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Top 5 Health and Wellness Trends to Try in 2021

January 15, 2021 at 4:00 a.m.
  1. Focusing on Improving Metabolic Health to Improve Immune System Health

Research on COVID-19 and how it affects the body has shed light on the link between metabolic health and the immune system. We now know that your immune system cannot function properly if you're metabolically unhealthy -- which is why people living with diabetes and cardiovascular disease are at increased risk of developing serious complications from COVID-19.

Only 12% of Americans are metabolically healthy, which is defined as:

• Waist circumference less than 35 inches for women and less than 40 inches for men (ideal is a waist to hip ratio of 0.8 or less for women and 0.95 or less for men)

• Systolic blood pressure less than 120 mm/Hg and diastolic less than 80 mm/Hg

• Hemoglobin A1c less than 5.7%

• Fasting blood glucose less than 100 mg/dL (70 - 80 mg/dL is ideal)

• Triglycerides less than 150 mg/dL (less than 100 mg/dL is ideal)

• LDL Cholesterol less than 100 mg/dL

• HDL Cholesterol greater than 50 mg/dL for women and 40 mg/dL for men

• Triglyceride to HDL ratio of 1:1

• Alanine Aminotransferase (ALT) between 7 - 55 U/L (less than 25 U/L is ideal)

• Uric acid less than 6 mg/dL and less than 7 mg/dL for men

• High-sensitivity C-Reactive Protein (hs-CRP) less than 2 mg/dL (less than 1 mg/dL is ideal)

• Not requiring medications to control any of the above-listed biomarkers

Tending to your metabolic health is one of the most effective ways to protect yourself against infectious diseases such as COVID-19, influenza, pneumonia, bacteremia, wound infections, sepsis, and staph.

Seeking out metabolically healthy friends and adopting their lifestyle habits, as well as working with a metabolically healthy health care practitioner, are two surefire ways to improve your metabolic health. Being metabolically healthy is more of a result of a lifestyle than genetics.

  1. Using Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning to Understand Health Data

Wearable health tracking devices like Fitbit, Apple Watch, Whoop, Oura Ring, and Garmin watches have become increasingly complex and accurate since the early days when they merely tracked step count and heart rate. Now continuous measurements for biomarkers such as blood oxygen, breathing rate, heart rate variability, perfusion, skin temperature, and sleep phase are becoming more standard on consumer wearable devices.

A number of startups have cropped up over the past few months that now offer continuous blood glucometers for the non-diabetic population unable to get a prescription CGM such as the Freestyle Libre or Dexcom more commonly worn by people living with Type 1 diabetes.

Artificial intelligence and machine learning can analyze all this data to provide personalized lifestyle recommendations and insights into your body that can help you make better decisions every day.

For instance, small increases in your skin temperature, coupled with a decrease in blood oxygen levels and heart rate variability, can indicate you've been exposed to COVID-19 before you even start to feel sick.

In women, a decrease in breathing rate and blood perfusion combined with a slight increase in skin temperature and resting heart rate is an indicator of a six-day fertility window in which she can become pregnant.

There are also companies such as DayTwo that provide personalized food recommendations to normalize blood glucose based on microbiome data gathered from your stool sample and analyzed using machine learning.

  1. Beautiful Home Gym Equipment with Streaming Classes

Home gym equipment used to be unsightly and relegated to the garage or a spare bedroom, but with more people choosing to exercise at home instead of the gym, fitness brands are going above and beyond to deliver awesome equipment that you'll be proud to keep on display even when you're not using it.

Plus, the ability to stream a wide variety of live and recorded classes from world-class trainers keeps workouts fresh and increases a sense of community even if you aren't physically in the same room with others taking the same classes with you in real time.

In 2021, you'll also see a huge rise in brands offering decorative dumbbells, weight benches that double as furniture, beautiful fabric resistance bands, fashion statement ankle weights, and yoga mats made to perfectly match your outfit of the day.

  1. Mind-Body Medicine

Psychedelic-assisted therapy, meditation, breathwork, and acupuncture will continue to rise in popularity as a growing body of research makes it clear that these modalities can work just as well as (or better than) pharmaceutical and surgical interventions -- without an abundance of harmful side effects.

For instance, medically supervised psychedelic-assisted therapy and acupuncture are known to be effective at treating mental health conditions such as PTSD, depression, and addiction.

Acupuncture has also been found to help alleviate post-surgical pain, migraine headaches, and chronic low back pain, reduce the frequency of cardiac arrhythmias, increase the success rate of IVF procedures, and modulate immune system activity, among other things. The evidence is so strong for the usefulness of acupuncture for treating low back pain that Medicare now covers acupuncture for senior citizens with chronic low back pain that hasn't responded to other treatments.

Meditation and breathwork improve metabolic health because of the strong link between the mind, breath rate, and the inner workings of the cardiovascular system. There are a variety of mobile apps now available that assist you in performing a variety of breathing techniques that can help you feel more alert, feel more relaxed, combat anxiety, or improve your mood.

Ultimately, mind-body modalities such as acupuncture, meditation, and breathwork help you to tap into your body's own pharmacy instead of reaching for outside substances.

  1. Fasting Mimicking Diet

Practices such as intermittent fasting or time-restricted eating (only eating meals or snacks during certain hours of the day, such as between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m.) have gone mainstream over the past few years as research continues to mount that consuming foods and caloric beverages at all hours (especially in the late evenings and nighttime hours) significantly increases your risk of developing Type 2 diabetes and cancer.

However, the benefits of time-restricted eating are somewhat limited. It can reduce your risk of disease by improving metabolic health, but it's not going to induce the kind of cellular cleanup that reverses aging and lengthens life span.

The ProLon Fasting Mimicking Diet, on the other hand, is a five-day dietary program that holds the only patent for promoting longevity and health-span in humans.

A randomized controlled trial found that healthy adults who used Prolon for five days for three consecutive months (with no other change to their diet or lifestyle) lost body fat while maintaining lean muscle mass, lowered blood pressure, and decreased IGF-1 hormone, which has been implicated in aging and disease. They also lowered blood glucose, triglycerides, cholesterol, and C-reactive protein (a marker for inflammation).

To find out if you may be a good candidate for using the ProLon Fasting Mimicking Diet, send an inquiry to [email protected]


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