Healthy Eating Articles

Thess healthy eating articles are here to help you get on track with a balanced healthy eating plan, and showing you how to have fun while maintaining it.

Vitamin B12 Supplement Recommendations

Here are my recommendations for brands of vitamin B12 supplements, with links to order online. If you have one that you like, email me to let me know and I'll check if it's a good one.

    Super Coenzyme B Complex

  • Super Coenzyme B Complex This B complex supplement is my favorite because it has all of the B vitamins in the right ratio, and in their most easily-absorbed form (called coenzyme form).
    Click here for more info.
  • Ultra B12 Liquid

  • Ultra B12 Liquid This liquid supplement (which is really easy to take) has B12 is in the methylcobalamin form, paired with some of the other B vitamins. The most important one in here is folic acid, which shares deficiency symptoms with B12 so it can be hard to tell which one you're low in.
    Click here for more info.

How Much B12 Should You Take?

The US RDA minimum for Vitamin B12 is 2.4 mcg per day for adults, and 2.8 mcg for pregnant or nursing women. More recent studies put the ideal intake at 4-7 mcg per day. (Click for more info on optimum levels.)

The trouble is our bodies don't absorb all of the B12 we take, and there's kind of a cap on how much we absorb at one time. (Click for more info on how to calculate our body's absorption rate.

The ideal would be to take smaller doses throughout the day. Since B vitamins stimulate energy and the nervous system, it's better to take them in the morning and early afternoon so that you don't get wired before going to sleep.

A B Complex that includes 250 mcg of B12 as cyanocobalamin daily should be enough for you to absorb what you need to maintain healthy levels. (As per Dr. Michael Greger's latest recommendations.)

To correct a deficiency, take something in the range of 1000-2000mcg per day. Your body will flush any excess in your urine (you'll notice it being overly yellow) so there's no danger of overdosing.

When taking supplements to correct a deficiency, they should only be taken in higher doses for 4-6 weeks, then reevaluate to see if you've gotten back to balance and can move to a maintenance level.

Methylcobalamin is reported to be a more active form of B12 and more effective than cyanocobalamin for smokers and for certain conditions like chronic kidney failure. The methyl form of B12 is found in higher quality supplements, but you need a higher dose of it (1000-2000 mcg) to make sure enough is absorbed.

Immune Nutrient Supplement Recommendations

The main nutrients for supporting the immune system are vitamins A, C and E, selenium and zinc. Look for a supplement that includes some or all those nutrients.

Elderberry liquid: Elderberry is used as a medicinal herb to help boost immune function. This syrup has zinc and echinacea to give even more of a boost.

Now Immune Renew: This supplement blends astragulus (helps enhance natural immune response) and a high beta-glucan mix of fungi.

Garden of Life: This is a fantastic blend of immune-supportive nutrients + antioxidants + a powerful fungi blend.

Vegan Probiotic Supplement Recommendations

Here are my recommendations for brands of vegan probiotics supplements, with links to order online. If you have one that you like, email me to let me know and I'll check if it's a good one.

Probiotics are the good bacteria that live in your digestive tract, and they serve a lot of useful purposes. If their population gets too low they have trouble keeping their claim on your system, and bad forms of bacteria and yeasts take over.

Taking a probiotic regularly helps keep the good bacteria population up. Prebiotics (the food that those good bacteria eat) are important too.

You need to make sure that your probiotic supplement is made up of high quality and active forms of the right bacteria, and that they will survive through your system to make it to the colon (where most of them live).

Essential Probiotics

This product contains probiotic bacteria and yeast - and 19 organic aromatic herbs - to replenish the body with healthy microbes. The generic name for this is 'Effective Microorganisms'. It's used in gardening, too.

It used to be quite difficult to find, but Amazon actually carries it now. Read More.


Renew Life Ultimate Flora

If you prefer a capsule, Renew Life has these, with probiotic strains for maintenance. The more powerful ones below are great if you've had to take antibiotics or have flushed out your colon for some reason.

Portland And Vida Vegan Con

Portland And Vida Vegan Con

Sorry for my absence this past week! I've been away at a conference of vegan bloggers in Portland, and then traveling with my mom up to Victoria, BC.

The conference is called Vida Vegan Con, and was such an amazing experience! The vibe was super friendly and collaborative, with tons of amazing energy from everyone.

I met so many of the people who I only knew from emails and blogs, and spent time catching up with some of my favorite friends from my online life.

Read more...

Tryptophan Rich Foods For Getting To Sleep

Tryptophan Rich Foods For Getting To Sleep

Tryptophan rich foods can be helpful as a bedtime snack if you're having trouble getting to sleep because it triggers the neurotransmitters that help your brain's sleep cycle.

Tryptophan is a precursor to serotonin, which in turn is a precursor to melatonin.

Serotonin helps regulate mood and sleep.

It seems to be helpful for people who have mild trouble sleeping (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/6764927), although not for people with no trouble sleeping or more severe insomnia.

Read more...

Benefit Of Flaxseed

Benefit Of Flaxseed And Online Meal Plan Discount

The benefit of flaxseed comes mostly from its high omega-3 and fiber content, which are both things that are underrepresented in a standard diet.

Flax also has lots of minerals, like phosphorus and magnesium, and vitamins, especially folic acid thiamin.

Not only does flaxseed have a lot of nutrition, it works fantastically as a binder so I use it a lot in baking and veggie burgers to replace eggs.

One of my favorite things is to blend flax with cocoa powder, banana and water or almond milk to make a chocolate pudding.

Read more...

Heather's Peruvian Fruit-A-Thon

Heather's Peruvian Fruit-A-Thon

I love all the wonderful fruit they have in South America. So many varieties, and it's all so fresh and ripe. I think I may have been born on the wrong continent...

My favorite fruit is mango, and I ate lots while we were in Peru, but I also got to try lots of new ones and wanted to share the experience with you.

So this video is a compilation of clips from the three months we spent in various parts of southern Peru.

I had many happy days heading to the markets to visit my fruit ladies and pick out the best mangoes, and see what other goodness they had to show me.

Read more...

Being Honest With Myself - And Sharing With You

Being Honest With Myself - And Sharing With You

Well, today I have some serious news to share. It’s difficult for me to talk about, and difficult for me to share, but because you've all become such a big part of my life I want to try to explain.

You've all heard me talk about my husband Phil a lot, and he has his own site about organic gardening. We've had a wonderful 10 years together, but it’s time for us to go our separate ways.

It’s been a really difficult decision, and one that neither of us took lightly. It can be hard to be honest with yourself when you don't really want to admit something. In the end we've managed to both feel good about it and confident that it’s the right path.

Read more...

Meal Planning - FREE Webinar This Saturday!

Meal Planning - Free Webinar This Saturday

This Saturday, April 13th at 2pm ET I'll be doing a FREE LIVE webinar going through what you need to know to plan healthy balanced meals, and answering your questions!

In an ideal world, meal planning would be easy and intuitive. We do tend to make a bigger deal of planning meals than we need to sometimes.

Sometimes I get caught up in thinking more about what I should eat rather than what I want to eat. You don't want to force yourself to eat a big meal if you just don't want it, even if it's healthy.

Although for some people, it can be dangerous to only think about what you want to eat because cravings can cause misleading messages.

Read more...

Cooking Without Oil - And Knowing When It's Useful

Cooking Without Oil - And Knowing When It's Useful

By

When I was getting into healthy eating, I started reducing the amount of oil I used in cooking as I realized that I really didn't need as much as what most recipes called for.

Then when Phil and I were traveling in Europe a couple of years ago, we spent 3 months moving from place to place every week and I started cooking without oil because I didn't want to carry a jar around with me.

I started to experiment with oil-free cooking techniques like water sauteeing, and learned that I should dry-toast spices before using them when there was no oil because the bitterness made my tongue go numb.

Read more...

Taster Meal Plan

Get a taste of what it's like to eat vegan with my free 3-day meal plan!

Grab Your Meal Plan Now

About Heather

I’m Heather Nicholds, a registered holistic nutritionist. I can help you transform your life through simple changes in how you eat.

Whether you’re seeking healthy weight loss, more energy or a boost towards balanced nutrition, I’ll introduce you to the positive and powerful impact of a plant-based whole food diet.

I share my knowledge, enthusiasm and experience so you can prepare quick, healthy, delicious and balanced meals that leave you and your family full of vitality!

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