Don’t Look Worried, Be Happy!

Have you ever watched a television program and wondered how the actors can portray different characters with such believability that we are convinced they are the person they are depicting?  For example, when a male actor and female actor are in an emotional scene where the man breaks the lady’s heart.  Tears of sadness streams from her eyes as their faces contorted with hurt and anguish.  The action is so ‘real’ that you almost start crying yourself.  Or, we witness a happy ending, and we laugh with happiness or cry from joy along with the actors.

 Are the actors really feeling the emotions attached to these powerful portrayals?  One might believe that an experienced actor can give the appearance of experiencing emotions without actually feeling them.  There is no doubt that some actors are so well trained that they convey what would appear to be the true meaning and emotion of the scene.  On the other hand, there are also those actors that do not have the ability to relay those deeply intense feelings, so they appear somewhat shallow and insincere.

What does this all have to do with you and your VitaMist business?  Truth be told, we are all actors on the ‘Stage of Life’. Many of the same principles that are used theatre and film are used in life itself.  Case in point, we all know from our past talks that we can choose how we feel from day to day, and from minute to minute.  “If it is to be, it is up to me.”  For example, you wake up in the morning, and you say to yourself, “Today is going to be a great day!”  Then, with your mind programmed you allow yourself to feel the way you are supposed to, you end up having an exciting and wonderful day. Recently I noticed a sign in someone’s office that stated, “You do not sing because you are happy, we are happy because we sing.”  But you might be saying to yourself, “I never feel happy, yet I have good feelings”. Well, if you are waiting for the feeling to come to you automatically, then you will be in the queue for a long time, and are likely be disappointed.  Only you can control your attitude and how your day will go, so take action today!

It takes practice to feel good, both about yourself and about life.  Before the real thing comes, you must first learn how to act the way you want to feel.  Positive actions will create positive feelings.  Actions are the words you speak; your body movements; your eye contact; your breath, and even your posture. In summary, the inspiration for a happy feeling is doing things that bring about a happy response.

Recently I was at a large dinner party, so large that there were about 40 different tables to seat the entire group.  Each table of guests was deep into their conversations when suddenly one of the groups exploded with laughter.  At first, the sudden burst of noise was distracting to the entire room, but soon everyone calmed down.  Seconds later, the same group of guest exploded again with laughter and the giggles continued… so that the table of guest next to the joy makers began laughing too.  Then another table, and another and soon the guest at my table were laughing out loud, so loud that I began laughing.  “What were we laughing about?” you may ask.  To this day, I could not tell you.  The fact is, we were laughing because others were laughing.  You have all had experiences like this – whether is has been carried away with laughter, or shedding a few tears.  Try it yourself; act happy and watch the doors of joy open before you.  Don’t wait for others in life to make you happy.  You are in control of your giggle-box, so die laughing today.

The Freshest in the World

Scotch, cheese, cast iron cookware and your favorite pair of jeans; there’s no denying that some things just get better with age.  Unfortunately, your vitamins are not among them.  Even under ideal conditions, most supplements degrade over time.  Heat, light, humidity and the oxygen in the air all accelerate this process.

When we go grocery shopping, we select the freshest ingredients available.  We recognize that the freshness of our perishables is a reflection of their quality.  We test our fruits and vegetables for ripeness.  We ask the butchers and fishmongers, “Is it fresh?”  So why don’t we check the freshness of our vitamins?  Is checking the expiration date enough?  If you think about it, nutritional supplements are food, in a different form.  If you’re supplementing with pills, instead of VitaMist, then they probably don’t taste as good as food, but their ultimate purpose is the same.  Supplements provide a concentrated form of micronutrients (vitamins and minerals), botanicals and even some macronutrients (carbs, fats, proteins, sodium, and potassium).  They are no different than food, so we should take the same approach with them that we do when we shop for groceries.  Recognize that their freshness is a reflection of their quality, avoid purchasing ‘overripe‘ supplements and always ask, “Is this fresh?”

To understand the importance of taking our supplements when they’re still fresh, we’ll have to take a look at the process that gets them to your medicine cabinet.  Just as most grocers do not milk cows and pick tomatoes, supplement distributors do not manufacture raw ingredients.  Manufacturers purchase the raw ingredients used from companies such as our partner Glanbia Nutritionals.  These companies serve as bulk suppliers for ingredients, usually powders or liquids.  Here they are tested for purity and potential contaminants, then packaged for bulk distribution.  These companies assign expiration dates for each batch tested and then ship the ingredients out to manufacturers.  The manufacturers usually order these ingredients in large quantities, because it is far cheaper that way.  The problem is that ordering large quantities means that the raw powders and liquids are sitting around in the manufacturing facility for extended periods of time before they’re even used to make a product.  Once the product is made, the manufacturer then slaps an expiration date on it.  This expiration date has nothing to do with the expiration dates provided by the raw ingredient distributor.  Instead, they are the results of stability tests performed before the company ever sold their first supplement.  The expiration dates are often two or three years from the date the product was manufactured.  Furthermore, the tests are performed on products that used fresh ingredients, straight from the distributor, not the ones that sat around in the facility.  So now you have a product with a dubious expiration date sitting in a warehouse owned by the manufacturer or a bulk storage company, waiting to be sold to a distributor.  When they’re sold to a distributor, such as a vitamin shop or grocery store, they sit in the distributor’s storage area until there is shelf space for them.  Even after all this time in storage, that supplement still needs to wait for you to buy it, and from then it will be a month or more until the product is all used up.

Just looking at the size of that last paragraph gives me the impression that this supplement’s freshness is suspect.  Getting a supplement to you is usually a long process, and the whole time this is happening, those nutrients are degrading.  The process is made worse the moment consumers open the bottle.  Pill bottles are air tight because few things will break down a vitamin as rapidly as oxygen and light will.  They are so effective at breaking down nutrients that you can easily test the results yourself.  The first time you open a supplement bottle, give it a whiff.  There shouldn’t be much of an odor to it unless it’s a botanical supplement.  Now try again in a week, then two weeks.  Try smelling that pill bottle after a month, when you’re taking the last capsule.  That odor means that your supplement is getting overripe.  Like a banana that’s been on the counter too long, that supplement has passed its prime.

A Fresh Approach.  VitamiSt!

So what makes VitaMist “The Freshest in the World”?  It’s not one single thing.  We’ll go over the process a VitaMist supplement takes to get to your medicine cabinet, but don’t worry, this paragraph won’t be anywhere near as long.  Rather than taking advantage of the savings we would get from ordering and storing large batches of ingredients from our partners, we order them in much smaller quantities.  This ensures that we often have the most recent batch from our suppliers.  Smaller batches of ingredients mean smaller batches of products.  In fact, we try to time it so that we’re making a new batch of each product every month.  Then we directly ship our products to our affiliates and our online customers, each and every month.

If there were a faster way to get seafood from Maine to your dinner table, you’d probably be pretty happy, wouldn’t you?  Well then, rejoice!  While our B12 spray might not be Maine lobster, it’s much better for you, and we can get it to you faster and fresher than the competition.  But what about once you’ve “opened the bottle”?  Well, obviously we don’t have your typical pill bottle.  We’ve got something better.  Our sprays are protected from light from the time they enter the can until the last drop has been sprayed.  This goes a long way in maintaining freshness, by completely negating the effects of light on our products.  To protect them from the atmosphere, each spray is flushed with with nitrogen to remove any oxygen before the canister is sealed.  Spraying your first spray is like popping the top off a pill bottle, except that instead of the entire containing filling with air, only 0.04 ml of air is injected into the bottle to force and equal amount of spray out.  Since oxygen is around 21% of the atmosphere, with each spray you’ll add approximately 0.0105 ml of oxygen.  In case you don’t recall what a milliliter looks like, it’s pretty darn small.  One one-thousandth of a milliliter is a miniscule amount of oxygen.  Try the smell test with one of our sprays, and you’ll be hard pressed to notice a difference between spray one and spray two hundred and forty.

Of course, some of you have probably realized that over the course of a month, eventually that entire canister will be filled with air.  That’s very true, and it’s why we’ve got a tip to help you make sure that your VitaMist sprays stay fresher, longer.  The oxygen in that canister can only come into contact with any nutrients along the surface area of the liquid.  Any air injected into the canister by the pump or mixed in with the contents by shaking it will quickly rise back up to the top, and separate from the liquid.  This means you can keep your product fresh for longer by reducing the surface area of the fluid.  Standing your products up in the medicine cabinet, or hanging them from one of our lanyards are great ways to prevent degradation!

If you want a good idea of a VitaMist product’s freshness, check the bottom of the canister.  That stamp on the bottom starts with a letter or string of letters that signifies which product you’re looking at.  That string is followed by six numbers;  this is a date, in the form of mmddyy. No, that is not an expiration date.  As I mentioned earlier, an expiration date doesn’t tell us as much about a product’s freshness as you would hope.  That is your product’s Born On Date.  Check this the next time you receive a VitaMist spray, and you’ll see that your products are often made as recently as the very month you received it, or the month before.  Compare that to other manufacturers and there is no denying that VitaMist Spray Vitamins are The Freshest In the World!

Here Comes Halloween!

October always seem to get me excited because it has one of my favorite holidays, Halloween.  For at least 15 years my husband and I held Halloween parties at our home.  For those of you who were members of our VitaMist family in those days, I’m sure you remember being there.

October and Halloween also means CANDY, CANDY, CANDY and more CANDY! Have you noticed that every year it’s the same?  We buy the candy in bulk well before the trick-or-treaters show up, and then we start eating it OURSELVES!  Our workplaces are full of those delicious treats. In fact, everywhere we go there seems to be bowl after bowl of CANDY!  We always seem to say to ourselves “I’ll just take one!”  But somehow that one piece turns into many.

Eventually all those “just ones” add up… around our middles.

So this year VitaMIst has a better suggestion.  Instead of unwrapping another candy bar, which you just KNOW you are going to regret, why not spray a couple of shots of Slender-Mist Chocolate Fudge!  TRY IT!  You get the taste, the mouth feel, the sensation – WITHOUT THE CALORIES!

Here is another great idea!!   How about giving away coupons with that candy you are handing out.  To help get your good habits started, we have designed a beautiful Coupon for any Slender-Mist product, that you can give away to everybody for Halloween.  The coupons are in full color on both sides, and can be customized for a small fee.  Call Customer Service to find out more. 1 (800) 582-5273.

 

From My Heart With LOV – Sari

 

P.S. Happy ’52’ years Joe!!

Messengers of Hope

Amy Cayer
Ray & Juanita Wilson
Bret Grubbs
Janice Tobens
Elaine Spence

Spreading the Fire

Bret Grubbs
Lynn Deer
Ray & Juanita Wilson
Lloyd Grimes
Jacob Hinton

The 6 Categories of Superfoods

Teriyaki salmon dinner with green onions and sesame seeds

Animal Products

Animal products are not an option for vegetarians and vegans, but they are valuable sources of nutrients for those on more omnivorous diets. While many animal products can do more harm than good, there are some superfoods that cannot be overlooked.  Eggs, for instance, deliver 6 grams of protein, despite being only 72 calories.  Since there are 4 calories per gram of protein, this means one third of an egg’s caloric contribution comes from protein.  If you only eat the egg whites, that protein jumps up to 85% of the egg’s calories!

Eggs In a Basket

3 Oz. of turkey breast pack 20 grams of protein into just 90 calories, for 89% of its caloric contribution, and 3 Oz. of salmon will provide all of the omega-3 fatty acids you need for the day. If you dress your fish or poultry with some greek yogurt, you’ll take your entrée’s nutritional value to a whole other level.  Perhaps some of the most nutrient rich food sources available are liver and kidneys.  As a society, we’ve moved away from the days when livers and kidneys were common staples of the dinner table, and that’s a shame.  A diet consisting of only liver or kidneys with a green such as spinach on the side would deliver all of the micronutrients and macronutrients your body needs to survive.

Dairy is also important, as it provides one of the most crucial micronutrients, calcium.  While some people love the taste of milk, there are many who dislike it, or can’t process it.  If you’re just not a fan, then try to include more cheeses or greek yogurt into your diet.  Cheeses with stronger flavors are often better for you.  American cheese is rather bland because it’s made with low fat milk, sugars and chemicals, whereas sharp cheddar, gouda, goat cheeses, brie and others rely more on whole milk, healthy bacteria and minerals to provide flavor.

For those who can’t or don’t want to consume animal products, supplementing with B-complex vitamins, especially B-12, and iron may be necessary.  For those who can’t process milk, this next gategory is also a great source of calcium.

Greens

Enough can’t be said about all of the benefits of ensuring a diet rich in green vegetables… although we did say quite a bit in our last Brief.  Some of the superfoods we didn’t cover last week include spitulina, blu-green algae and wheat or barley grass.  True nutrient power houses, each and every one of them.

Seaweed clinging to rocks along the shore

Seaweed

The greens of the sea, seaweed gets it own category for very good reasons.  The environment below the ocean’s surface is obviously very different than the environment above, but did you know that sea water is actually very close in composition to our own blood plasma?  This environment leads to vegetation that is rich in minerals, omega-3’s, alkalizing agents that lower our bodies’ acidity and much, much more.

Seaweeds such as kelp, nori, wakame and others tend to be ‘acquired tastes’.  But they are tastes that are well worth acquiring, since they are all extremely beneficial as detoxifiers, anti-oxidants, purifiers and nutrient sources.  When choosing seaweed products from a store, be sure to pay attention to where the products were sourced from.  Seaweeeds take on the properties of the waters they grew in, so products sourced from polluted waters can do more harm than good.  Certified organic products can be more expensive than their countrparts, but this is an instance when it’s well worth it to pay that extra cost.

Botanicals

aloe vera plant

Many herbs and other botanicals are not considered ‘greens’ or vegetables because they don’t carry enough macro-nutrients (carbs, fats, proteins, sodium and potassium), but that doesn’t mean they can’t be superfoods.  Basil, cilantro and parsley are packed with flavor, and micronutrients as well.  Most edible botanicals carry valuable cancer fighting phytonutrients, and many have additional medicinal properties.  Don’t exclude botanicals when you think of superfoods.  Many, such as aloe vera, ginseng, echinacea and nettle are valuable enough to be worth adding to your morning smoothy, or even supplementing with products like ImmuneX or Breathe EZ.

Nuts & Fruits

These are our fan favorite superfoods.  Many people have allergies that prevent them from taking advantage of the proteins and healthy fats provided by nuts.  Fortunately, though, most fruits are extremely low in allergens.  While oranges with their high Vitamin C content, and coconuts with their fantastic electrolyte balance are both well known, there are some other fruits you should take note of.

Coconut & Nuts

Acai, noni, maca, goji berries and raw cacao (aka chocolate!) are all gaining popularity in health food stores and nutrition blogs throughout the world.  This is neither a fluke nor a fad.  These superfoods pack a huge punch into small, delicious packages.  The minerals, enzymes, anti-oxidants and phytochemicals in these foods make them some of the most healthy snack foods you can get your hands on.

Bee Products

Honey dripping from honey dipperThe last category might come as a surprise, but we hope it’s a pleasant one.  The close relationship between bees and the flowers they pollinate are why their products are loaded with so many nutrients.  They are basically nature’s supplement manufacturers.  The long shelf life of honey can be attributed to its natural preservatives, which fight off bacteria and other microorganisms.  Bees produce much more than just honey, though.  Bee propolis and bee pollen are common nutritional supplements, but royal jelly is where the bee’s supplement manufacturing really shines.  Royal jelly is brimming all the nutrients required for life.  This includes a hefty dose of B-complex vitamins, with royal jelly being the highest concentrated source of Vitamin B5, a nutrient that prevents fatigue and the effects of stress.  This is why we used it as the finishing touch for our ATP: Super-Cell Food!

Bee pollinating echinacea flower.

Bringing It All Together

You don’t often hear the words “superfood” and “delicious” used in the same sentence.  But when you look at the six major categories of superfoods, a healthier and tastier diet starts to come into view.  The best diets are those that incorporate a lot of variety.  Eating your kale salad twice a day can be more than a little tedious, and it’s tough to stick with a diet like that.  Look into all six categories of superfoods, and you’ll find a diet that’s easy to stick to.  Pick and choose your superfood.  Mix it up from meal meal, day to day.  Satisfy your hunger with your favorite snacks from these categories.  Supplement your diet with the nutrients you’re missing.  Do these things, and you’ll have the energy you want, without being restricted to the depressing and often unhealthy fad diets that have flooded the market.

14 Vegetables With a Higher Nutrient Density Than Kale

These days it seems the whole world has gone kale krazy.  But is kale really the most super of all superfoods? The Centers for Disease Control doesn’t think so. In fact, they don’t even rank it in the top ten supervegetables.  Kale lands in fifteenth place, with a respectable 49.07 Nutrient Density Score.  Here’s the CDC’s top 15:

Rank Vegetable Nutrient Density Score
15 Kale 49.07

So, this means you can stop eating kale, right?

Closeup of Kale Leaves

Sorry kale haters, but 49.07 is still a highly respectable Nutrient Density Score.  Your biggest takeaway here is that kale is not your one stop shop for daily nutrients.  In fact, the healthiest (and most enjoyable) diets are those with a lot of variety.  So mix your kale with some other tasty greens, to ensure a healthy and happy diet!

 A Cautionary Kale:  Although it’s in 15th place, kale is still action packed with nutrients, including a whopping 1180 times the recommended daily intake of Vitamin K.  People on blood thinners should consult their health care providers about what not to eat because greens like kale and spinach might be doing more harm than good!

14 Chives 54.80
Chives Grwoning in the WildEasily the healthiest topping you put on your baked potato (and arguably the only healthy topping you put on your baked potato). Allium vegetables, such as garlic, scallions, onions and leeks, have long been pushed for their beneficial properties, but chives just might be the healthiest of the bunch! Their potent flavor makes it difficult to consume a full serving of them, but sprinkling a little on your meals can add a flavor kick that’s packed with vitamins and minerals.
13 Endives 60.44

Three Endives Lined Up in a RowAs far as green, leafy vegetables go, endives don’t seem very green or leafy. That doesn’t stop them from being packed full of nutrients, despite containing hardly any calories.  The endive the CDC is referring to here is the Belgian endive pictured on the right.

Endives are a great source of folate, vitamin K, choline, minerals, omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, as well as additional vitamins though they’re found in much smaller amounts.

12 Mustard Greens 61.39

Bunch of Mustard Greens Against a Plain White BackdropMustard Greens have been shown to lower cholesterol, and they fall just short of collard greens and kale in this ability.  Like many green, leafy vegetables, mustard greens contain cancer-fighting agents, and they are second only to Brussels sprouts in glucosinolate, one such compound.

A terrific source of vitamins and minerals, and packing a strong peppery bite, mustard greens are great as a side dish or mixed in with other greens in a salad.

11 Turnip Greens 62.12

Basket of Turnips With Their Greens Still AttachedTurnip Greens can be rather bitter, but a major reason for this is the considerable amount of calcium they provide.  In fact, one cup of steamed turnip greens can provide 20% of your daily calcium requirements.  This is especially impressive when you take into consideration that calcium has far and away the highest daily requirement of all the micronutrients.

Calcium is not their only benefit, though.  Turnip greens still come packed with other minerals, vitamins, protein and omega-3 fatty acids.

10 Collard Greens 62.49
Closeup of a Collard green leafSadly, cooking collard greens in bacon fat does not make them more healthy, only more fattening and delicious.  When cooking greens, the optimal method is always to steam them.  Boiling and other methods leach nutrients from them.  Heat tends to destabilize and destroy many vitamins, but the effect is not as pronounced when steaming vegetables.  In fact, steaming vegetables can increase the variety of helpful sulfur containing compounds.
9 Romaine Lettuce 63.48
Row of Lettuce Ready for Harvest

Everybody knows that romaine lettuce is far healthier than the relatively useless iceberg lettuce.  Or at least they do after reading that last sentence.  Romaine lettuce is a staple in most salads, so it’s nice to see that this mild and fresh tasting lettuce is so nutrient rich.

Use romaine lettuce as a base for your salads, and then add other greens and herbs around it for a variety of exciting flavors.  Cilantro did not make this list, but it’s still a very nutritious herb that pairs well with a little romaine.  Add in some leaf lettuce and one of the more “peppery” vegetables, such as mustard greens and you’re off to a tasty and healthy start.  You don’t need to rely on your vinaigrette to enhance the flavor of your salad!  Variety is the spice of life, after all.

8 Parsley 65.59

Plethora of ParsleyOne of the tastiest plants to make this list, parsley is the most popular herb in the world.  It’s great as a seasoning or added to salads, but parsley can also be used in uncommon ways, such as adding it to a sandwich in place of lettuce.

Not just flavorful, parsley is noted for being rich in vitamin C, antioxidants and carcinogen neutralizing agents.  It has been also been associated with good heart health.

7 Leaf Lettuce 70.73

Leaf Lettuce CloseupLeaf lettuce is second only to Popeye’s favorite in nutrient density among the most common green, leafy vegetables.  While spinach dominates in nearly every category, an NDS of 70.73 is nothing to sneeze at.  That’s more than twice the NDS of broccoli.

Maybe parents should be telling their children to eat their lettuce, instead?

6 Chicory 73.36
Chicory on Burlap

The chicory family includes radicchio, escarole and cultivated dandelion (which has a more subtle flavor than the wild dandelion weeds).  The taste of each is similar, despite their differences in appearance, and each one is packed full of nutrients.

Beyond the usual vitamins and minerals, chicory is an excellent source of potassium, a valuable electrolyte.

5 Spinach 86.43

Spinach LeavesIt’s no surprise to find spinach in the top five vegetable powerhouses.  A great source of calcium and vitamin K, spinach outstrips most green, leafy vegetables in nearly every nutrient category.

Long known for its versatility on the breakfast, lunch or dinner table, spinach is just as versatile as a nutrient delivery system.  Its well-rounded repertoire makes it a valuable addition to any meal.

4 Beet Greens 87.08
Beets with Greens at a Farmers Market

With the obvious exception of Soylent, most foods that end with the word “green” tend to be quite healthy, but none more so than beet greens.  The vibrant green colors of the leaves and deep reddish-purple of the stems and veins are our visual clues that these wonderful vegetables are packed with a variety of nutrients.

With a high concentration of iron, and more protein than most greens, beet greens contain sizable percentages of many of our daily requirements.  While their folate levels aren’t overly impressive at 5% of the RDI, including one cup of beetroot with a serving of the greens can boost those levels to nearly 40% of the RDI.  Adding beetroots will also provide additional fiber, minerals, vitamin C and vitamin B6.

3 Chard 89.27
Swiss chard in a Variety of Colors

One of the prettier vegetables on the market, chard contains all of the carcinogen binding chemicals, bioflavonoids and phytonutrients we’ve come to expect out of our green, leafy vegetables, but with the addition of syringic acid.  Syringic acid is a nutrient that’s been found to help regulate blood sugar levels.

Combine these amazing abilities with a nutrient density score of a whopping 89.27, and you’ve got yourself a vegetable that’s not just pretty to look at, it’s pretty darn good for you to eat it as well.

2 Chinese Cabbage 91.99
Chinese Cabbage

Like regular cabbage, only taller.  Oh, and also packed with an incredible amount of nutrients.  Chinese cabbage, or bok choy, contains very good amounts of 21 different nutrients.  This includes omega-3 fatty acids and even high concentrations of zinc.

Chinese cabbage is a great addition to any diet, but it’s especially useful if you’re looking for dietary sources of anti-oxidants and anti-inflammatories.

1 Watercress 100.00
Watercress

And the Winner Is!

Watercress tops off the list at #1 with the unmatched nutrient density score of 100.  You don’t hear a lot of talk about watercress outside of the nutritionally well informed, but it’s long been known as a superfood.  Despite being very low in calories, it contains a wide variety of nutrients, without going overboard on the vitamin K as many green, leafy vegetables do.  In fact, watercress doesn’t go all out in any single ingredient.  Where it shines is in its  jack-of-all-trades nature.

The Link Between Obesity and Dementia

Memories are intensely personal.  More than just a catalog of our personal histories, they are the foundation of our realities.  They make us who we are.  Each of them comes with a record of events, combined with the emotions we experienced as they happened.  They’re connected to colors, shapes, sounds, smells, tastes, feelings and, above all, to other people; particularly our friends and family.  They are the basis for our thoughts and feelings about the people around us.  This is why losing these memories is so painful, confusing and frightening.  Not just for those who feel their reality slipping away, but also for their friends and family, who suffer just as much from the terrible afflictions that tear these memories away.

 There is no magical pill to prevent diseases such as Alzheimer’s or other forms of dementia.  Internet search results will yield many supplements and health tips that claim to prevent these diseases, or to be “linked to” their prevention.  But the truth is that the study of Alzheimer’s, the most widely known and feared form of dementia, has yet to reveal a root cause.  The disease is still not fully understood.  For this reason, preventative measures are usually speculative.  Most scientists believe that Alzheimer’s Disease is the result of a combination of factors, such as lifestyle, environmental factors, and genetics.  Less than 5% of all cases are linked to specific genetic changes that all but guarantee the that the disease will be developed.

 Although most preventative measures for Alzheimer’s are speculative, there is strong evidence that diet and exercise are critical factors in preventing or postponing the disease.  Diet and exercise are also known to prevent other forms of dementia, especially those resulting from strokes or uncontrolled high blood pressure.  The only surefire way to reduce our risk of dementia is through good health.  But until recently, there had been no quantifiable way to express just how important diet and exercise were.

 A new study has shown a direct link between BMI (Body Mass Index), and the speed at which Alzheimer’s Disease develops.  In fact, each extra point of BMI can cause Alzheimer’s disease to develop seven months earlier than it would have if your weight had been within healthy levels.  These are staggering results.  Especially when you consider that a person who is only mildly obese (BMI of around 30) is at risk of developing Alzheimer’s Disease three years sooner.  That’s three additional years of lost time, lost memories, confusion, stress, worry and financial strain.

 People throughout the world suffer from the adverse effects of some form of dementia.  Whether it’s their own battle with these conditions or somebody close to them.  The hope is that some day we will find ways to prevent dementia, stop the destruction it causes our brain tissue and perhaps even reverse the effects.  Until that day comes, the only known preventative measure is to take care of our bodies.  Losing weight often seems more daunting than it is.  It’s certainly a challenge, but it’s one that we will address in future articles.  For now, setting a goal weight could be your first step towards preventing countless diseases, including heart disease, diabetes, and even dementia.

 To help set your goal weight, the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute provides an easy to use BMI Calculator.  Because these simple calculators assume only moderate levels of muscle mass, they are not accurate for muscular individuals, and can even underestimate the BMI of people with little muscle mass.  However, for the majority of Americans and people in developed nations, calculators such as this one give us a good idea of what our BMI is, and what our optimal weight should be.  By finding your height and desired BMI on a BMI Table, it makes it easier to set your goal weight, and get started down the road to good health.