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Better Choices

Are Fermented Foods the Key to Happiness?

Whether it is with a salad or any other dish that I am making at home, organic fermented foods – usually sauerkraut (above) or kimchee – can almost always be found on my plate. Why is this?

I have come to understand that if we want to have a strong immune system, we must take care of our gut and provide it with beneficial bacteria.

And that is exactly what fermented foods give us – beneficial bacteria.

Dr. Natascha Campbell-McBride, a Russian neurologist and founder of the GAPS Diet, says that:

“about 85% of our immune system is located in the gut wall. This fact has been established by basic physiology research in the 1930s and the 1940s. Your gut, your digestive wall, is the biggest and the most important immune organ in your body. There is a very tight conversation and a relationship going on between the gut flora that lives inside your digestive system and your immune system.

Your gut flora—the state of the gut flora and the composition of microbes in your gut flora—has a profound effect on what forms of immune cells you will be producing on any given day, what they’re going to be doing, and how balanced your immune system is.”

Dr. McBride also believes that an imbalanced gut will result in a host of physical and emotional disorders, such as dyslexia, dyspraxia, obsessive-compulsive disorder, bipolar disorder, asthma, skin problems, digestive issues, and autoimmune disorders. And this doesn’t even begin to mention all of the health problems that many children face such as autism, ADD, and allergies.

An imbalanced gut also leads to depression, and this has particular relevance to me.

I took antidepressants for almost 11 years and struggled with serious bouts of depression after going off of the drug in 2001.

Given that 90% of our serotonin — one of the key neurotransmitters responsible for happiness — is produced in the gut, we must have plenty of beneficial bacteria.

For me, that is reason enough to make sure I have a steady flow of organic fermented foods –  sauerkraut, kimchee, beet kvass, kefir, cultured vegetables – in my diet.

A message from Tradin Organic

How Tradin Organic is Helping Coconut Farmers in The Philippines

For more than a decade, Tradin Organic has been working with local partners in The Philippines to bring a diversified range of organic products to the market, such as coconut oil, tropical fruits and even cocoa.

The company is helping to support local farmers by assisting them with technical support and organic certification, in addition to paying Fairtrade premium on top of the organic premium.

Learn more.

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Living Maxwell

Better Choices

Pure Rooms are a MUST for Wellness-Minded Travelers

Having recently returned from Natural Products Expo West, a very intense and long five days visiting hundreds of trade show booths and meeting with dozens and dozens of people, one thing is very clear — I felt incredibly fortunate to have stayed in a Pure Room.

Launched by a company called Pure Wellness, a Pure Room is an extremely unique hotel offering that is addressing the needs of wellness-minded travelers in a way that I have never seen before. For people who place a serious priority on health, such as myself and many Living Maxwell readers, it is reassuring to know that this lifestyle can be maintained when on the road.

And now that I have stayed in a Pure Room on three separate occasions — most recently at two different hotels in the Los Angeles area for Natural Products Expo West — these hotel rooms have completely changed the way that I think about travel and how I book my accommodations.

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A message from E3Live

"My Everyday, Must-Have Green Organic Aquabotanical"

The best testimonial that I can give is that I drink this every single day, as it impacts my mood in an incredibly positive way.

E3Live + BrainON is certified organic, fresh-frozen AFA (Aphanizomenon flos-aquae) with a concentrated, aqueous, organic extract of Phenylethylamine and Phycocyanin.

Learn more.

Living Maxwell

Better Choices

5 Reasons to Eat Organic Apples

In a previous post, I wrote that milk is the most important organic product that a family can buy.

But milk is by no means the only item that people should be concerned about.

The worst offender on the Environmental Working Group’s Dirty Dozen list are apples.

Forbes magazine recently did an excellent piece talking about five reasons to eat organic apples, and I wanted to share the highlights with you and provide commentary. To read the full article, click here.

Reason #1 – The average conventionally grown apple has more pesticide residue on it than any other fruit or vegetable.

Data from the Environmental Working Group showed that 98% of 700 apples tested had pesticides on them and that 48 different pesticides appeared. WOW!!!!

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Organic Insider

Better Choices

Could Regenerative Organic Coffee Farming be the Key to Reversing Deforestation in Peru?

Nestled in the heart of the mountains in the Andean Paramos region of Peru, there are 182 families who entirely depend on coffee cultivation for their livelihood.

Unfortunately, coffee rust – a fungus also known as “La Roya” — has devastated the coffee trees of 64 of these families, leading to catastrophic economic losses for hundreds of people.

With coffee production their only way to make a living and provide for their families, they have had no choice but to search for nearby land which has not been infected by coffee rust. While this is giving these families a financial lifeline, it has also resulted in the destruction of forests in the region, a territory that cannot that cannot afford this type of displacement.

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