Kiwi Fruit

The humble Kiwi is no ordinary fruit! Did you know that eating the Kiwi fruit an hour before bed may help you sleep better.

Great To Help You Sleep Better And A Powerhouse Of Antioxidants

Studies are proving that the humble Kiwi is no ordinary fruit! Did you know that eating the Kiwi fruit an hour before bed may help you sleep better. Add to this the nutritional composition, this fruit is a must have addition to your routine diet.

Several Studies indicate that people who consumed kiwifruit before bed each night got an extra hour of sleep. The researchers hypothesized that Kiwifruit might be an effective sleep aid due to the antioxidants and Serotonin that the fruit contains.

Serotonin deficiency has long been associated with depression and mood disorders. It is also key to good sleep. Serotonin in the body contributes to several aspects of sleep, including helping to initiate sleep onset and to maintain sleep during the night. Serotonin appears to interact with Melatonin, another hormone essential to sleep, in helping to regulate the body’s 24-hour circadian cycle as well as other physiologic functions.

These study results are promising for those with sleep disorders, and are especially significant given that the long-term health ramifications of sleep disorders like insomnia.

Studies dating back to a few years ago associate sleep disorders with increased mortality, suggesting that an optimal amount of sleep to get per night is seven hours.

Kiwi also has many other useful and interesting aspects

Loaded With Vitamins and Minerals

Kiwi fruit is loaded with vitamins and minerals such as Vitamins A, B6, B12, E, and potassium, calcium, iron and magnesium.

If you thought that lemons and oranges were the highest sources of Vitamin C, then think again! According to the nutritional break-up of kiwi fruit, per 100 grams contain 154 percentage of Vitamin C, which is almost twice that of lemons and oranges.

Great Source of Dietary Fiber

The Kiwi is loaded with dietary fiber, which helps in the prevention of numerous diseases. According to researchers, high fiber foods keep one full for longer and control metabolic markers like blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar. It also facilities weight loss and is often recommended to diabetics.

Other foods that can help us sleep better

While Kiwi is thought to be among the best, it isn’t the only identified sleep-boosting food out there. Foods rich in calcium help to boost Melatonin levels. So you might look towards dairy, soy, nuts, seeds, and whole grains – which are all strong sources of calcium. Dark leafy greens, bananas, nuts, seeds, citrus, tomatoes, and whole grains are rich in Magnesium and potassium, which is said to help promote relaxation and circulation.

The definitive research finding is yet to be out on the mechanism by which Kiwi promotes sleep. Having said that, the possibility that natural foods like Kiwi can be used as a low-cost, non-pharmacologic, natural aid for sleep is an exciting one, and worth further investigation. Give a shot at Kiwi if you have trouble falling asleep. Not just is it great to help with your Zzzz, it is also great for it’s many nutritional benefits

Milk Kefir

Milk Kefir is considered a wonder-drink. Let’s see why this beverage is making waves in the healthy living community

Milk Kefir is a cultured, fermented dairy beverage that tastes very similar to a yogurt drink. It’s made using a starter of “Kefir Grains”, which is a combination of lactic acid bacteria and yeasts in a matrix of proteins, lipids, and sugars.

Kefir and Yogurt have a lot in common but also have many differences. They differ in consistency, nutrient content, and how they’re made. Since Kefir is fermented, most lactose intolerant people can tolerate Kefir.

Some sites recommend that you buy Kefir from the stores. There are many sources that recommend that you prepare Kefir by yourself. My own experience was that I liked the taste of my home grown batch of Kefir much better than the ones that I bought from the store.

Here’s how Kefir is prepared at home.

The main ingredients are Kefir starter grains and Milk (preferably full-fat milk, and not the UHT varieties)

The process is very simple – add a teaspoon of kefir grains to table spoon of full fat milk and mix well. Add this to a cup of milk  and let it sit out at room temperature in a cool dark place for about 24 hours. After the 24 hour period, strain the Kefir grains using a plastic strainer. Your Kefir drink is now ready for consumption.

Here’s what you also need to know :

  • The ‘Kefir Grains’ are living cultures and can be re-used as the starter for subsequent batches. After preparing your batch of Kefir, strain the Kefir Grains. You could store the grains by placing them in a cup of milk and keep in the refrigerator. Stored this way Kefir grains can remain viable for multiple uses.
  • The grains enlarge in the process of Kefir production, even reaching a walnut size, and eventually they split.
  • As the grains grow, you will also notice that your Kefir Milk ferments faster and becomes sourer. If you would like your drink to be less sourer, reduce the quantity of Kefir grains.
  • Make sure that the Kefir grains do not come in contact with metal utensils (spoons, strainers, bowls etc.). Proponents say that contact with metals can spoil the Kefir grains. They recommend that you could use glass bottles, wood or plastic spoons and plastic strainers for producing Kefir.
  • While washing the grains, use filtered or distilled water. Make sure that you maintain a high level of hygiene while producing your batches.
  • When you start on a new starter batch of Kefir Grains, your first batch of production may have an odor. If you are sensitive to the smell, then you could discard the first two batches.

Bottled Water … Safe? Think Again

The average adult human body is comprised of 50-65% of water. A no-brainer then that keeping hydrated is essential to your health. Most of us are conscious about the health benefits of drinking water and keep our plastic bottles at easy reach. Convenient indeed, but did you know that the plastic bottled water may be doing more harm than good.

Here’s what you need to know about the dangers of plastic bottled water.

BPA a frequent component of plastic bottles and in most food packaging plastics is a chemical that mimics hormones.

Studies indicate that BPA, even in minute quantities can lead to a variety of hormonal changes, including early puberty in females, reduction in sperm count, causing men to grow breasts and increased rates of reproductive cancers. The harmful effects are also pronounced in newborns and young children exposed either directly or indirectly through their mother.

Hormones are the most critical component in fertility in both men and women, and hormone problems are most commonly implicated in impaired fertility. Hormone disruptors such as chemicals in plastics send mixed signals. These cause some reproductive hormones to be produced excessively and while lowering the production of other hormones.

Both genders are equally susceptible, with hormonal imbalances such as those with estrogen reduce the ability to conceive.

Boys seem to be the most at risk for severe alterations before and during puberty.

Research continues to alert that the increase in estrogenic chemicals, like BPA and other plastic materials, has contributed significantly to cancers such as breast cancer, testicular cancer and prostate cancer.

Gut Microbiome & Health


My experiences on using recommendations related to Gut Microbiome

The Gut Microbiome movement has taken the health & wellness world by storm and has proponents swearing by it’s impact on human health.

Not one to be influenced by popular media, I decided to try out the recommendations myself and see if they were beneficial.

Here’s an account of my experience. But first a look at what the proponents say…

What is the Gut Biome and why do proponents consider it as fundamental to our good health.


Our gut microbiota contains tens of trillions of microorganisms. The distinctive compositions and specificity of the microbiota in one’s intestines makes it rather unique to each individual and is likened to your distinct identity card.

Come to think of it this way, everything that you eat – from the spicy kababs, to the lettuce in your salads is converted by your gut into – your cells, energy, the processes within your body. Proponents of Gut Microbiome vouch that the Microbes in your gut have a strong influence on the process and results and so are key to your health and well being.

Living a healthier lifestyle and fostering a symbiotic relationship with our good gut bacteria helps us modulate immunity, insulate us from toxins, better absorb foods, and fight disease.

Gut microbiota are even being studied for their potential effects on behavior and mental well being. Several studies have hinted at our behavior being affected by our microbes. For instance, a landmark study conducted by Bercik, et al. in 2011 performed a simple experiment, where they basically swapped the gut bacteria between breeds of mice with different characteristic behaviors. One breed which tended to be anxious and timid and the other which were more exploratory and less timid. The study found that the mice changed their behavior to be more like their donor breed. These are newer and exciting fields of study and the results are worth watching our for.