Paleo Breakfast Ideas

Breakfast is my favourite meal of the day and I absolutely love having something delicious after my morning workout. I normally have the same thing every week day then treat myself to something extra indulgent (and often more timely) on the weekend.

In case you’re sick of plain old bacon and eggs each day (I don’t know how people can tire of bacon but that’s just me), here are our top 10 favourite paleo breakfast ideas.

You will notice that most of these ideas are savoury; this is because it is best to avoid fruits in the morning given their effect on blood sugar and electrolyte imbalance.

Paleo_Breakfast_Ideas

Bacon and Egg Cupcakes
Grease a muffin hole with coconut oil and line with bacon (you can make your own using our recipe here). Crack in an egg, sprinkle with chives and bake in the oven until the egg is cooked.

Breakfast Pizza
Heat a pan over medium and add in a knob of coconut oil or lard. Whisk a few eggs and add to the pan. Wait a few minutes for the eggs to set then add any toppings you like (I love capsicum, tomato, crispy bacon and cooked chicken). Place under the grill for a few minutes until it has puffed up a bit and serve with fresh rocket.

Pork Breakfast Sausage
Combine organic, grass fed pork mince, some chopped lard, salt and fennel in a bowl. Mix with hands until well combined then form into little sausages. Pan fry in coconut oil or lard until golden and cooked through.

Eggs and ‘Soldiers’
Halve some pre-cooked pork breakfast sausages and pan-fry in coconut oil or lard until crispy all over. Boil some eggs for 4-5 minutes (4 minutes if you like runny yolk, 5 if you like slightly harder) and serve with the crispy sausages. I love to spread the runny yolk on the crispy sausage or dunk the sausage in like a vegemite soldier!

paleo-protein-packed-scotch-eggs

Homemade Scotch Eggs
Grease a muffin hole with coconut oil or lard and press some pork mix from the homemade breakfast sausages in to form a pastry. Crack in an egg and bake until the mince and egg is cooked. You can also top with some crispy bacon; yum! Here’s our fancy homemade scotch egg recipe.

‘Sweet’ Omelette
Whisk a few eggs with coconut cream, cinnamon and vanilla beans and cook in a pan with some coconut oil. Once the bottom is cooked, place under the grill for a few minutes until puffy. Top with an extra sprinkle of cinnamon and some whipped coconut cream or coconut butter.

Bacon Wrapped Meatballs
Combine organic, grass fed pork, beef or chicken mince with chopped lard and salt. Mix until well combined and form into small meatballs (read our full meatball recipe here). Wrap each meatball in a piece of bacon and bake until the bacon is crispy and the mince is cooked through.

Meat Floss
This is what I have for brekky most days! -Place a good heap of slow-cooked meat (I use 150-200g) in a hot pan with 1-2Tbs of coconut oil; cook until crispy and sprinkle with Celtic Sea Salt, pepper, chilli and a pinch of truffle salt.

Brekky Burger
Combine organic, grass fed beef mine with chopped lard, salt, pepper and a splash of coconut aminos or coconut barbecue sauce. Form into a patty shape and pan-fry in coconut oil or lard until cooked through. Serve in a lettuce leaf with tomato, avocado and crispy bacon.

Bacon Devilled Eggs
Boil a few eggs for 5 minutes or until hard boiled. Peel and remove yolk. Place yolks in a bowl with 1-2 teaspoons of homemade mayo and chives then mix to combine. Scoop (or pipe if you’re feeling fancy) the yolk mix back into the egg whites and top with crispy bacon, extra chives and a pinch of truffle salt.

I hope this gives you a few ideas for the week and doesn’t leave you craving paleo pancakes, paleo muesli or paleo bread (or any other processed food product that’s been paleo-ified)!

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Paleo Packed Lunches

Paleo lunches can be haaard; you’re either stuck eating the same thing at your desk every day or you begin to be tempted by the ol’ lunch classic, the sandwich. Well I’m here to help you out!

mealprepmonday

I’ve put together this post so you’re equipped with 10 paleo packed lunch ideas so you don’t have to keep eating that old chicken salad you’ve been having for the past month!

Please note that some of these recipes do require slightly more time than a vegemite sandwich, so I like to do a big meat cook up on the weekend and freeze individual portions so that I can just defrost them the night before and pack them with some other bits and pieces for lunch! (Read our tips on meal prepping here).

Most of these lunches are actually based on leftovers with a bit of tweaking (read: lots of homemade mayo added to them) to make them different.

Picky Paleo Platter
Grab a BPA free lunch box with lots of compartments and add a different snack to each compartment. I love a few boiled eggs (read our post on how to choose eggs here), prosciutto or ham, cherry tomatoes, homemade pickles, olives, homemade mayo and some baby cos lettuce leaves. That way you can eat them all together or just snack on each ingredient!

Deconstructed Burger Bowl
Shredded iceberg lettuce leaves with cherry tomatoes, sliced beetroot, homemade pickles, a chopped hard boiled egg and a leftover, homemade beef patty all thrown together. You can make it taste even better by taking a small container of homemade mayo and pouring that all over before you eat!

Crispy Bacon, Avo and Mayo
This is an absolutely delicious lunch and great for when you need a high fat day after a few unhealthy meals. Crisp up some bacon (make your own with our recipe) and add to a lunch box with ½ to a whole avo, a few cherry tomatoes and a dollop of homemade mayo. If you want you can also add some baby cos lettuce leaves or you can just have the delicious fattiness!

Chicken Omelette
Believe it or not, omelettes actually taste really good when they’re cold! If I’m in a real rush, I will double the quantity I’m making for breakfast and have half for brekky and take the other half to eat cold at lunch. Add some coconut oil and cooked chicken to a pan to warm through. Then add some whisked eggs with a dollop of cream and cook to make an omelette (or scrambled egg if you’re anything like me). Let it cool and add to a BPA free lunch box with some cherry tomatoes, rocket and, you guessed it, homemade mayo!

Paleo Packed Lunch Ideas

Jerky and Mayo
A bit like the first lunch; get a BPA free lunch box with lots of different compartments. Add homemade jerky to one, some carrot sticks to another and lots of homemade mayo to another. Eat like a dip platter!

Hot Dogs (But not as you know them)
Leftover homemade pork sausages (or bought if you can find preservative free, pasture raised and low carb sausages from a butcher) wrapped in prosciutto and then wrapped again in zucchini ribbons. Feel free to dunk in homemade mayo!

All Day Paleo Brekky
Brekky for lunch, why not! I also have this for brinner (breakfast for dinner). Boiled eggs, crisped up bacon, avocado, cherry tomatoes, pork sausage (homemade or bought) and a handful of rocket leaves.

No-Potato Salad
Chop hard boiled eggs and mix with finely sliced crispy bacon, homemade mayo and chopped chives. Add to a BPA free container and serve spooned into baby cos lettuce leaves and avocado.

Bone Broth with Slow Cooked Meat
This is absolutely delicious on a cold, winter’s day! Add hot bone broth to a large flask and stir through some slow cooked meat (we use the meat from the bones) and a spoonful or lard or coconut oil. That’s it!

Leftover Eggy Muffins
Delicious eaten cold with a crunchy green salad or even just a few veggie sticks will do the trick!

 

Basically, if all else fails, crisp up some bacon, hard boil some eggs and eat with some fresh veggies. In the words of Sergei the Meerkat, simples!

9 Reasons to Eat More Fat

Fat; what sort of chance does it have when it’s both the name of a macronutrient and a term to describe the nation’s ever increasing waistlines. Ever since we’ve been old enough to understand, we’ve been told by nutritional ‘experts’ and dietitians to decrease our fat intake (especially the dreaded saturated fat) and replace these fats with ‘heart healthy’ wholegrains, because, well, fat makes us fat. (Read the truth about fat and the food pyramid here).

Forget everything you know about fat!

In this post, we’re going to show you why you should be eating more saturated fat.

The Truth About Fat

1. Curb sugar cravings
Good quality saturated fat is more filling than carbs. Constant hunger, or cravings, is our body’s way of telling us that it is not being fed correctly. Consuming more saturated fat can help to fuel your body properly and provide you with an instant source of energy that, unlike sugar, won’t cause a spike in insulin and then an energy crash.

2. Reduce insulin spikes
Fat has the lowest impact on insulin level of all the macronutrients. Your body releases insulin in response to high blood sugar. When the body is continually required to do this, it can burn out, resulting in diabetes. Eating higher fat diets reduce the amount of insulin your pancreas has to pump out.

3. Control blood glucose levels
Fat helps to control your blood glucose level by slowing the absorption of carbs.

4. Helps with the absorption of fat soluble vitamins
Hard to believe, I know, but fat soluble vitamins such as vitamin A, D, E and K need fat to be absorbed! Following a low fat diet reduces our ability to absorb these key vitamins.

5. Keeps you feeling fuller for longer
Fat is the most energy dense macronutrient. And because fat is filling, high-fat dieters often aren’t left feeling hungry (or grumpy like low-fat diets). On a high fat diet, appetite tends to be suppressed and dieters end up eating fewer calories without even trying.

detox copper eat meat

6. Weight loss
When you reduce your carb intake and replace it with fat, your body goes into a metabolic state called ketosis. In ketosis, instead of using your glucose stores for energy, your body taps into its fats stores and burns those for energy instead. Studies have shown that people on low-carb/high-fat diets tend to lose more weight (and faster), than people on low-fat diets.

7. Reduce inflammation
When our bodies are placed under chronic stress from things such as elevated blood glucose levels, high triglycerides, low HDL levels, high blood pressure and insulin resistance, our bodies can’t react with a proper immune system response. This ultimately leads to inflammation in our body. A number of studies have shown that diets high in refined carbohydrates can lead to oxidative stress and high levels of inflammation.

8. Improves brain function
our brains are made up of 60% saturated fat and 25% of our cholesterol is found in our brain. Following low-fat diets that restrict saturated fat consumption and focus on lowering cholesterol starves our brains of the nutrients it needs to function. Saturated fat helps to form myelin, the substance that helps to connect brain cells to each other. Low-fat diets literally starve your brain!

9. Balance hormones
Saturated fat is an essential building block for a variety of hormones in our body. Hormones have a much larger impact on us than we give them credit for. In fact, hormones control all the metabolic processes in our body. The fat in our body is saturated fat, with only 3% of our fat made up of other types. This ratio is critical for our health. The more man-made chemical fats (such as canola and soybean oil) we eat, the more this ratio gets out of whack. The further this ratio gets imbalanced, the more our endocrine system is impacted and the further hormonal disturbances are exacerbated.

Read our post Keto Diet 101 for how to include more fat in your diet.

Foods that reduce cortisol

foods that lower cortisol

When your adrenals are healthy they produce the correct level of cortisol. Cortisol is often called the “stress hormone” as it is usually released by our body in times of stress – think of that adrenalin rush we get when we’re in a flight-or-fight mode.

More often than not, we are told that we need to reduce our levels of cortisol. However this can be problematic for someone suffering from an autoimmune disease, especially a thyroid problem. Correctly functioning adrenals and thus good cortisol levels, neither too high nor too low, are essential to healthy thyroid function. Cortisol raises your cellular level of glucose which works with your cell receptors, ATP (our energy source) and mitochondria to receive T3 from the blood into the cells (you can read more about how to test your cortisol levels here).

When an autoimmune disease is severe, any small changes in cortisol levels can have a detrimental effect on how we feel. Furthermore, foods that are often touted as healthy, can actually further lower our cortisol levels and make us feel even worse!

This is the case for many adaptogens. In particular matcha, licorice root, maca powder and ginseng can actually work against us by lowering cortisol. So whilst these foods are often categorised as “superfoods”, they can do more harm than good!

 

3 Reasons to use Melatonin

Melatonin – or as we like to call it, the wonder hormone – is a hormone produced by the pineal gland; a tiny gland found in our brain.

This gland is thought of as the master controller of our body clock. It manages our day-to-day circadian rhythm, telling us when to sleep and when to wake, and our longer-term biological clock, telling us when we get to experience those wonderful major hormonal milestones, such as puberty and menopause!pineal-gland

The pineal gland controls our circadian rhythms by releasing melatonin. Melatonin synthesis and its release is stimulated by darkness and hence is primarily produced at night. Typically, melatonin is used as a sleep aid to help people overcome jetlag or to help shift workers who have difficulty sleeping.

And that’s why we started using melatonin – to help us sleep. However, melatonin can also help with regulating hormones, thyroid function, our immune system and even help with slowing down aging!

Here are 3 of the benefits to using melatonin:

  1. Melatonin improves your sleep

As we mention above, our pineal gland controls our wake-sleep cycles by releasing melatonin. Melatonin is stimulated by darkness. However, when we watch tv before going to bed or lay in bed playing with our phones, the light from these devices interrupts the release of melatonin.

This disruption throws off the entire melatonin cycle, impacting both the quality and length of your sleep. When you don’t sleep, you suppress all of the systems in your body. Supplementing with melatonin helps your body to regulate its sleep-wake cycle and helps to prevent a breakdown of the other systems in your body.

sleeping

2. Melatonin helps to regulate hormones

I started supplementing with melatonin to help with sleep. However, after a couple of weeks using it, my period returned – after missing for five years! Initially I thought that this was down to the melatonin improving my sleep and therefore reducing the amount of stress in my body. Yet after some further research, I found that melatonin can actually help with regulating hormones.

Italian physician Walter Pierpaoli, MD, in particular, has spent decades researching melatonin and its effects on hormones. Dr. Pierpaoli believes that supplementing with melatonin can not only re-synchronize our circadian rhythms and wake-sleep cycles but also our overall endocrine system.

In one of his studies, Dr. Pierpaoli looked at perimenopausal and menopausal women aged between 42 and 62. This study found that using melatonin supplements for 6 months:

  • Increased estrogen levels,
  • Improved thyroid function,
  • Reduced follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH) levels in the women under 50,
  • Restored normal menstrual cycles in the younger women,
  • Restored normal menstrual cycles in a number of women who were already postmenopausal,
  • Delayed characteristic endocrine changes that occur during menopause, and
  • Helped with the conversion of T4 to T3, resulting in increased T3 levels in the study group.

3. Melatonin can help slow down aging

As we age, the pineal gland produces less and less melatonin. This natural decline means the pineal gland has to work harder to produce the melatonin we require to sleep well. Supplementing with melatonin allows the pineal gland to rest, protecting the pineal gland from aging and slowing down the aging process of our other glands and organs.

Studies of mice and the effects of melatonin have shown that, when provided with a melatonin supplement, the treated mice demonstrated regained energy, a youthful sex drive and a normal thyroid hormone cycle. As such, melatonin may slow some of the effects of aging.

 

I really believe that melatonin is one of the reasons my period returned after five years. Not only are my hormones returning to normal levels, I also feel much more relaxed and even rested when I wake up in the morning. One thing I should mention though – if you do decided to supplement with melatonin, just be aware that your dreams can become very vivid!!

The Truth About Cholesterol (Part 2)

This post is the second article in our series The Truth About Cholesterol. Read about why we need cholesterol here.

In this post we’re going to discuss the fallacy of ‘good’ and ‘bad’ cholesterol aka HDL and LDL.

Veg Oil

There is no such thing as good and bad cholesterol. In fact HDL and LDL are not even cholesterol but lipo-proteins which act as transport mechanisms for cholesterol.

The propaganda bus has created an irrational fear that LDL is ‘bad’. However, our bodies cannot function without LDL – it transports 25% of our total cholesterol to our brain (fun fact – our brain’s weight is 20% cholesterol) for neurons to use in the transmission of vital messages between receptors. (Number one side affect of cholesterol lowering statins is memory loss and brain fog!).

HDL, the so called ‘good’ cholesterol, is the lipo-protein which transports cholesterol from the bloodstream back to the liver for reprocessing.

The real problem isn’t the level of LDL, rather the type of LDL particles circulating in the bloodstream. LDL particles can range between small and large – and it’s the small ones that are the problem.

Small LDL particles are more susceptible to oxidisation. When these particles oxidise, they create inflammation in our arteries which supply blood to our organs. This can then lead to an increased risk of heart attack and stroke.

So the real question should be: “what is causing LDL to oxidize?”

When there is a high level of oxidation present in the body, there also tends to be free radical activity in the tissues. Consuming adequate amounts of antioxidants such as Vitamins C and E prevents oxidative free radical damage.vegetableoilpoison

Consuming artificial, partially hydrogenated oils (trans fats) will not only cause LDL to oxidize, so will a diet high in refined sugars, alcohol and smoking cigarettes. Elevated levels of LDL also may be caused by chemical and heavy metal toxicity, liver toxicity and stress, hypothyroidism and kidney failure.

Calling LDL ‘bad’ is very misleading, especially if you are not identifying causation.

Low levels of HDL reflect a sedentary lifestyle. Doctors and others who push the misinformation about raising HDL as being a good thing, fail to address that HDL levels greater than 75 are actually correlative with autoimmune processes. This is a strong possibility especially if triglyceride levels are low (less than 40). Excess consumption of alcohol, drug use, hypothyroidism, and excess estrogen can also cause HDL levels to become too high.

The Truth About Cholesterol (Part 1)

The Truth About Fat

What actually is cholesterol? Well if we believe the propaganda perpetuated by public health and medical bodies over the last 50 years you would think it is a highly dangerous sticky fat that clings to the walls of our arteries forming plaques, creating arthrosclerosis and causing heart disease, stroke and death!!!

In fact every cell of our body is made from it – cholesterol is one of the most vitally important bodily substances. ALL of our steroid hormones are manufactured from cholesterol, including our sex and adrenal hormones!

Why on earth are we told to lower it then? Good question and I will attempt to explain this later! I say attempt because I find it difficult to understand how the combined brain power of all of the researchers on this subject over the past 50 years have actually concluded that cholesterol is dangerous and the major cause of heart disease, despite the fact their studies have found no such link!

First though let me tell you all of the wonderful things that cholesterol does for us.

The six steroid hormones our bodies need to function are all synthesized from cholesterol and they include :

  • Glucocorticoids which are vitally important for the metabolism of carbohydrates. In particular cortisol, a powerful adrenal hormone that has multiple functions in the body including blood glucose control and anti-inflammatory actions that oppose the hyper reactions of our immune system.
  • Mineralcorticoide hormones, in particular aldosterone which is in charge of electrolyte balance. In lay man’s term keeping sodium and potassium in balance with each other. (Remember that awful feeling of dehydration that comes with a hangover – that comes from an electrolyte imbalance!)
  • Adrogenic hormones such as DHEA and testosterone are critical for libido, bone density, memory and anti-aging, (if you are sick of using the ol’ headache as an excuse get your man on some cholesterol lowering statins – they will take care of his libido! Yes it is one of the most common side effects of statin drugs).
  • Progestagens such as progesterone are vital in regulating women’s menstrual cycles and maintaining a healthy pregnancy.
  • Estrogens such as estradiol are critical for sexual development and bone and brain health.
  • Vitamin D, actually a sterol but don’t worry about that, as it behaves as a steroidal hormone which is converted in the liver and has hundreds of vital immune supporting functions along with calcium regulation in the blood.

As you can see cholesterol is vital for survival!

In fact I am living proof that we need good levels of cholesterol to function. During my acute phase of anorexia when I was living on lettuce leaves, low fat yoghurt and black tea my total cholesterol plummeted to 3.2mmol/L. Along with a multitude of other issues this created, I regressed back to my pre-pubescent years (I was 17 and built like a 9 year old!) everything shrank to the size of a lentil!!!! And I mean everything!!! I was surviving, just, but my clever body knew that I was not fit to bring life into this world and reacted accordingly.

Why I Love…A Keto Diet

A keto (or ketogenic) diet is a low-carb, moderate protein, high fat diet (read our post Keto Diet 101 here). There are a number of health benefits of a keto diet – the number one reason often touted is weight loss, and fast weight loss! Here are the top 5 reasons we love a keto diet.

1.Reduction in blood sugar levels and insulin resistance

Type 2 diabetes is caused when the body can no longer bring spikes in blood sugar levels back to normal. When we eat carbs, the body breaks them down into simple sugars (typically glucose), which is then transferred to the blood stream, elevating our blood sugar levels. As high blood sugar levels are actually toxic, the body has to respond to this spike by pumping out insulin. Now, when people are healthy, this response is often quick. However when we continually eat high carb diets (re a lot of the western world) a lot more insulin is required and this reaction becomes slowed, leading to insulin resistance and eventually type 2 diabetes. As we reduce our carb intake (as per a keto diet), we reduce the need for all of that insulin and our blood sugar levels reduce and stabilise.

2. Reduction of triglyceride levels

Triglycerides are an indicator for heart disease – the higher they are, the higher the risk of heart disease. Whilst triglycerides are fat molecules, the main driver of high triglyceride levels is actually carb consumption (and especially fructose consumption). When people reduce their intake of carbs their triglyceride levels fall (in comparison, low fat diets lead to increases in these levels). Therefore, eating more saturated fat can actually reduce your risk of heart disease!

 

3. Fat loss

When you reduce your carb intake and replace it with fat, your body goes into a metabolic state called ketosis. In ketosis, instead of using your glucose stores for energy, your body taps into its fats stores and burns those for energy instead. Studies have shown that people on low-carb diets tend to lose more weight (and faster), than people on low-fat diets. And because fat is filling, low-carb dieters often aren’t left feeling hungry. On the keto diet, appetite tends to be suppressed and dieters end up eating fewer calories without even trying. These studies also show that a large percentage of this fat loss comes from the visceral fat (i.e. the bad fat) that gets lodged around our organs.

4. Improvement in metabolic symptoms

Metabolic syndrome is a cluster of symptoms including obesity, high blood sugar levels, high triglycerides, low HDL levels, high blood pressure and insulin resistance. It is also highly correlated to diabetes and heart disease. As we mention above, a low carb diet can actually reverse these symptoms and reduce the symptoms of metabolic syndrome.

5. Improved brain function

Saturated fat is a key building block for our body. In fact, our brains are made up of 60% saturated fat. When we eat a low fat diet, we starve our bodies of the key nutrients they need to function. Saturated fat is actually one of the main components of brain cells, and is therefore necessary for healthy brain function. Studies have shown that people who included more saturated fat in their diet reduced their risk of developing dementia by 36%. Other studies have also shown that a keto diet improves memory.

10 reasons fructose is poison

That heading might sound a little bit extreme, but if you have read our series Fructose – What’s the problem with it? you will know that our bodies metabolise fructose differently to other sugars. In fact, when we eat fructose in excess, our body stores it completely as fat.

Here are 10 reasons why excess consumption of fructose is so damaging to our health:

  1. Excess fructose makes you fat

As we said, fructose is metabolised by our bodies differently to any other sugar. In fact, fructose can only be metabolised by our liver. Unlike glucose, fructose can’t be used by our cells for energy and hence is completely useless! Now, when we eat fructose in excess, or day in, day out, our liver has to work over time to get rid of it…and how does it do this? The liver transforms the fructose into fat and sends it straight to our fat cells!

  1. Fructose causes leptin resistance

Leptin is one of our hormones that controls appetite and metabolism. It is the hormone that helps us maintain a healthy weight. However, when we eat fructose in excess, we rapidly develop leptin resistance, meaning our stomachs don’t send the “stop eating, you’re full” message to our brain and we can’t control our weight as easily…so just looking at that muffin makes us gain 10kg.

sugar-cubes

  1. Excess fructose raises ghrelin

Fructose not only doesn’t send the “stop eating” message to our brain, making us think we are still hungry…but it also can raise the levels of ghrelin. Ghrelin is a hormone in our body that stimulates appetite, therefore when we eat fructose, this hormone is raised, making us even hungrier! A double whammy for our appetite!

  1. Fructose can cause insulin resistance

Excess fructose can damage the liver. As we said in point 1, our liver transforms the excess fructose we eat as fat and this fat is in the form of triglycerides. High triglycerides are more of an indicator of potential heart disease than HDL/LDLs, so the lower the level of triglycerides the better. High triglyceride levels can be a factor in causing insulin resistance.

  1. Fructose is more toxic to the liver than alcohol

Yep, you read that right – fructose is more damaging than alcohol to our liver. Excess fructose consumption can lead to non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.

  1. Excess fructose causes inflammation and chronic disease

This one is extremely important for us sufferers of autoimmune diseases. When we consume fructose in high amounts, the sugar reacts with the proteins and polyunsaturated fats in our bodies to create advanced glycation end-products (AGEs). As AGEs compound they create oxidative damage in our cells, leading to inflammation and chronic diseases.

  1. Increased risk of heart disease

Because of the damage to our livers caused by excess fructose, chronic consumption can cause your blood lipid markers to rise, indicating a higher risk for heart disease.

  1. Fructose consumption messes with your gut

Our gut health is integral to our bodies’ functioning. Whilst our cells can’t use fructose for energy, the bacteria in our gut can. Therefore, when we consumer fructose in excess, the bacteria grow and multiply leading to gut flora imbalances and bacterial overgrowth (which, when not treated can have some serious health implications).

gut_bacteria

  1. Fructose consumption impairs brain function

In line with the impact fructose has on our gut, excess fructose can also affect how our brain functions. We know from points 2 and 3 that fructose sends horrible signals to the part of our brain that controls appetite, but it also can impair memory (couple that with brain fog from an autoimmune disease and it’s a surprise we are still managing to function at all!).

  1. Excess fructose can cause the problems of metabolic syndrome

Diabetes, heart disease, obesity – all of the problems of metabolic syndrome can be caused, and exacerbated, by excess fructose consumption. Now we’re not going into the debate about causation and correlation, but just think about this graph:

obesity-levels-and-sugar-consumption

http://goo.gl/EvKt2Q

 

Do you have a magnesium deficiency?

Do you suffer from ‘growing pains’? Muscle cramps? Insomnia? Anxiety? PMS or even chronic fatigue? If so, you might have a magnesium deficit.

Magnesium is a powerful mineral that is important for helping our bodies to function. Anything that is cramped, tight, irritable and stiff — a body part or a mood — is an indication of magnesium deficiency. Magnesium is responsible for more than 300 enzyme reactions and is found in all our muscles, bones and brain. We need magnesium to help our cells make energy, stabilize membranes and help our muscles relax.

The list of symptoms caused by a magnesium deficiency is long – medical references show there are more than 3,500! These are the most common:

  • Muscle cramps or ‘growing pains’magnesium deficiency
  • Muscle twitches
  • Restless Legs Syndrome
  • Constipation
  • Headaches
  • Migraines
  • Insomnia
  • Sensitivity to loud noises
  • Anxiety
  • PMS
  • Menstrual cramps
  • Irritability
  • Palpitations
  • Asthma
  • Kidney stones
  • Irritable bladder, and
  • Irritable bowel syndrome

Magnesium deficiency has also been connected to whole body inflammation (and as you know, inflammation is a problem/cause of all autoimmune diseases).

Unfortunately, our modern world can again be blamed for why so many people suffer from these issues. Many of us live on a diet of highly-processed, refined food that is predominantly made from white flour and sugar – all of which contain no magnesium! Furthermore, magnesium is poorly absorbed, and easily lost, from our bodies – especially when we consume excess alcohol, coffee, table salt, or are involved in intense exercise with lots of sweating or prolonged stress (which also relates to adrenal fatigue!).

Toxic Food - What NOT to eat with Hashimoto's

However, a number of medical studies have found that these symptoms can be reduced or eliminated by adding a magnesium supplement to our diet.

The most absorbable forms are magnesium citrate, glycinate and taurate. It’s important to note though that the magnesium found in those cheap, supermarket shelf supplements are often magnesium carbonate, sulfate, gluconate and oxide. These are poorly absorbed by our bodies and best avoided.

In order to aid in its absorption, magnesium supplements should also be taken alongside Vitamin B6 and Vitamin D.

To really amp up the absorption, you can take a warm bath with Epsom salts (magnesium sulfate)…we like to use our Epson salt bath as time to meditate and take some time out for ourselves!

Now, you’ll know if you have taken too much magnesium as you’ll be running to the toilet all day! If this occurs, just scale back the about of magnesium you are taking.

We like to take our magnesium supplements at night. This helps our bodies to relax and sleep better. We also find that magnesium really helps with our stress levels!!