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Why Eat Raw Foods?

Some people tend to think that food is food, and cooking it or eating it raw doesn’t really make a difference. While it is obviously better to eat cooked healthy food rather than junk foods, there are even more benefits to be had when you eat those same healthy foods raw.

When you cook foods, many of the vitamins and phytonutrients are destroyed or damaged, making them less available for proper assimilation. When these nutrients are missing, your body will immediately notice it. You will be undernourished, and this means you will not be full and satiated for very long. When you increase your nutrient intake by eating raw foods, you will have more energy and feel fuller longer.

Fresh vegetables fallingRaw foods are packed with enzymes, which are essential to life. Without enzymes, life simply would not go on. They are needed for proper digestion and assimilation of nutrients, help with fat loss, energy and every other function that goes on within the human body. Raw foods are rich in enzymes, but cooking foods at above 118 degrees will destroy them. The human body spends a lot of energy digesting foods, so when you incorporate more raw foods into your meal plan you are giving your digestive system a break by supplying more naturally occurring enzymes. This can instantly help improve your energy.

Raw plants also provide protein, which is very easy for the human body to digest and assimilate. Proteins are damaged during high temperature cooking, causing the amino acid chains to congeal.

Eating raw plants provides a great source of protein and fiber, without the cholesterol and fats which can accompany meat proteins. If you’re on the fence about raw foods, try incorporating a few fruits and vegetables here and there. Their high nutritional content and delicious taste may just change your mind, and your health

Amazing Benefits of Aloe Vera!

You may have noticed one of the ingredients in the Heart Beet cold pressed juice from Ze/Lin is aloe vera juice. When most people think of aloe, it usually coincides with summer and sunburn: the cooling sensation of aloe vera gel on hot, sunburned skin. The healthy benefits of aloe vera do not stop with just its external applications. Here are a few more benefits from the aloe plant you may be unaware of.

Aloe vera contains over 200 active compounds. Everything from vitamins and minerals to enzymes and amino acids are contained in this amazing plant. Just a few of the vitamins and minerals in aloe are vitamins A, C and E, B vitamins, calcium, magnesium and potassium.

Aloe contains fatty acids and plant sterols such as campesterol, linolenic acid, linoleic acid and oleic acid, which can help reduce high cholesterol, reduce fats in the blood and promote better overall heart health.

Aloe vera is known as an adaptogen, which means it helps to boost the body’s own natural defenses and combat illness. These adaptogenic properties also help to combat stress from both physical and mental sources, as well as environmental stresses such as air pollution.

One of the most well-known uses for aloe vera is that it also helps promote digestive health. A well-functioning digestive system is vital for overall health, and aloe vera helps to cleanse and soothe the digestive tract, allowing for a more optimally functioning system. Aloe is useful for treating everything from irritable bowel syndrome to acid reflux to intestinal worms.

In today’s world, many people exist on a highly acidic diet, which keeps their body out of balance and allows germs and disease to flourish. Aloe vera helps to keep the body in an alkaline state, balancing out overly acidic nutritional habits.

Aloe vera juice can be bought at your local health food store, or if you’re in the area, pop into Ze/Lin for a Heart Beet smoothie! The addition of this powerful plant can provide a plethora of nutritional benefits for a healthier life. Aloe vera isn’t just for sunburns anymore.

By: James Van Dyne

Just Beet It!

The beet is often an overlooked food, but one that packs a nutritional punch. At Ze/Lin, they like to include a wide variety of fruits and vegetables in their smoothies to offer maximum nutritional value, and one of their favorite foods is the beet.

Beets are an excellent source of many vitamins and minerals, including vitamins A, B and C, folic acid, potassium, magnesium and iron. But the benefits of beets do not simply stop there. In addition to their micronutrient content, beets offer a variety of other healthy benefits including:

• Natural detox – beets help to cleanse the liver and blood, and also help to combat several different forms of cancer.

• Sexual enhancer – the ancient Romans used beets as a natural aphrodisiac. The high concentration of boron helps to produce sex hormones, and that can lead to a better sex life.

• Improve mental health – beets contain betaine, which can help to combat depression, and they contain tryptophan, which helps to relax the mind and promotes a sense of well-being.

• Great source of energy – while beets are sugary, the sugar is slowly digested, allowing for a stable insulin output which means a steadier energy supply with no crash later.

These are just a few of the many healthy benefits of this amazing food.

With all of the benefits they offer, don’t hesitate in adding beets to your daily nutritional plan. They’re easily available all year round, which means freshness isn’t a problem. If you’re looking for a versatile food with a wide range of health benefits, just beet it!

By: James Van Dyne

Does “Over The Counter” make it safe?

I was reading an article about a hidden danger inside over the counter medications. It’s one that not many people would even think of, but it can lead to some pretty harsh side-effects if one doesn’t pay attention to what they’re really putting in their body. But before I get to this hidden danger, let’s go over some of the more widely known side effects of these easy-to-get drugs.

• Acetaminophen can cause liver damage. Hundreds of people die from this each year, either accidentally or intentionally.

• Ibuprofen can cause mild side effects such as gas, bloating or constipation, to much more serious conditions such as ulcers, elevated blood pressure, liver and kidney damage. Rare cases have even been shown to cause heart attacks and strokes.

• Aspirin can also cause milder side effects like heartburn and constipation, to much more serious side effects like ulcers, kidney and liver damage from prolonged use.

• Naproxen also has the same list of side effects from the mild of stomach pain and dizziness to the more serious of liver and kidney damage, heart attacks and stroke.

While this article may specifically be about OTC medications, this list of side effects also pertains to those prescription drugs that contain these ingredients.

Now let’s talk about the hidden problem with OTC medications that you may not be aware of. It’s sodium!

Research from the British Medical Journal has shown that many over-the-counter medications, which can be very high in sodium, can lead to a variety of serious health problems. Those who used high- sodium medications were 12% more likely to develop hypertension, and hypertension can lead to more serious problems. In addition, the research shows that 22% of those who used high-sodium medications were more likely to suffer a stroke. Those subjects studied that did experience a stroke, heart attack or vascular death were 16% more likely to be taking these drugs on a regular basis.1

people who use OTC medications on a regular basis.

Sure, OTC medications may seem harmless at first, but they are drugs after all. We really need to pay attention to what it is that we’re putting in our bodies, because that is how we live a better and healthier life.

1 http://www.bmj.com/content/347/bmj.f6954

The Amazing Acai Berry!

A diet rich in antioxidants is a great way to keep a healthy immune system, neutralize cell damaging free radicals and combat various forms of cancer. One of the most potent sources of antioxidants hails from a type of palm tree in the Amazon rain forest in Brazil: the acai berry.

The antioxidant measurement score, ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity), is used to determine how potent a food is in terms of neutralizing free radicals. For a long time, blueberries were thought to be “it” when it came to an ORAC value (having around a 6,500), but the acai berry comes in with a massive ORAC value of over 100,000.1

Other benefits of the acai berry include:

• Good source of protein

• High in the healthy fats, Omega 3, 6 and 9

• All the vitamins and minerals of most fruits

• High in anthocyanins, which can help lower cholesterol

• Great for detoxing, keeping the digestive system in top running function

• Anti-aging benefits

Amazon natives have known the power of the acai berry for centuries, using it to boost energy levels, treat various ailments and even to sustain life during times of famine. Having a nutrition plan which includes plenty of antioxidants is vital to a healthy life, and the simple addition of the acai berry can greatly increase overall health and wellness. Try using acai in a smoothie, as a bowl (like they do at Ze/Lin), drink it in place of your morning juice, or as a snack to munch on. Really any berry is a great addition to your nutrition plan, and the acai berry is one of the healthiest and most beneficial ones you can eat.

By: James Van Dyne

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