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5 Must Haves For the Body

Updated on June 8, 2013

Andrew Weil is the Founder and Director of the Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine. He specializes in wellness and holistic medicine. According to Weil, there 5 essential tools that will help our body fight fatigue and help our bodies age well. We all know that proper diet and exercise contribute to a healthier lifestyle. But many people overlook some nutrients that can be found right in our own kitchen. Let me break down the 5 must haves in our kitchen, pantry, and our body.

1. Iodine- According to Weil, many women are deficient in iodine. Iodine helps keep our brain working and controls metabolism. Iodized salt is definitely a good source of iodine. This nutrient aids muscle function. People who lack iodine are often fatigued and are sensitive to colds and have thyroid problem. Some people have enlarged thyroid glands or goiter due to lack of iodine. A common sign that most people do not notice with iodine deficient people is having puffy eyes. Some symptoms include loss of interest in sex, weight gain, brittle nails, and lack of glowing skin. Weil suggested that we should do thyroid tests. This test can be done at home. Put your fingers at the nudge of your throat. Tilt your head up and swallow. If you feel your thyroid, then it means you are healthy. The National Institute of Health recommends that people should take 150 micrograms of iodine. They can be found in dairy products such as milk. They can also be found in seafood, fish, shellfish, and seaweed.

2. Pistachios - For those people who are suffering from heart burn and acid reflux disease, don't fret. These are the solutions that can save your day. Pistachios are high in fiber and are prebiotic meaning they are good bacteria. All you need is 1 serving of pistachios which is equivalent to 47 pcs of pistachios. They have fewer calories than the regular nuts. In fact, they only have 158 calories. Weil mentioned that 80% fat that are found in pistachios are unsaturated.

3. For those people who are suffering from heart burn, you should consume an herbal extract called DGL or Diglyceride Licorice. DGL increases the mucus coating in the stomach and esophagus. It is also good for sodium retention and reduces the amount of acidity. This supplement is soothing and safe. People with acid reflux disease should take 2 tablets before meals and 2 tablets before bedtime. Stress can take a toll on our bodies. But did you know that you can fight stress by just massaging your fingers? The Chinese have what they call an acupressure technique or palm reflexology. You take your palm and firmly massage the area between your thumb and forefinger. Then massage each finger and pull it out with twisting pressure. The Chinese mentioned that the energy meridians are coming from our fingers to combat stress.

4. Raw Diet- Some fruits and vegetables are better eaten raw than cooked such as watercress and leafy greens. Because these foods lose their vital enzymes when cooked. Some vegetables are better cooked such as tomatoes and carrots because they release nutrients when they are cooked. Especially tomatoes which have lycopene that prevents prostate cancer. Here are some foods that are better taken raw.

a.) Garlic- It's an antibiotic that protects the heart. It has a main ingredient called alicin. Since garlic has a foul smell when ingested, you can dip it in olive oil or honey. You should crush it and let it sit for 10 minutes. Chew parsley after taking garlic to freshen your breath.

b.) Asparagus- This has folate which helps blood circulation. Just like garlic, you can dip it in olive oil with garlic. It is tasty and crunchy.

5. CoQ10- This nutrient slows down aging. This also protects the heart and brain. It is made by every cell in our bodies. Unfortunately, when people get older, the cells don't produce much CoQ10. This active nutrient protects the heart from oxidative stress that is essential for brain health. The recommended dose for CoQ10 is 120 mg a day with a meal that contains fat. It is available in soft gel form. CoQ10 can be found if we consume 4 lbs of sardines a day or 8 lbs of beef or 10 lbs of peanuts.

These 5 essential must haves for better health may be intimidating for some people. Leading a healthy lifestyle is a difficult path to walk on. We love to eat the junk food because we feel good after eating. But in the long run, it can wreak havoc on our entire system. These 5 important steps will help us live a better life and promote our sense of well-being. Our health shouldn't be compromised. If we want to live longer and age gracefully, we should have the courage to try these 5 must haves.

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