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Migraine Misery

This week is Migraine Awareness Week, so we are focussing this blog on some practical tools that could help relieve the symptoms and occurrences of migraines.

It is estimated that 15% of the UK population suffer from migraines, with more women being susceptible than men.

There are 2 main categories of migraine:
1. Migraine with aura – about 1 in 5 migraine sufferers experience aural symptoms during their attacks. They are identified by impaired vision, inability to speak and numbness of the hands or feet.
2. Migraine without an aura – most people who suffer from migraines do not experience auras during the attacks.

Symptoms

Everyone has a different experience of migraines. Symptoms can vary from:
• Severe headache – usually experienced as an intense throbbing pain at the front or side of the head
• Nausea and vomiting
• Sensitivity to light
• Auras
• Sweating
• Abdominal pain
• A need to lie down in a dark place

Causes and Triggers

• Hormonal – many women will experience a migraine around the time of their period due to oestrogen fluctuations.
• Serotonin levels may have a role to plan. This hormone is often thought of as the ‘feel good’ hormone, but in excess it can lead to reduced blood flow to the brain, which has been linked to migraines.
• Stress and anxiety .
• Low blood sugar levels.
• Gut problems and low immune system – an overgrowth of unfriendly bacteria in the gut can result in a high toxic load and a compromised immune system, which can sometimes trigger a migraine.
• Food Intolerance – foods such as alcohol, nuts, caffeine, chocolate, citrus fruits, onions, fatty foods, fermented foods, aged cheese and those high in tyramine can all be common problem foods.
• Processed foods containing monosodium glutamate, aspartame and sodium nitratecan.
• Certain lighting.
• Tiredness.

Solutions

• It’s important to balance your blood sugar levels by eating regular meals – including a little protein with every meal and snack. This is a key focus of the Chiray Health Programme.
• Remember to never skip breakfastChiray Power makes a great breakfast smoothie.
Identify which foods are your triggers and avoid them as much as possible – especially for women around the time of menstruation. A food diary can help to do this or consider having a food intolerance test – contact us for more information.
Eat plenty of fresh vegetables and fruit – although avoid citrus fruits as these have been linked to headaches and migraines.
Reduce inflammation and promote circulation – Ginkgo biloba can be useful for this.
Ginger – this contains more than 200 substances in its oils. It is believed that ginger may block prostaglandins, which stimulate some muscle contractions, control inflammation and impact some hormones. Therefore migraines may be prevented and stopped by ginger stifling the action of prostaglandins. Ginger is also good for combating nausea. We suggest making a ginger shot by putting a big chunk of ginger and half an apple through a juicer.
Relaxation – stress busting techniques such as yoga, meditation and listening to relaxing music can really make a difference. Try out wonderful range of relaxation CD’s.
Balance your hormones – foods rich in phyto-oestrogens such as sage, hops and alfalfa can be helpful for this.
Support gut healthcoconut, garlic and oregano act as natural antibiotics against unfriendly bacteria and fungi.

Useful Supplements

Magnesium – this important mineral relaxes the nervous system and research has found that migraine sufferers can be deficient in this mineral. Foods rich in magnesium include beans, seeds, bananas, wholegrain foods and avocado. We also recommend Cytoplan’s Biofood Magnesium and topically rubbing Magnesium Oil around the neck area and the forehead and temples (make sure you avoid the eyes).
Coenzyme Q10 has been shown in some studies to cut down the number of days with a migraine.
Fish Oils / Krill Oil – research suggests that since fish oil prevents constriction of blood vessels, it can prevent the actions in the brain that lead to migraine attacks.
A 2002 study of 27 adolescents who took fish oil found that they had fewer migraines, shorter headaches and less severe migraine headaches.
Probiotics – these help boost the friendly bacteria in the gut.

Herbs

There are also useful herbs such as Ginkgo biloba, betterbur and feverfew.

For more information please do not hesitate to contact our experts at Chiray via our website – www.chiray.co.uk.

Freedom From Acidity

Many foods you may consume regularly will be having a negative effect on your body’s pH balance. Our body secretes or maintains many different kinds of fluids and their pH factors are different. The most important of these fluids is blood, which has to be slightly alkaline all the time.

What is pH

The scale by which we measure the acidity or alkalinity of a substance is called the pH (potential hydrogen) scale. It relates to the concentration of acidic hydrogen ions in the substance being tested. This scale ranges from 0 to 14 with 0 being extremely acid and 14 very alkaline. A pH of 7 is considered neutral. Ideally you want to keep enough alkaline forming elements in your body fluid to maintain an alkalinity level of pH 7.4.

The Dangers of most Western Diets

Most western diets nowadays promote a very acidic environment in the body. The mass consumption of meat, grains, sugars and processed foods causes the body to become overly acidic, which strips it of minerals. It is often said that one of the causes of cancer and other degenerative diseases is the cumulative effect of the acidic condition of body fluid.

Some of the Health Problems Associated with body acidity

Cancer – Studies have shown that in the test tube, cancer cells and tumors thrive and grow in a more acidic environment.
Heart disease
Arthritis
Diabetes
Osteoporosis
Kidney Stones
Dental problems
Loss of muscle mass
Joint pains
Anxiety
Frequent colds and nasal congestion
Infertility
Digestive problems
Edema
Low energy
Signs of premature aging
Weight gain

What is an Alkaline Diet?

Many people become confused in regards to alkaline and acid diets because they think that it refers to the actual pH level of the food itself. However there are 2 types of acid and alkaline foods. One is acid or alkaline foods; the other is acid or alkaline forming foods. So for instance lemons and limes are very acidic in their natural form, and yet after they have been metabolised in the body it will cause the blood to become alkaline and so they are alkaline forming. So in nutrition terms you want to aim to eat plenty of alkaline forming foods.
An alkaline diet usually involves eating minimal amounts of meats, dairy products, white flour and white sugar, because these foods have a very acidic reaction on the body’s pH level. Instead, the diet usually focuses heavily on vegetables, superfoods (such as wheatgrass, barleygrass, chlorella and spirulina), some fruits and nuts, seeds and pulses. These all leave an alkaline ash within the body.

Examples of Alkaline Foods:

Vegetables: fresh herbs, asparagus, broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, celery, courgette, cucumber, carrot, garlic, ginger, pepper, green beans, kale, lettuce, leeks, onion, peas, pumpkin, spinach, turnip, watercress,
Fruits: avocado, coconut, grapefruit, lemon, lime, tomato
Seeds, Nuts & Grains: almonds, any sprouted seed, buckwheat groats, hemp seeds, sesame seeds, spelt, millet, quinoa
Pulses: chick peas, lentils
Oils: flax, hemp, avocado, olive, coconut
Drinks: almond milk, fresh vegetable juice, herbal teas, lemon water, non-sweetened soy milk, vegetable broth, filtered water

Juices & Smoothies

One of the easiest ways to alkalise is to incorporate a daily vegetable juice or smoothie. See the recipe section of our website for ideas. One of our favourites is Get Up and Green.

Superfoods12-12-P1020939

Some particularly good superfoods for alkalizing are Chiray Supergreens, wheatgrass, barley grass, spirulina, chlorella and Himalayan Rock Salt

Himalayan Rock Salt

This salt contains over 40 minerals which assist in promoting a healthy pH balance in the cells.

Alkaline Minerals

Calcium, magnesium, potassium, sodium, silicon, iron, manganese

High Alkaline Emotions and Activities

Peace, gratitude, forgiveness, love, joy, laughter

Acidic Foods

Meat, cheese, processed foods, sugar, table salt (use sea salt or Himalayan rock salt instead as the minerals help to alkalising the body), alcohol.

Acidic minerals

Phosphorus, chlorine, iodine, nitrogen, sulphur

High acidic emotions and activities  

STRESS!, anger, jealousy, fear, hate, lack of rest and sleep, drug use, smoking, radiation exposure – e.g. mobile phones, television, computer

Stress is particularly acid forming so try to incorporate practices such as walking in nature, yoga, qi gong, tai chi and meditation into your daily routine. Check out Chiray’s beautiful range of relaxation CD’s created by experienced yoga instructor Manjula Coté.

Track Your Ideal pH 

Health improvements will give you a good indication that you are becoming more alkaline; however it is also beneficial to regularly check your pH, especially when first working toward the ideal body pH. A simple way of doing this is using pH strips, which you can purchase via our shop. These strips are dipped in a urine or saliva sample and use color to indicate pH levels. As you become more in tune to these changes, you should be able to detect when your body is in balance without the strips.

Chiray Health Programme

The recipes in the Chiray Health & Weight Loss Programme have been devised to promote an alkaline environment.  So if you would like to follow a more structured programme this is a great place to start.  Once you subscribe you will receive on-going on-line support to help to stay on track.

Supplements

Alka-Lize – this offers a gentle way to help restore the body’s tissue pH to a healthy level. We recommend supplementing with this until your body pH has stabilised at about pH7.4

Chiray Alkalising Pack

This can be purchased from our website and contains everything you need to start rebalancing your pH. The pack includes – Supergreens, Barley Grass Powder, Liquid Chlorophyll, Himalayan Rock Salt, Alka-Lize and pH Strips.

There are so many benefits of eating a high alkaline diet.  Eating to support a healthy alkaline body balance will help you lose weight, prevent disease, and support great overall health.

For more information or to order your Alkalising Pack, please contact us via our website – www.chiray.co.uk

The Natural Way To A Sound Night’s Sleep

Endless nights of tossing and turning, staring at the ceiling, checking the time, mind racing and then before you know it its morning and you’ve barely slept a wink. If this sounds familiar then you could one of an estimated 70 million people who are thought to have trouble sleeping in Britain. In fact research has shown that as many as 1 in 3 workers in Britain experience sleep problems. Some employees get less than 5 hours sleep a night and only one in 7 feels completely refreshed when they wake.
If you have trouble falling or staying asleep, or you wake up feeling unrefreshed, you may be suffering from insomnia. This may be experienced anything from a few days, several weeks, months or even years. We have a lot of customers come to us asking the same question “What can help me sleep” and so we have created this blog post to answer that exact question.

Other ways which you can prevent the question of What can help me sleep.

There are many reasons for poor quality of sleep these include worry, stress of work deadlines, financial concerns, too much light and/or noise, family problems, hormonal imbalances, depression, medications, pain or poor sleep habits or a partners snoring.

Whatever the cause, insomnia results in daytime fatigue, irritability, poor concentration, compromised immunity and accelerated aging. It can also contribute to the development of conditions such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes, hormonal imbalances and obesity.

Experts say that everyone should ideally get 7 – 8 hours sleep a night. Sleep is the time when we rest, detoxify, repair and restore and the better the quality the more efficient this process is. The good news is that there are many natural solutions that can help you to get a good night’s sleep.

Some Things To Avoid Before Bedtime

Large meal – as this will affect your blood sugar levels and give you a big spike of energy just at the time you want to go to sleep. It will also stimulate the nervous and digestive systems. So there will be a party going on inside you, just when you want to fall asleep!
Stimulants – these include tea, coffee, alcohol and fizzy drinks. Also avoid over stimulating the mind with action packed films or books.

How Good Nutrition Can Encourage Restful Sleep
• Eat a small portion of foods that contain tryptophan. L-tryptophan is one of the essential amino acids that your body uses to make neurotransmitters such as serotonin and melatonin. These neurotransmitters all play a role in helping you to sleep at night. Foods rich in tryptophan include seafood, chicken, milk, yogurt, beans and cashew nuts.
• A small bowl of full fat natural yogurt or a glass of almond milk can both help. This is due to their calcium content, which helps regulate the production of melatonin – a substance that naturally controls a sleep/wake cycle.
• A calming cup of chamomile tea 30 minutes before bedtime can help to soothe nerves.Easy Sleeping
• Include some maca into your daily diet (taking it in the morning is best). This is an adaptogen so can help regulate sleep patterns. Our Chiray Power Goji and Vanilla flavour is a delicious way of getting your daily dose of maca.

Supplements That Aid Sleep:

Hops & Valerian – these have been shown to improve sleep quality.
• Magnesium – this important mineral plays a key role in the regulation of sleep. Research has shown that a deficiency of magnesium can prevent the brain from quietening down at night time. Take 200mg of Biofood Magnesium before bedtime.
5HTP – 5 – Hydroxytrptopah is an amino acid that is the intermediate step between tryptophan and the important brain chemical serotonin. Recent studies have shown that increased levels of serotonin – obtained by supplementing with 5-HTP – can help re-establish healthy sleep patterns in people with chronic sleep disturbances. (Please note, this is not suitable for use during planned pregnancy, pregnancy or breastfeeding. Not suitable to be taken in conjunction with mood modifying drugs).

Some Lifestyle Factors That Will Help You Into The Land Of Nod:

• Create the right environment for sleep. Ideally your bedroom should be dark and quiet – even if this means wearing an eye mask and ear plugs. Also remove all mobile phones (don’t use your mobile as an alarm – buy an alarm clock instead!), televisions and computers from the bedroom.How to sleep easy.
• Have a long soak in the bath – add a few drops of lavender essential oil to the water as this herb has a calmative effect.
• Experienced yoga instructor Manjula Cote has produced a series of blissful guided visualisations that are aimed at reducing stress and promoting rest and relaxation.
• Some gentle yoga or sitting for a few minutes in meditation can help the mind to unwind.

• Don’t check your clock when trying to sleep; this only serves to increase stress.
• Avoid naps later in the day as they decrease sleep drive.
• Exercise of any kind before bedtime can be a great way of sending you into a peaceful sleep!

Please note, if you are on medication or have a medical condition please consult your GP before making any changes to your nutrition or supplement regime.

For more information please call our team of experts on 01202 770927, we want to make sure you stop wondering “What can help me sleep”.

Heart Health – Love Your Heart

Heart and circulatory disease is ranked as one of the biggest killers in Britain. Cardiovascular disease (CV) is responsible for one third of all deaths in the UK. Our lives today are very sedentary, we eat far too much processed foods, we drink too much alcohol and our stress levels are high. All of which has very detrimental effects on the health of our heart.

Human Heart Facts:

• It’s the size of your fist.
• It starts beating approximately when you are approximately 3 weeks old in the womb.
• The heart beats more than 100,000 times per day.
• By the time you are 70 it will have beaten 2 ½ billion times.
• Around 1 in 6 men and 1 in 9 women die from heart disease.

High blood pressure, high cholesterol levels and high homocysteine levels are all contributory factors to heart disease.

High Blood Pressure

Another human heart fact is that it is estimated that around 30% of people in England have high blood pressure. Normal blood pressure is between 90/60mmHg and 140/90mmHg. Readings of 140/90mmHg and above are considered high. If the blood pressure becomes high it causes the arteries to become stretched. When this happens they become weaker and tiny tears appear, leaving rough scar tissue that catches debris such as fat and cholesterol. This causes the arteries to become narrowed and hardened due to an excessive build up of plaque on the artery wall. This condition is known as atherosclerosis. This disease disrupts the flow of blood around the body and poses serious cardiovascular complications.

Cholesterol

Cholesterol is a waxy, fat-like substance found in all cells. Two thirds of cholesterol is manufactured in the liver and the rest is obtained from foods. There is much debate nowadays about cholesterol. Despite all the bad press about cholesterol, it is essential for life. Some of its many roles include:
• Helping to form cell wall and structures.
• Repairing cell membranes
• Helping cells adjust to changes in temperatures.
• Used by nerve cells for insulation.
• Manufacturing vitamin D
• Essential for synthesising a number of critical hormones – including testosterone, progesterone and estrogen.

Cholesterol cannot dissolve in the blood and so it transported to and from cells as lipoproteins. Low density lipoproteins (LDL) are known as ‘bad’ cholesterol as it transports cholesterol into the arterial walls and high-density lipoproteins are known as ‘good’ cholesterol as they tend to carry cholesterol away from the arteries to the liver for metabolism and excretion. So we need to focus on keeping our cholesterol at a healthy level – keeping the LDL low and the HDL high.

Homocysteine

Another random human heart fact is that homocysteine is produced in the body from another amino acid called methionine in a process called mythelation. Even though many have never heard of homocysteine, high levels can be more indicative of heart health than cholesterol levels. Homocysteine is a toxic amino acid which can oxidise cholesterol and is thought to be involved in the development of atherosclerosis. High levels of homocysteine are an indication of poor methylation and have been linked to heart disease, stroke and many other degenerative diseases. B vitamins are very important for healthy methylation as they ensure that homocysteine is methylated to form healthy substances rather than toxic ones. B12 is particularly important and a product we particularly like is B12 Boost.

Simple Ways to Improve Heart Health

• Reduce homocysteine levels
High homocysteine levels can be treated with a specially formulated blend of vitamins. However to make this treatment more successful we recommend getting your homocysteine levels checked prior to beginning a supplement protocol. You can organise this test by contacting our qualified nutritional therapist.
• Reduce Stress
High stress levels can have a huge impact on CV health. We recommend incorporating daily stress busting techniques such as exercise – especially outdoors, listening to music, yoga, qi gong, meditation and laughter. Our experienced yoga instructor Manjula Cote has designed a beautiful series of relaxation CD’s that are designed to restore balance and reduce stress to a healthy level.
• Quit Smoking
Smoking damages blood vessel walls, can lower HDL cholesterol and has been linked to high homocysteine levels and atherosclerosis.
• Obesity
Being overweight puts a serious strain on your heart and puts you at a high risk of heart disease. Reducing body weight by as little as 10lbs can lead to a significant reduction in blood pressure and cholesterol levels. The Chiray Health & Weight Loss Programme is an effective, easy and empowering way to lose weight. This innovative programme has been proven to promote heart health by reducing cholesterol levels and blood pressure.
• Good Nutrition
Nutrition can have a huge impact on heart health. Some simple ways of keeping your heart healthy include:
Eat plenty of vegetables and 2 or 3 pieces of fruit daily. Fruit and vegetables that are particularly good for heart health include broccoli, green leaves, brussel sprouts (all high in Vitamin K), berries (high in antioxidants) and garlic (helps maintain normal cholesterol levels and blood pressure and maintains healthy arteries).
Increase essential fatty acids – these are found in oily fish, nuts and seeds. Research shows that these fats may help reduce inflammation and therefore lower the risk of heart disease. They can help support healthy arteries, blood flow and normal heart rhythm.
Increase fibre – foods such as beans, lentils, oats, fruit, hemp seeds and vegetables contain soluble fibre that can help to maintain healthy cholesterol levels.
Reduce Saturated Fats – cut down on red meats, cheese and processed foods. Also avoid margarines. Replace cooking oils with coconut oil, which does not produce trans fats (which have been linked to heart disease).
• Increase antioxidants – these are found in abundance in fruits and vegetables, especially the superfoods. We particularly recommend our key product Berrylicious, goji berries and raw cacao products.
Cut out all processed foods – instead aim to eat a rainbow of natural foods every day.
Avoid Sugar – if you do need a little sweetener then opt for natural sweeteners like xylitol or a little honey or agave nectar – but keep these to a minimum.
Cut down on alcohol – research has shown that a small glass of red wine every now and then can have a positive effect on heart health due to its antioxidant properties. However don’t go overboard, as too much alcohol can increase your risk of high blood pressure and heart disease.
Reduce Salt – we recommend using a moderate amount of the mineral rich Himalayan Rock Salt

Supplements

Heart Support – contains high potency Fish Oil, Vitamin D3, K2, CoQ10, Lycopene and Resveratrol – which collectively bestow wide-ranging cardiovascular support.

• H Factor – a blend of nutrients aimed at reducing Homocysteine levels.
• Co-Enzyme Q10 – this nutrient is very important for heart health. Production of Co-enzyme Q10 declines as we age and synthesis of this nutrient can be lowered by as much as 40% for those taking statins.
• Omega 3’s- research has shown these have a positive impact on heart health. We recommend Krill Oil or Fish Oils.
• Vitamin D – as many as 60% of the UK population are deficient in Vitamin D. Studies have shown that individuals with lower serum vitamin D levels have a higher risk of CV disease incidence – including heart attack, stroke and heart failure. We recommend DLux1000 or DLux3000.
Magnesium – low magnesium status may increase the risk of heart disease, abnormal cardiac rhythms and stroke, especially for those with high blood pressure.
• Vitamin K – obtained in the diet from foods such as green leaves, broccoli and brussel sprouts. Many experts now believe that a sub-clinical vitamin K deficiency can contribute to CV disease. Moreover, population studies clearly show a link between higher dietary intake of vitamin K2 and lower rates of arterial calcification and CV disease.
B Vitamins – these help to reduce homocysteine levels and so reduce the incidence of heart disease.
• Vitamin E – a powerful antioxidant for fighting heart disease.

If you are taking any medication or have an existing health problem please consult your GP before implementing any dietary or supplement changes. For more details visit our website or call our team of experts on 01202 770927.

Natural Solutions to Hay Fever

The emergence of spring and summer is a joyous time for most. However for those suffering from hay fever it can be a challenging time of the year. It’s estimated that approximately 27% of the UK population suffers from hay fever. The main problem is that there is no fully known one off cure for hayfever.

Causes of Hay fever.
Contrary to what the name would suggest, hay fever is not an allergic reaction to hay (in fact hay fever is almost never triggered by hay) and it doesn’t cause a fever!
Hay fever is caused by an allergic response to airborne substances, such as pollen – unlike a cold which is caused by a virus. An allergic reaction occurs when the immune system reacts to a normally harmless substance. When this happens the immune system starts producing IgE antibodies which attach to larger mast cells containing histamine and are ‘programmed’ to remember the foreign particles in the future. So the next time you come into contact with this normally harmless substance it triggers an immune response as the immune system tries to eliminate the perceived invader. It is this over reaction that leads to the symptoms of hay fever.

Hay fever can start at any age, however it’s most likely to develop during childhood or early adulthood. Often the symptoms will reduce in severity over the years.

Symptoms of Hay Fever Include:
Sneezing, itchy eyes, itchy throat, runny nose, itchy throat, blocked / runny nose, headaches, loss of smell and taste, blocked sinuses

Hay fever Triggers Include:
Tree pollen, grass pollen, ragweed pollen, spores from fungi and moulds, dust mites, dander from pets, pollution

These triggers vary in severity according to the season. If you are allergic to fungi, mould and pet dander you may have all year round hay fever. However if you are just allergic to pollens then it’s more likely for your symptoms to be seasonal.

Conventional treatment:
This tends to be in the form of anti-histamine medication. However this has many side effects so many seek natural alternatives.

Natural Cures for Hay Fever:Cure For Hayfever
Bee Pollen has been used for centuries to help alleviate allergies. It is thought that this works on the principle of desensitisation. Through administering small amounts of the allergen via the bee pollen, it stimulates the patient’s own immune system to produce antibodies that will cancel out the effects of the substance when the person is exposed to it again. To achieve the best results it is advisable to start taking bee pollen 6 weeks before the season begins and then continue taking it throughout the season.
• Vitamin C intake can also help as it rids the body of excess histamine – which is a major factor in preventing allergies. We recommend a product called CherryC. .
Chamomile is a great herb to stop your eyes from streaming. Add some Chiray Chamomile Flowers to boiling water, allow to steep and cool down. Then soak a handkerchief or tissue in the tea and apply to the eyes. Relax and allow the cooling and easing effect of the chamomile take effect.
Vitamin D – make sure you dose up on this important nutrient, as hay fever may be associated with low levels. The best ways to boost your levels is to spend a little time each day with your skin in contact with sunlight. If the weather conditions are not conducive to this then we recommend DLux1000 or DLux3000 spray to boost your levels.
Quercetin is a plant pigment found in foods such as garlic, onions, leeks, dark berries, citrus fruits, apples and green tea. It has anti-inflammatory properties and is thought to inhibit histamine release by certain types of white blood cells.
Bromelain is a sulphur containing enzyme found in pineapple that also has anti-inflammatory properties. Also bromelain has shown to aid the absorption of quercetin.
• Ginger contains natural decongestants as well as being a powerful anti-inflammatory. If you have a juicer, each day juice together ½ apple and a big chunk of ginger. This ginger shot should have a powerful effect on hay fever and is considered a good cure for hayfever.
Certain foods can aggravate symptoms e.g. if you are allergic to birch pollen you may find that your symptoms are triggered by foods such as celery, apples, pears, cherries, apricots, plums, peaches, kiwis, potatoes, carrots, celery, hazelnuts, almonds, walnuts, peanuts and soya beans. The reason being is that the protein in these foods is similar to the proteins in the pollen – particularly the case with birch pollen allergy. So when you eat them the body mistakes them for birch pollen and is definitely not a cure for hayfever.
Avoid alcohol – this will make symptoms worse as it causes dehydration and increases sensitivity to pollen. It also has a negative effect on the immune system.

For more information please do not hesitate to contact the Chiray team either by sending us a message via our website or calling us on 01202770927 for your all in one cure for hayfever.

Juices and Smoothies

Juices are “Nature’s finest liquid fuel” as Jason Vale would say. Juicing offers many life-enhancing health benefits, including a faster, more efficient to absorb a wealth of vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients contained in fruits and vegetables. It also provides a way to access digestive enzymes typically locked in the fibre matrix contained in these foods.
For years we have been told to eat our 5 pieces of fruit and vegetables a day. In contrast, the French are told to eat ten portions a day, the Canadians between five and ten, and the Japanese 13 portions of vegetables and four pieces of fruit. Scientists claim if we upped it to at least seven portions it could have positive effects on our mood and outlook. They discovered that people who eat between 7 – 8 portions a day felt happier about themselves and life.

Star Appeal

However the sad fact is that despite spending millions on campaigns to get the British population to up their fruit and vegetable intake, fewer than a third of Britons hit that target. However these rather unpopular foods of nature are making a star studded come back – in the form of juices and smoothies. These provide an easy way of packing a fair few portions of fruit and vegetables into your daily routine, with very little preparation or chewing! Celebrities such as Angelina Jolie, Kylie Minogue, Katie Price and Simon Cowell have all extolled the virtues of juicing.

Benefits of Juices and Smoothies

The powerful effects of fresh juices is partly due to the high concentrations of health-enhancing chemicals they contain, but also to the fact that it s easier for the body to absorb and assimilate essential nutrients quickly and efficiently when they are taken in liquid form. Juices are like the first emergency services – freeing up blockages, eliminating toxins, fighting free radicals, protecting us from ailments and maintaining normal bodily functions.

Green Power

Often the juice or smoothie of choice will be one with high fruit content. However the real power is in the green juices and smoothies. Green juices were at the core of Max Gerson’s protocol. The Gerson Cancer Therapy was an integrated set of medical treatment which is said to have cured many cases of advanced cancer. Green juices are a rich source of chlorophyll – this has powerful alkalising and detoxification properties and is a similar substance to human hemoglobin so is very nourishing for the blood. So when you make your juice or smoothie, try to incorporate plenty of greens into them.

Supercharge Your Juices

The difference between a juice and a smoothie is that a juice has had fibre extracted and a smoothie retains the fibre. At Chiray we believe they both have benefits and we try to incorporate at least one of each into our daily routine. We also like to incorporate an array of superfoods into our juices and smoothies to pack an extra powerful nutrient punch. Some of our favourites to add are Chiray Supergreens, wheatgrass, barleygrass, spirulina, chlorella, goji berries, raw cacao and maca.

A word about shop bought juices and smoothies. In general all shop bought products will have been pasteurised, which essentially eliminates most of the wonderful nutrients, minerals and enzymes contained in the raw form. They also tend to be high in sugar and generally something that at best should be avoided and at worse drunk in moderation and watered down.

Smoothie Recipes

Get Up and Green
• ½ Cucumber
• 1 apple
• ½ – 1 avocado
• Couple of handfuls of lettuce / spinach / kale
• Lemon juice
• Handful goji berries (you can buy these from us)

Blend all of these together.

Popeye Smoothie
• 2 sticks celery
• ½ small cucumber
• 2 chunks broccoli
• 2 handfuls spinach
• 1-2 apples
• 1 inch ginger
• Juice ½ lemon
• ½ ripe avocado
• Small handful of ice
Juice all the ingredients (except the avocado and ice). Place the juice into a blender and blend together with the avocado and ice.

Beetroot Blast
• ¼ small pineapple
• ½ raw beetroot
• ½ cucumber
• Juice ½ lemon
• Handful of spinach
• ½ avocado
• Handful ice
Juice all the ingredients (except the avocado and ice). Place the juice into a blender and blend together with the avocado and ice.

Strawberry Maca-ri
• 2 handfuls strawberries
• 1 teaspoon Berrylicious
• 2 dessertspoons hulled hemp seeds
• 1tsp – 1 heaped dessertspoon of maca
• Coconut water (amount depends on desired thickness)
• 2 dessertspoons natural yogurt
• Pinch vanilla powder / couple drops vanilla essence

Blitz all the ingredients together in a blender and serve in a martini glass!

Summer Smoothie
This makes a great breakfast – and kids love it!

• Handful strawberries
• Handful raspberries
• ½ banana
• 30g hemp seeds
• 25g sunflower seeds (pre soaked if possible – just soak overnight in some water)
• 25g cashew nuts (pre soaked if possible – just soak overnight in some water)
• 25g Brazil nuts (pre soaked if possible – just soak overnight in some water)
• Large piece ginger (optional)
• Approximately 250ml coconut water (or you can just use water)
Wiz all the ingredients together.

For more information please visit the website or contact us on 01202770927, our staff would be more than happy to help.

Vitamin D Benefits

Vitamin D benefits have been in the spotlight over the past few years. One major reason for this is the increase in cases of Vitamin D deficiency. Vitamin D is a vitamin and pro-hormone which is rarely found in natural foods. Our bodies naturally produce it by synthesizing ultraviolet light from the sun. It is required in the body to make proper use of calcium for stronger bones and teeth. Vitamin D deficiency is often the cause of bone diseases in children and adults, including osteoporosis and rickets.

Health experts are becoming more concerned about the impact of not getting enough sunlight in the body. Our summers are wetter than usual, we spend hours cooped up indoors and when we do get out in the sun we tend to cover ourselves in high factor suntan lotions. Added to this, the stresses and strains of modern life are making it increasingly difficult to make our own Vitamin D.

Government Recommendations:

The Government has recently become concerned with the low Vitamin D status of many people in the UK and they advise “that to ensure sufficient intake, the following groups of people should take a vitamin D supplement:
• All pregnant and breast feeding women.
• All infants and young children from 6 months to 5 years of age.
• Older people aged 65 and over
• People who have low or no exposure to the sun.”

Functions and Benefits of Vitamin DVitamin D Supplement

Vitamin D is most commonly known for its role in building strong bone and teeth and helping to prevent osteoporosis. These are however only a couple of the benefits of vitamin D, it is now known to have the following other important functions:

• Plays a major function in our overall health and well-being
• Supports the immune system
• Regulates cell growth which could help protect against certain types of cancer
• Aids glucose tolerance
• Helps regulate blood pressure
• Supports good mental health, helping to combat depression
• Low vitamin D levels have been associated with the development of Multiple Sclerosis and Rheumatoid Arthritis
• Helps to protect against Age-Related Macular Degeneration.

Sunlight is necessary for the synthesis of Vitamin D3, which is produced underneath the skin following exposure to sunlight. D3 is also contained in foods such as salmon, mackerel, tuna, sardines, milk, eggs, beef and liver.

Do you know your levels?

Nutritional Therapist Manjula Cote recommends finding out your Vitamin D levels before supplementing. “This way you will be able to supplement exactly the right amount for your individual requirements.”  If you would like to find our whether you have a Vitamin D deficiency there are simple tests you can do. You can order a test kit via the Chiray website. This test is easy to do, it is involves a thumb prick blood test (that is easy to do yourself), the sample is then placed in the envelope provided and sent to the laboratory. The results are sent back to Qualified Nutritional therapist Manjula Cote who will call you with the results and advise on appropriate supplementation to maintain healthy levels of this vital nutrient. The supplement recommended by Manjula is called DLux, which is an oral vitamin D spray.

Contact Us:

If you would like any more information about this subject or any of the products supplied by Chiray please contact our staff on 01202 770927.

Easy Steps to a Healthy Wedding.

Weddings are all about perfection, the perfect ceremony, the perfect venue and the perfect bride. But this can all come at a high cost and not just to your bank balance. Crash diets, high stress, anxiety and undue pressure all add up to create a health debt that continues long after the big day.

The good news is it’s not difficult to look beautiful both inside and out on your wedding day if you focus on 3 key areas, and these are:
1. staying healthy with good nutrition
2. staying motivated with simple coaching techniques
3. staying calm with the ancient art of yoga.

Staying Healthy With Good Nutrition

Good nutrition doesn’t have to be complicated. If you follow these easy steps you will be well on your way to looking and feeling the best you ever.
• Don’t crash diet – remember for healthy and sustainable weight loss 2lbs a week is realistic.
• Drink about 2 litres of water a day
• Eat a rainbow of fruit and vegetables – these will contain a wealth of antioxidants that destroy free radicals that damage cells.
• Eat regularly throughout the day – breakfast, snack, lunch, snack, dinner. This ensures that your blood sugar levels are kept stable throughout the day. This is crucial for general well being and key to weight loss. Chiray have designed a great organic snack range in 3 delicious flavours – Cheeky Chomp, Super Snack and Chunky Mix. These are packed full of protein and will keep you feeling fuller for longer.
• Never skip breakfast – especially not on your wedding day!
• Have a little protein at every meal and snack (e.g. chicken, fish, eggs, nuts, seeds, pulses, tofu)
• If you have a juicer or live/work near a juice bar incorporate a daily juice. Avoid too much fruit and focus more on vegetables (especially greens). For example cucumber, celery, spinach, apple and ginger make a great juice packed full of nutrients.
• Add in some superfoods – a teaspoon each of Chiray Supergreens and Berrylicious mixed in with a little juice pack a mighty superfood punch. The combination will give you an abundance of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants to fight off those free radicals and keep you looking beautiful. They also have powerful alkalising properties to keep you in good health.
• Avoid – caffeine, alcohol, sugar and too much salt.
• Go easy on carbohydrates (especially biscuits, crisps, cakes, sweets, pastries etc) and always use whole grains e.g. brown rice and wholemeal pasta

• Include some good oils in your diet. Coconut, flax, olive and hemp oil are good choices. Use them to dress salads or pour over food once it’s been cooked. Also include a daily fish oil supplement as this is an excellent source of Omega 3. Research suggests that Omega 3 can aid weight loss and has a host of other benefits. The product we suggest at Chiray is Krill Oil.

Staying Motivated

To keep yourself motivated it’s important to set goals. Your wedding is your long term goal, but to keep yourself on track you need to set weekly goals so you have something more realistic to aim for. Each week set a weight loss goal (if appropriate), a health goal (e.g. you may want to improve your skin by drinking more water) and an exercise goal. Make sure these goals are realistic. It’s also important to give yourself a weekly reward to keep you motivated – just make this doesn’t involve food or drink!

Hold an image in your head of how you would like yourself to look and feel on your wedding day. Every day visualise this image and know that by keeping focused on your goals you are moving ever closer to this image.
Beliefs guide our decisions and behaviour. So in your quest for super health and a super look, ensure limiting beliefs are not holding you back. For example a limiting belief may be “I can’t do this, I haven’t got time.” Instead of focusing on this, concentrate on an empowering alternative e.g. “I know this is just an excuse, I will work on way s to create more time for myself. I shall prioritise my health and well being.”

Staying Calm with Yoga

To help you glide into your wedding day in a more Zen like way, try practicing some pre-wedding yoga. If you’ve never tried it before you’ll be surprised at how effective it is for combating stress and nerves. This ancient practice has a wealth of benefits including promoting calm, aiding weight loss, toning and improving flexibility, improving digestion and Wedding Catering

balancing hormones. A class also provides a quiet space for you to take some time out of your busy schedule.
If you’ve never tried yoga before there are many of different varieties, so you may need to try a few classes before you find one you like. For a practice that helps to balance and harmonise mind, body and spirit try to find a class that incorporates Hatha poses, deep relaxation, pranayama (breathing practices) and meditation.

Please see the Chiray website for details of yoga classes, workshops and retreats.
If you follow these 3 steps you’ll be well on track to achieving optimum health, your ideal weight, increased energy, glowing skin, a calm mind and a healthy libido! Start your married life on a natural high!

Contact Us.

To find out more about the wholefoods, superfoods and high quality supplements sold by Chiray, please contact us on 0120 277 0927 for more information. Our staff are always on standby to take your questions and answer them to the best of their knowledge.

Organic Foods UK.

At Chiray we only supply  the finest and most useful organic foods in the UK.

Organic foods by definition are foods which are produced using the methods listed under organic farming.

A few example of organic farming are:

  • Crop rotation.
  • Using green manure.
  • Using biological pest control.
  • Use of non synthetic fertilizers and pesticides.

One of the main components of organic farming is the use of green manure this is created when plants such as alfalfa and rye are grown in to the ground, on your growing patch the season before, and then are dug in to your soil before planting and this adds nutrients and organic matter that breaks down giving good soil structure which is perfect for organic farming.

We have a few products we are great in helping to improve your body and its health.

Organic Goji Berries.

Organic Foods UK

Goji berries have been in the health industry for many years and they have a vast amount of health benefits for anyone that takes them.

We have created a short list of the key benefits for this product:

  • Increase in oxygen efficiency – This means that whenever you do any exercise these berries will help you to to make sure that your body utilises oxygen in a much more efficient manner. This allows you to exercise for longer before the onset of fatigue becomes a restricting factor.
  • Aids in weight loss – These organic goji berries contain a low amount of GL, are high in fibre, and contain chronium which is an important nutrient in helping to make sure your blood sugar is regulated and this in turn helps to preserve lean muscle mass in your body.
  • Helps to strengthen and support glands which are responsible for producing energy, muscle growth and repair.

At Chiray we feel that organic goji berries are one of the best organic foods UK you can possibly purchase as their health benefits are vast and varied.

 

Organic Raw Cacao Nibs

Organic Foods

Cacao is a naturally occurring fruit and is indigenous to South America.  When it was discovered it was originally called theobroma cacao which is translated to “cacao, food of the gods”.

A few of the main features of the Raw Cacao Nibs include:

  • Highest levels of antioxidants – Raw cacao out of all the food in the world contains the highest levels of antioxidants which help to protect us from age-related health conditions and free radical damage.
  • Beneficial to your entire cardiovascular system – The antioxidants found in the cacao nibs can actively prevent the plaque built up in arteries which will help to reverse the conditions of heart disease and lower blood pressure.
  • Highest whole food source of magnesium – This helps to relax your muscles and improve peristalsis in the bowels. It also helps to relax the heart and cardiovascular system.

 

Organic Wheatgrass Powder.

Organic Foods UK

Organic wheatgrass powder is a sure fire way to improve your diet and pack your body full of vitamins and nutrients.

Here are some of the key features you will acquire with organic wheatgrass powder:

  • Improvement of physical and mental sense of well-being.
  • Improvement of your immune system.
  • Helps to remove any heavy metals from the body.
  •  Balance pH levels
  • Improve digestive health and relieve constipation.
  • Support circulatory health.
  • Improves skin problems such as eczema and psoriasis.
  • Increase vitality, well-being and higher energy levels.

Overall we feel that organic wheatgrass powder is one of the most useful organic foods UK that we provide here at Chiray.

Contact Us.

To find out more about organic foods UK and what they can do for you please make sure to contact Chiray on 0120 277 0927 for more information. Our staff are always on standby to take your questions and answer them to the best of their knowledge.

Wholefoods UK.

At Chiray we supply our customers with the best wholefoods in the UK.

Wholefoods in the UK

Wholefoods are unrefined and unprocessed wonders of nature, they range from the most simple of products to those which are a bit harder to obtain.

This entry into our blog is there to kind of give you an idea of the types of wholefoods which we provide our customers with at Chiray and what they can do for you in terms of letting you live a healthier life.

We do want to make everyone more away about wholefoods, this is why we have comprised this blog to help you understand what they can do for you.

Organic Hemp Seeds – Hulled.

Organic Hemp Seeds are one of the main wholefoods that we like to promote at Chiray their natural weight loss benefits is a key feature that a lot of our customers like to have. The increase in sustained energy also helps out with people who are in to performing a lot of exercise.

Going along with the whole idea of performing a lot of exercise another great feature of this product is that it improves your physical strength and stamina which is great for anyone that needs to get into the weightlifting scene.

Chia Seeds.

This is another great wholefood to promote weight loss. These chia seeds are great for anyone who wants to help promote a healthy heart and cardiovascular system.

This is a great wholefood for people on the go, the hydrophilic property of these chia seeds allows them to hold a lot more water in your system. They can roughly absorb up to 12 times their weight in water, this helps to essentially create a storage deposit of water in your body. It can be slightly related to that of a camels hump, it stores water in your body in case you need it at a later time.

The antioxidant properties of this seed are a great way to help reduce free radicals, these wonderful seeds have also been reported to not only improve your mood but help you sleep at night.

Wholefoods UK

Desicated Coconut.

This is a popular wholefood for anyone who is looking to help eliminate bad bacteria in their systems. The desicated coconut has great anti viral, anti microbial and anti-bacterial properties.

Fungi and yeasts are something else this product has a great reputation for eliminating in your body, as well as parasites.

For those who are unfortunately have diabetes then this could be the product for you as Desicated coconut helps to relieve symptoms and reduce health risks associated with diabetes.

Contact Us at Chiray.

If you are interested in Wholefoods in the UK then make sure to contact Chiray or visit our store. We will always look to make sure you get the best advice possible for whatever you are trying to do in your life whether it is to help speed up weight loss or improve the longetivity of your life.

 

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