depletion of necessary nutrients by cooking and processing living foods adds to the difficulty in obtaining vital minerals and vitamins from our food.    Severe vitamin deficiencies will result in serious illnesses. Even a modest deficiency in certain vitamins, can have a profound effect on health.  

Vitamins are important, but minerals are the catalyst for everything in our bodies.  What this means is that minerals ignite every action in our cells and bodies.  No vitamin can work without the proper minerals.  Minerals -  are naturally occurring chemical elements found throughout the human body in the bones, muscles, teeth, blood and nerve cells.  Minerals help to maintain a normal water balance within the body, regulating the breakdown of sugar and carbohydrates (chromium), helps form red blood cells and maintain nerve tissue (cobalt), strengthening bones and teeth (fluoride), regulating the thyroid (iodine), stimulate a healthy immune system (iron), fighting cancer cells (manganese), essential for protein synthesis and a healthy nervous system (molybdenum), destroying free radicals with vitamin E (selenium), antibiotic capabilities (sulfur), helping wounds heal, production of white blood cells (zinc).  Minerals are involved in virtually every activity from immune function to the beating of our hearts. 

Also critical for overall health are enzymes and friendly bacteria.  Lets discuss enzymes first.  We are mainly concerned about two kinds of enzymes – digestive and metabolic.  Digestive enzymes help break things down in our body and metabolic are the building blocks of every cell in our bodies.  When we have low digestive enzymes, our miraculous body can change our metabolic enzymes into digestive enzymes so that the big dinner we ate can be digested.  However, that means we are depleting our very essential metabolic enzymes, which give us life.  The more we do this the more we age and get far out of balance and this allows depression and disease.  Also, when we do not have enough digestive enzymes, our body because it is so intelligent, will produce something called candida yeast to break down excess undigested foods, toxins, non-foods etc.  This overabundance of candida can give us all kinds of unpleasant symptoms, which also can lead to depression.

Friendly bacteria-is the bacteria that we are supposed to have in our bodies to help with digestion and keeping bad bacteria under control.  Medication, antibiotics, drugs, sugar, chlorine, pop, etc. will all kill friendly bacteria so if we are consuming too many harmful foods, our body never has a chance to rebuild its friendly bacteria. A product called acidophilus is friendly bacteria and is available from health food stores.  It is also called a probiotic, which is the opposite of antibiotic.  It does the same work as an antibiotic but it is supportive of the body rather than killing all bacteria in the body.

Keeping all of the following items to a minimum or avoiding entirely will encourage and promote rapid healing and bringing the body back to balance:

1) White sugar and flour, including all wheat (gluten is linked to depression)
2) All soda pops and carbonated beverages
    (deplete us rapidly of nutrients and strength)
3) Caffeine, alcohol, nicotine
4) Foods additives such as MSG, dyes, artificial sweeteners
    (well disguised on labels)
5) Processed dairy products (unless you can obtain free range organic)
6) Animal products (unless you can obtain free range organic)
7) Chemicals such as chlorine, drugs, medications, nicotine
8) Bad fats such as margarine, lard, anything deep fried
9) Anything microwaved

Highly beneficial nutrients for bringing the body back to balance, giving the body the power to reverse depression, disease, acidity and aging include:

1. Complex carbohydrates in the form of fruits and vegetables which include the most powerful fruits and vegetables:  carrot, parsley, beet, broccoli, kale, cabbage, spinach, tomato, apple, orange, pineapple, cranberry, acerola cherries and papaya.
2. Soybeans and soy products
3. Beans, nuts, seeds, dried fruits
4. Whole grains such as brown rice, wild rice, kamut, rye, millet, barley, spelt, quinoa
5. Salmon, white fish, range fed turkey, eggs
6. For sugar, use honey, molasses, cane sugar, stevia
7. Minerals/vitamins – selenium, folic acid, calcium, magnesium, chromium, niacin, Vitamin D, B vitamins, etc. – Choose a high quality supplemental  source.

There are many non medicinal ways to alleviate depression to go along with good nutrition, some of them are:

1. Homeopathy (many books and practitioners available)
2. Aromatherapy is easy to apply and is enjoyable
3. Exercise – probably the most important thing to do
4. Sunlight – activates Vitamin D (the happy vitamin) in our bodies
5. Acupressure, massage and reflexology are all very supportive
6. Reading motivational, supportive books (library and excellent source)
7. Reading spiritual healing books and working with prayer, meditation and caring
for yourself

In summary, by putting all of the basic nutrients into your body on a daily basis, depression can be avoided or reversed.  However, once depression has set in, it can be quite challenging to even imagine having the energy or desire to do any of these things.  I recommend a whole food supplement that gets into the cells which means it is bio-available.  This supplement would contain all the basic micro nutrients for the body:  plant based vitamins and minerals, live enzymes, and friendly bacteria.  This supplement would also contain all the powerful plant based antioxidants necessary to protect cells from free radical damage (but that is another whole topic), and has all the plant proteins that are critical for rebuilding.  Here is a package of nutrients worth looking at.