The Attack of Protein shakes…. Shift to Hemp Protein (+Our Choice: Nutiva)

About Author Marko Visic, M.Pharm.(Master’s in Pharmacy) is a professional pharmacist with years of experience, and is very passionate about truly natural and healthy products.


Everybody likes to look fit and healthy. Especially when meeting somebody new, preparing to fit into a wedding dress or when we just need a little pick me up look in the mirror. The problem is that at times we don’t look the way we want. At these times we want to look great now, tomorrow for example would be perfect too, but getting from now to great takes time Going to the gym and doing cardio will only let us progress so much. That’s why most people seek shortcuts using protein shakes. The good thing is that it actually helps but only if you know which shakes are the best and healthiest.


 

Protein is usually job one for people looking to get in shape with the majority of people actually doing this prior to signing up for a gym. It is true that an after workout shake is a good idea because our bodies need necessary protein and sugars to refuel. However, most of protein powders you see when entering a nutrition shop are not the best sources of protein. You can easily identify the products as they are in the packaging with a ‘XXX’ or ‘Super’ along with a guy looking like the Terminator. A thing to remember here is that Terminator is all metal and for normal human beings industrially synthesized proteins might present a health hazard; fortunately there is an alternative.

The problem is in synthesizing industrially-made proteins. Among the regular disadvantages of large scale manufacturing proteins are particularly hard to synthesize. To make it work hazardous solvents such as hexane are used during the process. Potassium cyanide for example is used to synthesize the amino acids. Certainly, the manufacturers claim that all industrially-made proteins are clear of all these things, but personally I would refrain from buying protein powder that employs reagents such as KCN which was used by Nazis to poison themselves in the event of being captured! Sure ‘no pain no gain’ is a fitness motto but consuming proteins of questionable quality is a bit much.

Due to the nature of the supplements market the majority of the over the counter products have no certifications or long term testing. Have you ever noticed they always have “these messages and claims have not been certified by “Name Your Agency”? With protein powders we have little credible information from producers. Unlike immediate reactions to using the wrong face lotion you don’t see any signs of using the wrong protein powder right away.

To make a change and start with healthy bulk or healthy weight loss one of the best solutions is substituting synthesized proteins for organic proteins. Hemp proteins, for example, are created out of high-quality plant proteins containing much sought after branched-chain amino acids (BCAA). The procedure uses only mild solvents such as clear water to gently produce proteins at low temperature. No hexane or worries of body inflammation due to synthetic proteins. Good news is that organic hemp proteins work just as well, if not better, than synthesized protein powders. Nutiva’s organic hemp protein even contains 2 g of good-for-you essential fatty acids per serving making it one of the best organic hemp proteins on the market. Healthy fatty acids additionally lift your metabolism and help to prevent cardiovascular diseases.

The Healthy Eating Game (+Our Choice: Clifbar)

Doesn’t it seem that healthy eating becomes more difficult everyday? Things that used to be as simple as choosing a snack with no added sugar has now become a game of interpreting names of ingredients and comparing nutrition labels.

At Go-Nayked.com we work tirelessly to identify the healthy living products that are truly healthy living. As a free resource to you, our writers and editors search out, test, and report back on true healthy living items. We play the games that you don’t have the time to play and give you the products and companies that are making a positive difference in your daily life and the world we all live in.


 

One of the biggest shell games being played right now is in regard to high fructose corn syrup. The ingredient has been linked with a host of health and environmental issues but is a staple of most processed foods and snacks. With growing awareness of the dangers of the ingredient consumers and government agencies alike have called for it’s removal from food products. In response the processed food industry had several options available:

1. remove high fructose sugars from foods (requires a natural healthier substitute)
2. fight the criticisms with good science supporting the ingredient (there is no supporting science)
3. changing the name of the ingredient (way easier). Of course they have decided to change the name. High fructose is now just “fructose”.

Like you we are tired of the games and at Go-Nayked.com we have identified several products that do not use high fructose, fructose or other fillers in their foods. Today we are going to give you one great snack option that is marketed towards kids but is just as good for adults too. It comes from a US based company that consistently donates and supports a number of great causes along with their commitment to sustainability.

 

Clifbar Company started out when a husband and wife decided to make honest healthy snacks for their family. The snack bars are the perfect size for a morning or afternoon treat and easily fit in the pocket of your favorite cycling or running clothes. We have sampled every flavor and would be hard pressed to pick a favorite.

(Their original energy bar is now accompanied by a host of other treats. Made with only organic ingredients, it is listed as USDA Organic, the bars come in a number of flavor choices including Chocolate Brownie, Chocolate Chip, Honey Graham, Iced Lemon Cookie, Iced Oatmeal Cookie, and S’mores.)

With a great mix of carbs, proteins, and vitamins the ClifBar is the perfect snack food that skips the corporate “guess the ingredient” game and provides you with an organic taste of what you want. Available online, through our store, or in your favorite big box stores ClifBar is our recommendation for a great snack. To see which Cliff Bar Products make our cut, check out the GO-NAYKED Marketplace

 


Healthy eating does not have to be difficult and should not require playing constant games. If you are going to buy a snack food why not buy a snack food that is made with healthy ingredients by a company dedicated to helping the planet? We are making it easy for you to find healthy living products from great companies, bookmark Go-Nayked.com and subscribe to our newsletter for more great tips on healthy eating and healthy living.

Does Your Breakfast Cereal Contain BHA and BHT?

Weekday mornings are hectic! Amidst the chaos that ensues, breakfast is the most neglected. Forget breakfasting like a king, we barely manage to grab a bite! In the scant moments that can be spared, enjoying a hearty breakfast is impossible. Thankfully, there are breakfast cereals and an assortment of snacks that keep us going. They are convenient and are fresh in their boxes and bags. But they also contain BHA and BHT – suspected human carcinogens. Would you rather choose convenience over toxicity? That’s a tough one! Go-Nayked.com helps you decide.


 

What is BHA?

Butylated hydroxyanisole is a preservative that keeps oils in food from oxidizing and becoming rancid. Oxidation alters the color, odor, and flavor of food. It also reduces the nutrient content of food. BHA is found in breakfast cereals, meats, butter, chewing gum, dehydrated potatoes, and other snacks. Disturbingly, they are also found in cosmetics, petroleum products, animal feed, and food packaging!

How safe is BHA?

As BHA is almost indispensible in our processed foods as an additive, it is prudent to be concerned about its effects on our health. It is considered “generally recognized to be safe” or GRAS, by The Food and Drug Administration. It has been approved for use in various foods up to 0.02 percent of the oil or fat content of the food. For dry food like cereals, the FDA has set different limits. Take a look at this link – FDA Limits

Laboratory studies on rats and other animals have shown BHA to be carcinogenic (cancer-causing). The National Toxicology Program surmises that this preservative could be ‘reasonably anticipated’ to be a human carcinogen. In Europe too, BHA is an approved food additive but is categorized as a potential endocrine disruptor. Studies have reported adverse effect on sperm quality, lowering of testosterone and thyroxin levels, and decreased growth in rats.

What is BHT?

Butylated hydoxytoluene is also of the same family as BHA. It is added to food as a preservative, very often with BHA. Though there is no conclusive evidence suggesting it as a carcinogen, studies show that rats that were fed with BHT had developed lung and liver tumors. There were developmental and thyroid changes observed in these animals. The motor skills and coordination of these rats was also affected. On comparison, BHT seems the lesser evil. It bears the GRAS label too!

Know Your Facts

Additives that are ‘presumed’ safe by the government are classified as GRAS and don’t need to go through the pre-market review and subsequent approval. This could be perfectly understandable for harmless, natural additives like thyme or pepper, but to enlist additives with debatable safety like BHT and BHA as GRAS is unsettling to say the least. It is possible for manufacturers to obtain a GRAS status even without informing the FDA at all! It is entirely up to the consumer to check the facts.

  • Check the product label for BHA and avoid it. A wide range of foods contain this additive, including preserved meat, snacks, and chips.
  • Avoid products with BHT, especially if the product also contains BHA.
  • Use the EWG’s Food Scores to find foods that don’t contain either additive.
  • Try to eat fresh food or the food that has been minimally processed. Usually, they are more nutritious!
  • Look out for packaged foods that use vitamin E as preservative or better still, use no preservative at all.
  • Read these articles for more information about BHA, BHT, and other commonly used additives.

Add years to healthy living by subtracting additives from your food! Visit the Go-Nayked.com Marketplace to find breakfast cereals and treats that are good for you and free of toxins.

Snack Food Without the Guilt

As an avid outdoors-man I am always on the lookout for great tasting and easy to store snacks. I have already covered Clifbar brand foods and their great taste and flavor but like anything, too much of one thing breeds boredom. We were testing a few natural food products and I fell in love with this Almond bar from Sage Valley.


 

The problem with most snack foods is that they are made with processed ingredients and fillers to hold them together and keep their freshness. When researching and testing products for Go-Nayked.com we actually take in to consideration these filler ingredients because, amazingly, they have the biggest impact on your overall health. For example a friend was drinking one of those sugary soda drinks advertised in between and during X-Games competitions. This company advertises to extreme sports fanatics with catchy commercials showing people doing all these amazing things… implying that the drink is the reason for their “awesomeness”.

The problem with this drink are the ingredients. Looking at the label the first on the list is water (carbonated) next and most shocking is High Fructose Corn Syrup followed by ingredients that would make Marko flip (he is our resident Pharmacist – read his recent post here). Basically Mt Dew is one of the worst products you can allow in to your body! The problem with other energy drinks and foods sold on standard store shelves is that they are not much better. For active healthy individuals what can you do? Go-Nayked.com and get some of these Sage Valley bars.

In a nutshell… get it… these are what you or I would make if we knew how and had the time. Almonds, toasted coconut chips, diced apricots, honey, whole grain crisp brown rice, and brown rice syrup all combined in to a tasty snack. The easy to access wrapper and small form factor make them perfect pocket stuffers to grab while on the go. With 190 calories the bars pack a punch with 12 grams of total fat and very low sodium content. The only caveat with the bar is that it has a bit of sugar from the honey and rice syrup totaling 17 grams with 11 of them from sugars… it would be a one meal snack for low carb dieters.

For a 2-3 hour biking or hiking outing these bars are a perfect second snack. They rotate well as the first bar 45 minutes in with the complex natural sugars giving your body a nice spike to keep you chugging along. You can then rotate in a good protein drink or bar 45 minutes later and a recovery snack of nuts and meat after the workout. We have been approving and adding a number of great protein choices to the marketplace recently and invite you to peruse the options available by clicking here.

For your next adventure trek grab some of these Sage Valley Almond Bars and hit the trails feeling good because you are eating well. Learn more about the Sage Valley Almond Bars by clicking here and ordering yourself a box of these tasty treats. Being an outdoorsy person does not require eating and drinking the junk marketed to you… take control of your diet.

Food Score Hack for Eating Healthy

About Author Marko Visic, M.Pharm.(Master’s in Pharmacy) is a professional pharmacist with years of experience, and is very passionate about truly natural and healthy products.


I wouldn’t have to write this article but I’m just too excited about this new food score hack tool that I’ve started to use on a daily basis. So first here’s the problem pretty much all healthy eaters have.

‘We eat healthy,’ is a statement that I hear a lot of times from young families. I always take it as granted that families with young kids will go above and beyond to place the healthiest food on their tables and I believe that that is always the general intention. However, the other day I was at neighbor’s house – they have two young kids, 3 year old and a 7 year old. Chatting away with mom who always tells me ‘we eat healthy’ she raised a concern about how to know what healthy really is. She tells me that she tries to buy everything that is healthy and has a healthy mind of doing so but in many cases she can’t tell the difference between which cereals are better for the kids.

I have to admit I sometimes have the same difficulty. My neighbor is a real estate agents and she doesn’t really know what kind of ratio of nutrition is good for her and the kids, what potassium bromate is used for and what does it mean when something contains nitrates. Even as a pharmacist it is hard to take into account everything that is on the label when buying cereals for example. If I’m being honest, I usually primarily look at nutrition – high protein content, low simple sugars content and the fibers are a major plus. I’m sure many of us want to choose a really healthy breakfast cereals but the knowledge of nutrition, ingredients and processing factors involved is just too much for us to handle while in the store. I have to make a shopping list not to forget anything, imagine then trying to figure out all the nutrition and the chemicals they give in each of the 20 cereals choices for breakfast.

The reason I’m writing this is because I’ve by accident stumbled on the best tool out there for knowing which food is really healthy. And best of all – you don’t have to be a nutritionist to use it.

It is called EWG’s Food Scores tool. The tool gives you 3 scores for a specific food – nutrition concern, ingredient concern and processing concern. This is how all the complex nutrition ratios and weird ingredient names on the label are simplified in just the food scores ranging from 1 (best score) to 10 (worst score). The tool has a large database of more than 80,000 products and it is growing fast.

From the 3 scores the tool creates a single master score. The number sums up which food is healthiest. So with this in mind we wanted to test the tool at our GO NAYKED Marketplace. The foods here are chosen specifically for their health benefit and have a balanced nutritional value. Just checking the marketplace I suddenly fell in love with Bear Naked – Fit Granola 100% Pure & Natural Vanilla Almond Crunch cereals. I knew the cereals I was currently eating are delicious and pretty healthy with a score 6 (1 is the best score out of 10 ). I used the tool to evaluate how healthy Bear Naked’s cereals were – the score was 3.

My jaw just dropped. It’s pretty much a confirmation of how valuable GO NAYKED is to deliver us only the healthiest and most nutritious foods out there. We’ll use this tool in the future here and save you the work – we will at your convenience give you the scoop of which foods are the best and you can share how they taste with us. If this Vanilla Almond Crunch tastes as delicious as it sounds I’ll definitely use it to make my breakfast even healthier.

What I really like about the tool is that it was developed by people who went to the store every day thinking they are buying healthy food but had serious concerns if it really was healthy or not. I recommend checking out EWG’s video about the tool. I can guarantee you will at least be tempted to use it after 5 minutes and check out how healthy the food you’re buying really is.


To see products Go-Nayked.com approves for your diet click here to visit our Marketplace.

Think Before You Gift – Natural Gift Idea for Christmas and the Holidays

This is the time of year when family and friends come together to exchange thoughtful gifts; it’s also the time of year when we’re all more likely to get sick.


 

Stress and over consumption of unhealthy foods are common causes of holiday illness, but the gifts you’ve been giving and receiving could also be a culprit. Some of the most common gifts that we give during the holidays can harm the ones we love, and most of us don’t even realize it! At GO-NAYKED.com, we’re doing our part to keep you informed, by revealing the hidden dangers in some of the most common gifts that are exchanged over the holidays.

Cancerous Cuisine

Gift baskets filled with processed meats and cheeses have always been one of my go-to gifts for the man in my life; the way to his heart is through his stomach after all. However, the World Health Organization recently classified processed meats as a group 1 carcinogen, meaning that they definitely cause cancer. Many processed cheeses also contain emulsifiers and dyes that promote tumour growth. This year don’t poison the man in your life with a basket of chemicals or bore him with another tie. Instead, surprise him with the Badger Deluxe Wet Shave Set; made from 100% natural products, this gift will keep him looking and feeling great.

Poisonous Perfume

On the surface, buying someone their favorite fragrance is a thoughtful gift that is always well received. However, most perfumes and colognes are a concoction of undisclosed chemicals that are known to trigger allergies and asthma. Many fragrances also contain an ingredient called diethyl phthalate (DEP); this toxin is used to make the scent linger and it is linked to early puberty in girls, reduced sperm count in men, reproductive defects in the developing male fetus, and obesity and insulin resistance in men. If you want to give your loved one a sweet scent that won’t harm them, try creating a gift basket with 100% Pure shower products; they smell delicious and are 100% non-toxic.

Toxic Tranquility

Holiday stress is bad for your health, and the gift of a spa day for your best friend, wife, or mother will help them start the year feeling revitalized and healthy. But, de-stressing with toxic chemicals is counter-productive and even dangerous. Fortunately, you can give the gift of a spa-day, without putting anyone at risk. If you’re a fan of water spas, stick to places that use natural enzymes and ions rather than chlorine, since absorption of chlorine through the skin is associated with certain types of cancers. You can also opt for a massage package instead of a facial to de-stress in a serene environment without being exposed to a cocktail of mysterious chemicals.

We live in a world where many of the chemicals that we encounter on a daily basis have the potential to harm our health, but we don’t want that to ruin your holidays. That’s why we’re providing the tools you need to think before you gift. You can give your loved ones the gift of health by shopping for natural, healthful products at our Marketplace. You can also help to spread the gift of health and support companies who make safe products by posting one of our Shareables  to your social media pages. From all of us at GO-NAYKED.com have a happy, healthy holiday!

Red Meat Danger – Nitrates and Nitrites

About Author Marko Visic, M.Pharm.(Master’s in Pharmacy) is a professional pharmacist with years of experience, and is very passionate about truly natural and healthy products.


 

For starters I have to confess I am a little bit of a health junkie. Running 10k in under 50 minutes is not a problem anymore and benching 150 pounds seems like a piece of cake. God, do I crave it though.


 

Having a workout routine is great but I’ve learned that results won’t show if I eat cake every day. This is why my fridge is always full of healthy foods such as broccoli, eggs, skim milk, chicken and yogurt. However, eating clean for a prolonged period of time makes you start to crave the cake even more. And I have one other craving – red meat. Salami, burgers, you name it, as long as it has beef in it I’ll eat it on my cheat day.

For example I eat salami every Sunday morning. Even before WHO declared red meat substantially dangerous to health I noticed that I can have the same salami in the fridge for 3 months (nobody touches my salami with the big note ‘MARKO CHEAT FOOD’). What is surprising is that after 3 months the taste, the smell and the color of the salami is exactly the same as it was on the day I bought it. That was the first alarm. I mean, I can’t even leave chicken for 3 days in the fridge without being paranoid I’ll get salmonella if I eat it undercooked.

With WHO starting to give official warnings about red meat I went into research. I knew what I’ll probably find – some kind of preservatives in the salami, but the real question was what kind? Well, it turns out that the delicious, my most precious, full of taste and exuberance salami contains two rather nasty chemicals that are used as food preservatives – nitrates and nitrites.

Putting nitrates in salami and other red meat as a preservative is a nasty chain that ends in cancer. Chemically nitrates (NO3-) are rather harmless on their own (in terms of health – otherwise nitrates are used to make gun powder and explosives) and are therefore added to red meat and it is all fair play. However, nitrates have a chemical tendency to decay into nitrites (NO2-) by losing one oxygen atom.

Now nitrites are a dangerous thing to put in your system. Why? They have a great affinity to proteins in human body. Every protein has a chemical functional group called ‘amine group’ to which nitrites readily bind. The result of this reaction is a formation of a completely new chemical called nitrosamine. This is the end of the chain – and unfortunately it ends at nitrosamines which are well known cancer-causing agents.

nitrates-nitrites

This chemical chain can happen in human digestion when nitrites are introduced to body’s proteins or in the very meat itself. Meat, as we all know, is full of protein that can react with nitrites to create cancerous nitrosamine. So, in short, when I leave my salami in the fridge for 3 months this is the process that is taking place and at the end I’m eating salami filled with cancer-causing agents. In 2010 WHO itself declared nitrates and nitrites are probably carcinogens so why I am still eating them?

One important thing to remember is that this chemical chain does not need access to oxygen to transpire. That means that cancer-causing nitrosamine is being created in the meat that is packaged. My advice is to always check when the salami or red meat was packaged and if it is a long time prior to you buying it (some salami can be in the fridge for even half a year), don’t buy it. This is how, eventually, we can influence producers to work on their food quality.

I, for one, will stop eating packaged red meat. If you, the reader, stop eating it there are already two of us. And if the trend continues producers will be forced to do something about it and in such a way we will both bring benefit not only to our bodies but will ensure the health of others with future advancements in food quality.


To see products Go-Nayked.com approves for your diet click here to visit our Marketplace.

Bromated Flour – Conditioning Bread with Carcinogens?

Have you ever paused to read the list of ingredients on the label of the bread you buy? Sounds superfluous, right? It has to be either whole wheat flour or enriched wheat flour. Or a healthy mix of wheat flour with oats, corn, or rye. Can it be anything else? As a matter of fact, yes! Look out for Bromated flour in the ingredients, Potassium Bromate, specifically. Go-Nayked.com tells you why it is better to have bread without bromated flour.


 

Let’s start from scratch. A loaf of bread which is a staple food across the world appears quite simple. In reality, however, this humble bread houses a staggering structure of molecules called Gluten that hold it together. But two gluten molecules bind to each other only when a bridge forms between them as a result of oxidation. Natural oxidation that happens with ‘aging’ of flour and exposure to oxygen is a time consuming process.

Enter Potassium Bromate. This chemical is a powerful oxidizing agent which chemically ages flour much faster than would the elements. Potassium Bromate improves the elasticity of the dough by making its network of molecular bridges strong. It results in the formation of those tiny, delicate-walled bubbles as the bread rises. Little do we realize that it does so, only for its safety standards to fall! The final product obtained is the soft, fluffy and abnormally white bread that we all love and relish.

So, what’s wrong with using Potassium Bromate? There is nothing wrong at all. If the temperature of the oven is high enough and the baking process itself is thorough, Potassium Bromate gets converted to Potassium Bromide which is a harmless byproduct, and all would be well. Bromate residues that are below 20ppb are considered safe. But this is the ideal case scenario. Very often, this harmful additive is found in much greater quantities in the final product. It is a matter of grave concern, for Potassium Bromate is a proven carcinogen.

Then, why do bakers use bromated flour at all? Fast lifestyles, need for quick food and a growing chain of fast-food joints have led to an unprecedented demand for bread and baked goods. Using Potassium Bromate dramatically reduces the ‘rising’ time. But experiments conducted on animals in laboratories have shown increased incidence of benign and malignant tumors in the thyroid and the lining of the abdomen. Countries like UK, Canada, Brazil and the EU have banned its usage as an additive in food.

King Arthur Flour, Bob’s Red Mill, Gold Medal, and other brands sold at Whole Foods are all flour without Bromate. In fact, Whole Food black lists the chemical as an unacceptable ingredient for food. Many big national bakeries have stopped using bromated flour for their baked goods five years ago. Best foods Inc., Pillsbury, and Pepperidge Farm are some of them. As more and more consumers become aware of the dangers that Bromated flour poses to our health, the demand for responsibly baked goods will increase…

Rest assured that Go-Nayked.com will certainly ‘rise’ to the occasion and sieve the marketplace to identify more such manufacturers of healthy and bromate-free flour and baked goods… Let’s raise a toast to healthy baking!


To see which products Go-Nayked.com approves see our Marketplace.