The 5 Best Alkalizing Foods

bigstock--166546871Eating an alkaline diet is so important for many reasons. First and foremost, it is proven to prevent cancer. Cancer thrives in an acidic environment; therefore, if you keep your pH alkaline (7.2-7.4) cancer has trouble surviving.

Many of the foods present in the American diet are acidic, even though they are good for us. This includes things like proteins and some fruits. Therefore, it is always important to include alkalizing foods in to your diet. Today we’re going to talk about five of the best alkalizing foods to incorporate in to your diet.

Lemon
If you’re someone who follows a high protein high fat diet, i.e. something like paleo, it is extremely important to use lemons on a daily basis. One of the easiest ways to do this is to add fresh squeezed lemon into your water. Diets high in acid can cause kidney issues. And although lemons may seem to be acidic they are very alkaline, making it a perfect balance.

Almonds
Almonds are very alkalizing, but you have to be sure you get them raw. Although roasted and salted almonds are delicious, they don’t have the same benefit as raw almonds do.

Kale
This leafy green has been all the rage for a while now, and for good reason. All of the vitamins and minerals in kale make it a great alkalizer.

Quinoa
This plant based protein is another alkalizing food. Plus, it packs a huge protein punch for just a little seed.

Cucumber
Cucumbers are very high in water, in fact almost 100%. So they help to hydrate your skin and are full of antioxidants.

Looking for a healthy lunch for tomorrow? Why not combine all 5 of these foods to make a nutrient super-packed salad? Cut up some kale, chop some cucumbers, add a little quinoa, sprinkle on some almonds and for the dressing drizzle with some lemon juice. The lemon juice will help to cut the bitterness of the kale, and the quinoa will add some extra protein.

What to learn more about an alkaline diet? Check out the Women’s Mind Body Wellness Summit. It contains 6 interviews by top female health professionals plus two workout videos and 3 bonus videos on mind-body wellness with MyHealthSpin Founder Lori-Ann Rickard. Now including a bonus video from Dr. Jennifer Shell!

6 Supplements to Avoid if You’re on Prescription Drugs

We’ve been talking about supplements a lot lately. And while supplements can be vital to ones diet, it’s important to keep in mind that they must be taken safely. Also, you should never start taking any vitamin or supplement without consulting a healthcare professional. Even though a supplement can be considered safe by the FDA it doesn’t mean that it can’t cause interactions. July is Herbal/Prescription Drug Interaction Awareness Month so today we’re sharing 6 supplements you should watch out for if you’re on prescription drugs.

Grape fruit and St. John’s Wort 
Not many women know this, and not many health care professionals warn young women about it, but grapefruit supplements, as well as St. John’s Wort, can interact with birth control pills. It can change how your body handles estrogen. Which is the whole point of a birth control pill, it prevents an egg from dropping by tricking your body  in to thinking it’s already pregnant. Therefore, if the grape fruit extract messes with one’s estrogen levels it can cause a decreased effectiveness of their contraceptive. 

St John’s Wort
St. John’s Wort is an herb that has several contraindications. In addition to birth control, as mentioned above, it can interact with many other prescription medications. These medications include HIV drugs, cyclosporine (an immunosuppressive drug used after transplants), imatinib and irinotecan (chemotherapy drugs), verapamil (a calcium blocker used for hypertension), warfarin (blood thinner), digoxin (for managing high blood pressure) as well as methadone (pain medication). So as you can see, this herb has many dangerous contraindications. 

Black Licorice
Licorice and licorice liquid is often times used to improve poor adrenal function. The adrenal glands are responsible for blood sugar control, blood pressure regulation and they can play a role in stress and fatigue. Black licorice is a great herb to help boost adrenal function, but beware if you’re on diuretics. This liquid can lessen their strength.

Coleus
Coleus, these beautiful variegated plants you see in peoples landscaping, is used for treating cardiac disorders. It helps regulate blood pressure and strengthens the heart muscle. But be careful not to mix this plant with prescription hypotensive drugs. It can drop blood pressure too low.

Korean Ginseng
Korean ginseng is an ancient herb used to boost the immune system. It can also help manage diabetes and improve memory. But don’t take this herb if you’re on MAOI’s for depression. It can cause drowsiness  and more serious complications such as liver damage.

Evening primrose oil
Evening primrose oil is an herb that all women should know about, especially those who are of the age of menopause. EPO helps to lessen hot flashes. What woman wouldn’t want that? But this is a no-no for those with blood sugar issues. It can lower blood sugar and could potentially lead to diabetic coma. It can also increase one’s risk for breathing.

As you can see, many of the herbs listed above have important benefits. And can really help with many ailments. But as you can also see, these supplements can be extremely dangerous when mixed with the wrong prescription drugs. So you should always consult your physician before adding any vitamins or supplements to your diet.

To learn more about health and women’s health check out the Women’s Mind Body Wellness Summit. It contains 6 interviews by top female health professionals plus two workout videos and 3 bonus videos on mind-body wellness with MyHealthSpin Founder Lori-Ann Rickard.

7 Best Oils for Cooking

Knowing the right type of oil to use when cooking is no small task. We know oils such as olive oil and coconut oil are great for our health, but can they stand up to high heats when cooking? What about vegetable oils? There’s always mixed reviews on if they’re okay in moderation or if they should be avoided all together. Today, we’re going to help you decide what types of oils to use when making your favorite dishes. 

Olive oil
Olive oil is heart healthy and helps to build strong bones. But this oil should only be used in medium heat.  Meaning, it should not be used for frying or baking over 350 degrees. At high temperatures oil can go rancid, causing bonds to break down making them indigestible in our bodies. Olive oil is great to use in salad dressing or on dishes being cooked at 350 or less. 

Avocado oil
Like several of the other oils listed here, avocado oil has a very high smoke point. The smoke point of avocado oil is about 520 degrees! This makes it perfect for frying. Also, avocado is a healthy fat, perfect for hair, skin and nails.

Coconut oil
Coconut oil is one of the best oils around, including one of the best to cook with. It has numerous benefits for your body including: working as an antimicrobial, helping burn stubborn fat, and it boosting your immune system. Coconut oil has a high smoke point, meaning it can be used when cooking at high temperatures. It’s perfect on Brussels sprouts and cabbage as it adds a slight sweet flavor to food. You can also try putting a tablespoon in your smoothie or morning coffee. One thing to note, when buying coconut oil it must be unrefined, expeller pressed. 

Butter and ghee
While very different, we’re going to consider them the same for the purposes of this article. Butter, not the garbage margarine you find in the grocery store, is good for you. It’s a healthy fat. Remember our post last week Facts About Fat? You just have to be sure you’re buying the right kind. Stick to (get it?) butter that is made from grass-fed cows milk, that are not treated with hormones and antibiotics. An excellent brand is Kerry Gold. Ghee is another great option for cooking. Ghee is clarified butter, again, be sure you’re using the good stuff. It’s super easy to make your own ghee at home, or you can buy it at the health food store. 

Beef tallow
We hadn’t heard of this healthy cooking fat until our most recent interview with Dr. Jennifer Shell, so we were really excited to learn about it. Beef tallow is excellent for cooking as it can withstand high heats. It also contains a bunch of vitamin D, helping to build strong bones.  Thanks Dr. she’ll for sharing this with us! Check out the Women’s Mind Body Wellness Summit for more information! 

Sesame oil
Sesame oil is high in fat, but good fat! It has a smoke point of over 400, so it’s great for cooking. Choosing a lighter color version of this oil is even better. But, it’s definitely not something you want to use for baking. It has a heavy flavor so stick to using it when making things like stir fry or lettuce wraps. 

Palm oil
Palm oil is found in the heart of the palm. It’s high in vitamin E and carotenoids making it an excellent choice when it comes to health. It has a very high heat point making it great for cooking. And it has a very mild taste which makes for a great alternative to use when baking. 

Oil to avoid…

Canola oil 
This oil is a no-no, even when it comes to baking. It is genetically modified from its original form containing countless of harmful chemicals. It’s also a partially hydrogenated oil, meaning the oil has been heated and the molecular bonds have been broken down. The purpose behind this is to keep the oil from going rancid, thus, giving it a longer shelf life. But hydrogenated oils are bad for your heart and can increase cholesterol, clogging your arteries. 

To learn more health and wellness tips, pick up the WMBW Summit. It contains 6 interviews by top female health professionals plus two workout videos and 3 bonus videos on mind-body wellness with myself, MyHealthSpin Founder Lori-Ann Rickard. Plus a newly added bonus video from Dr. Jennifer Shell! Use promo code “BEWELL” to receive 50% off!