A Case for a Dairy Free Diet

When my oldest son was born we thought he was normal and healthy in every way. We started noticing a change as he was weaned off of breast milk and began drinking cow’s milk. We didn’t connect the dots until we finally visited an allergy dr. and she told us he had an allergy to dairy and we had to begin a dairy free diet for our little guy.

Personally, I never once thought about life without dairy. My wife and I were very confused and unsure of the measures to take to begin this new dairy free diet for our son. What we thought was a handicap lead us to a new way of eating and thinking as a family. This new way of eating sparked an interest in me and I began studying why would my son have an allergy for something that I thought everyone drank? Doesn’t milk do a body good? As I began my research I soon found that there is growing evidence in not consuming dairy. Below are a few startling conclusions I came to that may make you consider a dairy free diet.

Dairy Free Diet

Linked to Cancer – Would it surprise you that dairy is linked to cancer? Well, it is true. If you or someone you know has an allergy to dairy then they are allergic to the protein casein that is found in milk. Casein has viruses that can start the onset of leukemia and lymphoma. Casein actually puts the body in an inflamed state which can help promote cancer.

Linked to Autoimmune Disease – A terrible disease that is running rampant is Type 1 Diabetes. One conclusion that has been reached is the immune system can reach the point where it can no longer tell the difference between casein and other cells in the pancreas. What happens? The immune system attacks them both.

Linked to Asthma – The Chicago Tribune reported in 2006 that in order to treat asthma, dairy should be eliminated. Mothers that are breast feeding can help fight asthma by implementing a dairy free diet themselves. Breastfed babies have much stronger immune systems than babies that are not. There are also direct links between asthma and high cholesterol, and dairy is very high in cholesterol!

Dairy consumption in America is considered normal. As research begins to grow I think that we will see less and less dairy being consumed because it is link to so many disorders. Fortunately, we live in a day and time where there are great options for those that are considering a dairy free diet. Many health food stores contain many dairy free and vegan options. There is also a lot of great milks out there like rice milk that are just as tasty, full of calcium, and no risk!

My family and I have come along way since those initial days. We are at a great place now in our health, and it is so refreshing to be able to see my son eat without struggle. Is it time for you to re-think dairy?

3 Alternatives To Kick Your Smoking Habit

We’ve all heard and seen the warnings—smoking kills. Yet despite all the Surgeon General’s warnings and the billboards I pass on a regular basis demanding things like “Los Angeles, Quit Smoking!” it’s harder to actually quit than most people (read: non-smokers) realize. Even when you’ve made the decision to quit, it’s difficult.

Despite the plethora of ways you can try to quit smoking, most attempts are unsuccessful. In fact, according to the American Cancer Society, unless you have drugs or other types of help, your chance of success is between 4-7%. Even with that help, most cessation methods’ success rates sit around 20-40%. Below are a few alternative methods that I’ve seen work, either in my own life or in the lives of people I’m close to.

Aversive Smoking

If you’re desperate to stop smoking, one of the best ways to kick your habit is to start thinking negatively about smoking. This is easier than you might think, since it’s more of a change in psychology than anything else. Aversive smoking is done by rapidly smoking 3 cigarettes in 3 minutes. After a short break (1-2 minutes), repeat and continue repeating until you’ve smoked between 12-15 cigarettes. By then you should feel ill and even the thought of smoking another cigarette makes you nauseous. According to a few different studies, the success rate is between 40 -50%.

About ten years ago, I smoked heavily. I’d tried numerous times to quit. Four months into my attempt at quitting cold turkey, I started up again. I was frustrated with myself for failing yet again. A friend of mine told me about aversive smoking, and, willing to try out anything at that point, I went for it. I’ll readily admit I was over-zealous in my attempt, disregarding the suggested breaks. Although I haven’t picked up a cigarette since, I know my success would’ve been the same had I followed the method more precisely. I would suggest that anyone who wants to try out this cessation techniques to abide by the guidelines. You’re risking your health if you don’t.

Electronic Cigarettes

If you’re looking for a way to ease yourself out of smoking, you might want to look at e-cigs. With a success rate of about 31%, they’re one of the best ways to quit without seeking professional help or turning to drugs. There are a few different types of e-cigs too—some with a bit of nicotine, some without—so you have a choice. I haven’t tried electronic cigarettes personally (they weren’t around when I quit), but I have a cousin who used them to break her habit.

She’d been a smoker for almost thirty years (11 years of chain-smoking), and she wasn’t ready to give up nicotine completely. So, she gave up tobacco instead by trying out the electronic cigarettes. After she adjusted to the e-cigs, she cut down her usage, and eventually stopped smoking altogether. She’s been smoke-free for three years.

Hypnotherapy

And lastly, there’s hypnotherapy. This is a relatively new method, and there are multiple types of therapies. Because of this, no official studies have been completed. However, despite the lack of studies, the success rate has been charted somewhere between 50-60%.

The point of hypnotherapy is to change your behavior. When you’re trying to quit smoking, hypnotherapy strengthens your desire to quit, while at the same time tweaking your desire to smoke. My best friend went to a hypnotherapist about a year. He’d been smoking steadily since we were in high school and had tried to quit five times before. He never made it past two or three months before, but he passed his year mark last month.

If you have a desire to quit smoking, you can do it. All you have to do is find the way that works best for you. Maybe it’s one of the alternative methods mentioned above. Regardless of the method you choose to quit smoking, I wish you the best of luck in your new, smoke-free life.

8 of The Best Things You Can Start Doing Today To Become A Healthier You

Everybody wants to become a healthier person. To become a healthier person will require you to make some important lifestyle changes that will lead to good health. Some people don’t have problem making these necessary lifestyle changes, because they know the amazing benefits they’ll be rewarded with when they do. Some of these amazing benefits include:

  • Lower chance of developing cancers and other diseases
  • Better weight
  • Longer life
  • Have a happier life
  • Be more productive

If you want to improve your health check out these 8 great health tips.

Get rid of Fat

If you want to be a healthy person, you have to get rid of fried foods, bacon, ham, ribs, salami, burgers, and other fatty foods. If you like dairy products like milk, cheese, and cream start eating the low fat versions.

Reduce the amount of fatty nuts and condiments like mayonnaise and butter you use. You could also find lower fat versions of foods like butter and mayonnaise that can be used as a replacement.

Decrease Stress

Stress is one of the most important things to reduce in order to become a healthier you. However, limiting stress in your life is very tough since stress comes in so many different forms.

Spending at least thirty minutes of your day to do something positive is one of the best things you can do to reduce stress. Some other things you could do include thinking positive thoughts, counting to 10 before you lose your cool, and staying away from people that are difficult to get along with.

Stop Smoking

This is an obvious one, but one that most people avoid doing. If you’re serious about becoming a healthier person you are going to have to quit smoking. It’s been proven medically that smoking takes years of your life literally.

If you can’t completely quit start trying to reduce how much you smoke. To make it much easier for you to quit smoking it’s a good idea to limit your time around people who have unhealthy habits like smoking.

People who are the healthiest usually have strong relationships with other people who are very healthy. Try to get other family and friends to quit smoking with you and it will help you to stay smoke free for a longer time.

Stay Away From Pollution

Protecting yourself from pollution is very important in order to become a healthier you. Stay away from rooms or homes filled with tobacco smoke, avoid environments that aren’t smog free, avoid high traffic areas that have a lot of fumes in the air.

When you exercise do so indoors so you know the air quality is good. Start planting a good amount of plants and flowers in your yard, as this is a good way to deter pollution and dirt.

Don’t Drink Alcohol Excessively

When you drink alcohol excessively you are more likely to become overweight, age faster, and become more vulnerable to developing health problems like heart disease, live disease, kidney disease, and cancer. Limit yourself to just one or two drinks daily and don’t drink in excess.

Stay Positive

It’s been proven that people who are the healthiest have a positive outlook when it comes to their life. Try to keep smiling and laughing with the people you care about. Try to limit stressful situations and always be cheerful.

Stay Active

Staying active is essential for staying healthy. Do things everyday to help keep yourself healthy such as walking your dog, climbing the stairs, playing with your children, playing sports, mowing the lawn, swimming, or riding a bike.

Do anything you can think of that will keep your limbs and body moving. Staying active is vital as it will reduce stress, make you less likely to develop health problems, and keep your mind in a good state.

Start Off Small

All of this might seem like it’s a little too much for you to tackle. This is the main reason why some people don’t make the necessary adjustments in their lifestyle to become healthier, because they feel like it’s too much to do.

The key is to start off small so you don’t get overwhelmed by everything. Begin with the smallest and most painless changes first and then as time goes on try to add more challenging changes in your daily routine.

 

Stay Fit and Avoid Injuries With These 6 Healthy Tips

Many people start a new exercise program with commitment and enthusiasm. Eager to see quick results, they dive headfirst into a new routine. Unfortunately, some of them get sidelined with a fitness injury shortly after they start working out. With the right mindset and a few simple precautions, people can stay fit and avoid injuries. Here are six healthy tips to consider.

1. Warm Ups

A pre-workout warm up is an important part of an exercise program. It helps muscles and surrounding tissues get enough blood and nutrients to perform their required exercise tasks. Many people skip this important step and rush headlong into exercise. This shortcut can result in painful muscle tears that can take days to heal. Ten minutes of light running, jumping and other cardio routines is a good way to warm up for exercise. After exercise, a few minutes of low-intensity exercise helps the body cool down.

2. Stretching

Stretching the muscles increases flexibility and gives people a leaner, longer appearance. Improved flexibility allows people to perform better during workouts. It also minimizes the risk of fitness injuries. Proper stretching is essential since bad form can cause painful ligament tears. People can stretch at any time, but stretching is especially important during warm ups and cool downs.

3. Hydration

Exercising without drinking water before or during the workout is like driving a car with an empty gas tank. Without proper hydration, the body will start to shut down. This can cause collateral damage in the form of fitness injuries. How much water is necessary for a workout? According to WebMD, a good rule of thumb is twenty ounces of water an hour before exercise, ten ounces of water fifteen minutes before a workout and another eight ounces every fifteen minutes.

4. Nutrition

Good nutrition is just as important as good hydration. While the body uses fat cells for energy, the muscles need ready access to glycogen during a workout. Without this access, muscles can fail in the middle of activity and experience painful tissue tears. The body needs pre-workout carbohydrates for adequate glycogen stores and post-workout protein to repair muscle damage.

5. Rest

Rest is important for every athlete, from the weekend warrior to the marathon runner. Over-training can cause muscle soreness, intense physical discomfort, exhaustion and injuries. Most people need at least one day off from their workout regime each week.

6. Diligence

Diligence is another way to avoid fitness injuries, especially in health clubs and fitness centers. Many accidents can occur in these settings. From slip-and-fall accidents to overexertion injuries to those involving faulty equipment, safety incidents can sideline athletes and cause permanent damage. Medical malpractice lawyers are available to counsel people in situations like this. They have the skills and expertise to get clients the compensation they deserve.

The body is an amazing machine that is equipped to deal with a number of stressors including physical exercise. Like all machines, it requires maintenance to work properly. Too much of a good thing – even exercise – can lead to negative results. However, with the right balance of hydration, nutrition, stretching and rest, most people can avoid injuries and stay fit and healthy.