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I hope that you will be able to use the information provided to make educated decisions about your health and fitness goals. All questions are welcome, so please ask! Also feel free to go to my website and learn more about my company.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Top 12 Strategies for Optimizing Your Health by Dr. Mercola

By Dr. Mercola

#1. Add Sprouts to Your Diet

One of the most nutritious powerhouses to add to your diet are sprouts. They are an authentic “super” food that many overlook or have long stopped using. In addition to their nutritional profile, sprouts are also easy and fun to grow in your own home as they don’t require an outdoor garden.

They can contain up to 39 times the nutrition of organic vegetables grown in your own garden, and allow your body to extract more vitamins, minerals, amino acids and essential fats from the foods you eat. During sprouting, minerals, such as calcium and magnesium, bind to protein, making them more bioavailable.

Furthermore, both the quality of the protein and the fiber content of beans, nuts, seeds and grains improves when sprouted. The content of vitamins and essential fatty acids also increase dramatically during the sprouting process. Sunflower seed, broccoli and pea sprouts tend to top the list of all the seeds that you can sprout and are typically each about 30 times more nutritious than organic vegetables. While you can sprout a variety of different beans, nuts, seeds and grains, sprouts in general have the following beneficial attributes:
  • Support for cell regeneration
  • Powerful sources of antioxidants, minerals, vitamins and enzymes that protect against free radical damage
  • Alkalinizing effect on your body, which is thought to protect against disease, including cancer (as many tumors are acidic)
  • Abundantly rich in oxygen, which can also help protect against abnormal cell growth, viruses and bacteria that cannot survive in an oxygen-rich environment
Planting and Harvesting Sprouts at Home

I used to grow sprouts in Ball jars over 10 years ago but stopped doing that. I am strongly convinced that actually growing them in soil is far easier and produces far more nutritious and abundant food. It is also less time consuming. With Ball jars, you need to rinse them several times a day to prevent mold growth. Trays also take up less space. I am now consuming one whole tray you see below every 2-3 days and to produce that much food with Ball jars, I would need dozens of jars. 

I am in the process of compiling more specific detailed videos for future articles but I thought I would whet your appetite and give you a preview with the photos below.

About to plant wheat grass and sunflower seeds – 2 days after soaking

Wheat grass and sunflower seeds – 3 ½ days post germination

Sunflower seeds and pea sprouts – 3 days until ready for harvest

Sunflower seed sprouts and wheat Grass – ready to harvest

My two favorites are pea and sunflower sprouts. They provide some of the highest quality protein you can eat. Sprouted sunflower seeds also contain plenty of iron and chlorophyll, the latter of which will help detoxify your blood and liver. Of the seeds, sunflower seeds are among the best in terms of overall nutritional value, and sprouting them will augment their nutrient content by as much as 300 to 1,200 percent! Similarly, sprouting peas will improve the bioavailability of zinc and magnesium.

I have been sprouting them now for a few months and they have radically improved the nutrition of my primary meal, which is a comprehensive salad at lunch. They are a perfect complement to fermented vegetables. My current salad consists of about half a pound of sunflower sprouts, four ounces of fermented vegetables, half a large red pepper, several tablespoon of raw organic butter, some red onion, a whole avocado and about three ounces of salmon or chicken. It is my primary meal. In the late afternoon, I typically only have macadamia nuts and coconut candy in addition to drinking 16-32 ounces of green vegetable juice. I break it up occasionally by going to a restaurant with friends.

#2. Make Fermented Vegetables a Daily Staple

#3. Optimize Your Vitamin D Levels with Appropriate Sun Exposure

#4. Intermittent Fasting

#5. Incorporate High Intensity Interval Training into Your Exercise Routine

#6. Get High Quality Sleep

#7. Get Grounded

#8. Drink Pure Water

#9. Limit Processed Foods and Replace Non-Veggie Carbs with Healthy Fats

#10. Avoid Toxins

#11. Have Great Tools to Address Your Stress

#12. Replace Drugs with Natural Alternatives that Address the Cause

To get more info and to suscribe to Dr. Mercola's blog go to:

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Conscious Eating

It is a battle I face every day. Why do I face this battle? Primarily because I was raised on a traditional Mexican family diet or at least what it became over the past few decades. 
I understand the difficulty of eating healthy but I also seriously understand the consequences of not doing so. It's not really your fault and to some extent it is not really your parents faults either. 
The food industry has serious political strength and much more than you can imagine. The FDA (Food and Drug Administration) and the USDA (United States Department of Agriculture) make decisions about what will and what won't make it to our dinner tables but the choices also come with political pressures from farmers and other companies in the food industry. Read enough and you will learn that these types of decisions may be based on profits over peoples health. It may sound crazy but there is an organization of doctors who have chosen to help people heal through nutrition rather than drugs. You might say, 'No way' but I have real life experience to this reality. If you would like to hear that story you better be willing to sit down over a cup of tea and listen to the whole story.
So what do I mean by 'Conscious Eating'? Here is what I mean. We rarely stop to think about what is in our food or what process it went through to get it on the table. People often associate food from high end restaurants as food that has been handled in some special way or is a more expensive cut from some animal or exotic plant that may have come from some higher end supplier. Maybe it's a gaming animal like deer or a unique delicate snail. So how about some Fois Gras? What is it? It's fatty liver from a duck. You won't get something like Fois Gras at King Taco but that doesn't mean that it will be healthier than King Taco. You will pay a good buck, but have you stopped to think of where it comes from, what it went through to get to the restaurant and what impacts it may have on your health? Maybe you did or maybe you didn't. I added a video which bares some light on what these poor ducks have to go through in order to get their livers (Fois Gras) just to satisfy someones expensive taste. Expensive food doesn't always mean healthy food or better living standards for animals. It does not mean that other animals are going through more humane slaughter to justify the mark ups on the packaging. If you would stop for a minute to meditate on what has been placed in front of you for eating, you may be making a huge and positive impact on your personal health and the prevention of inhumane animal slaughter. Caesar Chavez who started up the United Farm Workers fought for better treatment and safer working conditions of farm workers amongst many other things, but his battle also forced owners of  farmers to find craftier ways of accomplishing the same results with environmental impacts to our crops. If a larger majority of us become more involved in our health, we will soon make decisions that will force farm owners to make more sustainable and health friendly farms. Consider your health before their profits!

If you wish to read more: Fois Gras

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Are You Fit Enough to Make it to the LAPD?

You may think this is some kind off gimmick or that I just wanted to catch your attention. Maybe the first thing that crossed your mind was a police officer at the donut shop enjoying a Cup of Joe and a Glazed Donut. Well you may be partially right. For sure I was trying to catch your attention but this was no gimmick and not all cops eat a donut while sipping on their coffee. 
When ever I hear people talking about the LAPD (Los Angeles Police Dept) or law enforcement in general the conversation usually revolves around getting a ticket, cops not doing their job because they are at the donut shop or worst case scenario is excessive use of police force. These statements in themselves may be true to some extent but it's not all the LAPD is all about. 
Those who know me closely enough are well aware of the fact that I serve as the Head Strength & Conditioning Coach to the LAPD Centurions Football Team so I get to see a side from them that most people rarely get to see and I also get to listen to some very interesting stories. 
Let's get to the point. You may have thought of or over heard someone talking about going into law enforcement. They may have mentioned their interest in entering the LA Sheriffs Dept. or the LAPD Dept. Academy. Getting into the academy doesn't guarantee that you will get in nor does getting a formal education  guarantee that you will be accepted but getting educated and putting in the application definitely will get you on the right track. You may be a genius but if you don't have the right conditioning you will definitely reduce your odds of getting in and through the academy. So what do they expect from you? Here is a summary straight from the archives of the LAPD:
  •  Flexibility
  • Strength Training
  • Endurance Runs
  • Calisthenic Exercises
  • Obstacle Course conditioning
  • Self-Defense Training
The flexibility component is quite obvious. Inflexibility can lead to injury, hinder performance and leave you susceptible to injuries. Calisthenics can include Squats, Reaches, Twists, Lunging, Jumping, Landing, Pushing, and getting up and down on the ground like burpees.  
You will for sure need to practice Push-Ups, Sit-Ups, Pull-Ups and a 1 1/2 mile run on a full track. You will be scored on how fast you can complete these events in the Physical Fitness Qualification standards. If you can't pass their exams and meet the State-Mandated Exam you won't be able to become a police officer. 
So what other components will you be faced with in order to qualify? Here is the breakdown:
  • 99 yard obstacle course that includes simulated curbs, weaving courseways of right and left turns, wooden horse jump, and 40 yard sprint
  • 165 lb body drag for 32 feet on a flat surface
  • Climbing a 6 foot Chain link fence
  • A 6 foot wall climb
  • 500 yard run on flat track
There is much more to the details but I thought I would share with you a sneak peak of what you should be prepared to face or if you simply want to try and see if you can do it or train as if you were attempting to qualify for the academy, now you have some guidelines you can play with. :D Hope you enjoyed this article.

Living to Age 100 plus and Healthy

I have come across a lot of interesting comments in my past 15 years of involvement in the health and fitness industry. The most interesting one that I have heard in the past 3 years is a lack of interest in living longer. This lack of desire for longevity may be the first sign of a depressed person. 
This topic of longevity comes most often in conversation when I discuss food and my desire to live to be 120 years old and still self-sufficient with my (ADL's) activities of daily living.
The most interesting part of this is that people today seem to find food to be a main source of pleasure rather than seeking other forms of pleasure. Although this is a temporary form of pleasure when practiced incorrectly it can lead to many bad forms of eating which in turn has many negative and detrimental effects to ones health. 
Dr. Joel Fuhrman, M.D., specifically wrote a book which he titled 'Eat to Live' which is the way nature originally intended it. The book was written to teach people how to eat not just for weight loss but for good health. Good health should be the priority, weight loss will happen naturally if a proper nutrition intake is eaten. Food was intended to be a source of replenishing nutrients, maintaining health and a way of consuming ingredients which would help the body repair itself as well as acquiring fuel to sustain life and physical activity. These days the trend has become a way to happiness, relieve depression and many other mood altering effects. 
A recent report by the Wall Street Journal published the finding of an almost 6 year study which involved 73,308 members of the Seventh Day Adventist Church and reported in JAMA (Journal of the American Medical Association) Internal Medicine. This is little in comparison to a 30 years of research that was reported in a book titled 'The China Study' by T. Colin Campbell, Ph.D which involved 2,500 counties across China and Taiwan demonstrating the conclusive connection between nutrition (an animal based diet versus and plant based diet) heart disease, diabetes and cancer. 
Although both of these studies have similar and conflicting findings, here is what the study reported: 
(Only read this if you want to live to be over 100 years old and healthy)
  • Vegetarians experienced 12% less deaths over the period of almost 6 years
  • Vegetarians were 19% less likely to die of Heart Disease
  • Fewer deaths form Kidney failure and diabetes in the Vegetarian Group
  • Caloric intake did not make a difference and both consumed about the same amount of calories
  • Men benefited the most from a Vegetarian Diet
  • Cancer rate was roughly equal amongst both groups
  • Nutrient profile of Vegetarians provided more Fiber and less saturated fat
  • Vegetarians had leaner body structure
Even though this study claims that there were no significant reductions in preventing cancer, both studies demonstrated that those who follow a vegetarian or mostly plant-based diet are less likely to suffer from heart disease, diabetes and will also reduce the mortality rate from these two diseases as well as Kidney failure. These reasons alone in addition to the 12% reduction in death are good enough to follow a primarily if not complete plant-based diet. The Choice is Yours! I want to live to be 120 years and still be as self-sufficient as possible. This gives me another 80 years of helping transform lives toward good health :D

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Sports Drinks and Your Teeth

This year I have been a guest speaker to various Chamber of Commerce's and service clubs like the Kiwanis, Rotary, Lions and even private businesses like Mission Foods. Several times I covered the topic of health, water, sports drinks and other types of drinks such as vitamin waters. 

I have spoken largely against them because of the use of artificial sweeteners, deceptive food labels and the
misconceptions of their benefits to health and sports performance. Of greatest interest was the topic of BVO (Brominated Vegetable Oil) and it's use in sports drinks. Today's public is becoming more and more aware of what is being added to our food and/or food products as technology, social media and other avenues of spreading information has advanced. In an article by Men's Journal, PepsiCo., has chosen to address public concern of the use of certain ingredients like BVO by removing them from their products like Gatorade (Yes,   in case you didn't know Pepsi owns Gatorade and other drinks. Also, Coca-Cola Company owns drinks like Vitamin Water). 

Do you research and you will find that acidity has been linked to diseases like Kidney Stones, Osteoporosis and various Cancers to mention just a few. Sugar as we know has various detrimental effects to our health including tooth cavities. Research reported by NASM (National Academy of Sport Medicine) Insider Monthly Blog, published this conclusion: 

In agreement with the literature, it appears that fruit juices and energy drinks appear to have greater erosive potential versus sports drinks. However some in vitro studies (researchers immersing samples of human tooth enamel in sports drinks) demonstrates a potential to damage teeth. To mitigate such problems athletes should follow proper oral hygiene care and limit sports drink consumption to exercise sessions lasting 60 minutes or more. Physical activity lasting 60 minutes or less warrants the use of water to help keep athletes hydrated and minimize tooth enamel erosion.

When we talk about investing money into our future it may be a good idea to consider investing money into foods that protect and prolong our personal health. The Choice is Yours!