The energy metabolism takes the nutrients you eat and turns them into energy. The process is a vital component in determining how well the body functions and disperses important nutrients and vitamins to where they need to go.

The family of B vitamins, otherwise known as B complex vitamins, are water-soluble vitamins involved in energy metabolism. They play a crucial role in how well the energy metabolism works because certain enzymes in the body can only work with the proper amount of B vitamins that are required for the formation of their cofactors. These specific enzymes help with energy expenditure as well as the building of macromolecules within the body.

What is the metabolism?

The metabolism is a set of uncountable reactions in the body that help convert food to energy, which is used to do everything from moving, thinking and breathing, to storing and getting rid of nutrients and toxins, to keeping organs functioning.

Increasing or decreasing metabolism can be a difficult process to accomplish. Many wish to increase their metabolism to aid in weight loss, but the reactions that go into metabolism are essential for so much more than a healthy weight.

 

MakeWell - woman
Image by Fuu J on Unsplash: Do B vitamins give you energy?

Do B vitamins increase metabolism?

Since B vitamins have a direct role in how the body metabolises carbohydrates, fats and proteins, it’s been said that having enough of these essential nutrients can help to speed up the process of metabolism. The truth, however, is that it’s unlikely that B vitamins can increase metabolism – rather, they can restore it to its properly functioning levels. When the body doesn’t have an adequate amount of B vitamins, the energy metabolism suffers and may even slow down.

Other factors that contribute to decreased metabolism function include:

  • Ageing
  • Genes
  • Hormone imbalances
  • Lack of sleep
  • Undereating or lack of adequate meals
  • Dehydration
  • Certain medications
  • Chronic stress or illness
  • High-fat diet

Getting enough B vitamins can help to restore a slowing metabolism, but there’s not much evidence to back up weight loss or an increased ability to metabolise foods beyond average healthy levels.

Types of B vitamins

Thiamine (B1)

Thiamine is used in the body to break down carbohydrates and sugar, create neurotransmitters and metabolise fatty acids. It also has a role in the synthetisation of certain hormones. Natural sources of vitamin B1 include pork, trout, wholegrains and black beans.

Riboflavin (B2)

Vitamin B2 plays a crucial role in the production of energy by helping the body break down fats. It also contributes to the conversion of other B vitamins including niacin and B6 and helps the body break down medications and steroid hormones. Vitamin B2 can be found in organ meats, fortified breakfast cereals, yogurt and milk, and mushrooms.

Niacin (B3)

The body uses niacin to create nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+), which is used in over 400 enzyme reactions. NAD+ plays a role in converting carbohydrates, proteins and fats into usable energy, helping cells to communicate, and DNA protection. It can be found in both animal and plant-based foods such fortified cereals and meat.

Pantothenic Acid (B5)

Pantothenic acid aids the body in the production of the coenzymes such as coenzyme A, which it needs for a host of different functions. It is transported via the bloodstream and used in several different energy metabolism processes. Natural sources of B5 include sunflower seeds, chicken, tuna and beef liver.

Pyridoxine (B6)

The body uses vitamin B6 to help break down carbohydrates and fats, as well as in brain development and immune function. Like B5, B6’s role is more broad, and it contributes to over 100 coenzyme reactions. Foods that act as good sources of Vitamin B6 include chickpeas, tuna, potatoes and salmon.

Biotin (B7)

Biotin plays a role in the citric acid cycle and is required as a coenzyme to help lipid and other macronutrient metabolism. It helps to synthesise fatty acids, amino acids and glucose in the body. It also helps to regulate DNA and break down fats and carbohydrates, and is needed in the extraction of biotin from protein-rich foods such as liver, salmon and eggs.

Folate and folic acid (B9)

Folate is the natural form of B9 and aids cell replication and the homocysteine metabolism. Folic acid is the synthetic form, which was developed to help people who cannot ingest enough of the vitamin through diet alone, as is often the case in those who are pregnant. It plays a direct role in cell division and is needed for both vitamin and amino acid metabolism. Vitamin B9 can be found in dark green leafy vegetables, beef liver, avocado and beans.

Cobalamin (B12)

Vitamin B12 is the only vitamin that contains a metal ion, specifically cobalt. It is used in the body to help catabolise fat and protein and to synthesise haemoglobin, which is found in red blood cells. Vitamin B12 has also been shown to help brain and neurological function. It is found naturally in high amounts in animal products such as fish, meat, poultry and dairy products.

 

Make Well - mushrooms
Image by Waldemar Brandt on Unsplash: Mushrooms are an excellent source of B vitamins, specifically B2.

Which B vitamin is the most important?

For the energy metabolism to operate at its best, it needs the entire complex of B vitamins. Instead of taking different supplements of B vitamins, many people opt for a B-complex that has the recommended amount of each one. Depending on your diet and lifestyle, however, you may be deficient in just one B vitamin, and that would be the most important one to supplement.

There is no one B vitamin that stands out from the rest, because they are all vital components of how the energy metabolism functions, and thus how healthy the body is as a whole.

Featured image by Yvens Banatte on Unsplash

Modern living tends to open the body up to many health threats. Lack of exercise can increase chronic health issues; a poor ‘fast-paced’ diet can lead to nutritional deficiencies; and the build-up of toxins through the air you breathe and other sources can make it hard to keep overall health on track.

A detox is a process many people go through to help cleanse and purify their bodies from the build-up of toxins. When the body begins to experience certain ailments, many people opt for a detox program to help rebalance the system and restore natural health. The liver’s main job is to perform detoxification, but there are some things a person can do to offer a little assistance when things get too hard to manage.

Does detoxing help the immune system function?

The immune system is the body’s first line of defence against pathogens and toxins. When a toxin enters the body, it’s up to the immune system to decide if it’s an immediate threat to one’s health. It sifts through the foreign substances and rids the body of those that could cause health problems. Sometimes, though, these toxins don’t pose immediate threats, and thus the immune system doesn’t attack them with an immune response as it would with a virus or bacteria.

This is where the liver comes in, clearing the less-threatening toxins out of the body. When the build-up becomes too much to deal with, however, health problems can arise and the immune system can weaken. When detoxification is done properly, it can lead to the restoration of immune function following a weakened state.

 

MakeWell - liver
Image by VSRao on Pixabay: The liver is the organ that naturally detoxifies the body, but sometimes it doesn’t work as well as it should.

 

How do detoxes boost your immune system?

Detoxification is said to have many health benefits, and improving the immune response is just one of them. Detoxing can aid in digestion, balance hormones, improve metabolism and restore the balance between antioxidants and free radicals.

Digestion improvements

Digestion is a vital component of how well an immune system functions. This is because it is needed to help absorb and deploy certain nutrients throughout the body. When the digestive process works properly, it sends the appropriate nutrients where they need to go to help aid in enzymatic reactions.

Digestion also has a direct role in how immune function works. For example, if there is an overgrowth of bacteria within the gut, the immune system may become confused and trigger an immune response against the gut’s own cells. When the immune system is responding to healthy cells it causes health problems like auto-reactions.

Improves metabolism

Like digestion, metabolism is another crucial part of overall health. The metabolic process takes food and turns it into energy; the immune system relies heavily on this process because it needs a good amount of energy to fight against pathogens.

If the body’s metabolism is underperforming, the immune system won’t have the energy it needs to fight off infections or other pathogens. This weakening of the system can be restored by detoxing to improve metabolism.

Balances hormones

The body’s hormones help to stimulate a variety of different processes such as fertility, growth and metabolic function. When hormone levels are in check, the body operates as it should. When they become imbalanced, many ailments can result, including depression, anxiety, cognitive decline and weight gain. Imbalanced hormones can also lead to weakened immune function.

Doing a detox can contribute to restoring levels to a healthy balance. During a detox, you avoid eating too many bad foods or ingesting any other ‘toxic’ substances; thus the body has time to re-regulate itself. When hormones are rebalanced, the immune system can then function as it should.

 

MakeWell - cognitive decline
Image by Christopher Ott on Unsplash: Imbalanced hormones can lead to mental illness and cognitive decline, but is there a way to restore them through detox?

Does glutathione help detox processes?

Glutathione is a tripeptide that helps balance antioxidants and free radicals to avoid oxidative stress. It is made up of three amino acids and can help to impose the detoxification process naturally. It is found in the body in high amounts, and has been proven crucial to the body’s ability to naturally rid itself of toxins.

Glutathione can become depleted when poor lifestyle, diet and other health factors are present. When that happens, it can be taken as a supplement, known as S-acetyl-glutathione, to help improve the overall detoxification process within the liver and boost immune function.

Though it is not meant to replace healthy living, a detox for immune system function can be a great step towards reaching optimal health when the body needs a little boost.

Featured image by Mariah Hewines on Unsplash

When the seasons change, what you eat should change, too. Depending on where you live, different climates will yield different vegetables, and eating in-season is an important part of getting the most nutrients for your buck, so to speak. The closer you are to where your produce was grown, the more nutrient-dense it will be when it finally makes it to your table.

With the onset of cold weather, immune function can suffer, particularly from things like exposure to the cold and lowered levels of vitamin D due to lack of sunlight. As winter approaches, it’s especially important to eat autumnal vegetables that boost immune function by delivering vitamins and nutrients that help your system gear up for cold days and time indoors.

Is the immune system weaker in winter?

Some studies have shown that the simple act of being out in the cold can influence the immune system’s ability to fight off infection. This, along with the fact that viruses tend to thrive when the air becomes dry and cold, creates a recipe for heightened risk of infection during the cold-weather months.

Other research on the subject has found that it isn’t only immune cells that are negatively affected during the cold-weather months. The immune defences in the nose, for example, were found to weaken during bouts of exposure to cold in a study done on mice.

What vegetables help boost your immune system?

Vegetables are perhaps the most important source of nutrients, fibre and vitamins. Every food group offers its own set of health benefits, but vegetables reign supreme when it comes to keeping your body in check. Some of the best vegetables to eat when you want to help boost your immune function include citrus fruits, bell peppers, garlic, ginger and spinach.

But what if these vegetables aren’t harvested in the fall where you live? Eating seasonally doesn’t mean skipping out on nutrient-rich foods that can keep colds at bay throughout the winter. There are many fall vegetables that can give you the boost you need.

Pumpkin

Pumpkins are synonymous with autumn, especially during certain holidays that utilise the vegetable for foods and decoration. But did you know that it is also a huge immune booster?

Pumpkin is full of beta-carotene, the pigment that gives it its beautiful orange colour. When ingested, beta-carotene is transformed by the body into vitamin A. This micronutrient plays a vital role in the immune system because of its direct effect on the cellular response. It helps to regulate the immune response, reduce inflammation that could lower the immune system, and provide therapeutic assistance when fighting off infection.

 

MakeWell - pumpkin
Image by Aaron Burden on Unsplash: Pumpkin is a great immune booster to eat during the fall.

Squash

Whether you like butternut or acorn, the type of squash doesn’t matter much as long as you’re eating enough. Butternut squash in particular is full of carotenoids, a known immune booster, and also contains high amounts of vitamin C. Vitamin C helps to boost immune function by encouraging the production of the white blood cells that protect against infection. Acorn squash is also nutrient-dense and offers up for example vitamins C and B6.

Carrots

Carrots are another food that gets the bright hue from beta-carotene, which again turns into vitamin A upon ingestion to help the immune system greatly during the cold weather months. Carrots also contain high levels of other vitamins and nutrients that play a direct role in how the body recognises pathogens and what type of immune response is needed to fight them off.

Sweet potatoes

Another beta-carotene superstar is the sweet potato. The activating power of beta-carotene has the ability to increase T-cell production, which heightens immune response. Sweet potatoes also contain vitamin C for an added boost, which in turn leads to better absorption of iron. Since iron is a vital component of non-specific immunity, ensuring that your body is absorbing all you need is crucial to staying healthy this winter.

Kale

Kale is one of those fall foods that can be grown and harvested mostly year round; however, the taste is much sweeter in the fall. Kale is a great immune booster because of high levels of vitamins, like C and K.

 

MakeWell - kale
Image by Marisa Morton on Unsplash: Which vegetables improve immunity in the winter months? Kale is one of them!

Fall vegetable recipes

Knowing what to cook for the fall to keep your immune system up to par is a great way to stay healthy as the weather cools down. For those who like to keep things on the easier side when it comes to preparing foods, roasting can be a great way to incorporate fall vegetables into your diet.

Chop up squash, carrots and sweet potatoes, toss in olive oil, salt and pepper, and roast at 220 degrees Celsius for 30–45 minutes depending on the size. When the vegetables can be easily pierced with a fork, they are good to go. For a sweet touch, adding a tablespoon or two of maple syrup while tossing will give them a beautifully sweet glazed flavour.

Kale can be sauteed with lemon and garlic for a no-effort side dish. All you need to do is pull the leaves from the stems and chop them up to a size of your liking. Begin by heating olive oil, garlic and red pepper flakes on medium heat until fragrant, then toss in kale and lemon juice and cover, cook, and stir occasionally for about five minutes.

The great thing about autumnal vegetables is that they can be incorporated into meals effortlessly, and that level of ease is just one of the many plus sides of adding immune-boosters to your diet to keep illness at bay this winter.

Featured image by Viviana Rishe on Unsplash

MakeWell - health supplement

Candidiasis is a fungal infection caused by the overgrowth of yeast. The most commonly known cause for the infection is a yeast called Candida albicans. Yeasts are a common part of a natural and healthy microbial flora and can be found in the majority of the population, in external areas such as the skin, but also internally as a part of our microbiome.

When an infection does occur, it is because yeasts have become too prevalent, which can happen due to a disrupted microbiome. This can be caused by long-term antibiotic treatment, for example, but general lifestyle and nutrition factors also play key roles.

Candidiasis can usually be treated through the use of antifungal medications or creams that can be applied topically. There are also some natural remedies for Candida albicans that can aid recovery, including essential oils and apple cider vinegar.

When battling candidiasis, it is important to seek treatment through your medical health professional. The right medical treatment, nutritional regimen and support by supplementation of natural remedies such as MakeWell’s CDA Plus, can help in your ongoing care of the infection.

In the following article, we’ll introduce you to some of the key ingredients used in MakeWell’s CDA plus supplement and explain why it can be a great addition to your treatment regimen!

 

MakeWell - pomegranate
Image by Marta Matyszczyk on Unsplash: Pomegranate is a great fruit to eat for overall health, but the peel extract in particular has impressive medicinal properties.

Pomegranate peel extract standardised on punicalagin

The pomegranate can be generally found in Mediterranean cooking, and packs a punch when it comes to essential vitamins and minerals. The bright red seeds of the fruit are full of vitamins as well as folic acid. They are valued for antiviral and antioxidant properties, which makes them great for reducing the build-up of toxins within the body and helping to ward off viruses.

Pomegranate peel itself, however, is not of much use to most of us, which is why its benefits have been mostly kept in the dark. The Pomegranate Peel Extract used in CDA Plus is standardised on the compound punicalagin, a tanning agent. Punicalagin has been investigated for different health benefits, including antifungal properties in combination with conventional medication, amongst others.

Watercress extract

Watercress belongs to the Brassicaceae family, which also includes numerous other plants, such as cabbage. One of their beneficial ingredients is mustard oil glycosides, which research has found to help improve cholesterol levels and assist in the treatment of heart disease.

Historically, watercress extract has been used as an ancient remedy in the treatment of urinary tract infections, although this has not yet been scientifically proven. However, recent research has shown that watercress extract can exhibit antioxidative properties, which makes it a valuable addition to MakeWell’s CDA Plus.

MCT oils (Medium chain triglycerides)

Due to their ability to be absorbed through the small intestine with ease, their independence from bile acids and their shorter chain length, MCT oils are fatty acids have been shown to contribute to weight loss and be more easily digested. MCT oils have also been reported to have a positive effect on candida overgrowth and are frequently advised as a part of the so-called ‘candida diet’, in the form of native coconut oil where they naturally occur.

Galgant powder

Galgant powder is an edible spice that is part of the ginger family. It has been used in ancient Chinese medicine for centuries for its antioxidative and antimicrobial properties. The nutritional value of galgant powder comes mainly from its root. It is rich in polyphenols, which have been shown to benefit memory, lower cholesterol and protect against diabetes.

Although there isn’t significant research on the subject, studies have confirmed that the root is rich in antioxidants. Other ingredients in the galgant root have been shown to offer both antibacterial and carminative effects.

Olive leaf extract

Olive oil is widely used in cooking and an intrinsic part of the Mediterranean diet. In Europe, olive oil of high quality is widely available and many benefit from its nutritional values.

In the case of olive leaf extract, beneficial ingredients include oleuropein, which is often processed out when making olive oil. The ingredient has been found to offer antifungal effects and could be a supportive treatment of Candida albicans.  The raw material used in MakeWell’s CDA Plus is standardised on this important ingredient, offering great value to the end product, a premium health supplement.

 

MakeWell - olives
Image by Luismi Sanchez on Unsplash: Olives are used in a wide variety of delicious recipes, but the leaves of the olive plant bring the nutritional value needed to battle a fungal infection.

Lemon juice powder

Lemons and lemon juice are widely recognised as health powerhouses because of their high levels of vitamin C, soluble fibre and secondary plant compounds. When it is dried into a powder, the citrus fruit retains a lot of its medicinal properties and adds a nice citric note in MakeWell’s CDA Plus supplement.

Horseradish extract

Horseradish is another ingredient included in MakeWell’s nutritional supplement for candidiasis. It is rich in mustard oil glycosides and antifungal oils. The extract used in the supplement is of the highest quality to ensure that all medicinal properties are carried over.

Further plant-based ingredients

MakeWell’s CDA Plus supplement also contains further plant-based ingredients, such as:

  • Grapefruit
  • Garlic extract
  • Cinnamon and clove blossom powder
  • Turmeric extract
  • Oregano extract
  • Cayenne pepper

An outstanding branded ingredient included in the supplement is BioPerine®, which is extracted from black pepper. Piperines are thought to increase the bioavailability of certain minerals and vitamins by different mechanisms of action, all of which have not yet been discovered. This is the main reason piperines are commonly classified under the term ‘bioenhancer’. BioPerine® is a registered trademark of the Sabinsa Corporation, USA.

 

B-Vitamins

The family of B-vitamins is vital when it comes to maintaining an overall level of health. They are attributed to the healthy function of the brain, energy levels and cell metabolism. They have been added to MakeWell’s CDA Plus to help limit deficiencies and encourage optimal health levels.

CDA Plus is a brand-new and unique supplement, with a beneficial combination of different plant-based ingredients. Just like all MakeWell supplements, it is vegan, hypo-allergenic and produced with the highest standards regarding raw ingredients and quality controls.

Featured image by Amanda Jones on Unsplash

 

Further Reading and References:

Arsenault, Amanda B., et al. "Dietary supplementation with medium-chain triglycerides reduces candida gastrointestinal colonization in preterm infants." The Pediatric infectious disease journal 38.2 (2019): 164.

Bergsson, Gudmundur, et al. "In vitro killing of Candida albicans by fatty acids and monoglycerides." Antimicrobial agents and chemotherapy 45.11 (2001): 3209-3212.

da Silva, Rafaela Alves, et al. "Antifungal activity of Punicalagin–nystatin combinations against Candida albicans." Oral Diseases (2020).

Nasrollahi, zahra, and M. Abolhasannezhad. "Evaluation of the antifungal activity of olive leaf aqueous extracts against Candida albicans PTCC-5027." Current Medical Mycology 1.4 (2015): 37.

Ozen, Tevfik. "Investigation of antioxidant properties of Nasturtium officinale (watercress) leaf extracts." Acta Poloniae Pharmaceutica 66.2 (2009): 187-193.

Srividya, A. R., et al. "Antioxidant and antimicrobial activity of Alpinia officinarum." Indian journal of pharmaceutical sciences 72.1 (2010): 145.

MakeWell - nutrition diet

Candida albicans is a pathogenic yeast that is naturally occurring and generally doesn’t cause any problems within the body. When an overgrowth does occur, it can lead to infections of the urinary tract, mouth, genital area and skin. The symptoms of an overabundance of this type of fungal yeast can range in type, severity and duration, depending on where the infection is.

In the past, a specific diet was prescribed to people suffering from an overgrowth of the yeast, a condition called candidiasis. This ‘anti-candida diet’ was focused on the complete elimination of carbohydrates from the patient’s system over a course of several months. Nowadays, the diet has been found to be scientifically outdated in the treatment of candidiasis, at least in its strict form. However, nutrition can still play a big role in the course of healing from the infection.

How to cure candidiasis

There is no one-size-fits-all treatment for an overgrowth of candida because there are several different types of fungal yeast infections. Each course of therapy must be specific to the type and location of the infection.

Urinary yeast infection

In the case of a build-up of the candida in the urinary tract, symptoms such as burning while urinating, pelvic pain and blood in the urine could be present. These symptoms are treated via fluconazole, an antifungal medication.

Urinary yeast infections are usually brought on by:

  • The use of antibiotics that could disturb natural gut flora
  • Using a catheter
  • A weakened immune system

Genital yeast infection

The risk of a genital fungal infection is much higher for women and can be brought on by the use of antibiotics, pregnancy or pre-existing diseases.

These types of infections can usually be treated with over-the-counter antifungal medications and creams. If the overgrowth is serious, a prescription course of antifungal medication will need to be administered.

Oral yeast infection (thrush)

Candida albicans can be found in your mouth and generally doesn’t cause an infection. When it does, symptoms can include:

  • White spots that bleed when touched
  • Pain or burning in the mouth
  • Loss of taste
  • Dry mouth (cottonmouth)
  • Difficulty swallowing.

Treatment for oral thrush typically comes in the form of antifungal medications such as nystatin or clotrimazole, or fluconazole in more serious cases.

MakeWell - mouth
Image by Kassidy Sherburne on Unsplash: Oral thrush is just one type of the fungal infection caused by an overgrowth of candida. But can food cure candidiasis?

Can a yeast infection be cured through diet?

A good diet can help the body recover from many infections. When the immune system is given the nutrients it needs to function at its best, the body is more in balance and thus less likely to contract certain types of ailments. The same can be said for a specific type of candida diet; it operates on the same principle of fuelling with wholefoods that are freshly prepared to retain as much nutritional content as possible.

Certain things can also be added to a well-rounded diet to help battle recurring fungal infections. Increased consumption of probiotics can be achieved by adding supplements to the diet or by eating foods high in probiotics. Also, eating certain ingredients such as garlic has been shown to contribute to an overall antibiotic and antifungal effect.

Candida overgrowth and chronic illness

For those who suffer from chronic illnesses such as Lyme disease, heavy antibiotic courses may have been administered, which could throw off the balance of the body. In this case, ensuring that your body has a healthy level of gut flora is vital.

Diet is especially important in this instance, because it can play a huge role in how the body responds to new medications and the side effects that may come along with being on a regular treatment plan for a chronic condition.

Which foods to avoid in fungal infections

While there isn’t much evidence to support that diet alone can cure candidiasis, there is a specific way of eating that can lessen the risk of infection.

People who are more prone to the overgrowth of Candida albicans can limit certain foods in their diet, such as:

  • Gluten
  • Foods high in sugars (including natural sugars found in fruit)
  • Alcohol
  • Simple carbohydrates (in high amounts)

Many experts have now realised that diets high in yeast aren’t likely contributors to an overgrowth of Candida albicans, because nutritional yeast is not the same species, and because it is inactivated due to heat treatment or baking and cannot continue growing.

 

MakeWell - dairy
Image by Waldemar Brandt on Unsplash: How can you reduce your risk for candida albicans overgrowth? Avoid dairy products. 

The best course of candidiasis treatment

Speaking with your doctor about your infection will help you distinguish between any other type of illness that could be a contributing factor to your fungal overgrowth. Once a positive diagnosis is made, your doctor will suggest or prescribe an antifungal medication to help assist in recovery. During this time, eating a diet rich in vitamins and minerals and adding probiotics into the mix will ensure that when you are free and clear of the infection, the likelihood of it returning is lessened.

Make Well’s CDA Plus is a supplement that can contribute to control healthy levels of Candida albicans within the body. It is a good addition in conjunction with traditional treatment, a healthy diet, exercise and a lifestyle plan. For more information on Make Well’s CDA Plus or other supplements, don’t hesitate to contact us.

Featured image by Louis Hansel on Unsplash

MakeWell - candidiasis

The human body needs a variety of different things to thrive. In healthy amounts, the candida species do their part to keep the mouth, digestive tract and genital area healthy. But problems can arise when the growth of the fungus gets out of control. This condition is known as candidiasis.

Abnormal levels in many cases of naturally occurring yeast can be caused by a number of things. One of the most common causes of an overgrowth of Candida albicans is the use of antibiotics. When antibiotics enter the system, they do so to kill certain bacteria – both good ones and those that need to be eliminated. The elimination of good bacteria, especially in the gut, can contribute to an imbalanced microbiome and a lower production of important short chain fatty acids (SCFA). When antibiotics are taken frequently, these imbalances can be a convenient habitat for candida, as usually other bacterial species keep it in check.

Other factors that may be contributing factors in candidiasis include:

  • Eating too much sugar or too many refined carbohydrates
  • A poor or weakened immune function
  • Continuously elevated levels of stress
  • The overconsumption of alcohol

The first line of treatment for an overgrowth of candidiasis is antifungal medication in the form of oral pills, creams or ointments, depending on where in the body the infection is. Natural remedies such as supplements can complete the treatment regimen, after consultation with your doctor.

What is the effect of candidiasis?

There are several different locations that can be impacted by the rampant overgrowth of candida. Each location can present with different symptoms depending on where it is occurring and the severity.

Candidiasis has the ability to affect several parts of the body, including:

  • Genitals
  • Mouth (oral thrush)
  • Skin
  • Urinary tract

The most severe type, invasive candidiasis, can lead to serious illness that sometimes even can affect the heart, brain, bones, joints or eyes.

Symptoms of candida overgrowth

In the typical types of infection caused by an overgrowth of Candida albicans, symptoms can range from mild to severe.

For example, in a genital yeast infection, symptoms often tend to be more on the milder side and can include:

  • Irritation and itching
  • Burning and itching during intercourse or urination
  • Redness, soreness and rash
  • Inflammation or swelling

Other types of yeast infections include urinary and oral. In the urinary tract, it can present with symptoms such as:

  • Pain in the pelvic area
  • Burning sensation upon urination

Oral thrush occurs in the mouth and can lead to white sores, lesions and pain in the throat and mouth.

 

MakeWell - man and woman
Image by Vladimir Kudinov on Unsplash: Women are more likely to develop yeast infections, but men can still develop the overgrowth at any time. 

What are the different types of invasive candidiasis?

Invasive candidiasis symptoms are different to those of other types of yeast infections, because it is a more serious condition that often requires more extensive medical intervention. The condition occurs when candida enters other areas of the body.

The infection is most commonly referred to as candidemia, because of its location within the bloodstream. By entering the bloodstream, it can access other parts within the body including vital organs such as the heart, eyes, brain, joints and bones. Serious symptoms can occur following the onset of the illness, and in some cases can require intensive medical care.

What are the symptoms of invasive candidiasis?

When it comes to this more serious form of candida overgrowth, the symptoms can present themselves as other types of ailments, such as the flu or a headache.

The most common symptoms of candidemia include:

  • Fever
  • Chills
  • Skin rash
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle aches
  • Abdominal pain

What is chronic candidiasis?

Chronic candidiasis symptoms are like those of typical yeast infections in the genitals, urinary tract, mouth or skin, but they differ in frequency and length. When a person continuously has a yeast infection or can’t rid themselves of one, it’s likely due to having a chronic case of candida overgrowth.

The condition could also lead to infections in other areas of the body, including:

  • Skin and nails
  • Oesophagus
  • Eyelids
  • Digestive tract

The treatment for chronic candidiasis is the same as other, milder forms of the infection and includes antifungal medications, usually by way of topical application. Some cases do require oral treatment, over the course of a longer period of time than suggested for non-chronic cases.  Some patients may require IV treatments.

 

MakeWell - IV treatment
Image by Insung Yoon on Unsplash: The most serious form of chronic candidiasis may require treatment via intravenous immune globulin.

 

Having a candida infection does not necessarily lead to serious repercussions, but that is only the case if it does not enter the bloodstream. Symptoms should be monitored in conjunction with the aforementioned symptoms of invasive candida to ensure that treatment is undertaken quickly to avoid any grave consequences.

For many people, infection can be avoided by eating a diet rich in wholefoods, vitamins and minerals; exercising regularly; and avoiding foods that could lead to an overgrowth of candida bacteria. Supplementation is also available; Make Well’s new CDA Plus, for example, can be a useful addition to traditional treatments in the battle against mild forms of candidiasis in the intestinal tract.

Featured image by Lazyartistgallery on Unsplash

MakeWell - NAD+ Fatigue Resist capsule

Energy levels are important to maintain equilibrium in your life. When you suffer from chronic fatigue, the processes in your body become imbalanced. Luckily there are many natural ways to boost your energy levels. Eating a balanced and varied diet, exercising regularly, and getting adequate sleep are all methods that can be used to improve chronic fatigue symptoms.

But sometimes those approaches aren’t enough, and supplements that boost energy levels may be necessary to help decrease your overall fatigue and get back to being ready to take on whatever the day throws at you.

What is a nutritional supplement for energy metabolism?

Your energy metabolism is a process that helps encourage optimal energy levels. It is a key component of your total level of energy throughout the day, and when it is out of order, it can lead to chronic tiredness.

Everybody goes through periods where they may need a little boost to keep this bodily system running smoothly. If you’re looking for natural treatments for low energy levels, MakeWell’s NAD + supplement can act as a helping hand.

What is MakeWell’s NAD + Fatigue Resist?

The newly launched supplement “NAD + Fatigue Resist” is a mixture of more than 20 high-quality ingredients designed to combat the symptoms that come with chronic fatigue and lack of energy by supporting energy metabolism, healthy ageing, and general health.

Vitamin C

The water-soluble vitamin is most commonly attributed to the health of the immune system, but it can also be a great helping hand in reducing tiredness and fatigue, for example by helping amino acids provide fuel to muscles, thus relieving fatigue.

 

MakeWell - citrus Vitamin C
Image by Freestocks on Unsplash: Vitamin C has been hailed an immune booster, but it can also help boost energy levels.

N-acetyl cysteine (NAC)

This ingredient hails from L-cysteine, an amino acid that aids, amongst others, in the synthesisation of proteins. It is more commonly used to treat ailments such as coughs and respiratory illnesses, but has been shown to help improve energy levels by being a vital component in combating oxidative stress within the body.

Nicotinamide Adenine Dinucleotide (NAD+)

This coenzyme helps with cell repair as well as the protection of DNA and energy production. As people age, their natural levels of NAD+ decrease, and it has been found that this could impact  neurodegenerative diseases, chronic fatigue and exhaustion.

This type of supplement has been available for some time now, but the NAD+ in MakeWell’s supplement contains the whole molecule, which bridges the gap when it comes to limitations on the availability of building blocks and enzymatic capacity.

Veri-teTM Resveratrol

Resveratrol is a phytoalexin, a plant-based compound that helps protect against harmful UV light and oxidative stress. It has been used in the past to help fight against signs of ageing and other chronic diseases and is also well known from the cosmetic industry.

Alpha lipoic acid

This powerful antioxidant is both water- and fat-soluble. It can also cross the blood-brain barrier, which gives it the power to help fight against oxidative stress within brain cells. It has the ability to work with bioenergetic mitochondrial enzymes to decrease inflammation throughout the body.

5 hydroxy L tryptophan (5-HTP)

This ingredient is a derivative form of an amino acid that’s generally found in black beans. It is most often attributed to having an important role in producing serotonin. Chronic fatigue can often be a symptom of a mental health condition, and the addition of 5-HTP can help balance out low levels of serotonin that could cause or worsen mental illnesses and mitochondrial dysfunction.

Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM)

This organic compound contains sulphur, an important building block for tissues and proteins. It has been shown to help heal and repair the body, and can act as an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory.

Betain and Glycine

Betain is a methyl donor, a vital organic compound that plays a role in the methylation process. Methylation plays a huge role in overall health, and is directly related to energy levels. Deficiencies in this compound have been shown to potentially play a role in chronic fatigue. Glycine works with betain to help counteract depletion of the compound.

L-glutamine

Chronic fatigue can be attributed to a wide variety of different conditions. One of those conditions, leaky gut syndrome, occurs when there is a disruption in the gut barrier, allowing toxins to get into the bloodstream.

The amino acid L-glutamine is important for our guts integrity and contributes to overall gut health. Since the gut is so important in all processes of the body, this can help lessen symptoms of chronic fatigue caused by inflammation.

Magnesium

Magnesium is a mineral that is known to help with muscle contraction and cramps. It also has a direct positive effect on acid base metabolism and enzyme processes. Having lower levels of magnesium can lead to chronic fatigue because of its effect on energy metabolism.

B vitamins

B vitamins are involved in a plethora of different functions within the body. They assist with brain health, cell metabolism and energy levels.

Each B vitamin has its own special job. For example, vitamin B2 is involved in the breakdown of carbohydrates into energy, and B12 helps to maintain a healthy nervous system and folic acid metabolism.

 

MakeWell - fatigue
Image by Dogukan Sahin on Unsplash: Chronic fatigue can be debilitating, but naturally boosting energy levels can be as easy as a few lifestyle changes and adding in MakeWell’s NAD + Fatigue Resist supplement.

Vitamins A and D3

These fat-soluble vitamins are crucial for both sight and immune function. Vitamin A is used to help regulate carbohydrates, proteins and lipids, while vitamin D3 is involved in numerous processes such as bone health, immune defence and many others.

Trace elements: manganese, selenium, chromium, molybdenum, boron

Metals and earth compounds are needed within the body, but only in limited amounts. They help metabolism function by helping different enzymes and metabolic pathways run properly.

Further Literature:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6513299/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4449691/

https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PII0140-6736(91)91371-Z/fulltext

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4369670/

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/19112401/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6030047/

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2468867319300318

https://www.bmj.com/content/350/bmj.h1771/rr-15

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29185388/

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/8958163/

MakeWell - naturally boost energy levels

Energy metabolism is the process the body uses to turn nutrients into the energy you need to get through the day. When you suffer from low energy levels, it can put a real damper on your day-to-day quality of life.

For optimal function, the body must be fed all the right energy-giving nutrients: vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, fats and proteins. Things such as lack of exercise, poor diet choices and chronic illnesses can all affect the natural function of energy metabolism by negatively altering oxygen levels.

If you’re wondering ‘How can I boost my energy levels?’, you’ve come to the right place. So, what are some simple ways to boost your energy levels?

What is a good natural energy boost?

While there is no one way to naturally boost your energy, a combination of things can be a great help in the battle against chronic fatigue and extended periods of low energy. The following seven lifestyle tips can be achieved simply and work together towards a more energetic you.

1. Get the proper amount and quality of sleep

Sleep is a make-or-break part of everyone’s lifestyle. It doesn’t just come down to how many hours you get a night, but also how well you slept and the health of your circadian cycle overall.

It’s been proven that blue light emittance from cell phones and other devices can negatively impact the quality of your sleep, because it has the ability to block the natural production of melatonin, the hormone responsible for the quality of your rest.

 

Avoiding device use for at least two hours prior to bedtime can dramatically improve your sleep cycle. Another way to get a better sleep is to stop eating three hours before you plan on going to bed.

 

MakeWell - sleep cycle
Image by Ashley Byrd on Unsplash: What are some simple ways to boost your energy levels? Good quality sleep is the first and foremost component of improving energy levels.

2. Stay hydrated

Water is the key to all life, and when it comes to the human body, that same fact rings true. The best way to stay hydrated enough to improve your energy levels is by starting first thing in the morning and drinking two to four litres of liquids throughout the day.

It’s not recommended to drink a lot of liquid right before bed, because it can lead to nocturia, the need to urinate throughout the night. When this happens, your sleep cycle (and energy levels) will be disrupted even further.

3. Move more

Exercise has many health benefits, including better respiratory and cardiovascular health and weight management. But it can also have a direct effect on energy metabolism.

When you exercise, it increases blood flow throughout the body. This blood flow then encourages the transport of oxygen. As oxygen is directly related to how well energy metabolism functions, exercising can be a great help in decreasing fatigue.

4. Make healthy food choices

What vitamin are you lacking if you’re tired all the time? Chances are, a lot of them. The cure for this is making healthier food choices and eating a balanced and varied diet. When you fuel your body with food high in vitamins and minerals, you’ll feel less tired overall.

Iron and Vitamin B12 are both critical to energy levels, so eating more meat such as beef, liver and chicken, or fish and other seafood, can help balance any deficiencies. You may also be lacking in vitamin D, magnesium or potassium if you find yourself unable to keep up with the day’s demands.

5. Be social

For some people, interacting with friends and family can be a boost of energy. They feed off social situations that leave them feeling more energised than before. If you’re feeling fatigued all the time, you could just need a night out with your favourite people.

6. Reduce stress

It’s no secret that stress is a silent killer. It can lead to many health complications, such as heart disease, high blood pressure and declining mental health. When a person is chronically stressed, the body can’t function optimally. This then leads to chronic fatigue, causing more stress – and the cycle continues.

Stress can also lead to insomnia, which will disrupt your ability to get the rest you need to battle low energy levels.

7. Avoid unhealthy habits

Smoking, drinking, and eating too much sugar can upset many processes in the body and lead to chronic or terminal illnesses such as cancer, cirrhosis or heart disease.

Limiting your intake or completely avoiding these unhealthy habits altogether can be a great help in restoring the proper balance within your body for a more restful night’s sleep and an overall boost in energy levels.

 

MakeWell - relaxing with friend
Image by Janko Ferlic on Unsplash: Destressing, no matter how you do it, will help combat chronic fatigue.

 

Not having the energy to get through the day can make even the simplest tasks seem arduous. Improving energy levels naturally can be achieved easily with a few minor changes to your lifestyle, and once you go from fatigued to energised, you’ll know just how important it is to keep utilising these easy-to-implement tips.

Featured image by Peter Conlan on Unsplash

Energy levels are important for those suffering from chronic illness. They can mean the difference between getting through the day and struggling to battle debilitating symptoms. For chronic illness sufferers, finding the energy to do even the most minute tasks can be difficult, but it doesn’t always have to be an uphill battle.

Ensuring that you have enough energy to deal with chronic illness might not always be doable in terms of diet and exercise alone; in a lot of cases, supplementation may be required for the body to function at its most optimal level. For those who do suffer from low energy caused by a chronic illness, a supplement containing NADH is a good addition to their daily routine. So what is NADH and what is its function?

 

What is NADH?

Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide plus hydrogen (NADH) is a naturally occurring chemical that plays an important role in different bodily functions, such as the creation of energy that occurs on a cellular level in our mitochondria. NADH and its redox pair, NAD+, have further been described to be involved in numerous other important processes and functions, such as having a possible effect on our immune system, on cellular repair and mitochondrial fitness. 

All of these processes play an important role in overall energy levels and well being throughout the day. For a person to have the energy to run for the bus or even make dinner after a long day at the office, these energy processes must be working simultaneously at their best levels.

 

What is NADH used for?

Every cell in the human body needs to use energy to get its specific job done. Considering there are over 100 trillion cells in the body, that’s a lot of energy expenditure needed just to keep things running smoothly. NADH is used by every single cell, and in the processes mentioned above, to help keep everything moving.

When production of NADH is inhibited, it can throw the entire system off as the body becomes exhausted on a truly cellular level.

 

MakeWell - energy
Image by Braden Collum on Unsplash: NADH is required to give the body a quick burst of energy when needed.

Symptoms of NADH deficiency

For those who suffer from a lack of NADH in their system, certain chronic ailments can arise, because without the proper energy in the cells, the cells will perish. Some studies have suggested that when the cells in the body are tired, it can lead to chronic issues such as fibromyalgia, the exacerbation of Lyme disease, and general feelings of fatigue.

It has also been said that NADH deficiency can play a huge role in lowered function of the immune system, cognitive decline, mental illnesses including depression and anxiety, and unstable moods. For those with chronic illnesses, a NADH deficiency can wreak havoc on the body’s systems because they are already functioning at a lower level. Since it can affect the way the immune system works (and many with chronic illnesses depend on proper immune function to deal with symptoms), NADH deficiency can lead to further exacerbation of symptoms and longer recovery times.

 

What is the difference between NAD+ and NADH?

There is some confusion regarding the difference between NADH and NAD+. While they are both critical in the production of energy, NADH typically has a high energy profile and contributes to shorter bursts of high energy, while NAD+ tends to create energy that can last for longer periods of time. NAD+ can also have positive effects on slowing the ageing process, DNA repair, cellular stress response, and lowering the risk of chronic disease.

Recent studies have shown that when giving people NAD precursors such as NMN (nicotinamide) and NR (nicotinamide riboside), the prevention of certain metabolic diseases was not far behind. More innovative supplements provide the NAD+ molecule as a whole. To put it simply, both NADH and NAD+ are required for energy production, but they can’t do the same job. The two need to work in conjunction at the optimal ratio for energy processes to work as they should.

 

Make Well - ageing
Image by Malin K. on Unsplash: Some studies have suggested that NAD+ can help slow the ageing process.

What is the best NAD supplement?

For those who suffer from an imbalance in their energy metabolism, NADH and/or NAD+, supplementation is available. Make Well offers a specific supplement that was designed to target energy levels with a specific combination of helpful ingredients, including NADH. Energy Plus is fructose-, lactose- and gluten-free and gives those suffering from chronic illness, including Lyme disease, a fighting chance at a cellular level. Let’s take a look at some of the ingredients of the Energy Plus supplement:

 

Live lactic acid bacteria

Low energy levels can have a number of different causes. An imbalance in our microbiome - the microbial community our gut gives host to - is once such cause. Our gut can influence our susceptibility to several problematic symptoms such as tiredness, mood swings, immune deficiencies, and many others. This is why supporting the gut flora with live lactic acid bacteria is a helpful addition to an energy support supplement.

Phosphatidylcholine and Phosphatidylserine

Both phosphatidylcholine and phosphatidylserine play important roles in our cellular health. They are part of our cell’s and mitochondrial membranes and contribute to their integrity. The phosphatidylcholine used in our supplement is vegan, soy based and of the highest purity available. 

L-Carnitine

L-Carnitine is known for its role as a fatty acid shuttle. Long chain fatty acids can be broken down in our mitochondria and put to use in energy production by a process called ß-oxidation. The transfer that occurs over the mitochondrial membrane is enabled by a so-called carnitine shuttle, whereby fatty acids are bound to carnitine and transported together.

Coenzyme Q10

Just like NADH and NAD+, coenzyme Q10 can exist in two chemical forms, namely ubiquinone and ubiquinol. The coenzyme Q10 is an electron carrier, meaning it contributes to the electron transport chain that works along the mitochondrial membrane in order to produce ATP - the source of our cellular energy.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is probably one of the most well-known vitamins associated with maintaining a healthy immune system. However, vitamin C, or ascorbic acid, has many more far reaching functions for our body. One of those is its ability to reduce feelings of tiredness and fatigue, making it a great addition to our Energy plus supplement.

 

Featured image by Stacey Gabrielle Koenitz Rozells on Unsplash

MakeWell - preventive medicine

More often than not, medicine falls on the treatment side of things. This means that many people deal with illnesses once their bodies and lives have already been affected. This type of healthcare can have a negative impact on communities, because it doesn’t address health until it’s too late.

Preventive medicine, on the other hand, operates under the technique of avoiding health issues before they start. It’s an approach that targets healthy living over treatment; the prevention of diseases as opposed to finding cures and new ways to cope with symptoms; and the avoidance of ill health altogether.

How does preventive medicine work?

Preventive medicine is a medical specialty designed to act as a prophylaxis. Instead of waiting for people to fall ill and be treated, medical professionals are now actively pushing towards wellbeing approaches. The professionals behind preventive medicine have a range of specialties and use their knowledge in those areas to work toward the common goal of a healthy community.

There are five types of preventive healthcare. They include:

Primal

This type of prevention occurs in vitro and is focused on epigenetic healthcare practices by improving the health of the parent, thus improving the health of the child.

Primordial

Prior to the development of disease, certain steps can be taken to avoid bad habits such as poor diet, lack of exercise, and unsafe sex practices.

Primary

By targeting pre-existing condition factors such as genetic disposition or obesity, primary preventive medicine targets areas where a disease could develop if a person remains on the same health path.

Secondary

For existing diseases that go into remission or become asymptomatic, secondary preventive medicine uses screenings to determine whether or not a disease or worsening of a pre-existing condition could develop.

Tertiary

In those who do suffer irreversible and chronic conditions, tertiary prevention is practiced. This is done by reducing the progression of the disease and managing symptoms.

 

MakeWell - nutrition
Image by Brooke Lark on Unsplash: Widespread nutrition programs could help keep communities healthier for longer.

Is preventive medicine effective?

Due to the increasing age of the UK population, it has been found that many people have a higher life expectancy. This can be chalked up to better healthcare technology, but the system is generally still only treating people only after they fall ill. The efficacy of preventive healthcare has been found to reduce both overall deaths as well as debilitating disabilities across the region.

This is due in large part to the ability to keep people healthy for longer periods of time, thus reducing the risk of premature death and chronic illness.  The economic impact, however, doesn’t change much, and the cost of preventive healthcare is on par with the cost of the current reactive system.

Are chronic illnesses fuelled by reactive medicine?

Reactive medicine has been designed to treat the person only after they’ve developed the disease, and many chronic illnesses could be avoided if better health systems were in place. Things such as smoking, obesity, or lack of knowledge about the prevention of certain chronic illnesses can all lead to grave repercussions on a person’s health.

There are many ailments and illnesses that could be prevented in many cases with a healthier lifestyle. Some examples of lifestyle diseases include:

  • Heart disease
  • Stroke
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Hypertension
  • Cancer (lung, colon)
  • Cirrhosis
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease

In a new era where preventive medicine reigns supreme, many of these health issues could be circumvented.

How can preventive medicine help those who suffer from Lyme disease?

When the community is well-equipped with both the knowledge and the tools to prevent chronic conditions, people are much more likely to avoid contracting illnesses that could have otherwise been avoided.

However, knowledge of certain things such as Lyme disease safety practices may not be available to everyone. Also, the dangers that lie in the transmission of Lyme disease may not be as well-known as other diseases, making vital prevention seem much less serious. But if more people are made aware of safety practices in areas where tick populations are high, this could lead to a significant drop in cases.

 

MakeWell - pandemic
Image by Mauro Mora on Unsplash: The COVID-19 pandemic has turned the attention of world leaders towards preventive medicine.

The future of preventive medicine

Community medicine has been at the epicentre of the media lately due to the coronavirus outbreak. Being a community-transferable virus, it’s no surprise that preventive medicine has been brought to the forefront. In terms of communities and transmission, world leaders have been looking toward preventive medicine as a way to limit the devastation the pandemic could cause. If more people are living healthily, it’s more likely illness would be better coped with.

Things such as widespread nutrition programs are being developed to give people a fighting chance at fuelling their body with things that can help them ward off disease. There is also the case of social medicine, a field dedicated to the understanding how health can be directly related to both social and economic conditions. A healthier society is one that everyone can benefit from, and preventive healthcare can help create that new level of wellbeing.

Featured image by Dan Gold on Unsplash