Tricks of the Trade to Keep Your Skin Happy and Your Body Healthy While On The Road

Want to know my top travel tips for staying happy and healthy on the road? I’ll tell you!

I’ve been investing in lots of education to boost my practice as a practitioner so I can serve my patients better – and that means more travels to different time zones. It also means more nights spent in hotel rooms for conferences.

So how do I manage to stay happy and healthy while I am in different time zones and in different hotels all around the world?

Read below and I’ll let you in on my tricks of the trade.  

While these are wonderful tips for life in general, these are especially helpful in your home away from home. Once you try a few of these tips you’ll see lots of incredible benefits, such as brilliant glowing skin.

Here are my top travel tips:

1. Supplement with magnesium.

I take magnesium before I go to bed. I usually take about 400mg and sometimes more. It helps me relax my nervous system and to sleep better.  It also minimizes my muscles from stiffness from sitting around all day in conferences or on planes. Sometimes I like to start taking magnesium the day before I start traveling. Magnesium glycinate is my preferred kind, but magnesium citrate is also helpful if you get constipated from traveling.

2. Hydration.

This is essential always, but it is especially important to start increasing your hydration before traveling. By the time you see your lips are dry in the mirror, you are already playing catch up and dealing with a deficit. Stay ahead of the game and drink at least 10 glasses a day. I now carry a lime or a lemon in my carry on, since it’s a sure way to make any water more palatable wherever I go. Plus a splash of lime or lemon helps my kids to drink more water too. (One caveat: Citric acid in lemon is not good for the coating of our teeth, so drink lemon water shortly before or after a meal where your stomach acid is going to be high anyways.)

3. Beauty Sleep.

Anything that can maximize your sleep is key to all benefits! For example a deep sleep promotes better immune response, cell regeneration, effective learning rates, etc. Melatonin certainly promotes sleep and it is also a powerful antioxidant.

Here’s a list of what I do to promote beauty sleep:

4. Relax with Inner Balance by HeartMath.

This is an incredible piece of technology that I use this for 5-10 minutes whenever I feel I can’t do my usual meditation routine. I also use it if I wake up in the middle of the night feeling jet lagged. It’s a profound and simple tool that measures my heart rate and gives me immediate feedback on my breathing and relaxation response.

5. Skin Care.

Be sure to put on sunscreen before you go out, but be sure to invest in the safest sunscreen for you and your family. Also, it is a good habit to wash your face well at night. This helps to purify the face from toxins that you may have acquired throughout the day from cosmetics and air pollutants. Air pollutants specifically includes many harmful substances such as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons from gas fuels, fumes, and cigarette smokes. These harmful exposures are found to be just as damaging to our skin as UV lights.

6. Eat Light.

This is especially important when changing time zones. Did you know that it takes at least a few days to adjust your gut motility pattern? Your gut motility pattern guides your hunger and bowel movements. Thus, I recommend you avoid grains and sweets those first few days of traveling. Instead, focus on greens, a simple protein shake, and MCT oils as your gut takes time to adjust to the new time zone. That ensures that you are not hungry, as you’ll be eating healthy veggies, proteins, and fats. Furthermore your brain will be happy with the MCT oils and all the veggie fibers will keep your bowels moving too.

In essence, there are many strategies you have when it comes to keeping your skin healthy and your body happy while you are on the road.

When you supplement with magnesium, hydrate, sleep deeply, relax, take care of your skin, and eat light – you will be well on your way to traveling like a happy healthy pro. I hope you try at least one of these tips when you go on your next adventure. When you feel physically healthy and radiant from within, your skin AND your aura will glow! Plus as an added bonus, a simple outfit will show your beauty and your suitcase will inevitably be lighter too!

Happy Travels,

Dr. Onna Lo

Guide To Boosting Your Cognitive Health Part 2:  Lifestyle Tips

Last week we shared an article about how to boost your cognitive health using nutrition. Click here to read that post: Guide To Boosting Your Cognitive Health Part 1: Nutrition

Whether you yourself are suffering, your loved one is struggling, or you are an advocate of healthy living- you will want to take note of the tips offered in this guide.

This guide is based on Dr. Bredesen’s #1 Bestseller, The End of Alzheimer’s: The First Program to Prevent and Reverse Cognitive Decline,  His substantial work in the field of reversing cognitive decline is instrumental for anyone suffering from this themselves or supporting a loved one going through this process.  

Here are some great tips that would truly benefit all of us, especially those of you who are trying to find the right protocol to support your brain health.  1) Exercise 

5-6 times per week for 30-60 minutes, raising heart rate and including both cardiovascular and strength training exercises. Exercise increases brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), which has important anti-Alzheimer’s effects. It also helps to improve oxygenation, improve sleep, reduce overall stress, reduce fat and associated adipokines, improve insulin sensitivity, and improve overall brain and body physiology in numerous ways. Exercise is one of the best ways to prevent cognitive decline, and is an important part of the protocol to reverse cognitive decline.2) Sleep

Sleep has multiple mechanisms to reduce cognitive decline. For example, it induces melatonin, which reduces the amyloid-beta associated with Alzheimer’s disease. Also, it is critical to memory consolidation and it alters cellular anatomy to foster the removal of abnormal and toxic species from the brain. Thus, sleep has multiple mechanisms to support the reversal of cognitive decline.

Most people have a sleep debt, due to chronic lack of optimal sleep, both in quantity and quality. It is crucial to ensure that you do not have sleep apnea. If you do have sleep apnea, it is very important to treat it whether by CPAP, oral device, altering sleeping position, or other methods. Melatonin:

It can be helpful to use melatonin at bedtime. A physiological dose is 0.5mg, which can be taken by mouth or sublingually, depending on formulation. Some take higher doses, up to 20mg, and it is a relatively benign supplement, so you can adjust your dose.

If the dose is too high, you may notice that you awaken after about three hours of heavy sleep, and you may feel sluggish the next morning. If the dose is right, you should notice increased dreaming and awaken feeling refreshed. Melatonin has many effects, among them reducing amyloid-beta, reducing reactive oxygen species, and tumor suppression.

If you find that you are awakening in the middle of the night and ruminating, unable to return to sleep, you may find that Tryptophan (500mg) or 5-hydroxytryptophan (100 mg) helps to prevent this. Please discuss this with your practitioner, especially if you are on an SSRI (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor) for depression, or a related SNRI (serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor).Helpful Sleep Tips:

In order to optimize cognition, try to get as close to 8 hours of sleep each night as possible. It is best to go to bed before midnight, although some people find that their circadian rhythms do not allow this. It is also best to make sure that the room is as dark as possible. Many people like to use an eye mask for this purpose or blackout curtains. In addition, have your bedroom be as quiet as possible and free of EMFs. I’ve found Airestech to be a reliable company with affordable options for EMF protection- use code onnalomd10 for 10% off! Lastly, wind down in the evening instead of exercising or working right up until bedtime. 3) Reduce Stress

Stress is one of the most important contributors to cognitive decline, and stress-related molecules such as cortisol and corticotropin releasing factor receptor 1 are mediators of neural cell death and cognitive decline. Therefore, an important part of the overall program is to reduce stress-related effects, and there are many ways to do this, so please choose the ones that you enjoy. Relaxation Ideas:

Some people choose meditation, and indeed meditation has a positive effect on cognition. Others love music, walks in the park, yoga, visiting museums, lovemaking, or many other things (or all of those things). The Neural Agility recording, designed for brain neurophysiology, is “meditation on steroids,” and many enjoy that. This should be done 5 times per week, in the evenings, for 30 minutes, relaxed and lying down with the lights down. Finding joy and relaxation in life is very important to reduce the brain-damaging stress that many of us feel in our busy lives.4) Mental Exercise

There are many ways to do mental exercises. Try Posit, Dakim, Lumosity, learn a new language, do Sudoku, or crossword puzzles, etc. The key is to do these in the presence of improved biochemistry. Do not do these exercises to the point of exhaustion. A typical session is 40-60 minutes for 4 or 5 times each week. If you are new to this habit, it is ok to start with shorter sessions and increase the duration with time. Remember, some mental exercise is better than none at all. Make it a priority to stay mentally active. In essence, you “use it or lose it.”5) Auditory Physiology

This is like “meditation on steroids.” Use with headphones and listen from your phone, iPod or computer in the evening. It is ideal to practice this 5 times per week, for 30 minutes each time. Rest as you lay down on your back in a dark room and relax. These specialized tones can affect the release of powerful brain chemicals that can regulate mood, improve sleep, and reduce aggression as well as depression. Listen here: http://www.fariastechnique.com/music-for-interhemispheric-synchronization  and Dr. Bredesen recommended this program : http://www.activemindsglobal.com/products/revita-mind/

6) Hygiene

Dr. Kenneth Seaton from Australia spent his career studying the relationship between hygiene, inflammation, and cognition. One of the measures he used to gauge inflammation was the albumin-to-globulin (A/G) ratio. Albumin is an important protein to remove amyloid, and to carry many other molecules (including drugs and hormones) in the blood. When inflammation occurs, from bacteria, fungi, viruses, harmful microbes or dietary inflammagens (like trans fats or simple carbohydrates) the globulin fraction (from which antibodies are derived) increases at the expense of the albumin fraction. This reduces the A/G ratio. This is associated with reduced cognition.

Hygiene, and the maintenance of intact barriers (gut lining, blood-brain barrier, oral, nasal, integumentary (skin, nails, hair), etc.), play a key role in optimizing the A/G ratio. Oral hygiene with an electric toothbrush, floss, and a water-pressure flosser are all important. Oral microbes have been identified repeatedly in the brain in Alzheimer’s disease. Some like to use nasal washes, as well. Evaluation for MARCoNS (multiple antibiotic resistant coagulase-negative Staphylococcus) is helpful, especially in anyone with type 3 (toxic) Alzheimer’s disease. Furthermore, ensuring good nail and skin hygiene can be helpful.

In Summary

Your Cognitive Health Is Worth The Investment. In essence physical and mental exercise, sleep, relaxation, auditory physiology, and hygiene are all important factors to consider when supporting your brain health. All six of these lifestyle tips will help to optimize your physical and mental wellbeing. We hope that this information is useful for you on your journey for the best cognitive health. If you’d like personal support in this process please click here to learn more about our Happy Health Brain Longevity Program. Also, be sure to check out our entire series on cognitive health by clicking the links below:

Guide To Boosting Your Cognitive Health Part 1: Nutrition

Guide To Boosting Your Cognitive Health Part 2:  Lifestyle Tips

Guide To Boosting Your Cognitive Health Part 3: Kirtan Kriya

Guide To Boosting Your Cognitive Health Part 4: The Ketogenic Diet

Guide To Boosting Your Cognitive Health Part 5: Is your blood sugar affecting your brain?

PS: You are invited to click here to sign up for our free 14 Days to Health Video Series and to join our Facebook group for personal support: The Happy Health Community. 


To learn more on this topic please reference our resources below:

Book: The End of Alzheimer’s: The First Program to Prevent and Reverse Cognitive Decline by Dale Bredesen, MD

Website + Research: https://www.drbredesen.com/thebredesenprotocol

5 Best Tips for a Better Sleep

Here are some tips from Sleep specialist Dr. Mathew Walker, PhD in his book: Why We Sleep: Unlock the power of Sleep and Dreams. 

  1. Maintain regularity
    •  Wake up the same time and go to bed the same time, even on weekends. 
  2. Create darkness around our room
    • We are a darkness deprived society.  We need light and dark cycles to create healthy doses of melatonin – A hormone that helps us initiate sleep.  Dim the lights before bed, stay away from LED screens that emit blue light and fool your brain into thinking it’s daytime still.  Use nightshift on your phone, or blue light blocking glasses. Thick curtains.
  3. Keep it cool!  
    • We often sleep in a room too warm.  Keep a room temperature of 68 degrees fahrenheit,  our brain and body need our core body temp to drop down to initiate sleep.
  4. Avoid alcohol and caffeine – 
    • Alcohol is a class of drug that’s called a sedative, it knocks our brain out and does not bring us into a natural sleep.  It also is potent chemical for blocking dream sleep or REM sleep.  Caffeine is a stimulant as a class of drug, you might be able to fall asleep easily  when you drink it, but the depth of your sleep is not as deep as if you didn’t drink it,  so in the morning, you find your self not refreshed and you wake up needing more coffee.
  5. Do not stay in bed if you are awake 
    •  If you can’t call asleep after 20 minutes or wake up for more than 20 min during the middle of the night, then you might associate your bedroom with the behavior of not sleeping, instead, get up and move to another room, read a book.    An alternative is meditation, which has shown to calm down flight or fight response, and that can also help you fall asleep more easily.

 

4 Natural Immune Boosting Tips

Whether you are a parent with kids going back to school, or you work in a large office environment with lots of handshakes or door knobs to grab, September to November months are often when people begin the cycle of cough and colds, earaches, strep throats and sinus symptoms.  Some more prone to it than others.

Here are some simple tools to boost your immune system so you can avoid being out from work, or avoid frequent visits to the doctors.

1. Pay attention to Diet

Remove inflammatory foods can make a huge difference in boosting your immune system, and we now know that foods with high phytonutrients can fight disease too.

  • Remove most sugar, including artificial sugar, processed sugar, fruit juices and sodas.
  • Remove cow and goat dairy like cheese, yoghurt, milk.  It is known to cause more phlegm and mucus in our body.
  • Eat 8 servings (a small fist/serving) of fruits, especially berries and vegetables like dark leafy greens, cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, kale, cauliflower)
  • Use food as medicine and eat lots of onions, garlic and ginger to benefit from their anti-microbial, anti-inflammatory
  • Eat high quality protein (fish, lean meats) and fats (olive oil, coconut oil, avocado)

2. Get enough Sleep

It’s easy to extend the summer fun and push for late night social events or watch one too many TV series.  Instead, give yourself more time to sleep by going to bed early, and try to get at least 8 hours of sleep. 

Our body fights inflammation better with melatonin from our body during our sleep, and we make better at repairing our body with protein and cells when we have enough sleep.

3. Use a Nasal Saline Rinse daily

Using a nasal rinse using saline can help reduce respiratory infections significantly.  You can use a neti pot, my favorite is the Neil Med Sinus Rinse Bottle that you can get in major pharmacies.  And use the pre-packaged pH balanced saline packets so it’s soothing to the nasal cavities.

4. Take these 3 vitamins every day

  • Vitamin C –
    • Study shows cold symptoms decrease by 13% with taking 1 gram daily of Vitamin C for prevention.
    • Take 500mg buffered ascorbic acid twice a day, or 1000mg daily.
  • Vitamin D –
    • Vitamin D is essential fat soluble vitamin that acts like a hormone in our body, important for immune functioning, decreasing inflammation, control of cell growth.
    • Get 10 -15 minutes of mid-day sun exposure to your skin (Adjust base on your location and how close you are to the equator and also the time of year. )
    • Take 2000 IU (international units) per day
  • Zinc –
    • Zinc is an essential mineral for keeping a healthy immune system, building proteins, triggering enzymes and creating DNA.  If you take it daily for up to 5 months, zinc reduces chances of you getting a viral infection such as colds.
    • Food sources of proteins includes oysters, crabs, nuts, spinach, seeds: sesame, pumpkin, sunflowers, chia and flaxseeds, dark chocolate, and mushrooms.
    • Take 25mg per day.

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Singh M, Das RR. Zinc for the common cold. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2011;(2):CD001364

Slapak I, Skoupá J, Strnad P, Horník P. Efficacy of isotonic nasal wash (seawater) in the treatment and prevention of rhinitis in children. Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 20 08 ;134 (1) : 67-74.