Tag Archives: Immunity

Healthy retreat

Gentle Reader,

Traveling again, and wanted so much to have a healthy retreat.  I flew to Santa Fe for a long weekend to sit, walk and write with Natalie Goldberg at the Upaya Zen Center.  November in Santa Fe worried me.  I packed long johns, silk undershirts, leg warmers and turtle necks and vests.

It did snow, their first of the winter, but I need not have worried about these Zen practitioners.  They are not given to the kind of austerity we witnessed in the book Natalie assigned to us:  The Bones of the Master, by George Crane.  The page-turning tale of a Zen Monk, Tsung Tsai, was the last and only member of his Ch’an lineage in Inner Mongolia to survive the Red Chinese take over.  Under normal circumstances these monks endured freezing temperatures without heat or warm clothes.


Upaya was toasty from the spacious Zendo where the sixty-seven participants met for writing to the sleeping quarters scattered in older and new southwestern adobe style buildings on the Center’s campus.Ushaya-Zen-Center


Health issues came up over and over as a topic in writing practice.  Natalie is battling cancer and was not with us for every meal or for the early morning sitting zazen, harboring her strength. When I saw her the first day, I was relieved to the point of tears to see light in her eyes and no strained evidence of pain clouding her mind and wit and demanding teaching.

Thich Naht ThanThich Nhat Than, the Vietnamese Zen bhuddist who has offered so much peace making teaching to us Americans over the last 45 years and has been a spiritual guide for many, is lying in an ICU with a cerebral hemorrhage.


While walking in a nearby Nature Conservancy reserve east of the Center, I received notice of my cousin by marriage, Jack Bell’s massive heart attack.  Mortality loomed large.  The Roshi (the abbot or head priest of a Zen center), organized a healing service for all who hang in that liminal place between life and death asking for best possible outcome.  Roshi Joan Halifax spoke to us about not knowing what the “best” is.  The names of those close to the Center who have gone on to join the Great Majority were listed on the altar. I was profoundly moved by the service, the chanting, the deep surrender to the will of God.

We students wrote our hearts out and read aloud to each other. I was struck by how often struggle and death came up.  These big themes were peppered by the lesser but just as pesky themes of life threatening aches and pains of the aging body. Even the younger writers read about waking up to the changes they notice in their bodies, the laziness that has taken over, the hurry of life that causes neglect of physical health.  Natalie has always taught “Sit, Walk Write” and paid additional attention to long vigorous walks as a way to loosen the mind and go deeper.  I overheard comments like, “I’m going to put more walking into my day.”  “I’m going to be more consistent with my exercise.”

One woman I wrote with at a writing retreat in Italy is swimming again, up to a mile as she turns 69, using the thirty-five laps as intentional meditation time.

You think of writing as a sedentary life, but the way Natalie teaches it, it is anything but.  When you are stuck and have become too linear or wallow too long in research, get up and walk:  around the house, the coffee shop, the neighborhood.

The sitting part of practice is the hardest on the body. At the Upaya Center, they begin at 6:30 a.m. and sit on their cushions in silence for 40 minutes, take ten minutes of slow walking and stretching and then 40 more minutes of silent sitting.  I joined each morning at the slow walking part and at first sat in the folding chairs provided.  I was awake in time for the 6:30 sit time, but staying healthy on the go requires me to lie on the floor and do my back exercises, cat/cow stretches on all fours and a few yoga moves so I am functional with relatively little pain all day.  The second two days, I sat on a cushion and fared pretty well with the hips and knees.labyrinthUpaya[1]

When I travel, I take a small camping pillow for my head and another to put between my knees while sleeping.  Something you might try is finding a pillow that keeps your back and neck lined up in a back-friendly way.

I always take all my supplements.  The stress of travel is no time to cut back on the nutritional support you are accustomed to at home.  One of Natalie’s writing topics for a “bullet writing” –2-3 minutes—was “Vitamins.”  One writer, a nurse from Phoenix who I roomed with when I went to write with Natalie in France, was saying she was so confused by vitamins and took the ones everyone talks about—Calcium, D and fish oil—but never felt any difference.  So she wandered away from that discipline.  I suggested a good multi might make everything work better.

What I love about the Shaklee Corporation is that they tell you up front if you don’t feel better with Vita-lea and Protein taken daily for one month, you will get your Vita Lea and Proteinmoney back. That’s a big promise and seldom cashed in on.

Water, water, water when you travel. The high desert of Santa Fe, 7000 ft.—gave me a slight headache and dizziness. After 24 hours and quarts of water, everything was fine.  I know some people slow down on their water intake when they travel because they are worried about the availability of bathrooms.  Trust the place. Drink water. You will feel better.

On the way home I had a twinge of throat tickle and plopped a Vitalizing Immunity in my water bottle and drank it down before boarding the plane. Gone. No hint of a cold.

I had my Herb lax in case the food and water—being different—caused digestive difficulties.  In fact, the cook, Sharon, at the Upaya center is creative with seasonal root vegetables and prepared the most delicious and nourishing vegetarian meals I have ever eaten.  Lots of roughage!

Whether you are traveling for business, pleasure, study or a healthy retreat, take care of yourself. Keep your immune system strong so you don’t get sick.  That can ruin a trip. Stay hydrated and keep the digestive track functioning.

Don’t forget sleep:  I always take ear plugs and Gentle Sleep Complex to help with sleeping in a strange place.  How wonderful to attend a healthy retreat!

I love hearing what you do to stay healthy on trips.  Please comment.

Be well, Do Well and Keep Moving,


206 933 1889

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Immune Support

Cold and Flu Season= Immunity and how to get more of it.


Organs of Immunity


Skin: Forms an effective barrier against pathogens.

Respiratory system: Cilia lining the airway move mucus and contaminants out of the body.

Stomach and intestines: Stomach acid kills most bacteria. Antibodies secreted by the intestinal cells attack pathogens.

Lymph nodes: Lymphocytes are cells of the immune system that recognize and eliminate pathogens.

Spleen: Aids the body in fighting harmful bacteria.

White blood cells: Attachs pathogens throughout the body.


How Viruses Work

If you have ever had a cold or the flu, you have been the victim of a virus.  “Viruses are responsible for many other serious, often deadly, diseases including AIDS, Ebola, infectious hepatitis and herpes.”


Viruses are tiny microbes much smaller and very different from bacteria in that they cannot survive on their own.  Viruses need to invade a living cell in order to live and grow. Once inside a host cell, viruses rapidly replicate themselves, burst their host cell and start infecting other cells around them. Once enough cells are effected, you begin experiencing symptoms such as fever, cough and sweating as the body tries to defend itself against the attack.


Why viruses are so difficult to combat…When the proper host is not available, some viruses can hide out in your body for years waiting for the right conditions.  Viruses can mutate quickly so as soon as scientists create a new vaccine, a mutated resistant virus often appears.  An antibiotic doesn’t necessary help unless the bacteria is identified and the medication is specifically designed to kill that strain of bacteria.


How viruses spread…Most viruses are airborne and can pass from an infected person when they cough or sneeze. Others are infectious only when a person has contact with the bodily fluids of an infected person…like the AIDS virus.  Some viruses are tough enough to live on room temperature surfaces (doorknobs, handrails or countertops) for up to 48 hours.  That’s why frequent hand washing is critical if you want to avoid viral infections.


Bulletproof immunity…Recently, a devastating strain of Enterovirus has been infecting school-age children, developing overnight from mild flu-like symptoms to threatening their very ability to breathe, particularly in children with asthma.  In a global community, we are exposed to widespread contagion of pathogens, many of which have no preventative vaccine or medical treatment.


Our best defense is a strong immune system.


Strong immune support is no guarantee, but it is your best chance to stay healthy in the face of any and all health threats.


5 steps to bulletproof your immunity:


Stay hydrated. Healthy fluids such as Get Clean Water and Shaklee tea flush toxins.


Eliminate Sugar refined sugar is a poison which dramatically decreases immune function.



Get enough sleep. Lack of sleep depressed the immune system.  Try Gentle Sleep Complex.


Eat healthy foods often.  Plenty of fresh vegetables and whole fruits, to keep your blood sugar even throughout the day.

Take probiotics.  80% of your immune system is located in your gut… trillions of beneficial bacteria help you fight disease and absorb nutrients.  Optiflora

Ready to shop?  My Shaklee shopping page is here.

Questions?  Call or email me.  206 933 1889, betsy@hihohealth.com

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100 years of innovation

Gentle Readers,

Celebrating 100 years of product innovation, on the eve of our 100th anniversary of uniting science & nature, Shaklee introduces 4 newproducts. I am writing from the annual Global Conference in Long Beach, CA, where Shaklee begins the celebration.  Ninety-nine years  ago, Dr. Forest C. Shaklee recognized the degredation of American foods and the increasing inability of our raw food sources to build health.  The roller mill threw away the core of the wheat kernel—and its vitamins—in favor of white flour.  New chemical fertilizers took over the agriculture.  Dr. Shaklee developed Vitalized Minerals to fill in the gaps in his chiropractic patients’ nutrition.  This breakthrough innovation in 1915, preceded the discovery of vitamins.

In this same spirit of scientific breakthrough, the Shaklee scientists and advisors continued to introduce products for the health of the environment and all of us.  This short list highlights a few innovations.

General nutrition supplement (Vitalized Minerals 1915)

Environment (Basic H, 1960),

Skin-care without toxins (Enfuselle  1998)

Immune support (Nutriferon (2005),

Anti-aging cellular help for the DNA (Vivix 2008).

Leucine-based fat loss program (180 Turnaround Weight Management 2013)

This year, the eve of our 100th anniversary of uniting science and nature to improve health, Shaklee introduces 4 new products:

MindWorks | 3X improvement in memory, focus & reaction time versus a control group and supports long-term brain health

Over time, neural connections in the brain become less efficient, impairing our ability to recall, think, and respond. A key nutrient in MindWorks, Chardonnay grape seeds–but only one tiny aspect of that grape seed–was shown in multiple clinical studies to significantly enhance memory, sharpen focus, and improve reaction time within 6 hours.

Protects against age-related mental decline, the loss of brain mass beginning at age 21.

Key nutrients in MindWorks were shown in laboratory studies to promote the formation of new neural connections and in a clinical study to reduce brain shrinkage rate by 30% over two years (based on study of 223 adults with mild cognitive impairment).

MindWorks key nutrients were shown in laboratory studies to effectively cross the blood-brain barrier and enter the brain. Blood circulation is critical for delivery of oxygen and key nutrients to the brain. It is linked to neural activity. Contains B vitamins and calcium both of which help circulation.  Also supporting circulation is our carefully selected guarana extract which has been extensively tested—guarana has long been used traditionally by Amazonian Indian tribes. It helps improve cognitive performance and contains less caffeine than a medium cup of decaf coffee.

MindWorks also comes with a month of CogniFit, a brain training program – a $12.99 value, free.
Healthy mindMindWorks is included in the Healthy Solutions  Regimen with Vivix and OmegaGuard and the Healthy Solutions  Plus Regimen 

Healthy solutions PLUS
Healthy solutions PLUS

with Vivix, OmegaGuard and Nutriferon, both of which are eligible for free membership with new join orders. New people can also get free shipping (up to $20) when they join by September 30.

Blood Pressure | Help retain healthy blood pressure

Healthy Heart Program
Healthy Heart Program

Our Smart Heart program now includes Blood Pressure, a vitamin and herbal formula that helps create healthier blood vessels.  It contains nitrates from spinach and beets, quercitin, vitamin c and magnesium.  After you take a Blood Pressure tablet, your body converts the vegetable nitrates into nitrous oxide which help relax the blood vessels.

Your complete supplement support for heart health includes Blood Pressure, CoQ Heart, OmegaGuard and Cholesterol Reduction Complex.  Rather than an allopathic approach to high blood pressure and developing heart disease, these four products may help prevent the need for medication.
Vitalized Immunity™ |

Drop, Fizz, Drink Boost Immunity
Drop, Fizz, Drink
Boost Immunity

Ideal for everyday immune support, and when you’re facing stress, pollution, poor nutrition or busy schedules. If you have been slipping a packet of Air-born in your cart as you check out of the grocery or drug store, you might want to compare labels and choose Shaklee’s new immunity boost:  no artificial flavors, a broad combination of natural ingredients in addition to vitamin C. Try it out to see if changing brands makes a difference. Remember Shaklee offers you a money back guarantee.
Vitalized Immunity is naturally sweetened with Monk Fruit, and contains as much vitamin-C as 16 oranges. It includes a proprietary blend of 19 vitamins, minerals, and herbs.

  • Helps support your immune system*
  • Delicious effervescent formula
  • Provides nutritional support your immune system


Vitalizing Protein™ Vanilla and Chocolate| Optimized nutrition for sustained energy

A Protein shake plus 80 nutrients in a convenient strip
A Protein shake plus 80 nutrients in a convenient strip

I am super excited about this new addition to our protein offerings.  180 shakes can be confusing to the person who doesn’t need to lose weight.  My introduction to Shaklee included Energizing Soy Protein.  Back in 1985, soy protein on a daily basis made all the difference in my health when added to the Vita Lea, B, C, Calcium, Alfalfa and Herb Lax.  It was, and still is, the protein shake every morning that contributes to that satisfied energy-producing feeling all day long.  Now Shaklee offers Vitalizing Protein, 15 grms. of protein (23 when mixed with non-fat milk or soy milk), fiber, vitamins including antioxidants to mix and drink with your Vitalizer strip every day.  If you want the complete meal, buy 2 cannisters a month (15 servings in each).  If you are a snack kind of person, add one scoop to your yogurt or coffee in the morning and the canister will last all month.
Vitalizing Protein is included in the Healthy Foundation Regimen along with Vitalizer. The Healthy Foundation Regimen is eligible for free membership with new join orders. And new people can also get free shipping (up to $20) when they join by September 30.

If you are already getting Vitalizer in a monthly auto ship, you might want to consider adding the Vitalizing Protein for the best foundation.  Dr. Shaklee used to say, “if you take my Vita Lea and Protein for a month and don’t feel better in some way, I’ll give you your money back.”  Many people take me up on this challenge.

I will have a taste-and-try party at my house in West Seattle on Thursday, Sept. 4.  7:15 – 8:30.  Let me know if you would like to join us.  We will watch some videos about the products and the science beind them, plus try the new shakes and the Vitalized Immunity.  We always have a great time, so join the fun.

Be well, Do well and Keep Moving,


206 933 1889 to RSVP









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