High Fiber Foods & Why White Rice Doesn’t Work

Being from America, the country that has the most constipated citizens in the world (close to 60 million of the population), I seriously through rice was good for digestive health.

When I first started living in Thailand, my diet was absolutely horrid — consistent of fizzy drinks, 7-11 food, and constant KFC. I was afraid of eating Thai food any longer because of an immense stomach bug I had for around 5 weeks. When this happened, I began making all the wrong decisions, leading to 3-4 day constipation cycles. It wasn’t until 3-4 years ago when I start learning about healthy bacteria, probiotics, echinacea and a few other things that allowed me to achieve the healthy digestive tract that I desperately needed.

Fiber, also known as roughage, is the part of plant-based foods (grains, fruits, vegetables, nuts, and beans) that the body can’t break down. It passes through the body undigested, keeping your digestive system clean and healthy, easing bowel movements, and flushing cholesterol and harmful carcinogens out of the body.

Fiber comes in two varieties: insoluble and soluble.

Insoluble fiber does not dissolve in water. It is the bulky fiber that helps to prevent constipation, and is found in whole grains, wheat cereals, and vegetables such as carrots, celery, and tomatoes.

Soluble fiber dissolves in water and helps control blood sugar levels and reduce cholesterol. Good sources include barley, oatmeal, beans, nuts, and fruits such as apples, berries, citrus fruits, and pears.

Many foods contain both soluble and insoluble fiber. In general, the more natural and unprocessed the food, the higher it is in fiber. There is no fiber in meat, dairy, or sugar. Refined or “white” foods, such as white bread, white rice, and pastries, have had all or most of their fiber removed.

And this is why understanding is very important when it comes to eating and rice in general. White rice has had all the fiber stripped from it. Brown rice and the other types out there have a considerable amount of fiber that will improve your overall digestive health.

So, for many American out there, how can you begin to bulk up on fiber and relieve your ever-clotting intestines? There are some ways.

Chia Seeds and Flak Seeds, which can be found in most whole-food markets, are high in omega-3 fatty acids and are known to lower cholesterol.

Most websites recommend carbohydrates, which also have good fiber….but these are also UNHEALTHY, through my eyes. Anytime I eat carbs and a lot of them, my stomach begins the back-up process.

Personally, Aloe Vera, which is the sacred nectar of the world, is my absolute favorite. If I drink this the night before and when I wake up, my digestive track works like a charm.

I’ve also boiled up carrots as part of my dinner in the evening. Make sure they’re not in the boiling hot water for too long, or all the nutrients will be wicked away. Have yourself a cucumber by your side, chop it up and gobble away.

I hope this has helped you, and if you have any pointers, comments or questions, please let me know!

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Pre-Workout: Amino Energy Review

You guys don’t know, but two days ago had to be the most terrifying moment of my life.  After sucking down two cups of coffee (1pm and 4pm), I decided to “test” out my new pre-workout, Amino Energy, at 6pm.

Yeah.  Bonehead move.  There was no effects at the moment, but I while I was walking to my bus stop after work, I got super lightheaded.  Why? Maybe too much of a surplus in caffeine.

I tried sleeping around 9:30, and everytime I closed my eyes and went into a stage of sleep before I actually fell asleep, everything felt like it was moving and I would get a jolt of warm energy from my elbows to my hands.  This ensued to 11pm, 1am, 3am….I had enough.  I was down near on a 24-hour stint and I headed to the clinic to get some medication to fall asleep.  Disclaimer: do this only during worse case scenarios…never on a regular basis because these drugs are terrible and they can affect your kidney.

I went to sleep around 4:30 am, woke up once to call in sick, and slept again until 11:30 am.  I felt so groggy and completely fatigue, but it was because of the excess caffeine.

Judgement Day

So, I was scared when I woke up.  I looked at my pre-workout and it looked at me.  I said, “should I, “and ‘it’ said, “should.”  I took only a half-a-scoop and off I went to the gym.  Now, there were no tingling effects or anything, but what I felt was an extreme amount of focus.  In this class had 4 other women and a guy.  The women I like to call “fair-weather” because some days they say good morning, other days they completely ignore you.  Didn’t matter, but it was motivation on top of the focus.

When the workout started, I was zoned it COMPLETELY.  This reminded me of the day I took Jack 3D back in 2012 and my energy was bouncing off the walls.  I didn’t give up once.  I kept it rolling for a full hour, which is unheard of.  Even during breaks, I kneeled and remained focus….normally I would chat it up or try throwing some conversation gambits out there for bait (lol).

Now, is this as good as Stimul, my absolute favorite pre-workout? Well, Stimul never gave me insomnia.  All will tell later on tonight if I can sleep or not.

Nonetheless, the ingredients, reviews and everything I saw online made me purchase this two days ago, and it surely didn’t disappoint.

  • Strength – Check
  • Quality – Check
  • Consistency – Check

 

Chia Seeds + Flak Seeds = Constipation Freedom!

Some of the best kept secrets in terms of food being the most powerful drug are kept so deep within a barracks it seems!  After having a good number of conversations the last 24 hours with nurses and doctors, I came across a brilliant video about superfoods (after teaching about brain foods) and realized the healthy benefits of Chia and Flak seeds.

Chia Seed Benefits

  • Skin ageing
  • Digestive Health
  • Heart health
  • Help treat diabetes
  • Boosts energy and metabolism.

 

Flak Seed Benefits

  • Lower cholesterol
  • Weight loss
  • Menopausal symptoms (especially for women here in Thailand)
  • Omega-3 Fatty
  • Gluten-free
  • Combats cancer

The beauty about Chia seeds are that they’re tasteless; therefore, if you throw a cup of it into a smoothie in the morning, or even blend it into a dressing, you’re good!  Flak can also reduce sugar cravings, which is probably one of the biggest things I have.  It has soluble and insoluble fiber which can help support colon detoxification.

After all the blogs I’ve written about Herbalife shake recipes, it’s time for all of you to get on both a remarkable way to combat constipation and try the smoothies once and for all.

 

 

 

Herbalife Healthy Meal Shake #4 – Neapolitan

We’re back! Another wonderful recipe, which I had the idea come about this morning, is in the books.

When I was a child, every time my mother would by neapolitan ice cream, I would literally just eat the strawberry and vanilla portions of it.  I was never a big fan of chocolate ice cream or chocolate milk until I grew older.

I was hesitant to buy the Herbalife Formula Healthy Meal 4 years ago here in Bangkok because again…I’ve never been a fan of chocolate outside of candy and cake.

However, this trio of flavors tastes exactly like the ice cream, but BETTER!

One scoop of each into a blender with some cubes of ice + milk is probably making you want to try it yourself.

Of course, for those of you who has never tried herbalife before, I would recommend only vanilla (since it’s the basis).  On the other hand, you can start adding in other flavors and bananas or whatnot (I would recommend almonds) to give it that added punch.

  • One scoop of each Formula 1
  • Milk (2%)
  • Ice cubes

This is excellent for a morning shake.

Herbalife Shake Recipe #3 – Chocolate + Peanut Cookie PDM (Protein Drink Mix)

OH. MY. GOODNESS!  I completely understand why they invented chocolate chip cookies….and here’s why I just HAD to write another blog about a recipe I desperately needed to share with my followers.

Chocolate flavor and the added protein drink mix is a blessing to humanity.  Here’s the breakdown and I highly recommend a blender.  Those who put scoops of powder into water and shake it should be ashamed of themselves.

  • 3 Ice cubes (depending on if you want it runny or thick)
  • Milk (this is an eye test because too much could take away the taste).
  • One scoop of PDM Peanut Cookie
  • Two scoops of Chocolate Formula 1

Additives: cinnamon, banana, peanut butter.

You can experiment with what you have.  If it’s not too sweet, you can put vanilla extract or a whole banana in it to boost the sweetness.

 

 

What’s That One Habit You Can Do In The Morning? Time To Create It!

It’s that one thing that will help you in the morning and fuel that burning desire (or lack thereof).  Creating a routine in the morning is difficult, but after trying a variety of things in 2016, I have a morning routine as follows.

  • Initial wake-up into meditation.
  • After meditation, count the things that I’m grateful for in my professional and social life.
  • Prime in the shower which consists of burning hot water – to freezing cold.
  • Vitamins then off to doing my podcast + blog.
  • Head to the gym, shower at the gym, then I’m ready for work by 10am.

On the days that I’m off, I fall completely out of my routine (bad habit that I’m still trying to destroy) if I don’t write anything on my to-do list.

So, in addition to what I’ve said above, here’s a video (Tony Robbins – I’m Not Your Guru) that has an excellent morning routine that a lot of people can adopt.  Recounting the three things you’re most grateful for, going back to your earliest childhood memory, and feeling everything about those moments of pure joy.  It starts at 1:43:00 and finishes at about 1:49:00-1:50.  You need to view this video from a desktop/notebook.

Bomb Those Distractions

On one of the most important days of my professional life, I woke up at 3am and couldn’t go back to sleep because I glanced at my phone.  This is one of the problems I have with leaving my phone inside my bedroom.  GET IT OUT!

Also, you should NOT tune into the news for the first 1 hour of the day because I can tell you right now that it will leave a very lasting impression on you compared to looking at it later in the morning.  You will see yourself bitching much faster and sending that bitchy information to other people who bitch so you can bitch together and have a bitch breakfast and bitch morning.  Get the drift?

Social Networking – I’m Not talking about FB, Twitter and Co

I never….EVER….EVER….EVER have a problem with the main social networking sites out there controlling my habits.  I will admit one malicious habit is social chat apps, which in actuality drops my defences because the amount of racist that’s dished out at me.  Yet, I still get on them? Foolish.

However, I bombed them all AGAIN just two days ago and the productivity not only went up 200%, but I also regained control of my happiness.  I love to ask myself “what’s 80% of my unhappiness right now?”  There’s one particular individual who I will never talk to again for as long as I live, and there are the social chatting apps such as horrendous Tinder, Skout, Badoo, etc.  In my personal opinion, I think this is probably the worst of them all because it’s not only time-consuming, but the headaches you get involved with where again….you go out and bitch about these men seeking women as objects to your friends and that 1 hour later you’re talking about why there aren’t any good men in the world.  STEER CLEAR!

Those are my distractors.  I’ve recently taken them out….and now I have control.

What are yours?

Podcast: https://www.spreaker.com/episode/11853811

 

Herbalife Banana Muffins Recipe

My absolute favorite! The thing that makes this so delicious is not only that I have an unspoken infatuation for banana bread, but the fact that the Herbalife 24 Strength “Chocolate” flavor is added in this, making it unbelievably delicious!  Here’s a simple and quick recipe for you guys so you can have these read in case you’re doing heavy cycling or cardio in general.  By the way, I’ll have to make a separate blog about the Herbalife 24 Strength.  By far the best protein on Herbalife’s market.

Banana Chocolate Muffins 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a food processor, add the following….

2 cups oats

2 cups Herbalife24 RebuildStrength

1/2 tsp salt (optional and totally not essential)

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp baking soda

Pulse until finely grounded and pour into a large bowl

Add the following to the food processor

1 cup peanut butter

3 bananas

1 1/2 cups milk

Process it until it’s smooth

In a large bowl, whip 12 egg whites until stiff peaks form.

In turns, slowly mix one cup of the dry mixture and one cup of the wet mixture into the beaten egg whites until fully mixed.

Pour into greased muffin tins and bake for 20-25 minutes..

This might take some practice in the beginning, and you might think it’s a lot of ingredients.  Again, some of them are optional, and 12 egg whites might even be excessive.  Again, these are for my cardio junkies or even just a healthy snack during the day.  I still love my banana pancakes, so stay tuned for more of that!

 

Herbalife Spotlight: Liftoffs! The Answer To Afternoon Crashes!

Yes, my favorite of them all that comes in a diversified group of flavors.  I recall being back in the south in Thailand where pre-workouts were obsolete.  Going to the gym without energy is a great way for your workout to fail before it even begins.

Thankfully, my friend from Australia sent me three boxes of it from Melbourne to Nakhon Si Thammarat and BOY! Were these the difference makers!

image1

What’s so great about this is the incredible about of B Vitamins you get just in one tablet. These vitamins help the process your body uses to get or make energy from the food you eat. They also help form red blood cells. You can also get B vitamins from proteins such as fish, meat, eggs, and dairy products. Leafy green vegetables, beans, and peas also have B vitamins.

Vitamin B Deficiency?

Not getting enough of certain B vitamins can cause diseases. A lack of B12 or B6 can cause anemia.

When to take it.

In my opinion, when you’re in need of a desperate boost.  Most Asian countries live on rice; therefore, there’s a good chance you’ll have a high carb lunch in the middle of the day, which will end up putting you to sleep within 30 minutes.  Am I right? Try me.

Dropping a tablet into a water when you’re getting drowsy is my suggestion.  Does this give you an amazing amount of energy before a workout? Unfortunately, no.  On the other hand, you can just take this as you go, by a water and watch it dissolve for a few minutes before consumption.  On top of that, this is actually healthy compared to the massive amounts of caffeine stuff into pre workouts.  Try it out!

Top 10 Potassium-Rich Foods

Look at Potassium as a hydration tool for your body.  Without it, your body would suffer from catastrophic dehydration and severe headaches.  It’s also the third most important mineral in keeping the organs of the body functioning properly.

The current recommended dietary intake for male and female adults is 4,700 milligrams of potassium per day.

What foods are rich in potassium? There are a lot of potassium-rich foods to choose from to meet your daily requirement. This list includes some of the highest potassium-rich foods.

1) Avocado

Avocado is definitely one of my favorite potassium-rich foods. A 2013 study published in the Nutrition Journal revealed epidemiological data from 2001 to 2008 that describes the effects of avocado consumption on metabolic disease risk factors.  Look at the variety of ways the avocado could be used in salad (chicken & avocado salad), guacamole, and even using them on sandwiches.  Also, best “good” fat out there.  Hop to it!

2) Acorn squash
26% DV

Acorn squash is a vegetable source of potassium that really should be more popular than it is because it also contains high levels of antioxidants. This type of antioxidant is well-known for helping prevent and fight various types of cancer, including skin, breast, lung and prostate cancer.  Honestly, would I eat squash with avocado being above? Probably not, but it’s an option for those of you out there who aren’t fans of the green.

3) Spinach
1 cup cooked = 21% DV

There’s a reason why spinach was the cartoon character Popeye’s power food of choice, and it’s not because of his biceps being massively big, either.  Not only is spinach a potassium-rich food, scientific research has shown that spinach contains plant chloroplast glycoglycerolipids, which are believed to act as cancer fighting agents. I thought spinach use to be disgusting, but if you eat it with a sandwich, just like avocado, you can’t even taste it.  I started eating spinach with sandwiches after my tenure in down-under.

4) Sweet potato
1 large potato = 24% DV

Sweet potatoes are a potassium-rich food that contain a higher density of nutrients than white potatoes. Sweet potatoes are also high in beta-carotene vitamin C and vitamin B6.  Plus sweet potatoes have been shown in scientific animal research to exhibit anti-ulcer activity and are likely helpful in the successful treatment of peptic ulcers.

5) Wild-caught salmon

1/2 fillet = 21% DV

In addition to potassium as well as other vitamins, minerals and protein, wild-caught salmon is loaded with health-promoting omega 3 fatty-acids The benefits of these essential fatty acids include decreasing the risk of heart disease and stroke while also helping reduce symptoms of depression, high blood pressure, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), joint pain and chronic skin ailments like eczema.

 

6) Pomegranate
1 whole: 19% DV

Pomegranate seeds and its juice are awesome fruit sources of potassium. They’re also loaded with fiber, vitamin C and vitamin K amongst other nutrients. Also, pomegranate juice has also been found to be the healthiest fruit juice in the world.

7) Coconut Water
1 cup: 17% DV

Looking for more potassium-rich foods that come in liquid form? Coconut water, without sugar, is a beverage option that is high in electrolytes like potassium, but not too high in sugar or calories.

 

8) Banana
1 large banana: 18% DV

Bananas are the absolute best, but it’s high in sugars and carbs. That’s why I recommend bananas as a quick source of energy before a workout or a post-workout nutrient-rich recovery food to help repair muscle and balance water retention. Exercising, especially an intense workout, is one of the major ways that your potassium levels can get drained so that’s why it’s crucial to consume potassium-rich foods like bananas.

Top 10 Foods High In Selenium

The first time I talked about Herbalife with a colleague almost three years ago, he had his doubts.  He tried asking as many questions about the Formula 1 Shake possible, which I answered easily.  He pointed out Selenium and how it was so important during the presentation, and he was convinced.  1 scoop of Herbalife Formula 1 healthy meal contains 20% of the DV.  However, as time went on, I didn’t know how beneficial it was until yesterday.

I recently started teaching a brilliant student from the top university here in Thailand who’s studying nutrition and toxicology, and with her vast areas of study in terms of Goitre Thyroid that slammed the northern region of Thailand, to small sectors of Nakhon Si Thammarat (south of Thailand) being flooded with Arsenic in their soil due to heavy flooding, I was enthralled. It was a considerable challenge from a future doctor and it was impressive how she stated so many case studies that I had no clue about.  With her area of expertise brings a ton of new blogs coming out over the next couple of weeks.

With that being said, let’s check how detrimental a Selenium deficiency can be to the human body….

Selenium deficiency symptoms include:

  • Thyroid dysfunction
  • Weakened immune system
  • Infertility in men and women
  • Depression
  • Heart disease
  • Increased risk of cancer

Selenium is basically a trace mineral that works in conjunction with Vitamin E that helps relieve the body of oxidative damage.

Oxidative stress is essentially an imbalance between the production of free radicals and the ability of the body to counteract or detoxify their harmful effects through neutralization by antioxidants.

Selenium also helps recycle Vitamin C and helps with cellular protection.  With it already being a powerful antioxidant, eating foods that contain it could relieve stress off the liver and kidney.

Top 10 Foods High in Selenium 

1) Brazil nuts
1 oz (6-8 nuts): 544 mcg (over 100% DV)

2) Yellowfin tuna
3 oz: 92 mcg (over 100% DV)

3) Halibut, cooked
3 oz: 47mcg (67% DV)

4) Sardines, canned
3 oz: 45mcg (64% DV)

5) Grass-fed beef
3 oz: 33 mcg (47% DV)

6) Turkey, boneless
3 oz: 31 mcg (44% DV)

7) Beef liver
3 oz: 28 mcg (40% DV)

8) Chicken
3 oz: 22 mcg (31% DV)

9) Egg
1 large, 15 mcg (21% DV)

10) Spinach
1 cup: 11 mcg (16% DV)

Cancer prevention
There is a strong correlation between levels of selenium in the blood and a reduced risk of several types of cancer. Selenium may help with DNA repair or may prevent cancer cells from replicating.

Since selenium is a powerful antioxidant, foods high in selenium may also prevent cancer by reducing free radicals in the body. The benefit of cancer prevention is seen from eating selenium rich foods, not taking a selenium supplement.

Heart Health
Selenium rich foods prevent oxidative damage to the body’s cells reducing inflammation and lowering the risk of cardiovascular disease. People with low levels of serum selenium have been shown to be at higher risk of cardiovascular disease. This effect has been seen for people with diets high in selenium, not for those who take selenium supplements. – Dr. Axe

Being able to buy chicken in about every country, and eggs, makes it simple for us to get our DV of selenium.  There aren’t any peculiar foods on the list, so I do suggest everyone to start making sure you get your daily requirement of this wonderful vitamin.