Brain supplements?

October 18, 2012

Don’t solely rely on anything I write about supplements for your brain or for anything else.  I am just some random blogger that you should not trust implicitly.  Use blogs, news articles, social media, etc. to get ideas.  Then, talk to real experts and do your own research on those ideas!  Think critically, look behind the claim, try your best to find evidence against the claim, read peer-reviewed journals.  Medical doctors are usually a great source of information as well.*

I met a true expert in brain supplements this afternoon at my favorite natural food and supplement store, Integral Yoga.  His name is Dr. Parris Kidd, and in talking with him at length today, seems to really know what he’s talking about.  Granted, I’m just an aforementioned random blogger, but check out his stuff for yourself.

Dr. Parris Kidd

Dr. Parris Kidd

I didn’t realize it when I was talking to him, but I already knew of him!  A very good friend of mine read Dr. Kidd’s book PS (PhosphatidylSerine) Nature’s Brain Booster A Vital Lipid Nutrient For Memory Mood And Stress and had wonderful success using PS with her daughter who was diagnosed with ADD.  If you have concerns about your own brain health and/or memory, or you have loved ones who suffer from ADD, ADHD, Alzheimer’s or dementia, you should check out what Dr. Kidd has to say.  I think he is working on formulations with Doctor’s Best supplements, and I will definitely be researching their Curcumin, Polyphenols, Natural Brain Enhancers, Best DHA and Magnesium.

Just a note: My own doctor (who is an MD, and is also highly knowledgeable about and respected in the field of complementary and alternative medicine) has recommended Doctor’s Best supplements to me in the past (he doesn’t sell them, nor is he affiliated with the company in any way), so his endorsement also bodes well for the brand, I think.

*  If you are genuinely concerned about your health and will work hard to make it better, and are not just satisfied to take some prescription medication, then you should have a doctor that has ideas about complimentary medicine, supplements, nutrition, exercise, stress management and all of the many natural pillars of health, in addition to current and confirmed knowledge of western medicine as well.  If your doctor skirts the issue, doesn’t take your concerns seriously, suggests little more than prescriptions and OTC medications, find a new doctor.  Prescriptions and western medicine are beneficial and at times, miraculous, but there is a wide, wide world of alternatives.


Alert: Great Snack Food

October 5, 2012

Flamous Falafel Chips

I found these at Integral Yoga. I’ve also seen them at Whole Foods occasionally. If you’re going to eat a chip, this seems to me to be your best option, nutritionally.

It’s that time of the year when I go evaluating snack foods to bring in to The Kid’s classroom, and I am very impressed with Flamous Falafel Chips in Original Flavor (they have a spicy flavor as well).  Due to my nightshade intolerance, I can’t eat them (they contain bell peppers, tomato and cayenne), but The Kid and husband loves them, and I am impressed with the organic non-GMO ingredients, as well as their dairy-free, gluten-free, preservative-free, artificial color/flavor-free status.  I’m not a fan of corn (it’s the Dick Cheney of the nutritional world), and these are corn-based.  However, they at least made it organic, non-GMO, whole kernel corn, so the presence of (at least good quality corn) is more than mitigated by the other benefits, in my opinion.

Flamous Falafel Chips Ingredients

This is one impressive set of ingredients!

Flamous Falafel Chips Stats

The stats are not bad. I like to see zero sugars, a bit of protein, reasonable sodium and good numbers for Calcium and Iron (especially considering the serving size is only 10 chips).


What are the names associated with OSX versions?

October 4, 2012

OMG!  I have the same question, about every 2 weeks!  I can’t stand the fact that Apple insists upon using these stupid code names, but yet refuses to put them next to the version number in the “About this Mac” window!  Apparently, they just want to drive me crazy.  Here’s a chart to keep me sane.  Thanks, Wikipedia!


What is your favorite zinc spray?

October 3, 2012

Quantum Thera Zinc Spray

Quantum Thera Zinc Spray is my favorite zinc spray. There is another company called Quantum that makes similar products (which are also great, BTW), so that is why I added this picture, so you can tell the difference.

Quantum Thera Zinc Spray is my favorite zinc spray, with Source Naturals Wellness Zinc Throat spray coming in second.  Quantum is kind of harsh on the throat, I find, but it does the trick.  If your throat is really sensitive, go with the Source Naturals.

 

 

 

 

 

 


What did you bring in for snack week this week?

October 1, 2012

This week was our family’s turn to bring in snacks to The Kid’s classroom.  We’re not allowed to bring in anything with nuts or coconut (the coconut ban at our school is new and kind of crazy in my humble opinion, even in spite of the FDA misguidedly – again, in my opinion – reclassifying coconut as a nut in 2006).  Given the restrictions, I still tried to bring in healthy snacks.  I brought in:

  • Organic celery, totally washed, trimmed and cut up into sticks.  Hey, don’t teachers have enough to do than have to prep snacks?
  • Oikos (by Stonyfield Farm) single serve yogurts – organic vanilla – I am usually not a fan of fat free yogurt (it’s more than just a taste thing… fat is important in your diet), but this had a nice size container for class snack, it’s organic, and it had one of the more favorable sugar to protein ratios I’ve seen in the organic, dairy-based, flavored yogurt single serves (11:15 g).
  • Cabot Creamery Serious Snacks Sharp Cheddar Cheese packs.  I’d prefer it if these were organic, but I like the Cabot cooperative farmers products, so I don’t mind non-organic on this one so much.  Great size – .75 oz each and I think the individual packages make it a lot easier on the teachers during snack time.
  • My Super Snack Soft Granola Bites in Blueberry Banana Acai flavor.  I just recently tasted these, and liked them.  They have a sugar to protein ratio of 2:1 (which is not bad – I try to keep it as far under 3:1 as I can) and best of all, The Kid liked them.
My Super Snack in Blueberry Banana Acai

These are tasty, nutrient-dense snacks that are new to NYC!

My Super Snack in Blueberry Banana Acai

Here are the ingredients and some stats.

  • Go Raw Organic Sprouted Pumpkin Seeds.  I don’t know if there are any dairy-free kids in the classroom, but even if there aren’t, a high protein, nutrient-dense food like pumpkin seeds are a wonderful classroom snack.
Go Raw Organic Sprouted Pumpkin Seeds

I don’t know why Go Raw doesn’t have their expanded nutritional information on their website, but they don’t show this many stats there, so I took a picture. Pumpkin seeds are an amazing superfood. Plus, they’re anti-inflammatory!

  • Organic Sunbutter – look at the stats!  It’s another great high protein source, and it’s nut free!
  • Happy Herbert’s Spelt Snack Sticks  – these are tasty, filling, organic, and have turmeric!  I am all about turmeric these days.
  • Edward & Sons Organic Brown Rice Snaps in Unsalted Plain – I love these things, plus, it’s a nice gluten free platform for the Sunbutter!  Besides, now that I don’t have any priest friends anymore, the chances of me getting my hands on unconsecrated hosts for snacking is pretty much nil.  These are my substitute.

Other great classroom snack ideas:

  • Washed and thinly-sliced organic fennel
  • Roasted Nori packs (Trader Joe’s has good ones)
  • Homemade gluten-free, dairy-free, nut-free, refined sugar-free energy bars (see recipe here) – just be sure to provide teachers with complete ingredient list, so they don’t have to go crazy wondering if there are nuts in it.  It tastes nutty.
  • Bananas (the less ripe they are, the less sugar they have – I try for one day away from any visible green)
  • Washed and chopped organic red pepper (great source of vitamin C without the big sugar rush)
  • Freshly cut sunflower sprouts (I get these at the Union Square Farmer’s Market from The Grassman, who is awesome, BTW)
  • Flamous Falafel Chips – (see my post about them)

Alert: It’s time for you to start your cold and flu season regimen!

October 1, 2012

Today is October first, which means that if you live in the Northern Hemisphere above the 37th parallel (I’m talking to you, New York, San Francisco, Chicago, St. Louis, etc.), you are not going to be getting your Vitamin D from the sun until late March/early April.  Having inadequate levels of Vitamin D as shown on a Serum 25-Hydroxyvitamin D [25(OH)D] test (<50 nmol/L or <20 ng/mL, according to this article from the National Institutes of Health site) could impact your immunity, along with a whole host of other health conditions.  (Just google “Vitamin D immunity” and critically look at what you find and then talk to your doctor!)

The best way to get Vitamin D is from the proper, timely sun exposure, but in lieu of that in the winter months, one of the many ways to get it is from Cod Liver Oil.  My favorite brand of Cod Liver Oil is currently on sale, through tomorrow, at Whole Foods (at least in the NYC area).

Cod Liver Oil

Carlson’s Lemon Flavor Cod Liver Oil is currently on sale through tomorrow at Whole Foods (at least in the NYC area). I would get some if I were you!

Personally, I take 2 tablespoons of it a day plus a Vitamin D supplement (because I am near deficient, according to the test above).  Maybe it’s related, maybe it’s not, but I haven’t had a flu or a serious cold since I seriously started on this regimen, and I never get the flu shot.  Perhaps it is coincidence – who knows?

However, if you are interested, you should talk to your doctor about it before taking it.  If you feel like your doctor doesn’t know anything about it, or brushes off your concern, or worse yet, just mindlessly pushes a flu vaccine on you instead, you should think about getting a new doctor.  All nutrients, foods and your own body chemistry work together, and taking something in isolation without understanding the whole picture is not a great idea.  For example, to be absorbed, Vitamin D needs to be taken with fat.  It works together with Magnesium, Phosphorus, Vitamin K and Calcium, and others, all in different amounts.  Messing up the balance of your body is a bad idea.  Gather information on your own in order to ask informed questions of experts (don’t just rely on some layperson blogger like myself).

Speaking of immunity, see these prior, seasonal posts of mine:


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