Mental Health: An Issue that Needs Awareness

Why Should we Care?
As per the World Health Organization mental health problems affect one in four people at some time in life. About 800,000 people worldwide commit suicide because of mental health. In line with these stats, mental health issues are one of the leading causes of health problems in the Netherlands; and a major burden to the healthcare system.

Understanding Mental Health and Mental Illness
Being mentally healthy leads to having the least amount of health related problems and is just as important as being physically fit. It results in greater satisfaction with life, clear life goals, healthy social functioning, and being of high resilience.

Your mental health can be affected by the stress of balancing work and family, loss, or inability to cope with difficult problems. In addition, a change in environment can lead to mental illness and such changes affect different people in different ways – depending on their genetic makeup. As such, the presence of any of these factors, or a combination thereof, can trigger a mental illness.

There are over 200 classified forms of mental illnesses, some of the common ones are: anxiety disorder, bipolar disorder, depression, eating disorder, mood disorders, schizophrenia, self-injury, suicide, and violence.

Symptoms and Signs
Although the symptoms vary depending on the disorder, and the individual, some of the examples are:

  • Withdrawal from social activities
  • Excessive anger and hostility
  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Loss of interest in hobbies
  • Changes in eating or sleeping habits
  • Feeling anxious or worried
  • Delusions or hallucinations
  • Prolonged sadness

Even though, experiencing just one or two of these symptoms may not be a sign of a mental illness; experiencing several of these symptoms along with the inability to focus at work, school, or daily tasks may point to a mental heal issue and would typically require further evaluation. These symptoms can be noticed by parents of children, classmates, teachers, friends, and/or family.

mental health

What You Can Do For Your Mental Health
Eat a healthy diet: Have you heard of “you are what you eat?” Food provides us energy, and nutrients that our body and mind needs to function properly. Consuming sugar and caffeine in large amounts can have detrimental effects on our body and mind. A healthy balanced diet is a key to good physical and mental health. A healthy balanced diet includes: different types of fruit and vegetables; wholegrain cereals or bread; nuts and seeds; dairy products; oily fish; and drink eight ounces of water a day.

Exercise: Numerous studies have been conducted on the link between exercise and mental health. The results have shown that exercise has positive effects on individuals with mental health issues. Exercise results in better mood, increased self-esteem, and are a great distraction. Specifically, aerobic exercises, such as swimming, cycling, running, dancing, gardening have proven to reduce anxiety and depression.

Take a break: At times our lives can get busy and we can lose track of time and it is during times like these that by giving yourself some “me” time can help you de-stress. Stop for five minutes and meditate, drink tea, listen to music, etc. Perhaps, it’s time to take a vacation? Do whatever needs to be done in order to give yourself some breathing room and re-charge. This could vary anywhere from taking a 5-minute break to take an extended vacation.

Accept who you are: Everyone has their own strengths and we are all unique individuals. Therefore, focus on your strengths and don’t compare yourself with others. Feeling good about yourself will boost your self-esteem and confidence. If you want to change something about yourself, ask yourself if it is reasonable. If it is reasonable, make small realistic goals to get there.

Ask for help when needed: There is a stigma attached to mental health, due to which individuals do not like to share their feelings. You have the right to be selective as to who you will share your feelings with, but It is encouraged to talk about your feelings with a trusted loved one or colleague as you will build an invaluable support network and challenge the stigma and secrecy associated with it.

Primary medical care: it is important to continue going for follow-up check-ups. If needed, seek further assistance from a professional – counsellor, psychiatrist, local services offered by the community, etc.

Feeling sad, withdrawn, and isolated for a brief period, while coping with a traumatic event, is part of the human experience. However, when these emotions and feelings remain persistent and cause obstruction in your daily tasks, and affect your well-being, they could be a sign of mental illness. It is difficult to take the first step, but is important to seek out a selected and trusted network, obtain proper care, and get back to your daily life.

 By: Tahreem Raza


Get a healthy skin glow through fruits and vegetables

Scientist researched that eating more fruits and vegetables gives the skin a healthy golden glow, which makes you look healthier. The research also shows that people find this golden glow more attractive than the glow you get from the sun.
Especially high levels of red and yellow pigments in fruits and veggies will give you this glow. This is called carotenoids coloration. Carotenoids are antioxidants that are important for our immune and reproductive system.
Food with high carotenoid levels to get the best glow:
• Sweet potatoes
• Melons
• Carrotsafbeelding blog 1.htaccess
• Tomato juice
• Pumpkin
• Spinach
• Broccoli
So the tip of the day: eat more brightly coloured fruit and veggies to look healthy and attractive!




Losing weight with shakes


How can you lose weight with shakes?


You can lose weight with shakes if you follow a protein diet, with which you try to reduce the amount of carbohydrates and consume a lot of proteins. Such a diet will help you lose weight without losing muscle tissue, because 90% of your weight loss will consist of fat!


Shakes that are rich in protein slow down the transportation of the food from your stomach to your bowels. This will make you feel full for a longer period of time and thus help you to eat less. Proteins will keep your blood sugar low, and your body uses up more energy-processing proteins than carbohydrates. Because of this, a large amount of the energy you consume will be used right away!


And what about my muscle tissue?

If you lose weight with shakes, you don’t have to worry about your muscle tissue. This will be sustained by the amount of proteins in your shakes.


Be careful when losing weight with shakes!

There are some well-known protein diets that only make you eat food that contains a lot of unhealthy fats. It is also not wise to eat only proteins and no other essential nutrients like vitamins, minerals and fibres.


Antioxidant is a collective term used for substances such as vitamins E and C, dietary Vegetables
elements, such as selenium and bioactive substances, such as those present in our vegetables and fruit. All of these help protect our cells and tissues from being damaged, and may prevent cancer and cardiovascular diseases in the long run (although this hasn’t been proven yet). It has been proven that Vitamin C and E and selenium work as antioxidants in your body.

Taking supplements containing antioxidants will however not give you extra protection, and some research results show an opposite reaction!

Antioxidants are also used as preservatives in the production of our foods. Oxidation is a process in your body during which aggressive substances, called free radicals, damage your cells. Think of the next example: a peeled apple will turn brown, when it is exposed to oxygen. This process is called oxidation. When you put lemon juice on the apple, it will not turn brown, because lemon juice contains antioxidants, such as vitamin C.

Oxidation is a natural process in our body, that can cause damage to cells and tissue, which can result in cardiovascular diseases, cancer and damage to your nervous system in the long run. Eating healthy food containing a lot of antioxidants will prevent this from happening.  These free radicals, that cause the damage, are formed during your regular metabolism, but also during smoking and sunbathing!

Certain diseases or infections can also cause your body to form more free radicals. This is because your body uses free radicals itself to eliminate unwanted intruders. Oxidation happens when the body’s own capacity is not sufficient to take these out. How useful or harmful free radicals are, depends on the type and the place where they are produced inside a cell. It is also important that the body has enough capacity for the antioxidants.

It is not yet clear how many (bioactive) substances have a strong antioxidant function. In a tube many do, but whether this is the same inside a human body is not yet known. Dietary elements such as selenium and zinc play an important part in eliminating free radicals.

Whether a certain substance has an antioxidant function or not, is actually not that important. What matters is whether the substance can eliminate the free radicals, which mostly depends on whether or not the body can absorb this substance. It also depends on the substance getting to the right place in the body.

Antioxidants are added to a lot of processed foods, to prevent fats from becoming rancid, Women ~Fruitand fruit from turning brown. Antioxidants are added to a lot of processed foods, to prevent fats from becoming rancid, and fruit from turning brown. The ones the food industry uses the most are: vitamin C, salts of ascorbic acid, different types of vitamin E, and synthetic antioxidants, such as BHA and BHT.

This information comes from our ‘Nutrition’ DVD. On this DVD, more information will be given concerning the influence certain nutrients have on our body. When you buy this DVD, you also support the foundation. The proceeds will be used to make new DVD’s and help even more people with their health issues.


How to detoxify your body

Your body gets taxed from the inside and outside every day. Because of this, your body often has a hard time. It is filled with pollutants that you have to get rid of again

Detoxify your body

Inside and outside

Your body can get taxed from the inside when you eat food that contains residuals that aren’t good for your digestion and metabolism. You are also taxing your body when you eat too fast. Or we burden our body with medicine and amalgam fillings that contain harmful mercury. Amalgam is mainly used for dental fillings. Mercury can also be found in many vaccines that also contain aluminium, which you would also rather not have in your body. Acidification and stress also come from inside your body.

Examples of taxation from the outside are eating wrong foods, toxins in the water, ground or air, cosmetics and deodorant that contain aluminium. There are also pathogens, such as UMTS, Wi-Fi and radioactivity, that aren’t good for you. In addition to this, there are also more dioxins, pesticides and antidepressants in tap water than most people realize. Clothing also carries residues of pesticides, colorants and detergent.



If you want to get rid of these pollutants and neutralize the negative influence of them, you have to stimulate the organs that are responsible for the excretion of toxins from your system. To prevent  toxins from entering your bloodstream and thus damaging your cells, they are stored in your fat tissue and organs. The organs in your body that are responsible for the excretion of toxins are your liver, kidneys, bowels, skin, lungs and mucosa. They all require a different approach for getting detoxified.



  • The best way to detoxify your liver is to ingest Spirulina, which is a unicellular blue-green, spiral-like algae. The United Nations call it ‘The best food for the future’. Astronauts would supposedly take it with them into space because of the beneficial qualities. It is said to help the body deal with radioactivity and 70% of it consists of proteins. It also contains all eight essential amino acids and many vitamins, minerals and enzymes. Furthermore, it is the best source of gamma-linolenic acid, which is an essential fatty acid. Finally, it strengthens your cellular immune system.

If you want to detoxify your liver, you can also eat bitter tasting foods, such as Belgian endive, Brussels sprouts, endive, rucola, but also turmeric and aloe vera. These foods will stimulate the liver to produce more glutathione; an antioxidant that is crucially important for the production of white blood cells. Artichokes and grapefruit juice are also very good for your liver. Lastly, drinking a cup of warm water also has a detoxifying effect.

How to get rid of stress

A lot of people nowadays say they are feeling too tense or stressed. This is a serious stresssscontemporary problem. Of course we can feel stressed when we are leading a busy life, a lot is expected of us, or because of what we demand of ourselves. But a cause of stress that shouldn’t be ignored is your diet! Your health (mental and physical) can suffer greatly from an unbalanced blood sugar level or if your liver gets overburdened. Balanced nutrition is therefore essential in reducing tension and stress and to keep your health up.


If you are experiencing stress, there are several nutritional advices that could help you:

It would be good to avoid caffeine as much as possible. When you are addicted to caffeine, your adrenal glands, which have the important task of producing hormones, will get tired. Consumption of caffeine has the same effect as prolonged tension. It exhausts you. Try drinking herbal tea or green tea to get rid of your coffee addiction.

It is also a good idea to stop drinking alcohol. Alcohol stimulates the secretion of adrenaline, which is a hormone that causes stress. This hormone has a negative influence on your liver and as such hinders it in getting rid of waste products.

You also might want to start avoiding sugar and products containing a lot of sugar in your diet. Perhaps you already know about the short energy stimulant that kicks in after eating sugar. After this short rise in energy, your energy level crashes again. This can also exhaust your adrenal glands in the same way caffeine does.

Bad fats should be avoided. Cake may be delicious, but it is also filled with trans fat, which is harmful to your body. These fats burden your circulatory system.

It is also a good idea to avoid refined and processed foods, such as white bread, white flour, cake, cookies and pasta. These foods are a burden to your body, because they contain hardly any nutrients, but do contain a lot of calories. These calories won’t nourish your body and instead contain a lot of sugar, trans fat and omega 6. Empty calories like these are best avoided.

This information and more can be found in the DVD ‘Nutrition’. It also contains handy tips to help yourself adopt a healthy diet.

Food Facts

Turmeric and pepper

Turmeric offers several health benefits: it cleanses, stops infections and is good for your bowels. The only problem is that it isn’t absorbed into the body easily. But if you combine it with black pepper, which is good for your digestion, it works a whopping 1000% better!

Asparagus and egg
Eating asparagus and egg together helps the liver to detoxify your body.

Do avocados make you fat?
Just half an avocado contains twice as many calories as a whole apple! But it also contains aFood facts lot of healthy nutrients and important fats. As a result, it isn’t so bad to eat it on a regular basis. Just don’t overdo it.

Fat is bad?
A lot of vitamins can only be found in fats. Furthermore, fats contain important nutrients. There are of course some fats that aren’t so good for your health: trans fats. Trans fats are artificially created and should be avoided.  All fats supply us with a lot of energy. This is why it is important not to eat too much of them.


The passion fruit

A sour taste, rich in vitamins A and C and the flesh and seeds are edible… we are obviously talking about the passion fruit. passion fruit

This tropical fruit can have a wrinkly or smooth skin, depending on the ripeness. If the fruit is smooth or a bit wrinkly, it is not ripe yet. But not everyone knows about the health effects this juicy fruit can have on us.

Healthy passion?

Yes, this fruit is definitely healthy! Research has proven this fruit to lower your blood pressure AND your cholesterol. It is also known to slow down the growth of cancer cells. And there’s more! The seeds will improve your bowel movements, are good for your heart and blood vessels and are rich in anti-oxidants, fibers, iron and zinc. These are good for your muscles, eyes and skin.

The passion fruit is also a good choice for people who want to lose weight. It contains relatively few calories and it tastes great. It also tastes great in combination with yoghurt, blueberries, grapefruit and oranges. And remember: the uglier it looks, the better it will taste!

New way of eating

Tips to lose weight:

1. Get rid of all temptations: throw away all potato chips, cookies and other junk food that’s rich in sugar.

2. Eat more healthy snacks in between meals, so you will never feel very hungry.

3. Have a small meal in the evening and a big breakfast in the morning. People who do not eat anything for breakfast will usually gain weight faster than people who get the same amount of calories, but do eat something for breakfast.

4. Know the reason why you are eating! If you’re eating because of stress or unhappiness, it is important to find out where these feelings come from.

5. Always have some food with you in case of emergencies. Make sure you have some healthy snacks with you, so you can eat something when you feel hungry unexpectedly. Keep these snacks in your car or in your handbag. In many situations you will not find healthy food in your vicinity, and having a healthy snack at hand will prevent you from buying unhealthy food.

6. Keep a food diary. Write down your weight so you can track your progress. This will motivate you to lose even more weight.

7. Eat slowly and be aware of what you eat and how you eat. If food doesn’t get fully digested, nutrients will not be absorbed well by the body. Furthermore your bowels might get overburdened. Taking your time when eating will also give your body the opportunity to produce substances that will give you that saturated feeling. When you eat too fast, you might still feel hungry while your body doesn’t need any more food, but hasn’t been given enough time to let you know.

New way of eating








These practical tips are from the workbook that comes with the DVD ‘Nutrition’. When purchasing this DVD, you will not only help yourself to get a healthier lifestyle, but you will also support the foundation in making new DVD’s, which they can use to help more people with their health issues. The DVD will be available in our shop soon.

100 health tips 31 / 40: ALLERGIES


  1. Use a diary to keep track of your activities what you eat. Write down when you are experiencing an allergic reaction. This might give some insight in the cause of your allergy. Allergic reactions are not only food related. Sometimes scents, soap, cosmetics, clothing fabrics or animals can produce an allergic reaction.
  2. Do not hesitate to ask for the ingredients that are used in dishes in restaurants. It is also a good idea to let the host of a party you are going to know you are allergic to certain things. If you’re not sure whether a dish contains something you are allergic to, it is best to ask. And just in case, make sure you are always carrying the right medicines with you.
  3. If you can have a very strong allergic reaction, it is best to wear an allergy bracelet that has the sign of your allergy on it. This is helpful information for people who are trying to help you whenever you are experiencing an attack. It is also important to tell your family and friends about your allergy.
  4. Go to a specialist who can help you find out what it is exactly that you are allergic to and provide you with the right medicines.
  5. There are many common allergens and it might be a good idea for you to compare those symptoms to your own. If you see many similarities you can try to avoid the possible causes. If it works you might not even have to go to a doctor!
  6. As soon as you know what you are allergic to, changing your habits would be best. But don’t just remove a certain nutrient from your diet! Look for a replacement to make sure your diet remains balanced.
  7. The hardest thing is when you are allergic to a food you really love. But even in such a case you will have to go on without it. It isn’t easy, but unfortunately it is necessary. Certain
  8. If you are allergic to specific nut, it might be better not to eat any other nuts either. Your allergen might be present in other nuts as well. It will be easier to find out which foods and products you have to avoid if you know what your allergen is.
  9. Stress and other kinds of tension can also cause an allergic reaction to take place. Try to find out when it happens en counter the tension with relaxation, meditation, reflection or another method. If you are not allergic to milk, you might want to try drinking a glass of milk before you go to bed. It can help you sleep better, and this reduces stress.
  10. Keep up your guard! Allergic reactions can happen at all times. Don’t think of only the here and now, but look ahead for possible causes. Make sure you are prepared, especially when you are not at your own home. Being careful can prevent panic and keep you and your surrounding safe.