What are the top five ingredients for Winter Wellbeing? We'll show the top five items you need now to power through the winter months:
Armaforce- Immune Boosting Herb Nutrient Combination
ArmaForce contains immune herbs Echinacea, andrographis and olive leaf which supports healthy immune system to help your body fight upper respiratory tract infections including colder.
Ubiquinol- For Energy Production
Ubiquinol is considered to be one of the strongest antioxidants, providing support against oxidative stress, supporting cardiovascular and overall immune health. It has also been shown to lower the degree of inflammation after intense physical exercise.
Magnesium- For Muscle Soreness
If you are training through winter, where you need to wake your body up from a state of being cold, the odds are that you may feel more cramping and muscle pain than usual.
Magnesium is not only brilliant for helping ease muscle soreness, but it also is great for promoting sleep!
Theracurmin- For Inflammation
Curcumin (Turmeric) has been used as a health remedy for centuries, particularly for its anti inflammatory benefits, and it is now being heralded as -the next Omega 3'.
Previous studies have indicated that curcumin exhibits poor absorbency in the body as it is fat soluble, however scientists have recently discovered a method to increase the bioavailability 27 times the normal rate with Theracurmin, an ingredient recently made available in the Australian market.
It may be beneficial to fitness enthusiasts for helping manage inflammation in the body post exercise.
Stress Less- For management of stress and anxiety
Isowhey ® Stress Less is scientifically formulated for the symptomatic relief of mild anxiety, stress and nervous tension using the active ingredients of the herbs magnolia and phellodendron, as well as Ocimum tenuiflorum (holy basil) leaf.
Japanese researchers have determined that two chemicals found in Magnolia Bark are up to 1000 times more potent than Vitamin E in antioxidant activity. These two active compounds are also thought to contribute to the primary anti-stress and cortisol-balancing effects of the plant.
Holy Basil Leaf is commonly used in Ayurveda for its healing properties. It is used for different balancing processes in the body and is helpful for adapting to stress.
Belinda Reynolds graduated with an Honours Degree in Nutrition and Dietetics in 2003. She has been involved in the complementary medicine industry for nearly 15 years - 10 of these working for BioCeuticals and IsoWhey® as a Practitioner Sales Consultant, Team Leader, Presenter, Educator and Writer, with an involvement in Marketing and Product Development. Outside of this Belinda has spent time working in hospitals and lectured at the Australasian College of Natural Therapies.
Belinda's greatest passion is assisting practitioners in developing their knowledge by presenting new research in the area of integrative medicine. Now a mother of two, pre- and postnatal, infant and child health have evolved as subjects particularly close to her heart.
Question: What are the best vitamins to take during winter to beat colds and other sickness?
Belinda Reynolds: There are several vitamin, mineral and herbal options that you may want to consider in winter. The immune system is incredibly complex, and the best way to ensure you are armed against infections is to check that you are covering all bases.
First and foremost, before considering supplementation, ensure you are consuming a healthy diet and achieving sufficient sleep, as this will go a long way to supporting immune defences.
After that, when deciding which supplement is best for you, it can be quite individual, and a healthcare practitioner can help to guide you in the right direction. For example, certain nutrients will be more indicated based on factors such as your current nutritional status (e.g. if you are deficient in vitamin D3, addressing that is essential), you're level of activity and stress (e.g. athletes and those under significant stress will benefit from vitamin C), history of medication use (e.g. chronic antibiotic use may indicate the need for probiotics/prebiotics) etc.
Vitamin D: vitamin D deficiency is more common during winter as our opportunities to manufacture the nutrient from sun exposure is significantly limited. Vitamin D plays an important role in the body's response to invading pathogens and thus if you are deficient you may be more susceptible to mild illnesses.
Vitamin C: Vitamin C is an antioxidant nutrient, plus it is important for the production and function of certain immune cells, plus it protects immune cells from damage. Vitamin C can also function as a natural anti-histamine. It is via these mechanisms that vitamin C is believed to reduce the severity and duration of mild upper respiratory infections.
Zinc: is important for the functioning of both specific and non-specific immune responses, and therefore if you are low in zinc, you may become more susceptible to infectious bugs you are exposed to.
Probiotics: A healthy balance of bacteria in the body is important for preventing the overgrowth of disease-causing microbes and viruses. Supplementation with friendly bacteria (probiotics) have been shown to protect against certain illnesses. A healthy diet rich in fibre is very important for supporting the survival of good bacteria.
Question: What foods should we be adding to our diets to increase our ability to fight off common colds?
Belinda Reynolds: Eating well is essential for good health and a strong immune system. Make sure that you stock up on vegetables and fruits that are rich in vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and other phytonutrients as they work to support the body's natural processes and defenses.
My general rule is to eat a lot of different coloured fruit and vegetables, as having a diverse diet is important for good health. Also make sure that you include healthy protein sources such as eggs, non-farmed fish, leaner cuts of meat and legumes, as well as nuts, seeds and healthy fats such as extra virgin olive oil.
Try to consume foods that boost glutathione, which is a compound in our body that plays an important role in immune health, antioxidant protection and detoxification. Foods that boost glutathione include cruciferous vegetables (e.g. broccoli, cauliflower, spinach) and Whey protein.
Question: Why do we seem to be sicker during the cooler months and how can we best combat this?
Belinda Reynolds: There are a number of reasons why people tend to get sicker in cooler months, one of which may be attributed to the fact that people tend to stay indoors when the temperatures drop which allows them to be in closer contact with others.
Another contributing factor is likely to be our reduced sun exposure. Vitamin D deficiency is a common problem in Australia and during the winter months, the risk of deficiency is higher due to this reduced dose of UV. As mentioned earlier, vitamin D plays an important role, not just in bone health, but also immune function.
If you are someone who commonly gets sick or run down in the cooler months, I would start by checking to see if you have any nutritional insufficiencies, such as Vitamin D as this is a great place to start when looking to maximise your natural immune defences.
Question: If we do catch a cold; what vitamins should we add to recover faster and strengthen our immune system?
Belinda Reynolds: Vitamin C and zinc are useful, and herbs such as echinacea, andrographis and olive leaf (at the right doses) can be beneficial also.
Question: Can you talk us through the supplements you take, daily?
Belinda Reynolds: The supplements I take regularly are Vitamin D3 drops (I don't get out in the sun as much as I would like to during the winter months), Zinc Drops, a probiotic/prebiotic powder, a fish oil liquid and CoQ10.
Question: How do the supplements you take change throughout the year?
Belinda Reynolds: It tends to be quite consistent, however any change will depend completely on what is happening in my life at that time and the health challenges I am faced with.
When I feel I may be coming down with something, or I know I'm particularly run down I'll add in high dose vitamin C powder and a magnesium powder with B vitamins.
When I am very active I'll add in more magnesium, protein and Curcumin to help manage muscle pain and support recovery.
If I'm going through a period where there are a lot of celebrations and I'm eating out more, or if my skin doesn't look great I'll complete a month of herbs and supplements that support detoxification (e.g. antioxidants, milk thistle, glutathione) and up my green tea intake.
Question: What are the benefits of a Magnesium supplement?
Belinda Reynolds: Magnesium plays numerous important physiological roles in the body. These include regulation of normal nerve and muscle function, energy metabolism, oxygen utilisation, heart and bone health.
Common symptoms of magnesium depletion can include muscle cramps and spasms, persistent or early onset fatigue and/or muscle weakness, greater anxiety and muscular aches and pains. Consuming a healthy diet rich in nutritious foods that provide magnesium is of course the first step toward reducing the risk of magnesium depletions, and these symptoms. Many athletes may find that a supplement is also required to make up for their accelerated magnesium losses and greater requirements. One of the best forms of supplemental magnesium are in the form of an amino acid chelate. These are absorbed well, and will not contribute to gut upset.
Question: How can a protein supplement such as, IsoWhey, help use recover faster during winter training sessions?
Belinda Reynolds: No matter when you're training, proteins (such as whey protein) are essential for healthy muscle recovery. When working out at high intensities our immune system can be slightly compromised, and protein (providing L-glutamine), together with vitamin C and probiotics can support a healthy immune system to minimise infection risk.
Protein also provides amino acids required for other functions in the body such as detoxification, gut health and antioxidant protection.
Question: What other benefits does IsoWhey have?
Belinda Reynolds: IsoWhey® has three product ranges designed to cater to the needs of different individuals (e.g. supporting athletes, individuals seeking weight management, those looking to boost the nutritional content of their diet).
The IsoWhey® products are formulated based on scientific research, and are free from artificial colours, flavours and sweeteners.
The original whey protein range contains high quality ingredients including premium whey protein concentrate and isolate plus 23 vitamins and minerals.
Question: Can you tell us about the Isowhey ® Stress Less product and how it works?
Belinda Reynolds: This product is part of the new IsoWhey® booster range. It helps to relieve nervous tension, stress and mild anxiety.
IsoWhey Stress Less combines the clinically trialled herbal formula Relora® (a combination of magnolia and phellodendron), with holy basil.
Holy Basil Leaf can provide support for the relief of the symptoms of stress.
Interview by Brooke Hunter