How To Raise Healthy Kids And Keep Your Family Healthy – The Three Things You Need To Do
In today’s topic, we will talk about:
- How whole food nutrition brings 4,000 different phytochemicals from plants that help repair and rejuvenate your body as well as protect it from various diseases
- How the right kind of exercise (High Intensity Interval Training or HIIT) generates more mitochondria which brings power and energy to your body
- How stress, pessimism and negative thoughts damage our DNA creating diseases, premature ageing and death.
Whole Foods Nutrition Brings 4,000 Different Phytochemicals From Plants
The human body is the most complex machine ever built and it requires a symphony of nutrients to pursue its functions. For decades now, study after study have shown that where there is a high intake of animal products there is a premature ageing and high incidence of chronic diseases such as cancer, heart attacks, stroke, diabetes and so on.
Animal products cause so many health problems but today I really want focus on the basic but very important information about what and how to eat so you, your children, and your family can stay young, healthy and to have a limitless amount of energy so you can do what you want, with whom you want and as long you want.
The human body is a biological machine, built of around 48 trillion cells that never sleep. Each of the cells possesses billions of actions per second, requiring constant delivery of high quality and a wide range of chemicals. These chemicals come from our food, drinks, and the air we breathe. Currently we estimate there are at least 4,000 phytochemicals in the plants on top of vitamins and minerals. These phytochemicals will build thousands of new compounds when combined together, all of which are crucial for the body to function.
Animal products contain fat, protein, and few vitamins and minerals, but none of the essential anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, anti-bacterial composition which plants can provide us with. Almost every medication that we prescribe to patients today came initially from plants. These natural chemicals protect, prevent, and cure most diseases as long as their delivery is constant, in high quantity, high quality, and in for of whole foods. Supplements cannot replace the real thing. And they have been shown in thousands of studies to be harmful rather than helpful. Supplements should only be used in people who have malnutrition or diseases that cause significant deficiency or in case of vegans who require supplementation of Vitamin B12 simply because the non-organic soil cannot provide the sufficient amount of nutrients any more. The reason why the supplements don’t work is very simple, the vitamins, minerals and other phytochemicals interact between each other creating a cascade of reactions necessary for our body. Picking one compound in a concentrated form can never replace the whole plant which contains a large composition of different chemicals. Let’s take as an example two groups of vegetables: the cruciferous vegetables and allium vegetables. These two types of vegetables are very important for us so I will tell you a few examples so you can use them for your diet.
Cruciferous vegetables include:
- Bok choi
- Brussel sprouts
Allium vegetables include:
The reason why they are very important for us is because all of them have strong anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, and anti-cancer properties. For example, for the broccoli, to create an active anti-bacterial or anti-cancer phytochemicals, we have to either chew it or blend it so that two inactive ingredients can merge into one that is active. However, this active compound remains intact only for a short period of time. After 3 hours, 70% of this natural treatment becomes oxygenated and loses its property. We also have to remember that many phytochemicals in the plants are very sensitive to temperature and so processing such as cooking or freezing destroys most of it. This is why it’s crucial to eat as many of the fruits and vegetebles in the raw form. Not even the powdered vegetables can replace the living thing.
We also need to know that mixing wide variety of plants is extremely important because of two reasons. Number one, if we take a high in anti-oxidant plant such as blueberry and blend it with another anti-oxidant plant such as kale, the anti-oxidant power will not just double but it will triple as a result of new protective compounds that will emerge as a result of blending these two plants and their phytochemicals. Number two, some plants protect us from one type of cancer and another type of plant protects us from another type of cancer or different diseases.
So eating only one plant in big volumes can never replace the wide range of plants that we should be eating. In simple words, the 5 a day concept is simply ridiculous. A wide range of fruits and vegetables is the backbone of our health and youth, adding whole grains and beans and we have everything we need to live a healthy and long life without cancer, diabetes, high blood pressure, and coronary artery disease.
For people like me, animal products are off limits to me because I am allergic to them. For others who do not have adverse reactions I still recommend caution, treat them more as a garnish rather than the main meal.
Human Body Requires High Intensity Exercise To Build More Mitochondria (The Powerhouse Of Our Body)
Let’s talk about why the human body requires large amounts of energy to function. Energy is life and the only way human cells can produce energy is by having large numbers of mitochondria. Mitochondria are the cell’s power stations. Cells produce more mitochondria as a response to exercise, and this is why sitting and lack of exercise kill millions of people around the world. One particular exercise—low volume High Intensity Exercise or H.I.I.T. increases mitochondrial biogenesis. Within 24 hours of maximal exercise, new mitochondria are formed. H.I.I.T. exercise involves doing any type of exercise intensely for a few seconds, then taking an interval of slow pace or rest in between. For example, jog as fast as you can for 20 seconds, then walk normal pace for another 20 seconds, and repeat 5 times.
Most of us know already that exercise is amazing for blood circulation, hormone production, and rejuvenation, it cuts down by half our risk of cancer, heart disease, osteoporosis, osteoarthritis and many other disease. It is better than any anti-depressant available on the market. But most of us don’t know that lack of exercise kills our mitochondria of the cells which serve as the power stations. And because the cells in our body cannot function without energy, lack of exercise kills us.
Our body is a biological machine that operates that 24 hours per day everyday of our life to be able to provide such a huge amount of energy, we require great nutrition and supply of oxygen. We also need the machines that generate the energy by burning food and oxygen—the mitochondria. The more mitochondria of course, the better for us. The number and the function of the mitochondria are dependent on how much we exercise. People who don’t exercise regularly have reduced number, size, and function of their mitochondria. And because the mitochondria are also responsible for many other cell functions, lack of them generates many other health issues. Dysfunctional mitochondria mean for all of us low energy levels, insufficient DNA repair, poor metabolism, disease development, depression, dementia, aging, and of course premature death.
Abnormal metachondria functions are observed in a broad variety of diseases, such as cancer, heart diseases, neurodegenerative diseases which are progressive loss of the nervous system functions, metabolic disorders such as diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and of course all the chronic inflammation such as gastritis, irritable bowel syndrome, Crohn’s disease, and much more.
The good news is that exercise stimulates mitochondria production and it improves the function by demanding more energy. In response to the strenuous exercise, cells overcompensate by increasing production of the mitochondria. This way the body is prepared for increasing energy demands for the next round of exercise. The ability of our muscles to overcompensate for stress caused by exercise is exactly why regular exercise results in increased strength, endurance, resistance to fatigue, and enhances health fitness and longevity. Studies with subjects over 65 years of age have shown that only 3 months of moderate exercise, which is 150 minutes per week or about 20 minutes per day of brisk walking or jogging increased the number of mitochondria by 50% to 65%. Hence, by increasing the number and function of your mitochondria you are also resetting your metabolism and therefore your biological clock. A large number of mitochondria that function better improves the way your body handles inflammation, infection, stress, hormones including insulin and therefore it handles better the sugars. And this is why exercise prevents and cures Type 2 Diabetes.
Exercise makes ourselves more intelligent, stronger, more competitive, and more willing to do the job better. It also sends signals to your nervous system that you want to be healthy and alive. We don’t stop exercising because we get old, but we get old because we stop exercising. By slowing down and becoming inactive we signal our body that we are ready to leave. And taking the fact that none of the fact really knows where we are going after this life, I frankly don’t understand why so many of us are in a rush to get there.
I hope that everyone now understands that mitochondria are crucially important to maintain not only the energetic balance of our cells, but also proper cellular function in general. So time to get up and go for a workout. Exercise, stay young, be happy, and live long.
How stress, pessimism and negative thoughts damage our DNA creating diseases, premature ageing and death.
Stress, negative thoughts, damage our DNA creating diseases, premature aging, and death. The 21st century should be all about us living 120 years in absolute health and vitality. Instead we are getting sicker by the minute and the number of people my age suffering from cardiovascular diseases, cancers, and even dying are huge and continue to be on the rise.
We have achieved great things in acute medicine, we save lives by treating severe infections, acute heart attacks, cancer, and so much more. But for the disease to achieve such an advanced stage and to become acute it takes years or even decades. Chronic diseases are the plague of our times and they are all related to our lifestyle.
And because lifestyle doesn’t come in a pill, the only thing medicine can do for you today is to treat your symptoms. And the entire medical profession knows that. We know that our current approach needs major transformation. And this is why in the last decade most of the modern research have been focusing on genetic and treatment of the diseases by treating directly our genes. And the results are astonishing. Dr. Rudolph Tanzi, professor of neurology at Harvard University Medical School stated, the evidence is overwhelming and it shows that only 5% of disease related gene mutations are fully determined by our genes, 95% can be influenced by our diet, behaviour, exercise, personal psychology, and other environmental conditions.
Current studies have shown that a program of lifestyle changes can alter 45,000 different gene activities. This means that we are not simply the sum total of the genes we are born with. We are the user and the controller of our genes. We are the author of our biological story. And like any author, we use words and images to write our story.
Today, I want to explain to you how our thoughts write the story and decide which of our genes are going to be activated and in which way. How you simply with your thoughts affect your life and your genetics, and not only this, it is also passed down to your children.
So how does stress and our negative thoughts damage our DNA, creating diseases, premature aging, and death?
To fully understand this let me tell you a little bit about Nobel Prize Winning research by Dr. Eric Kandel from year 2000 which exactly explains how we exactly create our memories. To explain in an easier way what memories actually are and how our brain functions, I will use metaphor.
You can look at our brain as a large library. In this library you have books, CD’s and DVD’s, and the books are essentially written in the form of memories. Until recently, we thought that memories are in the form of electrical activities in our brain, but now we know that to actually create memories, nerve cells which we call in medicine neurons have to receive a recurrent stimulus. When I say stimulus, you can imagine that this can be in the form of a picture or the words that come from outside, but it can also come from the inside. So the images you have in your head when you are visualizing something and the thoughts you have are all stimuli.
So once a neuron has received several of the stimuli, they activate our DNA. The DNA has to be activated so that the nerve cells can grow much more connections between each other. Now we have about a hundred billion nerve cells in our brain. And each nerve cell has the ability to grow up to about 200,000 connections. So the stimulus will activate a few of those nerve cells, those few nerve cells will grow between each other very strong connections of up to 200,000 connections, and they not only become very fast ways of interacting with each other but they become very strong physical bodies.
So in simple terms, your thoughts become stimuli, the stimuli activates nerve cells DNA, the DNA activates the growth of interconnection between certain neurons, and they build a physical body which is a unit that is responsible for this particular stimuli.
And because the stimuli can be in the form of the words, images, sound, or feeling this is why for me it’s much easier to understand the whole concept if I imagine our brain being a big library full of books, CDs, and DVDs, and I find it also much easier to grasp the concept of how we can change our library content. So I hope now we can understand better what our thought and memory is.
And now I will take you with me to 2009 when Dr. Elizabeth Blackburn won her Nobel Prize and shook the whole scientific world by discovering that psychological stress and pessimistic thoughts damage our DNA and can shorten our life by almost 20 years. Now, Dr. Blackburn’s research is important for the future of medicine however I want to stress that the information that I’m giving you is simply a drop in the ocean of the large number of scientific publications and researches which have been done in the last number of decades. I will be able to pinpoint in this podcast a couple of important discoveries which we can very easily influence our lifestyle on a daily basis.
So let’s start with the basic concepts of medicine. Most of us have heard of genes, genes are very default programs deciding about how we are going to look, behave, etc. But they can be influenced by our environment and our lifestyle. And because we have such a huge number of genes, we don’t want them to just float around the cell, so they are interconnected and they build together DNA, and the DNA swirls around and creates something that we call chromosome. Now at the end of each chromosome there is a tiny bit protecting this chromosome, it’s called telomeres. And this telomere gets used up over time as the DNA and the genes are being activated. Now to fix it and to make sure that this telomere does its job to protect the chromosome and therefore our DNA and our genes there is an enzyme called telomerase.
So the telomeres protect the end of the chromosome which carries our genetic material from deterioration and activating disease genes. The telomeres length and the activity of the telomerase enzyme that fixes the telomeres can be seen as the biomarkers for aging, aging related diseases, and death. So in simple language, we need long telomeres and very active telomerase enzyme for our genes to be healthy and for us to be healthy. What Dr. Blackburn’s study shows is that chronic life stress wears down telomerase. It shortens them and therefore it adds to our chronological age 9 to 17 years. It also wears down the telomerase and makes it 50% less active.
What makes it interesting is that this study shows that pessimism which is in essence a persistent exposure to negative thoughts and images are perceived by our brain and body as a chronic stress, and therefore it is also associated with short telomeres and less active telomerase. It means early aging, diseases, and dying almost 20 years earlier.
This study also looked at the association between short telomeres and the most common diseases and it shows that shorter telomeres are linked to common chronic diseases such as cancer, diabetes, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, pulmonary fibrosis, and a wide range of cardiovascular diseases starting from plaques, calcification around arteries, heart attacks, calcification of the valves in the heart, as well as vascular dementia. This is all because it activates the genes that carry the risk of developing these diseases. So this is extremely important because for the first time we have a study that shows that we are not the victims of our genes, we are actually activating the genes so that even if you have a bad gene you don’t necessarily activate it as long as you have a healthy lifestyle.
This means that even if you have a bad gene, as long as you life healthy, exercise using high intensity interval training, and you keep a positive and grateful mindset you can deactivate the genes that will make you sick.
When we talk about activation of bad genes, we are talking about chronic stress exposure. 90% of the time it is not the environment but how we perceive the environment that causes us stress. Pessimism is a choice. Every time you think of something negative, such as when you expect something bad to happen or when you watch a negative TV show or movie, all these are exposure to stress. These are things that we can very easily control.
One of my favourite people, Dr. Dean Ornish who is an advisor to the White House and also he runs the Preventive Medicine Research Institute in the University Of California, San Francisco found that comprehensive lifestyle changes can repair the damage and increase the length of the telomeres. So even if you’ve had an unhealthy lifestyle for the last 20 years, it’s not over, because you can reverse and reduce the damage in your body.
What you need to do to get better are:
1. Deactivating the bad genes
2. Rejuvenating our DNA with lifestyle changes
The lifestyle changes are:
1. Whole-foods, plant based diet – these have huge number of phytochemicals that can fix a lot of problems in our body. Our body has about 30,000 DNA damages every single day caused by free radicals and the phytochemicals can neutralize the free radicals that damage our DNA. Treat animal products as a garnish and avoid overeating meat.
2. Exercise – in Britain, 50% of the population are sedentary. If you do 150 minutes per week of moderate exercise which can be a simple work or 70 minutes per week of high intensity exercise can significantly prolong the DNA protective telomeres and extend our lives
3. Stress Management Techniques – we need to get enough sleep because lack of sleep activates 700 epigenomes which can activate the bad genes. If we don’t sleep we can’t be healthy. Meditation and things like yoga are helpful. Sit quietly for 5 minutes, then extend to 10 minutes next time.
4. Love, connection, support, and intimacy – we are designed to be social. Being lonely is as dangerous as smoking and it causes chronic stress for your mind, for your body, and for your emotions. Don’t focus only on building up your career, also focus on building up on your relationships.
1. Just because we are born with the bad genes doesn’t mean they will be activated.
2. 95% of whether or not the bad genes will get activated is completely up to us and it’s.
3. We need plants because they are filled with phytochemicals that repairs the damage every single day.
4. Animal products are rich in protein but don’t eat too much of them because meat causes inflammation.
5. Diet is very important.
6. Exercise is very important, it creates more mitochondria which gives your cells more energy.
7. Don’t blame other people if you are not happy, you are fully responsible if you stay in the environment that makes you unhappy, there is always a choice.
8. Learn to look at the bright side, perceive the good things that are happening around you.
9. Get a lot of sleep.
10. Do meditation or yoga. Start with 5 to 10 minutes.
11. Connect with people, friends, your loved ones. Spend time to build important relationships in your life. Poor relationships is the number one causes of chronic stress, premature aging, and premature death.
To find out more about how you can guide your child through nutrition, exercise, positive psychology, and healthy lifestyle you can go to our website for more free resources, guides, videos, and podcasts at: www.academyforhealthsuperheroes.com
Don’t forget to subscribe to our Youtube channel, podcast channels, and follow us on social media to get updates when we release new content.
Also, make sure to check out the articles we’ve written to help things become simple for parents, teachers and children to become healthy, compassionate, and happy:
The 18 Dangerous Trends In Children’s Health And How You Can Prevent Them – this discusses the problems with today’s society and how children are being affected by those problems. Once you know what the problems are, you can take the steps to protect your child.
9 Ways To Keep Your Child Healthy – an excellent article on ways that you can protect your child in today’s time.
Teaching Your Child To Be Grateful – a good way to start teaching your child how to be grateful, which will develop their emotional intelligence and grit as well as appreciation for family and life in general.
The Children’s Book With A Moral Lesson – a feature on the 200-page Children’s book with a moral lesson, you can download the free 30 page ebook on the Homepage of the website too!
Free Health Podcasts For Parents And Teachers – perfect for parents and teachers who are on the go, you can listen to these podcasts on your mobile phone, tablet, iPad/iPhone, computer or laptop anytime, anywhere. Audio Learning will help you learn more about how to keep your child or your students healthy even as you drive, while you are out exercising, or doing whatever you want to do.
Free Health Videos For Parents And Teachers – videos for parents, teachers, and children to appeal to the visual and auditory senses of the kids.