Is Exercise Before Breakfast Best?

What a great question!

Growing up we were always told the best way to start a day is with a good breakfast. But when it comes to your morning exercise, is it the first important element of your morning routine?  Jeffrey N. Berube, DC of North Reading Chiropractic, shares some insight with us on this topic. See below an article from his December Health Beat News Letter.

“Is Exercising Before Breakfast Best?                                                                                                                                          By Editorial Staff, Health Beat News Letter

You may think you need to fuel up with a good breakfast before doing any physical activity first thing in the morning, but research suggests doing the opposite may actually be beneficial from a health perspective.

For example, research summarized in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism suggests people who exercise first and then eat breakfast have better control over their blood sugar levels  and burn more fat compared to people who eat first and then exercise. The six-week study involved overweight  / obese adult men assigned to one of three groups for comparison. One group ate breakfast first and then exercised; the second group exercised first and then ate breakfast; and the third group made no lifestyle changes.

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Results showed that exercising first and then ate breakfast positively impacted lipid and insulin characteristics compared to doing the opposite. Specifically, exercising first increased fat utilization (i.e., burned more fat) and reduced the insulin response to eating – both important consequences for overweight individuals who may also be experiencing related blood sugar / insulin issues that could eventually manifest as diabetes.

Interestingly, both groups lost a similar amount of weight and increased their fitness levels similarly during the study period. However, as stated, fat and blood sugar utilization were markedly increased merely by participating in exercise before breakfast, during the “fasting state” between bedtime and the first meal of the day.”

Dr. Jeffrey N. Berube's professional office is located in North Reading, MA.
Health Beat News Letter   Website:  North Reading Chiropractic

Lifestyle is the most important means of maintaining health!


Healthy Lifestyle Checklist

  • Sunshine and time outdoors in nature (the Japanese call it “forest bathing” for health and balance)
  • Sleep, especially maintaining your Circadian rhythm by sleeping in the dark and waking in the natural light
  • Clean, whole foods unadulterated with chemicalshealth freedom's salad recipe
  • Clean water and adequate hydration, using both water and fresh, naturally high-liquid plant-based foods (fruits, green vegetables)
  • Use of wider variety of foods, especially plants, in the diet to properly feed the microbiome and maintain healthy gut flora
  • Circulation, through movement, your favorite exercise, massage, and also appropriate circulation-boosting herbs
  • Natural remedies including light, water, clean air, foods, herbs, sleep, circulation – and spiritual connection.
  • Reducing stress
  • Doing things that align your life with your purposes.
  • Doing things you enjoy. This includes spending time with people who help you appreciate life and your healthy lifestyle.
  • Contribute to a better life – find ways to help others in some way.



        Steps for Improvement:

  1. Look over the list.
  2. Note which are your strongest points contributing to a positive, healthy lifestyle.
  3. Decide which points you most want to change.
  4. Decide which points would be easiest for you to improve.
  5. Decide what you can do now to start in the direction you want for a healthier life.
  6. Implement something you can do now to make a difference, no matter how small.
  7. Make a longer term plan of actions you want, and get more information about how to, if needed.
  8. Work on it now and over time, checking off steps of successful improvement.
  9. Seek more information, support or fellowship for points you’d like help with.
  10. Keep on going. Try more things to improve. Don’t give up.


The Miracle isn't that I Finished. The Miracle is that I had the Courage to Start. John Bingham


Dangers Lurking in Your Medicine Cabinet

How many people do you know complain of back pain, knee pain, aches from old sports injuries or just overdoing it on occasion? It’s common practice for most people to reach for an over-the-counter-pain reliever.

It’s equally common for health care providers to prescribe Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs, or NSAIDs for short, to be used long-term and daily. These are sometimes prescribed even for other conditions like the ‘daily aspirin therapy’ for heart attack prevention that many people just accept as the norm as they grow older. NSAIDs are also often used or prescribed for menstrual cramps, headaches, colds and the flu.

I bet you could name at least 3 NSAIDs right off the top of your head. I can: ibuprofen, naproxen and aspirin are the most common. Considering there are so many common painful discomforts we want to avoid, a person may not take into account the number of doses consumed in any given day/week/month and their cumulative effect.

It’s even more rare to actually stop to consider the potential health risks that may accompany these pain relievers. After all, if it was that dangerous why would they sell it on every drugstore shelf? Why would my doctor prescribe a daily dose to me and not warn me if there were potential risks involved? Surely if the FDA approved it, it can’t be that big a deal…

That’s where we would all be wrong. Studies have shown on multiple occasions that there can be serious and potentially deadly health risks to taking these types of pain killers. According to the New England Journal of Medicine:

“It has been estimated conservatively that 16,500 NSAID-related deaths occur among patients with rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis every year in the US. This figure is similar to the number of deaths from the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome and considerably greater than the number of deaths from myeloma, asthma, cervical cancer and Hodgkin’s disease.”

“If deaths from gastrointestinal toxic effects from NSAIDs were tabulated separately from the National Vital Statistics reports, these effects would constitute the 15th most common cause of death in the US. Yet these toxic effects remain mainly a “silent epidemic” with many physicians and most patients unaware of the magnitude of the problem.”

This is not the only published finding of these effects. A quick search around the internet will show you that from Harvard Health to Mayo Clinic there are warnings about the potential health risks of long term use which is defined as 3 days for fever and 10 days for pain.

The FDA itself even issued this update to its warnings in 2015:

“Based on our review and the advisory committees’ recommendations, the prescription NSAID labels will be revised to reflect the following information:

  • The risk of heart attack or stroke can occur as early as the first weeks of using an NSAID. The risk may increase with longer use of the NSAID.
  • The risk appears greater at higher doses.

  • NSAIDs can increase the risk of heart attack or stroke in patients with or without heart disease or risk factors for heart disease. A large number of studies support this finding, with varying estimates of how much the risk is increased, depending on the drugs and the doses studied.
  • In general, patients with heart disease or risk factors for it have a greater likelihood of heart attack or stroke following NSAID use than patients without these risk factors because they have a higher risk at baseline.
  • Patients treated with NSAIDs following a first heart attack were more likely to die in the first year after the heart attack compared to patients who were not treated with NSAIDs after their first heart attack.
  • There is an increased risk of heart failure with NSAID use.”

Even though medical doctors often suggest acetaminophen for aches and pains associated with the flu, there is evidence that they can actually make your illness worse and easier to spread to others.

A double-blind, placebo-controlled study published in the Journal of Infectious Diseases, determined that when they infected participants with a flu virus and then treated them with aspirin, acetaminophen, ibuprofen or placebo, the aspirin and acetaminophen groups had a longer duration virus shedding than the other groups. The aspirin and acetaminophen actually made the patients contagious for a longer period of time than they would otherwise have been.   –view abstract here

These are something to be aware of regards these anti-inflammatory pain pills. Vitamins, herbs and natural remedies are becoming more frequently asked about for a reason, as people are growing disenchanted with the “side effects” of many pharmaceuticals. Nutrition is not taught in medical schools, but changing your diet and improving your lifestyle may make your life easier and help you to stay healthy!

Inspiration to start your work week…

"The miracle isn't that I finished. the miracle is that I had the courage to start." John Bingham

"The miracle isn't that I finished. the miracle is that I had the courage to start." John Bingham

Our staff who work here can attest to this. We believe in miracles!

“This week my grandmother celebrated her 93rd birthday! After 5 weeks in a neck brace from cracking a bone in a fall, she is still feisty and independent, and still takes no drugs of any kind. She kept hoping for the best, and yesterday started driving again. If she can survive it all and carry on, so can we all!”

“When I look at all I’ve had to do recently, this quote is particularly apt. Since my husband is no longer working, I’ve had a steep learning curve for parts of the business I never took care of before – the finances. The uncertainties have been tough, but it is starting to settle down. I’ve become experienced and can look forward with a smile.”

“My family & I are experiencing an average of three miracles a day. Some say it is our Sainted Mother & Grandmother looking over us. Others say our rewards come from how we treat other people & in return receiving what we give to others. My daughter & son will note the stars & planet alignment. Me… I just pray it keeps up”..


Can Chewing Help Your Endocrine System?

In our fast paced society there is no time for chewing, we devour our food without giving it a second thought. What if chewing is needed by the body for more than just breaking down food?

This is an excerpt from Lino Stanchich’s Power Eating Program book where he explains how chewing saved his dad’s life under dire circumstances. You’ll learn why paying attention to a simple thing like chewing can make a real difference to your health!

Surprisingly, even if you don’t have time to eat or prepare healthy foods, your body will be able to survive better just by how you chew. Your body receives messages not only from the food you put in your mouth, but the action of chewing itself! Chewing stimulates the endocrine system, putting glands and organs into communication with each other. It also sends oxygen to the brain and helps maintain short term memory. Most of us are so often rushed in life, that we swallow down our food quickly and our digestion suffers, but also our connection with our whole body. Read on…

“In 1943, during World War II, my father, Antonio Stanchich, was taken prisoner in Greece and sent to a concentration camp connected to a German factory, where all the prisoners were forced into hard labor.

That winter was bitterly cold. The barracks were poorly heated, clothing inadequate, and the food substandard. My father told me, “I was cold most of the time and hungry all the time.”

In the morning he was given a cup of chicory coffee and a slice of bread. For lunch and dinner he had a bowl of soup made of potatoes and some other vegetable, a grain or bean, and occasionally a bit of meat. Inmates died of starvation daily. Deaths from exposure to the elements increased constantly. Life was a constant fight for survival.

When my father was thirsty, he kept the cold water in his mouth to warm it and intuitively “chewed” it for a while, ten to fifteen times, before swallowing. One day, when the water was especially cold, he chewed it fifty times! And he discovered something that would save his life.

Aside from quenching his thirst, the water actually seemed to give him energy. At first he felt it must be his imagination. Eventually he realized that chewing water fifty times or more did indeed give him more energy. Puzzled, he asked himself how plain water could impart such a miracle. It took forty years to clarify this mystery.

My father experimented by chewing his food fifty times a mouthful. Then he tried 75, 100, 150, 200, even up to 300 times or more. He determined that the magical minimum number of chews was 150 and the more he chewed, the more energy he had. The morning and noon meals were restricted in time, but the evening meal was not. In the evening he could chew water as much as he liked.

My father’s technique was simple: Put one tablespoon of food, either liquid or solid, in the mouth, and count your chews. Most of his friends scoffed at his discovery. But two men became interested in these experiments and joined my father in his chewing sessions, Comparing notes, they both concluded that this technique did give them more energy. And they also felt warmer and less hungry.

In 1945, after two years in the concentration camp, the prisoners were liberated by the U.S. Army. In time my father, skinny but alive, came home to us in Fiume-Rijeka, formerly part of Italy, now Yugoslavia. Of his crew of thirty-two from the concentration camp, only three survived: my father, and the two men who joined him in his practice of chewing.

The following year, when I was 14, while on a family picnic, my father told me of his experience. He attributed his survival exclusively to chewing. He gave me some important advice, saying: “If you are ever weak, cold, or sick, chew each mouthful 150 times or more.” I never forgot those words, even though we had plenty of food and I was in good health.

Nineteen forty-nine found Yugoslavia in political turmoil. The communist government forbade Italian citizens to enter Italy. Many who opposed the government tried to escape Yugoslavia. I was one of them. On March 10, 1949, I was captured at the border and sentence to two years of hard labor. Now, at 17, I too became a prisoner.

My prison experience was extremely difficult, if not as horrible as my father’s. The diet was similar to the one he had described: one bread roll with chicory coffee in the morning, a bowl of soup, usually with barley and beans, at noon; and the same in the evening. Once a week the soup included some meat. If there were twenty beans in the soup, I considered the meal a good one. Like my father, I was hungry most of the time.

I was allowed one small package a month from home. Because parcels often failed to arrive, I asked my mother to send me raw onions, salt, and dry whole wheat bread. I reasoned that no one would steal such things, and sure enough, I received each one.

This supplementation made a big difference. I sliced the onion into wedges, dunked them in salt, and chewed them along with some bread. This was followed by one or two glasses of water, which filled me up. When properly chewed, the water gave me great energy and a strange feeling of confidence and courage.

I chewed as my father had taught, 150 times or more, but I introduced an important feature: I chewed with my eyes closed. This way I could “escape” my depressing surroundings. Closing my eyes also internalized my energy. By not looking outward, my energy went inward, strengthening me more.

The next year my family was allowed into Italy, and in 1953 we immigrated to the United States, where food was so plentiful. I went into the restaurant business with my brother. Without any fear of starvation, I abandoned my chewing regime.

The years passed and in 1969, I began to suffer the effects of my high-stress life. I was startled to realize that I was digging my own grave with my fork! Nutrition and health foods became my main interest. I tried many diets, from raw foods to fruit-only, from high-protein to lacto-vegetarian. The years passed and in 1969, I began to suffer the effects of my high-stress life. I was startled to realize that I was digging my own grave with my fork! Nutrition and health foods became my main interest. I tried many diets, from raw foods to fruit-only, from high-protein to lacto-vegetarian. All worked temporarily. Then I discovered macrobiotics, which I enthusiastically studied and adopted. I was once again determined to survive. Through what we consume, we change the quality of our mind, body and spirit. Each of us is responsible for his or her own destiny. We are our own masters, and no one else can chew for us.” – End of excerpt

Chewing your food more, while savoring the taste or texture or just the sheer pleasure of being alive, can enhance your health. 

Ideally, for food you want the food in your mouth to reach a rather soupy consistency. Even if you’re having juice, a smoothie or stew, if you chew well, your body can start making and using its digestive enzymes, and the endocrine glands will go into communication with each other.

So why not test this out at your next meal or even between meals? Try more chews and see how you feel.

You can learn more about Lino Stanchich and his valuable insights into natural health and a macrobiotic diet, which is famous for chewing discipline, from his book available on called Power Eating Program.

While we are not macrobiotic, we appreciate the wisdom Lino has passed on.
Read our What To Eat Page for more to consider about proper diet.

How can you recognize Adrenal Fatigue?

Adrenal Fatigue – What are the signs?

Adrenal Fatigue is stress-related and can cause different symptoms like a weakened immune system, exhaustion, tiredness, difficulty getting up in the morning and cravings for salty food. These are just a few symptoms.

Adrenal Fatigue can be caused by chronic stress, the theory behind is that your adrenal glands are unable to keep pace with the demands. The adrenals are located on top of each kidney and produce different hormones; one of them is called cortisol which is pushed into the bloodstream under stress.  If you are under constant stress the Adrenals can’t keep up with it. As a result, they can’t produce quite enough hormones you need to feel good and you can feel fatigue, lethargic etc.

These hormone changes can affect every part of your body. Everyone can experience it differently but here are some common symptoms like sleep interruptions, weakened immune system, fatigue and exhaustion and the need for stimulants like coffee or sugar.

The body tries to compensate for these hormone inefficiencies with cravings for caffeine, sugar and salty foods.

Restoring your overworked Adrenals seems almost impossible – especially when you are already exhausted! Fortunately, the road to recovery is easier then you might think. You can start with a few lifestyle changes.

Here is a quick overview on the do’s and don’t



These are some steps you can take to improve your health right away! I wish you lot’s of success!

Circulation and Lymph System Stimulation

Natural healing involves a number of techniques to get good results.  Proper nutrition and detoxification are important parts, but they can’t bring results without moving the body. Today let’s talk about the importance of moving. Why is it so important to move?  Why does it help our lymph system to exercise and with that our health?

  • The lymphatic system helps the immune system in removing and destroying waste, dead blood cells, toxins.
  • The lymphatic system absorbs fats and fat-soluble vitamins from the digestive system and delivers these nutrients to the cells of the body where they are used by the cells.
  • It also removes excess fluid, and waste products from the interstitial spaces between the cells.

But unlike blood which gets help from the heart to move around, the Lymphatic system doesn’t get any help and needs us to move so it can help our immune system and get rid of toxins.

Read moreCirculation and Lymph System Stimulation

How to Eliminate Stress and Lose Weight

stressed face

stressed faceHave you ever wondered why so many people have trouble losing weight despite dieting, weight loss programs, prescription or over the counter drugs, exercise and supplements designed to help you lose weight? It’s amazing how this problem somehow evades solution. And there can be many reasons for weight gain but they usually have certain things in common.

Read moreHow to Eliminate Stress and Lose Weight

How to Recover From a Sugar Hangover

I’ve loved sugar my whole life and thought it was normal to constantly eat sugar even though it threw my body off balance. A normal day for me growing up involved eating chocolate-covered croissants for breakfast, a soda and cookies for lunch and sugar-covered cereal for a snack before a dinner of frozen chicken nuggets and crinkle-cut french fries. Notice a trend? Every few hours, when I would feel weak, shaky, fuzzy headed and irritable, I thought I was hungry and needed to eat something. I was right, I did need to eat something that nourished my body, but that’s not what I ate or thought of as normal food.

Read moreHow to Recover From a Sugar Hangover