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Prepare your body for summer!

Congratulations! You made it through the infamous Canadian winter. Time to ditch the mittens and toques for sneakers and shorts. This is the time of year when we’re coming out of our hygge cocoon and opening our eyes (for what feels like the first time ever) to warm sun and green grass.

Whilst enjoying mother nature’s reawakening, let’s not forget about making sure our bodies are tuned up to take us well into late summer and beyond. Sure, getting enough exercise is always important, but what we put into our bodies deserves some attention.

T’is the season to break out the BBQ and beer – here are some tips for making sure your body enjoys the flavours of spring and summer as much as your palate does:

  • Portion size: as the saying goes, we eat with our eyes. Using smaller plates and utensils tricks our brains into thinking we’re eating big portions. An analysis spanning more than 50 separate studies found that varying the size of the plate or bowl had a significant effect on the amount of food the subjects consumed1. Scary fact: doubling plate size can increase the amount of food you eat by over 40%!2
  • Healthy treats: Zucchini, cucumber, broccoli florets, baby carrots, red, orange and yellow peppers – serve with a healthy spread like hummus, yogurt with herbs or fresh salsa and pair with naan bread and toasted pita.
  • Meal timing: to quote an old proverb, “eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a pauper.” A recent study found that the timing of when you eat can affect how your body metabolizes food1. Even though we’re now on the good side of Daylight Savings Time, be sure you eat at regular times to help minimize high blood pressure and cholesterol, a finding endorsed by the American Heart Association.3
  • Probiotics: stress, rich foods and various foods can affect our digestive system adversely. Probiotics are friendly bacteria thought to play a role in helping to support gastrointestinal health and promoting a favorable gut flora

What should I look for when choosing a probiotic?

  • Storage: If you’re an “on-the-go” person – then a shelf stable probiotic that doesn’t require refrigeration may be your best choice.
  • Guaranteed Potency: Probiotics are measured with “colony forming units” or “CFU” for short. So, look for products that have a CFU count that meets your needs.
  • Strains: Does the probiotic include researched strains? Some examples of researched strains are Lactobacillus acidophilus NCFM or Bifidobacterium Bl-04.
  • Capsule: What type of capsule is used? Using a delayed release capsule can help ensure that the healthy bacteria get past the acidic environment of the stomach.
  • Gluten & Dairy: Not all capsules are gluten and dairy free. Check the label before purchase to ensure your probiotics meet your dietary tolerances.

The Primadophilus Optima line of probiotics is the “go-to” for the on-the-go probiotic user. The Optima 50 Billion Digestive Health and Optima 50 Billion Women’s probiotics are shelf stable (no refrigeration required), provide guaranteed potency to expiry, and include researched healthy bacterial strains like NCFM and Bl-04. Both feature a delayed release capsule and are gluten and dairy-free.

References:
1 Holden SS, Zlatevska N, Dubelaar C. Whether smaller plates reduce consumption depends on who’s serving and who’s looking: a meta-analysis. J Assoc Consum Res. 2016;1(1):134–46.
2 Kahleova, H., Lloren, J.I., Mashchak, A., Hill, M. and Fraser, G.E. (2017). Meal Frequency and Timing are Associated with Changes in Body Mass Index in Adventist Healthy Study 2. The Journal of Nutrition.
3 St-Onge, M-P., Ard, J., Baskin, M.L., Chiuve, S.E., Johnson, H.M., Kris-Etherton, P. and Varady, K. (2017). Meal Timing and Frequency: Implications for Cardiovascular Disease Prevention: A Scientific Statement from the American Heart Association, Circulation: AHA Scientific Statement.

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About the Author: Nature’s Way Team

“Nature’s

Nature’s Way began from a simple desire to do something more for people, to help enhance health and happiness, and is now a recognized leader in nutritional and dietary supplements around the world. Learn more at natureswaycanada.ca

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