Prostate Health: Prevention With Lycopene

lycopene prostateProstate health is something that every man should think about. Changes in the prostate are most commonly beginning to be noticeable in middle-aged men. Issues with prostate can affect your health and well being drastically.

However, there are ways to help support your prostate health naturally. One of the most popular supplements for it is Lycopene. Let’s find out what it is and how it can help!

PS! There is a bonus tip at the end of this blog post. Continue reading to find out!

 

What Is The Prostate?

Prostate is a golf-ball sized gland that is part of the male reproductive system. It’s located close to the bladder, urethra and rectum. This gland is responsible for secreting a fluid that makes up around 30% of the volume of semen and helping to expel semen during ejaculation. Because of its location and purpose, problems with your prostate can have a negative effect on urination and sexual function.

Prostate issues are a common thing in middle aged and older men, because the prostate gland tends to grow when you age. The first phase of growth occurs in puberty, the second phase starts around the age of 25 (Source). This is why it’s important to start paying attention to your prostate health even as a young man. We’re firm believers in early prevention and you should be too.

The most common issue that men struggle with is difficulty urinating due to the prostate pressing against urethra. This can be caused by age-related enlargement of the prostate gland (benign prostatic hyperplasia or BPH), inflammation or infection of the prostate that is called prostatitis or even prostate cancer.

 

Prostate cancer is one of the most common forms of cancer in men. Here’s what the statistics based on the U.S population says:

Number of New Cases and Deaths per 100,000: The number of new cases of prostate cancer was 112.6 per 100,000 men per year. The number of deaths was 19.5 per 100,000 men per year. These rates are age-adjusted and based on 2011-2015 cases and deaths.

Lifetime Risk of Developing Cancer: Approximately 11.2 percent of men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer at some point during their lifetime, based on 2013-2015 data.

Prevalence of This Cancer: In 2015, there were an estimated 3,120,176 men living with prostate cancer in the United States.” (Source)

 

What Is Lycopene And How Can It Help?

prostate health

Lycopene is a carotenoid that’s found in tomatoes and other red fruits and vegetables. It is a powerful antioxidant that your body can’t produce on its own and needs to be ingested. As you might already know, antioxidants are extremely beneficial for your body. They help protect your cells from oxidative stress that produces free radicals.

Excess amount of free radicals has harmful impact on your cells, skin, immune-system and overall health. This results in DNA damage and age-related problems. Essentially, free radicals make your body age quicker. Furthermore, because issues with prostate health are more common in older men, it is important to start with prevention early on.

Lycopene has shown to support prostate health in different ways. The first controlled clinical study conducted in 2008 concluded that supplementing with lycopene may inhibit the progression and reduce the symptoms of BPH a k a prostate gland enlargement (Source).

A systematic review and meta-analysis published in 2015 showed the trend that there was reduced incidence of prostate cancer with higher lycopene intake (Source). Another systematic review and meta-analysis conducted in 2017 suggests that higher dietary and circulating lycopene concentrations in your body are associated with reduced risk of prostate cancer and may help protect from the aggressiveness of it (Source).

 

prostate health

Bonus Tip: Pumpkin Seed Oil

Pumpkin Seed Oil can be another great way to promote good prostate health. It has a high zinc and phytosterol content that are known to be beneficial for the prostate. Research conducted in 2014 showed that supplementing with pumpkin seed oil can be an effective way to reduce the symptoms of an enlarged prostate (Source).

Moreover, Lycopene is a fat-soluble nutrient that’s best absorbed with fat containing meals. For maximum absorption and extra support for your prostate, try it out with our Pumpkin Seed Oil softgels.

 

In conclusion, research suggests that Lycopene might be a beneficial way to support prostate health, reduce the symptoms of an enlarged prostate and prevent the risk of developing prostate cancer.

Our Lycopene supplement is extracted from real tomatoes. It doesn’t contain preservatives, gluten, sugar, wheat, fish, starch, lactose, artificial colours, sweetener or flavours.

Click HERE to read more about our Lycopene supplement and buy it today! 

Inflammation: What It Is and Why You Should Fight It

inflammation Most of us now have heard about inflammation and how it can affect your health. As a result, one of the biggest health trends at the moment are anti-inflammatory foods and supplements: our very own Bromelain is a great example of a natural aid. But do we even know what inflammation is exactly? Is inflammation always such a bad thing? And how can Bromelain help us? Let’s find out.

What Is Inflammation?

To put it simply, inflammation means swelling. But it isn’t always necessarily a bad thing. Why so? For example when your immune system detects an issue or danger in your body, inflammation is your body’s way to fight it.

And how does it work? Your immune system sends out white blood cells to essentially protect the injured area. When you cut your finger or hit yourself hard on something, chances are that area might swell up, become red and painful, it might be harder to move and the area might feel warmer because of the increased blood flow.

immune system response

Wounds and other damages to your body’s tissues cannot heal without an inflammatory response. Thus making inflammation a completely normal and very necessary defense mechanism in our bodies.

However, when inflammation becomes a chronic occurrence, you might need to start thinking about ways to fight it. But if inflammation is what protects your body from harm and helps you heal, why is chronic inflammation so bad? This is because it can actually lead to many different health issues and chronic health conditions.

Chronic inflammation is usually caused by pathogens that your body isn’t able to break down. These can include infections and viruses, foreign objects that have remained in your body or even when your immune system is overactive. When your body is reacting to a trauma, the inflammation usually lasts a few days up to a few weeks. Chronic inflammation on the other hand has a slow progress and it can last from months to years.

If your body is suffering from chronic inflammation, you might notice that your health has become weaker or there’s some pain and discomfort that’s constantly bothering you. Some of these conditions that are caused by chronic inflammation are joint pain, stiffness and arthritis, issues inside your digestive tract like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and problems with nutrient absorption, chronic sinus infections, allergies, asthma and coughs, and even mental health issues like depression and changed behavior. Furthermore, chronic inflammation is a huge risk factor for developing heart diseases.

 

How Can I Fight Chronic Inflammation?

anti inflammatory foodsFighting inflammation isn’t always needed, but it can be a helpful way to combat swelling and pain after a trauma like surgery or when you’ve caught a cold. However, when you’re experiencing inflammation for a prolonged period of time, for example you suffer with chronic pain in joints, constant digestive issues or allergies and sinus infections, it might be a useful way to make yourself feel better and avoid discomfort.

A lot of healthy, unprocessed foods are such a great way to help decrease the amount of inflammation in your body. Eating a healthy and balanced diet is crucial for your health and well being. Some of these foods include healthy fats like extra virgin olive oil, Black Currant Oil, Borage Oil and consuming fatty fish, fresh vegetables, leafy greens and fruits. It is also important to avoid fried foods, unhealthy and processed fats like margarine, and white bread and sugar (this also includes sugary drinks!).

Nevertheless, eating a healthy diet might not be enough. Our pineapple enzyme extract called Bromelain is a natural way to combat inflammation. Bromelain is a protein-digesting enzyme extracted from real pineapples. Have you ever noticed how your mouth gets sore after eating a pineapple? This means that bromelain is literally digesting the protein inside your mouth.

As bad as it does sound, it is actually a very beneficial compound that reduces overall inflammation in your body. It’s great for supporting digestive health and promote healthy body weight. It can also help with faster recovery after working out or even after a surgery! Pretty awesome, huh?

pineapple enzyme

So how does it work exactly, you ask? Bromelain is made up of different enzymes that help your body produce the compounds that help reduce inflammation. Bromelain can help break down those swollen bits in your body and therefore help prevent and treat different issues that stem from inflammation.

For centuries pineapples have been used in Central and South America to help treat different health issues. And if you’re not feeling like eating a whole pineapple every day, taking Bromelain in capsule form is such a convenient and natural way to get all the anti-inflammatory benefits from pineapples.

Buy yours today from Amazon or from our online store and let us know how you liked it!

6 Health Benefits of Borage Oil: A Well Kept Secret of GLA

borage oil health benefitsBorage oil is extracted from the seeds of the plant called borage a k a starflower (Borago officinalis). It’s been used in traditional medicine as a remedy for various health concerns for centuries. Although it’s native to the Middle East and Mediterranean regions, it can actually grow almost anywhere. Today, several studies have been conducted that confirm the health benefits of borage oil.

 

What Makes Borage Oil So Special?

The main compound that makes borage oil such a valuable supplement, is gamma linolenic acid (GLA). Borage oil has one of the highest amounts of this Omega-6 fatty acid. A common GLA supplement people reach for is evening primrose oil. It contains around 9% of GLA. However, the GLA content in borage oil is usually around 19-26%.

GLA has antioxidant properties that help reduce inflammation in your body (Source). This is why borage oil is such a versatile supplement. It can aid in hormonal balance, support good heart health, keep your joints and bones healthy, help with skin orders and promote proper nerve function.

 

6 Health Benefits of Borage Oil

1. Joint Comfort and Bone Health

borage oil gla health benefits

As we mentioned above, GLA in borage oil has antioxidant properties that help reduce inflammation in your body. Decrease in overall inflammation in your body means that it can also reduce inflammation in your joints. This results in lessened swelling and chronic pain (Source).  

Furthermore, research suggests that borage oil can help prevent bone loss by reducing the inflammation markings in bones (Source).

 

2. Promotes Hormonal Balance

GLA in borage oil can help support your body’s adrenal gland activity (Source). Adrenal gland produces different types of hormones, for example adrenaline and cortisol. Cortisol is also known as the stress hormone. When your adrenal gland produces too much of it, you’ll probably feel constantly stressed and anxious. Because borage oil can help support proper adrenal gland activity, it may also help manage chronic stress and anxiety.

 

3. Healthy Skin and Hair

borage oil gla health benefitsFatty acids are essential for good skin and hair. Because GLA is a type of Omega-6 fatty acid, it can play a role in improving the condition of your skin and hair. Fatty acids provide your skin and hair protection they need (Source). In addition, GLA also helps reduce inflammation in your body that may be the cause of different skin conditions like psoriasis, dermatitis and eczema.

You can use borage oil both internally and externally to combat your skin disorders. Our Borage Oil softgels are convenient to use internally, but also externally! Just pop one softgel and use it as an on-the-go moisturizer.

 

borage oil health benefits

4. Hangover Cure

We certainly do not promote excessive drinking, but a few of us have to admit they’ve suffered a hangover at some point in their lives. Good news is that borage oil can actually help combat those nasty hangover symptoms.

One study showed that 88% of participants reported a borage oil containing supplement effective in reducing a hangover (Source). The study was conducted using a supplement containing mostly borage oil, magnesium and a few other vitamins.

Luckily we also have a vegan Magnesium Glycinate supplement, which is one of the best absorbed forms of magnesium! Take our Borage Oil and Magnesium supplements right before and after a night out, and see for yourself!

 

5. Cardiovascular Health Support

Borage oil can be a helpful supplement to help prevent and relieve different heart issues. It helps lower total and LDL cholesterol levels (this is the ‘bad’ cholesterol) (Source). Borage oil can also help lower blood pressure and heart rate response to stress (Source). Furthermore, research suggests that borage oil can be an effective treatment to congestive heart failure signs prevention (Source).

 

6. PMS Relief

Because borage oil has anti-inflammatory properties and thus it can help promote hormonal balance, it’s been widely used to relieve the symptoms of PMS (premenstrual syndrome) and menopause. Some of these symptoms include mood swings, stomach cramps, hot flashes and breast tenderness. Although today there isn’t enough scientific evidence to back this up, it sure is worth a try if you struggle with the symptoms we mentioned above.

borage oil supplement

 

As we learned, borage oil has many health benefits because of its ability to decrease inflammation in your body and therefore help relieve and prevent different health issues.

NutriONN offers you the highest quality, extra potent Borage Oil that we just launched. CLICK HERE to get yours today.

 

 

 

What’s The Difference Between Refined & Unrefined Coconut Oil?

unrefined coconut oil

Most of us have heard about coconut oil and it’s endless uses. In recent years it’s been granted a superfood status by health gurus around the world.

Coconut oil is available in two forms – refined and unrefined coconut oil. So what does it mean exactly? What is the difference? Which one is better? Let’s dig in.

 

First, What Is Coconut Oil?

Coconut oil is an edible oil that’s been extracted from the meat of mature coconuts. These coconuts are harvested from the coconut palm tree a k a Cocos nucifera.

Coconut oil is extremely versatile and has many-many uses. In cooking it is most commonly used for frying, in baked goods and pastries, smoothies, snacks and more. As for its health benefits, coconut oil is a great source of MCT’s, it has immune system boosting abilities because of its antibacterial and antifungal properties. You can read more about the health benefits of coconut oil from HERE.

Not only can it be used in cooking, it’s also a great moisturizer for skin and hair. Some people use coconut oil to combat different skin issues. Furthermore, it can even be used in oral hygiene.

Coconut oil can be extracted using different methods. The process of the extraction is what dictates if the oil is refined or not. On the market you’ll find both forms of coconut oil – unrefined or virgin coconut oil and refined coconut oil.

unrefined coconut oil

What Is The Difference?

Is one type of coconut oil better than the other? What are the differences? Which one should you choose? That depends on what you’re using the coconut oil for.

Unrefined or virgin coconut oil has not been refined. This means that no chemicals, bleach or deodorizing has been used to extract the coconut oil. Usually the unrefined coconut oil extraction process uses cold-pressed or expeller-pressed method.

These methods are almost the same. Fresh coconuts are mechanically pressed using high pressure to extract the oil. The difference is that cold-pressed coconut oil is extracted in a heat-controlled environment to preserve as many nutrients as possible. If you use coconut oil for its nutrients and health benefits, it’s safe to say that unrefined coconut oil is your guy.

On the other hand, refined coconut oil is usually made from dried coconut. Refined oil can also be extracted using a variety of methods. Some manufacturers want to get as much as possible out of the coconut, so they use chemicals such as hexane to extract the oil. There are also more natural options available like steam refined and clay bleached coconut oil.

Unrefined coconut oil has a distinctive coconutty flavor and scent, whereas the refined oil should have a neutral smell and taste. Refined coconut oil has a smoke point of about 450°F and for unrefined or virgin coconut oil it is 350°F. This makes refined coconut oil a better option if you don’t want your food to taste like coconuts or when you want to use it for frying.

 

unrefined coconut oil

In conclusion – Both types of coconut oil are useful for different purposes. It all comes down to the quality of the product and what you’re using coconut oil for.

 

If you supplement with coconut oil because of its health benefits and nutrients, we’ve got you covered! Our Coconut Oil softgels are made from organic, cold-pressed coconut oil. Click HERE and order your bottle today!

 

5 Tips To Stay Cool and Healthy in Hot Weather

hot weatherIt’s our favorite time of the year – long and lazy days, lots of sunshine and warm nights. What better could you ask for? But even if the hot weather is too good to be true, don’t forget that exposure to extreme heat and direct sun may lead to sunburn or even sunstroke. For some, especially little babies, pregnant or breastfeeding women and older people, these may cause a serious illness or worse.

But do not worry! We want to make sure you have all the insider tips on how to avoid sun damage and sunstroke, and still get the most out of a hot summer day. Here are our top five tips on how to stay cool and healthy in the summer heat:

 

Stay Hydrated!

hot weatherIf you’re feeling thirsty and that your mouth is dry, your heart beats rapidly or you feel a little dizzy, then you’re already dehydrated. And think again before you’re going to reach for that nice and cooling, but incredibly sugary soda (yes, this also applies to sugar-free sodas!). They can actually have the opposite effect on your body. Plus, excess sugar intake will deplete your body from essential vitamins and minerals.

It is recommended to drink at least 8 glasses of water daily, but keep in mind that you will sweat when it’s hot outside, so keep the water flowing! In addition to water, vitamin water and sport drinks are also a useful way to combat extreme heat, because they’ll help your body restore vitamin levels. If you need a little flavor in your drink during a hot day, these are your go to drinks.

Tip: The color of your urine may tell you how hydrated or dehydrated you are. The darker the color, the more dehydrated you are. If you’re properly hydrated, the color of your urine will be a pale or a transparent yellow color. (Source)

 

Limit Coffee and Alcohol Intake

Think twice about how much coffee you’re going to drink in hot weather. Caffeinated drinks can flush out water that you’ve consumed. If you’d still like to enjoy your coffee or tea, have plenty of water with it to make sure you’re hydrated properly.

And what about a few cocktails by the pool or at the beach? The same applies here – alcohol flushes water out of your body (this is one of the most common causes of a hangover!). If you want to enjoy your occasional piña colada, make sure to drink water as well to avoid dehydration.

 

Protect Your Skin

Always, always, always use sunscreen. Even if it’s not sunny outside, you should still wear some level of sunscreen to prevent sunburn and sun damage to your skin. There are so many amazing natural products on the market that will protect your skin from sunburn and aren’t full of harmful chemicals. Even most of the liquid and powder foundations have SPF in it!

hot weather

PS! Wearing sunglasses will help to protect your eyes from UV rays as well.

A great tip to determine what level sunscreen you should use, is to check the UV (ultraviolet) index before you head outside. When it’s especially hot weather, it might also mean that the UV index is higher than usual. The bigger the number of UV index, the higher risk you have to be harmed from unprotected sun exposure. We can’t stress enough how important it is to protect your skin from sun damage. Not only for preventing wrinkles and saggy skin, but also to prevent skin cancer.

Tip: Apply sunscreen every two hours or every time after swimming or showering.

Moreover, SPF won’t give you 100% protection from harmful UV rays. UV rays can damage your DNA which may lead to premature aging in cells and the development of harmful and even cancerous cells in your body.

A great way to internally protect your skin is to supplement with Olive Leaf Extract or Lycopene. Both of these supplements have antioxidant properties that help prevent DNA damage and support your immune system. Another supplement to support healthy and glowing skin is Biotin. This will also help make your hair and nails grow faster and stronger!

 

What to Wear?!

It is obvious that in extreme heat you don’t want to wear your finest merino sweater or the tightest pair of leather pants you own. Instead, prefer loose clothing made from natural materials like cotton and linen. This way you let your body breathe and can avoid excessive sweating, which in turn depletes your body from vitamins and flushes out water.

Furthermore, if you don’t want to expose your skin to any sun at all, even loose fitting long sleeved blouses and long pants made from natural materials can help you stay cool in hot weather. It is also useful to wear a summer hat to prevent sunstroke.

 

What About Exercise?

Need to get your workout in, but can’t imagine getting through with it on a hot day? Try to plan your workout time for early morning or later in the evening to avoid heat stroke. Vigorous exercise in heat may lead to dehydration. If you need to work out in hot weather, keep an even closer eye on your water intake.

 

To conclude, it is absolutely possible to get through a super hot summer day and not get sunburnt or even a heat stroke. Just make sure to stay safe and healthy, keep in mind to not go overboard with tanning or exercising and drink plenty of water throughout the day. What are your top tips for staying cool and healthy in hot weather? Let us know in the comment section!

 

Berberine: AMPK aka “Metabolic Master Switch” Activator

ampk activator Berberine acts as an AMPK activator, an enzyme found in your body’s cells. It’s sometimes called a “metabolic master switch” because it plays an important role in regulating your metabolism.

So why is that a good thing and how does it work?

Let’s dig in and find out!

 

First, What is Berberine?

AMPK activator

Berberine is a yellow-colored alkaloid compound found in various plants. Some of these plants are barberry, tree turmeric, Oregon-grape, goldenseal and yellowroot. It has reached us from Asia, where it has been used in Ayurvedic medicine and in traditional Chinese medicine for centuries.

Fun Fact: Because of its strong yellow color, berberine has even been used as a natural wool, leather and wood dye.

What Is Berberine Used For?

Berberine affects your body at the molecular level and functions inside cells, having many benefits for different health problems. However, one of the main functions is activating an important enzyme called AMPK, which regulates metabolism.

Berberine benefits your health in many different ways. It is most commonly used as a natural way to support healthy blood sugar levels. This means that it can also be a great supplement for weight loss, because healthy and stable blood sugar levels is essential for weight loss and for maintaining healthy weight. It also supports your cardiovascular health by promoting healthy cholesterol and lipid levels.

 

What is AMPK and Why It Should Be Active?

AMPK stands for AMP-activated protein kinase or adenosine monophosphate-activated protein kinase. It’s an enzyme inside your body’s cells that has an important role to play in regulating your metabolism. When AMPK is activated, it stimulates your body’s energy generating processes. As a result, your metabolism speeds up and your body burns fat. (Source)

We all have AMPK in our bodies, but sometimes it’s not fully activated. In humans and rodents, vigorous exercise can be an AMPK activator (Source). Also with a healthy, calorie-controlled diet you can jump-start your AMPK activity. But as we know by now, berberine is widely used as a natural AMPK activator supplement. Berberine activates AMPK in multiple different cell types, thus improving insulin sensitivity (Source).

Furthermore, studies suggest that berberine can be a helpful way to prevent obesity and type II diabetes, reduce body weight and lipid levels, and improve insulin sensitivity by activating AMPK (Source). This is because AMPK activity attributes in glucose and lipid homeostasis, your weight and food intake, insulin signaling and mitochondrial biogenesis (Source).

The most common form of Berberine used in studies is berberine HCl that has shown to be absorbed better by your body than other forms. This is why we use berberine HCl in our Berberine supplement as well.

In conclusion, several studies have shown that berberine has a role in activating the enzyme AMPK and what health benefits it can provide. Click here to read more about our Berberine supplement and get yours today!

 

Here are a few Berberine reviews from our happy customers on Amazon:

After I started taking berberine, my blood sugar levels dropped from borderline high to the middle of the normal range. My doctor is happy and so am I. This is a good product at a reasonable price. I will definitely purchase again.

– K. Arnett

It’s the best one I’ve used so far. I like the higher dosage. I’ve actually lost weight on this!

– Kimberly Z.

Love this product! It delivers and helped lower my A1C yet again. So pleased AMAZON carries this product. Thank you for a great product!

– L. Ramirez

Product works for me. My nutrionist recommended it as a supplement to aid with carbs and glucose levels. Will buy again. Easy on stomach and no side affects for me.

– J. R.

This product is great. It has helped to lower my AIC. My son is taking the Berberine. He commented that it is not only helping him to feel better, he is losing weight. I would not hesitate to buy this product again. I highly recommend it to lower you glucose level.

– A. C.

 

Get your pure, high quality Berberine supplement today by clicking HERE.

Selenium & Thyroid Health

thyroid healthSelenium has an important part to play in many different processes taking place in our bodies. Did you know that your thyroid is the organ with the highest amount of selenium per gram of tissue?! (Source)

In this blog post we talk about the mineral selenium and focus on its benefits for supporting thyroid health and helping prevent different thyroid problems.

 

What is Selenium?

Selenium is an essential mineral that plays a key role in metabolism and many other physiological functions in your body. It is naturally found in the soil, many fruits, vegetables, meat and dairy products. Selenium atomic number is 34 and the atomic symbol is Se.

Selenium exists in organic (selenomethionine and selenocysteine) and inorganic (selenate and selenite) forms. Plants convert the inorganic selenium from the soil to organic forms of selenium.

Fun fact: Your body absorbs more than 90% of selenium as selenomethionine, whereas from selenite and selenate you’ll only absorb around 50% of selenium. (Source)

 

What Does Selenium Do?

Selenium is most commonly used to support the thyroid health, reproductive and immune systems. So is selenium good for you? If you eat lots of fast food, sweets and not enough fruits and vegetables, you’ll probably benefit from adding selenium in your diet. Not only are fast foods low in selenium and other nutrients, consuming excess sugar and fats will actually flush good nutrients out of your body.

It can support the proper functioning of your thyroid gland by helping the thyroid properly synthesize hormones. Issues with thyroid can result in some very unpleasant symptoms like stress, constant fatigue, irritability and even thyroid diseases that need medical intervention.

Some studies have shown that selenium may be a useful addition to your diet when trying to conceive. Selenium can significantly improve sperm motility and good blood flow (Source). Furthermore, several studies have shown that supplementing with selenium reduces the risk of pre-eclampsia in pregnant women (Source). So if you’re planning to expand your family, perhaps try getting more selenium in your diet. But first make sure to consult with your doctor or health care professional!

Selenium is also widely used in manufacturing. Industrially it is used to decolorize glass, color glass red and make the pigment China Red.

 

Signs of Selenium Deficiency

Generally, selenium deficiency is not very common in the Western world. Chances are that you’re getting enough selenium when you’re eating a balanced diet full of fruits, vegetables and quality animal products like meat and dairy. However, if your body doesn’t absorb nutrients from food properly, you may not be getting enough selenium that your body needs for functioning. Another thing that has an effect on selenium levels in your body is your geographical location and how much selenium is found in the soil there.

thyroid health

Most common signs of selenium deficiency are hair loss in large amounts and all over your body, skin and nail discoloration. Also fatigue and low energy levels caused by oxidative stress or thyroid issues, hypothyroidism and other thyroid diseases. And even fertility issues in men and higher risk of miscarriage in women. Furthermore, selenium deficiency can in some cases lead to some serious health issues like Graves’ disease and Keshan disease.

Selenium deficiency alone might not cause any serious health issues. But it may lead to nutrient imbalances in your body that can actually have negative effects on your health and expose you to the risk of developing various diseases. For example, selenium deficiency will make your body lose iodine more quickly which in turn may lead to the development of iodine deficiency disorders. (Source)

Another thing to note is that you consume the exact amount of selenium that is recommended by your doctor. Especially if you already eat foods that contain high levels of selenium to prevent the selenium toxicity. Although this occurs rarely it is still important to be careful, because that as well can have negative effects on your health. Side effects of selenium intake can again be hair loss (also a symptom of selenium deficiency!), lethargy, dizziness, motor weakness and paresthesias (Source).

 

Selenium and Thyroid Health

Selenium plays an important role in the proper functioning of the thyroid gland. Thyroid is part of the endocrine system in your body. It produces hormones that regulate your body’s metabolic processes and growth. Selenium is essential to several enzymes, including some antioxidants that help support the thyroid to synthesize hormones. Several studies have shown that selenium does in fact have a big impact on thyroid health.

A study published in The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism in 2015 investigated whether the prevalence of thyroid disease differed in two otherwise similar areas in China, but where the concentration of selenium in soil and crop was very different. The results showed that in the area that’s adequate in selenium, the prevalence of thyroid issues like hypothyroidism, subclinical hypothyroidism, autoimmune thyroiditis, and enlarged thyroid was significantly lower than in the low-selenium area. (Source)

Another study that was published in The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism in 2007 examined whether supplementing with selenium during and after pregnancy would influence the thyroidal autoimmune pattern and function. Pregnant women who are positive for thyroid peroxidase antibodies are in risk of developing thyroid dysfunction and permanent hypothyroidism after pregnancy. Over 2000 euthyroid pregnant women participated in the study, 7,9% of them were positive for thyroid peroxidase antibodies. Results showed that supplementing with selenium reduced inflammatory activity in thyroid and the occurrence of hypothyroidism. (Source)

Research conducted in France in 2003 investigated the relationship between selenium status, thyroid volume and thyroid gland echostructure. Research suggests that selenium may protect against the abnormal enlargement of the thyroid gland that is also known as goiter. They concluded that selenium is related to thyroid echostructure and that it may protect against developing autoimmune thyroid disease. (Source)

Furthermore, a literature research published in 2016 in Thyroid: official journal of the American Thyroid Association identified 3366 records on the topic and after thorough assessment of the texts, picked out 16 controlled trials to include in their systematic review. The authors found that selenium can reduce the autoantibody levels in patients with chronic autoimmune thyroiditis. (Source)

An article published in the International Journal of Endocrinology in 2017 performed a thorough review of the literature on selenium’s role in thyroid function. Based on their findings, they suggest that adequate levels of selenium is essential to support thyroid health, prevent thyroid diseases and promote overall wellbeing. Results show that the most preferred form is organic selenium because of its efficiency. (Source)

 

How To Get Selenium and How Much Should You Take It?

As we mentioned above, if you eat a healthy and balanced diet that includes plenty of vegetables, fruits, grains and quality animal proteins, you probably are getting some selenium in your diet. Selenium rich foods are brazil nuts, seafoods like tuna, halibut, sardines and shrimps, organ meats like beef liver.

thyroid healthHowever, it is important to keep in mind that the amount of selenium in fruits, vegetables and other plant sources depends on how much selenium is found in the soil where the food is grown. Thus, you can’t be sure of the amount of selenium you get from these sources and if you unknowingly consume too much of it, you may experience adverse side effects.

If you eat a lot of processed foods, don’t eat animal products or are located somewhere with low levels in soil, you might need to add a selenium supplement to your diet. As we found out, the organic forms of selenium (selenomethionine and selenocysteine) are better absorbed by your body. By the way, NutriONN Selenium supplement is organic!

Fun Fact: selenium supplements can have a distinctive smell that some people may find unpleasant. This is because the organic form of selenium, selenomethionine, contains methionine. Methionine is also found in other smelly foods like garlic, onions etc. This amino acid can help support your liver function. (Source)

How much selenium is too much? Safe intake of selenium is around 50-400mcg (Source). We always recommend to keep an eye on your selenium intake. For example, if you’re taking a selenium supplement, do not exceed the amount stated on the bottle. But the first thing to start with would be paying a visit to your doctor and have your body’s nutrient levels tested to figure out the exact amount your body needs.

 

Recommended Dietary Allowance for Selenium (RDA) (Source)

Age Male Female Pregnancy Lactation
Birth to 6 months 15 mcg* 15 mcg*
7–12 months 20 mcg* 20 mcg*
1–3 years 20 mcg 20 mcg
4–8 years 30 mcg 30 mcg
9–13 years 40 mcg 40 mcg
14–18 years 55 mcg 55 mcg 60 mcg 70 mcg
19–50 years 55 mcg 55 mcg 60 mcg 70 mcg
51+ years 55 mcg 55 mcg

*Adequate Intake (AI)

 

In conclusion, selenium has a key role in supporting thyroid health. Multiple studies have shown that selenium levels are related to different thyroid issues and diseases. But it’s also an important mineral for your overall health and wellbeing.

If you’re looking for an organic form of selenium, we’ve got you covered! You’ll find our yeast free, pure Selenium supplement by clicking here.

Olive Leaf Extract: Benefits & Uses

olive leaf benefits

We all know about the holy grail of healthy oils – olive oil. The cold-pressed, extra virgin olive oil is widely known for its many health benefits. Olive oil and olives have a huge role in the much raved Mediterranean diet. Since ancient times, olive tree has been known for its many health promoting properties. It has been called The Tree of Life, The Immortal Tree and even the King of Trees.

But what might not be so familiar to everyone is olive leaf extract. The not-so-well-known little brother of olive oil that comes from the same tree. So what is olive leaf extract and why should you use it? Let’s dig in!

 

What is Olive Leaf Extract?

Olive leaf extract is made from the leaves of the olive tree also known as Olea europaea. Olive leaves contain lots of oleuropein. This is the beneficial compound that gives olive oil many of its valuable health benefits. It has powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that help protect your cells from oxidative stress and many other issues. Olive leaves have been used in traditional medicine for centuries.

Olive leaf extract contains up to 40 times more antioxidants than extra virgin olive oil. This way you’ll get all the valuable nutrients for your body without the need to consume unreasonably large amounts of olive oil. Although we still recommend you use olive oil in your cooking – it’s an amazing addition to almost every dish and it’s full of healthy fats. You can find olive leaf on the market as an extract, a powder or herbal tea.

 

Olive Leaf Extract Benefits & Uses

Powerful Antioxidant

Olive leaves have excellent antioxidant properties. Antioxidants protect us from harmful free radicals that have damaging and aging effects on our cells. Olive leaf extract’s antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties help to protect cells from oxidative damage, they can improve brain function and prevent memory loss, protect skin and prevent premature aging and much-much more.

olive leaf extract benefits

Research has shown that the antioxidant effects of oleuropein prevent DNA damage that happens when your body is in oxidative stress. When your DNA gets damaged, harmful cells may start to develop in your body. A study conducted in 2011 showed that the compounds found in olive leaf extract can prevent and inhibit DNA damage. (source)

Some studies even show that olive leaf extract has a positive effect on brain function as it has the potential to prevent age-related brain disorders. Studies also suggest the connection between issues with memory and free radicals. The antioxidant properties of olive leaf extract may help relieve the damage done by free radicals. (source)

We’ve talked about free radicals many times in this blog post. So why are those free radicals such bad things? When your body is in oxidative stress, free radicals are damaging your cells. Your whole body consists of cells and when they get damaged, your body starts to age. Of course aging happens to every single one of us all the time, but why encourage it, when there are ways to prevent premature aging?! By the way, this also goes for the aging of your skin cells!

 

Strong Immune System

Your immune system defends your body against different microorganisms that cause colds and viruses. When your immune system has weakened you’ll be more susceptible to all kinds of diseases. Thanks to olive leaves’ antiviral, immune system boosting properties, olive leaf extract can be a useful supplement for preventing colds and viruses.

Not only can the compounds in olive leaves fight off nasty infections, they can even have antimicrobial properties that kill bacteria and fungi in your body. A study conducted in 2003 showed that olive leaf extract can even fight E-coli cells that are usually found in the digestive system, dermatophytes that cause skin, hair and nail infections and candida albicans that causes oral and genital infections. (source)

 

Cardiovascular Health Support

For centuries, olive leaves have been used to support cardiovascular health. When consumed regularly, olive leaf extract may help lower bad cholesterol, prevent high blood pressure and to support healthy blood sugar levels. Healthy cholesterol, blood sugar and blood pressure levels are essential for good cardiovascular health.

olive leaf benefits

Studies have shown that olive leaf extract can play a role in lowering blood pressure. In a research published in the journal Phytomedicine in 2011, participants were given 500mg of olive leaf extract twice a day for eight weeks. Results showed that participants’ systolic and diastolic blood pressure were lowered. (source)

Polyphenol compounds in olive leaves have been shown to prevent the formation of arterial plaques by reducing the production of the molecules that help plaque stick to your arterial walls. Not only! The polyphenol compounds reduce clumping and formation of clots in your arteries that can also turn into plaque (source). Doesn’t sound too dangerous? Think again. Plaque in arteries is a major threat to your health that increases the risk of strokes and heart attacks.

Furthermore, olive leaf extract prevents the oxidation of bad cholesterol. As a result, oxidized bad cholesterol leads your body into state of inflammation that is damaging to your overall health and also to your arteries.

Olive leaf extract can help reduce and control your blood sugar levels by a number of different mechanisms. When your blood sugar levels are elevated, it triggers inflammation and oxidative stress that in turn leads to diabetes and premature aging in cells.  

 

Olive Leaf Extract Side Effects

Studies suggest that consuming olive leaf extract won’t have any serious side effects. But if you’re dealing with low blood pressure, olive leaf extract can lower it even further which in turn can make you dizzy. We always recommend you consult with your healthcare professional before taking any supplements. Especially if you’re pregnant or being treated for high blood pressure, diabetes or if you’re taking blood thinners.Olive Leaf

 

As you may know by now, olive leaf extract is truly a powerhouse of health benefits. Several studies have already proved it and olive leaves are gaining more and more recognition for its natural healing and health boosting abilities. 

The easiest and most effective way to get the benefits of olive leaves, is to consume olive leaf extract in capsule form. Make sure that the supplement you consume is a pure product without any added artificial ingredients. Our Olive Leaf Extract contains 20% of oleuropein. This is the highest amount you’ll find! Grab your bottle by clicking RIGHT HERE.

 

What Is The Difference Between Ceylon and Cassia Cinnamon?

ceylon vs cassiaCinnamon is one of the most common spices found in our cupboards. It’s a great flavoring addition to different recipes, but it also provides some pretty nice health benefits. Not to mention the amazing aroma of cinnamon, that alone helps to calm your mind!

What some of us don’t know is that cinnamon is most commonly found in two forms – Ceylon cinnamon and Cassia cinnamon. And to be exact, most of the times you’ll find the Cassia version in your local supermarket or store.

So what’s the deal? What is the difference between Ceylon and Cassia cinnamon? Let’s find out!

 

If You Didn’t Already Know What Cinnamon Is, Let’s Clear It Up

Cinnamon spice comes from the dried inner bark of the Cinnamomum tree that belongs to the family Lauraceae. To our tables it mostly arrives already ground from the bark. Cinnamon has been used in cooking and as a traditional herbal medicine for centuries. A good quality cinnamon has extremely powerful medicinal properties and it’s a great source of antioxidants.

Cinnamon is widely used as a natural way to stabilize blood sugar levels. Plus, it can also help to reduce inflammation in your body. This means that it can also help with pain – it’s compounds have shown to help relieve muscle and joint stiffness. Furthermore, the anti-inflammatory effects of cinnamon can help lower the risk of developing heart diseases.

ceylon vs cassia

Cinnamon’s antioxidant properties help to protect your body from the damage done by free radicals. This means that cinnamon can literally help to slow down the aging process in your body. In addition, antioxidants found in cinnamon may even help to defend your brain against various neurological disorders

You have endless options to include cinnamon in your cooking. Though it has a very distinctive taste that we all know and (most of us) love, you can add it to lots of different recipes. Your desserts, smoothies, baked goods and morning yogurt will get that extra kick of taste with cinnamon. Or maybe just sprinkle some of it on your sliced apples, you’ll definitely have a different yet delicious healthy snack ready.

 

Ceylon Vs Cassia Cinnamon: What Is the Difference?

So, what is the difference between Ceylon cinnamon and Cassia cinnamon? Which one is better? Why? Which one should you consume? Let’s answer your questions!

ceylon vs cassia

Ceylon Cinnamon

First of all, a lot of the times it is extremely hard to determine the source of ground cinnamon in the supermarkets. But if you’re lucky enough, the package will state whether the cinnamon was produced from the bark of Cinnamomum zeylanicum/Cinnamomum verum (Ceylon cinnamon) or from Cinnamomum cassia a k a Cinnamomum aromaticum.

If you have a good eye and already know about this stuff, you probably can distinguish which is which quite easily. Ceylon cinnamon has a lighter color and smoother texture. Its taste is more delicate and slightly sweeter than Cassia cinnamon. Ceylon cinnamon sticks tend to be softer and crumblier than their Cassia counterparts.

Did you know that Ceylon cinnamon is often referred to as the “true cinnamon” or “real cinnamon”? Ceylon cinnamon is primarily produced in Sri Lanka from that one specific tree we mentioned above. Whereas the Cassia cinnamon is usually a mixture of many different types of cinnamon.

ceylon vs cassia

Cassia cinnamon

One of the biggest differences that Cassia and Ceylon cinnamons have, is that Ceylon cinnamon contains a lot less coumarin. And this is a good thing! Coumarin is a natural compound found in cinnamon. BUT! Consuming coumarin in large quantities is toxic to your liver and kidneys. It may even lead to liver damage or failure. So if you’re trying get healthier while consuming cinnamon, make sure it is safe and doesn’t have the opposite effect on your health!

 

Conclusion

To conclude, both of these types of cinnamon have great health benefits. But it is wise to stay cautious and not consume Cassia cinnamon in large amounts on a daily basis. This is especially important if you use cinnamon every day for its medicinal properties or consume it in supplement form.

organic ceylon cinnamonIf you enjoy your cinnamon often and can’t imagine your life without it, then make sure to grab yourself a pure, organic Ceylon cinnamon. And no need to look far! We have exactly the perfect supplement for you – our Organic Ceylon Cinnamon capsules.  

We assure you that our Ceylon cinnamon truly is high quality and won’t harm you. Make sure to get yours today!

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Can Black Currant Oil Help with Weight Loss?

Black currants have lately been making headlines and a true comeback to the health and fitness industry. And it’s no surprise! They’re truly something you can call a superfood. Black currants are one of the best sources of vitamin C and antioxidants. Its seeds contain lots of gamma linoleic acid (GLA). So how can black currant oil help with weight loss? Continue reading to find out.

 

What is Black Currant?

black currant oil weight lossThe black currant plant, a relatively small shrub, is widely known for its deep purple sour berries. It’s native to Europe, northern Asia and New Zealand, where the highest quality black currants are being grown.

Black currants have been used as a traditional herbal medicine in Europe for many centuries to treat different health issues and support good health. Because of the high content of vitamin C and antioxidants, black currants are ideal for supporting the function of your immune system.

You can eat raw black currants, use them in cooking or consume them as supplements. Most common forms of black currant supplements on the market are black currant oil and black currant extract.

 

What is Black Currant Oil?

black currant oil weight lossBlack currant oil is extracted from the seeds of black currants. Higher quality oils have been extracted using cold-pressed, chemical free method. However, there are many products on the market that are extracted using hexane. This is a highly flammable chemical commonly extracted from petroleum and crude oil. That doesn’t sound really healthy, does it? (PS! NutriONN Black Currant Oil softgels are cold-pressed and no hexane or other chemicals have been used!)

Black currant oil is an amazing source of gamma linoleic acid. This is an omega-6 fatty acid that regulates your body’s hormonal balance. Plus, it’s a great anti-inflammatory agent. About 70% of black currant oil is made up of essential fatty acids that have an important role in regulating your hormones. Not to mention all the antioxidants and high amounts of vitamin C that make sure your immune system is strong and ready to fight whatever comes its way.

 

Can Black Currant Oil Help with Weight Loss?

So, what are black currant weight loss benefits? Firstly, the high amounts of gamma linoleic acid a k a GLA has various health benefits that can attribute to a healthy weight.

black currant oil weight loss

Study published in “Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology” in October 2000 showed that GLA helped decrease the accumulation of body fat. Another study published in “Journal of Nutrition” in June 2007 showed that people who have undergone a major weight loss, will regain a lot less weight when using GLA than the people who didn’t take additional GLA.

Furthermore, according to a new study published in the European Journal of Applied Physiology in April 2018, black currants enhance fat oxidation during exercise, meaning that black currants help your body burn more fat while you’re working out. The study showed that taking 600mg of black currant extract for 7 days helped female participants burn an average of 27% more fat while exercising! Dr Sam Shepherd, who conducted the research, told that this kind of increase in fat oxidation usually happens after 3-4 weeks of regular endurance training. This is definitely something noteworthy!

 

Conclusion

In addition to all of the amazing health benefits black currants can offer, multiple studies have shown that they can be a great way to support healthy weight. As most of us already know – (unfortunately) there is no miracle pill for weight and fat loss. But, taking a good quality black currant supplement accompanied by moderate exercise and healthy diet will probably help you shed that stubborn fat much quicker than without it.

Interested in trying it out yourself and see if it’s worth it? Try out our high quality, cold-pressed and hexane-free Black Currant Oil softgels.