Your Weekly Dose of Health Inquiries (Week 2)

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

brain cramps

Q: What nutritional supplements should I take if I have brain cramps?

A: Advise to take D3 supplements to keep their systems in balance. Along with B6, Magnesium, and Vit. 

Vitamin E, which have been found to be helpful in treating epilepsy, some doctors have found treatment with manganese and taurine reduced seizures as well.

Question 2

white hair

Q: How should white hair be treated?

A: Any deficiencies of Vit B6, B12, Biotin & D3, or Vit E can contribute to premature graying.

While graying is mostly genetic, oxidative stress in the body may play a part when the process happens prematurely. Oxidative stress causes imbalances when antioxidants are not enough to counteract the damaging effects of free radicals.

Free radicals are unstable molecules that damage cells, contributing to aging and disease. A diet rich in antioxidants can reduce oxidative stress also help to prevent white hair.

Question 3

prebiotic vs probiotic

Q: I'm confused about prebiotics and probiotics. Are these the same thing? 

A: Probiotics are healthy bacteria that live inside our intestines. Prebiotics are the food for probiotics helping them stay alive and multiply. Prebiotics are beneficial but don't be fooled with a probiotic supplement that contains both as often times in order for prebiotics to reach its benefits you need much higher doses. 

Typically supplements that contain both prebiotic and probiotic, the prebiotic usually only contains 300-500mg whereas you would need around 1-2g of prebiotics in order for it to have its effect. The added prebiotic won't help, but you would be paying for something that you can easily get in food.

Food sources of prebiotic include: 

  • artichoke
  • garlic, onions, leek
  • asparagus
  • barley, oats 
  • bananas

Question 4

CFU

Q: When using probiotics, is higher the better? 

A: Higher the CFU count (potency) is not necessarily better. Instead it's better to focus more on the variety of bacteria strains with a moderate potency. 

Our intestinal tract houses around 1000 different species of bacteria and so one bacteria will not be able to do the job of all. 

Therefore it is also wise to rotate probiotics every few months so your intestinal tract can absorb as much variety as possible. 

Importance of potency occurs when you are working on a specific health condition, eg. food poisoning, and you need very high potency to override the bad bacteri that is causing you problems.

Question 5

do i need probiotics if i eat yogurt

Q: Do I need probiotics if I eat yogurt? 

A: Traditional homemade yogurt is healing and beneficial, however modern day manufacturing of yogurt means that it is no longer such the case. 

Milk now has alot of hormones and antbiotics found in them with the mass factory farming of cows. And majority of manufacturers now only use 1 or 2 strains of probiotics which is not enough to recolinate our gut. 

What is worse is that in order to guarantee food safety, all dairy products need to be pastuerized which uses high heat to kill off bad bacteria, but also this kills good bacteria too. And so, when you're eating yogurt found in supermarkets there really is not much benefit to it.

Question 6

Q: I've been having bad headaches lately. Do you have any natural remedies for migraines? 

A: Sorry to hear about the migraines =( 

The increase in temperatures and intense heat can be a factor plus when you're working out every day it's also putting more strain on your body to balance the electrolyte loss. 

Headaches and migraines are often due to dehydration more than anything else so I recommend tons of water, don't go for tea or coffee (as much as coffee could potentially cure it for a moment haha) and then I would include high doses of magnesium (minimum 1-2g 2x a day) You can even increase this if it's not helping, it's completely safe.

My second go to would be ginger in your water, though in this heat in my increase body temperatures.You can also consider peppermint oil either difused or mixed with a carrier oil (olive oil, coconut oil) and rub on your temples for some relief from the throbbing.

Question 7

vegan protein

Q: How can vegetarian get their protein?

A: Vegetarians should be careful to make sure they have significant amount of protein intake. 

In addition to fish, meat, milk and eggs, food sources that are rich in protein can be found among

  • Beans: tofu skin (bean curd skin), edamame, tofu, black beans, 
  • soybeans, red beans, broad beans, etc. 
  • Nuts and seeds: chia seeds, sesame seeds, flax seeds, sunflower seeds (shelled), 
  • almonds, pistachios, pumpkin seeds (shelled), walnuts, chestnuts, etc. 
  • Plant-based milk: soy milk, oat milk, etc. 
  • High-protein vegetables: kelp, spinach, asparagus, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, etc. 
  • Fungi: Fresh mushrooms, Flammulina-velutipes, Hericium, fungus, etc. 
  • Staple food: noodles, corn, gluten, oatmeal, buckwheat, etc.

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