Vitamins & Supplements to Live by Guide to Your Health

Immune Health – ECHINACEA – The Immune Herb

Seasonal Change Got You Down? Try Echinacea.

Known as the #1 herb for helping to maintain healthy immune function, Echinacea promotes the body’s natural defense system. This centuries-old herb can be used for immune system support throughout the year, but is especially popular during times of seasonal change.

In a study, Echinacea was found to support immune system health and overall wellness more effectively than placebo.

Throughout the treatment period, the positive response rate for a healthy immune system was greater in the Echinacea group.

  •  #1 herb for helping to maintain healthy immune function
  • Promotes the body’s natural defense system
  • Contains beneficial polysaccharides and phytosterols
  • Popular during times of seasonal change
Yours in Health,
Nikki Palmer


Vitamins & Supplements to Live by Guide to Your Health

Heart Health – POLICOSANOL – Cardio Support from a Natural Source

The Science of Healthy Blood Flow

Heart health and blood flow go hand in hand, and Policosanol is a natural way to support both. Policosanol is generally derived from sugar cane, rice wax, and/or wheat germ sources in a process that provides the naturally occurring compounds octacosanol and hexacosonal, long-chain alcohols that promote circulatory health through their positive effects on cholesterol in the blood stream.

Two separate studies point to Policosanol’s positive effects on cardiovascular health. In the first clinical trial, 70 subjects with heart concerns took either 10 mg of Policosanol or a placebo once daily for 8 weeks. Results of the study show Policosanol may support heart health based on its positive effects on cholesterol when compared to placebo. A second study of 110 subjects with heart concerns reported a significant benefit for cholesterol levels when compared to the subject’s baseline scores.

  • Provides cholesterol support by helping to maintain cholesterol levels that are already within a normal range
  • Promotes healthy blood flow
Yours in Health,
Nikki Palmer


Vitamins & Supplements to Live by Guide to Your Health

Heart Health – NIACIN – Circulation is a Full Body Proposition

The Head-to-Toe, Inside & Out B Vitamin

 Niacin is important enough to warrant a name and a number! As part of the Vitamin B family, Niacin is known as Vitamin B-3 and is related to the other B vitamins through their shared support of the nervous system. On its own, however, Niacin is prized for its ability to promote healthy circulation. This healthy movement of the blood throughout the body supports a variety of systems including the heart and skin, as well as cell growth and metabolic function.

According to the Institute of Medicine, Niacin, a water-soluble B-vitamin, is rapidly absorbed in the stomach and intestines and is metabolized by all body tissues. Dietary sources include proteins, particularly meat, fish and poultry as well as enriched bread products and fortified cereals. Low intakes of this vitamin may cause skin and digestive concerns.

  •  Supports heart health
  • Helps maintain healthy hair and skin
  • Is essential to nervous system health
  • Promotes energy metabolism
  • Is important for cell growth and metabolic function
  • Supports carbohydrate and protein metabolism
Yours in Health,
Nikki Palmer

Why I Pray

I spent a good deal of time yesterday thinking about prayer.

It was my first Sunday back at Mass in too long. As a converting Catholic, Mass is not the thing to miss. But the family was so warmly received. Father said, “Welcome home.” A dear friend said she knew she would see us soon.

It was the 10th anniversary of 9-11. This churns up a whole bunch of thoughts on hate, love, trespass, forgiveness, religion, prayer – at least to does for me.

It has been no secret that my journey with God and all that encompasses has been an interesting one. We have found ourselves in many different places. However, I have found comfort in the fact that most of the figures in biblical history have some things in common – they experienced fear, doubt, love, dishonor, courage – either all at once or at multiple times. I am not so different.

Even when my doubts are at their pinnacle, one thing that is always staring me in my face is prayer. All my life, I can remember times when I prayed.

  • Spending the night under a flipped couch with my newborn sister during a hurricane
  • Starting my new kindergarten (after a move which I hated)
  • Watching my parents give my baby sister mouth to mouth
  • The first time I missed curfew
  • The day I enlisted in the Navy
  • Joey died
  • Bootcamp
  • The night Momma made that phone call
  • The day I found out I was in labor – 12 weeks early
  • When I sent her to kindergarten
  • The night of her emergency surgery
  • Every single day of my deployment during OEF/OIF
  • My miscarriage
  • My discharge from active service
  • That other time
  • Right now as I write this

There are a ton of wonderfully happy times when I pray. And I enjoy the feeling of gratitude. But when I am fearful or scared, prayer is amazingly powerful. Not quite sure what I would do without it. Even now, conversations with The Blessed Mother is one of my favorite things.

I have heard prayer described as a crutch. I am ok with that. I would never fault someone with a broken leg for using a crutch – they need it. I need it. I am not flawed in my weakness. I am human.

I have heard God described as a fictious creation designed for our own need of comfort. I have also heard Him described as the Creator and Lover of all. I prefer the latter and as it takes equal amounts of faith to believe either, I will believe what I prefer.

I have heard religion described as a violent manipulation designed by those seeking power to control the masses. I have also seen religion deliver aid to the needy, food to the hungry, clothes to the naked, medicine to the sick, and comfort to the broken. Misuse of a thing is not the fault of the thing. Knowing that someone has had their head bashed in with a bat does not make the seventh inning stretch any less beautiful.

I don’t have all the answers, neither can I control the opposition or defense. But, that is the beautiful thing about freedom…I can ask my questions, I can search for my answers and I can pray.


I have never felt like an accident. Even from my unplanned birth. I can’t think of any point in my 35 years that I have ever pondered whether or not I was intended.

I know that is a blessed thing. I realize there are many who have had to struggle with being unwanted, unintended – an accident. I appreciate that is not a burden I have to bear.

However, at the risk of sounding ungrateful (which I am not) a more specific instruction guide would be nice. Yes, I am aware the Bible is considered the ultimate instructional guide. I have read it and I find its lessons on character completely accurate. And at the risk of sounding blasphemous (which I am not), I have also found it lacking the chapter of my life – should I have gone to college or the Navy, when do I get married, when do I have children, how many, do I work full time, what do I do, what are my hobbies, where should I live, which choices really have only one answer, which can I just do whatever and be ok…yeah, none of that is in there.

While this may not be a glaring omission for some, it is to me. I am a checklist girl. I like processes and formula. I like maps, plans, directions, reciepes, instruction manuals. I like pretending I am flying by the seat of pants, knowing all the while I have a Hollywood style harness that is keeping me right where I am supposed to be.

Don’t get me wrong, I am not talking rigid. I understand and expect processes to need case by case finesse. I know not all the boxes need to be checked all the time and some need to be added occassionally. I am a fabulous cook but only an ok baker – I like to use recipes more as a guideline than absolutes.

But a little more obvious direction would be nice. I am not an accident. I like not feeling like an accident. I would love to know that I am not participating in a whole lot of them too…

*Inspired by Day 2, The Purpose Driven Life

Vitamins & Supplements to Live by Guide to Your Health

Heart Health – GARLIC – Does Your Heart Good

A Revitalizing History

 Garlic isn’t just a great addition to your spaghetti sauce. It’s an herb with health benefits whose history dates back thousands of years. Garlic can substantially promote heart, circulatory and cardiovascular health while helping to maintain cholesterol levels that are already within a normal range.

A study demonstrated that Garlic supplements may have value in supporting cholesterol health when combined with a low fat diet.

In a pilot study, Aged Garlic Extract (AGE) showed a trend for supporting cholesterol and cardiovascular health.

  •  Promotes heart and cardiovascular health
  • Helps to maintain cholesterol levels that are already within a normal range
  • Has antioxidant properties
Yours in Health,
Nikki Palmer


It is Sorta About Me

I could lament all the time that has passed since I have done this. I will not. I could offer up excuses and tell you all the places I have been instead of in church or at God’s feet or long conversations with Mary, but I won’t. It isn’t important – well, maybe it is, but for some reason, it doesn’t feel amazingly relevant.

I was looking for something to read last night. I am attempting to get back on track – a term which I hate as it has all these negative connotations but I lack the desire to put forth the effort to find a suitable replacement. At any rate, I decided to dust off my old copy of Rick Warren’s The Purpose Driven Life. I have had the book for a while, have started it once or twice. I have yet to finish it. Maybe that’s why I am still not real clear on my purpose. Such an idiot. The answer has been sitting in my bookshelf the whole time.

Since all of that was incredibly snarky, I figure I had better explain that I appreciate Rick Warren and his work. He seems like a wonderful warm person and even after all his success, there was no Twitter picture post on the Bahamas scandal. That is a pretty big feat.

But, I decided when I picked the book up that I would be interested in my thoughts more than his and my leaning more than his. While his writings are a great primer, he does not know me and my relationship with God like I do. Rick, as good as they are, can only speak in generalities.

Day 1 talks about understanding the idea that it is not about me. Lives are intended to be others and Christ focused. Other self-help books fall short as they emphasis focus inward instead of upward. Our purpose is not our own. The Creator is the maker of purpose and only He can decide and explain said purpose.

Yeah – no. Well, maybe not “no” but just not enough.

I fully believe we are meant to be charitable and tend to the needs of others, we are also created to enjoy all the blessings God has intended for us. Did he adore David, bless Solomon, deliver Joseph so that they would simply spend their whole time talking about how unworthy they were and starving and thirsting so that they could give all their blessings away because it isn’t about them? I don’t think so. I think God enjoys watching me smile. I think He enjoys it very much. I think He created us in His image and He enjoys when His images are happy with the course He has set them upon.

And it is about me, sorta. As I am moving forward in discovering God’s will and purpose, doesn’t it make sense that a good deal of that conversation will focus on who He is and who he created me to be so I understand how the two fit? Don’t I need to understand my own jacked up brain so that I can better guard against challenges and perform in purpose?

Do I think Day 1 was bad? I certainly do not. I hold it as affirmation that I am a free thinking being, that God is priority over guilt and expectations, that maybe I have finally approached Rick’s book in the proper way. Maybe this time I will finish it.


Vitamins & Supplements to Live by Guide to Your Health

Heart Health – UBIQUINOL – Ready to Fight Free Radicals

The Active Antioxidant Form of Co Q-10

Ubiquinol is the “active antioxidant” form of the popular nutrient Co Q-10. Regular Co Q-10 supplements must be converted in the body to Ubiquinol in order to provide antioxidant protection. But as we age, we lost the ability to convert Co Q-10 into Ubiquinol. Ubiquinol supplements are pre-converted, highly absorb-able and “ready to burn” as soon as they are taken. By supplementing with Ubiquinol, you are providing your body with an active form that is ready to fight the harmful free radicals that may contribute to the premature aging of cells.

In one study, 127 men of varying ages had their blood analyzed to determine the ration of Ubiquinol to Co Q-10. The results revealed that as subjects’ ages increased, the ratio of Ubiquinol to Co Q-20 decreased – leading the researchers to suggest the importance of supplementing with Ubiquinol throughout the aging process. In another clinical trial, researchers found that people who supplemented with 90 mg of Ubiquinol daily for four weeks experienced up to a 4 fold increase in blood Ubiquinol levels. The Ubiquinol levels then dropped after supplementation stopped, underscoring Ubiquinol’s importance.

  • Appears in almost every cell in the body
  • Supports healthy aging
  • Promotes energy production
  • Functions as a powerful antioxidant
  • A powerful weapon in supporting heart health
  • Supports brain health

Yours in Health,

Nikki Palmer



I was Sent to the Principal’s Office

Ok, so maybe I wasn’t sent to the principal’s office. But my Turtle was. In kindergarten. The Principal’s Office. For whacking a kid in the face with a book. Her little friend no less.

She doesn’t know why she did it – she just did. Little friend didn’t hit her first, say something mean, look cross-eyed, stick a tongue out – nothing to which I could defend this outburst of brutality. My sweet little Turtle just attacked without provocation.

I won’t lie, my first thought was, “Holy shit, they are going to think I am that kind of mother.” It was actually my first, third, ninth, twenty-second, thirty-eighth, this morning’s thought of the day…you get the idea. Of course I had other thoughts like, “What is the appropriate reaction,” “is the victim ok,” “what kind of trouble is Turtle in at school,” “are the girl’s parent mafia thugs who are gonna hunt my family down.”

Ok, so I didn’t think that last thing at all.

But I really was am concerned about the conversation happening at the little girl’s house.

I wrote a letter to the teacher explaining that we do not tolerate that type of behavior and please pass our feelings on to the offended family. I thought about it all night. I considered rewriting the letter to try to convey more remorse. I thought about it this morning. I am obviously thinking about it now.

I feel like I am the one who has been waiting outside the principal’s office. Waiting to be weighed and measured. Waiting to be found wanting. Waiting to be judged.

Seriously?!? I am a grown damn woman. Must investigate this dumbass response and figure out what has got my knickers twisted.

The truth is a good many parents feel over whelmed in this way. We are bombarded with media images of snotty ass kids and their over indulgent parents. God Bless I Am: A Flippy Doodle for really marching this point home with the timely post on bratty kids.

All over the place, parents are relentlessly forced to watch children behaving badly. And, bless their hearts, after we get cut screens of the parents, we realize it really isn’t their fault – Mom and Pops are crazy! We watch peas get thrown, heads get bashed, rooms destroyed, fits thrown, and all other manner of perfectly good reasons why I am certainly pro spanking. And all the time mom just rolls her eyes, dad acts like he doesn’t have a clue and kid gets exactly what they wanted in the first place – so they will do it again – instead of a big old dose of “I-am-the-Momma-punk.”

As a parent, I see flashes of my Turtle walking the streets of Jersey Shore talking about how she used to throw down all the way back in kindergarten. That’s right punk, she’s hard like that. Too bad her Momma didn’t raise her better. Probably didn’t pay any attention to her. Probably just hung out and blogged about it. It’s hard coming from a piece of crap family.

And I want nothing more than to shout at the top of lungs “I am not a bad momma and Turtle is not a bad kid! We just had an unfortunate minute!”

And why should I even feel that? Her daddy and I did talk to her. She is very sorry. She was put on punishment and she was even more sorry. She felt bad about it today and apologized to everybody.

I have long quit letting “other mommies” create the benchmarks by which I grade myself. I need to add the products of those “other mommies” to the list. Not gonna let over indulged children or their breeders put me in a funk.

P.S. Little Friend’s Mommy, we are really sorry. I hope she is feeling better. Turtle tells me they are really good friends and they have hugged and made up. I say that not because I want you to think good of me and my family, but because your child should not have to go through. Turtle was handled. I hope we get to meet soon.

**Photo credit to Eric Castro

Vitamins & Supplements to Live by Guide to Your Health

Heart Health – FLAXSEED – An Abundant Source of Essential Fatty Acids

One of the Most Concentrated Plant Sources of Omega-3s Found in Nature

Flaxseed Oil contains important Omega-3 fatty acids and provides one of the most concentrated vegetarian plant sources of Omega-3 fatty acids found in nature. Flaxseed Oil is also naturally full of heart-healthy nutrients.

A study found that a Flaxseed supplement can support healthy blood flow and total blood cholesterol and LDL levels.

A study on women showed that Flaxseeds can support heart health through the maintenance of healthy cholesterol levels.

  • One of the most concentrated vegetarian plant sources of Omega-3 fatty acids found in nature
  • Contains Alpha Linolenic Acid and Linolenic Acid
  • Naturally contains heart healthy nutrients
  • Can support healthy cholesterol levels that are already within a normal range

Yours in Health,

Nikki Palmer