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Healthy Living Real Food

13 Ways to Increase Mineral Intake for Improved Well-Being & Health

www.mypicshares.com
It is said that all health begins and ends in the digestive tract. It is also said that many diseases are caused by a lack of vital nutrients in our diets.

If our digestive tracts are not functioning properly, we can’t digest the nutrients from the foods we eat, including essential minerals needed for health.

Minerals are critical to almost every function in our bodies, and the lack thereof can cause many symptoms people believe are “normal” or may even ignore because they get too busy to deal with the problem. Some of these include loss of appetite, fatigue, headache, muscle tension, anxiety, nausea, inability to focus or irritability.

We are more mineral depleted than people living just 100 years ago due to the increased population and prevalence of mechanized, commercial, and industrial farming methods. Chemical processes remove quality and quantity of the nutrients found in our soils, the source of life.

These farming methods may produce bigger quantities of food, but the quality and nutritional value of foods overall has diminished greatly. When you eat conventional and processed foods, you are eating dead foods with many of the nutrients including vitamins, minerals, enzymes, co-factors, and beneficial bacteria removed and then synthetic versions of vitamins and minerals are added back in. These synthetic versions are not something our bodies recognize and they can actually cause  issues such as overdosing and storage of toxins in our bodies that can lead to chronic health disorders.

Most diseases and health conditions can be improved or eliminated by making sure you get enough nutrients – and in particular – minerals in your diet.

If you’re looking to increase minerals in your diet naturally, you can eliminate or improve many health issues including weight issues, insomnia, mood and behavior disorders, adrenal fatigue, inability to deal with stress, ability to focus, increased levels of energy and wellness, and many more.

I have had health issues for years that were greatly improved and eliminated with careful attention to mineral-rich, real food sources. Read my post on how GAPS helped me with panic, anxiety, and insomnia when nothing else I tried for nearly 20 years did.

Some of the most digestible foods that are high in minerals include liquid foods.  These foods are easily absorbed by those with digestive compromise (which includes most everyone). Most people are affected by this issue due to poor lifestyle and dietary habits that have been maintained for longer than a short period of time.

Here’s a list of some of my favorite foods for increasing mineral intake:

  1. Nettles – calcium, magnesium, potassium, selenium, zinc. This is one of the easiest ways to increase your mineral intake, and can be made in about 5 minutes. I make nettles every day, and my whole family drinks them. According to Susun Weed, stinging nettles “strengthens adrenal functioning, promotes sound sleep, increases overall energy, prevents allergic reactions, strengthens the blood vessels, and prevents hair loss.”
  2. Bone broths - zinc, calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, and others and will vary on the source of the bones you are using. Minerals are not heat sensitive and will transfer into your broth while cooking. Bone broths support digestion, immunity, help eliminate cellulite, promote sound sleep, nourishes skin, tendons, joints, ligaments, bones, and mucous membranes. Donna Gates of Body Ecology agrees that bone broths are one of the foundations of health and that they support digestion, immunity, help eliminate cellulite, promote sound sleep, nourishes skin, tendons, joints, ligaments, bones, and mucous membranes.
  3. Sea salt – calcium, magnesium, manganese, copper, iron, boron, and many trace minerals. Drink in water daily or add to just about any food or other beverage you consume. Salt is absolutely vital to health, and despite what conventional health “experts” say, it supports many components of our health such as vascular, sinus, reproductive and sexual health, promotes healthy ph in our cells (especially brain cells), digestion and absorption of food in the small intestine, bones and muscles, hydroelectric energy in the body, adrenal glands which regulate over 50 bodily functions, regulation of metabolic processes and sleep.  Refined salt, full of caking agents and color agents, and which is stripped of vital trace minerals to leave mostly sodium chloride, a deadly poison to the body. Refined salt is what you’ll find in restaurants and grocery stores, but it’s the substance that should be getting the blame for health problems such as high blood pressure, heart disease, edema, allergic reactions, and many others.
  4. Kelp – calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, iodine, and many trace minerals such as copper, boron, and selenium. Use powdered or dried kelp in soups, stews, smoothies. You can also sprinkle it on any other foods like casseroles or main dishes. Promotes brain and mental function, supports thyroid and endocrine health, relieves anxiety and nervous energy, boosts energy for daily tasks, and promotes sleep.
  5. Fermented and cultured foods - home-made yogurt, buttermilk, sour cream and other dairy foods, kombucha, dairy and water kefir, kvass, cultured vegetables, fruits, meats, depending on the strains of probiotics or friendly bacteria present in the fermented foods you eat, you will also experience an increase in the nutrients present including a wide variety of minerals. (Vitamin Profiles of Kefirs Made from Milk of Different Species. International Journal of Food Science & Technology. 1991. Kneifel et al). Health benefits: reduces the risk of cancer, supports cardiovascular health, digestion, immunity, brain function, bones and joints, and
  6. Pastured meats and poultry, and especially organ meats - magnesium, zinc, copper, phosphorus, selenium, and iodine depending on where the animals/birds graze or forage.
  7. Pastured dairy - raw milk and other dairy foods like cream, butter, cheese, sour cream, yogurt, and kefir, contain 3-5 times the amount of minerals found in factory farm/feedlot milk. Rich in colloidal minerals calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, and sometimes iodine depending on the source of minerals found in the soil where the cows you get milk from graze.
  8. Fish and other seafood from safe sources - magnesium, potassium, iron, zinc, copper, manganese, selenium. Seafood is one of the most rich sources of minerals to be found.
  9. Organic fruits and vegetables – calcium, copper, magnesium, iron, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, sodium, zinc, (best eaten with healthy fats like cream, butter, olive oil, coconut oil, or fermented or cultured).
  10. Magnesium oil - we absorb nutrients through our skin even more efficiently than our digestive tracts, and when our digestive tracts are compromised, absorbing through the skin is a good alternative to consuming foods we may not be able to digest well.
  11. Epsom salt baths – my favorite brand is Remarkable Redwood Remedies. This salt is high in magnesium chloride and is ideal for transdermal absorption (via the skin). Good source of magnesium and other trace minerals.
  12. Filtered water with minerals - tap water (and likely bottled water) is contaminated with PCBs, lead, chlorine, fluoride, and other harmful chemicals. If you can find a good source of mineral water, this is another important source of minerals in the diet. If you can’t find a good source of mineral water, consider a water filter. We use Berkey Filters and love them. These filters do remove chlorine and other harmful contaminants, but not fluoride.
  13. Liquid minerals – if you are still not getting enough minerals in your diet, you may consider a good brand of liquid minerals. Honestly, I’ve used many brands of minerals and not found anything better than Dr. Morter’s Best Process Trace Minerals. I always list any supplement as a last choice because it’s best to get minerals and other nutrients from real food. Since many people are grossly deficient in these elements due to compromised health issues and lack of minerals in the soil and food we eat today. These can easily be added to drinking water, soups, stews, smoothies, juice, or kombucha and other beverages or foods.

 

Healthy Living Kids & Family Real Food Toxin Alert!

17 Ways To Boost Your Immune System for The UpComing Flu/Cold Season

www.mypicshares.com

Cold and flu season is already here! Tired of missing work, school, and important events? Want to have more energy and vitality? Make the most of your diet and lifestyle this season and protect yourself in one of the best and easiest ways – with real food!

Real food supports our bodies with vital nutrients necessary to keep our immune systems strong and in optimal condition in ways that chemicals and medications cannot.

You really can keep yourself healthy and avoid sickness by paying attention to what you are eating, while avoiding processed and refined foods.

Here are 17 ways to keep your immune system strong this season:

  • Take cod liver oil. The best cod liver oil on the market is Green Pasture cod liver oil. Try it! It’s also astoundingly useful for dental and bone health too. Cod liver oil is a superfood containing Vitamins A, D, E, and K, and all the Omega essential fatty acids, plus many other vital nutrients.  Green Pasture cod liver oil is hand-crafted, not treated with heat, and slow-fermented to remove impurities and increase nutrients.
  • Make bone broth – use apple cider vinegar to draw out minerals in the bones you use, and also use garlic and onions which are anti-fungal and very healing
  • Drink raw milk from a clean source. Other raw dairy foods are extremely immune boosting too – butter, cheese, cream, yogurt, buttermilk, and sour cream.
  • Eat pastured meats, eggs, and dairy products. Meat, eggs, and dairy products from healthy animals and birds on pasture are higher in many nutrients essential for our immune system health -Vitamins A, D, E (a powerful antioxidant), and K, Omega 3s which are important to keep up cardiovascular, brain, and nervous system function, and conjugated linoleic acid which is associated with a reduced risk of heart and cardiovascular disease as well. Fat and cholesterol are absolutely vital to health and immunity.
  • Get out in the sun. – summer’s days may be waning, but there’s still the opportunity to get sunshine on your face and body to help store up those vital amounts of Vitamin D to help protect you against illness this winter.
  • Reduce stress, and laugh. Those who take time out to make relaxation a priority on a regular basis can recharge better and keep away illness more effectively. Taking time for yourself and being able to laugh are good ways to reduce stress and keep your outlook more positive, which is a deterrent to becoming sick.
  • Find an enjoyable activity or exercise you can get while enjoying fresh air – even when it’s cold. Get bundled up on chilly days and go outside for a walk or a hike. Your activity doesn’t have to be running a marathon – but should be something you find pleasure in and can find some time for yourself to get away.
  • Make sure you are getting enough rest, and more importantly, don’t go to bed late.
  • Eat safe-sourced seafood. Wild-caught Alaskan salmon, cod, sole, halibut, tilipia, mollusks like clams, oysters, mussels, shrimp, octopus, squid which are high in minerals like calcium, zinc, magnesium, phosphorus, and fat-soluble vitamins A & D. Check the Monterey Bay Aquarium site for a current list of safe-sourced seafood.
  • Reduce your intake of refined foods and carbohydrates, and even properly prepare. Packaged bread products, cereals, crackers, pastas, cookies, and snack foods especially. Instead, opt for soaked, sprouted, and fermented grains eaten in moderation. Properly prepared grains are easier to digest because grains contain phytic acid, a substance that blocks the absorption of nutrients. When grains are soaked, sprouted, and fermented, the phytic acid becomes neutralized and digestion is improved. Eating grains that are not properly prepared can lead to all types of health issues – headaches, irritability, digestive problems, weight gain, auto-immune disorders, eczema, dry skin, asthma, and many other problems.
  • Eat plenty of healthy fats. Butter, lard, and tallow from healthy animals on pasture, extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil, and palm oil from sustainable sources. Ditch the vegetable and fake oils like canola, cottonseed, and soybean oils (check labels in your house for things that contain these oils!), also fake butter, shortening, and other artificial fats.
  • Eat fruits and vegetables, but with healthy fats. Eating fruits with cream or vegetables with butter, coconut, or olive oil helps to increase the digestibility of those foods because they contain fat-soluble vitamins like A, D, E, and K. Also, lacto-fermenting your vegetables improves digestibility as well. When possible, buy organic, sustainable, or pesticide-free varieties of your favorite fruits and vegetables.
  • Make sure you are getting plenty of minerals in your diet. A healthy diet is important to ensure proper mineral intake, but also using real sea salt on your food and also adding it to your water (especially if you are drinking filtered water with no minerals in it). Tap water has some minerals, but it also contains many dangerous chemicals like chlorine and fluoride, and also toxins like lead, arsenic, and traces of other substances like pharmaceutical drugs and medications.

Other good ways to get more minerals in your body is to make nettles infusions. Or, add unsweetened (preferably organic) cranberry juice not from concentrate and/or freshly squeezed lemon juice to filtered water. Cranberry juice is full of minerals and is an excellent lymphatic detoxificant. Lemon also contains minerals and is an antifungal and detoxifier as well.

  • Drink plenty of filtered water (see how to naturally enhance your water above). At least eight 8-ounce glasses daily. Water helps to flush out toxins from your tissues and if properly mineralized, can also keep you hydrated as well.
  • Avoid taking prescription drugs, antibiotics, and over-the-counter drug products. These substances contain many toxins and don’t get to the heart of what’s causing you to be sick and not feel well. They generally only mask symptoms. Antibiotics kill all the bacteria in your body – good and bad, and can cause resistant-strain bacteria to become stronger. If you do come down with a cold or flu, check out my Home Medicine Cabinet post. It has lots of great home-remedies and ideas for managing your cold, flu, or other ailments.
  • Consider a detoxification program. If you are already sick, it’s best to wait until you get well and eat healthy foods before embarking upon a detox. Although eating real food provides a certain amount of detoxification to your body already, participating in a focused detox protocol can dramatically affect your health in the future and can help prevent illness and disease. If you are new to detoxification, consulting a knowledgeable practitioner can help you choose a program that’s right for you and in some cases, help you save money on detoxification supplements. The health food store sells many products, and it can be overwhelming to go and try to pick out something when you have little to no experience doing so. You can also spend a lot of time and money on products that aren’t right for you or aren’t the correct potency.

For more information about treating your colds and flus naturally when they come, be sure to read all about My Home Medicine Cabinet, and arm yourself for days when you aren’t able to remain as healthy as you’d like.
This post is part of Kelly The Kitchen Kop’s Real Food Wednesdays Carnival.