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Testimonials

I am Subhankar and I #empowerme

posted by FitnessFirst Team October 24, 2017 0 comments

I am Subhankar Ghosh, I am 52 years old and a VVIP member of Fitness First, Dalma Mall since 2014. I came to Abu Dhabi in 2010. I came from a quite stressful work-life background at Chennai, India. After coming to Abu Dhabi life was better, with less anxiety and comparatively tranquil. I could spend more time with my family. After 2 years of this, I gained 2 Kg in weight (66 to 69 Kg). Prior to this I had a stable weight of 66 Kg since at least 12 years. I was doing free-hand exercise and a few Yogasanas daily. Also in 2013 my Doctor asked me to be ready to start life-long pills to reduce my blood pressure.

It was then I understood that it was time to hit the gym. I did a few months at nearby gym but it was always over-crowded. As I was a frequent visitor to Dalma Mall, I observed this Fitness First gym come up new there. In June 2014, I joined the gym. The advantage was that this gym was on my way back home from the office. I took the fabulous trainers’ help there to chalk out my personal exercise regime. Two of the trainers really turned me into a new man.

I am Subhankar and I #empowerme – Fitness First Testimonials

The initial going was very tough as I had weak muscles due to continuous sitting in front of the computer. The trainer Gilbert was calibrating my strength & endurance and checking my limits. Every day of the week, I was sore all over and every part of me ached. Added to this were my personal problems with my knee joints and ankles. So, my trainer equally had a tough time. But luckily one thing I had inbuilt is determination. The exercise plan was made up for cardio, back, calfs & abs, chest, legs, cardio, cardio again, stretch, plyometric and full body circuit in that order. This is the same regimen pattern that I still follow which gives me good returns.

My food intake also had to be changed a lot. I started noting and measuring each and everything I put in my mouth. We found that I was eating about 3000 KCal daily. Initially we reduced the target to 2700, then 2500, then 2200, then 1800, then 1500, then finally 1150. My requirement was being cross-checked by the Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR). Then a carb cycle started but that was too tough for me. Nowadays I try to stay within 1500 KCal daily. I have made a chart of all that I eat and pasted the calculated protein/carb/fat & KCals on the refrigerator.

The result of all this was that I reduced to 60.8 Kg and then am staying at 61 Kg ever since 2014. I feel fitter than I was at 22 years of age. I can now jump higher than I ever imagined. Incidentally 62 Kg was my dream weight since last 15 years and only here I could achieve it. So, this is the best gift for me on coming to Abu Dhabi. I have my heartiest well wishes for Fitness First Dalma Mall (it feels like home, once I am inside), to my trainers Gilbert & Liam. Liam also helped me with specialist advice when I had frozen shoulder one year back. With the prescribed rubber band, I came out of it in 5 months.

One thing which I can say is that it is never late to start. I started at 49 years.

I am Subhankar and I #empowerme

#EmpowerME

Testimonials

I am Aisha and I #empowerme

posted by FitnessFirst Team October 24, 2017 0 comments

My name is Aisha and yes I am one of the many that are proud to be empowered by Fitness First Middle East to become the active member, coach, mother and role model for some of the Fitness First ladies that wish to have a body transformation.

The story goes back to 5 years ago when I joined Fitness First as a member after I had my second child, thinking it was a good start to get back in shape rather than just following strict diets. As a child, I was never a success in any kind of sports and I always lacked the coordination and the spirit of fitness.

I am Aisha and I #empowerme – Fitness First Testimonials

Working as a full time accountant in the DIFC, I only had a chance to train during the lunch break, and to be honest, the main goal started as keeping my lunch breaks busy and investing the free time that I was away from my two kids. Yet, I was not taking it very serious as I was more concerned to run back to the office, and not exhausting myself to look tidy enough to fit back in my business attire. Yet, getting closer to the Fitness First coaches and establishing strong ties with Fitness First as a community not just a place to work-out, the exercise addiction has dominated my daily routine. In addition, having progress in my strength recognized & validated by Fitness First coaches has always kept me moving forward, to improve in becoming fitter and stronger by day.

After a year of commitment and dedication, I was empowered by Fitness First master trainers to become a trainer myself, which back then all I had was a passion for group exercise. To be honest, the process of improvement was not as easy as it sounds, especially having no background studies in coaching & never being an athlete as a child. Yet, thanks to Fitness First coaches that has provided me with enough tools and educational guidelines of what it takes to become a good coach and think about group exercise from the other side of the stage, a member perspective vs a coach perception.

A year later, I cannot manage to start my day happily without the early morning visit to Fitness First, just like the morning cup of coffee. My priorities have changed, I would rather not waste my time in late evenings or getting extra time of sleep that can be rather invested in exercise. Even during Ramadan, after I froze my membership as I used to for the past four years, Ramadan day 2 I still thought it is nothing to be ashamed of to change your mind, and was back in the gym floor to train before Iftar.

I am an athlete in the morning, an accountant during the day, a mother in the evening and a fitness student by night. I am a member who became a coach. I am Aisha and I #empowerme.

Aisha Yaqout
Fitness First Member / Freelance Instructor

#EmpowerME

Noor Nasser
Testimonials

I am Noor and I #EmpowerME

posted by FitnessFirst Team October 5, 2017 0 comments

I joined Fitness First in 2014, thinking “who am I kidding?  I will join this gym just like I did with every gym I joined before, attend one month and then leave!”

I am Noor and I #EmpowerME – Fitness First Testimonials

Yes that is what I used to do, join a gym, leave it and look for something else.

I was overweight, frustrated and demotivated believing that this is how I am and will be for the rest of my life. But then I tried a class, had to pull up a lot of courage to force myself into the studio. I saw how beautiful and graceful the instructor was and told myself “I want to be as graceful as she is” and that was what inspired me. In fact, I was inspired by the Club General Manager herself, Ana, managing the gym, interacting with the members and attending to their needs as well as being the Group Exercise Instructor at the same time! That’s power and strength of personality!

Fitness First changed my beliefs about myself, I fell in love with fitness so much it became a lifestyle for me and I wanted to become a Group Exercise Instructor myself so I can inspire others and push my limits and become powerful.

Believe in yourself, unleash the power within and become an inspiration!

Noor Nasser
Fitness First Member and Zumba Instructor

Noor Nasser

#EmpowerME

I AM MARTIN AND I #EMPOWERME
Testimonials

I am Martin and I #EmpowerME

posted by FitnessFirst Team September 9, 2017 1 Comment

I used to be in generally fit shape when I was younger in my school days when I used to play for our rugby team and regularly visit the gym. I wasn’t much disciplined in the gym but I put the hours in. In university, I tore my inner-meniscus tendon in my right knee and things spiraled from there. Due to a slow recovery in an unhealthy environment (student life in Manchester is a big party), I quickly piled on 10 kilos over the next 6 months. Most of my friends and family were shocked and couldn’t believe I had gotten so big so fast. For me I didn’t really feel like I was putting on too much weight it was a gradual realization and when I had it was depressing and I mostly gave up on getting back into shape.

I am Martin and I #EmpowerME – Fitness First Testimonial

Before diet and working out

Over the next few years of jogging on and off and yo-yo diets, I had steadily peaked at about 110 kg. It was early in 2015 when I was suffering from chest pain when I knew something was very wrong. The doctor confirmed I had been suffering from hyper tension and high blood pressure and I either changed my lifestyle immediately or started heart medication.

Old picture from our wedding day

I had married at this point and my wife really encouraged me and supported me in sorting out a proper diet and I started going to the gym every morning before work. Progress at first was slow but when I joined Fitness First and started training, I started losing weight pretty quickly after that and my body really started changing. I started sleeping better and breathing more easily and I monitored my body fat and muscle content. The fat was going down and muscle up. I had lost about 10 kg in the first year and the morning gym routines had changed from being health motivated to a full blown habit which I still abide by.

After diet and working out

I still have a long way to go another 8 kg to be at my goal weight but my blood pressure is back to normal and I have a baby girl now who I have plenty of energy to run around and play with. I sleep like a baby and I need to start my day at my local gym- Fitness First Mirdif City Centre. I recommend visiting the gym in the morning since you start the day with a positive note so no matter what happens you have done something positive for yourself and that sense of well being translates into every aspect of your life. I hope others don’t wait for a medical reason to take that positive step to a healthier lifestyle, once you catch the fitness bug there’s no going back!

At a recent friend’s wedding

Martin Yarsley
Fitness First Member

I am Isabel and I #empowerme
Testimonials

I am Isabel and I #EmpowerME

posted by FitnessFirst Team September 9, 2017 0 comments

Choose your future, work hard on yourself – with passion and consistent action everything is possible!

I am Isabel and I#EmpowerME

My profession: I’m a Personal Trainer.  In 2015 I decided to change my life and become a Personal Trainer.

I have always been into fitness since I was a child. My background is in Shaolin Kung Fu and long distance running.

Here is where I come from. I love to challenge myself and others. It’s important to break boundaries and to go out of your comfort zone!

I am Isabel and I #EmpowerME

Last year I started with Triathlon training to get ready for the Ironman 70.3 in Dubai. It was a life changing experience and you should also join the movement!

I am Isabel and I #EmpowerME – Fitness First Testimonial

One of my long term goals is to qualify for the Ironman in Kailua-Kona in Hawaii, which is the hardest triathlons in the world.

What empowers me is to see my clients and members changing and achieving their fitness goals.

I always believe in hard work. It’s never easy and there is no short cut! Be true, passionate and consistent.

Then everything is possible!

Isabel Schuessler
Personal Trainer
Fitness First Middle East

#EmpowerME

Farid #EmpowerME
Testimonials

I am Farid and I #EmpowerME

posted by FitnessFirst Team August 16, 2017 2 Comments

Son inspired the father who now inspires the son! – Fitness First Testimonial

By profession, I am a Property Manager and a DJ at the Spartan Race. But the most pivotal role I play is that of a father. As a father to a young son, I hate being the one to tell him that I am ‘Too Tired’ to play with him. Then Fitness First approached me to join and represent the Couch-to-Sprint movement. After training for one month for the Spartan race, I have already lost 16 Kgs. Now I am never too tired to play with my son.  I am an example of how the Son inspired the father who now inspires the son!

With that in mind, the Spartan Race team approached Fitness First Middle East with the idea. As a catalyst and an integral part of healthy living within the community, Fitness First took it on board.

Couch to Sprint became a reality.

They chose a candidate. And with the support of Spartan Race Arabia and Fitness First Middle East, it was time to put it to the test.

The aim is to move from the living room couch to the Spartan Race Arabia


The Candidate (and the blog author)

Weight: 130 kg

Height: 176 cm

Classified: Obese

My name is Farid, I have been the DJ for Spartan Race Middle East from the outset.

As you can see from my stats, I am unhealthy. I always found it funny that the only person not exerting any sort of physical activity at the races is the big fat DJ. But the truth is, it was depressing. Don’t get me wrong, I loved every moment of being able to DJ and in some way contribute to the success of the event. But many times I’d feel left out. I was not part of the “game”.

I’d watch these amazing people head towards the start line. They all had the exact same expression on their faces. They all looked like they were about to enter into a battle convinced they are going to overcome. They were all challenging one person, themselves. It was personal and it was about to go down!!

And they all looked happy, I never sensed an ounce of fear or hesitation.

But that wasn’t even the best part, you should see their faces crossing the finish line! They have conquered something deep within themselves, it is hard to touch upon. It’s like they have crushed all the self doubt they were carrying.

Mud faced, sweat and blood. Soaked, bruised and dehydrated. They had been through a long, demanding and vigorous test. Yet no one seemed like they were walking, everyone was floating.

They started happy and finished defiant, ecstatic and overjoyedContent with who they are.

That is what I am looking for by taking on this challenge. Of course that mental state comes with the physical and that is what this blog is about. My physical journey to reach that mental state.

I’d love for you to join me on that ride.

Today I was tired and did not want to go. I just wanted the couch and youtube. I convinced myself to go and take it easy. Walking into @fitnessfirstme Uptown Mirdif I got a wave of energy but was still thinking i'll tell @dinis_fitness_crossfit_coach if we can slow it down a notch today. Boy was I wrong. It was the most grueling session I had with him. He kept pushing my buttons. I froze at one point. My legs stopped functioning and I could hear Dinis in my ear – "TWO MORE!!" At that moment it felt like this is my limit, I can't push no more. But it felt soooo good afterwards. I don't want that to be my limit. It is not my limit, I will push harder!! @spartanarabia – but did you die though? 😂 . . . . . . . #spartanrace #spartanarabia #spartanracehatta #spartanraceproteam #fitnessfirstme #fitnessfirstdubai #fitnessfirstuptownmirdif #legendswillrise #couchtosprint #tunnelvision #pushpushpush #ihatesquats #buckfurpees #mirdif #uptownmirdif

A post shared by Couch To Sprint – You Decide (@couchtosprint) on


The Blog

There will be a lot of health and fitness inspired posts. There will also be a lot hellos and goodbyes. Hello to apples, goodbye to pizza. Nice to meet you grilled salmon to ciao big juicy cheese dripping burger.

With the support and guidance of Spartan Race and Fitness First. I will offer all the useful information and tools handed out to me.

There will be a lot of blood, sweat and tears along the way which I would also like to share with you. But it will all be fun and entertaining.

I want you to join in, this is a call to action. I want you to share whatever success story you feel needs telling. Whether in the comments section or even if you have your own blog, share this with us. Or send in a write up of something you recently achieved and we can include it in a section of the blog,

Being the DJ and training for Spartan Race Arabia, I have decided to put together 30 minute mix. I'll do this on a regular basis, once a week or so. The inspiration for it will come from within the gym. Whether group classes at @fitnessfirstme or a specific workout I tried. Or by watching someone grinding at the gym. Each mix will have different tempos and energy levels based on whatever inspiration I picked up during the week. They will range from high intensity for cardio to reggaeton based for Zumba to deep house for your warm up. I'll throw in a couple of down tempo sounds for yoga and recovery. So here is the first one. Inspired by the dreaded BURPEE!!! @spartanarabia https://www.mixcloud.com/SpartanMusic/ . . . . . . . . #spartanrace #spartanhatta #spartantraining #spartanarabia #spartanbahrain #couchtosprint #fitnessfirstme #fitnessfirstdubai #fitnessfirstuptownmirdif #legendswillrise #workoutmix #spartandj #burpees #buckfurpees #workoutplaylist #couchtosprint #spartanproteam #dubaifitness #dubaifitnesstrainer

A post shared by Couch To Sprint – You Decide (@couchtosprint) on

I’ll see you all at the finish line! 

Farid Abou Rjeily
Property Manager
Source: Couch To Sprint Blog
Follow Farid’s Journey on his blog and @couchtosprint

1 Month! It's time for a before after post. Timeframe: Day 1 ➖Month 1 Weight: 129.4 kg➖117.6 kg Fat Mass: 54.6 kg ➖44.2 kg BMI: 40.8 ➖37.2 So down 12 kg. Everything seems to be going as planned. Numbers look good. I'm very happy about that. Extremely happy!! Still over though, but who's counting anyway? I AM! Lol. Big up to @spartanarabia @fitnessfirstme for all the support. Can't forget the man with the master plan @dinis_fitness_crossfit_coach. Thanks buddy! Still a long way to go but we'll get there. Everyone around me has been extremely supportive. Love and kisses to my backbone @pixi2000 who has given me all the time and space to go ahead with this. I'm talking like i've just crossed the Spartan Race finish line!! 🏁 Enough. Back to work. Oh, if you swipe left, I tried to flex on you 💪🏻. Just practicing. AROO! . . . . . . . . #spartanrace #spartanarabia #spartanhatta #spartantraining #fitnessfirstme #fitnessfirstdubai #fitnessfirstuptownmirdif #empowerme #couchtosprint #legendswillrise #dontquitstayfit #mirdif #dubai #beforeandafter #progress #noquittingnow #longroadahead

A post shared by Couch To Sprint – You Decide (@couchtosprint) on

#EmpowerME

#EmpowerME

Tenderloin
Health & Nutrition

Tenderloin with Salsa Verde

posted by FitnessFirst Team June 12, 2017 0 comments

INGREDIENTS

  • Tenderloin beef
  • 1kg parsley, chopped
  • 500g basil, chopped
  • 500g coriander, chopped
  • 500g onion, finely diced
  • 200g Dijon mustard
  • 30g garlic
  • pinch apple vinegar
  • salt
  • 200ml olive oil

METHOD:

  • Seal the tenderloin and cook in the oven to desired doneness
  • Place chopped herbs, olive oil, garlic and mustard in robo coupe and blend to a paste
  • Remove and add the onions and correct the seasoning with the vinegar

Recipe provided by Pura pura.ae

Shakshuka
Health & Nutrition

How to make Shakshuka

posted by FitnessFirst Team June 12, 2017 0 comments

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 medium brown or white onion, peeled and diced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 medium green or red bell pepper, chopped
  • 4 cups ripe diced tomatoes, or 2 cans (14 oz. each) diced tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 tsp chili powder (mild)
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper (or more to taste– spicy!)
  • Pinch of sugar
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Poached eggs
  • 1/2 tbsp fresh chopped parsley (optional, for garnish)

Method

  • Heat a deep, large skillet or sauté pan on medium. Slowly warm olive oil in the pan. Add chopped onion, sauté for a few minutes until the onion begins to soften. Add garlic and continue to sauté till mixture is fragrant.
  • Add the bell pepper, sauté for 5-7 minutes over medium until softened.
  • Add tomatoes and tomato paste to pan, stir till blended. Add spices and sugar, stir well, and allow mixture to simmer over medium heat for 5-7 minutes till it starts to reduce. At this point, you can taste the mixture and spice it according to your preferences. Add salt and pepper to taste, more sugar for a sweeter sauce, or more cayenne pepper for a spicier shakshuka (be careful with the cayenne… it is extremely spicy!).
  • Serve tomato sauce and style poached eggs on top of the tomato sauce. Garnish with the chopped parsley, if desired.
  • Shakshuka can be eaten for Iftar or Suhoor. For Iftar, serve with warm crusty bread or pita that can be dipped into the sauce. For Suhoor, serve with a green side salad for a light, easy meal.

Recipe provided by Pura pura.ae

Turkey Meatloaf
Health & Nutrition

Turkey Meatloaf Recipe

posted by FitnessFirst Team June 6, 2017 0 comments

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 2 tbsp Dijon Mustard
  • 2 tsp tomato purée
  • 500g turkey mince
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 50ml BBQ sauce (homemade)
  • 1-2 tbsp roughly chopped parsley

Cook the onion for 8-10 mins until softened. Add the garlic, mustard and tomato purée, and stir until combined. Set aside to cool.

Put the turkey mince, egg and cooled onion mix in a large bowl and season well. Mix everything to combine, then pour into a rectangular lined roasting tin. Bake until cooked

Spread tomato sauce over the meatloaf end enjoy.

Recipe provided by Pura pura.ae

Gaucamole
Health & Nutrition

How to Make Perfect Guacamole Recipe

posted by FitnessFirst Team June 6, 2017 0 comments

Ingredients

  • Guacamole
  • 2 avocados, ripe
  • 1 tomato, de-seeded and diced
  • ¼ small hot chili
  • 30g coriander chopped
  • 1 lime, juice
  • 1 shallot, diced
  • sea salt

Put the avocado in a bowl and crush into large chunks

Fold in the remaining ingredients with a fork

Recipe provided by Pura pura.ae

 

Health & Nutrition

Protein Overnight Oats

posted by FitnessFirst Team May 31, 2017 0 comments

Ingredients

  • 50g Oats
  • 50g vanilla Protein powder
  • 30g Almond milk
  • 30g Water
  • 30g Berries

Mix the oats, vanilla protein powder, almond milk and water.

Chill over night. Pour on top of the berries. Enjoy!

Recipe provided by Pura pura.ae

Health & Nutrition

Healthy Chocolate Fudge

posted by FitnessFirst Team May 31, 2017 0 comments

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ cups almond butter
  • ½ cup chocolate
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
  • Sea salt, to top
  • Roasted almonds, to top 

Instructions

Line a 12 count muffin tin with six-muffin liners and set aside.

In a microwave safe bowl or stovetop, melt your chocolate almond butter with coconut oil. Stir through your pure maple syrup and mix until fully incorporated.

Divide mixture evenly amongst the lined muffin cups. Top each cup with an almond, if desired. Refrigerate or freeze. Once firm, sprinkle with sea salt, if desired.

Recipe provided by Pura pura.ae

Health & Nutrition

Roasted Strawberry Protein Shake

posted by FitnessFirst Team May 24, 2017 0 comments

Try this healthy treat for the taste buds as a post workout snack.

Roasted Strawberry, thyme and cottage cheese protein shake

  • Thyme roasted strawberries
  • Cottage cheese
  • Strawberry protein powder
  • Water
  • ½ banana
  • 1 cup Ice

Blend all ingredients and enjoy!

Recipe provided by Pura pura.ae

Health & Nutrition

Yellow Lentil Soup

posted by FitnessFirst Team May 24, 2017 0 comments

Try this healthy and hearty lentil soup for Iftar.

Yellow lentil soup

  • 200g of split red lentils, soaked
  • 50g chopped onion
  • 50g chopped celery
  • 50g chopped carrot
  • ¼ tsp green chili
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon of olive oil
  • 2ltr chicken stock
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 2.5 tsp kosher salt
  • ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • chopped parsley

 

METHOD

  • Rinse and soak the split red lentils for 15-20 minutes, then drain
  • Heat the oil up in a large pot over medium heat
  • Cook the onions, celery, and carrots for 7-10 minutes until they have become slightly translucent
  • Add in the garlic and cook for 30 more seconds
  • Add in the bay leaf, cumin powder, turmeric, drained lentils, chicken stock, and water
  • cook for 15-20 minutes or until the lentils have softened
  • Remove the bay leaf
  • Blend the soup to the consistency that you like
  • Season with the lemon juice, salt, and pepper
  • Top with chopped parsley

Recipe provided by Pura pura.ae

Fitness & Training

This Ramadan Aim to Maintain with MYZONE

posted by FitnessFirst Team June 13, 2016 0 comments

The aim of Ramadan is to maintain your fitness and MYZONE can help you do just that. Nicky Holland, Fitness Manager shows how to utilise your MYZONE belt to get the most from your workout during the Holy Month.

For more information on MYZONE please visit our website.

Spinach-coconut-water-shake
Health & Nutrition

Green Vanilla Shake

posted by FitnessFirst Team June 12, 2016 0 comments

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup of coconut water
  • 2 cups of baby spinach
  • 1 banana
  • 2 tablespoons of almond butter
  • 1 scoop of vanilla protein

Place all ingredients in the blender and blend until smooth.

This recipe is great as a a full post-workout meal.

Nutrition Facts: Provides  around 480 kcal with 19 g of healthy fats, 60 g of carbs, and 47 g of protein.

Almond Butter

Provides a great health benefits for the heart because of the healthy fats and fiber content, it has more 18 g of unsaturated fats with a low carbs content.

Spinach

is an excellent source of vitamin A, Vitamin K, manganese, folate, magnesium, iron, copper, vitamin B12, potassium, protein and vitamin C.

Coconut water

it is a natural sport drink, it is a natural isotonic drink, that provides the body electrolytes, calcium, magnesium, sodium and potassium.

Banana-dates-smoothie
Health & Nutrition

Banana Date Smoothie

posted by FitnessFirst Team June 8, 2016 0 comments

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium banana ripe
  • ¼ cup of pitted dates
  • 1 ¼  cup of almond milk
  • Dash of cinnamon and sea salt
  • 2 table spoons of chia seeds soaked in water (for 1 hour)

Place all ingredients in the blender and blend until smooth.

Great breakfast or pre-workout meal.

Nutrition Facts: 325 calories, 50 g of carbs, 9 g of healthy fats, and 7 grams of protein.

Chai seeds

Like flax seeds chia seeds are very high in omega 3, in fact it contains omega 3 more than salmon do compared one gram to one gram, omega 3 is very beneficial, for your concentration, memory, skin, vision, and heart health.

Cinnamon

cinnamon can treat muscles spasms, vomiting, diarrhea, infections, and common cold, loss of appetite, and can help maintain blood sugar in the body.