Healthy Summer Sun!

Healthy Summer Sun!

Los Angeles gives us summer-like weather almost all year round. But even here in California, the rays of the sun become more intense during the summer months, so regardless of where we live, we must all be extra mindful about our sun exposure during this time of the year.

The American Cancer Society states that there are over five million new skin cancer cases each year and that melanoma outweighs all other cancers combined! These are staggering statistics especially for those of us who live in a sunny climate and may be at increased risk.

There seems to be a lot of confusion about healthy sun exposure and whether or not a tan equals potential long-term damage to our skin. While there are many opinions on this topic, some things remain clear.

The basic guidelines to follow in order to reduce your overall risks of cancer and aging of the skin are:

  • Avoid lengthy sun exposure at peak times between 10am-4pm
  • Cover up with clothing, a brimmed hat, and sunglasses
  • Remain in shady areas between 10am-4pm
  • Apply quality sunscreen liberally to exposed areas

With new studies coming out about potential dangers of certain chemicals in sunscreen, it can be overwhelming trying to decide which ones to purchase to protect you and your family. As a general guide, stick to natural sunblock whenever possible. Look for creams and lotions that contain titanium dioxide and/or zinc oxide as their main sun protection ingredients.

While the verdict is still out, certain ingredients may act as endocrine disruptors which can mimic the hormone estrogen. When made by the body or given as a drug, increased estrogen may affect reproductive organs and may also raise the risk of certain cancers. For more information, visit the Environmental Working Group EWG for a list of sunscreen products which can be harmful.

Along with being smart about your sun exposure, you may want to take some natural approaches too, in order to boost your body’s ability to block harmful UVA and UVB rays.

Astaxanthin– this potent antioxidant found most often in shrimp, salmon, lobster, and krill has been shown to increase the body’s natural ability to absorb UVA and UVB. Supplementing a minimum of 2mg of Astaxanthin per day, may help to lower your risk of cancer and reduce overall inflammation.

Topical Vitamin C– Applying a Vitamin C serum or cream with your sunscreen may act as extra defense from the damage that the sun causes to your skin. A serum is best, one that contains at least 15% pure Vitamin C.

CoQ10– Supplementing with Coenzyme Q10 and using it topically in creams or lotions may help to fight the free radicals that come from the sun’s rays. Italian researchers found that melanoma patients had very low levels of CoQ10 compared to those who were free of cancer. Another study in 2006 showed that topical CoQ10 suppressed the inflammation caused by UV radiation.

Healthy Exposure– More and more doctors and health practitioners are suggesting that 10-20 minutes of sun exposure to a large percentage of your skin without sunscreen, may actually be a healthy and good way to produce natural Vitamin D3. Some experts suggest doing this before 10am or after 4pm while others say that peak times are okay.

Vitamin D– Supplementing Vitamin D3 may help to boost immunity and reduce the risk of certain cancers. It is thought that taking Vitamin K along with D3 may increase the positive effects of a Vitamin D3 supplement.

Apart from avoiding skin cancer, many of us want to keep our largest organ looking young and supple. It really is a balancing act of getting enough rays to boost our health and immunity without overdoing it and causing sun-related aging of our skin.

Like all things in life, balance is key. It is vital that we don’t live in fear or angst about enjoying healthy sun time with friends and family, but also, ensuring that we are taking precautions and being smart.

Let this summer be one that you remember. Take the steps to protect yourself and then go out and celebrate this wonderful time of the year. Be healthy, be safe, and enjoy!

*Always consult with your doctor about healthy sun practices, especially if you have a history of melanoma or are at increased risk of cancer.

 

Jay Bradley is a Youthful Aging, Wellness & Lifestyle Coach Living in Los Angeles. http://www.JayBradleyLifestyle.com

He is the Author of LIVE LOOK FEEL, The 12-Week Guide to Live Longer, Look Younger & Feel Better!

What the Heck is Astaxanthin?

What the Heck is Astaxanthin?

Astaxanthin, pronounced “ASTA-ZAN-THIN” is possibly the most potent antioxidant on earth. Considered 6000 times more powerful than Vitamin C, this red colored phytonutrient which comes mainly from micro-algae along with certain orange and red colored fruits and vegetables is seriously good for your health!

The reason that krill, flamingos, shrimp, lobster, and salmon are pink is because they eat large amounts of astaxanthin-packed algae and phytoplankton. Known as a carotenoid, this powerhouse superfood is shown to reduce inflammation within the body, increase the skin’s protection from the sun when used both internally or topically, and may even lighten sun spots caused by aging.

Like most antioxidants, astaxanthin fights harmful free radicals within the body to assist in healthy cell production. It also has been studied for its ability to minimize muscle damage and improve recovery after exercise along with increasing physical energy in athletes. It has been shown to support eye and heart health, and may increase cognitive function as well.

One of the best sources of astanxanthin is from the tiny crustaceans known as krill. The shrimp-like sea life that are found deep in the Antarctic ocean are best because these waters contain less toxic waste making it relatively pure. Krill also tends to live deep below the water’s surface in areas where toxicity and pollution is decreased even more.

Taking 4-12 mg of astaxanthin per day is highly recommended by numerous alternative doctors and health experts for its long-term support of overall health and longevity.

We can get overwhelmed by the numerous options of vitamins, minerals, and superfoods on the market but I for one, make astaxanthin a part of my daily supplement regimen.

*Astaxanthin is not recommended for children or women who are pregnant.

Jay Bradley is a Youthful Aging, Wellness & Lifestyle Expert Living in Los Angeles http://www.JayBradleyLifestyle.com

He is the Best-Selling Author or LIVE LOOK FEEL, The 12-Week Guide to Live Longer, Look Younger & Feel Better!

 

 

Fall Foods to Promote Better Health

Fall Foods to Promote Better Health

Most of us enjoy the festivities of the autumn season. It’s a reminder of the upcoming holidays, family celebrations, and comfort foods. Even though Los Angeles remains warm, hints of crispness begin to fill the air.

I am a big believer in eating seasonally whenever possible meaning that we consume foods which are grown in the particular season of year that we are in.

This fall, why not try some of nature’s amazing autumnal superfoods which are packed with vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients, and other health-promoting gifts.

Pumpkin – Pumpkins are packed with Vitamin A from Beta Carotene which helps to promote better vision. Pumpkin seeds are high in tryptophan which support healthy serotonin levels and assist in balancing our mood and sleep. Pumpkin seeds or pumpkin seed oil have been shown to strengthen the prostate and may lower the risk of prostate cancer.

Squash – There are so many varieties of squash and all have enormous health benefits. They are one of the oldest groups of vegetables on earth and they help to boost overall immunity, reduce inflammation, improve vision and blood circulation, and regulate blood sugar. They also improve lung function and have antifungal properties.

Zucchini – Zucchini is high in B Vitamins which improves overall energy. It may also help to control Diabetes, and improve digestion along with being high in antioxidants including Vitamins A and C, and Super Oxide Dismutase. Zucchini also helps to support proper thyroid and adrenal function.

Brussel Sprout – This cruciferous superfood is more popular than ever and for very good reason. They are excellent sources of Vitamin C and Vitamin K. They assist your body in detoxing because of the sulfur-containing compounds and they may lower your risk of cancer and estrogen levels because of their high levels of indole-3-carbinol.

Cauliflower – Another vegetable from the cruciferous family, it is particularly potent at fighting prostate cancer when combined with turmeric. It is also very high in antioxidant vitamins and minerals.

Pomegranate – This beautiful fruit is high in a unique antioxidant called punicalagin. Research indicates it may be effective in reducing the risk of heart disease due to aggressive free radical-scavenging activities in the body. The high polyphenol level in pomegranate has also been linked to a reduction in cancer cell activity.

Apple –  Apples are high in vitamins and minerals along with both soluble and insoluble fiber. The fiber content is effective at slowing or preventing the absorption of bad cholesterol into the arteries along with assisting proper elimination and detox. An apple a day really does keep the doctor away provided it’s organic since apples are one of the most highly pesticide sprayed fruit on earth.

Celery – Celery contains luteolin a nutrient which may slow memory loss and inflammation in our brain. It is also low in calories and high in vitamin and mineral content. It has been linked with an ability to slow cancer cell growth, especially in breast tissue for women on synthetic hormones.

Carrot – Carrots are extremely high in Beta Carotene which converts to Vitamin A in our liver and is known to support proper eye health. The minerals in carrots work to promote strong bones and a healthy nervous system along with maintaining healthy and young skin, hair, and teeth.

Beet –Beets contain nitric oxide which help to open blood vessels providing the body with more energy and feeding the cells with extra oxygen. Beet juice extract is wonderful as a pre-workout for this reason. Beets also assist the body in proper liver detox.

Cranberries – The juice of cranberries are most known for their positive effects on the kidneys and the urinary tract also in aiding urinary tract infections. They also have powerful immune-boosting properties and work to fight most types of cancer cells.

Turnip – Turnip greens are even more vitamin enriched than the root although both have amazing healing benefits. The sulfur-containing compounds have powerful anti-cancer effects along with a great deal of antioxidants and minerals.

Sweet Potato – Like other orange fruits and vegetables, sweet potato contains high levels of the powerhouse antioxidant Beta Carotene. Sweet potatoes have less calories per serving than white potatoes and a lower glycemic index rating too. This high fiber vegetable is especially great as a pre-workout food.

Whenever possible, buy organic produce in order to avoid toxins and chemicals. Experiment over the next few months and try some new recipes. You may just discover a new-found love for the most exciting fruits and vegetables of the year.

 

Jay Bradley is a Youthful Aging, Wellness & Lifestyle Expert Living in Los Angeles. http://www.JayBradleyLIfestyle.com

He is the Best-Selling Author of LIVE LOOK FEEL, The 12-Week Guide to Live Longer, Look Younger & Feel Better!

 

 

 

Is Your Scent Making You Sick?

Is Your Scent Making You Sick?

Why is it that I am always the one to sit next to the person who has poured on cologne and perfume just before heading out to the movie, theatre, or restaurant? And why is it that when I am exposed to such excess scents, I feel awful?

You may be able to relate. In fact, many people have similar experiences. A number of my friends and family get migraines, allergies, and tired spells when in the vicinity of a well-meaning perfume-wearing individual who may be clueless as to their negative effect on others.

More and more, chemicals and toxins are bombarding our environment. Many of these invaders we have no control over while others we do. Our bodies are often overloaded which is why they begin speaking to us with negative reactions as a way to say, “I can’t take this much longer, I am overburdened.”

Perfumes, body sprays, colognes, and even shampoos, and body gels are filled with so-called natural fragrance. What exactly does that mean? Well, that special designer blend that you wear may contain trace amounts of natural essences, but it is most likely concocted from any number of the fragrance industry’s 3,100 stock chemical ingredients!

In fact, the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics, commissioned independent laboratory tests that revealed 38 secret chemicals in 17 leading fragrances which don’t need to be listed on the bottle. As a consumer, we are left in the dark as to exactly what is in our products. While the American Cancer Society makes no conclusive claims that such chemicals cause cancer, many other studies do in fact reveal a connection.

As a wellness advocate, I speak regularly about detoxing our body and home from harmful chemicals in order to lighten the load from overexposure and to help our bodies to heal and rebalance. Aggravating reactions such as headache, sinus issues, skin rashes, allergies, and asthma for example, are signs that something is wrong. It is up to each of us to pay attention and listen to what our bodies are trying to tell us.

Our skin is our largest organ and it absorbs everything that we put onto it and rather quickly. With perfumes and colognes, we are hitting our body from two sides both topically and inhaling the potentially hazardous ingredients too.

If you’re committed to wearing your favorite scent then do yourself and others a favor and use it sparingly or better yet, look for a new favorite made from only pure essential oils. The goal with any scent is to offer a personal expression of our personality to the world but applied just light enough so that somebody next to us in an intimate setting can smell it. We shouldn’t wear it so that we are immediately noticed when walking into a room as if leaving the perfume counter at Bloomingdales.

It is time for us to not only think about ourselves but also others. Be considerate when going out and especially if you’ll be in an enclosed setting with others sitting near you. Just because you aren’t bothered by your scent, doesn’t mean that others wont be.

For more information go to the Environmental Working Group’s (EWG) website http://www.ewg.org and research a list of what chemicals to avoid in order to improve your health.

 

Jay Bradley is a Youthful Aging, Wellness & Lifestyle Expert Living in Los Angeles. http://www.JayBradleyLifestyle.com

He is the Best-Selling Author of LIVE LOOK FEEL, The 12-Week Guide to Live Longer, Look Younger & Feel Better!

The Power of Rooibos

The Power of Rooibos

I have always been a coffee drinker. I love the dark, rich taste and the smell of my morning java. I do my best not to drink caffeine in the afternoons however and searched out an alternative years ago.

I personally am not fond of light, herbal teas and prefer something with a similar robust flavor to coffee and a dark color. Being a wellness coach, I also look for options that will offer me health benefits as well. Enter Rooibos.

The Rooibos bush is originally from South Africa and the word actually means “red bush” and is one of the richest antioxidant filled teas around, being high in Vitamin C and polyphenols yet it’s naturally caffeine free. It is also rich in minerals such as iron, zinc, potassium, manganese, copper, and calcium.

Here are the Top 7 Reasons to drink Rooibos tea regularly:

Immune Support
The powerful polyphenol and Vitamin C content in Rooibos tea has anti-inflammatory and antiviral properties, which give the immune system an extra boost especially during cold and flu season.

Relieves Hypertension
Some research has shown that Rooibos may help with hypertension by gently lowering the blood pressure with regular consumption.

Aids the Respiratory System
Rooibos tea has shown positive effects as a bronchodilator and seems to offer some relief to those who suffer from respiratory challenges such as Asthma.

Bone & Teeth Support
Because of the high mineral content in Rooibos, it may support healthy bones and teeth and may slow osteoporosis with regular use.

Digestion
Rooibos tea is rich in antispasmodic agents that activate potassium within the body and therefore may help to ease stomach cramps, and abdominal pain along with aiding proper digestion especially if consumed 30 minutes before a meal.

Improves the Skin
Rooibos has anti-inflammatory effects, which will help the skin to look smoother and less puffy with regular consumption. It is also an ingredient in many facial chemical peels because of its high content of naturally occurring alpha-hydroxy acid.

Blood Sugar
Rooibos is rich in Aspalathin, which is a rare yet potent antioxidant that may help to balance blood sugar along with supporting proper insulin production.

So the next time you’re searching for a rich, dark, and satisfying decaffeinated beverage, pick up some Rooibos tea and feel free to add organic milk or coconut cream and monk fruit sweetener, stevia, or raw honey for a delicious and health-promoting beverage.

 

Jay Bradley is a Youthful Aging, Wellness & Lifestyle Expert Living in Los Angeles. http://www.JayBradleyLifestyle.com

He is the Best-Selling Author of LIVE LOOK FEEL, The 12-Week Guide to Live Longer, Look Younger & Feel Better!