Vibrant Health Association

Mission

The Vibrant Health Association is a national, non-profit organization of volunteers dedicated to promoting whole health.  Our mission is to educate the public on vibrant and whole health by addressing every aspect of our humanity: mentally, spiritually, emotionally, physically and self-understanding.

The Vibrant Health Association, in partnership with other organizations, achieves its mission through education, referral services and informational services. These efforts are supported by volunteers and staff and funds raised in communities across the US.

What's New?

Vibrant Health Association will soon introduce the Before Slavery Museum – A new museum in Metro-Atlanta.

With this project, we seek to touch a place where healing is needed. How many Americans know the origins of African Americans? Not many do. That is also true of African Americans themselves.

The purpose is to educate the public on the pre-slavery history of African Americans. It tells the story of the tribes from which African Americans came and showcases those cultures; thereby allowing African Americans to obtain a deeper knowledge of self. Most Black history museums focus on slavery and post-slavery topics. The Before Slavery Museum addresses the origins of African Americans and what life was like before the Atlantic Slave Trade. The experience directly impacts the African American population, however, it is inviting and welcoming to people of all types and backgrounds.

Priorities

Thanks to the generosity of our donors and the work of our volunteers and staff, the Vibrant Health Association is leading the way in actively deterring disability and life threatening disease. We are also dedicated to helping to heal generations of residual pain from slavery. The Association has partnered with various naturopathic doctors, therapists, ministers, fitness pros, nutritionists, academics, etc., to bring about an overall balanced, healthy approach to life.

Save The Date & Participate!

  • CashApp: $B4Slavery
  • Join us to celebrate Juneteenth for our Jerusalema Challenge! We’ll be at the NAACP’s celebration in Marietta Square (Marietta, GA) on June 18th from 10am-7pm! Stop by to dance the Jerusalema with us at 1pm.
  • Get a 18 karat gold-plated necklace of Africa! $5 raffles for this necklace! Drawing is July 10th @ 9pm on Facebook LIVE! Proceeds help to furnish the Children’s Section of the Before Slavery Museum.
    Please put your email address in the note. We will email your personal raffle tickets to you. And notify winners by email too!
  • “When I Think of Home…” On Sunday, February 19th
  • Join us November 12, 2023 for the Grand Opening of the Before Slavery Museum! The Before Slavery Museum (B4S) is a project of Vibrant Health. B4S purpose is to educate the public on the pre-slavery history of African Americans. It tells the story of the tribes from which African Americans came and showcases those cultures; thereby allowing African Americans to obtain a deeper knowledge of self.

Eat Your Micros
By: John Apel
@_johnapel_

Eat Your Micros: The Importance of Nutritive Foods

John Apel @_johnapel_

 

This is the first article in “The Importance of Holistic Health” series, where each week we explore a different aspect of a balanced, healthy lifestyle.

 

What makes up a healthy diet? Why should I care about a healthy diet for myself? What does it mean to “Eat Your Micros”? Read on to find the answer to these questions and more.

 

What Constitutes a Healthy Diet?

 

Merriam-Webster defines health as “soundness of body or mind; freedom from disease or ailment.” Other words for health include vigor and vitality. These are all things we as human beings need to live our best life, both physically and emotionally. A healthy diet is one that allows us to remain vibrant of mind and free of avoidable maladies while providing energy and strength to do what we love.

 

One element of a healthy diet is a proper energy balance, that is, an amount of calories to eat given our activity level. We establish our personal caloric intake by determining our macronutrient (protein, carbs, and fat) needs depending on whether our goal is to gain, maintain, or lose weight. Maintaining a proper energy balance is a critical component of holistic health, but this article focuses on a different aspect of a balanced diet: micronutrient intake.

 

Micronutrients, more commonly referred to as vitamins and minerals, are critical for preventing disease, healthy childhood and adult development, and general wellbeing. Six essential micronutrients include:

  • Iron
  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin D
  • Iodine
  • Folate
  • Zinc

 

Why Should I Care About a Healthy Diet for Myself?

 

One way to find the answer to the question of “why should I care about ____” is to find out what happens if we don’t. What happens if we ignore the advice of nutritionists and other health professionals and do not prioritize a healthy diet? The answer to this question is twofold.

 

Most diet and nutrition advice in today’s society revolves around finding a proper energy balance, which comes from our macronutrient intake. If our energy intake is out of balance, we will either gain or lose weight, both of which can be unhealthy depending on the circumstances. However, even if our energy balance is properly managed and we maintain a healthy weight, if our food is not sourced from a balanced diet, we run the risk of developing micronutrient deficiencies.

 

What happens if we have micronutrient deficiencies? Here are some examples of common deficiencies and their effects:

 

Micronutrient Symptoms of Deficiency
Iron

 

Tiredness, weakness, impaired brain function
Calcium Soft bones (children), osteoporosis (adults)

 

Vitamin D

 

 

Weakness, bone loss, increase risk of bone fracture
Vitamin A Eye damage or (worst case) blindness, suppressed immune function

 

We don’t want to experience any of these negative effects from micronutrient deficiencies. So, what to do? Eat Your Micros!

What Does It Mean to “Eat Your Micros”?

 

To “Eat Your Micros” is to eat a diet full of adequate micronutrients to enable optimal health and wellbeing.

 

Micronutrients generally come from one of two sources: food intake or supplementation. Not all foods contain adequate amounts of micronutrients for optimal health, however. Many popular foods with very little nutritive value include non-diet soda, sweets, fruit juices, white rice and white bread, and other highly processed grains.

 

This is not to say that these nutrient-poor foods must be avoided entirely; that is far from realistic. However, it is important to not rely solely on foods in these categories to fulfill our caloric needs or we greatly increase the risk of developing a micronutrient deficiency.

 

So, is the solution as simple as “eat your fruits and vegetables?” Yes and no. The general solution to preventing micronutrient deficiencies is to adopt a broad, healthy diet prioritizing, yes, fruits and vegetables, but also whole grains, beans and legumes, low-fat protein, and dairy products.

 

To see a list of micronutrients and food sources that contain them, click here.

 

It is often more challenging to meet our diet and nutrition goals in practice than in theory, as any of us who have ever tried to lose weight can verify. Fortunately for us, with micronutrients, there is a simple product that can support a lacking diet: a daily multivitamin. There are generally different products for men or women because men and women have different micronutrient needs (particularly for pregnant women), and they can be found in any grocery store or pharmacy. So, if you find your diet to be lacking some of the vitamins and minerals listed in the link above, consider external supplementation with a multivitamin.

 

What Now?

 

Have some protein. Have some berries. Have some beans. If that doesn’t sound good, have a multivitamin. The important part? Don’t stress about it. Stress can be as damaging to our health as a poor diet, which we’ll learn about in “Take a Moment to Breathe: The Importance of Mindfulness,” coming soon. Next, however, we will learn about the most exciting aspect of holistic health in “Move Your Body: The Importance of Exercise.” Stay tuned…

 

 

References

 

“7 Nutrient Deficiencies That Are Incredibly Common.” Healthline, 21 May 2019, https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/7-common-nutrient-deficiencies.

Black, M. (2003, November 01). Micronutrient deficiencies and cognitive functioning. Retrieved May 11, 2021, from https://academic.oup.com/jn/article/133/11/3927S/4818043

Brunst, K., Wright, R., DiGioia, K., Enlow, M., Fernandez, H., Wright, R., & Kannan, S. (2013, December 13). Racial/ethnic and sociodemographic factors associated With Micronutrient intakes and Inadequacies among pregnant women in an urban US Population: Public HEALTH NUTRITION. Retrieved May 11, 2021, from https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/public-health-nutrition/article/racialethnic-and-sociodemographic-factors-associated-with-micronutrient-intakes-and-inadequacies-among-pregnant-women-in-an-urban-us-population/EE5F359B85CD746DDB3FE45AC927718C

Micronutrient facts. (2020, December 03). Retrieved May 11, 2021, from https://www.cdc.gov/nutrition/micronutrient-malnutrition/micronutrients/index.html

Micronutrients. (2021, April 30). Retrieved May 11, 2021, from https://www.cdc.gov/nutrition/micronutrient-malnutrition/index.html

“The Best Foods for Vitamins and Minerals – Harvard Health.” Harvard Health, 19 Sept. 2016,

https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/the-best-foods-for-vitamins-and-minerals.

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