March 2019 - Wakunaga of America

Men’s Health: Tips to Improve Vitality & Virility

More fatigue, less focus, less enthusiasm, and just a sense of lost vitality. While all of these changes seem like separate problems, they all potentially point to one thing in common – low testosterone levels.

Testosterone is the most important sex hormone in men – and when your testosterone levels are low, you can experience a wide range of health problems. The symptoms of low testosterone can include a lot of nondescript symptoms including lack of energy, a loss of interest in sex, difficulty maintaining an erection, and mood changes. But not having enough testosterone can also increase your risk of major conditions such as cardiovascular disease, obesity, and type 2 diabetes.

Unfortunately, for many men over the age of 20, their testosterone level drops with each passing birthday. But there are ways to regain and maintain your youthful vigor and virility.

The Testosterone Factor

Like we mentioned above, testosterone is a very important hormone in men. It is central to a man’s sexual response, including the desire for sex and the mechanics of triggering an erection. Drugs like Viagra and Cialis only improve blood flow temporarily, but do not do anything to influence testosterone. Testosterone replacement therapy is a treatment of choice, but there is a great deal of confusion over when it is appropriate to use. In most cases, blood levels have to get very low before your doctor will even consider it. Although there has been some controversy on safety of testosterone therapy, the consensus is that it is safe when used appropriately. Fortunately, you can support healthy testosterone levels when you are in the grey area of lab values and symptoms with a variety of safe, time tested herbs and nutrients.

Ways to Boost Your Testosterone Naturally

Known as secretagogues, these herbs act as testosterone precursors, encouraging the body to increase its own production of testosterone and enhance desire. Taken separately, they can improve erectile function. But when they are taken together, they have a synergistic effect that heightens both your performance and your experience.

Codonopsis Ianceolata root, for example, has a long history of use in traditional Chinese medicine. Considered to have similar, yet milder benefits as ginseng, this centuries-old herb was often used to treat respiratory ailments, stomach upset, and nerve disorders. Packed with flavonoids and other bioactives, modern-day studies suggest that codonopsis root helps increase testosterone levels in the blood and may help to restore some forms of ED.

Longjack, has also long been used by men looking to enhance both their performance and libido. Indeed, new findings show that this Asian herb contains compounds that directly enhance testosterone production by changing the ratio of cortisol to testosterone. It worked so well in one trial that more than 90 percent of participants showed normal testosterone levels after taking supplemental Longjack for one month. Other research found that the herb increases testosterone concentrations by as much as 30 percent. But Longjack’s benefits don’t end with testosterone. It also increases sperm production and may directly act as a pro-erectile agent.

Looking to incorporate these two ingredients into your routine? Kyolic Lucky 7 contains a synergistic blend of Codonopsis Ianceolata, Maca, Longjack, and other natural ingredients with a long tradition of use for enhancing male reproductive health and desire. This supplement helps boost testosterone levels, enhances energy and performance, builds stamina and strength, and stimulates libido. Try it for peak male performance!

This article is for informational purposes only. This article is not, nor is it intended to be, a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment and should never be relied upon for specific medical advice.

References

  1. https://kyolic.com/healthyguides/Mens-Health/?page=1 

Nutrients from the Sea

Today we’re talking sea vegetables. Here is a breakdown of what sea vegetables are, popular ones you should try, and why you should be eating these nutritious foods.

Chlorella: This unique single-celled freshwater algae has survived on the earth for more than two billion years. The secret to its longevity is chlorella’s fibrous outer wall. Hidden within that wall – which is indigestible to humans – are powerful detoxification properties. Fortunately, scientists have found that breaking the wall releases chlorella’s natural ability to bind toxins and heavy metals through a process known as chelation. Chlorella also boasts a wealth of antioxidants and vitamins including vitamins B1, B2, B12, folic acid, C, and K. Plus it’s a potent source of minerals, essential fatty acids, protein, and fiber.

Preliminary research has found that supplementing with chlorella can increase the amount of cadmium and other heavy metals that are excreted by the body. A randomized clinical trial found that this superfood has remarkable liver-protective and detoxifying benefits for people with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. The study participants took either the popular diabetes drug metformin and vitamin E, or metformin and vitamin E combined with 1,200 mg of chlorella. Those who took the medications with the addition of algae experienced improvements in their diabetes markets, triglycerides, and abnormal liver enzymes.

Spirulina: This blue-green microalgae is actually a type of bacteria called cyanobacterium. High in antioxidants, especially phycocyanin, spirulina has been shown to inhibit the production of inflammatory-signaling molecules. Spirulina is also rich in high-quality protein, B vitamins, iron, copper, magnesium, potassium, and manganese. Not only does this make spirulina an alkaline food, it’s rich nutrient profile also gives this algae numerous health benefits. Research shows that spirulina supports healthy lipid levels, helps maintain blood sugar balance, benefits those with seasonal allergies, and improves muscle strength. A study at the University of South Florida Center of Excellence for Aging & Brain Repair has shown  that spirulina can also help shield the brain from the oxidative damage that accumulates as one ages and may help reverse declines in learning and memory. Specifically, spirulina improves neuronal function, lowers inflammation in the brain, and reduces levels of chemicals linked to oxidative damage.

Spirulina also helps pump up the immune system. Researchers at the University of California, Davis found that adding spirulina to cultured immune system cells significantly increases the production of infection-fighting cells called cytokines. Other research shows that this green food balances the immune response.

Kelp: If you’re a fan of sushi, you’re probably familiar with kelp and its culinary uses. But it turns out that this common seaweed is particularly rich in B vitamins, which play a critical role in cellular metabolism. Because it absorbs nutrients from its surrounding environment, kelp contains more than 15 amino acids and is also a great source of calcium, magnesium, copper, boron, zinc, and manganese. As a result, this mineral-rich seaweed helps maintain pH balance and bone density. Perhaps kelp’s biggest claim to fame is its high iodine content, which supports thyroid function. This is critical for an efficient energy-producing metabolism.

Don’t like the taste of sea veggies? Not a problem. There are supplements out there that contain most of the nutritious ingredients mentioned above. Looking to get a little more chlorella in your life? Try Kyo-Green Greens Blend and Kyo-Green Sprouts Blend, which both contain this powerhouse ingredient and provide nutritional benefits for the whole body. For spirulina, we recommend Kyo-Green Harvest Blend, which not only contains spirulina, but also organic fruits, veggies, naturally sourced grasses, and ancient grains, designed to support and protect the immune system.

References

  1. https://kyolic.com/healthyguides/Great-Greens/index.html?page=1 

This article is for informational purposes only. This article is not, nor is it intended to be, a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment and should never be relied upon for specific medical advice.

Sleep Loss and the Circadian Rhythm

But how do these late nights affect our bodies, our sleep, and our circadian rhythm? Let’s find out.

There is a system in place within our body referred to as our circadian rhythm, that measures time, and synchronizes many of our internal processes to daily events within our environment. Some of these internal processes include: sleep, metabolism, body temperature, melatonin levels, and more. The control of these patterns is built into our genetic makeup. The body follows these synchronized patterns or rhythms, which sometimes persist independently of outside influences. Every cell in our body follows a circadian pattern, which is a compilation of biochemical reactions in the body that are perfectly timed based on available resources, and orchestrated by a small group of cells in the part of the brain called the hypothalamus (Brody, 2014).

Light is perceived by the eyes and travels via the retina to the optic nerves. Above the optic nerves sits the suprachiasmatic nucleus, which is a mouthful, but it is actually the master clock of the body. It couples the body’s physiological processes described earlier to the timing of light and darkness in your surroundings. In isolation from resetting cues (i.e. light), the timing of these processes may eventually become desynchronized. This explains why, after returning from a trip abroad, it takes your body a little while to adjust back to your old sleep schedule, due to the differences in light. When the internal clock is misaligned to our environment, circadian disorders can develop, like delayed and/or advanced sleep syndrome (Peters, 2019). These conditions are associated with insomnia and excessive daytime sleepiness. Luckily, board certified sleep physicians can provide guidance and resources to help correct these disorders.

Now that we’ve had a crash course in the circadian rhythm, let’s explore the topic of sleep deprivation. As mentioned above, the occasional all-nighter is bound to happen in life, sometimes these nights are out of our control, like when we travel. But how do they affect your health? The good news, is that the occasional all-nighter, does not negatively affect your health, and is relatively easy to bounce back from. If you skip shut-eye regularly though, you are putting your health at risk. The same can be said for excess travel (i.e. jumping time zones). If done regularly, it can lead to a suppressed immune system, chronic fatigue, and even memory issues.

Here are some tips for those jetsetters out there:

  1. Plan ahead: Before your trip, try and slowly alter your sleep and wake schedule to more closely mirror that of your travel destination, so it will not be such a shock to the system when you arrive. If you’re heading east, start getting up and going to bed earlier; if you’re heading west, try and shift your wake and bedtime to be later.
  2. Hydrate: Drink plenty of water before, during, and after your trip to prevent dehydration. Try to avoid alcohol if possible.
  3. Get on schedule: Try to choose a flight that gets you to your destination in the early evening, and stay up until 10 p.m. local time. If you’re absolutely exhausted upon arrival, it’s okay to take a small nap, but no longer than one hour.
  4. Let there be light: Let yourself experience sunlight, since this light can help your circadian rhythm acclimate to the new time zone.

Along with these helpful tips, there are a variety of supplements that can help with sleep and travel. Since your immune system is oftentimes suppressed while travelling, it is important to introduce a probiotic before, during, and after your trip. This can help fortify your gut and strengthen your immune system. Kyo-Dophilus, for example, provides 3 billion cells of L. gasseri, B. bifidum, and B. longum, the Friendly Trio®, for digestion and immune health. B vitamins are also helpful as well. Kyolic Formula 101 contains aged garlic extract, GABA, vitamins B1, B6, and B12, and is designed for stress and fatigue relief.

Try some of these tips on your next trip to get better sleep and avoid jet lag. Safe travels!

References

  1. https://dailyburn.com/life/health/time-zones-affect-health/
  2. https://www.verywellhealth.com/the-science-of-circadian-rhythms-3014832

This article is for informational purposes only. This article is not, nor is it intended to be, a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment and should never be relied upon for specific medical advice.