When Female Hormones Go Wacko!

Infographic by Sanford Harvey
Infographic by Sanford Harvey

GreenSmoothieGirl reader, Sanford Harvey, developed this really simple and helpful infographic on female hormones and shared it with us.

Have you always wondered why you are already experiencing signs and symptoms similar to menopause regardless of age? Have you felt like you could go head-to-head in a mood swing competition with your menopausal mother? Although female hormone imbalance is most common in aging women, it can be experienced by women regardless of age.

Female hormone imbalance is not exclusive to aging and menopausal women. Even women in their younger years can experience an overproduction or underproduction of one or more hormones. A whopping 80 percent of women worldwide suffer from different kinds of female hormone imbalance. Moreover, an estimate of 2.2 billion women over age 50 are presumed to suffer from female hormone imbalance by the year 2025.

Fortunately, female hormone imbalance does not have to be a ‘normal’ part of every woman’s life. Knowing and avoiding the triggers of female hormone imbalance can spare a woman from experiencing undesirable signs and symptoms such as forgetfulness, fatigue, sleeping difficulties, stubborn acne, mood swings, and more.

And if ever you might already be suffering from female hormone imbalance, there is still hope. There are simple and practical ways to correct hormone imbalance including leading a healthy and active lifestyle, eating a healthy and organic diet rich in omega-3 and healthy fat, and using hormone replacement therapy.

In all my research, I have found that “bioidentical hormone replacement” is the safest and best way to treat female hormone imbalance. I even prefer it over the other options which are unnatural and dangerous to your body. Bioidentical hormone replacement produces hormones with the same molecular make-up that your body naturally produces. This therapy takes hormones from animals versus making them synthetically as the drug industry does. Synthetic therapies are molecularly different and thus carry several associated risks.

Along with natural hormone replacement therapy is eating a more organic, raw plant food diet. In my opinion, this is as much part of the answer as hormone replacement therapy.

My friend, Kristie Rosser, who doubles as my own bioidentical hormone practitioner, says that stress can play a part in female hormone imbalance. She suggests that practicing meditation, gratitude, and working on your attitude daily has a positive effect on your body and can ease the negative symptoms of hormone imbalance.

When I am on speaking tours, women often talk to me about their hormone issues. I will give you the same advice I give them: Ask for a referral from someone you trust, or google “bioidentical hormone” along with the name of your city. Once you find a specialist you trust, you will need to get your blood tested. This isn’t just a T3 test you need that many OB/GYN’s order. There are upstream, downstream, and precursor hormones, each having a complex interplay that is best evaluated by an experienced bioidentical specialist. These practitioners have an advanced degree in nursing or medicine.

Contrary to what you may have been told, treating female hormone imbalance usually involves more than taking a thyroid pill. The successful approach may involve careful, timed delivery of natural precursor substances like pregnenalone or DHEA that support your body’s own ability to produce hormones. I prefer that versus taking pills!

Along with bioidentical treatment, I use our GSG Ultimate Minerals to support my thyroid function. As a result, I have been able to restore much of my thyroid production in recent years with my diet and strong mineral support. (Even with my quart-a-day green smoothie habit, I was low in minerals!) All of our Superfoods mixes increase raw, organic, whole plant foods in the diet, as well. I add a scoop of our raw, vegan, whole-foods protein to my green smoothie every day for thyroid support, appetite/weight management, and overall wellness.

What’s more is we just put our protein in single-serve pouches. On my recent trip to Texas, I used these GSG single protein servings 3x a day and returned home a pound lighter! (Usually I struggle to NOT GAIN weight on a trip.)

My question to you is what will you do to prevent and relieve the aggravating symptoms of female hormone balance? You can choose to not be a part of the 80 percent of women suffering from female hormone imbalance by simply exercising, eating right, drinking your green smoothie, and considering bioidentical hormone replacement therapy. Everything you need to know about female hormone imbalance is in this infographic. Thanks to Sanford!

My very favorite supplement, a game changer!

April Promo1I’m a supplement snob. Because most supplements out there are made from materials the body can’t process. (Like chalk! rocks! metals!, Or highly processed ingredients. Or isolated nutrients that aren’t helpful when they’ve lost the synergistic properties of the whole plant.)

When I did some lab testing 5 years ago, I was deficient in several minerals and trace minerals, I was astonished. I took supplements, and of course I drank tons of green smoothies. Aren’t greens full of minerals? What more could I do, diet-wise?

I learned that pesticides have heavily depleted humic and fulvic acids in the soil, which is where the plants get THEIR minerals. I learned that the vast majority of mineral supplements are made from rocks. (Which aren’t bioavailable to the human body.)

ultimate-minerals-720x720I then went on a hunt to FIND a plant-based, organic, non-diluted source of humic and fulvic acids. What we found we’ve put on a VERY RARE buy of our customers’ favorite product, and mine too. Through April only, you can get Buy Two Get One Free special, to let you stock up. (One bottle is about a 40-day supply for 1 person.)

Because I’d learned that fulvic acid is the richest and most bioavailable form of minerals, anywhere. And I wanted humic acid, too. Between them, they do far more than provide every mineral and trace mineral. They also increase cell permeability. This lets nutrition enter the cell and be utilized better, and it helps the cell push toxins out more effectively, too.

I finally located an organic, American, plant-based source of fulvic AND humic acids. The black, probiotic-rich stuff that USED to be in our soils. I wanted it highly concentrated—not heavily diluted with water

GSG Minerals aids the health of hair and nails.
GSG Minerals support the growth of healthy hair and nails.

When I started using this product, my hair and nails started growing faster, thicker, longer. I’d had dark circles under my eyes, and they went away. Most significantly, my lifelong insomnia disappeared and, in 4 years now, that has never returned. I fall asleep in minutes rather than hours now. (You don’t speak in 88 cities like I did last year—lots of hotels!—if you’re an insomniac!)

These amazing benefits are just my own body’s reaction to having a balanced state of highly absorbable nutrients. Of course you will have your own specific response and my own story is not meant to be predictive for anyone else. As with any new protocol, please seek the advice of a competent health care provider.

The body needs trace minerals for everything it does. The neurological system needs minerals to shut down at night, and to wake up in the morning. So, don’t put your Ultimate Minerals in your green smoothie. It’s perfect, as recommended, in water right before bed and first thing in the morning—when your mineral reserves are most depleted, and your neurological system most in need of food!

I hope our special this month helps you stock up on my very favorite thing, the highly concentrated GreenSmoothieGirl Ultimate Minerals, your fulvic/humic acid compound, a plant-based way to supplement your whole-foods diet.

the virtues of coconut water

Stacy S., organizer of my San Diego event last week (I will blog about it this week, just waiting for photos), that I should write more about coconut oil. How about the liquid, or water, of the coconut? Thanks for the help on this, Jenny Cook:

It’s an amazing alternative to water – low in calories, zero fat, and lots of naturally occurring nutrition including potassium, magnesium and calcium, fiber, proteins, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. It rehydrates you 3 times faster than water itself.

It’s a natural sports drink that stands apart from the blue-dye, chemical-sweetener-added competition. It is isotonic and contains more potassium than a banana and the perfect balance of electrolytes.

It has the same osmotic pressure as that of blood plasma, which means it can be safely administered as an intravenous fluid. In fact, it was used during WWII in emergency transfusions to replace blood plasma and save the lives of many wounded soldiers in the Pacific. Coconut water has also been used to treat cholera because of its electrolyte properties. Think of it as your own natural blood transfusion.

Secondly, it’s a very clever, wholly natural sports drink that knocks spots off the factory-created competition. It is isotonic and with more potassium than a banana and the perfect balance of electrolytes. Its just a natural and far more healthy alternative to mainstream sports drinks.

But the benefits don’t stop there. Coconut water is a natural diuretic that helps to dissolve kidney stones. It has oodles of potassium, which helps the body to fight water retention, muscle cramps and heart irregularities.

The calcium in coconut water is an important mineral for bones and teeth. It also plays a role as an electrical conductor in nerves and muscles.

Sodium is also needed in the body to maintain life. This vital electrolyte plays a number of roles to support health and wellness. Potassium and sodium interact electrically within the cells and outside the cells in the blood plasma and this is required for cardiac contractions, skeletal muscle movement and nerve impulses.

Coconut water helps dissolve kidney stones. It’s a natural diuretic, with lots of potassium, which helps the body fight water retention, muscle cramps, and heart irregularities.

It’s calcium rich, supporting strong bones and teeth. The highly bioavailable calcium plays an important role as an electrical conductor in nerves and muscles.

Sodium is an important electrolyte supporting wellness. Potassium and sodium interact electrically within and without cells in the blood plasma, aiding cardiac contractions, skeletal muscle movement and nerve impulses.

Coconut water also has fiber, protein, antioxidants and dozens of other nutrients. It takes 9 months to draw the water up from the earth through the trunk, into the nut and develop. We should appreciate the miracle that is the young coconut.

As more is known in the mainstream about coconut water, it will become harder to obtain. I am already having a hard time buying young coconuts–which are sold as a drink all over Asia, the Pacific, and many other places in the world I have been in the past several years.

I recommend buying cases of canned coconut water and keeping it in your long-term storage for emergencies. It’s a power food. And it has the benefit of tasting lovely. Coconut water is in my Hot Pink Breakfast Smoothie every morning (Ch. 10 of 12 Steps), which may be part of why I suffer from no chronic health conditions at age 44.

extra ingredients for green smoothies [part 1 of 7]

Many health food nuts like me have a mental list of ingredients they know are nutritional powerhouses, and we want to get them in our diet but often fail to do so, because we don’t know how or don’t fit it into the day’s menu. Green smoothies are the perfect way to do that–just toss some stuff in! Be adventurous. Use those exotic, high-impact nutrition items if you can afford them. If not, please don’t worry about it–you’re getting tons of fiber, vitamins, minerals, and enzymes from the simple greens and fruit combinations. Smoothies don’t have to contain expensive, exotic ingredients. But not all of the “other ingredients” discussed in this section are expensive.

Kelp and dulse

If you don’t mind the seaweedy taste of sea vegetables like kelp and dulse, use those high-impact foods in your blender. Just a little bit is enough, and they are more thyroid nourishing than any other food. So if you are hypothyroid (as about 25 percent of women are in America, many of them undiagnosed), consider getting one or both of these foods in your daily diet. Green smoothies are an easy way to do that. Those who suffer with low energy and slow metabolism often have low thyroid problems. (And diagnosing it can be difficult, involving full-panel blood testing done by a hormone clinic, examining the interplay of several different variables.) Taking a thyroid hormone causes disease risk and can burn out the thyroid even more over time, especially the synthetic drugs such as Synthroid and Cytomel. Sea vegetables nourish and support the thyroid rather than sort of jab and poke it to perform.

Flax oil

If you don’t know how to get flax oil in your diet, minerals from greens are absorbed better when eaten with some fats, so putting flax oil in your green smoothie is a great idea. You’ll never even notice it, used in this form. A tablespoon daily is a good dosage for an adult to avoid inflammatory ailments, and protect healthy cell membranes needed to keep toxic elements out but allow nutrients in. Flax oil has wide-ranging benefits uncovered in research in the past decade involving the immune, circulatory, reproductive, cardiovascular, and nervous system. It’s rich in essential fatty acids, including the rather rare omega-6 and omega-9 nutrients that your body cannot manufacture itself and must receive from outside sources.

Using flax oil, you can avoid taking fish oil with all its attendant risks (fish being tainted with mercury and other pollutants). Flax has more lignans by 80 times than the next-highest food, which cut your risk of breast and colon cancers dramatically. Research connects it to reduction of PMS symptoms, improvement in multiple sclerosis treatment, reduction in allergies and arthritis and diabetes, as well as eczema, asthsma, and loss of eyesight. It increases fat burning and allows you to recover from sprains and muscle fatigue more quickly.

You should never heat flax oil, which damages its nutritional properties, and you must purchase it refrigerated and use it very fresh, as it becomes rancid in only a month or two. This is one of the more expensive ingredients you can add to smoothies. If you prefer, you can grind a small amount of flaxseed instead. This is inexpensive, but the whole seed is mucilaginous, thereby making your smoothie thicker and bulkier, so if you add ground flaxseed instead of oil, you may want to add more water to compensate. Use freshly ground flaxseed, as it oxidizes and becomes rancid quickly once ground. You can use your BlendTec Total Blender, or a small $10 electric coffee grinder from any store like Target or Walmart.

If you add interesting things to your GS, let us know! I’ll be posting more of my additions over the next 6 days.

the best food dehydrator on the market . . . part 1 of 3

Today I’m telling you about one of my favorite tools for incorporating fantastic plant-food nutrition into your diet.   This is my favorite appliance, second only to the BlendTec Total Blender.   It’s the Excalibur dehydrator, my “oven,” the best rated food dehydrator in the world.   See if the person who loves you most wants to get you this for Christmas:

 

http://tinyurl.com/56cn36

 

You can buy cheaper food dryers.   The cheap ones do not have temperature controls, unfortunately, so if you’re going to buy one of the small, Walmart-type brands, you’ll have to vent by opening up the trays, and use a thermometer to try to control the heat to not go above 116 degrees.

 

But you truly can’t buy one better for preserving the nutrition in raw foods than Excalibur’s.   If you have a family, you can also make big batches because the 3000 models have nine trays, so you can dry several recipes at once, or doubled/tripled batches.

 

Excalibur is not only the gold standard in dehydrating, but the company knows raw food well and is used and endorsed by all the pre-eminent raw foodists (Cousens, Boutenko, Kulvinskas, and more).   Dehydrating is the best way to preserve the essential properties of fruits and vegetables, and those are ENZYMES, VITAMINS, and MINERALS.   It’s also a great way to preserve the summer harvest and stock up your pantry with LIVE food.