NorthStar Nutritionals Blog

Join the conversation and stay up to date on all your natural health news. Plus, discover solutions to everything from arthritis to blood sugar.

  1. The Ultimate Guide to Preventing Falls

    Posted by: on

    falls preventingPreventing falls isn’t just about not embarrassing yourself or feeling clumsy.

    Preventing falls may keep you out of a nursing home, allow you to stay independently mobile, and could even save your life.

    Unfortunately, not many people realize just how important this issue is.

    Or they don’t think there’s anything they can do to prevent falls, that falls just happen to some unlucky people.

    And while, sometimes, this is true – falls can just happen.

    But there are also ways you can minimize your risk of falling.

    The Statistics Behind Falls

    While preventing falls may seem like a good idea, it may also feel like a waste of time. After all, how important can preventing falls really be? It’s pretty important, once you look at some numbers.

    Falls are the leading cause of nonfatal and fatal injuries in people age 65 and over. So much so that one in every three people in that age group will fall.

    90% of all hip fractures are caused by falls – yet only 25% of those people will make a full recovery.

    In fact, 40% of people who break a hip due to falling will end up having to move into a nursing home, and 50% will end up dependent on a cane or walker instead of regaining full mobility.

    But perhaps most shockingly, 20% of people who break their hip in a fall will die within a year of the accident. These are not encouraging statistics.

    Understanding the Causes of Falls

    There can be medical or personal reasons a person might fall. Identifying them can help mitigate their risks. Some of the most common ones are:

    • Age - your risk of falling goes up the older you get.
    • Activity level.
    • Poor nutrition.
    • Medication side effects.
    • Joint health.

    But before you get discouraged, remember, we’re talking about preventing falls, which means there are steps you can take!

    Reducing the Risks and Preventing Falls

    While there’s nothing you can do about aging, you can address the other common reasons people fall.

    1. Recognize the physical changes that come with age. When you were younger, you could wear the high heels or the leather-soled wingtips. Or climb up and down the ladder or up onto the counter top to reach the higher shelves. These days, it makes sense to be a little more careful than that. Wear lower heels with soles that won’t slip. Rearrange your house so that things are easier to reach. Simple changes in the house can go a long way to preventing falls.

    2. Get moving. Talk to your doctor about some kind of exercise routine. Too many people are afraid of falling, so they don’t move enough. But that can have the exact opposite result they’re looking for. Not moving enough can make you more prone to falling. Instead of being afraid of exercise, embrace it. It can help prevent falls! Get some aerobic exercise most days a week, but remember to work strength and balance exercises into your routine at least two days a week, as well.

    3. Take a look at your diet. Of course, the first thing to do is make sure you’re getting a healthy diet. Getting all the elements of a healthy diet will help keep you healthy, and less likely to fall. But even more tangibly, make sure you’re getting enough vitamin D and calcium. Strong bones are stable bones. And stability is the key to preventing falls.

    4. Stay up on your medications. Make sure that your medications are well-labeled and clearly marked. Also, only take them how and when directed. Finally, whenever you are given a new prescription or are thinking about a new supplement, be sure to ask your doctor or pharmacist about drug interactions.

    5. Protect your joints. Just like strong bones are stable bones, healthy joints are stable joints. Flexibility exercises will help keep your joints moving smoothly. Wearing the right shoes and eating a healthy diet contribute to healthy joints, as well. And of course, take the right supplements, like LunaFlex PM, that are specifically designed to protect the health of your joints.

    Don’t let the fear of falls control your life. They’re not inevitable, no matter what you’ve been told in the past.

    Preventing falls is easy, and doesn’t require any great sacrifices on your part. You can stay healthy, stay independent, and stay strong - longer than ever.

  2. A Hard Look at Hair Loss and Stress

    stress and hair lossYou’ve probably heard that hair loss and stress are related.

    But just how worried should you be?

    Well, there’s good news – and not so good news.

    The good news is that a couple bad days, or a few stressful moments are NOT going to cause you to lose your hair.

    The not so good news is that hair loss can be caused by ongoing, long-term stress.

    And it may be unexpected stress, at that.

    Hair Loss and Physical Stress

    Let’s start with the kind of stress most people don’t consider when thinking about hair loss – physiological, or physical, stress.

    This stress doesn’t have to have anything to do directly with your hair, either, so don’t think it’s only about pulling a bun too tight or using the wrong brush.

    Physical stress that leads to hair loss can be an accident, illness, extreme weight loss, or poor nutrition. Even a change in prescriptions may cause hair loss.

    Your body registers all of those – and reacts to them – as stressors. And that means if they go on long enough, they can cause hair loss.

    It’s often hard to recognize the hair loss as a symptom of physical stress because it can take so long for the cause to lead to the effect.

    In other words, it may take up to three or four months after the accident, illness, surgery, or weight loss for your hair to start falling out. But it really was caused by that initial physical stress.

    Luckily, so long as the physical stress is a temporary event, the hair loss should be temporary as well.

    Hair Loss and Emotional Stress

    This is the kind of stress most people think about when they think about hair loss and stress – and with good reason.

    When you’re stressed, your body goes into “fight or flight” mode, which, in turn, takes over many of the other systems throughout your body – including hair growth.

    Shut that system down long enough, and your hair follicles go into resting mode, which is when hair falls out.

    Unfortunately, life is stressful enough these days that many people are in “fight or flight” mode almost all the time.

    Your adrenal glands are always working overtime, so they take and keep control of the systems that allow your hair to stay healthy, thick, and strong.

    Playing a role in hair loss and stress is sleep – or a lack of it. The more stressed you are, the less sleep you’re likely to get.

    The less sleep you get, the more stressed you’re likely to be. It’s a cycle that’s hard on your hair, and harder to break. Every part of your body needs sleep in order to restore itself, and that includes your hair follicles.

    Since your hair is sensitive to changes in restorative sleep, if you aren’t getting enough of it, you’ll probably start seeing the results in your brush and drain.

    As with physical stress, though, if you can get control of your emotional stress so it’s a temporary event, your hair should start growing back.

    So how do you keep hair loss and stress from being a permanent concern? It may not be easy, but it is simple…

    Combat Stress – Combat Hair Loss

    1. Do what you can to reduce stress. This is the one that’s not so easy, but it’s also one of the most important steps you can take to help with hair loss caused by stress. There’s no right or wrong way to reduce stress. Still, consider trying some combination of these:

    • Get exercise. A walk can help reduce stress, even if you think you’re too stressed to get off the couch.
    • People with friends to laugh with, talk to, and just be around tend to have lower stress levels.
    • Learn to say no. Although being social can help with stress, feeling obligated or over-extended increases stress levels. It’s okay to set boundaries.
    • Try yoga. Or tai chi. Or meditation. There are many relaxation techniques that have proven track records. Just because one doesn’t fit your style doesn’t mean none of them will.
    • Find someone to talk to. A therapist or counselor may be able to help if you need more than a friendly ear. And the stigma that used to be attached to finding one is long gone. So ask for help dealing with your stress if you need it.

    2. Get more sleep. If you can manage your stress, you should be able to get to sleep easier in the evenings. Still, it’s important to make sleep a priority in its own right, too. Take an hour or two before bedtime to start winding down, so your body recognizes it’s time to rest. Go to bed and get up at the same time every day, so your body can learn a sleep schedule. And keep your bedroom peaceful.

    3. Check your diet. Eating a proper diet can help with both emotional and physical stress. Make sure you’re getting plenty of vegetables, lean proteins, and healthy fats. Protein and vitamin B are especially important to hair health. Make sure you’re getting fish, nuts, fruit, and avocado along with your leafy greens and healthy carbs.

    4. Help your hair along. While hair loss and stress may be connected, even stress-related hair loss can be helped by advancements in research. There are products available that have been shown to support healthy hair, discourage hair loss, and even encourage hair growth – products like Restore FX – so that you can keep the hair you’ve got instead of watching it go down the drain.

    If it’s emotional or physical, stress and hair loss ARE connected. So disconnect them, with these simple steps, and Restore FX.

  3. How to End to Back Pain While Sleeping For Good

    While sleeping back painBack pain during the day is bad enough.

    But back pain while sleeping seems worse, somehow.

    It’s the one time you’re supposed to be able to find relief.

    Even just a comfortable position.

    Or maybe you’re fine during the day and your back pain doesn’t kick in until you’re in bed, trying to sleep.

    Either way, getting rid of back pain while sleeping just might be easier than you though – or feared.

    Continue reading

  4. 8 Natural Gingivitis Remedies That Will Bring You Relief Today

    remedies gingivitisPeople focus on overall health…heart health…mental health…but rarely do you hear much about oral health.

    After all, there’s not a lot of mystery to oral health.

    You brush your teeth twice a day, floss, and see the dentist.

    Except that, sometimes, that’s not enough.

    Maybe you’re not brushing well enough or flossing often enough.

    However it happens, sometimes you end up with gingivitis and needing a gingivitis remedy.

    The good news is that you’re not alone.

    The better news is that gingivitis remedies are easy to find, and even easier to do.

    Once you know it’s time to step up your oral hygiene routine…

    Continue reading

  5. 7 Toxic Makeup Ingredients You’re Probably Using

    makeup toxicYou wear makeup to feel better about yourself.

    A little blush, some mascara, and of course, a gentle cleanser to keep your skin looking its best.

    But if you’re wearing or using any of these toxic makeup and toiletry ingredients – and they’re widespread enough, you probably are – then you risk making your health worse, even as you think you look better.

    Don’t just assume that everything you use on your face and skin is safe.

    Instead, look for these toxic makeup and cosmetic ingredients on your labels – and avoid them!

    Continue reading

  6. 7 Powerful Health Benefits of Selenium

    selenium health benefitsFor the most part, you know which vitamins and minerals you need in your diet to ensure optimal health.

    But every now and then, it’s important to check and make sure you aren’t missing anything – like selenium.

    Because the health benefits of selenium are too often overlooked – but shouldn’t be!

    The health benefits of selenium are simply too important and too extensive, for more people not to know about them.

    Which is why we wanted to make sure you were aware of just how beneficial selenium can be…

    Continue reading

  7. 7 Sex Drinks to Boost Your Libido

    drinks sexFood has been recognized as an aphrodisiac for centuries – but have you ever thought about how sex drinks might boost your love life?

    Not just a glass of wine to get you in the mood, but actually using known libido boosters to create sex drinks that will do more than just relax your inhibitions.

    Just remember that one or two cocktails can help relax you.

    More than that and the alcohol becomes counterproductive.

    The key is to use natural, rather than processed, ingredients.

    Sure, these take a little bit of prep, but in the end, the flavor – and the results – are worth it!

    Continue reading

  8. How to Avoid These 6 Common Sports Injuries

    When you think about common sports injuries, you probably think about career-ending breaks or dislocations.

    The kind of injuries that happen to professional athletes. Surely you don’t have to worry about sports injuries.

    Except that the most common sports injuries are ones that can – and do – happen to anyone, even if they aren’t necessarily playing sports.

    If you’re playing with the grandkids, swinging a golf club, or think it might be fun to try and shoot hoops with your old high school buddies, these are common sports injuries that you should protect against.

    Continue reading

  9. 10 Must-Have Superfoods for Better Digestion

    Superfoods are all the rage these days, and for good reason.

    They are nutritionally dense, address multiple health concerns at once, and usually taste great.

    But did you also know that some superfoods can help you with better digestion?

    Because sometimes good health isn’t just about your heart, brain, and life expectancy.

    Sometimes, good health is far more basic than that.

    Sometimes, what you want is to get over the discomfort, gas, bloating, and constipation that comes from poor digestion.

    On those days, focus on these superfoods – for overall health AND better digestion.

    Continue reading

  10. The Ultimate On-the-Go Anti-Inflammatory Cookbook

    Inflammation doesn’t just affect your joints.

    Inflammation is one of the leading causes of systemic, physical problems.

    In other words, you should be thinking about anti-inflammatory foods and recipes even if your joints don’t hurt!

    Which is why we’ve designed an anti-inflammatory cookbook, with some general guidelines and very specific recipes for every meal of the day.

    Use the recipes as they are, tweak them to suit your tastes, or just draw from the general section and create your own anti-inflammatory cookbook! The choice is yours.

    Continue reading

  11. 3 Quick Exercises to Ease Your Adrenal Stress

    stress adrenalYou’re exhausted all of the time.

    And you know that exercise is supposed to boost your energy – but it doesn’t.

    In fact, nothing that’s “supposed” to help actually does.

    If this sounds familiar, you may be dealing with adrenal stress.

    Adrenal stress, or adrenal fatigue, is a condition where the constant, ongoing stress of everyday life has simply overworked your adrenal glands until they become as exhausted as you are.

    And when your exhaustion and fatigue are caused by adrenal stress, you’re right – the standard ways to relieve your symptoms won’t work as well, if at all.

    Your body needs more than a good night’s sleep or a caffeine boost. Some – like heavy exercise - may even be making you worse!

    Continue reading

  12. The Ultimate Guide to Great Summer Health

    health summerThere’s really no time like summer.

    The sun is warm, the food is fresh, people are happy – and it’s easy to maintain GREAT summer health.

    It just takes a little bit of planning.

    Because you want to be able to embrace and enjoy every day of summer!

    Continue reading

  13. 7 Reasons to Love Ivy Gourd

    gourd ivyIt’s summer and that means the freshest, most delicious fruit of the year.

    Strawberries, peaches, cherries…they will never get old. But this year, you might want to think about expanding your horizons a bit, and giving ivy gourd a try.

    And just what it ivy gourd? Perhaps one of the healthiest fruits you’ve never heard of.

    Ivy gourd is indigenous to Africa, Asia, and the South Pacific islands – but it’s also made its way to Hawaii, Florida, and Texas, here in the United States.

    Although its nickname is “baby watermelon” it’s actually part of the pumpkin family.

    And along with being delicious and versatile, it has amazing health benefits…

    Continue reading

  14. 8 Hidden Food Toxins You're Probably Eating

    toxins foodYou do your best to eat clean, stay all-natural, and live as healthy a life as possible.

    Unfortunately, there are some food toxins hiding in plain site that may be sabotaging even your best efforts!

    Continue reading

  15. The Mysterious Link Between Processed Foods and Cancer

    Posted by: on

    cancer and processed foodsWe’ve known heavily processed foods are less healthy than raw foods for decades, but how much physical damage they can cause is only now truly beginning to be understood.

    It’s not just that they’re full of fat, sodium, and preservatives – as it turns out, heavily processed foods are directly linked to cancer.

    Even the so-called “healthy” alternatives in your frozen food or baking aisle aren’t really healthy.

    In fact, it doesn’t matter which aisle you’re in. If you’re buying a heavily processed food, it can be linked to cancer.

    Continue reading

  16. How to Plan for Random Joint Pain

    Posted by: on

    joint pain randomSome days are just fine.

    You move, bend, twist – all without a twinge.

    Other days, though, not so much.

    Other days you’re struck by random joint pain.

    That may go away once you change position, or it may linger, effecting the rest of your day. Or even your week.

    So how do you address random joint pain so it doesn’t take you by surprise and possibly ruin a good time? Keep reading…

    Continue reading

  17. 6 Anti-Aging Vitamins to Add to Your Diet Today

    Posted by: on

    vitamins anti-agingYou’ve got basic anti-aging steps down.

    You eat well, watch your sugar, and drink plenty of water.

    Exercise and moisturizer? Check and check!

    And you always wash your face before bed.

    All of which means one thing: you’re ready to take it to the next level.

    It’s time to add specific, targeted anti-aging vitamins to your beauty routine. And we’re here to help.

    Sure, vitamin E and vitamin C are great for your skin, but you’re probably getting enough of those in your diet.

    Since you’re looking to take your anti-aging up a notch, you need to look beyond the obvious.

    Continue reading

  18. 7 Hidden Food Intolerances You Might Have

    Posted by: on

    intolerances foodYou’ve heard about food intolerances – to gluten, yeast, and more – but you aren’t sure if that’s what’s going on with you.

    Well, we’re about to help you figure it out! Continue reading

  19. Listen to Your Gut: The Complete Guide of Good and Bad Gut Bacteria

    Posted by: on

    Nothing is more important than your health – but if don’t know how to listen to your gut, you aren’t taking care of your health the way you think you are.

    Don’t get us wrong, eating right, getting enough sleep, and exercising are essential steps to maintaining your health and we’re not arguing that.

    But listening to your gut is the piece you may be missing.

    We’ve been taught that bacteria is bad, and when it’s on your kitchen counter or in a scrape on your knee, it is.

    Bad when it’s in your gut, it’s the cornerstone of health. Continue reading

  20. 6 Quick and Fun Exercises to Improve Your Spinal Health

    Posted by: on

    health spinalHow often do you think about spinal health? Never, right?

    That’s probably your answer – but it may not be entirely true.

    Because if you think about posture, you’re thinking about spinal health, if you realize it or not!

    Keeping your spine long, straight, strong, and flexible – in other words, maintaining good posture – really is the same thing as taking care of spinal health.

    Standing tall and sitting up straight are perfect first steps to proper posture, but if you aren’t doing exercises as well then you aren’t doing everything you can to take care of your spinal health.

    Which is why we’ve come up with these six exercises to help improve spinal health. Continue reading