As the winter festivities came to a logical close and the new year started pacing us, an onslaught of detox ideas began landing in our inboxes and field of vision. At the time when you and your[...]
Cytoplan takes nutritional advice very seriously, so if you want to have ‘personalised’ supplement recommendation, you need to fill their comprehensive questionnaire online, which takes into account your medical history, lifestyle, hormones & emotional problems you might be going through among other things. To be honest I ‘chickened out’ of doing it, as it is quite lengthy & does take time to complete it (being thorough when it comes to choosing supplements is a very good idea and the fact that Cytoplan offers this for free is a testament to how seriously they take their clients wellbeing), but Charlotte kindly acted as my nutritional fairy and based on the things that I told her, she recommended some Cytoplan supplements to me in early autumn ( I am sorry to say I am not a fan of Krill oil but take BareBiology fish oil (liquid or in capsule) daily), as in her opinion ‘they represent the different aspects of the range, but are also good for skin health at this particular time of year. Vitamin D is, of course, the one that you should also consider as that is one of the most common deficiencies come the shorter days – however, you can also get that from natural food sources’. (Galina’s note: I use ‘Better You’ Vitamin D spray daily from October onwards, both for myself, as well as for my children, as the brand makes it for adults, babies and kids. My spray provides me with 1000 IU in one spray, but if your blood test shows you are low on it, based on your doctor’s or registered nutritionist advice, you can increase it to 3,000 IU in dark autumn and winter months, when we feel the lack of sunshine quite acutely). Now, apart from Vitamin D & BareBiology, I stopped taking any other supplements from October, so I can see & feel how my body responds to Cytoplan. I put three to the test, Super B Extra, Wholefood Zinc & Cherry C & throughout the post added advice & comments from both Amanda & Charlotte, to give you a well-rounded view of my experience.
The Super B Extra tablets (an example of their Food State range, 60 tablets), £15.90
Charlotte Fraser: ‘One of my personal favourites, and a popular one amongst my nutrition clients. I take two at breakfast, but if I am dog-tired or jet–lagged, I might take two at lunch too. These are brilliant for revving up your energy, but also keeping you super chilled – wonderfully supportive to the nervous system. Of course they are also very good for skin health too. You can’t store B vitamins in the body, so you will urinate out any excess. Super B Extra is fast acting and it contains good levels of magnesium as well to combat stress and help relax muscles. B vitamins are great for also making the glass half full – I think of B for ‘bounce :)’.
The recommended intake on the tablet box states ‘2 tablets daily, can be increased to 4 tablets daily if required as food supplement or as directed by your practitioner. This supplement shouldn’t be used as a substitute fora varied diet’. I take two tablets (the have a slightly flat oval shape, making them fairly easy to swallow) after breakfast with a small glass of water and after taking it for about three weeks, I noticed that overall I became slightly milder in my general attitude to life, which when you are particularly busy, is a very welcome bonus. Somehow I became more subdued when dealing with stressful situation and while the grumpy gremlin in me hasn’t disappeared completely, I multi-task more efficiently and am calmer. Now, having been taking it consistently for three months, I can feel the difference it makes to the nervous system & think it is definitely the one to be taking on a regular basis when you deal with stressful situations on a regular basis. It helps make you a better person of sorts .)
Wholefood Zinc (7,5mg, 60 capsules), £13.20
Charlotte Fraser: ‘This is made from hydroponically-grown brassica (a member of the broccoli family). Zinc is a hugely important mineral and one that I find a lot of clients are deficient in. It is a particularly good idea to top up Zinc levels in the Autumn months, more as an insurance measure. It is of course the ‘vanity’ mineral, great for skin, hair and nails, however it is super important for helping to maintain optimum gut health, boosting the immune system, maintaining hormonal balance, growth, libido, brain function & helping to combat depression – the list is too long to mention. Everyone can benefit from some additional zinc in the lead up to Christmas when the bugs are flying, just to bolster one’s immune system. The best time to take Zinc is supper time. If you don’t like the capsule wholefood format, Cytoplan do a Food State variety called Zinc & Copper, which is nice too.
You don’t feel an instant difference taking zinc. You slightly have to reach the end of the tunnel and then look back, and then you wonder how it is that you now see the world in colour; you aren’t conscious of a particular ‘Eureka moment’, but you realise that you feel significantly different from when you set out along the tunnel. It is more gradual, but Zinc can have a very profound effect on someone’s physical health and mental wellbeing. The dosage I prescribe for Zinc differs depending on clients’ individual circumstances – there are maintenance, therapeutic and clinical doses.’
Following Charlotte’s advice I have been taking one capsule of zinc in the evening, after dinner and just as Charlotte described, gradually, within a few weeks, I find myself calmer and not as fussed compared to let’s say the run up to Christmas last year. Yes, there were the usual jitters along the line ‘how will I get everything done on time’, but I kept my head on, genuinely smiled outward and just got on with the ticking of the items of my daily ‘to do list’. Now, as we dive into January, after various indulgence and family travels, I feel like a better version of myself, ready to tackle the excitement and work projects that lie ahead.
The Cherry C (whole food Vitamin c 200mg, 60 capsules), £15.50
That Protein was founder by the lovely Irish woman Darlene McCormick. Darlene has been voted Northern Ireland’s Top Businesswoman, but before starting TP, she owned one of Ireland’s top PR firms, which she sold, in order to follow her passion for plant based nutrition. By creating her own company & brand she puts her products into the limelight, while she works tirelessly in the background, replying to my messages & customer enquiries herself. She also loves spending time in her kitchen, developing new recipes that she shares regularly on her social media pages, as well as trying the ones that her customers send her. Some of you would be interested to hear that she is vegan & so are the That Protein powders. She also makes sure that her products are dairy free, non GMO, are high in fibre & Vitamins like B1, B2 & B6 & don’t contain refined sugars or sweeteners.
Now, to proteins & the role they play in our bodies. Our bodies require different types of food, with the three building blocks being carbohydrates, proteins & fat. On top of that we need to add vitamins & minerals, which stimulate enzymes & chemical reactions in our bodies. Another important element is of course water! As a rule of thumb we need about 60% carbs, 10-15% proteins, which depend on your activity levels & 25% of fats, minerals, vitamins & fluids. Like with everything in life, we all need to achieve balance, which depends on many factors & our individual traits, bodies & DNA.
Proteins are our body’s building blocks. As well as helping to build muscles, they support repairs within our bodies, help digestion & assist our immunity system. We mostly get proteins from meat, fish, milk products, eggs, nuts and from some vegetables. Then there are the complete & incomplete, as well as high- and low-quality proteins, which refer to the amino acids they supply. Few foods are purely one element and most of our sources of protein also supply us with either carbs (vegetable proteins) or fats (animal proteins). Meat & fish eaters probably get enough of proteins, but need to be conscious of the amount of fat they consume. Equally, vegetarians need to make sure they don’t miss on the vital nutrition block and get enough amino acids essential for building protein (muscles). When we lack protein in our diet, it can lead to anaemia, tiredness and potentially weakened immune system. Interestingly enough our brain, with its main source of nutrition being glucose, would make a very bad dietician, as it doesn’t take into account whether glucose that we consume comes from protein, vegetables or fat.
The BBC1 documentary I mentioned earlier was focussed on the popularity of protein supplements and the high-protein diet favoured by athletes and body builders. The latter often consume excessive amounts of protein daily, which can lead to unpleasant side effects and potentially serious illness, if this goes on for a prolonged period of time.
As a meat eater, I do get enough protein through my diet, but there are days when things get hectic and that’s where supplements like That Protein come to play the leading role. Mix three heaped table spoons with your preferred milk or add into your smoothie and that allows you to fuel the body in the right way. As protein contributes to growth and maintenance of muscle mass, I often take it after my workout and that gives my body exactly what it needs to recover after an intensive exercise session.
This limited edition
Peanut Butter Protein powder contains
In addition to upping my water intake ( yes, I know, everyone recommends it, which means it is good advice !), I have amassed supplements from three brands, two well-known to me, Unbeelievable and =&0=&, the other,
How important is the diet for female fertility?
We have known for years that the food we eat affects our ability to conceive, so eating healthily can improve our chances of getting pregnant and support healthy pregnancies. You need to be aware that certain foods and drinks are known to lower fertility and that both under-eating and over-eating can contribute to infertility. More specifically, certain nutrients can support each phase of the cycle, for example B vitamins are required to support the release of the egg and support implantation. Relatively simple changes can increase your chances of getting pregnant.
Is our emotional state affected by how we nourish our bodies with food?
Our relationship with food is often a reflection of how we care for ( managing stress & getting enough sleep ) and nourish ourselves. We must not overlook the need to feed our fertility on an emotional level, as good emotional health is important prior to conception and throughout pregnancy. Remember that food influences our mood and energy levels, so by eating natural, rather than processed foods, you will help to improve your emotional stability.
Can you talk[...]
What I like about Organic Burst ( I do know Ekaterina & Dimi, OB founders ) is that it is an honest and sustainable business. You can easily find the information on the provenance of their ingredients and learn about each supplement in detail. Their customer service team will always try to answer your questions or address concerns and if they can’t, they will point you in the right direction. What also sets Organic Burst apart is their desire to learn and improve, that’s why I was very curious to learn that they were re-designing their packaging and adding some new things to their existing range ( click here to read my interview with Ekaterina and Organic Burst from my blog archive ).
Previous packaging has been lovely but I am completely smitten with OBs new designs, as each product is beautifully vibrant and you can be sure that with continued use your body will respond in kind to the nutritional content of the following supplements from Organic Burst :
Maca ( energy & endurance )
Baobab ( alert & alive )
Acai Berry ( beauty & radiance )
Spirulina ( nourish & nurture )
Chlorella ( detox & renew )
I have reviewed Bare Biology’s Lion Heart Sicilian lemon Omega-3 fish oil in April and am happy to report that not only to I continue to take it daily, but my penguins are now happily demanding their own Super Hero oil Omega 3 Fish Oil right after breakfast, before we make a dash for school.
What makes it special and why should you consider giving it to your child? Well, to start with, Melanie Lawson, brand’s founder, is a mother of three and we all know that being a mother often gives you extra inspiration and motivation, especially in unsteady and worrying times we currently live in, when nutritional content of the food can be somewhat lacking and children face growing pressures since the moment they step over the school threshold.
Omega 3 is essential for children’s development but many kids don’t like the smell or the taste of fish, leading to many arguments in the kitchen table. What to do? One single 1ml
drop of Super Hero contains the same amount of Omega 3 that
Recently Organic Burst added Chlorella to their existing range of supplements and I can highly recommend taking it now, when the skies are grey and one wants to possibly go for a nap rather than an exercise class. What’s special about Chlorella ? It is a microalgae that contains the highest amount of chlorophyll per gram than any other plant on Earth, hence it will support your body’s vitality and wellbeing. OB Chlorella is grown by organic farmers high on the Mongolian plateau, using the mineral rich spring water and it contains Vitamins D & K, as well as selenium, folic acid, iodine ( great for those who have under-active thyroid ) and Vitamin B12 which is beneficial for our nervous system. We all lack sunshine at this time of the year ( when I was visiting Finland recently I saw no sunshine in four days I was there ) and our bodies get depleted of Vitamin D which is essential for our immunity and mood function – in Finland you are actually prescribed Vitamin D to be taken daily. In addition Chlorella is good for your digestive tract, your skin, hair and nails.
Another benefit is that OB offers Chlorella in either powdered form, if you prefer adding it to your daily juice or smoothie or in a tablet form, if you just want to pop some in your mouth ( the maintenance dose is four tablets a day or you can take eight of them as a booster, alongside a glass of water ). It is also handy for when you travel for business or go on a holiday but still want to keep some of your healthy habits. I now mix Chlorella with Wheatgrass when I make green juices ( or if you are pressed for time you can mix it in with an Innocent smoothies or juices, I like combining it with their kiwi, apples and limes juice ) and while I am not going to make any astounding claims, I can certainly say that since adding
I continue to take it almost daily ( only forgetting on an odd occasion when my brain is fuzzy after a particularly hectic day ) and have to say that it continues to impress me and my friends who started taking it too. I also noticed that taking it before going to bed on a night when you drink a glass or two of wine ( or a cocktail ), prevents you from waking up with a headache in the morning .)
It is a well know fact that our environment is much more polluted now than it was when we were children, so anything that contains good quality anti-oxidants is beneficial to you and protects your skin and body from adverse effects. When I recently had a chat with another friend of mine, uber facialist Tine, who works with brands like Ole Henriksen, Gazelli & NuBo, she raved to me about a nutriceutical dietary supplement from Perricone MD called
Functionalab is the Canadian brand that combines advanced nutraceuticals with extensive research into body functions and uses only highest quality active ingredients. I heard about this brand a couple of years ago from a friend who studied together with the Francis Maheu, one of brand’s co-founders, at INSEAD, and last year I decided to test their supplements.
Functionalab is an innovative and premium brand of science-based, supplementsolutions promoting a holistic approach to beauty, health and