Three of the Healthiest Seeds on Earth

pom

by Autumn Pappas, CHHC, AADP

Are you getting your daily intake of nuts and seeds?  Studies show that a mere one ounce of nuts and seeds per day can provide anti-aging qualities and build up your immune system!  Many nuts also provide omegas, which are important for heart health and cancer prevention.

Here’s a few new seeds to add into your day as a snack!

1.  Pumpkin Seeds

Pumpkin seeds are the only alkaline forming seed out there.  This is important for all those eaters who love acidic foods!  Alkalinity is crucial for our immune system as well as our digestive system, simply because our bodies prosper in an alkaline environment and decline in an acidic environment.  Pumpkin seeds also contain vitamin B-6, riboflavin, niacin and folates. Pumpkin seeds can be beneficial for fighting depression as well due to their mood boosting qualities.

2. Cumin Seeds

Cumin is a herb that has been known for its health benefits and medicinal uses for hundreds of years. It assists in digestion and is rich in iron.  It promotes liver function and aids our immune system.  Furthermore, it fights colds and sore throats, can treat asthma and arthritis!

3. Pomegranate Seeds

Pomegranates are a rich source of antioxidants. Pomegranates help to protect your body’s cells from free radicals, which cause premature aging and harm your immune system.  Pomegranate seeds aid your circulatory system by preventing blood clots and improving the oxygen levels in your blood.  Pomegranates reduce the risk of heart disease and cancer due to their high amount of antioxidants.  Additionally, pomegranates prevent the hardening of your artery walls, which removes fat from your arteries.  Winter is a great time to pick up pomegranate seeds since pomegranates are in season!

So next time you make a salad, grab a snack or make breakfast, grab for some healthy nuts to go on top!  It’s that easy to boost your immune system and health!

Hope you are feeling energized today!

Autumn

How to Make Your New Year’s Resolutions A Reality!

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Want to make 2014 your best year yet? Would you or a friend benefit from having me as your health and lifestyle coach?    Let’s make your 2014 successful, together!!

Check me out at www.pacificnorthwesthealth.com and click on the “connect” link to sign up for a free consultation.  Slots are filling up fast!

As always, to your health!

Autumn

 

 

3 Brand New Ways to Stay Healthy in 2014

nuts

Want to make 2014 your healthiest year yet?  Here are some brand new wellness tips to help you become the healthiest and happiest person on the planet!

> Swap saturated fats for monounsaturated fats!

Translation:  Eat lots of Omega’s to boost your immunity.  Avocados and walnuts are good sources of Omega 3’s. Pomegranates are a good source of Omega 5. Consume Macadamia nuts and sardines– a good source of Omega 7.  Lastly, olive Oil gives you your Omega 9’s!

>Have 3 healthy snacks a day and make sure one serving is a serving of nuts (1 ounce.)

Nuts increase immunity leading to longevity.  They also suppress appetite.

> Get up from your chair every 15 minutes and take a 10 minute walk every 2 hours.

Movement and exercise fight heart disease, diabetes, and aging.

To your health!

Autumn (check me out @ www.pacificnorthwesthealth.com)

A Healthy Eggnog Recipe for the Holidays!

eggnog

Hi everyone!  I wanted to share with you my healthy Eggnog Recipe, for all of you who love Eggnog– but not the calories that come with it!  It’s also, Vegan!  How can it get any better?

 Low Calorie Eggnog Recipe: 

1 1/2 cups unsweetened almond milk

1/2 frozen banana

1/2 avocado

2 tsp maple syrup

1 tsp pumpkin spice

1/2 tsp nutmeg

1/4 tsp vanilla extract

Directions:  Mix all ingredients in blender and serve!

To your health!

Autumn (check me out at www.pacificnorthwesthealth.com)

Anxiety Literally Makes Everything Stink

 

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Did you know that as you get more anxious, you are more likely to find neutral smells less appealing?

It’s True!  As your anxiety heightens, your emotional system goes into overload.  Your processing stream is affected by your emotional system, which is operating in overdrive. Suddenly, everything smells, literally.

So what can you do to counteract anxiety?

Exercise!

As little as twenty minutes a day can help to lessen your anxiety! 

Personally, I love to take brisk walks when I feel anxiety and stress.  The fresh air and the outdoors really lighten me up.  Would that work for you?

 

To your health and happiness!

Autumn (check me out at www.pacificnorthwesthealth.com)

 

Oxygen: A Breath of Fresh Air!

oxygen

Have you ever seen an oxygen bar?

I remember seeing one for the first time back in the mid 90’s. There was a row of people sitting at a bar with breathing tubes wrapped around their faces. I thought it was the strangest concept.

The oxygen bar had a sign that said, “Provides 4-5 times the amount of oxygen present in normal air.”  I thought, “What does that mean? Don’t these people know they are being scammed? Who would pay for oxygen when they could walk around and breathe it for free?”

What I didn’t realize at the time was that a lot of people suffer from a lack of oxygen and don’t know it. This can be caused by many factors including insufficient exercise, pollution, yeast infections, bad diets and not breathing correctly.  Oxygen gets rid of bad bacteria, viruses and fungi in our bodies. It also assists in digestion and eliminating toxins. Our brains need oxygen to function properly. When we don’t get enough oxygen our immune systems become compromised.

So how do we get more oxygen into our bodies? Exercise is important; especially the kind that gets your heart pumping. Aerobics, yoga and pilates are great forms of exercise that allow the body to take in a lot of oxygen. Meditation is good for correcting improper breathing and taking in deep breaths which both increase oxygen levels. Eating antioxidant rich foods like berries, red kidney beans and artichoke hearts help oxygen to enter the bloodstream properly. Furthermore, foods and oils that contain fatty acids like walnuts, flax seeds and sunflower oil also have this same effect.

It is easy to underestimate the value and importance of getting clean and proper amounts of oxygen into our bodies. It is our vital life force. So next time you run across an exercise class or oxygen bar you might just want to stop and join!

As always, to your health!

Autumn (check me out at www.pacificnorthwesthealth.com)

Color Your Body Healthy!

fruit

by Autumn Pappas, CHHC, AADP

Add Some Color to Your Plate! 

One of the best ways to have a balanced and healthy diet is to eat an array of colored vegetables and fruits. The different colors of these foods provide particular functions for our bodies.

White fruits and vegetables support our immune system. They are anti-fungal, anti- bacterial and anti-biotic in nature. They fight off external and internal things that try to damage our bodies.  Cauliflower, onions, garlic, ginger and shallots all fall under this category and are great immune system boosters.

Yellow and orange fruits and vegetables make us beautiful and are good for our digestive systems. They contain carotenoids and bioflavonoids which act as antioxidants.  They help keep our skin looking healthy, heal wounds and make our bones strong. Lemons, butternut squash, pineapple, summer squash, oranges, yams and cantaloupes all contain these powerful qualities.

Red fruits and vegetables are beneficial for our hearts and fight cancer because their red color comes from lycopene. Lycopene is a pigment that acts as an antioxidant and protects our bodies from free radicals and heart disease. Good sources of lycopene are tomatoes, red bell peppers, beets, watermelon, radishes, red cabbage and chilies.

Green fruits and vegetables contain lutein and carotenoids which keep our eyes healthy. Green foods also have potassium, folate, and vitamins C and K. Avocados and kiwi are star players in this category. Avocados lower cholesterol, prevent strokes, help with absorption of nutrients, protect our eyes and are a great source of glutathione. Kiwis are so rich in Vitamin C that just one kiwi contains almost our whole daily amount.

Purple foods have antioxidants and flavonoids which protect our hearts and promote longevity.  They also improve our memory and assist in preventing cancer risks. Good sources of these powerful purple foods include eggplant, purple grapes, plums, figs, raisins, prunes and blackberries.

Next time you’re at the market, pick up some new colored fruits and vegetables to add to your diet. Your body will perform better, be healthier, and thank you!

To your health!

Autumn (check me out at http://www.pacificnorthwesthealth.com)

*My article was published in the December 2012 issue of the Port Ludlow Voice.

Do You Suffer From Back or Spinal Issues?

spine

Back pain will affect 80% of the population at some point during their lifetime.  It is the second most common reason for missed work and the fifth most common reason for all physician visits.

Disc herniation and spinal stenosis are two common back and spine problems that affect our population. Disc herniation occurs as discs degenerate and weaken, and the outer disc shell of fibrous cartilage bulges or is pushed into the space containing the spinal cord or a nerve root causing pain. Spinal stenosis is an abnormal narrowing of the spine due to bone overgrowth, herniated discs, thickened ligaments, tumors or spinal injuries.

To differentiate the two disorders, a physical therapist may evaluate you through your history, a postural assessment, a movement analysis, sensation testing, reflexes, muscle testing, gait, instability testing, slump test or imaging studies. Treatment modalities differ for each disorder and the goal is to find the correct prescription that will alleviate the lower back pain.

There have also been advancements in spine surgery and spine hardware. Minimally Invasive Spinal Surgery (MISS) is now the standard of best practices. MISS patients get smaller lateral or front entry incisions, suffer less blood loss and tend to have shorter hospital and outpatient stays. Hardware has changed from stainless steel to titanium and plastic. Candidates for spine surgery include those suffering from degenerative disc disease, spine deformities, spinal stenosis, scoliosis, slippage of the spine, herniated discs, fractured vertebrae, traumas, tumors and infections. Research findings support better outcomes for non-smokers and people who are not overweight.

Remember, prevention is the key. Exercise and stretch the full range of motion of your back, spine, arms and legs on a regular basis. Do core and strengthening exercises to stay strong. Practice good posture. Keep your weight maintained and don’t smoke. Use your legs instead of your back to power yourself up while picking up objects. Place objects that you are going to pick up in a safe lifting zone; where your body will not be strained by lifting the object. Lastly, keep moving! You don’t have to live with back pain. See a specialist if you are suffering.

To your health!

Autumn (check me out at www.pacificnorthwesthealth.com)

Life is Full of Beauty

“Life is full of beauty.  Notice it. Notice the bumble bee, the small child, and the smiling faces.  Smell the rain, and feel the wind.  Live your life to the fullest potential, and fight for your dreams. ” -Ashley Smith

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Hi everyone!

I wanted to share these photos of where I live with you.  I get to wake up in the most beautiful place everyday!

I hope you are able to find beauty in your lives too.  We are all so lucky to live on this amazing planet!

To your health and happiness!

Autumn (check me out at www.pacificnorthwesthealth.com)

Want to Beat The Winter Blues?

 winter oak tree

By Autumn Pappas, CHHC, AADP

Do you find yourself feeling a little low in the winter time? Maybe it’s the weather, or maybe it’s the shorter days—but somehow you just can’t seem to get out of a funk. Seasonal Affective Disorder, or SAD, is a form of depression that affects 25 million Americans each year. Symptoms include loss of interest in activities, oversleeping, irritability, sadness, poor sleep, low self-esteem and anxiety. Whether you suffer from SAD or not, here are some great tips on how to beat the cold weather blues and start looking on the bright side of things.

Exercise. Exercise is a natural stimulator of serotonin and dopamine, two very important mood boosting hormones. Serotonin also regulates hunger. Physical movement increases metabolism, and stimulates the digestive tract which can help prevent bloating, constipation and indigestion.  Not in the mood to exercise? Find an exercise buddy this winter and hold each other accountable. Start a new exercise class, dance around to some holiday music, or take a brisk thirty minute walk. This will get your heart rate up and help trim your waist line at the same time.  Don’t wait until January to set some fitness goals.

Stick to a healthy diet. Sadness can increase food cravings and send you rummaging for sweets.  Caffeine suppresses serotonin and can have the same effect. Stick to serotonin-boosting foods like bananas, flaxseed, wild fish, high quality eggs, buckwheat, and free range turkey so you don’t get caught up in a vicious cycle.

Stay on schedule. It’s hard to stay motivated when the weather is cold and it’s dark outside.  Sticking to a normal schedule will keep you upbeat and focused, as well as keep you from procrastinating. Surprisingly, procrastination in not only linked to stress but depression as well.

Invest in good lighting. Our serotonin levels drop due to the lack of light in the wintertime. Sitting within three feet of a 300 watt bulb for 20 minutes a day can help. You can also purchase a UV lamp or a Happylight. These lights mimic sunlight and encourage the production of Vitamin D. Furthermore, spend time outdoors during the peak hours of daylight.

Increase your Vitamin D intake. Check with your doctor to see if you should up your dosage in the winter. Vitamin D is a key contributor to our overall health. It supports our bones, brain, nervous and immune systems.

Try a new activity this winter. How about a painting class, cooking some new healthy recipes, or volunteering for a local cause?

Lastly, start a gratitude journal. It’s important to notice the beauty of our world, kind gestures and the little things in life. Gratitude can have an immensely positive effect on your self-esteem, health, career and relationships.

To your health!

Autumn (check me out at www.pacificnorthwesthealth.com)

*This  article was written by me, and featured in the December 2013 Issue of the Port Ludlow Voice.