Posts Tagged ‘yoga’

Tummy Troubles and your Immune System

Welcome back this month to our guest blogger Annette Presseau, Reliv distributor here in Massachusetts.  Remember staying healthy is important while you go around your daily routine (including buying or selling a house).  Thanks again to Annette for helping us do just that. 

Tummy troubles and your immune system….


I have had a lot of stomach troubles over the years and have tried so many things to try to help and one important thing that has helped me considerably is FIBER in my diet.  I take a nutritional supplement in powered form that has fiber with it and it makes the world of difference to my stomach and I also try to eat food with fiber in it.  I cannot stress enough the importance of fiber in the diet it can be something like adding fruit to your regimen or eating bran cereal just little changes will make a big difference in your life.  Sometimes I miss one of my fiber shakes and boy do I notice a difference so I go right back on taking my fiber shakes.


Also, keep a log of the food you eat and what affects your stomach you will be surprised at what food affects you.  Like myself I have Psoriasis and popcorn affects my Psoriasis and I love popcorn but will not eat it now.


At one point I was troubled with IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) and know how troublesome it can be and I still have IBS but don’t have the symptoms and I can attest that to adding fiber in my diet made a world of difference.  April is IBS awareness month (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) and if you talked to your friends about this sensitive subject you will find that most people are troubled by their stomach in some shape and form.


IBS is a disorder within the intestines that causes abdominal pain and discomfort. The pain may occur on its own, or it can be accompanied by constipation, diarrhea and bloating.  What causes IBS is unknown; however, it’s important to note that people who have IBS may have a more sensitive digestive system. That’s why it’s best to avoid triggers by managing stress and eating foods that regulate digestion.


Managing IBS

Understanding what you are eating may cause flare-ups is the first step to controlling IBS.  Create a diet that adds in high fiber foods.  Most people don’t realize that there are actually two types of dietary fiber: soluble and insoluble. Each takes on a different role in the digestive system.

Insoluble Fiber: can’t be dissolved in water, passes through the intestinal track without changing form; will increase the frequency, water content and ease of bowel movements.

Soluble Fiber: dissolves in water, is smooth and soothing to the digestive track; can also lower the risk of heart disease, as part of a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol.  Fiber is one amazing multi-tasker. Whether your goal is weight loss, improved digestion or heart health, fiber does it all. But despite common knowledge of fiber’s many benefits, 95% of Americans don’t get the American Dietetic Association’s recommended 21-35 grams per day.

Check out the Mayo Clinic’s high fiber foods list:


Immune System

Who will be first in your defensive lineup? When it comes to tackling germs, bacteria and viruses, vitamin C is a nutritional MVP.   When we get enough, vitamin C can help detoxify our bodies, promote healing of cells and help us handle stress. It also supports good bacteria in the stomach, neutralizes free radicals, protects us from pollution, and much more.

This super-supplement also increases the production of infection-fighting white blood cells and antibodies and increases levels of interferon, the antibody that coats cell surfaces, preventing the entry of viruses.


Healthy Skin

Vitamin C is key to the production of collagen, a protein that aids in the growth of cells and blood vessels and gives skin its firmness and strength. Studies support that vitamin C slows the rate of free-radical damage. Free radicals are unstable molecules that damage collagen and cause skin dryness, fine lines and wrinkles.

Vitamin C may also reduce sunburn caused by exposure to ultraviolet B radiation and prevent the consequences of long-term sun exposure, which can lead to skin cancer.


Eye Health

Most people assume that vision just naturally deteriorates with age and that there’s nothing they can do about it. But with vitamin C, you can take preventive action now. Vitamin C helps the body form and maintain connective tissue, including collagen found in the cornea of the eye.

Studies also suggest long-term consumption of vitamin C may reduce the risk of forming a cataract and vision loss from macular degeneration.

Did you know that 40% of elder Americans have Macular Degeneration and that one of the solutions to prevent it is just wearing sunglasses?  Sometimes it just takes a little change in your lifestyle to give you a healthier life.  So change one thing today that will make you a healthier life and you will be a healthier person for it.


Supplement with Vitamin C

Most of us aren’t getting enough vitamin C. The RDA for vitamin C is 90mg, but studies suggest that number is too low to harness the supplement’s health benefits. Since our bodies don’t make vitamin C, we have to get it from our diet.   Also, watch out for added sugar in Vitamin C drinks.


What’s in your energy shot?

Do you know of someone who takes energy shots?  Most energy beverages and shots rely on caffeine and sugar to create an artificial buzz. The problem is that these stimulants inevitably leave you feeling more exhausted than ever. We’ve all experienced that afternoon “crash” once the morning coffee has worn off. Caffeinated energy beverages work the same way.

In addition, caffeine can cause withdrawal symptoms. Clinical studies indicate these symptoms include headache, fatigue, depressed mood, difficulty concentrating, irritability and brain fog.

Experts also say the use of guarana — aka “herbal caffeine” — is particularly dangerous. Many consumers don’t realize guarana itself contains extremely high levels of caffeine. A Consumer Reports review of 12 popular energy drinks found that caffeine levels — some topping 200 milligrams or more — are often omitted from the label.


Serious Side Effects

Caffeinated energy drinks caused a spike in heart rate and blood pressure in a study presented by the American Heart Association. The effects of the caffeine occurred in healthy individuals in a relaxed, seated position. Even more worrisome for researchers is the effect of caffeinated energy beverages on patients with heart or blood pressure problems.

Athletes who use caffeinated energy beverages as performance enhancers create their own set of risks. In the Mayo Clinic Proceedings, researchers noted that both athletes and non-athletes are consuming energy beverages at an alarming rate. The study cited several recent cases of caffeine-associated death and seizures associated with caffeinated energy drinks. Caffeine also acts as a diuretic, and high doses of sugar can impair absorption of fluids. The risky combination can cause severe dehydration.

So do your research and check the label on your energy shot.


You’ve probably heard that probiotics—the active cultures in some yogurts, for example—are good for your health. But not all probiotics are created equal.  Here’s what you need to know to boost immunity, soothe itchy skin, quell an upset stomach, and more.

Scientists have known for decades that probiotics can boost your health. That’s why yogurt’s “active cultures,” or good bugs, are touted so often. And now these bugs can be found in cereal, cheese, energy bars, soup, and a wealth of other products filling up grocery and pharmacy shelves. Their labels promise everything from fewer tummy aches to faster cold and flu recovery.

But probiotics aren’t all created equal, says University of Western Ontario microbiologist Gregor Reid, PhD, who has studied them. The strain that helped Klawiter—Saccharomyces cerevisiae boulardii—probably won’t do a thing for eczema, and vice versa, studies show. In fact, Klawiter had tried eating more yogurt and popping generic probiotic supplements, including acidophilus. Still her condition worsened because she wasn’t using the right kind of probiotics.

So how do you decide which one to take? Check out this website for your help with your most common complaints:,,20411606,00.html

So when all is said and done what probiotic do you take?  Here is a website that describes what each Probiotic on the market today does:


National Heimlich Maneuver Week

Every five days a child in the U.S. dies from choking to death. Most of these deaths could have been prevented if the parents knew how to administer the Heimlich maneuver.  This emergency technique, which was developed by American Henry Heimlich, was founded in 1974. Since then it has saved over 100,000 American lives and countless more around the world.


This year National Heimlich Maneuver Week will occur from April 8-14. The week-long observance will celebrate the life-saving technique and educate the public about proper ways to perform it.

Do you want to learn the proper way to administer the Heimlich maneuver? Check out this website on how to do the Heimlich maneuver it could save a life:

I recently had to do the Heimlich maneuver and was glad that I remembered how to do it!  You never know when the knowledge you have learned will be needed.



In addition to overall wellbeing, people also opt for yoga to recuperate from illnesses as severe as cancer. Yoga helps in the process of self-healing. Getting ample sleep is equally essential to actively resting your body. When you practice yoga, you reach an active phase of resting wherein the brain feels alpha waves. Even though these waves at the same what you feel in the initial stage of sleep. So, consider taking a Yoga class for better health!  Check out this website on Yoga


I have often heard people say “If you don’t have your health you don’t have anything” and in my opinion that is very true.  What do you think?


Be healthy and stay well.


Annette Presseau, Reliv Distributor (MA)






Billerica Health & Wellness Fair – March 31st

Sometimes it is important to tell people what is happening in towns that they are considering purchasing their next home.

This Saturday, March 31st, the third annual Billerica Health & Wellness Fair is being hosted by the Billerica Lions, the Billerica Lodge of Elks, the Billerica Community Alliance, & the Town of Billerica (Council on Aging, Recreation, Board of Health, & the Billerica School Lunch Program)

Thanks to the support from our many sponsors including:
Premier Sponsors ($1000 +up)
Billerica Community Alliance, Billerica Lions Club, Billerica Lodge of Elks, Billerica Masons (Thomas Talbot Lodge), Billerica Minuteman/Gateway Media,, EMD Millipore/Millipore Foundation, Lifecare Center of Merrimack Valley, Republic Services/Allied Waste, Town of Billerica (COA, Board of Health, Recreation, School Lunch Program)

Platinum Sponsors ($500 +up)
Billerica Crossings Assisted Living, Burlington Medical Associates, Comcast/Infinity

Gold Sponsors ($250 +up)
Billerica Access Television, Brightview Concord River Assisted Living,
Enterprise Bank & Trust (Pinehurst & No Billerica), Neighborhood Health Plan, Nova Biomedical, Stoneham Bank, Visiting Nurse Association of Greater Lowell

Community Supporters ($100 +up)
JP O’Connor True Value Hardware

All attendees ages 18 and over may enter a FREE drawing to win:
FIRST Prize – Xbox Kinect with WiFi
SECOND Prize – $100 Gift Card to LL Bean
Additional Drawing – Ipod Shuffle by Apple
courtesy RCS Computer Solutions

The Billerica Lions will be hosting a Walk for Sight during the Health & Wellness Fair to support Lions Eye Research which uses 100% of all donated funds for research only with a goal of eradicating blindness. Register at the Lions table for the walk that is being held in the Pavilion area behind the Elks Hall ($5 minimum donation per walker suggested). Walk times are 10:30am, 11:30am, and 12:30pm.

There are over 70 vendors in over 30 categories including massage therapy, backyard chickens (Billerica’s new law to allow people to have chickens), Masons CHIPS program, pilates, travel, senior services, art therapy, hypnosis, water, dance, kung fu, bellydancing, Mary Kay, blood pressure & glucose screening, the School Lunch FAT Vest & more.

Don’t miss the 4 stage demonstratons
10:15am Chair Aerobics (Billerica COA)
11:15am Zumba (Kerri Stang’s Gotta Dance)
12:15pm Kung Fu (Michael Macaris Kung Fu
1:15pm Let’s Move (Upper Merrimack Valley
Medical Corps)

And of course, no fair would be complete without facepainting for the kids, free raffles at a number of the tables, giveaways by several vendors including the Billerica Board of Health, Billerica Water Department and others.

The event completely takes over the Elks Hall located on Webb Brook Road from 10am to 2pm filling the main hall, the smaller hall, and hallways throughout the building. Don’t miss anything. There is even a food concession being run by Sunshine Gals (a local nonprofit recently formed to provide a hot meal to those in need on a monthly basis).

Visit their facebook page and join to learn more – Billerica Health & Wellness Fair

Joan Parcewski
Chairman of the Fair
1st VP Billerica Lions Club

Staying Healthy helps you maintain your energy

You might ask what has staying healthy have to do with real estate.  Well when you think about it, buying or selling a home takes lot of energy and stamina.  Staying in shape, eating healthier – gives you the stamina you need to do these and many other things. 

I would like to welcome our new guest bloggest Annette Presseau.  Annette is a Reliv distributor.  If you don’t know what Reliv is, checkout her website at the end of this article and find out for yourself.  In the meantime take some ideas from the article and make them your own.  We want you full of energy and stamina as you prepare to buy or sell. 

How do you start your year healthy?

Was one of your New Year’s resolutions to improve your health and eating habits?  Every year I look to improve my health and eating habits and put that on my New Year’s resolution list.  Do I falter oh yes many times but I keep on trying.  I have left over chocolate bars from Halloween and they keep calling me to just have one bite – just one and then I’m hooked but alas I did read that chocolate was good for you so maybe just one is ok. J  I continue to fight the battle with my health because I like food.   To offset the days when I don’t eat right I cut back on meals and I try to eat things that are healthy and I also take a powered nutritional supplement.

What’s your New Year’s Resolution list look like?  Were you able to do just one thing from your list this January?  This year I’ve added the months (ex: January) with my resolution so I can work toward getting the resolution done.  I’ve heard it said that if you put a date with your list you are more apt to achieve it.  One thing on my list is to lose weight by November 2012 so that I can enjoy the food next holiday season!

What’s on your health list for 2012?

What have you done in the past to improve your health?  Are you tired all the time?  Are you stressed? (Aren’t we all!)  Have you done meditation or Yoga to help?  None of us have the time but at least we think about doing what is good for our health.  There are so many UTube videos online about health to watch.  Even 15 minutes of meditation would help us to relax.

Maybe on your health list is to donate to worthy causes that make people healthy.  If you look at helping stop diseases like Measles in other countries then check out to help children and vulnerable populations to fight Measles and save lives.



Stress and weight loss:

Lately I saw a show on TV talked about stress and how it affects us and that meditation and Yoga are great for relieving stress even adding 15 minutes of exercise two times a day helps to lose weight and relieve stress. There are also plenty of other things that you can do for stress like an art class which can relieve stress. Check out the art class at Colleen Sgroi’s website:  People have told me that Art class is very relaxing and you forget about the stresses of life.  I have taken Colleen Sgroi’s classes and they are very relaxing.

This year I plan to learn how to do Yoga, meditation and exercise or at least add it to my list of resolutions.   My goal is to do one thing a month from my list to get healthy.

And if you’re tired all the time this could be a sign of a severe health issue like high blood pressure so don’t ignore how you are feeling and see a doctor.  January is the month to wind down and regain your strength back from all that stress.  The days are shorter and colder and we do feel drained from the holidays or at least I know I do but I always look for things to do to make me happy or at least feel better.  Definitely, I need more exercise but going to the gym didn’t work out for me I didn’t go most of the time so that is out but I have added to my list fun exercises like skiing, skating, tubing, walking, dancing etc.!

The secret to losing weight is about burning more calories than you eat. That seems simple enough, but if were really that simple, none of us would have a weight problem!  The real secret to weight loss is to make small, lasting changes. The key is to forget about instant results and settle in for the long run.  Check out this website on the basics of weight loss:   One of the best exercises on this website is just waking.  I have read that walking 15 minutes twice a day is as good as walking for half an hour but any exercise will help with weight loss.  This website also talks about calculating your BMR (basal metabolic rate) to help with weight loss (very interesting).

Eating habits:


Well, what about your eating habits?  A recent Harvard study found that those who ate breakfast regularly were less likely to become obese, compared to those who skipped it. Meal skipping also can slow down your metabolism. Your body needs a certain amount of calories and nutrients each day for normal function. Denying the body these essential elements throws the system into survival mode, slowing metabolism and encouraging the storage of fat.

Instead of cutting calories from your day, meal skipping tends to lead to overeating later. A grumbling stomach can make you lose control by late afternoon, taking over any will power as you dive into that bag of chips or candy bar. Think about eating Yogurt or a handful of almonds or even making up your own healthy snack check out this website for ideas: .  Have you ever noticed that after you eat those unhealthy foods that you don’t feel much better?

Maybe a small glass of red wine at the supper meal would be healthy at least according to the latest news check out this website on red wine:  it sounds like a good thing to start doing.  Also, drinking more water and getting more fiber in your diet besides getting enough sleep are ways to keep healthy and of course the big one – exercising.  For me what I have found is that exercising usually helps to take the weight off but everyone is different as to what works for them.    Drinking water is also a great way to curve hunger if you drink a glass of water ½ hour before you eat it will curve your appetite.

Check out this website on 10 weight loss tips:  and the Mayo Clinic has a great website on “Weight loss goals:  10 tips for success” check it out:  the site also talks about slow metabolisms and a BMI calculator.  Both these websites have some great ideas!

Soy and cholesterol:

I would like to incorporate more soy products in my meals so that I’m eating healthier.  Did you know that the scientific community acknowledges the heart health benefits of soy, a claim validated in 1999 by the Food and Drug Administration? Studies show that lunasin, a naturally occurring peptide found in soy, is largely responsible for soy’s cholesterol-lowering properties.  Also, adding more fruits and vegetables to your meals helps to eat healthy.  Check out the new food pyramid:

Most people also don’t get enough fiber in their diet fiber has been shown to remove toxins in our body, relive constipation and lowers the risk of hemorrhoids, irritable bowel syndrome and diverticulitis, while it supports growth of “good guy” bacteria in the colon.  In addition, fiber lowers cholesterol levels and blood pressure while reducing inflammation that can lead to heart disease.  Fiber also makes you feel fuller longer so you’re likely to eat less!  Fiber is a good guy! Look to eat foods high in fiber but don’t forget to drink plenty of water to work with the fiber.

January is National Oatmeal Month and Cervical Health Awareness Month:

Did you know that January is National Oatmeal Month?  More oatmeal is consumed in January than any other month. Some breakfast cereals are loaded with sugar.  Have you every checked the ingredients of cereals?  It’s scary what is in some cereals half the stuff I cannot pronounce!  Oatmeal is the one cereal that you can control your sugar intake.  In my opinion sugar is very addictive at least it has been for me and cutting back on sugar is a good thing for your health!

There are 50 new websites on the Internet pertaining to Best Healthcare Blogs:  There is no shortage of information to help us get healthy!

January is also Cervical Health Awareness Month.  The National Cervical Cancer Coalition stresses the importance of screening and prevention during January Cervical Health Awareness Month.  Approximately 11,000 American women will learn they have cervical cancer this year.  Nearly 4,000 women will die from an advanced form of the disease.  For more information on Cervical Health Awareness Month, visit

That four letter word “DIET”!

I’ve read that yo-yo dieting is not good for the body but most of us have done it including me. Every time I remind myself that I need to diet it seems that I crave food more and gain weight! When I have dieted I will give myself one day a week to eat what I’m graving in food and that helps me to go back on my diet plan for the next week.

A friend of mine dieted by cutting down on most of the foods that he liked he did lose weight but didn’t feel good afterwards because the key in my opinion is to eat a healthy and balance diet so that you feel energized. Eating a balanced diet is one of the keys to success in losing weight. Sometimes a person just needs to cut back on what they eat for instance instead of eating the whole meal at dinner eat a portion of it or instead of the entire desert eat only half of it. Also, frozen foods are loaded with salt and preservatives so cut back on them if possible. This is an interesting website about eating 3 servings of fat free yogurt a day in that it will help you lose weight: . I have read that a person should not eat after 8 p.m. in the evening because you will gain weight unless you go to the gym afterwords!

It is always a good idea to keep a record of your weight loss and weight yourself only once a week at the same time and you will see your progress as you lose the weight. Don’t get discouraged if the weight doesn’t come off quickly it is better for the weight to come off slowly that way the weight is more apt to stay off.

Check out this ezine website on 100 effective, healthy and harmless weight loss tips that help with weight loss: Very interesting!

Keep in mind a diet that works for one person might not work for another and use your judgment when starting a diet plan. Crash diets might work for awhile but play havoc on your body.

Maintaining a healthy weight:

Maintaining weight loss can be as much of a challenge as losing the weight in the first place. In fact, one weight loss study showed that 80 percent of participants who lost weight gained it back within five years. Your weight loss problem — it could be in your brain. Experts say weight loss is as much a psychological battle as it is a physical one.  I know that every time I think of the word “diet” I want to eat more so I look at food differently in that I’ll look at that donut and think “how long will it take for me to burn the calories off?” and usually that stops me from eating it!  You will be amazed at how much you can lose in weight just by changing your thought process.

Most people lose weight quickly then the weight loss slows down and they get discouraged and stop but they forget that losing weight is a lifelong battle and you need to be committed to doing it all the time.  A few of my friends have done Weight Watchers and have lost a lot of weight but then they went off the plan and gained all the weight back and more then they went back to Weight Watchers again to get the weight off.

A Yale School of Nursing study interviewed 18 women who had maintained weight loss for an average of seven years. The most common factor among them was participation in a formal weight loss program. A formal weight loss plan might involve keeping track of your food intake, exercise recommendations or meetings with other dieters.

To food journal or not that is the question:

If you’re not recording your food intake, it’s easy to fall into denial about how many calories you’ve actually consumed. A study by the Kaiser Permanente Center for Health Research showed dieters who kept a food journal lost twice as much weight as those who didn’t. The study included 1,700 overweight or obese participants from around the U.S. The key to the diarists’ success was being able to visualize how much they were eating and identify problem patterns.

Do you have any new health goals for January, in keeping with New Year’s resolutions?  How do you plan to improve your health this month or this year?  I encourage you to assess your current health.  It’s a great opportunity to adjust your habits to improve your life.   What do you need to add or remove from your diet?  What do you need to start doing this year for exercise?  What has worked for you in the past?  What do you want to try this year?  Did you know that it takes 8 times to change a habit?  What have you done to lose the weight and has it worked?  Change a little at a time and keep doing it before you know it you will be doing it automatically and become healthier in the process!

If you want to keep up with the latest of healthy in general you can sign up for to receive Reliv’s free Science & Health Today newsletter via email at

Well, thanks for reading about how to you start your year healthy.  I hope this blog entry encourages you to follow through with your own health goals for 2012.  It has helped me to put away those Hersey chocolate bars and start walking!

To your health!

Annette Presseau         Reliv Distributor (Billerica MA)           978-985-3878

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