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8 Simple Ways to Control Stress!

8 Simple Ways to Control Stress!

Besides rebalancing hormones, simple modifications in posture, habits, thought, and behavior often go a long way toward reducing feelings of stress and tension. Here are 8 quick and simple things you can do immediately to help keep your stress level under control.

 

1. Control Your Anger:

Watch for the next instance in which you find yourself becoming annoyed or angry at something trivial or unimportant. Make a conscious choice not to become angry or upset – practice letting go. Do not allow yourself to waste energy and thoughts where it isn’t deserved. Effective anger management is a tried-and-true stress reducer.

 

2. Breathe:

Before reacting to the next stressful occurrence, take three deep breaths, into your abdomen and release them slowly. If you have a few minutes, try out breathing exercises such as meditation or guided imagery.

 

3. Slow Down:

Whenever you feel overwhelmed by stress, speak more slowly than usual. You’ll find that you think clearer and react more reasonably to stressful situations. Stressed people tend to speak fast and breathlessly; by slowing down your speech, you’ll also appear less anxious and more in control of any situation.

 

4. Complete One Simple To Do:

Jump start an effective time management strategy. Choose one simple thing you have been putting off (e.g. returning a phone call, making a doctor’s appointment) and do it immediately. Taking care of one nagging responsibility can be energizing and can improve your attitude.

 

5. Get Some Fresh Air:

Get outdoors for a brief break. Our grandparents were right about the healing power of fresh air. Don’t be deterred by foul weather or a full schedule. Even five minutes on a balcony or terrace can be rejuvenating.

 

6. Avoid Hunger and Dehydration:

Drink plenty of water and eat small, nutritious snacks. Hunger and dehydration, even before you’re aware of them, can provoke aggressiveness and exacerbate feelings of anxiety and stress.

 

7. Do a Quick Posture Check:

Hold your head and shoulders upright and avoid stooping or slumping. Bad posture can lead to muscle tension, pain, and increased stress.

 

8. Recharge at the Day’s End:

Plan something rewarding for the end of your stressful day, even if only a relaxing bath or half an hour with a good book. Put aside work, housekeeping or family concerns for a brief period before bedtime to fully relax. Don’t spend this time planning tomorrow’s schedule or doing chores you didn’t get around to during the day. Remember that you need time to recharge and energize yourself – you’ll be much better prepared to face another stressful day. If you are feeling stressed, let’s get your hormones tested and see what I can do for you.

 

Dr. Sanjay Mohan Ram, N.D.

One Simple Dietary Change for Male Fertility

One Simple Dietary Change for Male Fertility

There are two definitive things to avoid to help with male fertility – smoking and drinking alcohol. However, many men do not realize that their diet can also affect their fertility. Processed meat products like bacon and sausages do affect male fertility in a negative way. 

 

Processed Meats

According to a study from Harvard University in 2013, men who were involved in fertility treatments and who ate more than one serving of processed meats, such as salami, bologna, bacon, hamburgers, and hot dogs, ended up with lower semen quality. The team analyzed sperm samples of 156 volunteers and compared them to each participant’s food intake, as reported on a food intake questionnaire. “Processed meat was associated with lower sperm concentration and morphology,” lead researcher Dr. Myriam Afeiche, of the university’s Department of Nutrition.

Conversely, men who ate more chicken or other poultry, had a better chance of improving their fertility. However, the research does not show the exact cause and affect cycle. In reality, Dr. Rebecca Sokol says that may studies have shown that diet can affect human fertility, but out diets are very complex and it is difficult to say how a particular food type may affect the reproductive outcomes. There is one possible explanation – processed meats tend to house more hormonal and chemical residues than other meats, which could have potential reproductive consequences.

The fertilization rate for in vitro fertilization (IVF) without intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) was 28 percent higher among men who ate the least amount of processed meat than among those who ate the most processed meat (82 percent versus 54 percent). 

In another 2014 study, published in the journal Epidemiology, the same researchers found that eating processed meat was associated with lower sperm count.

 

What Should Men be Eating?

So, this begs the question – what should men considering fertility be eating? The good news is that the Harvard Nutrition team also noted a positive association between male fertility and fish consumption. According to the research, white meat fish like cod and halibut were associated with a higher percentage of normal sperm. Salmon, tuna and other dark meat fish, on the other hand, were related to a higher total sperm count.

In essence, it is not clear whether eating red meat in general is good or bad for your fertility, due to the lack of depth of the researches. However, there is a possibility that the meat is not the problem, but rather the chemicals or hormones in the processed meats that might be an issue. Regardless, healthier dietary choices, as elucidated through the food sensitivity blood testing with a Naturopathic Physician, combined with a healthier lifestyle, which includes exercise in moderation, may overall increase fertility outcomes in men.

If you or a loved one is experiencing challenges in fertility, please feel free to book an appointment with me at Edgemont Naturopathic Clinic, and I will be happy to help guide you.

 

By: Dr. Sanjay Mohan Ram, B.Sc.(Hon.), N.D.

10 Tips to Stay Lean after Summer!

10 Tips to Stay Lean after Summer!

1) Workout first thing in the morning before you start your day. Then, you will have no excuse later in the day.

2) Be more active – choose to walk or ride a bicycle or swim as much as possible, swimming is one of the highest calorie burning activities you can do.

3) Focus all your meals around a good source of protein and healthy fats. This will help maintain muscle. Protein and fats have the highest thermic effect of food which allows you to burn more calories digesting it.

4) Consider getting sorbet ice cream if you do have dessert. They are usually very low in calories compared to fancy Italian gelato.

5) Eat foods high in fiber for breakfast and this will keep you feeling full all day long.

6) Never have 2 “cheat meals” in a row. For example, if you have pasta for one meal, make sure the next meal is something that is healthy, such as lean fish and vegetables.

7) Ask for the dressing or sauce on the side when you order food at a restaurant – you can add the right amount you want as you eat.

8) Drink water based on your body weight throughout the day. The more water you drink, the less likely you will consume large calorie meals.

9) Drink zero calorie drinks. For example, drinks with stevia will help with sweet cravings and do not contain calories which can cause weight gain.

I should trade mark this last piece of advice – I say it to patients all the time:

10)
If you are going to cheat, cheat well.”  Do not cheat with junk foods with artificial or junk ingredients. Cheat with food that feeds your soul and your belly – foods that are decadent and worth the calories. Follow the 80-20 rule or the 6 days on, 1 day off rule.

People gain weight when they go on holidays or travel because there are so many different food choices and options. I hope you found these 10 tips useful and you can apply some of them for the fall. If you do need help with a specific diet to achieve the health goals you want, feel free to reach out and let me help you!

 

Dr. Sanjay Mohan Ram, N.D.