Keeping a Track of Your Food Intolerances

If you have complex Food Intolerances keeping track of your do and don’t list foods can be a chore. This can be increasingly difficult if you are unfortunate enough to have more than a single food intolerance or when you are reintroducing foods after a restricted diet period.

An excellent App by Baliza GmBh may be the simple help you have been looking for, allowing you to carry around with you a comprehensive but easily used source of FOOD INTOLERANCE information.

This App allows you to choose from the most common food intolerances; Histamine, Fructose, Sorbitol, Lactose, Salicylates and Gluten.  Furthermore, you can combine two or more food intolerances if appropriate and the App will collate a summated list for you. By setting up Food Intolerance filters of your personal choice you will be subsequently able to screen each food for the content levels of food chemicals of concern.

Foods are colour coded according to four categories; Green (foods that can be consumed without restriction), yellow (foods that do not cause problems for most people), orange (foods that are frequent causes of food reactions) and red (highly problematic foods). Further comments are also added where relevant.

This is a highly informative App with additional notes on each of the food chemicals discussed. It therefore not only serves as a pragmatic food tool but an educational source as well. For added confidence for health professionals the App comes with a reference list.

Baliza GmBh is therefore a very helpful tool for both individual’s with Food Intolerances and Professionals that deal with patients with Food Intolerances. Not only is the information invaluable, the construct of the App is very easy to use.

As a tablet/ phone App it can be readily available whilst you shop or when dining at a restaurant, although one limitation is that it may not always cover all the commercial foods you will find in the supermarket…you will need to sort through the food labels for yourself.

All in all, FOOD INTOLERANCES by Barista GmBh is one of the best Apps of its kind, available on both Android and IOS (Apple platforms).

Giving Up on Your Past

I have to confess, I am somewhat of a history geek. A fascination with history, from the grand aspects we have all been taught at school to the little know idiosyncracies of our past has guided my reading time and made me a travel addict.

Yet after a lot of contemplation of history and its effects on the present I am beginning to wonder whether or not an over obsession with our history is not endangering our present. True, it has been said that if we do not understand where we have been how can we understand where we are going.

But if keep going back to where we already have been doesn’t that also mean we will find it hard to change towards a better future?

Consider any example you like of a modern conflict and it is usually apparent, and quite extensively so, that an inability to move away from the injustices of our past leads headlong into continued conflict in the present.

Acknowledging the lessons of our history is one worthy consideration, but using history, and, in particular, our selectively chosen and interpreted fragments of history to choose our perspective and subsequently allowing these perspective to justify all manner of vile acts and incomprehensible crimes can only damn us with pain and suffering.

Perhaps that is even more important when it comes to our personal lives. Many of us have lived with pain and suffering.  Some personal experiences may be etched into your brain such that reflection upon it returns you into that very moment of, perhaps, your worst experience.

Yet when this happens what are you going to about it?

Are you going to let yourself stagnate within the traumas of your past?

Worse still, seek moments of retribution and revenge in the present?

Or are you going to step forward, accept what has happened, learn from the lessons of the journey, forgive when you are ready (whether forgiveness is towards others or yourself)) and decide that your future can and will be better because you are not a victim of your history.

You are an active and empowered person who can adapt, evolve, change and transcend yourself by working towards the future every day.

No one in the life can change the past. You have a limited capacity to change other people who are trapped in the past.

But you do have the ability to change yourself and your future. There are many ways to do this, but here is one I suggest today.

Commit to burying the negative influences of your past that are affecting your present life, even create a ritual to do so if this works for you, in order to create a fresh freedom to move forward in the future.

Enjoying a Health Bath

Throughout the history of a variety of cultures the bath has been a lifestyle for health and longevity. The Romans were well known for enjoying a good bath The entire population used a mixture of hot, cold and lounging baths for both cleansing a socialising with friends

In Turkey and Islamic countries in general various types of bath or hammam were also used carrying over the tradition of the Romans. Steamed and often fragrant rooms also added to the experience and elegant baths can still be found in many cities today.

In Japan the bath was of such importance that some historians believe it is one of the only truly Japanese experiences (most other aspects of their society being borrowed from the Asian mainland). This is partly due to the numerous amount of volcanic springs found in Japan that provided a natural source for the country’s many public onsen that can still be enjoyed today.

Baths have always attracted a mixed reputation by their very nature. While a religious basic of sorts through bathing’s association with cleanliness, from Ancient Egypt, Rome and Greece, to Islamic traditions and even the Christian rite of baptism, baths were also periodically chastised a s a source of sin and iniquity. I suppose one can therefor enjoy from a bath all manner of human experiences.

With such a history of public bathing it is unsurprising that many forms of baths exist.  Just add water and you have a bath, but what you add to the water alters the experience.  Baths that arise from natural origins can have varying mineral content in the water while all manner of other additives including medicinal herbs, muds and sands, essential oils, flowers and pine all have been used in baths. Furthermore baths were frequently coupled with spas, healers and masseuses, further varying the experience.

All this suggested that baths may have innumerable healing qualities. Few would argue that baths are relaxing and help unload stress at the end of the day. Certainly there is little to equal a bath in reducing both psychological and physical tension. Soak your whole body or just your feet and the results are almost immediate.

A bath is also a natural way of increasing your peripheral circulation. Minerals added to baths such as magnesium (Epsom salts) may also be absorbed through the skin during a bath while essential oils added to a bath may help to moisturise the skin and have their own particular health influence.

Baths are also considered a method of detoxifying the body of many of the accumulated pollutants of modern society. The heat of a bath mobilises the lymphatic drainage system releasing toxins through the sweat as induced by the bath’s heat.

So why not enjoy more baths in your life not only for the health benefits but just the enjoyment of relaxing and unwinding?

Plan for the occasions, create the perfect environment with a little care and attention; candles, fragrances, oils, music, a good book. Ensure no interruptions, this is ‘you time’ for simple self-indulgence.

After all, you deserve it.

Please Note: If you have any blood pressure concerns a very hot bath may not be for you. Discuss this with your doctor. Men looking to conceive should also not take overly hot baths as it may effect fertility.

Help with Correcting Your Posture

Many of us suffer with the consequences of poor posture. Our muscles ache, neck and back become stiff, eyes sore. We all also have unique postural stresses in our lives. It may be prolonged sitting, standing or a position particularly to your home environment that impacts on your Health and Happiness.

Because of this there are many aids to help with your posture. Ergonomic chairs, lumbar rolls, postural straps and tapes, yet there is one tool that most of us have that can be highly effective in improving upon your posture.

What is it?

Your smart phone. No, we are not going sit on them, stand or position these in your lumbar curves, that is not how we intend to use them. There are far simpler ways of using your phone to correct your posture than as a mechanical device.

First of all, there is plenty of information of the internet that can help you understand your postural conditions. Websites that give you the correct posture at a work station are easy to find with a simple Google search.

Easier again is to download an interaction App that helps you work with your posture whether for an Apple (IOS), Android or Microsoft device.

One example of a tip providing App is ‘How to Get the Perfect Posture [Android]’, a simple compilation of articles on how to improve your posture such as sitting, standing, driving and walking posture suggestions, the use of visualisation, massage and exercise for posture and more innovative ideas such as image reminders, breath control and postural challenges.

A step further in the App department is to use your Smart device as a timed postural reminder. Simple Apps such as ‘Posture Corrector [Android]’ allow you to set up a vibration reminder at set intervals (from 2 minutes to 60 minutes) that will prompt you to correct your posture. This is a good way to work on your posture, by starting with short reminder intervals and extending the period between plugs.

An additional consideration are Apps such as ‘Salute the Desk [Apple-IOS]’ that provide a series of stretches and exercises to alleviate postural tension throughout the day. Rolling your shoulders, arching your back, stretching your forearms after long hours at the keyboard are just some of the exercises that you will find may reduce the ache and fatigue caused by long periods of static or dynamic posture.

Finally, there are various professional posture assessment apps that may be used to assess your posture such as ‘Posture Screen Mobile’. These Apps allow you to take a photograph that is subsequently reviewed by the programme and feedback given to you as to the problems with your posture.

A note of caution, however, such Apps are intended for the use of professionals so unless you have some idea of how to apply the information to provide you with specific postural correction and exercise advice you may be better served by an appointment with a physiotherapist, chiropractor, osteopath or other health professional.

Giving Yourself Permission

Do you you remember your childhood when you would sing and dance, laugh at anything, perhaps delve into some little act of cheeky defiance without a concern for the frivolity of it all?

Throw a little water around, roll in the mud, even have a food fight?

Why did such actions feel so right back then, but now appear vastly inappropriate?

We are not talking about committing crimes here, just a little mischievous fun. Is there any reason growing up suddenly meant losing touch with the whimsical side of life?

It never use to be that way, indeed there are many festivals worldwide that celebrate letting your hair down as if a social release is sometimes required, if not necessary. In many Catholic countries Carnivale preceded the rigours of leant. In India there is the paint throwing festival of Holi and the rigidly ordered Japanese take time out in summer for suikawari, watermelon smashing, just to name a few.

Yet why do we need festivals to allow us to indulge in a little bit of liberal frivolity.

There is a simple answer to this question and the word is permission.

For most of us our entry into adulthood and compliance with the rules of society has taken away the permission to enjoy ourselves in frivolously fun. We watch with fondness as children play in the park, laughing our loud without a care in the world, but fear to laugh ourselves in case that laughter is seen as being too childish.

Isn’t this ironic?

So I would like you to consider bringing a little joy back into life with spontaneous outbreaks of ‘childishness’, and I use this word deliberately.

Dare to live a little, laugh more, give yourself permission and give permission to others to be a somewhat daring and mischievous.

Of course we are not here talking about the kind of misadventures that hurt others. One of the most important rules in life continues to apply; ; ‘First do no harm’.There are many ways to breakout without being irresponsible.

But after assessing your compliance with this number one rule, how about breaking out and rebelling against the unnecessary formalities of adulthood. Choosing the right moment, of course, and amongst the right company, dare to act a little childishly and release the tension from your otherwise serious life.

Invite others to lighten up, give them permission too. Look around your community for others who are also willing to play, even if they need convincing.If you can’t find adult company, I’m sure a few kids will join in on the fun.

What about a water fight, a snow fight, a food fight, some paint ball? Spontaneously dance or join in on some karaoke. Learn a new joke or wear a funny t-shirt.

The key being to give yourself permission for a little pressure release from the seriousness of your life.

After all, if you can’t loosen up, even if for the occasional festival or carnival, what are you living this life for?

7 Weight Loss Short Cuts for Any Diet

Every day there is a different diet released in an ever confusing round of trends and fads. Worse still, each new diet usually adds to the sea of contradiction and confusion; no fat, low fat or enjoy your fat, high protein versus low protein, Mediterranean versus Paleo. It often just amounts to too much stress and a why bother attitude and in many cases the very opposite of what is intended, weight gain through the frustration of emotional eating.

Yet there are a few simple ways to reduce your weight by decreasing the calories that you consume which can be followed without any complex dietary knowledge or calculations. After all, reducing your caloric intake is a necessary aspect of losing weight, irrespective of whether or not your calories are coming in the form of fats, carbs or protein.

So here are a few simple rules to follow to kick start your weight loss. Add them to any diet and you are on your way to not only weight loss, but healthy eating.

1.     Don’t drink your calories.

Drinking calories is the number one way to exponentially increase your caloric intake. It doesn’t matter whether you are consuming a glass or cup of milk, fruit juice (home-made or not), soft drink or alcohol, the caloric intake begins at 80 calories or more (and is often twice this much).  So always drink water to satisfy your thirst. If you are going to have a smoothie consider it a meal on its own unless you have high energy needs (and in which case you would not be dieting).

2.     Cook your own foods.

Processed foods usually contain a high amount of added sugars and/or fats. When you cook yourself you know the calories that you are consuming. This means you can carefully monitor your diet and what you are consuming.

3.     Beware of bland foods such as rice, pasta, bread etc

There are several reasons why bland foods lead to weight gain. The first is that they are often carbohydrate rich irrespective of whether or not they contain gluten. Secondly, as they are bland you will often add a sauce or spread to flavour them up. Additionally, if they are dry like toast or croissants, you will add an oil based spread such as butter or margarine in addition to the flavouring. This all adds up to a triple hit of calorie additions.

4.     Know your low calorie substitutions

Here are a few suggestions for healthy low calorie substitutions for you to consider. Cauliflower ‘rice’ made by processing cauliflower to grain size then quickly steaming or stir frying. Carrot or zucchini noodles/pasta, created by stringing noodle length strands that you can subsequently steam or stir fry. Use herb based rubs to flavour meat, fish or poultry rather than sauces. Create water or lemon juice based dressings.

5.     Simplify your cooking

Think about the following six ‘S’ cooking methods that tend to lead to quick, healthy meals; salads, soups (vegetable and protein based), smoothies (considered a meal), steaming, stir frying and sizzling (pan-fried, with minimal oil). On the other hand if you are deep-frying or baking chances are you are either soaking up the oil and/or battering or crusting your foods.

6.     Keep snack foods to snack food sizes

This applies to nuts and seeds and, in particular, dried fruits. Healthy in small amounts but over indulgence risks calorie excess.

7.     Exercise

It doesn’t matter what diet you are on, you will need to exercise, if not for weight loss then for ongoing health. If you think that diets that say that you do not need to exercise will keep you healthy in the long term, you are deluding yourself.

App Assistance for Food Intolerances

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If you have complex food intolerances keeping track of your do and don’t list foods can be a chore. This can be increasingly difficult if you are unfortunate enough to have more than a single food intolerance or when you are reintroducing foods after a restricted diet period.

An excellent App by Baliza GmBh may be the simple help you have been looking for allowing you to carry around a comprehensive but easily used source of FOOD INTOLERANCE information. The App focuses on the primary food intolerances; Gluten, FODMAPS, Lactose, Salicylates and Amines

This App allows you to choose from the most common food intolerances; Histamine, Fructose, Sorbitol, Lactose, Salicylates and Gluten.  Furthermore you can combine two or more food intolerances if appropriate and the App will collate a summated list for you. By setting up Food Intolerance filters of your personal choice you will subsequently able to screen each food for the content levels of food chemicals of concern.

Foods are colour coded according to four categories; Green (consumed without restriction), yellow (don’t cause problems for most people), orange (frequent causes of food reactions) and red (highly problematic). Further comments are also added where relevant.

This is a highly informative App with additional notes on each of the Food chemicals discussed. It therefore not only serves as a pragmatic food tool but an educational source as well. For added confidence for health professionals the App comes with a reference list.

This App is therefore a very helpful tool for both individual’s with Food Intolerances and Professionals that deal with patients with Food Intolerances. Not only is the information invaluable, the construct of the App is very easy to use.

Uploaded to your phone, this App can be readily available whilst you shop or when dining at a restaurant, although one limitation is that it may not always cover all commercial…you will need to sort through the food labels for yourself.

All in all, FOOD INTOLERANCES by Barista GmBh is one of the best Apps of its kind, available on both Android and IOS (Apple platforms).