Your Weekly Dose of Health Inquiries (Week 1)

Food for Life hopes to inspire and provide tools for a holistic lifestyle. Hence, we are collecting and answering different health inquiries every week. 

Here is the health inquiries for this week:

Question 1

Ridges on nails

Q: Recently noticed these ridges on my fingernails were wondering what they could be any ideas?

A: Ridges on nails are often a sign of vitamin and mineral deficiency. Depending on the ridges, vertical or horizontal, in this case yours is more like horizontal ridges, it can mean various things. 

Horizontal ridges can be a sign of specific vitamin/mineral deficiencies particularly Vitamin B and iron. I would suggest you to monitor them.

See if your nails grow slower or if they are harder, softer than normal, and also if your toe nails also have this.

Question 2

chronic patients

Q: Are chronic patients suitable for taking iron supplements? 

A: Since iron can be stored in the body and there are dangers with overdosing on iron, we recommend you take iron in small doses (10ml at a time) and periodically (e.g. 2-3 months at a time with breaks). 

For chronic disease, we do not recommend cancer patients to be on iron supplement consistently. However in some other cases like chronic liver disease, or anemia, iron supplements would really benefit. 

Our body stores around 1-3g of iron in the body but we lose around 1mg per day, though women and athletes can lose around 2mg per day, depending on lifestyles. 

Question 3


Q: I have smoked for a very long time. Would like to ask what is the benefit of taking Q10?

A: You know that every time you smoke a cigarette, your body will produce at least 100,000 free radicals, and free radicals will harm our cells. Coenzyme Q10 is an important antioxidant in the body, which can reduce the production of free radicals and help neutralize free radicals in the body.

Question 4

Udo's Choice's probiotics

Q: Do Udo's Choice's probiotics really work?

A: A recent study published by the National Institutes of Health tested five popular brands of probiotics and found that only the Udo's Choice brand contained the number of bacteria claimed on its label. Bacteria are biological, and Udo's Choice probiotics are refrigerated to ensure their highest benefits. 

Question 5

middle ear infection

Q: Hi Denise, my husband has middle ear infection. It's quite severe and has lost hearing. What can we do?

A: Inner ear is usually from a bacteria infection that is trapped inside. So we want to work on killing the virus/bacteria while building the immune system. 

I would recommend: 

  • Oregano oil : 2-3 drops in water three times a day or 
  • Pure Garliactive :3 capsules 2x per day 
  • Tea tree oil: mix 1 drop with some liquid coconut oil or olive oil and put a few drops in the ear before bed and do that consecutively. 

Continue boosting the immune system with double the recommended dose of Udo's Super 8 probiotics, Vitamin D and EsterC. 

Question 6

eat soup

Q: Should I eat soup before meals or after meals?

A: There is no right or wrong answer to this question. It depends on individual needs. 

Drinking soup before meals can enhance the feeling of fullness. 

This prevents people from intaking extra calories. This could be suitable for people who want to lose weight. However, drinking soup before meals may add extra burden to digestion, because soup will dilute stomach acid. This could affect digestion.

It is recommended that those with insufficient secretion of stomach acid do not drink soup before meals, they can choose to drink soup after meals.

Question 7

hot drink


Q: Why do Chinese always choose hot drinks over cold?

A: We recommend warm drinks over hot or cold.

If you take cold beverages, we don't recommend you take it together with meals. This can interfere with digestion because the digestive juices and enzymes get carried out with the beverage rather than staying in the stomach. Cold beverages can also solidify the fat that you may have consumed in your meal.

Some people like to take cold beverages to increase thermogenesis (fat burning), but there are much better and more efficient ways to do this.

According to TCM and Ayurvedic medicine, excess cold fluids deplete our digestive heat and our body's energy (Qi) which is needed not just for digestion but also for blood flow and kidney functions.

Having said that overly hot drinks are also not good for the body as it can overstrain the digestive system.

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