Healthy Aging Resources

Live Life to the Full in Optimal Health

  • Sep 4

    What does it take to release weight? Do you have one of these at home?  For years I have been wishing for my husband to downsize, and instead he just kept on piling on the weight.  It wasn’t that he ate junk food, it was more that he ate too much meat, too many relishes, sauces and chutneys, and too much food generally. Combine that with lack of exercise, and slowly a health scare began forming.

    (He also takes advanced quality nutritional supplements that include heart healthy CoQ10, Omega-3 and magnesium plus others. But that’s not all that is required for prevention: 10 Healthy Aging strategies).

    He didn’t tell me that over the last 15 months he had been experiencing angina upon exertion.  But I did know that he was putting himself at risk of becoming diabetic (and it was getting very challenging finding size 3XL shirts).

    What does it take to release weight? The bingo experience.

    It took the death of his much-loved 55 year old cousin (a sudden fatal heart attack) in May this year, to wake him up (not his wife’s nagging…).  He contacted his cardiologist and told him to forget the treadmill, take him straight in for an angiogram. And the results were grim.  As the cardiologist said, ‘a bit of mischief has been going on’ (my husband had two stents placed in 1997 so was on the heart watch list).

    Four weeks later it was into hospital and 5 bypass grafts were performed.  (If you know anything about bypass operations, they do not perform a graft unless there is a 70% or more blockage.)  For the next 7 days, the pain of recovering began.

    Back home again and then a visit to the GP’s nurse to check the stitches and get a blood test done.  Diabetes Type 2 was diagnosed.

    30/7/2012 Blood test results:
    Total Cholesterol 5.8 mmol/L
    HDL: 0.87 mmol/L
    LDL: 3.8 mmol/L
    Chol/HDL Ratio: 6.7 (high)
    Triglyceride: 2.5 mmol/L (high – normal < 2.0)
    Glucose: 8.0 mmol/L (High – normal 3.5 to 7.7)
    HbA1c: 56 mmol/L (high – normal 20-40)

    Meanwhile, I had recommended that hubby reads a book – Dr Steven Gundry’s Diet Evolution.

    Bingo!  The time has come to release weight. Now he is on a “no grains, starchy vegetables, sugar and fruit” regime.  And boy, is it working!  The day of the operation he weighed 125 kgs and now he weighs just under 113kgs.  In less than 6 weeks. He has found it easy to do because he enjoys growing and eating vegetables, and importantly he doesn’t feel hungry. Here is a list of Heart Healthy Food Groups.

    We are now waiting for next set of blood to be taken and tested. (Last weekend he had a home blood sugar test done and his result was 6.3 – normal!).

    “The research actually shows that it’s the sugar and grains (which turn to sugar in our bodies) that cause high cholesterol as well as weight gain and type 2 diabetes, NOT the animal fats. If you eat animal products along with sugars and grains, that *will* cause your cholesterol and blood sugar to rise.”

    And yet when we look at the food pyramid we have grains taking up the large portion.  What if we put vegetables where the grains are, and put grains in with the sugars at the top.  And how about including more healthy fats like olive oil, coconut oil, avocados and nuts in our diet? Do you think that would solve many of our chronic health issues?  I believe it would.

    “Apparently wheat causes all sorts of issues, even if you don’t have a known allergy or intolerance to it….or I guess, you just don’t realize it is wheat causing trouble.”

    When you visit the supermarket, how many aisles hold products based on wheat? – breads, biscuits, cakes, muffins, crackers, bagels, pasta, pizzas, cereals, ready made meals, sauces…wheat is everywhere – you could even say… “ingrained”.

    “Check out the book Wheat Belly by William Davis MD.  He says the (very) genetically modified strains of wheat used everywhere these days cause havoc worldwide with the human immune system which has not been able to keep up with the change in structure of wheat products.”

    “It’s interesting information at worst and very enlightening at best.  Dr Davis says going wheat free leads to weight loss, alleviation of things like diabetes, colitis and celiac disease, improvement in cholesterol, reduction of inflammation and arthritis pain.., and so on.”

    Meanwhile, I began supporting my husband on the 8th August by following the same eating regime. I do have about 5kgs that I would like to release, and I have been fighting a pot belly for the last 10 years. So far, I have released 1kg and 3cms from my waist – the pot belly is flattening out!

     

  • Jun 30

    How do we find out if our thyroid is healthy?  I had given no thought to this question so was surprised to find out that I have an ‘under active’ or ‘low’ thyroid (also called hypothroidism). Learn what you can do to support your thyroid health.

    According to Doctor Ray Strand, Hypothyroidism or under active thyroid occurs when the thyroid gland is destroyed or is not producing needed amounts of thyroid hormone. This condition has also been called myxedema due to the potential harm possible to the body when there is no thyroid hormone. Patients can become edematous (filled with fluid), weak and fatigued, intolerant to cold, experience abnormal weight gain, notice changes in their skin and hair, and may suffer from total body pain. They can also develop congestive heart failure as well as significant increase in their cholesterol levels.

    Learn more:  What does the thyroid do and where is it located?

    My main symptom is being overweight (which of course leads to other problems like diabetes, heart disease and cancer), the other symptom is that I  feel the cold terribly (it is now winter in New Zealand). There are other symptoms so the best thing to do is to get screened.  (List of symptoms from the Mayo Clinic here.)

    There are two ways to get the health of our thyroid checked out – the usual way is by a blood test.  But this may not be as accurate as a Thyroflex test  – in this video, Naturopath David Holden explains the Thyroflex test.

    The other test that I had done was the VLA Test and that indicated that I need to exercise more to build up more muscle.  My healthy low-glycemic diet and the supplements that I take have kept me in good health – so the ‘only’ thing I need to work on is exercise.

    The nutritional supplements to support a healthy thyroid are advanced quality multi minerals/vitamins, vitamin D3, CoQ10, vitamin C. Plus “Iodral” with supervision from your doctor or Naturopath.  I also take a Calcium/Magnesium tablet, grape seed extract and omega-3 capsules.  I am ensuring that I am drinking 1 1/2 litres of water daily and avoiding soy products for the time being.

    My blood test results showed that my blood sugar levels are slightly elevated – again exercise is the key here too.

    The exercise I enjoy is walking (so much so, I have a website ‘Short Walks in Auckland‘), however I hate walking in the cold and wet of winter.  But I must get out walking every day for one hour – so I will.

    For sufferers of Hashimotos, Dr Steven Gundry suggests the following: “Most gluten free foods are made from corn, rice, and potatoes, all of which are lectins which contribute to Hashimotos. Please eliminate all grains, all peppers, potatoes, milk and milk products. You can have goat and sheep products. No pseudograins like quinoa! No Advil or Aleve. No stomach acid suppressants like Prilosec or Nexium. You will start to heal.”

    My goal is to release fat so that I can reach a healthy weight by Christmas Day 2011 and then I can wear a beautiful dress I have hanging in my wardrobe, that at present is too small for me.

    I am looking forward to letting you know when I have reached that goal.

    This is a photo of me on holiday in Australia last week:

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