Vitamins & Supplements

GIVEAWAY: Twinlab® 100% Whey Fuel™ + Complete NutriBullet® System

Monday, April 21, 2014 by Ben H

If you think you’ve still got time before “swimsuit season” arrives, you do... but not much! It’s time to put your plan into action, hit the gym and get back on track with a healthy diet. And the rockstars over at Twinlab® have hooked us up with one amazing giveaway package to help one lucky person kick off their spring rejuvenation in style! (Giveaway details at the end.)

Twinlab 100% Whey Fuel

100% Whey Fuel™

  • 25g protein per serving from 100% whey
  • Instantized for easy, no-blender-required mixing
  • Incredibly thick, rich taste, even in water
  • Enzyme-assisted formula to promote comfortable digestion

Twinlab 100% Whey Fuel is exactly what your workout has been missing. It’s the best tasting protein powder they’ve ever developed. 100% Whey Fuel is a superior blend of high quality, bioavailable whey protein that's completely “instantized,” meaning it dissolves quickly and mixes up easily in your favorite shaker bottle.

Twinlab 100% Whey Fuel Prize

How Does it Fuel Your Workout?

If you’re in the gym, you’re there to create lean muscle mass and tone your body. Twinlab’s 100% Whey Fuel supports muscle protein anabolism, which promotes that muscle growth after you’ve completed your workout. But it also helps promote performance in the gym while you’re cranking out rep after rep (or mile after mile), as well as post-workout recovery.

Clinical studies show that whey protein is one of the most anabolic, muscle-building proteins available, providing a rapid drive of amino acids to skeletal muscle tissue, thereby supporting your weight training efforts in the gym. It’s all about maximizing your gains, and this protein powder is built... well, to put it simply, it’s built to get you built!

Research also shows that whey protein is among the most easily digested and absorbed proteins, and has one of the highest Protein Efficiency Ratios, providing more branched chain amino acids than most other protein powders. It’s a top choice of serious athletes, bodybuilders and power lifters.

 

GIVEAWAY—Sponsored by Twinlab®

Follow the directions below to enter to win a 3-pack of 100% Whey Fuel™ pouches + a Nutri-Bullet blender! We’ll draw 1 winner next Monday at random from all entries received! (If you're reading this post as an email update, please click here.)

 

 

 

The Essential Guide to Natural Allergy Relief

Thursday, March 20, 2014 by Anthony N.

How to Naturally Treat Your Allergies:

Springtime offers us sunshine, budding flowers and blooming trees. But for many of us these are the very elements that make venturing outside into the glorious post-winter world an unpleasant event. Allergies caused by tree pollen—and in more humid areas, mold—can make springtime a lousy time of year. For people with allergic sensitivities, pollen and mold can bring on sneezing, coughing, congestion, itchy eyes, and a runny nose.

So why does this happen? In some folks, the body’s immune system overreacts to a foreign substance like pollen or mold, releasing chemicals in the body that cause the unpleasant allergy symptoms.


How to Make Your Home Safe for Allergy Sufferers: 

Staying indoors when pollen and mold is present is one way to reduce the misery of springtime allergies. But even indoors you might find allergens lurking around that can make you feel bad, and these irritants can hang around all year long. What’s the worst indoor irritator?

what is dust made of?Dust—even the most meticulously clean abode harbors some dust (you can try, but you can’t clean everywhere). And although a dusty house may look…well, dusty, how bad can dust really be? What’s in dust? It varies from house to house, depending on many factors—including pet ownership—but typical dust elements include:

  • Soil and plant material
  • Human and animal skin (dander) and hair
  • Fabric fibers
  • Mold spores
  • Dust mites
  • Insect parts and waste

 

 

How to Avoid Indoor Allergens in Your Home:

There are some things you can do to decrease your exposure to indoor allergens:

  • Run the air conditioner at home. Leaving doors and windows open is a good way to invite allergens and other irritants inside your home, so there’s no escape.
  • With forced air furnaces and air conditioning systems, use high-efficiency filters and maintain the system as required. Keep air conditioning and furnace filters fresh. It’s important to change filters every three months and use filters with a MERV rating of 8 to 12.  A MERV rating tells you how well the filter can remove pollen and mold from the air as it passes through.
  • Vacuum furnace/air conditioning vents and air returns
  • Use a dehumidifier to keep indoor air dry
  • Use HEPA filters in portable units (especially in the bedroom) and in vacuum cleaners
  • Sweep, dust and vacuum often—don’t forget behind, under and on top of your refrigerator
  • Wash your sheets. Dust mite particles can be found in your bedding, which may trigger allergies. Washing your sheets once a week, and comforters or quilts every few weeks, will help rid your bed of these particles.
  • Listen for Drips. Leaks around the house can result in a mold problem, which can cause immune-related problems. Once a leak is sealed, clean around the area with disinfectant or a hot water and bleach mixture.
  • Move your Plants. Like any area of the house, plants can grow mold overtime. If you smell the musty odor of mold on your houseplant, throw it away or move it to an area of the house that isn’t frequently used.

 

How to Naturally Reduce Allergy Symptoms:

tips to reduce allergy symptoms

  1. Wear Shades—Wear glasses or sunglasses when outdoors. Covering your eyes keeps pollen and other irritants away from this sensitive area, which reduces itchiness and redness. Pollen is a known irritant for eyes and eyelids.
  2. Drink Water—Even mild dehydration can activate histamine production, so staying hydrated can dampen allergy symptoms.
  3. Nasal Irrigation—Nasal irrigation with a combination of warm water and natural salt may help clear out mucus and open sinus passages. You can administer the solution through a neti pot.
  4. Shower and Wash Your Hair before bed. Cleaning up before getting into bed helps remove pollen from your hair and skin, which reduces irritation. You should also consider keeping pets out of the bedroom if they’ve been outside, as pollen can cling to their fur.
  5. Minimize activities outdoors when pollen counts are at their peak. Pollen is typically at its highest point during midday and afternoon hours, so those who suffer from allergies and asthma should avoid going outside during those times of day.

 

Allergy Mistakes

Avoid These Mistakes When Trying to Prevent Allergies:

  1. Don’t treat symptoms without knowing what you’re allergic to. You may think you know what’s causing your allergy symptoms, but more than two-thirds of spring allergy sufferers actually have year-round allergies. An allergist, a doctor who is an expert in treating allergies and asthma, can perform tests to pinpoint the cause of your suffering and then find the right treatment to stop it.
  2. allergy prevention mistakesDon't blindly spend on over-the-counter medications. There are tons of allergy medications available at the store, some of which can be very effective. But if you’re buying new products all the time, spending a bundle and not feeling better, consult with an allergist who can discuss which options might be best for you. Your allergist may suggest nasal spray or allergy shots, also called immunotherapy. Immunotherapy can actually cure your allergies and keep you out of the drug store aisles for good.
  3. Don’t wait until symptoms kick in and you’re already feeling bad to take allergy medication. Instead, prepare by taking medication that has worked for you in the past just before the season starts. Pay attention to the forecast: When winter weather turns warm, pollens and molds are released into the air. Start treatment prior to the warm-up.
  4. Never hang clothing or laundry outside. Hanging laundry is a great way to be green and save on your electricity bill, but when your clothes are on a clothesline, fabric can collect pollen, which is an allergy trigger. Instead, use a drying machine to reduce these allergens.
  5. Avoid eating produce and other foods that might aggravate sniffles and sneezing. If your mouth, lips and throat get itchy and you sniffle and sneeze after eating certain raw or fresh fruits or other foods, you may have “oral allergy syndrome.” The condition, which affects about one third of seasonal allergy sufferers, occurs in people who are already allergic to pollen: their immune system sees a similarity between the proteins of pollen and those of the food, and triggers a reaction. If you are allergic to tree pollen, for example, foods like apples, cherries, pears, apricots, kiwis, oranges, plums, almonds, hazelnut and walnuts may bother you. Cooking or peeling the food may help, but you should talk to an allergist.

 

12 Best Natural Supplements for Allergy Support:

Over half of all Americans suffer from allergies, so you're not alone if you've been sneezing, coughing or wiping your watery eyes. Although there is no magical cure for spring allergies, there are a number of ways to combat them, including over-the-counter and prescription drugs. You may also want to consider natural therapies. There are a wide variety of natural supplements that you can take to help ease allergy symptoms. Here is a list of some of the most well-reviewed supplements for allergy support. Just like OTC and prescription treatments, health supplements can cause side effects or can react with medications you’re taking so be sure to talk to your healthcare provider before you start taking any natural health herbs.

  1. Astragalus – A traditional Chinese remedy for allergies, buy astragalus to support the immune system.
  2. Butterbur – The herb butterbur (Petasites hybridus) shows potential for relieving seasonal allergy symptoms. Taking butterbur supplements may reduce hay fever symptoms. Taking 100 mg daily of this herbal extract can improve nasal airflow by cutting down leukotriene, a compound that kick-starts many allergic reactions. In one Swiss study, butterbur was just as effective as an over-the-counter antihistamine for reducing allergy symptoms.
  3. Evening Primrose – This oil works two ways to suppress allergies. First, allergic reactions cause inflammations and evening primrose oil acts as an anti-inflammatory to decrease the reaction. Secondly, it stimulates the white blood cells that regulate the production of histamines and antibodies.
  4. Gamma Linolenic Acid – GLA has a long history in folk medicine for treating allergies. People who have allergies may require additional essential fatty acids and have trouble converting LA (Linoleic acid) to GLA. Studies have found that women and children who are prone to allergies have lower levels of GLA.
  5. Green Tea – Drink a cup of tea. It delivers EGCG, an antioxidant that blocks production of histamine and immunoglobulin E, both of which trigger allergy symptoms.  
  6. Probiotics – Increasing beneficial bacteria may prevent allergies. Probiotics benefit the immune system and could, therefore, reduce allergies.
  7. Omega-3s – Scientific studies have shown fish oil can help alleviate hay fever, sinus problems and allergic skin conditions.
  8. Quercetin – This flavonoid, found naturally in onions, apples, and black tea, has anti-inflammatory properties and has been shown to block histamines or reduce the release of histamine, which decreases symptoms.
  9. Skullcap – This herb has been traditionally used in Chinese medicine to treat hayfever. It has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and antihistaminic properties.
  10. Spriulina – Studies suggest this blue-green algae can boost the immune system and protect against allergic reactions.
  11. Stinging Nettle – The roots and leaves of the stinging nettle plant (Urtica dioica) have been used to treat everything from joint pain to prostate problems. Some people use freeze-dried stinging nettle leaves to treat allergy symptoms.
  12. Vitamin C – This well-known immune-boosting antioxidant lowers histamine levels in the bloodstream, which could prevent the onset of allergies. 2,000 mg of vitamin C can cut histamine levels (which trigger allergy symptoms) by up to 40%, improving breathing and your airway.

natural supplements for allergies

 

Sources:
University of Maryland Medical Center
WebMD
getbetterhealth.com
Mother Earth News

What Are You Doing to Protect Your Eyes?

Monday, March 10, 2014 by Ben H

Aside from an annual vision exam, how often do you really think about the health of your eyes? For most people, they’re probably far down the list of organs and body parts considered on a regular basis. But the question you should be asking yourself is, “Are you doing enough to protect your precious vision?”

Just like you take an essential fatty acid supplement full of omegas to support your heart and overall cardiovascular health, or a multi-mineral supplement to maintain healthy bones, there are supplements available (and some solid supporting research) that are designed to protect your vision by supporting the health of your eyes. Let’s take a look at a few such supplements from Nature’s Way.

Nature's Way Vision supplements

Eyebright HerbEyebright Herb

A native European herb, Eyebright Herb (Euphrasia officinalis) has been used for centuries to promote healthy eyes and sinus function. This unique herb was actually a popular feature in monastery gardens during the middle ages. Historically used for tired eyes, modern herbalists continue to utilize its natural qualities to promote healthy eyes and normal vision.

"I was having many problems with my vision, especially at night. I started taking this product about 5 yrs. ago and when I did it was like night became day. Since that happened I have never stopped taking it and I don't think I will ever do it." ~product review by Chapis

 

Standardized Bilberry

Bilberry is a natural source of powerful anthocyanins, which have been studied for the potential to support healthy eye function and protect vision. It’s a potent antioxidant that has been used support visual adaptation to light and nighttime vision, improve micro-circulation, promote healthy connective tissues and provide general antioxidant protection to the eyes. This Bilberry extract from Nature’s Way is standardized to 25% anthocyanins.

 

Ginkgold eyesGinkgold® Eyes

  • Promotes healthy blood flow in the eyes
  • Helps with night vision with targeted retina support
  • Provides antioxidant protection against free radical damage

Ginkgold® Eyes is a clinical strength ginkgo biloba extract supplement formulated specifically to promote healthy eyes by strengthening capillaries and supporting vital connective tissue in the eye. This formula also includes supporting nutrients—lutein and zeaxanthin, two protective carotenoids that have been heavily studied—that help the retina with its adaptation to light and dark conditions.

 

Vitamin A & D

These two vitamins are great for so many things, but you may not think of them as eye vitamins. While they do promote bone and immune health, vitamin A in particular also helps maintain the integrity of normal cell membrane, as well as vision and reproduction. This combination formula from Nature’s Way really rounds out this complete eye and vision support supplement 4-pack.

"I noticed the good results when taking this Vitamin A 15000IU for my eyesight & skin health. I also learned from Swanson Research the many benefits of D3. I tried other more expensive Vitamin A before. However this combo pack delivers the two in bargain price !" ~product review by quester00

 

GIVEAWAY—Sponsored by Nature's Way®

Follow the directions below to enter to win this four-pack from Nature’s Way! We’ll draw one winner next Monday at random from all entries received!

 

NOTE:  If you are reading this in an email, simply click the title of this post at the top of your email to get to the live post on the Swanson Health Blog, where you will find the giveaway entry form. If you’re not signed up but would like to receive free email updates from the Swanson Health Blog with new articles delivered right to your email inbox, click here to sign up!

New Product Reviews with Lee Swanson — March 2014

Saturday, March 1, 2014 by Lee Swanson

Libifem

Dear Friends and Valued Customers:

We have lots in store for you this month, with over a dozen new products and incredible savings on some of your longstanding favorites.

Our featured new product this month is Libifem™, a new solution to an underserved need. While the subject may be sensitive for some, it affects too many women to be ignored. We’re talking about female libido and sexual health.

 

Clinically Studied Female Libido Support

Libifem offers a scientifically supported natural option for women who wish to increase sexual desire. As Dr. Paul Clayton, Former Chairman of the Royal Society of Medicine, points out in our in-depth article, far too much emphasis has been placed on the male side of the sensual equation, leaving many women frustrated with the limited options available for them.

Libifem is a unique fenugreek seed extract standardized to a group of phytonutrients collectively known as “Fenuside.” Clinical research shows this one-of-a-kind preparation promotes five key markers of female libido—sexual cognition, arousal, experience, drive and climax. Please read more about the research and learn how Libifem offers a real solution to the one in four women who struggle with low libido.

 

New Loose Leaf Teas

Dandelion Loose Leaf TeaHoly Basil Loose Leaf Tea

Also this month, we introduce five new loose leaf teas guaranteed to satisfy even the most accomplished tea connoisseur. From classic Oolong to antioxidant-rich green and white teas, to the classic functional dandelion tea, our Certified Organic loose leaf teas are carefully sourced just for us and packed fresh in the heart of Europe, where tea is not just a beverage but a point of cultural pride. I guarantee you won’t find higher quality tea at better prices anywhere.

Look for more exciting new products like our new plant-based essential fatty acids, a great new herbal bladder support formula featuring Urox™, and a revolutionary new joint health supplement with glucosamine and type II collagen. And, as always, don’t miss our Buy-1-Get-1-FREE specials.

Thank you for taking a moment to review some of newest products for March, 2014, with me here on the Swanson Health Blog. Please continue to check in every so often for more updates as we move through the year... and cheers to a continued healthy 2014.

As always, I wish you the very best of health,

Lee Swanson