Constant Headaches and A Quick Tip

Fasting – or just daily life –  can bring on a constant head ache that does not go away.  I have heard from too many of my clients and people around me they have been suffering from long term headaches. Good news is this is something that is very much under your control. Sometimes, even when we follow a correct individualised nutrition plan, the nutrients are not properly upregulated into the cells. This is caused by factors such as lack of minerals that play a role in cellular intake of nutrients – mainly potassium. Yes, something so simple can be (and usually is) the cause of a constant head.

Potassium is an essential mineral that has many roles in your body. It helps regulate muscle contractions, maintain healthy nerve function and regulate fluid balance.

A national survey found that approximately 98% of Americans are not meeting the recommended potassium intake. A Western diet is likely to blame, because of processed foods.

But remember, a low-potassium diet is rarely the cause of potassium deficiency, or hypokalemia.

Deficiency is characterized by a blood potassium level below 3.5 mmol per liter ().

Instead, it occurs when your body suddenly loses a lot of fluid. Common causes include excessive sweating, blood loss, chronic vomiting, and diarrhea,

Imaging your cells coming across good nutrition and still not being able to make use of it. Your body – made up of cells – can be operating at less than normal efficiency due to deficiencies of minerals. It’s important to remember that you need a daily intake of vitamins and minerals to meet these needs.

Other than your headache, you may also be experiencing:
1. Muscle spasms
2. Heart Palpitation
3. Fatigue
4. Digestive issues
5. Muscle aches, stiffness, tingling, numbness
6. Breathing difficulty
7. Mood changes

What to do? Supplement correctly.

Unfortunately, we can not rely on food intake to be the sole resource of our nutrition. YOU NEED TO SUPPLEMENT. In these cases, other than investing in your top quality multivitamin and etc – you can try a top quality BCAA : branched chain amino acid complex which comes with a correct electrolyte blend and includes a good potassium mix.

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During fasting, I recommend (and we personally take) BCAA mixed in water. Try this , it may really help you.

Read more about BCAA here and here.

The main focus on supplementing with a good BCAA is to replenish your mineral stores.

NON FASTING:
Alot of my clients feel dizzy throughout the day and even while working out. Something like getting up too quickly or doing cardio / hiit can cause nausea and vomiting sensations. This is also due to the same cause !

Have I told you to eat more beetroot? because it is highest in potassium, but eating beet root in the morning can mean you are still depleted of potassium by the evening. So this is where an investment into BCAA can really give you more than your money’s worth.

Are you suffering from constant headache? share below and lets talk about living pain free.

Nuts – Are You Eating A Toxic Mold?

Nuts! A great way to improve your lipid profile and make sure you are balancing your intake of fats. Nuts are a good source of unsaturated fats (mono and poly). Increasing your intake of nuts (as per your individual nutrition needs) is a good idea IF you know how to properly handle them; which most of us do not.
Nuts carry a microscopic toxic fungus (mold). This is because of how we harvest, store and ship our nuts and they end of staying in dark and moist places. Aflatoxin – a human carcinogen – causes inflammation and growth impairment, and damage to digestive organs – among many other harms to the body.
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Afllatoxin. Credit : stock images
Research shows that aflatoxin targets the digestive organs most, especially the liver by raising the risk for liver cancer, heptitis and liver disease. Long-term exposure to aflatoxin is a major risk factor for cancer of liver called hepatocellular carcinoma, which causes liver scarring, loss of nutrients, inflammation of the digestive tract and other serious problems that can lead to death.
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credit : stock images

Other foods contaminated with and cause spread of aflatoxin :

  • peanuts
  • corn
  • milk and cheese (rarely, meat can also become contaminated due to the spreading in aflatoxin in livestock feed)
  • nuts (especially almonds, Brazil nuts, pecans, pistachios and walnuts)
  • grains including quinoa
  • soybeans
  • figs
  • dried spices
  • although it’s not commonly eaten, cottonseed is also a major crop that tends to grow aflatoxin

Experts believe that the biggest threat of aflatoxin to human health globally is the contamination of corn, since it’s such a widely-consumed crop in many parts of the world. Corn tends to be grown in humid climates that are likely to have contaminated soils. Aflatoxin in corn is hard to control because of the enormous quantity that it’s grown in, duration of storage processing and how we ship it across the globe.. Because some populations eating a lot of corn might already have impaired immunity, aflatoxin in corn is a big concern for liver disease formation.

Does cooking peanuts and corn help to reduce aflatoxin?

Aflatoxin molds are not entirely killed off even when corn, grains peanuts or other foods are processed or roasted, so it can even show up in things like peanut butter and many processed products. 

 
Peanut butter is another item on the list to avoid. Peanut butter is not the ideal “healthy food” that you think ! Unless you are making your nut butters at home, the peanut butters on the store shelfs / or wherever you buy from have been sitting there for ….how long now?
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Detoxifying your body of microscopic molds should be one of your top priorities when it comes to improving your lifestyle, wellbeing and sense of happiness. Remember, your gut is your second brain !
 
Supplements that help your body improve detoxifications pathways are:
 

1. Studies show that chlorophyllin and chlorophyll supplements help to reduce the bioavailability of aflatoxin.

 

2.Milk thistle, marshmallow root and dandelion root all help cleanse the liver and can lower digestive symptoms.

3. Activated charcoal can help bind to aflatoxin mold and carry it out of the body more easily

Recommendation:

First and foremost, when following a detoxifying nutrition plan, I ask my clients to avoid nuts, lentils, legumes, peanut butter and all foods that carry a major risk of aflatoxin. We work on adding supplements and improving nutrition intake which boost detoxifying pathways. This is very important to focus on when starting a programme of healing and recovery.

Furthermore, when adding nuts back into your nutrition plan, I always advice to roast the nuts in high heat, and store in fridge. You must consume the nuts quickly and purchase only the freshest. 

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Are you still eating nuts on a regular basis? This may be a good time to consider the above facts and focus on correct supplements instead. 

 


  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26930866
  2. https://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000280.htm

 

Detoxing Your Body

Liver-Detox

Acne is not just a sign of imbalanced hormones. Acne is a sign of imbalances hormones caused by toxins inside your body. Acne is not the problem, rather acne is signalling you there is more problems inside of you. What are other signs your body is giving you about hidden toxins inside? Extreme fatigue, body pain, constipation, cognitive decline, and much more.

What can you do about it? Boost your detox pathways. Change your lifestyle to help boost the natural function of your kidney, liver and entire lymphatic system. It is extremely important for you to LEARN about toxins and how they enter the body and how your body removes them. Nutrition, exercise, supplement and sleep all come into play when planning for a Detox Boosting lifestyle.

Are you suffering from skin issues, and fatigue? What are some changes that you think you can that may help you feel better?


Want to start a serious body cleansing detox protocol?

Check out my programme Glow Up Detox Programme

 

Does Ab Exercise Give You Abs?

One of the biggest concerns of women who are new to working out is : can I get abs by doing more ab workouts? The answer is straight and easy: NO! But before you give up on your transformation journey,  read on to find out how to keep lean, strong and increase quality of your life. 

Because you already have abdominal muscles. You also have 2 types of fat, one is under the abs – visceral fat- and one is fat under the skin – subcutaneous fat. These 2 types of fat needs to be reduced in order for you to tone your entire body. Visceral fat is causing your abdominal muscles to bulge out and contributes to the flabby shape of our tummy. Fat under the skin is covering your abdominal muscles and further causes the bulging shape of your mid section. 

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Visceral fat is stored in a person’s abdominal cavity around the organs and is also known as ‘active fat’ because it influences how hormones function in the body. An excess of visceral fat can, therefore, have potentially dangerous consequences.

Carrying around excess visceral fat is linked with an increased risk for:

  • Coronary heart disease
  • Cancer
  • Stroke
  • Dementia
  • Diabetes
  • Depression
  • Arthritis
  • Obesity
  • Sexual dysfunction
  • Sleep disorders

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Visceral fat is also insulin responsive fat and stores the access calories in your blood. What this means is, when you over consume calories (carbs mostly) this goes right into your visceral fat cells. Visceral fat is very carb sensitive. This is why in terms of body fat loss, you need to follow a proper individualised plan of low carb lifestyle to really get rid of those fat cells. 

visceral-fat

HOW VISCERAL FAT DEVELOPS

When there’s too much glucose in our bloodstream and our cells already have filled glycogen stores, glucose is stored as fat. This happens a lot more quickly and easily when consuming refined processed carbohydrates and sugary foods. Processed starches, like white bread or white rice, along with high-sugar foods, are rapidly converted into simple sugars that enter the bloodstream and trigger a larger release of insulin from the pancreas. The result is usually weight gain, plus even more hunger, which leads to continued overeating and a vicious cycle that makes it hard to stop eating sweets.

The more often and longer that blood insulin levels remain high, the more likely a person is to accumulate excess body fat and to battle weight problems. Insulin also communicates with many other hormones needed for various functions, including those made in the adrenal glands, such as the stress hormone cortisol, so abnormally high levels and hormonal imbalances result in powerful urges to eat, mood changes, lack of energy and various other factors that contribute to disease formation.

WHAT REDUCES FAT ON THE ABDOMEN?
1. A PROPER nutrition plan where your metabolism is boosted throughout the day, hormones are balanced. This is where individualised nutrition comes to play. Important steps include reduces inflammation causing carbs and only having carbs based on your body, metabolism, hormones and lifestyle needs. 
2. Proper exercise that involves muscle engagement
3. Supplements and correct sleep cycle
4. Consistency

WHAT IS THE RIGHT WAY TO TRAIN THE ABS AND LOWER FAT?
Use ab workouts to condition your muscles. you need to train your muscles to be “active” and “engaged”. This is where proper training comes in. When you exercise you need to understand what happens to your muscles down to the cellular level.

Do not train abs daily. Train abs 2 times a week properly and INTENSELY.

IS THIS ENOUGH?

Yes, if you are proper engaging your abs during ALL your exercise so you dont need to ab workouts.

BEST EXERCISE TO ENGAGE THE ABS?

First, you need to learn stomach vacuum and kegels. This will get your core muscles engaged.Then add in proper conditioning exercise. my favorites are kettle bell swings, and single arm snatched. these 2 are amazing for sculpting the whole body.

UNDERSTAND AND FOLLOW PROPER NUTRITION CONSISTENTLY.

You need to understand YOUR body composition. Just lowering the number on the scale IS NOT GOING TO HELP YOU. You need to learn about body composition in order to change it.

How much fat are you?
Much muscle muscle mass are you?
Where are your troubled areas?

DITCH THE SCALE

Stand naked in front of the mirror. Analyse your body and see where your trouble spots are. This will help you ( or your experienced and educated coach) understand your metabolism more. This will set the basis for your transformational routine.

TRAIN SMART

Knowledge is power. seek proper knowledge instead of just following online exercise models.

 


Dull and Ageing Skin

QUESTION: my face skin has become dull, and looks like it has aged quickly. What can I do to improve my face skin?

RECOMMENDATION:
You skin is the largest organ in your body. It is living, breathing and responds to everything you do to your body. Most important thing we have to remember is that what goes on your skin gets absorbed into your blood stream within 10 seconds. Every cosmetic product you use is getting into your body and yes they are toxins ! Over time, the chemical and toxic residue builds up on your skin and underneath your skin. YOU NEED TO DETOX from this. You need to boost your body’s natural detox pathways and restore the natural glow of your skin.

Your skin has a layer of fat cells underneath. This layer of fat cells keeps your skin plump and tight. When this layer of fat cells becomes dry and breaks, you start to get dull skin and wrinkles. What can you do? Improve your nutrition intake to improve your skin quality. Your nutrition intake includes whole organic foods + supplementation. See my tips below.

1. Include healthy fats – super foods- like ghee and edible coconut oil in your nutrition plan. This will help balance your hormones and give your body the much needed nutrients to carry out skin repair.

2. Drink 3 litres water.

3. Make sure you are not having carbs at night and not over eating your carbs. Starch carbs soak up alot of water in your gut, and actually dehydrates you. So drink water to balance out. Or follow my 4th tip below.

4. Replace starch carbs with more fruits. Fruits give you a better source of carbs which come with fibre plus plant chemicals that boost your body’s natural anti-aging process.

Resveratrol is a plant chemical (polyphenol) that repairs and reverses damage to cells. Include these fruits / foods into your diet

– red grapes
– white grapes
– cacao
– mexican orgeno , dried
– celery seeds

5. Stop using so much cosmetic products. Cosmetic products dull, weaken and age your skin. You will lose the natural glow. Also like we said above, the toxic build up will cause acne and skin imbalances.

6. My secret is using natural moisturisers, and I know this is going to blow your mind. Have you tried massaging your face with natural edible coconut oil? Take a tiny drop on your ring finger and rub upwards n your face and neck. Use as body moisturiser after daily showers.

Ok that was not so crazy, but this one is. Have you tried ghee on your face and dark circles under your eyes? If you are starting to get enough night sleep then try rubbing some ghee under your eyes at night. It’s crazy but a proven tip !

7. EXERCISE ! along with proper nutrition, adding routine exercise will boost your natural anti-aging process. TRUST ME! when you exercise your body clears away old cells and replaces it new cells. This should be reason enough for you to workout.

Have I missed something? Let me know below

Make sure to like this post and tag your BFF. Join our women only transformation group to stay connected

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Injured Knee and Pain

Question

Hi Marina, I had a question and I feel you can help me out a little with it. So I injured my knee a few years back while running. Back then my doctor told me to lay off running because apparently I have arthritis tendencies. Since then I don’t risk it and stopped running. Recently, I’ve started doing HIIT and tabata workouts. But that pain is back again and it’s been bothering me a little. It’s not intense but I feel a pressure when I do jumps (squats are fine btw)

Any suggestions?

Response
Yes there is MUCH you can do about it. Infact, ladies I HAVE BEEN YELLIN AT THE TOP OF MY LUNGS – stop doing cardio and impact workouts if you have previous knee issues.
Infact, stop doing cardio and intense impact workouts period ! Impact exercise means movement which causes your feet to slam or have an impact with the floor. This impact force is transferred to your ankles and knees and hips. Chances are, you have structural degradation due to nutrition and muscle deficiencies and these are made worse through exercise.
 
Even a squat is going to cause pain in the front, back and side of your knees. Why are jumps so dangerous? Because a joint that is structurally not strong now has a force on it – it causes the ligaments and tendons to weaken when it is already not ready to take that impact force.
 
Things for you to avoid:

jogging, running outside

zumba / dancing
treadmill, rowing machine
HIIT
 
Things for you to do:
1. Knee extensions using ankle weights that will use your large knee muscles (tear drop muscle)
LegExtensions
 
2. Donkey kicks and hip thrusts – to strengthen hips, lower back, knees, calves and ankles
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Must focus on:
1. Nutrition – your muscles, bones and organs need fuel to repair and thrive not just barely survive
 
2. Supplements – you will need supplements like hyaluronic acid and glucosamine and a good collagen supplement. dosages depends on your specific body type.
 
*** a good multivitamin that comes with the proper ratio of of vitamins and minerals. this you have to order from amazon.com
 
3. Water intake – no less than 3 litrs
 
4. Avoid junk and processed foods. they increase inflammation and damage nerve cells.
 
Here is what your doctor failed in telling you:
arthritis tendencies are due to nutritional deficiencies and immune response to your body. THEY CAN BE FIXED AND YOU CAN LIVE PAIN FREE. you can gain control of your health again.
Inflammation is the most basic problem in all arthritis, whether it is  “inflammatory arthritis,” like autoimmune rheumatoid arthritis, or the arthritis most associated with wear and tear on joints over time, osteoarthritis.
The traditional / conventional medical approach to these two kinds of joint inflammation is to use medications to block the inflammation process. Although these can be successful in decreasing symptoms and can in some cases prevent further joint destruction, the medications don’t get at the root cause of why you developed the inflammation in the first place. 
It is important to find out in the first place what has lead to the wear and tear of your knees. From here on out you can develop a recovery plan that includes nutrition, supplementation, corrective exercise and better lifestyle changes. 
 
 
 

Physical Fitness & Strength for Office Workers

Most of us are confined to our desk jobs for long hours, five to six days a week. If we live far away from our offices, the traffic keeps us more sedentary.

This makes me wonder…

1. How dangerous is sitting for prolonged hours, in regards to our health? (e.g. muscle atrophy)

2. If I workout 30 mins – 60 mins daily (cardio + resistance training), will sitting the rest of the day “undo” the health benefits of the workout?

3. What are practical ways to combat sitting all day in the office? (without making your co-workers think you’ve gone crazy.)

Answer

These are some great questions ! They are all connected and yes there is much you can do to make sure your body is performing good even after sitting for so long. Remember, as the human species, we were not meant to sit long hours staring at digital screens. We have come a long way from ur hunter-gatherer ancestors who undoubtedly had better health physically and mentally. Your can harness the power of exercise to keep fit and performing your best.

1. How dangerous is sitting for prolonged hours, in regards to our health? (e.g. muscle atrophy)

Muscle wouldn’t atrophy due to long hours of sitting, but your flexors and deep muscle fibres do tend to shorten and loose their range of mobility. The first and foremost area of weakness from sitting is in the hips. We have flexors in the hips that shorten because of lack of mobility, exercise and proper movement. This also causes the hamstrings ( the back of your thighs) to shorten. This can and does cause poor mobility issues with all joints connected to your hips i.e. your whole body. 

Important to understand that, your hips and lower back encase your core. Your core is made up of abdominal muscles, pelvic floor muscle and lower back muscles. These 3 groups of muscles make your center a super important and strong place that houses your second brain – your gut ! So anything not making your core stronger is undoubtedly, making you weaker. 

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Shortened flexors are a major cause in age related joint and muscle pain and injury. Especially for women post pregnancy, working on lengthening flexors and proper muscle mobility crucial to ageing healthy and preventing age related issues. 
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shortened and tight hamstrings also need to tilting of the hips and successive hip issues. 

Sitting not only shortened muscles and flexors, bad posture of sitting will cause the following:
1. Pressure on your stomach / gut
2. Pressure on wrong areas of your spine
3. Muscle imbalance
4. Hormone imbalances due to the poor posture

5. Reduce brain function due to lower blood flow, nutrient absorption

and so on…

So, sitting for  long periods without movement isn’t only dangerous, it has some major affects on your body that work like a chain reaction.

2. If I workout 30 mins – 60 mins daily (cardio + resistance training), will sitting the rest of the day “undo” the health benefits of the workout?

Off-course, all is not lost. There are better ways to sit, and movement around and include movement in your lifestyle. 

30-60 mins of exercise is excellent, and if you work 5 to 6 days a week then you should exercise 5 to 6 days a week also. Here is a good blue-print to follow for planning your workout routine. Try this:

20 mins of HIIT

followed by

45 min of Weight Training

You can undue the dangers or sitting and leading a sedentary lifestyle. But this should be looked as making proper lifestyle changes instead of a crash course into dieting. Strength training and functional fitness is part of your lifestyle if you want to turn back the clock and optimise your DNA

3. What are practical ways to combat sitting all day in the office? (without making your co-workers think you’ve gone crazy.)

Yes ! This has alot to do with how you train after office. For exercise and functional training, you must focus on the following which will in several ways keep your body fit and strong:

  1. Core muscle mobility : abdominal muscles, lower back, pelvic floor. No I don’t mean do abs! Doing abs is a very useless way to engage core strength. Instead do stomach vacuums and Kegel’s and practice holding your core tight. 
  2. Compound movements: squat and deadlift ladies ! These 2 compound movement done correctly will change your body shape, metabolism and central nervous system response. Yes, I mean it will change you completely !
  3. When siting at the office, hold the correct posture of sitting. Hold your core tight, shoulders back and chest out. Don’t round your back !

Last but not least: Nutrition

Food is the raw materials your body needs to thrive and flourish. Sitting at the desk is not as hazardous as you feeding your body nutritiously void junk food that is fake food. Best idea, is to get an analyses of your current and previous health and start a nutrition programme that is best for you.  

Keep in mind, you will also need to take proper supplements because the food is no longer rich in vitamins and minerals and lack many micro-nutrient components. 

Oh, and one more thing. If sitting at the desk is causing you all this trouble then quit, chase your dreams and start your own business. It’s hard at first but worth it and you will be your own boss 😉 

BCAA for Men Only?

Question

Hello, my everyday inspiration! I hope you are well. I weigh much more than before. I weigh 57 kgs and this is the highest i have ever been. I finally joined a gym. I follow your blogs and i bought myself bcaa. My gym instructor isn’t really liking this . I don’t know why, may be because they are on the verge of some superstitions that these are for men only.

Response

First of all, the number on the scale is NOT accurate. it is better to assess your body in the mirror then start a exercise regiment that targets fat loss and toning the body.

Second, most trainers (that i have seen) have LOTS of misconceptions especially when it comes to women hahaha ! but you dont worry at all.

Since you are first time in the gym – i would suggest you to start with a top quality protein powder. difference in BCAA and protein powder is that protein powders contain all the 9 essential amino acids where as bcaa only have a few of the protein amino acids – mainly 3 amino acids which are leucine, isoleucine, and valine. these are very good yes you need them but in terms of YOUR body and fitness goals, you need to focus on having complete proteins which we get from animal sources or protein powder supplements.

BCAA is not for men only !!! this is so silly and i can not believe that some would tell you that ! both man and woman are made of proteins, we are both humans and made of flesh HAHAHA!! how silly of them to say that. you can read more about BCAA in this article I wrote here 

For now, your bcaa is not going to go to waste. you can actually add it into your routine to help you reach your fitness goals. try doing cardio on emptry stomach in morning for 40 minutes and drinking your BCAA while you do cardio.

You can also do intermittent fasting , do cardio in morning and only drink BCAA while you cardio session. This will help you prevent losing muscle mass.

Remember, just drinking bcaa is not enough. you need to have a proper workout plan that helps balance your hormones and boost body fat burn. You need to sleep, have proper vitamins & minerals too.

So stick to your programme and ignore fools.
Love ya !

Ball Roll Feet Massage

A common tennis ball can serve as a useful tool for strengthening and rehabilitating your feet. Whether you have an injury, high arches, flat feet, bunions or calluses, tennis ball exercises for feet provide an easy, inexpensive self-maintenance tool for healthy feet.

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Rolling the foot with a tennis ball provides a self-controlled massage and stretch for the bottom of the foot and plantar fascia. Start by sitting on a chair and placing the tennis ball under your foot. Gently apply as much pressure as you can tolerate to push the ball into the floor, rolling the ball back and forth from your toes to your heel. Roll the ball for 30 seconds and switch to the other foot. Perform the rolling massage tennis ball exercise two to four days per week to prevent foot-related injuries.

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If you are using the exercise to address issues like plantar fasciitis, which is the swelling or inflammation of the ligament that runs along the sole of our feet, you should focus more on the sensation of the foot than your posture. Many people choose to use a frozen item to roll with, as the cold can help alleviate the pain associated with plantar fasciitis, as well as prevent further inflammation. Frozen golf balls or bottles of water are great choices for this. However, it is hugely important to note that if you decide to use a frozen item, you must stretch the ligament first, or you risk exacerbating the problem.

If you are using this technique to deal with pain in the bottom of the foot, remember that you are essentially massaging the foot. You want to encourage bloodflow and reduce tightness. If you come across an area that is particularly tender, you should push down firmly on that area for 15-20 seconds. Your natural instinct throughout the exercise, and particularly when pushing down on a tender area, will be to hold your breath. Be conscious of your breathing and avoid holding your breath at all, as you want as much oxygen moving around the foot as possible.

Foot rolling can be used to treat a sore bunion, but be sure that you don’t press down on any spots, warts, verrucas, or boils. Once you have covered all the tender areas and rolled your item to the back of your heel, spend a few minutes rolling it back and forth, trying to cover as much of the sole as possible. Before finishing up, you should press down on each of the tender areas for another 15-20 seconds.

This exercise should be repeated several times a day, and you should begin to notice an improvement relatively quickly in most cases. Depending on why you are doing this exercise, you should use it in conjunction with other techniques. For example, smart supplementation such as magnesium + zinc + B6 boost muscle recovery. You also need to track water and food intake to make sure you don’t have macro nutrition deficiencies. Starting a recovery programme of functional exercise will show quick result. 

Need help with your Plantar fasciitis? Get in touch to start your recovery programme today !

Adrenal Fatigue, Hypothyroidism, & Correct Exercise

Re: adrenal fatigue
When I researched how to manage hypothyroidism, I came across the term “adrenal body type” and “adrenal fatigue”. If you tend to have an adrenal body time, you are discouraged to do heavy exercises (HIIT, heavy anabolic exercises) and do more catabolic exercises (yoga, etc). I am someone who has struggled to lose weight pretty much all my life and am planning to do some intense workouts like CrossFit or Insanity, but these ideas regarding adrenal body types confuse me. Any ideas?

Response: 

There many issues in this question and unfortunately a few scientific terms are used to make a simple problem complicated. Let’s break it all down. 

First off, adrenal hormones is cortisol – released when you are stressed. What stresses you can range from personal, environmental, emotional ,physical stress – anything and everything that drives you up the wall or even unnerves you causes releases of stress. 

 

Here is the thing about stress – something I love teaching in my workshops – life is hectic and you will have stress. You don’t have to bend over backwards to solve every problem. What you have to do is identify your reaction to a stressful situation and mindfully take actions to calm down. So this is where the word mindful comes into real play in YOUR life. When you see a situation coming up that will un-nerve you; take actions that control your cortisol. Yes, there are steps you can do to minimise cortisol release but before i get into that, let’s understand cortisol. 

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What are your adrenals? Your adrenal glands (adrenals) are two thumb-sized organs that sit above your kidneys and are part of the endocrine system. Also known as the suprarenal glands, they’re involved in producing over 50 hormones that drive almost every bodily function, many of which are essential for life. Adrenal glands play a huge role in stress response. Your brain registers a threat, whether emotional, mental or physical. The adrenal medulla releases cortisol and adrenaline hormones to help you react to the threat (the fight-or-flight response), rushing blood to your brain, heart and muscles. The adrenal cortex then releases corticosteroids to dampen processes like digestion, immune system response and other functions not necessary for immediate survival.

 

Cortisol is a gluconeogenic hormone – coming from your adrenal glands. Meaning it breaks down other cells to create glucose (food for brain and organs). Why? Because when you are stressed your brain need more fuel to thing and get you out of stress. Cortisol can target any and every cell in your body except the liver. This is why super stressed people can stress themselves into heart attacks, brain strokes, diabetes and metabolism illness and hormones imbalances – such as yourself.  try this, next time you are super stressed, do a quick blood sugar reading – yes you will have more blood sugar now because your brain is needed food to think through the “fight or flight” situation. Make sense? 

 

FYI: something as simple as not enough on regular basis will upset your hormone balance and release more cortisol. So make sure to get 8 hrs unbroken sleep and add in 7 to 20 mins power nap int he day when you can’t sleep 8 hrs. 

Quick question: in a regular basis, how often do you loose your mental cool? Are you managing it? Better than before, I assume. 

(It is not enough to just research a disease – we also have to understand how it applies bio-individually to ourselves!)

So, how cortisol effects you when you are stressed what you have in your genetics. If you are genetically pre-disposed to thyroids weakness and hormone imbalances then all the stress you feel daily and all that cortisol breaks that down and starts to weaken you. In my case, I am genetically pre-disposed to asthma and lung weakness. When I am too stressed + not managing my stress I work myself up to shortness of breath and asthma attacks. So I always have to keep mindful of my weakness, and work on my strengths and prevent the weakness from being in control. 

Control your cortisol. Don’t try to control your stress. Most of the things in our life are out of our control. YOUR HAPPINESS however lies with in you and you have direct control of the damage cortisol does in your body. How to control the cortisol damage? Simple !

Vitamin C. 

Yes vitamin C directly  puts your body in “recovery” mode when you are stressed. The best and most effective way to incorporate Vitamin C is to have a shot of lemon. This will control your cortisol and put you in a better metabolic state to think clear, handle the situation at hand and navigate through a seemingly tough situation – don’t worry girl, you got this. Vitamin C is a non – toxic compound that your body can take up to 9000 mg – and after will just give you loose stomach. So experiment with your lemon shots and have them 5 to 6 times throughout the day. 

That’s not all, you need to actively and mindfully make lifestyle adjustments to recover from cortisol damage. Your recovery programme includes:

  1. Mindfully managing your response to regular stressful situations
  2. Following a non-inflammatory nutrition programme (watch out for carbs)
  3. Adding in smart supplements that boost hormone imbalance, brain performance and physical health

 

Now my favourite part, exercise. The reason we covered cortisol first is so that you can understand what the word anabolic and catabolic. First of all the word catabolic refers to breaking down of tissue / components in your body and anabolic refers to building or creating tissue / muscle / cells in your body. Now which one sounds like cortisol? Cortisol breaks down your cells and catabolism breaks down in your body too. So aren’t they the same then. 

Any exercise can turn into a catabolic exercise. For example, you jogging for too long will start to break down your muscles instead of tapping into your fat stores. Your doing intense yoga for too long can start to break down your muscles ( which are used for fuel) instead of tapping into your fat stores. Ping pong, zumba, cycling even weight training can turn into a catabolic exercise in which your body breaks down muscle tissue to fuel your workouts. 

The correct method of exercising is knowing what to do and how to do it so you don;t stress your body out even more. Remember, you need to build muscle which will help you balance your hormones and make your physically stronger from the cell up. Cardio and HIIT is not for you right now – both of which starts to break down muscle tissue, which causes more cortisol release and now everything start to break down. Make sense?

Here is a proper way to add exercise and training into your life:

  1. Strength train – do muscle centric exercise and stay in the rep range of 8 to 10. Use a weight which you can do easily 8 reps and last 2 reps are moderately difficult. Train all your major muscle groups. So your workout routine may look like this, arm day, chest and shoulder day, back day, leg day repeat with one day a week you do not workout at all. Focus on functional mobility training of delicate joints like shoulder, knees and especially your core and pelvic floor muscles. 
  2. Cardio – nothing crazy like zumba, or running at 10 on the treadmill. Infact stay away from the treadmill and all types of non-sensical cardio. Cardio will not help you burn stored body fat (which releases hormones that disrupt your natural hormone balance). Walking and running on the treadmill will injure your ankles and knees. 
  3. Yoga – a great relaxing way to spend 45 mins on your weekends. 

For you, an ideal workout routine involves you being focussed on your workout and keeping it no longer than 45 mins. Check your heart rate and keep it between 100 and 120 bpm – this is the fat burn zone and will not stress you out by releasing too much cortisol. work on your squats, and deadlifts and do things you love. Remember, exercise is not punishment for something you ate. Exercise finding out the amazing things your body CAN do. 

Insanity workouts – no ! this is going to drive your heart beat way over 150 bpm and start  breaking down muscle tissue even more. Crossfit, should be guided and nothing intense – but then again crossfit is only for conditioning of athletes and involves in intense circuit training – this may not be suitable for you at this stage of your recovery. 

So what can you do? Focus on a proper nutrition plan, try strength training 5 times a week and sleep at night. Once your hormones are balanced using proper nutritional therapy, your body is better predisposed to handle exercise which will further balance your hormones. 

Weight training and strength training is going to help you balance hormones, build more muscle mass (which burns more calories and burns fat) and jump start an anti-aing process in your body that improves your mitochondrial function. 

BUT none of this is going to help you unless you go up to the top of this article and apply techniques of controlling your cortisol. Remember, you can not solve your stress (issues) but you can control the damage cortisol does to your body by being mindful of how to respond. 

So take care of yourself. Do things you love. Start loving your body and not thinking about the negatives. Cortisol damage, adrenal fatigue and thyroid imbalances are under YOUR control and you can transform into a stronger version of yourself. Just control your cortisol. 

Lastly, power pose. Flex in the mirror. Stand in your most powerful stance – because 2 minutes of power posing reduces your cortisol by 25%. So why not? Flex hard and remind yourself how strong you are 😉

 

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