The next time you are at a Booster Juice in your local food court, take a taste test. It’s the closest thing to a fountain of youth. Wheatgrass is the grass stage of grain plants and is taken just after sprouting, and is the most popular and widely used health supplement. It contains chlorophyll, the basis of all plant life and nature’s optimal health promoting nutrient, along with 20 amino acids, hundreds of enzymes and a plethora of vitamins and minerals, making it ideal for anyone who works out, is active, wants to maintain a strong immune system or plain old just wants to feel good!
One ounce of wheatgrass is equivalent to 2.2 pounds of leafy greens. Chlorophyll which makes up 70 per cent of this plant, has been scientifically proven to stop harmful bacteria from growing and helps to wipe out free radicals, maintain proper circulation and promotes a healthy metabolism. Wheatgrass is full of amino acids that work with cells to renew and repair, therefore prolonging your life. Other benefits of amino acids include anti-aging, skin and hair growth, energy, brain stimulation, alertness, coordination and digestion.
Wheatgrass also contains Vitamin E (superior antioxidant), Vitamin C (promotes healthy skin, muscles, teeth and eyes, important antioxidant), Vitamin B (aids digestive system) and Vitamin A (helps keep eyes and skin healthy, encourages growth).
And, on top of all that are the enzymes. Wheatgrass contains many different enzymes all of which kick-start chemical reactions inside your body and help you digest protein and starch, while keeping your cells healthy, toning your heart muscle and breaking down fat.
So, next time you are at your local mall, stop by a juice bar and try a shot, it has an earthy, grassy taste, or have it mixed into a smoothie. At your local health supplement store, you can buy a mixture of wheatgrass and other greens in powder form to add to morning drinks (best taken on an empty stomach).
I like it as my morning kick start, mixed with a little unsweetened apple juice and water. Take it in small amounts on an empty or almost empty stomach, one to four ounces every day or every other day is sufficient. Simple and nutritious for every day healthy eating.
Every Nutritionist will tell you to drink more water and I’m no exception. It’s like the “golden rule” of nutrition. I find that most people who say they drink lots, are not drinking enough and the tale signs are usually very simple.
So, to start your morning right, and when you are most full of toxins and dehydrated, reach for a big glass of water – even before coffee. This water in the morning really gets the blood flowing. If you don’t like the plain taste of water, add the juice of half a fresh lemon, this has three benefits. One, you are getting your water intake, two, helps with the absorption of vitamins and minerals, and three, it is a natural cleansing food to help rid the liver of toxins.
Take regular water breaks throughout the day and always have a glass of water when you go to bed. Yes, you will probably need to get up to go to the bathroom in the night, but eventually this will go away, the benefits definitely outweight the consequences.
Try herbal teas as part of your fluid intake for the day, but it is always a good habit to make water your main source of fluid.
Water should be consumed between meals, not while you’re eating. Drink water 1/2 hour before meals to help the body with digestion. Drinking while you eat will dilute the digestive juices needed to adequately breakdown food. However, the stomach depends on water to help digest food, and lack of water makes it harder for nutrients to be broken down and used as energy. The liver, which dictates where all nutrients go, also needs water to help convert stored fat into usable energy. If you are dehydrated, the kidneys turn to the liver for backup, diminishing the liver’s ability to metabolize stored fat and interferes with your body’s ability to remove toxins and supply your cells with adequate nutrients, makes sense!
Keep a water bottle by your side all the time. Use either bottled water or tap water, and carry it with you everywhere, to the gym, in your car, to your office. Start by adding water to your daily routine, during the first week, and then incorporate more as needed. Ideally, drink at least two litres of water a day, depending on your body weight and activity level. The point is not to wait until you’re thirsty to drink.
Use this simple formulae to calculate how much water you need to drink. Divide your body weight (in pounds) by 2. This equals the number of ounces of water you need daily. A normal glass is approximately 8 ounces. For example, if you weight 160 pounds you need to drink 80 ounces or 10 glasses of water per day.
Keep water flowing before, during and after workout. Drink at least 1 liter of water for every 60 minutes of exercise. Drink more if it’s hot. During exercise, such as playing sports on a hot summer day, you can lose up to 2 liters of fluid per hour, and therefore, I recommend that you replenish fluid at least every 20 minutes. Reach for water at the first sign of stress, pain, headache, anxiety or discomfort to assist your body in adapting more quickly and easily.
Dehydration can include one or more of these symptoms.
- Loss of energy, vitality and drive
- Memory problems and dulled thinking
- Decreased immune function and ability to fight disease
- Problems with digestion and metabolism
- Joint problems, arthritis and back pain
- Heart and circulatory problems
- Headaches, muscle pain, nerve pain
- Premenstrual or menopausal symptoms
- Sunken eyes
- Depression, anxiety, irritability and insomnia
- Impotence or erectile dysfunction