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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. 

Kids Good Stuff for Skin Health

Research suggests that more than 65% of children experience skin issues by the time they are five.3 This can be influenced by a number of circumstances including family history, immunity, social and environmental factors.3 Climate can play a role (warmer climates have been shown to increase the risk of conditions like pyoderma), as can low


Research suggests that more than 65% of children experience skin issues by the time they are five.3 This can be influenced by a number of circumstances including family history, immunity, social and environmental factors.3 Climate can play a role (warmer climates have been shown to increase the risk of conditions like pyoderma), as can low hygiene, which has been associated with increased rates of scabies.2

The skin makes up the integumentary system and provides our bodies with a physical barrier against infection, chemicals and the surrounding environment. When this barrier is compromised by dramatic changes such as climate and hygiene, alterations in the skin can occur, resulting in skin disorders.1,2 Immune disfunction or dysregulation also plays a significant role in the proliferation of skin disorders.1  

What are some common skin conditions in children?

Like adults, skin conditions in children can manifest in a plethora of ways. While parents often hear horror stories of impetigo, head lice, scabies and shingles, it’s Atopic Dermatitis (AD) or eczema that is actually one of the most common childhood skin conditions.4,5

Eczema is a pruritic (itchy!), chronic skin condition, with 50% of cases diagnosed by the age of one.6 Eczema has a significant impact on quality of life, with 50% of children reporting negative effects on sleep, mood and physical activity.6

The prevalence of eczema is thought to be the result of interactions between genetic and environmental factors, and immune dysregulation. Increased serum immunoglobulin E (IgE), elevated Th2 cytokines and T cells have been identified in eczema.4 Children with a family history of eczema, asthma or allergic rhinitis have an increased risk of eczema compared to those without a family history.6

How to keep your child’s skin healthy

There are a number of lifestyle factors that can improve children’s skin health:

  • Drink water. Children aged between 4 and 14 should consume 5-6 cups of water per day.7
  • Wear sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30.
  • Avoid products that contain harsh chemicals like sulphates and parabens.
  • Eat fresh fruits and vegetables.
  • Add one daily serve of Kids Good Stuff to your child’s diet.

Kids Good Stuff for skin health

Kids Good Stuff is an all-in-one, convenient nutritional supplement that contains ingredients to support skin health.

Beta-glucans

Beta glucans are derived from sources such as yeast, grains and fungus and possess biological activities that enhance immune function.8 Beta glucans have been found to promote wound healing via modulation of immune cellsand proliferation of keratinocytes and fibroblasts through specific receptors such as Dectin-1.8

Probiotics

Inflammation is an immune response commonly seen in skin conditions. Probiotic strains such as Lactobacillus exert anti-inflammatory and immune-modulatory effects via interactions with T and B cells.9 Probiotics may therefore assist in the treatment of inflammatory conditions such as AD.9

Vitamin B5

Pantothenic acid (B5) is a water-soluble B vitamin and has been found to be effective in treating skin conditions such as acne via antibacterial and anti-inflammatory actions.10 B5 is also suggested to regulate skin barrier function through the proliferation and differentiation of keratinocytes.10

B7 (Biotin)

Biotin is a water-soluble vitamin and has been shown to be beneficial for hair and nail growth.11

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is the most abundant antioxidant in human skin.12 Patients with AD are found to have lower levels of vitamin C, therefore supplementation may be beneficial.12 Vitamin C supports skin integrity, via cell growth and differentiation, and also exerts antioxidant effects.12

Vitamin D

Children with AD have displayed lower levels of serum vitamin D, suggesting vitamin D deficiency increases the risk of AD.13 Vitamin D may have positive effects on AD via regulation of Th1 and Th2 cytokines and the promotion of skin cell proliferation.13

Manganese

Manganese is an essential trace element that is found to be deficient in children with skin rashes.14 Manganese may be beneficial for skin health via its ability to scavenge reactive oxygen species within the skin.15

Skin conditions in children can range from mildly inconvenient to uncomfortable and debilitating. Looking after their skin nutritionally with Kids Good Stuff is the first line of defence.

References:

  1.             Vakirlis E, Theodosiou G, Apalla Z, Arabatzis M, Lazaridou E, Sotiriou E et al. A retrospective epidemiological study of skin diseases among pediatric population attending a tertiary dermatology referral center in Northern Greece. Clinical, Cosmetic and Investigational Dermatology. 2017;10:99-104.
  2.             WHO | Epidemiology and management of common skin diseases in children in developing countries [Internet]. Who.int. 2021 [cited 9 April 2021]. Available from: https://www.who.int/maternal_child_adolescent/documents/fch_cah_05_12/en/
  3.             Foley P, Zuo Y, Plunkett A, Merlin K, Marks R. The Frequency of Common Skin Conditions in Preschool-aged Children in Australia. Archives of Dermatology. 2003;139(3).
  4.             Boguniewicz M, Leung D. Atopic dermatitis: a disease of altered skin barrier and immune dysregulation. Immunological Reviews. 2011;242(1):233-246.
  5.             Pediatric Contact Dermatitis | Children’s National Hospital [Internet]. Children’s National. 2021 [cited 9 April 2021]. Available from: https://childrensnational.org/visit/conditions-and-treatments/skin-disorders/contact-dermatitis
  6.             Peterson M. Eczema and children – the novel approach | FX Medicine [Internet]. Fxmedicine.com.au. 2019 [cited 9 April 2021]. Available from: https://www.fxmedicine.com.au/blog-post/eczema-and-children-%E2%80%93-novel-approach
  7.             Water [Internet]. Nutrient Reference Values. 2014 [cited 9 April 2021]. Available from: https://www.nrv.gov.au/nutrients/water
  8.             Majtan J, Jesenak M. β-Glucans: Multi-Functional Modulator of Wound Healing. Molecules. 2018;23(4):806.
  9.             Kober M, Bowe W. The effect of probiotics on immune regulation, acne, and photoaging. International Journal of Women’s Dermatology. 2015;1(2):85-89.
  10.             Yang M, Moclair B, Hatcher V, Kaminetsky J, Mekas M, Chapas A et al. A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study of a Novel Pantothenic Acid-Based Dietary Supplement in Subjects with Mild to Moderate Facial Acne. Dermatology and Therapy. 2014;4(1):93-101.
  11.             Patel D, Swink S, Castelo-Soccio L. A Review of the Use of Biotin for Hair Loss. Skin Appendage Disorders. 2017;3(3):166-169.
  12.             Wang K, Jiang H, Li W, Qiang M, Dong T, Li H. Role of Vitamin C in Skin Diseases. Frontiers in Physiology. 2018;9.
  13.             Umar M, Sastry K, Al Ali F, Al-Khulaifi M, Wang E, Chouchane A. Vitamin D and the Pathophysiology of Inflammatory Skin Diseases. Skin Pharmacology and Physiology. 2018;31(2):74-86.
  14.             Manganese [Internet]. National Institutes of Health. 2021 [cited 9 April 2021].  Available from: https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Manganese-HealthProfessional/
  15.             Treiber N, Maity P, Singh K, Ferchiu F, Wlaschek M, Scharffetter-Kochanek K. The role of manganese superoxide dismutase in skin aging. Dermato-Endocrinology. 2012;4(3):232-235.

Protein 101 for Kids

What is protein? Protein is one of three macronutrients on which our diets are built (along with carbohydrates and fat) (1). It’s essential to almost every physiological process in the body, including, but not limited to, growth and repair (1). Protein is particularly important for children’s growth, neurodevelopment and long-team health (2). Protein consists of


What is protein?

Protein is one of three macronutrients on which our diets are built (along with carbohydrates and fat) (1). It’s essential to almost every physiological process in the body, including, but not limited to, growth and repair (1). Protein is particularly important for children’s growth, neurodevelopment and long-team health (2).

Protein consists of 20 amino acids (1); 11 of these are known as non-essential amino acids and can be made by the body, whilst the other 9, known as essential amino acids, must be obtained externally through diet (1). Amino acids form together in long chains to create the building blocks of protein and are present in all living cells exerting both functional and structural properties (1). Functionally, the body can break down tissue proteins into amino acids and utilise them for energy or glucose production (1). Some proteins can act as enzymes to support digestion, the building of bones and glucose production, whilst certain hormones such as insulin and glucagon use proteins to help regulate blood glucose levels and human growth hormone (3).

Why is protein so important for growing kids?

Brain growth and development relies on a high rate of protein synthesis (2). The amino acids that make up proteins, for example arginine and leucine, are required to synthesise crucial signalling molecules such as neurotransmitters and determine neuronal complexity (2). These amino acids also function to create other compounds, such as creatine, which is a key marker of kidney function, and peptide hormones which exert effects on the endocrine system (2). Research has highlighted the importance of protein for infants, with preterm babies who have higher protein intakes displaying greater head circumference growth and improved neurodevelopmental outcomes compared to those with lower levels of protein at birth (2). Furthermore, animal studies have demonstrated the effects of amino acid deficiency, in particular leucine, on decreased neurodevelopment (2).

How much protein does a child need?

The World Health Organisation and Food and Agriculture Organization states the reference values for protein intake as 0.9g/kg/day for boys aged 3 to 18 years old and girls aged 3 to 15 years old (4). This means if your child weighs 20kg they require 18g of protein per day.

Best sources of protein:

Protein is present in both animal and plant foods. Whilst the amino acids found in animal proteins is closer to that of humans, all of the essential amino acids can be obtained from plant sources as well (1).

Some of the highest sources of protein include:

  • Chicken (32g per 100g)
  • Pork (31g per 100g)
  • Tuna (29g per 100g)
  • Firm Tofu (17g per 100g)
  • Lentils (9g per 100g)
  • Yoghurt (5.7g per 100g)
  • Cheese (Parmesan) (35g per 100g)
  • Pumpkin Seeds (29g per 100g)
  • Eggs (12g per 100g) (5)

How can I increase protein in my child’s diet?

Whilst your child may be having three meals a day, they may not be consuming protein with each meal. One of the best ways to increase protein in your child’s diet is through snacks either side of meals. Here are some of our top tips to increase protein in your child’s diet!

  • Add cheese to bread or crackers and use it to top baked potatoes and vegetables.
  • Blend tofu or plain Greek yoghurt with melted chocolate to create a creamy chocolate mousse.
  • Add yoghurt to smoothies.
  • Store hard-boiled eggs in the fridge to have on hand as a quick handheld snack.
  • Create cut-outs of cheese slices, ham and sandwiches using fun shaped cutters. 
  • Sprinkle seeds or nuts on fruit and yoghurt.
  • Add peanut butter or almond butter on toast, fruit or blend into a smoothie.
  • Add one serving of Kids Good Stuff to 250ml water or milk of choice. Alternatively, you can add Kids Good Stuff to a fruit smoothie or your child’s favourite baked goods.

Kids Good Stuff contains 8g of pea protein isolate, which is an effective, kid-friendly dose of high-quality protein. Pea protein isolate is vegan, gluten, soy, and dairy-free, and is also free-from common allergens including peanuts and egg, making it a low-allergen, safe option for children. It has an absorption rate of over 89% and contains all 9 essential amino acids, including leucine, which is needed for human growth and development.

Kids Good Stuff is the perfect addition to your child’s diet, providing protein along with 11 fruits and vegetables to support optimal growth and development. For more ideas on how to incorporate Kids Good Stuff into your child’s diet and to shop products, click here.

References:

  1. Nutrient Reference Values, (2014). Protein. Retrieved from https://www.nrv.gov.au/nutrients/protein
  2. Cormack, B. E., Harding, J. E., Miller, S. P., & Bloomfield, F. H. (2019). The Influence of Early Nutrition on Brain Growth and Neurodevelopment in Extremely Preterm Babies: A Narrative Review. Nutrients, 11(9), 2029. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu11092029
  3. Medline Plus, (2020). What are proteins and what do they do?. Retrieved from https://medlineplus.gov/genetics/understanding/howgeneswork/protein/#:~:text=Proteins%20are%20large%2C%20complex%20molecules,the%20body’s%20tissues%20and%20organs.&text=Enzymes%20carry%20out%20almost%20all,that%20take%20place%20in%20cells.
  4. FAO/WHO/UNU. Protein and amino acid requirements in human nutrition. Joint WHO/FAO/UNU Expert Consultation. World Health Organ Tech Rep Ser. 2007:1–265. https://www.who.int/nutrition/publications/nutrientrequirements/WHO_TRS_935/en/
  5. My Food Data, (2021). Top 10 Foods Highest in Protein. Retrieved from https://www.myfooddata.com/articles/foods-highest-in-protein.php

Protein and Recovery in Sport

Physician, Martin H. Fischer once said “Life goes faster on protein”. He was right. Without protein, it’s very difficult to put one step in front of the other. Protein is responsible for the growth of something we all want – muscle! For this reason athletes are forever trying to reach their protein goals. Supplementation offers


Physician, Martin H. Fischer once said “Life goes faster on protein”. He was right. Without protein, it’s very difficult to put one step in front of the other. Protein is responsible for the growth of something we all want – muscle! For this reason athletes are forever trying to reach their protein goals. Supplementation offers a way to reach protein thresholds when diet is simply not enough. In 2015, protein powder sales were valued at 4.7 billion U.S. dollars. Which tells us what? People are investing in this macro nutrient in every way possible.

What is protein?

At a cellular level, proteins are polymers of amino acids linked via peptide bonds. These proteins are the body’s main source of nitrogen which we need for growth (7).

In regards to good nutrition, we’re only concerned with the amino acids they form. Particularly 20 specific ones encoded in DNA, plus 5 others—ornithine, citrulline, γ-aminobutyrate, β-alanine, and taurine—that play quantitatively important roles in the body (7). Of the 20 amino acids present in proteins, 9 are considered nutritionally essential amino acids (EAAs) because the body is not able to manufacture them (3). These 9 amino acids are leucine, valine, isoleucine, histidine, lysine, methionine, threonine, tryptophan, and phenylalanine. In addition, 2 others are made from their indispensable precursors: cysteine from methionine, and tyrosine from phenylalanine (3).

Protein’s Role in the Body

As previously mentioned, protein promotes growth – it’s the catalyst for all reactions in the body. Think of it like the engine of a car, nothing really gets going without turning on the engine – right?

Amino acids not only repair body tissues including muscle, skin, bone, organs, nails and hair, but also act as their major constituents (1). Without protein, we can’t build muscle and we certainly can’t repair it, so protein is essential for sports recovery. Proteins also regulate gene expression, the immune system, metabolism. What’s more, Proteins can assists in hormone prediction (7).

Importance of Protein for Recovery in Sport

Optimal muscle growth and recovery is more than just about meeting daily protein needs. Protein is in constant turnover. What that means is that at any given time, older damaged proteins are degraded through muscle protein breakdown and are replaced with new functional muscle proteins through muscle protein synthesis (8). Muscle protein is gained if rates of synthesis exceed breakdown. Conversely, muscle protein is lost if breakdown exceeds synthesis in a state of negative net muscle protein balance – for example weight loss (5).

Damage to muscle tissue (e.g pulled hamstring or muscle tenderness) requires an increase of muscle synthesis or an increased intake of protein in order to compensate for the muscle breakdown. A good rule of thumb is to increase protein intake by 20% during muscle recovery (5).

You may have heard a myth that you need to consume protein immediately after a workout in order to maximise muscle growth.

Is this the same with preventing recovery?

Are the gym goers and fitness fanatics who chug shakes immediately after a workout doing so for muscle repair as well?

Yes and no. Yes, they are maximising muscle growth and replacing damaged muscle. In fact, about 20 grams of high-quality protein is sufficient to stimulate muscle protein synthesis and regeneration following resistance exercise (1). However, the window which muscle requires this new hit of muscle juice is several hours, not 20 minutes. So relax Rocky’s, you have time to get home and shower first.

How Much Protein? 

A question with many answers…

For starters the Australian Guidelines suggest 0.75 g/kg for female adults and 0.84 g/kg for male adults (4). Considering the importance of protein, research now suggests these intakes simply won’t cut it.

Let’s take a look at what the protein experts at Examine have to say – these ranges are based on your total body weight (2).

  • If you’re sedentary, aim for 1.2–1.8 g/kg.
  • If you’re of healthy weight and active and wish to build and repair muscle, aim for 1.6–2.4 g/kg.
  • If you’re of healthy weight and active and wish to keep your weight, aim for 1.4–2.0 g/kg.
  • If you’re of healthy weight and active and wish to lose fat, aim for 1.6–2.4 g/kg.
  • If you’re overweight, aim for 1.2–1.5 g/kg.
  • If you’re pregnant, aim for 1.7–1.8 g/kg.
  • If you’re lactating, aim for at least 1.5 g/kg.

(Examine.com, 2020).

More recently you may have heard the hype from Aussie scientists David Raubenheimer and Stephen Simpson’s book Eat Like The Animals, and their well informed thoughts on protein. By extensive observations they concluded that optimising intake of protein may be the answer to wellbeing. For optimal protein, they suggest multiplying your total energy intake by the following values (6):

  • Child and adolescent: 0.15 (15% of diet)
  • Young adult (18-30): 0.18
  • Pregnant and breastfeeding: 0.20
  • Mature adult (30s): 0.17
  • Middle years (40-65): 0.15
  • Older age (>65): 0.20

(Raubenheimer & Simpson, 2020).

So, how much protein? You can see that it’s not a simple answer, but recent evidence suggests an intake of at least 18% or 1.5 g/kg of body weight. If you’re vegan, vegetarian, or obtain most of your protein from plants, then your protein requirements should be a little higher because plant-based proteins have incomplete amino acid profiles and are less bioavailable than animal proteins.

The Benefit of Protein Powder

For one, convenience. Compared with frying up eggs and bacon, adding a scoop of protein powder to a smoothie is far less work and much more heart healthy. Secondly, if you’re an athlete or extremely active your protein intake needs to increase for two reasons: to sustain muscle growth and prevent muscle/tissue damage – even with your three meals a day, you may still fall short. That’s why supplementing your smoothies, bliss balls, yoghurts, overnight oats, pancakes etc with a quality protein powder is a great way to meet that protein threshold.

Our Clean Lean Protein has a whopping 21g of protein per serve, making it superior to most plant based protein powders. It uses the highest quality pea protein isolate which is incredibly rich in protein and is one of the few ‘clean label’ vegetable proteins that’s free of nasties.

In the words of Dr Fischer, why not go faster on protein?

References

  1. Cintineo, H. P., Arent, M. A., Antonio, J., & Arent, S. M. (2018). Effects of Protein Supplementation on Performance and Recovery in Resistance and Endurance Training. Frontiers in nutrition, 5, 83. https://doi.org/10.3389/fnut.2018.00083
  2. Examine.com (2020). Optimal protein intake guide. Retrieved March 08, 2021, from https://examine.com/guides/protein-intake/#how-much-protein-do-you-need-per-day_-tip-calculating-your-protein-needs
  3. Gorissen, S., Crombag, J., Senden, J., Waterval, W., Bierau, J., Verdijk, L. B., & van Loon, L. (2018). Protein content and amino acid composition of commercially available plant-based protein isolates. Amino acids, 50(12), 1685–1695. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00726-018-2640-5
  4. National Health and Medical Research Council. (2005, January 01). Nutrient Reference Values for Australia and New Zealand: Protein. Retrieved March 06, 2021, from https://www.nrv.gov.au/nutrients/protein
  5. Poulios, A., Georgakouli, K., Draganidis, D., Deli, C. K., Tsimeas, P. D., Chatzinikolaou, A., Papanikolaou, K., Batrakoulis, A., Mohr, M., Jamurtas, A. Z., & Fatouros, I. G. (2019). Protein-Based Supplementation to Enhance Recovery in Team Sports: What is the Evidence?. Journal of sports science & medicine, 18(3), 523–536.
  6. Raubenheimer, D., &; Simpson, S. (2020). Eat Like the Animals. Harpercollins Australia.
  7. Watford, M., & Wu, G. (2018). Protein. Advances in nutrition (Bethesda, Md.), 9(5), 651–653. https://doi.org/10.1093/advances/nmy027
  8. Witard, O. C., Garthe, I., &amp; Phillips, S. M. (2019). Dietary protein for training adaptation and body composition manipulation in track and field athletes. International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism, 29(2), 165-174. doi:10.1123/ijsnem.2018-0267

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

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.

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/

The Importance of Meal Preparation and Planning

For many of us, the start of a new year brings about new hopes and aspirations for healthy habits, however, when it comes to creating these new healthy habits, it’s easy to fall off the bandwagon. In fact, up to 80% of New Year resolutions are unsuccessful[1]. Meal preparation and planning is one of those


For many of us, the start of a new year brings about new hopes and aspirations for healthy habits, however, when it comes to creating these new healthy habits, it’s easy to fall off the bandwagon. In fact, up to 80% of New Year resolutions are unsuccessful[1].

Meal preparation and planning is one of those things we all know we should do but often don’t. Meal preparation involves the planning and cooking of your weekly meals ahead of time and is a good idea for those who are looking to save time, money and get a bit more organised with their nutrition.

Here are our top three ‘how to steps’ for meal preparation that will encourage successful healthy habits in the New Year.  

1. Plan your menu for the week ahead.

Like the saying suggests, “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.”. Sitting down and planning out a menu is one of the most important steps in meal prep.

How To:

  • Use a menu plan template and/or an App such as ‘Mealime Meal Plans & Recipes’ to plan out your meals for the week ahead.
  • Identify your busiest days – late nights, early mornings, social commitments and plan your meals accordingly.
  • Create nutritionally balanced meals by building each meal around the three key macronutrients – protein, carbohydrates and fat. An example of this may include overnight oats, with oats as the carbohydrate, Clean Lean Protein as the protein and peanut butter as the fat.
  • Remember, just because you are meal prepping, doesn’t mean your meals should be boring! Sit down with yourself, your partner or your family and choose meals that you enjoy! This will encourage successful meal preparation.

2. Prepare meals ahead of time.

Setting aside time on the weekend to meal prep will keep you organised Monday through to Friday. Preparing your own food also provides you with more control over what goes into your meals, which is beneficial for those with specific health and nutrition goals.

How To:

  • Allocate three hours on the weekend to shop, cook and portion out meals.
  • Batch cooking is an effective method that can be used to prepare multiple meals at once. When preparing some of your favourite recipes, try doubling the quantities so that you increase the number of serves
  • Wash, cut, cook and store food in advance. Vegetables can be roasted on large trays, and grains such as rice and quinoa can be cooked and stored in the fridge to be added to meals throughout the week.
  • Plan and portion out healthy snacks. Cut up fruit at the start of the week and store in the fridge. This can be consumed with nuts for a perfectly balanced snack.
  • To ensure your meals last, store additional serves in air-tight containers in the freezer. It is worth investing in good quality airtight, food storage containers as this will guarantee your foods freshness.

3. Variety is key.

Whilst it is easy to prepare the same meals week after week, this can create a lack of variety and become monotonous and tasteless.

How To:

  • To avoid monotony, come up with three to four core recipes that can be rotated throughout the week. Some great core recipe ideas include vegetable casseroles, lentil curries and pasta bakes.
  • Adding vegetables that are in season ensures diversity.
  • The addition of herbs, spices and condiments are also a fantastic way to create interest and variety!

Meal preparation and planning is a fantastic way to stay organised and can be an important tool for those wanting to stay on top of their health goals in the New Year. With these simple tips, you’ll have plenty of healthy options ready to support you throughout the week.