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Nuzest Bars: The Journey

Nuzest is excited to announce the relaunch and reformulation of both our protein and multivitamin bars this July, 2021. This year the Nuzest team have been working hard to bring you a new and improved even better tasting bar range. From the nutritional powerhouse of the Good Green Vitality multivitamin bar, to the clean and


Nuzest is excited to announce the relaunch and reformulation of both our protein and multivitamin bars this July, 2021.

This year the Nuzest team have been working hard to bring you a new and improved even better tasting bar range. From the nutritional powerhouse of the Good Green Vitality multivitamin bar, to the clean and tasty Coconut & Lemon and Almond & Vanilla protein bars, to the decadent Chocolate Peanut Butter protein bar – there are options to suit all palettes.

Over time, our team has gained valuable consumer feedback, which has helped us craft fresh formulations that help us to continue to support health, resilience and vitality, on-the-go.

The Good Green Vitality Multinutrient Bar

Nuzest launched the Good Green Stuff Bars (now known as Good Green Vitality Bars) in New Zealand, where the bar concept was first tested. The aim was to make Nuzest’s flagship product, Good Green Stuff – a multinutrient greens powder – into a convenient and accessible snack bar.

In 2016, when Chris Barge (Nuzest’s Global COO) joined the company, the bars were brought into the Australian market from New Zealand. With growth and expansion in mind, the bar manufacturing facility was moved to Melbourne, where we worked closely with the new manufacturer to refine the bars’ overall taste and texture.

The Formulation

Since then, the Good Green Vitality Bar formulation itself has not changed radically. Firstly, Good Green Stuff was re-formulated and rebranded in 2019, improving and updating the formula to what it is today. With 75+ ingredients and 24 vitamins and minerals Good Green Vitality is the gold standard in nutritional support.

Small tweaks have been made to the ingredients from the original bar recipe. For example, we decided to swap whole dates to a date paste, in order to avoid the presence of date seeds in the bar. We have included the addition of high fibre wholefood ingredients (cashew and almond nuts), and have increased the protein content to improve satiety. The team’s major focus was to improve the overall taste and texture of the bars whilst ensuring a convenient and nutrient dense product.

The 2021 relaunch of the Good Green Vitality Multivitamin Bars:

The latest and greatest version of our Multivitamin Bar contains a half serve (5g) of Good Green Vitality powder. It’s a super blend of plant-based ingredients, 20+ essential vitamins and minerals, pre and probiotics, superfoods and more, in one handy pocket-sized snack.

The Good Green Vitality powder has been blended with clean and high-fibre wholefoods including apricots, dates, cashews, sunflower seeds, almonds and chia for a delicious texture and taste.

Every bite aims to support better digestion, healthier-looking skin, a more robust immune and nervous system, and an overall healthy lifestyle.

The Clean Lean Protein Bars

When the Nuzest team decided to add protein bars to the range, the aim was not only to stay true to the brand, but to also create a nutritional product that we would love to eat ourselves.

The Formulation

First and foremost, when creating the Clean Lean Protein Bar, we prioritised choosing the cleanest, wholefood ingredients – aligned with the name of the bar and our brand values.

The team approached our manufacturers in Melbourne to begin the development of our initial protein bar range. The main consideration when developing the bars was to check the formulation met key nutritional targets, while ensuring the flavour, taste and texture were genuinely appealing to the consumer.

We worked closely with a team of specialists throughout this journey to support the development of the bars and were met with some challenges in regards to their texture and shelf life as we were adamant about using only clean, natural ingredients.

In 2020, an executive decision was made to swap manufacturers and completely reformulate our bars in order to explore different solutions that would allow us to improve the taste, texture and shelf life of the bars, without sacrificing our commitment to clean ingredients.

The new team put their heads together and came up with the answers we needed. Finally happy with the formula, we went on to create three delicious flavours:

– Almond & Vanilla

– Coconut & Lemon

– Peanut Butter &Chocolate

2021 Launch of our new Clean Lean Protein Bars:

Nuzest is excited to launch our range of Clean Lean Protein Bars – a delicious plant-based high-protein snack. With a focus on clean, wholefood ingredients and a balanced macronutrient profile, our bars have been made by blending our premium European golden pea protein with whole fruits, nuts and seeds. The bars are high in digestible protein and dietary fibre, and low in sugar and carbohydrates.

Each bar contains the cleanest ingredients without fillers or refined sugar. Available in three delicious flavours, these bars are plant-based and made with minimal ingredients for maximum flavour.

Nuzest produces the cleanest, most effective nutritional supplements on the market. All products are built on concrete science and efficacy. The range is entirely vegan, clean and free from nasties.

Click here to shop with Nuzest in your local region today.

New Research Confirms Multivitamin and Mineral Supplements Increase the Benefits of a Healthy Diet

Recent Australian research has revealed that healthy diets are enhanced by supplementing with vitamins and minerals.1 We are often told that you can’t outrun a bad diet, and unfortunately, you can’t simply out-supplement it, either. Studies have shown that foods high in trans fats pose a significant risk factor for cardiovascular disease, while diets high


Recent Australian research has revealed that healthy diets are enhanced by supplementing with vitamins and minerals.1

We are often told that you can’t outrun a bad diet, and unfortunately, you can’t simply out-supplement it, either. Studies have shown that foods high in trans fats pose a significant risk factor for cardiovascular disease, while diets high in fruit and vegetables are associated with a lower risk.2

It has already long been established that on its own, a healthy diet can positively impact health. As can the use of vitamin and mineral supplements, with research on supplements such as magnesium being found to reduce the risk of stroke, heart failure and diabetes.3

However, the joint effects of the use of supplements in conjunction with a healthy diet have not been studied – until now.

A 2021 Australian longitudinal study of 69,990 participants examined the effects of a healthy diet together with multivitamin supplementation. Results showed that those who had a healthy diet, combined with calcium supplementation, had a lower risk of obesity and cardiovascular disease.1

Calcium and a healthy diet

This research suggests that calcium consumption may be a strategy to decrease obesity.1

It is proposed that these effects are the result of calcium’s role in regulating fat metabolism, cell turnover, thermogenesis and gut microbiome composition.1 It must be noted that those with an unhealthy diet did not receive these same beneficial associations, even though they also took supplements.1

Fish oil and a healthy diet

Supplementing with fish oil alongside a long-term healthy diet was also found to reduce the risk for cardiovascular disease.1 These affects are attributed to the omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil – alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) – which reduce reduce triglyceride levels and plaque formation in the arteries.1

So, how can Good Green Vitality help?

Designed to help fill the gaps in our modern diets, Good Green Vitality contains over 75+ plant foods, vitamins, minerals, adaptogens and probiotics, being formulated by leading health experts the ingredients have been specially chosen for their efficacy.

Each serve contains 165mg of plant-based calcium, sourced from red marine algae. A 10g serve contributes 14% towards the recommended dietary intake of calcium (NRV, 2014).4 Good Green Vitality also contains high levels of vitamin A, C, D, B vitamins and selenium, which all play an essential role in overall health and vitality.

Although no supplement can truly replace a healthy diet, Good Green Vitality is the comprehensive multivitamin supplement which can support good health when used synergistically with a balanced diet. Click here to shop with your local distributor today.

References: 

  1. Xu, X., Shi, Z., Liu, G., Chang, D., Inglis, S. C., Hall, J. J., Schutte, A. E., Byles, J. E., & Parker, D. (2021). The Joint Effects of Diet and Dietary Supplements in Relation to Obesity and Cardiovascular Disease over a 10-Year Follow-Up: A Longitudinal Study of 69,990 Participants in Australia. Nutrients, 13(3), 944.
  2. Chareonrungrueangchai, K., Wongkawinwoot, K., Anothaisintawee, T., & Reutrakul, S. (2020). Dietary factors and risks of cardiovascular diseases: An umbrella review. Nutrients, 12(4), 1088.
  3. Fang, X., Wang, K., Han, D., He, X., Wei, J., Zhao, L., … Wang, F. (2016). Dietary magnesium intake and the risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, and all-cause mortality: a dose-response meta-analysis of prospective cohort studies. BMC Medicine, 14(1), 210.
  4. Calcium [Internet]. Nutrient Reference Values. 2014. [cited 2021, May 31]. Available from: https://www.nrv.gov.au/nutrients/calcium

The Importance of Protein for Hair, Skin and Nails

There is often an emphasis placed on taking care of your hair, skin and nails from the outside, but what about nourishing from within? Protein is one of three macronutrients and is made up of 20 amino acids. The body can make 11 of the 20 amino acids, the other 9 amino acids need to


There is often an emphasis placed on taking care of your hair, skin and nails from the outside, but what about nourishing from within?

Protein is one of three macronutrients and is made up of 20 amino acids. The body can make 11 of the 20 amino acids, the other 9 amino acids need to be obtained through the diet to provide the body with what it needs. Protein plays several roles in the body including the growth and maintenance of healthy hair, skin and nails.

One of the key proteins the body converts amino acids into is Keratin. Keratin is an intracellular fibrous protein that helps give hair, skin and nails their structure, rigidity, protective and water-resistant properties.1 You can boost the body’s natural keratin production through dietary intake of quality protein and further support hair, skin and nail health with a variety of vitamins and minerals.2

Hair

Hair follicles are predominantly made up of the keratin protein.3 A low intake of dietary protein can lead to brittle hair and slow hair growth as the body lacks the amino acids required to support healthy, strong hair.4 Research suggests a lack of protein in the diet contributes to thinning and even hair loss.4  When dietary protein intake is low, the body prioritises protein for essential functions such as supporting muscle structure and function, hormones, enzymes and energy, rather than hair growth.

Protein, vitamins and minerals all play a key role in the hair cycle and a nutrient deficiency may impact overall hair structure and growth.

Skin

Protein is one of the building blocks of skin tissue therefore it’s essential for healthy skin. The skin is made up of several proteins including keratin, elastin, and collagen.5

The surface layer of the skin is composed of keratin, which is a tough protein that helps with barrier protection – guarding tissues, organs and structures against physical, chemical and biological damage by forming rigidity in the skin.5

The skin is also made up of elastin, a protein that provides structure and shape to the skin. A low level of elastin causes skin to sink and sag as the elastin fibres break down over time from aging and external exposures such as UV radiation.5

Collagen is another structural protein supporting healthy skin and wound healing. As we age, collagen synthesis decreases, and the structure of the skin breaks down leading to wrinkles and fine lines.5 The external environment and general aging processes reduce the body’s ability to produce collagen. The amino acids such as lysine and proline help to support the body’s production of collagen.6

Nails

As with hair, keratin production is the key to strong and healthy nails. There is a link between low protein intake and brittle/weak nails.4 The amino acid cystine contributes to the strength and stability of keratin.7 A nutrient deficiency can appear on your nails as dry, crack, brittle or irregular shaped nails.8

Clean Lean Protein contains all 9 essential amino acids to provide the body with the building blocks for vitality, repair and recovery. Made from the highest quality European golden peas, Clean Lean Protein is a delicious and convenient way to boost your daily protein consumption and support healthy hair, skin and nails.

References

1. Courses.lumenlearning.com. 2021. The Integumentary System | Anatomy and Physiology I. [online] Available at: <https://courses.lumenlearning.com/austincc-ap1/chapter/the-integumentary-system/> [Accessed 11 April 2021].

2. Linus Pauling Institute. 2021. Skin Health. [online] Available at: <https://lpi.oregonstate.edu/mic/health-disease/skin-health> [Accessed 11 April 2021].

3. Ausmed.com.au. 2021. The Keratin Trilogy: Skin, Hair and Nails | Ausmed. [online] Available at: <https://www.ausmed.com.au/cpd/articles/what-is-keratin> [Accessed 13 April 2021].

4. Guo EL, Katta R. Diet and hair loss: effects of nutrient deficiency and supplement use. Dermatology Practical & Conceptual. 2017; 7(1):1-10.

5. Cleveland Clinic. 2021. An Overview of Your Skin. [online] Available at: <https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/articles/10978-skin> [Accessed 13 April 2021].

6. Paz-Lugo PD, Lupianez JA, Melendez-Hevvia E. High glycine concentration increases collagen synthesis by articular chondrocytes in vitro: acute glycine deficiency could be an important cause of osteoarthritis. Amino Acids. 2018;50(10):1357-1365.

7. Encyclopedia Britannica. 2021. keratin | Definition, Function, & Facts. [online] Available at: <https://www.britannica.com/science/keratin> [Accessed 11 April 2021].

8. EverydayHealth.com. 2021. Fingernail Health – Nutrition for Dry, Brittle Nails | Everyday Health. [online] Available at: <https://www.everydayhealth.com/skin-beauty/fingernail-health-nutrition-dry-brittle-nails/> [Accessed 13 April 2021].

The Link Between Gut Health and Skin

You’ve heard of gut health. But what does it mean? The word ‘microbiota’ refers to the group of beneficial, and pathogenic (non-beneficial) micro-organisms found in a fixed environment, like the gut. Balancing the equilibrium of bacteria within the gut is what promotes good health. What’s more, research has discovered a unique communication with these microbial


You’ve heard of gut health. But what does it mean? The word ‘microbiota’ refers to the group of beneficial, and pathogenic (non-beneficial) micro-organisms found in a fixed environment, like the gut. Balancing the equilibrium of bacteria within the gut is what promotes good health.

What’s more, research has discovered a unique communication with these microbial cells found in our gut with fellow organs such as the brain. If this concept is confusing, it may help to think of the microbiota of each human organ telepathically talking to each other with a unique language. This communication only becomes loud and clear when the microbiota is diverse with beneficial bacteria. If you are interested in learning more about the gut-brain connection, click here.

This article will focus on interconnective roles of the gut and the skin (the body’s largest immune protective organ) – otherwise known as the gut-skin axis. Scientists are beginning to understand that microbes of the gut are vital to the immunologic, hormonal, and metabolic equilibrium of the skin.

The gut and skin are strongly interconnected with crucial immune regulating roles including1 :

  1. Providing a barrier to water loss and pathogens
  2. Protecting against diverse forms of trauma, including thermal, chemical and ultraviolet radiation
  3. Keeping us in touch with our environment through a host of nerve endings
  4. Regulating body temperature
  5. Enhances metabolic functions
  6. Synthesizes vitamin D                       

It does this through constant renewal of epidermal cells, a process by which skin regenerates itself. These epidermal cells differentiate into three cell types – basal cells, spinous cells, and granule cells – before ultimately becoming the outermost layer of the epidermis, or the surface of your skin.12

This is where the gut comes in. When epidermal turnover functions appropriately, the (roughly) 15 layers of densely keratinized, stratified cells serve as an effective skin barrier with the ability to perform the functions mentioned above.1 This extensive process is beautifully orchestrated by the all-powerful intestinal microbiota, located a layer beneath the skin (see image below of the epidermis and microbiota).8 How? The gut flora can affect the skin more directly by transporting the gut microbiota to the skin. When the intestinal barrier is disrupted, gut microbiota and their metabolites quickly enter the bloodstream, accumulate in the skin, and disturb the skin equilibrium.8 Therefore, the skin microbiota is an essential part of human health.

That’s all well and good, but where is the science to back this theory? Let’s take a look at the ingredients of Good Green Vitality in more detail to show how using nutrients to optimise gut health improves skin integrity in return.

PROBIOTICS

Probiotics are beneficial bacteria which populate our gut with lovely microbes to assist with digestion.

Probiotics have also been proven to prevent skin bacterial infection and inflammation by strengthening our gut intestinal barrier, inhibiting harmful microorganisms, and stimulating epithelial cell proliferation and differentiation for skin regeneration. In contrast, pathogenic bacteria such as Cutibacterium acnes cause skin conditions, such as acne.8 Lactobacillus acidophilus and Bifidobacterium bifidum are specific probiotic strains which have been proven to reduce outbreaks of rosacea, acne, and atopic dermatitis – the most common skin conditions.7  

ZINC

Similar to probiotics, zinc acts to maintain microbial inflammatory equilibrium, both in the gut and skin. Zinc is required as a structural component for over 300 enzymes and other proteins related to cell proliferation, survival and more, making skin repair almost impossible without sufficient levels.5

Disturbances in zinc metabolism may result in conditions that typically manifest themselves on the skin – not surprising considering zinc is present at 60 µg/g in the epidermis and 40 µg/g in the dermis (in other words, it is a key nutrient in skin health).2,4

DIETARY ENZYMES

Bromelain is a complex mixture of protease extracted from the fruit or stem of the pineapple plant. It is known for its anti-inflammatory, and immunomodulatory effects in addition to being a wound healing treatment. It influences the gut-skin axis by acting as an anti-adhesive and by stimulating intestinal secretory signalling pathways.11

PSYLLIUM & SLIPPERY ELM

Psyllium and slippery elm are widely used treatment for Irritable Bowel Syndrome.6,10 They are valuable, as are water-soluble fibres. When combined with water, psyllium husk and slippery elm become mucilaginous – they go gluggy! As a functional food, they become a source of soluble fibre that adds bulk to the stool. This helps to bulk stools and prevent both diarrhoea and constipation. Evidence suggests that both psyllium and slippery elm enhance microbial diversity via optimising digestion.6,10 What does this mean for the skin? A happy gut means optimal gut microbiomes needed to assist in skin regeneration. A beautiful cycle indeed!

ALOE VERA

Aloe vera is historically known for its ability to treat skin traumas such as burns, cuts, insect bites, and eczemas, as well as digestive problems. This is due to its anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties. This perennial herb contains more than 75 different compounds, including vitamins (vitamin A, C, E, and B12), enzymes (amylase, catalase, and peroxidase), and minerals (zinc, copper, selenium, and calcium).13 It’s no wonder it has been and remains a key treatment for skin health!

GINGER

Ginger – the aromatic, pungent plant with its distinctive flavour, has anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidative and antimicrobial potential which can help in treating infectious disease within skin and digestion.9 There’s a reason why for centuries we’ve put it in our teas, food, and medicinal products. What this super spice does for the gut-skin axis is to reduce inflammation and free radicals which can cause oxidative stress. Thank you ginger!  

Here are 6 ways to enhance your skin health via the gut-skin axis:

  1. Include a largely wholefood diet rich in fruits, vegetables, wholegrains and lean proteins to feed your gut microbiome and enhance good gut bacteria.
  2. If you suffer from constipation or diarrhoea, chances are your gut is suffering and as a result, your skin also. Find the right diet for your tummy and you’ll find the right food for your skin! Do this with the help of a practitioner.
  3. Ensure you have adequate zinc levels and consider supplementation if you or your health care practitioner suspect low levels.
  4. Include Good Green Vitality daily to enhance your immune system and microbiome diversity when diet fails to do so.
  5. Without water, the skin cannot eliminate toxins. Aim for 33 ml/kg body weight daily.
  6. Consider supplementing with probiotics if skin conditions persist. Consult with a practitioner to get the best advice on which probiotics to take. 

References

  1. Abdo J, Sopko N, & Milner S. The applied anatomy of human skin: A model for regeneration. Wound Medicine. 2020;28, 100179.
  2. Bin B. H, Hojyo S, Seo J, Hara T, Takagishi T, Mishima K, & Fukada T. The Role of the Slc39a Family of Zinc Transporters in Zinc Homeostasis in Skin. Nutrients. 2018;10(2):219.
  3. Bustamante M, Oomah D, Oliveira P, Burgos-Díaz C, Rubilar M, & Shene C. Probiotics and prebiotics potential for the care of skin, female urogenital tract, and respiratory tract. Folia microbiologica. 2020; 65(2):245–264.
  4. Glutsch V, Hamm H, & Goebeler M. Zinc and skin: an update. Journal of the German Society of Dermatology. 2019.
  5. Gupta M, Mahajan K, Mehta S, & Chauhan S. Zinc therapy in dermatology: a review. Dermatology research and practice. 2014.
  6. Jalanka J, Major G, Murray K, Singh G, Nowak A, Kurt C, Silos-Santiago I, Johnston M, de Vos  M, & Spiller R. The Effect of Psyllium Husk on Intestinal Microbiota in Constipated Patients and Healthy Controls. International journal of molecular sciences. 2019.
  7. Kober M, & Bowe P. The effect of probiotics on immune regulation, acne, and photoaging. International journal of women’s dermatology. 2015.
  8. Lee B, Byun J, & Kim S. Potential Role of the Microbiome in Acne: A Comprehensive Review. Journal of clinical medicine. 2019.
  9. Mashhadi S, Ghiasvand R, Askari G, Hariri M, Darvishi L, & Mofid R. Anti-oxidative and anti-inflammatory effects of ginger in health and physical activity: review of current evidence. International journal of preventive medicine. 2013.
  10. Peterson T, Sharma V, Uchitel S, Denniston K, Chopra D, Mills J, & Peterson N. Prebiotic Potential of Herbal Medicines Used in Digestive Health and Disease. Journal of alternative and complementary medicine, New York, N.Y; 2018.
  11. Rathnavelu V, Alitheen B, Sohila S, Kanagesan S, & Ramesh R. Potential role of bromelain in clinical and therapeutic applications. Biomedical reports. 2016.
  12. Salem I, Ramser A, Isham N, & Ghannoum A. The Gut Microbiome as a Major Regulator of the Gut-Skin Axis. Frontiers in microbiology. 2018;(9):1459.
  13. Sánchez M, González-Burgos E, Iglesias I, Gómez-Serranillos M. Pharmacological Update Properties of Aloe Vera and its Major Active Constituents. Molecules. 2020. 

Clean Lean Protein Ingredient Spotlight: European Golden Peas

Both short and long term health require a steady protein intake as protein is needed for growth and development, muscle repair, hormones, immune system function, bone development, hair, energy production and more. Protein provides the building blocks the body needs to function properly in the form of amino acids. The body can make 11 of


Both short and long term health require a steady protein intake as protein is needed for growth and development, muscle repair, hormones, immune system function, bone development, hair, energy production and more. Protein provides the building blocks the body needs to function properly in the form of amino acids. The body can make 11 of the 20 amino acids but the other 9 amino acids (known as essential amino acids) need to come from our diet. 

When you think of protein sources you may not think of peas, however peas are a complete source of protein and have all nine essential amino acids which are needed for processes in the body. High in fibre and vitamins, pea protein is easy to digest, hypoallergenic and a more sustainable alternative to some of the more traditional protein powder sources. 

Protein powder supplements aid the supply of amino acids to the body and can support individuals to reach their health goals. They are a nutrient dense and convenient way to support your daily protein intake. Clean Lean Protein is made from the highest quality European Golden Peas and provides the building blocks for vitality, repair, recovery and muscle growth.

Why European Golden Peas?

The European Golden Pea (Pisum sativum) has been chosen as the concentrated base for Nuzest’s protein powders. The Pea protein in Clean Lean Protein is one of the highest quality pea protein isolates on the global market and is naturally high in protein, starch, fibre, vitamins and minerals.[1]

Typical pea proteins have a protein content of 80-85%, while Clean Lean Protein contains up to 88% protein and is one of the few ‘clean label’ vegetable proteins available. The raw ingredient is free from GMOs, gluten, crustaceans, molluscs, eggs, fish, peanuts, soya, milk, nuts, celery, mustard, sesame seeds, lupin, sulphur dioxide and sulphites. 

Not all pea proteins are created equally.

Peas are naturally high in anti-nutrients such as phytates, lectins and tannins. These have been shown to negatively impact the absorption of nutrients and can contribute to inflammation in the body. However, the protein we use is extracted via a patented water-based process which ensures the removal of anti-nutrients, increases the protein content and availability from the peas, and makes the resulting plant protein highly available, easily digested, and incredibly fine in texture.

The European Golden Peas (Pisum sativum) used in Clean Lean Protein are are believed to be amongst the best in the world. They are grown primarily in Northern France, an area known for their high-quality soils, clean environment and sustainable farming practices.

What else makes Nuzest’s Clean Lean Protein so unique? Read more about it here

Whey vs Pea Protein

Whey protein has been long favoured as a protein of choice for athletes due to its high biological value and absorption by the body. It’s derived from milk or dairy products and contains lactose. It is a ‘complete’ source of protein (meaning it has a full amino acid profile) and is quickly digested. For some individuals though, animal derived proteins can be harsh on the digestive system and may cause digestive disturbances. Dairy can be a common allergen and digestive irritant,[1] causing inflammation, and allergies and sensitivities, which may lead individuals to choose a plant-based protein alternative.

Pea protein can provide similar benefits to whey protein but without the dairy allergens and digestive disturbances. Pea protein is suitable for vegetarians and vegans and is naturally gluten free and hypoallergenic. When compared with whey, pea protein is digested slightly faster however it is absorbed slower and is more satiating. Not all plant-based protein powders are complete protein sources and may vary in the balance of amino acids, therefore it’s important to be aware of this when choosing a pea protein supplement. 

A randomised clinical trial in France (2015) where pea protein and whey protein were compared against a placebo revealed that both protein types contributed to equivalent muscle growth, significantly more than the placebo.[2] Individuals taking pea protein showed a considerably greater increase in muscle mass when compared to those with whey.[3]

Benefits of Pea Protein

  • High in branch chain amino acids

Pea protein is high in branch chain amino acids (BCAAs) – leucine, isoleucine and valine. These three amino acids are essential, meaning they cannot be produced by the body so must be supplied. BCAAs have been shown to support lean muscle mass and muscle recovery.[4] [5]

  • Naturally free of allergens 

Pea protein is naturally hypoallergenic, meaning it is free from common allergens such as soy, wheat, gluten, dairy, peanuts, eggs, fish. This makes it an excellent source of protein for vegans, vegetarians, and individuals with allergies.  

  • Easily digestible 

Pea protein is noted for its very high digestibility rating as it is gentle on the gastrointestinal tract. A highly digestible and high-quality pea protein increases its absorption and nutritional quality. Additionally, Clean Lean Protein is also free from fillers, gums, and artificial preservatives, which further increases its digestability.

  • Sustainable crop

Peas are classified as a sustainable crop as they use less land and water than other protein sources. Peas also add vital nutrients like nitrogen back into the soil. 

Clean Lean Protein is 100% vegan with a protein content of nearly 90% – this is over 4 times greater than that of animal protein sources e.g., meat, chicken, fish. Clean Lean Protein is a rich source of all 9 essential amino acids and contains an average of 20g of protein per serve. It is renowned for its quality, taste, smooth texture and minimal ingredients and is regularly and independently tested to ensure it’s free from contaminants. No matter what your health goal may be, pea protein is a healthy and sustainable protein source.


[1] https://www.metagenicsinstitute.com.au/protocols/lactose-intolerance

[2] https://core.ac.uk/download/pdf/195071838.pdf

[3] https://core.ac.uk/download/pdf/195071838.pdf

[4] https://jissn.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1550-2783-6-S1-P1

[5] https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16365096/

Good Green Vitality Ingredient Spotlight: The brain boosting benefits of Panax ginseng

Good Green Vitality was formulated in conjunction with leading independent health experts to help fill the nutritional gaps in modern diets. Over 75 ingredients work synergistically to support all 11 body systems; each one chosen specifically for the benefits it provides to the body, including the brain and nervous system. Ginseng, an herbal medicine in widespread


Good Green Vitality was formulated in conjunction with leading independent health experts to help fill the nutritional gaps in modern diets. Over 75 ingredients work synergistically to support all 11 body systems; each one chosen specifically for the benefits it provides to the body, including the brain and nervous system.

Ginseng, an herbal medicine in widespread use globally, is one ingredient in Good Green Vitality chosen for its brain-boosting potential. 

Why Panax Ginseng?

One of the most commonly used and highly researched species of ginseng is Panax ginseng – native to China, Korea and Russia. The root of the Panax ginseng plant has been used in Chinese herbal medicine for thousands of years primarily as a calming agent and adaptogen.[1] Extensive research suggests that it may have beneficial effects on the brain and cognition.[2]

The main active constituent of Panax ginseng are the ginsenosides,[3] which have been shown to have a variety of therapeutic benefits including antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective effects.[4]

To support the nervous system and brain function, Panax ginseng (100mg per 15g) has been chosen as part of the neural blend in Good Green Vitality. 

How does Panax ginseng support brain function?

  • Potent antioxidant and neuroprotectant 

Panax ginseng may help to reduce oxidative stress by increasing antioxidant enzyme activity. Research and studies suggest the ginsenosides have the ability to target the brain for protection against free radicals. 

Both oxidative stress and inflammation are two key contributing factors to neurogenerative disease (e.g. Alzheimer’s disease). The beneficial effects of Panax ginseng on neurogenerative disease  have been attributed to the antioxidant and immunomodulatory activities of the active constituent, ginsenoside. Studies on the neuroprotective effects of ginsenosides show they act as antioxidants and modulators of intracellular neuronal signalling, metabolism and mitochondrial function.[5] [6] The antioxidant function of Panax ginseng has been studied and suggested for its health benefits.[7]

  • Supports memory, behaviour and mood

The ginsenosides in Panax ginseng have been widely studied globally, with over 100 different ginsenosides revealed so far. They have been found to stimulate the release of acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter that is associated with learning and memory.[8]   

Studies suggest that Panax ginseng may have beneficial effects on memory, learning and mood in short and long term studies.[9] [10] Panax ginseng may have the ability to improve mental performance, memory and support feelings of mental fatigue, as well as stimulate brain activity.[11] [12]

There have been a number of studies focusing on the therapeutic benefits of Panax ginseng and neurogenerative disease, with studies suggesting Panax ginseng may act to enhance and improves cognitive performance in patients with Alzheimer’s disease. [13]

Good Green Vitality uses a high quality Panax ginseng extract which contains many beneficial compounds and provides the greatest efficacy by dose. There are 100mg of Panax ginseng in each 15g serve of Good Green Vitality

The levels, forms and ratios of each vitamin, mineral, and nutrient in the Good Green Vitality formula have been determined and optimised through thorough evaluation of scientific research and evidence. The form of each ingredient has been selected based on its bioavailability and contribution to the synergistic effect of the formula.


References

[1] https://naturalmedicines-therapeuticresearch-com.ezproxy.laureate.net.au/databases/food,-herbs-supplements/professional.aspx?productid=1000

[2]https://www.cochranelibrary.com/cdsr/doi/10.1002/14651858.CD007769.pub2/full?highlightAbstract=panax%7Cginseng

[3] https://www.aafp.org/afp/2003/1015/p1539.html#afp20031015p1539-b2

[4] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2893180/

[5] https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S122684531630269X

[6] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5386131/

[7] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5386131/

[8] https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S122684531630269X

[9]  https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/12895687/

[10] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5386131/

[11] https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/15982990/

[12] https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0091305703001266?via%3Dihub

[13] https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18580589/

Cognitive Function and Brain Health

You know what they say – you are what you eat – and your brain is exactly that. Your brain thrives on nutrients such as omega 3, tryptophan, B vitamins and magnesium. So, it’s essential that we include these food sources in our diet and ensure that we are absorbing the nutrients during digestion. First


You know what they say – you are what you eat – and your brain is exactly that. Your brain thrives on nutrients such as omega 3, tryptophan, B vitamins and magnesium. So, it’s essential that we include these food sources in our diet and ensure that we are absorbing the nutrients during digestion.

First things first – we simply cannot have a healthy functioning brain without nurturing the second brain that is housed in our gut!

Gut health and the Second Brain

Gut flora or gut microbiota refers to the microorganisms that live in the digestive tracts of humans [1].

Serotonin is the mood hormone. It regulates sleep, appetite and mood, and 95% of it is produced in the gut. Therefore, our gut produces the hormone that regulates our emotions, and that’s why it’s now referred to as the second brain [2, 4].

Ever had a gut feeling? Now there’s science to back that feeling! It has been established that a complex communication network exists between the gut microbiome and the central nervous system [10].

If we feel anxious, our appetite can be suppressed or increased, our gastrointestinal organs can constrict, and we’re not able to optimally digest food. Furthermore, an imbalance in the gut microbiome can lead to a chronic inflammatory state and increase the risk of developing brain disease [2].

Fibre

So, what do we need to feed this wonderful gut microbiota in order to have optimal digestion and optimal brain function? We need fibre, diversity in fibre and LOTS of it. Why diversity? There are over 100,000 strains of bacteria in your gut and they all require different forms of nutrients to feed them [1].

Great sources of fibre all come from plants like fruits, vegetables, legumes and wholegrains [11]. Our gut microbiomes also love probiotic and prebiotic rich foods. These contain good bacteria which help populate our gut microbiome.

Probiotic foods include sauerkraut, yoghurt, kombucha and all those super trendy foods that have been fermented. Prebiotic foods stimulate the growth of bacteria found in probiotic rich foods [2]. These include legumes, sweet potato, onions, garlic and bananas.

Vitamins, Minerals and Nutrients

Omega 3

An essential fatty acid found in oily fish like salmon, mackerel, herring, sardines, and seeds and nuts such as flaxseed, chia, and walnuts, and plant oils like extra virgin olive oil [11].

The brain is made up of up to 60% fat – it loves fat, particularly omega 3 polyunsaturated fatty acids. Omega 3 acts on the cell membranes within the brain and regulates signalling pathways. It has been found to reduce inflammation, as well as shortening the duration of the inflammatory process [3].

The anti-inflammatory effects of omega 3 may explain its ability to ameliorate cognitive decline in the elderly, as well as in Alzheimer’s disease, and improve cognition in traumatic brain injury. It is also successfully used for the treatment of mood disorders [3].

Nutritionist tip: Australian diets are often lower in omega 3 and higher in omega 6. Foods higher in omega 6 have been associated with pro-inflammatory effects – aim for an omega 6 to omega 3 ratio from 1:1 to 4:1 [9]. To do this include omega 3 rich foods, and limit saturated fats like cooking oils, processed meats and deep-fried foods.

Tryptophan

An amino acid found in lean chicken, turkey, tuna, snapper, lean cuts of red meat, tofu, tempeh, whole milk, pumpkin seeds, oats and eggs [11].

Maintaining tryptophan levels is essential as it acts as a cofactor or ‘tool’ to produce serotonin [5, 6]. Significant decreases or increases in optimal levels of tryptophan will significantly disrupt normal behaviour and brain function. Studies show that decreased tryptophan increases depression, irritability, anxiety and aggression, while more tryptophan induces drowsiness and decreases pain sensitivity [5].

The recommended daily intake of tryptophan was suggested as 4 mg/kg body weight for adult humans as essential for optimal brain function [9]. For example, 100 g of lean chicken breast contains 404 mg of tryptophan which is 144% of the recommended daily intake [11].

B Vitamins

Found in clams, tuna, crab, salmon, white fish, lean chicken, lean red meat, soy products, dark leafy greens, dairy products and eggs [11].

The B-vitamins comprise a group of eight water soluble vitamins that perform many functions – energy production, DNA repair, and the synthesis of numerous neurochemicals required for hormone production [7].  

Vitamins B6, B12, and folate are commonly acknowledged as cofactors or ‘tools’ for serotonin and melatonin production, relating B vitamin status with mood [7]. The recommended intake of B vitamins varies individually, however a diet rich in these foods is essential for your brain to flourish and secrete those happy hormones.

Magnesium

A mineral found in buckwheat, spinach, pumpkin seeds, lima beans, tuna, brown rice, oats, dark chocolate, avocado, yoghurt and bananas [11].

Similar to B vitamins and tryptophan, magnesium is also an essential tool to produce hormones for healthy brain function.

However, it works in a slightly different way. Magnesium is essential for regulation of muscle contraction by allowing for the exchange of energy [8]. Low levels of magnesium may result in an over production of nerve conductivity (message signalling), resulting in oxidative stress and cell degradation. This increased conductivity has been implicated in many neurological and psychiatric disorders [8]. Many studies have shown neuronal protection from treatment with magnesium, making it an ideal supplement to support cognitive function [4, 8].

1 cup of cooked buckwheat contains 94% of your recommended daily intake, while 1 cup of uncooked oats contains 66% and 28 g of pumpkin seeds contains 40% [11].

Supplementing

Include a diet rich in these nutrients and not only will your brain function optimally, it will also thrive! However, that’s not always possible, that’s why a supplement like Good Green Vitality, full of ingredients to support brain health, like vitamin B1, B2, B3, B5, B12 and magnesium, is a great way to ensure your adequate nutrition. It also includes many other nutrients essential for healthy brain function like zinc, copper, bioflavonoids, Co-enzyme Q10, vitamin A and E.

5 Key Takeaways

  • To optimise brain function we must consider the health of our second brain – the gut!
  • Fill up on fibre and include pro and prebiotic rich foods
  • Be conscious of your omega 3 to 6 ratio, aim for 1:1 to 4:1
  • Aim for a diet rich in food sources of tryptophan, B vitamins and magnesium
  • Consider supplementing to ensure you’re getting all of those healthy brain functioning nutrients

References

[1] Appleton J. (2018). The Gut-Brain Axis: Influence of Microbiota on Mood and Mental Health. Integrative medicine (Encinitas, Calif.), 17(4), 28–32.

[2] Banskota, S., Ghia, J. E., & Khan, W. I. (2019). Serotonin in the gut: Blessing or a curse. Biochimie, 161, 56–64. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biochi.2018.06.008

[3] Chianese, R., Coccurello, R., Viggiano, A., Scafuro, M., Fiore, M., Coppola, G., Operto, F. F., Fasano, S., Laye, S., Pierantoni, R., & Meccariello, R. (2018). Impact of Dietary Fats on Brain Functions. Current neuropharmacology, 16(7), 1059–1085. https://doi.org/10.2174/1570159X15666171017102547

[4] Fernstrom, J. (2005). Branched-Chain Amino Acids and Brain Function. The Journal of Nutrition, Volume 135, Issue 6, Pages 1539S–1546S, https://doi.org/10.1093/jn/135.6.1539S

[5] Friedman M. (2018). Analysis, Nutrition, and Health Benefits of Tryptophan. International journal of tryptophan research : IJTR, 11, 1178646918802282. doi:10.1177/1178646918802282

[6] Jenkins, T. A., Nguyen, J. C., Polglaze, K. E., & Bertrand, P. P. (2016). Influence of Tryptophan and Serotonin on Mood and Cognition with a Possible Role of the Gut-Brain Axis. Nutrients, 8(1), 56. doi:10.3390/nu8010056

[7] Kennedy D. O. (2016). B Vitamins and the Brain: Mechanisms, Dose and Efficacy–A Review. Nutrients, 8(2), 68. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu8020068

[8] Kirkland, A. E., Sarlo, G. L., & Holton, K. F. (2018). The Role of Magnesium in Neurological Disorders. Nutrients, 10(6), 730. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu10060730

[9] National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC). (2021, February 17). Nutrient Reference Values. Retrieved March 28, 2019, from https://www.nrv.gov.au/home

[10] Strandwitz P. (2018). Neurotransmitter modulation by the gut microbiota. Brain research, 1693(Pt B), 128–133. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.brainres.2018.03.015

[11] Whitbread, D. (2021, January 22). Top 10 foods highest in Tryptophan. Retrieved February 17, 2021, from https://www.myfooddata.com/articles/high-tryptophan-foods.php

Kids Good Stuff for Brain Health

The first 1,000 days of an infant’s life are said to be critical to their neurocognitive development [1]. However, beyond these 1,000 days, lifestyle and environmental factors continue to have a huge impact on brain development, none more so than nutrition. Failure to provide adequate nutrition can lead to long-term consequences affecting behaviour, cognition and


The first 1,000 days of an infant’s life are said to be critical to their neurocognitive development [1]. However, beyond these 1,000 days, lifestyle and environmental factors continue to have a huge impact on brain development, none more so than nutrition. Failure to provide adequate nutrition can lead to long-term consequences affecting behaviour, cognition and mental health [1].

With the pace of modern life and the rise of processed and convenience foods, it can be hard to ensure your child is getting all the required nutrients for brain health. Kids Good Stuff was formulated in conjunction with leading independent health experts to support all 11 body systems, including the brain and nervous system. Designed as a daily supplement, it helps fill the key nutritional gaps in the diets of children aged 4-14 and contains a variety of vitamins, minerals and plant foods that work synergistically to promote brain health.

Key Nutrients in Kids Good Stuff for Brain Health:

Flaxseed (Linum usitatissimum):

Kids Good Stuff contains 250mg flaxseed which is a valuable source of omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids are made up of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and alpha lipoic acid (ALA) which play a critical role in brain health. EPA has been shown to modulate behaviour and mood, whilst lower levels of DHA have been associated with poorer performance in spatial and learning tasks [2]. ALA in particular, has been shown to result in a higher brain mass when given to pups in studies, highlighting the value of flaxseed for brain development [2].

Sunflower lecithin:

Lecithin contains phosphatidylserine, phosphatidylcholine, and phosphatidylinositol substances that form part of the cell-membrane. Lecithin also provides choline, a precursor of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine which acts as a key messenger between cells. Research has demonstrated the importance of lecithin for healthy brain development via its effects on synaptic development. Lecithin was shown to upregulate synapsin I (SYN1), which supports neural complexity and activity [3].

Brahmi (Bacopa monnieri extract):

Bacopa, most commonly known as Brahmi is a perennial herb native to India, Australia, Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Americas. It is traditionally used in Ayurvedic medicine as a natural cognitive and memory enhancer. Recent studies have highlighted the benefits of Brahmi for children with hyperactivity and attention challenges [4]. Brahmi was found to be effective in reducing hyperactivity and improving cognition by acting as a free-radical scavenger and antioxidant, promoting neuroprotection, increasing choline, reducing β-amyloid, increasing cerebral blood flow, improving mitochondrial efficiency, and modulating neurotransmitters such as acetylcholine, serotonin, and dopamine [5,6]. Kids Good Stuff contains 50mg of Brahmi which is considered a safe dose for children.

Lutein and Zeaxanthin (Tagetes erecta (Marigold) flower extract):

Lutein and zeaxanthin are classified as xanthophyll’s and are part of the carotenoid group. Extracted from the marigold flower, lutein and zeaxanthin play an important role in eye, brain and nervous system development, particularly during the early stages of life [7]. In the same way lutein protects the retina from damage, via antioxidant and anti-inflammatory actions, lutein also protects the brain [8]. Lutein spans the membrane and works to block the oxidation of lipids such as DHA which is necessary for membrane structure and fluidity in the brain [8]. Zeaxanthin also functions as an antioxidant, exerting macular and neuroprotective effects [9]. Supplementation with both zeaxanthin and lutein has shown to improve central nervous system xanthophyll levels and cognitive function in young adults and are therefore vital nutrients for brain development [9].

Bioflavonoids:

Flavonoids are polyphenolic compounds that are naturally found in many plant-based foods such as citrus, tea, berries and chocolate [12]. Bioflavonoids are associated with improved cognition, eye health and reduced inflammation and oxidation [10, 11]. Specifically, bioflavonoids in the form of blackcurrant have been shown to improve brain health via inhibiting monoamine oxidase (MAO) [12]. Higher levels of MAO are correlated with lower dopamine and therefore lower working memory and attention [12]. Cocoa has been shown to improve the focusing ability of the eyes of young adults and has also demonstrated positive benefits for cognition [12]. Citrus bioflavonoids are associated with improved attention and general executive function [12]. As bioflavonoids all have slightly different actions, Kids Good Stuff has been formulated to include a spectrum of flavonoid compounds including blackcurrant, cocoa and citrus, to ensure optimal support. The evidence also suggests that taking bioflavonoids derived from wholefoods is superior to taking isolated flavonoids, which is why Kids Good Stuff contains 11 real fruits and vegetables.

Nutrition plays a crucial role in promoting brain health for children. Kids Good Stuff is an all-in-one formula that provides the key vitamins and minerals to promote optimal health, including brain health. To find out more about the benefits of Kids Good Stuff, click here.

References:

[1] Cohen Kadosh, K., Muhardi, L., Parikh, P., Basso, M., Jan Mohamed, H. J., Prawitasari, T., Samuel, F., Ma, G., & Geurts, J. M. (2021). Nutritional Support of Neurodevelopment and Cognitive Function in Infants and Young Children-An Update and Novel Insights. Nutrients, 13(1), 199. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu13010199

[2] Parikh, M., Maddaford, T. G., Austria, J. A., Aliani, M., Netticadan, T., & Pierce, G. N. (2019). Dietary Flaxseed as a Strategy for Improving Human Health. Nutrients, 11(5), 1171. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu11051171

[3] Latifi, S., Tamayol, A., Habibey, R., Sabzevari, R., Kahn, C., Geny, D., Eftekharpour, E., Annabi, N., Blau, A., Linder, M., & Arab-Tehrany, E. (2016). Natural lecithin promotes neural network complexity and activity. Scientific reports, 6, 25777. https://doi.org/10.1038/srep25777

[4] Kean JD, Downey LA, Stough C. A systematic review of the Ayurvedic medicinal herb Bacopa monnieri in child and adolescent populations. Complementary Thera- pies in Medicine. 2016;29:56-62.

[5] Vishnupriya P, Padma VV. A review on the antioxidant and therapeutic potential of Bacopa monnieri. React Oxygen Spec. 2017;3:111-20.

[6] Suen J, Thomas J, Kranz A, Vun S, Miller M. Effect of Flavonoids on Oxidative Stress and Inflammation in Adults at Risk of Cardiovascular Disease: A Systematic Review. Healthcare. 2016;4(3):69.

[7] Wallace TC. A Comprehensive Review of Eggs, Choline, and Lutein on Cognition Across the Life-
span. Journal of the American College of Nutrition. 2018;37(4):269-85.

[8] James M Stringham, Elizabeth J Johnson, B Randy Hammond, Lutein across the Lifespan: From Childhood Cognitive Performance to the Aging Eye and Brain, Current Developments in Nutrition, Volume 3, Issue 7, July 2019, nzz066, https://doi.org/10.1093/cdn/nzz066

[9] Renzi-Hammond, L. M., Bovier, E. R., Fletcher, L. M., Miller, L. S., Mewborn, C. M., Lindbergh, C. A., Baxter, J. H., & Hammond, B. R. (2017). Effects of a Lutein and Zeaxanthin Intervention on Cognitive Function: A Randomized, Double-Masked, Placebo-Controlled Trial of Younger Healthy Adults. Nutrients, 9(11), 1246. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu9111246

[10] Lamport DJ, Dye L, Wightman JD, Lawton CL. The effects of flavonoid and other polyphenol consump- tion on cognitive performance: a systematic research re- view of human experimental and epidemiological studies. Nutrition and Aging. 2012;1(1):5-25.

[11] Patel S, Mathan JJ, Vaghefi E, Braakhuis AJ. The effect of flavonoids on visual function in patients with glaucoma or ocular hypertension: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Graefe’s Archive for Clinical and Experi- mental Ophthalmology. 2015;253(11):1841-50.

[12] Lamport DJ, Dye L, Wightman JD, Lawton CL. The effects of flavonoid and other polyphenol consump- tion on cognitive performance: a systematic research re- view of human experimental and epidemiological studies. Nutrition and Aging. 2012;1(1):5-25.

Nutrition and Lifestyle for Ultimate Health and Wellbeing

Good health is the foundation for our mental and physical performance. It also allows us to be in a good position to deal with health conditions and the many other things that life throws our way. Despite many of us being confused about the best way to shape our nutrition and lifestyle behaviours for optimal


Good health is the foundation for our mental and physical performance. It also allows us to be in a good position to deal with health conditions and the many other things that life throws our way.

Despite many of us being confused about the best way to shape our nutrition and lifestyle behaviours for optimal health, there are many simple changes that can be made to enhance our overall wellbeing.

Nutrition

Nutrition for general health and wellbeing comes down to making sure you have a solid foundation.

This includes:

• An appropriate energy intake (not too much and not too little!)

• Sufficient protein

• Sufficient essential fats

• Sufficient vitamins and minerals

• Appropriate intake of carbohydrates

Achieving this may seem a little daunting. However, a few simple strategies can help us to achieve this and self-regulate how much and what we eat.

Eat natural, unrefined foods

Diets that are based on unrefined foods are typically more satiating than diets that predominantly consist of highly processed and refined foods. They are naturally higher in fibre, which helps to leave you feeling fuller and more satisfied for longer. Eating natural, unrefined foods allows the body to better ‘auto-regulate’ its energy intake, meaning that you won’t be as prone to over or under-eating. For most people, this ‘natural first’ approach

both helps to ensure an appropriate energy balance, without having to count calories, and provides the essential nutrients required for good health.

Build meals around protein

Protein is the most satiating nutrient and therefore can help to avoid overeating without the need for counting calories. Prioritising protein by building your meals around this macro-nutrient also has considerable benefits to overall health.

Increased protein intakes (relative to other nutrients) has been shown to:

• Help the body to retain muscle and lose fat [1] [2]  [3] [4]

• Reduce blood pressure, improve blood lipids, and reduce fat stores [5] [6]

• Reduce bone loss and improve the strength of bones as we age [7] [8] [9]

• Help the body to retain immunity and reduce infection by increasing glutamine intake [10]

  • Eat plenty of vegetables

Vegetables are good for our health, period. Increasing your fruit and vegetable intake from less than three to more than five servings per day is related to a 17% reduction in heart disease risk [11]. Research also indicates that for every serve of fruit or vegetable that is added to the diet each day results in a 4% reduction in heart disease risk [12]. It has been suggested that the daily five serves of vegetables that is currently recommended in national nutrition guidelines is not enough for optimal health [13].

Instead, it has been put forward that up to ten serves of fruits and vegetables (with the majority being vegetables) each day is the better amount for best health [14].

Vegetables are also high in fibre which helps to fill us up and contain a bunch of essential vitamins and minerals that play a role in the hundreds of bodily processes required for good health. Interestingly, eating high-fibre foods such as vegetables paired with protein leads to a lessened desire to overeat and may also help to reduce sugar cravings [15].

  • Ensure you are getting sufficient essential nutrients

It is important to remember that every system of the body (all 11 of them) requires a unique mix, and sufficient pool, of essential and micronutrients to optimally function. Without each of your systems working as best as they can, it is nearly impossible for you to get the best of you.

For example:

• The gastrointestinal system, which looks after digestive function and waste elimination, is supported by fibre, probiotics, prebiotics and digestive enzymes.

• The immune system, which defends the body against pathogens (such as bacteria and viruses), is supported by nutrients such as vitamin C, vitamin D and zinc.

• The nervous system, which looks after your brain health and is responsible for cognition and the information that is sent around your body, is supported by B-vitamins, bioflavonoids and CoQ10.

• The circulatory system, which delivers oxygen, nutrients and energy throughout the body and helps to eliminate waste, is supported by calcium, potassium and antioxidants such as those found in green tea, hawthorn berries and spirulina.

• The endocrine system, which produces hormones, looks after stress and plays a large part in how you feel, is supported by iodine, fatty acids (omegas -3, -6 and -9) and selenium.

• The integumentary system, which is the physical barriers and connective tissues that protect our body from infection (such as your hair, skin and nails), is supported by protein, vitamin C, vitamin D and vitamin B7 (biotin).

• The muscular system, which is responsible for how the body moves, is supported by protein, magnesium, potassium and zinc.

• The renal and urinary systems, which are responsible for removing waste via the filtration of the kidneys, is supported by sodium, dandelion and beetroot.

• The reproductive system, which allows you to produce offspring, is supported by vitamin B6 (pyridoxine), ashwagandha, grapeseed and ginger.

• The respiratory system, which allows us to breathe by extracting oxygen from the air and removing carbon dioxide from the body, is supported by bioflavonoids, fruits and vegetables.

• The skeletal system, which consists of the bones of the skeleton and is responsible for maintaining the structure of the body, is supported by calcium, vitamin D and vitamin K.

This highlights only some of the key nutrients required to support the 11 body systems. The reality of the nutrient necessity is much more complex than this guide will allow, however, it is important to note that each body system requires a wide variety of essential nutrients in varying degrees. The best way to get enough of these essential nutrients is to eat a varied and colourful diet of whole foods, with a particular focus on consuming plenty of vegetables. However, despite our best efforts, this can sometimes be tricky.

  • Snack smart

While we’ve been told for decades that eating small meals and snacks through the day is the best way to maintain weight, the evidence actually shows a strong link between snacking and poor food choices and obesity and this can, over time, worsen health [16].

However, healthy snacks can be a useful tool to curb hunger and prevent overeating at mealtimes. The best option for you is one that allows you to be optimally fuelled and optimally healthy. For many people, the best strategy is to focus on meals (not snacks), but for some, snacks can be beneficial. Snacks can be based on one, or a combination of, the food groups outlined in the meal matrix on pages [17] [18].

  • Supplement

While we always encourage a healthy diet as your main source of nutrition, today’s lifestyle and environment mean our bodies often need a little more help to enjoy optimal health.

Good Green Vitality is a powerful multi-nutrient formula designed to help you thrive. Designed to support all 11 body systems from energy production and cognitive function, to the immune system and gut health, it’s packed full of vitamins, minerals, herbs and nutrient-boosting compounds to help meet the added nutritional requirements of modern life.

LIFESTYLE AND WEIGHT MAINTENANCE

Exercise

Regular exercise is as important to long-term health and wellbeing as nutrition choices. Exercise increases the amount of energy you expend, thus helping you to achieve an appropriate energy balance and maintain a healthy weight. Exercise can also help the body to rid itself of dysfunctional tissue, reduce inflammation, and moderate stress levels, all of which is favourable for overall health and wellbeing.

Reviews of the scientific evidence suggest that around two to three hours of exercise per week is enough to improve overall health and reduce mortality [19]. Exercise also helps us to avoid falls and fractures as we age, as it helps us to retain muscle mass, and in turn, strength [20].

Ideally, people should aim to exercise for at least two and a half to five hours per week with a combination of resistance, low-intensity, and some higher-intensity workouts. However, if you are currently sedentary or only partake in lower-intensity exercise (such as walking), it is suggested that you build to including high-intensity gradually to reduce the risk of injury.

Stress

Stress, whether it be attributed to work, excessive demands on time, or trauma from life events, can affect your health. Stress can increase inflammation [21], affect weight maintenance [22] [23] [24],affect sleep and encourage poorer food choices, leading to a cascade of poorer health outcomes [25]. Managing stress is an important component of ensuring and optimising overall health and vitality.

Sleep

Sleep has a complex relationship with inflammation, stress, and food choices [26] [27] [28]. Not getting enough quality sleep has been linked to a range of health conditions including diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and obesity [29]. According to the National Sleep Foundation of the US, which convened an expert panel to evaluate optimal sleep times, the recommended amount of sleep for adults aged 18 to 64 years is between seven and nine hours. The quality of a person’s sleep also matters.

With this being said, it should be noted that there can be significant variations in sleep requirements between people. While most of us will probably do best around the norms suggested above, genetic variability exists between people and some thrive on greater or lesser sleep times and sleep patterns. What is key is figuring out what works best for your body and making good sleep a daily habit.

If you’re interested in powerful, nutrient-packed formulas for a stronger, brighter and more active you check out Nuzest products here.

Setting health goals and staying motivated in 2021

Have your new year’s resolutions already slipped? Now February has rolled around and 2020 is a past memory it’s time to set, remember and stick to your health goals once and for all. But how? Setting goals and identifying your underlying motivation really is the key. Setting goals is the simple part. By following the


Have your new year’s resolutions already slipped?

Now February has rolled around and 2020 is a past memory it’s time to set, remember and stick to your health goals once and for all. But how? Setting goals and identifying your underlying motivation really is the key.

Setting goals is the simple part. By following the SMART goal strategy (outlined below) it will help to make goal setting even easier.

What are SMART goals?

Firstly, goals help us define what we want to do and how to measure the progress. They are the key to getting your brain on board to support your health journey and help guide you and keep you focused on what you really want to achieve – providing direction, motivation and empowerment around daily decisions.

Goal setting is easy, yet it can become overwhelming when trying to achieve and plan for too many goals at once. This year try setting Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time-bound (SMART) goals so you can stay on track and feel motivated (beyond February) to achieve them.

Use this tried and tested goal strategy to set smaller, specific goals to avoid the overwhelm of unrealistic and vague health objectives.

  • Specific
    • Create goals that are clear and include fine details by describing exactly what the new habit will be. Instead of setting a goal to ‘eat more vegetables’, be more specific ‘I will fill half my plate with crunchy salad vegetables at lunch and dinner’.
  • Measurable
    • Define a measure that will indicate when the goal has been achieved. It is important to measure your progress and hold yourself accountable to keep you on track. Use a journal, app, calendar, check list to track and tick off your new healthy habit as its completed.
  • Attainable
    • Set goals that are realistic and attainable for you to achieve. Place yourself in the position to be able to achieve your goals and this will mean you are more likely to stick to your goal.
  • Relevant
    • Create goals that are relevant to you and your lifestyle – make sure they are realistic and consistent with the outcome to help avoid setbacks. When you place unrealistic expectations on yourself on the outcome it will be hard to stay motivated and reach your goals.
  • Time-bound
    • A goal without a starting point and deadline is easy to put off. Set goals that can be completed in a specific time frame and this will also help make you more accountable to achieve it. 

Here are some questions to consider when writing your goals:

  • How do I want to feel?
  • What exactly do I want to achieve?
  • How will I track my progress?
  • Is this achievable? Do I have what I need to make it possible
  • Is this relevant and realistic for me right now? Is this consistent with my outcome?
  • How long do I want to give myself to achieve the goal?

Aim to work towards setting three to five goals, with one of them being your biggest, umbrella goal. For example, if your biggest goal is to lose 10kgs in 2021 think about the smaller goals that are going to help you achieve this, that way you can achieve and tick them off easily. The satisfaction of ticking something off on your path to success is an excellent motivation tool too!

Closely connect all your goals back to ‘why’ – Why do you want to achieve these goals in the first place? From here, the smaller goals that are easy to build on will keep you motivated and help you achieve your biggest goal in the long-term.

STAYING MOTIVATED IN 2021

Now you have set your health goals, sticking to them and remaining motivated is an entirely different story. Research suggests that self-motivated goals are more likely to be achieved[1] therefore it’s important to reflect and understand what it is that drives you and understand exactly how you want to feel. This will make it a lot easier to keep on track, stay motivated and achieve your goals.

Here are some tips for staying motivated:

  • Always come back to your ‘why’ and how you want to feel. If this is clear it will be a lot easier to take consistent actionable steps every day. Set yourself up for long term change and success.
  • Visualise yourself achieving your goals. Visualise and feel into the emotions of what it will be like to achieve the outcome and feel this every day.
  • Get an accountability buddy and support network. Share your goals with your partner, work colleagues, friends and family or become part of a virtual community with like-minded people. Get them on board for the extra support you deserve.
  • Celebrate your wins, even the small ones. Don’t forget to reward yourself when you completed a goal. Celebrate all your wins, big and small as ultimately, they all contribute to healthy and positive changes.
  • Let go of perfectionism. Try not to stress if you slip up, forget or fall off track. Tomorrow is a new day, get out of the downward spiral, acknowledge slip ups and move on.
  • Plan ahead and schedule it in – Set yourself up for success by planning ahead e.g., leave a gym bag in the car, make your lunch the night before, prep your smoothies in advance. Remember to block out time in your calendar to participate and take action towards your goals too. If time is put aside, you’re more likely to get the task done.
  • Be patient. Remember, new healthy habits take time and your body and mind need a period to adapt and adjust so practice patience, commitment and consistency.

Ok 2021, let’s do this! Put these simple strategies to use and achieve the outcomes you desire.

Back-to-school Tips To Keep You Organised

Preparing for the return of the school year is a daunting task for many parents. With school uniforms, stationary and some back-to-school anxiety felt by the child, it is easy to feel overwhelmed. To make the return to school easier, here are our top five tips that will ensure you and your child are organised.


Preparing for the return of the school year is a daunting task for many parents. With school uniforms, stationary and some back-to-school anxiety felt by the child, it is easy to feel overwhelmed. To make the return to school easier, here are our top five tips that will ensure you and your child are organised.

Create checklists – Checklists are an easy way to organise your thoughts and keep you on track.Create lists of tasks and appointments that need to be attended to before the school year starts – things like cleaning backpacks and lunch boxes, checking that shoes and uniforms still fit, picking up any text books needed for the year ahead.

Schools often provide a checklist of stationery and other items required for the classroom. If yours doesn’t then check your local stationery store like Officeworks or Staples.

A checklist may also be useful to manage the morning school rush. Pin a list to the family fridge with the key morning tasks such as 1) Getting dressed 2) Brushing teeth and 3) Packing lunchboxes.

Sort out Sleep – The key to a good routine is sleep. The National Sleep Foundation recommends that school aged children get between 9 and 11 hours of sleep[1].

Two weeks before the kids return to school, encourage them to go to bed and wake as if they would during the school term. This will help re-establish a healthy sleeping pattern and reduce the morning sleep ins! Limiting screen time at night and making sure children are active during the day are also great ways to encourage good sleep.

Focus on Nutrition – Breakfast is arguably the most important meal of the day for both parents and children. If you are short on time in the morning, a breakfast smoothie is a quick and easy way to get nutrients into your body.

Try adding 1 scoop of Kids Good Stuff (for the kids) or Good Green Vitality (for you!) to your morning shake. This provides your body with essential nutrients and energy to fuel your day. Click here for more nutritious breakfast ideas.  

Prepare in advance – Meal preparation and planning is a key tool that can be used to keep you organised throughout the school week. Read more about back-to-school lunch box tips here.

Plan for Homework – Homework is dreaded by many students as well as parents. To lessen the load and encourage good homework habits, you can organise your child’s schoolwork by developing a homework plan. This can be manually drawn out on a calendar or digitally scheduled using free Apps such as ‘My Study Life’.

If you have a designated space in the home for your children to complete their homework, declutter the area before they return to school. It’s easier to think clearly in a clear space, plus the clean-out will allow you to take stock of stationary you already have so that you don’t double up. Labelling drawers and folders will also encourage your children to stay tidy and organised.

Make it easier and reduce your child’s back to school anxiety by planning ahead and getting organised.



Back To School Lunch Box Tips And Tricks

Getting the kids ready to go back to school after the Christmas break can be a daunting task! Between organising school uniforms and after school activities, it’s easy to leave the kids’ lunch boxes to the last minute. Here are our top tips and tricks for planning and preparing healthy lunches that will ensure a


Getting the kids ready to go back to school after the Christmas break can be a daunting task! Between organising school uniforms and after school activities, it’s easy to leave the kids’ lunch boxes to the last minute. Here are our top tips and tricks for planning and preparing healthy lunches that will ensure a stress-free start to the school year.

1. Planning ahead.

Setting aside the time to come up with lunch box ideas for the week ahead will not only keep you organised, it will also save you time on those mornings when you are rushing out the door.

How To:

  • Allocate 1 hour on the weekend to write out lunch box ideas for the week ahead. You can do this by manually drawing out a plan or using a planner App.
  • Choose meals and snacks that keep well in lunch boxes – some examples include savoury muffins, protein balls, wholegrain crackers and pasta.
  • Structure lunch boxes around the three key macronutrients: carbohydrates, fats and protein. See the image below for a visual guide on how to fill your kids lunch box.
  • Make sure you include variety – children may grow tired of the same foods, so it is important to incorporate some different lunch options! A good way to do this is by changing up their snacks and rotating between different fruits and vegetables.

2. Batch cooking.

Once you have planned out the children’s lunches for the week ahead, set aside time to shop, cook and portion out meals on a Sunday as this will ensure you are prepared for the week ahead.

How To:

  • Allocate 1-2 hours on a Sunday to prepare meals and snacks.
  • Batch cooking is an efficient method that can be used to prepare many meals at once. Pick some of your child’s favourite recipes and double the quantities to increase the number of serves.
  • For easy grab and go snacks, wash, pre-cut and store vegetables and fruit ahead of time.
  • Freeze any leftovers as these can be used at a later date.

3. Hide extra nutrients in food.

If your children are fussy eaters and struggle to eat their vegetables or a variety of foods, a great way to include more nutrients in their lunchboxes is by hiding them in their favourite foods.

How To:

  • Grate or blend vegetables such as carrots and zucchini into sauces.
  • Add chia seeds or ground flaxseeds into yoghurt.
  • Choose wholegrain breads that have visible seeds and grains.
  • Blend spinach into egg mixtures.
  • Add a scoop of Kids Good Stuff into baking and smoothies – click here to explore some kid friendly recipes!

4. Get the kids involved.

Do you cook with your kids? It may seem overwhelming, but It doesn’t have to be stressful. Getting your children involved in the act of meal preparation not only provides valuable skills and education, it also exposes them to different foods. 

How To:

  • When planning out lunch box ideas for the week, sit down with your kids and let them contribute ideas. This will ensure they will enjoy their meals more and actually eat them.
  • When preparing food, get the kids involved with the washing, sorting and assembling of ingredients.
  • Baking is a fun and exciting hands-on activity for kids. Try a healthy take on your favourite classics.
  • Encourage the kids to help you pack their lunch boxes. This can be an activity that gets the kids excited about their lunches!

For more tips of how to pack a healthy lunch box, click here https://www.nuzest.com/blog/how-to-pack-a-healthy-lunchbox/