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My health formula

May 11, 2023

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Starting your day on the right foot is more than just an axiom. Like Admiral W.H. McRaven's advice in his book “Make your bed”, It is the little things that you do on a daily basis that can change your life.

Thus attention to even the smallest details must be followed in order to reap the benefits later in life.

Starting your day with the proper nutrients is an example of a simple but vital key to maintaining a state of healthy energy that should last you the rest of the day. The meal must be designed to energize and sustain you through the stressors, emergencies, or unexpected events that may prevent you from receiving further nourishment until your, hopeful, return home in the evening.

In the video above I share with you my personal choice of morning fast and simple shake/ breakfast substitute. I hope you find it useful. Feel free to use any or all of my suggestions. I may occasionally change some of the ingredients and if you want to see you are welcome to follow my daily Instagram posts where I describe the specific supplements I take that support me on my arduous but enjoyable day. I have no financial interests in any of the companies I show here.

The ingredients with  their benefits and drawbacks are included below:

  1. Bananas (~118 grams (gm) = a medium-sized banana): Although its contents may vary based on its size and ripeness bananas are a good source of energy boost for the day through their supply of nutrients, fibers, and vitamins. Here are some of its highlights: A Banana contains carbohydrates (not recommended if you follow a low-carb or ketogenic diet) and natural sugars (may help regulate blood sugars, but could also cause an unhealthy high spike in blood sugar levels in some people (different people have a different sugar spike response to different foods- I advise everyone to check their own response)). It contains essential nutrients such as Potassium (a medium-sized banana has 400-450mg of potassium)- a key ingredient for proper heart and muscle function. It also contains vitamins such as Vitamin C (medium-sized banana contains 10% of the recommended daily dose of vitamin C)- important in immune defense, antioxidant as well as aiding in the absorption of iron, and Vitamin B6 (medium-sized banana contains 20% of the recommended daily dose of vitamin B6)- important for brain health, as well as the metabolism of fat, protein, and carbohydrates. Other essential nutrients and vitamins include magnesium, manganese, vitamin A, vitamin K, folate, and vitamin B3 (Niacin). Lastly, the banana contains dietary fiber (medium-sized banana contains usually 3gm of fiber) to help regulate digestion and bowel movement, reduce colon cancer risk as well as increase the feeling of satiety which helps support weight management.
  2. Flaxseeds: When consumed in moderation it is a good source of fiber, omega-3 fatty acids such as alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), and lignan compounds to help reduce the bad cholesterol (LDL) as well as reduce cancer risks from breast, prostate, and colon cancer. The drawbacks are that high doses can lead to bloating and constipation and It is high in calories. Although grounded flaxseeds contain little cyanide ( a protective mechanism of the plant against herbivores) people can typically take a few tablespoons without feeling any side effects; consuming large quantities of its whole form may increase the risk of cyanide toxicity while reducing its nutritional benefits. I take about two teaspoons in my shake.
  3. Almond Milk: Depending on the brand of Almond milk approximately 2-3 6oz cups filled with almonds (280- 420 grams) blended in water are used to produce half a gallon of almond milk. Some add sweeteners, thickeners, or flavors among other ingredients to their product so be mindful. Almond milk is high in magnesium, vitamin E, and calcium, it is lactose-free and low in calories. Some studies suggest it can help lower cholesterol levels and thus help with reducing the risk of heart disease.
  4. L-glutamine: An amino acid naturally produced by our body and found in different foods, L-glutamine has many health benefits: It helps muscle health and speeds muscle recovery after exercise. It supports gut health helping reduce leaky gut syndrome and diarrhea. It helps reduce infections by supporting the immune system and has even been shown to reduce mental fatigue thus improving cognitive function. Despite all these benefits, it is important to note that the quality and purity of different supplement companies may vary and this supplement may not be right for everyone. It shouldn’t be used in people with liver or kidney disease, in those suffering from epilepsy, or taking chemotherapy or immunosuppressant medications (it can interfere with the drug absorption) without first consulting with your medical doctor.
  5. Vegan protein supplements: If you are lactose intolerant or want to reduce the likelihood of acne or the over-activation of your mTOR pathway, vegan proteins are key. High in fiber, and environmentally friendly they are made of vegetables such as peas, rice, hemp, or soy (you can choose which one you prefer). Of course, moderation is important as too much of even these proteins low in the amino acid methionine and leucine can still lead to mTORC1 pathway activation with its resultant later increase in the risk of cancer and reduced longevity. Who wants to be a handsome corpse? Ok, not to sound bleak but still, even if size does matter, I’d take health and longevity with an ok physique over the huge muscles and poor midlife health, wouldn’t you?
  6. AG1: OK. This one is an Australian-based company I researched and liked. The drawback is the big packets should be kept in the refrigerator. But they do have a well-balanced content of minerals, vitamins amino acids and could be used as a meal substitute. Some of my patients find the taste not to their likings others find it grows on them and yet others enjoy the taste despite or because of its green color.

Whatever you choose it is important you discuss it with your physician and occasionally review your blood biomarkers as this is not your only source of food and you do not want to overdose on any of the supplements. Help your body find its flow state, seek the yin, and yang in your diet, too much could be as harmful or even more harmful than too little.

As we say at my practice of levit dermatology: Health and beauty is our duty. Wishing you all health, balance, and happiness. Be good, do good, and may good come your way.