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Tip for Health

Passing too much gas? Beware of bacteria overgrowth
2020-11-13
Passing too much gas? Beware of bacteria overgrowth

If you often have gut problems such as constipation, bloating and even flatulence (which by means, farting), you might have an imbalance in your gut microbiota. Your gut houses over 1000 types of beneficial and harmful bacteria, with the amount 10 times higher than your body cells. Studies have found that these gut bacteria can affect the functioning of the gut, immune system and even your mood!   A healthy, balanced gut microbiota consists of a higher amount of beneficial bacteria, which ensures the well-functioning of the digestive system and forms a protection barrier on your intestinal muscosa, preventing harmful pathogens from invading and causing infections, as well as inhibiting their growth. Having a healthy immune system is the key to maintaining a balanced gut microbiota and overall health.   However, having a weak immune system can often cause bacteria overgrowth in the gut, causing gut problems such as flatulence, constipation, bloating, stomach cramps, diarrhea and even indigestion; or worse, destroying and invading the intestinal mucosa, making us fall sick or cause food poisoning. Besides, lifestyle factors such as stress, lack of sleep, diet high in sugar, salt and fat, overconsumption of alcohol and overuse of antibiotics can also disrupt the balance of gut microbiota.   How to improve your gut microbiota?   1. Eat more fiber-rich food   Studies have found that high fiber food such as fruits, vegetables, beans, nuts and grains can promote the growth of beneficial Bifidobacteria and lead to a diverse microbiome, which is ideal for good gut health. Fiber, which cannot be digested by our bodies, can be digested by certain bacteria in the gut, which promote their growth.     2. Eat fermented foods   Fermented foods such as yogurt, sauerkraut and kimchi are rich in beneficial Lactobacilli, which helps in reducing the amount of harmful gut bacteria. However, it is important to take note of the amount of sugar in yogurts, as long-term consumption of too much sugar can reduce the amount of beneficial bacteria in the gut and not to mention, can negatively impact your health.     3. Consume immunonutrition   A health, balanced immune system is the key to maintaining a balanced gut microbiota. Consuming health food rich in specific IgA and IgG antibodies can directly help in reducing harmful gut bacteria, improving the amount and activity of beneficial bacteria and helps to boost your immunity, protecting your overall health.     4. Lower stress levels   Stress in the long-term can seriously affect your mood and pose a threat to your health, which includes disrupting the balance of your gut microbiota. Try meditation, walking or exercising to de-stress and improve your mood.     5. Stay hydrated   Our bodies require sufficient amount of water to function normally. Drinking plenty of water daily has been shown to be beneficial for the intestinal mucosa and promote gut microbiota health.  

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Get tired easily? Here's five food to boost your energy
2020-10-30
Get tired easily? Here's five food to boost your energy

Need some energy boost? Despite drinking coffee, eating the right food not only nourishes your body with nutrients, but also effectively promote energy levels. Here’s five food that have been proven to help you boost your energy, keeping you productive throughout the day.     1. Eggs   Eggs are packed with proteins, which not only fills you up, but also providing a steady and sustained energy throughout the day. Besides, the most abundant amino acids found in eggs- leucine, is known to stimulate energy production as well as increasing the break down of fat for energy.     2. Turmeric   Originated from India, turmeric is widely used for thousands of years as traditional spice and herbs. Studies have found that the active ingredient found in turmeric- curcumin has antioxidants benefits, offers liver protection and helps to boost metabolism, giving you more energy. However, the amount of curcumin in turmeric is quite low (3-5%) with low bioavailability. Instead, choose curcumin that is high in purity and formulated with bioavailability enhancers (such as lecithin) for maximized absorption.     3. Brown rice   Compared with white rice, brown rice is rich in fiber with a relatively lower glycemic index, which is great for stabilizing blood sugar and providing sustained energy throughout the day. Additionally, brown rice is also packed with manganese, a mineral that helps enzyme to break down carbohydrate and proteins to generate energy.     4. Leafy green vegetables   Iron is an essential element for hemoglobin production, which helps to transport oxygen in the blood. A person with iron-deficiency tends to get tired easily. Leafy green vegetables such as spinach, broccoli and kale are great sources of iron as well as vitamin C, which helps to enhance iron absorption in your body.     5. Nuts   Packed with protein, fiber and good fats, nuts such as almond, walnuts and cashews are great snacks for health and energy. Besides, nuts are also great sources of energy-producing nutrients, including vitamin B, vitamin E, manganese and iron, which helps to beat tiredness.

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Childhood Obesity is a Growing Concern
2020-10-16
Childhood Obesity is a Growing Concern

According to a study in Childhood Obesity in Malaysia, one in every four children is either overweight or obese, which is quite concerning. Most parents seem to be unaware of the health consequences childhood obese can bring. In addition to height, the number on the weighing scale is something parents should also not overlook while monitoring their children’s growth and development.     ‘Letting your child eat whatever they want’ is the problem   A balanced diet plays a vital role in the growth and development of children. However, children tend to be picky eaters, in which they would mostly prefer sweets, snacks and fast food rather than eating fruits and vegetables, which are important sources of nutrients. Such foods with ‘empty calorie’, which contain higher calorie with relatively low amount of nutrients greatly contribute to weight gain and malnutrition in children, which can affect their growth and development. Besides, parents can also play huge factor in childhood obese, as children tend to follow their parents’ eating habits.     Children nowadays are more inactive   In this modern era, urban people tends to eat more and move less. Today, children tend to watch tv and use electronic devices such as phones and computers more often, rather than playing outdoors and engage in physical activities. In addition to an imbalance diet, such physical inactivity can easily lead to weight gain in children.     The complications of childhood obesity   Overweight and obesity are major risk factors for many chronic diseases. 80% of overweight children are more likely to become overweight adults. Children who are obese are at increased risk for diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, hypertension and cancer compared to children with normal weight. Not to mention that an obese children has a greater risk of infection, allergies and asthma, as obese can cause an imbalance in the immune system.     Is your child obese?   Childhood overweight and obesity can be determined by measuring a child’s body mass index (BMI), using the formula BMI = weight (kg) / height (m2). According to World Health Organization (WHO), anyone with a BMI between 25 and 29.9 is considered overweight; and if 30 or higher, he/she is considered obese. However, children tend to have different body sizes and development rate at different ages. Childhood overweight or obesity can be determined based on the child’s age as shown in the table below.   Age Overweight ﹙BMI≧﹚ Obese ﹙BMI≧﹚   Male Female Male Female 2 17.7 17.3 19 18.3 3 17.7 17.2 19.1 18.5 4 17.7 17.1 19.3 18.6 5 17.7 17.1 19.4 18.9 6 17.9 17.2 19.7 19.1 7 18.6 18 21.2 20.3 8 19.3 18.8 22 21 9 19.7 19.3 22.5 21.6 10 20.3 20.1 22.9 22.3 11 21 20.9 23.5 23.1 12 21.5 21.6 24.2 23.9 Source:Ministry of Health and Welfare (Taiwan)     3 key ways to help your child lose weight safely   1. Eat a balanced diet   Change your child’s diet by increasing their intake of high fiber and nutrient-dense food, such as fruits, vegetables, grains and beans. Choose lean meat such as chicken, fish and dairy such as milk for protein, which is crucial for children’s growth and development.   2. Reduce intake of high-calorie food   Choose nutrient dense and low-calorie snacks such as fruits, whole wheat bread, low fat and salt biscuits instead of high fat and calorie food such as sweets, desserts, processed and fried food.   3. Increase physical activity   Engage in physical activity with your children. Indoor activities such as doing house chores, skipping ropes, stairs-climbing, simple cardio exercises or outdoor activities such as a walk at the park, playground activities and cycling are great ways to increase physical activity in children, as well as strengthening parent-child relationship.  

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Boost your Happy Hormones
2020-09-25
Boost your Happy Hormones

When you are doing things you love, such as eating your favourite food or meeting someone you like, these happy hormones- known as dopamine, will be released in large amounts in the brain, making you feel good and rewarded. In contrary, low levels of dopamine can make you feel less motivated and enthusiastic. Dopamine levels are typically regulated within the nervous system, but there are some things we can do to naturally boost our dopamine levels.     5 Ways to Boost Your Dopamine Levels   1. Eat more protein   Proteins are made up of building blocks called amino acids. Tyrosine, one of a type of amino acid plays a role in the production of dopamine. Studies have found that eating food high in tyrosine such as milk, yogurt, beans, fish and chicken can increase dopamine levels in the brain; while a diet low in tyrosine can lead to a reduction in dopamine levels.     2. Eat less saturated fat     When in a bad mood, people tend to reach for snacks. However, a diet high in saturated fat, such as fried food, cakes, biscuits and animal fat may disrupt dopamine signalling in the brain. Choose to consume food rich in unsaturated fat instead, such as nuts and avocados to minimize dopamine disruption (not to mention that they are more heart-friendly).     3. Eat more antioxidant rich foods   Dopamine is easily oxidized enzymatically. Eating food rich in antioxidants such as vegetables, fruits, onions, garlic and turmeric can protect dopamine from damage by oxidative stress.      4. Maintain gut health   Gut is known as the ‘second brain’, as it contains large amount of nerve cells that produce neurotransmitter signalling molecules, including dopamine. Keeping your gut environment healthy and increasing probiotics in your gut may help to boost dopamine levels and improve mood.     5. Get enough sleep   Dopamine levels tend to decrease naturally at night when we fall asleep and rise in large amounts in the morning, making us feel awake. However, lack of sleep can reduce dopamine levels, leading to reduced concentration and possibly bad mood.  Hence, ensure adequate sleep of at least 8 hours a day is crucial in keeping dopamine levels balanced.     Reference: Heho health Healthline

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Can't find the time to exercise? Try stretching
2020-09-11
Can't find the time to exercise? Try stretching

People nowadays can’t seem to find the time to exercise due to busy lifestyles. However, stretching is a great form of exercise as it can simply be done at home under ten minutes and is relatively less intense compared to outdoor exercises such as jogging, swimming and cycling. Not only can stretching help to relax your muscles, it can also improve posture, helps to improve back pain, relief stress and more.     6 Benefits of Stretching     1. Improves flexibility   Regular stretching can help to increase flexibility, which not only allows you to perform everyday activities with relative ease, but also helps in maintaining balance, delaying reduced mobility caused by aging and reducing the risk of falling.     2. Improves blood circulation   Stretching can help to improve blood circulation by allowing more blood to flow to your muscles. This helps to relieve muscle tension and stiffness, reduce muscle recovery time and even reduce muscle soreness.     3. Improves posture   Long term poor sitting habits or repetitive motions can cause muscle imbalance, which can lead to poor posture. However, stretching a specific muscle groups helps to encourage proper alignment, which in turn help to reduce muscle imbalance and improve posture.     4. Helps to heal and prevent back pain   Having tight muscles can lead to decreased range of motion, increasing the risk of straining your back muscles. Stretching can help to heal back pain by strengthening the muscles, prevent future back pain and reduce the risk of muscle strains.     5. Relieves stress   Sometimes physical and emotional stress can tighten up your muscles. Try stretching the area of your body where you tend to hold your stress, such as your neck, shoulders and upper back.     6. Helps to reduce tension headaches   Tension and stress headaches can seriously affect your daily life. Besides having a well-balanced diet, staying hydrated and having adequate rest, stretching may also help to relieve headaches.     6 Simple Stretching Exercises   Hold each stretch for 30 seconds. It is normal to feel some tension while stretching your muscles; however, if the area you are stretching starts to hurt, back off the stretch until you don’t feel any discomfort.       Reference: Healthline Heho Health  

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Is white meat healthier than red meat?
2020-08-28
Is white meat healthier than red meat?

It is a popular belief that white meats (such as chicken, duck or fish) are better for cardiovascular health than red meats (such as pork, lamb or beef), as red meats generally have higher amount of saturated fats than white meats. Food with high saturated fat can raise the blood cholesterol levels, increasing the risk of cardiovascular diseases.     Red meats and white meats have equal effects on blood cholesterol levels   A recent study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition has challenged these claims. This research study has found that surprisingly, consuming both types of meat raised blood cholesterol levels more than consuming the same amount of plant-based proteins. Regardless of the type of meat, their effects on blood cholesterol levels are the same given that the saturated fat levels are equivalent.     Non-meat protein sources are the best for cholesterol levels   According to Dr. Ronald Krauss, the senior author of the research team, the results indicated that restricting meat altogether, whether red or white meats is more advisable in lowering cholesterol, and that non-meat protein sources such as vegetables, dairy, legumes, nuts and toufu are the most beneficial for cholesterol levels.   Reference: Science Daily: Red and white meats are equally bad for cholesterol

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Don't let your guard down! Beware of Dengue too
2020-07-22
Don't let your guard down! Beware of Dengue too

Both COVID-19 and dengue has been a double health threat in Malaysia. While staying at home during the pandemic, beware of the mosquitoes too. With the arrival of rainy season, the Ministry of Health has predicted a second wave of dengue fever in the 2nd half of the year and urged Malaysians to not let their guard down in preventing dengue despite the pandemic.   Dengue fever is a mosquito-borne disease caused by the dengue virus, which is primarily transmitted by female mosquitoes of the Aedes type. Dengue is a common tropical disease worldwide and has been affecting the lives of many in Malaysia throughout the years.   The incubation period of dengue usually ranges from 4-7 days. Symptoms of dengue include high fever, headache, muscle and joint pain, eye pain, nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite and rash. People infected with dengue virus usually recover within 2-7 days.   However, it is a concern that people who have previously been infected with dengue have a greater risk of having severe dengue disease if they were infected again. Dengue virus has four serotypes, meaning one who recovered from initial dengue infection (and is believed to have lifelong immunity to it) will still have the chance of getting infected by the other three serotypes and has a higher risk of developing severe dengue fever on subsequent infections, which can damage the lungs, liver or heart and can be deadly.   Currently, there is no specific treatment for dengue and the symptoms usually resolve on its own. Preventive measures such as avoid mosquito bites, clear stagnant water on items such as containers, jars or pots regularly, avoid going to high risk areas, use of insecticides and maintaining a balanced immune system are crucial to avoid getting infected by dengue virus.   A balanced immune system is the key to prevent infection and faster recovery.  The best ways to maintain a healthy, balanced immune system include having a well-balanced diet, ensure adequate sleep, exercise regularly and relax.   References: Oriental Daily News Sin Chew Daily

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Milk, the complete food: 5 health benefits of drinking milk
2020-07-08
Milk, the complete food: 5 health benefits of drinking milk

Milk is a white, nutrient-rich liquid food which has been enjoyed throughout the world for thousands of years and is loved by many for its smooth and rich mouthfeel. Drinking a glass of milk at the start of the day helps to replenish the nutrients and energy needed to sustain throughout the day; while drinking before bed helps to relax and improve sleep quality. Dubbed as a complete food, here’s 5 health benefits of drinking milk:   1. Milk is rich in nutrients Milk is packed with vitamins and minerals and is a great source of nutrients which are often under-consumed by the population, such as calcium, vitamin B12 and potassium.   2. Milk as a great source of quality protein Proteins are essential elements in the body for vital functions such as growth and maintenance. Milk is known as great source of quality protein as it contains all nine essential amino acids necessary for the body to function at optimal level and is better absorbed in the body compared to plant-based protein.   3. Milk benefits bone health Milk is rich in nutrients which benefits bone health, such as calcium, potassium and magnesium. According to studies, drinking milk may help to prevent osteoporosis and reduce the risk of bone fractures.   4. Milk helps in weight control The high protein content in milk helps to make you feel fuller, which helps to prevent overeating and control calorie intake.   5. Milk as a versatile ingredient Adding milk to oatmeal, coffee, smoothie and soup helps to improve nutrition value and flavour. As for those with lactose intolerance, drinking milk with other solid food, drink in small and frequent amount slowly and warmly helps to reduce gastrointestinal comfort.   References: Healthline Evergreen

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Why you should be careful of hypertension
2020-06-24
Why you should be careful of hypertension

Normally, a person’s blood pressure can vary throughout the day depending on factors such as activity and mood;   but hypertension (or high blood pressure) is different.   Hypertension is a chronic disease, in which the blood pressure in the arteries is persistently elevated with systolic pressure of ≥ 140 mm Hg and/or diastolic pressure  of ≥ 90 mm Hg,   known as an even deadlier disease than cancer, hypertension can be dangerous with the various life-threatening complications it can cause.   Uncontrolled high blood pressure in the long term can affect organs such as the heart, brain and kidneys, leading to complications such as   · Stroke · Coronary heart disease · Heart failure · Renal failure · Vision loss · Dementia   Hypertension is one of the main risk factors of cardiovascular diseases-Malaysia’s leading cause of death as it can damage the endothelium, leading to atherosclerosis, which increases the risk of cardiovascular disease.   Hence, regular checkup, maintaining a healthy diet (limit salt and oil intake, increase fiber intake) and lifestyle (maintain a healthy weight, moderate alcohol consumption and increase physical activity) are important to prevent hypertension and its other complications.   Stolle ImmNuPlus contains patented bioactive factors, which are clinically proven to stabilize cardiovascular by reducing blood pressure and inhibiting atherosclerosis development. Protect your cardiovascular health with Stolle ImmNuPlus today!

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