Changing Your Lifestyle


healthy snack of fruit and yogurt

At age 63, I was diagnosed as a Type 2 diabetic. I was told that this was a life sentence and that I would have to change my lifestyle and start on some heavy duty medications. Eventually I would have to have daily insulin shots. For 10 years I was able to control my diabetes without any medications. Gradually, I had to add various medications. It wasn’t until I was 83 that I had to go on insulin. 20 years without the needle! Even now, I find that I don’t need to take insulin on a daily basis. So how do I do it?

Yes, I most definitely changed my lifestyle. I started to eat a healthier diet and exercise regularly. Those two things turned out to be the key. One of the changes was to include various types of natural supplements in my diet. Vitamins and mineral supplements were particularly important towards building my strength and even more importantly my stamina. This meant that the exercise regimen that I undertook was more effective. My brother-in-law and I worked out at least three times a week, egging each other on to become healthier. I hadn’t been as fit since my days playing multiple sports in high school.

We even started playing tennis together until my knees decided that tennis was not something that I wanted to do anymore. I started down the road of osteoarthritis. My doctor prescribed a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory (NSAID) to curb the pain. That turned out to be a cure that was worse than the disease. The side effects are incredibly harsh so I went looking for alternatives. As discussed in a previous blog post, anti-inflammatory supplements are effective and far less harsh than more traditional medications as prescribed by the medical profession.

The biggest change in my life came because I changed my attitude. Diabetes wasn’t a death sentence but rather a wake up call. It forced me to look at not just my health but my entire life. I realized that I had the opportunity to still contribute and to be with my family and to help them to be strong and to achieve their goals. But most importantly, I realized that getting older wasn’t a penance but rather an opportunity. Being engaged and being interested in the world around me. I still have fun and make myself and others laugh. My life is full of vitality.

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Herbal Teas and their medicinal properties



hands holding tea mug

Herbal teas have been used for centuries for medicinal purposes. It is a wonderful way to help that which ails us in a pleasant way. There are an infinite number of herbal teas that are blended into herbal infusions.

Green tea has been used for centuries by the Chinese and Indians in their traditional medicines. Among the many possible health benefits:

  • control of bleeding,
  • wound healing,
  • aid in digestion,
  • improved heart health,
  • regulating body temperature and
  • aid in improving mental health.

As well, recent studies seem to indicate that there is potential for improvement in:

  • weight loss,
  • liver disorders,
  • type 2 diabetes and
  • Alzheimer’s disease.

As well, studies have shown that green tea may impact rates of cancer although lifestyle facts could also play part. In today’s world, green tea is not just for drinking as a hot beverage, its also included in smoothies and baked goods.

Chamomile tea, like green tea, has a very long history of uses for medicinal as well as social purposes. Studies have shown that chamomile tea a bedtime helps relieve:

  • general aches and pains,
  • headaches and
  • arthritic pain

allowing for a more restful sleep. As well, chamomile tea is known for its support for the nervous and digestive system, easing stress and nervousness. In children, chamomile tea is popular for calming colic and childhood digestive issues.

Other types of Herbal teas


Herbal teas are often a part of a detoxification or cleansing regimen. The body builds up toxins from food and the environment, and these toxins can have a major, negative impact on our health. Cleansing regimens can take many forms, the most common being:

The organs that are most commonly targeted for cleansing are the colon, kidneys and liver, but it is important to be careful about cleansing. This is an area where more is not necessarily better. For general information on cleansing go to Essential Vitality.

Social teas

Herbal teas have always been in enjoyed in relaxed social settings. Teas that include ginger, lemon and peppermint to name a few. Of course, we can’t forget teas such as orange pekoe and Earl Grey. Wonderful!

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Controlling Stress and Anxiety with Vitamins and Minerals

Stress is the scourge of modern life. At its most basic, it is a reaction to danger. Under stress, we may feel tense, anxious, or nervous. The reaction can be physical, as well as triggering a surge of a hormone called adrenaline that briefly influences the sensory system. It sources are many: work, family, and noise to name a few. The list is endless.

Stress does have a place in our lives by saving us from danger particularly physical danger, but too much stress is not a good thing. It can cause anxiety, depression. It can also manifest itself physically: tight muscles, low energy, irritability, the inability to sleep properly. And the list goes on. There are a number of ways to reverse stress. Hard physical exercise and meditation are two. There are various drugs that have been developed to specifically control stress. Good  vitamin and mineral supplementation and a good diet can also relieve stress.

The VITAMIN B group of vitamins as well as foods such as: Dried fruit, Nuts, Eggs, Seafood, Lean meat, Whole grains such brown rice, Yeast extracts, Green vegetables, Seeds, Dairy produts, Lentils and other pulses.

VITAMIN C. This vitamin reduces the stress hormones in your system. Vitamin C can be taken as a supplement or through the consumption of fruits and vegetables.

MAGNESIUM. Magnesium is the most important mineral for stress maintenance. It helps to reliever muscle tension and cramps. Its found in nuts, seeds, green vegetables, wholegrains and pulses.

CALCIUM: important for muscle and nerve health. Foods such as canned fish, yogurt, cheese and pulses.

ZINC & COPPER: These minerals boost immune function. Foods such as red meat, nuts and wholegrains are rich in these minerals.

A proper diet will help you manage stress, but if you can’t get that, there are excellent supplements that will fill the bill. Essential Vitality has more information on vitamin and mineral supplements.