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Healthy Living

Coronavirus is global

The Coronavirus is a Global Threat

By Community, Health No Comments

The coronavirus has impacted the whole world. The fear is mounting and even in San Diego there are cases that are causing people to worry. But, we aren’t helpless. We have the ability to fight the coronavirus and change how we live. One of the best ways to do it is taking good care of our wellness so that our immune systems are strong to fight the coronavirus. Let’s ensure that we are doing our best to prevent the spread of the virus for the sake of our own health and the others around us. ICOHS College in San Diego is here to help with some tips and tricks to help prevent the virus from spreading:

1.       Maintain the body in an alkaline state. A body with high alkaline pH levels doesn’t get sick as often as a body with acidic pH. There is a wide variety of foods and substances that can help raise your alkaline level:

–          Magnesium chloride
–          Sodium bicarbonate
–          Olive oil and lemon juice
–          Turmeric tea
–          Ginger
–          Black pepper

–          Lemon juice diluted in water (without sugar)

2.       Start taking high quality vitamin C and, if you have children or elderly people in your family, be sure they take it as well. Vitamin C is important in maintaining a healthy and strong immune system. Its recommended daily intake is 75 mg for women and 90 mg for men. You can find a high-quality vitamin C supplement or get your daily dose from foods.

3.       Wash your hands consistently throughout the day with antibacterial soap. Soap kills any bacteria and germs that might find their way onto your hands.

4.       Avoid places where there is a crowd and close contact with people. Masks with professional grade filters are good as well if you want to be safe.

5.       Eat beef liver. It’s a nutrient-dense super food that can help boost the immune system. They are full of vital vitamins and nutrients. Beef liver can be cooked in a variety of ways and tends to be on the affordable side compared to other cuts of meat.

6.       Drink carrot and orange juice. Carrot juice is full of beta-carotene, Vitamin B, and other minerals. Orange juice is loaded with Vitamin C. You could also choose to eat oranges and carrots if you don’t want to drink juice. Sprouts and Trader Joe’s in San Diego carry great options of organic juices that you can purchase. The carrot and ginger juice is an efficient one for strengthening your immune system.

7.       Drink fennel tea twice a day. It has the same substance that is in the medicine used to treat the flu. It can also reduce stress, detoxify the body, and more, according to Medical News Today.

8.       Cut down on sugar. Sugar makes our bodies more acidic and prone to several health problems.

9.       Stay home if you’re feeling sick so you don’t put others at risk for catching the common cold. Getting sick already means that your immune system is lowered, therefore you want to be sure you give yourself time to recover and don’t put others at risk.

According to UC San Diego Health, the general public of San Diego is still at low risk for the coronavirus. They want to ensure the public that it is still safe and any patient that tests positive will remain in isolation until CDC makes a determination. They also stated that a person needs to be within 6-8 feet of someone with the virus in order to be at risk of being infected. It is our responsibility to take care of ourselves and others, so be sure to share this with your friends and family.

ICOHS College offers a Holistic Health Practitioner program that prepares students to become Holistic professionals and use various forms of health care with a focus on promoting natural healing. 

Flexitarian meals are made up of vegetables and less meat

Flexitarianism: The Flexible Diet

By Diet, Health No Comments

What is Flexitarianism?

What does it mean to be “Flexitarian”? The word originated from the 1990’s and describes someone that consumes mainly plant-based foods with occasional meat or fish. It is a combination of the words “flexible” and “vegetarian.” In simple terms, flexitarian eating is the reduction of meat.

Health Benefits

With flexitarianism, you receive similar benefits as you would if you were a vegetarian. It can reduce the risk of heart disease, cancer, and help with weight loss. Consuming anything in excess can be bad for your health, so meat reduction alleviates issues like high cholesterol and more.

Environmental Benefits

By reducing meat consumption, you might be helping improve the environment. The way meat is produced emits a lot of greenhouse gases that are negatively affecting our planet. Reducing meat consumption is one step closer to lowering the emission of greenhouse gases. It is also one step closer to maybe eliminating meat entirely from your diet.

Flexitarian Criticism

You might be wondering, why be flexitarian when you can just be full-on vegetarian? How can you be semi-vegetarian? There are others that ask the same questions. The arguments for a flexitarian diet could easily be used for a vegetarian diet. The only difference is that flexitarians still consume all types of meats, just rarely. There is no counter-argument

against this, except for the fact that they wanted to have a name to define this type of diet.

Flexitarianism is still a positive step towards healthier living that also benefits the environment. Even though some might be opposed to the term, it’s too late to go back now. Flexitarianism is being talked about more and more. For some, eliminating meat entirely might sound too hard, so opting for flexitarianism is still beneficial for those that want to improve their health and environment.

10 Healthy Christmas Dish Ideas to End the Year Right

By Diet, Health No Comments

Get Ready to Enjoy Eating Healthy During the Holidays!

 

The winter season is upon us and Christmas is right around the corner. It’s a time for giving, love, and FOOD.  Holiday meals don’t always have to leave you feeling like you’re going to fall into a food coma. Here are 10 Healthy Christmas dish ideas and recipes that you could try this season!

1)      Lemony Herb Roast Chicken

Need a main course dish? Chicken is a classic. Using herbs as the flavor can help enhance the dish while keeping it healthy for your holiday dinner.

2)      Roasted Salmon with Citrus Salsa Verde

Salmon is a great source of omega-3 fatty acids that help with brain function. On top of that, it tastes pretty delicious when roasted in some good ol’ zest.

3)      Cauliflower “Couscous”

If you’re trying to avoid carbohydrates this Christmas, this cauliflower “couscous” is a great alternative! It has all the flavors of couscous without the actual couscous.

4)      Brussel Sprouts with Pickled Shallots and Hazelnuts

Brussel sprouts are high in fiber, vitamins, and more! Why not add them to your Christmas spread this year? This simple recipe will make the perfect side dish.

5)      Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Mashed potatoes? Healthy? Well, what a happy surprise, mashed potatoes can be healthier than you think. Check our Sugar-Free Mom’s recipe that uses very little butter to make a healthy version of this classic dish.

6)      Garlic Lemon Green Beans

Whether you need a solid side dish or want a light main course, these tasty green beans work great. And they only take 15 minutes to make!

7)      Green Bean Casserole & Garlic Mushrooms

This recipe pulls a vegan twist on a classic holiday dish! This is a great option for those that are vegan or vegetarian.

8)      White Bean Vegan Mashed Potatoes

To continue the trend, here’s another vegan twist on an oldie but a goodie. Mashed “potatoes” without the potatoes!

9)      Rosemary Stuffed Mushrooms

If you need an appetizer, this dish is great! These mushrooms are stuffed with a cashew-based mix instead of cheese. It’s another vegan option for those that need it!

10)   Radiance Fruit Salad

Fruits are a great source of vitamins and can be just as tasty as any other dessert. Instead of opting for a cake or pie, you can make this fruit salad! It is filled with a variety of fruits that can be swapped out depending on availability.

4 Reasons to Be Vegan

By Diet, Financial Assistance, Health No Comments

Thinking of Going Vegan?

Following a vegan diet brings many health benefits. Vegan people have a lower risk of type 2 diabetes compared to people who eat meat. Studies have also shown that vegan people have a lower risk of cancer associated with our diet. They also have lower levels of cholesterol, blood pressure and body fat on average. Although there are numerous benefits, there are also some aspects that must be taken into account to prosper.

Calories, protein, and fats

It is important for people who are trying to eat a vegan diet to include some foods high in calories and protein in order to feel satisfied.
Simply eliminating animal products from a common American diet will leave you with practically low-calorie foods such as salads, vegetables, and fruits. Eating only these foods can make you feel very hungry and weak, it will also leave you thinking that vegan eating is a very big challenge.
While severe protein deficiency is not something to worry about, not eating some high-protein foods can leave you craving animal products. Legumes (beans, peanuts, peas, lentils, soybeans), seitan and quinoa are the best sources of protein for vegans and vegans. Include some portions of these foods a day, including at each meal.
A very low-fat diet can improve people’s health in the short term, especially if they have high cholesterol levels, but it may not be ideal in the long term. If you are avoiding all the added fats and start craving products of animal origin, it may be time to increase vegetable fats. People tend to consider animal products as “protein,” especially meat, but they are mostly 50% fat.
In unusual cases, some vegans and vegans may not be consuming enough fats and calories to produce adequate amounts of steroid hormones (which are produced from cholesterol). Two studies have shown that these people have the same amount of sex hormones, but one report showed that vegan women have lower levels of estrogen.
Other reports provide evidence that low cholesterol cases can be a problem for those who lead this lifestyle. In these cases, increasing saturated fats, such as coconut oil, may improve some symptoms (such as increased libido or regulation of the menstrual cycle).
Even though the study is still preliminary, it seems that some people do not have genetics that work with a high carb diet. For such people, an eco-Atkins diet, high in vegetable protein such as soy meat, legumes, and seitan, might be a better option.
Lastly, if you have cravings for animal products, it may be because you have a strong preference for the taste of glutamate, known as umami. Some foods rich in umami are miso, tamari, ripe tomatoes, nutritional yeast, mushrooms, olives, balsamic vinegar, dried mushrooms, and sauerkraut. Roasting, caramelizing, browning and roasting increase the umami.

Four (important) reasons to be vegan

1. It’s good for the planet

Scientists say we should eat less meat immediately and change the way we manage the land to stop the climate crisis.
A report on climate change published by United Nations scientists in August said that eating less meat and reducing food waste could reduce global greenhouse gas emissions and benefit our health and the environment.
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which published the report, says that humans affect approximately 70% of the ice-free land on Earth, and the panel previously concluded that changing our diets could contribute 20% of the effort needed to prevent the global temperature rises by 2 degrees Celsius above preindustrial levels.
Meat consumption is a major contributor to global warming: according to the Worldwide Fund for Nature (WWF), agriculture is responsible for approximately a quarter of the world’s direct greenhouse gas emissions from mankind, and livestock contributes with approximately 14.5%.
Animal husbandry for food requires many resources and requires the production of food and fertilizers that produce greenhouse gases, not to mention methane that comes from cows.
Livestock also requires that the land be cleared: according to WWF, about 17% of the Amazon rainforest has been lost in the last 50 years, and most of the losses are due to the conversion of the forest to livestock.
Beef and soybeans are the main contributors to global deforestation, while the production of meat, dairy, poultry, and shellfish also contributes to habitat loss and water use, says WWF.

2. It could be good for your health

Many people adopt a vegan diet because of its health benefits. Following a plant-based diet may help reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes, a study published in July suggested.
“We found that the consumption of plant-based diets was associated with, on average, a 23% reduction in diabetes risk,” said Dr. Qi Sun, associate professor in the Nutrition Department at Harvard TH School of Public Health Chan in Boston and lead author of the article published in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine.
Meanwhile, another study published in the Journal of the American Heart Association found that sticking to a generally plant-based diet or a diet that includes more plant foods than animal foods could be associated with a 16% lower risk of cardiovascular disease and up to 25 % less risk of premature death.

3. Animal welfare

Some people choose to be vegan for reasons of animal welfare: according to the animal rights organization of the United Kingdom Animal Aid, becoming a vegan “is one of the best things you can do to help end animal cruelty.”
Some refrain from eating meat because they disagree with the killing of animals. They may choose to adopt a completely vegan diet because they believe that the conditions in which animals are maintained to produce popular foods, such as meat, eggs, milk, cheese, and honey, contribute to the suffering of creatures.

4. Being vegan is easier than ever

Veganism may have once been seen as a hard-to-satisfy diet, but now restaurants offer vegan dishes and supermarkets are packed with plant-based alternatives in developed countries around the world. Those who still crave a quick meal are receiving answers to their prayers.
KFC launched a vegan hamburger in the United Kingdom in June, McDonald’s began offering meatless hamburgers in Germany, and in the US. In the US, Burger King announced that it was expanding the distribution of its popular meatless Impossible Whopper hamburger to 100 locations in the San Francisco Bay area.
Retail sales of plant-based foods in the United States have grown 11% over the past year, according to a July report by the Plant-Based Foods Association and The Good Food Institute, a nonprofit organization that supports businesses’ vegetable origin. Barclays investment bank predicts that the alternative meat sector could reach around $ 140 billion in sales over the next decade, capturing approximately 10% of the global meat industry.

Is the vegan diet healthy for children?

The Royal Academy of Medicine of Belgium recommended that children, adolescents, pregnant women, and nursing mothers do not follow a vegan diet. Vitamins, including essential ingredients such as D and B12, calcium or even trace elements and essential nutrients for proper development are “absent from this diet,” according to MD. Casimir.
Isabelle Thiebaut, the co-author of the medical concept and president of a European organization for dietitians, said it is important to explain to parents about “weight loss and psychomotor delays, malnutrition, anemia” and other possible nutritional deficiencies caused by a vegan diet for children. If parents do not follow the new recommendation, children who continue a vegan diet should receive regular supplements, medical follow-up and blood tests, according to the academy.
smile everyday to improve emotional well being

10 Tips to Improve Your Emotional Well-Being

By Health No Comments

Emotional Well being is an important part of your health. People who are emotionally healthy have control of their thoughts, feelings and behaviors are able to face the challenges of life. They can put problems in perspective and recover from setbacks. They feel good about themselves and have good relationships.

Being emotionally healthy does not mean being happy all the time. It means that one is aware of their emotions. That one can deal with them, whether positive or negative. Emotionally healthy people also feel stress, anger, and sadness. But they know how to handle their negative feelings. They can distinguish when a problem exceeds what they can handle on their own. They also know when to seek help from their doctor.

Emotional health is an important part of your life. It allows you to develop your full potential. You can work productively and cope with the stresses of everyday life. It helps you work with other people and contribute to society.

Research has shown a relationship between an optimistic mental state and lower blood pressure, a lower risk of heart disease, a healthier weight, better blood sugar levels, and a longer life, says the agency.

The smile is the facial expression associated with feelings such as joy, satisfaction or happiness. It is characterized in that the corners of the lips are lifted so that they form a U-shaped curve. When the smile is spontaneous, the muscles of the sides of the eyes also move.

The smile is a beautiful gesture that always transmits light, positive energy and contributes to the good physical and mental state of people. With a smile, we can change our mood, increase our attractiveness, improve our health and reduce stress. In addition, there will also be positive effects in our environment, it helps us to relate to others.

emotional well being at icohs.edu

 

The smile conveys part of our happiness and well-being to those around us. Smiling has many health benefits. Smiling rejuvenates, oxygenates, cleanses, eliminates stress and improves relationships with others. Smiling increases confidence, balances mood, improves digestion and makes you live longer. Laughter helps overcome many situations such as depression, anxiety or stress. When we laugh, we feel much better because it cleans and ventilates our lungs. Laughing regulates the heart rate. Laughing relaxes the muscles and is a good breathing technique.

Accompanying our words with a smile is the best gift we give each other.

The smile corresponds to the feelings, the laugh corresponds to the emotions.

Emotions are difficult to define because they arise when evaluating any previous event that affects memory, subjective experience, thought, etc. Faced with positive emotions, feeling joy, hope, fun we smile and laugh, the contrary to negative emotions such as fear, anger, anger, sadness, we express different facial gestures because they are unpleasant.

Laughter and a sense of humor are protagonists in our well-being and positive energy. And they are the most important strengths of people. The smile evolves into an emotional, mental and even spiritual behavior.

The smile and laughter work a positive attitude, causing a rapid effect of contagion towards others that is very pleasant to share. Exercise more than advisable to live with a sense of humor. Laughing is a biological function necessary to maintain physical and mental well-being. It is ideal to achieve relaxation and open our ability to feel and love.

10 Tips to improve your emotional well-being

1. Don’t think, feel
2. Don’t judge yourself, it flows
3. Do not deny, accept
4. Don’t look back, look here and now
5. Don’t expect to be loved, love yourself
6. Smile every day, practicing smiles is very healthy
7. Feel the positive force of laughter inside you
8. Contagious and let yourself be smiled
9. Give many smiles, you will heal your soul and sow joy
10. Smile and enjoy life

 

smile to improve emotional well being

You know now that smile and laughter are natural functions that you have, and it is only up to you to articulate your muscles to live with health and joy.

Remember that being emotionally well is more than just managing stress. It also means being attentive to your thoughts, feelings, and behaviors, whether positive or negative. Emotional well-being implies the ability to be aware of and accept our feelings, rather than deny them, have an optimistic approach to life and enjoy life despite their occasional disappointments and frustrations.

Read more about more ways to improve your well-being by reading the first article in our blog series “The 3 Neglected Needs”.

How can massage help depression

Massage Therapy and Depression

By Health, Massage Therapy No Comments

Massage Therapy and Depression

By: Jessi Wiley
9/17/2019

What is depression?

Depression is both a brain disorder and a state of mind.  It is a common, serious illness that leads to a persistent sad, anxious or “empty mood.”  Affecting almost 300 million people worldwide, it can happen to anyone, at any age, and to people of any race or ethnic group.  It is never a “normal” part of life.  Depression, which is treatable, can come from chemical imbalances in the brain, hormonal changes, medications or life events.  Though it can be treated by methods like anti-depressants and talk therapy, massage therapy is a great addition to the treatment of depression.

How can massage help with depression?

Whether a person suffers from persistent anxiety and depression or experiences stress from time to time, massage therapy can help.  More than 500 men, women, and children with a history of depression and anxiety had their cortisol, a stress hormone in the body, measured before and after a massage. After a series of studies, researchers found that massage therapy helped participants lower their levels of cortisol by more than 53 percent.  Basically, if your cortisol levels are lowered, that allows your body to produce more serotonin and boosts your ability to fight depression and anxiety.

The science behind massage and how it can help with depression

Human touch is very powerful and can help us to heal.  It is a comforting gift that is present from infancy into adulthood and takes on many forms.  For example, infants long the touch of their mother after birth and throughout adolescence, while children seek reassuring gestures from their parents.  Touch is vital for the growth and development of a child, giving them a sense of belonging and security.  Into adulthood, even a simple pat on the back can turn a bad day around.
When we come into physical contact with someone, we can experience an increase of dopamine and serotonin levels in the body.  These two neurotransmitters help to regulate our mood. With that being said, massage doesn’t just relieve aches and pains, it can literally adjust the chemicals in your brain to improve your mood, making you feel refreshed and happier.
Anything that connects your mind and body like massage can be helpful for depression. By increasing serotonin levels, connecting your mind and body, and bringing a sense of safety and comfort, regular massages can be extremely beneficial for somebody suffering from depression.
Bibliography
https://www.myotherapycollege.com/can-massage-therapy-really-help-depression-anxiety/
https://www.healthline.com/health/depression/massage-therapy
https://dynamicphysiotherapy.ca/blog/massage-therapy/how-massage-therapy-helps-with-depression/
https://www.yourhormones.info/hormones/cortisol/
https://www.lifealth.com/wellness/healthy-living/why-human-touch-is-important-for-an-individual-mj/57304/

8 Health Food Buzz Words (And What They Actually Mean)

By Health No Comments

We know you’ve been wondering…

There are a lot of health food words floating around these days. Grocery shelves are stocked full of products containing labels with some intriguing claims, especially for those who are not accustomed to the sudden shift.

From gluten-free to sugar-free, vegan and non-GMO, there is a lot of terminology to keep up with. Most of all, not all of these labels mean what they imply. For those who are interested in health and wellbeing, it is vital to do research and stay informed.

In this article, we cover eight of the ultra buzzy health food words that have been in circulation recently, going into depth about what they actually mean.

What Constitutes as a ‘Health Food’?

Before we dive into some commonly present health food words that are floating around, it may be first important to define what a ‘health food’ truly constitutes.

By definition, a health food describes a food of natural origins that is also said to have beneficial qualities for health and wellness. Health foods can be anything from greens and veggies to superfoods and other ingredients rich in nutrients. To be honest, the term is quite broad and, therefore, envelopes many things.

Here’s What These 8 Health Food Buzz Words Really Mean

To bring about clarification and to promote knowledge surrounding health foods, we break down the real meanings of these commonly used words:

  1. Superfood

Superfoods are certainly not superheroes, but they may potentially make your body feel like one. Although this term is perhaps used a little too loosely, some superfoods are known for their high densities of nutrients, vitamins, and minerals.

Unfortunately, there is not a lot of science to back up a claim like ‘superfood’, but nevertheless, it will not hurt you to indulge in these nutrient-packed picks. In fact, a wide selection of healthy options is necessary for a balanced diet, and considering how many superfoods are out there, there is plenty to work with.

Some popular superfoods include goji berries, chia seeds, maca powder, spirulina, berries, dark leafy vegetables, green tea, brazil nuts, almonds, garlic, kombucha, kefir, kimchi, turmeric, ginger, avocado, salmon, and seaweed, just to name a few.

  1. Organic

Probably one of the most heavenly words for health-conscious individuals to see on a food label, ‘organic’ is about as natural and pure as it can get when it comes to buying items from a store. Likely, the only way to receive purer quality is to grow produce yourself under strict conditions.

Organic is a set of agricultural cultivation practices that are in place to heavily regulate and monitor the way in which this food is grown. From soil quality to animal raising practices and pest/weed management, every step of the organic growing process is monitored and controlled, otherwise, a product is not awarded Organic Certification.

Organic Certification is normally given by the USDA, an organization that is especially strict with its requirements and regulations.

For those who are not in a position to buy only organic goods, the Environmental Working Group (EWG) has generated a list of ‘dirty-dozens’ which includes the products that tend to possess the most pesticides. This is generally a good place to start when transitioning to an organic lifestyle.

These ‘dirty-dozens’ include:

  • Spinach
  • Strawberries
  • Nectarines
  • Kale
  • Celery
  • Potatoes
  • Pears
  • Tomatoes
  • Grapes
  • Peaches
  • Cherries
  • Apples
  1. GMO (or Non-GMO/GMO-free)

GMO stands for ‘genetically modified organism’. In simplified terms, this refers to organisms such as plants that have had their genetics modified or manipulated in a laboratory.

Non-GMO or GMO-free foods are not managed and labeled by any government organization, rather “The Non-GMO Project” is responsible for awarding this label to products in the United States.

Although not enough science exists to thoroughly support claims made that GMO’s are bad for us, one aspect that is potentially quite frightening about GMO’s, is how GMO soy and corn that are mutated in order to resist pesticides are allowed to be sprayed by these carcinogenic chemicals to no end.

As a general rule, opt for non-GMO corn and soy in particular, or simply choose organic altogether, which is heavily monitored and for certain will not have been sprayed with carcinogenic pesticides.

Remember, not all foods that are non-GMO are organic, yet all organic foods are automatically non-GMO. Choosing organic IS the safer option if pesticide-consumption is a primary concern.

  1. Vegan

Sometimes it can be a bit silly what products are marked as ‘vegan-friendly.’ Vegan wine for instance; isn’t all wine vegan? The answer might come as a surprise – no. At times, the way in which wine is clarified, a process known as ‘fining’, an array of animal-derived products are utilized, such as animal protein (gelatin), casein (milk protein), and even albumin (egg whites).

A product becomes certified as vegan if it contains absolutely no animal-derived ingredients, which includes any substances used throughout the production process. For vegans, this matter can often be taken very seriously. For other vegans, things are a bit more lenient.

Depending upon the individual, there are different degrees of veganism. Some vegans, termed ‘honey vegans’, still consume products derived from bees, such as honey and royal jelly. Other vegans only eat food that is not derived from animal products, but potentially utilize commercial cleaning or personal care products or maybe even wear clothing derived from animal fibers (wool, leather, angora, etc.)

Regardless of to what degree one practices veganism, it can quite unanimously be agreed that reducing our consumption of animal products is beneficial to sustainability and the environment because it requires far less energy and water to cultivate a staple ingredient such as beans, versus having to raise an animal for its meat.

  1. BPA (or BPA-free)

BPA, known formally as Bisphenol A, is a common chemical found in plastic. You may have noticed various bottled goods making claims such as ‘BPA-free’ on their packaging. This is because BPA is said to be extremely harmful to one’s health. BPA is a hormone-mimicking chemical, meaning that it can potentially lead to adverse effects such as infertility, obesity, certain cancers, ADHD, and more.

More research does need to be done in order to fully understand BPA’s effects on the human mind and body, but the fact that any negative studies do exist could send many running for the hills far, far away from this chemical.

Avoiding single-use plastics might not be such a challenge, especially now when using less plastic is actually encouraged by many, but as it turns out, bottles are not the only containers that contain BPA.

It might be surprising but food cans are often just as laden with BPA. Tin food cans are normally lined with a plastic material which keeps anything inside from tasting metallic. For this reason, BPA-filled plastic is used to coat the inside of the can.

If you intend to avoid BPA completely, opt for glass or cardboard packaged goods only. These two materials are not plastic-derived so they do not have a chance of containing BPA. And let’s face it, using glass and paper only is probably far better for the environment.

  1. Gluten (or Gluten-free)

Gluten defines a group of proteins called glutelins and prolamins, that are found in some grains including wheat, spelt, and barely. Gluten is responsible for giving bread its classic light, airy, and puffy consistency that many know all too well.

Recently, gluten-free products have been popping up everywhere. Grocery store shelves, even conventional chains, are stocking their shelves with products that don’t contain gluten.

For those who are Celiac, this is good news. Finally, it has become a bit easier to protect oneself from the consumption of this allergen. Although Celiac disease does impact a number of individuals, it seems that gluten sensitivity is far more prevailing.

Gluten sensitivity is not a full-fledged allergy, rather a result of symptoms that are potentially triggered by the doughy substance. Regardless of your reason for staying away from gluten, if you search for products labeled as gluten-free, be sure to still check the ingredients.

Although gluten-free products definitely will not contain any gluten, they can still be bad for your health. In fact, just because something is gluten-free does not mean it is good for you. These products can still contain artificial ingredients, colorants, preservatives, and other chemicals, as well as other common allergens such as eggs, dairy, corn, nuts, and more.

If monitoring your health is your primary concern, always read labels before purchasing a product. If a label contains something you truly can’t pronounce, this could be a sign that it is not the best for your well-being.

  1. All-natural

‘All-natural’ might possibly be one of the scariest health food buzzwords for health-conscious individuals, due to the fact that the claim ‘natural’ isn’t actually regulated by the FDA, meaning that it can be used rather freely, even by companies who are not deserving of this title.

In fact, many companies do practice ‘green-washing’, a term that refers to products that are branded as being natural or green, when in reality they are far from it.

Normally, natural products will not contain preservatives, food colorants, artificial flavors, and so on, but just because a product is listed as ‘all-natural’ does not necessarily mean that it is healthy.

Natural products can still be packed-full of bad-for-you salts, fats, sugars, and more, which is why you should always check labels before buying anything if health is your number one priority when consuming food.

  1. Sugar-free

When a product has sugar-free written on the label, this may not mean exactly what one would think. You see, sugar-free just means that the product does not contain cane sugar in its formulation, but this does not mean that other sweeteners aren’t present.

In fact, sometimes sugar-free can be worse, especially if you are trying to avoid artificial sweeteners like Aspartame and Acesulfame-K. In order to ensure the foods you are consuming are as pure as possible, check ingredient labels carefully.

For more natural sweetener options, you will want to see ingredients such as agave syrup, stevia, maple syrup, or honey listed on the label. As a general rule of thumb, keep in mind that ‘sugar-free’ does not automatically mean ‘no sugar’.

 

Final Thoughts on 8 Health Food Buzz Words and Their Meanings

If health is of serious interest to you and if you have even been looking at career colleges in San Diego to enter into a health-related profession, ICOHS is a non-profit vocational college offering a personalized and unique Holistic Health Practitioner program.

We aim to provide students with a tailored-to-them experience that involves dedicated staff and educators who are there to help you pursue your dreams and fulfill your goals. Reach out to us today and request more information.

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