Coach Alicia Fong

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Pre-workout supplement

My clients and athletes often asked me what supplement is best to take before training.

I recommend Ultra RagNoRok by Millennium Sport Technologies.

The reason I like this product is because it uses 6 different types of supplements and blend them together in one bottle. It has creatine, nitric oxide, beta alanine, antioxidants, electrolytes, vitamin B-9, and magnesium. It doesn’t have sugar, carbs, aspartame, and acesulfame.

All you have to do is add water, shake it and drink it.

All my clients feel a difference when they take it prior to their workout. It gives them more energy. You get more pump and you feel like you can do more and go heavier.

It only has one flavor now which it’s warrior melon (watermelon). It’s sweet and taste good.

I personally take it and feel a difference in my training when I’m on it.

Millennium Sport Technologies carries good quality products. Their ingredients are from the US. Here is a big tip to choosing your supplements: follow the source. Find out where does the company buy their ingredients. If they come from China, the supplement is of low quality and you are wasting your money.

We sell several products from Millennium Sport Technologies because they are a good company and we personally like the RagNoRok. It’s conveniently put together for you. It has all of the right pre-workout ingredients mixed in one bottle.

We sell it at our online store and in our physical location in Santa Monica. It is currently on sale for $32.50 (retail price is $65.99).


August 2, 2011 Posted by | health | , | Leave a comment

Very interesting “FMS” article

I like to share the following article about FMS aka Functional Movement Screen.  It talks about the pros, cons and its studies. What are your thoughts?

Anyone who is interested in training, and browsing on the Internet now and then probably have hardly missed Functional Movement Screen, also commonly abbreviated as FMS, which currently is almost ridiculously hyped in the U.S.. Just as everything else from the U.S. so it’s about that you should pay the money to take a course and then get a license / a diploma that you then can show to their customers. What course would cost to go to Sweden I do not know, but education is in two days where you learn the tests and then a series of exercises that are designed to improve performance in the tests.

If you would like to be tested by someone who is licensed in the Functional Movement Screen and it will cost you around 600 SEK, ie the class with a PT-hours. The question then is whether it is worth the money? Is there any research showing that a training course in 2 days can make a random PT clever enough to determine whether it is the increased risk of injury?

I personally am not very fond of the Functional Movement Screen. I think it makes more sense than much else out there on the market but as usual when something strikes it big in the U.S., it’s an awful lot of talk and surprisingly little evidence behind. A very distinctive characters for almost all of those Americans who encountered a lot of searching on the web about exercise is that they all like to talk very much about studies and research, but almost never sees them actually refer to any studies or research.

Anyway. In this post I will look at the Functional Movement Screen and the research that does exist to try to determine whether the test adds nothing new and if it can help you as a coach or athlete to become better at what you do.

Brief Functional Movement Screen

Functional Movement Screen arrived in 1998 and is created by Gray Cook, Lee Burton and Kyle Kiesel. The first studies on the Functional Movement Screen is also performed by these gentlemen, if you will notice later, the results seem to differ a lot from when one of them is involved in the studies and when it is more independent people.

For those of you not familiar with the Functional Movement Screen and so does the seven different tests that can result in 0-3 points. 3 points are given if the movement is perfect. If the motion is carried out but with some form of compensation will be 2 points. If the test subject is unable to perform the test, he or she was 1 point and if the pain during movement, it will be 0 points. Maximum score for a test is thus 21 points and the minimum is 0 points, which occurs about every movement hurts.

One thing that is very good with the Functional Movement Screen purely scientific terms is that it is very standardized. In theory, this standardization mean that many people in different parts of the world can take the same tests and do basically the same assessment. So if you go to two different persons performing the various tests on you, you should get the same results in the two tests. If it really becomes so are studied in three different studies ( 1 , 2 , 3 ).







Functional Movement Screen is well standardized

In the first study, where Kyle Kiesel was co-author, saw a very good interrater reliability (IBR) ( 1 ). This long complicated words, how well the assessment is between two different people. Results from the study showed a rather good ability for different analysts to find the same results and the authors concluded that the Functional Movement Screen has high IBR and can be safely used by trained persons. Total overlapped approximately 70-92% of assessments for the various tests. In this study, also shared the team of an experienced team of two who both had at least 10 years of experience in Functional Movement Screen, a more inexperienced team with two newly trained assessors. Interestingly, more regular assessments of the newly trained assessors.

In the second study conducted on military performance was approximately the same result, the ( two ). This study also looked at how consistent assessment is from a single assessor. So if you have the same score by the same assessor if you do the test twice in succession. In this case the results were very good.

In the third study, the results were not as positive ( 3 ). The researchers in this study, the worse figures for IBR and they therefore recommend that the assessor should always perform the tests.

Despite the more adverse outcome in the third study is still a strength standardization of Functional Movement Screen. If we consider that it is still to some extent is a manual test that can be performed “on the ground” so the results are in good reliability. There is also a strength when you then must conduct studies on the test to see if it can predict future damage, reduce the number of injuries or even assessing how well a particular person will perform in a sport. For the fact that we know that different people consider pretty much the same means that studies can be performed in a standardized way of several different research groups.

The first studies

Knowing that a test is performed more or less the same way by different people is always interesting, but something that is far more interesting for an athlete is on the tests add nothing new. If they can contribute to either predict or damage by reducing the risk of injury. There are currently very few studies on the Functional Movement Screen, but mixed results and I will now briefly go through them all.

American footballer

The first of these studies appeared in 2007 and in that looked at American football player ( 4 ). This study was conducted by Kyle Kiesel, founder of the Functional Movement Screen, and is retrospective. With retrospective meant looking at the outcome afterwards to try to find connections. This is a form of study design that gives uncertain results should always be interpreted with caution. Study participants were 46 players in a professional club in the United States. Physical coach of this team had under study a total of 11 years of experience in Functional Movement Screen and the upcoming season, he had performed these tests on the players on the team. Using these results and injury statistics for the past season, the scientists then look at whether they could see no statistical correlation between test results and injury risk.

The mean football players of the test were found to be 16.9 points. For those who spent an injury, the mean 14.3 and for those who received no injury, the mean rather than 17.4. This difference in mean was significant. Apart from this simple comparison was made also a calculation to try to come up with a test value in the best possible way could make out the people who were in greater risk of injury while not unnecessarily included many who were not at increased risk of injury. If one were to set the threshold at 20 points so it would be guaranteed to get with virtually all of which harm themselves, but offers almost all of which do not harm themselves. The boundary is thus totally useless.

The value that was reached after the calculations was 14 points. Of those who scored below 14 points in the study were over 90% damage. Of those who had come to around 50% damage. This represents a specificity of 0.9 and a sensitivity of 0.5. They gave then some other ways of looking at this value which indicates an odds ratio of 11.7 which means that people under 14 points has an 11-fold higher risk of injury to a person with more than 14 points.

Can Functional Movement Screen predict damage in play in the NFL?

There are some very big questions of this study. In addition to being retrospective as I have said, I wonder immediately why you only included one season in the study? If the physical coach has worked with the Functional Movement Screen for 11 years should he is reasonably have data for several seasons. Perhaps it is the physical coach just got the job, we do not know. To me this feels like a big warning flag, especially when one of the authors of the study self-developed tests and has sold them commercially for almost 10 years before the study. Other problems are that you get to know very little about the individual values ​​of the test persons. The reason for this separation is to protect the players’ identity. Nor shall we know the name of the club we’ve tested. Or to put it another way, there is no way to verify this information.

In all cases, this study underpinning the value of 14 which now is established in the performing Functional Movement Screens.

For athletes before a marathon

This study is unfortunately only published as an abstract ( 5 ). In this study, we performed tests of the 60 runners who signed up for a marathon. After this, the participants each week before the race to fill out a form online where they could indicate whether they had any damage. The results of this study is far from impressive. A total of 12 pieces that had an injury of which only one participant had an overall score in 14th

After this daunting performance as tested is moving at the limit of 14 points to see if any other border could work better. The best value that was reached was then 17, which gave a specificity of 42% and a sensitivity of 57%. Still very bad and it can in principle be likened to a coin flip.

In women’s sports

Another study looked at 38 women’s sports that are either trained soccer, volleyball or basketball ( 7 ). In this study it was found that participants with a score over 14 points had 3.85 times as likely to go on an injury compared to those with 15 points and more. The sensitivity of this study was 0.58 which means that the test could find 58% of those who spent an injury. The specificity was 0.74, which means that 26% who did not went on a damage still had a profit during the 14th

All injuries except one in this study was the lower extremity and when we excluded the debt test in the Functional Movement Screen was the correlation between test results and injury risk clearly evident.

With firefighters in a year

This study involved 433 firefighters who face a new year underwent a Functional Movement Screen and then after a major intervention where the goal was to increase both bålstyrka and flexibility ( 6 ). There was no control group, but instead looked at injury statistics from the year before the intervention.

Nor in this study saw no connection between scores in tests and risk of injury. There was a small correlation between test results and previous injury in which those who were hurt had a slightly lower score. The real difference in score was only 0.24 points between previously injured and ‘never’ wounded so the practical usefulness here is basically none.

Youth Basketball player in a season

This study included 112 youth basketball players in which roughly half were girls and half boys aged 14-18 years ( 8 ). The results of this study was that 24% of those receiving the 14 points went to an injury, but 22% of those under 14 points was an injury. In other words, there was no difference in injury risk depending on the results that the girls and boys received the Functional Movement Screen test. The use of any value other than 14 as a border nor did it any significant results.

In the military

By far the best study published just one week ago and was performed on an aspiring military officers ( 9 ). The total includes 874 pieces of people which may be seen as a very impressive figure in terms of training studies. About half of them went through a workout that lasted 68 days and the other half an exercise period of 38 days. Before the training period all participants underwent a Functional Movement Screen, and a standard physical tests, which consisted of chins, sit-ups and well as a fitness test at 3 miles, that is almost 5 km.

The results showed that with a test result in 14 points had an injury that was 1.5 times greater than that which had more than 14 points. Overall, 45% of those who had a test result in 14 points of damage compared with 30% of those who had more points. The sensitivity of the test was 0.45 and specificity was 78%. This is not really impressive results, but we look only at these numbers, however, seems pretty Functional Movement Screen and still be able to fulfill a purpose in these contexts. However, there are two more things to do that in any case I am in really look into its benefits.

The first thing that is most telling is that when the researchers plotted the test results from damage to a graph that saw them to the risk of injury seemed to increase again among the participants who received more than 17 points on the test. The “plot up” means to put out items for each participant in a graph and then try to calculate any correlation. You’ve probably seen a graph at some point with a slanted line through the whole lot and points here and there. It is called a scatter plot.

The results of the study of military officers. Persons who scored below 14 points was the increased risk of injury but also those who received 18 points and more were in increased risk of injury.

This is quite surprising results. The person who was best on the tests proved to be more injury risk than their counterparts who were only decent on tests.

The other thing that speaks against Functional Movement Screen has something good for at least the military is that the physical tests they did at the beginning predicted which individuals were in the risk of injury as good as the Functional Movement Screen. Not only fystestet ability to predict who was at risk of injury was the same, its sensitivity was higher than for Functional Movement Screen. To put it in a very simple and obvious way. Less fit individuals are at increased risk for going on an injury when they begin to train more intensively.

Functional Movement Screen and performance

The relationship between test results of the Functional Movement Screen and performance is still not clear. There is a degree at Master’s level where the author looked at whether there was any link between performance on the test and the results of the various fitness tests like the vertical jump, sprint, throw the medicine ball and a “witty incitement” test ( 10 ). This study showed a very weak link between performance and test results. Another study conducted as part of a PhD. also showed that the disappointing results and in this also looked at differences between right and left sides to see if the Functional Movement Screen would predict that ( 11 ). Another study conducted by a graduate student in search of her PhD looked at the relationship between test results at a Functional Movement Screen and performance in 23 brandmänsanspiranter and found no significant relationship ( 12 ). The same study also did not do any correlation between test results and injury risk.

The study of military officers that I have mentioned here above was seen even where a relationship between performance on fystestet and results in the Functional Movement Screen, but even that was somewhat weak. The correlation was weak this explains why we saw a more straightforward relationship between injury risk and performance at fystestet compared with injury and scored in the Functional Movement Screen, which has said both the under 15 points and over 17 points had increased risk of injury.

Another study also conducted as part of a doctoral dissertation looked at whether you could see some form of systematic error in the Functional Movement Screen ( 13 ). Unfortunately I have not managed to get hold of this study in full text, but the abstract can be read out to more people seem to be more difficult to perform tests than shorter people. This suggests anyway that taller people are likely to be “designated” to be at risk of injury more often than shorter people, despite the risk of injury does not really differ slightly.


This post is hardly a celebration of the Functional Movement Screen. When it comes to predict the risk of injury or performance, it appears to be an awful lot to be desired. As I see it is really not worth the money to go to a place like this test unless you’re the type who likes to make movements that it is not possible, then it is probably Functional Movement Screen, a funny thing. It should be mentioned that there are good things to Functional Movement Screen. What I like most is the exercises you learn to increase his mobility again.

If you are however looking to reduce the risk of injury, I think it is far better to just look at what you need to take on and then try to increase their strength, balance and mobility so you can handle the movement. There is also in a lot of knee injuries that studies that have demonstrated several testable factors, if they are not working properly, leading to an increased risk of ACL injuries ( 11 ). If you want to reduce the risk of athletes do you probably will want to first of all abide by these factors.

July 21, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Health tip for week July 4th

Sleeping 8 hours a night helps you lose weight

A client asked me recently if lack of sleep affects his training performance even though he doesn’t feel tire at the time of training.  The answer is YES, definitely.  Just because you are not tired at the time, it doesn’t mean that it doesn’t screw up your body (to be more specific, your hormones).  Sleeping is the main key to fixing many health issues.

“Consistently skimping on sleep for even a week or two can have the same impact on our mood and performance as missing two full nights of sleep,” says Donna Arand, Ph.D., clinical director of the Sleep Disorders Center at Kettering Medical Center in Dayton, Ohio.  “Plus, it puts you at risk for diabetes and heart disease.”

A recent survey indicates that more than 60% of Americans have average less than 7 hours of sleep.  Ideally, 8 hours of sleep is good.  Missing 30 minutes to 1 hours can surprisingly lead to weight gain because your metabolism starts slowing and hormonal changes boost appetite and cravings.

If you miss 1 or 2 hours sleep, your mood will tank and often lead to anxiety, stress and/or depression.  Other research shows that after a couple nights of only 4 or 5 hours of rest, memory and attention span notably worsen.

If you miss 3 to 4 hours sleep, our heart rate and blood pressure spike.  There’s also evidence that sleeping only 4 hours a night for just six days can impair your body’s ability to regulate blood sugar; therefore, more cravings and weight gain.

For many of our functional medicine’s patients, getting them to sleep better (at least 8 hours a night) eliminates more than half of their health issues.  One thing I noticed from our clients/patients who weren’t getting enough sleep was they had adrenal burn out or adrenal fatigue, which all lead to low cortisol and low testosterone.

So make sure you get yourself a good quality sleep every night.  Here are some suggestions:

1) Go to bed before midnight, (ideally before 10 pm) because between 10 pm to 2 am is the optimum time for hormonal regulation and repair process, everything that involves recovery.

2) Don’t work out at night because it raises cortisol and disrupts the sleeping pattern.

3) Don’t drink any drink containing caffeine such as tea, soda and coffee.

4) Turn all lights off, including computers.  Any small light can disrupt your sleep throughout the night.

5) Read a boring book (textbook) before going to sleep.

6) Drink chamomile tea.  It soothes and calms you down.

7) Take some supplements that help your sleep like melatonin, 5-HTP, and Gabba.

I hope these tips help. Getting a good night sleep makes your day goes by faster and your mood will be good.

“Stop sneaking by. Getting too little sleep is only cheating yourself”.




July 6, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Health tip for week Jun 13th

Benefits of owning a pet

We all know that owning a pet is work especially a dog and it’s all about unconditional love, but it also provides few health benefits to pet owners:

1)       Decreases Stress

In a 2002 study at State University of New York at Buffalo, researchers found that when conducting a stressful task, people experienced less stress when their pets were with them than when a spouse, family member or close friend was nearby. Promises Treatment Centers, which specializes in addiction, not only recommends its patients consider getting a pet, but even allows pets in its rehabilitation facilities, according to David Sack, MD, CEO of Promises. “One of Promises’ core beliefs is that we need to remove obstacles that prevent people from getting help,” Dr. Sack says. “We are committed to making Promises a safe and reassuring homelike environment. And what could be more like home than to have your pet accompany you?”

2)      Lowers Blood Pressure

While some studies have found a stronger connection than others, having a pet has the potential to lower blood pressure, especially in hypertensive or high-risk patients, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). “If you have a dog around, your blood pressure is lower,” says Marty Becker, DVM, veterinary consultant for Good Morning America and author of the upcoming book Your Dog: The Owner’s Manual. “

3)      Eases Pain

Believe it or not, pets can be the best medicine, especially when a person is dealing with chronic pain such as migraines or arthritis, says Dr. Becker. “Just like Valium, it reduces anxiety. The less anxiety, the less pain,” he says. One study from Loyola University found that people who use pet therapy while recovering from surgery may need significantly less pain medication than those who do not.

4)      Lowers Cholesterol

According to the CDC, another heart-healthy result of owning a pet is lower cholesterol. People who own pets–and men, in particular–have significantly lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels than those who don’t have pets.

5)      Improves Mood

A lot of the health benefits of owning a pet may stem from the mental and emotional benefits. “People who have pets are less harried; there’s more laughter in their life,” says Dr. Becker. “When you come home, it’s like you’re George Clooney. You’re a star.” This is a primary reason pets are used in various forms of therapy. “At Walter Reed Army Medical Center, they’re using dogs to help soldiers dealing with post-traumatic stress disorder,” says Katy Nelson, DVM, associate emergency veterinarian at the VCA Alexandria Animal Hospital in Alexandria, Virginia. “They’re finding the guys who have a pet are able to re-enter society a little bit easier. They’re showing a decreased suicide rate, one of the biggest health threats [veterans] face. These guys who have a pet have someone they’re responsible for, someone who cares about them. And they don’t have to explain what they’ve been through.”

6)      Helps People Socialize

While it may seem a bit counterintuitive, owning a dog actually increases a person’s opportunities to socialize, according to Michael Landa, CEO of natural pet food brand Nulo and founder of Los Angeles–based dog-walking service The Pet Staff.  If you own a business, it also helps you meet prospects.  A 1999 Canadian study found that pet owners were more ‘socially engaged’ than non–pet owners. In addition, an Austrian study “found that pet ownership led to an increase in social contact, more socialization within neighborhoods [such as neighbors chatting as they walk their dogs], and even a greater perception to observers that the neighborhood seems ‘friendly.’”

7)      Prevents Strokes

Although dogs are often touted for their health benefits, cat owners can see gains, too. Felines are just as beneficial to your health as dogs. “If you have a cat, you’re 30 percent less likely to have a heart attack, and you’re 40 percent less likely to have a cardiovascular incident like a stroke,” Dr. Becker says. In addition, pets can aid in the recovery of a heart attack. “If you have a heart attack and you have a dog, you are [significantly more] likely to be alive a year later,” Dr. Becker says.

8)      Prevents Allergies and Improves Immunity

Dr. Becker says pets can dramatically improve immunity and prevent allergies. “A study found that children ages 5 to 7 from pet-owning households attend school three weeks more per year than those who don’t have pets,” he says. He also says that the more pets you have earlier in life, the fewer allergies you will develop. “Kids who grow up on farms and around animals don’t have allergies,” he says. “That dander on that hair, that’s natural immunotherapy.” But he notes that this effect is not reversible: Getting a pet as an adult will not minimize allergies, it only helps prevent certain allergies from developing in children.


June 13, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Health tip for week June 6th


Be aware that high fructose corn syrup will be renamed to “corn sugar”.

The new name “corn sugar” was submitted to the federal government for permission to be used in food labels by the Corn Refiners Association. They have leverage with the government and it is most likely to be approved so look forward to the new label. Don’t mistaken by thinking it’s different. It’s the same and is very bad for you.

What is exactly high fructose corn syrup (HFCS)?

High fructose corn syrup (HFCS) is a man-made sweetener that is found in a wide range of processed foods, from ketchup and cereals to crackers and salad dressings. It also sweetens just about all of the (regular) soda Americans drink. HFCS used in foods is between 50 to 55 percent fructose—so chemically, it’s virtually identical to table sugar (sucrose), which is 50 percent fructose. Metabolic studies suggest our bodies break down and use HFCS and sucrose the same way.

Why is it bad for you?

Research has shown that “high-fructose corn syrup” goes directly to the liver, releasing enzymes that instruct the body to then store fat! This may elevate triglyceride (fat in blood) levels and elevate cholesterol levels. This fake fructose may slow fat burning and cause weight gain. Other research indicates that it does not stimulate insulin production, which usually creates a sense of being full. Therefore, people may eat more than they should. Indications also are that the important chromium levels are lowered by this sweetener which may then contribute to type 2 diabetes. Obesity is a contributor too.

HFCS is easy to transport in tanker trucks. It isn’t susceptible to freezer burn, as is sugar. It has a long shelf life and keeps foods from becoming dry. It gives bread and baked products a wonderful color. It’s also cheaper than white sugar, partly because of generous federal subsidies and trade policies that encourage farmers to grow more corn. Fast food chains add it to their products because it is cheaper. It’s in the sauces, in the condiments, in the breadings, in the buns and in the drinks. It is the commercially preferred artificial sweetener by mist food manufacturers.

June 6, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment

Health tip for week May 29th

Grain-Free Diets Can Clear Up Your Acne FOR GOOD!

We all have acne problems sometime in our lives, but for some people, it is chronic and has become a painful part of their lives.


More proof is continuing to emerge that the root cause of acne is not bacteria or genetics, but environmental factors—particularly your DIET. Solid evidence exists proving that diets high in sugar and refined carbohydrates are the primary CAUSE of acne.

Second cause and another major factor is STRESS.

We now know that a low-grain or no-grain diet will very likely clear up your skin, permanently! Antibiotics are unnecessary because correcting your diet creates an internal environment that does not ALLOW bacterial overgrowth to occur.


Not all carbohydrates are created equal. Carbohydrates can be categorized into the following types:

  • Simple carbohydrates are sugars, such as those found in candy, soda, and baked goods. Your best bet is to strictly limit those in your diet—working toward eliminating them completely. Be especially careful to avoid all high fructose corn syrup, which is a major component of sodas and processed foods.
  • Complex carbohydrates are found in natural whole foods such as beans, nuts, whole grains, and vegetables. Although beans, nuts and grains contain more nutritive value than simple carbohydrates, you will need to limit them if acne is a problem for you.

Your body “prefers” the complex carbs found in vegetables to the complex carbs found in grains, because your body handles their digestion differently. Vegetable-carbs are slow to break down into simple sugars, with minimal insulin impact, whereas digestion of grain-carbs raises your insulin and insulin-like growth factor (IGF-1).

Higher IGF-1 levels can lead to increased male hormones, which cause your pores to secrete more sebum, a greasy substance that traps acne-promoting bacteria. IGF-1 also causes skin cells (known as keratinocytes) to multiply, a process associated with acne.

This is why most grains should be avoided if you have acne issues.

In a 2007 study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, young men (ages 15 to 25) with acne problems were placed on low-glycemic diets for 12 weeks, showing significant improvements in acne and insulin sensitivity.

Simply eliminating grains, sugars (particularly fructose), cereals, potatoes, corn, rice, pasta, processed foods, etc., radically improves acne for most people. Fruit contains a fair amount of fructose, so it should be consumed in very limited quantities if you are predisposed to acne. And fruit juices should be strictly avoided since the sugar is very concentrated in them. (Vegetable juices are great, though, especially green juices.)


Remember, gluten is usually found in wheat and other grains which may be contributing to your acne symptoms if you have a gluten intolerance, which many people do. This is a separate issue from the insulin effects already discussed. Gluten is a prime suspect if you have rosacea, a growing problem, especially for Baby Boomers.

According to The Gluten Free Diet: “A person who is gluten intolerant cannot digest gluten, so the body will not recognize it when it is eaten and therefore treats it as a foreign body when trying to digest it. Because the body of a gluten intolerant person cannot process gluten properly, the small intestines become damaged slowly over time causing digestive issues. The gluten intolerance can produce other symptoms and push the toxins through the skin such as acne.”

Since gluten sensitivity is so pervasive anyway it would make loads of sense to try a gluten-free diet for one month and see if your acne or any other health symptoms improve. This shouldn’t be too difficult if you are already implementing a low-grain or no-grain diet, which minimizes sources of gluten.


What you put on your skin is as important as what you eat. In fact, what you apply topically is readily absorbed through your skin, which is really a semi-permeable membrane through which substances pass directly into your body.

Many of today’s skin care products and cosmetics are nothing more than a toxic mélange of harsh chemicals, which cause more skin problems than they solve. And when it comes to acne, these chemicals can seriously inflame an outbreak, or prevent one from healing.

The reason for containing hazardous ingredients is due to cost (they are cheap), readily availability, and easy to dilute.

When it comes to the skin care industry, anything goes. The Environmental Working Group estimates 99 percent of personal care products contain more than one ingredient that has never been evaluated for safety. It’s a self-regulated industry—an industry that operates on “the honor system” but has a multitude of dishonorable players.

So you have to be a meticulous, well-educated label reader to know what you’re getting.

You should spend five minutes every day cleansing your face, which removes the impurities that collect on your skin during a typical day and clog up your pores. And ladies, please never sleep in your makeup. It’s also advisable to exfoliate your skin once or twice per week. But do so gently, especially if you are experiencing an outbreak, and never pull or rub your skin aggressively.

You should use pure, safe, natural skin care products—preferably organic ones. Apply your skin care products to warm skin, which maximizes absorption.


  • Avoid eating Sugars and Grains, as discussed above.
  • Drink water.  Drink plenty of fresh, pure water every day. Hydrating your body facilitates cell growth and regeneration, elimination of wastes, and sloughing away dead skin cells. Hydration will also improve your skin tone.
  • Exercise: Getting plenty of high-intensity exercise helps your body flush out toxins, including those in your skin’s pores. If you happen to have access to an infrared sauna, this can be helpful, because the more you sweat, the more you flush unwanted debris and contaminants out of your pores.
  • Sleep: Did you know that a good night’s sleep can decrease your stress and lead to clearer skin? Your body’s time for healing and rebuilding is at night while you sleep, and this applies to your skin. Sleep is also required for good energy and mood.
  • Proper balance of bacteria: This is especially important if you have been on antibiotics, because those drugs indiscriminately kill off the beneficial bacteria in your gut, without which you cannot have a strong immune system. You can reestablish your bacterial balance by taking a high quality probiotic supplement, and by incorporating naturally fermented/cultured foods into your diet.
  • Vitamin D: This important nutrient is crucial for maintaining a healthy immune response, and most people are deficient in it. Without adequate vitamin D, your body cannot control infection, in your skin or elsewhere. Exposing large areas of your skin to appropriate amounts of sunshine is the best way to optimize your vitamin D levels, or use a safe tanning bed. You should expose your skin until you just barely begin turning pink, which indicates you’ve generated the optimal amount of vitamin D for the day.


May 31, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Health tip for week May 23rd

Having sugar management issues?

I know how hard it is to stop eating sweets especially when you have cravings.  I have the same issue.  I wanted to get lean and I knew cutting sweets (desserts, chocolate, fruits and most protein bars) was a big step toward losing fat.  But it was so hard to stop when all I could think was chocolate.  One supplement that has helped me in the past is Alpha-lipoic acid.  After a week of taking this, my cravings stopped and I was able to stop eating sweets and my body got leaner.  Alpha-lipoic acid has many other benefits which I will discuss below, but first let me give you a definition and end this blog with a suggestion of which form of alpha-lipoic acid is best to take.

  • What is Alpha-lipoic acid?

Alpha-lipoic acid (ALA) is an antioxidant that is made by the body and is found in every cell, where it helps turn glucose into energy. Antioxidants are substances that attack “free radicals,” waste products created when the body turns food into energy. Free radicals cause harmful chemical reactions that can damage cells in the body, making it harder for the body to fight off infections. They also damage organs and tissues.

Unlike other antioxidants, which work only in water (such as vitamin C) or fatty tissues (such as vitamin E), alpha-lipoic acid is both fat- and water-soluble. That means it can work throughout the body. In addition, antioxidants are depleted as they attack free radicals, but evidence suggests alpha-lipoic acid may help regenerate these other antioxidants and make them active again.

 In the cells of the body, alpha-lipoic acid is converted into dihydrolipoic acid. Alpha-lipoic acid is not the same as alpha linolenic acid, which is an omega-3 fatty acid that may help heart health.

  • What are the benefits?


ALA has an insulin like effect. It does not take the place of insulin, only mimics it. ALA has been shown to increase glucose uptake by mimicking insulin.

Individuals that display limitations in moderating blood sugar concentrations often have a serious problem with glycation caused by higher than normal levels of blood sugar due to low insulin production or insulin resistance. Glycation happens when blood sugar reacts quickly and spontaneously with proteins to form damaging cross-linking. This cross-linking causes severe tissue damage and leads to kidney ailments, plaque build-up in the arteries, and retinopathy. Lipoic acid curtails glycation and enhances the transfer of blood sugar into the cells by stimulating insulin activity


Alpha-lipoic acid can lower blood sugar levels, and its ability to kill free radicals may help reduce pain, burning, itching, tingling, and numbness in people who have nerve damage caused by diabetes (called peripheral neuropathy). Alpha-lipoic acid has been used for years for this purpose in Europe, and at least one study found that intravenous (IV) doses of alpha-lipoic acid helped reduce symptoms. However, the evidence indicating that taking alpha-lipoic acid orally will help is weaker. Most studies have been small and poorly designed. One 2006 study did show benefit from taking alpha-lipoic acid for diabetic neuropathy compared to placebo.

Taking alpha-lipoic acid does appear to help another diabetes-related condition called autonomic neuropathy, which affects the nerves supplying the heart. One study found that 73 people with autonomic neuropathy improved when taking 800 mg of alpha-lipoic acid orally compared to placebo.

 Liver Disease

Alpha-lipoic acid has been proposed as a treatment for alcohol-related liver disease, but so far there is no evidence that it works. Alpha-lipoic acid has been administered by IV along with silymarin to treat people who have eaten the poisonous mushroom Amanita, which causes liver damage.

Brain Function and Stroke

Because alpha-lipoic acid can pass easily into the brain, it has protective effects on brain and nerve tissue. Scientists are investigating it as a potential treatment for stroke and other brain disorders involving free radical damage. Animals treated with alpha-lipoic acid, for example, suffered less brain damage and had a four times greater survival rate after a stroke than animals who did not receive this supplement. More research is needed to understand whether this benefit applies to people as well.

Immune system

There’s even been quite a bit of research showing it can restore T cell function. T cells are a type of white blood cells that are of key importance to your immune system, and are at the core of adaptive immunity, the system that tailors your body’s immune response to specific pathogens.

  • Which form is better to intake?

Studies have shown that the naturally-occurring R(+) form is significantly more effective that the synthetic S(-) form. Dr. Peter Rouse suggests “Professional Complementary Health Formulas” brand.  This is a high-quality brand, only-doctors brand.  AF Performance is selling this brand and this product online.  And it is on sale for the next few weeks.   If you are interested in buying it, click on the picture.

Thanks for reading my blog and I apologize to all of my readers for not writing sooner.

R+ Alpha-lipoic Acid

May 24, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Health tip for week Apr 11th

Soy is toxin. Avoid at all cost.

Soy is been promoted as the miracle food that will feed the world while at the same time prevent and cure all manner of diseases.

Soy is nothing but a multi-million dollar marketing strategy based on scanty facts, half-truths and lies.  The soy industry is one of the world’s most wealthy and powerful multi-billion dollar industries.

Most people remain unaware that soy is known to contain an array of potent chemical toxins. Soybeans are widely known to contain a gamut of natural toxins – and it makes no difference whether they are organic.  The modern manufacturing processes of high-profit industries make no effort to remove these potent toxins. High levels of phytic acid, trypsin inhibitors, toxic lysinoalanine and highly carcinogenic nitrosamines are all present in soy products.

Phytoestrogens that disrupt endocrine function and are potent antithyroid agents are present in vast quantities in soy, including the potentially devastating isoflavone Genistein. Infants exclusively fed soy-based formula have 13,000 to 22,000 times more estrogen compounds in their blood than babies fed milk-based formula, the estrogenic equivalent of at least five birth control pills per day. Premature development of girls has been linked to the use of soy formula, as has the underdevelopment of males. Infant soy formula has been linked to autoimmune thyroid disease.

Among the many health problems linked to a high-soy diet are:

  • Thyroid problems as mentioned above, including weight gain, lethargy, malaise, fatigue, hair loss, and loss of libido
  • Premature puberty and other developmental problems in babies, children and adolescents
  • Cancer
  • Brain damage
  • Reproductive disorders
  • Soy allergies

Studies reviewed by Dr. Kaayla T. Daniel, PhD. and colleagues have found that soy does not reliably lower cholesterol, and in fact raises homocysteine levels in many people, which has been found to increase your risk of heart disease, stroke, and birth defects. In fact, according to Dr. Daniel, soy can increase your risk of heart disease.

And there’s more:

  • Since soybeans are high in natural toxins, they are also known as antinutrients. This includes a large quantity of inhibitors that deter the enzymes needed for protein digestion. Further, these enzyme inhibitors are not entirely disabled during ordinary cooking. The result is extensive gastric distress and chronic deficiencies in amino acid uptake, which can result in dangerous pancreatic impairments and cancer.
  • Soybeans contain hemaglutinins, which cause red blood cells to clump together. Soybeans also have growth-depressant substances, and while these substances are reduced in processing, they are not completely eliminated.
  • Most soybeans (over 80%) are genetically modified, and they contain one of the highest levels of pesticide contamination of all foods.
  • Soybeans are very high in phytates, which prevent the absorption of minerals including calcium, magnesium, iron and zinc, all of which are co-factors for optimal biochemistry in your body.
Here are three other sources about how bad soy is:

April 11, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment

Health tip for week April 4th

Bent over exercise is a great whole body exercise.

You work your hip  flexibility, core, shoulder stability and back strength.  It’s not about how heavy you do it, but how well you do it.  If you do it properly, you will feel the whole body working.

Bent over looks very similar to windmill.  There are few differences.  The windmill starts with one arm up and then down, while the arm goes up as you go down with the bent press, so you focus more on the press.   The depth is more deep with the windmill. You come down vertically and center with the windmill, while the bent press is more to the side focusing on having the arm up perfect align with the arm down as you press.

Here are two videos of how to do the bent press.  One is with the kettlebell and another is with the barbell.


April 5, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Health tip for Week Mar 20th

  • Avoid extreme and crazy diets especially those liquid diets.

You can die from starvation. Your skin will look sluggish and terrible.  You loose focus because you are too hungry to concentrate.  Your hormones will out of whack, will experience mood swings.  Your immune system will be suppress due to lack of calcium, iron, B12, carbohydrates, proteins and salt.  These lead to all kind of serious diseases.

The lack of absorbable calcium (less than 300mg  –  the body needs 800mg a day) means you risk early onset osteoporosis and osteopenia too  –  something that Gwyneth Paltrow has been diagnosed with.  The actress follows the Tracy Anderson’s diet which is mostly juice diet.  Tracy Anderson is a personal trainer but not a nutritionist but she sells millions of copies and DVDs about her diet and no or little weight exercises.

Having protein levels are not good –  less than 1.7oz per day, if prolonged, it can be dangerous.

Even the vitamins available in the juices cannot be absorbed since there is no fat present in the diet to act as an absorption vehicle, so they will just be excreted from the body.

In summary, such diet is dangerous.

People often ask me what I do for diet. I don’t restrict myself on calories or starve myself.  My regimen is to eat healthy, eat as much as I want as long as they are good for me.  I avoid foods that are bad like sugar, GMO (processed food) and foods that will irritate my gut and body inflammation such as dairy and all grains including whole wheat and corn.

Here is an article you might be interested in reading more.  They talked about Gwyneth Paltrow’s diet and how bad they are.

The following article is about how Gwyneth’s diet is to blame for osteopenia, a possible precursor to the bone-thinning disease osteoporosis — conditions usually found in older women.

March 23, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , | 1 Comment