Got Allergies?
This year has been a big year for allergies.  With all the rain (in California) the mountains are green again, and the flowers are blooming!  That's great, unless you have allergies.  I haven't had allergies this bad since I was a kid in Ohio.  It came on like gangbusters.  Having allergies is definitely not fun.  Runny nose, scratchy throat, stuffed up head, water eyes, sneezing, itchy nose, post nasal drip, etc.  Or the dreaded stuffed up head AND a runny nose!  What can you do?!  Well, there's always the over-the-counter drugs like antihistimines, decongestants, immuno-therapy, eye drops, corticosteroids, and the epi-pen. You might recognize some of these: Claritin Zyrtec Advil Allergy Dimetapp Sudafed Mucinex The problem with these meds is they have some side-effects such as drowsiness, dry eyes, dry nose, dry mouth, insomnia, abdominal pain, etc.   The other thing is that pharmaceuticals don't actually cure allergies.  They just treat the symptoms.  In Natural Health, we prefer to find the source of the problem and fix it. Here are some natural options for alleviating allergies: Try an anti-inflammatory diet (allergic reactions are based on inflammation.) Try an alkaline diet Eat more garlic (an immune booster and antibiotic) Eat more lemons (antioxidant, immune booster, alkaline, liver cleanser.) Eat green leafy veggies (kale, spinach, collard greens, etc.) Eat probiotics (pills or fermented foods - sauerkraut, kimchi, yogurt, etc.) Drink coconut milk instead of cow's milk (cow's milk is phlegm-forming.  Some people are lactose intolerant.) Eat almond butter instead of peanut butter (lots of people have peanut allergies.) Cut down on bread (many people are allergic to gluten.) Drink Apple Cider Vinegar (has many uses, including reducing allergy symptoms.) Eat pineapple (has an enzyme, bromelain, that helps reduce symptoms.) Use bee products such as local honey, Manuka honey, and bee pollen. Eat spicy food (helps dissolve mucus.) Stinging Nettle - (an herb.  You can buy in tincture form.) Butterbur (an herb said to be as effective as some over-the-counter drugs.) Essential oils (eucalyptus, frankincense, peppermint, basil, lemon, tee tree.) You can use a Neti Pot or a Diffuser to allow the essential oils to affect your olfactory system. You can mix essential oils with a carrier oil (coconut oil, olive oil, almond oil) and then put it on your chest, temples, back of neck, etc. You can mix essential oils with water in a mister/sprayer and spray around your house.   Also, there are some lifestyle changes you can do to help alleviate allergy symptoms: Take a shower to rinse off the pollen, etc. Wash your clothes and bedding. Clean your house. Keep doors and windows closed. Exercise! Sit in a hot tub or steam room (gym steam rooms used to put eucalyptus in the steam.  So nice.)   There are natural remedies sold at health food stores that combine various herbs, also.  Check with your local health food store. Let's get through this spring allergy season.  There's no need to suffer.   Bill Ultimate Health & Wellness    
How Important is Your Gut? Very
The latest research has shown just how important your gut health is for your overall health.  In fact, your Gut has been called a second brain.  People often ask, "what is the Gut?"  Usually, the Gut is considered everything from your stomach through the small intestine, ascending colon, transverse colon, and descending colon.  The stomach is acidic, while the intestines are alkaline.   Natural Health Practitioners have a saying that “all disease begins in the gut.”  It makes sense.  Everything you eat goes through your gut.  Along the journey, the food is broken down, and the nutrients are absorbed into your body.  If the nutrients are unable to be absorbed, or if toxins accumulate in your system, you will not be healthy.  If left long enough, it will lead to dis-ease in your body.   Typically, issues with the gut lead to such things as: Celiac Disease IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) Leaky Gut Syndrome Diverticulosis Diverticulitis Constipation Diarrhea Colorectal Cancer Colitis   But, an unhealthy gut can be related to: Autoimmune conditions Mental Health Disorders Immune Health Heart Disease Diabetes Skin Conditions Obesity Cancer Asthma   Gut health can even be related to brain issues: Memory ADD, ADHD Depression Anxiety Alzheimer‘s Eating disorders   “Hidden in the walls of the digestive system, this “brain in your gut” is revolutionizing medicine’s understanding of the links between digestion, mood, health and even the way you think.” “Scientists call this little brain the enteric nervous system(ENS). And it’s not so little. The ENS is two thin layers of more than 100 million nerve cells lining your gastrointestinal tract from esophagus to rectum.” “The enteric nervous system doesn’t seem capable of thought as we know it, but it communicates back and forth with our big brain—with profound results.” “Our two brains ‘talk’ to each other, so therapies that help one may help the other,” “research suggests that digestive-system activity may affect cognition (thinking skills and memory)” *(From Johns Hopkins)   So, what are some things that are bad for your gut? Not eating a diverse range of foods. Don’t get stuck eating the same five things every day.   I’ve seen recently how people have a long list of what they can’t/won’t eat.  Try not to be like that.  We like to say, “eat your colors.”  Eat various fruits and vegetables including the reds, yellows, and greens. Lack of pre-biotics. Most people know about probiotics, but pre-biotics are healthy, also.  In other words, eat more fiber such as whole grains, veggies, and fruits.  Good choices include onions, nuts, garlic, asparagus, beans, and lentils. Too much alcohol. Alcohol turns into sugar and becomes acidic.  It also decreases the good bacteria and increases the bad bacteria. (If you like alcohol, you may want to go with red wine, because it has polyphenols.) Antibiotics.  They kill all gut bacteria, including good and bad.  In the past, doctors would prescribe antibiotics for almost everything.  Only take them when you have to. Lack of exercise Lack of sleep Cigarettes Stress   As a general rule of thumb, stay away from fast food, processed food, bread, pastries, cookies, crackers, soda, candy, ice cream, etc.  Stay away from acidic foods.  Try to eat more alkaline foods.   Some better choices: Lean meat Unrefined and cold-pressed oil Fruit Vegetables Organic eggs Nuts and seeds   My favorites for a healthy gut: Probiotics Digestive Enzymes Coconut Oil Oregano Oil Aloe Vera Vitamin C Bentonite Clay Milk Thistle   Some herbs for a healthy gut include: Licorice Root Slippery Elm Marshmallow Root Turmeric/Curcumin Cat’s Claw Ginger Thyme Cloves   Lastly, fermented foods are also healthy for your gut, because they contain probiotics: Sauerkraut Miso Raw Yogurt Kefir Kombucha Amasai   If your gut is not healthy, you may see symptoms like: Bloating Indigestion Brain Fog Exhaustion Sugar Cravings Chronic Sinus Drainage Toenail Fungus Food Allergies   If you want to alleviate these symptoms, work on making your gut healthy.  You can jump right in and do a detox or a fast, or you can take baby steps and start making small changes to your diet and exercise habits.   If you want to learn more about natural health, here are some doctors to look up.  See what their views are.   Dr. Oz Dr. Mark Hyman Dr. Andrew Weil Dr. David Perlmutter Dr. Jeffrey Bland Dr. Joseph Mercola Dr. Alan Christianson Dr. Al Sears Dr. Dean Ornish Dr. Joel Fuhrman Dr. Thomas O’Bryan Dr. Mark Stengler Dr. Michael Murray Dr. Leigh Erin Connealy Dr. Josh Axe (I got a lot of information from this blog from Dr. Axe)   If you want to be healthy, eat right, exercise, get enough sleep, and try to de-stress.  If you need help, contact me. Be Healthy!   Bill Shuttic  
How to be Healthy
Defining Health What does it mean to be healthy?  In my opinion, being healthy means that your entire body is working at 100% efficiency in order to absorb nutrients from the food you eat and distribute those nutrients to all parts of your body, so all of your body parts can work together the way they were meant to in order to keep you healthy.  This includes all your internal organs and the 12 systems of your body.  Because your body was meant to be healthy.  Your body is constantly trying to be healthy.  Unfortunately, sometimes, we’re our own worst enemy.   What does being healthy require?  Put simply, you have to eat nutrient-dense foods (not empty calories), exercise, get enough rest, and have a positive mindset.  I know, sometimes that is easier said than done.  Most people have their nemesis.  Mine is bread.  Some people love chips, others love cookies, cake, or candy.  Our vices are usually either sweet or salty.  These flavors can be addictive.  Over time, people start eating more of what they like (which may not be healthy) and less of what they need.  What to do…what to do…   When it comes to food, first, you have to recognize your food issues and decide that you’re going to make the effort to be healthy.  Then, you have a choice to go cold-turkey or take baby-steps.  Different strokes for different folks.  Whether you’re trying to give up smoking or sugar or salt, some people just pick a day and stop.  That’s great, if you can do it.  But for those of you who can’t do cold-turkey, you can start slowly by reducing the amount of sugar, for example, or exchanging an alternative for your cravings.   There are many little tricks you can use.  Portion control is one method.  Eat a little less of everything.  Don’t go back for seconds.  Split dessert with a friend.  Skip dessert altogether.  Don’t eat after 8:00pm.  Eat grapes or nuts instead of chips or cookies.  Drink water instead of soda.  Drink tea instead of coffee.  Make your own fresh juice from fresh fruits and veggies rather than buying processed, store-bought juice.  Small changes.   Start eating more SuperFoods.  There are a number of SuperFoods in various categories from Green SuperFoods, to Bee SuperFoods, to Fruit & Nut SuperFoods, to Herbal SuperFoods.  SuperFoods are nutrient-dense, which means they have a high nutrient-to-calorie ratio.  You want the nutrients.  You don’t want all the calories.   When it comes to exercise, try to get in at least 30 minutes per day.  You can go to the gym or work out at home.  Go for a jog or a bike ride around the neighborhood.  Buy some dumbbells and workout in your garage or basement.  You can get a great workout without the need for a lot of equipment.   Rest and relaxation.  Try to get to bed at a reasonable time.  Try to get 6-8 hours sleep.  Some people need more, some less.  If you can’t fall asleep, there could be many reasons, so try to find out why.  Are you eating too late?   Working out too late?  On the computer too late?  Stressed out?  Once you know the reason, you can work on fixing it.   Attitude is key!  Negativity is a killer.  It causes stress, and stress leads to a host of health issues.  You can choose to be either positive or negative.  Try being positive.  Sh*t happens, but how you react can greatly affect your health.  When bad things happen, don’t dwell on it.  Face it and fix it.  Or you can just let it go.  Either way, you’ll be much happier with a positive attitude.   To summarize, if you can eat well, get a little exercise, get some good REM sleep, and stay positive, your body will love you for it.  And in exchange for treating your body well, your body will stay healthy for you.  And that should make you happy!   Be Healthy!   Bill Ultimate Health & Wellness 310.413.0514  
New Year's Resolutions
Ah, it's that time of the year again!  Happy New Year!  What are your New Year's Resolutions?  I hope that Health is up on top of your list.  So, what's the plan?  Join a gym?  Start working out?  If you go to a gym this week or this month, it's going to be PACKED!  You already know it.  Why?  Because everyone wants to get in shape for the new year.  Well, that usually lasts about a month or two before people get back to their old routine and stop going to the gym.  It's so unfortunate.  How can you avoid that pitfall?  It's all about the Lifestyle!   LifeStyle Change If you really want to be healthy, you need to change your lifestyle.  Don't just go to the gym.  If you want to see a change, if you want different results, you need to actually make changes to your life.  You can start by getting a Health and Fitness Notebook.  You'll do better if you keep track of your daily activities.  On the first page, write down your goals.  Try to be as specific as possible.  For example, "I want to lose 10 lbs in January (it's doable.)"  "I want to reduce my body fat percent from 30% to 25% in 4 weeks."  (Also doable.)  Then write down the things in your life you're going to change.  For example, "I'm going to get up 15 minutes early and do push-ups, sit-ups, and planks."  Or, "I'm going to go to the gym every morning before work (or every evening after work) and do 30 minutes of cardio and 30 minutes of weight training."  Or, pertaining to food, "I'm going to quick eating chips in the evening."  Or, "I'm going to start eating eggs instead of bagels for breakfast."   Once you have your goals and your plans, then you have to implement the plan.  Plan your work and work your plan!  You have to do it, otherwise nothing will happen.  There are so many resources out there these days.  There are boot camps.  There are diet programs.  There are online programs.  So many options.  Pick one.  The hardest part is getting started, because change is often difficult for people.  But, once you start your new lifestyle program, within about 3 weeks, it will become a habit, and things should start getting easier from there.   Once you're started your new routine, take your notebook out and write everything down.  What time did you get up?  How did you feel?  What did you eat for breakfast?  How did you feel afterward?  When did you workout?  What was your workout?  How did you feel after?  What did you eat throughout the day?  How did it make you feel?  Do you feel bloated or tired?  How many hours did you sleep?  Did you sleep well?  How is your appetite?  Are you craving any types of foods?  Food is very important.  Nutrition is the key.  Are you getting your nutrients?  Do you take any vitamins?   Try making simple changes in your diet if you don't want to go cold-turkey.  Eat more fresh fruits and vegetables.  Cut back on the junk food or eliminate it entirely.  Cut down on sugar, sodas, diet sodas and try replacing it with lemon water, tea, etc.  Trying juicing fresh fruits and veggies.   Of course, you can sign up as a member of Ultimate Health.  Members have access to almost 100 different workouts that you can do at home.  You can buy a set of BillyStix and the 6-part BillyStix Workout.  It's a great workout!  I'm available via Skype for online Health and Wellness consultations.  If you're in the Los Angeles area, I'm available for private 1-on-1 Health and Fitness Coaching which includes personal training, massage therapy and bodywork, self-defense, nutritional counseling, detoxification, supplementation, and more.   For a free initial consultation, please feel free to contact me at to set up a time to speak.   Let's make 2018 a fantastic year!   Bill Shuttic Ultimate Health & Wellness 310.413.0514
Dealing with Pain (without opioids)
How do you deal with pain?  If you're the average person, you go to the doctor, and the doctor prescribes an opioid for you.  Opioids (which come from the same ingredients found in opium and heroin) are highly addictive.  By treating pain, our medical community is creating drug addicts.  Some estimate the number is in the millions.  It's becoming an epidemic.  Doctors prescribe over 250 million opioids per year!   So, what are the options?  Pain comes in many forms, so different things work for different people.  There is joint pain, muscle pain, internal pain, external pain, headaches, stomach pain, etc.  I suggest trying different remedies to see what works for you.  Here are some options for you: acupuncture chiropractic adjustment massage epsom salts bath detoxification anti-inflammatory diet external oinments (icy hot, zhengu shui, etc) essential oils herbs supplements exercise deep breathing visualization   There are many choices.  Choosing opioids is a risky proposition.  Before you go down that road, look into some natural remedies.   Here is an article by Dr. Alan Sears.
Ditch the Sugar!
Ditch the sugar! We all love sweets, but too much sugar can lead to a host of health issues including diabetes, stroke, and heart disease.  Click on the link to learn more about it.