Dirty Dishing: Probiotics, Inflammation & Hormones

With so many myths and misconceptions about nutrition floating around, who do you believe? I receive so many questions about nutrition and health in general, so I wanted to create a way for me to answer some of the most common ones that I hear. Thus, Dirty Dishing was born. If you’re interested in learning the truth about today’s popular trends and issues, check back from week to week. And if you have any questions of your own, leave them in the comments below. I’m excited to start cleaning up your knowledge of health and wellness one dish at a time!



What are probiotics?

Are they all the same? How often should I take them and in what form? These are some of the questions I get on a regular basis about probiotics. Probiotics are live microorganisms that provide a health benefit for us when we ingest them.  They offer “good ” or “friendly” bacteria into our GI tract, otherwise known as our gut.  Our gut houses good and bad bacteria.  When we become sleep deprived, stressed, or sick it can effect our digestive health in a negative manner by tipping the ratio of good to bad bacteria. Introducing probiotics regularly into our GI tract will have a positive effect on our immune system.  I take a good probiotic everyday, and I swear by it! I am rarely ever sick. Some great food sources of probiotics include: yogurt, kombucha, miso soup, sauerkraut, kefir, fermented veggies or pickles, tempeh, and good probiotic supplements.  The best way to be proactive and regain control of your health is to take some probiotics everyday in some form.

Check out my previous blog posts on how to ferment your own veggies, and kimchi for easy ways to incorporate probiotics into your diet.

fermented vegetables, fermentation, probiotics


What are omega-6 foods and why should I limit these?

Today, the standard American diet is very different than it was years ago.  It contains far too many omega-6 sources from the foods that we eat and too little of omega-threes.  This imbalance creates an inflammatory response in our body.  To mitigate this, we should aim to increase our intake of omega-3 fatty acids and decrease sources of omega-6.  When cooking, try to replace oils that are high in omega-6 with other sources.  Click here for more information on  Cooking oils.

What is your advice for women over 45? Should we focus more on diet or exercise?

Both are very important as we age.  First of all remember this, abs definitely are made in the kitchen.  You can run your yourself ragged, but if you have a terrible diet it will get the best of you.  For women over 45 specifically, I cannot stress enough the importance of toning and weight bearing exercise.  Ladies, if you want to tighten up get to a great barre, yoga, pilates, trx, or body pump class.  I see all too often women that think they need to lose weight go straight to the treadmill.  Once you reach a certain age, cardio will not help you as much as toning and weights because your body begins to lose lean muscle mass at a more rapid rate around age 35.  To preserve this, you must tone and tighten.  For example, I had a client that was 5’5″, size 4, and 130 pounds at 25.  At 55, she was 5’5″, size 10 and 130 pounds. Her exercise regimen was swimming 3 times a week for an hour.  Over time, because her body was not experiencing enough weight bearing exercise, she had lost lean muscle and fat mass had increased creeping her pants size up but not her weight.  It’s not totally about the scale! After 45, our metabolism slows as well and we just don’t need as many calories so it is a combination of diet and exercise modification.  Lastly, we must not forget hormone regulation.  Check out this previous post for more info on hormones and fat loss.

hormones, fat loss, hormones and fat loss
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  1. I often wondered about probiotics. You hear so much about them and I never really understood what they were or how they worked. Thank you so much for that information.

  2. As a personal trainer, I love everything about this post! Get those probiotics in and do some weight bearing exercises!! Great post.

  3. I totally agree that our diet is too high in omega 6’s. So funny I just wrote an article about following an anti-inflammatory diet high in omega 3’s 🙂

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