Lifestyle Optimiser - Cecilie Rigneus

Cecilie is passionate about helping others optimise their life by managing their health and beauty through nutrition and fitness.

A personal story

My oldest son who is soon 17 has suffered for years with migraines, up to 5 days a week. Poor boy and so brave, he never complained and has never skipped school or sports activities, he just had to learn how to make it through the day and live with it. We did all the medical tests possible at the hospital, all with negative results. The neurologist wanted to put him on heavy migraine medicine or beta-blockers. Heart medicine to a 14 year old not suffering from a heart disease? “No thank you”, I said and I was told I was an awful mum. How could I let my son keep on suffering??? Luckily we were put in contact with another doctor who after a thorough examination could feel that his organs were inflamed and it was most likely to be linked to food intolerances. A blood test was done, intolerances to gluten, lactose and eggs were confirmed and shortly after cutting all these ingredients his migraines were reduced to once a week! My boy has a new life. So in case you are gaining weight, suffering from injuries that won’t heal, headaches… It’s worth checking out your diet!

Remember you are unique in your own individuality, so a one size fits all diet will not be suitable to all people. Reading the actual ingredients on labels is the only way to see what exactly is in the food you are consuming (if it is processed). There are many toxic chemicals added to our food. Please don’t be fooled by what the front label says. Many giant food manufacturers get away with disgusting chemicals as pseudo ingredients and marketing an “all natural” product or a product “made with natural ingredients.” The laws on what is allowable on front labels for food packaging are vague. Just because the front says it is natural, does not always mean it truly is. Deceptive and aggravating isn’t it?

Some of the lies and deception big food corporations get away with are hiding these chemicals under a blanket name. For example, what would you think if you saw the following ingredients listed: “natural flavors”, “spice”, or “organic spices”? Wouldn’t you think, ok great, this really is an all-natural product? That is what I though until I started to read more about it.

I invite you to start questioning the validity and integrity of ingredient labels. What are spices? Many times we see salt, pepper, garlic powder listed as individual ingredients before “spices” are listed. What are they? In my opinion, if a product is truly natural, every ingredient should be listed on the ingredient label, individually. Very often ingredients in children’s food are actually worse with deceptive labeling. It is frightening, but true. I am not trying to instill fear. On the contrary, I share this information to empower you to wake up and become aware of your food choices.

One of my favorite ingredients to question is the “natural flavors”. What are natural flavors? If it’s really natural and you have nothing to hide, then why are the natural flavors not disclosed as individual ingredients? Food manufacturers, including so-called natural ones, have the ability, by law, to list chemicals like MSG, trans-fat, and other non-natural chemically toxic additives as “natural flavors”. Although the natural flavor debate can be considered controversial, just remember that any food product claiming to be natural should have every single ingredient specifically listed on the ingredient list. Natural flavors is not an actual ingredient, it’s a phrase that can be used to legally disguise whatever chemicals that they want.

Don’t count calories, count chemicals instead

Did you know that there are hundreds of new chemicals introduced in our food supply every year? How about the fact that our tap water is polluted with pharmaceutical and pesticide residue? Did you know that our air is filled with noxious gases and heavy particulate matter every day? In other words, free radicals. Having awareness around what you are putting into your body can make a considerable difference. Synthetic ingredients such a s artificial sweeteners, synthetic colorings and MSG, can be highly toxic to the body, especially the lymphatic system. These chemicals can place a huge burden on your organs and cause health problems. Our bodies have an intuitive intelligence and know when there are foreign and toxic substances introduced instead of focusing on counting calories, consider counting the amount of chemicals in foods you consume and the products you use instead. You can burn off calories; chemicals on the other hand, can remain stored in the cells and organs of your body for many years.

Aside from reading the actual ingredients and counting chemicals instead of calories, you are probably wondering what you can do to protect yourself from these toxins and chemicals. Well, having awareness about it (like reading here) is the first and foremost important thing you can do. In fact, I encourage you to keep reading and researching. But I have to warn you… The more you find out about the dirty and terrifying food industry, the less you want to know… coz it’s a mean business!

Here are my best helpful tips you can keep in mind when it comes to chemicals in your food and personal care products:

Say no to GMO’s. You are not Frankenstein! Make it known that you and your loved ones are not going to partake in science experiments being conducted on your body through food any longer. GMO’s are not labeled, so buying certified organic is the best thing you can do to avoid GMOs.

Bigger is NOT better! Hormones are another potentially dangerous addition to the food supply. Hormones are given to dairy cows so they can produce more milk. They are given to beef cattle to fatten them up, so they produce more meat. They are also given to poultry so they grow bigger and produce more eggs. Not to talk about the antibiotics they are given not to get sick as they are squeezed together within a few square meters. And this is what we eat… Hormones, just like GMOs are not fully tested for safety. Demand meats and dairy products that is free from hormones- you have the right. This is especially important if you have children as their bodies are still growing and developing. Unfortunately, hormones are also not labeled, so you want to go with organic products that are certified to be hormone free.

Chlorine is for disinfecting, not drinking. It is a well-known fact that chlorine is a carcinogenic substance. It is meant to disinfect water, not to be ingested. Even bathing in non-chlorinated water makes a difference. I highly recommend using a high quality drinking water and shower filter. If you are drinking bottled water, please check the label for chlorine.

Avoid MSG, Aspartame and High Fructose Corn Syrup at all costs. They are all highly toxic substances which can cause damage to organs and make you addicted to junk food. When reading ingredients, make sure to look for these commonly used chemicals and always choose to pass for a more natural option if it contains any of them.

Just remember to always ask a lot of questions - lots of them! It’s up to you and only you to educate yourself by learning all you can. When you do this, you are discovering the most effective way to actually know what is in your food, in your children’s food. It also empowers you to make your own informed decision, not taking my word for it or anyone else’s version of what they label as the truth.

MSG
A widespread and silent killer that's worse for your health than alcohol, nicotine and many drugs is likely lurking in your kitchen cabinets right now.

"It" is monosodium glutamate (MSG), a flavor enhancer that's known widely as an addition to Chinese food, but that's actually added to thousands of the foods you and your family regularly eat, especially if you are like most Americans and eat the majority of your food as processed foods or in restaurants.

MSG is one of the worst food additives on the market and is used in canned soups, crackers, meats, salad dressings, frozen dinners and much more. It's found in your local supermarket and restaurants, in your child's school cafeteria and, amazingly, even in baby food and infant formula.

MSG is more than just a seasoning like salt and pepper, it actually enhances the flavor of foods, making processed meats and frozen dinners taste fresher and smell better, salad dressings more tasty, and canned foods less tinny.

While MSG's benefits to the food industry are quite clear, this food additive
could be slowly and silently doing major damage to your health.

GMO
GMOs (or “genetically modified organisms”) are living organisms whose genetic material has been artificially manipulated in a laboratory through genetic engineering, or GE. This relatively new science creates unstable combinations of plant, animal, bacteria and viral genes that do not occur in nature or through traditional crossbreeding methods.

Most developed nations do not consider GMOs to be safe. In more than 60 countries around the world, including Australia, Japan, and all of the countries in the European Union, there are significant restrictions or outright bans on the production and sale of GMOs.

GMOs (or “genetically modified organisms”) are organisms whose genetic material has been artificially manipulated in a laboratory through genetic engineering, or GE. This relatively new science creates unstable combinations of plant, animal, bacteria and viral genes that do not occur in nature or through traditional crossbreeding methods.

For consumers, it can be difficult to stay up-to-date on food ingredients that are at-risk of being genetically modified, as the list of at-risk agricultural ingredients is frequently changing. As part of the Non-GMO Project’s commitment to informed consumer choice, they are working diligently to maintain an accurate list of risk ingredients.

- Corn = corn syrup, corn starch.
- Soy = hydrolyzed vegetable protein.
- Canola = canola oil.
- Sugar beets = processed sugar.
- Cotton = cottonseed oil.

Animal feed can be a source of GMOs also. What did that cow, chicken or pig eat? Any of these could be from animals fed GMO feed if not organic or 3rd party verified as non-GMO:
- Milk
- Cheese
- Meat (chicken, pork, beef)
- Eggs
- Farmed raised fish

Additional various food additives including flavoring agents, nutritional supplementation, thickeners and pH regulators also contains GMOs.

So what I am trying to tell you is that GMOs are unhealthy and all the food listed above should be eaten to a minimum and always choose to eat organic.

Since the introduction of GMOs in the mid-90s, the number of food allergies has sky-rocketed and the health issues such as autism, digestive problems and reproductive disorders are on the rise. Animal testing with GMOs has resulted in cases of organ failure, digestive disorders, infertility and accelerated ageing.

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Wednesday, 22 May 2019

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