Energy smoothie and vodka fruity cocktail

April 25, 2010

Energy smoothing ingredients …

  • 1 x banana
  • 1 x raw egg
  • honey
  • milk
  • pomegranate juice
  • guarana drink
  • crushed ice

… mix and drink.

Vodka fruity cocktail ingredients …

  • strawberries
  • blueberries
  • raspberries
  • pomegranate syrup
  • isotonic orange drink
  • i measure of vodka

… crush into a pulp and pour into a champagne filled flute to drink.


Depression: Causes and Treatment

January 2, 2010

Depression is a problem that occurs when you have intense sadness that ends up lasting for weeks, and this keeps you from normal function in your life. There are a various symptoms of depression include

  • insomnia,
  • feeling guilty or worthless,
  • fatigue,
  • problems concentrating,
  • thoughts of suicide, problems staying calm,
  • sleeping too much,
  • weight loss or gain and other symptoms.

What may cause depression to occur and how you can overcome depression in your life…

  1. Stress and Traumatic Situations: Going through a trauma in your life or dealing with a lot of stress in life can end up being something that can cause depression to occur in your life. Some of the situations that can cause these this to occur include pain, illness, losing someone you love, abuse, or other traumatic events. This can lead to imbalances in the chemicals in the brain, which can cause depression to occur.
  2. Genetics: There are studies that show that depression can be caused by heredity, at least to some extent. While not every single person that has depression has a family history of it, those who have it in their family history are more likely to end up dealing with mental illnesses, such as depression.
  3. Not Enough Community Time: Community time can be thought of as time spent in leisure, in groups. This may be playing sport, a walking club, book club, being involved in a charitable endeavour with others, or simply sharing friendship. The lack of community time can cause depression.
    If you’ve become more isolated to the point where you perhaps have few friends, or are not engaging in group activity, this needs to be rectified urgently. Sometimes face to face meetings in groups are too overwhelming, but there is an easy interim step, which is joining an on-line group in order to build confidence and comfort in a group environment.
  4. Sedentary Work: Even more than exercise time, the little bits and pieces of movement we do each day (our general activity level) is vital in keeping our metabolic rate up.
    If we’re in front of a computer screen all day, we need to stretch every 15 minutes, and get up and actually walk around. We’re not meant to be immobile!
  5. Being Without a Purpose: Everyone needs to build meaning into their life – we cannot exist healthily if we do not have an abiding interest in something and that will cause depression, if we do not have in our lives something that really matters to us. This may be something grand, for instance working to solve global warming, or something on a much smaller scale, scrapbooking family history or learning more about a topic that interests you.
    Sometimes my depressed clients report that there is nothing that interests them, and of course this is true. The trick is to find an activity which is "less boring" than others they can think of, and to do that in a disciplined and committed way. Gradually (and quite surprisingly) the passion and energy return, and the patient begins to make real choices about what is important to them, and how they wish to spend their time.
  6. Not Having a Routine: No-one wants to live a regimented life where they never vary anything, but the opposite, where people just drift along from day to day with no set time to get up, no set time to go to bed, and no set time to do anything in particular in between, is the fastest way to develop depression known to man. For some reason human beings thrive on routine and quickly become ill without it. Have a look at your day-to-day life and make sure there’s a strong routine factor in there, even though you might vary it according to circumstances.

Source…


Brain Foods

January 2, 2010

For brain cells to communicate effectively with each other to create neural pathways, they require chemicals called neurotransmitters. Neurotransmitters are the ‘messengers’ carrying messages from neuron to neuron.
Neurotransmitters are made from amino acids found in protein foods e.g., meat, fish and cheese.
Vitamins and minerals are needed to convert ordinary amino acids into these powerful neurotransmitters. 
Neurotransmitters are found in the food we eat, hence why some foods are called ‘brain foods’. 

The three key neurotransmitters are: 

  1. Acetylcholine (ACh) – This neurotransmitter excites other neurons and may be responsible for memory. It is involved with voluntary movement of muscles, behavioural inhibition, drinking and memory.
    Acetylcholine rich foods include: egg yolks, peanuts, wheat germ, liver, meat, fish, milk, cheese and vegetables (especially broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower)
  2. Dopamine generally excites and is involved in movement, attention and learning but is also inhibitory. It is involved with voluntary movement, emotional arousal.
    Dopamine rich foods include all proteins (meat, milk products, fish, beans, nuts, soy products). 3-4ounces of protein will help you to feel energized, more alert and more assertive.
  3. Serotonin (or 5-HT) usually inhibits and is involved in arousal and sleep, mood, appetite and sensitivity. However, it is also excitatory and is part of the brain’s reward system producing feelings of pleasure.
    Serotonin rich foods are carbohydrate based e.g., pasta, starchy vegetables, potatoes, cereals, breads.

Brain Foods – Protein

Protein is found in meat, fish, milk and cheese. Protein provides the building blocks for most of the body’s tissues, nerves, internal organs (including brain and heart). Proteins are used to make neurotransmitters and are essential to improve mental performance.

Brain Foods – Carbohydrate

  • Carbohydrates enhance the absorption of tryptophan, which is converted into serotonin in the brain. Within about thirty minutes of eating a carbohydrate meal,, you will feel more calm and relaxed. The effects will last several hours.
  • Grains, fruits and vegetables are key sources of carbohydrates.
    Digestion causes the breakdown of carbohydrates into glucose (sugar) which is the brains primary source of energy. If your glucose levels fluctuate too much, you may experience mental confusion, dizziness and if severe, convulsions and loss of consciousness.

Brain Foods – Fat

  • The brain is more than 60% fat. This is because the brain cells are covered by the myelin sheath which is composed of approximately 75% fat. Fats also play a crucial role as messengers. They regulate key aspects of the immune system, blood circulation, inflammation, memory and mood. 
  • Omega 3 fatty acids are essential to the optimum performance of your brain. Lack of omega-3 fats in your diet can lead to depression, poor memory, low IQ, learning disabilities, dyslexia, ADD and many more mental disorders.
  • To ensure that your diet is rich in omega-3 fats, ensure that you eat plenty of oily fish like salmon, sardines, trout, tuna, herring, mackerel and anchovies.

Brain Foods – Vitamins & Minerals

  • Vitamins and minerals are essential for the growth and functioning of the brain. 
  • The ‘B’ complex vitamins are particularly important for the brain and play a vital role in producing energy. Vitamins A, C and E are powerful antioxidants and promote and preserve memory in the elderly. 
  • Minerals are also critical to mental functioning and performance. Magnesium and manganese are needed for brain energy. Sodium, potassium and calcium are important in the thinking process and they facilitate the transmission of messages.

Source…


Tips For Depression Men

January 2, 2010
  1. Don’t Give Up Your Hobbies  – do not lose to the empty feeling as many people have given up hope and start dropping their favorite pastimes and hobbies in the process. This will undoubtedly only worsen the situation and create a more depressive state for you in the future as you are robbed of enjoyment and pleasure that these activities provide you. Instead, you should concentrate more of your time and energy into doing something that you love, for example go for a walk in the park, play golf and immerse yourself in hobbies that hopefully involves physical movements.
  2. Exercise – apart from increasing your blood flow throughout all parts of your body, exercise will enable to you think clearly and more objectively to handle your situation besides obvious physical benefits as well as working as a natural anti-depressant as the activities will increase your serotonin levels and allow you to be at a more relaxed sedative state which will help depression men.
  3. Watch Your Diet – lack of nutrients will make feel you easily irritated and generally unwell. Also, eating frequent light meals is better than a few heavy ones and make sure that all the appropriate nutrients are available in your meals. Leave out extreme diet plans that require you to forgo all carbohydrates and focus on protein or vice versa.Include brain food in your diet which uplifts your serotonin levels and helps to enhance your memory. Simply put, you are what you eat so it is vital that you eat your way back to your former happy healthy self.

See “Brain Foods,” post…


Anti-Depression Supplements

January 2, 2010

Try a natural supplement to treat depression. Low to moderate levels of depression can often be treated effectively with St. John’s Wort, a fairly inexpensive supplement available over the counter, without a prescription. St. John’s Wort is taken orally. According to studies by the British Medical Journal, patients treated with St. John’s Wort are 3 times less likely to experience temporary side effects than people taking pharmaceutical antidepressants.

Herbs that help nourish and heal the nervous system include oatstraw, chamomile, lemon balm, and borage. These herbs can be taken on a daily basis and likely don’t conflict with the prescription medication.

Ginseng is a type of herb called an adaptogen. Adaptogen herbs have a balancing affect on the body. Depression can signify a lack of balance. So herbs like ginseng can help to treat depression and other nervous system complaints indirectly.

Increase your daily exercise. Studies show that a minimum of 30 minutes of daily exercise can increase the production of serotonin in the brain. This chemical is responsible for creating feelings of well being. Daily exercise, over the course of 6 months, may increase the body’s serotonin and help treat depression naturally.


5 Superfoods to Fight Stress

January 2, 2010

Food is the biggest drug most of us take on a regular basis. Depending on what you eat, you feel the good or bad effects almost immediately.

Why not add a bit more of these stress-fighting superfoods to your diet this hectic holiday season and enjoy the mellowing effects?

1. SPINACH

Stuff fresh spinach in omelets and sandwiches for an extra boos of magnesium, which lowers stress by stopping blood pressure from spiking.

2. ORANGES

Drink orange juice. A study found that healthy people exposed to cold viruses are more likely to get sick when under pressure. Even a brief period of stress can affect our immune systems, but the vitamin C in citrus fruits helps strengthen them.

3. CHOCOLATE

A piece of dark chocolate, especially, is an instant mood booster and can help you relax. The cocoa in chocolate affects the pleasure sensors in our brains.

4. FISH

Have a tuna sandwich for lunch or smoked salmon from the holiday dinner buffets. (Or better yet, fatty tuna sushi and salmonskin rolls! Two of my favorites!) The omega-3 fatty acids in salmon and tuna have been shown to calm anxiety.

5. OATMEAL

Good for breakfast as well as an afternoon snack. The B vitamins in oats stimulate serotonin production, another natural pleasure drug in our brains that soothe us.

For the complete article “5 Stress-Fighting Superfoods” at self.com, click here.

Source…


How to tell if you have a cold or a flu

January 2, 2010

Here’s how to tell the difference:

1. FEVER

If you’re temperature is above 100 degrees Farenheit (37 degrees celsius), you probably have the flu.

2. RUNNY NOSE

If your nose is stuffy and drippy, that’s more likely a cold.

3. SNEEZING

Sneezing is a symptom of a cold.

4. COUGHING

Coughing could signal either a cold or the flu. “A dry unproductive cough means you have the flue, but a hacking, productive cough means you have a cold.”

5. SORE THROAT

A sore throat probably means you have a cold.

6. HEADACHE

Both colds and flus often come with headaches, so check your other symptoms.

7. FATIGUE

Sudden and extreme exhaustion or sleepiness is a sign of the flu.

8. CHILLS

Feeling unusually cold and can’t warm up easily? This might mean fever and the flu.

9. SORE BODY

It depends. “If your body aches are accompanied by a headache and chills, it’s a cold. But if your body aches are accompanied by fatigue, it could be the flu.”

10. VACCINE

Obviously if you’ve had your flu shot this year, it’s probably the old common cold.

For the full “How to Tell If You Have a Cold or the Flu” at foxnews.com, click here.