• Gut Health
  • Heart Health
    • Heart Health

      The stats tell it all: The number one cause of death in the United States is heart disease. That’s right, more than any other disease – even cancer (a close second) – heart disease is the most likely to kill you. The United States is currently facing a “diabesity” epidemic, or a substantial increase in the prevalence of metabolic syndrome leading to diabetes and obesity, all serious risk factors for heart disease.

      According to the American Heart Association, every 34 seconds someone in the US dies of a heart attack. By the time you finish reading this paragraph, another person will have lost their life. Sadly, many people do not even know they have heart disease until they experience a heart attack. These facts alone make Heart Health a critical topic to understand.

  • Skin Health
    • Skin Health

      The gut-skin connection is very significant. Inflammatory processes present in the gut may manifest on the skin. Toxins are expelled with sweat, and can cause the skin to react. Like the inside of the digestive tract, the skin is covered in microbes which can be neutral, protective or pathogenic. Skin reaction may reflect what is going on inside the body. Therefore treating skin conditions only from the outside will often be ineffective and lead to other chronic issues.

  • Brain Health
    • Brain Health

      The gut-brain connection occurs in two directions—from the brain to the gut, and from the gut to the brain. When a person has a “gut feeling,” or an emotional upset causes a stomachache or loss of appetite, they experience examples of the first, most familiar direction. When the gut is out of balance, inflammation results leading to a condition commonly known as leaky gut. A leaky gut will allow undigested food particles and toxins to enter into the bloodstream. Some may cross into the brain, setting the stage for diseases like Alzheimers and dementia. Recognizing the underlying contributing factors that created the gut imbalance in the first place is the first step to achieving optimal brain function .

  • Diet & Health
    • Diet & Health

      Healthy pH levels, whether in the colon or systemic, are found when you eat a high-fiber diet, high in vegetables and fruits, healthy proteins, and healthy fats. Complement this with foods and supplements high in beneficial bacteria, omega-3 fatty acids, and digestive enzymes, and you will be supporting optimal health (which begins in the digestive system).

  • About Brenda
  • Pet Health
    • Pet Health

      Our dog’s health is precious! They provide us with unconditional love and companionship. A daily probiotic formula is a great way to ensure good health. Make sure you choose one that delivers the recommended potency level and strain count. There is nothing quite like a healthy and happy dog. Happy Dog. Happy Life!

  • Blog
  • Shop

Breast Milk Discovered to Contain Probiotic Bacteria

Filed in Children, General, Probiotics & Gut Flora | Posted by Brenda Watson on 09/30/2013

Breast milk is considered nature’s perfect food. Breast milk contains everything an infant needs to grow and develop, including nutrients, immune factors, and prebiotic fibers known as oligosaccharides. It was once thought that the prebiotics found in breast milk were responsible for helping to establish beneficial bacteria in the digestive tracts of growing infants, but a new study is adding to our knowledge of how babies’ digestive tracts are colonized by beneficial bacteria.

The study, published in the journal Environmental Microbiology, found that breast milk actually contains beneficial bacteria that come from the digestive tracts of the mother. They found the same strains of a particular probiotic bacterium, Bifidobacterium breve, in addition to other beneficial Clostridium strains in both the digestive tracts and breast milk of mothers. This is a new discovery. “We are excited to find out that bacteria can actually travel from the mother’s gut to her breast milk,” stated Christophe Lacroix, PhD, lead researcher. The researchers are not sure of the route taken by bacteria into the breast milk, but future studies will investigate this topic further.

What this tells us is that not only is mother’s digestive balance important for baby during pregnancy and birth, but it is also very important during breastfeeding. An infant’s gut bacteria are derived from the mother especially when delivered via the birth canal, and also through breastfeeding. When mother has a healthy balance of gut bacteria, baby is more likely to inherit that balance.

Sleep Deprived? Watch your Snacking

Filed in Brain, General | Posted by Brenda Watson on 09/27/2013

Have you ever found yourself reaching for unhealthy foods after a sleepless night? A recent study published in the journal Nature Communications scanned the brains of 23 healthy young adults using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and found impaired activity in the brain’s frontal lobe, which functions in decision making. They also found increased activity in brain regions that respond to rewards. Sleep-deprived participants were also more likely to choose unhealthy snacks and junk food compared to those who had a normal night’s sleep.

“What we have discovered is that high-level brain regions required for complex judgments and decisions become blunted by a lack of sleep, while more primal brain structures that control motivation and desire are amplified,” stated Matthew Walker, lead author and professor of psychology and neuroscience at UC Berkley. “High-calorie foods also became significantly more desirable when participants were sleep deprived. This combination of altered brain activity and decision making may help explain why people who sleep less also tend to be overweight or obese.”

Sleep deprivation affects more than our cravings. Chronic lack of sleep worsens almost any health condition. The body restores itself as we sleep. Forgoing this vital restoration means your health will suffer. Sleep well and you will crave less. That sounds like a good reason to get your zzz’s to me.

Watch My Segment on Leaky Gut on The American Health Journal

Filed in General, Leaky Gut, Omega-3 & Fish Oil | Posted by Brenda Watson on 09/25/2013

Have you heard the term “leaky gut” but didn’t really understand what it meant? Recently I explained leaky gut in detail and how it relates to silent inflammation and heart disease on The American Health Journal, airing on Public Television in different markets nationally. You can watch the entire segment below:

[vimeo 74309037 500 375]

Let’s face it. Most people don’t really understand the function of their intestinal lining. Very simply, digestion of food begins in your mouth, continues in your stomach, and it’s then passed along to your intestine. The lining of your intestine is designed as a selective barrier to keep undigested food, parasites, bacteria, and toxins out of your bloodstream, and to only allow digested nutrients like vitamins, minerals, and anti-oxidants into your bloodstream, so that your cells, tissues, and organs may be nourished.

In a healthy digestive system, there’s a mucous layer that covers your intestinal lining where friendly bacteria known as probiotics line up. They protect your circulatory and lymphatic systems from harmful invaders and also help in delivering the good nutrients from digested food directly into your blood.

As your intestine becomes inflamed, largely from poor dietary choices, the mucous lining erodes away and unfriendly bacteria and yeast can multiply. As this takes place, the good bacteria—your probiotics—are destroyed. That’s when the leaking begins.

As undigested food particles and toxins of all sorts enter your blood stream, many different areas of your body can become inflamed—from your brain and your joints, to your heart and arteries. At this stage, it’s called “silent” inflammation because in most cases, you can’t feel that it’s happening.

There is good news, however. Silent inflammation is actually easy to detect by four simple to measure markers. They are:

  • high blood pressure
  • high cholesterol
  • high blood sugar
  • weight gain

More good news! Omega-3 oils are a natural and easy way to obtain nutrients that can significantly help decrease silent inflammation and also assist in repair of a leaky gut. There are actually over 7,000 research studies that report the benefits of omega-3 oils for human health.

Be aware though, fish oil is not the same as Omega-3 oil. Omega-3s are a small component of fish oil and according to studies, you need approximately 3,000 to 5,000 mg of omega-3 daily to reduce silent inflammation and heal leaky gut. So as an example, if the label on your fish oil says it contains 1,000 mg of omega-3 per capsule, then you would only need to take 3 capsules per day. It’s very important to check your label for this critical information.

Once again, with regard to omega-3s, the amount you take daily directly relates to the benefits you will receive, according to the research literature. I don’t want you to be misled into thinking that just a little bit of omega-3 (or fish oil) is actually protecting your heart and your health, when it’s not.

I have personally experienced many people who have lowered their cholesterol and blood pressure without medication by modifying their diets and supplementing with the right amount of omega-3s. If your body is showing signs of silent inflammation—high blood pressure, high cholesterol, high blood sugar, or weight gain—consider checking with your doctor to see if this natural approach might be right for you.

Silent inflammation and the symptoms that go along with it are optional. They directly relate to the nutrient choices you make throughout your day. Choose wisely and stop silent inflammation before it becomes a chronic disease.

A Tale of Two Brains – Infographic

Filed in Brain, Digestive Health, General | Posted by Brenda Watson on 09/23/2013

Personally, I’m a visual learner. If you’ve ever picked up one of my books, you’ll notice they’re filled with pictures. So when my team showed me this infographic explaining the intimate relationship between the brain and the gut that I talk about all the time, I was excited. I hope you like it as much as I do.
In this case, heal your gut and you’ll heal your brain (and your mood, too)!

A Tale of Two Brains - Infographic

Embed Code