Nova Health Naturopathic Centre Blog

True Health and Well Being

Three Healthy Recipes July 19, 2011

Filed under: diabetes,recipes,weight loss — novahealthnaturopathic @ 4:33 pm

Chicken Apple Salad

  • 6 oz chicken
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • ½ tsp allspice
  • 1/8 tsp cloves
  • 6 cups shredded cabbage
  • ½ Granny Smith apple
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste
  1. Dice the chicken. Heat 1 tsp olive oil in a skillet over medium heat.
  2. Add the chicken, allspice and cloves to the hot skillet. Sauté, tossing often, until the chicken is thoroughly cooked.
  3. Shred the cabbage into a large salad bowl.  Slice half of an apple into very thin slices and set them aside.
  4. Once the chicken is done, add it to the cabbage, then top with the sliced apple. Add salt and pepper to taste, then drizzle with olive oil. Use an appropriate quantity of olive oil to meet your individual needs. 

Turkey Carrot Quiche

  •  ½ lb ground turkey
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup shredded carrot
  • 6 omega-3 eggs
  • 5 tbsp coconut milk
  • ½ cup broth
  • 4 tbsp fresh parsley
  • ½ tsp coriander
  • Coconut oil
  1. Brown the turkey in a bit of olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Meanwhile, shred the carrots.
  2. Crack the eggs into a bowl; beat well with wire whip. Add the meat when done, the shredded carrots, and all of the remaining ingredients except the coconut oil. Stir.
  3. Grease a baking dish or pie pan with some coconut oil. Pour the mixture into the dish, then bake at 375F for 30-40 mins, or until edge is set and centre still slightly jiggly.

 Greek Scallops

  • 1 lb. Sea scallops
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup sliced mushrooms
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 cup chopped tomatoes
  • ¼ cup chopped parsley
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • Oregano to taste
  • Pepper to taste
  • 1 hard-boiled egg, chopped
  • 2 tbsp pine nuts
  1. In a large saucepan, heat the scallops in 1 tbsp olive oil until they are opaque (around 5 mins). Transfer the scallops and liquid to a bowl and set aside. Rinse and dry the pan.
  2. Now heat 1 tbsp olive oil in the pan; add the onions and sauté for 2 mins. Add the mushrooms and sauté 3-5 mins more, then add the minced garlic and sauté for 1 more minute. Add the tomato, chopped parsley, lemon juice, oregano and pepper. Boil, then reduce heat and simmer 5 mins. Stir in the scallops and liquid and bring to a boil. Serve into bowls, top with chopped hard-boiled egg and pine nuts.

(*If pine nuts are unavailable, substitute with crushed walnuts.)


Weekend Round-Up June 9, 2011

Filed under: diabetes,environment,IBS,research,round up — novahealthnaturopathic @ 4:06 pm

Happy Thursday! With another week ending, we thought we’d give you all some fun and informative reading.

While it’s not a definitive correlation, two researchers have found that a low intake of vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) is associated with IBS symptoms. Adults should be getting 1.3mg of this vitamin each day. So for all of you IBS sufferers out there, load up on shiitake mushrooms (0.42mg/cup), steamed broccoli (0.22mg/cup), baked cod (0.52mg/4oz) and bell peppers (0.23mg/cup). Here is a more complete list of B6-rich foods.

Naturopaths have long been wary of what electronic radiation can do to the human body. Research is catching up and the general population is becomign more aware of its effects. Cell phones are the most common source of daily radiation exposure. Time published a handy list of things you can do on a daily basis to limit your exposure to radiation.

Mindfulness exercises such as meditation, tai chi and yoga may help menopausal women ease their hot flashes. This is great news! These exercises would also be effective in dealing with other menopause symptoms such as irritability, headaches and lack of concentration.

Here is an important primer on prediabetes. Prediabetes is basically the warning period that occurs before full-blown diabetes occurs. It can easily be reversed with diet and lifestyle changes, and careful blood sugar monitoring. Modern food is so sugar-filled that a lot of us have wildly fluctuating blood glucose levels and don’t even know it. If you have any of the symptoms listed on page 2 of the link, please see a doctor to have your risk factors assessed!


Infrared Saunas for Health and Well-Being March 25, 2011

Filed under: diabetes,heart health,relaxation and insomnia,weight loss — novahealthnaturopathic @ 5:57 pm

The skin is a major organ of detoxification. We release toxins through our skin when we sweat, and ideally, we should sweat daily to maximize the skin’s function as a detoxifying organ. Recently, the infrared sauna has become recognized as one of the most effective methods to channel your body’s natural detoxification mechanisms. It helps remove toxic chemicals from the body, particularly when they are stored in fat cells.

Infrared radiant heat can penetrate 4 centimeters beneath the skin and can speed fat metabolism. When fat is discharged from the body as sweat, it carries with it toxins, chemicals and heavy metals such as mercury, cadmium, lead, copper, etc. which cannot be discharged by either the kidneys or the lungs.

Instead of heating the air, infrared saunas emit an infrared wavelength that heats the body core from the inside out. Infrared saunas cause sweating at lower temperatures than non-infrared heat, so it is safe for anyone with high or low blood pressure or cardiovascular issues.

Benefits of Infrared Heat

  • Improves circulation, cardiovascular function and lymphatic flow – Repeated sauna treatment improves impaired vascular function for patients with coronary risk factors.
  • Enhanced detoxification – Toxins such as alcohol, nicotine, environmental pollutants and heavy metals accumulate in the body during daily living. The body can eliminate toxins through sweating and research has shown that the body burden of chemicals, heavy metals, carcinogens and other pollutants can be significantly diminished through infrared sauna treatments.
  • Rejuvenates skin – Helps skin conditions (acne, eczema, scarring, cellulite, etc) – Infrared sauna improves circulation, expels toxins and chemicals, reduces the appearance of cellulite and moves dead cells from the surface of the skin. It clears debris, oils, and make-up residue from the pores of your skin leading to a softer, clearer and firmer complexion.
  • Boost metabolism and energy – Similar to exercise, being in the infrared sauna increases your heart rate and metabolism and uses a large amount of energy, while you just relax! Perspiring also reduces fluid build-up, sodium and subcutaneous fat.
  • Pain relief – Arthritis, chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia, muscle and joint pain – By expanding blood vessels and increasing circulation, more oxygen reaches injured areas of the body reducing pain and speeding up the healing process. Infrared sauna treatments help to remove lactic acid build-up, often felt after exercise or exertion, leaving the muscles feeling renewed. Infrared sauna is a successful additional treatment for arthritis, muscle pain and spasms.
  • Boosts immune system – Why do our bodies create fever when we are sick? Simply, heat kills harmful bacteria that cause infection. Fever is a natural part of the immune response. Infrared sauna induces an “artificial fever” which activates immunity and can decrease the duration of cold- and flu-like illnesses.
  • Relaxation and stress relief – Infrared sauna relaxes and loosens muscles prior to a massage or chiropractic treatment, making treatments more effective. However, the calm environment and soothing heat are also relaxing and therapeutic all by themselves.
  • Improves quality of life for those with diabetes, chronic pain and depression

Sources: Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, 2010; 42(5): 818; Journal of Alternative & Complementary Medicine, June 2010; 16(6): 677-681; Journal of the American College of Cardiology, October 2001; 38 (4): 1083-1088; International Congress Series, April 2006; 1287: 298-303.


Exercise in the Management of Type 2 Diabetes February 4, 2011

Filed under: diabetes,heart health,weight loss — novahealthnaturopathic @ 3:49 pm

Exercise and diet modification are commonly recommended approaches for reducing type II diabetes risk factors such as obesity, impaired glucose tolerance, and insulin resistance.  A sedentary lifestyle has been associated with decreased insulin sensitivity and increased fasting state insulin.

A study looked at the effects of calorie restriction and exercise on glucose and insulin concentrations in 60 sedentary overweight men aged 20 to 50 years old.  Subjects were divided into two groups; restricted caloric intake (1000-1500 calories/day) and non-restricted caloric intake, and then further sub-divided into light intensity (minimal exercise) or vigorous intensity (30 minutes of exercise three times a week of cycling at 70% maximum heart rate).  The results showed that vigorous exercise alone (in the absence of calorie restriction) decreased fasting glucose by 13% and reduced glucose and insulin resistance by 20%. The results also showed that calorie restriction resulted in a 40% reduction in the insulin resistance and vigorous exercise and calorie restriction were additive in reducing the insulin resistance.  In conclusion both calorie restriction and vigorous exercise independently and additively reduce glucose and insulin concentrations in overweight and sedentary men (Cox et al., 2004.  American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 80, 308-316).

Another study looked at the effects of a lifestyle-intervention program on glucose tolerance in 102 overweight individuals.  The subjects were divided into two groups; one receiving regular (one hour per week) diet advice and encouagement to lose weight and to increase their physical activity, and another that received only a brief information session on the benefits of a healthy diet and exercise.  The subjects were followed for one year and glucose tolerance was measured before and after the experiment.  The results showed that after one year weight loss was higher and blood glucose concentration decreased significantly in the intervention group.  It was concluded that weight loss and increased physical fitness were the most important determinants of improved glucose tolerance and insulin sensitivity.  It is apparent that a lifestyle-intervention program involing diet and exercise modifications is effective in improving glucose tolerance (Mensink et al., 2003. International Journal of Obesity 27, 377–384).

It is evident that exercise alone can improve insulin sensitivity and glucose utilization. The value of exercise in the treatment and prevention of type 2 diabetes cannot be understated, and thus in addition to diet and lifestyle modifications it must be incorporated in the treatment of type 2 diabetes.


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