Get Down and Dirty



Get Down and Dirty
For many, running is no longer a solitary activity. Both new and regular runners are trading treadmill tedium for the fun and camaraderie of themed races. In 2012, more than 2 million people participated in nontraditional runs, ranging from colourful chaos to chocolate bliss.


NEED A REASON TO RUN?
Do it for fun!
Since most themed races cover shorter distances than marathons, both newbie and veteran runners can partake. Women account for much of the increase in participants, representing an all-time high of 56 percent of running-event finishers in the US.

Total Body nutrition Feeding your brain



Total Body nutrition Feeding your brain
Too often when we think of our health, we tend to separate the body and mind, as if one can function independently without the other.
This way of thinking couldn’t be further from the truth, as every system in our body is interconnected and relies on the other’s health to optimize its own. let’s take a look at
some of the influences that have an impact on our brain, mind, and mood.

Total Body nutrition Feeding your brain


Antioxidants
Free radicals in our brain can be produced by everything from cigarette smoke and air pollution to poor dietary choices, and the damage they cause has been identified
as one of the brain’s key agers. A diet rich in an array of colourful fruits and veggies is the best way to nourish the body with antioxidants and prevent free-radical damage from occurring in the brain.

Nitric oxide for heart health

WHAT is Nitric Oxide?  Discovery
In 1998, three researchers were awarded the Nobel Prize for their work in the identification of nitric oxide. They showed that this molecule is able to make vascular smooth muscle cells relax, resulting in vasodilation.
Of the Nobel Prize winners, one researcher was a pharmacologist in New York who was working on the identification of a molecule that caused smooth muscles in blood vessels to relax. He termed this molecule EDRF—endothelium-derived relaxing factor.
In 1977, a second researcher in Virginia showed that nitroglycerin releases nitric oxide as a signaling molecule to dilate the blood vessels.
Nitric oxide for heart health All Fitness allfitnesse WHAT is Nitric Oxide?  Discovery  In 1998, three researchers were awarded the Nobel Prize for their work in the identification of nitric oxide. They showed that this molecule is able to make vascular  smooth muscle cells relax, resulting in vasodilation.  Of the Nobel Prize winners, one researcher was a pharmacologist in New York who was working on the identification of a molecule that caused smooth muscles in blood vessels to relax. He termed this molecule EDRF—endothelium-derived relaxing factor.  In 1977, a second researcher in Virginia showed that nitroglycerin releases nitric oxide as a signaling molecule to dilate the blood vessels.

In 1986, the third winner, a pharmacology professor in California, discovered that EDRF is identical to nitric oxide. This discovery led to many more research endeavours into the potential of nitric oxide in the human body.

Functions
With the interest generated by nitric oxide, many important functions of the molecule have been identified. These include its role in the regulation of blood pressure, the functioning of the immune system, and activities of the central nervous system, including memory and behaviour.
Although the potential for the use of nitric oxide in healing disease states continues to be researched, it is now available as an approved supplement.
Studies on its uses have focused primarily on the treatment of hypotension or hypertension, Alzheimer’s disease, and sepsis.

Role in the body
Nitric oxide is made when L-arginine is combined with oxygen. An enzyme called nitric oxide synthase converts those substances to nitric oxide and citrulline.
Nitric oxide has a role in body systems such as the immune system, nervous system, and cardiovascular system. In the immune system, macrophages produce high levels of nitric oxide in the killing of tumour cells and bacteria. Nitric oxide is beneficial to the nervous system in that it acts as a neurotransmitter to regulate programmed cell death of neurons. In the cardiovascular system, nitric oxide is released as the heart pumps blood to allow the smooth passage of blood within the blood vessels.
Nitric oxide may also inhibit metastasis—the spreading of a tumour or cancer to other parts of the body—by preventing tumour cells from sticking to inner blood vessel walls.

Heart Health
Nitric oxide appears to have a role in cardiovascular health during normal physiological processes as well as in disease states. Blood vessels are lined with a single layer of cells that maintain chemical balance.
Nitric oxide is one of the molecules involved in vasodilation, and low levels have been shown to be a risk factor for cardiovascular events.
Nitric oxide prevents the cells of the blood vessels from multiplying, prevents platelets from aggregating, and prevents other inflammatory cells from building up in the vessels. If there is excess oxidative stress in the blood vessels, nitric oxide activity becomes impaired and asymmetric dimethylarginine (ADMA) accumulates and further inhibits nitric oxide production. Heart disease research is attempting to determine ways to maximize nitric oxide enzymes to allow increased nitric oxide production within vessel walls.

improve YOUR Level OF Nitric Oxide
Meditation has been studied for its effect on raising nitric oxide levels through the relaxation response. In a small meditation study, the authors were able to show
a relationship between a deeper relaxation response and a higher nitric oxide level. The nitric oxide level was measured after meditation and shows promise for
using meditation in stress-related conditions.
Research is also being conducted on the use of cocoa flavanols to optimize nitric oxide levels through biochemical pathways. One interesting initiative tracked the consistently low blood pressure of Kuna Indians of Panama. Their diet is rich in cocoa products when they live with their tribe.
When tribe members moved to urban areas of
Panama, however, their blood pressure was noted to increase, and there was a sharp decline in the amount of cocoa consumed. The researchers concluded that flavanol-rich foods (from cocoa) were associated with lower blood pressure in their study groups.
Diets high in fruits and vegetables provide more dietary polyphenols. These polyphenols are being studied in terms of increased consumption and consequential lower blood pressure. The research is focused on findings that polyphenols regulate nitric oxide bioavailability and thus regulate blood pressure.



L-Arginine And HEART HEALTH
L-arginine is a semi-essential amino acid, which means the body can produce it, but at times supplementation is required. Arginine can be sourced from the diet in the form of tree nuts, red meat, poultry, dairy, or fish. it is converted in the body to nitric oxide by the enzyme nitric oxide synthase.
L-arginine is used to support heart health, as it dilates blood vessels and
allows for less-compromised blood flow. Conditions for which L-arginine
is used include congestive heart failure, high blood pressure, coronary
artery disease, erectile dysfunction, and chest pain.
Doses of 3 to 8 g per day appear to be safe, and a typical Western diet
provides 5 g per day. it is important to discuss the use of L-arginine with
Your health care practitioner. There may be contraindications to its use
With pre-eclampsia (high blood pressure during pregnancy) and with certain heart patien



All Fitness_ Nitric oxide For heart health

Brenna Jacks, ND, is a member of the Pediatric Association of Naturopathic Physicians and maintains a general family practice in Langley, BC.

Beat the winter blues



Beat the winter blues
Natural depression treatments
The post-new year’s let-down encompasses feelings of bleakness and burnout that affect a number of us in the aftermath of the holidays.
many people are affected by blue feelings in the new year, and for those struggling with depression, these feelings often worsen.

Beat the winter blues allfitnesse Beat the winter blues  Natural depression treatments  The post-new year’s let-down encompasses feelings of bleakness and burnout that affect a number of us in the aftermath of the holidays.  many people are affected by blue feelings in the new year, and for those struggling with depression, these feelings often worsen.

For many suffering with depression, mood-enhancing medications such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), the most commonly prescribed class of antidepressants, are often perceived as the only way to cope with these feelings on a day-to-day basis.

Heart Attack Prevention



HEART ATTACK PREVENTION
Plaque buildup in the arteries, known as atherosclerosis, can greatly increase the chance of a heart attack.
Characterized by hardening and narrowing of blood vessels, atherosclerosis can reduce blood supply to key areas of the body such as the heart muscle and eventually lead to a heart attack.
In a small 2004 study from the University of California, cardiologists reported that aged garlic extract reduced participants’ risk for heart attack by about 50 percent
After supplementing for one year  Later studies have supported these Ũndings, showing that AGE can slow the progression of artery hardening, and may even help to reduce blood homocysteine levels, which are thought to be another marker for inflammation and risk of heart disease.

HEART ATTACK PREVENTION All Fitness Allfitnesse HEART ATTACK PREVENTION  Plaque buildup in the arteries, known as atherosclerosis, can greatly increase the chance of a heart attack.  Characterized by hardening and narrowing of blood vessels, atherosclerosis can reduce blood supply to key areas of the body such as the heart muscle and eventually lead to a heart attack.  In a small 2004 study from the University of California, cardiologists reported that aged garlic extract reduced participants’ risk for heart attack by about 50 percent  After supplementing for one year  Later studies have supported these Ũndings, showing that AGE can slow the progression of artery hardening, and may even help to reduce blood homocysteine levels, which are thought to be another marker for inflammation and risk of heart disease.

NATURAL ASPIRIN?

Awakening the Olympian within



Awakening the Olympian within
From the couch to the podium
On a February afternoon in 1964, I was in geography class with an atlas open to the map of Austria. The Olympics were in Innsbruck, and I was calculating the opportune time to excuse myself to go to the janitors office. >>

 He had a black and white portable television permanently set on channel 11 for Wide World of Sports. I arrived just in time for the men’s downhill ski event. Egon Zimmermann, the young Austrian skier, took off from the gate. He resembled a low-flying rocket as he won gold.
I felt my inner athlete emerge through the excitement of that historic run. I felt the need to get stronger, get faster, and get myself to a gym. As I cried tears of pride,
I witnessed something special.
I felt the same feelings of pride through each subsequent Olympiad, culminating with the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics. The floor in front of my television became stained with all the tears of pride and joy I squirted.

Awakening the Olympian within

Sablefish in white wine sauce

It’s fun to cook with wine. especially when you’ve purchased a bottle and, after taking a sniff, don’t really think it’s good enough to sip as a stand-alone. The key to making any dish pleasing to the senses involves adding a little sweet, a little savoury, a hint of fat, and a touch of tartness. And then we take it a step further by adding wine to tie all the flavours together with a spectacular result.

sablefish in white wine sauce All fitness

A classic coq au vin from the region where it originated in France traditionally means adding a glass of red to the braising sauce. The flavour of the recipe is profoundly piqued but sometimes the purple colour of the dish is a bit off-putting. In our version

Slow Roasted Riesling Braised Chicken


Slow Roasted Riesling Braised Chicken

This recipe is based on a traditional coq au vin recipe. Delicious when simmered to perfection, it’s been adapted to use a crisp dry Riesling rather than a typical Burgundy wine.
 4 strips turkey bacon, diced
2 tbsp (30 mL) extra-virgin olive oil
4 bone-in, skin-on organic free-range chicken breasts Salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 large shallots, peeled and cut in half
4 carrots, chopped
1 fennel bulb, trimmed and diced into
3/4 in (2 cm) cubes
1 large garlic clove, minced
1 1/2 cups (350 mL) dry fruity Riesling
1/2 cup (125 mL) low-sodium chicken broth or stock
4 sprigs thyme
4 sprigs parsley
1 fresh bay leaf Finely grated zest from 1/2 lemon
2 tbsp (30 mL) minced flat-leaf parsley
Slow Roasted Riesling Braised Chicken

Avocado Lime Cheesecake Bars



Avocado Lime Cheesecake Bars
While cheesecake normally provides an avalanche of calories from cheese and cream, this healthier citrusy version obtains many of its fat calories from nuts and creamy nutrient-dense avocado. Plus, it’s no-bake!
Consider sprinkling some coconut flakes on top. Placing a sheet of parchment paper over the cheesecake will also help keep it from browning too much during storage.

Avocado Lime Cheesecake Bars

2 cups (500 mL) organic rolled oats
3/4 cup (180 mL) pecans
1/2 cup (125 mL) dried cranberries
1/4 cup (60 mL) melted coconut oil
2 tbsp (30 mL) honey
1 in (2.5 cm) piece fresh ginger, grated or finely minced
1 tbsp (15 mL) unflavoured gelatin or agar-agar powder
1 1/4 cups (310 mL) milk
1/4 cup (60 mL) coconut sugar, sucanat, or other raw-style sugar Zest of 2 limes
1 tsp (5 mL) vanilla extract Juice of 1 lime
2 ripe medium-sized avocados