Gut Health Blog

June 30, 2024

How Much Does Inflammation Affect Weight Loss?

Hi Everyone,

Are you finding it hard to lose weight?

Do those stubborn pounds refuse to budge despite diets and exercise?

Then chronic inflammation could be the problem.

In this post, I will explain how chronic inflammation affects weight loss and why the diet foods you’ve been eating may be making it harder to lose weight. Then, I’ll share my top 5 tips for lasting weight loss.

What is Chronic Inflammation?

How Does Inflammation Affect Weight Loss?

Can Ultra Processed Foods Cause Inflammation and Weight Gain?

Top 5 Tips For Lasting Weight Loss

 

What is Chronic Inflammation?

There are two types of inflammation, chronic and acute. Acute inflammation arises quickly during injury or illness – when you break a bone for example, or have a high fever with the flu. Once the injury or illness starts to improve, the acute inflammation goes down.

Chronic inflammation is when your body’s immune system keeps producing inflammatory chemicals. This can be caused by an ongoing serious illness like cancer or heart disease, or as a result of stress, weight gain, inflammatory foods, or environmental toxins.

Conditions that feature chronic inflammation include:

Crohn’s Disease, Colitis, and Diverticulitis

Diabetes

Endometriosis

Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Long Covid

Migraine

Psoriasis

Thyroid issues

As you can tell, chronic inflammation is part of many different health conditions. It’s why it can be hard to lose weight when you have an ongoing health issue. If you don’t tackle the underlying inflammation, your body will struggle to shed weight.

 

How Does Inflammation Affect Weight Loss?

Inflammation and weight imbalance have a “chicken or egg” relationship. Chronic inflammation can cause weight gain, and conversely, weight gain can cause inflammation. Behind all this is a set of complex metabolic processes:

  • Weight gain triggers hormonal changes that lead to higher levels of inflammatory chemicals like C-reactive protein and cytokines.

 

  • The resulting inflammation hampers insulin function, contributing to elevated blood glucose levels and the build-up of liver fat. This impedes insulin activity even more and sets off a feedback loop.

 

  • Weight gain and inflammation disrupt the production of leptin, a crucial hormone that regulates metabolism and appetite. Reduced leptin affects satiety signaling in the brain making it easier to overeat.

 

Can Ultra Processed Foods Cause Inflammation and Weight Gain?

In 2019, Dr Kevin Hall ran the first-ever randomized control trial exploring the effects of ultra-processed foods (UPFs). The study found that people eating a diet of UPFs ate on average 500 calories more per day and gained more weight than when they consumed a diet of unprocessed foods (Hall et al, 2019).

All these heavily marketed “diet” foods are UPFs. They are rich in artificial sweeteners, emulsifiers, high-fructose corn syrup, flavorings, and thickeners that damage your gut and worsen inflammation.

How do they do this? It’s because of the communication that happens between your gut bacteria and your brain. The billions of bacteria in your gut microbiome are sending messages to your brain based on the types of foods you eat. When you eat UPFs like diet shakes and ready meals, the gut bugs tell your brain they want more of this stuff. So, your brain keeps telling you to eat.

The problem is, these foods are devoid of any nutritional value. They give you calories, but nothing else. They lack the fiber, vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients your body needs to thrive and survive.

The chemical additives disturb the balance of good and bad bacteria in your gut. As the bad bacteria multiply, they damage the lining of the gut, leading to increased intestinal permeability (also known as “leaky gut”) and widespread inflammation.

And as I mentioned earlier, chronic inflammation is linked to weight gain. This is how the weight gain-inflammation cycle begins.

 

Top 5 Tips for Lasting Weight Loss

So, now you know how bad these diet foods are for weight loss, it’s time to look at what you should do instead to lose weight.

Here are my top 5 tips for lasting weight loss:

– Ditch the inflammatory foods! Steer clear of ultra-processed meals and snacks, diet sodas, energy drinks, candy, doughnuts, chips, and sugary cereals.

– Stop doing workouts that raise inflammation. This is a major problem for many people. They think they need to exercise more often, or harder, to lose weight. But grueling workouts raise your stress hormones and over time, this encourages weight gain.

– Stay hydrated. Your brain struggles to tell the difference between hunger and thirst. The chances are you’re reaching for a snack when what you need is a glass of water.

– Prioritize good sleep. This is such an important step for sustaining weight loss. Find out why in How Does Sleep Help With Inflammation?

– Learn to relax. Cortisol, your main stress hormone, programs your body to store fat around your belly. This won’t shift until you learn how to relax and build your resilience to stress. Read more about this in Does Cortisol Cause Weight Gain?

 

Lose Weight With Eat Burn Sleep

The beauty of the Eat Burn Sleep program is that it combines all the different elements you need to tackle inflammation and lose weight, for good.

Our meal plans and food lists tell you exactly what to eat. The movement videos show you how to exercise without making inflammation worse, and our meditation guides help you deal with stress and manage your cortisol levels.

But don’t just take it from me, this is what our members have to say:

Ingrid says:

“I just wanted to let you know how much of an impact you have made on my life. My weight has always been between 9.7 and 10 stone, and as a result, it’s now been 8st for the last few months.

My sister is also a member and we feel like you are part of the family, you’re the one we go to for advice on almost everything!”

 

Brooke says:

“I love your “soothing workouts” and all your advice. I also wanted to let you know that when I rejoined last year, I had my physical, and my weight was 172 lbs. My physical last month was 142 lbs. Thank you so much.”

 

Dina says:

“After just one week of the 6-week reset I have lost 3.5kg. I am thrilled with the result and I look forward to losing some more!”

 

Ready to lose weight the easy way? Find out more about our membership options now.

You might also enjoy:

Why Am I Always Hungry?

Best Exercise to Lose Belly Fat

Does Cortisol Cause Weight Gain?

Yours, in health,

Yalda x

 

Yalda Alaoui is a qualified Naturopathic Nutritionist (with a foundation in Biomedicine) who studied with the College of Naturopathic Medicine in London. She has spent over a decade performing groundbreaking research in chronic inflammation and gut health.

 

Yalda Alaoui

Author

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Join the Eat Burn Sleep email newsletter and be the first to hear about new tips, and recipes!

Continue Reading

Is Ozempic a Safe Way to Treat Obesity?

Best Exercise to Lose Belly Fat Quickly

Is an anti-inflammatory diet good for weight loss?

June 23, 2024

Low-Calorie Foods for Weight Loss

Hello Everyone.

Do you want to lose weight and not feel hungry all the time?

Are you looking for low-calorie foods for weight loss?

This post is for you. I’m going to share 5 important things about branded low-calorie foods so you can understand exactly what they do to your body. Then, I’m going to show you some higher-calorie meals that are even better for weight loss so you can decide what to eat to lose weight.

Let’s start with the 5 important things you need to know about branded low-calorie foods.

1. Beware of Marketing. Selling Matters More Than Your Health.

2. Most Low-Calorie Foods Should Carry a Health Warning!

3. Most Low-Calorie Foods Will Lead to Even Greater Weight Gain

4. Don’t Count Calories for Weight Loss

5. Low-Calorie Foods for Weight Loss Lead to Misery

1. Beware of Marketing. Selling Matters More Than Your Health.

I started researching low-calorie products and a quick online search led me to ‘low-calorie crackers’. The first one to come up was a sweet chili flavor rice cracker with 106 calories per 25g. That’s about 6 crackers. The marketing focus is on the calories as they are written in big bold type on the label, the same size as the logo.

The label for these crackers tells you they are ‘baked not fried’, 93% fat-free, gluten-free, and are a healthy, delicious low-fat snack.

Here are the ingredients:

Rice (84.5%), Rice Bran Oil (Contains Antioxidant: Soy Tocopherols), Sugar (4.3%), Salt, Milk Powder, Hydrolysed Soy Protein, Tomato Powder, Garlic Powder, Yeast Extract, Soy Sauce Powder (Soy, Rice, Salt), Onion Powder, Acidity Regulators: Calcium Lactate, Sodium Acetates, Citric Acid, Malic Acid, Flavor Enhancers: Disodium Guanylate, Disodium Inosinate, Vinegar Flavor, Maltodextrin, Paprika Powder (0.1%), Chilli Powder (0.1%), Colouring: Paprika Extract, Anticaking: Silicon Dioxide, Antioxidant: Soy Tocopherol, Capsicum Extract.

Do these ingredients sound healthy to you? Do you have them in your store cupboard? Why does a simple cracker need to contain so many chemicals? The answer, of course, is that these crackers are an ultra-processed, highly addictive food.

Young female doctor consulting overweight woman in clinic

2. Most Low-Calorie Foods Should Carry a Health Warning!

Ultra-processed foods like this are riddled with enhancers, stabilizers, emulsifiers, and other additives. These chemicals damage your gut microbiome and cause gut dysbiosis (Song et al, 2023).

Gut dysbiosis leads to chronic inflammation, which causes obesity!

It’s no coincidence that ultra-processed foods are big business, and obesity and diseases are on the rise. Over 1 billion people in the world are obese. That includes 650 million adults, 340 million adolescents, and 39 million children!

3. Most Low-Calorie Foods Will Lead to Even Greater Weight Gain

The bad bacteria that cause obesity love these acidity regulators, flavor enhancers, and anticaking agents. They will let your brain know that they want more of this rubbish so that they can survive and wipe out your good bacteria. This is why ultra-processed foods become addictive.

These chemicals confuse the brain’s hunger-reward system. They trick you into thinking you are eating something healthy, and your body searches for fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Because these foods are nutritionally deficient, your brain tells you to keep on eating, in the hope that you will find the nutrients you need. Ultra-processed food is wiping out our natural eating habits, and the body is starving.

This is why obesity is on the rise. These chemicals are in all low-calorie, marketed foods. Bodies are getting bigger, and malnutrition is getting greater. 

But when you eat real food filled with fiber, vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients, your body knows how to utilize it. You don’t feel constantly hungry with a nutrient-rich diet. And more importantly, you won’t become obese and inflamed.

Fat woman., Shape up healthy stomach muscle, and diet lifestyle, to reduce belly concept.

4. Don’t Count Calories for Weight Loss

The ultra-processed low-calorie rice crackers state that they are 424 kcal per 100g.

We don’t count calories here at Eat Burn Sleep, but look at what you can eat for the same number of calories as these crackers:

 

A tray of chicken bites coated in anti-inflammatory ingredients, sprinkled with herbs

A serving of our chicken nuggets @ 200g = 310 kcals.

Two glasses with coconut yogurt and strawberries on top. Mint at the side.

A serving of our Summer Pudding, 113.2 kcals.

 

A bowl of Thai red curry with red and green vegetables.

Our Red Thai Vegetable Curry 217.4 kcal

Plus:

A glass of a chocolatey-looking protein shake made with cacao, with a red and white straw in it.

Anti-craving Chocolate Shake 92kcal

Plus:

A plate with a burger and salad on it, with a dip on the side with an orange napkin and knife and fork.

Moroccan Burger 204.4 kcal

Plus:

A bowl of salad with tomatoes, quinoa, butternut squash and other vegetables in a pink and cream bowl

Butternut Squash & Quinoa Salad 268.4 kcal

 

You could use the same number of calories (or fewer!) and enjoy easily digested, genuinely healthy food that will help you lose weight and make your brain and body happy.

More importantly, look at the superpower nutrients you are putting inside your body in these quick and easy recipes:

  • Vitamins A, B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B12, biotin, C, D, E, K, and folate.
  • Minerals like calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, sulfur, and zinc.
  • Fiber to support your gut microbiome.
  • Omega 3, the essential fatty acid that helps manage inflammation.
  • All 9 essential amino acids that your body uses as building blocks for protein.
  • Anti-inflammatory, antioxidant polyphenols from colorful plant foods.

This is why EBS members are putting their weight issues and inflammatory conditions into remission and enjoying one of life’s joys: Eating delicious food. Just like Natasa:

“Since joining the platform 3 weeks ago, I have lost 3kg, and my bloating is gone.

I have bilateral patellofemoral osteoarthritis (severe pain in both knees) and the pain is now much less. I feel like I can finally start doing movement videos that I previously couldn’t do because of my knee pain.

Also, all your recipes are so tasty. Thank you so much.”

Woman having great happy life, jumping for joy on the beach

Eating this way will fill you up and allow your body to function as it should. It will make your skin glow, your hair grow and shine, your eyes sparkle, and, without a doubt, make you feel full of joie de vivre!

Remember that when your gut is well-fed, your brain is too. Healthy gut bacteria regulate mood balance and our “happy” neurotransmitters like serotonin. Are there many diets out there that can say the same?

5. Low-calorie foods for Weight Loss Lead to Misery

Following a low-calorie diet and counting calories all the time will lead to misery.

Weight loss diets gain popularity because people do lose weight at the beginning. Any weight loss regime is the same, whether it is the keto diet, a low-carb diet, or a low-calorie diet.

But keeping the weight off is the challenge. I know because I have tried most of these diets myself. Have you read Is Ozempic a Safe Way to Treat Obesity?, The Dangers of a Vegan Keto Diet or Is The Keto Diet Good For Diabetes?

When you eat low-calorie, nutrient-poor foods, your body is not satiated. The chances are you will think about food all day long because you are starving yourself of essential nutrients that you need to survive.

When you binge because you are so hungry, your body will hold onto that binge food because it worries that you will starve again. And this is how yo-yo dieting starts. Starve and binge. Weight loss and then even more weight gain.

Over time, the chronic inflammation that comes from eating ultra-processed low-calorie foods leads to weight gain, digestive problems, anxiety, brain fog, and depression. It can increase your risk of Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s Disease. Packing your body full of these chemicals is making your mind and body ill.

Young Asian lady celebrating her achievement, successful in slimming

What to Eat to Lose Weight

If you are looking for weight loss that lasts, I suggest you stop counting calories and stay away from ultra-processed low-calorie foods. It doesn’t work as a weight loss strategy, and it is dangerous, unsustainable, and boring!

Instead, give your body the nourishment it needs to feel energized and shed weight – just like EBS member Helen has done:

“I shed 10 pounds (4 and a half kg) following the Six Week Reset.

I feel so much more balanced and lighter inside and out, plus some digestive issues have disappeared.

The EBS approach is considered gentle and scientifically backed. I’m actively trying to maintain my now thriving gut health ‘garden’ as much as I can, limiting the damage it does in social eating situations.

I’ve never been a great cook, but I find the recipes so easy and filling. My favorites so far are chicken nuggets, zucchini bread, and chicken sausage shakshuka.

Plus, there are options for those of us with a sweet tooth or who can’t face savory protein for breakfast, which doesn’t happen on many healthy eating plans. Thank you, Yalda!”

 

Ready to lose weight and never feel hungry again? Find out more about our membership options now.

You might also enjoy:

Why Am I Always Hungry?

Best Exercise to Lose Belly Fat

Is AG1 Supplement Good For You?

Make every day count in terms of health and happiness. I hope your day is full of both.

Yalda x

 

Yalda Alaoui is a qualified Naturopathic Nutritionist (with a foundation in Biomedicine) who studied with the College of Naturopathic Medicine in London. She has spent over a decade performing groundbreaking research in chronic inflammation and gut health.

Yalda Alaoui

Author

Eat. Burn. Subscribe.

Join the Eat Burn Sleep email newsletter and be the first to hear about new tips, and recipes!

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Why Am I Always Hungry?

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June 16, 2024

How To Prevent Alzheimer’s Disease

Hello Everyone!

I’m sure it must be frightening to hear you have the genetic markers for Alzheimer’s disease. However, please be assured that this doesn’t automatically mean that you will develop the condition.

Why? Because you have the power to prevent Alzheimer’s disease.

It’s a bold statement, I know, but as with any inflammatory condition (which Alzheimer’s Disease is), you can use diet and lifestyle to minimize your risk of developing it.

In this article, I will tell you some facts about Alzheimer’s disease and explain how you can optimize your brain health and protect against cognitive decline.

Please share this post with anyone you know who is fearful of developing Alzheimer’s and anyone who cares for someone who has early signs of it. It might make a world of difference to their lives.

Alzheimer’s and Inflammation: The Facts

Lifestyles Drive Alzheimer’s Risk

Alzheimer’s Disease and Gut Health

Sleep and Neuroinflammation

Movement Affects Our Brains

Stress Response and Inflammation

How Long Does Protection Against Alzheimer’s Take?

Reverse Early Onset Dementia

Alzheimer’s and Inflammation: The Facts

Let’s establish some of the facts about Alzheimer’s disease:

  • Alzheimer’s disease is the most common type of dementia. There are an estimated 5.8 million people in the U.S. with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias. Around 200,000 of these are under the age of 65.
  • Women are nearly twice as likely to be affected by Alzheimer’s than men.
  • The inflammation and cellular damage that leads to Alzheimer’s begins years before any symptoms appear.
  • There are many underlying causes of Alzheimer’s, which is why the search for a single drug cure will never work.

Alzheimer’s is characterized by the appearance of amyloid plaques and knots of tau protein in brain tissue. However, this type of damage occurs in healthy brains as they age and doesn’t explain why some people develop Alzheimer’s and others don’t.

Scientists then discovered that chronic inflammation in the brain drives the progression of Alzheimer’s. It seems to be this combination of chronic inflammation alongside amyloid plaques and tau protein fibers that leads to Alzheimer’s.

A close up of a bowl of chips being eaten by a lady but only her torso is seen.

Lifestyles Drive Alzheimer’s Risk

Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia are more prevalent now than 100 years ago. This is because our diets and lifestyles are radically different:

  • We are exposed to more environmental toxins and chemicals in food. These toxins alter the gut microbiome and drive inflammation.
  • We do less exercise and movement.
  • We have less good quality sleep.
  • We eat junk foods that lack essential vitamins and minerals.

All these factors combine to create a state of chronic inflammation that damages brain tissue, leading to dementia and Alzheimer’s.

 

Alzheimer’s Disease and Gut Health

To understand the origins of Alzheimer’s we need to look at gut health. Gut bacteria have a direct effect on brain health and inflammation. What we eat affects the balance of good and bad gut bacteria and can increase our risk of inflammation in the brain.

If we choose ultra-processed foods filled with refined sugar, processed fats, and chemical additives, we are choosing to damage the gut, promote inflammation, and increase our risk of developing dementia.

If we opt for anti-inflammatory foods that provide brain-healthy nutrients, then we are choosing to nourish our gut bacteria, minimize inflammation, and protect our brains against Alzheimer’s.

Sleep and Neuroinflammation

How well we sleep influences our risk of developing neuroinflammation. Good quality sleep is vital for brain cell “housekeeping” and clearing away amyloid plaques in the brain. If you regularly get less than 7-9 hours’ sleep a night you are depriving your brain of the time it needs to do this repair work.

The Eat Burn Sleep lifestyle supports and promotes healthy sleep and we have specific advice for Insomnia. You might also like to read: What Happens If You Don’t Sleep Enough?

 

Movement Affects Our Brains

Exercise and movement stimulate blood flow and oxygen circulation to the brain. Brain cells get more nutrients and metabolic waste can be cleared away.

Our program includes a whole series of exercise and movement videos designed to improve your strength without increasing inflammation. Many regular forms of exercise are too strenuous. They spike your cortisol levels which then causes more inflammation.

Stress Response and Inflammation

Stress is a massive factor in chronic inflammation and dementia. We each have the power to reduce the effects of stress and improve our resilience. Regular relaxation is crucial for cognitive wellbeing and we have a library of guided meditations for you to enjoy.

 

How Long Does Protection Against Alzheimer’s Take?

In a matter of weeks, you can dramatically change your genetic expression and reduce your risk of Alzheimer’s disease. If you are as consistent as possible (I advise an 80/20 on this lifestyle), you give yourself the best protection possible.

Start the 6-Week Reset, and then follow Daily Goals and the monthly planner in the Reboot & Revive section under Lifestyle Guide to make your meals, meditations, exercises, and snacks for each day as easy as possible. Remember that the recipes are family-and-friends-friendly!

 

 

Reverse Early Onset Dementia

If you have signs of Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) or early onset dementia, you can slow the progression and dramatically change the outcome with the Eat Burn Sleep lifestyle. Give yourself proper rest, daily movement, interesting activities to stimulate your brain, and an anti-inflammatory diet, and you will give your brain the best chance to fight dementia.

My final advice is to start protecting yourself as soon as possible. Don’t live with that fear anymore. You can protect yourself against developing inflammatory conditions like Alzheimer’s disease and look and feel years younger by doing so!

Want to find out how? Look at the Eat Burn Sleep program and find out about our membership options now.

You might also like:

How Does Sleep Help With Inflammation?

Brain Food for Studying and Focus

Signs of Inflammation That May Surprise You

With love and excellent health, as always!

Yalda x

 

Yalda Alaoui is a qualified Naturopathic Nutritionist (with a foundation in Biomedicine) who studied with the College of Naturopathic Medicine in London. She has spent over a decade performing groundbreaking research in chronic inflammation and gut health.

 

Yalda Alaoui

Author

Eat. Burn. Subscribe.

Join the Eat Burn Sleep email newsletter and be the first to hear about new tips, and recipes!

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May 26, 2024

Is Ozempic a Safe Way to Treat Obesity?

Hi Everyone,

I hope you are well. Today, I want to talk about the diabetes drug Ozempic. It’s one of the big social media topics at the moment because people are using it for weight loss.

However, there are significant health risks to taking prescription medicine for a health condition if you don’t have that condition and without your doctor’s approval. People are buying Ozempic from online pharmacies and unregulated websites, leading to a shortage of the drug for diabetics who desperately need it.

So let’s dive into this topic and see whether Ozempic is a safe way to treat obesity and weight loss, and what the natural alternatives are.

What is Ozempic?

Side Effects of Ozempic

Is Ozempic Dangerous for Weight Loss?

Can Ozempic Affect Fertility?

Long-Term Effects of Weight Loss Injections

Does Lack of Sleep Cause Weight Gain?

Is Obesity a Chronic Disease?

How to Manage Obesity Naturally

What is Ozempic?

Ozempic is one of the brand names for semaglutide, a glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1)  receptor agonist. The other well-known brand name is Wegovy.

In 2017 the FDA approved the use of Ozempic as an adjunct to diet and exercise to improve glycaemic control in adults with Type 2 Diabetes. It helps diabetics feel full and reduces their appetite but it is important to note that Ozempic isn’t approved as a weight loss medication.

On the other hand, Wegovy (also semaglutide) is approved as a weight loss drug. However, neither Ozempic nor Wegovy are designed to be used by people who only want to lose a small amount of weight.

Side Effects of Ozempic

Any doctor will tell you that medication has side effects. Doctors weigh up the pros and cons of a medication based on your medical history and the potential benefits to your health. Ozempic is only for patients with Type 2 Diabetes and must be used under medical supervision. It is not meant to be a temporary drug or for people who want to lose a few pounds.

The common side effects, according to Ozempic’s official website are:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Stomach pain
  • Acid reflux
  • Headache
  • Dehydration
  • Diarrhea
  • Dizziness
  • Cramping
  • Constipation

 

These side effects can kick in within hours of Type 2 diabetics starting the drug which is why the dosage is gradually increased under medical supervision.

There is also a warning about the risk of possible thyroid tumors, including cancer. GLP-1 receptor agonist drugs like Ozempic are known to cause thyroid C-cell tumors in rodents. The manufacturers of Ozempic say that the risk of this happening in humans is as yet “undetermined” and only time will tell now that more people are using the drug.

They also warn against using Ozempic if:

  • You or anyone in your family have ever had Medullary Thyroid Cancer (MTC) or Multiple Endocrine Neoplasia type 2 (MEN 2)
  • You are allergic to any of the ingredients in Ozempic. Severe hypersensitivity reactions (anaphylaxis, angioedema) have been reported in patients treated with Ozempic.

They then list even more severe potential side effects:

  • Inflammation of your pancreas (pancreatitis). Their website states that you should stop taking Ozempic if you have severe pain in your stomach, with or without vomiting. Ozempic has not been studied in patients with a history of pancreatitis.
  • Vision changes.
  • Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia).
  • Kidney problems (kidney failure). As stated on their website, there have been post-marketing reports of acute kidney injury and worsening of chronic renal failure in patients treated with GLP-1 receptor agonists. Some of these are reported in patients with no known underlying renal disease. Most reported events occurred in patients who had experienced nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, or dehydration.
  • Serious allergic reactions.
  • Gallbladder problems.

This is why you need to be under medical supervision if you take Ozempic or Wegovy. Doctors who understand the physiology of semaglutide and know your medical history should be the only people prescribing these drugs.

 

Is Ozempic Dangerous for Weight Loss?

As I’m sure you’ve realized by now, the risks of taking Ozempic for weight loss are not worth it.

One final point about side effects: Medicine.gov lists all of the precautions about semaglutide, the ingredient in Ozempic, and has added:

You should know that your mental health may change in unexpected ways, and you may become suicidal while you are using semaglutide injections for weight loss.

Why put your health at such serious risk when there are easier ways to lose weight? Also, when you stop using the drug, the weight piles back on. It is not a long-lasting, sustainable solution.

To achieve lasting, healthy weight loss results, you need to abandon the idea of a “magic pill” and embrace holistic health.

Weight loss isn’t just a simple matter of cutting calories. It requires knowing what to eat, how to move, and how to deal with negative thoughts that sabotage your weight loss efforts.

This is what the Eat Burn Sleep platform is about. We have food lists, meal plans, movement videos, guided meditations, health Masterclasses, and more, all designed to support you on your weight loss journey.

 

Can Ozempic Affect Fertility?

No one knows yet if Ozempic affects human fertility or pregnancy, but the manufacturers advise stopping the drug two months before a planned pregnancy.

Animal studies reveal why. In a combined fertility and embryo development study using rats, small doses were given to male and female rats before mating. The offspring had reduced growth and fetal abnormalities in heart and blood vessels, cranial bones, vertebrae, and ribs. In studies using rabbits, pregnant rabbits experienced early pregnancy losses along with increased fetal kidney, liver, and skeletal abnormalities.

 

Long-Term Effects of Weight Loss Injections

Your doctor will advise you about all the effects of weight loss injections.

Studies show that stopping weight loss drugs, injections, and other weight loss regimes will likely lead to regaining weight within a few months. It stops intuitive eating, so you do not know when to eat and when you are full, which also affects other areas of your health, like sleep.

 

Does Lack of Sleep Cause Weight Gain?

Yes! Not getting enough good quality sleep will hamper weight loss. Sleep is essential for your body to regulate hunger hormones and appetite. Lack of sleep makes you prone to cravings, overeating, and fatigue. I talk about this topic more in Weight Loss & The Link to Sleep.

 

Is Obesity a Chronic Disease?

Obesity is a chronic inflammatory condition that can be managed naturally and safely without injections and extreme weight loss regimes. Millions of people struggle with obesity because of highly addictive ultra-processed foods that promote weight gain and inflammation. It takes more than an injectable drug to deal with this issue, which is why we have so many weight loss success stories here at Eat Burn Sleep.

Weight loss can occur quickly on EBS – and it lasts. The only side effects are more energy, comfortable digestion, no cravings, and excellent mental well-being! This is why our program is used and recommended by doctors and medical professionals all over the world.

But don’t just take my word for it. Check out our members’ reviews from people like Kirstin:

“The movement videos really help my energy levels. My immune system has improved, less of the dreaded colds.

Working with young kids I’m constantly surrounded but I’ve been on top form the last year and fought off anything relatively quickly.

Gobsmacked at how quickly I got pregnant as I wasn’t even sure it was even possible.

My skin is clear and fresh not to mention the weight loss of 15kg and rediscovering my wardrobe! My mental health has improved too!”

 

How to Manage Obesity Naturally

Optimum gut health is the foundation of the EBS approach. It is essential for weight loss because the microbes in your gut regulate appetite and weight balance. Gut microbes can be modulated positively or negatively by different lifestyle and dietary factors and can even ‘turn off’ any hereditary links to obesity (Cuevas-Sierra et al., 2019).

Our food lists and meal plans are designed to nourish your gut flora and keep you energized and satisfied. Snack options are included if you want to snack but the meals are so filling you probably won’t want to!

Try these recipes that aid weight loss (when eaten as part of a varied anti-inflammatory diet, daily): Egg Muffins: Sweet Potatoes, Carrots & Chives, Paleo Energy Bars, and Chicken Tagine With Preserved Lemons.

You will be amazed at the transformation!

Take a look at the program and check out our membership options now.

You may also want to read:

Why Am I Always Hungry?

How to Lose Weight For and During Holidays

Best Exercise to Lose Belly Fat Quickly

As always, I wish you excellent health and a wonderful day!

Yalda x

Yalda Alaoui is a qualified Naturopathic Nutritionist (with a foundation in Biomedicine) who studied with the College of Naturopathic Medicine in London. She has spent over a decade performing groundbreaking research in chronic inflammation and gut health.

Yalda Alaoui

Author

Eat. Burn. Subscribe.

Join the Eat Burn Sleep email newsletter and be the first to hear about new tips, and recipes!

Continue Reading

How Much Does Inflammation Affect Weight Loss?

Best Exercise to Lose Belly Fat Quickly

Is an anti-inflammatory diet good for weight loss?

May 05, 2024

What Kills Candida Overgrowth, Fast?

Hello Everyone!

I suffered from candida overgrowth a while ago, and I know how it feels to have it. This is why I delved into the subject and want to share my knowledge of what kills candida fast, in a natural way.

The symptoms of candida overgrowth (also called candidiasis) can be hard to identify because it can present in lots of ways. It is often mistaken for conditions like Chronic Fatigue and Irritable Bowel Syndrome.

So, if you are looking for a fast, natural way to get rid of candida overgrowth and keep it at bay, you are in the right place.

What Is Candida?

What Causes Candida Overgrowth?

What Are The Signs of Candida Overgrowth?

How Do You Test for Candida?

Diet and Lifestyle Tips to Kill Candida Overgrowth, Fast

How to Manage Candida Die-Off

How To Stop Candida Overgrowth From Coming Back

What Is Candida?

Candida is a type of yeast, a microscopic fungus that lives in and on your body. It is part of your microflora, the community of bacteria, yeasts, viruses, and other microbes present in your gut, throat, lungs, skin, and genitals.

Candidiasis that occurs in the mouth, vagina, or on the skin (including on the penis) is often called thrush. White patches, itchiness, and soreness are tell-tale signs of a thrush infection.

Under normal conditions, candida is kept in check by other microbes. It is only when the balance of microbes is disturbed that candida has the opportunity to grow. And if it sees an opportunity, it will grow quickly!

Most candida problems can be resolved with diet, lifestyle, and in some cases, supplements. However, there is a severe form of infection called systemic candidiasis which requires medical attention. This occurs when the yeast infects major organs like the lungs and kidneys. Systemic candidiasis commonly affects people with a compromised immune system such as HIV patients, and people taking immune-suppressant drugs.

 

What Causes Candida Overgrowth?

Common causes include:

  • Stress.
  • Pregnancy.
  • Taking oral contraceptive pills or Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT).
  • Smoking.
  • A diet high in Ultra Processed Foods and Drinks (UPFDs).
  • Chronic illness.
  • Using a catheter.
  • A compromised immune system.

These issues affect the balance of microflora in and on your body. When the microbes are disrupted, candida takes the opportunity to thrive.

What Are The Signs of Candida Overgrowth?

Signs and symptoms of a yeast overgrowth will be different for everyone, but they include:

  • Sore patches in the mouth
  • White coating on the tongue
  • Cracked corners of the mouth
  • Sore throat
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Sore, itchy genitals, and in women, a foul-smelling vaginal discharge that looks like cottage cheese
  • Fever
  • Chills
  • Brain fog
  • Depression
  • Athlete’s foot
  • Nail infections
  • Skin infections
  • Diarrhea
  • Constipation
  • Bloating
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Memory and concentration issues
  • Mood swings and irritability
  • Sinus infections
  • PMS symptoms

If it is left unchecked, candida can start to attack the lining of the gut, causing leaky gut syndrome. Damage to the gut lining allows partially digested foods and toxins into the bloodstream. These can trigger an immune response which then leads to chronic inflammation.

How Do You Test for Candida?

Various blood, urine, and stool tests can check for candida overgrowth. And there’s also a simple home saliva test that you can do. If you follow me on Instagram, you can find it in my reels. Do check out the videos for candida support, too.

 

Diet and Lifestyle Tips to Kill Candida Overgrowth, Fast

Eat Burn Sleep’s anti-candida protocol is powerful, effective, and long-lasting.

The plan focuses on anti-inflammatory foods that support a healthy balance of microflora in your body. Unlike other candida diet plans, the Eat Burn Sleep approach doesn’t tell you to “starve” the candida because ultimately, that doesn’t work!

You don’t want to be feeding it with sugars and ultra-processed foods, but neither do you want to try and “starve” it out of existence because that won’t happen.

You need to take a multi-pronged approach to candida management that includes:

  • Foods that support a healthy balance of microflora
  • Anti-inflammatory foods
  • Anti-fungal foods
  • Foods that support your liver detoxification pathways. Your liver has to deal with the candida die-off and it needs plenty of help with this.
  • Foods to support regular, comfortable bowel movements. This ensures the dead candida leaves your system!
  • Relaxation and meditation. Stress is a big trigger for candida overgrowth. If you don’t learn how to handle stress, you are leaving the door open for candida to return.
  • Restful, restorative sleep.

We have a powerful candida protocol as part of our Premium Membership. The protocol covers the diet, lifestyle, and supplement advice you need to kill candida overgrowth quickly and naturally. You can use this protocol alongside the 6-Week Reset program which gives you food lists and meal plans to keep you motivated and inspired.

How to Manage Candida Die-Off

You will know when the candida overgrowth is dying, and it usually happens by day 3 of the protocol. It’s that quick!

When the candida starts to die off it can cause a few uncomfortable side effects like wind, bloating, nausea, and fatigue. This is when you won’t feel like yourself, but the upturn is so worth it. Oh my goodness, you will feel amazing afterward!

Just keep going, follow the plan, drink plenty of water, and rest as much as you can.

 

How To Stop Candida Overgrowth From Coming Back

Once you’ve dealt with the overgrowth and are feeling better, I recommend you follow the overall Eat Burn Sleep approach to maintain this improvement.

The EBS diet and lifestyle can keep candida at bay because it deals with the underlying cause of yeast overgrowth – poor gut health and imbalanced microflora.

The movement and meditation practices are a powerful part of this approach too. Many of our members have been surprised by the power of the neuroplasticity exercises and how their brain feels rewired afterward. By following these exercises they have been able to break strong addictions to sugar and processed foods.

Strong immunity, resilience to stress, healthy digestion, boundless energy, mental clarity, and sharp concentration – these are some of the amazing outcomes you can expect from the Eat Burn Sleep diet and lifestyle. So if yeast overgrowth is a regular occurrence for you, I  advise following this lifestyle to combat and prevent it!

 

This is what EBS member Sharon says about the program…

I’m really enjoying the EBS lifestyle, and have been following it for 10 months now, I feel the best in years, I have a flat tummy and suffer much less with bloating.

When I did the six-week reset the first week was hard but by day 5 I was feeling so good it encouraged me to keep going.

I am slimmer around my middle and have a lot of energy. My joints feel so much better. I can tell I have less inflammation in my body. The workouts are great and because they are short, I always can fit them into my day.

I love all the information and master classes on the platform, as I like to learn about health and nutrition. I will be subscribing for another year – thanks Yalda for all your work, in helping yourself, you are now helping so many people.

Want to know more? Check out our membership options now.

 

You might also like:

Habit Stacking: The Key to Making Your Health Habits Last

How Does Sleep Help With Inflammation?

Worst Foods for Gut Health

 

With love,

Yalda x

 

Yalda Alaoui is a qualified Naturopathic Nutritionist (with a foundation in Biomedicine) who studied with the College of Naturopathic Medicine in London.

She has spent over a decade performing groundbreaking research in chronic inflammation and gut health.

 

Yalda Alaoui

Author

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April 17, 2024

Is AG1 Supplement Good for You?

Hi Everyone,

I am often asked, “Is AG1 supplement good for you?” And I have to say no! When I first saw it (I like to keep up to date with new products so I ordered a packet for myself) I was horrified by the ingredients. I was so horrified that I returned the product. Let me explain so you can learn how to spot problematic ingredients too.

What is AG1?

AG1 is a multivitamin and herbal powder formula that you mix with water to make a healthy drink. It is heavily endorsed by doctors and celebrities and marketed with phrases such as ‘Promotes Gut Health,’ ‘Supports Immunity,’ and ‘Helps Recovery.’

But the extensive list of ingredients doesn’t stack up to be as healthy as it makes out.

Are Supplements Safe?

Is AG1 Good or Bad for You?

The Risks of Taking AG1

Why the AG1 Ingredient Soy Lecithin Has Health Risks

How is Soy Lecithin Produced?

Is Inulin, Another AG1 Ingredient, Safe?

 

Are Supplements Safe?

Firstly, everyone needs to know that supplements are not FDA-approved (Food and Drug Administration). Supplement manufacturers are responsible for their products’ safety but do not need to prove their safety.

Nor do they need to prove the effectiveness of the supplements.

A supplement manufacturer may do business with another manufacturer who may verify the safety of their ingredients before they use them. But the other manufacturer does not have to prove the safety of their ingredients, either.

The Food and Drug Administration provides no safety certification for supplement formulas – or their ingredients, including

additives. Additives have never been rigorously tested.

For reassurance, I always advise using a trusted brand, like Minami or Solgar who extensively research their ingredients and products. You can see more brands I love and trust on my Yalda Loves page. However, no matter how good a supplement is, it cannot replace a healthy diet and lifestyle.

Also, please ask yourself what you want from your supplement. For instance, you can easily reach your weight loss goals, manage depression, ease pain, optimize energy levels, and discover glowing skin by following the EBS anti-inflammatory lifestyle! The effects are incredible, and they keep on coming!

What Do Supplements Contain?

Many popular supplements contain unnecessary excipients, fillers, stabilizers, bulking agents, and preservatives. A supplement company can get away with using cheap additives because they don’t have to comply with any food and drug laws. This lack of regulation and use of cheap filler ingredients is partly why supplement manufacturing is a billion-dollar industry!

It is essential to know what to look for in a good quality supplement and to spot cheap, unnecessary ingredients. I urge you not to be swayed by endorsements from doctors or celebrities or to buy things online without understanding the ingredients.

 

Is AG1 Good For You?

AG1 has been around for a while, is recommended by doctors, and has famous people as investors. So, there’s a lot to ‘trust’ about the brand. Endorsed by Dr. Chatterjee, Dr. Mark Hyman, Huberman Lab, and Dr. David Sinclair, it is not a surprise that their revenue numbers are apparently through the roof. Doctors are telling you that it is good for you.

AG1 was founded in 2010 and was originally called Athletic Greens. It is a blend of 75 vitamins, minerals, superfoods, probiotics, and adaptogens, with no GMOs, herbicides, pesticides, artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives. According to their website, AG1 is made from the highest quality ingredients under the strictest standards – but bear in mind that there are no strict standards in place by the FDA.

 

The Risks of Taking AG1

Supplements are huge money-makers, and the manufacturers don’t need to prove their safety.

Even when taking supplements from ‘reputable’ brands, it’s always wise to ensure that you go over the ingredients with your nutritionist or healthcare provider. This minimizes the risk of :

  • Contraindications with medications or other supplements.
  • Accidentally taking too much of a vitamin or mineral.
  • Sensitivities to ingredients that are not classed as dangerous to health.

AG1 is full of active ingredients beneficial to health such as B vitamins, zinc, and vitamin C. However, this high amount of active ingredients may be difficult for some people to digest and assimilate. And many of the herbals have well-recognized potential risks. For example, too much licorice can lead to hypokalemia and hypertension and some people are more sensitive to licorice exposure (Kwon et al., 2020). There is no caution about this on their website, by the way.

The most significant problem I noticed within seconds of looking at the ingredients is soy lecithin.

Soy lecithin harms the gut microbiome (Miclotte et al, 2020) and may trigger gut dysbiosis. It is NOT good for gut health, the immune system, or aiding recovery. It does the complete opposite.

Why the AG1 Ingredient Soy Lecithin Has Health Risks

Soy lecithin is added to products as an emulsifier, not for health benefits. You could argue that AG1 is using it for this reason and the good ingredients will outweigh any harmful effects. But, soy lecithin is the second largest ingredient in the supplement!

Research is ongoing into the impact of emulsifiers like soy lecithin on health, but so far we know that:

  • Higher levels of soy lecithin encourage Enterococcus and Clostridium bacteria in the microbiota. These are pathogenic and lead to disease.
  • Soy lecithin is associated with a decline in the diversity of the gut microbiome (Miclotte et al, 2020).
  • By disrupting the microbiome, emulsifiers contribute to a pro-inflammatory state and the development of Metabolic Syndrome (Miclotte et al, 2020).

Disruption of the gut microbiome leads to a dysregulated immune system, which leads to chronic inflammation.  This manifests in different ways for each individual and can show up as alopecia, candida & H-pylori, depression, IBS, bloating, migraines, obesity, Metabolic Syndrome, skin inflammation – the list goes on!

So, if you have an inflammatory condition and you regularly take a supplement containing a large amount of soy lecithin, you could be making your condition worse.

A footnote at the end of the label states: This product contains a premium lecithin for phosphatidyl serine and phosphatidylcholine. The metabolism of phosphatidylcholine from soy lecithin in the gut microbiota has been linked to cardiovascular disease, as discussed in studies (Wang et al., 2011, Tang & Hazen, 2014).

How is Soy Lecithin Produced?

To make soy lecithin you must first extract soybean oil from raw soybeans using an industrial solvent. The oil then goes through a process called degumming. This involves mixing water with the oil until the lecithin separates from it. After that, the lecithin is then dried and often bleached. The DNA in soy lecithin is degraded during this process, so it is impossible to tell whether it is GMO or not. Also, I am not sure what AG1 means by premium soy lecithin.

Is Inulin, Another AG1 Ingredient, Safe?

The other AG1 ingredient linked to health issues is inulin, the fourth ingredient listed.

Inulin is a prebiotic fiber that can alter your microbiota. In some instances this can be helpful but if your microbiome is already out of balance there is the risk of feeding the harmful microbes.

Animal studies show that inulin disturbs systemic cholesterol and bile acid metabolism and may have detrimental effects on liver function. (Pauly et al., 2020).  And be careful if you have digestive problems as inulin can cause bloating, excess wind, cramps, and diarrhea (WebMD).

Again, many articles state the health properties of inulin. It is important to run through ingredients with your nutritionist (or contact us if you are a member) to make sure they are right for you and your specific health needs.

Reading one of AG1’s clever marketing statements “AG1 empowers the gut for whole body health” I’m afraid I have to disagree. Soy lecithin disempowers your gut, increasing the risk of disease. But I do agree with their statement: We can’t achieve a healthier everything else without a healthy gut.

 

Beware of Marketing Words!

They could cost you your health.

The key takeaways here are:

  • The FDA does not regulate supplement companies and their products.
  • Marketing slogans exist purely to make you buy the product.
  • Always read the ingredients list on any supplement carefully and speak to your healthcare practitioner (or us, if you are an EBS Member) before taking them.
  • Taking supplements – even those endorsed by doctors and famous people – may leave your body susceptible to disease if they contain potentially harmful ingredients.

If you haven’t heard my podcasts or the recent Instagram Live with Dr. Dawn Sherling about the dangers of food additives, check them out.

AG1 or Eat Burn Sleep – Which is the Best Investment For Your Health?

Consider how much it will cost you to make you unhealthy in the long run:

  • AG1’s ‘BEST VALUE’ package is for two people at £2,328.00 ($2,796.70) a year.
  • For a single subscription (at the time of writing, there was an offer of £79 per month), which is £948.00 (approx.$1,140) a year for a ‘health’ supplement!
  • Our Premium EBS Membership, which gives you access to everything you need to support your health, is only £250 a year, without health risks and long-term positive effects.

 

Knowing what is good for you and how your body works is the best way to take care of yourself. And the EBS platform enables you to do exactly that.

A year’s subscription to Eat Burn Sleep gives you the knowledge and tools you need. It is the equivalent of having a personal nutritionist and a year’s gym sessions with unique exercises not found anywhere else. You can access Movement videos, guided Meditations, meal plans, food lists, and an ever-expanding anti-inflammatory cookbook with recipes from around the world, like Catalan Roasted Vegetables, Chicken Marbella, and Moroccan Burgers.

EBS is family-friendly and world-friendly. Our members are getting happier and healthier, changing their tastebuds and optimizing their microbiome. They are living a better life as the days and years go by.

This is what Dr Sara Fernandez, MD, has to say…

“I am really impressed with the quality of your work and couldn’t agree more with your principles. Your ability to formulate a lifestyle strategy around improving health is outstanding.

EBS is an excellent professional platform sustained with thorough research and scientific information. You not only cover research for anti-inflammatory nutrition but for all medical conditions. This demonstrates how what we eat contributes to their regression or progression as chronic illness.”

 

Do take care. Your health is precious. Have a great day!

 

Yalda Alaoui is an expert Naturopathic Nutritionist (with a foundation in Biomedicine) who studied with the College of Naturopathic Medicine in London.
She has spent over a decade performing groundbreaking research into chronic inflammation and gut health.

 

Yalda Alaoui

Author

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March 24, 2024

Can Diet Help Relieve Hay Fever?

Spring is here which means seasonal allergies are too! Tree, grass, and weed pollen make life miserable for millions of hay fever sufferers every year, causing sneezing fits, sore throats, and stuffy noses. Antihistamine drugs may help but often have side effects like drowsiness. But what about food? Can diet help relieve hay fever?

 

What Is Hay Fever?

Hay fever, or seasonal allergic rhinitis as it is officially known, occurs when your immune system reacts to pollen from grasses, trees, flowers, and weeds.

The pollen irritates the lining of your nose, eyes, and throat, causing immune cells to release histamine and other inflammatory chemicals. This leads to itching, swelling, and irritation.

Typical hay fever symptoms include:

    • Sore throat.
    • Tickly cough.
    • Runny or blocked, stuffy nose.
    • Itchy, watery eyes.
    • Sneezing.
    • Headache.
    • Mucous in your throat.

 

When Is Hay Fever Season?

Hay fever season starts in late Winter / early Spring when the tree pollens appear. This is soon followed by grasses in late Spring and early Summer and weed pollen in Fall. Spring and Fall are often peak seasons for seasonal allergic rhinitis, although pollen levels vary according to your location and climate.

 

Who Is Prone to Hay Fever?

Anyone of any age can suffer from hay fever. Some people grow out of their childhood hay fever and no longer experience any symptoms as an adult. Others develop it for the first time in their twenties or thirties, or even later. Many women start with seasonal allergic rhinitis and other allergies during menopause when hormone changes affect immune and gut health.

 

How Long Does Hay Fever Last?

This varies from person to person. If you are only sensitive to one type of pollen, your symptoms will subside when that pollen level drops. If you are sensitive to several types of pollen your symptoms can potentially last from late Winter through to Fall.

 

Why Is My Hay Fever So Bad All of a Sudden?

There are several reasons why seasonal allergies can suddenly get worse.

Stress has a major impact on immune health. If you are under a lot of stress, your immune system may not work as effectively.

Illness and infection can affect the membranes lining your nose and throat and leave you more sensitive to pollen.

Location change. If you’ve moved to a different city or even a different part of the same city, the pollen levels may be higher than where you lived before.

Air pollution from traffic fumes can make hay fever worse for some sufferers.

Weather patterns affect pollen levels. A mild winter followed by a cool spring and a sudden burst of warmth in early summer can trigger a pollen burst that can worsen symptoms.

 

Can Diet Help Relieve Hay Fever?

Yes! Adopting an anti-inflammatory diet and lifestyle can be hugely beneficial for managing seasonal allergic rhinitis. The clue here is in the name of the condition. The word “rhinitis” translates as “inflammation of the nose,” meaning the membranes lining the nose are inflamed.

The Eat Burn Sleep anti-inflammatory diet and lifestyle program minimises inflammation by supporting gut and immune health. These two systems are intrinsically linked because so much of your immune system resides in the gut.

Alongside these immune cells, your gut microbiome is also hard at work supporting immunity. It helps to regulate immune responses and inflammation and communicates with other microbiomes in the body, such as the oral and nasal microbiomes.

Research shows that people with allergic rhinitis have an altered microbiome in the nasal passages which may be associated with inflammation (Chen et al, 2022). As we can’t micromanage individual bacteria within a microbiome, it’s important to create the right environment for beneficial species to thrive. Following an anti-inflammatory diet and lifestyle is the ideal way to do this. I suggest the 6-Week Reset as the place to start – it has all the meal plans, food lists, and guidance you need to begin your anti-inflammatory journey.

 

Here’s what EBS Member Eleonora has to say about the program:

I’m in the sixth week of the Six Week Reset and I cannot thank Yalda enough for the EBS lifestyle. During the last two years, I’ve struggled a lot with various issues like bloating, being overweight, psoriasis, thyroid malfunction, and acne, but now I’ve found the lifestyle that is the answer to all my problems.

I finally started losing weight, changing my body composition, feeling energetic all day long, less bloated, fewer cravings in my PMS phase, and still counting the benefits!

This lifestyle completely switched my body and my mind, and I cannot live without all the specialized advice I can find on the EBS platform anymore. Again, thanks Yalda for your great work!

Want to know more about Eat Burn Sleep? You can take a sneak peek around the platform here and check out our membership options here.

 

And you might also like to read:

The Anti-inflammatory Diet and Lifestyle

Does Sleep Help With Inflammation?

What is Gut Health?

 

Here’s to a happy and healthy hay fever season,

Yalda x

Yalda Alaoui

Author

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Join the Eat Burn Sleep email newsletter and be the first to hear about new tips, and recipes!

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October 22, 2023

10 Ways to Boost Your Immunity Quickly

Fastest Ways to Boost Your Immunity Against Viruses

Hello Everyone! If you are in a part of the world experiencing seasonal changes, there is likely to be an increase in viral infections, and you could be looking for ways to boost your immunity quickly against viruses.

Exposure is inevitable, and it is essential unless you are advised to shield for medical reasons or are classed as vulnerable.

We need exposure but must also be highly cautious of viruses when underlying chronic inflammation exists. This has become even more evident in the last few years. If you have underlying chronic inflammation, your immune system is dysregulated, but you can change that and fight inflammation.

Boosting your immunity quickly by following the below will help most people do so while still enjoying life!

(Looking after your immune system throughout the year is good advice, not just when the seasons shift).

 

 

Here are 10 ways to boost your immunity quickly against viruses and ensure better health:

1. Eat Gut-healthy, Nutrient-rich Foods Regularly

Our immune systems need nourishment from a plethora of nutrients from foods.

Poor gut health is linked to weakened immunity and non-communicable diseases. Gut health is imperative to good health, and the diversity of your gut bacteria will dictate how nutrients are absorbed.

Getting it right will better prepare the body for excess inflammation and microbial attacks! Beneficial nutrients to boost your immunity quickly and ensure immune system regulation must be digested regularly, forming an excellent dietary pattern.

Try these two delicious recipes:

A bowl of Greek chicken soup with inflammation reducing turmeric, which has given it a wonderful golden colour. A healing soup.

Immune-boosting Chicken Soup

A plate of immune boosting energy balls

Immune-boosting Energy Balls.

2. Ensure You Get Enough Vitamin D 

90% of vitamin D is absorbed from the sun, essential for the immune system. There are safe ways to do this, and of course, there are challenges here, especially with seasonal changes.

If you have poor vitamin D absorption, like with ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s, and celiac, please follow the personalized advice for inflammatory bowel disease. It is an imperative protocol for good health and to put the conditions into remission, regardless.

If you are a vegan, live where sunlight is limited, or have any other reason that prevents you from getting the right amount of vitamin D, it’s worth reading through this health education platform, arming yourself with advice from a nutritionist and of course, eating nutrient-rich, gut-healthy foods. The bioavailability of foods is essential to boost your immunity quickly. However, some people need to take supplements.

Sunshine is good for your immunity.

Absorb sunshine as much as possible in cooler months, sit by an open sunny window, or obtain a S.A.D. lamp.

3. Keep Your Inflammation Down – through eating, moving, and sleeping (Eat Burn Sleep!) is the most sound advice for everyone!

4. Change Lifestyle Habits

Change any lifestyle habits that inhibit good health. An unhealthy lifestyle, which includes eating and drinking unhealthy foods and drinks most of the time, being overweight and underweight, following restrictive diets, lacking proper exercise, being sedentary, lack of fresh air, pollution, toxins, excess alcohol, smoking, drug abuse, poor sleep patterns, and stress weakens immunity defense.

A close up of a slim girl on her weighing scales.

5. Reduce Your Weight

Obesity is a chronic inflammatory condition, and you can reduce your weight by reducing the inflammation in your body. It is the safest, most effective way of reducing weight and boosting your immunity. Fat tissues produce adipocytokines, and these increase inflammation. Impaired T-cells stop the response of the immune system to pathogens. Also, it is worth knowing that with obesity, vitamin D is not readily available when needed because it accumulates in excess fat. This is reversible when you reduce chronic inflammation.

6. Put Your Autoimmune Disease Into Remission

Is that possible? Yes. I have two autoimmune diseases, so I created Eat Burn Sleep. Please read the other articles and magazine and newspaper features in the articles section.

Man taking ten minute mental break at the desk for good health.

7. Perform Regular De-stressing Techniques

Stress is so bad for your health, and it can affect gut health, affecting mental and physical health. Excess cortisol that is triggered, along with other hormones when you are stressed, leads to reduced immunity and increased inflammation.

The immune system, central nervous system, and endocrine system interact with each other.
When stressed, your sympathetic nervous system kicks in, shutting down the immune and parasympathetic nervous systems.

Have you heard my podcasts with Nick Potter about The Behavioral Immune and with Dr. Tamsin Lewis about Long Covid, Immunity, & Energy Levels?

When life feels like it is crashing around you, pay attention to your gut (70% of immune cells and 60% of feel-good neurotransmitters reside in a healthy gut) and de-stressing techniques.

It is vital to keep chronic inflammation at bay because chronic inflammation promotes anxiety, depression, and other diseases, as well as a weakened immune system.

Woman in bed smiling, fast asleep

8. Get Good Sleep 

Sleep is the foundation for good health! You only have to think about how you crave sleep when you feel ill and have a virus. Nothing can keep you awake. Your body tells you to lie down and heal!

A person who regularly sleeps for a good amount of time will likely have more antibodies than someone with fitful, irregular sleep. This is an excellent way to boost your immunity quickly.

Long-standing shift workers and insomniacs have turned their lives around on the Eat Burn Sleep reprogramming. Reprogramming your sleeping is possible. Check out the Insomnia personalized advice.

9. Stay Social 

It’s fundamental to our overall health and survival. Our emotional joy!

Studies show that people who socialize tend to live longer than those who are more isolated. Plus, dopamine is released when we mix and exercise.

Stay social for good immunity

10. Go For a Walk 

Walk with your family, your friends – or just yourself – and feel the pleasure and reward of the dopamine hit from doing so. You will release stress along the way, boost your immunity quickly and be outside!

Remember that a robust immune system can respond appropriately to the world around it and can defend the body against invaders, pathogens, and viruses!

I wish for you – the best immune health there is!

Yalda Alaoui

Author

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October 15, 2023

Vegetarian to Meat Eater

Vegans and Vegetarians Who Want to Eat Meat Again

Hi Everyone! This post is for you if you are a vegan or vegetarian and want to eat meat – again, for the first time in years or ever!

Firstly, you should also know that we have personalized advice for re-introducing meat/animal products back into your life safely and healthily. Plus, this month’s personalized advice for members is the essential guide to optimum health for vegetarians!

Vegan and Vegetarian Health

Malnutrition Statistics

Vegan and Vegetarian Deficiencies

Symptoms of Deficiencies in Vegans and Vegetarians:

Vegan & Vegetarian Diet Supplements

Nutrition Advice for Vegans and Vegetarians

Nutritionist for optimum health

Vegan and Vegetarian Health

Firstly, it’s okay to eat meat again if you are looking at eating meat after being vegetarian. If you are reading this, then there is good reason. Maybe your mind and body are screaming at you to have animal protein.

With the added pressures of eating plant-based diets and the reasons why people become vegans and vegetarians, it can be a hard decision to switch back to eating meat.

I think many people can feel guilty when they decide to follow a particular way of eating and then find that they can’t eat that way and it isn’t sustainable. Micronutrient malnutrition can also cause low moods and less-than-optimum mental well-being.

It happens all the time with so many popular diets. Like Keto, Atkins, Raw Food, and Low-calorie diets, for instance. There may be ethical or cultural reasons behind your choice, but many diets are unsustainable or nutritionally sound.

Man with a headache, indicating malnutrition

Many diets can make you unwell and not satisfied nutritionally. Sometimes without realisation.

You may not be concerned about the impact of a vegan or vegetarian diet on your health. You may have switched to veganism for weight loss or from another diet because the doctor says your cholesterol is high or something, and you feel better at the moment.

Although there are statements all over the internet that say veganism and plant-based diets can reduce your risk of developing disease, this is not necessarily the case if you are not eating everything you need daily for optimum health. Numerous studies state that following a vegan diet can lead to skeletal, nervous, and immune system impairments, as well as anemia and depression.

Any diet that is not balanced and contains a lot of meat, or too much or too little of anything, puts you at risk of chronic disease. Everyone needs to know how to eat for optimum health!

Nutritionist explaining nutrition facts label to a client, close-up

 

Many restrictive diets (and those you would not define as restrictive) can cause deficiencies, leading to chronic inflammation.

Chronic inflammation, sustained inflammation running all the time (not just as a protective reaction to trauma or injury), is linked to the leading causes of death. 78% of deaths related to diseases have chronic inflammation pathways.

Chronic inflammation leads to neuroinflammation, which increases anxiety, depression, brain fog, mood swings and irritability, a decline in cognitive functions, and so on.

Malnutrition Statistics

Many of the world’s population has malnutrition, and an unhealthy diet, which means nutritional needs are not met, is a significant contributor to malnutrition.

Malnutrition is defined as deficiencies, imbalances, and excesses of nutrients. Malnutrition increases chronic inflammation and ill health (see below).

There’s:

  • – Undernutrition
  • – Diet-related imbalances lead to chronic inflammation and autoimmune diseases like obesity, diabetes, cancers, heart disease, IBD, arthritis, mental health issues, fibromyalgia, etc. 
  • – Inadequate micronutrient intake. 

 

 

According to the World Health Organisation, 149 million children under five are affected by malnutrition through their height. Forty-five million were estimated to be too thin, and 38.9 million were obese.

1.9 billion adults are overweight or obese, and 462 million adults are underweight.

Low-to-middle-income countries have a high rate of obesity and malnutrition.

According to the Malnutrition Task Force, 1.3 million people over 65 have malnutrition in the UK.

Not eating a good balance of the proper nutrients and micronutrients affects everyone throughout our lives!

Vegan and Vegetarian Deficiencies

Many deficiencies come from missing out on the essential daily required nutrition. Not just for vegans and vegetarians. Most people have dietary inadequacies and need the assistance of a nutritionist.

The types of iron consumed are essential. Without this, oxygen cannot be circulated, and body homeostasis is not maintained. Plus, there are Gut microbiota that improve the absorption of iron. These Gut microbiota are promoted with essential daily vitamins not found in a vegan diet, for instance.

Young vegetarian couple standing with boxes full of fresh vegetables outdoors on the gray wall background

Essential nutrition for life and keeping disease at bay is generally lower in vegans or plant-based diet eaters. The overlooked side of veganism could be dangerous for many, as explained in a study by Bali & Naik (2023).

Hundreds of studies have been reported on nutritional intake for vegans and vegetarians that show inadequate intake. These essential micronutrient requirements for optimum health are only obtained from animal products.

If you are considering eating meat after being vegetarian, it would be best to consider B12, zinc, iodine, calcium, PUFAs, etc., with veganism and vegetarianism. (Head over to personalized advice for nutrition help for vegans and vegetarians. We cover all sorts of science-backed supportive advice for vegans and vegetarians, like:

  • – eating meat after being vegetarian and vegan

  • – how to eat and what to eat (with 300+ recipes)

  • – vegan guilt

  • – worries about eating meat and getting sick after veganism

  • – being vegetarian and eating meat again has side effects

  • – how to shop for anti-inflammatory groceries on a budget

  • – your Gut microbiome…and the list goes on!

Doctor nutritionist, dietician and female patient on consultation in the office. young smiling female nutritionist in the consultation room. Nutritionist desk with healthy fruit and measuring tape.

 

Follow this anti-inflammatory diet and lifestyle for all nutrition concerns when you have been eating a restricted way for a while or have malabsorption issues like with any inflammatory bowel disease.

There are essential vitamins necessary for crucial metabolic roles across your whole life span, during development (before you are born), throughout your childhood and adulthood, and later years.

This applies to people with too much of one thing and not enough of another, not just if you are considering eating meat after being vegetarian. (Many meat eaters think they are okay, too, but they may not have enough essential daily vitamins. They, too, are at risk. It’s why nutritionists and dieticians exist!).

Protecting your mind and body, ensuring proper nutrient absorption, and meeting daily nutrition values are essential for optimum health. We do it here through gut health, reducing inflammation, regulating the immune system, liver detox, and so on.

Check out the article: Help With Anemia, B12, and Iron Deficiencies.

Female vegan and vegetarian nutritionist working at desk and writing medical records over fresh fruit in the consultation.

Symptoms of Deficiencies in Vegans and Vegetarians:

  • Iron-deficient anemia

  • Pernicious anemia

  • Fatigue

  • Weakness

  • Depression

  • Anxiety

  • Mood swings

  • Confusion

  • Lack of coordination

  • Headaches

  • Shortness of breath

  • Palpitations

  • Lack of energy

  • Vision issues

  • Pins and needles

  • Myelin shaft damage

  • Walking issues

  • Cold hands and feet

  • Nausea

  • Cravings

  • Appetite loss

  • Heart murmurs

  • Weight gain

A man in blue pyjamas in lying awake in bed, looking unhappy.

 

Vegan & Vegetarian Diet Supplements

The recommended daily intake of supplements for vegans is for people who already eat a balanced and nutritious diet. Plus, as I always say, supplements do not match the bioavailability of good food, and your vegan diet supplements could be full of inflammatory ingredients. Eating meat after being vegetarian needs good consideration.

Try these vegan recipes: Slow Cooker Indian Vegetable Curry and Carrot & Quinoa Salad.

Read these articles for more information about inflammatory ingredients in the form of supplements and medication:

Is AG1 Supplement Good for You?, Side Effects of Antibiotics & IBD, NSAIDs, and Gut Health & Inflammation.

Closeup of young woman holding vitamin capsule while taking supplements with glass of water at home

Nutrition Advice for Vegans and Vegetarians

If you are a vegan or vegetarian with concerns about nutrition and want to eat meat again, join us! We can help you facilitate the transition and help you achieve optimum mental and physical wellness.

There are many vegetarian and vegan recipes on this anti-inflammatory diet and lifestyle, along with others, so you will eat well and be well.

If you are thinking about eating meat after being vegetarian, it won’t just be your vegan or vegetarian diet that you change. You will protect yourself from chronic disease, age-degenerative neurological diseases, and anything genetic.

Plus, you won’t be disappointed about the incredible side effects.

You can book a 15-minute Zoom with me if you have any questions, connect with us in the forum, or start immediately by going to the personalized advice section.

I wish you and your family good health and wellness.

Yalda Alaoui

Author

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October 08, 2023

Depression, Anxiety & Gut Health

Reducing Depression and Anxiety Naturally

Hello Everyone! It’s hard to believe that what you eat today and tomorrow may have you waking up feeling sad, anxious, or moody the next day.

The last thing you may be thinking about if you are prone to depression and anxiety is what you are eating. You could be reaching out for unhealthy options, overloaded with caffeine and sugar, and not sleeping well, too.

Getting through the day could feel like wading through mud, and you are doing whatever you can to get through it!

This post is about depression, anxiety, and how gut health is so powerful that it can help you tremendously. Small steps will help. Please do share with anyone who is suffering. It could be the lifeline they need.

Treating Depression Safely and Naturally

Lifestyle Factors and Depression

How Does Gut Health Reduce Depression?

What Changes Gut Health?

A Diet Rich in Anti-inflammatory Prebiotic Compounds

Anti-inflammatory Diets Are Neuroprotective

Exercise and Depression

Improve Brain Health

Depressed, anxious female being comforted by her female friend.

Treating Depression Safely and Naturally

Depression is the second most common cause of disease-induced disability. An estimated 280 million individuals suffer from depression, and many factors contribute to depression.

Some factors you cannot control, but two major factors that you can control are diet and lifestyle. It is safe, natural, and starts working quickly.

Studies show more and more that depression and anxiety can be treated naturally by changing what you eat and how much physical activity you do. Before we go any further, I don’t mean hitting the gym seven times a week! Far from it, actually.

As I have mentioned before in Come Off Antidepressants, medical students are now being taught to look at diet and lifestyle interventions for patients with symptoms of depression and anxiety as a first course of action.

Male lecturer teaching medical students in university

In most cases, with a diet and lifestyle intervention for depression and anxiety, the symptoms go away.

I continually come across studies that back this up, but the proof to me, through studying the link between gut and mental health, is the number of Eat Burn Sleep members who have told me that their depression and anxiety have lifted. I know how I feel myself and how I felt before I studied gut health and changed what I ate and did each day.

Lifestyle Factors and Depression

Multiple lifestyle factors and depressed mood were studied by Sarris J., Thomson R., Hargraves R., et al. (2020). A cross-sectional analysis of 84,860 participants with major depressive disorder and those without depression showed that a healthy diet and optimal sleep duration were significantly associated with less frequency of depression.

Aguilar-Latorre, Oliván-Blázquez, Pérez Algorta, et al. (2023) conclude that health education and lifestyle modifications significantly reduce depression. The study included six weeks of health education on diet and lifestyle changes.*

Young guy attending online training or webinar from home, sitting on couch in front of coffee table with laptop, using headset, taking notes, copy space. E-education, online class, training concept

The key is to continue the health education and the diet and lifestyle changes. Health education will teach behaviors that become automated. You start living an anti-inflammatory way without even thinking!

How Does Gut Health Reduce Depression?

Gut microbiota has critical roles in the immune system (70% of our immune system resides in our guts. GALT – gut-associated lymphoid tissue). It also has a role in the central nervous (brain and spinal cord) and endocrine systems (glands that make hormones, the body’s chemical messengers).

Behavior, mood, and response to stress can all be affected by gut bacteria because gut health affects the immune system, nervous system, and endocrine system.

These, in turn, all affect each other.

A young man holding his gut and looking happy, indicating the gut and brain health connection.

There’s more about the gut-brain axis and how the gut influences the brain and the brain influences the gut in this article: Depression Diet & Lifestyle Intervention. 

Have you read How Do You Live With IBS and Anxiety? Do You Often Feel Like Crying? Why Are You Moody and Irritable?

You may enjoy listening to the podcast Using Sounds to Calm Your Mind with my guest Athena Ko, aka The Gong Girl, Food Additives & Your Microbiome with Dawn Sherling, and Emotional Health Strategy with Steve Burns.

What Changes Gut Health?

While gut microbiomes are unique to us, any change can upset the production of intestinal bacterial fermentation that regulates intestinal adaptive immune responses and affects the production of feel-good neurotransmitters.

If you eat meals laden with chemicals and compounds that the harmful bacteria in your gut like, you will help the harmful bacteria grow. They will tell your brain to seek more, too! 

A bowl of prawn stew bursting with colour, topped with herbs.
Delicious Gut Loving Brazilian Prawn Stew.

 

If you give your gut microbiota foods that encourage good bacteria, they will grow! Then, these guys ask for more of the good stuff, too! 

It’s not limited to food, though. Again, read the above article for more about depression, anxiety, and gut health. 

Whatever you eat or do will put your gut in a healthy or unhealthy state.

An unhealthy state will dysregulate your immune, as mentioned, and increase chronic inflammation, which increases neuroinflammation (inflammatory response in the brain and spinal cord).

Carabotti, Scirocco, Masselli, and Severi (2015) noted the bidirectional relationship of the emotional and cognitive parts of the brain with peripheral intestinal functions.

Have you tried these gut health recipes yet?

A bowl of chicken sop with limes, chili peppers, noodles, bell peppers, garlic and stock.

Asian Chicken Soup With Konjac Noodles

A bowl of frozen blueberries, bananas, pecans and chopped nuts.

Banana & Blueberry Nice Cream

A Diet Rich in Anti-inflammatory Prebiotic Compounds

Scientists Eliby D, Simpson C, Lawrence A, et al. (2023) examined the associations between diet quality and anxiety and depressive disorders. They looked at how diet can implicate mental health and concluded that diet interventions had consistently significant, positive effects on depressive symptoms.

Eliby, Simpson, Lawrence, et al. also noted the strong evidence that a diet rich in anti-inflammatory, prebiotic compounds and other lifestyle modifications provided a more integrative approach.

Anti-inflammatory Diets Are Neuroprotective

Indeed, further studies below recognize the benefits of a gut-health, anti-inflammatory diet.

Dietitian surrounded by healthy food, making a gut health nutrition plan in the office

An anti-inflammatory, neuroprotective, prebiotic diet is associated with reduced rates of depression, as they are rich in a wide variety of bioactive compounds, minerals, vitamins, and so on, as stated by González R, Ballester I, López-Posadas R, et al. (2011).

The effects of an anti-inflammatory, neuroprotective, prebiotic diet are demonstrated further in a study about the dietary intake and risk of incident depression in midlife and older women by Chang S-C, Cassidy A, Willet WC, et al. (2016).

In a study by Bienenstock J, Kunze W, Forsythe P, et al. (2015) on microbiota and the gut-brain axis, it was noted that diet could change the profile of gut microbiota and behavior. They quote that the effects of bacteria on the nervous system affect the immune system because they are in constant bidirectional communication.

A female smiling taking a walk in the autumn

Exercise and Depression

Exercising may be so far away from what you want to do when you are prone to depression and anxiety. The sofa or bed may seem a better option when you are depressed and anxious.

In a review in the British Journal of Sports Medicine by Singh B, Olds T, Curtis R et al. (2023) on the effectiveness of physical activity interventions for improving depression, anxiety, and distress, they looked at the evidence in 1039 trials, that included 128, 119 participants.

The conclusion was that physical activity is highly beneficial for improving symptoms of depression, anxiety, and distress across a wide range of adult populations, including people with diagnosed mental health disorders and people with chronic diseases. The concluding remarks were: Physical activity should be a mainstay approach in managing depression, anxiety, and psychological distress.

Smiling cheerful fit woman resting while sitting on yoga mat indoors

Some exercises contribute to chronic inflammation, neuroinflammation, and depression, though. Follow the Movement Guide, Members.

Improve Brain Health

There’s no doubt that gut microbiota influences our brain health. Gut microbiota is impacted by physical exercise. And vice versa. Eating for gut health will improve your brain health.

Then, when you feel lifted, you will feel like starting those twenty/thirty-minute movements at home. Before you know it, you will be doing them daily alongside your gut-health diet and enjoying them.

Until one day soon, you can say that you are feeling so much better, and it continues. Life can feel brighter again daily.

Female student with headphones on learning online, smiling.

Getting the synergy is essential, and it will happen.

*As the study mentioned above, lifestyle changes and health education for depression showed significant recovery. This health education platform and our nutritionists’ help in the forum are accessible every week of the year. Not just six!

Check this article about what an anti-inflammatory diet and lifestyle can do for you.

As always, I wish you good gut health and happiness!

Yalda Alaoui

Author

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What Is Gut Health?

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Long COVID Migraines

October 01, 2023

What Is Gut Health?

How Does Gut Health Affect Us

Hi Everyone! I talk about gut health all the time, as you know, and how it can change and lead to chronic inflammation and immune dysregulation.

There is still a lot of wonder about gut health, though. Why do we need good gut health? What exactly is gut health? Is gut health just another trend until the next health trend? Does gut health matter?

Gut health really matters! It is vital to good health. It isn’t a passing health trend.

It’s important that we all know how to make and keep our guts healthy. It is linked to chronic disease and to the leading cause of death.

It isn’t just food that we need to look at, although that’s a good place to start.

I hope that you will be as fascinated about these tummy bugs as I am. It’s amazing that they are imperative to good health. Read on and share!

What Is Gut Bacteria?

How Do You Get Good Gut Health?

Why Is Gut Health Trending?

How Do You Know If Your Gut Health Is Balanced?

What Is the Fastest Way to Improve Gut Health?

How Can You Improve Gut Bacteria?

How Do You Fix Gut Health ASAP?

Why Does Gut Bacteria Change?

How Can I Drastically Change My Health?

What Does Gut Bacteria Do?

The Causes of Bad Gut Health

What Are the Signs of an Unhealthy Gut?

What Meals Are Good for the Gut?

Why Do I Need Good Gut Health?

Probiotic bacteria. Beneficial substances for gastrointestinal tract. Human stomach in phone. Probiotic bacteria and microorganisms. Concept apps for taking care of body. Probiotic Immunity. 3d image

What Is Gut Bacteria?

Your gut health is the entire digestive system, running from your esophagus to your bowel, and it is full of microbes!

Your gastrointestinal tract harbors a complex colony of trillions of different microbes and thousands of species of gut bacteria, fungi, viruses, and parasites.

Suppose you can imagine this vast, industrial network of cell signaling and pathways with proteins, metabolites, peptides, etc., in the layers of the GI tract. In that case, you get a rough idea of the gut microbiome.

Most microbiota are symbiotic (which means that microbiota and the body benefit), and some are pathogenic (disease-promoting).

These microorganisms, which consist of viruses, fungi, protozoa, and microbiota, weighing in at around 4-5 lbs, all co-exist quite happily in a healthy person.

Our diverse gut microbiomes are paramount to good health. 

Female, pregnant, sat on her bed, smiling and holding her tummy.

How Do You Get Good Gut Health?

Your gut health started before you were born. That was when the first colonization occurred.

We got some from our mothers, who got their first exposure from their mother, who got hers from her mother, and so on.

Since the second we were born, we inherited and acquired trillions of bugs all over and inside us called microorganisms.

Our gut microbiome is unique to us, and it is there to protect us.

Some of our microorganisms are ancient because they have been passed down from mother to mother!

What they were exposed to was passed down, and so on.

A Grandma, Mother and Daughter lying on the floor next to each other, smiling, looking at the camera.

This links to an intriguing report about the existence of ancient microbes in our microbiome by Dr. Rook, University College, London.

These trillions of microorganisms and their genes support critical functions, which has allowed us to evolve. In return, they get what they need to survive from us!

These ancient microbes prevented the body from attacking its tissues and resembled that of the natural environment.

Why Is Gut Health Trending?

Gut health is trending because it has been realized that good gut health is imperative to good health. Gut health is real and not a fad.

Healthy eating balanced diet weight loss concept. Cropped close up photo of professional nutritionist showing good balance with hands on her stomach isolated over grey background

Please be warned about unqualified people on social media giving out gut health advice, gut health hacks, gut health weight loss tips, and so on. You could damage your gut health and open up your body to the risk of disease. I always advise that you take gut health nutrition and gut health diet advice from a qualified gut health expert/nutritionist/doctor who has studied gut health.

So, gut health is not a passing health trend. I have spent years studying gut health and chronic inflammation, and it is crucial to good health.

How Do You Know If Your Gut Health Is Balanced?

A balanced microbiota stimulates the immune system and synthesizes amino acids and vitamins. It also assists in breaking down toxic compounds, providing protection from organisms that enter the body through contaminated food and drink.

You would know about it if your gut health is unbalanced. Once you know how to look after your gut health, when it becomes unbalanced, you will feel it.

3d rendered image of a man with his gut highlighted.

What Is the Fastest Way to Improve Gut Health?

In the past, we lived under timber and close to dung and thatch. We had pantries, not refrigeration. Bacteria were more abundant, and we were exposed to them more than they are today.

Nowadays, our homes are made with manufactured products, people clean too much, and there are chemicals everywhere!

We miss that connection to the past and do not have the microbiota to deal with these extremely clean environments.

Unless we live on a farm in a natural environment or with pets! (If you think of the powers of earthing and maximizing our exposure to nature and our connection to early antioxidants).

Having good hygiene is important to avoid infections, but too much is not good for your health.

Close up a man's hand and hand sanitiser being used.

The Lifestyle Guide has more gut health information. It will help you look after your gut health, keep sickness and disease at bay, and have you feeling fantastic – every day! Start with the potent, popular 6-week Reset.

How Can You Improve Gut Bacteria?

You can improve your gut bacteria by following an anti-inflammatory lifestyle that has a focus on gut health.

Exposure is key to protection!

If we are never exposed to something, we won’t have the bugs to deal with it when we do. This is why if you have never come across a certain germ and then you are suddenly exposed to it, your body reacts. 

It’s all about diversity, remember. Your good bacteria will thrive if you do something that encourages it.

Boys planting and playing with the earth.

So, the first exposure is entirely down to our mother’s/DNA species of microbiota but also depends on how we are delivered into the world. Vaginally delivered (and position), we have microbiota resembling our mother’s vagina microbiota. C-sections would harbor microbes from a mother’s skin.

The microbiota we were born with is not very diverse but soon alters as we adapt to our surroundings so that we can digest the food we are given and deal with germs and what is around us. This cultivates a diverse, anti-inflammatory microbiome.

A baby in America is exposed to different bugs than a baby in Europe, for instance.

As we go through life, as we have changing environments, lifestyle habits, and so on, gut health corresponds with how you live.

So, if we feed the good bacteria with good nutrients, they thrive. If we feed it with damaging foods, then the damaging bacteria grows. They, in fact, like anything living, will want to survive and send signals to your brain for more damaging foods! They are that powerful!

A female holding an image of a gut in the area of her gut, signifying gut health.

How Do You Fix Gut Health ASAP?

We have bacteria all over us as the first line of defense – on our skin, in our airways, and in our guts. If we don’t give the bad bacteria any reason to grow, we stay healthy.

Gut bacteria become harmful when a healthy diversity is not encouraged. This affects the immune system, and ruins the line of defense, and that is when we are susceptible to disease. See the list of reasons below why gut bacteria change.

You can fix gut health ASAP by joining our gut health community!

Why Does Gut Bacteria Change?

Gut bacteria change with everything we do and are exposed to.

Exposure in infancy protects a child from developing weakened immune systems later in life that are sensitive to pollen, benign germs, and dust.

A mother and her baby lying on white sheets, smiling.

Likewise, exposure to chemicals in infancy can affect these gut microbiota. Did you read: Why Aspartame is Linked to Cancer? Exposure to aspartame is linked before you are born if your mother drank aspartame-laden drinks without knowing about the dangers. It has only been exposed as a carcinogen recently, despite scientists crying out for it to be banned for decades!

There are more risks of being susceptible to chronic inflammatory conditions and autoimmune diseases later in life without the correct quantity and quality of germs in childhood.

It’s really important to be exposed and not shielded unless it is chemicals!

Have you read Low-calorie Foods for Weight Loss and listened to my chat with Dr. Dawn Sherling on Food Additives & Your Microbiome and about The Behavioral Immune System with Nick Potter?

I talk all the time about how medication can cause gut dysbiosis and keep you in a perpetual state of sickness, so to speak. I found this out when I was researching what was wrong with me and how I could fix myself with two autoimmune diseases. Read NSAIDs, Gut Health & Inflammation.

Tablets, pills, medication, medicine on a table, in a bowl and in hands.

So, everything we are exposed to as we grow, along with our diets, habits, and environment, shapes our microbiota communities. This bug community can change the body into a healthy state or one at greater risk of disease.

Mental and physical health change bacteria. Stress and depression can change your gut bacteria. The wrong exercise can change it, too.

Being with people has an effect on gut bacteria.

Sleep affects gut bacteria! If you don’t get good quality regular sleep, your gut health will be affected. Have you read Weight Loss and The Link To Sleep?

And vice versa! It all works symbiotically together.

A man and woman cuddling and smiling at the camera.

How Can I Drastically Change My Health?

You can drastically change your health by joining this anti-inflammatory lifestyle. 

Your gut health will improve dramatically, and the benefits are astounding.

You see, some bacteria in your gut may grow depending on what you are exposed to and what you eat. Others may disappear or shrink, which influences the immune system in the gut and in our adaptive immune system.

There’s a whole array of activities involving antigens, innate cell types, neutrophils, T cells, and B cells, for instance, that go on in the gut that displays how the microbiota has a profound effect on both the innate and adaptive immune system. A study by Wu & Wu (2012) explains it in detail.

Microbiota can change or become fixed due to being too hygienic, even.

Having a low microbial load due to being too clean in modern life can have a powerful effect on our immune response because it will either not be tolerant or will create inflammation.

Gastroenterological manual. A model of the human intestine in the hands of a doctor. Taking care of digestion. Intestinal health. Large and small intestine in doctor hands.

What Does Gut Bacteria Do?

Our composition of microbiota has a crucial influence on our health. As I mentioned, it aids nutrient metabolism, breaks down toxic compounds, and protects against contaminated food and drink. It also ensures that the gut barrier is strong. 

Indeed, our microbiota is an intrinsic regulator of immune responses.

Gut microbiota plays a vital role in the development of immune homeostasis, including the development of gut-associated lymphoid tissues.

70-80% of immune cells (Gut-associated Lymphoid Tissue) reside in the gut. GALT is an essential component in protecting the body from pathogens. In fact, studies show that it is microbiota from before we are born that is involved in generating innate immunity during growth and development. 

Gut microbiota and gut-associated lymphoid tissue are essential players in the pathogenesis of various diseases.

Close up of a woman eating three donuts. Gut health and unhealthy diet.

The Causes of Bad Gut Health

An unbalanced microbiota results in gut dysbiosis, leading to chronic disease through (but not limited to):

  • *An unhealthy diet, including calorie-restrictive and extreme diets (not all popular diets are good for you!)
  • *A compromised immune system (you can be born with or acquire a weakened immune system)
  • *Overstimulated bowel functions (malnutrition through inflammatory bowel conditions like Crohn’s, colitis, and diverticulitis)
  • *Older age (influenced by personal factors)
  • *Lifestyle
  • *Obesity 
  • *Medication (often to ‘treat’ disease causes more disease)
  • *Antibiotics (wipe out a gut microbiota richness and diversity within four days)
  • *Recurring bouts of acute inflammation (pneumonia, viruses: colds, flu, Covid)
  • *Auto-inflammatory diseases
  • *Stress 
  • *Illness (a vicious cycle)
  • *Environment (toxins, cleaning products, plastics, solvents, pesticides, cigarette smoke, mercury, and so on)
  • *Sleep deprivation
  • *Certain exercises
  • *Isolation (not socializing significantly alters gut microbiota).

 

Medication is not good for gut health.

What Are the Signs of an Unhealthy Gut?

Dysbiosis (when an altered interaction between immune cells and microbiota occurs) makes the body susceptible to disease. It increases intestinal permeability (leaky gut syndrome) and opens up the chronic inflammation pathway!

When you realize how gut microbiota can get unbalanced, and contributing factors like highly processed and calorie-controlled diets, along with other factors mentioned above, you can see the link with the rise in chronic inflammatory diseases like obesity, diabetes, depression, cancer, and autoimmune diseases.

There are currently, 10 percent of the population with autoimmune diseases, and 78% of deaths worldwide are linked to chronic inflammation.

It seems that everyone has conditions that are related to the gut microbiome!

A woman in exercise gear with a measure tape around her waist, indicating weight loss.
Member’s results of living the EBS Gut-healthy Anti-inflammatory Lifestyle.

What Meals Are Good for the Gut?

You can find 300+ gut-health recipes when you sign up for this gut-health diet and lifestyle. They are globally inspired, so you get to travel around the world while you are making yourself super healthy, too! Try these taster dishes: Moroccan Burgers, Sicilian Eggplants, Asian Chicken Soup With Konjac Noodles, Mediterranean Roast Chicken & Vegetables, and Coconut & Cacao Loaf.

Why Do I Need Good Gut Health?

Having good gut health not only protects you from disease but can help you age well and keep you looking and feeling young, as long as you incorporate other lifestyle factors. Good gut health assists in looking after your skin, hair, eyes, mood, and cognition, and it helps relationships! It’s true.

If you have good gut health, you are most likely to be a better friend, and seeing people that you love spending time with is good for gut health, too. As I mentioned above, staying social is important for your gut health and immune health!

The wonderful thing is, is that with the right manipulation, you can make your gut microbiome into a healthy, diverse community.

You just need the right tools!

Yalda Alaoui

Author

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Join the Eat Burn Sleep email newsletter and be the first to hear about new tips, and recipes!

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September 24, 2023

NSAIDS, Gut Health & Inflammation

NSAIDS May Ruin Your Health

Hello Everyone! This post is all about NSAIDS, the nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs most prescribed for anti-inflammatory conditions that many people use for pain.

The trouble is that depending on how often you use NSAIDS, they can worsen your condition. I will explain. Read on, and share!

What Are NSAIDs?

Common Side Effects of NSAIDs

How Many People Use NSAIDs Daily?

Why NSAIDs Are Bad For Your Health

What Are Chronic Inflammation Conditions?

Do NSAIDs Cause More Pain and Inflammation?

What Is An Alternative to Taking NSAIDs?

A female holding four blister packs of medication.

What Are NSAIDs?

NSAIDs are nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs; the medications you can buy over the counter, like ibuprofen, naproxen, and aspirin, are also prescribed by a doctor, like diclofenac and celecoxib.

Many refer to them by their brand name, like Advil, Aleve, and Celebrex. They are used for acute and chronic pain, fever, and inflammation for many conditions, except for low-dose aspirin, which is used to prevent heart attacks and strokes).

Common Side Effects of NSAIDs

Depending on how much you use them, there are side effects to longer, regular use.

The common side effects of NSAIDs are listed on the boxes as warnings and safety concerns. Several include kidney, liver, GI toxicity, respiratory, organ damage, and cardiovascular adverse effects. Bindu, S., Mazumder, S., & Bandyopadhyay, U.(2020).

A brown-haired female holds painkillers and indicates tooth pain.

Many studies link NSAIDs to peptic ulcer disease and colitis, like this study by Tai & McAlindon (2021).

Numerous studies talk about the severe side effects of using NSAIDs daily. In the British Journal of General Practice, Davis & Robson (2016) look at the dangers of NSAIDs and call for an urgent need to consider their safety.

How Many People Use NSAIDs Daily?

In a study by Gunaydin & Bilge (2018), an estimated 30 million people worldwide took NSAIDs daily!

An estimated 10 million people over 60 in the UK use NSAIDs daily, which puts them at an increased risk of adverse effects because of the natural physiological aging process that occurs, making them more susceptible. Plus, NSAIDs shouldn’t be taken with other drugs like diuretics, hypoglycaemic, anticoagulants, etc.

A female doctor handing a painkiller to her female patient who looks in pain.

I so often say that medication can save you, but long-term use doesn’t fix the source of the pain. Everyone should be screened for all potential risks and weigh the risks versus the benefits with their doctors. It is recommended that they are taken at the lowest possible dose for the shortest duration, as stated in this study by Pisano et al. (2016).

Why NSAIDs Are Bad For Your Health

NSAIDs can change the composition of your intestinal microbial community, otherwise known as gut dysbiosis, which is not good.

Gut health (with a good intestinal microbial community) is imperative to good health.

The microbes in your gut are influenced by your diet and eating behaviors, what else you ingest, like drugs, alcohol, pollutants, and so on, and stress, how you live, move, and breathe.

When you are burnt out, you can reach for things that actually make your health worse, like alcohol and the painkillers that are keeping those stress headaches at bay (but actually keep them there!).

A female stomach shown with a heart shape made by her hands to indicate gut health.

Among the microbes are bacteria, the most abundant component in your intestinal community. Over a thousand species, in fact, and they consist of good and bad bacteria!

Medication can kill off the good bacteria, shift the balance in the community, and increase the bacteria that puts your health at risk. Edogawa et al. (2018) explain the increase in the harmful bacteria and a decrease in the good bacteria.

You may like to read Side Effects of Antibiotics: IBD.

An imbalance causes gut dysbiosis, which dysregulates the immune system and leads to chronic inflammation.

You can improve gut health with prebiotic recipes like these delicious: Sesame & Sumac Lamb ChopsCoconut & Collagen Chia Pudding.

What Are Chronic Inflammation Conditions?

We need inflammation as a healthy defense mechanism against a cut, bug, or virus, but we don’t need inflammation to be running continuously. This is when it turns into chronic inflammation, which can cause pain and swelling, which is why NSAIDs are used and prescribed.

A young female sitting on a sofa clutching her stomach, indicating stomach or period pain.

There are so many conditions that are related to chronic inflammation, and many are listed here – from alopecia to cancer to depression and menopause, obesity, skin conditions, and thyroid issues.

You may like to read Signs of Inflammation That May Surprise You.

Members, access Personalized Advice for more in-depth advice for your painful and inflammatory conditions.

Do NSAIDs Cause More Pain and Inflammation?

So, the pain medication you take for your chronic inflammation condition actually causes gut dysbiosis, immune dysregulation, and chronic inflammation.

NSAIDs make your body more susceptible to pain and other diseases.

They make you less healthy than you were before.

By causing an imbalance in your gut, this explains why painkillers stop working after a while.

If you are looking to lower your cholesterol, please check this article.

Happy man looking at his pain medication and holding a glass of water.

What Is An Alternative to Taking NSAIDs?

So, if you are in the habit of popping over-the-counter painkillers for the slightest twinge or are having lots of pain, discuss it with your doctor. Everyone should be screened for all potential risks when you take any medication.

Or, if you have been prescribed painkillers for an inflammatory condition, consider an anti-inflammatory diet and lifestyle change, as well. Run it by your doctor.

They usually recommend a diet and lifestyle intervention for many health conditions, including stress. It’s incredible how it works. You may find that you visit the doctor less and use NSAIDs less and less, which will help your gut, which will more than likely help put your condition into remission.

As you use less, you will also see other positive changes like feeling brighter, more energy, and joie de vivre.

I wish that for you. Have a fantastic day!

Yalda Alaoui

Author

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